SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
image
N A T I O N

Sanjay gets reprieve till Sept 27
Mumbai, August 27
Actor Sanjay Dutt, who is temporarily out of jail after being convicted by the TADA court for possessing weapons under the Arms Act, will not be sent to jail till September 27.
Actor Sanjay Dutt arrives at TADA court in Mumbai to make his weekly appearance on Monday.
Actor Sanjay Dutt arrives at TADA court in Mumbai to make his weekly appearance on Monday. Dutt has got a four-week respite from jail as he is to receive a copy of the TADA court's judgement on September 27. — PTI

NHRC against deporting Pak asylum seekers
New Delhi, August 27
The National Human Rights Commission has recommended that 63 Pakistan asylum seekers should not be deported to their home country till the government takes a decision on their request for asylum.

Death toll crosses 500 mark
Bihar reeling under worst floods
Patna, August 27
The UN has already called it the worst flood for Bihar in human history. Over 500 persons have lost their lives in the current spell of floods in the state with fresh reports of 23 deaths today.






EARLIER STORIES




Erosion threatens world’s biggest river island
Guwahati, August 27
The world’s biggest river island, Majuli, located in the bosom of the mighty Brahmaputra is facing serious threat of erosion by the river that has already eaten into a large chunk of the island.

Sikkim-Bhutan road blocked

General J.J. Singh Army chief favours ‘Theatre Command’
New Delhi, August 27
The Chief of Army Staff General J.J. Singh today expressed his opinion for the setting up of an integrated ‘Theatre Command’ comprising officers in battle fatigues, besides experts from the ministries of Defence and External Affairs.

Dadi Parkash Mani cremated
Mt. Abu, August 27
Dadi Parkash Mani, chief administrator head of Prajapat Brahmakumari Ishwarya Vishwa Vidhyalaya, and recipient of United Nations International Year of Peace Medal in 1986 and International Peace Messenger Award from the UN secretary-general in 1987, was cremated at Shanti Van complex of the Brahmakumaris organisation, here today.

Salman Khan's father Salim Khan, his mother Salma and brother Sohail Khan arrive at Jodhpur Central Jail to see him on Monday. Salman has been jailed after his sentence was upheld by a lower court.
Salman Khan's father Salim Khan, his mother Salma and brother Sohail Khan arrive at Jodhpur Central Jail to see him on Monday. Salman has been jailed after his sentence was upheld by a lower court. — PTI

Rakhi greetings
New Delhi, August 27
President Pratibha Devisingh Patil, Vice-President Mohd. Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh have greeted the nation and Indians living abroad on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan.

Adulterated khoya

Lakhs pay obeisance to Lord Shiva
Varanasi, August 27
Lakhs of pilgrims from across the country today offered 'jalabhishek' at the Kashi Vishwanath temple and other Lord Shiva shrines here on the occasion of the fourth and final Monday of the auspicious month of Shravan.

Pension Fraud
Dead man gets pay, boy retires at 12
Imphal, August 27
Sounds bizarre, but it is true. An employee of the Electricity Department in Manipur who passed away 22 years ago has been getting his salary and pension, while a 12-year-old boy has already retired from a government job.

Kashmiri antiques to be exhibited in New York
New Delhi, August 27
Several Kashmiri antiques, including Buddhist, Hindu and Islamic art works, will be on display at a three-month-long exhibition being organised in New York from October to showcase the artistic contributions of the culturally rich region.

MEA to issue apostilles from Aug 29
New Delhi, August 27
The Ministry of External Affairs will start issuing apostilles from August 29. The apostilles will be issued by the CPV Division, Patiala House, the MEA said today.

Praveen Mahajan says life in danger
Mumbai, August 27
Praveen Mahajan, who stands accused of murdering his elder brother and BJP leader Pramod Mahajan, today petitioned the court to shift him to the Thane Jail saying his life was in danger in the Arthur Road jail.

Depressed IISc student hangs himself
Bangalore, August 27
Ajay Srichandra, a 22-year-old student of Indian Institute of Science (IISc), was today found hanging from the ceiling of his room.

NHRC seeks report on gangrape of woman with HIV
New Delhi, August 27
The NHRC has asked the Tamil Nadu government to submit within a month a report on the alleged gangrape of a woman with HIV.

