Headlines

  • FM Arun Jaitley to present budget, tax sops, initiatives to boost investments on cards

    New Delhi: Eager to win over the middle class following Delhi poll debacle, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is expected to present a common man-friendly Union Budget on Saturday, February 28, by either raising tax slabs or hiking investment limit in savings instruments.

    Besides giving sops to individual tax payers, he is also expected to unveil initiatives to boost investments by corporates and promote manufacturing as part of the 'Make in India' campaign that aims to make the country a global manufacturing hub and create jobs.

    Jaitley, who in his maiden Budget in July 2014 had outlined his approach to providing relief to individual tax payers, is likely to continue this in the BJP government's first full-year Budget.

    Last year, he had raised the personal Income Tax exemption limit by Rs 50,000 to Rs 2.50 lakh and also raised by same amount the exemption from payment of I-T on savings to Rs 1.50 lakh.

    However, this time around Jaitley, according to experts, may choose only one of them as he looks at additional revenue to boost public spending and push economy to high-growth path.

    He may also look to raise tax-exempted investment limit in health insurance as well as exempt savings in pension schemes at all three stages -- entry, accrual and withdrawal. Another option before the Finance Minister is to expand the scope of Leave Travel Allowance (LTA) and allow people to claim tax benefit every year.

    With the government focusing on core sector, Jaitley may come out with tax saving infrastructure bonds and greater tax relief for payment of interest and principal on housing loan.

    Last year, Jaitley had raised the tax exemption limit on repayment of housing loans to Rs 2 lakh from Rs 1.5 lakh.

    The Finance Minister, who did not make any changes in the rate of surcharge on corporates or individuals last year, may retain them at the existing level. A surcharge of 10 per cent is levied on individuals on income of over Rs 1 crore and for corporates with a profit of over Rs 10 crore.

    On the corporate side, Jaitley is expected to postpone the implementation of the controversial General Anti Avoidance Rules (GAAR) by at least two years as it might adversely impact the investment climate which the government is seeking to improve

    Pressure is building on Jaitley to announce tax concessions for the Special Economic Zones (SEZ) to bring back investors who have been surrendering permissions obtained by them to set up SEZs.

    On the indirect tax side, the Finance Minister will lay the ground for implementing the Goods and Services Tax (GST), which is expected to come into force from April 2016.

    Towards this he may gradually raise the Service Tax rate from the current 12 percent as the GST would have only one rate of indirect tax.

    As regards the inverted duty structure the Budget may address the concerns of the industry, especially in sectors such as auto, electronics and pharma.

    Inverted duty structure refers to taxation of inputs at higher rates than finished products that results in build-up of credits and cascading costs.

    Industry has been demanding that government should remove the anomalies with regard to taxation of raw material and other inputs.



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  • Land Acquisition Bill: Modi says ready to make changes

    New Delhi: In an apparent bid to shore up support from NDA allies, some of which have openly expressed their reservations on the contentious land bill, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday agreed to make the changes if there is anything against the farmers in the bill.

    In a forceful speech in the Lok Sabha, Modi said he was ready to bring about changes to the land bill that has been dubbed "anti-farmer" by the opposition parties.

    "If there is anything against farmers in the bill, the government is ready to change it," the prime minister said, giving the first hint of a climb down on the issue that has sparked widespread protests.

    If the government fails to muster the requisite support for the bill in parliament, it stands to lose the confidence of the prospective investors since it will be seen as its failure to carry out reforms.

     
     
    The NDA government has the required numbers to move the bill in the Lok Sabha but it lacks that in Rajya Sabha Bill. The Opposition is firm against the Bill in the current form.

    To allay fears of the Opposition about the bill being anti-farmer, BJP president Amit Shah has constituted a committee to seek farmers' suggestions on the Bill. But the critics are yet to cave in.

    The government has just few weeks to ratify the ordinance, if it fails within the stipulated time it will lapse. The NDA currently has only 60 seats in the 241-member Rajya Sabha. Four seats in the Upper House are currently vacant. In the 542-member Lok Shabha, the NDA has 335 seats.

    If the government decides to try the joint session route in parliament to tackle the issue, it faces three scenarios.

    In the first scenario, if NDA gets support from all its allies (335 + 60), the bill will get through. In the second scenario, if NDA gets the support of PDP and AIADMK (335 + 73), the Bill will get through. In the third scenario, if NDA allies like Shiv Sena, SAD & SWP oppose, the Bill will not get through.

     

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  • Avalanches triggered by heavy snowfall kills 250 people in Afghan

    Kabul: More than 250 people have been killed in a series of avalanches triggered by heavy snowfall around Afghanistan this week, provincial authorities said on Friday, Febraury 27.

    The bulk of the deaths have come in Panjshir province, north of Kabul, where at least 186 people were killed, acting provincial governor Abdul Rahman Kabiri told a news agency.

    Kabiri said President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani was due to inspect and visit the damage to the northern reaches of the valley late on Friday.

    "Unfortunately, death toll has risen to 186 people killed in avalanches in Panjshir province," Kabiri said, warning it was not the final toll.

    The avalanches came after days of heavy snow, which destroyed more than 100 homes in the province and blocked main roads, making it difficult for rescue workers to reach the stricken villages.

    The death toll was confirmed by Panjshir provincial police chief, Abdul Aziz Ghairat.

    "The volume of snow is really huge in districts in Panjshir," Ghairat said, "There are some districts where we do not have any any news from them, the communication lines have cut off due to avalanches." 

    Mohammad Aslam Sayas, deputy chief of the Afghanistan National Disaster Management Authority, said the army was distributing supplies to people in areas of Panjshir still unreachable by road.

    "Helicopters are dropping medicines, blankets and other necessary items to remote areas of Panjshir," Sayas said.

    Elsewhere in Afghanistan, 36 died in the remote northeastern province of Badakhshan, five in northern Baghlan, five in Parwan and 12 in Nuristan and Kunar provinces in the east, and five in western Badghis. Six were killed in the central province of Bamiyan, four in Laghman and one in Nangarhar, both in the east -- bringing the total toll to at least 260.

    Deadly avalanches are common in Afghanistan`s mountainous areas in winter. One in the remote far northeast in 2012 left 145 people missing, presumed dead.

    Despite the billions of dollars in aid from the international community after the collapse of the Taliban in 2001, Afghanistan remains among the world`s poorest nations after decades of conflict.

    Rescue efforts after disasters such as avalanches and flash floods, which often hit as snows melt in the spring, are frequently hampered by lack of equipment.

    Poor infrastructure makes it difficult for rescue teams to reach isolated areas.A



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  • Student blames sex assault on ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’

    This is a classic case of when life imitating art goes wrong. A 19-year-old college student is being accused of raping a classmate and he is being charged with aggravated criminal sexual assault.

    According to the Chicago Tribune, 19-year-old Mohammad Hossain was given bail at $500,000 after prosecuting Assistant State’s Attorney Sarah Karr argued that the bionuclear student attacked a woman he’d been intimate with before with tricks he picked up from the S&M-driven film. The problem is one of consent, she argued, the consent that Hossain didn’t obtain from his partner after inviting her to his dorm room where he tied her up with a belt and then filled her mouth with a necktie.

    The movie, which has so far grossed over $130 million in the U.S, has been targeted by groups working to prevent domestic abuse, who say it promotes violence against women.

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  • India bans ISIS under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act

    New Delhi: Dreaded terror group ISIS and all its affiliate organisations, responsible for series of savage attacks and killings in Iraq and Syria, have been banned in India under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

    Recruitment of youths to the outfit from India and their radicalisation is a matter of serious concern for the country especially with regard to its likely impact on national security when such youth return to India, the Home Ministry said while banning the terrorist group.

