SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
image
N A T I O N

Chikamaglur: govt bows to saffron brigade
VHP allowed obeisance at shrine
Bangalore, December 4
In a partial victory for the saffron brigade, the JD(S)-BJP government today allowed thousands of activists of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and the Bajrang Dal to pay obeisance at the hill shrine of Baba Badungari-Dattatreya in Chikamaglur district.

Six more convicted in ’93 Mumbai blasts case
Rubina Memon, an accused in the 1993 Mumbai blast case, arrives at the TADA court in Mumbai on Monday. She was held guilty by the court.Trial ends with 100 convictions
Mumbai, December 4
The special court set up under the Terrorism and Disruptive Activities Act to conduct trial in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case concluded the proceedings today with the conviction of six accused. With this, 100 persons have been convicted in the case.

Rubina Memon, an accused in the 1993 Mumbai blast case, arrives at the TADA court in Mumbai on Monday. She was held guilty by the court. — PTI photo



EARLIER STORIES


Tension over dam heightens between TN, Kerala
Chennai, December 4
The Mullaperiyar dam issue, which has turned into a serious bone of contention between Tamil Nadu and Kerala, is gaining momentum as political outfits irrespective of their political affiliations are taking to the streets.

Truce between Somnath and BJP shortlived
BJP boycotts advisory committee meeting
New Delhi, December 4
The recent truce called between Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee and the BJP proved to be short-lived with the main Opposition party today boycotting the meeting of the business advisory committee which was called this afternoon to fix the week’s agenda.

By-poll in Andhra peaceful
Hyderabad, December 4
The polling for Karimnagar and Bobbili Parliamentary seats in Andhra Pradesh has passed off peacefully, despite the high voltage campaign to the run up to the by-elections.

SEZ: Notice to Haryana on Bishnoi plea
New Delhi, December 4
The Supreme Court today issued notices to the Centre, states of Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, the Haryana Industrial Development Corporation, M/s Reliance Ventures Limited, headed by Mr Mukesh Ambani, and the member secretary, National Capital Region Planning Board, on a petition filed by Congress MP Kuldip Bishnoi, challenging the acquisition of farmers' land without their consent for giving the same to big corporate houses for setting up special economic zones.

Nitish tells cops to nab prof’s killers
Patna, December 4
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has asked high-ups of the police to leave no stone unturned to nab the culprits behind the murder of noted professor of history at the Patna Women College, Papiya Ghoah.

BJP charges govt with gagging Oppn, boycotts RS
New Delhi, December 4
In protest against the alleged suppression of Opposition’s voice by the government, the BJP today boycotted the Lok Sabha and its Business Advisory Committee meetings this afternoon.

SC tells Zaheera to name politicians
New Delhi, December 4
The Supreme Court today told key prosecution witness in the Best Bakery case Zaheera Habibullah Sheikh either to name politicians who misled her and exploited her for political gains or delete the allegations made in her petition seeking waiving of the cost of Rs 50,000 imposed on her for contempt of the apex court.

EC action bid to malign JD (S): Gowda
New Delhi, December 4
JD (S) president and former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda has taken exception to the Election Commission clearing the Chamundeshwari Assembly constituency of his party leaders without taking any action to evict anti-social elements housed in community and marriage halls till late last night.

Meeting on global warming
New Delhi, December 4
Amid growing fears about global warning, a two-day international conference on climate change and its adverse consequences on development of countries like India will begin here on Thursday.

Mufti briefs PM on his US visit
New Delhi, December 4
Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and gave him a detailed account of his recent US visit during which he had several engagements including that at the United Nations.,

Soren sentence today
New Delhi, December 4
Former Coal Minister Shibu Soren, convicted of the 1994 murder of his secretary Shashi Nath Jha, is stable and will be taken to court from the Tihar Jail hospital for his sentence tomorrow.

Videos

‘With LUV...Tumhaara' hit theatres.

(56k)

Snake man  to enter Guinness Book of Records.

