SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
image
N A T I O N

Quota: Commission for imprisoning lax officers
Hyderabad, February 11
The National Commission for Scheduled Castes has recommended imprisonment for officers who fail to implement the rule of reservation in central government jobs.

NHRC wants only CBI to deal with terrorism cases
New Delhi, February 11
In a suggestion to the Supreme Court, the National Human Rights Commission expressed its view that only the CBI should be given the power to look into cases of terrorism.

Rickhshaw pullers wade through a water-logged street after heavy rain in Mathura on Sunday. Rickhshaw pullers wade through a water-logged street after heavy rain in Mathura on Sunday. — PTI photo


EARLIER STORIES




Railway Minister Lalu Prasad prepares to sample food from a stall on a platform at Patna junction railway station on Sunday during an inspection of facilities.
Railway Minister Lalu Prasad prepares to sample food from a stall on a platform at Patna junction railway station on Sunday during an inspection of facilities. — AFP

45 feared drowned in bus mishap
Bulandshahr, February 11
At least 45 passengers were feared drowned when a private bus smashed through the crash barrier and plunged into the upper Ganga canal in the Rajghat area here this afternoon.

Karnataka to come to a halt today
Bangalore, February 11
Karnataka is set to come to a standstill tomorrow with a state-wide bandh called by various organisations getting indirect support from the Janata Dal (Secular)-BJP government.

BJP leader stoned to death
Dehra Dun, February 11
A local BJP leader was stoned to death in Bageshwar district of Uttarakhand following which the party today lodged a complaint with the Election Commission accusing the ruling Congress of engineering the attack.

BJP expels 16 rebels
Dehra Dun, February 11
The BJP today expelled 16 rebels for anti-party activities for a period of six years.

We will convince you on SEZ, Buddha to farmers
Khejuri, February 11
Facing flak over his government’s farmland acquisition policy, West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee today sought to soften up protests by assuring farmers of Nandigram that land for an SEZ by the Indonesian Salim group would not be taken until the people were convinced about the need for it.

CBI team visits Singur
Singur, February 11
A seven-member CBI team today visited Singur in Hooghly district in connection with the mysterious death of an activist of the Save Farmland Movement, fighting against the Tata small car project.

400-yr-old mausoleums to get new look with Iranian expertise
Hyderabad, February 11
The 400-year-old Qutb Shahi tombs, mausoleums of the rulers of Golconda, are all set to get a new look with the help of Iranians experts.

India-China-Russia meeting on Feb 14
Iran issue likely to dominate
New Delhi, February 11
The Foreign Minister-level India-Russia-China trilateral meeting, to be held here on February 14, is likely to have an in-depth discussion on the Iranian nuclear impasse where the three countries have a near-identical position.

‘Wage board for journalists soon’
Kochi, February 11
The Centre will expedite the constitution of a new wage board for journalists and non-journalists, Union Minister for Non-Resident Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi said today.

NCR residents seek parity with metros
New Delhi, February 11
Phenomenonal development and influx of multinational companies have completely transformed townships like Gurgaon, Faridabad, Noida and Ghaziabad in the National Capital Region (NCR), pushing up the residential rental values manifold in the past few years.

Experiments on to study universe
New Delhi, February 11
Indian scientists are testing magnets to carry out experiments in understanding the creation of the universe at the world's most powerful particle accelerator in Switzerland that will be commissioned in November.

Actor Yunus Parvez dead
Mumbai, February 11
Film actor Yunus Parvez, known for his performances in films like ‘Deewar’ and ‘Mr India’, passed away at his residence in the neighbouring Thane district’s Mira Road this morning, family sources said.

Sonia visits Manipur today
Imphal, February 11
AICC President Sonia Gandhi will visit Manipur tomorrow to address two election meetings, Congress sources said today.

‘Mathrubhumi’s Delhi edition today
New Delhi, February 11
Malayalam daily ‘The Mathrubhumi’ will launch its edition from Delhi tomorrow.

Top









 

Quota: Commission for imprisoning lax officers
Tribune News Service

Hyderabad, February 11
The National Commission for Scheduled Castes has recommended imprisonment for officers who fail to implement the rule of reservation in central government jobs.

Speaking to reporters here, the Commission Vice-Chairman, Fakirbhai Vaghela, said a clause should be included in the draft bill on reservations for SC/STs and OBCs in civil and other posts of the central government, which implements punitive measures for erring officials, including a six-month jail term, a fine of not less than Rs 5000, or both.

While pressing for reservation for SCs in the private sector, the Commission, however, rejected the proposal to extend the benefit of reservation for converted Dalit Christians and Muslims.

"The reservation for SCs is mainly based on the factor of the practice of untouchability. This stigma is not there in other religions," Mr Vaghela clarified.

Quotas for the weaker sections of the society in the private industry is also sought by the Commission as it feels that corporate companies, which get a slew of sops from the government, have the responsibility to give back to the society.

The Commission also opposed the proposal of the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment to provide the benefit of reservation to women who get married to upper-caste men. Extending such a benefit will deprive a large number of SCs of their share in reservations, Mr Vaghela explained.

Aggrieved persons from the weaker sections of the society can contact the Commission's Head Office in Delhi at their toll free number-1800118888.

Top

 

NHRC wants only CBI to deal with terrorism cases

New Delhi, February 11
In a suggestion to the Supreme Court, the National Human Rights Commission expressed its view that only the CBI should be given the power to look into cases of terrorism.

According to the Commission, the state police, which has so far been tackling such crimes, is increasingly finding itself handicapped to deal with such cases due to the sophistication and spread of the offences, which at times cross national boundaries.

The Commission also said there is an acute need to identify certain offences as federal crimes and entrust them to the central agency to be dealt with by their specialised investigators.

In order to bring transparency in the investigation against corrupt public servants, the Commission suggested these federal cases also be handed over to the CBI.

Interestingly, suggestions given by the Soli Sorabjee Committee, constituted for the drafting of the new Police Act, is of the opinion that the present system is not sufficient to tackle these problems and a separate federal agency should be constituted. — PTI

Top

 

45 feared drowned in bus mishap

Bulandshahr, February 11
At least 45 passengers were feared drowned when a private bus smashed through the crash barrier and plunged into the upper Ganga canal in the Rajghat area here this afternoon.

According to official sources, about 70 persons were travelling aboard the bus when the accident took place at Nangla Beni village at 3:30 pm. The driver lost control of the vehicle since it was raining and the road had turned slippery.

Some passengers swam to safety. At least 15 bodies had been fished out by divers so far.

The accident site was 50 km from district headquarters. Rescue operations were on. — UNI

Top

 

Karnataka to come to a halt today
Jangveer Singh
Tribune News Service

Bangalore, February 11
Karnataka is set to come to a standstill tomorrow with a state-wide bandh called by various organisations getting indirect support from the Janata Dal (Secular)-BJP government.

Various farmers’ organisations, including Kaveri Hitarakshana Horata Samithi, whose leader, G. Madegowda, has started a hunger strike in Mandya since yesterday, and the Karnataka Rakshana Vedike, are likely to be at the forefront at Mandya and Bangalore tomorrow.

The fact that Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy was able to "persuade" various organisations to defer the bandh call from February 8 to 12 due to the Aero-India show speaks about the power he weilds to lead the agitation from behind the scenes along with his father-former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda.

Two ministers have already shown on which side of the fence they are by participating in a road-blockade with farmers on the Mysore- Bangalore road yesterday. The momentum for tomorrow's ‘bandh’ as well as a sustained protest movement against the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal's "injustice" against Karnataka has been established with various protests being held all over the state today.

Farmers stopped trains at Mandya as well as at stations in Mysore and Bangalore today. The Bangalore-Mysore Express highway was also blocked. In Mysore, the MP C.H. Vidyashankar participated in a dharna and said he would lead a delegation of MPs to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and stall the implementation of the Tribunal verdict.

Meanwhile state’s Director-General of Police (DGP) K.R. Srinivasan told newsmen that security had been beefed up for tomorrow's bandh with more than 160 platoons of Central Reserve Forces apart from the State Police and Armed Reserve Police at sensitive areas in Bangalore as well as in the entire Cauvery basin. He said state police had rounded up nearly 5000 anti-social elements during the past one week.

The Karnataka Rakshana Vedike disclosed that it would not allow Central Government offices to function tomorrow. The state government has also ordered closure of all schools and colleges tomorrow. A large number of IT companies have already announced they would not be working tomorrow.

Top

 

BJP leader stoned to death

Dehra Dun, February 11
A local BJP leader was stoned to death in Bageshwar district of Uttarakhand following which the party today lodged a complaint with the Election Commission accusing the ruling Congress of engineering the attack.

Rajendra Singh Bhoriyal, BJP chairman of Tusreda village of the district, was attacked in Aulani area yesterday and died due to excessive bleeding, the police said.

They said his body was recovered from a field nearby where it had been thrown, and had been sent for post-mortem.

A manhunt was on for Bhoriyal's attackers, they said. — PTI

Top

 

BJP expels 16 rebels

Dehra Dun, February 11
The BJP today expelled 16 rebels for anti-party activities for a period of six years.

Among those expelled from the BJP for contesting against official candidates in the coming assembly polls are three-time MP Harpal Singh Sathi and sitting MLA from Purola Malchand, a BJP press statement said.

While Sathi was contesting as an independent from the Iqbalpur Assembly seat against BJP candidate Chhavi Tyagi, Malchand is seeking re-election from Purola against BJP’s official nominee Amrit Nagar.

Earlier the Congress had expelled 32 rebels for contesting against their official candidates. — PTI

Top

 

We will convince you on SEZ, Buddha to farmers

Khejuri, February 11
Facing flak over his government’s farmland acquisition policy, West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee today sought to soften up protests by assuring farmers of Nandigram that land for an SEZ by the Indonesian Salim group would not be taken until the people were convinced about the need for it.

Addressing a CPI(M) rally at Khejuri, adjoining Nandigram, the Chief Minister accused the opposition of trying to whip up people’s sentiments by making false propaganda about the state’s industrial policy.

The Chief Minister said the state government would explain to the people in detail the benefits that would be accrued from the chemical hub and the multi-product SEZ in Nandigram and also the returns farmers would get from it.

“If the people are not convinced about this logic, we will definitely have to think of shifting the project elsewhere, but we will patiently go to the people and try to answer all questions and whatever misgivings they have”, he said.

“Our politics is aimed at development and raising the living standard of the people and opposition politics revolves around digging roads and attacking police and CPI(M) men”, he claimed.

Distributing rights over land among 5040 landless farmers in Nandigram and adjoining areas, the Chief Minister said, “People need to understand that the industrial process being initiated by the state government is irreversible and transition from agriculture to industry is an inevitable course”.

Mr Bhattacharjee reaffirmed the government’s resolve to make the Tata Motors small car project in Singur a reality.

He said 96 per cent of the farmers had given consent for land for the factory and taken the compensation cheques.

Only four per cent of farmers were yet to give their consent for handing over their land for the project, he said, adding that the question was whether the project would be scrapped for only four per cent people.

The Chief Minister assured the people that utmost care would be taken to ensure the rehabilitation of the families displaced and proper price for the losers of land.

He said investment proposals to the tune of Rs 10,000 crore for Haldia, where the state’s second port was situated, had been received from Germany and the USA, besides the Tatas.

Haldia adjoining Nandigram, where the chemical hub would be set up, had attracted investment worth Rs 20,000 crore, employing 40,000 people, he said.

The IOC would set up the mother unit of the chemical hub, which would give rise to several downstream industries, the CM said. — PTI

Top

 

CBI team visits Singur

Singur, February 11
A seven-member CBI team today visited Singur in Hooghly district in connection with the mysterious death of an activist of the Save Farmland Movement, fighting against the Tata small car project.

The CBI team, led by joint director Arun Kumar, met several people in the area to gather information.

Tapasi Malik was found dead under mysterious circumstances in the Bajemelia Dakshinpara locality in December last.

CBI DSP Parthasarathi Bose said the investigation was on the right track and they were hopeful of wrapping up the probe process shortly, but refused to divulge details.

The investigating agency first went to the village on December 20 and talked to the relatives of the deceased.

The sleuths had also visited the area in January and collected samples. — PTI

Top

 

400-yr-old mausoleums to get new look with Iranian expertise
Ramesh Kandula
Tribune News Service

Hyderabad, February 11
The 400-year-old Qutb Shahi tombs, mausoleums of the rulers of Golconda, are all set to get a new look with the help of Iranians experts.

The government of Andhra Pradesh, with the assistance of Iran, will take up the conservation and restoration of the historical Qutb Shahi tombs and gardens, the Premamati mosque and the Badeshahi Ashurkhana to restore them to their pristine glory. These three monuments were designed by Iranian engineers around 400 years ago during the rule of the Qutb Shahi dynasty.

The Central Government has agreed in principle to provide an assistance of Rs 8 crore, sought by the state, to restore these monuments. The Centre has also agreed to include these tombs in the preliminary listing for the status of a world heritage.

Considered the most eloquent specimens of Indo-Persian architecture, the tombs, located near Golconda fort, are dedicated to the memory of the seven Qutb Shahi kings who ruled Golconda for nearly 170 years. Prominent among these tombs is the one erected in the memory of Hayath Bakshi Begum, daughter of Muhammed Quli Qutub Shah, founder of Hyderabad city.

An Iranian delegation, led by the Consul General of Iran, Hossein Ravesh, called on Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy at the Secretariat today. Reddy showed keen interest in the project and assured complete support of the state government.

The five-member Iranian team of experts consisted of Dr Khoshnawisi, Director, Institute for Research of Monuments; Mr Jalali, a garden expert; Mr Parhizgari, Director General of Owej Construction Company; Hasan Rahsaz, an expert on stones and carvings; and Hasan Agajani, an expert on tiles and historical monuments.

The team will work in coordination with the Director of Archaeology and Museums for five days and prepare a project report which will then be routed by the Chief Minister to the Centre for clearance.

Top

 

‘Wage board for journalists soon’

Kochi, February 11
The Centre will expedite the constitution of a new wage board for journalists and non-journalists, Union Minister for Non-Resident Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi said today.

Inaugurating the three-day annual general meeting of the Federation of PTI Employees Unions here, he said he would use all his influences to ensure that the board was constituted without further delay and exhorted trade unions to take up matters related to retirement benefits along with the prime task of enhancing the wage structure.

Lamenting that issues of the common man were not getting the importance they deserved in the media, he said journalists should focus on the problems of a major chunk of the population living below the poverty line.

"While the marriages of film stars are hogging headlines, reports on developmental issues, suicides by farmers and problems of the common man are getting relegated to the back pages,” he said. — PTI

Top

 

India-China-Russia meeting on Feb 14
Iran issue likely to dominate
Rajeev Sharma
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 11
The Foreign Minister-level India-Russia-China trilateral meeting, to be held here on February 14, is likely to have an in-depth discussion on the Iranian nuclear impasse where the three countries have a near-identical position.

The stated position of New Delhi, Moscow and Beijing is that the problem should be resolved by negotiations within the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), though on its part Iran, too, should follow international rules. The India-Russia-China trilateral meeting takes place at a time when the UN’s Security Council is just weeks away from slapping second phase of sanctions on Tehran for its alleged nuclear weapons programme.

Knowledgeable officials here believe that the Foreign Minister-level trilateral meeting of Pranab Mukherjee, Sergey Lavrov and Li Zhaoxing will be largely exploratory, where the three powers will try to assess and ascertain the areas where they can work in a trilateral format. Of the three sides, only Russia has been most vocal and strong advocate of this trilateral axis, while New Delhi and Beijing have been quite reticent.

This will be the first-ever structured interaction among India, Russia and China in a trilateral format.

At the trilateral meeting, the three countries are likely to favour resumption of negotiations between Iran and Germany before the February 21 deadline of the much-awaited IAEA report that could form a basis for tougher sanctions against Iran.

The Chinese Foreign Minister, Mr Li Zhaoxing, arrived in India on a four-day official visit. He will hold bilateral discussions with his Indian counterpart, Mr Pranab Mukherjee, on February 13. During the visit, the Chinese Foreign Minister will also call on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Li Zhaoxing will participate in the inaugural function of the Xuan Zang (Hieun Tsang) Memorial at Nalanda tomorrow. The External Affairs Minister, the Chinese Foreign Minister and the Minister for Culture and Tourism will together launch the ‘India-China Friendship Through Tourism Year’ on February 14 at a function organised by the Ministry of Tourism in New Delhi.

Top

 

NCR residents seek parity with metros
S. Satyanarayanan
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 11
Phenomenonal development and influx of multinational companies have completely transformed townships like Gurgaon, Faridabad, Noida and Ghaziabad in the National Capital Region (NCR), pushing up the residential rental values manifold in the past few years.

This phenomenon has led to residents of these townships demanding parity with metros like Delhi for exemption in respect of House Rent Allowance (HRA) while calculating income tax.

Their argument is that while the residents of metros get 50 per cent exemption in HRA, residents of these townships get only 40 per cent exemption in HRA, though over the years residential rentals have gone up and are either at par or more than that prevailing in metros like Delhi.

Rentals in Gurgaon are much higher than in in east Delhi and while an employee in east Delhi is entitled to exemption up to 50 per cent of his basic, the employee in Gurgaon is entitled to only 40 per cent of his basic.

Top

 

Experiments on to study universe

New Delhi, February 11
Indian scientists are testing magnets to carry out experiments in understanding the creation of the universe at the world's most powerful particle accelerator in Switzerland that will be commissioned in November.

The 27-km underground tunnel of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will smash protons at very high speeds to recreate the conditions encountered in the first few billionths of a second of the creation of the universe.

"Indian scientists are testing magnets for one of the four detectors being built for the LHC," Robert Aymar, Director General of the European Organisation For Nuclear Research (CERN) said.

By December 2006, nearly 80 per cent of the LHC's magnets, the main components of the machine, was installed underground in a facility built close to the Swiss-France border near Geneva.

A huge layered particle detector built using cutting-edge technology, involving both hardware and software, will be used to track and identify the particles produced in the collisions. — PTI

Top

 

Actor Yunus Parvez dead

Mumbai, February 11
Film actor Yunus Parvez, known for his performances in films like ‘Deewar’ and ‘Mr India’, passed away at his residence in the neighbouring Thane district’s Mira Road this morning, family sources said.

He was 75. Parvez is survived by his wife and two children, they said.

He was suffering from acute diabetes and was not well for past several days. He was about to be taken to a specialty hospital for treatment later in the day, family sources said.

In his career spanning nearly four decades, Parvez had acted in over 200 films, mostly doing character roles. - PTI

Top

 

Sonia visits Manipur today

Imphal, February 11
AICC President Sonia Gandhi will visit Manipur tomorrow to address two election meetings, Congress sources said today.

Ms Gandhi had addressed two election meetings last week at Imphal and Wangjing in Thoubal district. — PTI

Top

 

‘Mathrubhumi’s Delhi edition today

New Delhi, February 11
Malayalam daily ‘The Mathrubhumi’ will launch its edition from Delhi tomorrow.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will receive the first copy of the paper at his residence, the daily said. — 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 |