    The Islamic State/Islamic State of Iraq and Levant/Islamic State of Iraq and Syria/Daish and all its manifestations have been declared as outlawed in India under UAPA, a notification issued by the Ministry said.

    Home Minister Rajnath Singh had said in Parliament on December 16, 2014 that the Middle-East group had already been declared banned in India under a United Nations Schedule.

    According to the latest notification, the outfit is operating in Iraq and neighbouring countries and has been resorting to terrorist actions to consolidate its position in that area by recruiting youth for ‘Global Jehad’ to achieve the objective of establishing its own ‘caliphate’ by overthrowing democratically elected governments.

    The group is also resorting to terrorism in the form of killing of innocent civilians and security forces and the central government believes that the Islamic State/Islamic State of Iraq and Levant/Islamic State of Iraq and Syria/Daish is involved in radicalisation and recruitment of vulnerable youth from various countries including India.

    Singh had said the group has been proscribed under the provisions related to organisations listed in the Schedule to the U N Prevention and Suppression of Terrorism (Implementation of Security Council Resolutions) Order, 2007 made under section two of the United Nations (Security Council) Act, 1947.

    Four Mumbai youths had gone to Iraq-Syria in May 2014 to join ISIS. One of them returned late last year while the whereabouts of the remaining three are yet to be known.

    A Bangalore-based executive of a multi-national company was arrested in December last year for allegedly running a pro-ISIS twitter handle.

    Last month, another person from Hyderabad was barred from travelling to Syria, ostensibly to join ISIS.

    Recently, retired Intelligence Bureau chief Asif Ibrahim had said there was an imminent danger of Indian youths moving to the conflict zone (Iraq-Syria), emerging as a role model, and such developments may directly or indirectly pose a threat to the country.

    “The threat potential is accentuated with some lower rung elements returning from conflict zone,” he had said.

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  • US asks Bangladesh to address the current impasse in the country

    Washington: Expressing concern over the continuing political violence in Bangladesh, the US has called for a viable opposition to create inclusive processes and address the current impasse in the country, days after a court ordered the arrest of former prime minister Khaleda Zia in connection with two graft cases.

    "We do think that it's very important that for Bangladesh, as a democracy, to have space for a viable political opposition," Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, Nisha Desai Biswal, told reporters at a news conference at the Washington Foreign Press Center yesterday.

    "There is a continuing political impasse and that there is a continuing violence, and we hope that government and opposition leaders can address these issues and can improve and advance beyond that political impasse," she said.

    While we have a great deal of concern about the level of political violence and think it's incumbent upon all political parties to repudiate violence, it's also equally important that government provides space for peaceful political opposition to be able to exist and to create inclusive political processes, she said.

    "I'm not going to speculate on the charges that have been levied, except to say that we do hope and expect that there will be due process in terms of any ? pursuing of any charges in any legal procedures," she said.

    These are matters that are going to need to be addressed internally. I think the Secretary (of State) has stated that he stands ready to provide whatever support the United States can provide to support resolution of these issues, she said.

    We are in very regular contact with all aspects of Bangladeshi society -the government, opposition, civil society. But these are fundamentally issues that require internal resolution, Biswal said.

    These are internal issues that need to be resolved by the Bangladeshi people and by the political leadership in Bangladesh, she said.

    "We have restated our concern that all political parties need to reject and renounce violence, but we do also believe that there should be space in a democracy for a viable opposition and a more inclusive political process," Biswal said.

    A special anti-corruption court ordered the arrest of former prime minister Khaleda Zia in connection with two graft cases after she repeatedly failed to appear for the hearings on February 25, a development which could escalate the ongoing political turmoil in the country that has claimed at least 110 lives. 

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  • Reward announced on ’missing’ Rahul, Priyanka in demand for vice-president

    New Delhi: Ever since Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi decided to go on "leave" for couple of weeks, rumour mills are working overtime. Amid all this, a section of disgruntled Congress workers in Allahabad have put up posters and banners in the city announcing "handsome reward" for anyone who can find Rahul.

    Some of the Congress workers even demanded that Priyanka Gandhi Vadra be made the party’s vice-president, while others have demanded that she should take over the reins of the party. These Congress workers have been joined in the ’jibe campaign’ by some workers of the Bharatiya Janata Party as well.

    Amar Vaishya alias Munna Bhaiyya, a businessman of the city who has been eying a BJP ticket for the Assembly elections, on Thursday put up hoardings near Anand Bhawan, the ancestral house of the Nehru-Gandhi family. "Rahul Gandhi is missing. Those who find him would be made rich," the hoarding declared.

    "Rahul Gandhi is an escapist. He has run away from the battlefield leaving behind his men in lurch. So I have announced a cash reward to those who find him," Vaishya said.

    Earlier on Wednesday, some Congressmen in Allahabad put up posters and banners in which they demanded Priyanka Gandhi Vadra should be inducted as the Congress vice-president in absence of her brother Rahul.

    Haseeb Ahmad and Shrish Dubey, two local Congressmen associated with the youth wing of the party, declared that they would campaign to bring Priyanka into mainstream politics. "We have sent a letter to Congress president Sonia Gandhi to appoint Priyanka as the vice-president. Rahul has failed to rejuvenate the party," Ahmad said.

    "We seriously believe that all is not well between Rahul and Priyanka. We know many aspirants of the Assembly and Lok Sabha election whom Rahul wanted to field but Priyanka denied them ticket. There are many senior party leaders behind the posters which we see in Allahabad every now and then. These leaders are not happy with Rahul for personal reasons," said a senior Congress leader in Lucknow.

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  • Pak Gen warns India ahead of Foreign Secy S Jaishankar's visit

    Islamabad : Pakistan's powerful army chief General Raheel Sharif on warned India of a "befitting response" to alleged provocation along the Line of Control (LoC), just days before the arrival of foreign secretary S Jaishankar here.

    "Repeated Indian ceasefire violations on the Working Boundary and the LoC in recent past was a distraction for Pakistan from campaign versus terrorism and it affects regional stability," a statement issued by the military qouted Sahrif as saying.

    "Let there be no doubt that any provocation along LOC and Working Boundary will meet a befitting response," he said.

    The statement came just days before the crucial visit of Jaishankar to the country.

    Military spokesman Major General Asim Saleem Bajwa said that the army chief visited areas affected by recent Indian firing near Sialkot and met troops and local residents.

    "Nation united in defence of motherland," Sharif said. Pakistan and India have traded heavy fire in the area in recent months.

    Jaishankar will arrive here on a two-day visit on March 3, seven months after India cancelled foreign secretary-level talks with Pakistan.

    India broke off foreign secretary-level talks in August last at the eleventh hour because the Pakistan high commissioner in New Delhi held consultations with Kashmiri separatists.



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  • Mufti Mohammed Sayeed to sworn in as J&K CM on Sunday

    Jammu and Kashmir : Peoples Democratic Party and Bharatiya Janata Party have ironed out their differences and reached a consensus on a Common Minimum Programme that will form the basis of their unique coalition government in Jammu and Kashmir to be sworn-in at 11 am on Sunday.

    Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, founder-patron of PPD, flew in on Thursday evening to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday which will be final step in his return as the state's chief minister at the head of the coalition that will mark the first time ever for the BJP to be in power in the sensitive state.

    Sayeed said on his arrival that a CMP on which there has been a consensus has been made and now he will be meeting the PM on Friday.

    Refusing to talk about the understanding on contentious issues like Article 370 which gives special status to the state, he said, “I won’t talk on the issues....it (CMP) will come in black and white and the entire public of the country will see what we are doing.”