(56k)

 

Top









 

Chikamaglur: govt bows to saffron brigade
VHP allowed obeisance at shrine
Jangveer Singh
Tribune News Service

Bangalore, December 4
In a partial victory for the saffron brigade, the JD(S)-BJP government today allowed thousands of activists of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and the Bajrang Dal to pay obeisance at the hill shrine of Baba Badungari-Dattatreya in Chikamaglur district.

The JD(S) and its president, former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda, climbed down from the earlier stand of not allowing any congregation at the hill shrine, famous for its association with Muslim Sufi saint Baba Badungari and Lord Dattatreya.

This happened due to the reported trade-off between the two parties after the BJP decided not to put up its own candidate for the Chamundeshwari Assembly bypoll.

The programme was organised under unprecedented security, with more than seven thousand security personnel being posted at both Chikamaglur and at the hill shrine.

Devotees were somewhat inconvenienced due to a cage being put up at the hill shrine to regulate entry into it.

This did not apparently dampen the enthusiasm of the people, who were able to take part in this programme after a period of two years.

The BJP as well as saffron organisations were not entirely happy with the proceedings.

Chikamalgur legislator C.T. Ravi, also the state president of the BJP Yuva Morcha, said the organisers were not allowed to do 'puja' at the hill shrine.

He said the devotees were only allowed a darshan at the shrine and that the district administration had not allowed 'puja' at the shrine.

He claimed that this was against the spirit of the high court order on the issue as it had been clearly stated that Hindus could perform puja at the shrine.

Mr Ravi said 'puja' ceremonies were allowed at the shrine till 2003.

Mr Ravi said holding of 'puja' at the shrine was among the five demands of the BJP and now it would take the issue to the people's court.

He said the tremendous response to today's programme was an indication of the wish of the people.

The BJP held a procession at the shrine yesterday which also passed off peacefully.

The JD(S) heaved a sigh of relief at the successful conclusion of today's 'darshan' programme, mainly because the BJP had apparently stuck to its promise of ensuring peaceful celebrations at the shrine.

Senior BJP leaders kept away from the Datta Jayanti celebrations, which the party had endorsed, but was keen that the issue should not endanger the coalition government.

The district administration announced today that it would support the organisation of the Urs celebration at the shrine, famous because of its association with Sufi saint Baba Badungari, who had made it his home.

Top

 

Six more convicted in ’93 Mumbai blasts case
Trial ends with 100 convictions
Tribune News Service

Mumbai, December 4
The special court set up under the Terrorism and Disruptive Activities Act to conduct trial in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case concluded the proceedings today with the conviction of six accused. With this, 100 persons have been convicted in the case.

Judge Pramod Kode concluded the trial with the conviction of six persons for throwing bombs at the Mahim causeway.

Three persons were killed and six others were injured in that incident.

They are: Bashir Ahmed Usman Ghani Khairullah (accused No. 13), Zakir Hussain Noor Mohammad Sheikh (accused No. 32), Feroz Akram Amani Malik (accused No. 39), Mohammad Moin Faridulla Qureshi (accused No. 43), Salim Rahim Sheikh (accused No. 52) and Abdul Khan, alias Yakub Khan, (accused No. 36).

All were found guilty of conspiracy, aiding and abetment, weapons training and making bombs.

The six had travelled in a car to the fishermen’s colony at Mahim where five of them hurled grenades. Salim Sheikh drove the vehicle.

All were found guilty of obtaining arms training and attending a conspiracy meeting in Pakistan.

With the trial coming to an end, 23 persons were acquitted during the 13-year-long process.

Judge Kode will now complete hearing arguments regarding the quantum of punishment to the accused before sentencing them.

Among the more famous accused in the case is actor Sanjay Dutt.

Top

 

Tension over dam heightens between TN, Kerala
Tribune News Service

Chennai, December 4
The Mullaperiyar dam issue, which has turned into a serious bone of contention between Tamil Nadu and Kerala, is gaining momentum as political outfits irrespective of their political affiliations are taking to the streets.

Even actor-turned politician and legislator Vijaykanth joined issue with Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi and put the blame on him for Tamil Nadu’s plight.