N-fraternity looks forward to PM’s speech
Mumbai, August 27
The Indian nuclear establishment is eagerly waiting for the speech to be delivered by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during his visit to Mumbai on Friday next.

Meghalaya to move MHA against NSCN-IM
Guwahati, August 27
The Meghalaya government is peeved with the Nagaland insurgent group NSCN-IM for its activities aimed at fomenting militancy in Garo Hills areas in Meghalaya and is mulling over lodging a complaint with the Union Home Ministry.

Panel to make policy for rail tunnels
New Delhi, August 27
The railway ministry has decided to constitute a four-member committee to formulate policy guidelines for rail tunnels. By setting up the committee, the ministry wants to ensure construction of state-of-the-art rail tunnels with ventilation, monitoring device and control room for safe operation in the challenging terrain between Udhampur and Baramula in J&K.

Denial of bail to Sheikh Hasina flayed
New Delhi, August 27
The Asian Centre for Human Rights has condemned the denial of bail to former Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina.

Videos
Another casanova role for Akshay.
(56k)
Urmila Matondkar plays unfaithful loverr.
(56k)
India out of world's 'truly corrupt' group.
(56k)

 

Top









 

Sanjay gets reprieve till Sept 27
Tribune News Service

Mumbai, August 27
Actor Sanjay Dutt, who is temporarily out of jail after being convicted by the TADA court for possessing weapons under the Arms Act, will not be sent to jail till September 27.

As per the terms of his release from Pune's Yerwada jail last week, Dutt will stay out of jail till he is given a copy of the TADA court's order sentencing him to prison. During his appearance before the court today for a copy of the order, Judge Pramod Kode announced that copies of the order will be given to those sentenced in the Mumbai blasts case from September 14.

Sanjay Dutt was told to appear before the court on September 27. He will be taken into custody as soon as he is given a copy of the order while the actor's lawyers move the Supreme Court for regular bail.

Meanwhile, Dutt will appear before the CBI every week under the conditions specified for his release.

While those sentenced to death in the blasts case are likely to be given the TADA court's orders in the first stages, persons like Dutt and his associates, who were not found guilty under the TADA Act but convicted under the Arms Act, may be among the last to be given copies of the court's orders.

Sanjay Dutt later told reporters outside the TADA court that he was happy with the court's decision. "I have full faith in the judiciary of my country. I love my people and my fans. Thank you very much. I thank the press also. Thank you very much for being supportive," Dutt said.

Sanjay Dutt is likely to use his time off from jail to promote his forthcoming movie ‘Dhamaal’, which is scheduled to hit the theatres on September 7. Directed by Inder Kumar, ‘Dhamaal’ is being promoted as a comedy.

It is still not clear if the actor will resume work on Sanjay Gadhvi's ‘Kidnap’ and Sanjay Gupta's ‘Alibaug’.

Top

 

NHRC against deporting Pak asylum seekers
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 27
The National Human Rights Commission has recommended that 63 Pakistan asylum seekers should not be deported to their home country till the government takes a decision on their request for asylum.

Acting on a petition, the NHRC has recommended to the government to treat them in a humane manner and provide them with proper medical care and other basic amenities as long as they are in India.

The petitioners, who had staged a demonstration to seek asylum in India, were sent to Tihar jail for burning their passports.

They voiced the apprehension that they would be executed under the blasphemy law if they were sent back to their country.

Responding to comments sought by the NHRC, the MEA stated that the petitioners had obtained visa from the Indian high commission on the basis of fake letters of reference. It also said the petitioners’ fear of persecution was unfounded.

The report of the ministry was forwarded to Nilema Probhoo, representative of the petitioners.

The representative reiterated that deportation to Pakistan meant death penalty for the petitioners. She said the fear of death drove them to obtain Indian visa and the Indian hierarchy had ignored the circumstances under which they migrated to India.

After going through the statements of the petitioners, the commission said the grant of asylum was an administrative decision to be taken by the government and it cannot interfere in the matter.

At the same time, the commission has drawn the attention of the Indian government to the observations made by the House of Lords in a similar case.

It has expressed the hope that the government will give due regard to these observations while considering the petitioners’ request for asylum.

According to the observations made by the House of Lords, the secretary of state has the power and the duty to act so as to avoid any breach of a person’s right as soon as an asylum seeker makes it clear that there is an imminent prospect that such a violation can occur.

Top

 

Death toll crosses 500 mark
Bihar reeling under worst floods
Tribune News Service

Patna, August 27
The UN has already called it the worst flood for Bihar in human history.

Over 500 persons have lost their lives in the current spell of floods in the state with fresh reports of 23 deaths today. Nearly 20.5 million persons were said to be still reeling under the impact of floods in 20 districts.

As the situation worsened in some pockets following inadequate relief materials, block development officer Shailendra Nath, posted in Sakra in North Bihar, was attacked today when he along with an additional collector visited Rukanpura village for making assessment of the flood situation.

Reports from different districts unfolded the grim picture with villagers in many areas were said to be eating wheat flour after mixing it with water because they could not cook, underlying the inadequacy of government relief efforts even after weeks of flooding.

As advised by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi is touring all flood-affected districts to oversee the relief operations as well as to coordinate with banks to sanction loans to affected people. Nitish Kumar also visited some districts to supervise works on embankments.

Darbhanga in North Bihar alone has so far accounted for the largest number of 98 deaths, followed by Samastipur (84), East Champaran (78), Muzaffarpur (51), Khagaria (50) and Begusarai (20).

Rest of the deaths were reported from Supaul, West Champaran, Madhubani, Nalanda, Madhepura, Vaishali, Sitamarhi and Katihar districts.

Official sources said nearly 20.5 million persons of 9,864 villages under 225 blocks were affected by floods in 20 flood-hit districts where crops worth over Rs 701.93 crore in 15.88 lakh hectares had been damaged. Besides, over 4.01 lakh houses, estimated to be Rs 431.52 crore, had been destroyed so far.

Even though around 9,93,470 marooned persons have so far been evacuated with 1,302 relief camps, the effort by the government was much below the expected level in view of the magnitude of damages, both lives and properties.

Top

 

Erosion threatens world’s biggest river island
Bijay Sankar Bora
Tribune News Service

Guwahati, August 27
The world’s biggest river island, Majuli, located in the bosom of the mighty Brahmaputra is facing serious threat of erosion by the river that has already eaten into a large chunk of the island.

According to a source in the subdivision office in Majuli, panic has gripped people living in and around Bengenati and Bhogpur area in the river island located in Jorhat district of Upper Assam.

Two vaishnavite monasteries located in those areas are facing the threat of vanishing into the mighty river that has been continuously eroding into their land. The erosion assumed an alarming proportion in the eastern part of the river island, which is considered the heart of Assamese vaishnavite culture and religion, rendering over 100 families homeless.

Centrally sponsored anti-erosion schemes that are being implemented by the Brahmaputra Board have failed to arrest the erosion menace in the river island, which will be nominated for consideration as a UNESCO World Heritage Site by the central government this year.

Earlier, two attempts to get the UNESCO recognition of the river island failed to cut ice with the UN body because of lack of sufficient rules and regulations for protection of the site by the government.

The Assam government last year enacted a set of rules and regulations for protection of Majuli and its culture and traditions. According to oldest top sheet with Survey of India, Majuli had a total area of 900 sqm. The area was reduced to about 377 sqm as per survey data of the year 2000.

A comparative study of 1920 Survey of India data and satellite imagery of the river island taken in 1998, the breadth of Brahmaputra near Majuli has increased from 7-9 km.

Top

 

Sikkim-Bhutan road blocked

Kolkata, August 27
Road links to Sikkim, Kalimpong and Bhutan were cut off today, following massive landslides which occurred last night at several places on the NH-31 and Sevak road. The connection to Darjeeling was also snapped through Kalimpong which stranded several hundred tourists, including foreign nationals.

According to reports reaching Writers’ Building from Darjeeling, the landslides which destroyed several houses and damaged large areas on the NH-31, occurred during midnight.

No loss of live was reported. Army and CPWD personnel were engaged in the rescue work and repairing of the damaged roads. District administration at Siliguri reported that it would take at least 72 hours for clearing the landslide-affected areas. But officials feared that if there were further landslides it would take at least another week to normalise road traffic. — TNS

Top

 

Army chief favours ‘Theatre Command’
Girja Shankar Kaura
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 27
The Chief of Army Staff General J.J. Singh today expressed his opinion for the setting up of an integrated ‘Theatre Command’ comprising officers in battle fatigues, besides experts from the ministries of Defence and External Affairs.

While pointing out that time was not right for creating the post of the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), a matter which had been hanging fire for a few years now, the army chief said this integrated command would bring about necessary integration of the country's security and foreign policy.

This would then bring about a complete synergy in future conflicts and would eventually pave the way for the appointment of the first ever Chief of Defence Staff, who would be a single window advisor to the government on strategic matters, he added. Such a system was already prevalent in the west, Gen Singh, who retires on September 30, said.

At a function here to inaugurate the Centre for Joint Warfare Studies, he said, “When service chiefs of foreign countries come to India, they are accompanied by experts from Defence and Foreign Affairs”.

“In about 10 years, we may have an integrated Theatre Command where we will see intermingling and cross-postings of officers of the Ministry of Defence and Ministry of External Affairs as happens in other modern democracies,” he said.

In his opinion, the country's armed forces — the Army, Navy and Air Force — had achieved a fair-level of synergy and jointness with the adoption of joint war doctrine, frequent holding of joint exercises and setting up of integrated commands like Tri-Service Command at Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Strategic Command.

Asked why there was a delay in the appointment of CDS, he said it would fall in place and they were working on it. He said the borders with Pakistan and China were still not settled and the internal security situation in Jammu and Kashmir being service specific, was presently not functioning well.

Reflecting on the future of the Armed forces, he said he visualised converting the Army into a ‘lean and mean force’.

Top

 

Dadi Parkash Mani cremated
Raj Sadosh

Mt. Abu, August 27
Dadi Parkash Mani, chief administrator head of Prajapat Brahmakumari Ishwarya Vishwa Vidhyalaya, and recipient of United Nations International Year of Peace Medal in 1986 and International Peace Messenger Award from the UN secretary-general in 1987, was cremated at Shanti Van complex of the Brahmakumaris organisation, here today. Dadi Janaki and Dadi Hridya Mohini, the globally respected additional administrator and joint chief administrator, respectively, were joined by general secretary B.K. Nirwair in lighting the pyre of the chief administrator, who controlled more than 3,000 centres in more than 100 countries. A large number of persons paid tributes to the most revered Dadi, who had joined the organisation at the age of 14 in 1937, had breathed her last on Saturday. All markets in Abu Road and Mount Abu towns remained closed as a mark of respect.

Earlier, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, along with members of his cabinet, placed wreaths on the body of Dadi Parkash Mani in the presence of thousands of devotees, well-wishers and followers from all over the world at a prayer meeting in the Shanti Van. He said Dadi in line with Adi Shankracharya’s philosophy had been able to end the mindset of mine and thine in her and others lives. She had gone beyond man-made distinctions and discriminations of caste, creed, community, language, race and religion.

Top

 

Rakhi greetings
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 27
President Pratibha Devisingh Patil, Vice-President Mohd. Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh have greeted the nation and Indians living abroad on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan.

In her message, Patil said Raksha Bandhan was a unique festival of love, affection and trust between sisters and brothers. “ May the festival strengthen the spirit of kindness and goodwill and spread the message of fraternal feelings and oneness among our people,” she added.

The Vice-President hoped that this festival would foster the true spirit of love, goodwill, love and compassion in the society.

The Prime Minister said the festival was a special occasion to celebrate the bond of love between a brother and a sister. “It also marks a reaffirmation of traditional family values,” he added.

Top

 

Adulterated khoya

Lucknow, August 27
The recovery of a large quantity of adulterated and synthetic ‘khoya’ from here has hit the sale of sweetmeat in the city.

Large quantities of synthetic milk products were seized during a special drive a few days back.

Taking note of the recovery, customers are avoiding sweets made of milk or milk products. Sweets like Ghevar, Laddu and Sohanpapdi are being preferred by the customers. — UNI

Top

 

Lakhs pay obeisance to Lord Shiva

Varanasi, August 27
Lakhs of pilgrims from across the country today offered 'jalabhishek' at the Kashi Vishwanath temple and other Lord Shiva shrines here on the occasion of the fourth and final Monday of the auspicious month of Shravan.

The pilgrims comprising saffron-clad kanwarias thronged the temple since last night to offer 'jalabhishek' amid chantings of 'har har mahadev'. Devotees were seen standing in long queues to await their turn to visit the temple as district authorities had erected barricades near the shrine in view of the rush of pilgrims.

A large number of pilgrims also visited other famous Lord Shiva shrines like the Vishwanath temple in the BHU campus, Markandple, Til Bhandeshwar temple, Omkaresh temple, to pay their obeisance.

Elaborate security arrangements were made at the Kashi Vishwanath temple and other shrines with several hundred police personnel deployed at sensitive points to monitor the movement of people. — PTI

Top

 

Pension Fraud
Dead man gets pay, boy retires at 12

Imphal, August 27
Sounds bizarre, but it is true. An employee of the Electricity Department in Manipur who passed away 22 years ago has been getting his salary and pension, while a 12-year-old boy has already retired from a government job.

The two incidents have exposed widespread fraud in appointments and disbursal of pension in the Manipur government.

Ningthemjao was an assistant lineman in the Electricity Department who died on June 21, 1985.

“It was sometime in 2004 that we sent an application to the department to find out about my father’s pension papers when one of his friends enquired about it. Then we started to investigate and could not make much headway,” Ningthemjao's son Rishikanta told IANS.

The reason cited for the long delay in seeking pension details was that his mother was illiterate and he was too young then to know about government procedures.

Ningthemjao's wife L. Tombi in July this year filed a complaint with the state chief information commissioner for service-related documents.

The documents provided by the chief engineer revealed that Ningthemjao was shown to be promoted as a lineman on January 16, 1998, 13 years after he died. The documents also showed him drawing pension since August 31, 2001, 16 years after his death.

“Somebody was withdrawing my father’s salary and later the pension amount regularly after providing false documents,” Rishikanta said.

The family is now contemplating filing a criminal case against the department for the anomalies.

In another weird incident, a 12-year-old tribal boy in Tamenglong district of Manipur has been officially recorded as retiring from government service five years after he was born.

According to the service book, he was shown as joining the job on July 6, 1995 - the day he was born and taking voluntary retirement on July 31, 2005 at the age of five years. He has since then been shown drawing his pension regularly.

The name of the boy has been withheld by the accountant-general's office.

Officials are also looking at certain other bizarre cases of fraudulent pensions, including that of a 100-year-old man officially recorded as being alive and drawing his pension. Locals say he died long-ago. — IANS

Top

 

Kashmiri antiques to be exhibited in New York

New Delhi, August 27
Several Kashmiri antiques, including Buddhist, Hindu and Islamic art works, will be on display at a three-month-long exhibition being organised in New York from October to showcase the artistic contributions of the culturally rich region.

The event is being held by the New York based Asia Society, a pan-Asian organisation that works towards strengthening relationships and promote understanding among the people of the US and Asia.

Highlighting Kashmir as a land of diverse aesthetics, 130 objects from the second to 20th centuries will be on display during the exhibition that starts from October 3 and runs till January 2008.

"Multiple cultural influences have fostered a unique artistic environment of diverse aesthetics that will be witnessed in this landmark exhibition," the organisers said in a statement.

Titled "The Arts of Kashmir", it comprises works of Buddhist, Hindu, and Islamic art, including sculptures, paintings, and calligraphy loaned from collections in the US, Europe and India.

"Many of the objects (to be exhibited) have never been seen outside of India and, in some cases, they have never been exhibited or published anywhere," the organisers said.

The exhibition includes stone and bronze sculptures and calligraphic paintings, in addition to the fine examples of papier-mâché, carpets, shawls and embroidery - the artwork Kashmir is internationally known for.

"The Arts of Kashmir exhibition aims to increase understanding of the historic artistic importance of the Kashmir Valley and the important role of the region in the development of intellectual life in South Asia," said Asia Society Museum director Melissa Chiu.

"Understanding Kashmiri cultural heritage is crucial for all of us in today's world, especially because it tends to be overly simplified in much of the current reportage on this disputed region," she added.

The exhibition "tells the story of generations of Kashmiris who excelled in producing art in a wide variety of media, not only the shawls that have become almost synonymous with Kashmir", said museum curator Pratapaditya Pal. — IANS

Hindu festival in Nevada

New York: A traditional Indian rath yatra, a Hindu wedding and a life size temple of Lord Jagannath are among the major highlights of this year's annual Burning Man festival in Nevada desert.

A Krishna camp will also be organised at the seven-day festival beginning August 27 when an American couple will get married in traditional Hindu style.

Top

 

MEA to issue apostilles from Aug 29
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 27
The Ministry of External Affairs will start issuing apostilles from August 29. The apostilles will be issued by the CPV Division, Patiala House, the MEA said today.

Apostille, a French word which is commonly used in English, means a certification. It refers to the legalisation of a document for international use under the terms of the 1961 Hague Convention abolishing the requirement of legalisation for foreign public documents. Documents, which have been notarised by a notary public, and then certified with a apostille are accepted for legal use in all nations that have signed the Hague Convention.

The MEA said apostille stickers will be issued on various kinds of certificates - personal such as birth and death, affidavits, power of attorney, marriage certificate etc; and educational documents such as degrees, diplomas, matriculation and secondary level certificates.

However, commercial documents are excluded from the purview of the Apostille Convention. As per the procedure, all documents should be first authenticated by the designated agencies in the state from where the document has been issued. In case of personal documents, Home Department/General Administration Department of the concerned state are the designated authorities.

In case of educational documents, state governments have now opened Regional Authentication Centres (RACs), a list of which is available on MEA’s website www.mea.gov.in in states from where educational documents should first be attested.

Top

 

Praveen Mahajan says life in danger

Mumbai, August 27
Praveen Mahajan, who stands accused of murdering his elder brother and BJP leader Pramod Mahajan, today petitioned the court to shift him to the Thane Jail saying his life was in danger in the Arthur Road jail.

In a hand-written letter to the court, Praveen said he was removed from his cell on August 5 to accomodate Mustafa Dossa, an accused in the 1993 Mumbai blast case, but whose trial along with that of Abu Salem and Riyaz Siddiqui had been separated as the three were extradited to India after the main trials. Dossa was extradited from Dubai in 2003.

Praveen said after being removed from the cell he was made to stay on the verandah along with another accused Munna Gupta.

He told the court that Gupta once threatened him and said he could kill anybody at the behest of Dossa. — UNI

Top

 

Depressed IISc student hangs himself
Tribune News Service

Bangalore, August 27
Ajay Srichandra, a 22-year-old student of Indian Institute of Science (IISc), was today found hanging from the ceiling of his room.

Ajay, a PhD student, was found hanging from the ceiling of his hostel room by a friend today morning, according to police sources. He had presumably committed this act last night but that will be confirmed following the post-mortem examination.

His body was discovered by a friend Deeptaroop Nandi, who earlier tried to contact Ajay on his mobile and when that went unanswered, went up to his room. When there was no response to the knocking, Nandi peeped in from the window and saw Ajay hanging from the ceiling.

It seems that the deceased was facing some personal problems which had affected his studies also. “I had also been asked by Ajay’s mentor Prof Raghavendra Gadagkar to find out the reason why he was irregular in his studies”, Nandi said adding Ajay had told him the previous night itself that he was not able to adjust to the environment in the institute.

“He was showing signs of depression and I even volunteered to spend the night in his room but he told me he would manage following which I let him be on his own,” Nandi added.

The feelings of alienation and not been able to keep pace with his surroundings were reflected in the suicide note left behind by Ajay. He wrote a simple note addressing his father saying, “Sorry dad, the world is not for me. It is too much to take”.

The suicide note has been taken into possession by the police who have started investigating into the reasons behind the apparent depression suffered by the deceased.

Top

 

NHRC seeks report on gangrape of woman with HIV
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 27
The NHRC has asked the Tamil Nadu government to submit within a month a report on the alleged gangrape of a woman with HIV.

Taking suo motu cognisance of a recent news report in a national daily which reported that the woman was denied treatment, the NHRC has issued a notice to the state health secretary and said the incident raised serious issue of violation of her rights.

According to the report, the 35-year-old woman from Krishnagiri district was reportedly attacked by six persons, dragged, raped and left at the roadside.

She was taken to a hospital in Pochampally by a voluntary hopsital but denied admission. Even people in her native village treated her in an inhuman manner on learning that she had HIV.

She was denied admission to the Krishnagiri government hospital till an HIV test was conducted. Apart from the physical pain, the victim had to undergo mental agony as visitors and other patients at the hospital abused her for coming to the hospital despite her HIV status. 

Top

 

N-fraternity looks forward to PM’s speech
Shiv Kumar
Tribune News Service

Mumbai, August 27
The Indian nuclear establishment is eagerly waiting for the speech to be delivered by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during his visit to Mumbai on Friday next.

Dr Singh is expected to throw light on the government's stand on the Indo-US nuclear deal which has become a point of contention between the UPA government and the Left Front which is supporting it from outside.

The Prime Minister will be in Mumbai to commission the Tarapur Atomic Power Plants (TAPP) 3 and 4 of the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre.

Top officials from the nuclear establishment here are also looking forward towards interacting with the Prime Minister for some clues towards the future of the Indo-US nuclear deal. Though nobody expects the Prime Minister to reveal details about the government's future course of action at Friday's meeting, officials here are looking for chance remarks and body language to learn more.

Dr Singh will formally dedicate the two power projects to the nation. The plants are the largest Pressurised Heavy Water Reactors (PHWRs) built by using indigenous technology which can generate 540 MW of power each. The TAPP plants use natural uranium fuel and heavy water, both as moderator and coolant. The two plants are already connected to the power grid and are major source of power to western India.

Also on the Prime Minister's agenda is a close look at the agrarian crisis in Maharashtra. Last year, Dr Singh had announced a special package for the farmers of Maharashtra. However, the number of suicides in the worst-hit Vidarbha region continues unabated as the Maharashtra government still grapples with the situation.

The state government has already begun a major public relations exercise to show that the Prime Minister's relief package is working for the affected farmers.

Top

 

Meghalaya to move MHA against NSCN-IM
Bijay Sankar Bora
Tribune News Service

Guwahati, August 27
The Meghalaya government is peeved with the Nagaland insurgent group NSCN-IM for its activities aimed at fomenting militancy in Garo Hills areas in Meghalaya and is mulling over lodging a complaint with the Union Home Ministry.

According to an official source in the capital Shillong, the state government has taken strong exception to the nexus between the NSCN-IM and Garo tribal outfit Liberation of A’chik Elite Force (LAEF).

The D.D. Lapang government has decided to bring the matter to the notice of the Union Home Ministry given that the NSCN-IM is engaged in a prolonged ceasefire pact as well as peace process with the Union government.

The Meghalaya government is concerned over the involvement of the Naga rebel group to supply arms and ammunition and offer of training to the Garo militant group LAEF.

The state police claimed that it got the wind of the NSCN-IM-LAEF nexus following last week’s arrest of two senior LAEF leaders Peter Marak, the commander-in-chief of the LAEF, and Jackius A. Sangma. The police claimed that Peter Marak later died in a crossfire while he was taking a police team to a LAEF hideout in Garo Hills.

The police suspect that the NSCN-IM is interested in having a support group in Garo Hills that shares the border with Bangladesh. The Garo Hills area in Meghalaya is being used as a corridor to sneak into Bangladesh by militants groups including NSCN-IM and the banned ULFA of Assam.

Top

 

Panel to make policy for rail tunnels
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 27
The railway ministry has decided to constitute a four-member committee to formulate policy guidelines for rail tunnels. By setting up the committee, the ministry wants to ensure construction of state-of-the-art rail tunnels with ventilation, monitoring device and control room for safe operation in the challenging terrain between Udhampur and Baramula in J&K.

Sudhir Kumar, executive director, engineer, energy management, railway board, will be the convener of the committee. The members of the committee are R. K. Chowdhary, chief electrical engineer, construction (Jammu and Kashmir), and B.P. Awasthi, deputy chief engineer, construction, and Sanjay Kubba, director, safety, railway board.

The committee will study various practices in electrified and non-electrified rail tunnels in India and different parts of the world. It will be required to submit its recommendations within three months from its constitution, according to a press note by the ministry here today.

Top

 

Denial of bail to Sheikh Hasina flayed
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 27
The Asian Centre for Human Rights has condemned the denial of bail to former Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina.

The Supreme Court of Bangladesh had stayed the high court order of July 30, which granted her bail and stayed the inclusion of the extortion case under the Emergency Powers Rules of 2007 against her.

In a statement here, rights panel director Suhas Chakma said: “The invocation of the Emergency Powers Rules against Hasina is illegal and charges are politically motivated as she has been challenging the caretaker government.”

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 |