    It is expected that Sayeed will invite Modi for the swearing-in function in Jammu.

    Ahead of the meeting between Sayeed and Modi, presidents of both the parties -- Mehbooba Mufti of PDP and Amit Shah of BJP, met on Wednesday after which they announced formation of a coalition government in the state.

    Shah had tweeted after the meeting that “glory will be restored in the ‘Jewel of the Crown’, BJP-PDP govt will take J and K to new heights by ensuring good governance and development.”

    Sayeed will also hold the portfolio of home department which has been traditionally held by the CM since 1953. Nirmal Singh from BJP is expected to be the Deputy CMhaving the portfolio of planning.

    The December 23 election results saw a highly-fractured mandate with PDP emerging as single largest party with 28 MLAs followed by BJP with 25. Erstwhile allies National Conference and Congress ended with 15 and 12 seats respectively.

    BJP and PDP, which have been in negotiations for nearly two months now, have sorted out all the differences over Article 370, Armed Forces Special Powers Act, resettlement of west Pakistan refugees and holding of talks with Pakistan and separatist leaders of the state.

    Highly-placed sources said the document prepared by the two sides mainly focuses on development and providing job opportunities to youths.

    The document also lists ways and means for rehabilitation of nearly 60,000 Kashmiri Pandit families who had left the KashmirValley after the onset of militancy in early 1990s.

    On Article 370, while BJP has given no written assurance as demanded by PDP, the document is expected to say that both parties will respect the aspirations of the people of the state within the Constitution, the sources indicated.

    The proposed document may also touch upon the issue of more than 25,000 families of West Pakistani refugees by terming it a humanitarian issue.

    The other issues include handing over of hydel projects to the state government and vacating of land and buildings by the army in the Valley.

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National / State

  • Senior most Sushant Mahapatra will not be DG & IGP?

    Bengaluru: It is likely that the Om Prakash, the Director General of Police, Fire and Emergency Services, will be sworn in as state’s new Director General and Inspector General of Police (DG&IGP) on Saturday.

    Sources in the Home ministry told News Karnataka that the Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has decided to name Om Prakash as the new DG&IGP after considering the seniority list of three officials including DGP(Training and Recruitment) Sushant Mahapatra, Deputy Director of CBI RK Datta and Fire and Emergency Services DGP Om Prakash.

    However, the high level committee of the state to select the police chief will meet on Friday evening and the CM will issue the promotion and posting orders of the DG&IGP by Saturday afternoon, sources said. As per the procedure, CM has to select the from the list sent by the empanelment committee of  UPSC and the selection is left to the discretionary power of the Chief Minister.  Though the procedure is to consider the senior most officer, it is left to the decision of the CM.

    The present DG&IGP Lalrokhuma Pachuau will be retiring from services on Saturday and his farewell service parade was conducted on Friday morning and according to the sources, Om Prakash would be taking charge from him on Saturday evening.

    According to the seniority, Sushanth R Mahapatra is the first choice and the second is Rupak Kumar Datta. However controversies in which they are involved, have allegedly adversely affected their prospects for elevation to the top police post in the state. The senior most IPS officer Sushant Mahapatra is facing another case of signing for passport applications, which is under Lokayukta investigations.  Datta, though he has good service records, is involved in various controversies which include a criminal case filed by another IPS officer Hemanth Nimbalkar and answering the  law exam without  having government permission.  These controversies are said to have helped Om Prakash's elevation to the top post, sources said.

    It is said that Om Prakash, though not a popular name among the powers that be,  is not facing any serious charges against him.  RK Datta, though he has  a very good track record and reputation as ADGP (Lokayukta) and has experience of working in the Central Intelligence Bureau, is losing his hopes because of the charges against him. The CID has completed investigation on the charges of giving wrong information  against Nimbalkar, when a Lokayukta raid was conducted against the latter, and filed a B (closing ) report recently.

    Om Prakash, a native of Bihar and is an MSc from Banaras University. He joined the IPS in 1981 and started his carreer as a Superintendent of Police Udupi. He also worked in Chikkamagaluru, Shimoga and Karwar as SP. During the Babri Masjid incident, Karwar district, under his leadership, did not see any major incident of communal violence.. In 1990, he was sent to Bhatkal to control communal clashes, and he did it effectively.


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  • No plan to legalise prostitution: Centre

    New Delhi: The Government on Friday informed the Parliament that it is not considering to legalise prostitution.

    "No, it does not arise," Minister of Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi said in a written reply in Lok Sabha to a question in this regard.

    She, however, said they have implemented a comprehensive scheme for prevention of trafficking and rescue as well as rehabilitation and reintegration of victims of sexual exploitation.

    To a separate question, Gandhi said 69 complaints of sexual abuse and other irregularities in child care institutions were received by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights between 2011-12 to 2014-15. Uttar Pradesh alone reported 12 complaints and eight complaints were from Delhi and Haryana.
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  • Commissioner targeted for questioning ABCD attitude of officials

    Mysuru: Mysuru City Corporation, Commissioner Dr. C.G. Betsurmath on Friday alleged that he was being targeted by some of the officials through Corporators for removing the Avoid, Bypass, Confuse and Delay (ABCD) attitude among officials by bringing in discipline after assuming office. His allegations came after some Corporators blamed him for lapses in the works undertaken by the MCC.

    Addressing a hurriedly convened press conference at the meeting hall of the MCC, he said that all allegations against him were false and baseless and claimed that he had done nothing wrong adding that he was not allowed to clarify his stand at the meeting.

    Stating that 75 per cent of works in the Engineering Department are pending due to the lethargic attitude of engineers, Dr. Betsurmath added that he would not compromise on the issue and would bring the matter to the notice of the State Government.

    I tried to streamline the work and cleared bills based on seniority and emergency. There was always pressure to pay the bills to contractors, he said and added that pending bills were cleared on the basis of decisions taken by an Advisory Committee formed for the purpose and claimed that Rs. 4.60 crore pending bills had been cleared.

    Betsurmath further said that he would seek legal opinion on whether to file cases against those, who made derogatory remarks against him when the council was in session, which, he claimed, was against norms.
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  • Bengaluru: Southwood's 'Action' Queen Malashri Receives Threat Calls, Seeks Protection

    Bengaluru: This is yet another example of the world of make-believe falling flat on its face. Film 'heroes'and 'heroines' are shown on the silver screen as being capable of thrashing or bashing up dozens of goons in one go. They win loud applause and deafening whistles from the front rows.

    But, ironically enough, when it comes to real-life incidents, they, like any other humans, crumble. Over a decade ago, a famous southern actor, who had been kidnapped by a forest brigand, after days and days in the forest, had reportedly reached a state of adoring his own captor, in a stock example of what is considered the 'Stockholm Syndrome'.

    Malashri, who had earlier acted in many romantic movies in Kannada and other southern languages, later on happened put on many kilogrammes in her body-frame. True to her new appearance, she gradually got stereotyped in playing a 'toughie', like 'Kiran Bedi IPS' in the movies that followed. She has punished scores of villains in her roles and has done justice to 'Sridurga', the original name given by her parents.

    After donning the roles of a no-nonsense police officer in many films, now she herself has sought police help and protection. She has filed a complaint at the High Grounds police station here, alleging that two persons based in Chennai have been giving her threat calls.

    Malashri owned an apartment in Chennai because she was in demand in Tamil and Telugu films. As she was not getting many offers in films, she had sold it recently. Two persons who were looking after the apartment are now demanding a share of commission in the sale of the apartment, according to her.

    They have threatened her of dire consequences if their share is not paid. The police have registered a case and are investigating the matter.

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  • Church Street blast case: Two suspects sent to police custody

    Bengaluru: The National Investigating Agency (NIA) special court on Friday remanded two suspected Student Islamic Movement of India (Simi) operatives, Umer Siddiqui and Haider Ali, in police custody till March 7 for their interrogation in connection with the Church Street blast case.

    Sources said the police intend to get information from them about Simi modules assigned to carry out blasts in South India. The Bengaluru police produced the suspects before the NIA special court on Friday morning and filed an application seeking their custody for inquiry.

    The court directed the police not to question the accused between 8 pm and 8 am.
    The special court also directed the police to produce the accused on March 7. A senior police officer said Siddiqui and Ali will be flown back to Patna on March 10 for them to be present before the NIA special court in Patna for the next date of hearing on March 19.

    The two men are part of the Ranchi module of Simi and are facing trial in both Bodh Gaya and Patna rally blast cases. An official said the NIA special court in Patna had completed the recording of evidences.

    Ali also had contacts with the Indian Mujahideen. Referred to as ‘Black Beauty’ by Simi leaders, Ali was the first to be arrested in connection with the Patna blast in 2013. The investigations into both Bodh Gaya and Patna blasts revealed that Siddiqui, who was arrested later, was the mastermind of the blast.

    “Siddiqui was arrested in Raipur and considered to be the key man in several Simi modules. Ali was in constant touch with Siddiqui during both the blasts. We suspect the involvement of Simi activists in the Church Street blasts, and as key operatives of Simi, Ali and Siddiqui can throw more light on the possible raising of modules in south India,” an official said.

     


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  • N Srinivasan apologies to Supreme Court for chairing BCCI meet

    New Delhi: BCCI President-in-exile N Srinivasan tendered an "unconditional apology" in the Supreme Court for "breaching" its direction by chairing the Board's working Committee meeting on February 8 and deciding to hold its AGM on March 2 to elect new office bearers.
       
    Closing the contempt petition against him, the court allowed Srinivasan to exercise the vote of Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) as its authorised representative in the BCCI election in Chennai. Srinivasan also gave an undertaking  that he will not preside over the Mar 2 Annual General Meeting or any other such meetings till the time the January 22 judgement prevents him from participating in any decision making meetings.   
           
    "I have an instruction to say that I (Srinivasan) will not preside over the meeting. Let it be whosoever who will preside," senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the beleaguered cricket administrator, submitted at the outset before a bench comprising Justices T S Thakur and F M I Kalifulla.
     
    The bench noted the submission of Sibal that "Srinivasan has realised that his act of presiding over the working committee meeting of February 8 was not well advised" and in no way his intention was to defy the court orders.     
     
    However, the apex court did not agree with the Cricket Association of Bihar that being the President of the TNCA Srinivasan should be barred from participating in the March 2 AGM for electing new office bearers of the BCCI.     
        
    It accepted the submission of Sibal that he can be authorised by the TNCA to vote on its behalf which was valid as per the rules. It was made clear that Srinivsan would not be participating in the AGM as the President of the BCCI or as the President of the TNCA.     
      
    "His presence in the AGM if authorised by the TNCA should not be treated as breach of the January 22 judgement," Sibal said.     
     
    He said there should be a clear order from the apex court whether Srinivasan was entitled for voting as the authorised representative of the TNCA as he did not want to face further embarrassment of second contempt proceedings.

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  • Shivamogga violence: PFI office-bearers held, but no ban on outfit

    Shivamogga: Police have arrested the organisers of the Popular Front of India (PFI) convention and unity march in connection with the communal clash that resulted in the death of a man here on February 19.

    M Nanjundaswamy, IGP, Eastern Range, said four office-bearers of the PFI’s district unit had been arrested and remanded in judicial custody. They are Shahid Khan, 32, president, Mohammed Jilan Khan, 26, general secretary, Naseer Ahmed, 43, secretary, and Syed Mohammed, a member.

    He claimed the four men had played a vital role in organising the PFI event. Cases of attempt to murder, unlawful assembly and rioting were registered against them. The number of arrests in the case has reached 186. More arrests are likely, he added.

    Nanjundaswamy said the organisers had obtained permission from the authorities concerned, but since the event snowballed into a communal clash, they had been arrested. If need be, the PFI’s national office-bearers may be arrested soon.

    In Bengaluru, Home Minister K J George said banning the PFI was not the solution as that would lead to a demand for banning other such organisations. The government had suggested the Centre amend the existing laws to pave way for more stringent punishment to perpetrators of communal crimes. High conviction rate would deter people from taking to crimes, he said.
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  • 233 foreign boats apprehended since 2011: Parrikar

    New Delhi: Around 233 foreign boats and 1,686 foreign crew were apprehended by the Indian Coast Guard between 2011-15, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said Friday.
     
    "Instances of illegal fishing in Indian waters by foreign fishermen come to the notice of government from time to time. A total of 233 foreign boats and 1686 foreign crew were apprehended by the Indian Coast Guard during the period 2011-15," Parrikar said in a written reply in the Lok Sabha.
     
    This comes months after a suspected terror boat was apprehended by the Indian Coast Guard. The boat was set afire by its occupants according to the Coast Guard, which resulted in a blast.
     
    In a written reply in the Lok Sabha, Parrikar said vessels and aircraft of the Indian Coast Guard and the Indian Navy are deployed on a 24x7 basis for surveillance in the maritime zones of India "to protect national interests including for preventing infiltration and poaching by foreign fishing boats".
     
    "Indian Coast Guard conducts community interaction programmes with the fishermen to sensitize them on prevailing security situations and develop them to be the "eyes and ears" for intelligence gathering," Parrikar said.
     
    The defence minister added that static radars have been installed along the Indian coastline for electronic surveillance of vessel traffic. The Coast Guard has also been conducting regular exercises bi-annually on coastal security in coordination with other central and state government agencies like the marine police, customs, CISF, fisheries department, port authorities, state police and Indian Navy.
     
    "Strengthening of maritime security and coastal security is a multi-stakeholder activity and necessary measures are implemented by various agencies," the defence minister said.
     
    To ensure coordination, regular meetings of the National Committee on Strengthening Maritime and Coastal Security (NCSMCS) are held in which all stakeholders participate," he added.

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  • Essar Leaks: French cruise for Nitin Gadkari, favours to UPA Minister, journalists

    New Delhi: A “whistleblower” has decided to go public with internal company communications of the Essar Group that, he says, show how it cultivated individuals in positions of power and influence, showered them with gifts and favours to push its business interests.

    The correspondence which includes purported emails and memos refers to meetings with government officials and alleged favours to ministers, bureaucrats and journalists, is the subject matter of a public interest litigation which will be filed in the Supreme Court by the Centre for Public Interest Litigation.

    The Indian Express sent a questionnaire about these records to Essar’s spokesperson. Responding to the email, a spokesperson for the company said in a statement: “It is apparent that some of the material is fabricated and some of the allegations are conclusions and inferences being drawn from email stolen from our computers.

    Stealing emails constitutes theft and as you would be aware that Delhi Police is taking strong steps against persons stealing information… We have already filed an appropriate complaint with the concerned authorities… We would take appropriate legal steps to ensure that the protection of law available against theft in all its forms is extended to our property, i.e. our servers and data on these servers.”

    Company communications, which form part of the PIL, show that BJP leader Nitin Gadkari, his wife, two sons and daughter spent two nights on an Essar luxury yacht stationed in the waters of the French Riviera between July 7 and July 9, 2013. They were flown to the yacht Sunrays in a helicopter from Nice airport and returned the same way.

    Gadkari was not an Union Minister then and had stepped down as BJP president. But an Essar executive, in an email to the yacht captain, made it very clear: “are very important people… see they are comfortable.”

    When The Indian Express asked Gadkari about the trip, he said: “I was going to Norway with my family and all air tickets and hotel bills for the holiday were paid by me. I did take a ride on the yacht of the Ruia family and that is because I have known the Ruias for over 25 years. When they learnt I was visiting Europe, they invited me. I see no conflict of interest here since at that time I was neither the BJP president nor a minister or MP. I will not do so now since I am a minister but at that time, where was the problem?”

    ‘’This trip was a private affair,” Gadkari said, “and I do have individual relations with people independent of my public life. Ruias and I have been neighbours for years in Mumbai and I have not dealt with their cases in any capacity or extended any favours to them. Where is the conflict of interest? Also, it is not as if the Ruias were paying a bill for me. It is their yacht which was lying vacant when we visited it. It is their personal boat, they own it. And the helicopter ride was essential since you can only land on the yacht by helicopter. It was a memorable trip.”

    It is alleged in internal Essar communications that then coal minister Sriprakash Jaiswal, Congress leaders Digvijaya Singh and Motilal Vora, then MP Yashbant Narayan Singh Laguri and BJP’s Varun Gandhi referred candidates for jobs in Essar.

    A senior company executive, in one of the emails, suggests that 200 slots be earmarked for VIP “referrals” and a separate data bank maintained.

    Asked if he had referred people for jobs, Jaiswal told The Indian Express: “I may have recommended a few people to Essar. I used to frequently recommend unemployed youth from my constituency, wherever they asked me to put in a word.”

    Digvijaya Singh, who it is alleged made one such “referral”, said: “I do not recollect this case but I do not deny that I used to regularly give references to those who needed assistance.”

    Varun Gandhi, when contacted, said: “I cannot remember the name of this gentleman that you are referring to. But in the course of my public life, I do come across well-educated, well-meaning and unemployed youth from my constituency and other places as well. They request me to give a letter of reference for employment and my office gives them letters of recommendation after satisfying their bonafide credentials.”

    Laguri was unavailable for comment.

    In one email, there is a proposal from a senior Essar executive that the company gift 200 high-end cell phones to top bureaucrats and MPs. Essar executives also arranged cabs for some Delhi-based journalists, in one case for 10 days. The company kept a record of all such requests made and granted.
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Regional

  • 108 - Ambulance drivers contribute much to save accident victims

    Mangaluru:  GVK EMRI - 108 Service saved a bleeding patient a week back.  The victim, from Belur, suffered grievous injuries all over his body, and his palm was severly injured when he used dynamite to kill fish at Kempuholey river.

    The ambulance driver’s driving skills enabled to reach the spot on time. They managed to save Ravi’s life.  These ambulance driver’s contribute a lot to save human lives in grave emergencies and a midst serious odds.  Numerous cases are on record which are verifiable.


    In one recent case the driver drove 65k in 45 minutes to save the victims. The driver states that he received a call at 12.15am, and was at the spot at 12.20.  Although there was a large crowd, nobody helped me put the injured into the ambulance which is a regular occurance - people only stand around for amusement. On the way, he informed Mangala authorities that one of them was bleeding dangerously. A mobile ICU and a doctor was sent and the injured shifted to the mobile ICU at BC Road.

    The operations in-charge, Mangala Hospital and Mangala Kidney Foundation, stated that eight of their ambulances have been stationed at Nelyadi, Uppinangady, Ujire, Kakkinje, Charmadi Ghat. "In a month, 15-20 cases from Gundya, Charmadi, Kallugundi and Chervattur. All the shops on the route have the phone numbers of the ambulance drivers. Victims are first taken to the nearest hospital for treatment. If they need advanced treatment, they are brought to Mangaluru.  Will the service of these angels ever be recognised?  Will, at least vehicles stop and give way to these ambulances fighting death.  it i unbelievable that public instead of understanding and co-operating only create hindrances.

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  • Kinnigoli: Leopard Gets Caught in Snare in Elinje, Rescued and Taken to Pilikula

    Kinnigoli: On Friday morning, a male leopard was found trapped in a man-made snare of steel wires set on a government land for wild animals, possibly to catch wild boars or rabbits, near the house of Sharat Shetty of Moodumane in Shunthipadi of Elinje under Aikala panchayat limits. It might have got ensnared on Thursday night, say the villagers.

    His neighbour Annu Moolya heard the roars of the leopard as he was passing by the spot and was taken aback. Information was passed on to panchayat president Padmini Vasant. She in turn informed the police and the forest personnel.

    Officials from Kundapur were to come but since it would have taken long hours to take action, the Pilikula park authorities were informed. Moodbidri range forest officer D G Dinesh and tranquillization expert Dr Dilip also rushed to the spot, besides the staff from Pilikula.

    The leopard, thought to be 5-6 years old, is so strong and well-muscled that it escaped two tranquillizer shots fired at it. Even after the third one was successfully poked, it took about 45 minutes to go to sleep. After confirming that it had gone out of senses, it was shifted to Pilikula. Higher officials will decide about its future, whether it had to be released in the wild or retained at Pilikula.

    Leopards have been in the news for long in and around Mulki, Punaroor, Aikala and surroundings. A female leopard with two cubs have been on the prowl for a long time around Kinnigoli. But since the one caught on Friday is a male, the trio is suspected to be on the move.

     

    The movements of the leopards have been so erratic that the forest personnel are undecided about the spot where cages are to be laid. The leopard said to be on the prowl in Kodipadi is thought to be different from the one caught, they have decided not to move the cage placed near the NITK campus.

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  • Padma Bhushan awarde Dr. K Radhakrishnan Former Chairman of ISRO Felicited

    Udupi:   Padma Bhushan Dr. K Radhakrishnan, Former Chairman, ISRO Bengaluru, was felicitated by Shri Shri Shri Vidya Vallabha Tirtha Swamiji, Kaniyoor Mutt, Udupi  during his visit to Mangaluru for delivering the Karnataka Bank’s Founders’ Day Lecture.

    intech_karntk_bank

    Karnataka Bank signed MoU with INTECH

    Karnataka Bank Ltd., one of the leading Private Sector Banks of India, has joined hands with M/s INTECH, Chennai, for financing electronic weigh bridges and other automation products in Weighing, Fire & Safety, etc., purchased from M/s INTECH, Chennai, by entering into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

    The Bank will provide finance on priority as per Bank’s norms, to the customers who intend to avail finance under this MoU. In the presence of Shri P.Jayarama Bhat, the Managing Director & CEO and Shri. Mahabaleshwara M S., Chief General Manager, Dr. Meera L B Aranha, General Manager of Karnataka Bank Ltd and Shri. C.R. Satyanarayanan, Proprietor of INTECH, have signed the Memorandum of Understanding in this regard at Bank’s Head Office in Mangaluru on 21st February 2015.

    The Bank has over 650 branches across India. Bank’s Deputy General Managers Shri Subhaschandra Puranik & Shri Nirmal Kumar K Hegde, Asst. General Managers, Shri Ramesh Bhat & Smt. Sumana Ghate, Chief Manager Shri Vasantha Kumar C, Senior Manager Shri. Udayashankar and Dr. Neelam, the director of INTECH Group of Companies, were present on this occasion.

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  • Shiradi Ghat relaying, Central ministry to restart tender process for second phase

    Mangaluru:   Dakshina Kannada district in-charge minister B Ramanath Rai said that tender process will be re-done for the second phase works as only one Hyderabad based company has come forward with their offer.

    The tenders for the second part of development of Shiradi Ghat road on Mangaluru - Bengaluru national highway will be re-called as the Union ministry has not received sufficient  bids. 

    The Shiradi Ghat work is allocated Rs 155.18 crore. Dakshina Kannada district administration had closed the road to facilitate the first phase work from 6am on January 2. Vehicles are diverted on alternate routes.

    The sanctioned work on the stretch is providing rigid pavement from Heggadde to Kempuhole Guest House at a tendered cost of Rs 69.90 crore. The second phase of work, including strengthening and providing rigid pavement, is expected to be taken up at an estimated cost of Rs 85.28 crore. The last date for submission of tender for the second phase work was January 27 and the ministry received bid from just one party. The last date was extended to February 7, but the ministry did not get response, said DK DC  A B Ibrahim.

    Meanwhile, sources said MPs D V Sadananda Gowda and Nalin Kumar Kateel met Union minister of Road Transport and Highway Nitin Gadkari and requested him to consider the matter. According to sources Gadkari refused to accept the bid. Hence, fresh tenders will be re invited.   Ministers and district administration is troubled as the road can not be opened in May 2015 with the unseen delays.

    The work includes relaying  41 kms of road stretch with 26 kms of concrete and 21kms of bitumen as per IRC standards. Contract to provide rigid pavement from Heggadde to Kempuhole Guest House has been awarded to Ocean Constructions India Private Limited, Mangaluru at a tendered cost of Rs 69.90 crore. The second phase works will be undertaken at the cost of Rs 85.28 crore.

    Minister Rai said  it is not  right to  close the road again for the second phase of work. People are already face lot of difficulty travelling via alternative routes which are tedious and long.  Merging the second phase work with Hassan-B C Road four laning project and complete phase one of the Shiradi Ghat in May 2014, is the possibility seen for now.

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  • Synthetic track in Mangala Stadium banned for public usage to maintain its quality: DC AB Ibrahim.

    Mangaluru: Public’s are banned from using the synthetic track in Mangala Stadium. This move has been initiated to preserve the quality of the synthetic track and maintain it in good condition, said AB Ibrahim, deputy Commissioner of Dakshina kannada District.

    Speaking to the media persons on Thursday, February 26th he said this measure has been initiated so that the synthetic track which is constructed at a cost of Rs 3.53 crores will be useful to train the athletes, he said.

    It was decided in a meeting held on February 25th which was presided over by Abhaychandra Jain-Minister for youth empowerment, sports and fisheries.

    The synthetic track at Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru and Chamundi Vihar Stadium in Mysuru is also banned for the public’s, he revealed.

    Panduranga Gowda, Youth Empowerment and department of Sports deputy director said, as the public’s are using the synthetic track for jogging it has caused inconvenience to train the athletes and we have received complaints regarding this matter. Suitable shoes have to be worn while running on the synthetic tracks. As the public’s who walk on this track wear mud track shoes or other kind of shoes, the synthetic track is being damaged, he informed.

    As the National level Federation Cup Athletic Championship will take place in Mangala Stadium from May 1st to May 5th, it is necessary to preserve the quality of synthetic track, he said.

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  • MLA arrested on charges of abetting suicide

    Kasargod:  Kannur Srikantapura MLA Mathew James of CPI (M) was arrested in connection with the suicide of Taliparamba private school principal E P Shashidharan in a lodge.   Mathew was arrested after he surrendered before the police. A case of abetment to suicide is registered against him

    The MLA is the second accused in the case. The first accused, a teacher of the school, M V Shaji, was arrested last week.  The incident occurred on Decmeber 15, 2014. Shashidharan, who was the principal of Tagore Vidyaniketana school, Taliparamba, was found hanging in a lodge. He had left a note stating that he was committing suicide due to harassment by the MLA and the teacher.

    As per reports an amount was sanctioned from the MLA’s fund for the construction of a new building for the school. Disagreements arose with regard to the use of these funds and the MLA had allegedly threatened Shashidharan regarding  funds misused.

    The suicide note had also stated that apart from suffering harassment at the hands of the above persons, the deceased principal also received threats. Investigations into allegations was sent to Srikantapura police station in Kannur district and action was initiated accordingly.

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  • Mangaluru: Nanthur Accident - Locals and Relatives of Preetham Stage Protest - Police Resort to Lath

    Mangaluru: Relatives and friends of Preetham Pinto staged a protest at the Nanthur Junction against the defective road which is responsible for the loss of several lives including the three lives lost on February 27.


    Preetham Pinto

    Preetham was killed when a truck ran over a car and his bike at Nanthur Junction. Preetham died in the hospital whereas pillion rider Shwetha was severely injured.

    Two others in the car, Veena and her son were also killed. Veena's Husband and daughter were severely injured and are admitted in the hospital.


    Veena 

    Speaking to mangalorean,com Sheldon Crasta, Preetham's cousin said, "I was going to the police station to file a complaint about the negligent driving of the Lorry driver. My cousin was killed when he was riding his bike. Pillion rider Shwetha was also severely injured with her hand being crushed. I too along with thousands others use this road everyday. In the last six months there have been a number of accidents at the Nanthur junction, the Highway authorities are not at all bothered nor are they taking any measures to avoid accidents".

    He further said, "When we were passing from the Nanthur Junction some locals along with the auto drivers said that the junction is too dangerous to travel and we have to protest against the highway authorities. When we gathered near the junction, the police came and attacked us. Later the police resorted to Lathi charge on the protesters. One of the protester, Lawrence D'Souza was injured and has been admitted to the hospital.

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  • Auto drivers went absconding after rape on a girl

    Karkala: The three auto drivers who used to park their autos near Lemina cross here are absconding after the rape incident of a dalit girl in a house near Lemina cross in Nitte.

    The main accused in the case is named as Mohammed Hanif, resident of Boralgudde.The rural police have already arrested three persons namely Yogish, Ravi and Vijay for helping the accused in the crime.

    As the arrest were made three more auto drivers are said to be absconding and their mobile phones are switched off.

    It is not clear yet whether the absconding auto drivers are involved in the crime or they were part of the gang which assaulted the accused.
    ...

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Mumbai Rounds
  • Mumbai: Family Rehearsed Suicide for 5 Days

    Mumbai (Mid-day): On the day mid-day reported that a family of four in Andheri (West) had carefully scripted and shot their suicide videos before hanging themselves on Friday night, the Oshiwara police have discovered that the deceased had been rehearsing their deaths and their last words since five days before they were found dead.

    The police continues to be baffled by the case since brother-sister duo, Bharti Pal (25) and Somnath Kartik Pal (20), were found hanging in their employer's flat in Oshiwara on February 20, and their mother (Sikha Pal) and stepfather (Manoj Ajitkumar Patel) were found similarly dead in their apartment in Lokhandwala the next morning.

    Rape?

    Each of them left behind one-minute suicide notes on video, on a mobile phone that was bought on January 15 and was found near the mother's body. Bharti, in her video, said that her employer, Tinku Singh, would frequently sexually assault her, and had even proposed marriage to her. She said this had driven her to the extreme step. 

    Her brother said the same, and added that Singh would also beat him up at times. Singh was arrested for molestation and abetment of suicide based on the suicide notes, and he then told the police that Bharti was like his sister and he did not touch her.

    In a later statement, however, Singh confessed that he liked Bharti and would kiss and touch her, but had never had sex with her. But according to Bharti's post-mortem report, although there was no indication of rape, she was sexually active.

    This has led cops to wonder: is Singh lying about his relations with Bharti, or did she have a boyfriend? The police is now making efforts to unlock Bharti's phone and to check the call records of all four family members to see whether she had a boyfriend, and also to determine whether they were pushed to commit suicide by a fifth person.

    Trial runs

    Yesterday, this paper reported that all four deceased seemed to be reading their suicide notes from a script and it also seemed like they had recorded each other's clips.

    After a more detailed scan of the mobile phone, the police found more videos in which the family members are seen 'rehearsing' their last words. All four had been practising their suicide messages at least five days in advance, the police concluded from their changing garb in each of the clips.

    While Bharti and her brother were found hanging from hooks in a bedroom in their employer's flat in Oshiwara, their mother and stepfather were found hanging from hooks in their Lokhandwala flat's kitchen. But, the investigating team also found two extra hooks in the passageway of the Lokhandwala flat, and suspect that this was where they practised taking their lives.

    Cops believe that the hooks in the passageway were placed too close together, which is why the brother-sister duo decided to commit suicide at their employer's house instead. They are now trying to find out what exactly happened during those five days of rehearsal, as all the furniture in the Lokhandwala flat's entire living room had been cleared out, leaving only a wooden temple and a wall clock.

    A police officer from the Oshiwara police station said, "The kitchen has a fridge, which was also empty. The dustbin had been emptied and washed, and just a stack of newspapers was lying in the corner of the room." The police officers have now asked for the CCTV recordings of the building to find out who moved the furniture of the house or who visited the couple in the five days of their planning.

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  • Buntaravani Talent completion and School Anniversary held

    Mumbai : “Let us remember the contribution of our elders who established the night school. It was the time where our people had no facility for further education as they came to Mumbai in their early age. During that time our elders established these Kannada Night School. Those who studied in such school have achieved in their life becoming Industrialist and are in high post. So there is a good future for the night school Kannada medium students”. Said Karnire  Vishwanath Shetty, president of Bunts Sangha Mumbai.

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     


     Buntaravani Talent completion and the Anniversary of The Karnataka Free Night High School and Nityanand Kannada Free Night High School held on 14th April, 2015 at Radhabhai T. Bhandary Auditorium, Buntara Bhavana, Kurla (E), Mumbai. Further Karnire  Vishwanath Shetty, appreciated the development of Buntaravani Editorial and Advisory board and the Education & Social Welfare Committee.

     President of Mulund Bunts, Dr. Satyaprakash Shetty was the Chief guest. Addressing the students he said competition is just a support for the development. Bunts Sangha is supporting for the education as education can solve poverty. Children should learn their mother tongue in their small age and then they can easily learn our state language and other languages, he said.

     Vishwanath Niddodi, N. Shivaraj, Yamuma R. Shetty and Navin Shetty were the judges of the competition. Dr. Sunita Shetty, Lata P. Shetty and Chitra R. Shetty compared the talent competition. Shantaram B Shetty, Chairman of Buntaravani welcomed and briefed about Buntaravani. N Vivek Shetty Chairman of Education & Social Welfare committee congratulated the students.

    Member of Parliment Nalinkumar Kateel and Social Worker from Mangalore Monappa Bhandary were present during the occasion. Editor of Buntaravani Premnath Shetty Mundkur introduced the guests. Secretary Bhaskar Shetty Karnad offered vote of thanks.

     Vice President of the Sangha Prabhakar L Shetty, Treasurer CA I R Shetty, Education & Social Welfare committee Vice president Appanna M Shetty, treasurer CA Ramesh Shetty, Premnath Shetty Mundkur, School supervisor Sanjeeva M. Shetty were preset on dais. Tonse Vijayakmar Shetty compared the programme.

     

    By Ishwar M. Ail

    Pics. Dinesh Kulal


     
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  • Mumbai: 'Small Change' Coming! One-rupee Note to be Back in Circulation Soon

    Mumbai: Wherever one goes in India, it is the same issue - there seems to no 'change'.

    Whether in malls and petty shops, the person at the counter may have heaps of coins in the metal containers under the till, but still questions like 'Do you have three rupees?' are popped at the buyers.

    But when the bill, say, is Rs 27.50 and if you are asked, 'Can you give me Rs 7.50?' it can certainly get anyone on his nerves.

    What, pray, does cause this shortage? It goes without saying that most of the time it is psychological. Everyone presumes there is a scarcity and tends to hoard coins.

    Of course, there is another reason. Coins in large quantities get blocked in collection boxes in houses of worship belonging to all religions since the amounts that pile up are counted and accounted for only periodically.

    Besides, there are reports that since the intrinsic value of the metal is far higher than the face-value of the coins, they are diverted to shady trades like illegal firearm manufacture.

    Whatever it is, there is some good news which could provide some sense of relief to the general public. The printing and circulation of Re 1 had been stopped in November 2014 in view of forbidding cost of printing and production. Subsequently, the printing of notes in denominations of Rs 2 and Rs 5 also was stopped.

    Instead, more and more more coins in smaller denominations like Re 1, Rs 2 and Rs 5 were put into circulation. But, as mentioned already, they seem to vanish soon to be melted and used for more 'paying' purposes.

    Now, the Reserve Bank of India has decided to bring out the one-rupee notes back into circulation. The new versions will bear the signature of the Union finance secretary instead of that of the RBI governor.

    Let's wait with patience to see if this could bring about a real change in the situation with the arrival of small notes.

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Gulf Rounds
  • Indian teacher in Doha forced to quit over Narendra Modi caricature

    Doha: A woman teacher at a prominent Indian school here was forced to resign after she posted a derogatory caricature of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on her Facebook account, a media report said on Thursday.

    The caricature last week had triggered a huge outcry in a section of the Indian expatriate community here as some objected to it, saying the 'photoshop' work was insulting to the Prime Minister.

    The teacher, who was not identified, said the caricature was circulating on social media and she had just picked, shared and posted it on her Facebook account.

    "I didn't create the caricature nor did I post it to insult Modi," The Peninsula quoted the teacher as saying.

    "I just used it to protest against what has been happening back home."

    The teacher was initially suspended for three days pending inquiry by the management, the paper said. Yesterday she was asked to put in her papers, which the teacher said she did.

    Her friends told the newspaper that they found the school's action shocking because India being a democratic country, its citizens enjoyed freedom of expression.

    However, contacted for comment, the management of MES Indian School said they had asked the teacher to quit since she used the school's name and logo with Modi's caricature.

    "Being a teacher, she shouldn't have posted such a derogatory caricature on her Facebook account. A teacher is a role model for the entire society," said a senior official from the management.

    The teacher said she didn't know how the school's name and logo appeared on her posting.

    The school official said that after the posting of the caricature by the teacher the school got calls from several parents.

    Meanwhile, the Indian embassy in Doha said it had received some complaints informing them about the teacher's Facebook posting and they forwarded it to the school management.

    "Yes we had received complaints about it and we forwarded it to the school...It is a private school. We have no say in their matters. The decision to terminate the services of a teacher comes under school's authority," an embassy official told sources over phone.
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  • Riyadh: Five Indian workers killed in Saudi Arabia road crash

    Riyadh (IANS) Five Indian workers - four of them from Kerala and one from Bihar - were killed in a road accident in Saudi Arabia, media reported Wednesday.

    Acoording to Arab News, the group was returning from Saudi Arabia's King Khaled International Airport to their camp in the Huraymila town, 97 km from Saudi capital Riyadh Monday when the accident happened.

    The workers were travelling on the Huraymila-Thadig route Monday when their car collided with another vehicle driven by a Saudi man.

    The four Keralites killed in the accident were identified as Mohammed Haneef, 52, his wife Noor Jahan, 49, Mohamed Salim, 50, and Shareef, 50.

    Rona Hayat Muhammed, 44, the Indian driver of the car, was also killed in the accident.

    The police took the Saudi driver into custody, while the five bodies are being kept in the morgue of the Huraymala General Hospital.

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  • UAE: Thumbay Hospital Dubai to Host Annual Healthy Baby Contest on February 27

    UAE: The Thumbay Annual Healthy Baby Contest & Exhibition 2014 will be held by Thumbay Hospital, Ajman on the 27th of February 2015 at Thumbay Hospital Dubai. Every year, the contest is held under the patronage of Thumbay Moideen, Founder President Thumbay Group UAE, promoters of Thumbay Hospitals and Gulf Medical University.

    The contest helps to raise community awareness and to inculcate health and nutrition habits for children at an early age for a healthy living & good lifestyle. The contest also promotes health consciousness among mothers regarding different factors affecting the health of children and detecting ill health & sickness at early stages and also a personal and friendly interaction with our renowned doctors.

    According to the organizers, the selection of the ‘Healthy Baby’ will be done according to the physical and mental growth, complete immunization, and general appearance of the child and parent’s knowledge about childcare. The following categories based on age are open – from 3 months to 1 year, 1 to 2 years, 2 to 3 years, 3 to 4years and 4 years to 5years. Apart from prizes in five age group categories the participants will also have prizes in the following categories - Curly Hair, Sparkling Eyes, Sunshine smile and chubby cheeks.

    Renowned pediatricians, apart from the experts at GMC Hospital will judge the participants. We are receiving an overwhelming response for this year’s edition and we expect over 500 children to participate this year, said one of the organizing committee members. Entry is free, and we will be issuing children & parent’s family passes to attend the event. The competition will be formally judged on elements like creativity, coordination, vibrancy in color, costumes, and audience engagement. There are lots of prizes to be won informed the organizers.

    This year’s edition will also highlight a special live Healthy Food preparation for mothers and fitness training session for dads. Past events have been of remarkable success with an attendance of over 3000. The popularity of this event amongst the parents & children has inspired us to get much bigger and better this year, and we expect the attendance to cross 4000.

    Also, the hospital will offer a free dental checkup, blood sugar, blood pressure and BMI checkup for the family members.

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Articles
  • THE WORLD NEEDS OTHERS TOO

    By Deepti Rani

    ''I want my son to be an engineer. I want my daughter to be a doctor '' . Am sure this is a common expectation from most of the parents .

             When I passed my SSLC with 92% my parents forced me to take up science though I was interested in arts . When I passed my PU board exam with 91% my parents forced me to take up engineering though I aspired to be a lawyer . When I asked my parents why science? Why not arts ? They told ' society thinks only dull students take up arts ' . Wait a second! What is this society now? Don't you think even my parents belong to the same society which thinks arts is meant for dull students . 
             If all parents blindly followed this cheap social mentality we wouldn't get a great teacher Dr Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan , great singer Latha Mangeshkar , great advocate K.S Hegde , great astronaut Kalpana Chawla and so on. 
             If Sachin Tendulkar's dad would force him to clear the subject that he once flunked then the world wouldn't get 'The God of Cricket' .
             At the end of the day it's not our degree that counts but its the satisfaction that matters. We have one life . And the biggest adventure is to live the life our DREAMS . Each one of us are born with a talent and nobody can beat us in that . 
            Most of us enjoy the dance performance given by others . But when the same talent lies in our own house nobody supports it because we want to have an engineer or a doctor who can raise the family reputation. 
            We often blame our system and politicians . We expect Lot of development and changes in society. But we never take an initiative to bring that change . India needs young energetic leaders to bring this change . But unfortunately very few parents encourage their children to get into politics . 
           To all the parents who force their children to take up a particular stream here is a piece of advice .Only a poet can write a beautiful poem and only a sculptor can give us a beautiful sculpture . Even a sweeper if he's really passionate about his work then his passion can make him the best sweeper that the world has ever seen.No work is inferior or superior in front of god . 
           Here is a story which I came across in one of the lectures that I attended in my college. There lived a bank manager who had a son who flunked in his pu board exam . Even at the second attempt he couldn't manage to clear the subject .His dad was upset that his son was ineligible to take up engineering. But his son had a high knowledge about the cars and it's functioning . So he started working at the garage .One fine day he came across an advertisement given by FORD car manufacturing company which was asking for a solution regarding a major car design problem . The advertisement mentioned that the person with best solution will be rewarded rs 32 crore. This guy who was extremely passionate about cars approached the company with the solution .They implemented his design and his idea actually solved the major design problem . Thus he was awarded with rs 32 crore . He was asked to give lectures to research and mtech students at NIT's regarding his design . Further he was given a 100 crore overdraft for his next project . His dad who once considered him to be useless is now proud of him . Probably this guy wouldn't achieve this greatness if he was forced to take up engineering . 
              I guess this is the best example for great achievement by ordinary person with an extraordinary passion . 
              I hope my article will motivate atleast few parents to support and encourage their children in the field that they are passionate about.
              Because THE WORLD NEEDS lawyers , singers , sportsmen , astronauts , politicians and many OTHERS TOO.

    By Deepti Rani.
    ...

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Public Voice
  • Manipal Students Harrased by Police

    I am writing this to you as the media is the only system left that can provide justice for all in our country today. The politicians, the police, the authorities and sometimes even the law is corrupt. But among all this, Media remains to be the one system that speaks for the "little guy" and stands up for justice.

    I am writing to you concerning several cases of harassment of students by Manipal Police. Manipal is a university town sprawling with students from different states and countries. It is known to have a few drug problems as well it has a number of suicide cases of students taking their own lives after being intoxicated.

    Recently, A student had committed suicide due to drugs as claimed by the police and papers. The police have begun closing all restaurants and shops by 11:30pm so as to minimize movement around the area. They have also started searching suspected apartments for drugs and have caught many drug dealers. This is all commendable though the effort has started late.

    Over the past week, the police have beaten over 13 students walking back/to a friends apartment after 11:30pm. Students go to watch the last film which ends at 12pm and visit each others houses for group discussion and studies. The Manipal Police have been stopping students walking or on bikes and beating them without question. The police do not ask for students' Id cards neither do they ask any question as to where the student has been or is going. Numerous students stay in apartments as the Hostels are very expensive and visit each others houses for video games or studies. The police have started this brutal action the beginning of this week and everyone is too afraid of saying anything as the university has good relations with the police. Something needs to be done so that the police do not harass students in this way. Students are afraid of walking around. This has instilled fear in many. It is very unpatriotic and uncivilized for the police to catch students and beat them with sticks without questioning.

    I hope you will look into this as "Media" is the only source of justice left in this country.

    By- A Student of MANIPAL
    ...

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  • Be Aware...fraudulant companies around.

    I am Deepalaxmi from Mangalore, Karnataka. I have been following Your Channel from past decade. I request you to help me in one of the problem faced by many job seekers including me by one of the recruitment company below. I want you to take action against this so that no other individuals would be cheated in future by this company and also no other such fraudulant people can get guts to play with other people's money, time and talent.

    I have been cheated by the following company, which claims to be a job consultant. A lady called me and asked me to register my profile in their website: www.aapkacareer.com by paying Rs.1685/-, for which i have not received any confirmation mail. After that the call was transferred to another person who claimed himself to do profile verification for my profile and asked me to pay Rs.6180/- for the same, which was not intimated to me earlier.

    The Company has been cheating many people in the similar manner which i got to know later when i searched for the company in google.

    Request you to kindly take necessary action against this company and stop other people from being cheated by them. The company address is below:
    Address:
    AAPKA CAREER
    P 64, PANDAV NAGAR , MAYUR VIHAR PHASE 1, DELHI - 110091, INDIA
    Telephone: 011-45671678
    website address: http://aapkacareer.com/index.php?route=common/home ...

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