A large number of political activists were arrested today in various parts of the state as they blocked road traffic on the Kerala border demanding the raising of the water level in the dam to 142 feet.

Kerala wants the water level to be raised up to a maximum of 136 feet and Kerala Chief Minister V.S. Achitanandan had said in case the dam burst after raising the water level to 142 feet “35 lakh people would be swept away to the Arabian sea”.

DMDK founder Vijaykanth today came down heavily on Mr Karunanidhi for the Chief Minister’s remarks that it was the Central Government’s policy not to entrust the Water Resources Department to the states involved in water disputes.

He said the DMK had never asked for the ministry and now Mr Karunanidhi was coming out with new found reasons for it.

Instead, he pointed out that Mr Dayanidhi Maran was functioning as the Minister for IT and Communications despite his family having interest in the communication industry as it was running a satellite TV chain network.

Refuting Mr Karunanidhi’s logic that the Mullaperiyar dam issue was yet to reach the climax, Mr Vijaykanth said the Supreme Court order allowing the state to raise the water level from the present 136 feet to 142 feet was the climax.

He remarked, “The feature film should stop with the climax. If it continues after that, it is a rerun of the film”.

Top

 

Truce between Somnath and BJP shortlived
BJP boycotts advisory committee meeting
Anita Katyal
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 4
The recent truce called between Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee and the BJP proved to be short-lived with the main Opposition party today boycotting the meeting of the business advisory committee which was called this afternoon to fix the week’s agenda.

Mr Chatterjee, it was learnt, was mystified about the BJP’s absence as he had received no word from its leaders about their decision to stay away from the meeting, which was significantly attended by its ally, the Shiv Sena.

He is unlikely to initiate a dialogue with the Opposition and has instead left it to the government to do so.

Since the main opposition party was not present, the Speaker felt there was no point in taking any decision on the week’s business. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Priyaranjan Dasmunsi apprised the meeting about the government business, which includes the passage of the supplementary demands for grants for the general and rail budgets. A number minor legislations have also been listed.

The Speaker, on his part, is mulling over the futility of restarting his morning meetings with party leaders as the BJP continues to disrupt proceedings after giving word that it will allow the House to function.

He mentioned this at today’s meeting but Mr Dasmunsi made a forceful plea for continuing this exercise as it helps resolve a lot of misunderstandings.

This practice was resumed this session after a long gap suggesting that relations between the BJP and the Speaker, which had hit rock-bottom earlier this year, were now on the mend.

Sources in the Speaker’s office said the BJP leaders had not given any notice or mentioned that they intended to protest their President Rajnath Singh’s arrest in Singur at the morning meeting, which was meant to discuss the issues to be raised during the day.

According to Parliamentary Affairs Minister Priyaranjan Dasmunsi, BJP leader Santosh Gangawar had said that besides its newly-elected member Shahnawaz Hussain, they did not wish to raise any other issue.

He said the Speaker and the government were taken by surprise when the BJP suddenly disrupted proceedings, indulged in slogan-shouting and then staged a walk-out.

It was being seen as a ploy to drown the presentations of the non-BJP MPs, who had visited Gujarat last week to assess the steps taken by the Narendra Modi government to provide relief and rehabilitation to riot victims. CPM’s Basudev Acharia and Madhusudan Mistry of the Congress were listed to speak but could not be heard in the din.

Meanwhile, Mr Dasmunsi denied the BJP charge that he was influencing the Speaker, stating that as the Parliamentary Affairs Minister, it was his job to act as a bridge between the government and the Speaker’s office and between the treasury and the Opposition.

Top

 

By-poll in Andhra peaceful
Tribune News Service

Hyderabad, December 4
The polling for Karimnagar and Bobbili Parliamentary seats in Andhra Pradesh has passed off peacefully, despite the high voltage campaign to the run up to the by-elections.

For the first time in the recent history of the state multi-cornered contests were witnessed in both constituencies with the Congress, the TDP, the BJP and the TRS candidates in the fray.

Despite the hype surrounding the by-poll, especially in Karimnagar, where the political future of the TRS as well as its chief K. Chandrasekhar Rao was at stake, the polling percentage, surprisingly, has not witnessed any dramatic increase.

While Karimnagar registered barely 60 per cent votes, in Bobbili 71 per cent cast their vote. The low percentage of polling in Karimnagar is despite the fact that all political parties spared no effort in wooing the electorate to the ballot box.

The ruling Congress has taken the by-election seriously even though Karimnagar and Bobbili were held by the TRS and the TDP, respectively. Chief Minister Rajasekhara Reddy himself campaigned vigorously in both seats.

TRS chief K. Chandrasekhar Rao is testing his luck once again from Karimnagar, which is being fought aggressively by all major political parties. Rao should not only be able to retain this seat, but would have to demonstrate a large majority if his sub-regional party were to survive on the separate state slogan till the next elections.

The TDP is facing a stiff fight in Bobbili from the ruling Congress, which fielded the wife of a Cabinet minister as its candidate. The opposition party is banking on sympathy vote, as its candidate is the son of K. Appala Naidu, whose death necessitated the poll.

The outcome of the by-poll is being keenly watched by observers in the state, as multi-party contests are likely to throw up unexpected results. The counting of votes will be taken up on December 7.

Top

 

SEZ: Notice to Haryana on Bishnoi plea

New Delhi, December 4
The Supreme Court today issued notices to the Centre, states of Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, the Haryana Industrial Development Corporation (HSIDC), M/s Reliance Ventures Limited, headed by Mr Mukesh Ambani, and the member secretary, National Capital Region Planning Board, on a petition filed by Congress MP Kuldip Bishnoi, challenging the acquisition of farmers' land without their consent for giving the same to big corporate houses for setting up special economic zones (SEZs).

Mr Justice K.G. Balakrishnan and Mr Justice D.K. Jain issued notices to examine the conflict among the three laws on a PIL filed by Mr Kuldeep Bishnoi, son of former CM Bhajan Lal. — UNI

Top

 

Nitish tells cops to nab prof’s killers
Tribune News Service

Patna, December 4
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has asked high-ups of the police to leave no stone unturned to nab the culprits behind the murder of noted professor of history at the Patna Women College, Papiya Ghoah.

Hundreds of Patna University teachers today went on mass leave and staged a silent dharna in front of the Wheeler Senate Hall, demanding a CBI probe into the murder of their colleague.

Dr Papiya Ghosh (53) and her 70-year-old domestic help were found stabbed to death in her home in the posh Pataliputra Colony on Sunday.

Of late, the slain professor of international repute was working to rebuild Brand Bihar with her research work on the Bihar diaspora.

Noted historian Vijay Kumar Thakur said Dr Ghosh was widely respected as an academician in Delhi and overseas.

The member secretary of the Asian Development Research Institute (ADRI), Mr Shaibal Gupta, recalled Ghosh's contribution in documenting the state of Muslims in Bihar.

Patna University Teachers' Association (PUTA) president U.K. Sinha wondered the motives behind the murder of a non-controversial woman like Dr Ghosh and urged the Nitish government to unravel the truth.

Leader of opposition Rabri Devi had already demanded a CBI probe into the murders.

Top

 

BJP charges govt with gagging Oppn, boycotts RS
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 4
In protest against the alleged suppression of Opposition’s voice by the government, the BJP today boycotted the Lok Sabha and its Business Advisory Committee meetings this afternoon.

Talking to newspersons here, party spokesperson Vijay Kumar Malhotra said the BJP Parliamentary Party could meet tomorrow where the future course of action would be chalked out.

“While Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day amid din over the issue, the Lok Sabha, ignoring rules, completed the debate on the price rise issue when the whole House was in uproar. Besides, the Railway’s Supplementary Demand for Grants was also introduced in the Lok Sabha”, he said, alleging that the government and the Lok Sabha Speaker had together “tried to gag the Opposition”.

Top

 

SC tells Zaheera to name politicians

New Delhi, December 4
The Supreme Court today told key prosecution witness in the Best Bakery case Zaheera Habibullah Sheikh either to name politicians who misled her and exploited her for political gains or delete the allegations made in her petition seeking waiving of the cost of Rs 50,000 imposed on her for contempt of the apex court.

A Bench comprising Mr Justice Arijit Pasayat and Mr Justice H K Sema granted 10 days to Zahira to delete the objectionable portion of para 4 of her application, seeking the reduction of her one-year's imprisonment to the time already undergone.

The court wanted Zaheera to disclose the names of the politicians so that appropriate action could be taken against them.

Zaheera was the eyewitness in the case in which 14 persons were burnt alive during the 2002 Gujarat communal riots which were sparked off by the Godhra incident. — UNI

Top

 

EC action bid to malign JD (S): Gowda
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 4
JD (S) president and former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda has taken exception to the Election Commission clearing the Chamundeshwari Assembly constituency of his party leaders without taking any action to evict anti-social elements housed in community and marriage halls till late last night.

In a letter to the Chief Election Commissioner, Mr Gowda said the orders of the EC and the reprimand of Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy on the basis of unspecified media reports and the seizure of state government vehicles and private cars without valid reasons seemed to paint the JD (S) as the villain.

He claimed that several union ministers, including former Chief Ministers belonging to the Congress, were “freely moving around in the constituency in official vehicles while Mr Kumaraswamy had been booked for the violation of the model code of conduct”.

Mr Gowda said the EC as a custodian of free and fair conduct of elections must also appear to be fair and transparent in dealing with all political parties and elected representatives. The EC should do some soul searching to enable the people of Chamundeshwari to express their will freely without any fear or favour, he added.

Top

 

Meeting on global warming

New Delhi, December 4
Amid growing fears about global warning, a two-day international conference on climate change and its adverse consequences on development of countries like India will begin here on Thursday.

The conference will bring together top academics, policy makers and global experts to discuss the magnitude of climate-related risks and the need for adopting a coherent climate adaptation strategy to offset negative consequences of such a change.

The conference is being jointly organised by the MoEF, the European Commission, the World Bank and a host of other organisations. — TNS

Top

 

Mufti briefs PM on his US visit
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 4
Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and gave him a detailed account of his recent US visit during which he had several engagements including that at the United Nations.,

Mr Sayeed, who returned from a month long visit yesterday, told the Prime Minister that the prevailing atmosphere in the sub-continent was supportive of a peaceful and permanent solution of the Kashmir issue. There existed a "window of opportunity", he said.

During his interaction in the US, the former Chief Minister presented the "self-rule formula" as a solution to the contentious issue.

Top

 

Soren sentence today
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 4
Former Coal Minister Shibu Soren, convicted of the 1994 murder of his secretary Shashi Nath Jha, is stable and will be taken to court from the Tihar Jail hospital for his sentence tomorrow.

Jail doctors said Soren would be able to go to the court, according to sources in the jail.

Soren was shifted to the jail hospital on Sunday from the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) where he was admitted on Tuesday after he complained of chest pain.

Top

 
BRIEFLY

Train engine hits bogey, 23 hurt
Betul (MP):
Twentythree passengers of an express train were injured after an engine hit its rear compartment during shunting at the Tigaon station, around 100 km from here, today, Railway sources said. Passengers of the Tirupati-Patna Express sleeping on the top berths fell and sustained injuries as the engine, which was being connected to the train for additional support, dashed against it, they said. The injured were given medical attention at the Aamla railway station, the sources said, adding that the train was delayed for around two hours due to the incident. — PTI

Blockade call by Naga students
Kohima
: Not satisfied with the state government's stand on its demand for a CBI probe into the alleged scam in the Nagaland Public Service Commission (NPSC), the Naga Students Federation (NSF) has called for a 24-hour highways blockade on December 5. The NSF and the Eastern Nagaland Students Federation, in a joint statement, said the blockade would be enforced in Kohima and Dimapur districts, through which NH-39, which linked Manipur with Assam via Nagaland, passed. — PTI

Top

 

HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |