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Range Forest Officer in ACB net

ANTI-CORRUPTION Bureau (ACB) sleuths on Wednesday caught Pradip Pundlikrao Dhole, Range Forest Officer (RFO), Lakhni, district Bhandara, red-handed while demanding and accepting bribe of Rs 3,0... Read More
ANTI-CORRUPTION Bureau (ACB) sleuths on Wednesday caught Pradip Pundlikrao Dhole, Range Forest Officer (RFO), Lakhni, district Bhandara, red-handed while demanding and accepting bribe of Rs 3,000/- from a contractor for giving him permission to cut teak trees purchased by him. Mithilesh Giripunje, a contractor, had purchased teak trees in Lakhni area. For publishing ‘Jahirnama’ and giving permission to cut the trees, RFO Dhole (52) demanded Rs 3,000/- from him. Giripunje immediately lodged a complaint against RFO Dhole with ACB officers at Bhandara. Subsequently, the bureau officers laid a trap at Range Forest Office at Lakhni and caught RFO red-handed when he accepted the cash from Giripunje. The bureau officers registered an offence under relevant sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act against Dhole at Lakhni Police Station.

The trap was laid by Deputy Superintendent of Police (ACB Bhandara) Prashant Kolwadkar and his team under the supervision of Superintendent of Police (ACB) Prakash Jadhav.

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Asha Bhosle to perform in city today

Nagpur Mahotsav, the cultural extravaganza organised by Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) will start from January 22 with legendary singer Asha Bhosle performing on opening day. Bhosle is schedule... Read More
Nagpur Mahotsav, the cultural extravaganza organised by Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) will start from January 22 with legendary singer Asha Bhosle performing on opening day. Bhosle is scheduled to present some of her most memorable and melodious Marathi songs during this concert. Nitin Gadkari, Union Road Transport and Surface Minister will inaugurate the event while Mayor Pravin Datke will preside over. Union Minister of State Hansraj Ahir, Finance Minister of Maharashtra Sudhir Mungantiwar, Rajya Sabha MP Vijay Darda, Avinash Pande, Ajay Sancheti will be present as guest of honour. Legislators Krishna Khopde, Sudhakar Deshmukh, Vikas Kumbahre, Anil Sole, Sudhakar Kohle, Rajendra Mulak will also grace the occasion. Nagpur Mahotsav will be held from January 22 to January 26 at Yashwant Stadium.

Asha Bhosle will perform on January 22, while local artists will perform on January 23. Pt. Ravi Chary (Sitar), Rakesh Chaurasia (Flute), Sheldon D’Silva (Bass Guitar), Sangeet Haldipur (Key board), Nitin Shankar (Percussionist), Aditya Kalyanpur (Tabla), Andrew Kanga (Drums), and Sanjoy Das (Guitar) will perform in Fusion programme on January 24. The poet meet (Kavi Sammelan) will be held on January 25. Noted poet Hariom Pawar, Pradeep Choube, Sunil Jogi, Raja Dharmadhikari, Popular Merathi, and Rashmi Kiran will participate in it. The “Jay Ho” musical programme will be performed by noted play back singer Sukhwinder Singh on Republic Day.

The local body has provided free passes to citizens to enjoy the cultural programme. The passes will be available at zonal office, with corporators and NMC offices across city.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis will be present during concluding function on January 26. Former MP Banwarilal Purohit, Education Minister Vinod Tawde, Guardian Minister Chandrashekhar Bawankule, Social Justice Minister Rajkumar Badole, Ramtek MP Krupal Tumane and former MP Datta Meghe will be present in concluding function. Mayor Pravin Datke will chair the function. Education Committee President Chetan Tank, Sports Committee Chairman Harish Dikondwar, Deputy Commissioner Pramod Bhusari, Education Officer Deependra Lokhande, and others are working hard for the success of the event.

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Regulatory body for private hospitals uncalled for: IMA

Reacting sharply to the decision of Nagpur Municipal Corporation to constitute a Private Hospital Regulatory Authority (PHRA), Indian Medical Association, Nagpur branch (IMA) has said that idea... Read More
Reacting sharply to the decision of Nagpur Municipal Corporation to constitute a Private Hospital Regulatory Authority (PHRA), Indian Medical Association, Nagpur branch (IMA) has said that idea of such a regulatory body for hospitals is totally uncalled for. President of Nagpur branch of IMA, Dr Sanjay Deshpande while criticising the decision questioned the legality, propriety and very need of forming such a body. “They should specify under which rule they are doing so and under which law they are fixing rate of medical services ?, he sought to know.

NMC general body in its meeting held on Tuesday decided to constitute PHRA for regulating private hospitals following large-scale complaints against exorbitant rates charged by them from hapless patients. IMA said that with rising expectancy of average life in India, there had been growing expectation of society from the medical profession. The doctors, the medical profession and medical practices as such have become a focal point of discussion in various forums.

With its membership base of over one lakh doctors belonging to modern medicine, Maharashtra Medical Council, has been advocating ethical practices including the removal of “Cut Practice Menace” from the medical profession. Due to handful of doctors doing unethical practice, entire fraternity can not be blamed.

The Draft of State Act of Clinical Establishment Act has already been submitted to the Government of Maharashtra. The draft was prepared by 18 members of expert committee drawn from all over the country, under the Chairmanship of Dr. Kishor Taori, Chairman of Maharashtra Medical Council. It comprehensively covers the rights of the doctors, rights of patients. The provision of necessary infrastructural facilities will be covered by the bye-laws, which will be prepared after the Act is okayed by State Government.

In these circumstances the separate regulating authority at the corporation level is uncalled for and will result in having impact of differential treatment to the medical profession in various cities of Maharashtra, pointed IMA.

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Bomb scare in Duronto Express triggers panic

A bomb scare was triggered after cleaning staff found a bottle with suspected chemical aboard Mumbai-Nagpur Duronto Express on early Wednesday morning. The train arrived at 7 am and later was bei... Read More
A bomb scare was triggered after cleaning staff found a bottle with suspected chemical aboard Mumbai-Nagpur Duronto Express on early Wednesday morning. The train arrived at 7 am and later was being taken to washing yard for maintenance. The railway employees while checking the train found a suspected yellow coloured bottle with narrow opening in S-2 bogie.

The employees got scared when they also noticed something like wire dangling from the bottle’s mouth. Panicked, the employees raised alarm shouting ‘bomb’, ‘bomb’ which created quite a scene at the washing siding. Immediately, security agencies were alerted and Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad (BDDS) was summoned.

The squad reached the spot along with a sniffer dog and attended the train. As the dog did not signal, the BDDS personnel collected the bottle. Later, they found nothing suspicious as it contained phenyl.

After completing the formalities, the security personnel gave a go-ahead to the train for its journey.

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NMC seals Jaswant Mall to recover Rs 2.15 cr tax dues

Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) on Wednesday sealed Jaswant Mall run by S Kapursingh Tuli and Mohabbat Singh Tuli to recover property tax dues worth Rs 2.15 crore. The property is situated... Read More
Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) on Wednesday sealed Jaswant Mall run by S Kapursingh Tuli and Mohabbat Singh Tuli to recover property tax dues worth Rs 2.15 crore. The property is situated at Indora square and houses film screens and other commercial establishments, despite repeated notices, the owners did not clear the dues. From last many years, the tax demand was not honoured and hence penalty was also imposed along with penal interest. On Wednesday, NMC team led by Assistant Commissioner Harish Raut, A J Bodile, Sunil Meshram, Sanjay Kamble and others from Asi Nagar zone sealed the Mall.

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High Court notice to Enquiry Officer in NDCCB scam

Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court on Wednesday issued notice to earlier enquiry officer who had conducted enquiry under Co-Operative Societies Act against Saoner MLA and former chairman of Nagpur... Read More
Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court on Wednesday issued notice to earlier enquiry officer who had conducted enquiry under Co-Operative Societies Act against Saoner MLA and former chairman of Nagpur District Central Co-operative Bank (NDCCB) on a complaint filed by new officer who is conducting section 88 enquiry against Kedar and others.

According to Surendra Kharbade, a lawyer who was appointed as enquiry officer by Maharashtra government to probe Rs150 crore scam NDCCB alleged that former special auditor Yashwant Bagde had not handed over old records of enquiry to him.

Kharbade claimed that Bagde was adamant and not heeding to his requests.

Bagde took more than a decade to conduct the probe and later indicted Kedar and others for causing loss to bank. Kharbade took up the issue with department and finally moved the High Court seeking a direction to Bagde to hand over the record. Almost all delinquents and the bank proposed to rely upon the written statements, evidences, depositions, arguments adduced in the previous enquiry and arguments submitted therein. Under these circumstances, it was imperative to get the original record and documents for proceeding further, Kharbade said in the application.

A division bench consisting of Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice Mridula Bhatkar issued notice to Bagde and sought his response by January 28. Entire record has been put under lock and key of Bagde and in absence of this record, the enquiry is not proceeding further.

The High Court had already directed the Co-Operative department to complete the hearing on appeal filed against order of Rs 129.31 cr recovery within 6 months. The High Court had also directed the trial court to complete the trial which is languishing since last 12 years within one year.

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High Court notice to Enquiry Officer in NDCCB scam

Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court on Wednesday issued notice to earlier enquiry officer who had conducted enquiry under Co-Operative Societies Act against Saoner MLA and former chairman of Nagpur... Read More
Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court on Wednesday issued notice to earlier enquiry officer who had conducted enquiry under Co-Operative Societies Act against Saoner MLA and former chairman of Nagpur District Central Co-operative Bank (NDCCB) on a complaint filed by new officer who is conducting section 88 enquiry against Kedar and others.

According to Surendra Kharbade, a lawyer who was appointed as enquiry officer by Maharashtra government to probe Rs150 crore scam NDCCB alleged that former special auditor Yashwant Bagde had not handed over old records of enquiry to him.

Kharbade claimed that Bagde was adamant and not heeding to his requests.

Bagde took more than a decade to conduct the probe and later indicted Kedar and others for causing loss to bank. Kharbade took up the issue with department and finally moved the High Court seeking a direction to Bagde to hand over the record. Almost all delinquents and the bank proposed to rely upon the written statements, evidences, depositions, arguments adduced in the previous enquiry and arguments submitted therein. Under these circumstances, it was imperative to get the original record and documents for proceeding further, Kharbade said in the application.

A division bench consisting of Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice Mridula Bhatkar issued notice to Bagde and sought his response by January 28. Entire record has been put under lock and key of Bagde and in absence of this record, the enquiry is not proceeding further.

The High Court had already directed the Co-Operative department to complete the hearing on appeal filed against order of Rs 129.31 cr recovery within 6 months. The High Court had also directed the trial court to complete the trial which is languishing since last 12 years within one year.

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State Govt extends RTE to pre-primary admissions

Bringing much needed clarity in school admissions under Right to Education (RTE) Act, Maharashtra School Education Department has made it clear that at least 25 per cent seats at entry level need... Read More
Bringing much needed clarity in school admissions under Right to Education (RTE) Act, Maharashtra School Education Department has made it clear that at least 25 per cent seats at entry level needs to reserved under RTE. The department has laid down three guidelines to tackle the difficulties of schools with variation between pre-primary or standard I intake.

If the intake at pre-primary level is more than the intake of Standard-1, then the 25% seats as per intake of the Standard-I will be calculated and these many children will be admitted in pre-primary. If the intake capacity in pre-primary is less than the intake in first standard then 25% seats of the total intake of pre-primary will be calculated and accordingly admissions will be done in pre-primary. Remaining admissions will be done in Standard-I. If some seats remain vacant after the admission process of pre-primary then these seats will be filled during the admission at Standard-1, the department has clarified.

Due to different interpretation and various circulars, there was lot of confusion about applicability of RTE at pre-primary stage. But now even entry point has been covered under RTE, the Education department has stated.

Admissions are given under RTE to deprived and children from poor economic background class. Apart from State board schools, Maharashtra has large number of CBSE, IB, ICSE and IGCSE schools. Department noticed that the intake in these schools is different in Standard-I and pre-primary classes. This has created problems in calculating 25% admissions due to confusion about base point.

Minimum 3 yrs age fixed for nursery admissions

As declared by Education Minister Vinod Tawde, the department has also fixed minimum 3 years as the age for admission to play group/nursery admission. For Standard-I admission minimum 6 years age has been prescribed. The age will be calculated as on July 31 of the year of admission. The department has asked the schools to implement age criterion for play group/nursery from the academic year 2015-16 itself. While for Standard-I, it can be implemented by 2018-19 since the admissions to KG-I and KG-II have already been last year and there will be lot of injustice on these kids. Government has also made it clear that though the age limit for admission to Standard-I is 6 years, the kid of 5 years of age also can be admitted in that class during next academic year (2015-16), in 2016-17 only kids who will complete 5 years and four months will be eligible for admission to Standard-I while in 2017-18, minimum age should be 5 years and 8 months. Apart from the schools run by State Government, various schools of different boards including CBSE, ICSE, IB are following different age criterion At present there is no age limit fixed for the admissions to pre-primary class.

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HC slams NMC for wasting public money on extravaganza

NAGPUR bench of Bombay High Court on Wednesday lashed out at Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) for wasting precious public money on cultural extravaganza like Nagpur Mahotsav, when its coffers... Read More
NAGPUR bench of Bombay High Court on Wednesday lashed out at Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) for wasting precious public money on cultural extravaganza like Nagpur Mahotsav, when its coffers are empty and it is unable even to discharge its statutory obligations.

The High Court minced no words while slamming the civic body for inviting celebrities and spending huge money while it is unable to pay salary in time, repair roads, clean waterbodies and undertake development work without government’s financial aid. There are many cultural organisations in the city and local artists who are ready to perform on such platforms even without charging any fees, the High Court observed while strongly disapproving the manner in which Nagpur Mahotsav has been organised. The High Court hoped that from next time, the Corporation would not indulge in such activities and better counsel would prevail. Infact such cultural activities with local artists should be undertaken only after performing its statutory duties and only if it has some money left, the High Court observed while giving a major jolt to NMC bosses.

However, the Court refrained itself from passing any adverse order at this juncture to stall the six-day long festival beginning Thursday with musical concert of legendary singer Asha Bhosle. The NMC authorities and office-bearers were visibly nervous after High Court’s tough stance.

A division bench consisting of Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice Mridula Bhatkar while issuing notice to Municipal Commissioner on a PIL filed by Artists Council led by veteran artist O P Singh and a law-student Ankita Shah challenging the non-transparent process adopted by civic body, wastage of public money and favouritism shown to event management company Admark by NMC, directed him to file reply within two weeks. An outlay of Rs 1.75 crore has already been paid to Event Manager and the council had already raised a serious question-mark over which tender conditions were tweaked and celebrity artists were already booked. The court while adopting a very tough stance warned the NMC in no uncertain terms that though this time it was sparing this programme from interference, but in future, it would not take such wasteful and unwarranted expenditure by the Corporation kindly. It asked the City Corporation to give an undertaking to the court in writing in two weeks that it will not plan such wasteful extravaganza in future ignoring the need to attend to citizens’ basic needs and the need to encourage local and up-coming artists. Adv R M Tahaliyani and Adv Pradeep Agrawal appeared for the petitioner-council and the other petitioner Ankita Shah appeared in person. Adv S K Mishra represented the NMC.

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Govt sanctions Rs 105 cr to MIHAN for rehab

In a major boost to MIHAN project, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has sanctioned Rs 105 crore for rehabilitation of project affected persons. The amount will be spent during next two months. Th... Read More
In a major boost to MIHAN project, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has sanctioned Rs 105 crore for rehabilitation of project affected persons. The amount will be spent during next two months. The total cost of rehabilitation is Rs 643 crore as per plan approved by State Rehabilitation Authority in its meeting dated June 19, 2013. However, the amount was never made available to Maharashtra Airport Development Company (MADC) during all these years. After announcing his intention to accord top-most priority to expedite MIHAN and showcase it as destination for IT and other industries, Chief Minister has ensured timely delivery of Rs 105 crore to MADC to kick-start much delayed rehabilitation of project affected persons as per legislation.

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NMC proposes regulatory authority for pvt hospitals

Taking serious note of fleecing of patients by private medical hospitals in the orange city, Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) has decided to constitute a Private Hospital Regulating Authority... Read More
Taking serious note of fleecing of patients by private medical hospitals in the orange city, Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) has decided to constitute a Private Hospital Regulating Authority (PHRA) for regulating these hospitals.

A resolution in this regard was passed in the general body meeting of local body held on Tuesday at Town Hall. Mayor Pravin Datke chaired the meeting. Ruling party leader Dayashankar Tiwari raised the issue of formation of Private Hospital Regulating Authority in the city. Emphasising on the issue, Tiwari said, the hospitals are charging exorbitant room rents almost at par with five star hotels from the patients.

The Health Department of NMC is doing gradation of hospitals on the basis of number of beds in the hospital and not on the basis of facilities available and provided in the hospitals. He alleged that in renowned hospitals also, the doctors present in the ICU room of hospital are not qualified and hardly upto the mark. The facilities provided in these hospitals are lagging as compared to fees recovered from the patients.

He also highlighted cut practice adopted by the doctors in the practice and urged that this practice should be stopped immediately in favour of poor and needy patients. He suggested for PHRA comprising dean of Medical College, President of IMA, Deputy Director Health (State Government), Deputy Director of Health (NMC), members of various NGO's, Hospital Committee Chairman, and some corporators. Tiwari suggested for levy of taxation on the basis of number of beds and charges recovered from the patient. He said, a board should be displayed on the front side of the hospital mentioning charges of the various services, which is legally mandatory. He also suggested for quality control check on the services provided by these hospitals for the benefit of the poor and needy persons. He praised Radiology Association for rejecting cut practice in the profession.

Mayor Pravin Datke while declaring the resolution as passed directed that Municipal Commissioner should prepare a proposal according to Maharashtra Municipal Corporation (MMC) Act, and if required, take permission of the State Government for formation of this committee.

Financial Assistance to family of the deceased school-boy

Local body will extend every possible financial assistance to the family of the student, who died in the wall collapse incident at Kapil Nagar Hindi School of NMC. The student of class IV Sheikh Riyan Sheikh Rashid died in the accident on December 17, 2014 in North Nagpur. Corporator Aslam Sheikh has demanded Rs five lakh assistance and job to a family member. Mayor Datke assured to take adequate step for helping the family. Gautam Patil, Savita Sangole, Aslam Khan, Kishor Gajbhiye, and others participated in the discussion.

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Corporators’ ‘shocking’ unity to reinstate a tainted officer in NMC

Defying strong public opposition and ignoring pending criminal prosecution, Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) on Tuesday passed a legally questionable resolution to reinstate controversial tra... Read More
Defying strong public opposition and ignoring pending criminal prosecution, Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) on Tuesday passed a legally questionable resolution to reinstate controversial traffic engineer Nasir Khan in the service of local body. It may be mentioned that Nasir Khan was compulsorily retired last year for submitting misleading documents to the local body about his birth date.

The shocking proposal was passed without any discussion the meeting of general body on Tuesday, raising serious questionmark over intentions of those who kept mum when a tainted officer was clandestinely brought back, taking NMC administration also by surprise.

However, Mayor Pravin Datke while talking to mediapersons clarified that the administration would take decision according to the law. The then Municipal Commissioner illegally dismissed him without notice of the general body. The notice of reinstatement was given by corporators Aslam Khan, Jaitunbi Ashfaq Ahmed, Moh. Kamil Ansari, Savita Manoj Sangole, Bhushan Shingne, Adv. Sanjay Balpande and Prakash Totwani. The matter is sub judice in Nagpur Bench of Bombay High Court. Previously, then Mayor Prof. Anil Sole had denied permission to raise the sub judice issues in the general body meeting, however, his successor Datke allowed the same. Ruling party leader Dayashankar Tiwari also shielded Nasir Khan saying that Khan's date of birth was settled during tenure of J S Saharia, who was Municipal Commissioner. Sources claimed that NMC administration has clearly mentioned in the file that Khan was not dismissed but retired from the service for which general body's nod was not required. The office also mentioned about pendency of case in the High Court but general body rejected their apprehension. Datke while justifying the proposal claimed that nobody demanded discussion on this proposal so we cleared it.

Nasir Khan was not dismissed from the service but he was compulsorily retired from the service with effect from September 2013. Khan was found guilty for misleading local body on his date of birth issue. Khan had mentioned his date of birth in NMC's record as September 15, 1958. He submitted his transfer certificate of Nagpur Polytechnic college. As per school record Khan's year of birth was September 15, 1955 but somehow he had managed his date of birth in Nagpur Polytechnic College. Going by the record submitted by Khan, he achieved an impossible task of clearing class IV at the age of 7 years only.

Khan submitted his mother Rehmatullah Bi's affidavit to establish his claim. Nagpur Polytechnic college administration informed NMC that Khan had submitted TC of class IV of a school mentioning birth year as 1955. He completed his class IV in 1965 at the age of 10. This clearly shows that Traffic Engineer forged document in transfer certificate of polytechnic college. He reduced his age by three years. As per original date of birth, he should have retired in September 2013 but he continued in NMC service on the basis of this new date of birth.

Talatule is new Education Officer Lokhande to continue in NMC

The General body also cleared the proposal to give promotion to A R Talatule as Education Officer at NMC. Present Education Officer Deependra Lokhande will head the new Shikshan Mandal of the local body. As per MMC Act, the NMC has to constitute Shikshan Mandal for controlling all the educational institutes in the city. Dayashankar Tiwari urged general body to retain him in service at NMC without discontinuing his services. Kishor Gajbhiye opposed the appointment of Talatule. Present, Education Officer Deependra Lokhande, who is on deputation from State Government will be repatriated to his parent department. Talatule is working as Head Master (Secondary school).

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Dr Sanjeev Chaudhary gets Global Health Crusader award in Nepal

"Osteoporosis is a serious health problem faced by Nepal, but this doctor has come all the way from India to create awareness here about it which is very praiseworthy and he deserves our kudos.... Read More
"Osteoporosis is a serious health problem faced by Nepal, but this doctor has come all the way from India to create awareness here about it which is very praiseworthy and he deserves our kudos.”

These were the words of appreciation poured on city's famous Orthopaedic Surgeon Dr Sanjeev Chaudhary by Nepal's Health Secretary Kedar Bahadur Adhikari while presenting 'Global Health Crusader of the Year' award at Nepal in a glittering ceremony. Realising importance of Osteoporosis and ignorance about it in rural area, Dr Chaudhary introduced a novel and effective programme of on-line education called Health Education and Tele-consultation on Osteoporosis (HEATCO).

It has been successfully planned and conducted in 117 villages with resounding success. Dr Chaudhary has now expanded the scope of his services to neighbouring SAARC countries like Nepal, Mauritius, Bangla Desh, Sri Lanka and Myanmar where awareness about osteoporosis is negligible.

Dr Chaudhary launched his global awareness campaign from Kathmandu, Nepal on Sunday, January 18. In a seminar and training programmes, doctors, nurses, paramedical workers, teachers, social workers, corporate executives, public health workers were extensively educated on various aspects of osteoporosis and enabled them to conduct similar education programmes in villages for Nepalese women. His programme fetched massive response as it was appreciated and recognised as the most innovative initiative, first of its kind, in Nepal.

Dr Chaudhary said, "Osteoporosis is a silent disease of bones commonly seen in women characterised by progressive reduction in density and strength of bones making them fragile and leads to major fracture without fall or trauma leaving a woman to a life which is miserable and disabled."

Dr Chaudhary performed experiment of video-medicine or video-counseling in Chimnazari village near Nagpur wherein he talked to a 100 year old woman, sitting from his chamber at Sakkardara hospital. That was a novel idea, first time conceptualised in Central India. Dr Chaudhary during his tenure as President of Vidarbha Orthopaedic Society (VOS) initiated a project of awareness about osteoporosis. He then had sent his team members to various parts of Vidarbha wherefrom the statistics regarding osteoporosis was collected and it was documented. The documentation then was handed over to Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare in form of a White Paper.

Apart from Kedar Adhikari, the editor-in-chief of The Himalayan Times Prakash Rimal and Secretary of Indian Embassy at Nepal Bipin Tomar, along with other dignitaries were also present.

Ideal villages selected for osteoporosis awareness drive

Considering the seriousness of the disease osteoporosis and need of the awareness to be spread, Dr Sanjeev Chaudhary has been asked to conduct the same here by Government. In a letter sent to all District Collectors, Chief Executive Officers of Zilla Parishad, the Divisional Commissioner Anoop Kumar has said that the programme of Health Education and Tele-consultation on Osteoporosis (HEATCO) developed by Dr Chaudhary should be implemented in villages adopted by Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha Members under ideal village scheme. Time Facility Services will conduct workshop in Gram Panchayats with the help of Dr Sanjeev Chaudhary. This programme will be implemented as Entry Point Activity (EPA).

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Two city girls killed in ghastly mishap near Chhindwara

TWO engineering students from Nagpur were killed and three others injured, two of them seriously, after a Mercedes Benz car they were travelling in caught fire after hitting a divider on Linga ... Read More
TWO engineering students from Nagpur were killed and three others injured, two of them seriously, after a Mercedes Benz car they were travelling in caught fire after hitting a divider on Linga Ring Road in Chhindwara district of Madhya Pradesh in the small hours of Tuesday.

Nisha Sharma and Jennifer Sharma were killed in the ghastly mishap. Both were upcoming models. Injured Neelam Mishra, Hardik Harlaba and Adan Afroz Ahmed were rushed to Wockhardt Hospital in Nagpur.

According to sources, Nisha was a resident of Umarnala in Chhindwara district and was studying engineering in the city. Nisha had gone to attend her grandfather Dr Matadin Sharma's wedding anniversary celebrations at Silver Sand Hotel in Chhindwara on Monday. Her friends also accompanied her.

After the party, Nisha and her friends decided to return to Nagpur late in the night. They all boarded a Mercedes Benz car and started for Nagpur.

Around 1 am on Tuesday, Hardik, who was driving the car speedily, lost control of the vehicle. The car dashed against a divider in Mohkhed Police Station area on Linga Ring Road killing Jennifer on the spot and injuring others. Soon, the car caught fire.

Nisha's relatives, who were following them in different vehicles, extricated the injured and rushed them to Wockhardt Hospital where the doctors declared Nisha dead.

Hardik and Neelam, who suffered serious injuries in the mishap, are undergoing treatment at Wockhardt Hospital. It is learnt that Hardik is a native of Surat. Neelam is from Bhopal.

Chhindwara Police are investigating the case.

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SEBI orders ‘Shreesurya’ to refund money within 7 days

Cracking its whip against yet another ponzy scheme enticing unsuspecting investors from parking their hard-earned money running into hundreds of crores, SEBI on Tuesday barred Sameer Joshi of S... Read More
Cracking its whip against yet another ponzy scheme enticing unsuspecting investors from parking their hard-earned money running into hundreds of crores, SEBI on Tuesday barred Sameer Joshi of Shreesurya Investments from mobilising funds from public while also asking him to refund investors money within a period of seven days.

Sameer Joshi, a sub-broker with trade name Shreesurya Investments, has also been restrained from dealing in the securities market, till further directions. Joshi is already behind bars for duping investors to the tune of hundreds of crore and aggrieved investors had already approached the High Court demanding proper investigation against Shreesurya and its promoter who had cheated thousands of investors across Maharashtra, but especially at Nagpur, Amravati, Akola and Pune.

A similar order was passed by SEBI against Prashant Wasankar. However, this order came too late in the day, when Joshi is already behind bars facing criminal cases and has expressed inability to refund the money.

A preliminary probe by Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) found that Joshi was soliciting money from clients under various schemes by making "unrealistic claims of high returns." According to complainants, Shreesurya Investments has allegedly cornered more than Rs 5,000 crores from 6,000 investors. However the regulator found that till March 2010, Joshi had mopped up Rs 21.30 crore from iunvestors, in 2010-11 he mobilised another Rs 42 crore while in next 12 months he successfully convinced people to deposit additional Rs 56.73 crore with him.

According to the regulator's findings, Joshi was promising investors in Nagpur to double their money within 15-28 months or pay 50 per cent interest rate per annum on quarterly basis besides providing free foreign trips. He had also opened various ventures to create a picture of a thriving industrial house, but in reality, it was based on very weak foundation and entire empire came crashing once the falsehood was exposed.

""In the instant case, Sameer has solicited, enticed and induced investors and also collected funds and deposits from them through misrepresentation and allurement of high returns to such investors through various schemes when in reality Sameer had defaulted in making repayments/refunds to his investors," Sebi said in its order passed on Tuesday.

"Thus, schemes floated by Sameer, prima facie, appear to be representation made in a reckless and careless manner," SEBI added.

Accordingly, noting that investor interests need to be safeguarded, Sebi has prohibited Joshi "from mobilising or pooling funds from its clients, other general investors or public or any other unregistered activity, in whatever form." It has also directed him to refund the monies collected along with profits or returns promised to them "or interest at the rate of 10 per cent per annum, whichever is higher, from the date of investment till the date of refund, within a period of seven days from the date of this order (by January 27, 2015)."

Joshi would have to submit a repayment report to SEBI in this regard. Besides, Joshi has been asked "to immediately withdraw and remove all advertisements, representations, literatures, brochures, materials, publications, documents, websites, etc. in relation to the promising high returns or any unregistered activity in the securities market."

The broker is also prohibited from transferring the funds mobilised and from disposing of any assets raised from the schemes. Joshi is affiliated to the stock broker Kisan Ratilal Choksey Shares and Securities Pvt Limited.

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State fares poorly in improving tiger count

Forest Department has come under a big scanner, following a very dismal performance on protecting and improving tigers in Maharashtra. During last four years, the number has increased just by 2... Read More
Forest Department has come under a big scanner, following a very dismal performance on protecting and improving tigers in Maharashtra. During last four years, the number has increased just by 21 which is one of the lowest in entire country raising a serious question-mark over sincerity of efforts taken by department and various NGOs who got liberal financial aid from Government.

Wildlifers were dejected to learn that the number of tigers in Maharashtra was only 190 as declared by Prakash Javadekar, the Minister for Environment, Forests and Climatic Change, in Delhi on Tuesday. The state and particularly Vidarbha region was touted as destination for tiger centric tourism and Nagpur as Tiger Capital of India, but the official figure has shattered the dream of wildlife buffs.

According to rough estimates, out of 190 tigers in Maharashtra about 170 to 175 exist in the landscapes of Tadoba-Andhari, Pench and Melghat Tiger Reserves. Of them, Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve could reach at the figure of 105. The rise of tigers in Maharashtra is 12.4 per cent.

It may be mentioned here that Karnataka, which ranks highest with 408 tigers in this estimation, had recorded 290 tigers in 2006 and 300 in 2010, which is now a remarkable rise. In Madhya Pradesh, the number of tigers in 2010 was 257 but now it has gone up to 308 whereas in Tamil Nadu the number of tigers has increased by 66 during the last four years. Uttarakhand has registered the number at 308, which is second highest in the country.

They feel that increase in tigers in Maharashtra is not satisfactory if the rise in tigers in States like Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh or Kerala is any indication. During the All India tiger estimation conducted in 2010, the number of tigers in Maharashtra was 169 whereas it has now increased just by 21, despite passing of four years and spending hundred of crores and creation of so many tiger reserves, restricting industrial activity and expanding forest bureaucracy by giving IFS officers fast-tracked promotions and liberal perks to protect and conserve tiger, a sign of healthy forest.

Kishor Rithe, President of Satpuda Foundation, Amravati, and former member of National Board for Wildlife, attributed the main reason for failure in checking pressure of poaching tigers. As many as 22 tigers were poached in this region by Bahelia community members and the Forest Department miserably failed to check it. Otherwise, there would have been a significant rise in the numbers of this majestic animal. No doubt, the department arrested many poachers last year and this resulted in saving further tigers being poached, he pointed out.

While appreciating the relocation work, he expressed the view that the department's efforts fell short in protection level and conservation practices. Moreover, looking at the policy of the present government to clear projects around tiger reserves, the number may fall down dramatically again, Rithe claimed. However, during last four years, when most of the industries in and around forests were shut down, the insignificant rise in tiger population has effectively challenged this theory of putting forest and development against each other.

The other wildlife lovers also expressed dissatisfaction over the rise in the number in Maharashtra. Even petty reasons like absence of open wells without parapet walls, scant attention towards prey base due to which many tigers are forced to scout for prey, inadequate number of companion for male tigers, territorial fights among sub-adult male tigers and even accidental deaths are responsible for dwindling tiger numbers.

National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) released a report on Management Effectiveness Evaluation of Tiger Reserves in India 2014-15 at Delhi on Tuesday. The rating of Tadoba-Andhari, Melghat and Pench Tiger Reserves has improved from good to very good in management effectiveness evaluation while Sahyadri Tiger Reserve is from fair to good.

On the occasion, four tiger reserves were given awards in appreciation of the works. Dinesh Tyagi, CCF and Field Director, Melghat Tiger Reserve, received the NTCA Award in appreciation of rehabilitation work in the reserve.

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Nirbhaya Police team nabs couple in suspicious condition

A TEAM of Nirbhaya Police caught a couple in suspicious condition at Baba Hotel situated near Chanchala Bai College in Gole Bazaar area under jurisdiction of Lordganj police station on Sunday. Po... Read More
A TEAM of Nirbhaya Police caught a couple in suspicious condition at Baba Hotel situated near Chanchala Bai College in Gole Bazaar area under jurisdiction of Lordganj police station on Sunday. Police had several times raided the same hotel and caught couples involved in obscene activities.

Even after conducting several raids at the same hotel police are yet to take stern action against hotel owner following his influential connection. Continuing a campaign, Nirbhaya Police team received information about suspicious activities at Baba Hotel. Acting promptly on the information, a team raided the hotel and caught a boy and a girl who were class mates and stayed at rented room of a hotel.

When inquired about check-in register, police team found that the hotel owner did not ask for identity proofs of visitors while their entry was not registered at hotel register. Police team apprehended the couple and called their parents at police station. Their parents informed that they left home for attending their coaching classes.

Police officers advised parents to remain vigilant about activities of their children and release them after giving suggestions.

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People get no respite from biting cold conditions

COLD wave has once again made its presence felt in the city since last few days as mercury dipped to 6.4 degree Celsius on Sunday. Minimum temperature recorded on Sunday was 4 degree Celsius be... Read More
COLD wave has once again made its presence felt in the city since last few days as mercury dipped to 6.4 degree Celsius on Sunday. Minimum temperature recorded on Sunday was 4 degree Celsius below normal temperature. Whereas, minimum temperature recorded on the same day last year was 178.2 degree Celsius. Due to severe cool breeze in the area people preferred to remain indoors. Cold breeze is blowing with speed of 3 kms per hour, which has further increased the impact of biting cold.

Most of the people despite Sunday being holiday, preferred to stay at home even during the day due to dip in mercury. However, temperature started increasing by noon and people felt some respite.

Maximum temperature recorded on Sunday was 20.5 degree Celsius, which is five degree below normal temperature. Whereas maximum temperature recorded the same day last year was 21.4 degree Celsius. A total 4.1 mm rainfall has been recorded so far. Thick fog enveloped the area in early morning visibility remains restricted to few meters only. Trains are running slowly following precautionary orders to avert untoward incident.

The impact dew is also felt after sunset by late evening due to increase in moisture in the air in last few days. Relative humidity recorded in the morning was 86 per cent, while it was 41 per cent in the evening.

Number of patients suffering from various ailments is also increasing as case of patients affected by such diseases approaching hospitals for treatment have gone up.

Doctors have advised people to take all precaution to prevent themselves from getting affected by severe cold. As the days have become shorter in winter, sun rise was recorded at 6.55 am and sun set was recorded at 17.50 hours. Even after Makar Sankranti, festival of change of angle of sun, after which people presumably get relief from cold, there is no respite from cold weather. Streets and lanes of city wore deserted look early in the morning and after late evening. Those who came out of home were seen gathered near tea stalls,| coffee houses and restaurants enjoying tea, coffee etc.

As people are not getting relief from sever cold weather, parents of children have started demanding either to continue late opening of schools or to declare holiday for a few days again.

According to information provided by Meteorological Department, minimum temperature was recorded at Malanjkhand which was 2 degree Celsius. According to information provided by Meteorological Department, weather will remain dry in next 24 hours in the division.

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More Munna Bhais to face axe in coming days

COLLEGE-LEVEL Admission Verification Committee (CLAVC) of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Medical College Administration is likely to cancel admission of more Munna Bhais in coming days after termina... Read More
COLLEGE-LEVEL Admission Verification Committee (CLAVC) of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Medical College Administration is likely to cancel admission of more Munna Bhais in coming days after terminating 15 students accused of taking admission on fake identity basis on January 18.

OSD appointed by Madhya Pradesh Government and Head of CLAVC talking to ‘Hitavada’ informed that admission of a student, who did not turn up in six weeks time to represent before CLAVC after the court’s order given to him under Natural Law of Justice will be cancelled within a day or two. Action will be taken against more than one dozen students who did not turn up before CLAVC to give evidence that not guilty of taking admission on fake identity basis after completion of six weeks given to them, added Dr Guha.

He also informed that VYAPAM has recommended to cancel admission of 12 students who took admission through making erroneous in OMR answersheet of PMT examination, after conducting inquiry. It is to be mentioned that CLAVC has terminated Praveen Kumar Yadav, Anil Kumar Yadav, Shailesh Kumar, Sunil Mandloi, Vivek of Admission Year 2008, Anand Patel, Arun Sharma, Arvind Kumar, Natwarlal Chouhan, Pinki Ningwal, Rajkumar Sahu, Sanjeev Kumar Yadav of 2009 batch and Yaswant Bharavi of 2010 alleged of taking admission through unfair means on January 17.

The action has been taken against 15 student after they fails to place their part the law of natural justice and cannot blame that they did not get enough opportunity to place their part before the CLAVC after six week time was given to them.

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Miscreants steal brass black worth 1 lakh from truck

UNIDENTIFIED people stole brass black worth Rs one lakh from a truck before its delivery at Ordnance Factory Khamaria (OFK) under jurisdiction of Khamaria police station on December 20.

A... Read More
UNIDENTIFIED people stole brass black worth Rs one lakh from a truck before its delivery at Ordnance Factory Khamaria (OFK) under jurisdiction of Khamaria police station on December 20.

According to Khamaria police, Mehul Chouhan (30), a resident of Ambarnath area in Thane in Pune, Maharashtra filed a written complaint that he is owner of Bombay Goods Transport Service. On December 20, a truck (MH-04CU-1843) loaded with 20,000 numbers of brass black from Ambarnath Ordnance Factory left for delivery of stock at Ordnance Factory Khamaria. His truck driver Omprakash informed that on December 25 he had parked the truck at parking place at Ordnance Factory Khamaria, Jabalpur and was sleeping in the night. Next day, he reached at parking place and checked the truck and learnt that 3,950 numbers of brass black were missing from the truck. Acting on the complaint, police have registered a case under Section 379 of the IPC while further investigations are underway to identify and apprehend the accused.

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Preparations on war-footing for visit of Principal Secy Health

PREPARATIONS are in full swing at Government Hospital in the district prior to visit of Principal Secretary, Public Health and Family Planning Department (PSPHFPD) Praveer Krishna and other highe... Read More
PREPARATIONS are in full swing at Government Hospital in the district prior to visit of Principal Secretary, Public Health and Family Planning Department (PSPHFPD) Praveer Krishna and other higher officials of Health Department scheduled in last week of January. Health Commissioner Pankaj Agrawal and Mission Director Faiz Ahmed Kidwai is likely to accompany him during his visit.

Principal Secretary and other officials are coming to check ground realities of execution of various government health beneficiary scheme at ground-level. Director of Health Department Dr Thassu and other higher officials have already submitted the ground report to PSPHFPD earlier this month.

Chief Medical and Health Officer Dr B S Chouhan conducted meeting of higher officials including District Programme Manager, National Rural Health Mission, District Immunisation Officer, District Health Officer, District Tuberculosis and AIDS Officer and other officers concerned of district health services to review ground-level execution of various health beneficiary schemes and ensure that benefits of each health beneficiary scheme should reach to desired beneficiary.

He also directed officials to maintain record keeping of each immunisation of child and mother, other medicine being offered to pregnant women, family planning programme, pathology test, other medication to pregnant women under mother and child tracking system.

He said special stress must be given to HIV test during pregnancy, timely detection of pregnant women under high risk category to bring down Mother Mortality Rate (MMR) and Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) which is comparatively higher in the district in last couple of years. DPM and District Immunisation Officer have been directed to visit community health centre, primary health centre, delivery points, dispensary in the city area and check ground status like medical staff presence on every day basis, keeping of record related to immunisation, Anti-Tuberculosis Programme, AIDS Programme, Malaria Programme. Principal Secretary is likely to review benefits of ongoing Health Beneficiary Scheme reached to desired person beneficiary, shortcoming in execution of government beneficiary schemes like Immunisation, Mother and Child Tracking System, Delivery points, Family Planning Programme, Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel Nishulk Ayushdhi Vitran Scheme and Free Pathology Scheme, problems related to health workers in proposed meeting with higher officials of Health Department.

Other issues like proper disbursement of funds allocated for development and purchase of medical equipment and government health care centres and government hospitals. Known for his strict working, PSPHFPD had terminated two medical staffers and one doctor over negligence during his visit to Patan Community Health Centre last year.

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Man killed, 4 women injured as tractor trolley overturns

IN A tragic incident, a man was killed while four women sustained injuries when a tractor trolley they were travelling in overturned near village Boriya under jurisdiction of Katangi police sta... Read More
IN A tragic incident, a man was killed while four women sustained injuries when a tractor trolley they were travelling in overturned near village Boriya under jurisdiction of Katangi police station, on Sunday.

The deceased has been identified as Balram Choudhary (25), a resident of village Sukha in Katangi area, while Rajni Bai, Shyama Bai, Usha Bai and Rekha Bai sustained injuries in the accident.

According to police, they received information about a road accident in Boriya village. Acting promptly on the information, a police team reached the spot and rushed the injured to Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Medical College and Hospital, Jabalpur. According to injured, they went to visit Nahan Devi Mela in Katangi and were returning towards village Sukha on a tractor.

When the speeding tractor was passing through village Boriya, driver lost control and the tractor overturned.

In the mishap, they sustained injuries and were rushed to government hospital Jabalpur with the help of 108 Ambulance Service. In primary check-up, one of the injured Balram Choudhary was declared brought dead due to profuse bleeding while the injured is reported to be stable and undergoing treatment in hospital.

Police have registered a case against the accused driver under sections 304(A), 279 and 337 of the IPC while further investigations are underway.

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Candidate for Sarpanch’s post held in fake self-abduction case

POLICE have brilliantly disclosed fake complaint of abduction of a man following a political rivalry in Panchayat Elections in Bargi area. Police have apprehended the accused for framing his ow... Read More
POLICE have brilliantly disclosed fake complaint of abduction of a man following a political rivalry in Panchayat Elections in Bargi area. Police have apprehended the accused for framing his own abduction and misguiding police for taking mileage in elections. The accused was apprehended in Allahabad.

The accused has been identified as Anil Patel alias Munna Patel, a resident of Majitha village and candidate for the post of Sarpanch from Lami Gram Panchayat. Superintendent of Police Harinarayanachari Mishra disclosed this while addressing a press conference on Sunday.

Family members of Anil Patel filed a complaint on January 8 that he is candidate for the post of Sarpanch in Gram Panchayat Lami and was attacked and abducted by unidentified persons in Sihoda village.

According to Bhedaghat police, Azad Patel (25), a resident of Majitha village, filed a complaint that his mother Nandini Patel is Sarpanch of Gram Panchayat Lami. Following reservation of post of Sarpanch for male backward caste, his father Anil Patel filed nomination to contest elections. On January 8, his father Anil Patel along with eight other candidates filed their nominations for the post of Sarpanch. In the evening, Anil Patel left house towards Bhedaghat market but he could not return home till late night.

On January 9 morning, a relative Mastram Barman informed brother of Anil named Bharat Patel that Anil Patel called him and informed that some unidentified persons attacked him near a culvert in village Sihoda and abducted him in a car.

When family members reached the spot as described by the victim, they found his motorcycle and helmet near a culvert in village Sihoda. Acting on the complaint, police had registered a case against unidentified persons under Section 365 of IPC while further investigations are underway to search missing man.

Taking prompt action on the complaint, Superintendent of Police Harinarayanachari Mishra constituted a team under supervision of Additional SP (Rural) Sanjay Sahu and CSP, Bargi, Hariom Sharma comprising SHO of Bhedaghat police station, M D Nagautia, Head Constable Ramkaran, constables Rajesh, Mahendra and Nitin.

Investigating the case, police team found location of last call from the mobile of Anil Patel and held doubt with its last location in Katni. Continuing investigation, police learnt that Anil Patel was staying in Allahabad. Acting promptly, a police team reached Allahabad and succeeded in finding him in a hotel.

During interrogation, Anil Patel informed that he held arguments with his sons in drunken stupor and his elder son Azad attacked himself with an axe and sustained injury. He was already anxious due to candidature of 8-9 candidates in elections while his family members also objecting him to contest election. In order to teach lesson to his family members and sons, he framed fake story of his abduction.

Police have registered a case against the accused while further investigations are underway.

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Tripartite meet of BSP/SAIL, Dy CLC may be held on 21st

THE tripartite meeting of BSP/SAIL, Deputy Chief Labour Commissioner (Dy CLC Central), Raipur office, and three trade unions representatives over the long ending demand of granting Difficult Area... Read More
THE tripartite meeting of BSP/SAIL, Deputy Chief Labour Commissioner (Dy CLC Central), Raipur office, and three trade unions representatives over the long ending demand of granting Difficult Area Special Allowance (DASA) to BSP Dalli-Rajhara Mines workers, is scheduled to be convened at Ispat Bhavan, Bhilai on January 21 afternoon.

The Dy CLC, Raipur office observed that BSP/SAIL officials are intending to resolve the issue amicably in the larger interest with administrative intervention and amendment by the concerning office for ensuring appeasement, partial or full, of all the concerning parties.

The tripartite meeting to decide over the issue of DASA with probable serious consequences concerning to very interest of BSP mines employees would be held as per schedule. It has been observed that in other mines under SAIL, the employees are being granted DASA from January 01, 2012 while in stark contrast the BSP Dalli Rajhara mines employees are being paid the allowance only from July 01, 2014. The trade unions including INTUC and SKMS (AITUC) had taken up the issue with the management while terming it as the serious discrimination with the mines employees of Dalli Rajhara. The trade unions pressed the demands for rectifying the issue in interest of the mines employees and also clearing arrears outstanding like those of other mines of SAIL. The union had warned the management for sorting out the issue by January 15, 2015 or the mines workers would stage indefinite strike under the banner of the ‘Joint Trade Unions’.

Taking cognizance in the issue, PM Shrivastava, the Dy CLC (Central), Raipur convened the conciliation meeting and managed to negotiate over the issue in larger interest. Afterwards, it was finally agreed upon that the issue would be settled in the forthcoming tripartite meeting on January 21. As learnt, the allowance is calculated as per 10 percent of basic salary/wages and earlier the BSP management’s stand over the issue was dealing the issue as per guidelines of SAIL, Delhi Corporate office. While confirming the details, P M Shrivastava, the Dy CLC (Central), Raipur stated that the issue could be sorted out amiably in the scheduled tripartite meeting.

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RMC raises alarm after two cases of Jaundice reported in city

Raipur Municipal Corporation (RMC) has ringed alarm bell as the cases of Jaundice were reported from Mahamaya and Lakhe Nagar wards. Four Congress corporators visited the wards to take stock of... Read More
Raipur Municipal Corporation (RMC) has ringed alarm bell as the cases of Jaundice were reported from Mahamaya and Lakhe Nagar wards. Four Congress corporators visited the wards to take stock of the situation.

Talking to ‘The Hitavada’, Congress Corporator Satnam Panag said cases of jaundice are found in those, who are drinking water from borewells. Somehow, the borewell water has got contaminated by the sewer.

Satnam said that they found at least four patients of the Jaundice in the ward whereas a girl, who was showing symptoms of diseases, was medically examined and her urine and blood samples were sent to laboratory for detailed diagnosis.

Jaundice cases are reported from only those areas, where there is no tap connection. So, the population is completely dependent on ground water, even for drinking purpose. It was also informed that RMC is building a new overhead water tank in the same area considering the situation that water supply from other water tank wasn’t possible as these wards are situated slightly higher above sea level from rest of the surrounding area.

On Monday, a team of expert will also collect water samples from the suspected borewells and another team of RMC Health Department would check for the leakage that’s contaminating the borewell water. During the visit, Satnam Panag was accompanied by other Corporators such as Shrikumar Menon, Radheshyam Vibhar and Jasbir Singh Dhillon.

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Dr Raman Singh to leave for Lucknow today

Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh will be leaving for Lucknow on Monday to attend the Central Zonal Council Meeting. Keeping in view the significance of Central Zonal Council meeting scheduled on Jan... Read More
Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh will be leaving for Lucknow on Monday to attend the Central Zonal Council Meeting. Keeping in view the significance of Central Zonal Council meeting scheduled on January 19 in Lucknow, earlier during the Cabinet meeting held on Friday, the Chief Minister deliberated with his Cabinet colleagues on the issues to be raised during the meeting.

Accordingly, during Central Zonal Council Meeting, Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh will raise several important issues including demand for additional financial assistance for ensuring security arrangements in Naxal infested areas, increasing road density in Chhattisgarh, increase in financial allotment for implementation of schemes under Women and Child Welfare as well as several other significant issues. Chief Minister will be leaving through special plane at 10.45am and reach Lucknow at 12.15pm. The Central Zonal Council Meeting is scheduled from 2.30pm onwards. The Chief Minister will return to Raipur at 6.45pm.

It is worth mentioning that the meeting Central Zonal Council, to facilitate cooperation and exchanging of ideas between centre and states to check subversive forces, will be held on January 19. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh will preside over the meeting. Chief Ministers of Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Uttarakhand will participate in the meeting. The Meeting of the Eastern Zonal Council comprising states of Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal had met at Patna on Friday.

The agenda for the meeting finalized by the Standing Committee comprising the Chief Secretaries ranges from a number of issues of Inter-State and Centre-State cooperation, allocation of additional assistance to the States to provide relief to the tribals, issues relating to security and other substantial issues that the Chief Ministers would like to raise in the meeting.

There are five Zonal Councils, namely Eastern, Western, Northern, Southern and Central Zonal Council which are advisory bodies and discuss any matter in which some or all of the States represented in a Council have a common interest. These Councils advise the Central and State Governments on any matter of common interest in the field of economic and social planning, linguistic minorities, inter-state transport, matters connected with or arising out of the reorganization of states and matters concerning border disputes.

Government had constituted a Commission on Centre-State relations under the chairmanship of Justice MM Punchchi, former Chief Justice of India, to look into the changing dynamics of Centre-State relations in the context of emerging social, political, economic, environmental and governance issues in the country. This Commission had recommended that the Zonal Councils should meet regularly with an agenda proposed by the States concerned to maximize coordination and promote harmonization of policies and action having inter-state ramification.

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Expansion of Chhattisgarh Cabinet likely in February

The expansion of Chhattisgarh Cabinet is likely to take place in February after completion of Delhi Assembly elections as well as the elections for Panchayati Raj Institutions in Chhattisgarh. It... Read More
The expansion of Chhattisgarh Cabinet is likely to take place in February after completion of Delhi Assembly elections as well as the elections for Panchayati Raj Institutions in Chhattisgarh. It is being stated that apart from induction of three new Ministers, four Parliamentary Secretaries might also be inducted in the Cabinet.

Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh had also stated earlier that the Cabinet expansion would take place after panchayat elections. There are three Ministerial berths vacant in the Cabinet, for which, the permutation-combination has already began. The results of 3-tier Panchayat Elections will come to fore on February 4. Meanwhile, Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh will proceed to New Delhi for canvassing during Assembly elections there. During his stay in Delhi, the Chief Minister will be discussing the issue of appointments in Ministerial berths with the central BJP leaderships.

If the sources are to be believed, newly inducted Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries might be administered oath of office and secrecy in-between February 10 to 15. Sources have further informed that with the induction of new Ministers, the portfolios of few Ministers might be reshuffled. It is being stated that the portfolio of Health Minister Amar Agrawal is all likely to be changed as he had already requested to change. Also the party organization has held some Ministers responsible for the debacle party received during Urban Bodies Election and RSS has already issued directive to censure such Ministers. Hence during the reshuffle, the performance of such Ministers will definitely be taken into consideration.

It is being stated that the Forest and Industries Ministries might by allocated to new Ministers. Presently the Chief Minister is holding these portfolios.

Those who are in for consideration for ministerial berths are Bhaiyyalal Rajwade, Dayalday Baghel, Mahesh Gagda, Yudhveer Singh Judeo, Dr Sanam Jangde, Shivratan Sharma and Rajsharan Bhagat. Also significant responsibilities might be given to senior legislators including Badridhar Diwan, Deojibhai Patel, Santosh Bafna, etc.

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No FIR registered against erring Food Department officials

Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Protection Department is yet to register First Information Report against Food department officials indulged in the irregularities of rice meant for Daal-Bhaat... Read More
Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Protection Department is yet to register First Information Report against Food department officials indulged in the irregularities of rice meant for Daal-Bhaat center at Rajyotsava 2014. Although the State Government has already suspended the guilty officials and Director, Directorate of Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Protection has already ordered to lodge FIR against the guilty officials. Two days have passed since then, but FIR is yet to be lodged. It is all likely that the department may register FIR on Monday.

During Rajyotsava 2014, 1000 quintal rice had been allocated from Abhanpur PDS godown for establishing Daal Bhaat Centre. The rice was allocated in the name of Jai Maa Durga Self Help Group Nawapara, but the SHG didn’t have any inkling of the same. The whole fiasco was investigated by a team of six officials led by Deputy Director Neelam Elma and report was submitted to state government. The department in its report had held Sanjay Dubey, Assistant Food Officer, Abhanpur along with David Banjare, salesman of Fair Price shop situated in Tendua village; Dinesh Ram Yadav, In charge of Food and Civil Supplies department supply centre at Abhanpur; Rajendra Agrawal, Transporter of Food and Civil Supplies department, Abhanpur; Sonu Mishra and Vikas Shukla, Annapurna Daal-Bhaat Centre at Naya Mantralaya, responsible for the complete fiasco.

On January 16, Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Protection department had suspended Sanjay Dubey, Assistant Food Officer, Abhanpur under Raipur district, with immediate affect. In this direction, Dr Kamalpreet Singh, Director, Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Protection has also written to Superintendent of Police, Raipur to lodge an First Information Report against suspended Assistant Food Officer Sanjay Dubey along with all other accused at Naya Raipur police station.

In his letter to SP, Raipur, the Director, Food and Civil Supplies had mentioned that serious irregularities have been found in the sub-allocation, lifting, stocking and utilization of rice while running Daal-Bhaat Centre at Naya Raipur during Rajyotsava 2014. Dr Kamalpreet Singh has also attached the investigation report of Fair Value Shop Tendua and Jai Maa Durga Self Help Group Nawapara, along with his letter.

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Contenders cross fingers fearing cross voting!

Speculations are running around while the Corporators have switched off their cell phones and sealed their mouth ahead of the election for the Speaker of Raipur Municipal Corporation (RMC) on Mon... Read More
Speculations are running around while the Corporators have switched off their cell phones and sealed their mouth ahead of the election for the Speaker of Raipur Municipal Corporation (RMC) on Monday.

Wary of the cross voting in the election, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) senior leaders MLA Srichand Sundarani and State Minister Chhaganlal Mundra have huddled up their Corporators at Kanha National Park on the pretext of a picnic whereas Congress, which is oozing with confidence, is trying fishing in some BJP corporators for cross voting as they will still be minority in General Body Meeting (GBM) with 27 in compare to the BJP’s 37 in terms of numbers of corporators.

It’s almost certain that Speaker would be elected from BJP considering the majority but the fear of cross voting has kept the party leaders on tenterhooks. According to the reports, the shadow of BJP’s state politics also enveloped the Speaker election as the two BJP MLAs of Raipur were pushing for their close candidates. Names of Suryakant Rathore, Ramesh Singh Thakur and Prafull Vishwakarma were taken into consideration, however, most BJP Corporators. Even the lesser known Minal Choubey’s name was discussed by BJP leaders and Corporators at the National Park. Some brainstorming over the names of Ramesh Singh Thakur, Ashish Agrawal and Manoj Prajapati was also done for the seat of leader of opposition.

There is no such confusion in Congress, when it comes to the Speaker’s seat but there is certainly a fear of cross voting amidst the senior Congress leaders, too. Nagbhusan Rao was declared as the candidate from Congress party as District Congress Committee organized a candle light dinner for Congress corporators. New Mayor Pramod Dubey also discussed over the party’s strategy in Monday’s election with the dinner.

Congress will have to do a lot of mathematics for getting the required votes as they are lagging behind BJP by 10, when it comes to sheer numbers of corporators. Beside the BJP, Congress is also eyeing on independent corporators.

BJP corporators would be spending their night at new BJP Headquarter before the Election Day and would be reaching RMC Head Office directly from there. Stage is set for the final battle of power in the RMC as both Congress and BJP are battling to keep their teams united in voting for the Speaker’s seat on Monday.

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‘Failure to file reply will cost Rs 2,000 to Minister’s Secy’

Accepting request made by the Government counsel, Justice R K Deshpande at the High Court has granted him to file reply by January 28 next, to the writ petition filed by Gajanan Lande, a Gram P... Read More
Accepting request made by the Government counsel, Justice R K Deshpande at the High Court has granted him to file reply by January 28 next, to the writ petition filed by Gajanan Lande, a Gram Panchayat Sarpanch at Dhanegaon in Balapur tehsil of Akola district against affirmation in appeal, his removal from the post of Sarpanch by the State Rural Development Minister through an order on October 10, 2012. The impugned order appealed against was passed by the Divisional Commissioner on August 30, 2014. The Court has also warned the Secretary of the Minister concerned that in the event of failure to file reply on the stipulated date, he would be liable to pay Rs 2,000 by way of costs personally. Contending that the respondent-authorities, particularly, the ZP Chief Executive Officer has flouted principles of natural justice before reporting against him to the higher-ups, the petitioner has sought quashing and setting aside of both the impugned orders. Advocate H R Gadhia appeared for the petitioner. Advocate Nitin Lalwani (Santosh Lande, the member who had complained against the petitioner) and AGP Nitin Raut (State) represented the respondents.

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Veteran CPI leader Bardhan feted

Veteran Communist leader Ardhendu Bhushan Bardhan alias Bhai Bardhan was felicitation in recognition of completion of 75 years of struggle for the rights of labour and oppressed in the country. I... Read More
Veteran Communist leader Ardhendu Bhushan Bardhan alias Bhai Bardhan was felicitation in recognition of completion of 75 years of struggle for the rights of labour and oppressed in the country. In his 90th year, braving ill health, Bardhan modestly accepted the felicitation by his followers. The function was held at Shikshak Sahakari Bank auditorium, Gandhisagar, on Sunday, on sidelines of national council meet of Communist Party of India in city. Bardhan is past General Secretary of CPI.

The top leadership of CPI was present to salute Bardhan who graced the function for 15 minutes. Bardhan is admitted to a city hospital for past two days after his health deteriorated during the national council meet.

CPI’s General Secretary, Sudhakar Reddy; D Raja, Member, Rajya Sabha; national council members -- Shameem Faizee, Amarjit Kaur, Atul Kumar Anjan, National Vice-President Manohar Deshkar, Maharashtra unit’s General Secretary Dr Bhalchandra Kango and others were seated on the dais. Senior trade union leader of city, Mohandas Naidu, presided at the function.

Bardhan responded to his felicitation in a traditional way, folding his hands and acknowledging the love and recognition given by people. Due to ill health, he was not able to speak. Earlier, Reddy, in his speech, eulogised Bardhan, calling his living legend who derives respect from politicians from all walks of life, irrespective of their ideologies. Acknowledging that due to his stress on Left unity, he said, Bardhan has often faced criticism but now the Left Front recognises that this was needed to prevent country from going to dogs.

Amarjeet Kaur, in her speech, said, current policies of NDA Government are challenging the diversity and vividness of Indian culture which is against very existence of the country. Democracy is being shackled as Government is promoting Ordinance Raj and hence people need to be awakened. She said, the country’s roots are quite strong and it would be able to withstand the onslaught of rightist forces and come out united very soon. D Raja said, Left Movement in the country is passing through its critical phase in its history. Left parties need to introspect.

Pitching for unity among Communist forces in country, he said, without it they would not be able to counter the rightist ideology. There is need to adopt to modern thought and be innovative if left is to mobile people’s support for the cause of working class. Shameem Faizee, Atul Anjan, Dr Kango also addressed the function. Mohan Sharma conducted the proceedings while Ajay Sahu proposed a vote of thanks.

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Sonu Nigam’s scintillating performance enthralls all

Most versatile playback singer of Bollywood, Sonu Nigam enthralled the audience of Nagpur and compelled everyone to be crazy when he sang all of his favourite ones during the key handing over cer... Read More
Most versatile playback singer of Bollywood, Sonu Nigam enthralled the audience of Nagpur and compelled everyone to be crazy when he sang all of his favourite ones during the key handing over ceremony for Jayanti Mansion IX and Jayanti Nagri IV flat scheme by Abhijit Realtors and Infraventures Private Limited at Besa on Sunday.

Sonu commenced the show with his most popular song ‘Kal Ho Na Ho’ which made the crowd crazy and gave a perfect start to the show. Many fans rushed to the front of the audience to shake their legs on Sonu’s music. During the show, he rejuvenated the patriotic mood of audience with ‘Mera Rang De Basanti Chola’ before the Republic Day. The melodious music provided by the accompanying musicians provided a fillip to the show that virtually took off. To change the mood, Sonu also compelled the audience to laugh on his musical comedy interlude with Guitarist which was appreciated by all.

‘O Sonio’, ‘Kuch Tum Socho Kuch Hum’, ‘Saji Saji Teri Nazre’, ‘Nazro Se Nazre Mili’, ‘Suraj Hua Maddham’, Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gum’ and many other hot favourite songs had the audience charged. Indian Idol finalist Prajakta Shukre accompanied Sonu Nigam in many duet songs. She also performed few songs of Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhonsle. Each of these Bollywood numbers were received very well by the crowd who were thoroughly enjoying Nigam and Prajakta and the dancing troupe of Dani Savio. ‘Kya Hua Tera Wada’ by Sonu Nigam became the show stopper in emotional atmosphere.

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Mother commits suicide after setting ablaze twin daughters

IN a heartwrenching incident, a mother committed suicide by setting herself ablaze along with her twin daughters at Navin Bina Bhanegaon village under the jurisdiction of Khaparkheda police stati... Read More
IN a heartwrenching incident, a mother committed suicide by setting herself ablaze along with her twin daughters at Navin Bina Bhanegaon village under the jurisdiction of Khaparkheda police station on Sunday.

The incident sent shockwaves across the district and large number of onlookers gathered at the spot. The reason behind the suicide by the housewife could not be ascertained so far.

The police identified the deceased woman as Ruhina Javed Sheikh (22), a resident of Ward no. 1, and she lived with her husband and two daughters. Her husband, a bangle-seller, had gone to weekly bazaar. As Ruhina was alone at home she poured kerosene on her twin daughters and also sprinkled the K-oil on herself and then set all of them afire. A neighbour Nikhil Uttamrao Khobragade was the first to raise an alarm after he noticed smoke emanating from the house and he informed residents of the area about it. The residents gathered at the spot and broke open the door only to find charred bodies of the trio. The sight inside Sheikh’s house was ghastly and the villagers were taken aback for a while. But they quickly informed Khaparkheda police station who rushed to the spot.

The police performed panchanama and sent the bodies for autopsy.

A police officer informed that as per neighbours, the couple used to regularly have arguments over ownership of some property. However, exact reason could not be ascertained so far, the police added.

Khaparkheda police have registered a case of accidental death and started investigations. Cops are investigating case from various angles. ASI Bhandegaokar, Ganesh Pal, Pintu Rokde, Vivek Chute and others are investigating the case.

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Be financial literate, avoid ponzi schemes: CM

MAHARASHTRA Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis emphasised on the ‘financial literacy’ for overall development of the country. He said, “Without inclusive financial system, the country will ... Read More
MAHARASHTRA Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis emphasised on the ‘financial literacy’ for overall development of the country. He said, “Without inclusive financial system, the country will not grow. It is necessary to inform youth about capital market and banking system in the country and encourage them to gain more insight about capital market.” Fadnavis was addressing an investor education initiative “India Booms-Sensex Zoom and launch of Money Bee Month” a function jointly organised by Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC), Money Bee Institute Private Limited, BSE, L&T Mutual Fund and CDSL at Chitnavis Centre, Civil Lines.

Guardian Minister Chandrashekhar Bawankule, Mayor Pravin Datke, Ashish Kumar Chauhan, MD, CEO, BSE, Y M Deosthale, Chairman and Managing Director, L & T Finance Holdings, P S Reddy, MD, CEO, CDSL and Shivani Dani, Director of Money Bee Institute Private Limited were present on the dais.

Chief Minister while lauding Money Bee and Shivani Dani the for this month long event said, around 40 crore people have been connected with banking sector through Prime Minister Jan Dhan Yojana in last two-three months. The inclusion of each and every person with the financial system is necessary for the development of the country.

Fadnavis advised citizens to stay away from ponzy schemes which attract investors and vanish their hard earned money. He said, people should be aware about the capacity of the person, who is offering them mind-boggling returns and luring them for investment through him. He suggested for investment in stock market, mutual funds but only in good companies with proven financial track-record and with proper financial planning.

Banking system is lending money in Mumbai, Thane and Pune, Chief Minister said, the credit deposit in Vidarbha is very less as compared to these progressed districts. He said, small and medium entrepreneurs (SME) are the backbone of the economic growth and progress by them will create new jobs in the country. Welcoming to a suggestion of Chauhan, Fadnavis said, Maharashtra Government will give support to SME for investment in the region.

‘BSE to train 10,000 youths from Nagpur’

Ashish Kumar Chauhan, MD, CEO, BSE, while addressing the gathering said, Stock Market is necessary for writing the development story in the country. The stock market has given return of 280 times in last 35 years. The return in gold, property and silver is much less than the stock market. He said, the Government will give training of financial market to 10,000 youths in Nagpur. The BSE will also assist for clearing certification courses and best training of English speaking. The BSE will also open a centre for listing of SME in stock market. The BSE will open investor grievance cell at Nagpur to provide assistance to investors. He suggested Chief Minister to invest in SME for the development and job creations. He alerted investors to not trapped in securing short term gain and always believe in long term gain.

Y M Deosthale, Chairman and Managing Director, L & T Finance Holdings, also altered investors to stay away from ponzy schemes and emphasised on increasing savings through various options available in market.

P S Reddy, MD, CEO, CDSL said, the Central Government is working on connecting all financial activities with Demat account. In near future, the degrees will be available in demat account. Mumbai University is already working in this direction. This will help investors to maintain their records and all financial assets under one umbrella.

Youngest investor trainer in the country Shivani Dani in her impressive speech informed audience about month long programme of money bee institute. She said, the institute will provide opportunity to investor to change physical share in to demat account. Mayor Datke also spoke on the occasion. Asutosh Vakhre compered the programme.

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BMC to challenge HC decision to quash Narmada cess in Supreme Court

After quashing Narmada cess being collected by Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) for building permission by the High Court, Corporation is all set to challenge the decision in the Supreme Court. C... Read More
After quashing Narmada cess being collected by Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) for building permission by the High Court, Corporation is all set to challenge the decision in the Supreme Court. Corporation at the moment is busy preparing a strong argument in its favor and will challenge the decision in about 3-4 days. Meanwhile, with corporation challenging the decision, builders and people will have to wait for getting their money back as per the orders of the High Court. An amount of Rs 40 crore was to be given back by the Corporation.

Chandramauli Shukla, Additional Commissioner of BMC, informed that the Corporation will be challenging the decision of the High Court in the apex body, where they will be requesting relief from the SC. Shukla said that it will be done by Wednesday or Thursday. M S Meek, Spokesperson, CREDAI said that they will also be approaching and representing their side in the apex body.

It is worth mentioning that a division bench of High Court presided by Chief Justice A M Khanvilkar and Justice S S Kemkar quashed all Government orders through which Narmada cess was imposed by the BMC on any person applying for colony development permission last Thursday. The judgment came over the hearing of a petition filed by Confederation of Real Estate Developers Association of India (CREDAI) and other private developers and colonisers of capital city. In its decision, the High Court directed the Municipal Corporation to refund entire amount of Narmada cess collected in pursuance of its Governmental orders along with 9 per cent interest from the date of deposit.

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Home Minister felicitates sisters’ duo for nabbing thief in their house

Two sisters of Shahpura area displayed exceptional bravery by nabbing a thief, who had entered their house with intention of theft here on Sunday.

According to police, Divya Dwivedi, 28, ... Read More
Two sisters of Shahpura area displayed exceptional bravery by nabbing a thief, who had entered their house with intention of theft here on Sunday.

According to police, Divya Dwivedi, 28, and his sister Shivya, 21, daughters of Awadh Kumar Dwivedi were residents of A-sector, Shahpura. On Saturday afternoon, Divya and Shivya were at their house, when a thief entered their house and tried to get away with a laptop, but the sisters spotted him and nabbed him. Though the miscreant tried to get away, but the sisters kept him holding and raised alarm. Their father and neighbours rushed into the house and caught the thief.

Thief was identified as Sanjay Thakur, 32, Sitaram Thakur, a resident of Rohit Nagar. He is a habitual offender and had been nabbed earlier also. Home and Jail Minister Babulal Gaur visited the brave sister’s house on Sunday morning. Gaur, on this occasion, said that Kumari Divya and Shivya not only prevented theft, but also played important role in catching the thief. Both sisters’ courage was exemplary. He presented bouquets and praised them.

Gaur said that the girls prevented theft and caught the thief, who entered the house when they were alone in the house. They did not let the thief run away. Later, Divya-Shivya’s father and neighbourers caught him. The thief had sneaked into house No. 115 at A Sector of Shahpura to steal Divya’s laptop.

It is worth mentioning that several girls from State capital have showed immense bravery in past one month.

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MP’s Beti Bachao Abhiyan becomes national scheme

Madhya Pradesh Government’s Beti Bachao Abhiyan is going to be replicated by the Central Government. ‘Beti Bachao-Beti Padhao Yojana’ in national format will be launched at Panipat in Haryana... Read More
Madhya Pradesh Government’s Beti Bachao Abhiyan is going to be replicated by the Central Government. ‘Beti Bachao-Beti Padhao Yojana’ in national format will be launched at Panipat in Haryana. Giving this information, Women and Child Development Minister Maya Singh informed that State’s 4 districts had been selected for scheme’s implementation including Datia, Gwalior, Bhind and Morena.

The Minister said that Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan had launched Beti Bachao Abhiyan in Madhya Pradesh on October 1, 2007. Earlier, Ladli Laxmi Yojana was launched in year 2006, under which, the State Government bore expenses on girls, right from birth upto completion of education and marriage. Swagatam Laxmi Yojana was launched in 2014.

She said that results of these schemes had been lauded at the national level. Recognising its impact, the Central Government had decided to implement ‘Beti Bachao-Beti Padhao Yojana’ throughout the country.

An action plan was being chalked out to implement “Beti Bachao-Beti Padhao Yojana” in State’s 4 districts.

Side by side launch of ‘Beti Bachao-Beti Padhao Yojana’ at Panipat in Haryana, a 3-day national seminar would also be held from January 20. The seminar would extensively discuss issues of children and women. Women and Child Development Minister would preside over session “Nutrition and Health” on January 21. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will conclude the 3-day seminar on January 22.

On Central Government’s insistence, the State Government will put up an exhibition focusing on schemes for women and children and their impact at the venue. The schemes, which were highlighted and their impact shown at the exhibition include Ladli Laxmi, Swagatam Laxmi, Beti Bachao, Shaurya Dal, etc.

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Doctors, nurses continue protest in suspension case

Resentment against the Government for suspending two senior doctors and three nurses is brewing among the doctors and nurses for the last three days. They even held protest demonstration at Hamid... Read More
Resentment against the Government for suspending two senior doctors and three nurses is brewing among the doctors and nurses for the last three days. They even held protest demonstration at Hamidia and Sultania Janana Hospital premises on Sunday also. They shouted slogans against the Government and termed shocking the suspension of doctors and nurses for just a broken bed. The demonstration will be continued in coming days. Medical teachers, junior doctors and nurses will demonstrate at Hamidia and Sultania Hospital premises on Monday also. They will observe pen down strike on Tuesday and from Wednesday, the doctors, medical teachers and nurses will be on indefinite strike, paralysing health services in the city’s two prominent hospitals.

Govt not giving any importance to agitation The State Government seems to have not given any importance to the agitation by medical teachers, junior doctors and nurses of the Hamidia and Sultania Hospital. The agitation is continuing for the last three days.

Dr. Manju Sheram, State President, Prantiya Nursing Association, said that the agitation will be continued and until the Government does not withdraw suspension of nurses and doctors, it will be carry on. “We will garner support of nurses from other Government hospitals in the city and later, from different parts of the State to build pressure upon the Government,” Dr Sheram said. Dr Adarsh Vajpayee, State President, Gandhi Medical College Junior Doctors Association, said the junior doctors, medical teachers and nurses demonstrated against the Government at Hamidia and Sultania Hospital. it will be continued on Monday, pen down strike on Tuesday and total strike from Wednesday. “The Government did not call the agitating medical teachers, junior doctors or nurses for talks. It is very painful,” he said.

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Headless body case: Son-in-law nabbed for murder of woman

Ratibad police have solved the murder case of a 40-year-old woman with the arrest of accused son-in-law on Sunday.

CSP TT Nagar R D Bharadwaj said that it took lot of efforts to identify ... Read More
Ratibad police have solved the murder case of a 40-year-old woman with the arrest of accused son-in-law on Sunday.

CSP TT Nagar R D Bharadwaj said that it took lot of efforts to identify the victim woman as her head was missing. But the breakthrough came in the case, when police, after surveying the area, understood that no one could have entered the ground, where the body was lying, directly. So it meant that the woman must be from same area only.

Police came to know that the mother-in-law of a security guard of a tent house near the ground was not seen by villagers from the day the body was found. Police questioned the suspected security guard Surendra Kewat, 24, son of Mahesh Kewat, but he told police that his mother-in-law Bhuri Bai had returned to her village Lachayra in Vidisha district. But cops grew suspicious of Mahesh and kept eyes on his activities. Recently, police learnt that Mahesh’s wife Lalita had returned from her parent’s house. Police approached her and asked her about her mother on which she said that her mother was missing from her house. Police showed the unidentified body to Lalita, which she recognised as her mother’s. Lalita told police that she went away from her house on December 10, 2014 without telling her husband or mother. Her husband suspected that she had fled as her Bhuri Bai did not want Lalita to stay with Mahesh. Lalita returned to her home the same day the body was found but she believed her husband who told her that her mother went to village.

Following identification of the body, police nabbed Mahesh and sternly questioned him on which he confessed of killing his mother-in-law Bhuri Bai. Mahesh told that Bhuri was against marriage of Lalita with him. So, she used to encourage Lalita to leave him. When Lalita left, he suspected the hand of Bhuri Bai and on December 21, 2014, they had heated argument after which he stabbed her with knives.

Mahesh dragged the body to nearby ground and he cut the head and threw it in an empty borewell. Mahesh also undressed victim to hide her identity.

Police have arrested Mahesh under section 302 and 201 of IPC for murdering Bhuri Bai.

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Collector runs Mumbai Marathon to raise funds for disabled children

Bhopal Collector Nishant Warwade ran for a cause in the Mumbai Marathon organised on Sunday. The marathon, where a large number of celebrities, bureaucrats came together with local people for rai... Read More
Bhopal Collector Nishant Warwade ran for a cause in the Mumbai Marathon organised on Sunday. The marathon, where a large number of celebrities, bureaucrats came together with local people for raising funds for various causes, witnessed city Collector Warwade excelling in the 42-km-long Marathon race.

Warwade was running for Samarpan and Aarushi organisation that work for disabled children. Beating the morning cold, he completed the stretch of 42.195 km in 5 hours 20 minutes. The 42-km-long marathon started from Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), crossing Rajiv Gandhi Setu to end at the CST Mumbai. The 12th edition of the Mumbai Marathon on Sunday was one of the biggest fund-raising events, where people from all fields participated and raised their voice for social, environmental and other causes.

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Chill is back, Bhopal freezes at 5.8 degree Celsius

With 5.8 degree Celsius recorded on Sunday, chilly weather is back with light foggy conditions in the State capital. Also, northerly winds are also giving a fillip to the weather conditions, maki... Read More
With 5.8 degree Celsius recorded on Sunday, chilly weather is back with light foggy conditions in the State capital. Also, northerly winds are also giving a fillip to the weather conditions, making evenings cold. However, as per the Weather Department, moderate cold is likely to persist in Bhopal, Jabalpur, Hoshangabad divisions, but Indore division was expected to have dry weather. Dense fog was likely at Chambal, Tikamgarh, Rewa and Satna divisions in next 48 hours.

Meanwhile, temperature in the four main cities- Bhopal, Indore, Gwalior and Jabalpur ranged between 20.5 and 18 degree Celsius. Indore recorded a minimum of 7.5(-3) degree Celsius and maximum at 21.4 (-4) degrees Celsius.

Minimum temperature at Gwalior was recorded at 10.3 (+4) degree Celsius while maximum remained at 20.6 (-1) degree Celsius. In Jabalpur, minimum and maximum temperature were respectively recorded at 20.0 (-.50) and 6.4 (-4) degree Celsius. Khajuraho was at 18 degree celcius and minimum at 6.4 degree Celsius. Light sunshine witnessed on Sunday was not providing any respite as cold wind wave was persistent throughout the day. There was a tremendous decline in minimum degree temperature in the region. The intensity of fog was decreased and moderate fog was witnessed unlike conditions on Saturday, where fog reduced the visibility to less than 55 meters affecting traffic. Cold wave conditions prevailed in many areas, but other than Chambal and Gwalior divisions, rest of the northern part of Madhya Pradesh, is likely to have moderate fog. Cold wave conditions in State are likely to intensify further in coming days, especially in next two days. But, in Bhopal, the condition is likely to continue with moderate fog only and further decline of temperature is not expected.

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Baisware murder case: One more goon held

AFTER putting behind bars two hardened criminals, Ambazari Police on Friday arrested one more goon -- Sandeep Sukhilal Mahato (26) -- for his involvement in the sensational Ritesh Ramesh Baiswa... Read More
AFTER putting behind bars two hardened criminals, Ambazari Police on Friday arrested one more goon -- Sandeep Sukhilal Mahato (26) -- for his involvement in the sensational Ritesh Ramesh Baisware murder case and obtained remand for custodial interrogation till January 23. A resident of Pandhrabodi, Sandeep was nabbed from Sudamnagri. After confirming his involvement in the crime, cops arrested him immediately. Earlier, cops arrested Ashwin Turkel (22) and Nikhil Dagor (20), both residents of Valmiki Nagar, Gokulpeth, when they surrendered at the police station after killing Ritesh Baisware (30), owner of a garments shop -- Urban Men’s -- in front of Chauhan Hardware at Dharamepth in full public view on Monday morning. Ashwin and Nikhil were also remanded to police custody till January 23 by Chief Judicial Magistrate Ms A C Raut. Another goon whose identity was yet to be disclosed by the investigators is still at large. The murder was a fallout of an old rivalry between Ritesh and Ashwin. Investigators are intensely interrogating accused Sandeep, Ashwin and Nikhil to find out the motive behind Ritesh’s murder and verify whether it was a case of contract killing.

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Veteran CPI leader Bardhan hospitalised

Veteran leader of Communist Party of India A B Bardhan was admitted to Neuron Brain and Spine Clinics, Dhantoli on Friday afternoon. The treating doctor and Director of the hospital, well-known N... Read More
Veteran leader of Communist Party of India A B Bardhan was admitted to Neuron Brain and Spine Clinics, Dhantoli on Friday afternoon. The treating doctor and Director of the hospital, well-known Neurosurgeon Dr Chandrashekhar Pakhmode said, “Bardhan complained of giddiness on Thursday so the CT Scan was done. In the investigation, some bleeding was noticed. He was then brought to Neuron hospital.” Bardhan was diagnosed with gangliocapsular haematoma. The problem being in the right part of the brain, there was subtle weakness in right part of the body. “In this situation, a patient generally cannot speak. But Bardhan is conscious, speaking and he is also well-oriented. His blood pressure too is normal,” said Dr Pakhmode.

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Govt to introduce Injectable Polio Vaccine

After using Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) in immunisation drive for years together, the Government of India will soon introduce Injectable Polio Vaccine (IPV) in the drive anytime after April this yea... Read More
After using Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) in immunisation drive for years together, the Government of India will soon introduce Injectable Polio Vaccine (IPV) in the drive anytime after April this year, said Dr Mohammad Sajid, Surveillance Medical Officer, World Health Organisation (WHO).

Not only this, but the Government is also mulling over introducing various other vaccines in immunisation drive. These include Rotavirus, Pentavalennt, Measles and Rubella vaccines. Already, Pentavalent vaccine is being administered in 11 states of India. It protects children from five infections namely Diphtheria, Pertussis, Hepatitis B, Tetanus and Hemophilias Influenza B. Pentavalent vaccine will be launched in Gadchiroli from April and preparations are under way. “The vaccine on Measles and Rubella will be introduced as the Government wants to achieve endgame for these two infections by the year 2018,” said Dr Mohammad Sajid.

Dr Sajid was replying to questions asked during a press conference in Mayor Pravin Datke’s chamber in Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) on Friday. Mayor had called a press conference to inform the media about National Pulse Polio Immunisation Programme-2015, under which OPV will be administered to children between 0-5 years of age, on January 18 and February 22.

Asked about utility of IPV in polio immunisation especially after WHO declaring India as ‘polio free’, Dr Mohammad Sajid said that there was risk of the polio virus ‘behaving like Wild Polio Virus’. Hence, dose of IPV is required to be administered along with OPV during immunisation drive, he added. For past three years, no case of polio was reported in India. However, cases were reported in Pakistan (260), Afghanistan (21), and Nigeria (6).

Pulse Polio drive in city, district on Jan 18, Feb 22

Mayor Pravin Datke informed the reporters about National Pulse Polio Immunisation Programme-2015 to be implemented on January 18 and February 22 in the city. “We have requested Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union Minister for Surface Transport Nitin Gadkari, and all MLAs from the city to participate in the drive and administer dose of vaccine to children at various centres,” Datke said.

The previous year, a total of 2,71,241 children in city were administered polio vaccine. There will be total 1,175 vaccination booths this time and 3,275 employees will be engaged in the drive. Besides, transit and mobile teams will administer vaccine dose to children at temples, mosques, malls, railway station, bus terminals, airport, marriage hall, construction sites, brick kilns, orphanages, slums, and to children in nomadic tribes etc. Between January 20 and 24, the teams will visit 6,89,075 houses.

A total of 120 transit teams and 20 mobile teams have been constituted to implement the drive effectively. Ramesh Singare, Chairman of NMC Health Committee; Dr Milind Ganvir, Deputy Director (Health); Dr Shyam Shende, Nodal Medical Officer, Pulse Polio Immunisation Programme, and others were present prominently at the press conference.

Meanwhile, through a press release issued here, Zilla Parishad (ZP) Vice-President Sharad Donekar informed that ZP was targetting coverage of 2,14,639 children in the age group of 0-5 years. In all, 376 transit booths and 210 mobile booths also were constituted for administration of Pulse Polio vaccine in the rural parts of Nagpur district. After the drive also, house-visits will be taken up to cover children left out of the immunisation drive, three days after the above-mentioned dates, stated Donekar, who is also Chairman of Health Committee of ZP.

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HC rejects ‘baseless’ plea against CM, raps lawyer for filing frivolous case

Coming down heavily upon an interloper who sought to level “wild and baseless allegations” of hatching criminal conspiracy, forgery against Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Government Ple... Read More
Coming down heavily upon an interloper who sought to level “wild and baseless allegations” of hatching criminal conspiracy, forgery against Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Government Pleader Bharati Dangre, the Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court on Friday, dismissed the application filed by one Satish Uke dubbing it as nothing but the gross abuse of process of law. Making such wild allegations against persons holding such responsible positions like Chief Minister and Government Pleader is “thoroughly irresponsible,” the High Court stated while disapproving such type of applications.

A division bench consisting Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice M R Bhatkar, after giving a patient hearing to applicant-lawyer, who appeared in person, minced no words while lashing out at this tendency of wasting precious judicial time on the basis of “half-baked knowledge of law.” Citing a celebrated Supreme Court judgement in Natarajan’s case, the High Court dubbed the attempt to challenge its order by which two decade old criminal case was amicably settled as nothing short of “vexatious litigation.” Quoting the Apex Court judgement which stressed the need to discourage such litigant who proceeds “to present argument before the court with an analysis of facts which is tendentious and waste the time of the court by trying to cite decisions which have no relevance to the case,” the High Court expressed its acute displeasure over the brazen manner adopted by the applicant.

The applicant, Uke contended that Registry ought to have objected to petition since Fadnavis had not filed Vakalatnama of his counsel and moreover mentioned his profession as social worker while he was occupying the post of Chief Minister. He further claimed that Fadnavis and Government Pleader Bharati Dangre who studied law together hatched a conspiracy and claimed that they were together during a social function organised by alumni of Law College. He claimed right to intervene in the matter since prosecution had colluded with high-profile applicant and overlooked law and regulation.

The High Court totally rejected this submission and made it clear that law is equally applicable to all and different yardsticks can not be applied just because one of the applicant is Chief Minister. No applicant has come before us and both the first informants are before us and hence the present applicant has no locus, the High Court noted while dismissing the application seeking review of the decision. Lamenting that wild and reckless allegations were made against Chief Minister and Government Pleader, the High Court described them as figment of wild imagination and product of a very fertile mind.

HC had quashed criminal case on December 23

The High Court on December had disposed of two criminal applications filed by Hriday Kumar Babulal Parate, Madanlal Parate, Pravin Dubey, Devendra Fadnavis and Dipak Hiranwar and some others urging the High Court to quash the proceedings since the parties had settled the dispute. The actual bone of contention was an incident dated June 6, 1991 on account of removal of certain construction in an area known as “Parate Compound.” First case was registered for the offences punishable under Sections 147, 148, 149, 294, 448, 324, 336 and 427 of the Indian Penal Code at the instance of Parate family while second FIR was filed by Hiranwar against Parate. After the chargesheets were filed the proceedings were instituted before JMFC court way back in 1991 and not much progress was reported during last two decades. However, with passage of time, the parties amicably settled the dispute between them and also to give an end to criminal proceedings.

The applicants in both the cases who instituted criminal cases, were present in the court on December 23 while others were represented by their counsels. High Court while citing Apex Court decision in the case of Narinder Singh and Others Vs State of Punjab and Others, (2014) 6 SCC 466 which laid down guidelines while exercising jurisdiction under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure for quashing criminal proceedings and directed not to entertain application wherein an element of public law is involved.

The present cases were initiated against each other due to purely private dispute, the High Court noted after perusing record and stated that no element of public law is involved.

Another guideline laid down is that if there is no possibility of trial being culminated into conviction, the High Court should exercise powers under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure to give an end to the criminal proceedings. Since the parties have agreed to end the dispute amongst themselves, there is not even a remote possibility of trial ending into conviction, the High Court stated while accepting the settlement between the parties and quashed the criminal proceedings so that the parties are in a position to maintain peace and harmony in the area where they reside.

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Dr Singh greets people on Makar Sankranti

Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh greeted the State people on the auspicious ‘Makar Sankranti’ and prayed for their peace, prosperity and happiness. In his message, Dr Singh said that there i... Read More
Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh greeted the State people on the auspicious ‘Makar Sankranti’ and prayed for their peace, prosperity and happiness. In his message, Dr Singh said that there is a series of colourful festivals in the Indian culture. He said that the auspicious festival delivers the message of change in weather when Sun God changes His direction. Chief Minister said that the festival is also celebrated as Pongal in South India and Lohri in Punjab. It shows the rich culture and diversity of the country, he added. Assembly Speaker Gaurishankar Agrawal extended his best wishes to the people on the Makar Sankranti and said the festival brings new light to the life of people. “It is the day when Sun changes direction and weather is changed,” he said adding that the festival is a source of new energy to the humans. He also greeted the people from South India, where Makar Sankranti will be celebrated as Pongal. Mayor Pramod Dubey also greeted the city citizens on the occasion of Makar Sankranti and prayed for the peace and happiness to Sun God. In his message, Mayor also appealed all the people, especially women and youngsters to give their suggestions for making the capital city clean and green. He said that the whole country celebrates the Makar Sankranti, a symbol of India’s rich culture, with joy and brotherhood. The Mayor further appealed the masses to conserve the water and helps in developing the city’s beauty.

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‘Construction of roads in areas affected with LWE to be completed on Mission Mode’

Asserting that over 55 per cent of the road construction under Road Requirement Plan (RRP) Phase-1 has been completed and the remaining will be completed shortly Union Minister for Road Transpo... Read More
Asserting that over 55 per cent of the road construction under Road Requirement Plan (RRP) Phase-1 has been completed and the remaining will be completed shortly Union Minister for Road Transport, Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari said that the construction of roads in areas affected with Left Wing Extremism (LWE) would be completed on Mission Mode.

He said at the same time focus will be given on socio-economic development of local people, so that the menace could be tackled effectively once and for all.

Speaking to the mediapersons at a press conference on Tuesday here at Mantralaya after chairing a review meeting of LWE Works in eight states, Union Minister for Road Transport, Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari said in the completion of roads in LWE affected zones particularly in Chhattisgarh, help of Army Engineering Services, Defense Research and Development Organization as well as international technological assistance will be sought for fast execution of road constructions. He said by improving coordination, cooperation and communication between the state and central machineries, these development works will be executed on war footing. Fast execution of construction of bridges through modern technology will be a priority apart from construction of cement concrete roads through new technology and mechanism.

Gadkari stated that of the 5777 kms of road network being constructed in 34 LWE affected districts spread in eight states in the country under RRP Phase-1, 3200 Kms of road construction has been completed while of the remaining 2500 Kms approximately, over 50 percent has been completed and the remaining works will be completed by May 2015. Soon after completion of RRP Phase-1, the centre will initiate RRP Phase-2 project which will target construction of road network of 7294 kms of new roads having 48 bridges with a cost of Rs 10,700 crore.

Speaking to media persons, Gadkari said CRPF personnel who were present during the meeting also gave valuable suggestions, which will be considered and added. He said a website will be created by the Ministry of Surface Transport, through which the project execution will be monitored on project to project basis. He also urged the Chief Ministers and Chief Secretaries of all eight states to monitor the progress of work every three months. Gadkari said in Chhattisgarh both the Centre and state will encourage local contractors for the construction of roads in LWE areas by making small contract/package. This will also add up to the socio-economic development of the unemployed youths in such areas, which is the root cause of Naxalism. He said in order to fast execution of such projects, the Ministry will also talk to the Union Environment Ministry. He said when the NDA government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi had taken charge, projects over Rs 3 lakh crore were stuck up due to environmental issues, which now have been resolved and over 80 percent projects have been cleared. He said this is a subject of national importance and such initiative should be supported by one and all.

Cong flays Gadkari’s statements

Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari was on Tuesday criticized by Chhattisgarh Pradesh Congress Committee General Secretary Shailesh Nitin Trivedi over the statements of the minister after the meeting regarding construction of roads in Maoists affected areas. Gadkari has tried to gain praise by making promises like coordination, precast bridge and work to local people. When construction agencies like BRO is not being allowed to work in these areas and the incumbent state government of BJP has not been successful so far in making favourable circumstances for road construction, then how local contractors will be able to work there, Trivedi questioned. Maoists have held 50 Sarpanch candidates hostage after calling them on pretext of meeting related to Panchayat election and the state government and police are doing nothing, observed Trivedi and he added that hollow statements can neither make roads nor lead to any solution of the Maoists problem. Trivedi further observed that Gadkari’s visit was an exercise for finding out the reasons behind defeat of BJP in urban bodies election, also added that BJP has no interest to curb the Maoists problems or to make roads.

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Regional Conference on ‘Innovation in Public Service Delivery’ on 15th

The Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG) Government of India is organizing a two-day Regional Conference on ‘Innovation in Public Service Delivery’ in collabor... Read More
The Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG) Government of India is organizing a two-day Regional Conference on ‘Innovation in Public Service Delivery’ in collaboration with the Government of Chhattisgarh, at Raipur on January 15 and 16, 2015.

The Conference aims to create a national platform to share experiences of the States in the field of reforms/initiatives undertaken by the States/Union Territories to improve public service delivery and make the administration effective, transparent, accountable and citizen-friendly. It will also provide a forum for the AR departments of the States/UTs to highlight the challenges faced by them and their expectations from the Department of AR&PG, Government of India. The recent initiatives of the Government of India will also be shared with the States/Union Territories.

The representatives from the States and Union Territories in the Southern, Central and Western Regions would make presentations on award winning initiatives and projects on ‘Best Practices’ from the respective States/UTs followed by interactive sessions.

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NIA yet to appoint counsels to prosecute culprits

The National Investing Agency (NIA) is yet to appoint counsels to prosecute the culprits despite the fact that the charge-sheet has already been filed and the case is fixed for framing of charg... Read More
The National Investing Agency (NIA) is yet to appoint counsels to prosecute the culprits despite the fact that the charge-sheet has already been filed and the case is fixed for framing of charges on January 21.

The NIA had submitted a charge-sheet on September 27 last year against nine out of total 35 maoist ulras allegedly involved in last year’s Jhirum valley attack on Congress party convoy. The charge-sheet was filed in the Special NIA Court of Mahadev Katulkar. The 500 page charge-sheet including 40 pages of the final report includes the names of 35 maoist ultras, however only nine were produced in the Court at the time of filing the same. The chare-sheet against the remaining naxalites was filed in absentia as they are still at large. Names of the maoist agaist whom the charge-sheet has been filed are Jyoti Pramila, Mukka Mandawi, Ayta Markam, Deva, Chaitu, Mahadev, Kawasi Kosa, Banjami Sanna and Kawasi Kosa.

As the Court of Sessions Judge, Bilaspur is the only NIA Court designated in the State; the Maoist ultras were produced before it. It may be recalled that two Naxals were arrested in March, this year from Chandmeta village in Darbha area. Thereafter, other seven were also arrested in ones and twos.

They were wanted in connection with the last year’s Jherum valley attack in which several senior Congress party leaders including veteral leaders like V C Shukla, PCC President Nandkumar Patel and his son and Mahendra Karma besides others were killed. The ultras were arrested immediately after brazen attack in Sukma district in which 16 people 11 CRPF personnel, four State police and one civilian were gunned down by them.

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NIA report omits real culprits of Jhiram Ghati incident: Cong

Chhattisgarh Congress on Tuesday said that some portions of the NIA (National Investigative Agency) report on Jhiram Ghati massacre that left several senior party leader dead are shocking as th... Read More
Chhattisgarh Congress on Tuesday said that some portions of the NIA (National Investigative Agency) report on Jhiram Ghati massacre that left several senior party leader dead are shocking as the report does not carry the names of the real culprits in the ghastly incident. “All knows that the Chief Minister’s ‘Vikas Yatra’ had passed through Bastar few days before the ‘Parivartan Yatra’ of Congress. It is unfortunate to say that the attack was done to destabilize the government as the Maoists could have attack Vikas Yatra instead of Parivartan Yatra if that was the sole reason behind the attack,” said Congress General Secretary Shailesh Nitin Trivedi on Tuesday.

When Chief Minister’s Vikas Yatra was provided with adequate security, Congress’ rally was left on the mercy of God, he alleged, adding that NIA’s omission on this issue raises several eyebrows. It is to be mentioned, the Maoists had released a letter opposing both the rallies and in such circumstances Parivartan Yatra should have been extended more security than Vikas Yatra, he said, adding, such an important point has not been mentioned in the NIA report.

The NIA report has hinted that the Maoists had planned the attack between February 16 and 25, 2013 at Bijapur’s Pidia village which indicates that the report has been prepared on the basis of imagination as the Congress had planned the Yatra on March 4, 2015. The abovementioned facts clearly indicates that the NIA investigation is not transparent, he said.

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Sushma Swaraj to grace AIIMS Foundation Day function on 20th

The All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) of capital city is gearing up to celebrate its foundation day on January 20, where Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will be chief g... Read More
The All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) of capital city is gearing up to celebrate its foundation day on January 20, where Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will be chief guest. Union Health Minister J P Nadda was approached to be the chief guest in the foundation day function, however, due to busy schedule Nadda is unable to attend the function. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan will be present as a special guest of honour on the occasion.

The foundation day will see Director Professor Sandeep Kumar reading the annual report while External Affairs Minister will honour various meritorious students in prize distribution function.

It is worth mentioning that the AIIMS administration had earlier planned to inaugurate the hospital of AIIMS on foundation day, however, due to the construction of the hospital yet to be completed it has been postpones.

The annual foundation day function of AIIMS will also see Member of Parliaments Alok Sanjar, Jyoti Dhurve, Nand Kumar Singh Chouhan, State President of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Lov Verma, Secretary Health and Family Welfare, Chief Secretary Anthony JC DeSa and other dignitaries.

It is to be noted that AIIMS in capital city was inaugurated back in 2003, however, the hospital of AIIMS is yet to be constructed in past 12 years. AIIIMS administration will now be planning to improve the facilities and services provided to the passengers in the hospital.

No recruitment in AIIMS yet!

AIIMS hospital which is suffering from scarcity of doctors is yet to conduct recruitment for new consultants. Due to dearth of nurses and consultants, AIIMS administration is having a tough time in opening the proposed Intensive Critical Unit (ICU) in the hospital. It was being expected that with Union Health Minister likely to be part of the function there would be certain announcements. However, now that the situation is clear AIIMS administration will have to wait for a while to get those announcements. Dr K C Tamaria, Medical Superintendent of AIIMS, while talking to ‘The Hitavada’ said that we have forwarded the file for recruitment of new consultants in the hospital which will be done soon.

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Institutional arrangements of venture fund for innovative industries

State Cabinet has refused to approve the proposal decreasing the VAT on liquor and opening of new liquor shops in State. A Cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Tuesd... Read More
State Cabinet has refused to approve the proposal decreasing the VAT on liquor and opening of new liquor shops in State. A Cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Tuesday also decided for institutional arrangement of venture capital fund to meet share capital needs for establishment of innovative entrepreneurship. The Excise Department made a presentation before the Cabinet suggesting several proposals including reducing VAT on liquor in state. However, the Cabinet refused to approve this proposal. On the other hand, it was informed that all formalities for institutional arrangement for capital venture fund will be completed through constitution of Assets Management Committee under Finance Department. The committee will constitute a public limited company with a similar other name approved by Madhya Pradesh Venture Finance Limited or Registrar of Companies.

For institutional arrangement of Venture Capital Fund, formalities will be completed to constitute a private limited company to function as trustee of funds under Finance Department. Under it, a public limited company will be formed by a similar other name approved by Madhya Pradesh Venture Finance Limited or Registrar of Companies.

The State Government will make a Rs 5 crore preliminary investment in the fund as per provisions of SEBI Alternative Investment Funds Regulation, 2012. Additional funds will also be invested if needed.

The Cabinet decided to provide to Madhya Pradesh Finance Corporation additional funds as share capital equal to amount of guarantee fee paid/to be given by it. The corporation gives loans to small and medium entrepreneurs. As a result of this decision, the corporation will be able to extend low-interest loans to entrepreneurs of backward areas. The Cabinet decided to extend duration of Rs 1868.81 crore guarantee on loan taken from Rural Electrification Corporation.

The Cabinet decided to revise cost of Shri Singaji Thermal Power Project’s first phase (2X600 MW) of Madhya Pradesh Power Generating Company from Rs 6750 crore to Rs 7820 crore and that of Satpura thermal power station’s extension units 10 and 11 (2X250 MW) from Rs 3032 crore to Rs 3514 crore.

The Cabinet accorded consent to extend from March 31, 2016 to September 31, 2019, the time-limit for Government security for resetting under Sagar Municipal Corporation’s schemes. Besides, it also gave consent to replace 12.50 percent interest rate by floating rate 10.75.

The Cabinet decided to give three-year government security to Madhya Pradesh State Co-operative Bank Limited in favour of NABARD to acquire Rs. 416.27 crore from it for conversion of short-term to three-year medium-term, the loans taken from co-operative banks by farmers affected by natural calamities during Rabi 2012-13, Kharif 2013 and Rabi 2013-14. Besides, it would be exempted from security fee.

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‘Friends of MP Conclave’ to be held in America

During Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s US visit, ‘Friends of MP Conclave’ will be held at Manhattan where website ‘Friends of MP’ will be launched. This was informed by Chief Min... Read More
During Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s US visit, ‘Friends of MP Conclave’ will be held at Manhattan where website ‘Friends of MP’ will be launched. This was informed by Chief Minister Chouhan at a meeting pertaining to his US visit on Tuesday. Chief Secretary Anthony de Sa was also present on the occasion.

The meeting was informed that Indian NRIs will take part in “Friends of MP Conclave”. Eminent Indian luminaries of US will also be invited. Registration will have to be made on website for participating in the conclave. Chief Minister Chouhan said that branding and marketing of Madhya Pradesh will be focused at the conclave. The Chief Minister will visit US from January 31 to February 5. During the period, he will have one-to-one meetings with entrepreneurs and business summits will also be held. Principal Secretary to CM Iqbal Singh Bains, Principal Secretary Commerce & Industries Mohammad Sulaiman and Secretaries to CM Vivek Agrawal and Hari Ranjan Rao also attended the meeting.

CM to launch ‘Friends of MP’ web portal in US on Feb 1

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan will launch ‘Friends of MP’ web portal in New York on February 1. Madhya Pradesh has taken this initiative on the suggestion of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to prepare a global talent pool by every state. The website will focus on sectors like education, health, skill development, rural development and tourism. Gradually, the website will be expanded to other sectors also. Apart from giving suggestions, the member friends will also be able to associate with any project or voluntary work through the website. Chief Minister Chouhan has described it as a golden opportunity for NRI talents from Madhya Pradesh to associate themselves with Madhya Pradesh’s development works through website.

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NSUI, Congress spokesman Mishra come face to face

It seems that NSUI and Chief Spokesman of Congress K K Mishra have come face to face. The reason is that NSUI State incharge Nikhil said it was sensational statement of Mishra that aggravated p... Read More
It seems that NSUI and Chief Spokesman of Congress K K Mishra have come face to face. The reason is that NSUI State incharge Nikhil said it was sensational statement of Mishra that aggravated problem in NSUI and resulted into windfall of resignations.

He is going to mention Mishra’s factor in review report, to be submitted to NSUI National President Roji John.

On the other hand, K K Mishra said whatever he said it was on behalf of party and he stood by each word even today. He said all the organisations working under Congress come under the prerogative of State Congress President Arun Yadav. Mishra some days back said to media that those talking of their resignations in media construe that their resignations have been accepted.

While addressing a press conference, NSUI State incharge Nikhil said that he had spoken on phone to all the resenting leaders of organisation, including district presidents, and asked to work for Congress. Saying that no resignation has been accepted, he added that in civic polls, NSUI workers hopes to get the chance. Taking pots shot on Chief Spokesman of Congress KK Mishra, he said that his statement resulted into windfall of resignations in NSUI.

“Tomorrow I am going to submit report over whatever development took place in state NSUI and would mention the name of KK Mishra for aggravating the situation in the organisation,” said Nikhil to reporters.

He added that KK Mishra had no authority to accept the resignations of NSUI members. He accepted that NSUI members did not get the tickets in civic polls and anarchy like situation persisted in the organisation.

Contrary, K K Mishra said that whatever he speaks he speaks on behalf of party and party’s decision is applicable to all.

Notably, more than two dozen district presidents of NSUI have resigned in the wake of resentment erupted after ticket distribution process.

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HC quashes BMC’s order for Narmada tax imposition on colonisers

A division bench of High Court presided over by Chief Justice A M Khanvilkar and Justice S S Kemkar quashed all the Government orders through which Narmada tax was imposed by the Bhopal Municip... Read More
A division bench of High Court presided over by Chief Justice A M Khanvilkar and Justice S S Kemkar quashed all the Government orders through which Narmada tax was imposed by the Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) on any person applying for colony development permission on Tuesday.

The judgement came over the hearing of a petition filed by Confederation of Real Estate Developers Association of India (CREDAI) and other private developers and colonizers of capital city. In its decision the High Court directed the municipal corporation to refund entire amount of Narmada tax collected in pursuance of its Governmental orders along with 9 per cent interest from the date of deposit informed CREDAI through a release.

It is worth mentioning that the State Government had imposed Narmada tax at the rate of Rs 15 per square foot, which with respect to building permissions of residential colonies was estimated at around Rs 80 lakh to Rs 1.5 cores.

This amount would now be refunded to almost 30 developers who had approached the High Court in the matter. The court verdict is also bound to affect the manner of collection of Narmada tax at the stage of building permission as the judgement also holds that water tax cannot be collected before water supply is being made in the colonies by the corporation.

M S Meek, Spokesperson of CREDAI, welcomed the decision and said it is in favour of the developers and that the decision of the High Court is timely and respect it.

Meanwhile, officials in Bhopal Municipal Corporation when asked about the decision said that they are yet to receive the official copy of the decision of the court. Premshankar Shukla, PRO, BMC, said that corporation is yet to receive the official copy, however, they respect the verdict of the court and will act accordingly.

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Two, including Buddhist monk, shot near ex-DGP’s house

UnidentifieD miscreants shot two persons, including a Buddhist monk, in Chunnabhatti area near the house of ex-DGP D C Jugran here on Tuesday night.

CSP Habibganj Jayant Singh Rathore tol... Read More
UnidentifieD miscreants shot two persons, including a Buddhist monk, in Chunnabhatti area near the house of ex-DGP D C Jugran here on Tuesday night.

CSP Habibganj Jayant Singh Rathore told ‘The Hitavada’ two persons were shot by unidentified miscreants at Amrakunj Colony in Chunna Bhatti locality of State capital. Sheik Anwar was shot on waist and a Buddhist monk, who was accompanying Sheik, was shot on thigh.

Both the injured persons were rushed to JP Hospital and are undergoing treatment. The firing took place near the house of ex-Director General of Police (DGP) Dinesh Chandra Jugran.

Rathore further said that though the victims were unable to see the shooters as they were sitting in a car and fled immediately after firing at them but they claimed that they are having a dispute over a land with a person namely Mukesh Jain and alleged Jain’s involvement in the firing.

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Tinu Joshi surrenders before court, sent to jail

Absconding terminated IAS officer Tinu Joshi surrendered before local court on Tuesday. Tinu Joshi reached on wheel-chair to surrender and she was flanked by doctor and nurses. After hearing, cou... Read More
Absconding terminated IAS officer Tinu Joshi surrendered before local court on Tuesday. Tinu Joshi reached on wheel-chair to surrender and she was flanked by doctor and nurses. After hearing, court rejected her bail application and sent her to judicial custody. She is accused in the disproportionate case involving her husband and terminated IAS officer Arvind Joshi and others.

According to sources, Tinu Joshi reached court in the afternoon. Through the medium of counsel, she moved the application for bail on health grounds which was turned down by court. After hearing court sent her to judicial custody. While coming out of court, Tinu Joshi had tried to ignore the media by covering her face with dupatta. She was taken to jail in the vehicle.

Notably, Lokayukta organisation had filed case of disproportionate assets against the couple Tinu Joshi and Arvind Joshi after conducting raid against their residence some years back. Last year, Lokayukta police obtained arrest warrant against the couple and conducted searches at various places even outside the state to search the couple but to no avail. Even with the help of IB, alert was sounded at all airports of country so that couple could not leave the country. So far there is no information about the whereabouts of Arvind Joshi.

Sources said Tinu Joshi had been sent to judicial remand till fourteen days. In her bail application, Tinu Joshi showed that she was ill and need to undergo a surgery. However, Government advocate had protested the bail application strongly.

Notably, Tinu Joshi, during her service period, had served as Deputy Secretary in Prime Minister’s Office while her husband Arvind Joshi had remained Joint Secretary in Defence Ministry. At the time of Income Tax raid against them, couple were posted on important positions in Madhya Pradesh. It was after Income Tax Department’s raid that Lokayukta police had raided the house of couple. I-T Department raid found that couple of disproportionate assets of crores of rupees. While in Lokayukta police raid, it was found that couple had more disproportionate assets. After Income Tax Department raid, Madhya Pradesh Government had put couple under suspension and later moved proposal to terminate the couple from elite service to central government.

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Police still clueless about two bodies, their mysterious death

POLICE are still clueless about two bodies and their blind murder mystery even after 24 hours of the incident. Police teams were conducting a rigorous search to identify the bodies in the city ... Read More
POLICE are still clueless about two bodies and their blind murder mystery even after 24 hours of the incident. Police teams were conducting a rigorous search to identify the bodies in the city and its adjoining areas on Tuesday. Bodies of two unidentified men were found in an isolated area in village Tedh Chowki area under jurisdiction of Shahpura police station on January 12.

SDOP, Patan, N D Jatav informed that the bodies were first sighted by Gram Kotwar, Prahlad Pradhan (56), a resident of village Ramkhiriya at village Tedh Chowki. Taking prompt action on the information, senior police officers were informed about the incident, while Additional Superintendent of Police (Rural) Sanjay Sahu, SHO of Shahpura police station along with FSL team reached the spot. Prima facie of the investigation confirmed that the two unidentified men were killed with a sharp-edged weapon and their bodies were placed in the area. Taking a serious note into the case, Superintendent of Police Harinarayanachari Mishra constituted separate police teams for further investigation into the case.

ASP Sanjay Sahu informed that two men aged around 30 years and 35 years were killed with a sharp-edged weapon as police have found grave wounds on their heads and face due to the attack with sharp-edged weapons. In primary investigation, police learnt that unidentified men were killed at another place and their bodies were placed in an isolated area near village Tedh Chowki in Shahpura area.

Two die in bus-truck collision

TWO people were injured in an accident of bus and truck at village Barjhai Tiraha under the jurisdiction of Panagar police station on Tuesday. According to Panagar police, they received information about a road accident at village Barjhai. Receiving the information, a police team reached the spot and rushed the injured to Panagar government hospital. One of the injured Dinesh Lodhi (26), a resident of village Changavan in Majhgavan area, informed that he was driving a truck (MP-20HB-3449) loaded with cement towards Jabalpur. While he was passing through village Barjhai, a speeding bus (MP-20PA-1045) being driven recklessly by the driver rammed into his truck. In the accident, he sustained multiple injuries. On the other hand, Krishna Kumar (30), a resident of Mother Teresa Nagar lodged a complaint that he was driving a bus (MP-20PA-1045) carrying family members of bus owner. The bus was hit by a speeding truck (MP-20HB-3449) at crossing of village Barjhai. Acting on the complaints, police have registered counter cases under section 279 and 337 of the IPC while further investigations are underway.

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NUMM appeals MPPCB to stop inflow of polluted water from IIITDM to Khandari

MEMBERS of Youth Wing of Nagrik Upbhokta Margdarshak Manch (NUMM) submitted a demand letter to Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board (MPPCB), Regional Office demanding to stop drain coming fro... Read More
MEMBERS of Youth Wing of Nagrik Upbhokta Margdarshak Manch (NUMM) submitted a demand letter to Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board (MPPCB), Regional Office demanding to stop drain coming from Indian Institute of Information, Technology, and Design and Manufacturing connected to Khandari reservoir. Flow of polluted water should be stopped immediately as it may pollute the grand reservoir through which water is supplied to the city. NUMM workers also sent a copy of the same to Secretary of Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board, Bhopal, Principal Secretary Housing and Environment Ministry, Madhya Pradesh Government and other concerned.

Dumna Nature Reserve developed during British era where a grand reservoir was also developed called Khandari. In this reservoir since long time a drain is connected to drain out used water of IIITDM. Regarding stoppage of this drain and to install water treatment system the Forest Department has initiated correspondence with the institute but no positive initiative has been taken yet.

Raising the issue, Youth Wing President Manish Sharma said Khandari reservoir is a source to maintain water supply to over 4 lakh population in Jabalpur and in adjoining areas for drinking, irrigation and domestic works. As per information given by Forest Department of Madhya Pradesh to NUMM workers that used water drained out from IIITDM in form of a nullah got attached to the reservoir and the nullah water creates pollution. Sharma added that to protect water resources the Environment Protection Act 1986, Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act 1974 and rules framed by the Government of Madhya Pradesh to control water pollution are also being openly violated by national repute institute. According to Water Act Section 24 no person or institution can pollute natural water resources.

Without obtaining clearance from Pollution Control Board no organisation, person can let polluted water mix into any water body. On appeal of NUMM workers including Rani Jaiswal, Beena Singh, Gaurav Arora, Praveen Sahu, Surendra Saini, MPPCB Regional Office took cognisance and issued notices to Jabalpur Municipal Corporation and IIITDM authorities asking them to stop flow of nullah pollution into Khandari reservoir. Manish Sharma warned that if timely action is not taken to stop flow of polluted water of nullah from IIITDM into Khandari reservoir within 15 days then NUMM Youth Wing will file an appeal before National Green Tribunal.

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Congress works for people’s prosperity, progress: Yadav

“BEING the oldest and biggest party of the country, the Congress is least bothered with satisfaction of some selfish leaders and workers in the party. Congress is not working on cadre basis but... Read More
“BEING the oldest and biggest party of the country, the Congress is least bothered with satisfaction of some selfish leaders and workers in the party. Congress is not working on cadre basis but it is a public movement to ensure prosperity of the country and welfare and development of its citizens. Commitment of workers is required to make public aware of unethical practices of Bharatiya Janata Party and popularising the mission of Congress to retain strength of the party in city, state and country as well,” said President of Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee Arun Yadav on Tuesday.

Yadav was addressing the gathering of leaders and workers of Congress after inauguration of election office of Congress’ candidate Geeta Sharat Tiwari for the post of Mayor in Civic Elections-2015 in Jabalpur.

Earlier, Arun Yadav inaugurated election office and congratulated the leaders and members of City Congress Committee for having best candidature of Geeta Sharat Tiwari for strengthening the party in civic elections at Jabalpur. During the programme, some party workers staged protest against MPCC chief Arun Yadav and registered their agitation by throwing eggs and abusing him for partiality in distribution of tickets.

Local leaders and workers intervened and tried to pacify the members but agitated workers tried to attack vehicles of senior leaders and managed to escape from the spot. Thereafter, addressing a meeting of party leaders and workers at JDA Park, all the senior leaders of City Congress Committee charged violent act of some party workers and decided to take stern action against them.

Addressing the meeting, senior Congress leader and former Additional Solicitor General of India Vivek Krishna Tankha said violent act of some dissatisfied people cannot change prestige of Congress party as it is an outcome of their selfish working.

Even after a nationwide wave of Narendra Modi, Congress proved its strength with 2/3rd majority in civic body elections in Chhattisgarh while victory of Congress supported candidates in Cantonment Board Elections in Jabalpur is mirroring dedicated working of honest party leaders and workers. He added that even after BJP’s long regime of 20 years, Jabalpur is still the fourth city in the State and fighting for development of hospitals, education institutions and industries.

Following selfish working of BJP leaders, Jabalpur is still amongst backward cities. Corrupt working of BJP leaders misused funds provided by UPA-I and UPA-II governments in last 10 years.

Tankha said that there is another ray of hope for the city with candidature of Geeta Sharat Tiwari to start a new era of development by ensuring her victory as Mayor and strengthening her hands by sending majority of Congress candidates as corporators in Jabalpur Municipal Corporation.

Former Mayor Vishwanath Dubey said that there is no need of agitation for not giving opportunity of contesting elections as there are examples of several committed leaders of the Congress who dedicated their lives serving the party. Senior leaders Malaychand Jain and Swaichand Jain are perfect examples who were given assembly tickets in last phase of their lives. Senior leader Rameshwar Neekhra also criticised impatient act of workers and appealed to the workers to work within party line for maintaining discipline and ensuring victory of its candidates in civic elections. District Congress (City) President Dinesh Yadav convened the programme and proposed a vote of thanks to senior leaders, candidates and workers for making the programme a grand success.

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‘Violent act of some dissatisfied workers will never deter Cong’

PRESIDENT of Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee Arun Yadav charged violent act of some dissatisfied party workers and said that such incidents will never distract the party and him from their mi... Read More
PRESIDENT of Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee Arun Yadav charged violent act of some dissatisfied party workers and said that such incidents will never distract the party and him from their mission. Congress party always works with discipline and unnecessary agitation of selfish people cannot tarnish image of the oldest party.

Dedication of leaders and workers is the only key to success in any election. Recently held civic body elections in different areas proved that only ground-level workers are the best candidates to ensure victory in these elections. It is the best opportunity for candidates and workers to prove their strength and starting a new era of Congress in Jabalpur. He was addressing a press conference at the sidelines of his public contact drive in support of Congress candidate Geeta Sharat Tiwari for the post of Mayor.

He also visited several wards in support of party candidates and made an appeal to the residents to ensure victory of Congress in civic body elections for overall development of the city. Yadav further added that civic elections have no connection with national issues as only local problems and issues are significant for victory of candidates. He informed that Congress candidate Geeta Sharat Tiwari is a committed social worker and has always worked for welfare of people and society since last 20 years in the city. He charged that public is aware that UPA Government provided huge funds for development of the city but residents are deprived of any development due to corrupt working of BJP leaders.

Replying to a query on allegations for partiality in ticket distribution, Arun Yadav said that the election management committee members made scrutiny of candidates on the basis of their overall performance in the party. Field works of candidates was key concern in distribution of tickets while promotion of upcoming workers was on top priority for the party. He said that the party will take stern action against rebel candidates and workers involved in anti-party activities.

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NMC to reserve 25 pc funds for waste mgmt

Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) will reserve 25 per cent funds of the total budget for sewerage and solid waste management (SWM) programme.

The issue will come up for discussion in the g... Read More
Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) will reserve 25 per cent funds of the total budget for sewerage and solid waste management (SWM) programme.

The issue will come up for discussion in the general body meeting on January 20 at 11 am. Mayor Pravin Datke will chair the meeting. Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) has directed NMC to work under section 33 A, Water Rules, 1974 and section 31 A, Air rules, 1981 and SWM rules 2000. As per these rules, it is the responsibility of the local body to collect and process sewerage water scientifically. The MPCB has also directed NMC to segregate biodegradable and non-biodegradable waste and recoverable waste collected from the houses. The local body has to reserve 25 per cent amount of the total income of the budget and spend on these works. The general body will give nod to reserve the funds.

During 2014-2015 budget, the local body has allocated funds of Rs 157 crore for the sewerage and SWM in the city. The civic body has to provide a detailed report to MPCB about allocation and utilisation of funds.

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Injured wild animals suffer in absence of a rescue centre

Even though the headquarter of Forest Department is situated in Nagpur, injured wild animals brought here for treatment from other places in Vidarbha continue to suffer from miseries in absence... Read More
Even though the headquarter of Forest Department is situated in Nagpur, injured wild animals brought here for treatment from other places in Vidarbha continue to suffer from miseries in absence of a rescue centre. An injured spotted deer was brought to the city for treatment from Pachkehdi in North Umrer Forest Range on Tuesday evening. However, the local officers were reluctant to accept it in absence of any medical facilities readily available or a rescue centre. How to take the injured wild animal back in the night that too without any treatment was a problem for J Y Raut, Round Officer and two Forest Guards from North Umrer. Hence, Seminary Hills staff allowed the spotted deer to keep in the nursery temporarily and made arrangement for sending a veterinary doctor to examine the animal in a cage. The doctor gave medicine to the animal while staff provided green vegetable and water to it. The spotted deer sustained injuries on its legs when it fell in a canel while attempting to satisfy its thirst in Pachkehdi in the morning. Staff of the department reached the spot but a cop from Pachkhedi took out the helpless animal from the canel. A veterinary doctor examined it, provided first aid and referred the case to Nagpur. The injured animal was brought accordingly by the staff members but they had to depend on mercy of local officers. The three staff members from Umrer are now taking care of the spotted deer at Seminary Hills. It may be mentioned here that the Forest Department is constructing a transit treatment centre in the premises of the nursery but even after State Government alloting it Rs 62 lakh about two years ago it is yet to be completed. Reliable sources informed that the work of this transit centre has no meaning when a big rescue centre is coming up in the premises of Gorewada zoo project of international standard. The plan is that injured/orphane wild animals can be diverted to Gorewada rescue centre, which is supposed to be well-equipped. This centre is coming up on 25 acres of land by spending Rs 30 crore. Wildlife lovers wondered as to how the department could not think of a rescue centre in the city long back. It is also observed that injured animals coming from places like Chandrapur died in transit.

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High Court disposes of plea by NET aspirants challenging UGC action

JUSTICE Bhushan Dharmadhikari and Justice Ashok Bhangale, at the High Court here, have disposed of around 44 writ petitions as infructuous, in terms of the Supreme Court’s judgement delivered... Read More
JUSTICE Bhushan Dharmadhikari and Justice Ashok Bhangale, at the High Court here, have disposed of around 44 writ petitions as infructuous, in terms of the Supreme Court’s judgement delivered by Justice K S Radhakrishnan and Justice A K Sikri, on September 19, 2013, upholding the UGC’s qualifying criteria laid down after the examination and before the declaration of the results for National Eligibility Test (NET) examination held on June 24, 2012.

While doing so, the apex court had set aside a judgement of the Nagpur Bench of the Bombay HC of June 28, 2013. The ruling by the HC here, was that UGC lacked the competence to fix the aggregate marks as the final qualifying criteria, after the candidates secured the minimum marks, prescribed in the notification of December 6, 2012 before the declaration of the results of NET examination, agreeing with a similar view expressed by a Single Judge Bench of the Kerala High Court.

According to the apex court, in the academic matters, unless there is a clear violation of statutory provisions, the regulations or the notification issued, the courts shall keep their hands off, since those issues fall within the domain of the experts. In several decisions, the Supreme Court has expressed the view that the Court shall not generally sit in appeal over the opinion expressed by expert academic bodies and normally it is wise and safe for the courts to leave the decision of the experts, who are more familiar with the problem they face, than the courts generally are.

UGC as an expert body has been entrusted with the duty to take steps as it may think fit for the determination and maintenance of standards of teaching, examination and research in the University. For attaining the said standards, it is open to the UGC to lay down any ‘qualifying criteria,’ which has a rational nexus to the object to be achieved, that is for maintenance of standards of teaching, examination and research.

The Supreme Court has observed further in its judgement, that candidates declared eligible for lecturership may be considered for appointment as Assistant Professors in Universities and colleges and the standard of such a teaching faculty has a direct nexus with the maintenance of standards of education to be imparted to the students of the Universities and colleges.

UGC has only implemented the opinion of the experts by laying down that qualifying criteria, which cannot be considered as arbitrary, illegal or discriminatory or violative of Article 14 of the Constitution of India.

Advocates T H Udeshi, Kirti Satpute, V K Paliwal, Rahul Dhande, P P Thakare, A M Sudame, Rashid Haque, Zia Kazi, Shamal Kadu, D T Shinde, Virat Mishra, R D Bhuibhar, Prakash Meghe and others appeared for the petitioners. Adv S K Mishra represented the University Grants Commission.

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Fake job racket busted, four persons booked

DHANTOLI Police on Tuesday booked four persons, including two women, for duping a young man of Rs 8 lakh by promising him a job of a clerk in Western Coalfields Limited. Between December 2013 an... Read More
DHANTOLI Police on Tuesday booked four persons, including two women, for duping a young man of Rs 8 lakh by promising him a job of a clerk in Western Coalfields Limited. Between December 2013 and January 11, 2015, Madhuri Waghmare, Ramesh Bawne, Ravindra Kathane and mother of Harshal Waghmare took Rs 8 lakh from Moreshwar Watkar (35) on the pretext of providing job of clerk in Western Coalfields Limited (WCL), Nagpur. They collected the money from him at the office of MG Group of Companies at Bhiwapurkar Chambers. They also provided him a fake appointment letter. On the basis of a complaint lodged by Watkar, a resident of Plot No 122/A-Swagat Nagar, Bobde Layout, Hudkeshwar, a case under Sections 420, 468, 471 and 34 of the IPC has been registered against the accused persons at Dhantoli Police Station. Further investigations are on.

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Four anti-social elements attempt to kill youth

FOUR anti-social elements attempted to kill a youth in Lakadganj area on Monday afternoon. Injured Kalpesh alias Gora Dewaji Bawne (29), a resident of Plot No 92, Vidya Nagar, Wathoda, was rus... Read More
FOUR anti-social elements attempted to kill a youth in Lakadganj area on Monday afternoon. Injured Kalpesh alias Gora Dewaji Bawne (29), a resident of Plot No 92, Vidya Nagar, Wathoda, was rushed to the hospital. Around 1.45 pm, Kalpesh was sitting on a Honda Activa at Yashwant Chowk, Pewtha, Telipura. Two men came on a motorcycle they told him that Vilas Babanrao Khankule was calling him. They took him on their motorcycle to Mangpura Chowk where Vilas Khankule was already standing. Khankule asked him as to why he was roaming with Pintya. When Kalpesh told him that he was never with Pintya, Khankule and three of his accomplices attacked him. With serious injuries on his abdomen, Kalpesh was rushed to the hospital.

Lakadganj Police registered an offence under Sections 307 and 34 of the IPC against Khankule and his accomplices. Further investigations are under way.

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State transfers 17 IAS officers, including seven from Vidarbha

Maharashtra Government, on Tuesday, effected transfers of 17 Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers in the State including seven from Vidarbha region. With the transfers, Commissionerate ... Read More
Maharashtra Government, on Tuesday, effected transfers of 17 Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers in the State including seven from Vidarbha region. With the transfers, Commissionerate of Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) based in Nagpur has got a new Commissioner.

Sachin Kurve, an IAS officer of 2003 batch, has been posted as Commissioner, MGNREGS, Nagpur. Rahul Rekhawar, who has been working as Assistant Collector, Nagpur, has been transferred to Gondia as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Zilla Parishad (ZP). Deepa Mudhol, Assistant Collector in Chandrapur district, is shifted to Buldana as CEO ZP. M Devender Singh, Assistant Collector (Chamorshi) in Gadchiroli district, has been posted as CEO of Akola ZP. Sanjay Meena, Project Officer, Integrated Tribal Development Project and Assistant Collector (Dharni) in Amravati district, has been transferred to Wardha as CEO ZP.

A B Unhale, CEO of Akola ZP, has been shifted to Akola-headquartered Maharashtra State Seeds Corporation as its Managing Director. P Siva Sankar, Assistant Collector, Gadchiroli, has been moved to Kolhapur Municipal Corporation as Municipal Commissioner.

Other officers, who have been transferred, include: Debashish Chakraborty to Shivshahi Re-development Project in Mumbai as Managing Director; Abha Shukla as Resident Commissioner and Secretary of Maharashtra Sadan, New Delhi; Asheesh Sharma as CEO of Maharashtra Maritime Board, Mumbai; Y E Kerure as Commissioner (Fisheries); Om Prakash Bakoria as Commissioner (Sports and Youth), Pune; Uday Chaudhari as CEO of Dhule ZP; Abhijeet Chaudhari to Aurangabad as CEO ZP; Astik Kumar Pandey to Jalgaon as CEO ZP; M G Ardad to Hingoli as CEO of ZP; and Sushil Khodwekar as Municipal Commissioner of Kalyan-Dombivali.

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All key witnesses in Yug murder trial solidly back prosecution case

From school going girl to mobile shop owner, from aggrieved father to ex-friends, 17 witnesses confirmed the prosecution theory against both the prime accused in Yug Chandak murder trial. So far,... Read More
From school going girl to mobile shop owner, from aggrieved father to ex-friends, 17 witnesses confirmed the prosecution theory against both the prime accused in Yug Chandak murder trial. So far, not a single witness has turned hostile and all of them have very boldly pointed finger towards the accused persons. A friend turned prosecution witness had already revealed how accused Rajesh Daware and Arvind Singh hatched criminal conspiracy to become rich by abducting son of some wealthy person. Rajesh and Arvind have been charged with a cold-blooded and gruesome murder of Yug Chandak, son of well known dentist couple Dr Mukesh and Dr Premal Chandak.

On Monday, 14 years old Divya Chandel, a school student from Patansaongi, confirmed that she witnessed a mobike with three persons including a sleepy school boy near pump house on September 1, 2014. A few days later, police visited the spot with photographs and she readily identified Yug Chandak as the same small boy. She also recognised both the accused in test identification parade.

A villager from Babhulkheda Shriram Khalatkar also endorsed that on September 1, he saw two youngsters on bike and later lifting a small boy who was sitting in between and moving towards culvert. Two more villagers also deposed that they had watched two youngsters with a school boy near canal on September 1 and few days later learnt that he was Yug Chandak.

Rajesh Daware was computer operator at Dr Chandak’s dental clinic and along with his friend Arvind Singh Lokesh Singh, he is charged with kidnapping Yug a student of Centre Point School, for ransom on September 1, 2014 and later ruthlessly stoning him to death. The body of this innocent boy was found near a nullah at Patansaongi. Pranay Dongre, manager at Dr Chandak’s dental clinic in his deposition stated that Rajesh had slapped Yug in July 2014, when he was playing with computers. Later Dr Premal had reprimanded Rajesh for hurting her son after which Rajesh started disliking Yug. On the day of kidnapping, Rajesh had called the clinic at around 3 pm to confirm whether Chandak couple was still in the clinic, Pranay stated.

Pankaj Khurpade, an attendant in clinic recalled that on September 1 at around 730 pm, accused Arvind contacted him and sought cellphone number of Dr Chandak. Half an hour later, the ransom calls were made to the very same number.

A mobile shop-owner Mohandas Balani in his testimony stated that on September 1 around 830 a boy aged around 20 came to his Jaripatka shop and wanted to use coin box phone and also sought coin. Later he heard the boy talking loudly and demanding Rs 5 crore from someone. Very next day, the cops came to his shop and Balani narrated entire incident and few weeks later in identification parade immediately recognised Arvind Singh as the boy who made that ransom call.

Biharilal Chhabariya, another resident of Guru Vandana apartment where Chandak family also resides, recalled that on September 1 when returned home for lunch in his Honda city car, he saw a boy in Red T Shirt and black jeans loitering around in suspicious manner and few hours later when he came to know about Yug’s abduction, alerted Chandak couple about the doubtful guy and later identified him. Special Prosecutor Jyoti Vajani conducted the examination in-chief. Adv Rajendra Daga represented Chandak family and assisted the prosecution. Adv Pradeep Agrawal from legal aid panel represented the accused.

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Two booked for duping man of Rs 2.17 lakh

AJNI Police on Monday booked two persons for duping a young man to the tune of Rs 2.17 lakh.

The accused have been identified as Sunil Madhavsingh Yadav (39), a resident of Plot No 24, Ramna... Read More
AJNI Police on Monday booked two persons for duping a young man to the tune of Rs 2.17 lakh.

The accused have been identified as Sunil Madhavsingh Yadav (39), a resident of Plot No 24, Ramna Maroti Nagar, and Kishor Devkisanji Pawar (46), a resident of Plot No 101, New Amar Nagar, Manewada Road.

According to police, Kiran Namdeo Mahale (33), a resident of Wisdom Apartment, Plot No 110, Rameshwari Road, lodged a complaint that Sunil Yadav and Kishor Pawar told him that they were Chartered Accountants and were also on the panel of Akola Urban Bank, Sitabuldi. Assuring a loan through J S Consultancy, they collected Rs 2.17 lakh from him between March 2014 and January 12, 2015. When Mahale realised that he was duped, he approached the police.

On the basis of the complaint, an offence under Sections 420, 406 and 34 of the IPC has been registered against Yadav and Pawar. Further investigations are on.

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CM constitutes Planning panel to boost Nagpur Metro Region

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena led Maharashtra Government has constituted the Nagpur Metropolitan Planning Committee (NMPC) to clear the ambitious development plan of Metropolitan R... Read More
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena led Maharashtra Government has constituted the Nagpur Metropolitan Planning Committee (NMPC) to clear the ambitious development plan of Metropolitan Region. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis will chair the NMPC. The notification of NMPC has been issued recently by the Urban Development Department headed by Fadnavis.

The committee will pave way to clear long pending Metropolitan Regional Plan. The proposed Metro Region Plan will be tabled before the NMPC. The plan is awaiting State Government’s nod for last one year but previous Government did not bother to clear the proposal of NIT. The area covered under this scheme is around 3,780 sq kms comprising 750 villages.

The first meeting of NMPC is likely to be held in third week of this month.

The State Government has appointed official and non-official members of the NMPC. The 30 members from Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) and Zilla Parishad will get elected on this committee. The election process will be held in next couple of months. The committee has been constituted for a period of three years.

Meanwhile, the State Government has appointed Hingna MLA Sameer Meghe, Umrer MLA Sudhir Parve as members and West Nagpur MLA Sudhakar Deshmukh, North Nagpur MLA Dr. Milind Mane, Katol MLA Dr Ashish Deshmukh, Ramtek MP Krupal Tumane and Rajya Sabha MP Ajay Sancheti as special invitees of the committee. Assistant Director of Town Planning Department, Nagpur region is member secretary of the committee. Principal Secretary of Urban Development Department, and Divisional Commissioner of Nagpur have been appointed as ex-offico members of the committee.

The other members of the committee are- Municipal Commissioner, Chairman Nagpur Improvement Trust, Chief Administrative Officer- CIDCO, Chief Executive Officer- Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation, Chief Officer- Kamptee Municipal Council, V M Kinhikar, retd. Director, Town Planning, Dr. A D Bhide, Dr. B S Khandewale, B P Ganu, retd. Head of Department, VNIT. The special invitees of the committee are- Director, Town Planning, Pune, CEO- Maharashtra Jeevan Pradhikaran, CEO- Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company

Limited, CEO- MHADA, CEO- Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation, CEO- Maharashtra State Pollution Control Board, DRM - Central Railway, General Manager- BSNL, representative of Civil Aviation Department. Halcrow India Limited has prepared development plan for the region. The objectives of Metro Region planning were- laying down broad policies and directions of growth in principal zones, determining the hierarchy of roads and access ways in co-ordination with existing roads proposed in development plan roads. This plan includes present land use, perspective land use and development control rules (DCR) for the metro region. Maharashtra Government had issued notification in 1999 and declared Nagpur Metropolitan Area, which comprises Nagpur Rural, Hingna, Parsheoni, Mauda, and Kamptee Taluka and parts of Saoner, Kalmeshwar, Umrer and Kuhi. The Government has extended the jurisdiction of NIT outside NMC limit under clause 1 (2) of NIT Act, 1936 as “Nagpur Metropolitan Area” in connection to notification of 1999 that ranges approximately 25 to 40 kms areas beyond existing NMC limits.

These Regulations shall apply to building activity and development work in the areas under the jurisdiction of Nagpur Metropolitan Area for the area declared as an Improvement Scheme by the Nagpur Improvement Trust. These regulations shall replace all existing building bye-laws and Development Control Rules /Regulations in force framed under the Maharashtra Regional and Town Planning Act, 1966, the Maharashtra Municipal Councils, Nagar Panchayats and Industrial Townships Act, 1965, in respect of the notified Improvement Schemes in the Nagpur Metropolitan Area.

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Daylight murder of youth in Dharampeth

SENSATION prevailed in the otherwise peaceful Dharampeth area when four goons hacked a young man to death with a cleaver and other sharp-edged weapons in full public view on the road in front of ... Read More
SENSATION prevailed in the otherwise peaceful Dharampeth area when four goons hacked a young man to death with a cleaver and other sharp-edged weapons in full public view on the road in front of Chauhan Hardware on Tuesday morning.

The goons first threw chilli powder in the eyes of Ritesh Ramesh Baisware (30) and brutally killed him with sharp-edged weapons before fleeing on separate motorcycles.

A resident of Servants Quarters, behind MLA’s Hostel, Ritesh had an old enmity with the assailants. Prima facie, the murder may be a fallout of Ritesh’s rivalry with the assailants whose identity was yet to be officially established by the investigators.

A regular at the gym, Ritesh used to run a ready-made garments shop -- Urban Men’s -- near Law College Square in partnership.

He had an old rivalry with hardened criminals Ashwin Turkal, Nikhil Dagor, and Sandeep Mahanto who allegedly owe allegiance to a politician from Kamptee. A couple of months ago, a quarrel broke out between Ritesh and Ashwin Tukral’s gang over their supremacy in Dharampeth, Gokulpeth, Walmiki Nagar and other nearby areas. Ritesh’s rivals hatched a plan to eliminate him.

Accordingly, the assailants were hiding near Chauhan Hardware Stores opposite Batukbhai Jewellers’ showroom. As soon as Ritesh came out of the gym, they threw chilli powder in his eyes. Sensing trouble, Ritesh tried to run away. They chased and attacked with sharp-edged weapons repeatedly stabbing him much to the horror of the passers-by. After he collapsed on the road, they fled the spot on separate motorcycles.

Other members of the gymnasium and onlookers, rushed Ritesh to Wockhardt Hospital, Shankar Nagar where the doctors declared him ‘brought dead.’

The news about Ritesh’s murder spread like jungle fire in Dharampeth area. His two brothers, mother and relatives also gathered at Wockhardt Hospital. Senior Police Inspector Anil Katkade and staff from Ambazari Police Station arrived at the spot. Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone I) Nirmala Devi also visited the spot.

Cops were also deployed at Wockhardt Hospital to prevent any untoward incident. Ritesh’s body was later sent to Government Medical College & Hospital for post-mortem.

After collecting details, separate police teams were fanned out in search of suspected assailants Ashwin Turkal, Ashish Dagor and Sandeep Mahanto. These suspected assailants are the residents of Walmiki Nagar.

A senior police officer told ‘The Hitavada’ that they would soon crack the case and bring the culprits to book. Ambazari Police registered an offence under Section 302 and 34 of the IPC against the suspected killers on the basis of a complaint lodged by the deceased’s brother, Rajesh.

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Water supply to North, South, East Nagpur to remain affected for 30 hrs from Monday

Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) and Orange City Water (OCW) have planned to take up repair and maintenance work at various spots on January 12 to strengthen water supply system in North, Sou... Read More
Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) and Orange City Water (OCW) have planned to take up repair and maintenance work at various spots on January 12 to strengthen water supply system in North, South, and East parts of the city. This will affect water supply in 6 zones including Mangalwari, Ashinagar, Satranjipura, Lakadganj, Nehru Nagar, and Dhantoli for almost 30 hours. The repair and maintenance work will start after the morning supply on January 12, and will continue till the afternoon of January 13. It requires two main lines -- 1,300 mm and 900 mm -- of Kanhan Water Treatment Plant (WTP) to be shut for around 30 hours for which supply from both main supply lines of Kanhan WTP will be closed on Monday, OCW informed in a press release. The maintenance and repair works include repair of leakage on 1,300 mm diameter butterfly valve at Kanhan WTP, repair of leakage near 700 mm diameter Shanti Nagar Feeder Main, installation of valve on 900 mm diameter rising main of Kanhan WTP, installation of flow meter on 900 mm diameter Bastarwari Feeder Main and other places in all six zones. Since water supply to almost six zones is going to be affected and ESRs also will remain dry for almost 30 hours, water supply through tankers also will not be possible, states the press release. Water supply is expected to be normalised on January 14 morning.

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Loya is Mahanagar Sanghchalak of RSS, Gadge is Sah-Sanghchalak

After several years, change of guard took place in Nagpur Mahanagar unit of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). Noted Charted Accountant Rajesh Loya was elected unanimously as Mahanagar Sanghcha... Read More
After several years, change of guard took place in Nagpur Mahanagar unit of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). Noted Charted Accountant Rajesh Loya was elected unanimously as Mahanagar Sanghchalak, and Prof Shridhar Gadge as Sah-Sanghchalak.

The decision was taken in a meeting held at Dr Hedgewar Smriti Mandir, Reshimbag, on Saturday. The outgoing Mahanagar Sanghchalak Dr Dilip Gupta, Vidarbha Prant Sah-Sanghchalak Ram Harkare, outgoing Sah-Sanghchalak Laxmanrao Pardikar, and several prominent RSS office-bearers were present in the meeting.

Rajesh Loya will replace Dr Dilip Gupta while Prof Shridhar Gadge will replace Laxmanrao Pardikar. Dr Dilip Gupta served as Mahanagar Sanghchalak for almost 16 years.

Dr Gupta, while talking to ‘The Hitavada’ said, the entire team has supported him during last 16 years to strengthen and expand the work of RSS. “Only a person has changed, the work will continue,” he said.

Rajesh Loya expressed gratitude towards all office-bearers and believed that they would continue spreading the RSS’ work in every sector. Rajesh Vitthaldas Loya is a partner of Loya-Bagadi and Company. He is practicing as Chartered Accountant since 1985 in the field of Audit Taxation and Management Audit. Presently, he is Chairman of Nagpur Nagrik Sahakari Bank and also the President of Income Tax Bar Association. He is past Chairman of Nagpur Branch of WIRC, and appointed as Trustee by Charity Commissioner in Shri Sai Seva Mandal, Sai Mandir. Loya is also the Convenor of Finance Committee of Dev Sanskriti Vishwavidyalaya, Haridwar, and nominated as expert member in the Board of Studies in Management Technology in Ramdeobaba College.

Shridhar Gadge is working as lecturer in Metallurgy Department of Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology (VNIT). He is working as Sharirik Pramukh of Western Region (Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Goa) of RSS. He also worked as Vidarbha Prant Sharirik Pramukh, Bauddhik Pramukh, and Prant Karyawah.

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Govt discontinues energy subsidy upto March ’15; trade delegation to meet CM

THE energy subsidy provided to industries had been withdrawn by the Government from November 2014 due to which electricity bills had been inflated by Rs 1.5 per unit from December 2014. This ha... Read More
THE energy subsidy provided to industries had been withdrawn by the Government from November 2014 due to which electricity bills had been inflated by Rs 1.5 per unit from December 2014. This has hurt the energy consumers very hard burning a hole in their pockets.

“To complicate matters, industrialists are planning to close down or migrate to neighbouring states where energy tariff is cheaper,” said R B Goenka, Chairman of Energy Cell, VIA while talking to The Hitavada on Saturday.

Goenka said that with the abrupt withdrawal of energy subsidy, the industrialists were in a state of shock. Industrialists were concerned as production had become unviable leaving them with no option but to shut down their units leaving a large number of people unemployed.

Goenka highlighted that industrial production had become unviable. The steel plants, rolling mills and textile units would be ruined with the increase in power tariff.

Earlier, the recommendations of the Rane Committee to the Government allowed energy subsidy to the tune of Rs 706 crore which would be applicable upto March 2015. The energy subsidy of Rs 1.5 per unit included Interim Charges (IC), Genco Charges and Transco Charges (TC). The energy subsidy was to be shared between the Government, Genco and Mahagenco. Now, the BJP Government had withdrawn the energy subsidy from November 2014 on the pretext of financial constraint and empty coffer after which a VIA delegation met the Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Minister of Finance and Planning Sudhir Mungantiwar and Energy Minister Chandrashekhar Bawankule requesting them to provide energy subsidy for November, December and January. They gave a verbal assurance to provide relief to electricity consumers upto January 2015. To this, the Government provided relief only for the month of November 2014 which was credited in December 2014 bills, he noted.

Now, the industrialists are angry with the decision as the Government had reverted from its earlier stand to provide subsidy upto March 2015. “The Government has refused to provide energy subsidy upto March 2015,” said Goenka.

Goenka informed that a joint trade delegation of over 40 associations including the VIA would meet Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and submit a memorandum requesting for providing energy subsidy for December 2014 and January 2015. He said that the energy subsidy estimated by him worked out to Rs 550 crore for two months which could be sustained by the Government. Most industrialists were of the opinion that with continued production, the Government would gain more than the subsidy amount in the form of various taxes and VAT, he added.

Similarly, as per Case No. 95 2013, filed by the VIA against the MERC, the Tribunal had quashed the order to collect Transco Charges. The charges in the electricity bills was being collected illegally, he added.

To aggravate the matter further, the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL) had filed a petition seeking hike in power tariff, he said.

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‘Business must be fair, ethical’

“THE contribution of business sector to the development of society is immense. We should admit that the success achieved in entrepreneurship is only because of the support from society. The ... Read More
“THE contribution of business sector to the development of society is immense. We should admit that the success achieved in entrepreneurship is only because of the support from society. The business has to be fair and ethical, otherwise the society will not accept it,” opined Rahul Bajaj, President of Shiksha Mandal, Wardha.

Bajaj was speaking as chief guest at the valedictory programme of the 41st Kamalnayan Bajaj Memorial Inter- University Elocution Competition on the topic ‘Business and Society’ in the auditorium of G S College of Commerce, on Saturday.

Justice Chandrashekhar Dharmadhikari (retired); Shekhar Bajaj, Trustee of Shiksha Mandal; Madhur Bajaj, Sanjay Bhargava, General Secretary; Dr Gita Piramal, Panelist, and Dr S V Bawankar, Programme Co-ordinator, were on the dais.

Although, the country witnesses good entrepreneurs in different sectors, it is ironic to view some negative reputation of business in society for which immoral and dishonest entrepreneurship is responsible, lamented Bajaj. Corruption is the major hindrance in country’s development. Both bribe giver and receiver are equally responsible for corruption. Hence, rigorous punishment should be given to both the parties, added Bajaj. Businessmen should extend help to needy which will be a great service to society, he said.

While commenting on the present economical scenario of the country, Bajaj said, “I am not talking on politics or Hindutva. I am talking about today’s economy of India.” Had Congress done the development works in its regime, it would not have faced the current situation, observed Bajaj. Addressing further, Rahul Bajaj said that due to able leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, there would be positive changes in the country’s economy within five years. Sufficient time should be given to the Government to deliver the best, opined Bajaj.

Sanjay Bhargava, said that for every outsider, Wardha is a life-changer. He expressed satisfaction as the competition had enlarged the perspective of the theme of Shiksha Mandal.

The panel of judges appreciated the efforts being taken by Shiksha Mandal, Wardha. Dr Gita Piramal also spoke on the occasion.

In the competition, 29 participants from different states delivered their speeches in English and Hindi. The first three winners (English) were Prankur Arora (New Delhi), Karan Nirmani (Ahmedabad) and Saurav Mishra (Odisha). Purva Sharma(Wardha) was given consolation prize. The first three winners (Hindi) were Atha Tiwari (Nagpur), Shaunak Vyas (Gujarat) and Ashish Tiwari (Indore). In quiz on ‘Gandhian thought and life’, Abhishek Sharma (Aligarh), Shubham Maheshwari (Pune) and Ajit Gupta (Varanasi) were the first three winners.

Earlier, the bust of Kamalnayan Bajaj was unveiled in the college premises at the hands of the dignitaries. Dr S V Bavankar conducted the proceedings. The trustees and the members of Shiksha Mandal, renowned citizens of Wardha, students, principals, staff members attended the programme in large numbers. Various committee members strove hard for the success of the programme.

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‘Uniform means Mission, Excellence, Integrity’

He is one man who every Nagpurian should be proud of. Blessed with unassuming personality, charming smile, contemplative face, brilliant mind, and kind-hearted, he is one of the top leaders of ... Read More
He is one man who every Nagpurian should be proud of. Blessed with unassuming personality, charming smile, contemplative face, brilliant mind, and kind-hearted, he is one of the top leaders of the Indian Air Force (IAF). Meet Air Marshal Shirish Baban Deo AVSM VM VSM, a Nagpurian, who has taken over as Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief (AOC-in-C) of Eastern Air Command of the IAF on the very first day of this year.

A highly decorated officer, who has served as Director General (Operations) at Air Headquarters, Air Marshal S B Deo is a man with vision, mission, and deep attachment to his uniform. “For me, my uniform means Mission, Excellence, and Integrity. It instills in us a sense that we have got a job to do (Mission), that our output must be impeccable (Excellence), and also that we must accomplish the job with Integrity,” he said in an exclusive interview to ‘The Hitavada’ on Saturday.

The Mission could be operations or civic aid for an Air Warrior. Civic aid is a significant role of the IAF. Being the first responder, the IAF has been playing its part in offering aid to people stranded due to floods and natural disasters. “We have been offering our support routinely to people in inaccessible areas. In the cockpit, we, the IAF officers, are ace professional pilots; outside it, we are Government servants. It is our duty to help fellow countrymen,” he observed with a reflection of the sense of pride on his face.

Every Air Warrior, right from an officer to a crew member, has these values etched deep in heart while performing given duties. Everyone’s performance is critical to success of any mission, said the Air Marshal. Whenever an officer flying an aircraft gets a target, he can do it with precision. For, there go the efforts of the crew member sweeping the run-way, the technician checking all parameters of the flying machine, the doctor checking all vital health parameters of the flying officer, the cook offering appropriate food to the officer, and so on. After all these efforts by trained and qualified persons, an officer accomplishes the mission. “Sum of all wisdom is weapons on target,” he added with a smile.

But, despite these, there are incidents of human error. Yet, replied the AOC-in-C of Eastern Air Command with confidence, “Even statistics have proved that the IAF has an enviable record compared to other air forces in the world, as far as accidents are concerned. For, we emphasise on training, communication, learning from mistakes of others, flight safety considerations, and also on Operational Risk Management (ORM)”. A regular review and assessment of the requirements of the IAF, infrastructure, training module has helped the IAF in achieving man-machine synergy, he added.

Commissioned in the fighter stream of the IAF in 1979, Air Marshal Deo expressed happiness over adaptation of technology in younger generation. “Many young people are joining the IAF. With newer acquisitions, use of higher technology, new machine panel systems, requirement of skills also has gone up. Despite newer technologies, the IAF gives utmost importance to the man behind the machine. We have got certain benchmarks for the manpower, and these are never lowered,” he said. Of course, new infrastructure also was required and the Government cleared increase in infrastructure that would enable the IAF to train manpower in even better manner, observed the man who has done 3,855 hours of operational and training flying.

Air Marshal Deo has held various staff appointments and worked in Operations/Plans Directorates at Air Headquarters. He has been a witness to India transforming herself from being an Air Power to an Aerospace Power. “Yes. Being an Aerospace Power is absolutely essential. Since the collapse of the concept of Star Wars, the focus of all research shifted to Orbital and Sub-Orbital Weapons. All I can say is that India does not lag in this area. We have earned a significant position as an Aerospace Power,” said the seasoned Air Warrior in an impeccable English honed by years of hands-on experience of operations as well as strategic planning.

The IAF has been playing a key role in achieving better and effective co-ordination between civil and military aviation. The Air Marshal added, “Already, a document on flexible use of civil and military airspace has been promulgated. There is co-ordination between the IAF and Airports Authority of India.” India is coming of age in being self-reliant in defence production. According to Air Marshal S B Deo, who was actively involved in induction of modern assets and sensors in the IAF, the trade-off in ‘Make in India’ campaign launched recently by the Government of India would effect transfer of technology in a true sense. “The campaign is well worth it, and it augurs well for the requirements of the Services,” he said in an enthusiastic tone.

Conversation left a sweet taste in the mouth -- of talking to an accomplished Air Warrior on a wide range of issues related to India’s air defence. What marks Air Marshal Deo is his simplicity that defies his position. But what goes deeper in the mind is Air Marshal Deo’s savvy in latest technologies that are dominating air and aerospace defence of modern times.

The Nagpurian Officer

Air Marshal S B Deo is a Nagpurian. He was a student of Somalwar School. He is elder brother of Adv Rohit Deo, Assistant Solicitor General. The Air Marshal is married to Anjna. The couple has a son, who is a fighter pilot in the IAF. Air Marshal Deo is a fighter Combat Leader and an ‘A2 Qualified Flying Instructor’. He has been a Directing Staff at TACDE and an Instructor at the Flying Instructors’ School, Air Force Station, Tambaram. He is also an alumnus of the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington.

Air Marshal S B Deo was AOC 32 Wing, has commanded 15 Squadron and a Signal Unit, besides being the Chief Operations Officer of a front-line forward base. As Station Commander of the Signal Unit, he was actively involved in the induction of modern assets and sensors in IAF. Prior to taking over as AOC-in-C of Eastern Air Command, he was DG Air (Ops), AOC COBRA Group, AD Commander and Air-I at HQ CAC. He is a recipient of the Presidential awards of Ati Vishist Seva Medal, Vayu Sena Medal, and Vishist Seva Medal. He is an avid reader and is interested in creative writing and technology.

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Congress declares its remaining 24 candidates

Congress, on the last day of withdrawal of nomination forms, declared its 24 candidates for corporator posts of Bhopal Municipal Corporation on Friday. In the meantime, two tickets given in fir... Read More
Congress, on the last day of withdrawal of nomination forms, declared its 24 candidates for corporator posts of Bhopal Municipal Corporation on Friday. In the meantime, two tickets given in first list were changed. In first list, Asif Zaki’s name was cleared as candidate for ward number 24 but in Friday’s list he was replaced by his wife Sabitha Sultan.

It is learnt that ward number 24 was reserved to women and Congress had wrongly given ticket to Asif Zaki. It corrected its mistake in Friday’s list by replacing Asif with his wife Sabistha.

Likewise, in first list, Congress had cleared name of Krishna Chawksey from ward number 62 but in Friday’s list she was replaced by Dolly Manish Yadav. The names of candidates declared on Friday for remaining wards are: Mahira (ward no 7), Amir Aqueel (ward no 8), Rafiq Qureshi (ward no 23), Sanjay Sahu (ward no 35), Phool Singh Yadav (ward 37), Vivek Tripati (ward no 45), Yogendra Singh (ward no 46), Raju Gujre (ward no 47), Manisha Ahirwar (ward no 48), Shaifali Thol (ward no 49), Raju Narware (ward no 50), Jyoti Mandlik (ward no 54), Udaiveer Singh (ward no 56), Fakira (ward no 59), Nirmala More (ward no 63), Pukraj Singh Rajput (ward no 65), Girish Sharma (ward no 67), KC Dubey (ward no 68), Sunita Mahendra Gurjar (ward no 72), Radheyshyam Lodhi (ward no 74), Sajid Ansari (ward no 75), Mubarika Kamaruddin (ward no 77), Ashok Malviya (ward no 81).

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Woman made son to steal in marriages!

Children were trained to steal from marriage functions and reception ceremonies while the parents and accomplice used to wait for them outside. Several cases of marriage thefts were solved with a... Read More
Children were trained to steal from marriage functions and reception ceremonies while the parents and accomplice used to wait for them outside. Several cases of marriage thefts were solved with arrest of a gang and Rs 4 lakh worth booty was also recovered.

SP North Arvind Saxena told that several cases of theft from marriage receptions and ceremonies were reported in last few months including marriage of Aparna Bhargava, daughter of Ved Prakash Bhargava, on November 27, 2014. Miscreants stole a polythene bag in which all the gift cash envelopes were kept.

Saxena told that a team was formed in which ASP Zone-3 Manu Vyas, ASP Crime Shailendra Singh Chouhan jointly carried out investigation. Police teams gathered video shooting recordings and CCTV footages of the marriages target by the miscreants.

After lengthy investigation, shockingly, action of a child seemed suspicious.

Investigating team again checked the footages and identified the persons who got in touch with the minor boy. Police found that in different marriages ceremonies, two-three youths were again and again were present. It seemed suspicious that why same people would be invited in marriages daily that two where thefts occurred.

Police earmarked the suspects and started search for them, after several days police were tipped off that some suspected persons are living for Rajgarh by bus. Police kept eyes on suspects and nabbed them from Bairagarh while they were leaving for Rajgarh.

The nabbed miscreants were identified as Devendra aka Deva, 21, son of Vijendra resident of Village Kadiya in Rajgarh district, Aakash, 20, son of Ramkishan, resident of Gulkhedi in Rajgarh and Amika, 40, wife of Sikander also a resident of Rajgarh district. Amika’s 12 year old son used to steal the gifts from marriages.

The miscreants told that they used to send the boy dressed in good clothes in marriage receptions along with Baraat. The boy used to win the confidence of the relatives pretending to be son of a family member. He used to also do small works like bringing tea or soup for people and getting chair for elderly persons etc. So when the boy used to pick the bags carrying gift items or envelopes no one used to suspect them. Then the boy used to bring the envelope outside to his mother or accomplices. Even if someone stopped him or questioned him he used to tell that the packet is to be kept in the car.

Police have recovered goods worth Rs 4 lakh, including a set of gold tops and necklace, 2 sets of gold tops, two sets of gold bangles, Rs 1,70,000 cash.

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BMC not to allow school buses to run on BRTS corridor

With special guidelines laid by the administration in operating the school buses, a major change is likely to place in operation of these buses in city. Around 200 buses of various schools will s... Read More
With special guidelines laid by the administration in operating the school buses, a major change is likely to place in operation of these buses in city. Around 200 buses of various schools will soon be running in Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) Corridor. Regional transport Office has given consent to the proposal.

However, the BCM is opposed to the idea saying that it is not feasible to operate these buses in corridor. Now, the final call is with the district administration in the matter, file will be sent to district administration by the RTO.

It is to be noted that the BRTS Corridor is used by the Bhopal City Link Limited to operate its low floor buses and will now be conducting a survey in this regard for operation of the school buses in mobbing and afternoon. Regional Transport Office had conducted a survey about a year ago regarding operation of the school buses in the corridor stating that due to severe traffic in peak hours children are delayed to either reach schools or their homes on time. Therefore, the plan was carved to operate the school buses in the corridor to maintain smooth flow of buses. The survey aimed at operating the buses in the BRTS Corridor from Bairagarh to Misrod in morning, afternoon and evening.

Officials in the RTO are of the opinion that a limited number of school buses will be given permit to operate in the Corridor. Meanwhile, officials in BMC are saying that it is not apt for buses to be operated in the BRTS Corridor.

Devendra Tiwari, BRTS In-charge said that it is not feasible to operate the school buses in the corridor and has therefore sent their report to the RTO in this regard. Road experts are of the opinion that it will be a good decision to give the consent of operating the buses in corridor which will reduce the chances of accidents that is a prime risk in the severe traffic conditions.

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Chouhan reaches Gujarat, urges NRIs to invest in MP

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has invited all Indians and Non-Resident Indians to Madhya Pradesh. He said whether you invest or not, but do visit Madhya Pradesh. Chouhan was addressing c... Read More
Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has invited all Indians and Non-Resident Indians to Madhya Pradesh. He said whether you invest or not, but do visit Madhya Pradesh. Chouhan was addressing concluding programme of Non-Resident Indians’ convention at Mahatma Mandir at Gandhi Nagar in Gujarat on Friday. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh conducted the programme. Chief Ministers of nine states including Madhya Pradesh attended the convention.

Chouhan said that Madhya Pradesh’s industrial policy is investor-friendly. Power is available 24x7. This miracle was done first by Gujarat. Now, electricity is available in state’s villages as well. Madhya Pradesh is an island of peace where there is no discrimination between north, south, east and west. Whoever comes, Madhya Pradesh embraces all. Everyone is near and dear one of the state. Once Madhya Pradesh was notorious for dactoits. But now dacoits are either dead or in jail. Chouhan said that industrial peace prevails in Madhya Pradesh due to better law & order. Slogans like “Chahe Jo Majboori Ho, Maang Hamari Poori Ho” and “Hamse Jo Takrayega, Choor Choor Ho Jayega” are not heard in Madhya Pradesh. Instead of single-window, the State Government has implemented single-door policy. The Chief Minister said that he himself meets investors directly every Monday where officers of concerning departments are also present. Decisions on issued pertaining to investors are taken immediately. Chouhan said that a new cell will be constituted for NRIs in Madhya Pradesh. A separate officer will be appointed for every project. Chouhan said that the Prime Minister has given slogan of “Make in India”.

To ensure its success, the Chief Minister has given slogan “Make in Madhya Pradesh” inviting investors to Madhya Pradesh and assuring them of every possible facility. Chouhan said that earlier Madhya Pradesh was dubbed as a sick state. When he became Chief Minister 9 years ago, power was supplied to villages for only 3 hours. Roads were non-existent. Now, Madhya Pradesh’s growth rate is 11.08, which is highest in the country. The state is maintaining growth rate in double digit continuously for last 10 years. Earlier, only 7.5 lakh hectare area was under irrigation, which has been increased to 27.5 lakh hectares now. He said that with 24.99 percent agriculture growth rate, Madhya Pradesh is pioneer in both India and abroad. Last year, Madhya Pradesh was ahead of Haryana in wheat production. This year, it will be ahead of even Punjab. He said that efforts are being made for progress in every sector in the state. Though growth rate of the state is good, even then the state government is not satisfied with it. Chouhan referred specially to last Global Investors Summit to motivate industrialists.

The Chief Minister said that Madhya Pradesh is a very good state where investors will achieve desired success. Chouhan also made special mention of tourist attractions in the state in his address. He said that state boasts of 3 World Heritage monuments. Out of 12 Jyotirlingas in the country, 2 are in Madhya Pradesh at Mahakaleshwar and Omkareshwar. Simhastha is going to be held next year after 12 years. Apart from Shahi Snan with Sanatan traditions during this Mahakumbh at Ujjain, this Simhastha will also give messages of humanity, environmental improvement, save girls, basic unity and morality in all religions to the world. Eminent philosophers will hold discussions on these subjects during Simhastha. The Chief Minister also invited participants of NRI convention to Simhastha. Principal Secretary S K Mishra accompanied the Chief Minister to Gandhi Nagar (Gujarat).

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NSUI State President Vankhede resigns

Peeved over ignorance of NSUI workers in distribution of corporator tickets, NSUI State President Vipin Vankhede resigned from his post on Friday. Vankhede had tendered his resignation to NSUI Na... Read More
Peeved over ignorance of NSUI workers in distribution of corporator tickets, NSUI State President Vipin Vankhede resigned from his post on Friday. Vankhede had tendered his resignation to NSUI National President. What is more interesting is this that no senior leader from party tried to sooth his anger. “I had resigned from post as party had not considered NSUI members in ticket distribution. I had sought only one or two tickets for organization members from each municipal corporation but out of so many wards, Congress could not give even one or two tickets to NSUI workers,” said miffed NSUI State President Vipin Vankhede to “The Hitavada”.

He added that over the manner party had cleared tickets, morale of NSUI workers has been hit adversely. Earlier, party had made big commitments but later they proved hollow promises. “NSUI party workers have borne the brunt of lathis in demonstrations but they were not considered for even one or two tickets. In Jabalpur, I had sought only one ticket that also to NSUI District President Vijay Rajak but to no avail. How I could justify myself before organisation workers,” he added.

It was on Wednesday that Youth Congress State President Kunal Choudhary had sent feelers to party that he is offering his resignation as Youth Congress workers were neglected in distribution of tickets. However, later he withdrew his decision. He too felt that youths have actively taken part in demonstrations and got beaten up by cops but they were not considered for tickets. Interestingly, much before starting of local body elections, state Congress president Arun Yadav have made large claims that in coming elections it would be youths who would get maximum tickets. It was after his assurance that young party workers have become hopeful of getting tickets in local body elections but when it came to disburse the tickets, old party workers have managed to get lion’s share in ticket distribution. Leaders of Youth Congress and NSUI were left nail biting and simmering with anger.

Congress removes Katni District President

On the charges of internal bickering and his dubious activities which were hurting party’s image, Congress removed Katni District President Karan Singh Chouhan on Friday.

It is learnt that from some time, Chouhan was unsatisfied by the party’s decision making process and he had started to send feelers to party in this regard. Party had taken serious note of his objectionable activities and finally his wings were clipped.

“We have removed Katni District President Karan Singh Chouhan due to his dubious activities. His activities were suspected even in the Katni Municipal Corporation election held some time back,” said Chief Spokesman of Congress K K Mishra to ‘The Hitavada’.

It may be mentioned that Congress is witnessing a volley of protests over the ticket distribution and in last two day, many disgruntled leaders have protested at party headquarters.

NSUI District President miffed on not getting ticket

The resentment among workers in Congress is yet to die down. NSUI district president Veerendra Mishra was eyeing corporator ticket from ward number 46 but Congress gave ticket to right hand of former MLA and district Congress President PC Sharma, Guddu Chouhan. “I had been strongest claimant for corporator ticket from ward number 46 and my name was in the panel. My name was dropped at eleventh hour. Persons who bore the brunt of lathis for party have been deprived from tickets. I could take any big decision tomorrow including to resign from the post,” said Veerendra Mishra to ‘The Hitavada’.

Salim resigns as coordinator of Congress Minority Cell

Coordinator of Minority Cell of Congress, Mohammad Salim has resigned from his post as his recommendations for tickets in municipal corporations were not considered by party organization. “ I had mailed my resignation to state Congress President Arun Yadav. Even in local body elections, no tickets were considered in the wake of my requests. Same happened in municipal corporations.

From Bhopal, I had demanded ten tickets. The height is this that in the ward number 8 in which I lives, party had given ticket to brother of party MLA Arif Aqueel, Amir Aqueel notwithstanding the fact that he do not live in that ward,” he added.

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Severe water crisis in several parts

City at the moment is facing severe water crisis as the main pipeline of the Kolar project encountered some damages on Wednesday night due to excessive pressure from the pump house. Bhopal Munici... Read More
City at the moment is facing severe water crisis as the main pipeline of the Kolar project encountered some damages on Wednesday night due to excessive pressure from the pump house. Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) started repairing of the damaged section of the pipeline on Wednesday that continued on Thursday and Friday. The repairing has been completed and water supply will be restored from Saturday morning.

Experts in the city are of the opinion that the Kolar project has outlived its age and therefore there is a need to change it and find its alternative.

Meanwhile, water supply is also being done by the Narmada project and therefore it should be considered as an alternative they added.

It is worth mentioning that the pipeline underwent certain damages about a couple of months ago as well when water supply was affected for two to three days throughout the city.

Proposal regarding linking of the Narmada and Kolar project was submitted in the Corporation which is pending.

Due to shutting down of the Kolar pump house the supply of water was affected in the areas of E-1 to E-5 Arera Colony, Railway Colony Habibganj, Janata Quarters, Jhuggi Basti, Mira Nagar, Chaar Imli, Panchsheel Nagar, Chandbad, Nishatpura, Kaji Camp, old Bus stand, Bal Vihar, Nehru Nagar, Vaishali Nagar, Kotra Government Houses, South TT Nagar, Sanjay Complex, Shahpura, Gulmohar, Trilanga, E-7 extension, Lakherapura, Marwadi Road, Budhwara, Mangalwara, Itwara, Islampura, Khatikpura and other adjoining areas on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Premshankar Shukla, PRO, BMC, said that the repairing was completed on Friday and water supply will be restored from Saturday morning throughout the city. The pump house will be restarted after which it will take about 10 hours for water to reach in city. Therefore, water supply will commence from Saturday morning.

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Cop’s son shoots self with father’s revolver, dies

Teenage son of an ATS cop shot himself with his father’s service revolver at Tulsi Nagar here on Friday morning. The boy was admitted to Bansal Hospital in a critical condition. He died late ... Read More
Teenage son of an ATS cop shot himself with his father’s service revolver at Tulsi Nagar here on Friday morning. The boy was admitted to Bansal Hospital in a critical condition. He died late on Friday night. Police told that Sameer Kamble, 19, son of Rajesh Kamble, was a student of first year engineering at TIT College. Rajesh is posted as Sub-Inspector at Anti Terrorist Squad (ATS) while his wife Aparna is a teacher at Aurobindo School.

Rajesh Kamble had gone to Bangalore for an investigation for 10 days and he returned to his house in Tulsi Nagar locality on Thursday night. On Friday morning,

Aparna went to her school while Kamble after gifting a T-shirt brought for Sameer went to take bath. Rajesh kept his service revolver on the table and Sameer was getting ready to go to college. Sameer’s elder sister Priya stays at Pune.

In the meantime Sameer, picked his father’s service revolver, a 9mm glock, and shot himself on his head from left side. He shot another round but it did not hit him. On hearing gunshot, Rajesh rushed out of the bathroom and found his son in a pool of blood in verandah on the backside of the house.

Rajesh was so shocked on seeing his son that he lost conscious for some time. After that he rushed Sameer to People’s Hospital but on checking his condition, doctors referred him to Bansal Hospital. Sameer is admitted in ICU ward of Bansal Hospital and is being treated by Dr Nitin Garg, who is also treating Rati Tripathi.

Sameer’s mother Aparna told mediapersons that Sameer was a sincere boy and it never seemed that he would take such a step. SP South Anshuman Singh also visited the hospital where Sameer is undergoing treatment. Meanwhile, police have initiated investigation in the matter and FSL team has reached the crime spot. Entry of people has been stopped in the house. Though Sameer has not left any suicide note but it is being speculated that he was under immense pressure of ongoing examinations.

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Eleven injured in bus-truck collision

Eleven persons injured, when a bus and truck collided head-on at village Satpara of Abhanpur on Thursday. Accident happened, when the bus driver tried to overtake another vehicle.

Police ... Read More
Eleven persons injured, when a bus and truck collided head-on at village Satpara of Abhanpur on Thursday. Accident happened, when the bus driver tried to overtake another vehicle.

Police sources informed that a bus (CG/04-E/1606) of Manish Travel was heading Dhamtari from Raipur whereas the truck (CG/04-ZC/7413) was coming from Dhamtari towards Capital. On a single double lane road sans divider, bus driver tried to overtake another vehicle but he couldn’t hit the break on time as the truck had come too close. Collision left 11 persons injured including the drivers of both bus and truck. Fortunately, as much as the accident was severe, there wasn’t any death.

Name of the injured are Bus driver Santosh Sahu (38), resident of Sakra Sinhawa, truck driver Makkhan Singh (52), resident of Telibandha Raipur, passengers as Manoj Kumar Thakur (30)-Sihawa, Shankuntala Dhruv (23)-Sihawa, Abhishek Jain (23)-Sadar Bazaar Delhi, Basanta Bai (40)-Sihawa, Ramji Sonkar (64)-Rajim, Dilip Sahu (34)-Sihawa, Urmila Nagarchi (23)-Kurud, Madan Ram Nagarchi (54)-Kurud and Kamlesh Dewangan (41)-Nagri.

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Socio-political organisations strongly condemn rape incident at Govt Hospital

The Socio-Political Organisations like Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), Akhil Bharti Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), Hindu Yuva Manch, CPIM, Indian Students Association from Steel City are still continu... Read More
The Socio-Political Organisations like Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), Akhil Bharti Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), Hindu Yuva Manch, CPIM, Indian Students Association from Steel City are still continuing to vent their anger by staging vehement demonstration at several places while pressing the demand for stern action against the culprits, responsible for committing the heinous crime at Government Hospital Bhilai.

In this context Hindu Yuva Manch and Hindu Chatra Manch burned the effigy of Police Administration at Globe Chowk, Sector-10. The Manch said that the heinous incident of Supela Government Hospital is horrible because the saviors have turned into perpetrators thereby creating a fear in the society. Those present were Manch President, Amit Purohit, General Secretary, surendra Jain, Convener, Dinesh Barle, Dr Sanjay Singh, Nitesh Singh, Krishna Singh, Rama, Deepesh Barkle, Luccky Verma and others.

CPIM activists staged demonstration in-front of Lal Bahadur Shashtri Hospital Govt. Hospital where the incident took place and later handed over a memorandum to the Supela Police Station Incharge addressed to Chief Minister and demanded to establish Fast Track Court for punishing the accused. Present on the occasion were Shantakumar, Vakil Bharti, P Venkat, Girija Nair, Vijay Laxmi, Savita Kumari, AK Dhruv, Umrao Singh, SP Dey, Puran Sharma, Rakesh Banchore, Anil Shekar, Vijay Namdeo, AP Patel and others.

Vishwa Hindu Parishad Bajrangdal, District Bhilai handed over a memorandum to the Addl Director General of Police Socio-Political Organisations strongly condemn rape incident at Govt Hospital demanding stern action against the doctor and policemen who committed the heinous incident. Present during handing over the memorandum were District Vice President, KK Dwivedi, Anil Kumar Shukla, G Sai Krishna, Ashwin Wasnik, Pt. Balaji Maharaj, Naveen Dongre and others. Former State Minister and Vice President of Pradesh Congress Committee, Badruddin Qureshi in this context has written a letter to Chief Minister, Dr Raman Singh and asked for immediate financial help for the victim girl so that proper treatment could be done and also for her higher education.

He has demanded to expel the accused doctor and policemen immediately. He also demanded that proper check must be put on such heinous crime is at rise in the state.

Singhdeo writes to CM urging institution of fast track courts for rape cases

Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader TS Singhdeo has expressed grave concern over rising incidents of rape in state and demanded that these cases be assigned for hearing in fast track courts. Singhdeo wrote to Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh urging instituting of fast track courts to hear the rape cases. He said that while registered rape cases in year 2001 was 959, the number recorded in year 2013 was 1267. Recalling the infamous incidents of rape and molestation in state including that of Meena Khakho, Jhaliamari, Amadula tribal hostel, he said that fast track courts would ensure speedy justice to victims in these cases.

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Tension in Dhamdha over demolition of encroachment

Tension prevailed in Dhamdha on Friday noon after a team of administration went to demolish the illegal encroachment at Sabji Mandi.

The Mandi was reportedly constructed on a private land... Read More
Tension prevailed in Dhamdha on Friday noon after a team of administration went to demolish the illegal encroachment at Sabji Mandi.

The Mandi was reportedly constructed on a private land and after the anti-encroachment squad went to raze down the illegal establishment, the local congressmen created a scene. They were later arrested and brought to Pulgaon Police Station. According to information, the Sabji Mandi of Dhamdha has reportedly been constructed on a private land. A team of administration on Friday went to raze down the illegal encroachment during which the local congressmen including newly elected President of Nagar Panchayat Dhamdha, Sunita Gupta created a scene.

The team had to face stiff protest of the congressmen and finally around 36 protestors were arrested by the Dhamdha Police under preventive sections.

The 36 protestors including President of Nagar Panchayat Dhamdha, Sunita Gupta; 11 Corporators and 24 others were brought to Pulgaon Police Station and legal actions under section 151 was initiated against them. Later, they were released on bail. Former Saja MLA, Ravindra Choubey and Durg MLA Arun Vora too visited Pulgaon Police Station and met with the protestors.

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NDRF team tests BSP, CISF’s preparedness to tackle emergency

The high-level team of officials from National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) was in Bhilai to ascertain and evaluate the emergency preparedness and response of all the agencies in Bhilai Steel P... Read More
The high-level team of officials from National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) was in Bhilai to ascertain and evaluate the emergency preparedness and response of all the agencies in Bhilai Steel Plant including that of CISF and District Administration in a possible worst case scenario of chemical/industrial disaster in the plant.

The joint mock exercise was organized as a new initiative of Arvind Ranjan, IPS, DG, CISF and BSP Management as an effort for better preparation and coordination to handle any possible disaster in a more professional manner.

To check the level of emergency preparedness of all these agencies, it was desired by NDRF officials that a mock-drill be conducted at LD Gas Holder as a possible worst case scenario of chemical / industrial disaster in BSP, under their supervision. The exercise was also aimed at enhancing coordination among emergency support functions of various departments of BSP, CISF and stakeholders at district level and highlighting the roles and responsibilities of each of these agencies.

So, on Friday noon an emergency situation was reported in LD Gas Holder area as heavy gas leakage because of water seal breakage was observed. Two persons conducting routine check-up get exposed to the gas and become unconscious at the walkway, while another six persons working at ground level also get exposed to the toxic gas and fall down. Meanwhile the operator at the control room, upon noticing on-line CO monitor alarm and noticing some workers fallen down in the surrounding area, raised the alarm to declare emergency and informed the Energy Centre. Energy Centre further informed all those concerned as per emergency preparedness plan and response procedure of the department.

This reporting of the incident triggered all the agencies to respond and tackle the emergency, all of which was closely monitored by NDRF officials. Over and above this, they increased the level of emergency necessitating the involvement of state administration and response from NDRF team themselves. The entire exercise was over at around 1300 hours.

Addressing a debriefing session after the mock drill exercise, SB Singh,IPS (IG) said it is a positive sign that all the agencies involved participated spontaneously in the entire exercise. The coordination between the agencies and stakeholders has been good, he said, adding that the basic aim of sharing knowledge among all the agencies involved has been achieved. A positive step has been taken, he said, congratulating BSP, the CISF and other agencies.

To assess the standard operating practices and emergency preparedness, a table top exercise was held earlier on 8th Jan 2015 involving top officials of BSP and CISF, visiting officials of the NDRF and officials of Industrial Health & Safety Dept, Durg. The participants engaged in a day-long exercise during which all aspects of the Plant’s Emergency Preparedness Plan was discussed threadbare by the visiting NDRF officials.

The Plant’s Safety Engg Deptt presented Emergency Preparedness Plan of BSP, while the Energy Management Deptt presented Emergency Preparedness Plan pertaining to Gas Safety. The Plant’s Medical & Health Services Deptt gave a presentation on Medical Response Plan during disaster. The Bhilai Fire Brigade and the CISF also gave presentations. The NDRF Team gave an introduction to Incident Command System and conduct of table top exercise. In order to evaluate the response in real-life situation, it was decided to conduct a mock drill in a highly gas prone area.

Among the senior officials of BSP and CISF who participated in the discussions were CEO (BSP) S Chandrasekaran, who delivered the inaugural address, Shikha Gupta, DIG, CISF, Bhilai who delivered the keynote address, and Y K Degan, ED (Works) also addressed the participants. Also present were Dr S Hiran, Director I/c M & HS and LT Sherpa, ED (P&A), R.C. Huria, DIG (Training) CISF, S.S. Sandhu, DIG, Disaster Management, CISF, M.K. Yadav, Sr Commandant, NDRF and TK Sahu, Dy Director, Industrial Health & Safety.

It may be mentioned that the NDRF is a specialized agency, constituted by an Act of Parliament to coordinate rescue and relief efforts during the time of disaster. The satisfaction expressed by the visiting high level team of NDRF officials from Odisha, who had stationed themselves in Bhilai to oversee and ascertain the response of BSP, CISF and other agencies, has put a stamp of approval on the emergency preparedness and response of BSP.

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Not power supply, but bills will be a ‘shocker’ for sure!

The power consumers in the State will be getting high voltage jolt in the New Year if the proposals for increasing power tariff forwarded by the State Power Companies are approved by Chhattisga... Read More
The power consumers in the State will be getting high voltage jolt in the New Year if the proposals for increasing power tariff forwarded by the State Power Companies are approved by Chhattisgarh State Electricity Regulatory Commission (CSERC).

Chhattisgarh State Power Distribution Company Ltd which is supplying power to its consumers particularly domestic at the lowest cost in the country, have proposed for 35 percent increase in tariff to overcome the losses incurred over Rs 2400 crore. Power tariff in the State is fixed by Chhattisgarh State Electricity Regulatory Commission (CSERC) under Section 62 of Electricity Act 2003.

Alike previous years, this year also, the Chhattisgarh Power Companies including Chhattisgarh State Power Generation Company Ltd, Chhattisgarh State Power Transmission Company Ltd and Chhattisgarh and State Power Distribution Company Ltd have deposited their proposals on January 1, 2015.

According to sources, the power companies have proposed power tariff of 32-35 percent to recover the losses worth Rs 2450 crore which these companies have incurred in due course of time. As per the proposals, these companies have incurred loss to the tune of Rs 1000 crore in the current financial year 2014-15 while it had incurred losses to the tune of Rs 1450 crore in the financial year 2013-14.

In order to bridge these losses, the power companies have demanded hike in power tariff.

It is worth mentioning here that the Chhattisgarh State Power Distribution Company Ltd had targeted an income of Rs 8500 crore, against which, the company could earn only Rs 7500 crore. In order to bridge this loss, CSPDCL has urged CSERC to make provisions so that the incurred loss estimated at Rs 1000 crore can be overcome. However, the increase in power tariff might create more problems for the state government which is already in the receiving end due to paddy procurement, bonus and ration cards. But since there is no election in near future, the state government may go ahead with the hike.

Meanwhile, the CSERC will be initiating process towards announcement of new power tariff for the financial year 2015-16. In this direction, the proposals submitted by the power companies will be uploaded in the CSERC website and will invite claims and objections from the general public. After receiving the claims and objections, the CSERC will be holding public hearing for disposing off the claims and objections. It will also seek opinion from the Electricity Advisory Committee.

Presently the whole process is in primary stage and only proposals have been received from the companies. The whole process will be need approximately four months to get completed. Hence CSERC will be announcing new power tariff sometime during April-May. If the officials are to be believed, under present condition, the power tariff might see a hike of 12-15 percent this financial year. That means the consumers will get 20-30 paise per unit costlier power. Presently domestic consumers are paying at the rate of Rs 2.70 per unit (0-200 units); at Rs 4.10 per unit (201-600 units) and at Rs 5.90 per unit for 601 units and more.

C’garh Cong to oppose power tariff hike: Chhabra

Chhattisgarh Congress has registered its strong opposition to proposal from Chhattisgarh State Power Distribution Company Limited (CSPDCL) to hike electricity tariffs.

Party spokesperson Mahendra Chhabra blamed the mismanagement on the part of state government because of which the people are forced to buy expensive electricity. He pointed out that the electricity department has been under Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh since past decade but power companies continue to claim to be operating in loss. He also raked up the issue of small and medium industries which would be badly hit if any more price rise in electricity tariff is undertaken. Many of the industries reeling under acute shortage of iron ore may get shut due to power tariff hike, he said.

Chhabra said that Congress would vehemently oppose any move to further hike the power tariffs.

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Revoke suspension of medical officers at Indore, Mhow, demands MPMOA

RIFT between the Principal Secretary, Public Health and Family Planning, Department and Madhya Pradesh Medical Officers’ Association started demanding to revoke suspension of medical officers... Read More
RIFT between the Principal Secretary, Public Health and Family Planning, Department and Madhya Pradesh Medical Officers’ Association started demanding to revoke suspension of medical officers at Indore and Mhow recently. Madhya Pradesh Medical Officers’ Association (MPMOA), a body of government doctors, has registered stand against recent decision of Principal Secretary. Office-bearers of MPMOA said Principal Secretary Health Praveer Krishn decisions are autocratic. They said suspension of all medical doctors one PSC in Indore District without any adequate reason will be a setback for doctors who want to serve the society. They said doctors are targeted with malice and their moral also goes down with each action. They said how is it possible for 4000 doctors to carry out the work for the required strength of more than 7000. Raising the issue of demand, Madhya Pradesh Medical Officers’ Association office-bearer said our demands include reinstating all suspended medical officers, fresh appointment to be done as per Indian Public Health Standard, proper housing facility in rural areas, time bound promotion to all doctors and employees and regularise all contractual doctors and employees, amongst others. It is to be mentioned that Principal Secretary, Health Department known for his strict working has suspended 10 medical officers for negligence towards duties in Indore and Mhow recently. He has suspended more than 800 medical staff for paying negligence in 2014.

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Hearing of bail plea of VYAPAM accused deferred

A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Alok Aradhe on Friday has deferred hearing of bail application filed by Pradeep Raghuwanshi, ac... Read More
A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Alok Aradhe on Friday has deferred hearing of bail application filed by Pradeep Raghuwanshi, accused of VYAPAM scam, for two weeks so that in the meantime the applicant may consider of filing bail application even in other case in respect of which he has been arrested. The division bench has stand over till January 23.

On Friday, counsel for the applicant, in all fairness submits that as per information applicant has been arrested in connection with crime on January 8.

The applicant was employed on the post of General Manager in Bhandari Hospital, Indore, which is a private hospital, run by Dr Vinod Bhandari, who is also co-accused in VYAPAM Scam and is in jail. He was also looking after work of admission in Arvindo College of Medical Science run by Dr Vinod Bhandari and his family members.

On the basis of memorandum statement of evidence act, allegedly given by main accused Nitin Mohendra and applicant himself and also on the basis of name mentioned in excel sheet maintained in his computer (Nitin Mohendra), present applicant has been implicated in three cases, bearing crime, for alleged accepting of huge money from candidates, for getting them selected and appointment in PMT, 2012, Pre-PG course 2012 and PRT Examination, 2012. However, he was arrested in on November 24, 2013, in relation to crime.

The applicant by selling his house at Indore and ornaments have deposited an amount of Rs 1.42 crore, with respondent.

In the present criminal case, prosecution contended that, the key accused Nitin Mohendra has given his memorandum statement on October 30, 2013, in which, he had stated that, before the Pre-PG Examination, Dr Vinod Bhandari has gone to Bhopal and met Nitin Mohendra in government house of one Umesh Trivedi, where he told him, that, his manager Pradeep Raghuvanshi the present applicant will meet him, with names of six person, with huge money, for admission of students.

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Why do people treat garbage collection as thankless job?

FOLLOWING orders of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his emphasis on a ‘Clean India Healthy India Campaign’, the Swachh Bharat Swasth Bharat Abhiyan has been taken up with seriousness by JM... Read More
FOLLOWING orders of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his emphasis on a ‘Clean India Healthy India Campaign’, the Swachh Bharat Swasth Bharat Abhiyan has been taken up with seriousness by JMC. Even in remote residential localities such as Bilhari, Tilhari and Vijay Nagar, sanitation workers collecting garbage has become a common sight. Armed with a trolley they blow their whistle sending a message to all to get their bins. Moving in a pair, these hardworking men are neither repulsed by mounds of filth that they collect or deterred by uncooperative and sometimes irked residents that perhaps consider it far too much trouble to step out of their dwellings and put the garbage bags.

Sunil pulls the trolley while Rinku blows the whistle and is in-charge of garbage collection in and around Bilhari of Mandla Road. Hitting the road as early as 6 am the duo walk into colony after colony, urging residents to throw their trash in the garbage and not elsewhere in an attempt to keep their colony their ward and their city neat and clean. Garbage is collected, informed Rinku, and put in special waste disposal pit dug in a far flung field.

The garbage is then segregated into bio-degradable and plastic. Vegetable and fruit peels, food remains etc are put in compost pit for maturing and festering into organic fertiliser. The rest is disposed at Corporation incinerator. Asked if they received public co-operation in the demanding task, both Sunil and Rinku expressed their anguish at the unusual attitude of residents that behaved as though they did JMC a favour by giving away their garbage! They often reprimanded JMC employees for ‘bothering’ them during odd hours! Rinku also laid stress on the need of awareness more than collection and disposal of garbage if a truly Clean India was to be achieved! Thankfully, JMC provides its employees sent out on Swachh Abhiyan with gloves, masks and caps for their personal safety and protection. Sad, indeed is the stance of some residents who ill-treat them. In fact, for most of us, this spoon-feeding is not the right approach. People who litter and default on waste disposal or fail to support to their own hygienic and clean surroundings should be severely fined and punished. In India, unfortunately, it is fear of punishment or penalty that works as best formula. Stringent measures should be adopted to shake us out of our somnolence and complacency. We are dependant on the government and the administration for far too long and far too much. It is high time for us to bear the onus and take our responsibility as dutiful denizens with a fair amount of civic sense.

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Man crushed under wheels of speeding vehicle

Unidentified middle-aged man was crushed to death by an unidentified speeding vehicle in front of Manoj Hotel under jurisdiction of Panagar police station, on Friday. According to Panagar police,... Read More
Unidentified middle-aged man was crushed to death by an unidentified speeding vehicle in front of Manoj Hotel under jurisdiction of Panagar police station, on Friday. According to Panagar police, they received information from Government Hospital Panagar that a middle aged man was admitted for treatment of critical injuries in a road accident. The injured was given primary treatment and was referred to Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Medical College and Hospital.

On the way towards Jabalpur, the man succumbed to his critical injuries due to profuse bleeding. Learning about the incident, a police team reached the spot and sent the body for post-mortem after carrying out panchnama.

Investigating the case, police learnt that the unidentified man was riding on a bi-cycle towards Panagar. When he was passing through main road, an unidentified white colour car rammed into his motorcycle in front of Manoj Hotel. In the mishap, the man sustained critical injuries and the accused car driver managed to drove away from the area. The injured was rushed to government hospital with the help of locals.

Police have registered a case against unidentified car driver under section 304 (A), 279 and 337 of the IPC while further investigations are underway to identify the deceased and search is underway to identify and apprehend the accused car driver.

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With civic polls, micro-entrepreneurs pin hopes on multi-storied industrial complex

COMING civic elections could be the right time to press the demand of development of a multi-storied industrial complex for micro-entrepreneurs. Industrial organisations and leaders must propel... Read More
COMING civic elections could be the right time to press the demand of development of a multi-storied industrial complex for micro-entrepreneurs. Industrial organisations and leaders must propel the idea to bring a multi-storied industrial complex in city limits to tackle shortage of space for new entreprenurs.

In present circumstances in Jabalpur district, two industry development centres one at Ricchai and another at Adhartal which are full to their capacity. In Ricchai, some additional land is available but it will be provided through auction. Process of land auction will increase price manifold making investment beyond reach of new entrants.

Simultaneously, proposed or new industrial development centres are being developed through Audhoyogik Kendra Vikas Nigam in adjoining areas of the city. For micro-enterprises there is a challenge to control expenses of transportation of raw material, finished goods, labour cost etc to maintain profitability of units. All these factors convert the thought of developing a micro-enterprise at upcoming industry centres negative with remark of non-feasibility.

These centres are good for small and medium size industry having bulk investment options. For micro and small enterprise having investment part and industry cost within limit of Rs 100 lakh selection of site in any of upcoming industry development centres like at Umaria Dugaria, Tewar, Tilwara, etc that are around 20 to 30 km away from main city is not a feasible idea.

Jabalpur being the centre of commercial activities in Mahakoshal region needs such multi-storied industrial complex for micro, cottage and small enterprises. In previous budget the State Government had included infrastructure development for micro and small enterprises in the State Industrial Policy. The government must identify potential sectors in each Assembly Constituency and in every constituency a multi-storied industrial complex should be set-up appointing MLAs as Managing Director of the complex.

For small business owners like manufacturers of incense sticks, bag manufacturers, plastic good manufacturers, packaging and people running small business and needs area of around 1000 to 2000 sq feet area to run their enterprise will be real beneficiaries and target section for this multi-storied project. The government must work on identification of potential areas for such project so that a entrepreneurship could benefit the society.

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3-tier system to bring down child, mother mortality rate in State

TO BRING down child and mother mortality rate, the State Government is promoting massive drive for treatment and rehabilitation of children in the State. Three-tier system has been developed to t... Read More
TO BRING down child and mother mortality rate, the State Government is promoting massive drive for treatment and rehabilitation of children in the State. Three-tier system has been developed to take care of children, under which 1120 New Born Corner will be established.

Over 313 Malnourished Rehabilitation Centre (MRC) will be established for severely malnourished children. Besides this, 277 MRCs are already running in the State. Under three-level health promotion programme in the State, 876 new born corners have been established in health centre to promote institutional delivery. With launching comprehensive plans, there is declination of three per cent in mother and child mortality rate in the State.

Special Programme has been launched to control various diseases in adult girl child, Albendazole tablets are given twice a year, 32 weekly tablets for haemoglobin, health check-up programme will be organised by Women and Child Development Department.

Besides this, promotional measures like institutional delivery, promotion of breastfeeding and Janani Express for shifting of child and mother are strengthened to promote referral mechanism, I Y C F programme are being organised to trained ANMs, Anganwadi workers, assistants in breastfeeding to educate them on new guidelines of Health Department. 10 points for breastfeeding are followed as per international guidelines in most of the Government Hospitals to promote institutional delivery in the State.

The Health Department in coordination with Women and Child Development Department is organising various activities to promote child mortality rate under ‘Bal Suraksha Week’. Where dose of Vitamin A, Anti Worm Tablet will be given in an interval of six months to children aged between 9 months to 5 years. Apart from this, IFA tablet or syrup will be given for 100 days to children between 1 to 5 years of age. 41,131 severely malnourished children were treated in 277 Malnourished Rehabilitation Centres.

MRC will be stepwise established in 313 blocks. Appointment of caretaker, cook, staff nurse, trained dieticians will be done in the centre. 81 CMOC, institution are carrying out services to promote malnourish rehabilitation centre, beside this 66 blood storage units are already existing, 464 BMOC institutions are established, 313 Janani Express ambulance services are there for shifting of pregnant women and new born children to nearest government hospitals. New maternity wings have been established in four district hospitals recently and blood bank has been established in every government hospital.

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Rumors of leopard’s presence in Pachperi area triggers panic

NEWS of presence of a leopard in Pachperi area triggered panic amongst residents while rumors compelled the residents to step out of their houses in night hours. The leopard is being frequently s... Read More
NEWS of presence of a leopard in Pachperi area triggered panic amongst residents while rumors compelled the residents to step out of their houses in night hours. The leopard is being frequently spotted in the area since a few days. Besides this, the leopard preying a cow and attacking another in Defence Colony area left the residents terrified on Friday.

The leopard along with two cubs have been spotted in Pachperi and its surrounding areas adjoining the forest range. Along with establishment of several major education institutions including Rani Durgawati University and several colleges, VVIP area is homing residences of all the senior administration officers, police officers and judges’ bungalows.

District Forest Officer H S Mohanta while talking to ‘The Hitavada’ informed that spotting of a leopard in the region is not new. Frequent spotting of leopard in residential areas of Pachperi is a matter of serious concern and the department has been strengthening monitoring to avert any untoward incident. Receiving the information about killing of a cow by a leopard, Mohanta added, a team of Forest Department reached the spot and found the carcass of cow while another injured cow.

In primary investigation in the case, it was confirmed that the cow was not attacked by leopard. District Forest Officer informed that there are several instances of spotting a leopard in the area due to rich forest density but not a single incident of its attack was reported in the past. He informed that additional patrolling teams have been deployed in the area for monitoring movement of leopard and arrangements have been made for tracing its pugmarks.

It may be mentioned that there is urgent need of public awareness in the area as they should avoid walking in the area late in the evening and night hours and do not allow their children to play outside their houses at night.

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Give all privileges to SIT: High Court

A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Alok Aradhe on Friday said in the matter related to SIT monitoring investigation of all cases u... Read More
A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Alok Aradhe on Friday said in the matter related to SIT monitoring investigation of all cases under supervision of STF and related to any examination conducted by VYAPAM. The division bench in its order said that it is noted that SIT is monitoring investigation of all cases on day-to-day basis. SIT has been allotted office space and office has become functional.

A request has been made by SIT to the State Government to appoint Additional Steno, Accountant, Staff Officer, one ministerial employee (all retired persons) and four peons for office purpose. That proposal is still pending with the General Administration Department (GAD) for some time.

The division bench directed the State Government to issue appointment letters in the names of persons already identified by SIT and report compliance on January 13. The Secretary, GAD and the Chief Secretary shall be personally responsible to ensure compliance of this direction. “We reiterate the position stated in the order dated on November 5, 2014, as well as subsequent order passed on December 1, 2014 and, more particularly, order dated on November 28, 2014, of the Apex Court in SLP that SIT shall monitor investigation of all the cases being investigated by or under supervision of STF and related to examination conducted by VYAPAM, the court said.

The division bench also noted suggestions given by SIT on the report, which, in our opinion, SIT competent to directly issue appropriate instructions to STF, who, in turn, will be obliged to comply with the same as observed in clause (4) of the operative order dated on November 5, 2014. In the next report, SIT shall furnish details about number of instructions issued by it to STF from time to time between two dates of hearing of this suo motto proceedings and status of compliance of those instructions by STF. We have also taken note of requisition sent by the Additional DG, STF on November 10, 2014. The Chief Secretary reminded of the direction contained in clause (10) of the operative order dated on November 5, 2014.

The Chief Secretary shall state on affidavit, the reasons for not complying with the requisition sent by the Additional DG, STF, to be present on January 13.

Besides, the Chief Secretary shall issue appropriate instructions to the Secretary, Home Department in the light of requisition and the Secretary, Home Department, in turn, shall comply with the requisition without any exception. No excuse whatsoever can be countenanced as the State Government is obliged to file final chargesheet in all subject crimes investigated/supervised by STF recorded by the Supreme Court on November 28, 2014, in SLP, the court asked. The division bench said that we have also taken note of intention of SIT to open its website on NIC server.

It is likely to take some time due to logistical issues or formalities to be completed for obtaining new domain, SIT may consider of using the platform of High Court’s official website for display of its information to be disseminated and released in public domain by SIT concerning progress of investigation and other materials.The Registrar General may interact with the Chairman, SIT in this behalf and seek his point of view, which can be considered on January 13, when this matter will be listed for consideration of other material submitted by SIT in sealed cover. The material received from SIT be kept separately in two sealed covers to be handed over to each of us as it may have to be analysed before hearing on January 13. The division bench have perused the Report-III received from the Chairman, SIT in sealed cover dated on January 8. Additional Advocate General P K Kaurav appeared on behalf of the State.

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Witness reveals criminal mind of accused Rajesh Daware

The prime accused Rajesh was a man in hurry and wanted to become rich by using short cut and even by looting cash of a co-operative society, revealed a major prosecution witness during his depo... Read More
The prime accused Rajesh was a man in hurry and wanted to become rich by using short cut and even by looting cash of a co-operative society, revealed a major prosecution witness during his deposition in Yug Chandak murder trial on Day 2. Sandip Katre, who was a close friend of prime accused Rajesh Daware and Arvind Singh, deposed that Rajesh aspired to become rich quickly and used to spend lavishly on his girlfriend. Rajesh and Arvind are charged with a cold-blooded and gruesome murder of Yug Chandak, son of well-known dentist couple Dr Mukesh and Dr Premal Chandak. In all six witnesses were examined and all of them confirmed the prosecution theory. The accused duo were quite angry after Sandip spilled the beans and Arvind shouted at him and charged him with backstabbing friends. The sudden outburst of accused against a prime witness, surprised all and atmosphere suddenly became tense. Principal District Judge K K Sonawane had to intervene and bring things under control.

Rajesh shared his plans to loot the cash or kidnap son of some wealthy person and live merrily on ransom extracted, but parried query on identity of the person. Even on date of the incident, Rajesh sought help of Sandip to kidnap a boy, but he flatly refused. On September 2, when Sandip read in newspaper about kidnapping of Yug, he rang Dr Mukesh Chandak and alerted him about probable involvement of Rajesh. Sushila Bhoyar, cook in the house of Dr Chandak, deposed that she received a phone on landline around 3.30 pm asking whether Yug had returned from school and later watchman handed over tiffin, schoolbag and informed that Yug went along with one staffer of Dr Chandak’s clinic. When the doctor couple returned, she narrated the episode. One Naresh Machale, confirmed that Rajesh had demanded more money from him than stated by Dr Chandak. Mobile shopkeeper Manoj Thakkar confirmed that the accused had purchased two dual sim phones. Panch witness Vikram Sarda proved the spot panchnama. Special Prosecutor Jyoti Vajani conducted the examination in-chief. Adv Rajendra Daga represented Chandak family. Adv Pradeep Agrawal represented the accused.

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‘Bhandewadi dumping yard not to be shifted now’

“There are no plans to shift Bhandewadi dumping yard elsewhere for now at least till the year 2017. We are searching for a place to shift the dumping yard,” said Ramesh Singare, Chairman of H... Read More
“There are no plans to shift Bhandewadi dumping yard elsewhere for now at least till the year 2017. We are searching for a place to shift the dumping yard,” said Ramesh Singare, Chairman of Health Committee of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC). Singare, however, refused to disclose the areas outside the city limits where land was identified for shifting of dumping yard from Bhandewadi. “We cannot disclose it at this stage, as there is likelihood of protests from people in those areas,” he added while addressing a press conference in Mayor’s chamber on Friday.

Replying to a question, Singare and senior corporator Sunil Agrawal said that 973 tonnes of garbage was being lifted daily. Of this, 850 tonnes was garbage and remaining was silt and stones. In all, 208 vehicles had been deployed to collect garbage. Asked about action taken against the contractor firm that had attracted strictures from National Green Tribunal over sewage treatment, Singare and Agrawal said that NMC was ‘not happy’ with the contractor but without appointing another firm, existing contract could not be terminated with immediate effect.

Munna Pokulwar, Deputy Mayor; Dr Ashok Urkude, Medical Officer, also were present at the press conference. Pravin Datke, Mayor; Shravan Hardikar, Municipal Commissioner; Narendra Borkar, Chairman of NMC Standing Committee; Singare and others visited Bhandewadi area earlier in the day. Mayor asked the officials of Health Department to ensure proper management of solid waste dumped at Bhandewadi. Datke also held a meeting of officers and office-bearers of NMC in the office building of Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) at Bhandewadi. He asked the officials concerned to ensure that weigh-bridge at Bhandewadi was functioning to get an assessment of garbage lifted daily. Besides, information on working and CCTV cameras should be furnished. He asked the officials to repair the damaged compound wall of Bhandewadi dumping yard, and road leading to the yard. Plantation should be taken up in Bhandewadi premises, he said.

Municipal Commissioner also issued instructions to officials. He asked them to create a special cell in NMC to monitor solid waste management. “Non-working street lights should be repaired immediately,” he said.

Datke and Hardikar both also paid a visit to the STP, a joint project of NMC and Maharashtra State Power Generation Company Limited, and took stock of the work. Sanjay Kakde, Deputy Municipal Commissioner; Prakash Urade, Superintending Engineer; Dr Milind Ganvir, Deputy Director (Health); Shyam Chavan, Executive Engineer; Manoj Talewar; D D Jambhulkar, Estate Officer; D D Patil, Assistant Commissioner; Mohd Israil, Project In-charge (Rivers and Lakes); Dr Gajendra Mahalle, Veterinary Officer; Kamlesh Sharma, Manager of Kanak Resources Management, and others were present.

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Guardian Minister reviews zudpi jungle land required for development

Chandrashekhar Bawankule, Energy Minister and Guardian Minister of district, took stock of various developmental works in the district and requirement of zudpi jungle land for the same. He assure... Read More
Chandrashekhar Bawankule, Energy Minister and Guardian Minister of district, took stock of various developmental works in the district and requirement of zudpi jungle land for the same. He assured to strive for getting zudpi jungle land.

Bawankule chaired a meeting of District-level Forest Rights Committee at Abasaheb Khedkar Hall in Zilla Parishad (ZP) premises on Friday. In the meeting, it was informed that Nagpur district had total forest area of 2,39,799 hectares including 68,566 hectares of reserved forest, 63,273 hectares of protected forest, 14,131 hectares of zudpi jungle land with Forest Department, 62,573 hectares of wildlife sanctuary, and 31,147 hectares with Forest Development Corporation of Maharashtra.

So far, a total of 495 claims of individual forest rights and 125 claims of community forest rights have been approved by district-level committee. The individual claims involve forest land of 476.26 hectares, while community claims involve 262.82 hectares of land. The highest number of claims approved by district-level committee are in Hingna (individual rights) and Saoner (community rights) tehsils.

After taking stock of the situation, Bawankule told the officers of Revenue and Forest Departments that plantation would be taken up on wasteland. However, he said, zudpi jungle land that was not in possession of Forest Department and managed by Gram Panchayats should be made available for developmental works. “I shall take up the issue with the Government,” he said. He asked the officials concerned to compile data about zudpi jungle land not in possession of Forest Department, and submit a report by January 31. Forest Department officers and Tehsildars concerned should make available the data to Gram Panchayats, he added.

Guardian Minister also directed the officials of Forest Department to clear the proposals for utilisation of forest land up to 1 hectare for developmental activities under the provisions of Forest Rights Act, 2006. These developmental activities include construction of community halls, schools, hospitals, water tanks, roads, electricity lines etc.

Nisha Sawarkar, ZP President; Shivajirao Jondhale, Chief Executive Officer of ZP; J B Sangitrao, Deputy Collector (Revenue); Rajan Meshram, Assistant Conservator of Forests; Ruprao Shingne, ZP member, were present prominently.

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Engg colleges must have syllabi as per industry needs, says AICTE Chairman

NEW Chairman of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) Avinash Pant emphasises on having for technical institutions syllabi that should match with industry needs, said Pant who was sp... Read More
NEW Chairman of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) Avinash Pant emphasises on having for technical institutions syllabi that should match with industry needs, said Pant who was speaking exclusively to ‘The Hitavada.’

Pant had been to the city to be the keynote speaker during the workshop on national skill qualification framework organised by AICTE and hosted by Jhulelal Institute of Technology (JIT). Prof S S Mantha has resigned from the post and Vice-Chairman Avinash Pant who is also the Director of College of Engineering, Pune was given the responsibility of Chairmanship.

Pant said, “We have to develop skills to overcome the gap and it is important for the education industry to be aware of what skills are in demand in the market.” He added that all stakeholders need to work together for the success of skill workshops being held across the country.” Pant pointed out, “In the year 2012, considering increase in vacancy of seats in engineering, AICTE has lowered down the percentage criterion from 50 to 45 for open and from 45 to 40 for reserved category. This has also not helped in reducing the vacancy position. This year it has crossed 65,000 mark. I think geographical location of the colleges plays an important role. Second problem is job after engineering. Most of the students want jobs and they search for colleges which have good placement record. In last few years due to economic slowdown, industries suffered. Students did not get good jobs so the inclination towards engineering education has lowered down.”

Pant said, “There is imbalance in demand, supply ratio as far as engineering education is concerned. It means demand from industries was more but qualitative supply was very less. Of course, good institutions are the exceptions. The way education should be given, is not imparted by many institutions. Most of the institutions are affiliated to universities and universities have not changed the syllabi. Syllabi needs to be revamped. Most of the universities are running with the old syllabi. Now, it is high time for the universities to bring changes in syllabi which would have linkage with industries. AICTE has put model curriculum on its website, the help of which can be availed. The syllabus should be revised periodically.”

We will be taking National Skill Qualification Framework project ahead. Secondly, we have 24 quality enhancement schemes to raise quality of teachers. Earlier, we had 20 centres where the training to teachers is given. Now, the number has been increased to 80 centres. The idea of perspective plan by Prof S S Mantha, ex-Chairman will be taken ahead. The respective Boards of College and University Development (BCUDs) should support it, added Pant.

College approval processing to be expedited

THE court has extended its permission allowing AICTE to grant approval to technical education institutions in the country by one more year. The council will start the approval process for 2015-16 academic year in another 10 days, said AICTE Chairman Avinash Pant.

Pant said, “Among top priorities this will be the one. With the Supreme Court order the prevailing confusion is over.”

AICTE commences its approval process in the month of December for the next academic year. Applications were accepted till the end of December and they were processed between January and March to give approval to those who fulfilled the norms. Last year, the Supreme Court first debarred AICTE from regulating technical institutions in the country. This prompted the UGC to take control and issue guidelines apart from banning new institutions and increasing student intake. But, later on, the Supreme Court restored the power to AICTE and the council started approval process for 2014-15 very late on May 10.

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Snacks vendor, assistant get lifer for killing customer

DISTRICT Judge-7 & Additional Sessions Judge A R Dhamecha on Friday sentenced snacks vendor Munnalal Chhotelal Soni and his assistant Mohan Chandrabhan Tiwari to life imprisonment after the cha... Read More
DISTRICT Judge-7 & Additional Sessions Judge A R Dhamecha on Friday sentenced snacks vendor Munnalal Chhotelal Soni and his assistant Mohan Chandrabhan Tiwari to life imprisonment after the charges for killing a customer were substantiated against them in the court. A resident of Deo Nagar, Soni (40) used to sell omelets at a stall near Karuna Gas Agency at Surendra Nagar. Around 11 pm, on January 23, 2013, Rajkumar Dubey (55) and his friend Jagdish Ramkrishna Joshi (55), a resident of Type 2/G/23, Neeri Colony, went to Soni’s stall for eating omelets. Dubey asked Soni to prepare omelets and serve them early. Soni picked up a quarrel with Dubey and Joshi. After heated exchanges, Soni and Tiwari (40), a resident of Vijay Nagar, thrashed them. Soni and Tiwari attacked them with a stick injuring them seriously. With serious head injuries, Dubey was admitted to Care Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. On the basis of a complaint lodged by Joshi, Rana Pratap Nagar Police arrested Soni and Tiwari on charges under Sections 307, 302 and 34 of the IPC. The then senior Inspector (Rana Pratap Nagar), M D Pagare, who was the investigation officer, collected evidence against Soni and Tiwari and chargesheeted them. As the charges were proved against them, the court sentenced Soni and Tiwari to life imprisonment with a fine of Rs 2,500 each.

Additional Public Prosecutor Anawane represented the State. Advocate Sudhir Malode was the defence counsel.

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HC’s notice on IRS officer’s plea against CAT’s verdict

Justice Anoop Mohta and Justice A R Joshi at the High Court have issued notice to the respondents - Union Revenue Secretary in the Finance Ministry and the Chairman of the Central Board of Dire... Read More
Justice Anoop Mohta and Justice A R Joshi at the High Court have issued notice to the respondents - Union Revenue Secretary in the Finance Ministry and the Chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), in response to the writ petition filed by Indian Revenue Service (IRS) officer Dr Milind Bhusari (Commissioner of Income Tax, Nagpur) against the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT), Mumbai’s order of July 31, 2014, declining to entertain the petitioner’s application on the technical ground and not going into the legal challenges raised therein. The respondents have been granted two weeks’ time to show cause in reply to the writ petition.

The petition is directed against the charge-sheet of February 10, 2014 issued against the petitioner by the respondent - CBDT Chairman. The petitioner has also challenged the acceptance of the inquiry report of October 21, 2009. The petitioner joined the Income Tax Department at Nagpur on August 24, 1987 in the NADT as a probationer in the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Income Tax. After working in various capacities he rose to the rank of Joint Commissioner on October 24, 2000 and was later on promoted as Commissioner of Income Tax on August 28, 2007. Allegedly the charge-sheet of February 10, 2014, contains charges of 2008 based on an “act” of the year 2004, reiterated again.

It has been contended that the CAT’s Bench at Mumbai erred in dismissing the petitioner’s original application merely on the ground that the earlier existing flaw having been removed, the petitioner has to answer the memo of charge in a departmental inquiry, despite the Principal Bench of the Tribunal at New Delhi declaring the said charge memo to be non est. The Tribunal also erred in not appreciating the grounds of challenge raised by the petitioner in his original application, while dismissing it.

Senior counsel Anand Jaiswal and Advocates S S Sanyal, Nikhil Padhye and Radhika Bajaj appeared for the petitioner.

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I-T Department sleuths conduct searches on Vatsalya Group

Income-Tax (I-T) Department sleuths on Friday conducted search and seizure on Vatsalya Group creating sensation among land developers in the city. It was a consequential search conducted by the... Read More
Income-Tax (I-T) Department sleuths on Friday conducted search and seizure on Vatsalya Group creating sensation among land developers in the city. It was a consequential search conducted by the officials.

According to sources, Kakade Group which constructed several projects and malls in Pune, also faced the music from the Income-Tax Department, Pune.

Vatsalya Group which earlier was --Vaastuvihar-- in the span of more than 10 years, has launched several layouts, residential projects and farm villas Headquartered in Nagpur, the Group has offices in Indore and Raipur. Recently, the Group has launched its project in Pune. Vatsalya Group comprises Vatsalya Realities, Vatsalya Builders and Developers Private Limited and Vastu Vishwa Developers Private Limited. Founder and Managing Director Prafulla Gadge had came into contact with Kakade Group in certain deals.

Income-Tax Department, while doing routine assessment of Kakade Group, had discovered some documents pertaining to Vatsalya Group where huge tax evasion was found.

The Income-Tax Department, Pune simultaneously conducted search and search operations on Kakade Group and Vatsalya Group on Friday.

A team of Income-Tax officials came from Pune and took assistance of 30 officials of Income-Tax Department, Nagpur. They descended upon three premises of Prafulla Gadge including residential and posh office at Dhantoli, Nagpur.

During investigation, all the documents pertaining to several dealings were confiscated by the Income-Tax officials. The investigation will continue for another few days.

Vaastuvihar had also faced similar action from Income-Tax Department in the year 2008.

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Give three to four years to Govt for delivering goods: Rahul Bajaj

Banking on the hopes of the voters who have given full mandate to the new Government at the Centre, Rahul Bajaj, Chairman of the Indian conglomerate Bajaj Group, on Friday, said that three to fou... Read More
Banking on the hopes of the voters who have given full mandate to the new Government at the Centre, Rahul Bajaj, Chairman of the Indian conglomerate Bajaj Group, on Friday, said that three to four years time should be given to Prime Minister to give a new impetus to the economy of the country.

Bajaj was talking exclusively to The Hitavada after arrival by his private jet at Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport, Nagpur, en route to Wardha. Bajaj will inaugurate the 41st Kamalnayan Bajaj Memorial Inter-University elocution contest on January 10 at G S College of Commerce, Wardha. Shiksha Mandal, Wardha has organised the contest. Rahul Bajaj is President of Shiksha Mandal. He will also unveil the bust of Kamalnayan Bajaj in the premises of the G S College of Commerce.

The noted businessman rued that manufacturing sector in the country has taken a beating, balance sheets of industries have gone red. Manufacturing sector needs good infrastructure, roads connectivity, cheap power etc. “Good infrastructure is not created in one day. It takes some time and we must wait for it,” he noted.

Giving befitting reply to the Opposition parties, Bajaj said, what earlier Bhartiya Janata Party was doing in the Parliament, the same thing is being repeated by the Congress Party which is now in the Opposition. “The affairs in the Parliament were disrupted frequently by raking up various issues which has nothing to with the business in the Parliament. It was sheer wastage of time. Parliament is meant for conducting serious business. If Opposition wants to only disrupt the business in the Parliament, it should do peaceful demonstrations outside Parliament and not inside,” he said while referring to the recent hue and cry made by the Opposition parties including Congress in the upper house of the Parliament -- Rajya Sabha. “We understand that if you are not in favour of any matter, it should not stop the proceedings in the Parliament. Protest should be made in a peaceful manner,” suggested Bajaj, who had a stint as a parliamentarian.

The Opposition made it impossible for the Government to pass the bills forcing it to promulgate five ordinances in five days, as the Government made it clear that it would not let Parliamentary logjams disrupt its reform process. After the Winter Session was washed out with few bills making it past the Rajya Sabha, the Government has passed executive orders to make key changes in sectors like coal, insurance, medical devices, land acquisition and arbitration. If the Government fails to have a bill replacing an ordinance passed after the Parliament reconvenes, it has the option of re-promulgating it in order to extend its shelf life but there is only so far it can go without alarming purists. “The ordinances have to be replaced with a bill within six weeks of the House reconvening in the joint sessions which is written in the Constitution,” Bajaj added. The nod was given by the President of India Pranab Mukherjee. “Our President is a much learned man, he knows history of pre and post independence and wants to bring economy on the right track,” he said.

Bajaj suggested that the Prime Minister should shake hands with Opposition and take the Opposition into confidence. He suggested that for a ruling party, there should be a strong party hinting that Congress which is in the opposition in the Parliament should strengthen its weakness. “Opposition plays a vital role in keeping checks and balances on the ruling party,” he noted.

Present on the occasion were Bajaj Auto Limited’s authorised dealers Ajaykumar Patni and Vijaykumar Patni, partners of Arun Automobiles and Naresh Patni, partner of Patni Automobiles.

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Fadnavis takes bold step to curb ‘transfer-industry’

IN yet another bold step, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has decided to totally eliminate lobbying, political interference and pressure mounted by vested interests for transfer and posting of... Read More
IN yet another bold step, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has decided to totally eliminate lobbying, political interference and pressure mounted by vested interests for transfer and posting of Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers. Making a bold departure from the earlier practice, the Chief Minister has constituted a Civil Services Board for recommending posting or transfer of IAS officers of Maharashtra Cadre. It will be headed by Chief Secretary to the Govt. of Maharashtra. While Senior most Additional Chief Secretary working in the State will be its Member. Principal Secretary (Personnel), General Administration Department. Will be ex-officio Member Secretary of this board which will scan all proposals of transfer, postings of IAS officers. As per constitution of above Civil Services Board, Dr.P.S.Meena, IAS (1981 batch) presently being the senior most Additional Chief Secretary will be the member of the said Civil Service Board. Fadnavis has already delegated powers of transfer and postings to departmental head and right upto divisional level, these powers have been delegated to bring much needed transparency in postings of Government Officers. Infact, political representatives are very keen to ensure posting of an IAS officer of their choice in their area of influence. But, Fadnavis, in one stroke, has demolished a thriving industry managed by powerful individuals who used to decide postings and transfer of senior officers.

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Edn Deptt issues notices to 134 schools in distt over RTE norms

Education Department (Primary), Zilla Parishad (ZP), has issued notices to 134 schools in the district and has sought explanation from them within seven days regarding meeting the norms under t... Read More
Education Department (Primary), Zilla Parishad (ZP), has issued notices to 134 schools in the district and has sought explanation from them within seven days regarding meeting the norms under the Right to Education (RTE) Act. These schools include those governed by local bodies as well as private aided and unaided ones.

“We have sought explanations from these schools on whether they have got all 10 infrastructure indicators as prescribed under the RTE Act,” said Anil Kolhe, Acting Deputy Education Officer (Primary), ZP. These 10 important indicators include pucca/kuchha building owned by schools or rented building, designated room for Headmaster for office-cum-store, classroom for each teacher, ramp to facilitate movement of special children, separate toilets for boys and girls, drinking water facility, kitchen shed for mid-day meals and separate room for cooking, boundary wall, and play ground.

According to Kolhe, these 134 schools include those found with less than 50 per cent of attendance of students compared to those on rolls, during the rolls verification drive conducted in 2011. Then, he recalled, approval of 79 schools was revoked. However, the decision was challenged by the managements of the schools concerned. The court had restored approval of these schools. But, these and some more schools were not meeting infrastructure norms under the Right to Education Act. Hence, Kolhe said, notices have been issued to 134 such schools.

These schools include 60 private aided ones, 22 permanently unaided (mostly English medium convents), 16 run by Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC), 14 governed by Zilla Parishad, 12 private unaided, and two run by Kamptee Municipal Council. Besides, these also include eight schools where verification of students on rolls was not conducted but were found to be lagging in meeting RTE norms. “The list does not include prominent schools as they were found having necessary infrastructure,” said Kolhe.

Once explanations are received from these schools, Kolhe added, a committee would be constructed to conduct scrutiny. In case of schools found not meeting the norms under the RTE Act, proposals for revoking approval would be submitted to Director (Education), who will then forward the same to the Government for further decision, he said.

Meanwhile, Kolhe said, the process of admissions under the RTE Act will be conducted online from February. The appointment of service provider for conducting online process is likely to be finalised by the Government by February, he added.

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Dr Manish Shrigiriwar appointed OSD of Super Speciality Hospital

Dr Manish Shrigiriwar has taken over as Officer on Special Duty (OSD) of Super Speciality Hospital and Research Centre, Nagpur, on Friday. He was working with Department of Forensic Sciences, V... Read More
Dr Manish Shrigiriwar has taken over as Officer on Special Duty (OSD) of Super Speciality Hospital and Research Centre, Nagpur, on Friday. He was working with Department of Forensic Sciences, Vasantrao Naik Government College and Hospital, Yavatmal.

The ambitious Super Speciality Hospital was started in the year 1995, following a report published in The Hitavada on May 5, 1995. The building for the hospital was constructed when late Bar A R Antulay was the Chief Minister. However, it took almost two decades for the hospital to come into being.

Talking to The Hitavada, Dr Shrigiriwar said that he aims to improve services at the hospital so that patients from economically weaker sections would be benefited.

The hospital started with five departments viz Cardiology, Neurology, Gastroenterology, Nephrology and Urology. The Hospital was planned to be developed as Post-graduate Institute for Super Speciality courses. The original plan, however, took a back seat, mainly due to lack of political willpower. Newly elected MLC Anil Sole, however, took up the issue of getting OSD for the Hospital and succeeded in getting it sooner than expected.

Vidarbha Statutory Development Board had provided financial assistance for development of the hospital and planning to start post-graduate Super Speciality courses there. Dr Vedprakash Mishra was in the committee for medical education of the Board. His efforts bore fruits and the hospital was inaugurated by the then President Dr Shankar Dayal Sharma in December 1995, along with the then Chief Minister Manohar Joshi.

The hospital was provided with best equipment to suit the best institutions in the country. However, non-availability of trained staff to operate the equipment was never provided. This resulted in several doctors appointed at SSH, either leaving the job or they were moved elsewhere. Some doctors were ready to extend services for the hospital. However, they wanted trained staff for the post-operative care, which was not provided. Dr Shrigiriwar said that he would make all efforts to get adequate staff trained to work at the Super Speciality Hospital. Facilities for kidney transplant could be started at the hospital with a little efforts. He also expressed interest in fetching services of experts in the field in the neurology department.Cleanliness and security are main concerns, the hospital has been facing for the last several years. Dr Shrigiriwar, who has worked with Government Medical College and Hospital, Nagpur, is well versed with the facilities available at the SSH and its functioning. With his full-fledged appointment as its OSD is likely to improve services there.

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Wadi police arrest goon Chhota Samsher

WADI Police on Friday nabbed dreaded criminal Chhota Samsher alias Kalya who was absconding after attacking his own brother and notorious goon Kalim Khan Shamad Khan Pathan with sharp-edged wea... Read More
WADI Police on Friday nabbed dreaded criminal Chhota Samsher alias Kalya who was absconding after attacking his own brother and notorious goon Kalim Khan Shamad Khan Pathan with sharp-edged weapon near old mosque in Hasanbag. A resident of Hasanbag, Chhota Samsher alias Kalya Shamad Kahan Pathan (45) was nabbed near a dargah. He was later handed over to Nandanvan Police who arrested him for attempting to kill his brother and violating his externment orders. His brother Kalim Khan Shamad Khan Pathan (36), a resident of Plot No. 88, Wathoda Layout, Anmol Nagar, with serious weapon injuries was admitted to Government Medical College & Hospital.

Chhota Samsher and Kalim, who were externed from the city and district, had an old rivalry allegedly over their supremacy in Hasanbagh and Sakkardara areas. Both the externees were moving freely in Nandanvan and Sakkardara areas.

On Thursday, Chhota Samsher attacked Kalim Khan with a sharp-edged weapon and fled the spot.

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NMC’s financial burden increases

Losing funds under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) has cost NMC dearly as its financial burden has increased tremendously. Already, its revenue has been affected since impl... Read More
Losing funds under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) has cost NMC dearly as its financial burden has increased tremendously. Already, its revenue has been affected since implementation of Local Body Tax (LBT). Earlier in the year 2014, Central Sanctioning and Monitoring Committee (CSMC) of Union Ministry of Urban Development had warned NMC that no funds would be released for projects not completed before March 31, 2014. Owing to delay in completion of various projects under JNNURM, release of JNNURM funds to NMC was blocked. This has increased financial burden on NMC by Rs 256 crore. Most of the projects for which the funds were required, are in final stages of execution with 95-97 per cent of work done. Apart from this, the funds under JNNURM-II have been kept in ‘abeyance’.

Against the backdrop of already troubled financial position due to implementation of LBT, this burden has put NMC administration in worry. Steps are being taken to bring in financial discipline.

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NMC preparing revised DPR for concrete roads

Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) is pushing the project of constructing cement-concrete roads in the city, in a big way. After a meeting with Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Minister, last month, it... Read More
Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) is pushing the project of constructing cement-concrete roads in the city, in a big way. After a meeting with Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Minister, last month, it is now preparing a revised Detailed Project Report (DPR).

Last month, NMC had made a presentation before Chief Minister on cement-concrete roads project. As per the NMC presentation, the estimated cost of the project was Rs 460 crore. However, Chief Minister suggested some changes and asked NMC to submit a revised proposal within the limit of Rs 300 crore for the project.

“Chief Minister shared with us his ideas about cement-concrete roads project. He attracted our attention to new cost-effective technologies. Accordingly, we are preparing a revised DPR,” said Shyam Wardhane, Municipal Commissioner. He told ‘The Hitavada’ that the project involves construction of 70-km-long cement-concrete roads. Indian Institute of Technology-Kharagpur has developed a technology for economical-yet-durable construction of cement-concrete roads.

To know more about the technologies available and discuss finer aspects relating to the project, NMC has called a meeting of experts on Monday. For the meeting, two eminent experts namely Deodutta Marathe, who retired from Public Works Department; and Pundlik Darade, Harbour Engineer at Mumbai, have been invited.

For the project, NMC and State Government will share the burden on matching grant basis. NMC, State Government, and Nagpur Improvement Trust (NIT) will contribute Rs 100 crore each for the project. The special fund of Rs 100 crore promised by the State to NMC will be utilised for the project. The project was discussed in a meeting with Chief Minister held at Vidhan Bhavan during winter session of State Legislature. Asked about Nag river rejuvenation project, Wardhane said that NMC was preparing a new DPR.

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Two persons killed in separate road accidents in district

Two persons were killed and two others sustained grievous injuries in separate mishaps under jurisdictions of Butibori and Kondhali police stations.

In first case, reported from Butibori are... Read More
Two persons were killed and two others sustained grievous injuries in separate mishaps under jurisdictions of Butibori and Kondhali police stations.

In first case, reported from Butibori area, a motorcyclist was killed after a speeding truck hit his two-wheeler near MIDC area on Saturday evening. According to police, Manoj Abhiyan Chandne (28), a resident of Goregao was riding the motorcycle (MH-40/AN-1330), at 5 pm. A speeding truck (MH-40/AK-4493) hit the motorcycle from behind. Manoj sustained multiple injuries. He died on the spot. Butibori police have registered offence under Sections 279, 337 and 304 (a) of the IPC against the truck driver. In another incident, a youth died while two others sustained injuries after a brand new motorcycle on which they were ridding triple seat, skid and hit a road-divider near Satnavri village under jurisdiction of Kondhali Police Station on Friday night. The deceased has been identified as Sanjay Shalik Karme (27), a resident of Satnavri. The injured are Bandu Govindrao Warade (35) and Kishore alias Kunal Purushottam More (25), both residents of Satnavi village.

According to police, after taking a brand new bike from showroom, the trio was heading towards Satnavri village, at 10.45 pm. Sanjay was riding the motorcycle while Bandu and Kunar were riding pillion. As Sanjay was riding the two-wheeler in great speed, he lost control on the mobike. The two-wheeler rammed into a road-divider near Satnavri village. Sanjay sustained brain injuries in the mishap and died on the spot. However, the pillion-riders sustained multiple injuries. They were rushed to a hospital.

Kondhali police have registered offence under Sections 279, 337, 304 (a) of the IPC read with Section 184 of the MVA against the deceased.

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Man killed after car rams into road-divider

A man died in mishap after his car rammed into a road-divider at Nelson Square under jurisdiction of Sadar Police Station in wee hours on Sunday. The deceased has been identified as Abhishek Agr... Read More
A man died in mishap after his car rammed into a road-divider at Nelson Square under jurisdiction of Sadar Police Station in wee hours on Sunday. The deceased has been identified as Abhishek Agrawal-Goyal (32), a resident of Deshpande Layout, Wardhaman Nagar. He was son of former standing committee chief and Chairman of Sonu-Monu Industries Ashok Agrawal-Goyal. According to police, Abhishek was heading towards Nelson Square in his Maruti Swift Dzire car (MH/31/EA/2623), at around 12.30 am on Sunday. As the car was in great speed, Abhishek lost control over the vehicle. Near Nelson Square, the car rammed into a road-divider. Abhishek sustained grave injuries. A team of Sadar police reached the spot on being informed. The cops rushed injured Abhishek to Kunal Hospital. Later, he was referred to Indira Gandhi Government Medical College and Hospital (IGGMCH) where doctors declared him dead. Sadar police have registered offence under Sections 279, 338, 304 (a) of the Indian Penal Code and 184 of the Motor Vehicle Act against the deceased. Further investigation is on. Abhishek leaves behind wife, son, daughter and a host of relatives to mourn the loss. The last rites were performed at Gangabai ghat the same day.

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City Congress celebrates 129th Foundation Day

Nagpur City District Congress Committee celebrated its 129th anniversary at Devadia Congress Bhavan, Chitnis Park, Mahal on Sunday.

City President Vikash Thakre presided over. Former ministe... Read More
Nagpur City District Congress Committee celebrated its 129th anniversary at Devadia Congress Bhavan, Chitnis Park, Mahal on Sunday.

City President Vikash Thakre presided over. Former ministers Vilas Muttemwar, Satish Chaturvedi, Vinod Gudadhe Patil, Pradesh Congress Secretary Krishnakumar Pandey, Secretary Tanaji Wanve, former MLAs Yadavrao Deogade, Ashok Dhawad, S.Q.Zama, chief organiser of Sevadal Ramgovind Khobragade, women congress president Pradnya Badwaik, Sheikh Husain, general secretary Kanta Parate were the guests shared dais.

The programme started with garlanding the portraits of Mahatma Gandhi, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi. Spokesman and secretary Sandesh Singalkar conducted the proceedings and Ramgovind Khobragade proposed a vote of thanks.

Dr Gajraj hatwar, Bandopant Tembhurne, Umakant Agnihotri, Dr Abhijeet Wanjari, Vijay Babhare, Sanjay Dubey, Ratnakar Jaipurkar, Ramkumar Motghare, Parmeshwar Raut, Nitin Gaur and many others were also present.

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Fog effect: 13 trains still running late

Biting cold conditions in National Capital and Northern India and blanket of fog continue to affect movement of trains especially on Grand Trunk route on Sunday. About 13 Express trains includi... Read More
Biting cold conditions in National Capital and Northern India and blanket of fog continue to affect movement of trains especially on Grand Trunk route on Sunday. About 13 Express trains including Grand Trunk Express were running behind schedule.

According to information, train no. 12615 Chennai-New Delhi Grand Trunk Express was the worst affected train due to poor visibility. The train was running late by 12 hours. Similarly, train no. 12296 Patna-Bangalore Sanghamitra Express, 12642 H Nizamuddin-Kanyakumari Thirukkural Express and 18238 Amritsar-Bilaspur Chhattisgarh Express were running nine hours behind their respective schedules.

A senior railway officer informed that the visibility was 300 metres during morning hours which increased upto 1,200 metres by afternoon. However, some trains which pass from Nagpur station, have been diverted or cancelled due to fog, the Railway official added.

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Dr Vilas Dangre hospitalised, condition serious

Dr Vilas Dangre, well-known Homoeopath of Central India was admitted to Orange City Hospital and Research Institute (OCHRI) in the wee hours of Sunday in a very critical condition. Dr Dangre was ... Read More
Dr Vilas Dangre, well-known Homoeopath of Central India was admitted to Orange City Hospital and Research Institute (OCHRI) in the wee hours of Sunday in a very critical condition. Dr Dangre was taken to the hospital as he was having shocks and gasping for air. Dr Dangre recently completed 60 years of age and to mark his 60th birthday, a grand function was organised at Dr Vasantrao Deshpande Hall, which was graced by Sarsanghchalak of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh Dr Mohan Bhagwat, Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis, Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari. Dr Anup Marar, Director of OCHRI stated in a press release that on being brought to OCHRI, Dr Dangre was resuscitated immediately and put on ventilator. "He was pulseless and blood pressure was not recordable on admission to ICU. He was put on iotonic support. His investigations revealed high white cell acidosis. His ECG showed no fresh changes. His CT scan brain shows suspicious sinus thrombosis," Dr Marar stated. Dr Dangre was on ventillator support on Sunday. His Blood Pressure was maintained without ionotropic support and acidosis was corrected. His urine output was good and his heart rate had stabilised, Dr Marar added. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, MLC Prof Anil Sole, Sandeep Joshi, Girish Deshmukh visited OCHRI and enquired about Dr Dangre's health. He was being treated by a team of doctors led by Dr Rajesh Atal along with Dr Nikhil Balankhe, Ketan Chaturvedi, Dr Pawan Agrawal, Dr S J Acharya and supported by Dr Rani Lakhe, Dr Pallavi Bhange, Sandip Sukhsohale, Ganesh Bhure, Dr Anwar Ali, Dr Nitin Chopde, Dr Rahul Barolia, Dr Madhuri Baidya and, Dr Rasika Saraf, added the release.

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Sunday shiver: Nagpur records the lowest temperature in Vid

Many Nagpurians had to shelve their plans for holiday outing on Sunday, as the city shivered at 6.1 degrees Celsius, the lowest minimum temperature in past over a decade in the month of December.... Read More
Many Nagpurians had to shelve their plans for holiday outing on Sunday, as the city shivered at 6.1 degrees Celsius, the lowest minimum temperature in past over a decade in the month of December. With the mercury dipping to a new low this season, the city also recorded the lowest minimum temperature in entire Vidarbha region on Sunday.

As predicted by Regional Meteorological Centre (RMC), cold wave continued to intensify on Sunday. Last week, the minimum temperature had dipped to sub-10 degrees Celsius levels. Later on, though it rose slightly, it failed to provide any comfort to Nagpurians as wind chill factor prevailed. For past couple of days, the mercury dipped to new levels this season. Clubbed with prevailing wind chill factor, the cold wave froze plans of many to go out on weekend. The number of small bonfires ignited in various street-corners rose on Sunday. Even in day time, many people preferred to find warmth in the comforts of their homes.

With minimum temperature touching 6.1 degrees Celsius in day time, Nagpur remained the coldest in entire region of Vidarbha. Besides, this Sunday proved to be the coldest day in December for Nagpur in past over a decade. The minimum temperature on Sunday was 6.4 degrees lower than the mean minimum temperature of 12.5 degrees Celsius for December. The minimum temperature ever-recorded in Nagpur in this month was 5.5 degrees Celsius on December 29, 1968. The minimum temperature at other prominent places in Vidarbha on Sunday was as follows: Akola -- 7.3 degrees Celsius, Amravati -- 11 degrees Celsius, Buldhana -- 9.4 degrees Celsius, Brahmapuri -- 9.3 degrees Celsius, Chandrapur -- 11.2 degrees Celsius, Wardha -- 8.5 degrees Celsius, Yavatmal-- 10 degrees Celsius, and Washim -- 15.6 degrees Celsius.

R N Yadav, Assistant Meteorologist-II, RMC Nagpur, told 'The Hitavada' that the cold wave conditions would continue on Monday also. After that, depending upon the climatic conditions, cold wave may recede. The cold wave, he said, was due to 'well-marked' low pressure area over south-west Bay of Bengal off Sri Lanka coast, and the associated upper air cyclonic circulation. Cold wave conditions would prevail at a few places over Vidarbha and Madhya Pradesh, and at isolated places over Chhattisgarh.

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Sant Hari Bappa passes away, funeral today

Santshri Hari Bappa, a spiritual master and source of inspiration for Jalaram Satsang Mandal, Quetta Colony, Nagpur, popularly known as Chhote Jalaram Bappa, passed away in Amreli in Gujarat on... Read More
Santshri Hari Bappa, a spiritual master and source of inspiration for Jalaram Satsang Mandal, Quetta Colony, Nagpur, popularly known as Chhote Jalaram Bappa, passed away in Amreli in Gujarat on Sunday. He was 81.

Jalaram Satsang Mandal has made arrangements on December 29 (Monday) from 7 am to 2 pm to enable devotees take darshan of the Bappa. Funeral procession will start from Jalaram Prarthana Bhavan, Quetta Colony, at 3 pm and pass through Subhash statue, Aannaj Bazaar, Maskasaath, Kirana Oli, Itwari Tanga Stand, Vallabhacharya Chowk, Gandhibag, Jagnath Road, Sant Haribappa Road, Central Avenue, Telephone Exchange Chowk and reach to Gangabai ghat. The mandal has appealed to devotees to keep their business centres closed on Monday. Born on September 6, 1934 in Jasdan (Gujarat), Sant Hari Bappa, his father Kanjibhai Punjibhai Thakral was a grocery businessman and prominent person of Lohana Samaj while his mother Kunwarben a religious person like Jijamata. The parents taught initial lessons on spiritualim to their all children. Sant Hari Bappa and his elder brother Dharshibhai were the disciples of Bhojalram Bappa. Bappa took deeksha at Mahamandaleshwar Sanyas Ashram at Ville Parle, Mumbai. After the death of father, the mother and brothers decided to come to Nagpur and started business of incense sticks. On insistence by the mother and brothers, Sant Hari Bappa also came to Nagpur. He spread the message ‘Bhajan Karo aur Bhojan Karavo’. Then Jalaram Bappa temple was constructed in Quetta Colony at the inspiration of Shri Hari Bappa. He started ‘Annakshetra’ 16 years ago in the temple. A number of saints, disciples, devotees and poor people take meals in the temple premises daily.

Various religious programmes, including Akhand Ramdhun, are held daily in the temple in which a number of devotees participate. Under the guidance of the Bappa, Bhagvat Katha, Ramayan Katha and big programmes were also organised. After hearing the sad news, the devotees have expressed their shock over the demise of Shri Hari Bappa.

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Nagpur IIM to be an option for candidates

The results of Common Admission Test (CAT)-2014 were declared on Saturday evening, and Nagpur had its another day of glory with at least five students scoring more than 99 percentile. The inclu... Read More
The results of Common Admission Test (CAT)-2014 were declared on Saturday evening, and Nagpur had its another day of glory with at least five students scoring more than 99 percentile. The inclusion of new Indian Institute of Management (IIM) at Nagpur in the list of options for successful candidates, came as an icing on the cake for the city. This time, candidates clearing the CAT successfully will have some new IIMs in the list of options for them. One of these options is IIM-Nagpur, the announcement for which was made by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis in the recently concluded winter session of Maharashtra State Legislature. The list for the year 2014 also includes six new IIMs and other business schools. On the basis of the results, candidates will be eligible for admission to existing 13 IIMs and six proposed ones also. The new IIMs are coming up Maharashtra (Nagpur), Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Odisha, Himachal Pradesh, and Punjab.

From Nagpur, at least five candidates scored above 99 percentile, with Mayank Sanghani topping the chart with 99.99 percentile. The other top candidates are Kartikeya Rao (99.76 percentile), Hardik Rupani (99.93 percentile), Milind Bhoyar (99.45 percentile), and Nakul Sharma (99.35 percentile).

In all, 16 candidates including a girl scored 100 percentile in CAT-2014. The number of students scoring 100 percentile from IITs was yet to be confirmed, till filing of this report. According to CAT authorities, at least 3-4 of the candidates scoring 100 percentile must be from IITs. Apart from them, 10 candidates including a girl scored in 99.99 percentile bracket.

CAT results declared, server still running slow

The results of CAT-2014 examinations held on November 16 and 22, took long to be declared as the authorities wanted to make it glitch-free and to ensure transparent process to ensure zero error. Though the results were declared at the designated time at 7 pm on Saturday, the official website crashed and the server was running slow.

Around 1.70 lakh candidates took up the test organised by IIM-Indore. The result was declared comparatively earlier than the previous years. The CAT-2014 results were displayed on the website iimcat.ac.in. Though the results were declared at the designated time at 7 pm on Saturday, the official website crashed apparently due to heavy traffic. The official webpage of CAT-2014 was not loading just before the much-anticipated declaration of results. The situation remained the same on Sunday also.

According to Mehul Jhunjhunwala, an expert in CAT, the difficulty level of the test had been observed to be fairly similar across four slots for each of the five test areas -- Quant, DI, Verbal, RC, and LR. Quant and Verbal-RC have been relatively lower in difficulty level compared to LR and DI in all the four slots.

Jhunjhunwala added that getting a good percentile was just the first step for successful candidates. Except IIM-Ahmedabad that gives 100 per cent weightage to CAT score only for the first round of short-listing, all other IIMs give variable weightage between 20 to 77 per cent to CAT scores for the first round, the least being 20 per cent for IIM-Bangalore. He cautioned students not to experiment with the trainers and said that they should always look for the credentials and experience of the person who trained them.

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Sister’s encouragement gave extra edge to CAT city topper

He was not very much inclined to appear for Common Admission Test (CAT). His elder sister decided to appear for the examination and realised that there were more mathematical calculations that ... Read More
He was not very much inclined to appear for Common Admission Test (CAT). His elder sister decided to appear for the examination and realised that there were more mathematical calculations that her brother might find easy because of his interest in Mathematics. She encouraged him to appear for CAT and he did not let her down.

Mayank Rajesh Sanghani belled the CAT with great aplomb. He emerged topper from Nagpur city with marvellous score of 99.99 percentile. His sister Dr Mansi, who topped in Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS), also scored well with 97.09 percentile. Dr Mansi gives credit of her success to her teachers Rishabh Sanghani and Hitesh Dewani.

Rajesh and Meera Sanghani are the proud parents of Mayank and Dr Mansi. "We feel very happy. We were confident that our children would make us feel proud.

Both of them always topped in respective fields. They not only scored well in academics but also in extra-curricular activities," Meera Sanghani told 'The Hitavada'.

Meera Sanghani, Mayank's mother, sitting at her Anjali Peter England showroom at Dharampeth, said, "Mayank was in Bhavan's Bhagwandas Purohit Vidya Mandir, Civil Lines branch till Class XII. He scored well in Class XII and then in Common Entrance Test for admission to IIT. As he wanted to opt for Mechanical Engineering branch, Mayank chose IIT, Guwahati. Now he is in his final year." Mayank achieved the feat of topping CAT without going for any coaching to private coaching institutes. He was away from home pursuing his IIT and simultaneously preparing for CAT. According to his mother, Mayank was not tense, but he was also not casual about studies. He studied with zeal, proper care, and with eyes set on goal. Every year, Mayank won trophies in various competitions. He also played nationals of Table Tennis.

"Mayank watched movies, enjoyed life to its fullest, but not at the cost of his studies. He wishes to get admitted to Indian Institute of Management (IIM)-Ahmedabad. With 16 students securing the score of 100, and Mayank scoring 99.99 percentile, we are optimistic that he may get berth in IIM-Ahmedabad," said Meera Sanghani.

Usually, students scoring high and emerging toppers name any national leader as their role model. But, Mayank's role model is at his home only -- his father Rajesh Sanghani, who had stood third in the order of merit in MBA from Nagpur University.

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CM announces joint task force with CII to develop State

Devendra Fadanvis, Chief Minister of Maharashtra on Sunday fortified the serious intentions of the State Government by offering a conducive business environment to woo investors from domestic a... Read More
Devendra Fadanvis, Chief Minister of Maharashtra on Sunday fortified the serious intentions of the State Government by offering a conducive business environment to woo investors from domestic as well as abroad at the Global Investor Conference organised by CII and Nagpur First.

Chief Minister amplified the fact that if Maharashtra has to progress and emerge as the best State in the country, then Vidarbha and Maratwada have to be developed to realise this dream. He stated that the single reason why Vidarbha lagged behind other regions and also Maharashtra not attracting much needed investment was due to deficit of governance. For any industry to set up in a designated MIDC area, it takes 76 permissions wasting almost two years. Fadnavis asked his Secretariat to work on reducing the number of permissions by 25 per cent within 15 days. Today it has been reduced from 76 to 35 permissions and Chief Minister is now working to bring it down to 25. All this, he said, needs to be on an IT platform that will bring in total accountability. In fact, 3-4 permissions have already been put on automated route. In case permissions are not received within 3-4 days the permission is deemed as granted.

Chief Minister shared the simplicity in gaining enhanced FSIs for industry, lowering of levies on open access power in Vidarbha and the power supply rates in MIHAAN between Rs 4.30 per unit to Rs 4.50 per unit which is the cheapest in Maharashtra. He thanked Central Government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for removing all major hurdles in the path of MIHAN.

Chief Minister encouraged global investors present at the conference to invest in Vidarbha which according to him was the right time. He said, that after five years, they come, he would say 'no land is available'. He appreciated initiative of CII and Nagpur First.

He announced, "Government of Maharashtra is ready to forge a partnership with CII to form a joint task force. With the task force of industry on board, Maharashtra will move ahead." Present were Hakimudin Ali, Chairman of CII Vidarbha Zonal Council and Managing Director Calderys India Refractories Limited, Dinesh Jain, President of Nagpur First, V S Parthasarathy, Chief Financial Officer and Group CIO of Mahindra Group, Ashwini Malhotra, Chairman of CII Maharashtra State Council and Managing Director of Weikfield Foods Pvt Ltd, Kaushlendra Sinha, Regional Director of CII (Western Region).

Devendra Parekh, President of VED, Pradeep Khandelwal, President of BMA, Nitin Lonkar, Secretary, Manish Sanghvi, Vice-President were also present.

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Assembly clears Maratha reservation bill

Maharashtra Assembly on Tuesday cleared the bill granting 16 per cent reservation to Maratha community. The Government while ensuring passage of Maratha reservation outsmarted Opposition by darin... Read More
Maharashtra Assembly on Tuesday cleared the bill granting 16 per cent reservation to Maratha community. The Government while ensuring passage of Maratha reservation outsmarted Opposition by daring them to oppose Maratha Reservation while ducking query over Muslim Reservation. Totally confused over this smart move, the opposition members resorted to sloganeering, but Government remained unfazed.

Opposition parties including Congress, Nationalist Congress Party, MIM raised the demand to grant 5 per cent reservation to Muslim community in education sector as the term of ordinance came to end on December 24. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis rejected their demand citing that the Government would seek legal opinion of Advocate General for granting reservation to minority community. The members of the opposition parties trooped into the well and shouted slogans forcing speaker to adjourn the assembly thrice for 15 minutes each, and later opposition members staged a walkout from the house.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis tabled Maratha reservation bill before the assembly on Tuesday. The bill was tabled to provide reservation of seats for admission in educational institutions in the state and appointments or posts in public services under the state to educationally and socially backward category (ESBC) in the state for their advancement. The Government took decision on the basis of Narayan Rane Committee that the Maratha Community is socially, educationally, and economically backward and is inadequately represented in public services under the state and it requires special provisions to be made for its advancement. The bill was passed in the house without any discussion.

However, realising that new Government has not included Muslim reservation in the bill, opposition members trooped into the well. Legislators Ameen Patel, Yashomati Thakur, Jitendra Awhad, Warris Pathan, Rajesh Tope, Vijay Wadettiwar, and others shouted slogans against State Government. Education Minister Vinod Tawade tried to pacify opposition members but the turmoil continued in the house and Speaker adjourned house first for 15 minutes. The house was adjourned twice for 15 minutes each since slogan shouting continued.

After house resumed, Leader of Opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil said, the State Government passed the bill without discussion on Maratha reservation. The Government should also consider the demand of 5 per cent reservation to Muslim in education sector. He emphasised on moving the bill or issue ordinance as term of ordinance came to end on December 24. He said, the community would be deprived from the benefits of the reservation in education sector.

Former Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar said, Government should take positive steps for continuing benefits to minority community. The NCP and Congress will support Government’s move.

Chief Minister Fadnavis said, State Government does not believe in discriminating anybody on the basis of caste, religion and is committed for the development of minority community. Since the High Court has stayed the decision, we are trading cautiously and taking decision as per the Constitution. The students of the Muslim community are protected from the ordinance, he assured. Former Speaker Dilip Walse Patil said, if Government does not issue ordinance then Muslim students will be deprived from getting benefits of reservation in education sector.

The Government should ensure their reservation, he demanded. Abu Asim Azmi of Samajwadi Party, Shiv Sena Minister Eknath Shinde, former Minister Chhagan Bhujbal and others also participated in the discussion but Chief Minister did not deviate from his earlier stand and opposition parties staged walkout from the assembly.

The historical miss

For the first time in history of Maharashtra Legislative Assembly the customary last week resolution which is moved by Leader of Opposition was not taken-up today as Opposition boycotted the proceedings.

The Opposition trooped out of House after it approved the issue of reservation for Maratha community but criticised Government for walkout on issue of non inclusion of reservation for Muslim community in the proposal.

Since the Opposition was not present in the House the last week resolution which highlights the pressing current issue in State was not tabled.

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‘Save Mumbai from immigrants, no place left for more population’

Taking a strong position on migrants inflow in State, Leader of Opposition in Legislative Council Dhananjay Munde asked Maharashtra Government to stop further inflow of outsiders as Mumbai mega... Read More
Taking a strong position on migrants inflow in State, Leader of Opposition in Legislative Council Dhananjay Munde asked Maharashtra Government to stop further inflow of outsiders as Mumbai megapolis is choking. There is no space left in the Mumbai and adjoining Thane anymore and State needs to take immediate steps to ensure that interests of locals were protected. He was speaking after initiating debate on customary last week resolution in the Upper House on Tuesday.

Munde, at the outset took exception to statement of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis about appointing a committee headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for streamlining development projects in Mumbai. This position of State Government need to be clarified as to what exactly CM's wants and how would this impact the power sharing model in federal structure of Government.

Taking potshot at Shiv Sena, Munde said this statement of Chief Minister does not augur well for former which is ruling in Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC). We expected a vision documents from Chief Minister but he shocked us all by statement about authorising Prime Minister for development works, he further stated.

The inflow of migrants is hampering the development of Mumbai as it is burdening the existing facilities which fall short of demand.

Illegal slums are sprouting everywhere and hence State needs to take a firm stance on migrants. The existing infrastructure of megapolis is falling short, and State needs to spell out its vision.

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Congress leader Vikhe Patil is new LoP in Assembly

Speaker Haribhau Bagde, on Tuesday, appointed Congress group leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil as Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly. There was tussle between Congress and Nationa... Read More
Speaker Haribhau Bagde, on Tuesday, appointed Congress group leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil as Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly. There was tussle between Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) for this coveted post. However, Speaker took the decision on the basis of strength of single largest party in the Opposition.

Congress got support of 42 members while NCP claimed support of 44 (41 NCP and 3 PWP). The NCP submitted name of former Home Minister R R Patil for the post. Speaker Bagde said that he had received letter from Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee President Manikrao Thakre and Vikhe Patil himself staking claim over the post.

However, Speaker cleared the name of Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil after taking opinion from the legal luminaries. Speaker while announcing his decision before the House said, it is not possible to conduct the proceedings of the House without the Leader of Opposition as his suggestions are always required on several occasions. As Congress is the single largest party in the assembly, we have cleared appointment of Vikhe Patil has been cleared.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Shiv Sena group leader and Minister Eknath Shinde, NCP leader and former Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and senior most Member Ganpatrao Deshmukh escorted Vikhe Patil to his chair. The announcement was welcomed with thumping of desks from both treasury and Opposition benches. Fadnavis while extending compliments and congratulating Vikhe Patil said in a democratic set up, the post of LoP was important and he hoped that Vikhe Patil will perform his duties in an efficient manner. He said, Vikhe Patil will help Government for smoothly conducting business before the house. The Opposition plays an important role in controlling ruling party. Jayant Patil (NCP) while congratulating Vikhe Patil stated that during 1989, the smaller parties were united and selected their leader, who then was declared as Leader of Opposition, he also referred to incidence of 1983, when the same situation arose. Shiv Sena leader and Minister Eknath Shinde and Ganpatrao Deshmukh (PWP) also congratulated Vikhe Patil.

In his reply, Vikhe Patil assured to live up to the expectations of the members and the House. My opposition will not be for the sake of opposition, he told the House. He remembered the term of former Leader of Opposition late Gopinath Munde. He assured ruling party to help in conducting business. Speaker also complimented Vikhe Patil for his elevation and said he (Speaker) was happy to hear Vikhe Patil's views.

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Cops crack gang rape case of school teacher

IN A significant breakthrough, city police cracked the gang rape case of 21-year-old school teacher in Kalamna area using Mobile Tracking and Surveillance System (MTSS) and put behind bars eig... Read More
IN A significant breakthrough, city police cracked the gang rape case of 21-year-old school teacher in Kalamna area using Mobile Tracking and Surveillance System (MTSS) and put behind bars eight criminals, including five hardened criminals, for their involvement in the heinous act.

Posing as cops, the culprits had abducted the woman working as a teacher in a private school when she was with her friend and gang raped her at an isolated place near Kapsi overbridge on outer Ring Road in Kalamna area, on December 1.

The accused have been identified as Mohammad Afroz Ziauddin Pathan (32), a resident of Siddhant Nagar, Godhni Railway, Sudharshan alias Sanju Gajanan Maheshkar (31), a resident of New Indora, Punjabi Line No 12; Pundalik Domaji Bhoyar (40), a resident of Plot No 237, Sanjay Gandhi Nagar, Hudkeshwar, Anil Raju Ingley (36), a resident of HUDCO Colony, Nara Road, Jaripatka, Ashwin Ashok Danode (24), a resident of 27, Shyam Nagar, Hudkeshwar Road, Aakash Motghare, a resident of Bhim Chowk, Nara Road, Rameshwar Pradhan and Roshan alias Ashish alias Bhaji Madhukar Ingley (22), a resident of Sadhbhavna Nagar, Nandanvan.

Speaking to mediapersons, Commissioner of Police K K Pathak Afroz fled to Ajmer after committing the crime with his accomplices. When he returned to the city, he came to know that police were searching him. Accused Afroz, Sudarshan, Pundlik, Ashwin and Roshan fled to Mumbai where they were hiding in a house.

Cops had started investigation on the basis of the mobile data. Investigators, including cyber crime experts, screened almost one lakh numbers.

As many as 50 police personnel were assigned the task of tracing the culprits. Investigators got location of one of the accused persons at Medical Square. After studying the call data record, police found that he was using the cellphone between 6 pm and 10 pm only. Rest of the time, his cellphone was switched off.

Subsequently, the investigators traced the location of other accused persons. Five of them were trapped in Goregaon, Mumbai, on Monday night. The other three were nabbed from Imambada area. On Tuesday, cops produced accused Mohammad Afroz, Sudarshan, Anil, Ashwin and Pundlik before the court and obtained remand for their custodial interrogation till December 30. Three other accused arrested would be produced before the court on Wednesday.

Armed with knives and firearms, the culprits had threatened the woman and her friend Shailesh Sheware (22) with dire consequences. They abducted her from Dhargaon on three motorcycles on the pretext of taking them to police station. She was made to sit in between the two miscreants on the mobike. They took her to an isolated place. The culprits pulled her dupatta and spread on the ground before raping her one after another. Strangely, the culrpits dropped the victim to her locality. Sensing trouble, Sheware somehow managed to escape and alerted the traffic police at Kapsi about the abduction.

The traffic cops alerted the control room officer who in turn informed police stations like Kalamna, Nandanvan and Hudkeshwar. Soon, an alert was sounded in the Second Capital and the outskirts. A Diploma in Education (D Ed), the victim had claimed in her complaint that she wanted to spend some time with Sheware, a B.Com student, staying at her neighbourhood, as he leaving the city for sometime. She knew Sheware for the past four years. A few months ago, their families shifted to different localities.

Joint CP Anup Kumar Singh was present at the press conference.

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HC blow to Saoner MLA Kedar in NDCCB scam

In a major blow to Saoner MLA Sunil Kedar, Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court on Tuesday directed the Co-Operative department to complete the hearing on appeal filed against order of Rs 129.31 cr ... Read More
In a major blow to Saoner MLA Sunil Kedar, Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court on Tuesday directed the Co-Operative department to complete the hearing on appeal filed against order of Rs 129.31 cr recovery within 6 months and also asked the trial court to complete the trial within one year. The trial is languishing for last 12 years and even charges have not been framed.

A division bench consisting of Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande while allowing a PIL filed by Omprakash Kamdi and 13 others, passed this stern orders setting definitive time-frame for appellate authority to decide the appeal within six months and trial court to take this case on priority. The Supreme Court has already set a time-frame of one years for all criminal prosecutions initiated against elected representatives.

The special auditor had indicted Kedar for causing loss to Nagpur District Central Co-operative Bank (NDCCB) and had directed him to pay Rs 129.31 crore with interest to NDCCB. The order was stayed by then Co-Operation Minister Harshawardhan Patil. The petitioners have moved High Court demanding expediting the criminal trial pending in the JMFC court since last 11 years and vacation of stay. The PIL has demanded early recovery of Rs 156 crore loss allegedly caused to NDCCB by Kedar and then General Manager Ashok Chaudhary and also to separate his trial from other accused so as to take it to logical end.

The petitioners claimed that they had already approached then Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan with a request not to stay the recovery order passed by Special Auditor dated November 28, 2013 directing Kedar to pay Rs 129 crore to NDCCB and Chaudhary was asked to pay Rs 25 crore. Other directors were let off with minor penalties. Later Co-Operation Minister stayed the order. According to petitioner, after the Gilt scam was exposed in the year 2002, initially Kedar in his capacity as NDCCB Chairman and lodged complaint against Home Trade Limited, M/s Indramani Merchants Private Limited, M/s Century Dealers Private Limited, M/s Syndicate Management Services Limited and M/s Giltedge Management Services Limited through whom government securities worth Rs 125 crores were purchased by physical delivery was never given. Initially Ganeshpeth police registered offences on complaint lodged by Kedar and four days later special auditor lodged complaint with Ganeshpeth police station against Kedar and others and offence under section 406, 409, 468, 471, 120-B read with section 34 of IPC was registered and investigation handed over to CID. But the charges could not be framed as the accused persons were lodged at different jail and hence trial remained in limbo.

The petitioners have also traced the long legal battle in which the High Court in 2009 had directed District and Sessions Judge Nagpur to ensure that old criminal matters pending before different JMFC courts are disposed of on priority basis.

Even the enquiry conducted by special auditor Yashwant Bagde took 11 years to complete and the officer submitted his report only a month before his retirement. The petitioners have urged the High Court to direct the respondent authorities to recover Rs 156 crore loss from Kedar, Chaudhary and their associates as directed by probe officer along with interest from. More importantly, they have urged the High Court to direct the JMFC court to separate the trial and expedite the trial to punish the guilty. Adv Shrirang Bhandarkar appeared for the petitioner. GP Bharati Dangre (State), Adv Akshay Naik (Kedar), Adv Darshan Siras (Chaudhary) represented respondents.

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Suspension of five Cong MLAs revoked

It proved to be a big day for Congress in the Legislative Assembly. Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, Group Leader of the party, was named as Leader of Opposition. Within a few hours of this, the Assembl... Read More
It proved to be a big day for Congress in the Legislative Assembly. Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, Group Leader of the party, was named as Leader of Opposition. Within a few hours of this, the Assembly revoked suspension of five MLAs of Congress. Girish Bapat, Parliamentary Affairs Minister, made the announcement about revoking suspension of Congress MLAs. These MLAs included Abdul Sattar from Sillod, Jaykumar Gore from Maan, Rahul Bondre from Chikhli, Amar Kale from Arvi, and Virendra Jagtap from Dhamangaon. They were suspended in the very first session of this Government last month in Mumbai, for creating ruckus and also misbehaving with Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao. These MLAs were suspended on November 12 for a tenure of two years. However, much to their surprise, which some of them expressed privately, Congress leaders did not mount pressure on the Government to get their suspension revoked. On Tuesday, the penultimate day of winter session of State Legislature, the Speaker announced Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil as Leader of Opposition. Later, Bapat announced that on request of new Leader of Opposition and the suspended MLAs, the Assembly was revoking suspension.

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Kelkar Panel report suggests 15-yr frame for achieving balanced devpt

After a long wait of 14 months, finally, State Government tabled the report of the High-level Committee on Balanced Regional Development Issues in Maharashtra -- popularly called Kelkar Committee... Read More
After a long wait of 14 months, finally, State Government tabled the report of the High-level Committee on Balanced Regional Development Issues in Maharashtra -- popularly called Kelkar Committee -- in both the Houses of State Legislature on Tuesday. As reported earlier by ‘The Hitavada’, the report shifts the development debate from ‘backlog’ to ‘development gap’, and makes 146 recommendations to achieve balanced development in a suggested time-frame of 15 years. However, the new formula suggested by the committee, continues to give higher financial allocation to Rest of Maharashtra (RoM) than Vidarbha and Marathwada.

Sudhir Mungantiwar, Finance and Planning Minister, tabled the report in both the Houses of the State Legislature on Tuesday. While tabling the report in the Assembly, Mungantiwar said that the Government had neither accepted nor rejected the committee recommendations. “We are tabling the report as per the Cabinet resolution,” he said. The discussion on the report will be held in Budget Session of State Legislature and the Government will obtain opinion of both the Houses before deciding on the recommendations. Chhagan Bhujbal, former Deputy Chief Minister and senior NCP leader, and Dilip Walse Patil, former Speaker and senior NCP leader, objected as to how the Kelkar Committee report contents appeared in media even before it was tabled in the legislature. K P Bakshi, Additional Chief Secretary (Planning), later addressed a press conference at Divisional Commissionerate here and explained various aspects related to the report.

Dr V S Deshpande, Acting Vice-Chancellor of Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University (RTMNU) and a member of the committee; Anoop Kumar, Nagpur Divisional Commissioner, were present prominently at the press conference.

Bakshi told the reporters that the committee headed by noted economist Dr Vijay Kelkar had made 146 recommendations to achieve the goal of balanced development of Vidarbha, Marathwada, RoM regions, excluding Mumbai. The departments concerned are expected to cull the information pertaining to them. Secretaries of respective departments are expected to submit their opinions on relevant part of the report, to Planning Department within a month. A sub-committee comprising ministers and headed by Planning Minister will consider the opinions received from various departments, and then go before the State Cabinet. After that, the Government will formulate its strategy on implementation of the recommendations of the committee.

According to Bakshi, the committee has recommended division of plan component. First, the part for Scheduled Caste Sub-Plan (SCSP) and Tribal Sub-Plan (TSP) will be deducted from total plan component available. The remaining will be divided into general sector and water sector resources in the ratio 70:30. Of the total allocation to water sector (30 per cent of plan), 8.5 per cent will be a priority allocation to 44 water-stressed tehsils, 85 tehsils with ground water adversity, tehsils in saline belt of Buldhana-Akola-Amravati, and ex-Malgujari tanks in Nagpur Division. Of the remaining 91.5 per cent, allocation will be available for Water Resources, Water Conservation, Command Area Development Authority (CADA), and Water Supply and Sanitation (including Groundwater Survey and Development Agency) departments.

The general sector resource pool available after deducting allocations for SCSP/TSP and water sector, will be divided further into divisible and non-divisible plans.

Of these, 60 per cent resources will go to divisible plan and 40 per cent to non-divisible. Of the divisible plan in general sector, 30.78 per cent has been suggested for Vidarbha, 28.51 per cent for Marathwada, and 40.71 per cent for RoM.

Water sector and general sector resource pools combined together, the overall regional allocation percentages suggested by the committee are Vidarbha-- 33.24 per cent, Marathwada-- 25.31 per cent, and RoM-- 41.45 per cent. Compared to the existing formula for allocation of funds, a definite increase has been suggested for Vidarbha and Marathwada regions and decline for RoM. However, previously also, among three regions, RoM got higher allocation; and Kelkar Committee also has suggested higher allocation to RoM among three regions.

Asked if any deadlines were set for achieving the goals of balanced development, Bakshi said that the committee expected implementation of its recommendations for water sector by the year 2022. Further, it expected implementation of recommendations for other development sectors by the year 2027. “We have identified the recommendations of doable nature to be implemented in 15-year frame,” said Dr V S Deshpande. Making a power-point presentation about the report, Dr Deshpande told reporters that the committee had suggested to make two ‘virtual regions’ -- water and tribals, apart from the regular three regions of Vidarbha, Marathwada, and RoM. It has recommended a system to be set up to measure Tribal Development Index annually.

On Regional Development Boards

There are several other recommendations of the Kelkar Committee. Already, ‘The Hitavada’ has published most of the recommendations through its columns. Among other significant recommendations is the one pertaining to restructuring and streamlining of Regional Development Boards (RDBs).

The committee has recommended the Chief Minister to be Chairman of RDBs and seniormost minister from the region as the Executive Chairman. Deputy Chief Minister, Ministers of Finance and Planning, Executive Chairman of State Planning Board, all ministers from that region, two MLAs, two MLCs, Mayors of two municipal corporations, Presidents of two municipal councils, Presidents of two Zilla Parishads, two eminent citizens from that region, and two experts will be on the Board for respective regions. Additional Chief Secretary and Regional Development Commissioner should be the Member Secretary.

The RDBs, it is suggested, should prepare comprehensive Five Year Perspective Plans and Annual Plans of the region. Plan resources should be devolved to the districts, and blocks as per the formula suggested by the committee. The boards will be entrusted with the responsibility of planning, supervision, and monitoring of development plans in respective regions. Further, an Empowered Group of Ministers from respective regions should be formed under the Executive Chairman of respective RDB for faster decision-making on the region-specific problems on plan implementation, the committee has recommended.

‘Baseline disparities further aggravated in past 15 yrs’

Making a scathing comment on the state of affairs during the past 15 years in the State, the committee has recorded its observation without mincing words. “The baseline disparities between the agricultural or tribal areas versus the industrialised and urban concentrations were further aggravated during the past 15 years by the change in the structure of economic activities, and the regional shift in the political power in coalition governments.”

Asked to clarify on this comment, Dr V S Deshpande said in the press conference that baseline disparities had much to do with lack of creation of irrigation facilities to desired extent, problems in scheme implementation affecting the rate of growth in Vidarbha and Marathwada regions in particular, and political instability in these regions.

As to what went wrong, Bakshi and Dr Deshpande both said that their comments would be ‘personal opinions’ and not part of the report. “The biggest thing gone wrong was related to irrigation. Besides, there were problems with utilisation of available resources leading further to pendency of irrigation projects. And, certain factors also led to problems with non-plan allocation,” he said.

Report available on websites

Soon after tabling of the report of Kelkar Committee in both the Houses of State Legislature, the report was made available on two websites -- https://mahasdb.maharashtra.gov.in and www.maharashtra.gov.in for the people.

‘Have not recommended autonomy to Vidarbha’

Making it amply clear that Kelkar Committee had not recommended autonomy to Vidarbha or any other such alternative, Additional Chief Secretary (Planning) K P Bakshi told reporters during the press conference that views of stakeholders were incorporated in the chapter on summary of Stakeholders’ Perspectives. Further, Bakshi made it clear that the committee had not made any recommendation on providing free water and power to farmers. “These were demands or views that came up from people of Vidarbha region who participated in the consultation process. We have summarised those views in our report, but those are not our recommendations,” he said. Interestingly, some section of the media has been reporting that the committee has strongly recommended statehood to Vidarbha. The report has a chapter ‘Stakeholders Perspectives’ from pages 31-64. Page 48 has a paragraph titled ‘Summing up for Vidarbha’ in which sentiments expressed by stakeholders during consultation process have been summarised. The said paragraph starts with ‘The common belief of the people of Vidarbha voiced through their representatives is that...’ It goes on to sum up the sentiments of Vidarbha as follows, “If the blueprint of balanced development is not properly implemented, alternatives could be as follows: Important economic portfolios may now be shared with Vidarbha leaders, Sub-state status for Vidarbha as per 24th Amendment of 1969 as applied to Meghalaya as sub-state of Assam with independent legislature and ministers, and Statehood to Vidarbha -- as a follow up of alternative two, demand for statehood for Vidarbha on the pattern of Meghalaya carved out of Assam from sub-state to full statehood.” However, the paragraph remains what it is -- a summary of sentiments of stakeholders from Vidarbha. “It is not part of our recommendations,” said Bakshi. Despite the perss conference, as some section of the media continued misquoting the report on Vidarbha statehood issue, Bakshi had to issue an official press release through Department of Information and Public Relations late in the evening. The official release stated that the views on Vidarbha statehood were expressed by stakeholders during consultation process, and did not form part of the views or recommendations of the committee.

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The man who knows -- what he wishes to do

The first impression is: He knows. And the second impression is: He really knows.

That the accession of Devendra Fadnavis to Maharashtra’s chief ministership cannot be treated as a poli... Read More
The first impression is: He knows. And the second impression is: He really knows.

That the accession of Devendra Fadnavis to Maharashtra’s chief ministership cannot be treated as a political happenstance, becomes clear the moment one starts attempting to catch him off guard, or trap him in a tight spot about various issues in the State. For, when he assumed the coveted post about two months ago, Devendra Fadnavis walked in with two advantages -- one, being an Opposition leader until yesterday; and two having prepared for the chief minister’s role with a sense of focus through knowing the State in and out, not just politically but also administratively. Very few Chief Ministers have had such an advantage.

So, as newspaper Editors assumed the role of Reporters and asked Maharashtra’s brand new Chief Minister what may have been tedious and tricky questions, Devendra Fadnavis appeared not only unfazed but also seemed to enjoy the interaction as he knew his State as he does the back of his own palm.

So, as the Editors devoured the sumptuous breakfast at the Chief Minister’s official residence ‘Ramgiri’, no issue was foreign or alien to Devendra Fadnavis. He may have slept late in the night, as is his wont; he may have not had much time to get ready to join the Editors, as is his practice these days, but the Chief Minister appeared fresh and willing to discuss issues with a disarming smile marking his countenance.

The issues that came up for discussion ranged from urban development to rural and agricultural economy to jail reforms to irrigation to trade and business to special economic zones to the challenges before Tier-II and Tier-III cities to rural outflux to urban influx to power generation to coal handling to solar energy policy (which is in the offing)...! At each of these points, Devendra Fadnavis was forthcoming with detailed answers as if he had read the issue just before entering the wood-paneled conference hall. Of course, Urban Development Department is with the Chief Minister, and he knows the minutest details about every issue -- from differential Floor Spaces Indices (FSIs) in different cities to the current issue of amalgamation and cluster approach to FSI management in Tier-II and Tier-III cities where urban land holdings are necessarily small to allow higher FSI.

Let alone that, Devendra Fadnavis appeared ready to discuss each and every issue regarding the State of Maharashtra. He knew, as one answer revealed, that Maharashtra is the only State in the country that is still cribbing about cotton prices. “I am sorry to state, but the class that produces cotton is not concerned about its own low productivity from the cotton fields; it concerns itself more with having the support price hiked” almost illogically, he said in effect.

Nagpur’s MIHAN did spring up in discussion. There was rather a spiced question: “How long will MIHAN take to get completed?” The questioner was sure that the Chief Minister may have a politically driven stock answer. But in came the surprise twist that only man of the calibre of Devendra Fadnavis could give: “I can assure you that all the problems dogging MIHAN will be taken care of during the current year 2014-15, that is in the next few months”. For obvious reason, the question ended then and there.

But MIHAN did occupy quite some time in the 45-minute time-frame. “And when you can lower the electricity rates in MIHAN’s case, why don’t you think of a similar approach towards industrial power everywhere in the State?” -- was another question. The Chief Minister had an extended answer ready, as if again he had just studied the issue in full a few minutes ago. What made a good impression was that the Chief Minister remained unfazed when the Editors sought to compare the power situation in the neighbouring State of Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh. He said simply, “We have made a beginning, and we will end the effort at its logical culmination. You will hear good news from this front, too,” he added.

Yet, “you must mark one thing -- just until a few weeks ago, power generation capacity of as much as 1700 MW was under shut down due to coal shortage. That problem has been solved effectively. Very soon, we will deal with haphazard coal linkages as well to straighten out coal supply to power stations. In my opinion, this is a major step,” the Chief Minister said with an endearing conviction...

... The impression, therefore, is: The Chief Minister knows, and the State, too, will soon know that he knows.

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Bhavan’s Group hands over J&K flood relief fund cheque to CM

True to its spirit of commitment to the cause of the needy and the suffering, the Bhavan’s Group of Schools rose to the occasion and raised an amount of Rs 9,61,670/- towards their brethren i... Read More
True to its spirit of commitment to the cause of the needy and the suffering, the Bhavan’s Group of Schools rose to the occasion and raised an amount of Rs 9,61,670/- towards their brethren in flood-hit Jammu & Kashmir. The amount was handed over to the Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis at his official residence ‘Ramgiri’ by the Principals -- Annapoorni Shastri (Srikrishna Nagar), Anju Bhutani (Civil LInes), Vandana Bisen (Ashti), and Parwati Iyer (Trimurti Nagar branch). The Captains of all branches of Bhavan’s Group of Schools -- Shobhit Chandak, Radha Taori, Anando Ghosh, Shikha Batra, Anurag Shrivastav, Mallika Karmele, Mokshit Kothari and Ojasvi Thakre were present. A congratulatory message of the School management was conveyed to the Chief Minister on him assuming the office.

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Wadettiwar’s private member Bill on Vidarbha statehood

Vijay Wadettiwar, Deputy Leader of Congress in Legislative Assembly, was visibly irritated to find that his private member Bill regarding demand of statehood to Vidarbha did not figure in the l... Read More
Vijay Wadettiwar, Deputy Leader of Congress in Legislative Assembly, was visibly irritated to find that his private member Bill regarding demand of statehood to Vidarbha did not figure in the legislative business on Friday. Now, his private member Bill will come up in Budget Session of State Legislature to be held next year. Wadettiwar objected strongly to his Bill not being a part of the business for the day. He accused the Legislature Secretariat of removing his proposal without taking him into confidence. Girish Bapat, Parliamentary Affairs Minister, said that the proposal did not figure due to workload. “The matter will be taken up later,” he said. Bapat quoted provisions from the Rule Book and informed the House that he discussed with Group Leader before taking the decision about the private member Bill. Chief Minister Fadnavis said that the previous Government also had postponed some proposals citing one or the other reason. Dilip Walse Patil, former Speaker, also expressed his thoughts.

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Devendra Fadnavis directs NMC, NIT to expedite Nagpur’s development

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Friday directed civic bodies to speed-up report for seeking special funds for development of city matching its Second Capital status. Nagpur Municipal Corporat... Read More
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Friday directed civic bodies to speed-up report for seeking special funds for development of city matching its Second Capital status. Nagpur Municipal Corporation has demanded special financial aid for road repairs and new roads in the city. Fadnavis chaired the meeting held at Vidhan Bhavan on Friday regarding preparation of action plan to boost development of city. Union Minister for Surface Transport and Shipping Nitin Gadkari was prominently present.

The city has 195 km of roads under Integrated Road Development System and funds of Rs 345 crore are needed for road repairs. Directing the officials to focus on construction of roads, Chief Minister also directed that waste water should be used for industry purpose. He discussed reservation of 130 ten million cubic metre water for future drinking water needs of the city. After discussing pending issues, Fadnavis asked a combined report about Muslim Library at Mominpura, Dr B R Ambedkar Research Centre at Patwardhan ground which has been pending since long.

Chief Minister also held discussion on allocation of land for bus terminus for city bus service. A special committee has been formed under Chairmanship of Chief Secretary for betterment of transportation in city limits. He specifically asked NMC and NIT officials to distribute ‘Patta’ (Ownership right) on the lines of Tukdoji Nagar and Kamgar Colony.

State Energy Minister Chandrashekhar Bawankule, MLAs Sudhakar Deshmukh, Dr Milind Mane, Vikas Kumbhare, Krishna Khopde, Sudhakar Kohale and Sameer Meghe, MLCs Anil Sole and Prakash Gajbhiye, Deputy Mayor Munna Pokulwar, Standing Committee chief Narendra Borkar, former chief of NMC’s Standing Committee Sandeep Joshi, Chief Secretary Swadhin Kshatriya, Principal Secretary of Urban Development Department Manukumar Shrivastav and Shrikant Singh, Secretary for Medical Education Manisha Mhaiskar, Municipal Commissioner Shyam Wardhane, NIT Chairman Harshadeep Kamble and other senior officers attended the meeting.

Kocchi Barrage on Kanhan river to get new boost Kocchi Barrage proposed on Kanhan river has got a fillip after Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis directed revenue officials to start the land acquisition process. The project is conceived to meet future drinking water needs of city and free the current dependence on Pench Irrigation Project.

Fadnavis along with Union Minister Nitin Gadkari took review of the project status on Friday. Ramtek's Member of Parliament (MP) Krupal Tumane, MLA Sunil Kedar, ex-Zilla Parishad President Ashok Dhote, Shaligram Bondre, Chief Secretary Swadhin Kshatriya, CM's Principal Secretary Praveen Pardeshi, Principal Secretary, Irrigation Department, Malini Shankar, Secretary, Milind Mhaiskar, CM's Secretary Praveen Darade, Medical Education Department Secretary Manisha Mhaiskar, District Collector Abhishek Krishna, VIDC's Executive Director Shuka, Chief Engineer R M Chavan, Superintending Engineer R K Dhawle, Executive Engineer Sanjay Wankhde, Rehabilitation Officer Prakash Patil and Deputy Collector Asha Pathan.

The project cost of Kocchi Barrage is pegged at Rs. 262.25 crores as per VIDC's revised administrative approval dated August 31, 2007, and its command area is estimated at 4837.67 sq.km.

Central Government has approved in principle diversion of forest area of 72 Ha in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.

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CM ayes sops for Vidarbha’s development

Reiterating his unflinching commitment to wipe out backwardness of Vidarbha and make it a prosperous and developed region, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Friday announced a slew of measures ... Read More
Reiterating his unflinching commitment to wipe out backwardness of Vidarbha and make it a prosperous and developed region, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Friday announced a slew of measures to make Vidarbha an attractive destination for investment and tourism, reduce power tariff, fast-track irrigation projects, rejuvenate waterbodies, promote urban development and remove its development deficit within five years.

To boost Industrial development in backward Vidarbha region, the Maharashtra Government will waive surcharge on electricity drawn through open access which will bring down power tariff in Vidarbha. The State Government will seek permission of Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Authority (MERC) for this waiver, Fadnavis stated, while replying to a detailed discussion on backwardness of Vidarbha in Legislative Assembly. In Legislative Council the reply was given by Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse, on behalf of Chief Minister. This waiver will increase investment opportunity in the backward region.

Fadnavis said, State Government is committed to overall development of the region. He will dedicate two days in every month for expediting projects related to Nagpur and Amravati divisions. Chief Minister announced a plethora of developmental works to remove backlog and create job opportunities for the youths. He said, open access facility will pave way to purchase electricity from captive plants. The State Government will promote mineral-based industries in the region and create competitiveness with neighbouring states like Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, and Madhya Pradesh. In these states, the electricity is cheaper as compared to Maharashtra. The Government will also remove backlog of agriculture pumps in the region and promote solar pumps, he added.

Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) initiated discussion on development of Vidarbha on Thursday. In his splendid 60 minutes speech in the Assembly, the Chief Minister touched heart of every member. Former speaker Dilip Walse Patil, during right to reply, also appreciated his committment towards people of the region. He said, it is responsibility of the State Government to fulfill the promises made to the people of the region.

‘DF Govt flouted Governor’s orders’

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis blasted NCP member Bhaskar Jadhav for his inappropriate remarks against farmers of the region. Chief Minister compelled him to withdraw his remarks. Fadnavis said, people of the region sacrificed their status of capital of the CP and Berar State to protect Mumbai from going into hands of Gujarat. The farmers of Vidarbha were so rich that they had given cotton to British on credit. However, Maharashtra Government did not fulfill the commitment given to the region. The injustice was meted out to the region in every sector and therefore, the demand of Separate Vidarbha emerged in every sector. As per Article 371 (2) of the Constitution, the Governor of Maharashtra made special provisions for removing backlog and balanced development of the region.

Unfortunately, the previous Governments made provision but did not spend the amount and diverted it to other region. The Governor of Maharashtra has taken several objections on transfer of funds of Vidarbha and Marathwada to other region. He said that the then DF Government had spent funds on particular districts and tehsil. The DF Government failed to remove irrigation backlog of Amravati region found in 1994. As per 2011 figures, the additional backlog of 11 lakh hectares was created in Amravati.

State Govt reduces limit for industrial devpt in Nagpur

Chief Minister said, the DF Government had banned industrial development within radius of 25 kms from Nagpur. This has stopped the development of the district. However, there is no such condition for Pune district. Therefore, the Government has restricted upto 5 kms only from the city limits. This will pave way for new industrial growth.

Fill vacant posts from region

Chief Minister said, the Government has filled all the vacant posts in Revenue Department. The Government will not spare any officer, who refuses to join duties in the backward region. Such officers will have to face music. He said, the land acquisition could not be completed without Land Acquisition officers in the region. The Government will complete 102 irrigation projects in Amravati division by June 2015. This will create irrigation potential of the region by additional 2.36 lakh hectares.

The Government will give priority to land acquisition for the irrigation projects. He said, the Government will give revised administrative approval for pending projects. Fadnavis said, the Government will change norms for cleaning of 132 Malguzari Tanks in Eastern Vidarbha. The Government has constituted a committee under Secretary for framing new norms for the tanks.

‘Time-bound programme for Gosikhurd project soon’

The Government will finalise time-bound programme for the completion of Gosikhurd project. The project cost climbed up to Rs 14,000 crore. The Government will remove all obstacles coming in the way for land acquisition. The Water Resources Department will increase height of Gosikurd project up to 242 meters. The project has created 54,000 hectares irrigation potential by 2014 while 90,000 hectares irrigation potential will be created by 2015. The Government has targeted to create 1.20 lakh hectares potential in 2016 and take it upto 1,90,000 hectares in 2017 and ultimately irrigation potential will be up by over 2.50 lakh hectares by 2018.

River-linking project

The Government will link rivers of Eastern Vidarbha to Western Vidarbha. The additional water of Godavari valley will be transferred to Western Vidarbha region. This will create additional 3 lakh hectares irrigation potential and water will be provided purely for irrigation purpose. To tackle agrarian crisis in the region, the Government will extend help of Rs 500 crore per annum for Vidarbha Intensive Irrigation Development Programme (VIIDP).

Orange processing unit at Katol

State Government will start a modernised orange processing unit at Katol for the benefit of orange growers in the region. The Government will shift food processing unit from Hingana to Butibori and increase its capacity up to 5,000 metric tonnes. Fadnavis said, the organge unit of Katol is facing legal complications therefore, the Government is trying for out of the court settlement.

Highlights of CM’s speech

*Textile Hub in Amravati Industrial Estate within two years. The Government will promote investment of Rs 2,000 crore and generate employment *Government to develop all weather airports including night handling facilities at Amravati so that big aircraft can land. * Government clears development plan of all the cities in the Vidarbha. Chief Minister proudly told the house that what DF Government could not do in 10 years, the new Government did in a single day. * Government cleared files of Tower like structure and group housing schemes for Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC). * Rs 20 crore sanctioned for rescue centre at Gorewada Zoo. The Government will start developmental works without waiting for final nod to final draft. * Government will develop Gandhi Circuit, Buddhist Theme Park, and Eco-tourism for Tadoba. * To declare Lonara Crater as world heritage site * Government to remove all potholes from State Highways in the region. * Special provision for development of Shantivan as Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Museum. * Soil Testing Laboratory in every district of Vidarbha, Marathwada and Khandesh.

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PIL on pathetic condition of highways: High Court makes NHAI to act swiftly

Finding everything moving at a very casual pace and virtual flouting of its directives of November 14, 2014 by the top brass of the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), Justice Bhushan R G... Read More
Finding everything moving at a very casual pace and virtual flouting of its directives of November 14, 2014 by the top brass of the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), Justice Bhushan R Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande at the High Court, asked the NHAI counsel A A Kathane and personally present Chief General Manager (Tech.) NHAI, M K Jain to tell it Chairman’s name to issue notice to him to answer contempt charge for not complying with its directives and made the counsel and the top officer to develop cold feet. They were asked to came back with approval and assurances after lunch-recess, which satisfied the Court to a large extent. The Court was visibly unhappy during the hearing of a newspaper report of September 20, 2013, registered as public interest litigation (PIL) on the Court’s own initiative regarding the “pathetic state of affairs of national highways” and particularly relating to 37 kms patch between Mansar and Khawasa and also the unmotorable condition of road near Pandhurna and the incomplete bridge at Kondhali on the NHW No. 6. In its Comprehensive Tentative Plan submitted to the Court in the after-noon, the Court has placed that one page chart on the record of the case and accepted it as an undertaking on behalf of the NHAI regarding construction of balance work between 94.000 kms and 123.000 kms on Nagpur-Hyderabad section of NH-7 in Maharashtra and balance of construction of work from 153.000 kms to 175.000 kms on the same road. The Court was informed that regarding first part, competent authority NHAI Head-quarters has telephonically approved the bids and work will commence from December 19 next. And the second part of the maintenance activity will be undertaken by the new contractor, who will be commencing work from December 26 next. Till this period, maintenance work will be continued by the existing contractor and would be completed by March 31, 2015. As per the chart, contracts being executed by the non-performing contractors will be given closure notice and those will end on March 10, 2015. Speaking of preparation of bids, the Court has been informed that preparation of bidding documents to complete the balance work will be over by April 30, 2015. Bids will be invited for balance work from May 1 and acceptance will be up to May 15. Bids will be finalised on July 31 and contracts will be awarded to the approved contractor on October 1 and balance work is to be completed by December 31, 2016. The Court will hear the petition further after one week. Advocate N A Padhye is amicus curiae in the case. GP Bharati Dangre (State) and Assistant SGI Rohit Deo (Union of India) represented the respondents. Adv Mohit Khajanchi represented the intervenor - Adv Ashish Jaiswal.

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Three more Naxalites surrender in Gondia

Inspired by the social welfare schemes run by Police Department under the new surrender policy of State Government, three members of Triple–K Dalam surrendered in front of Gondia District Super... Read More
Inspired by the social welfare schemes run by Police Department under the new surrender policy of State Government, three members of Triple–K Dalam surrendered in front of Gondia District Superintendent of Police Shashi Kumar Meena on Wednesday. With this surrender, total 18 Naxalities have surrendered so far after the formation of independent Gondia district in 1999.

Giving more details, SP Meena said that the surrendered members including Jalher alias Dalsuram Parasram Kachlam (21), a resident of Navezhari in Korchi tehsil of Gadchiroli, Rishi alias Sukhlal Tulsiram Parsu (20), a resident of Mayalghat in Korchi tehsil of Gadchiroli, and Kashiram Eitu Koretti, a resident of Tirkhuri in Arjuni Morgaon tehsil of Gondia district, were active in Darekasa, Deori, Korchi – Kurkheda – Khobramenda (Triple – K ) and Platoon – 55 under North Gadchiroli-Gondia Division. They were involved in a number of Naxal incidents which include ambush, setting afire road roller on Piperkhari – Sukdi Road, setting afire Gram Panchayat buildings of Missipirri and Toyogondi and BSNL tower in Jamakudo between 2010 – 13. Rishi has confessed of having played a role in landmine blast in Donagagrh (CG) and killing of a police informer in 2004.

Their surrender has been cleared by the administrative approval committee having District Collector, DSP and SID men as its members. In 2014, this is the first surrender of Naxals, the last was done on April 17, 2013. Till date 18 members have surrendered with Gondia police. It may be mentioned that Gondia district is considered to be a Naxal- sensitive place, but in recent past with active police action, the Naxal activities has witness a steep decline in the region. SP Meena has given credit to his department people for this success and has appealed to other members involved in Naxal movement to surrender with the police and join mainstream of development.

SP Meena also said that there were attractive schemes apart from rehabilitation package in the new Naxal Surrender Scheme of State Government.

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Students, citizens flay terror attack on school in Pakistan

The smallest coffins are the heaviest. This was the message that was in the air and mobile networks and Internet, and also in the city of Nagpur. Right from the school children to grown ups and s... Read More
The smallest coffins are the heaviest. This was the message that was in the air and mobile networks and Internet, and also in the city of Nagpur. Right from the school children to grown ups and senior citizens, everyone joined the world to condemn the barbaric act of Talibani terrorists, who killed innocent school children in Peshawar in Pakistan; and also paid tributes to the victims of terror attack.

Every child in every school in the city observed a two-minute silence to mourn the loss of school children in the massacre effected by merciless and shameless Talibani terrorists in Peshawar a day ago.

During school assembly, the students prayed, wept, sobbed, and mourned. Parents and teachers also condemned the barbaric act of terrorists in the harshest words.

Condemnation of terrorists and mourning of victims filled every nook and corner of the city. Every office, every home, every lane and by-lane, every Nagpurian joined the country and the world in expressing sadness and anger both.

Minorities Democratic Party (MDP) activists staged demonstrations near Mominpura. “Terrorism has no religion. Even the harshest words are not enough to condemn the inhuman act of terrorists,” stated Mohammad Sajid Ansari. MDP activists flayed Fazalullah and Al Baghdadi for killing children and women. In Gandhi Chowk, Sadar, also the residents gathered for a candle-light vigil, and prayed for eternal peace of innocent children.

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‘Number of drought-affected villages may increase by 5,700’

The Central team that visited 14 districts of Maharashtra in the past few days has found that the situation of drought-hit areas is really grim. “The situation is such that the number of drough... Read More
The Central team that visited 14 districts of Maharashtra in the past few days has found that the situation of drought-hit areas is really grim. “The situation is such that the number of drought-affected villages may increase from 19,029 to around 25,000. We will request the Central Government to consider this as a national calamity situation and provide us additional financial assistance,” said Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Minister, while making a statement in the Legislative Assembly on Wednesday afternoon.

Chandrakant Patil, Co-operation Minister, made the statement in Legislative Council. Earlier, Chief Minister chaired a meeting with the 10-member Central team in Vidhan Bhavan. Informing about the outcome of the meeting, Chief Minister told the Assembly that Central team visited various affected villages and found the situation grim. The team members expressed their concern over the situation. Already, the State has sought an assistance of Rs 3,925 crore from the Centre to tackle the situation. However, as the number of affected village may increase by 5,700 after reviewing the situation in Vidarbha region and Nashik division, State would submit a revised memorandum to the Centre and seek additional financial assistance.

Central team agreed to the State’s contention and assured to expedite the proposal for aid. The initial aid sought was aimed at providing compensation to farmers who had lost their agricultural crop. However, as the State would be required to tackle subsequent situations including fodder and water scarcity, additional stock of foodgrains etc, additional assistance would be sought from the Centre, said Fadnavis. He said that the State would request the Centre to relax norms of Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme so that employment could be made available to people from areas facing drought-like situation, he added.

Swadhin Kshatriya, Chief Secretary; Pravesh Sharma, leader of Central team and Additional Secretary with Central Government; Dr Sudhir Kumar Goyal, Additional Chief Secretary, Maharashtra; Sudhir Shrivastav, Additional Chief Secretary (Finance); K H Govindraj, Secretary (Relief and Rehabilitation); Malini Shankar, Secretary (Water Resources); Rajesh Kumar, Principal Secretary (Water Supply); Deepak Kapoor, Secretary (Food and Civil Supplies); Pravin Pardeshi, Principal Secretary to Chief Minister; Milind Mhaiskar, Secretary to Chief Minister; Anoop Kumar, Nagpur Divisional Commissioner, and other officers were present prominently. In the meeting, Pravesh Sharma informed the Chief Minister about the Central team’s visit to various villages.

Sharma expressed satisfaction over the measures taken by the State Government to tackle the situation. However, he said, considering the problems that these areas might face in the next two months, additional measures were required to be taken as far as fodder and water availability were concerned. He assured to submit a report considering the increase in number of affected villages.

Swadhin Kshatriya said that the State was facing a never-before drought-like situation. Central team had visited Marathwada and Vidarbha regions to assess the situation. Kshatriya explained the situation prevailing in the State and said that a revised memorandum would be submitted to the Central team.

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MLAs press for affordable & quality education, reforms

DURING a discussion under Rule 293, which continued on Wednesday morning before start of regular business in the Legislative Assembly, members pressed for reforms in education sector. Most of t... Read More
DURING a discussion under Rule 293, which continued on Wednesday morning before start of regular business in the Legislative Assembly, members pressed for reforms in education sector. Most of the members felt that the education should become affordable and government should monitor the quality in education.

Initiating the discussion on Tuesday evening, Yogesh Sagar said that changes were required to be effected in education sector with changing times. Education should be able to develop a student’s personality through arts, sports, academics and latent talent. To meet present-day needs of evolution, old Universities Act must be changed. Private universities should be encouraged in State.

Also, in line with the objectives of Right to Education (RTE) Act of the Centre, State Government should enact Maharashtra RTE Act to ensure that no teachers are termed excess. He stressed on restarting the University elections to develop leadership qualities in youngsters. In the proposal for discussion, the MLAs pointed out that several plots were allotted to educational institutions. However, in many cases, these plots were lying unused. These plots should be utilised for new educational institutions and a policy decision must be taken in this regard.

Govt should control pre-primary schools, says Sunil Prabhu

State Government has no control on CBSE, ICSE schools. Nursery, KG-I, KG-II in private schools. More number of students are interested to take B Com but colleges get 4 divisions of 120 intake each. Instead it should be increased to 720. Appointment of Principal in colleges is a critical issue and should be resolved in a proper manner.

Problem-based learning necessary: D P Sawant

Teaching is more effective when there are 30-35 students in a class. Unfortunately there are 100 students in a class. Secondly school education is our base and we are utterly ignoring it. We have made our students habitual of applying rote method. We should bring Problem-based learning. Secondly, employability is bigger problem. Various surveys say that we have very less employability.

Dr Anil Kakodkar Committee has made certain recommendations but we need financial assistance to implement those. As far as technical education is concerned, institutions should be linked to industries. The condition of research is very bad.

Impose ban on teachers’ strike: Prashant Bamb

We give education to teachers but in turn what they give to education. Some members become MLC from teachers, graduates constituencies and fight for the demands of teachers. It should be stopped. Bring ban on teachers strike on the lines of police. State Government should bring proposal to bring ban on elections of MLCs from teachers constituency. These MLCs help politicians in running the educational institutions. Teachers examinations should be conducted. The teachers chew gutkha and teach children to be ethical.

Multi-disciplinary courses is need of hour: Vikhe-Patil

The students once take Arts can not go for Science or engineering. They should be able to take course as per their wish. For this, the multi-disciplinary courses should be brought. Secondly, MKCL is not much fruitful and did not yield much result. It should be closed. Coaching classes have mushroomed which is very bad practice. Many colleges are running by joining hands with the coaching institutions. The suggestion of incorporating ATM – Agriculture, Technology and Management should be considered.

GMCs need two deans: Awhad

There are lot of responsibilities on Dean of the Government Medical Colleges in State. He has to handle administration, hospital, academics. Considering this aspect two separate deans should be appointed for administration and education.

Have check on standard of edn: Jayant Patil

Government is permitting new colleges is not bad but it should monitor the quality. Parents spend lot of money on the education of their wards but they never understand what their children doing.

The previous government stopped conducting examinations of the students of Class I to VIII. It was not wise decision. The time has come to have check on standard of education.

Set up Sports University, says Dr Ashish Deshmukh

In our education system, sports is most neglected part. In fact it is the part of personality development. I feel sports should be given prime importance and going further I demand that separate Sports University should be established.

System should attract quality teachers: Patangrao Kadam

Private sector has contributed a lot in Maharashtra's education field. The then Chief Minister Yashwantrao Chavan, Education Minister Balasaheb Desai had vision. They opened education and emphasised on quality.

The Government should do something to attract quality and educated teachers to teaching profession.

Make Marathi subject compulsory in Central schools: Imtiyaz Jaleel

Former Minister Rajesh Tope Deepak Chavan, Rajabhau Waje, Adv Parag Alawni, Dr Shashikant Khedekar, Mohd Asif, Abu Azmi, Bhaskar Jadhav, Medha Kulkarni, Balasaheb Murkute, Bhimrao Dhonde, Captain Tamil Selvan, Charan Waghmare, Ameen Patel, Subhash Deshmukh, Bharati Lavekar, Ajit Satav, Bachchu Kadu also spoke on the occasion.

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RCOEM bags NAAC ‘A’ grade

Shri Ramdeobaba College of Engineering and Management, (RCOEM) has been awarded 'A' grade by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC), an autonomous institution of the University ... Read More
Shri Ramdeobaba College of Engineering and Management, (RCOEM) has been awarded 'A' grade by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC), an autonomous institution of the University Grants Commission (UGC), in its first cycle of accreditation. The NAAC peer team recently visited the campus of RCOEM for three days in the month of September for the assessment process.

The Standing Committee of Executive Committee processed and approved the Peer Team's report of NAAC and accredited RCOEM with a CGPA of 3.10 on a four point scale at 'A' Grade valid for a period of five years from December 10, 2014, which is one of the highest CGPA in Central India and Maharashtra.

The peer team handed over detailed report to the Principal Dr R S Pande during the exit report meeting to initiate further quality enhancement measures. The committee in its report has specifically mentioned and highlighted three things about RCOEM: 1. A linguistic minority college with highest rank in Vidarbha region, 2. Very committed and ethical management. 3. Good stakeholders relationships.

The College was established in 1984 and is the most sought after technical institute in Central India. The college was conferred with autonomous status by the UGC and Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University (RTMNU) from academic session 2011-12. The College has an ISO 9001-2008 certification for quality since 2006. It has also received NBA accreditation and reaccreditation for most of its programmes.

The college has been consistently ranked amongst the top engineering colleges in India by reputed ranking agencies such as 'OUTLOOK' and 'Competition Success Review' - Global Human Resource Centre (CSR-GHRDC) owing to its excellence in the area of academics, industrial interface, infrastructure and placement.

The NAAC peer team was chaired by Prof H P Khincha, (former Vice Chancellor of VTU, Belgaum), Department of Electrical Engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. Prof Matabadal Shukla, Faculty of Commerce and Management Studies, Mahatma Gandhi Kashi Vidyapeeth, Varanasi was appointed member coordinator and Prof N Alagumurthi, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Pondicherry Engineering College, Pondicherry and Prof Amiya Kumar Rath, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Veer Surendra Sai University of Technology, Burla, Odisha were the members.

During its three day visit, the peer team visited all the departments of the college and interacted with the teaching and non-teaching staff, students, alumni and parents. They also visited all the support facilities on the campus.

The NAAC team while granting the accreditation appreciated the well-defined process for planning, development and review of curriculum as well as the active involvement of all stakeholders including industry in the development of curriculum designed on outcome based criteria. The NAAC peer team recognised the guidance provided by the college for various competitive examinations to advanced learners as well as the mechanism adopted by the college for improvement of slow learners to be one of its key strengths. The well-defined examination process and the continuous assessment and relative grading systems followed by the college were appreciated by the NAAC team.

The NAAC team emphasised on the work done in the area of research and consultancy activities of the college. It recognised the research facilities at the college and the various extension and NSS activities undertaken as one of its pivotal strengths.

Adequate physical infrastructure and facilities, committed faculty and staff, good placement record, support from local community and stakeholders and proactive management of the college were some of the observations of the NAAC team. The college constantly strives to touch greater heights. This accreditation reinforces the fact that the college has been progressing ahead towards vision set by its Chairman Banwarilal Purohit with missionary zeal of Govindlal Agarwal, General Secretary and the entire team of the Management. It is because of the fair and ethical management of the College under the leadership of Banwarilal Purohit and the dedicated efforts of the members of the teaching and non-teaching staff, that it has been able to build revered reputation in the society.

The management of the college has congratulated all the stake holders for this achievement and has motivated them to achieve enviable heights in pursuit of academic excellence while ensuring that the students of the college not-only outstand as technocrats but also become responsible citizens of the society with high ethical benchmarks.

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Separate fund from mineral royalty for road repairs

The Government will set up a separate fund from the mineral royalty collected, to repair roads that are damaged due to plying of trucks for mineral transportation. Eknath Khadse, Revenue Minister... Read More
The Government will set up a separate fund from the mineral royalty collected, to repair roads that are damaged due to plying of trucks for mineral transportation. Eknath Khadse, Revenue Minister, told the Legislative Assembly on Wednesday.

Khadse was replying to a call attention motion by Ramesh Kadam, Arjun Khotkar and others. The members cited various instances of illegal excavation and transportation of sand in various parts of the State and violation of environmental norms. They lamented that there was inadequate fund for repairs of roads damaged due to trucks that transported sand.

In reply, Khadse said that the auction/tender document would specifically mention the clause regarding royalty share going to separate fund for road repairs. A portion of the royalty collected, will be provided to Public Works Department for road repairs. Further, some portion will be made available to Public Health Department, he added in response to queries about negative impact of pollution caused by mineral transportation on health of people living in the area from where transportation took place. Throughout the State, in financial year 2013-14, the Government had earned revenue of Rs 983 crore out of mineral royalty. Former minister and senior NCP MLA Rajesh Tope demanded installation of CCTV cameras at sand ghats to check illegal excavation and transportation of sand. Further, he said, independent staff should be provided to Tehsildar of respective areas for better functioning. He urged the Government to initiate efforts to find an alternative to sand as construction material, for, there were restrictions on excavation on sand. Ramesh Kadam alleged that Deputy Collector Shankar Jadhav was ‘hand-in-gloves’ with sand mafia.

Responding to Kadam’s demand, Khadse said that Divisional Commissioner of Aurangabad would be asked to initiate enquiry against the said Deputy Collector. If found guilty, the said Deputy Collector would be suspended, said the minister. On the issue of violation of environmental norms, Khadse said that blanket ban could not be imposed on excavation of sand as it would pose a big question over construction activities.

During his reply, Khadse said that Ghat No 1 and 2 in bed of river Sur near village Kodamendhi in Mouda tehsil of Nagpur district were found 'unsuitable' for auction for sand excavation. In Mouda tehsil, between April and November 2014, penalty of Rs 13.85 lakh was recovered in 187 cases of illegal excavation and transportation of sand. In three cases, offences were registered. Besides, measures like putting up barricades were taken to curb illegal transportation of sand. Throughout the State, flying squads were constituted to curb illegal excavation and transportation of sand, Khadse added.

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Local Body Tax to be scrapped by end of financial year: Khadse

Making first official confirmation on abolishing of Local Body Tax, Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse on Wednesday informed the Legislative Council that General and Services Tax (GST) is going to impl... Read More
Making first official confirmation on abolishing of Local Body Tax, Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse on Wednesday informed the Legislative Council that General and Services Tax (GST) is going to implemented in State from April 1, 2015, onwards. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in its election manifesto had promised to abolish LBT, a major demand of the trading community in State. Till now the Government was not forthcoming on date of abolition of the controversial tax that was introduced in lieu of octroi. Today, Khadse ended the prevailing confusion stating by end of this financial year LBT is going to be abolished.

This was informed by Khadse during reply on motion of thanks on Governor's speech. Further he said Central Government has agreed to compensate State Government for losses in lieu of shifting to GST to tune of Rs. 14,000 crores. The tax shortfall would not mean hike in taxes by the Government and we do not want to burden the people of Maharashtra any further.

Khadse further informed the House that a white paper on State's finances is going to be brought by the Government very soon. The move is seen as a way to corner the erstwhile Democratic Front Government but Khadse said the white paper is going to state the position of finances of Maharashtra as of date.

In the reply the Revenue Minister assured the Opposition benches that notwithstanding the difficult position of finances the BJP-Sena Government is going to complete all the promised projects. When the Government took over the reins of power the position of finances is difficult. Adding to woes the nature's fury has further strained the finances but despite that Government is no way going to leave the farmers in soup and same time fulfill all election obligation.

He further said the results cannot be expected immediately and Government is surely going to turnaround the State in short span of time. Maharashtra's position has slumped to number eight in raking among states as neighbouring Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh have gained edge. While Madhya Pradesh could increase irrigation by 24%, during the same period irrigation potential of Maharashtra got reduced. Even the decisions of Krishna Water Disputes Tribunal could not be implemented.

Maximum stress is being laid on on-line functioning for efficient, effective and transparent functioning. An e-portal will be launched very soon and paper work will be reduced. This will ensure transparency, eliminate nepotism and corruption and also delay in the administrative procedures.

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Fed up with Forest Deptt’s apathy, unions decide to cover open wells on their own

CRITICISING Forest Department for its ‘inaction’ in checking continued deaths of precious wild animals after falling in open wells, workers of Lok Garjana and Maharashtra State Forest Guards ... Read More
CRITICISING Forest Department for its ‘inaction’ in checking continued deaths of precious wild animals after falling in open wells, workers of Lok Garjana and Maharashtra State Forest Guards and Promoted Foresters Union have come forward to put up fence around wells without parapet walls in the buffer and adjoining jungle.

Fed up with the callous attitude of the department even after repeated representations during the past five years, Ajay Patil, leader of both the organisations, said that he had information of most such wells but would ask workers to undertake a survey immediately to update the data.

If the department is not still interested in saving wildlife then the workers would take up the programme of putting up temporary fence around the wells.

Patil said that the workers would launch the programme from December 25 on the auspicious occasion of Christmas by putting fence of dried/thorny branches of trees around some wells in the region.

“In the meantime, a deputation of the workers would meet Sarjan Bhagat, Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (Wildlife) in Van Bhavan here on December 19 at 12 noon to discuss this serious issue,” he added.

Patil said that the authorities concerned had given false assurances so far but failed to proceed further on the issue.

“Tiger is a flagship species and national animal holding apex position in the pyramid of wildlife. It’s number is dwindling day by day which is a matter of grave concern to everybody. On one hand the Central Government is spending crores of rupees on protection and conservation of tigers every year while on the other hand Forest Department is allowing tigers and other wild animals to die for silly reason - not making arrangement for at least putting temporary fence of dried/thorny branches for preventing animals fall in the open wells,” he added. When the Central Government is so much concerned about saving tigers, the department should have at least shown a sense of responsibility in support by taking up the work under regular or non-plan budget. The department boasts of doing good job in protection, conservation and effective implementation of wildlife management, he said and questioned their way of management.

Patil urged the State Government to make it mandatory to farmers and provide them grants for construction of parapet walls around the wells situated in buffer and adjoining jungle area.

The work should be taken up in Chandrapur landscape on priority basis as major cases occur in this district - the latest death case of a full-grown tigress in Ratnapur village in Shivani forest range, on Tuesday.

Gopalrao Thosar, a senior environmentalist, who was pained to hear the news of tigress death in open well, said that the field staff members should hold meetings in villages in and around forests to create necessary awareness among rural masses about importance of temporary fence for saving this majestic animal.

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City shivers at 7.70 C

The winter chill is here. For the first time this year, the minimum temperature in the city dropped to 7.7 degrees Celsius on Wednesday morning, with wind chill factor coming into play. The minim... Read More
The winter chill is here. For the first time this year, the minimum temperature in the city dropped to 7.7 degrees Celsius on Wednesday morning, with wind chill factor coming into play. The minimum temperature was three degrees below normal.

Regional Meteorological Centre (RMC) has predicted ‘cold wave conditions’ for next two days, at isolated places over Vidarbha region. The maximum temperature of the city was 24.9 degrees Celsius on Wednesday. There was a huge difference of 17.2 degrees between maximum and minimum temperatures. Nagpurians found it difficult to adjust to such extremes. Wind chill factor and dry weather added to the discomfort levels.

Early in the morning and by evening, in various corners and along major squares of the city, people were seen trying to find comfort in the warmth of bonfires. Wednesday proved to be the coldest day of the year so far. The city recorded the lowest-ever minimum temperature of 5.5 degrees Celsius on December 29, 1968.

As per the RMC, maximum and minimum temperatures ‘appreciably fell’ over East Vidarbha and changed little over West Vidarbha. Minimum temperatures ‘markedly fell’ over East Vidarbha and dipped ‘appreciably’ over West Vidarbha. The weatherman has forecast minimum temperature to be around 7 degrees Celsius on Thursday and 8 degrees Celsius on Friday. The maximum temperature is likely to remain around 26 degrees Celsius.

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Sena MLA booked for assaulting SPU officer

HIGH drama was witnessed at Hotel Pride after Shiv Sena MLA Harshavardhan Jadhav allegedly slapped a Police Inspector when he did not allow him to meet his party supremo Uddhav Thackeray in his... Read More
HIGH drama was witnessed at Hotel Pride after Shiv Sena MLA Harshavardhan Jadhav allegedly slapped a Police Inspector when he did not allow him to meet his party supremo Uddhav Thackeray in his presidential suit on Wednesday evening. After allegedly creating scenes, MLA Jadhav fled the hotel but was later booked by Sonegaon Police for assaulting Inspector Parag Jadhav of Special Protection Unit (SPU) (Nashik ) deployed in the personal security of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray and deterring him from discharge of his duty.

Uddhav Thackeray arrived in the city to hold meeting with party ministers and leaders. The meeting was held in Hotel Pride. After the meeting ended in the evening, Thackeray went to his presidential suit on the fourth floor with Environment Minister Ramdas Kadam and other leaders. The door was then closed from inside. The door was opened after Transport Minister Diwakar Raote came. It was again closed and none was allowed inside. However, MLA Jadhav tried to enter the suit but was prevented by the three SPU officers, including Inspector Parag Jadhav, who were deployed in security of the Shiv Sena chief. MLA Jadhav created scenes and allegedly assaulted Inspector Parag Jadhav and fled the hotel. As the news about the incident reached Shiv Sena chief Thackeray, the latter got terribly upset. He told his men that he won’t leave the hotel till MLA Jadhav was brought before him. Party leaders and police officers searched but could not locate MLA Jadhav immediately.

Senior Inspector P R Shah, in-charge of Sonegaon Police Station, told ‘The Hitavada’ that an offence under Sections 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty) and 323 of the Indian Penal Code has been registered against MLA Jadhav following a complaint lodged by SPU officer Parag Jadhav. Further investigations are under way, he added. Speaking to some television channels, MLA Jadhav denied the slapping incident and blamed the media for blowing up the matter out of proportion.

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Uddhav Thackeray to tour Vidarbha with Shiv Sena MLAs, Ministers

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Wednesday exhorted Sena Ministers and MLAs to work effectively and make their presence felt in the legislature and every part of Maharashtra. The Sena chief, i... Read More
Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Wednesday exhorted Sena Ministers and MLAs to work effectively and make their presence felt in the legislature and every part of Maharashtra. The Sena chief, in closed door parleys with the party leaders, stressed on performance of Ministers of the party. He urged the MLAs and Ministers to live upto expectations of the people and not to get overshadowed by the alliance partner.

Thackeray decided to tour Vidarbha region along with all Sena legislators and Ministers to assess the agrarian crisis on the lines of his much-publicised Marathwada tour.

Sena has three MPs in West Vidarbha and one in Nagpur division and party apparently wants to consolidate its base.

Though, Sena legislators who could not be accommodated in the cabinet were bit unhappy, the Sena chief and other senior leaders during the meeting, appreciated bold and far-reaching steps taken by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis who has accorded due respect to Sena Ministers in the decision-making process and maintained excellent co-ordination with them and party leadership. Senior Ministers Subhash Desai, Diwakar Raote, Ramdas Kadam, Eknath Shinde, Dipak Sawant were present.

According to Sena leaders, the party chief advised them to extend whole-hearted co-operation to the Government and ensure that all measures announced by BJP-Sena alliance Government are implemented successfully. He also asked Vidarbha office-bearers to strengthen organisation, particularly in East Vidarbha, where party fared quite poorly in Assembly elections.

Thackeray arrived in city on Wednesday to hold deliberations with party legislators, ministers, party’s Vidarbha office-bearers and candidates who lost in the region at a closed-door meeting in Hotel Pride. Accompanied by son Aditya, Uddhav Thackeray addressed the party members before leaving for Mumbai in the evening. Even when the party was in the Opposition, Thackeray made it a point to visit Nagpur during winter session and he maintained this tradition this year as well.

Later, talking to mediapersons, Shiv Sena chief stated that along with Ministers and Legislators, he will visit the region to keep watch on release of package for farmers of drought-hit areas in Marathwada and Vidarbha. Thackeray, who had visited Marathwada region with 63 legislators to assess drought situation, stated that State Government has announced good package to the drought-hit and hailstorm-hit farmers in the State. The Shiv Sena legislators will also visit affected areas in Vidarbha region. He said, it is responsibility of every Shiv Sainik to monitor the release of fund to affected farmers in their respective areas.

Sources claimed that Thackeray discussed with Ministers and MLAs regarding working of Legislature. He also reviewed shortcomings during election from defeated candidates.

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GST: Local bodies may lose revenue of Rs 12,000 crore

Responding to the Central Government’s call for pre-introduction comments on Goods and Services Tax (GST), Maharashtra Government has assessed the financial implications on State exchequer an... Read More
Responding to the Central Government’s call for pre-introduction comments on Goods and Services Tax (GST), Maharashtra Government has assessed the financial implications on State exchequer and revenue earnings of local bodies in this regard. As per the assessment, if GST is introduced with the clause of subsuming entry taxes, local bodies will lose revenue of Rs 12,000 crore per annum. Losing such a huge revenue will put local bodies in trouble. Raising GST by 1-2 per cent also will not fill up the huge revenue gap for local bodies in State.

Hence, the State Government has urged the Central Government to fill up this gap by compensating the State for next 10 years. At present, the Centre has proposed to compensate the States for transition to GST for three years.

The assessment regarding financial implications of GST on Maharashtra has been prepared by Finance Department. “We have assessed the situation and have sought aid from the Centre to fill up revenue shortfall. Central Government has assured the States to compensate for the revenue gap,” Maharashtra Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar told ‘The Hitavada’. At present, the biggest financial strength of local bodies is entry taxes like octroi/Local Body Tax (LBT).

Maharashtra Government has expressed its reservations over Paragraph 279 (A) that grants veto power to the Centre regarding decisions of GST Council, and Paragraph 286 (3) that restricts State’s powers to levy tax on sale or purchase of notified goods like petroleum products and liquor. State has strongly advocated repeal of the provision under Paragraph 286 (3), as it would result in huge revenue loss on account of restriction on levy of sales tax on petroleum products and liquor.

GST proposal empowers Centre to levy GST on tobacco. Maharashtra Government levies 25 per cent tax on cigarette and tobacco, and 12.5 per cent on beedi. From these taxes, Maharashtra earns a revenue of Rs 700 crore per annum. If the Centre is empowered to levy GST, and State’s powers are restricted in this regard, it would affect the State’s revenue. Hence, Maharashtra has demanded empowerment of States to levy GST and sales tax on tobacco.

Also, Maharashtra Government has pointed out to the Central Government that during the transition to GST, the former would need compensation to a huge extent. Maharashtra is yet to get compensation of Rs 1,686 crore from the Centre for Value Added Tax (VAT) for the years 2006-07 and 2007-08. For Central Sales Tax, for the year 2009-10 and 2010-11, State is yet to get compensation of Rs 553 crore from the Centre.

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State achieves 90% target in PM Jan-Dhan scheme

Under the Jan-Dhan scheme initiated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi under which bank accounts have to be opened in the name of families, the state of Chhattisgarh has made considerable progress. ... Read More
Under the Jan-Dhan scheme initiated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi under which bank accounts have to be opened in the name of families, the state of Chhattisgarh has made considerable progress. About 90% of the families in Chhattisgarh have opened their bank accounts under the scheme. In naxal affected Bastar Division, 75% families in 7 districts have opened their accounts and in rest of the district the achievement is 92%.

According to information districts like Korea, Mahasamund, Dhamtari, Surajpur, Mungeli, Sarguja, Rajnandgaon, Bemetara, Bilaspur, Jashpur, Kondagaon, Kanker, Durg, Raipur, Raigarh and Kabirdham have been successful in executing the Jan-Dhan scheme and in these districts more than 90% families have opened their bank account. Sources informed that the government has set a target date of December last to achieve 100% target in all the districts except Bastar Division where the target set is 85%. Chief Minister Dr. Raman Singh has congratulated all Divisional Commissioners, District Collectors and bank officials for making progress in achieving target under the Prime Minister’s Jan-Dhan scheme. He also directed the officials to achieve the set target by December end.

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State still stands in second lowest position on enrollment in higher edn

Despite several claims of the State Government and set up of various universities, there has been negligible growth in the higher education across the Chhattisgarh. The state still stands in seco... Read More
Despite several claims of the State Government and set up of various universities, there has been negligible growth in the higher education across the Chhattisgarh. The state still stands in second lowest position among all 29 states and 7 union territories of the nation on enrollment in higher education. The figures of higher education released by Union Ministry of Human Resources Development state that from 2006-07 to 2012-13, Chhattisgarh registered a growth of only 3.16% at enrollment of students in different sections of higher education. During 2012-13, 37.15% youngsters in the age group of 17 to 24 years were enrolled in higher educational institutes against 33.99% enrollment of students in higher education institutions in 2006-07. The second lowest out of all states in the nation, after undivided Andhra Pradesh which recorded 37.08% enrollment of students in higher education. In enrollment of boys, state recorded a growth of 4.43% during this period of 7 years whereas in enrollment of girls, state registered a growth of 1.89% in these seven years, one of the lowest amongst all states and union territories. In 2012-13, 82 girls enrolled for 100 boys in higher educational institutions at the state against 78 girls for 100 boys in 2006-07. The total enrolments of the youngsters in higher education across the state were 5.4 lakhs including 1.95 lakh girls. This is really a disturbing factor as from 2005 to 2012, with the support of University Grants Commission, Chhattisgarh Government as well as Chhattisgarh Higher Education Department did several things like the set up of 12 new universities including 4 private ones in different streams such as medicine, technical, veterinary and others and 210 new colleges. In fact higher education of department has also played a vital role in the formation of IIM Raipur and NIT Raipur. Apart from it, a state government has also introduced many scholarships and financial support systems for rising the number of girl enrollment in higher education and also youngsters of Scheduled Tribe (ST) and Scheduled Caste (SC). But these schemes and other activities of state government in promoting and growth of higher education also failed to raise the developments of it in all parts of Chhattisgarh. It is also interesting to note that that a small percent of enrollments in the educational institutions of state are from neighbouring states because of low fees structure in many courses as compared to other states like Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Southern States.

‘Over the past decade, admission of higher education in Chhattisgarh has improved but not in satisfactory mode. Still large numbers of youths in tribal as well as non tribal districts do not turn up for taking admission in undergraduate courses after finishing their school studies. The difference in higher education between the rural and urban areas needs to be bridged to further link the gap between the enrolments of both boys’ and girls’ stated Dr. Mahesh Chandra Sharma, Higher Educationist and Principal of Indira Government Colleges of Arts, Science and Commerce Bhilainagar.

When contacted, Dr. PC Choubey, Joint Director of Chhattisgarh Higher Education Department said he has no idea about this statistics so he could not comment on it.

On the other hand, Premprakash Pandey, State Higher Education Minister of Chhattisgarh did not respond the calls and remained unavailable for comment.

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BJP candidate K Abu elected unopposed

Bharatiya Janata Party candidate K Abu from Ward No 14, Mother Teresa Ward in Mana Nagar Panchayat has been declared elected unopposed. BJP District President Ashok Pandey while congratulating hi... Read More
Bharatiya Janata Party candidate K Abu from Ward No 14, Mother Teresa Ward in Mana Nagar Panchayat has been declared elected unopposed. BJP District President Ashok Pandey while congratulating him has extended his best wishes. Pandey stated that the Congress will be facing similar situation in all urban bodies in the state and the same has been started from Mana Nagar Panchayat. He said he is confident that the Congress will fail to win a single seat from Raipur Municipal Corporation and in all 70 wards BJP candidates will be victorious.

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RSCC urges rebel candidates to withdraw names from polls

Raipur Shahar Congress Committee (RSCC) President Vikas Upadhyay has constituted a committee to persuade the party’s rebel candidates contesting in municipal polls and make them withdraw names ... Read More
Raipur Shahar Congress Committee (RSCC) President Vikas Upadhyay has constituted a committee to persuade the party’s rebel candidates contesting in municipal polls and make them withdraw names before December 19. The committee has been constituted with Dr Kiran Mayee Nayak as its convener and Iqbal Ahmed Rizvi, Ramesh Warlyani, Abdul Hamid Hayat, Inderchand Dhariwal, Pramod Choubey, Shiv Gwalani, Mahesh Sharma, Ajay Tripathi and others as members. The committee has also been tasked to convey the list of Congress leaders/workers who refuse to back down from contesting against official Congress candidate promptly so that appropriate action against them could be initiated timely.

Meanwhile, RSCC President Vikas Upadhyay has also consulted Congress’s Raipur Mayor candidate Pramod Dubey to chalk out joint campaigning schedule. The finalized schedule includes canvassing in Srinagar, Gudhiyari, Murra Bhatti, Shukrawari Bazaar, Pahadi Chowk, Ram Nagar, Bharat Nagar, Kota colony, Mahoba Bazaar areas by early evening of Dec 18 where after RSCC office-bearers meeting has been organized. The campaigning would there after cover Madarasa Chowk, Baijnathpara, Katora Talab and Santoshi Nagar areas.

To enforce coordination between Congress office-bearers and party candidates contesting municipal polls, Congress has instituted state level control room with party state Secretary Shiv Singh Thakur, Ajay Sahu, Hardip Singh Benipal, party state Secretary, Nivedita Chhatterjee, Pranav Shukla.

Cong announces election committee for Raipur municipal election

Congress has announced election committee for Raipur Municipal election which includes senior party leaders like Satyanarayan Sharma, Dhanendra Sahu, Mohammed Akbar, Amitesh Shukla, Swarupchand Jain, Subhash Ghuppad, Paras Chopra, Iqbal Ahmed Rizvi, Abdul Hamid Hayat and many others. These leaders would also be canvassing for the party actively in the upcoming elections.

Meanwhile, Congress would be releasing its manifesto for municipal elections in a day or two even as ruling party would be releasing the election document on Thursday itself.

Congress leader Mohammed Akbar, also convener of state manifesto committee, told The Hitavada over phone that manifesto is ready for all practical purposes and only approval from state election committee is required. He also denied that Congress wanted to release its manifesto after having a look at BJP promise list.

Cong announces candidature for 8 Nagar Panchayat President, 2 Municipal Council

Congress, on Wednesday, announced its candidates for remaining two Municipal Council President. The party also announced the candidature for remaining eight Nagar Panchayat President. As per the list, Rajkumar Kesharwani and Dhanraj Madhyani have been fielded for Municipal Council President in Manendragarh and Gobra Navapara, both of which have been declared as general seats. Likewise, Rajesh Agrawal, Seeta Parihar, Rajkumar Ratre, Anil Chandrakar, Premlal Sinha have been fielded for Nagar Panchayat President in Lakhanpur (Gen), Pali (Gen Woman), Adbhar (SC), Fingeswar (OBC) and Pithora (OBC). Sanjay Tapan Chandrakar, Peman Swarnber and Kamla Goyal have been fielded as Congress candidates for Nagar Panchayat President in Kurud, Nagri and Kura.

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UFBU announces nation-wide bank strike on January 7

UNITED Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), an umbrella organisation consisting of five award staff and four officer’s bank unions have announced a nationwide strike on January 7, 2015. According to ... Read More
UNITED Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), an umbrella organisation consisting of five award staff and four officer’s bank unions have announced a nationwide strike on January 7, 2015. According to General Secretary of Bank Employee’s Federation (CG) D K Sarkar and Assistant General Secretary of Chhattisgarh Bank’s Employees Association Shirish Nalgundwar, after zone-wise strikes across the country from December 2 to 5 on longpending single agenda ‘Revision of wages’ and the adamant attitude of Indian Banks Association (IBA), the UFBU members met in Mumbai on Wednesday to chalk out future agitations. The scheduled meeting was chaired by UFBU Convener M V Murali.

As decided in the meeting, a daylong countrywide strike will be observed by UFBU on January 7, 2015 which will be followed with a four-day strike from January 21 to 24. During the meeting, it was further decided that if the demands were not fulfilled, an indefinite bank strike will commence from March 16, 2015, the duo added.

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New Vidhan Sabha at Naya Raipur

High–level meeting regarding the construction of new Assembly building and MLA rest house at Naya Raipur was held here on Wednesday. The land has been allotted by Naya Raipur Development Author... Read More
High–level meeting regarding the construction of new Assembly building and MLA rest house at Naya Raipur was held here on Wednesday. The land has been allotted by Naya Raipur Development Authority and soon the work will commence regarding the construction the new Vidhan Sabha building. During the meeting members discussed lay-out and planning of the building as well as guest house. Present during the meeting were Assembly Speaker Gaurishankar Agrawal, Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh, ministers Prem Prakash Pandey, Brijmohan Agrawal, Rajesh Munat, Secretaries Bajendra Kumar, Vivek Dhand, Devendra Verma, Amitabh Jain, K R Pisda, SS Bajaj, Amit Katariya and Sanjay Shukla.

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Cong demands CM’s resignation over sterilization deaths issue

The impasse in the House continued for the third consecutive day with Congress Legislators creating pandemonium in the House over sterilization deaths, demanding Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh’s... Read More
The impasse in the House continued for the third consecutive day with Congress Legislators creating pandemonium in the House over sterilization deaths, demanding Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh’s resignation and dismissal of Health Minister Amar Agrawal. However, the opposition Congress legislators had to come on back-foot as the BJP Legislators while countering the opposition onslaught raised the issue of insult to Father of the Nation by Congress. The House proceeding was suspended once but the chaos and mayhem continued with all the Congress Legislators shouting slogans and creating hindrance in the House proceedings. Later Congress Legislators were suspended due to their infringement into the Well of the House. However, the House adjourned today ahead of the schedule but before adjourning sine die, all listed business including passage of 2nd Supplementary budget were completed.

Before start of the Question Hour, the House paid homage to all the 160 persons including 132 school children, who were brutally killed at Peshawar in Pakistan by militants. Speaker Gaurishankar Agrawal, Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh and Congress Legislative Party Leader T S Singhdeo termed the incident as heinous. They said the incident which brought disgrace to the complete human race has been intended to disturb peace and invoke terror. They said not only Pakistan but the whole world has been left shaken from the incident. Every country in the world has criticized this incident in strongest words. This House severely condemns this heart rendering and heinous incident and extends its deep condolence.

As soon as the Question Hour began on Wednesday, the Congress Legislators donning flex apron type banners depicting pictures and slogans depicting sterilization deaths and farmers issue and created pandemonium in the House demanding resignation of Chief Minister and dismissal of Health Minister. Strongly countering the onslaught the BJP Legislators raised the issue of insult to Father of the Nation. BJP Legislator Shivratan Sharma while raising the issue said Congress Legislators had insulted Mahatma Gandhi by donning his statue with a black shawl within the Assembly annex on Tuesday. Sharma and the BJP Legislators created chaos by shouting slogans like ‘Mahatma Gandhi ka apman nahi sahenge’ while seeking unconditional apology from Congress.

Revenue Minister Prem Prakash Pandey raised the issue that the Congress Legislators have entered the House donning flex posters resembling flag and symbol which is prohibited in the House as per norms. He also said the Congress is doing all these mayhem for political gains. CLP Leader countering the allegations said the Treasury benches are putting pressure upon opposition by raising all these issues. Amidst all these chaos and mayhem Speaker Gaurishankar Agrawal adjourned the House proceedings till 12 Noon.

But as the House resumed Congress Legislators continued with their slogans demanding resignation of CM and dismissal of Health Minister Amar Agrawal. Countering the onslaught the BJP Legislators produced a bottle in the House displaying which they said they are going outside to purify Gandhiji’s statue which was insulted by Congress and went outside the House moving towards Gandhi statue while demanding apology from Congress members.

Not happy over the developments Congress legislators infringed into the Well of the House after which they were automatically suspended and they left the House. However, after undertaking few proceedings the suspension of Congress Legislators were revoked but they did not return.

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26-year-old youth commits suicide after being duped by acquaintance

A 26-year-old youth committed suicide in State capital here on Tuesday night. The deceased was worried after an acquaintance duped him. Police said that Sultan Singh, 26, resident of Daulatpura... Read More
A 26-year-old youth committed suicide in State capital here on Tuesday night. The deceased was worried after an acquaintance duped him. Police said that Sultan Singh, 26, resident of Daulatpura village, used to work in a private engineering college as a lab attendant. He used to reside with his wife and daughter in Daulatpura village under Bilkhiria police station. On Tuesday night, his wife and daughter went to their relative’s place to stay, but when they returned next morning, they found Sultan hanging from the ceiling fan in his room. He was immediately rushed to a hospital with help of the neighbours. Doctors at the hospital declared him brought dead. Police immediately rushed to the spot and seized the body. Police have sent the body for postmortem and have initiated investigation in the matter. Sultan has left a suicide note behind in which it was mentioned that he was duped by his acquaintance Raju Yadav. Sultan needed gas cylinder for his house. Raju took him along on the pretext of getting him cylinder. But Raju fled and mortgaged it to a trader. Sultan had to pay the loan amount to get his motorcycle back.

In the suicide note, he has mentioned several more things against Raju. Police have initiated investigation and are going to interrogate Raju. Police have registered a case under section 174 of CrPC and are continuing investigation. Body of the deceased was handed over to his next of kin after postmortem.

Also, in Bilkhiria area, a 60-year-old man committed suicide in Bilkhiria area only. Sevaram Kushwah, 60, son of Balmukund Kushwah hanged himself on December 15 and succumbed to his injuries on Wednesday. Reportedly, Sevaram was suffering from a mental disease and was in depression. Police have lodged a case under section 174 of CrPC and have initiated investigation.

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Crime Branch nab miscreants, solve half a dozen cases in one single shot

Crime Branch Bhopal solved more than half-a-dozen cases of theft and loot with the arrest of three miscreants from State capital here on Tuesday. Additional SP (Crime), Shailendra Singh Chouh... Read More
Crime Branch Bhopal solved more than half-a-dozen cases of theft and loot with the arrest of three miscreants from State capital here on Tuesday. Additional SP (Crime), Shailendra Singh Chouhan said, “The miscreants were involved in several theft and loot attempts in Ratibad area and were highly active for last some time. The miscreants had looted a mason after calling him to an empty plot on the pretext of showing land for construction of a house. Believing them, the mason had reached the site, where they looted him at gun point.” Chouhan further said that the modus operandi of the accused was to call a mason or property dealer on his mobile number and then ask him to reach a secluded area, where the accused then looted them using sharp-edged weapon or fake pistol. The accused also used to wait on secluded roads for passersby. When someone reached near them, they used to stop him and then loot the person. “Crime branch was tipped off that two persons are talking about Ratibad loot attempt in a liquor shop at Jawahar Chowk depot. A team was immediately rushed to the said location. Police team nabbed the suspects, identifying with their facial features,” said Chouhan. On interrogating them, the accused confessed that on December 12, they had tried to rob a microfinance company agent and injured him. They had also looted a roadside trader at gun-point at Bilkhiria on November 18.

Akhilesh Kastawar, 26, son of Mannulal Kastawar resident of Suraj Nagar in Ratibad and Shaitan Singh, 25, resident of village Kolua Kala under Bilkhiria police station, told police that they used to steal or loot expensive mobiles and cash from people in Ratibad area. Their accomplice Kailash Malviya, 22, son of Shivlal Malviya, a resident of Neelbad was nabbed from his house late on Tuesday night.

Police are now interrogating the accused to solve more cases of theft and loot.

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Crime Branch arrests 50-year-old man for circulating counterfeit notes

Bhopal Crime Branch has nabbed a miscreant involved in business of counterfeit currency and seized counterfeit notes from his possession. The arrested 50-year-old accused was earlier also nabbed ... Read More
Bhopal Crime Branch has nabbed a miscreant involved in business of counterfeit currency and seized counterfeit notes from his possession. The arrested 50-year-old accused was earlier also nabbed on same charges few years ago.

Addditional SP, Crime Shailendra Singh Chouhan said, “Nabbed accused Rizwan used to bring these counterfeit notes from Bihar and sell them for Rs 80 for every Rs 100 note. Crime branch team has recovered counterfeit notes worth Rs 65,000 from the accused.” Chouhan said that the branch was tipped off some time back that a person was circulating fake notes of Rs 1,000, Rs 500 and Rs 100. Cops kept eye on his every activity and increased terms with people he was doing business with. Accused Rizwan Ahmed, 50, son of Anees Ahmed was a resident of Raitghat under Talaiya police station and he worked as a property dealer.

Crime branch received information that the suspect was going to pay counterfeit notes for a property deal at Iqbal Maidan. At Iqbal Maidan, police team waited but no one came to meet Rizwan. Rizwan, while sitting on a bench, started counting the notes. At that moment, police team reached and questioned him about the Rs 25,000 cash he was possessing.

Rizwan claimed the money was for a property deal but could not tell from which bank or ATM he had withdrawn the amount. Rizwan confessed to his crime and said that he was using counterfeit notes, brought from Bihar, during property dealings. He also said that some Rs 40,000 counterfeit notes were kept at his house, which was later seized by police. Rizwan, during interrogation, said that he used to retail these fake notes for Rs 80 per Rs 100 note. Rizwan claimed that he purchased these notes for Rs 40 per Rs 100 note. According to sources, Rizwan had circulated over Rs 5 lakh in Bhopal markets.

He was earlier arrested in 2005 by Shahjahanabad police for possessing and circulating fake notes. Crime Branch police arrested him and is interrogating him to solve more cases of counterfeit notes. Reportedly, held accused is just one link of a larger chain.

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State to get addl one lakh MT urea

Agriculture Minister Gaurishankar Bisen met Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh and Chemicals & Fertilisers Minister Ananth Kumar in New Delhi on Wednesday.

He apprised them abou... Read More
Agriculture Minister Gaurishankar Bisen met Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh and Chemicals & Fertilisers Minister Ananth Kumar in New Delhi on Wednesday.

He apprised them about State’s agriculture scenario. He informed that sowing operations had accelerated following recent rains in over 20 districts of the State. At this stage, farmers were in dire need of urea. The Union Minister duo congratulated Madhya Pradesh for maintaining excellence in agriculture production and getting Krishi Karman Award for third straight year. He assured to send 5 rakes of urea to Madhya Pradesh daily in December as well as making good for previous shortfall in supply. He said that the State would be provided additional one lakh MT urea fertiliser. Following the meeting of Union Agriculture Minister with Bisen, sanction was granted to release Rs 235 crore out of Rs 261 crore under Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY). Rs 66 crore out of Rs 235 crore had already been received by the State.

Bisen urged to release Central share in other Centrally-sponsored agriculture schemes. He was accompanied by Principal Secretary Rajesh Rajora. Rajora informed that 3,70,000 MT urea had been allotted to the State for December, of which, 2,55,000 MT had been received so far. The State had received much less fertiliser than fixed for October and November. In meeting, it was decided to remove chronic shortage of fertiliser and allot additional one lakh MT fertiliser in order to continue the high level of production in the State.

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Madhya Pradesh pioneer in implementing self-attested document system: Arya

General Administration Department (GAD) Minister Lal Singh Arya presented annual report card of his department on Wednesday. Highlighting various achievements of his department, he said that Madh... Read More
General Administration Department (GAD) Minister Lal Singh Arya presented annual report card of his department on Wednesday. Highlighting various achievements of his department, he said that Madhya Pradesh was the pioneering state in implementing self declaration letter and self attested document system.

He said, now, no signature of revenue officers would be issued on income certificate and domicile certificate. “Now, civilians can avail facilities by giving declaration letter having their own sign. Apart from this, now there is no need to get attested documents from any gazetted officers. One can self attest the documents.”

The policy related to appointment on compassionate grounds had been rationalised. “It has been made mandatory to write the words ‘government servant’ while communicating at Government level. Apart from this, provision has been made to conduct DPC twice in a year. Wi-fi connectivity has been ensured in Vallabh Bhawan,” the Minister said, adding that there was a proposal for implementing biometric attendance system.

Arya said that irrigation capacity was increasing every year under projects of Narmada Valley Development Department. After constitution of Narmada Valley Development Department, work of construction of Indira Sagar, Omkareshwar, Rani Awanti Bai Sagar, Maan, Jobat, Punasa, Aparbeda projects had been taken up and out of them, Indira Sagar, Omkareshwar and Rani Awanti Bai Sagar projects had been completed. “In near future, work of Narmada Gambhir link project would be started,” he said.

When a question was asked that GAD did not give prosecution permission to Lokayukta organisation, he said that it was a process in which things were being looked into by Legal Department.

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Malnutrition has come down in State: Maya Singh

Women and Child Development Minister Maya Singh informed that malnutrition percentage had come down in Madhya Pradesh. Besides, her department was conducting ‘Suposhan’ campaign to end malnut... Read More
Women and Child Development Minister Maya Singh informed that malnutrition percentage had come down in Madhya Pradesh. Besides, her department was conducting ‘Suposhan’ campaign to end malnutrition in State. Aaganwadi Chalo campaign would be conducted every year.

Tabling the annual report card of her department before media, Maya Singh said myriad steps were being taken for the overall growth of children through anganwadis and by providing nutritious food to children.

She said that, now, gender budgeting had gone up to 28.5 percent. An agreement had been signed between Madhya Pradesh Government and UN on February 19 for extending technical cooperation in gender budget. Efforts of Madhya Pradesh in the direction of gender budget had been lauded at four national workshops in Delhi, participated by representatives from Nepal, India, Bhutan and Bangladesh. A high-level delegation of Bhutan recently visited the State to study implementation of gender budgeting.

She added that activities under Tejaswani rural women empowerment scheme had been lauded and awarded at national level. Ladli Laxmi Yojana was an ambitious scheme of state Government, in which, 1.36 lakh girls were registered as Ladli Laxmi in current year. So far, 18.62 lakh girls were being benefitted through the scheme and more than 16 lakh families had opted for family planning.

More than 51,000 child marriages were stopped under Lado scheme. Shaurya Dal had been constituted in 20 districts to stop violence and atrocities against girls and women and end social evils. Child adoption process had been simplified in State. Earlier, this process was taking time of one year and now, it took time of only six months. Action process had been started against those Anganwadi workers who got married and settled in some other cities and failed to render service. Answering a question, she said it was due to narrow-minded thinking that new born girls were being thrown in garbage.

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This time, ‘Simhastha’ to be held as ‘Green Simhastha’: Vijayvargiya

Urban Administration Minister Kailash Vijayvargiya said preparations of ‘Simhastha’, to be organised in Ujjain, would be completed within stipulated time-limit. This time, ‘Simhastha’ w... Read More
Urban Administration Minister Kailash Vijayvargiya said preparations of ‘Simhastha’, to be organised in Ujjain, would be completed within stipulated time-limit. This time, ‘Simhastha’ would be organised in the form of ‘Green Simhastha’ and use of bio-fuel in vehicles would be promoted. Besides, target of providing clean drinking water in all cities had been kept in Vision 2018.

Presenting the annual report card of his department before media, Kailash Vijayvargiya said that DPR for Light Metro Train (LMT) for Bhopal and Indore was being prepared and pre-feasibility study for the LMT process was underway for Jabalpur and Gwalior. Parking master plan, public transportation master plan, advertisement master plan for five big cities and dedicated urban transport fund is being constituted for strengthening of public transport system of these cities.

Speaking about ‘Simhastha’, he said that an international level convention would be organised in ‘Simhastha 2016’, apart from organising international level programme in which all religious leaders would be invited. He also said that head of Dera Sachha Sauda was having a band of dedicated workers for cleanliness and hence, Dera Sachha Sauda would be requested to take care of cleanliness of ‘Simhastha’. Vijayvargiya said the practice of open defection in local bodies would be ended by 2017 under ‘Clean India Clean Madhya Pradesh Mission’. “Process is under way to constitute regional solid waste management units under PPP model to make local bodies free from garbage,” he informed, adding that Narmada was the least polluted river in the country and to make it free from pollution, work of channelising nullahs would be done.

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Massacre of children most heinous crime: CM

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has said that massacre of children by terrorists in Peshawar was the most heinous crime against humanity. Obliteration of terrorism was entire world’s ple... Read More
Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has said that massacre of children by terrorists in Peshawar was the most heinous crime against humanity. Obliteration of terrorism was entire world’s pledge. Chouhan was addressing a condolence meeting at Subhash School for Excellence on Wednesday.

Chouhan said that no religion or sect approved of such acts. “Children belong to entire world and not any country or religion. Children cannot be bound within boundaries of religion and country. No amount of condemnation is enough for such a barbarous and dastardly act against children,” he said, adding that entire country stood by the bereaved families of deceased children. He prayed to the Almighty to grant peace to the departed souls and strength to the bereaved families to bear the loss. At the meeting, two-minute silence was observed to pay tributes to the deceased children.

Health Minister Dr Narottam Mishra, Minister of State for School Education Deepak Joshi, Additional Chief Secretary Sudhir Ranjan Mohanty and school children were present on the occasion. The Chief Minister, school children and all those present on the occasion paid floral tributes to students and teachers killed in terrorist attack.

Governor Ram Naresh Yadav also condemned the terrorist attack on Peshawar Army School in strong words, describing it as a dastardly act. The Governor said that terrorism had no religion and country. “Our country stands by neighbouring countries in fight against terrorism,” he said. At a condolence meeting at Raj Bhavan, Governor Yadav, officers and employees observed two-minute silence to pay homage to children deceased in the terrorist attack. Principal Secretary to Governor Vinod Semwal was also present on the occasion. Home Minister Babulal Gaur also condemned the terrorist attack on Army School in Peshawar. Gaur expressed profound grief over the brutal massacre of innocent children.

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Matter on removal of illegal hoardings to be heard on Jan 13

DEPUTY Director of Urban Administration and Development (UAD) Department Rajiv Nigam has appeared in person before the division bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Kha... Read More
DEPUTY Director of Urban Administration and Development (UAD) Department Rajiv Nigam has appeared in person before the division bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Sanjay Yadav stated in compliance of order dated on October 15, 2014, directions issued to the Collectors and Superintendent of Police across the State against Civil, criminal proceedings against person who had installed illegal hoardings and further submitted removal proceedings of hoardings is continue and a compliance be filed in. As per petitioner’s request the division bench directed the authority to ensure that whether any permission granted to installed hoardings contrary to regulations that it will also be treated as illegal. The division bench has listed the case for hearing on January 13, 2015. Earlier, the division bench had allowed 48 more hours to remove unauthorised hoardings across the State. Piyush Dharmadhikari, counsel for the State, stated before the court that 7,862 hoardings have been removed in compliance. The division bench observed these figures and efforts are very less and State has not shown realistic efforts in removing hoardings except issuing general directions to municipal bodies. The division bench in its order said that all collectors, District Magistrate and Superintendent of Police across the State should also take action against nuisance caused due to illegal hoardings. Further directed if order is not complied in true spirit it will be viewed seriously in next hearing. The division bench has given said directions in public interest litigation filed by Advocate Satish Kumar Verma challenging illegal and unauthorised hoardings erected along roadside.

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PIL disposed off

A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Sanjay Yadav has given directions in matter related to extension of benefits of Jawaharlal Nehru ... Read More
A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Sanjay Yadav has given directions in matter related to extension of benefits of Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) to all slum-dwellers of Jhuggi Basti near Gautam Nagar Water Tank, Bhopal. ‘The petitioner has already made representation to the Bhopal Collector in that behalf as land on which unauthorised structures have been built is a government land. Since, petitioner has already resorted to that remedy, the petitioner cannot be permitted to pursue two parallel proceedings. We decline to entertain this petition, which has been filed as public interest litigation. On the contrary, we place on record submission of respondents that suitable action will be taken by authorities by following due process. The authorities are free to proceed in matter in accordance with law. Petition is disposed off accordingly, said division bench in directions given to authorities related to JNNURM. Petition was filed by Pritam Sharma claimed relief in petition to direct authorities to extend benefit of Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission to all slum-dwellers of Jhuggi Basti near Gautam Nagar Water Tank, Bhopal. Advocate Shekhar Sharma appeared on behalf of the petitioner, while Swapnil Ganguly, Deputy Government Advocate for the respondent State.

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Women at driving seat of Metro buses set to give new direction to transport services

TAKING security of women with due seriousness they came forward. Opting profession of a bus driver and conductor girls have shouldered responsibility to provide safe transportation for women an... Read More
TAKING security of women with due seriousness they came forward. Opting profession of a bus driver and conductor girls have shouldered responsibility to provide safe transportation for women and girls using Metro buses. Women drivers and conductors working in Jabalpur Metro Bus services have become idols in the society who break prevailing prejudice that women cannot work in transport services and could work only in areas that are soft and secure.

With each passing day some development is going on in the country and cases of crime against women are also rising. A feeling of insecurity is growing pertaining to women security is looming large in the society. Contrary to this equal sharing of women in shouldering household responsibility along with male members have intended women to come forward for financial strength of family. Women are working in every field and are walking equally with men. Similarly, Metro Bus Transport Service is one of the enterprise where women are extending service as drivers and conductors.

One of the woman Metro bus driver Roshni Sonkar was felicitated at the hands of Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan for her best performance in city transport services. Awards and rewards are motivating more women candidates in city to opt for the job in services like Metro bus. Along with this, women passengers also feel secure, comfortable with women drivers and conductors. In view of security, GPS system has been installed in all mini and other Metro bus services in which women pilot are deployed. Along with this, routes having women passengers in large numbers have been allotted to them.

Citizens welcoming this positive change in the city have mentioned it as a step towards providing safe and secure transportation to school and college going girls, working women, housewives so that they be safe and secure on city roads. People are also demanding to increase the number of women employees in Metro Bus services. Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Jabalpur City Transport Service Limited Sachin Verma said, “The government is promoting women in all sectors. Similarly, recruitment was also carried out in City Transport Services. Where, needy women and who is interested in driving can also opt the job in Metro Bus services. Right now, two women drivers and two conductors are in Metro Bus Service. In view of safety, safe routes have been given to them. Timing is also as per their convenience. Now, we are planning to run exclusive bus service for women passengers. Along with this, we would also propose a proposal for more seat reservation to women passengers. At present, 20 per cent seats are reserved for women and in future we are trying to increase it by 30 per cent.”

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Directions issued in review plea filed by Seth Mannulal Jagannath Trust Hospital

A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Shantanu Kemkar has issued directions in review petition filed by Seth Mannulal Jagannath Trust H... Read More
A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Shantanu Kemkar has issued directions in review petition filed by Seth Mannulal Jagannath Trust Hospital that ‘In our opinion, interest of justice will be sub-served by merely directing appropriate authority that in the event the decision is adverse to review petitioner, the same shall not be given effect to for a period of two weeks to enable review petitioner to take up the matter before appropriate forum. The division bench further said in its order that besides this, nothing more is required to be said in present review petition. Counsel for review petitioner then submitted that incumbent Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Jabalpur Development Authority is personally biased against review petitioner. That issue can be considered if and when the occasion arises. In other words, only if review petitioner is required to challenge decision of the Chief Executive Officer being appropriate authority, that contention will be available to review petitioner. Appropriate Authority shall continue with inquiry as ordered on October 8, 2014, and take it to its logical end in accordance with law expeditiously.

Review petition is accordingly disposed off. This review petition filed by original respondent Seth Mannulal Jagannath Trust Hospital in relation to order dated on October 8, 2014, in writ petition (PIL). The said decision, in our opinion, does not decide any issue concerning merits of controversy. However, it merely expects appropriate authority to inquire into grievance of writ petitioner and take decision in the matter in accordance with law after giving due opportunity to all concerned. In that sense, the question of review of the said order dated on October 8, 2014, does not arise. Counsel for review petitioner, however, submits that the writ petition was filed on the basis of document, which is a false document. As aforesaid, in the order dated on October 8, 2014, the court has not expressed any opinion with regard to genuineness or authenticity of the said document. Even this grievance of review petitioner can be examined by appropriate authority in proposed inquiry and must record a clear finding on said contention one way or the other. If the appropriate authority finds merits in this contention, it will be open to review petitioner to take recourse to such remedy as may be permissible in law including to approach this court for initiating appropriate action against writ petitioner, the division bench said. Advocate Pankaj Dubey appeared on behalf of the respondent Kamlesh Agrawal.

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5 involved in several thefts held, stolen booty worth lakhs seized

CONTINUING a rigorous campaign against anti-social elements, Gohalpur police succeeded in apprehending five accused involved in several loot and theft incidents and recovered valuables, four mobi... Read More
CONTINUING a rigorous campaign against anti-social elements, Gohalpur police succeeded in apprehending five accused involved in several loot and theft incidents and recovered valuables, four mobile handsets and two motorcycles worth lakhs from them.

The accused have been identified as Neeraj Kalsi (19), son of Chhotelal Kalsi, resident of Premsagar in Hanumantal, Abhishek Mahatma (20), son of Balram Mahatma, resident of Premsagar, Jhanda Chowk area, Neelesh Srivas (22), son of Ashok Srivas, a resident of Beoharbagh area in Belbagh, Dharmveer Raikwar (21), son of Nanhelal Raikwar and Guddu alias Sachin Raikwar (22), son of Biharilal Raikwar, residents of ITI, Purani Basti in Madhotal area.

IPS Isha Pant, Additional Superintendent of Police (West) informed this while addressing a press conference on Wednesday. Under the direction of Superintendent of Police Harinarayanachari Mishra, police started a rigorous campaign against listed criminals for disclosing unsolved loot and theft cases under supervision of IPS Isha Pant, Additional SP (West), Amrendra Singh, Additional SP (East), Ashish Khare, Additional SP (Crime) and CSPs. Continuing the campaign, Gohalpur police received information about some suspected men involved in anti-social activities.

Acting promptly on the complaint, a police team led by Station House Officer (SHO) of Gohalpur police station Vipin Tamrakar started search for suspected men and succeeded in apprehending three men including Neeraj Kalsi, Abhishek Mahatma and Neelesh Srivas when they were riding on an unregistered motorcycle. The accused failed in presenting documents of their motorcycle and were apprehended by the police.

During rigorous questioning, miscreants confessed four loot incidents with women in Garha, Gohalpur, Omti, Gorakhpur, Lordganj and Madan Mahal areas. Police team recovered two motorcycles and four mobile handsets from them.

Acting on another tip-off, a police team apprehended Dharmveer Raikwar and Sachin Raikwar who confessed three theft incidents in Trimurty Nagar and Nandan Vihar Colony areas. Police team retrieved valuables worth Rs 1.5 lakh from them while further investigations are underway.

On this achievement, Superintendent of Police Harinarayanachari Mishra has declared rewards for members of police team comprising Station House Officer of Gohalpur police station Vipin Tamrakar, SI K K Shukla, ASI S N Singh, ASI Kamal Singh Parihar, constables Shivshankar Dwivedi, Sujesh, Rajendra, Crime Branch’s SI Satish Dongare, Head Constables, Firoz Khan, K K Pandey, Nissar Ali, Sanjay Lot, Prashant Solanki, Cyber Cell’s ASI, Kapur Singh, Head Contable, Saji Mathai and Constables, Rajesh Sharma and Amit Patel.

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‘This time, Simhastha to be held as Green Simhastha

Urban Administration Minister Kailash Vijayvargiya said preparations of ‘Simhastha’, to be organised in Ujjain, would be completed within stipulated time-limit. This time, ‘Simhastha’ wou... Read More
Urban Administration Minister Kailash Vijayvargiya said preparations of ‘Simhastha’, to be organised in Ujjain, would be completed within stipulated time-limit. This time, ‘Simhastha’ would be organised in the form of ‘Green Simhastha’ and use of bio-fuel in vehicles would be promoted. Besides, target of providing clean drinking water in all cities had been kept in Vision 2018.

Presenting the annual report card of his department before media, Kailash Vijayvargiya said that DPR for Light Metro Train (LMT) for Bhopal and Indore was being prepared and pre-feasibility study for the LMT process was underway for Jabalpur and Gwalior. Parking master plan, public transportation master plan, advertisement master plan for five big cities and dedicated urban transport fund is being constituted for strengthening of public transport system of these cities.

Speaking about ‘Simhastha’, he said that an international level convention would be organised in ‘Simhastha 2016’, apart from organising international level programme in which all religious leaders would be invited. He also said that head of Dera Sachha Sauda was having a band of dedicated workers for cleanliness and hence, Dera Sachha Sauda would be requested to take care of cleanliness of ‘Simhastha’. Vijayvargiya said the practice of open defection in local bodies would be ended by 2017 under ‘Clean India Clean Madhya Pradesh Mission’. “Process is under way to constitute regional solid waste management units under PPP model to make local bodies free from garbage,” he informed, adding that Narmada was the least polluted river in the country and to make it free from pollution, work of channelising nullahs would be done.

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Claims of acting against illegal pathology labs mere eyewash

TALL claims of higher officials of District Health Services of checking operation of illegal pathology laboratories in rural areas stand exposed. Many illegal pathology centres operating in rur... Read More
TALL claims of higher officials of District Health Services of checking operation of illegal pathology laboratories in rural areas stand exposed. Many illegal pathology centres operating in rural areas are running without fulfilling essential norms prescribed by State Health Department to run pathology lab.

Last action taken by district health officials was proving to be mere eyewash. About 50 per cent collection centre, pathology lab operating in rural areas does not have basic equipment like centrifugal machine, refrigerator. Complaints regarding illegal pathology centre operating in rural areas without following essential parameters have been made before the Chief Medical and Health Officer through various means of communication in recent month, but in absence of proper surveillance they are operating freely.

It is to be learnt that non-registration of person doing pathology test from Paramedical Council of Madhya Pradesh does not have Diploma Lab Medical Technician (DLMT), CLMT, to execute pathology test, pathology centres lack essential equipment like centrifugal machine, blood plasma separator, refrigerator, sitting arrangements for patients, hygienic conditions etc which one pathology centre have to fulfill before conducting pathology test.

Sources confirmed that irrespective of repeated surprise inspection by the Health Department during one-and-half-year, some pathology centre especially in villages is executing their services fearlessly under influence of some local political leaders.

Continuous delay in initiating stern action like filing FIR against owner of two pathology centres indulged in operation of illegal pathology centre, during last inspection about one-and-half years ago has given shelter to other illegal pathology centre. On the other hand, Chief Medical and Health Officer Dr B S Chouhan said that he has already started process to constitute team of health and administrative officer to take action against pathology centre indulged in violation of norms fixed by the State Government to run pathology centre.

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MP Govt slashes luxury tax on hotel industry in State

EXTENDING Christmas and New Year gifts to tourists, Madhya Pradesh Government has slashed luxury tax on hotel industry in the State for attracting maximum tourists in the State. Now, tourists wil... Read More
EXTENDING Christmas and New Year gifts to tourists, Madhya Pradesh Government has slashed luxury tax on hotel industry in the State for attracting maximum tourists in the State. Now, tourists will not have to pay luxury tax for booking at any hotel in the State upto Rs 3,000. Madhya Pradesh is the first State in the country where tourists do not have to pay luxury tax on hotel booking upto Rs 3,000.

Luxury tax has been revived after eight years to facilitate visitors and to promote tourism in the State. It may be mentioned that tourists were being charged 10 per cent luxury charge on bookings upto Rs 2,000 at any hotel in the State. Providing relaxation to tourists, the limit of charging luxury tax has been increased upto bookings of Rs 3,000 at all the government and private hotels in the State. Raghvendra Kumar Singh, Managing Director of Madhya Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation (MPTDC), while talking to ‘The Hitavada’ informed that Madhya Pradesh Government has increased limit of charging luxury tax for providing more relaxation to tourists in the State.

The limit of luxury tax has been increased in order to attract more tourists in the State. Raghvendra Singh added that Madhya Pradesh is the first State throughout the country where tourists do not have to pay luxury tax on bookings at any hotel upto Rs 3,000.

Regional Manager of MPTDC Ashok Mehra informed that the decision of increasing limit of luxury tax during peak tourism season will provide financial relief to several tourists throughout the State. Amended luxury tax has been applicable for all hotels of MPTDC as well as all the private hotels.

Relaxation in luxury tax will definitely prove fruitful for tourists in Jabalpur region as most of the government and hotels are already booked at all tourist destinations including Bandhavgarh National Park, Kanha National Park, Pench National Park, Bhedaghat, Bargi and other spots.

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Confident Govt takes on faltering Oppn

Witnessing a role reversal of major political alliances in Maharashtra after a long span of 15 years, the State Legislature’s winter session was expected to be stormy. However, as seen in the f... Read More
Witnessing a role reversal of major political alliances in Maharashtra after a long span of 15 years, the State Legislature’s winter session was expected to be stormy. However, as seen in the first week that passed by, BJP-Sena alliance appeared to be more confident to be back in the Government compared to Congress and NCP that are still faltering playing the role of the Opposition.

But, the courageous decision of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to clear files permitting open enquiry of former Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and ex-Irrigation minister Sunil Tatkare in irrigation scam and that of ex-PWD Minister Chhagan Bhujbal in Maharashtra Sadan construction scam has changed the course of Maharashtra politics as he explicitly defied all political pressures and rumours of bonhomie between BJP and NCP leadership by taking this very bold step. Shocked, angry and nervous by this move, the NCP finally decided to boycott the remaining session on the issue of suspension of its MLA Jitendra Awhad.

His decision to announce Rs 41,500 crore package for drought hit areas including Rs 7,000 crore immediate relief and Rs 34,500 crore for long term measures, stumped opposition who were forced to make ususal political noise knowing fully-well that the new Chief Minister outsmarted them.

Undoubtedly, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis emerged as the hero of the week with his studied speech on drought, aggressive response on discussion over law and order, corrective steps announced on wakf lands and constant presence in the house and firm reply to mischiveious issues sought to be raised by opposition, indicated that he is firmly in command and moving with confidence.

Throughout the week, the leading ruling partner BJP became more and more confident with each passing day. Just before facing its first full-fledged session of State Legislature, it was successful in getting the estranged partner back in the fold. As a result, the new Government with various partners projected itself as united. In contrast, Congress and NCP that ruled Maharashtra for 15 years in alliance, did not appear to have come to terms that they were in the Opposition. More than the Government, the game of one-upmanship was being played aggressively in the Opposition.

This was clear a day prior to the commencement of winter session. Congress and NCP, instead of coming together to form a strong Opposition, held separate press conferences and did not even co-ordinate with each other to formulate strategy. The game continued throughout the week. And, in this game, NCP scored over Congress quite well. Congress tried to extend its hand towards NCP, but the latter remained indifferent. This affected the floor management of the Opposition in Legislative Assembly. Obviously, this proved to be advantageous for the ruling BJP-Sena combine.

The biggest loser in this week was Congress, the party that was leading ruling partner in the Government for past 15 years. Though it has got big names like former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, Group Leader Radhakrishna Patil, Deputy Leader Vijay Wadettiwar and others, most of them could not show their aggression through convincing legislative performance. Wadettiwar tried to give some edge to the Congress side in the Opposition, but he could not find equally aggressive supporter within his party.

NCP took advantage of this and got into 'we are Opposition' mode quick. Former Deputy Chief Minister and NCP Group Leader Ajit Pawar held a meeting of all MLAs and asked them to participate in the legislative business, ask questions to the Government. Pawar and another seasoned leader Chhagan Bhujbal, also a former Deputy Chief Minister, made it a point to sit through legislative business in the House and led the charge on the Government. As a result, NCP was successful in projecting itself as the main voice of Opposition despite having a seat less than Congress. Of course, NCP did not stop at this. While the Congress continued to stake claim for the post of Leader of Opposition, NCP moved a step further and pushed its claim. NCP even nominated former Deputy Chief Minister R R Patil for the post of Leader of Opposition. Of course, it is for the Speaker to take final decision and he is yet to announce it. Working without Leader of Opposition in the House is another advantage for the ruling dispensation. There is widespread discontent in Congress camp over lack of aggression in its leadership, and they too were seen singing praise for NCP leadership outside the House. One important point in this regard was suspension of MLAs. The Government had suspended five Congress MLAs in the previous short session, but there was no aggression in Congress leadership. Again, in contrast, when the Government suspended NCP MLA Jitendra Awhad a couple of days ago, entire NCP camp declared its decision not to participate in the House proceedings. Congress leadership's lackluster performance has badly affected the confidence level of MLAs in party camp, while aggressive stand taken by NCP has boosted the confidence of its MLAs.

Against the infighting between Congress and NCP that has resulted into a weak Opposition, BJP and Shiv Sena had been successful in consolidating the ruling side. Irrespective of pre-poll differences, both the parties have come together on common ideological plank. Congress and NCP both tried to mount pressure on the new Government over the issue of farmers, but the BJP-Sena combine proposed discussion on drought situation and outsmarted the Opposition parties. Not only this, but the Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis announced an unexpected relief package focusing on short-term and long-term measures to tackle drought, leaving the Opposition parties in a fix. Fadnavis and his ministers confidently replied to the debates on law and order situation, power and industry scenes.

Throughout the session, Fadnavis burnt midnight's oil to work out reform path in various sectors. Though most of his plans may come out gradually, he indicated his commitment to reforms through his replies to debates especially on drought, and law and order situation.

As far as second week is concerned, whether NCP decides to participate in the House proceedings will decide if there is voice to Opposition. If Congress still fails to come out of shock of losing the elections, it will be facing a bigger loss of face even sitting on the Opposition benches. The most important business of the week starting Monday will be release of Kelkar Committee report on regional imbalances and balanced development of State. How the partners in ruling alliance and Opposition react to the contents of the report, which has proposed various measures to remove backlog of Vidarbha, will set the course of politics at least for next few months.

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HC’s notice to MOIL CMD on top officer’s plea against “punishment”

Justice Vasanti Naik and Justice C V Bhadang at the High Court have issued notice to the respondent -- Chairman-cum- Managing Director (CMD), MOIL Ltd., G P Kundargi -- to show cause by January 1... Read More
Justice Vasanti Naik and Justice C V Bhadang at the High Court have issued notice to the respondent -- Chairman-cum- Managing Director (CMD), MOIL Ltd., G P Kundargi -- to show cause by January 16, 2015, in reply to the writ petition filed by L M Telang, Senior Deputy General Manager (Personnel), against major penalty of reduction to a one lower stage in time-scale of pay.

As per the petitioner, the penalty from August 1, 2011 to January 31, 2012 was imposed on him stating that he would get Rs 1,410 per month less during this period and thereafter from February 1, 2012, his basic salary would be restored to Rs 48,330 per month. The petition is directed against the charge-sheet of January 23, 2012, punishment order of December 28, 2012 and appellate authority’s order of January 28, 2013.

The charges found proved against the petitioner have been that he had committed breach of Rules, Regulations or order applicable to the employees of MOIL as per Rule 28(ix) of MOIL Employees’ Conduct Rules, 1978. He has indulged in willful falsification and defacement of the records of the company as Rule 28 (xxxiii) of the 1978 Conduct Rules.

According to the petitioner, he could not have been charge-sheeted post facto for alleged irregularities/lacunae in the proposal submitted by him for recruiting various categories of officers, as the said proposal was duly approved in writing by all the three competent authorities. And for the same reasons, the allegation of misconduct by him only to favour one of the candidates, Vishnu Priya Sengupta, the daughter of the General Manager (P)-one of the competent authorities, cannot bear legal scrutiny. Further, Recruitment Rules 6.4, 6.8 and 6.9 read with and clause 13 of the advertisement contemplate flexible approach in consideration of candidates, hence such proposal by the petitioner cannot be termed as a misconduct. The appellate authority could not have dismissed the appeal in a cryptic and mechanical manner without application of mind. As the charge-sheet, punishment order and appellate order passed by the one and the same person after approving the petitioner’s proposal as competent authority makes the whole thing to look just an eye-wash and thus, can be called totally vitiated and legally unsustainable.

Adv S D Thakur appeared for the petitioner.

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HC’s notice to RTO, others on PIL against “illegal” passenger service

In response to the public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a registered NGO - Citizen Forum for Equality’s President Madhukar G, Kukde against “illegal passenger service” in Nagpur City, ... Read More
In response to the public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a registered NGO - Citizen Forum for Equality’s President Madhukar G, Kukde against “illegal passenger service” in Nagpur City, Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande at the High Court have issued notice to the respondents - State Transport (ST) Secretary, Union Road Transport Secretary, City Police Commissioner, Regional Transport Officer (RTO), various 13 auto-rickshaw owners, drivers’ organisations to show cause in 4 weeks in reply to the PIL.

According to the petitioner, the respondent authorities have failed in their statutory duties to control the menace of “illegal passenger service” in Nagpur, Maharashtra and restore the rule of law. The authorities have failed to detain and remove the vehicles involved in the illegal passenger service under Section 207 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 read with Sections 66-192-A, 56, 66 of the Act read with Rule 62 of the CMVR, 1989 read with Rule 45 of the MMV Rules, 1989.

The petitioner has stated that the respondent-authorities have failed to provide 20,000 new permits as per the policy and ration of 800 auto-rickshaws per one lakh population in the city. It has been alleged in the petition that 13 respondent auto-rickshaw owners and drivers’ associations have flouted various provisions of the 1988 Act, 1989 Rules and are involved in illegal passenger service without necessary compliance of rules and thereby fleecing more money from the citizens by refusing to install electronic meters and to ply by meters and the tariff fixed by the RTA, Nagpur. The petitioner-NGO has prayed for issuing fresh permits to 20,000 auto-rickshaws to constitute immediately a permanent special checking squad comprising police and transport officers to undertake special checking drive to curb illegal passenger service in the city, to take stringent action under Sections 66 read with 192-A of the 1988 Act against the owners of the private vehicles involved in illegal service and to ban that completely.

The petitioner wants the Court to direct the respondent-competent authorities to furnish interim monthly checking reports related to the stringent action taken against vehicles involved in illegal service in breach of Sections 56, 66, and 86 of the 1988 Act during pendency of this petition.

Advocate T D Mandlekar appeared for the petitioner-NGO. AGP T A Mirza represented State. Assistant SGI Rohit Deo represented Union Government.

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Public transport in limbo as Starbus operator stops services on 108 routes

City bus service is going from bad to worst as Starbus operator -- Vansh Nimay Infra Projects Limited (VNIL) -- has stopped services on 108 routes out of a total 189 routes in city. VNIL is opera... Read More
City bus service is going from bad to worst as Starbus operator -- Vansh Nimay Infra Projects Limited (VNIL) -- has stopped services on 108 routes out of a total 189 routes in city. VNIL is operating on only 81 routes in the city causing acute problem for the passengers including college and school-going students. Unfortunately, the office-bearers of the local body could not compel bus operator to operate buses on all the routes, leaving lakhs of commuters at the mercy of the operator and auto-rickshaws.

Sources claimed that VNIL is operating only 150 buses in the city out of total 430 buses. Remaining 280 buses are out of service, raising a big question mark over the efficiency of the Starbus operator and civic body. The buses received under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) are also under repairs for more than six months.

Sources informed The Hitavada that around 173 buses are permanently dumped at Hingana bus depot by VNIL and around 60 buses have been reduced to scrap due to irreparable rear engine snag.

As per L&T Ramboll report, the city will require around 750 buses for commuters in the city. The operator had purchased 230 buses and Central Government had sanctioned 200 buses for city bus operation. Due to apathy of the Starbus operator, only 150 buses are on roads.

Sources informed that many bus services were stopped without taking prior permission from the local body or from the Transport Committee. Committee Chairman Sudhir Raut was surprised to see the number of routes stopped by the operator without taking him or committee into confidence. He said, the passengers are in agitation mood and have lodged a strong protest with Mayor, and other corporators including Transport Committee chief for abruptly stopping bus fleet and discontinuing 60 per cent routes. Now, the matter has gone beyond our limit and it is high time to appoint second operator for the city, Raut stated. The local body will take a decision in this regard very soon, he informed.

The city buses have capacity to cater to the needs of about two lakh commuters daily. In last 8 years, instead of increasing fleet size or carry more passengers, the bus operator constantly reduced the number of buses from 430 to 150. Now, the bus operator is carrying only 50,000-60,000 passengers daily.

The buses are off the roads for petty reasons like clutch failure, brake problem, pick up problem, pressure leak, suspension, self and electrical work, gear, engine problem, over heating, glasses, tyres and battery problem.

Sources claimed that operator has stopped plying of buses from Prem Nagar, Gorewada, Shanti Nagar, Gondkheri, Kamptee, Sonegaon, CRPF, Isasani, New Narsala, and other places. The frequency on many routes has been brought down to 2 or 3 from earlier 40.

Commuters and commoners are only sufferers. The auto-rickshaws which refuse to ply by meter are the biggest beneficiaries and command fare as per their whims and fancy. People are forced to travel in shared auto by shelling out exorbitant fares. NMC had issued legal termination notice to Starbus operator for his abysmal failure in operating bus services in the city. However, local body did not cancel its contract since second operator is yet to be finalised and sudden withdrawal of starbus will lead to chaos.

The local body had issued several notices on many occasions to bus operator for regularising his fleet. The main concern is more than 60 per cent buses are off the road and that is violation of agreement between NMC and bus operator. The bus operator is not paying any depreciation cost against buses to local body, that means, the local body can not purchase new buses after they are retired. Transport Committee Chief Raut has decided to raise this issue with Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to sort out critical problem.

Meanwhile, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) Secretary Uttam Shevde has demanded to operate buses from Sitabuldi via Deekshaboomi upto IT Park, Parsodi. In a letter to NMC, Shevde said, on this route around 12 educational Institutes are working and students are facing tremendous problem due to inadequate frequency of public transport. Hundreds of students belonging to ITI, Blind School, BRA Mundle, Kurvey’s School, Dr Ambedkar College, Chokhamela Hostel, Chitrakala College, VNIT, National Power Institute, Software Technology Park and other institutes have been hit hard due to irregularity. The students from Medical Square, Rameshwari, Indora, Nara, Nari, Pardi, Hingana, Khamala, Manewada, Hudkeshwar, Wadi and other places are studying in these schools and colleges. Thousands of tourist also visits Deekshabhoomi every day. They have to travel by walking daily to their institutes as there is no bus available for them, he claimed.

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Founder reveals story of first ever magazine for blinds

“I met visually impaired children in Pune to know how they live life. I closed my eyes with the help of cloth. I started living like them. I started working with closed eyes and I got a vision ... Read More
“I met visually impaired children in Pune to know how they live life. I closed my eyes with the help of cloth. I started living like them. I started working with closed eyes and I got a vision in real sense,” said a journalist turned theatre personality cum wild life photographer and documentary filmmaker, Swagat Thorat. Thorat was revealing his journey of life at the programme ‘Chala Dolas Howu Ya’, an open public discussion cum interview organised jointly by Rotary Club of Nagpur South-East and Indian Medical Association (IMA) at IMA Hall on Sunday. “When I was working for Balchitravani, in 1993, I got an opportunity to produce a documentary based on educational system for visually impaired. With this project in view, I studied in depth the life style, and physical-mental development of students in two schools for the blind in Pune and produced ‘Kalokhatil Chandane’ which was widely acclaimed. This is how my journey with visually impaired was started,” Thorat mentioned. “In India, there are about 62,000 news papers and periodicals. But none of them is for visually impaired. Living with the visually impaired people, I have decided to start a news paper for them. Thus, the first ever ‘Sparshdnyan’ a Marathi fortnightly news paper has come out,” Thorat stated. Visually impaired people live their life like other persons. They are using their senses effectively. They wear clothes, they wear shoes, chappals etc, they use tooth brushes, toothpaste etc, then they have a full right to get knowledge. The newspaper has aimed to fulfill their need for knowledge, he added. The programme started with an oath administered by Thorat to audience. Then with the help of powerpoint presentation, Thorat displayed his play 'Swatantryachi Yashogatha' (Glorious story of independence) which created a world record, with 88 blind artists from two blind schools in Pune, on the background of golden anniversary of Independence Day. This play has been entered in 'Guinness Book of World Records' and 'Limca Book of Records'. Arun Mittal, President of Rotary Club, Kishore Rathi, Secretary Dr Sanjay Deshpande, President, IMA Nagpur, Dr Kush Jhunjhunwala, Secretary, Dr Avinash Rode, Sudhakar Ingole, Nikhil Mundle, Pratima Shashtri, Malti Shashtri, Shubhada Wagh were also present on this occasion. Dr Archana Kothari and Wasudha Kulkarni conducted the programme.

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Experienced, but divided Opposition appears weak

Wading its way through the full throttled Opposition, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena showed as to who is in the control of House at the Legislative Council. For the new G... Read More
Wading its way through the full throttled Opposition, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena showed as to who is in the control of House at the Legislative Council. For the new Government, where most of the Ministers are new, the going in the first session was expected to be quite tough. The other major reason was hopeless minority that Saffron alliance have in the Upper House. For Treasury camp this was a cause of worry as any united Opposition could have easily cornered it at will in the House. But a young and dynamic Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis rolling out quick decisions coupled with divided Opposition, the ruling side ended with a solid edge in the first week of winter session. Further for the BJP-Sena alliance, naming of one of its senior cabinet member Eknath Khadse as Leader of the Upper House provided solid foundation to take on the numerically stronger Opposition. Looking back at the proceedings and business transacted by House so far, the Government effectively settled the point as to who is in the charge.

With BJP firmly in charge of the Government, the alliance successfully took home the fight to Opposition camp The first week in fact saw the Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) trying to score over one another, but only managing to garner some brownie points among themselves.

The absence of Leader of Opposition in the House did prove to be major bone of contention between the NCP and Congress as both parties have staked claim to the post. And this come in handy for saffron alliance to set the tone of the proceedings as NCP time and again tried to show aggression in it's bid to represent that it is in the Opposition. Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) which is in majority in the Council faced the dichotomy on support to Government and this fact was fully exploited by Congress members. And NCP state chief Sunil Tatkare had to time and again specify reasons for outside support offered to BJP at time of formation of new Government in State.

Throughout the week NCP tried various ways to get the coveted LoP in the Council. It even submitted a letter having signatures of its 27 members plus supporting parties. But Congress put a spoke in NCP's ambition by staking claim to the LoP post. NCP members repeatedly raised the political tempo in House by resorting to sloganeering and repeated Point of Order on matter of decision on Leader of Opposition.

The tussle between NCP-Congress put Chairman Shivajirao Deshmukh in a quandary as he is taking his own time in determining who enjoys the majority. This however provided BJP-Sena alliance a good move to jab the Opposition, saying first they should solve the small issue among themselves before offering any advice on governance to ruling alliance.

And by end of week the Opposition is badly divided as NCP has submitted no confidence motion against Council Chairman Shivajirao Deshmukh, alleging delay in naming its nominee Dhananjay Munde as Leader of Opposition.

Though during the first week Opposition did try to corner the new Government, but inner contradictions were very much visible among the erstwhile ruling coalition. On the issue of farmer suicides and losses due to delayed rain and other natural causes, the Opposition try to put the Saffron alliance on mat. But Government smartly outwitted the Opposition even after letting them move an adjournment motion on the farmers issues in the State. Revenue Minister Khadse carefully outlined the package being given to farmers along with long terms measures so that in future farmers need not worry in case of a lean rainfall.

One of the new point in the farmers aid package was waiver of loans taken by farmers from registered private moneylenders. As expected, Opposition tried to push Government on the backfoot on this note. However, the rich parliamentary experience of Khadse pushed the Opposition itself in a tight spot, when the Revenue Minister questioned as to why should anybody be opposing waiving of farm loans? To this question the Opposition had no firm answer and Khadse dealt another blow to credibility of Congress-NCP's when he said if latter's desire the Government can withdraw the said component of package. The Opposition was now cleverly outwitted by this posers, as any opposition to this would mean they are anti-farmers.

The constant presence of senior Sena Minister Diwakar Raote also provided solid foundation to Saffron alliance in the Upper House. The Congress charge rested with its State unit chief Manikrao Thakre and experienced Bhai Jagtap. These two articulate speakers tried their level best to put pressure on the Government, particularly on the issue of farmers. But lack of floor co-ordination among Opposition bloc owing to divergent views on various topics and tussle over post of Leader of Opposition carried the week for the ruling coalition of BJP-Sena.

The Government also successfully piloted three key bills in the very first week itself. One among them was that of giving name of Savitribai Phule to Pune University. This bill was clubbed with two others on which the Opposition raised din and their demand for poll got drown out in the disturbance. But not to miss an opportunity Khadse showed readiness to have division on issue of giving name of Savitribai Phule, which again stumped the Opposition as it was during their regime the move was thought off.

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State Govt considering exemption to cars from paying toll tax

The new Government is taking steps to keep its pre-poll promise of reducing the burden of toll tax on non-commercial four-wheelers. It is thinking over granting exemption to non-commercial four-whe... Read More
The new Government is taking steps to keep its pre-poll promise of reducing the burden of toll tax on non-commercial four-wheelers. It is thinking over granting exemption to non-commercial four-wheelers including cars, from paying toll tax. For the purpose, it has taken up a survey to assess the number of commercial and non-commercial four-wheelers plying on different roads in the State.

Further, just ahead of the ongoing winter session of State Legislature, Public Works Department (PWD) constituted a committee of 11 officers and engineers to explore the possibility of closing down 121 toll tax collection booths in the State. However, according to PWD Minister Chandrakant Patil, if the Government decided to shut down all 121 toll tax collection booths in the State, it would mean a burden of Rs 30,000 crore on State exchequer. As this was not possible at one go, the Government would think of closing down the toll tax collection booths in a phased manner.

In this direction, the Government is giving a thought to closing down 40 toll booths in next couple of months. These toll booths are being identified on the basis of amount of contract. In case of such booths, the Government will bear the burden of paying to the contractor firm the amount that it intended to recover by way of collecting toll tax. Once the Government makes payment to contractor firm in such cases, the toll booths could be closed down. The Government is willing to bear the burden of up to Rs 200 crore.

A new policy on toll tax collection is being prepared. While doing so, the Government is exploring the possibility of not levying toll tax on roads involving cost up to Rs 200 crore and constructed through private partnership. The Government is also working out a mechanism to make the road toll collection more transparent, and ensure that contractors meet road maintenance and safety concerns.

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Fissures between Cong, NCP widens

Differences between Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) have come to fore over boycotting the Legislative Assembly over suspension of NCP legislator Jitendra Awhad. Congress legislato... Read More
Differences between Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) have come to fore over boycotting the Legislative Assembly over suspension of NCP legislator Jitendra Awhad. Congress legislators are against such boycott and as a result and apprehend that siding with NCP will dent their own political image. Besides the NCP has already angered Congress leadership by staking its claim over Leader of Opposition’s post in both the Houses as well as by moving no confidence motion against Chairman of Council.

Congress has convened a meeting of its legislators on Monday to decide whether to stay away from the House proceedings especially when Chief Minister will reply to motion of thanks and announce relief package for hailstorm-affected farmers of North Maharashtra. If Congress legislators boycott the House, it will give a free hand to the Government to take all credits.

On Friday, NCP and Congress staged walk-out against suspension of Awhad for the ‘entire period of winter session’. Awhad was suspended for his ‘foul remarks’ against Housing and Labour Minister Prakash Mehta in the House. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis cleared open enquiry sought by ACB against NCP stalwarts Ajit Pawar and Sunil Tatkare in irrigation scam and Chhagan Bhujal in Maharashtra Sadan scam. After the decision was made public by Advocate General Sunil Manohar, NCP camp suddenly found this issue as diversionary tactics.

However, many senior Congress leaders, in private, have claimed that by siding with NCP, whose top leaders are in dock and facing ACB enquiry, wrong signal will go to electorate. In fact, Prithviraj Chavan himself had directed white paper and appointed SIT to probe wrongdoings by NCP Ministers, contractors and officers, the Congress legislators claimed while rejecting any move to align with NCP on such flimsy issue.

Congress legislators are also peeved as to why the party leadership has not raised the issue of suspension of five MLAs for a period of two years. The MLAs were suspended for allegedly manhandling Governor when he was on his way to address both the Houses. MPCC chief Manikrao Thakre had told reporters that on Friday they expressed solidarity with NCP, but the final decision will be taken by Congress legislative party on Monday. Chief Minister is scheduled to reply on thanks giving motion on Governor’s speech and Congress legislators are in no mood to stay away from the House and allow NCP to dominate the agenda. NCP has not left any chance to humiliate Congress in both the Houses and it makes no sense to side with NCP, Congress sources said indicating ever widening differences between both parties.

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Chief Minister clears 3 major schemes of Nagpur metro

For the first time, the State Government is moving fast to clear pending projects of the Orange City. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has cleared three ambitious schemes of Nagpur Metropolitan R... Read More
For the first time, the State Government is moving fast to clear pending projects of the Orange City. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has cleared three ambitious schemes of Nagpur Metropolitan Regional Area to boost sluggish realty market of Nagpur and to create a massive pool of affordable houses. The Nagpur Improvement Trust (NIT), notified as Nagpur Metropolitan Region Development Authority (NMRDA) will develop these schemes under land-pooling policy. The NMRDA is likely to earn close to Rs 3,000 crore from sanctioning of these schemes which can be utilised for development of public amenities.

The Democratic Front Government was sitting pretty over these files for last two years. As Bharatiya Janata Party-Shiv Sena alliance took over the charge, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has given a new momentum to clear all pending files of the city to unlock its potential.

Sources confirmed that Chief Minister has sanctioned three schemes -- Khadaka-Kirmiti-Panjari-Shiv Madka-Sumthana, Varoda-Panjari-Rui-Gavasi Manapur, Parsodi-Jamatha-Kotewada -- while the fourth, Khasaramari Development Scheme is under the consideration.

Sources also confirmed that Urban Development Department (UDD) is working on these schemes. Presently, the land is under Green Zone and Government has to change its user from Green to Yellow. Therefore, the UDD will issue notification under the Maharashtra Regional Town Planning Act, 1966 to change it from Green Zone to Yellow Zone. The NMRDA will invite suggestions and objections from people within one month after issuance of notification. The final notification will be issued by February or March 2015. The proposed development schemes are once again going to boost the reality market on Wardha Road and will also ensure regularised and planned development on village land that are becoming part of Nagpur metro. The NMRDA wants to fulfill cherished dream of thousands of Nagpurians to own a low-cost housing unit in a developed ambience.

The Parsodi-Jamatha-Kotewada scheme will be implemented on 860 hectares, that include Gavasi Manapur-Parsodi-Jamatha-Sondapar-Kotewada-Sumthana villages of Nagpur tehsil and portion of Hingana tehsil. The scheme will be coming up on both sides of Wardha Road. VCA cricket stadium, Sahara Housing Scheme, and South-West part of MIHAN are some of the major landmarks of the proposed development schemes.

NMRDA is planning to develop this scheme under land-pooling pattern. Under this pattern, the NMRDA will acquire 40 per cent land of the developer and will give 60 per cent land to them for development. If the developer has non-agricultural land then the NMRDA will acquire only 25 per cent land. It will develop roads, open spaces, public utility spaces, residential and commercial spaces. The NMRDA has calculated land rate as per ready reckoner rates of the area.

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HC seeks reply in matter on post-matric scholarship

A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice Vandana Kasrekar has issued notices to the Secretary, Social Justice and Empowerment Department of Un... Read More
A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice Vandana Kasrekar has issued notices to the Secretary, Social Justice and Empowerment Department of Union of India, Ministry of Tribal Affairs, New Delhi, Director, Directorate of Technical Education, Bhopal, Secretary, All India Council for Technical Education, New Delhi and others and asked them to file their reply within four weeks in matter related to post-matric scholarship. The division bench has given directions in public interest litigation filed by Praveen Kumar Dahayat that said respondents should indicate to this court as to what action is taken in matter of irregularities pointed out by the petitioner with regard to distribution of scholarship in question and as prima-facie case pointing out irregularities in the matter be not handed to a competent authority to be decided by the court after hearing the respondents. Swapnil Ganguly, Counsel appearing for the State Government, also directed to seek instructions in the matter. The division bench further directed the State Government to ensure that all the documents and data available with regard to distribution of scholarship in official website and other sites are maintained during pendency of matter. The petition is being preferred not against any order in particular, but to save rights and interest of students belonging to Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe and Other Backward Class categories and minority category who are large in numbers and are about to be benefited by the scheme of post-matric scholarship introduced by respondent Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, New Delhi and implemented by respondent Director, Directorate of Technical Education, Bhopal with an object to prove financial assistance to aforesaid categories of students studying at post-matriculation or post-secondary stage to enable them to complete their education. These scholarships are available for studies in India only and are awarded by the Government of State and union territory to which the applicant actually belongs i.e. permanently settled.

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Lessening profit in farming work keeping youth away from agriculture

INCREASING input cost and lessening profits in farming work is deflecting youths from agriculture. Thousands of youths and families are migrating from rural areas simultaneously use of agricultur... Read More
INCREASING input cost and lessening profits in farming work is deflecting youths from agriculture. Thousands of youths and families are migrating from rural areas simultaneously use of agriculture land is also being diverted to other purposes at a great pace. Madhya Pradesh, recipient of Krishi Karmana Award for highest growth in agriculture production will face the heat of problem arousing in form of migration of farm labours to urban areas. Reason may be continuous increasing threat of loss in farming, poor working conditions and attraction of youths towards urban lifestyle, majority deflecting rural youths from farming work. Every year thousands of youths, farm labourers are joining the trend of migration from rural areas to cities. And migration is mounting multifarious problems civic amenities developed in cities. Continuous rise in migration flow from rural to urban areas shows significance of development of employment resources in rural areas. About 70 per cent of population lives in villages in Madhya Pradesh but yet no study has been conducted in context of migration of rural population. This scenario is being witnessed in major cities of Madhya Pradesh too. Now, agriculture fraternity in research, extension, development and yet to prepare its research strategy to study traits showing deflection of youths and its remedies to add how they could remain in farming work, besides to minimise input cost and increasing profit. At national-level the issue to be take up and work on identification of possible areas on which rural youths could be trained besides this crash and capsule courses in farming sector should be attached with State Agriculture Universities and nation-wide network of Krishi Vigyan Kendras. The village-based entrepreneurs can significantly contribute to economic growth of nation economy. Traditional agriculture in the country can be gradually evolving into well developed agri-business with strong linkage among agri-inputs, processing and agro-based industries which results in wholesale and retail trade. The government, both at State and national-level should encourage entrepreneurs for setting up marketing associations at their level offering bset and provide support by way of procurement processing and marketing of their products as well as in setting-up their workshop or enterprise.

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Seoni SP given month’s time to submit details of missing woman, child case

IN THE issue of missing of two persons, a woman and her one-and-half-year-old child in Seoni district, Seoni Superintendent of Police on Friday presented before the court and submitted affidavi... Read More
IN THE issue of missing of two persons, a woman and her one-and-half-year-old child in Seoni district, Seoni Superintendent of Police on Friday presented before the court and submitted affidavit that all necessary action will be taken to search the woman and her child and will take action against the responsible officer. He asked for one month’s time in this regard which was granted by the division bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Justice Ajit Singh and Justice N K Gupta. The division bench heard the letter petition (PUD) seeking her missing daughter and her child and directed the SP, Seoni, to remain present before the court on next hearing on January 19. On November 27, 2014, in spite of the order dated on July 16, 2014 recording displeasure about the manner in which the entire matter has been handled by local police and expecting that the Superintendent of Police, Seoni, will respond, the affidavit filed by the respondent did not indicate any serious action taken against the erring police officials who gave up investigation and search of missing woman and her child, after three months of registration of offence. The division bench had given order that the Superintendent of Police, Seoni shall remain personally present in the court along with the original record on next hearing. Before that, he must file affidavit disclosing steps taken since the order dated on July 16, 2014 and explanation for inaction, if any.

On July 16, 2014, from the chart submitted before us indicating line of investigation, it is noticed that although the complaint was registered on March 6, 2007, in respect of missing of two persons; mother and child, except making some effort till June 8, 2007, there is hardly any effort to trace the missing ones till January 31, 2012. Prima facie, this is indicative of inaction of official in-charge of investigation at relevant point of time. It is a clear case of dereliction of duty, if no sufficient explanation is available. The division bench had directed the Superintendent of Police, Seoni, who is present in the court to examine this aspect and issue appropriate instructions as may be required and report compliance in that behalf within two weeks.

Petitions related to reservation of Mayor, others to be heard on Jan 6

A DIVISION bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice K K Trivedi on Friday listed petitions related to reservation of Mayor, Municipal Corporation and President, Municipal Council for hearing on January 6. The division bench has passed interim order that aforesaid election shall be subjected to final decision of petitions. Earlier, the division bench in its order said in the issue of local body elections that Election Commission why are not published election programme in Rajpatra and division bench asked the State Government of Madhya Pradesh and State Election Commission. The petitioners had filed petitions separately including Biraj Yadav, Rahul Singh Tomar and others challenging violation of Section 29-A of Madhya Pradesh Municipalities Act, 1961 and Ultra-Vires of Article 243-T (1) of Constitution of India. Senior Advocate Adarsh Muni Trivedi, Advocate Rajendra Mishra, Satyendra Jyotsi, Prashant Awasthi, Ashish Trivedi, Ashim Trivedi, Sarad Verma, Shekher Sharma, Z M Shah, Shushil Kumar Tiwari, Sushil Mishra appeared on behalf of the petitioners, while P K Kaurav, Additional Advocate General for the State and Siddharth Seth appeared for the State Election Commission.

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Kaya Kalp programme workers to mark attendance biometric way

EMPLOYEES of district health services working for the State Government’s most ambitious Kaya Kalp programme for renovation of hospital, health care centre has given their digital attendance i... Read More
EMPLOYEES of district health services working for the State Government’s most ambitious Kaya Kalp programme for renovation of hospital, health care centre has given their digital attendance in biometric system installed at various points or else their salary will be deducted from January 1 onwards. Chief Medical and Health Officer (CMHO) Dr B S Chouhan said circular has been given to the department concerned that it is mandatory for sanitary workers and other employees working for Kaya Kalp programme to register their attendance by giving thumb impression on biometric digital attendance system installed at various places in the District Hospital or else their salary will be deducted. He further informed that calculation of attendance will be done through calculating thumb impression in case their attendance is found short, then their salary will be deducted. Salary will be deducted on leave when employee remains absent without information, other than earned leave, casual leave, medical leave and other leaves prescribed as per government norms. It is to be mentioned that government doctors and other concerned medical staff have registered their protest against installation of biometric system for attendance citing discrepancy digital attendance should be installed in other government departments. They have also claimed that some doctors work on field, then how can they make thumb impression in biometric attendance machine installed at Victoria Hospital.

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Man killed, two others injured as speeding truck rams into bike

n Staff Reporter A man was killed while two others were injured when a speeding truck rammed into their motorcycle near Pipariya railway crossing under jurisdiction of Panagar police station, o... Read More
n Staff Reporter A man was killed while two others were injured when a speeding truck rammed into their motorcycle near Pipariya railway crossing under jurisdiction of Panagar police station, on Friday. The deceased has been identified as Nand Kishore Kol (30), a resident of Agolaha Mohalla in Kusher area while Mukesh Kol, a resident of Kusner area and Deepak Gontia of Kusner. According to Panagar police, Munna Kol (50), a resident of Agolaha Mohalla in Kusner area filed a complaint that he works at kiln of bricks. On Friday, his younger brother Nand Kishore Kol along with Mukesh Kol and Deepak Gontia were on their way towards kiln in Umaria village on a motorcycle. When they were passing through railway crossing in village Pipariya, a speeding truck (MP-20GA-6671) being driven recklessly by the driver rammed into their motorcycle. In the mishap, Mukesh and Deepak were thrown off from motorcycle and Nand Kishore along with his motorcycle was crushed under wheels of speeding truck and succumbed to his critical injuries due to profuse bleeding on the spot. Learning about the incident, a police team reached the spot and injured were rushed to Government Hospital Panagar with the help of 108 Ambulance Service. Police sent the body for post mortem at Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Medical College and Hospital. Police have registered a case against the accused truck driver under Sections 304 (A), 279 and 337 of the IPC and started a rigorous search to identify and apprehend the accused driver.

Stolen truck laden with iron ore seized

Bargi police succeeded in finding a stolen truck worth Rs 15 lakh loaded with iron ore at Kotwali area in district Seoni, on Friday. Police have seized the truck and started a search for the accused. It may be noted that Ganga Sagar Yadav (30), a resident of Gitti Khadan area in Nagpur lodged a complaint that he is working as truck driver. On December 11, he was driving a truck numbered MP-20HB-4027 loaded with iron ore from Jabalpur towards Vardha. In the night, he stopped truck near Patel Dhaba at village Hilki in Bargi area for taking dinner. He was taking dinner when another driver named Iqubal arrived and left after sometime. After the dinner, he walked towards truck and remained shocked with witnessing that the truck was missing. He immediately contacted the truck owner and lodged a complaint at Bargi police station.

Police registered a case against unidentified thief under section 379 of the IPC and started a search for the truck. SHO of Bargi police station, Kanhayya Baghel informed that continuing a rigorous search for the truck, police team reached information from Seoni that a truck was found abandoned near a petrol pump. Acting on information, a police team reached the spot and seized the stolen truck in Kotwali area, Seoni.

The complainant expressed doubt that the man he had met at Dhaba named Iqubal was earlier working his truck owner is the main suspect for stealing truck.

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Assembly adjourned for indefinite period

Madhya Pradesh Assembly was adjourned sine die on Friday. In this winter session, Assembly gave approval to first supplementary budget of 2014-15. Apart from this, fourteen Government bills wer... Read More
Madhya Pradesh Assembly was adjourned sine die on Friday. In this winter session, Assembly gave approval to first supplementary budget of 2014-15. Apart from this, fourteen Government bills were also passed. While addressing house just before adjournment for indefinite period, Speaker Dr Sitasharan Sharma said total 1,387 questions were asked in the session and Assembly received 208 information, of them 24 were accepted and fourteen were discussed. Seventy-three petitions were presented in the house. Discussion was done on one adjournment motion. Besides, discussion was also done on non availability of fertiliser and seeds under rule 139. The computer training session for members was encouraging and as many as hundred members have taken part in it. Many members have requested to carry on the training programme even in coming session. He also congratulated house members and people on coming Christmas and New Year in advance. In his speech, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said Government is in constant touch with Centre over urea issue. Centre had fixed quota of 3.70 metric tones but if needed then Centre had assured to give more urea than the quota. The urea shortage would be fulfilled. In charge Leader of Opposition, Balabachchan requested to increase the time period of Assembly sessions from future. Afterwards, Speaker adjourned the house for indefinite period.

One dozen people die due to dengue in State: Mishra

From January 1 till November 15, twelve people have died due to dengue disease and 23 died due to Malaria and seven due to swine flu disease in Madhya Pradesh. During this period, no person infected from Ebola virus was found. This information was given by Health Minister Narottam Mishra to Assembly in written in reply to a question asked by senior Congress MLA Ramnivas Rawat. Rawat wanted to know that how many persons suffering from Malaria, Swine Flu, Dengue, Ebola virus were found and how many have died due to said diseases. Narottam Mishra had said in reply that from January 1 till November 15, 84494 cases of Malaria were detected. From January 1 till November 10, thirteen positive cases of swine flu and 1609 cases of dengue were seen. However, no patient suffering from Ebola disease was found. As part of preparedness, combat team and rapid response team were constituted in all districts and blocks. Ramnivas Rawat had also asked question to know that how many children in the age group of 0 to 6 and 6 to 12 years have died due to malnutrition, measles , malaria, dengue and other disease.

Clean chit to officers in Ratangarh stampede incident The report of judicial commission appointed to investigate the Ratangarh stampede incident found that stampede that claimed lives of 116 people occurred due to reaching of people in large number along with vehicles and spread of rumour that bridge had collapsed. Commission had refused to hold officers responsible for incident. However, it held SAF head constable Chotelal Dohre and constable Hukum Chand responsible for not executing their duty with alacrity and not stopping the influx of vehicles. The commission also refused to accept that incident occurred due to deployment of less force. Commission said that in comparison to Navratri mela’s of previous year, more police force was deployed in Navratri fair of 2013 but anticipation could not be done that people would come in such a large number. Commission suggested of broadening of road from Charokhara till Mata Mandir road, marking of parking place etc to avoid such incidents in future. It may be mentioned that citing reasons responsible for incident, commission said that police force was less by seeing the crowd and there was no proper parking arrangement. The other reason was jam created by vehicles plying on bridge. Besides, fight broke out among pilgrims after Jawara’s got broke in skirmish. Other reason for incident was this that anti social elements have spread the rumour of collapse of bridge and this led to stampede. The judicial commission’s report on Ratangarh stampede was tabled in state assembly on Friday.

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Speculation rife over names of Cong candidates

Congress State election committee meeting concluded abruptly on Thursday night after disputes surfaced between two factions of Congress. The situation worsened to the extent that CPCC President... Read More
Congress State election committee meeting concluded abruptly on Thursday night after disputes surfaced between two factions of Congress. The situation worsened to the extent that CPCC President Bhupesh Baghel and CLP leader TS Singhdeo as well as party Incharge General Secretary Girish Dewangan had to seek refuge within a portion of Congress Bhawan as supporters of former Chief Minister Ajit Jogi went on the offensive and raised slogans against party organization leaders. Congress sources informed that the ruckus erupted when Bilaspur Congress leaders close to organization raised objections to the finalization of tickets without consulting them. They alleged in conversation with Bhakta Charan Das, AICC Secretary, that only Jogi faction leaders were being consulted. The Jogi supporters soon after began assembling in Congress Bhawan and went completely on the offensive. Party leaders had to seek refuge within a portion of Congress Bhawan and it was only after Ajit Jogi came out of the meeting hall to pacify his supporters that the situation became normal and meeting had to be called off. Meanwhile, Congress Bhawan remained abuzz with activities on Thursday amidst marathon meeting in state party headquarter to finalize candidature for upcoming municipal elections. The 12-member reconstituted state Congress election committee deliberated with sitting MLAs, MLA candidates, Lok Sabha candidates, Member of Parliament and district committee chiefs to finalize the list of candidates. There were strong speculations about the possible Congress candidate, Pramod Dubey’s name is speculated to be on the forefront as the Congress choice for Raipur Mayor candidate even as Raipur Shahar Congres Committee President Vikas Upadhyay and party leader Anand Kukreja are also close contenders. Congress sources stated that three senior leaders are reported to be favouring the name of Pramod Dubey as Raipur Mayoral candidate. Going by the speculations, Dr Ajay Tirki, considered close to CLP leader TS Singhdeo, is most likely to be the candidate for Ambikapur Mayor while Jethu Ram Manhar, considered close to Late Nand Kumar Patel and close confidante of Kharasia MLA Umesh Patel, could get the party ticket for Raigarh Municipal Corporation.

Again, Renu Agrawal, wife of sitting MLA Jaisingh Agrawal, may get Congress ticket for Korba Municipal Corporation. Archana Upadhyay was another prominent name for the ticket from Korba and is considered close associate of former Minister Dr Charan Das Mahant.

Ram Sharan Yadav, is another close contender for Bilaspur Mayor ticket from Congress, and was also reportedly backed by former Chief Minister Ajit Jogi. Much against reports that Naresh Dakalia was the unanimous choice for Congress Rajnandgaon Mayoral ticket, there are speculations that Vijay Pandey is also on the race for the ticket. Malkit Singh Gaidu, a prominent Congress leader from Jagdalpur, could be the Congress candidate for Jagdalpur Mayoral ticket. Likewise, Congress’s Durg Mayoral ticket may go to either Neelu Thakur or Satyavati Verma. The CPCC President Bhupesh Baghel is reported to be backing the candidature of Satyavati Verma.

Earlier in the day, state party President Bhupesh Baghel came for the meeting late than scheduled time. The waiting media persons were taking snaps of former Chief Minister Ajit Jogi who was the first of the state election committee member to arrive in Congress Bhawan. As soon as the CPCC president arrived the media attention for Jogi did irritate him and he used some harsh words against media persons. After protest from media, the Congress leaders tendered apology to the media persons after which situation normalized.

As per reports, the Congress election committee meeting was suspended for dinner earlier than scheduled because of heated exchanges between CPCC President Bhupesh Baghel and MLAs RK Rai and Anila Bhedia over choice of candidates from Gunderdehi and Dondilohara. MLA RK Rai told The Hitavada over phone that some of the names were added on the insistence of senior Delhi based Congress leader for candidature in his constituency which was against the laid down guidelines which said that candidature can be decided in consultation with sitting MLAs and district committee chief. MLA Anila Bhedia could not be reached for her comments on the reported differences.

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Fomer MLA creates scene at Police Station

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and former MLA Nande Sahu along with his supporters created uproar at the Saraswati Nagar Police Station. Reportedly, he was miffed over the police for takin... Read More
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and former MLA Nande Sahu along with his supporters created uproar at the Saraswati Nagar Police Station. Reportedly, he was miffed over the police for taking his son into custody. According to the report, Nande Sahu’s son Hariom Sahu was taken into custody after he bickered with a sub-inspector of Saraswati Nagar Police Station. Saraswati Nagar Station House Officer (SHO) said that a Traffic Sub-Inspector stopped Nande Sahu’s son, when he broke traffic rules in front of Pt Ravishankar Shukla University’s gate. Nande Sahu’s son took this on his ego and got into a heated argument with the Traffic SI. As the security was beefed up owing to the visit of BJP National President Amit Shah, Hariom’s car was seized and he, too, was taken into custody. When the former MLA got this news, he turned up at the Saraswati Nagar Police Station with huge number of supporters, shouting slogans against police. Before the matter could go out of control, police officials and Nande Sahu managed to make a compromise between Hariom and SI.

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10 crore membership if achieved, BJP cannot be defeated for next 50 years: Amit Shah

Calling upon huge number of party workers and office-bearers present at the Science College ground during the mega Bharatiya Janata Party Membership Campaign Congregation, National President of B... Read More
Calling upon huge number of party workers and office-bearers present at the Science College ground during the mega Bharatiya Janata Party Membership Campaign Congregation, National President of Bharatiya Janata Party Amit Shah urged them to work hard so that party membership figures in the state touches 50 lakh mark. He said that among the 1600 odd political parties registered in the country, the Bharatiya Janata Party is the only party which functions democratically. He said if the party workers through their hard work achieve the 10 crore target membership in the country and 50 lakh in Chhattisgarh, no one can defeat BJP for next 50 years. Addressing the party workers including MPs, MLAs, Ministers, Mayors, Presidents and corporators and senior party workers who had come on invitation to attend the Congregation, the BJP National President said that BJP is the only party where a booth-level party worker can get the opportunity to become a Prime Minister Narendra Modi is its example, who was a booth-level party worker and used to sell tea for living. He said in this party organizational elections are held every three years, wherein opportunity is extended to every one to lead from the front. When the party came into existence in 1950 amidst huge negation and opposition and passing through different phases of ups and downs, in 2014 the party has come to a position where its ideology and policies are being liked not only nationally but internationally also. People now are accepting the party ideology and policies whole heartedly. But if this success has to be carried long we need to consolidate it. For which the membership drive is necessary. He urged every party worker to work hard for a week at their respective booths and make at least 100 new members. Presently the membership of BJP in the country is 3.25 crore which the party is targeting to take to 10 crore. If this target is achieved, the party will become world’s largest membership based party.

Similarly, in Chhattisgarh also there are presently 13.5 lakh active members which can be easily taken to 50 lakhs. Calling upon the party workers, Amit Shah said if every one of them makes at least 100 members, touching 50 lakh members in the state can be achieved easily. He said once the party achieves 50 lakh figure in the state, for the next 25 years no one can defeat the party here.

The BJP National President said the membership drive should be carried in an extensive way in every village, ward, tehsil, town and city that people irrespective of their caste, creed and colour should be able to join the party. The National President said that the membership drive has striking resemblance with Mahatama Gandhi Dandi March, wherein, when the march ended it achieved huge dimensions and ultimately achieved freedom for the country. Similarly, the membership drive when its target will be achieved, no other political party in the country will be able to match its prowess.

‘Dr Raman Singh has eventfully completed his 11 years rule’

Earlier, while praising the Dr Raman Singh government on its completion of 11 years rule in the State and stepping into its 12 year, Amit Shah said two significant things have taken place in the country, first the BJP led State Government under Dr Raman Singh has eventfully completed 11 years rule and secondly over 170 countries has supported India’s initiative towards Yoga and finally United Nations had announced June 21 to be observed as International Yoga Day, which is a great achievement for the country.

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Opposition stages walk out in Assembly on urea issue

Unsatisfied by Government’s reply on prevailing urea crisis in State, Opposition staged walk out in State Assembly on Friday. In his reply, Agriculture Minister Dr Gaurishankar Bisen rubbishe... Read More
Unsatisfied by Government’s reply on prevailing urea crisis in State, Opposition staged walk out in State Assembly on Friday. In his reply, Agriculture Minister Dr Gaurishankar Bisen rubbished the Opposition’s allegations and claimed that there is only ten percent shortage of urea in State and Government is making all efforts to meet the demand. Earlier, while taking part in discussion on persisting urea crisis, Opposition accused government of failing to provide adequate urea to farmers and said that farmers at some places have even protested demanding urea. At some places, urea is distributed under police protection.

While replying to the allegations, Agriculture Minister Dr Gaurishankar Bisen said that in present situation there is only ten percent urea shortage in State and there is no shortage of DAP and mixer fertiliser.

But Opposition was not satisfied by the minister’s reply. Outside the Assembly hall, Opposition raised slogans against State Government.

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Assembly adjourned for indefinite period

Madhya Pradesh Assembly was adjourned sine die on Friday. In this winter session, Assembly gave approval to first supplementary budget of 2014-15. Apart from this, fourteen Government bills wer... Read More
Madhya Pradesh Assembly was adjourned sine die on Friday. In this winter session, Assembly gave approval to first supplementary budget of 2014-15. Apart from this, fourteen Government bills were also passed. While addressing house just before adjournment for indefinite period, Speaker Dr Sitasharan Sharma said total 1,387 questions were asked in the session and Assembly received 208 information, of them 24 were accepted and fourteen were discussed. Seventy-three petitions were presented in the house.

Discussion was done on one adjournment motion. Besides, discussion was also done on non availability of fertiliser and seeds under rule 139.

The computer training session for members was encouraging and as many as hundred members have taken part in it.

Many members have requested to carry on the training programme even in coming session. He also congratulated house members and people on coming Christmas and New Year in advance.

In his speech, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said Government is in constant touch with Centre over urea issue. Centre had fixed quota of 3.70 metric tones but if needed then Centre had assured to give more urea than the quota. The urea shortage would be fulfilled.

In charge Leader of Opposition, Balabachchan requested to increase the time period of Assembly sessions from future. Afterwards, Speaker adjourned the house for indefinite period.

One dozen people die due to dengue in State: Mishra

From January 1 till November 15, twelve people have died due to dengue disease and 23 died due to Malaria and seven due to swine flu disease in Madhya Pradesh. During this period, no person infected from Ebola virus was found. This information was given by Health Minister Narottam Mishra to Assembly in written in reply to a question asked by senior Congress MLA Ramnivas Rawat. Rawat wanted to know that how many persons suffering from Malaria, Swine Flu, Dengue, Ebola virus were found and how many have died due to said diseases. Narottam Mishra had said in reply that from January 1 till November 15, 84494 cases of Malaria were detected. From January 1 till November 10, thirteen positive cases of swine flu and 1609 cases of dengue were seen. However, no patient suffering from Ebola disease was found. As part of preparedness, combat team and rapid response team were constituted in all districts and blocks. Ramnivas Rawat had also asked question to know that how many children in the age group of 0 to 6 and 6 to 12 years have died due to malnutrition, measles , malaria, dengue and other disease.

Clean chit to officers in Ratangarh stampede incident

The report of judicial commission appointed to investigate the Ratangarh stampede incident found that stampede that claimed lives of 116 people occurred due to reaching of people in large number along with vehicles and spread of rumour that bridge had collapsed. Commission had refused to hold officers responsible for incident. However, it held SAF head constable Chotelal Dohre and constable Hukum Chand responsible for not executing their duty with alacrity and not stopping the influx of vehicles. The commission also refused to accept that incident occurred due to deployment of less force. Commission said that in comparison to Navratri mela’s of previous year, more police force was deployed in Navratri fair of 2013 but anticipation could not be done that people would come in such a large number. Commission suggested of broadening of road from Charokhara till Mata Mandir road, marking of parking place etc to avoid such incidents in future. Citing reasons responsible for incident, commission said that police force was less by seeing the crowd and there was no proper parking arrangement. The other reason was jam created by vehicles plying on bridge. Besides, fight broke out among pilgrims after Jawara’s got broke in skirmish. Other reason for incident was this that anti social elements have spread the rumour of collapse of bridge and this led to stampede. The judicial commission’s report on Ratangarh stampede was tabled in state assembly on Friday.

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Bhopal Zila Panchayat President’s post reserved for OBC

Process to reserve posts of Zila Panchayat President for Panchayat general elections 2014-15, was undertaken in the auditorium of Land and Water Management Institute (WALMI) on Friday. Bhopal Z... Read More
Process to reserve posts of Zila Panchayat President for Panchayat general elections 2014-15, was undertaken in the auditorium of Land and Water Management Institute (WALMI) on Friday. Bhopal Zila Panchayat President’s post has been reserved for OBC (Open for men/women). The process was completed by Commissioner of Panchayat Raj Raghuvir Shrivastava. Under Sections 32 and 129, fifty percent posts in 51 Zila Panchayats in the State were reserved for women belonging to SCs, STs, OBCs and general category. Director WALMI Rajesh Mishra, Joint Commissioner Panchayats Shivani Verma and representatives of three-tier Panchayats were present on the occasion. During the process, posts of Zila Panchayat President were reserved in descending order where population of SCs and STs is more.

Fifty percent of the posts of President of 51 Zila Panchayats, 50 were reserved for women belonging to all reserved categories and 25 percent for OBCs. All posts were reserved through draw of lot. In this way, total 26 posts of Zila Panchayat President were reserved for women including 4 SCs, 7 STs, 7 OBCs and 8 of general category. Remaining Zila Panchayat President’s posts were declared unreserved.

Of the 8 Zila Panchayats declared reserved for scheduled castes, four will be reserved for women, including Datia, Agar-Malwa, Shajapur and Sehore. Of the 14 Zila Panchayats declared reserved for scheduled tribes, 7 will be reserved for women, including Barwani, Dindori, Mandla, Dhar, Chhindwara, Khargone and Khandwa. Seven Zila Panchayats in this category will be unreserved including Alirajpur, Jhabua, Anuppur, Shahdol, Umaria, Betul and Ratlam. Of the 13 Zila Panchayats declared reserved for OBCs, 7 will be reserved for women including Harda, Rajgarh, Ashok Nagar, Shivpuri, Burhanpur, Satna and Katni. Six Zila Panchayats under this category (OBC) will be unreserved (for men/women) including Bhopal, Morena, Narsinghgarh, Sheopur and Hoshangabad. As many as 16 Zila Panchayats have been declared unreserved of which 8 have been reserved for women including Indore, Neemuch, Raisen, Jabalpur, Balaghat, Sagar, Guna and Seoni. Remaining 8 Zila Panchayats will be unreserved including Gwalior, Rewa, Panna, Dewas, Singrauli, Damoh, Sidhi and Mandsaur.

Zila Panchayat members to deposit Rs 4000 security amount

In Panchayat elections, candidates will have to deposit security amount along with nomination. Security deposit for candidates for members of Zila Panchayats has been fixed as Rs 4000, for Janpad Panchayat members Rs 2000, for sarpanch Rs 1000 and panch Rs 200. State Election Commissioner R Parasuram has informed that if the candidate is female or belongs to SC, ST or OBC then half of the security amount will be deposited.

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Bhopal Zila Panchayat President’s post reserved for OBC

Process to reserve posts of Zila Panchayat President for Panchayat general elections 2014-15, was undertaken in the auditorium of Land and Water Management Institute (WALMI) on Friday. Bhopal Z... Read More
Process to reserve posts of Zila Panchayat President for Panchayat general elections 2014-15, was undertaken in the auditorium of Land and Water Management Institute (WALMI) on Friday. Bhopal Zila Panchayat President’s post has been reserved for OBC (Open for men/women). The process was completed by Commissioner of Panchayat Raj Raghuvir Shrivastava. Under Sections 32 and 129, fifty percent posts in 51 Zila Panchayats in the State were reserved for women belonging to SCs, STs, OBCs and general category. Director WALMI Rajesh Mishra, Joint Commissioner Panchayats Shivani Verma and representatives of three-tier Panchayats were present on the occasion. During the process, posts of Zila Panchayat President were reserved in descending order where population of SCs and STs is more.

Fifty percent of the posts of President of 51 Zila Panchayats, 50 were reserved for women belonging to all reserved categories and 25 percent for OBCs. All posts were reserved through draw of lot. In this way, total 26 posts of Zila Panchayat President were reserved for women including 4 SCs, 7 STs, 7 OBCs and 8 of general category. Remaining Zila Panchayat President’s posts were declared unreserved.

Of the 8 Zila Panchayats declared reserved for scheduled castes, four will be reserved for women, including Datia, Agar-Malwa, Shajapur and Sehore. Of the 14 Zila Panchayats declared reserved for scheduled tribes, 7 will be reserved for women, including Barwani, Dindori, Mandla, Dhar, Chhindwara, Khargone and Khandwa. Seven Zila Panchayats in this category will be unreserved including Alirajpur, Jhabua, Anuppur, Shahdol, Umaria, Betul and Ratlam. Of the 13 Zila Panchayats declared reserved for OBCs, 7 will be reserved for women including Harda, Rajgarh, Ashok Nagar, Shivpuri, Burhanpur, Satna and Katni. Six Zila Panchayats under this category (OBC) will be unreserved (for men/women) including Bhopal, Morena, Narsinghgarh, Sheopur and Hoshangabad. As many as 16 Zila Panchayats have been declared unreserved of which 8 have been reserved for women including Indore, Neemuch, Raisen, Jabalpur, Balaghat, Sagar, Guna and Seoni. Remaining 8 Zila Panchayats will be unreserved including Gwalior, Rewa, Panna, Dewas, Singrauli, Damoh, Sidhi and Mandsaur.

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Representatives resolve issue

The dispute between two groups of a community was resolved here on Friday after the representatives of both the groups met.

The meeting was mediated by Shahr Qazi Mushtaq Ali Nadvi. Mufti Abd... Read More
The dispute between two groups of a community was resolved here on Friday after the representatives of both the groups met.

The meeting was mediated by Shahr Qazi Mushtaq Ali Nadvi. Mufti Abdul Kalam, Muslim Personal Law Board Member Arif Masood and Rajihasan Haidari were also present. In the meeting the religious leaders were informed that it was not a clash between two sects but a personal fight among few people from both sects.

The dispute was also resolved and it was decided that people of both sects will reside with peace and harmony.

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Victims meet Home Minister Gaur

Members of the Irani group met Home Minister Babulal Gaur here on Friday morning and informed about the whole incident in detail. Over 100 victims of the incident reached Minister Gaur’s house. W... Read More
Members of the Irani group met Home Minister Babulal Gaur here on Friday morning and informed about the whole incident in detail. Over 100 victims of the incident reached Minister Gaur’s house. Women reached in larger number at Gaur’s house. They showed their injuries to Gaur and told that how they have to spend night in cold weather at the secured location. They told Gaur that on Wednesday night the matter was resolved but on Thursday morning, out of blue, people attacked their houses, set vehicles on fire. The victims reached Gaur’s house at 8 in the morning. Gaur listened to the whole incident and assured them strict legal action will be taken against the accused. Gaur told mediapersons that it is an unfortunate incident and both the groups are of same community only. Police have the situation under their control and efforts would be made to prevent such incidents in future.

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Group Clash: 33 arrested, people yet to return to homes

Over 33 members of a group were arrested in State capital by Friday evening for rampage, setting houses and vehicles on fire in Aman Colony in Karond area of capital on Wednesday and Thursday. Po... Read More
Over 33 members of a group were arrested in State capital by Friday evening for rampage, setting houses and vehicles on fire in Aman Colony in Karond area of capital on Wednesday and Thursday. Police have shifted women and children of one of the groups to secured locations. Meanwhile, a month-old child died due to suffocation after the arson in Nishatpura area. After tensions for over 24 hours in the area, the conditions started to normalise on Friday though most of the people stayed inside their houses only and roads remained deserted. Police force was deployed at every corner and street of the Nishatpura locality of state capital.

Meanwhile, police have shifted the families of one of the groups to secured locations. People of the group are very scared and afraid of staying in the locality. They told their families cannot stay at the secured locations for long and have to return home some days. They are afraid that after police force is removed from the area they will be attacked again and their houses will be set on fire.

The people of two groups of communities came face-to-face over a land dispute. People of a group reside in the area in large numbers. A dispute was going on for long time over a piece of land besides a religious place. The other group wanted to construct their religious place while the other group was not ready for it.

On Wednesday, the dispute turned into heated argument which did not take much time to become a bloody fight. Later, police dispersed the mob but after police force was removed on Thursday morning, one of the groups attacked the houses of other group.

SP North Arvind Saxena told ‘The Hitavada’ that six cases have been registered by a group of people and police have also registered one case in the matter under section 147, rioting, 148, rioting with armed weapons, 436, setting houses on fire, 427, damaging, of IPC. Police have arrested 33 accused and presented them in court. District police along with Rapid Action Force (RAF) and Special Task Force (STF) are deployed in the area and patrolling is also carried out.

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Three of a family killed in truck-van collision near Umred

Three members of a family from Chimur were killed and one other injured seriously when the van they were travelling in collided with a speeding truck near WCL Coal Mines near Umred town on Thursd... Read More
Three members of a family from Chimur were killed and one other injured seriously when the van they were travelling in collided with a speeding truck near WCL Coal Mines near Umred town on Thursday night.

The deceased were identified as Abid Abdul Aziz Jangad (36); Jir Mohd Sheikh (33) and Mobin alias Munna Yusuf Khan (40), all residents of Chimur.

According to police, the family was returning to Chimur in a van (MH-34-K-0947) after purchasing goods from Nagpur for their grocery shop, at 9.30 pm. Near WCL Coal Mines area, a speeding truck (MH-31-CB-6552) coming from the opposite direction rammed into the van. So strong was the impact that the van got stuck in the truck. Staff of Umred Police station rushed to the spot after being informed by passers-by. A senior police officer of Umred Police Station informed that one passenger died on the spot due to critical brain injuries. Three seriously injured persons, including Sadiya (8), were rushed to Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) where two of them were declared brought dead. Critically injured Sadiya is under observation at GMCH, said the police officer.

Umred Police have registered offence under Sections 279, 304 (a) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) read with Section 184 of the Motor Vehicle Act (MVA) against the truck driver identified as Shreeram Jeendar Bendre (41), a resident of Bhandara Road, Nagpur. Police have arrested Shreeram Bendre.

Further investigations are under way.

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State Govt trying to fetch investment of Rs 5 lakh crore: Desai

Maharashtra Government is trying to fetch investment to the tune of Rs 5 lakh crore and create 20 lakh jobs in industrial units thus coming to State, said Subhash Desai, Industries Minister.

... Read More
Maharashtra Government is trying to fetch investment to the tune of Rs 5 lakh crore and create 20 lakh jobs in industrial units thus coming to State, said Subhash Desai, Industries Minister.

Replying to a debate in Legislative Assembly on Friday, Desai said that the new Government had set before it an ambitious target of 13 per cent growth in industries sector in State. To achieve this goal, the Government was taking all-out efforts to attract more and more investors to Maharashtra. For the purpose, it was considering a proposal to bring down power tariff. The number of licences required to new industry would be brought down to 20-25, he added.

In the emerging sector of Information Technology and enabled services, Maharashtra has been successful in attracting investments. “The present Information Technology Policy has been given extension till March 2015, and a new policy will be declared soon,” said Desai. He took a dig at those demanding special Industrial Policy for Vidarbha region, and said that the region was not lagging in industrial development.

According to Desai, Vidarbha had seen an investment of Rs 36,800 crore so far. This had created 3,43,000 jobs. There were 361 mega projects and 29,500 other projects, he added. Further, the projects like Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL), Shyam Indofab, Hindalco, Rasoya Proteins, Prithvi Ferro Alloys etc were coming to the region. On the issue of MIDC area plots, the Industries Minister said that action would be initiated against the units that had obtained plots in MIDC area but had not utilised the land for stated purpose.

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No contempt action against Chief Secretary, UD Principal Secy: HC

Accepting unconditional apology tendered by State Chief Secretary (CS) Swadheen S Kshatriya and Principal Secretary of Urban Development (UD) - I, Manu Kumar Srivastava, Justice Bhushan Gavai and... Read More
Accepting unconditional apology tendered by State Chief Secretary (CS) Swadheen S Kshatriya and Principal Secretary of Urban Development (UD) - I, Manu Kumar Srivastava, Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande, at the High Court have dropped contempt proceedings against them, in the bunch of public interest litigations (PILs) filed by many citizens relating to traffic and parking problems in Nagpur city and surrounding areas and the suggestions and effective measures for tackling the problem on short term and long term basis.

The two officers were personally present before the Court by way of compliance of its directive. The Court accepted apology after giving its bit of mind to these officers as to what should be their attitude towards public causes.

The Court, on June 25, had directed constitution of a committee under chairmanship of the Chief Secretary with officers of various departments as members and asked for its preliminary report in three months.

But much to everybody’s shock, bureaucracy moved long after the expiry of three months. As per the Chief Secretary’s affidavit, the committee was constituted on October 14 and its first meeting was held on October 21 while the first meeting of the sub-committee was held on December 5 last. He has intimated that he himself with members of the committee visited various spots in the city, so as to have a factual feel of the situation. The preliminary report has been submitted with this affidavit, which addresses several issues and that may help to ease the situation somewhat. The said report deals with Mor Bhavan Bus terminal, parking places in the city, management of traffic will get a fresh look from the City Police Commissioner, evolving Hawkers’ Policy, truck terminals and contains several suggestions on these aspects.

The Court did not accept the suggestion made by Advocate General Sunil Manohar that because of his heavy pre-occupations, the Chief Secretary may be permitted to entrust chairmanship of the committee to some Additional Chief Secretary. It said that it has already authorised the committee to have sub-committees with some other officers heading them, but as overall head Chief Secretary, better results will follow. It will avoid blame-game.

Principal Secretary of UD - I, in his submissions, has stated that this problem can be tackled by his counterpart - UD-II. Now, the ball was in his court. Picking up this thread, the Court stated that in view to avoid such situations, Chief Secretary should continue to head the committee. The Court will consider the PILs further on March 13 next.

Adv Shrirang Bhandarkar, Adv Shrikant Khandalkar, Adv P C Madkholkar, Adv Vivek Kedar, Adv S K Mishra appeared in the matter.

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Nod to ACB given 15 days ago for probe against NCP stalwarts: CM

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, on Friday, made it clear that permission to Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) to conduct an open probe against three NCP stalwarts -- former Deputy Chief Minister Aji... Read More
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, on Friday, made it clear that permission to Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) to conduct an open probe against three NCP stalwarts -- former Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, NCP State President and ex-Irrigation Minister Sunil Tatkare, and former PWD Minister Chhagan Bhujbal -- was granted two weeks ago. The permission to ACB to go ahead had nothing to do with prevailing political situation or Shiv Sena extending its support to BJP Government, Fadnavis stated, while talking to the reporters. “We have no personal bias or political ill-will against anybody. But law must take its own course and nobody involved in wrong doings will be spared,” the Chief Minister asserted while squarely rejecting Opposition charge.

The ACB had moved the proposal in August 2014 seeking nod to probe into role of Ajit Pawar and Sunil Tatkare who handled Irrigation Department for last 15 years after many activists submitted damning evidence against both the ministers. The proposal was kept pending by then Home Minister R R Patil for some days and soon elections were declared and top officials of Home and Chief Secretary kept the matter for approval from the next Government. But after NCP pulled out of DF Government and both the parties snapping ties, the State was put under President’s rule. Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao, examined the files and with a positive remarks kept them pending for a nod from the elected government.

These were politically most sensitive files awaiting a firm decision from Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and displaying courage, he granted approval to conduct open probe against three senior NCP leaders. In fact, when NCP declared its unconditional support to BJP Government when it was short of numbers, political and official circle speculated that NCP would seek a quid-pro-quo and would pressurise the government not to order ACB probe.

However, after the new Advocate General, Sunil Manohar was appointed, the top functionaries reviewed the material submitted by ACB in support of its proposal to investigate role of Pawar, Tatkre and Bhujbal. After ascertaining that it would withstand judicial scrutiny, the Chief Minister apparently gave a go-ahead for ACB probe into the scam, a fortnight ago. The decision was not made public despite repeated queries from mediapersons and even his political supporters. Since this was an administrative order and at least in case of two former ministers - Pawar and Tatkare, PILs were pending before the High Court demanding probe into the scam, Chief Minister entrusted Advocate General Sunil Manohar to drop this bombshell, away from media glare and non-political platform, to indicate firmness of his resolve and seriousness of his Government to set the machinery into motion.

Advocate General Manohar, with clinical precision, made this all important statement before the High Court on Friday morning and within minutes its ripple effects were visible in the winter session as bewildered NCP camp staged a walk-out from the House declaring boycott on remaining part of the session.

ACB gearing up to conduct open enquiry

Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) is gearing up to handle this political hot-potato involving very high and mighty after the green signal from the Chief Minister. ACB Director General Pravin Dixit who has moved the proposal and awaiting decision, will now be the person to watch in coming days. ACB chief parried media queries.

According to sources, the ACB will have to constitute special teams to probe into the scam as it involves scanning of voluminous data and technical aspects related to cost escalation, clearance process, financial rules and quality of works. The Government functionaries are studying Bihar’s Fodder Scam case in which very water-tight terms of references were framed and the Anti-Corruption Bureau sleuths were able to secure conviction of then the Chief Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav.

Under open enquiry, apart from material initially collected, any aggrieved citizen can submit his or her complaint with supporting documents to the ACB.

Normally, a high ranking officer is deputed to conduct such a probe and verify the complaints lodged with it and segregate the prosecutable material to present a case before the special court by fixing the responsibility of all accused.

According to sources, ACB teams will record the statement of not only the officials of Irrigation Department, but also the NCP leaders. It is to be seen whether the ACB first registers a criminal case under the prevention of corruption act or completes the probe and then registers a case. Tracing the money trail will be another key to nail the guilty. Account books of all key contractors may be sealed and scrutinised and their bank accounts and other financial papers will be closely scanned to dig out wrong doings or money used to grease the palms of the authority concerned.

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New judicial appointment system has many flaws, says Justice Ajit Shah

Collegium system of appointment of Judges in Supreme Court and High Courts is riddled with complexities but the solution thought of by the Government to fix the system is remedy worse than the di... Read More
Collegium system of appointment of Judges in Supreme Court and High Courts is riddled with complexities but the solution thought of by the Government to fix the system is remedy worse than the disease. Yes, there is need for transparency as well as accountability in appointments made at higher judiciary, but same cannot be achieved by undermining the independence of judiciary, opined Justice (retired) Ajit Shah, Chairman, Law Commission of India, on Friday. The former Chief Justice of Delhi High Court felt that Government should have gone for more consultation before piloting the 121st National Judicial Appointments Commission Bill, 2014, which incidentally was approved by both the Houses of the Parliament.

The issue of appointments in higher echelons of judiciary in the country has attracted much attention and this is also much debated issue and there is no consensus among stockholders. Still Justice Shah felt that the new system could end-up inheriting the ills of present collegium system. The collegium system lacks transparency and much worse has no place for accountability as no one can question the decision giving rise to claims of nepotism and favoritism. Though having shortcomings, the collegium system managed to ensure that Apex court and High Courts were not packed with those favourable to executive as would have occurred otherwise with executive having the final say.

Justice Shah was speaking at the 10th Advocate N L Belekar Memorial Lecture Series organised by High Court Bar Association (HCBA), Nagpur, at Deshpande Hall. He spoke on ‘Appointments to High Courts and Supreme Court-Issues and Controversies’.

Justice Bhusan Gavai, Senior Administrative Judge, Bombay High Court, Nagpur Bench, presided. HCBA President Adv Arun Patil and Secretary Adv Shraddhanand Bhutada and M L Belekar, son of Adv N L Belekar also shared the dais.

Continuing his point Justice Shah outlined the scheme of things as envisaged by founding fathers. He spoke specially about the point introduced by Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar about not vesting absolute control on appointment in higher judiciary with Chief Justice of India (CJI) or with a single person. From that point of view, the NJAC Bill is good as it tries to balance the executive and judiciary but since the Bill has not specified about two eminent personalities who would be part of the selection committee, there is lot of skepticism. But the most dreaded point that Government has introduced is giving veto powers and if among six member panel even two members use veto then many deserving careers would get short-circuited. Also the contours of NJAC Bill goes against the spirit of majority judgement of constitution benches in three judges cases as he felt the primary role of judiciary in selection of Supreme Court and High Court Judges is being watered down by Government. Justice Shah felt that there should be three point formula for appointments in higher courts, the first being criteria be fixed, there should be diversity and third and most important there should be transparency and accountability in the entire process. Similarly, retirement age of High Court and Supreme Court Judges needs to be increased so that it can be in sync with prevailing practice worldwide.

Further, he spoke about having a cooling off period of two to three years before retired Judges could be considered for appointment in various posts.

Earlier, Justice Gavai elaborated on various prevailing views among the bar and also general public about the appointment of Judges in High Court and Supreme Court. He referred to various judgements of constitutional benches that provided final say to collegium in appointment of Judges. He said no system can be free from any shortcomings unless it can withstand the trust of those it meant to serve. Adv Patil elaborated on the life and work of Adv N L Belekar and how the lecture series was started. Mukta Chandurkar and Richa Choudhary introduced the guests and compered the programme. Adv Bhutada proposed a vote of thanks.

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‘Zero tolerance’ to corruption, crime, indiscipline: CM

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, on Friday, announced that his Government adopted 'Zero Tolerance' against corruption, crime, and indiscipline in Maharashtra. Replying to a debate on law and ord... Read More
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, on Friday, announced that his Government adopted 'Zero Tolerance' against corruption, crime, and indiscipline in Maharashtra. Replying to a debate on law and order situation, Fadnavis, who also holds Home Department portfolio, rolled out a road-map for reforms in Police Department.

Fadnavis informed the Assembly about the Government's plans to discipline the police force, curb cyber crime, take measures to reduce crimes against Dalits and women, and strengthen the police infrastructure and Intelligence apparatus. The Government would consider the recommendation of Ram Pradhan Committee of appointing retired officers of Intelligence Bureau and Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) on contract basis to strengthen Intelligence apparatus in State, he said. He made a slew of announcements, while throwing light on the challenges posed before him because of poor handling of Home Department by the previous Government. Chief Minister told the Assembly that he had directed the cops to register each and every complaint. "Unlike the previous Government, we will not resort to trickery like not registering offences and claiming decline in number of crime. Instead, I have asked the cops to register all the complaints. Initially, there may appear to be sudden increase in number of crimes in Maharashtra. However, in the longer run, it will help in restoring faith of citizens in police machinery. Besides, it will help improve faster investigation, better detection," he explained.

Stressing upon the need to train Investigation Officers for foolproof investigation, filing of chargesheet in a proper manner, Fadnavis said that his Government had adopted a 'Zero Tolerance' policy for crimes against women, Dalits, corruption, and indiscipline and insubordination in the police force. He announced to set up Women's Cell in each of the police stations in State. In a phased manner, effort will be made to designate all-women staff for these cells. The Government would consult the High Court and try to increase the number of Fast Track Courts for cases concerning women.

Commenting on the recent incidents of atrocities against Dalits, the Chief Minister said that it was a cause of concern. "The bigger cause of concern is that the rate of conviction in such cases is very poor. Hence, only law will not help, but its implementation and efforts to improve conviction rate will. The Government favoured disposal of serious offences through fast track trials," he announced in the House. He extended his greetings to police officers who investigated Javkhede-Khalsa murders for swift detection of crime and arrest of real culprits. "The cops recorded depositions of 140 witnesses, grilled 13 suspects, and conducted various tests including polygraph and SDS on six of them. Finally, they arrested the real culprits who confessed to the murders," he added.

Referring to an incident at Sindewahi in which two girls were sold in Rajasthan, Fadnavis said that the accused were arrest. Still, he said, the Government had asked the cops to probe if there was an organised gang behind the incident. In the human sacrifice case in Wardha district in which a child Rupesh Muley was killed brutally, he assured that the accused was arrested.

Though it was for the court to decide on punishment, he said that the Government would take necessary measures to ensure the most stringent action against the culprit.

Fadnavis announced that the Government was in favour of detection of smaller cases, and a plan of action was being prepared to bring doown number of crimes drastically in five years. "Fundamental changes, massive reforms are needed to increase detection and conviction," he said. He said that Forensic Science Laboratories in the State would be strengthened. Two new laboratories would be set up soon with all the ultra-modern facilities. Further, to improve rate of conviction from a poor 15 per cent, a panel of prosecutors would be appointed in every district and proper legal aid would be provided during investigation. Forensic units would be set up in every district and Commissionerate area. To boost the morale of cops, those doing commendable job would be honoured with special medals, he said.

Shall request to Centre for CERT unit in State: CM

Chief Minister informed the Assembly that the State Government would request the Centre to set up a unit of Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) for faster detection of cyber crimes and removal of objectionable content posted on social media. Expressing concern over rising cyber crimes and posting of objectionable content on social media, Fadnavis pointed out that servers of social media services were in the US or other countries. It was found that most of the content was posted from other countries, with an intention to stoke the sentiments of people in Maharashtra or India. Hence, Cyber Cell of Police Department was required to be made more effective, he added.

‘Property of directors to be seized for investors’ money’

Highlighting that the economic offences registered in the previous year involved a huge amount of Rs 9,340 crore, Devendra Fadnavis said that many companies collected money from innocent investors and duped them.

To ensure punishment to the culprits and return of hard-earned money of depositors, Additional Collector or Deputy Collector in every district was designated as special officer to look into the matters pertaining to protection of investors and depositors. The Government had decided to make provision for seizure of property of directors of such companies and return the money to depositors," he said.

State takes note of MLAs’ demand to ban ‘MD’

Taking a note of the demand of MLAs to ban Mephedrone or MD in Maharashtra, Chief Minister said that already the State Government had requested to the Centre to include MD in Schedule 1 of Narcotic and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act. State would explore if special action could be proposed against those manufacturing and selling MD, he said. A day ago, MLAs had alleged that MD was being manufactured and sold as a cheaper alternative to cocaine and youngsters addicted to it were dying.

CM takes a dig at Oppn

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis took a dig at the Opposition parties that were in the erstwhile Democratic Front (DF) Government, while replying to the debate on law and order situation. Referring to gang-war in Pune, Fadnavis pointed out that Marne gang was on rampage in Pune and was involved in land grabbing, shooting, murders etc. “Such gangs can operate because of political connections. As far as Marne gang is concerned, police officer concerned had proposed externment of its members, but the erstwhile Government stayed it,” he said. At the same time, Fadnavis assured that his Government would spare none.

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Central team in State to assess drought situation from Dec 14

A team of Central Government will be on tour of Maharashtra to assess drought-like situation. The team will arrive on tour on December 14 and will leave after a high-level meeting in Nagpur on ... Read More
A team of Central Government will be on tour of Maharashtra to assess drought-like situation. The team will arrive on tour on December 14 and will leave after a high-level meeting in Nagpur on December 17. Once the team submits its report to the Centre, the latter may clear the aid to Maharashtra to tackle drought-like situation. As per the official release issued here on Friday, Pravesh Sharma will lead the 10-member team. It will arrive at Aurangabad on December 14 and assess the situation in Aurangabad Division. The team will be divided into two sub-teams that will visit different parts of Maharashtra. A team will visit Aurangabad, Beed, Latur while another will visit Jalna, Malkapur, Washim, Akola, and Amravati on December 15. On December 16, one team will visit Latur, Ambejogai, Parali, Gangakhed, Parbhani, Ardhyapur, Mahagaon, Umarkhed and another will tour Yavatmal and Pulgaon (Wardha). On December 17, the team will arrive in Nagpur from Wardha. At 11 am, a high-level meeting has been called with the Chief Secretary and Secretaries of various departments concerned. In the meeting, various aspects related to drought-like situation will be discussed. At 12.30 noon, the team will meet Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Minister; and Pankaja Munde, Rural Development Minister. At 8.15 pm the same day, the Central team will leave for Delhi. It may be mentioned here that the State Government has sought an aid of Rs 3,900 crore from the Centre. Before providing the aid, Central Government sends a team to assess the situation. Accordingly, the team is on tour of the State. Meanwhile, the State Government has constituted a high-level committee to oversee implementation of relief package announced a day ago by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. Headed by Chief Secretary Swadhin Kshatriya, the committee comprises Principal Secretaries and Secretaries of Finance, Planning, Agriculture, Water Resources, Water Conservation and other departments.

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Oppn stalls Council in protest against scarce package

Terming the aid package given to farmers as eyewash, Opposition block forced adjournment of Upper House on Thursday. After Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse announced Rs. 7,000 crore aid package, th... Read More
Terming the aid package given to farmers as eyewash, Opposition block forced adjournment of Upper House on Thursday. After Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse announced Rs. 7,000 crore aid package, the Opposition block moved into well of the House flaying the Government. This led to first adjournment and after the House assembled as Panel Chairman Ramnath Mote tried to call the listed business the Opposition members again resorted to sloganeering.

The Opposition block then sat inside the well of the House and flayed Panel Chairman for pushing through the business. This finally led to adjournment for the entire day.

Manikrao Thakre of Congress who had initiated discussion on drought situation in State using Right to Reply flayed the Government for not indicating the per cent of per hectare compensation to the farmers. The package is nothing but disillusionment for the farmers as Government has merely combined ongoing schemes in name of package.

Reacting to this Khadse said the Government has introduced maximum possible compensation and there are some new features like, fee waiver for HSC students. Also for first time loan taken by farmers from licensed moneylenders too would be waived off and for this a provision of Rs. 373 crores has been made. Government is also ready to incorporate debt with private moneylenders provided farmers has to state it in writing. We were willing to provide more but due to empty coffers inherited by Government this was the maximum possible provision made, he opined.

However Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) Sunil Tatkare objected to Khadse claim of empty coffers saying debt is nothing new and every State in country has taken loans. The Minister he claimed has humiliated the 12 crore population of Maharashtra and further 90% of schemes are old.

Khadse too joined the debate and said the Congress-NCP combined ruined the Maharashtra and now BJP-Shiv Sena is left to wash the dirt left behind.

Not making any concrete announcements in the aid package. Congress's Manikrao Thakre who had given the adjournment motion that ensured debate on drought said, Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse has merely clubbed old schemes but not announced how much per hectare aid the farmers would be getting. The package is a mere eyewash as there is no mention of direct transfer of aid to farmers account and mere rehash of ongoing schemes. The announcement of package to drought hit farmers in State was made in Upper House by Revenue, Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Eknath Khadse. He was replying to two days debate in the House where members put forth some goods suggestions to enable farmers to stand on their feet once again.

Shobhatai Fadnavis and Adv. Anil Parab from Treasury benches joined the issue and amidst din nothing was audible as members traded charges against one another. Finally Panel Chairman adjourned the House for entire day after second disruption.

NCP aggressive for LoP’s post in Upper House

A divided face of Opposition in Legislative Council came to fore again as Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) made another bid to get its nominee named as Leader of Opposition. The NCP block has been aggressively pushing for naming their nominee as LoP but Chairman Shivajirao Deshmukh made it clear he cannot decide in hurry and nor should anyone try to hope that they can have the decision by such way.

After the Upper House convened after lunch break the NCP block wanted to know as to why there is delay in naming LoP. As the noise was increasing, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Girish Bapat made a statement asking NCP members to allow House to transact business. He said the Government had already given a letter to Chairman regarding naming LoP and hence Opposition should wait for the decision.

Bapat asked NCP members to allow discussion on drought to continue and also reply of Minister is more important.

“We also have given letter to Chairman asking him to list the issue of announcement of LoP on agenda. There is nothing controversial about LoP and hence discussion be allowed on drought,” he appealed.

However, Sunil Tatkare of NCP countered Bapat saying if the Treasury bench should have thought of it when they made announcement about Leader of House.

Why not that time also LoP announcement was made. He further contended that it is injustice on NCP as though being having largest number if House but still it is not being given its right. It is said that justice delayed in justice denied, Tatkare opined.

He further said though rules of business are their but sometimes the inordinate delay results in sentiments going overboard and it may be improper also but the gravity of the issue needs to be understood.

Chairman Shivajirao Deshmukh then gave his final decision on the matter which should ensure that the issue of LoP is dealt with for now. He said as per parliamentary conventions it is the prerogative of Chairman when to name LoP and no one can pressurize or push the decision in any way. Chairman also listed his seniority, having been working in legislature for nearly 37-years he knows the business rules and also that he would ensure no injustice is done with anyone.

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CM announces Wakf tribunal at Nagpur

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has announced to set up a Wakf Board Tribunal at Nagpur for speedy hearing in land cases. He said that earlier, Government had formed a committee to probe scams... Read More
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has announced to set up a Wakf Board Tribunal at Nagpur for speedy hearing in land cases. He said that earlier, Government had formed a committee to probe scams related to Wakf land. The committee had submitted its report to State Government two years ago. However, the report was not tabled in the House by the earlier Government. He said, Government will act on recommendations of the committee and take action against land grabbers and rectify irregularities. Govt will form a three-members tribunal for speedy decision on land cases. “We are also considering the proposal to appoint tribunal in other divisions of the State,” Fadnavis added.

Intervening during a question in Legislative Assembly, Chief Minister said, “When we were in Opposition, we raised the issues related to Wakf land.” He said that the State Wakf Board that had its headquarters in Aurangabad was flooded with work and there was a need for streamlining working.

Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse was replying to a question raised by Asif Sheikh and Abu Asim Azmi on whether the Government would increase the strength of the Board. Khadse informed the House that about 1,00,000 acre Wakf land was in the possession of some Muslim individuals and organisations and about 70,000 acre of the total land had been encroached upon. "The government will make all-out efforts to vacate the encroachments. The total Government land given on lease to the Waqf Board, is worth more than Rs 10,000 crore,” Khadse added.

Khadse said, Wakf Board has given land reserved for orphan children to top businessman Mukesh Ambani at throw away prices for construction of a bungalow. The Government has formed a committee to remove encroachment from Wakf land and has decided for digitisation of land records.

CM promises help to distressed milk producers

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis assured Legislative Assembly to organise a meeting of all stakeholders including milk producers to decide relief package. The Government will knock the door of Central Government for financial assistance, he added. Earlier, the House was adjourned for half-an-hour as Opposition members were not satisfied with the reply of Minister. The issue was raised in Assembly during call attention motion on Thursday. The prices of milk powder fell drastically in international market, Therefore, milk powder producers had started purchasing milk at reduced prices. Earlier, the prices of milk dipped from Rs 27 per litre to Rs 17 per litre. However, the common man is still paying Rs 40 per litre. The issue was raised by Ganpatrao Gaikwad, Baburao Pacharne, Hanumant Dolas, Vijay Wadettiwar, Amin Patel and others. Minister Eknath Khadse said that due to sudden fall in International market, the milk prices dropped drastically. The Central Government had adopted open market system in milk product.

Therefore, State Government was not in a position to control private milk producers to sell milk at cheaper rates. The private dairy owners should reduce prices of milk and make it available at cheaper rates. Khadse said, the State Government will crack a whip against adulterated milk sellers through FDA. The Government has requested Central Government to provide financial assistance of Rs 10 per kg on milk powder as incentive.

Former Speaker Dilip Walse Patil also raised some valid points during debate. He said, Maharashtra is producing 2.5 crore litre milk every day. The milk producers are in financial crunch and hence the Government should give financial assistance of at least Rs 3 per litre to the farmers.

The Government should take up the issue with Central Government and provide relief to the farmers. Former Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar said, Government should initiate steps to protect milk-producers’ farmers in the state. Former Ministers Balasaheb Thorat, and Madhu Chavan also participated in the debate. However, Panel Speaker Yogesh Sagar concluded the debate. This irked Opposition members and they demanded to continue discussion. The members trooped into the well and Panel Speaker adjourned House for half an hour. After house resumed, Chief Minister replied to the debate.

Govt to frame new policy for sand excavation

Maharashtra Government will frame new guidelines for excavation of sand from rivers, assured Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse while replying to a question in Legislative Assembly during question hour. Revenue Minister said that Supreme Court and High Court had directed Maharashtra Government on sand excavation issue. The Environment Committee also laid down some rules for excavation. He raised the issue with Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar seeking his prompt intervention in this matter. Javadekar discussed issue with Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi and asked to frame guidelines to avail sand throughout the year. Khadse said, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu also framed a policy and the Government had made good additions to it funds. A secretary level officer will visit Andhra Pradesh to study the issue. He said that the Government had sent proposal for sand excavation in 21 districts of the state for clearance from Environment Impact Assessment Committee. The issue was raised by Bhausaheb Patil regarding illegal excavation in Vaijapur, district Aurangabad. Congress group leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil said, the sand mafias are active in the state. All developmental works related to Government are stalled. The private works are going on. He demanded framing of new guidelines for land policy in the State.

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Burglars strike at teachers’ house, flee with booty worth Rs 5.05 lakh

IN yet another sensational day light house-breaking theft in Ajni Police Station area, a gang of unidentified thieves burgled cash and gold ornaments collectively worth Rs 5.05 lakh from the re... Read More
IN yet another sensational day light house-breaking theft in Ajni Police Station area, a gang of unidentified thieves burgled cash and gold ornaments collectively worth Rs 5.05 lakh from the residence of a school teacher on Wednesday. Even after more than 24 hours of the incident, police are groping in dark about the gang involved in the burglary.

A resident of Plot No. 17, Dobi Nagar, near Saket Nagar, Ajni, Janardan Ramprasad Mishra (43) is a teacher at Centre Point School, Katol Road. His wife is also a teacher at Zilla Parishad School, Hingna. On Wednesday, Mishra and his wife had gone to their respective schools. Grabbing an opportunity, a gang of burglars struck at Mishra’s house. The thieves gained entry after breaking open the door lock of the house. The intruders collected gold ornaments worth Rs five lakh from a steel box and Rs 5,000 cash from an almirah and decamped with the booty. When Mishra and his wife returned in the evening, they were shocked to find gold ornaments and cash stolen.

Staff from Ajni Police Station arrived at Mishra’s residence on being informed. Senior police officers also visited the spot to supervise investigations. They summoned fingerprint experts. However, the police could not get any clue about the gang involved in the theft.

On the basis of Mishra’s complaint, Ajni Police registered a case under Sections 454, 457 and 380 of the IPC.

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Maharashtra Assembly congratulates Nobel laureates Satyarthi, Malala

Maharashtra Legislative Assembly, on Thursday, passed a resolution congratulating ‘warriors of peace’ Kailash Satyarthi (India) and Malala Yousafzai (Pakistan), who were honoured with Nobel... Read More
Maharashtra Legislative Assembly, on Thursday, passed a resolution congratulating ‘warriors of peace’ Kailash Satyarthi (India) and Malala Yousafzai (Pakistan), who were honoured with Nobel Peace Prize.

Chhagan Bhujbal, former Deputy Chief Minister and senior NCP leader, suggested that the Assembly should pass a resolution congratulating Satyarthi and Malala. Accordingly, towards evening, Speaker Haribhau Bagde moved a resolution in presence of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and other members of the House.

The Speaker hailed the ‘champions of peace’ from India and Pakistan on winning the top peace award. He threw light on the contributions of Satyarthi and Malala both. He appealed them to continue with their good work. Later, he announced that a copy of the resolution would be sent to the Nobel Peace Prize winners.

The resolution stated that Satyarthi had been instrumental in rescuing more than 82,000 children from the worst forms of child labour, and while doing so, also endured threats to his life. For his commendable job, different countries honoured him. Nobel Peace Prize for the child rights activist is the latest acknowledgement to his work, Bagde said while reading the resolution.

Bagde also spoke on brave Malala Yousafzai. Since the age of 11 years, braving threats from the Taliban, Malala continued writing on conditions in SWAT area and exposed the Taliban. She was shot by the terrorists, but survived. Since then, Malala has taken up the cause of promoting education for girls in Pakistan. All the members of the Assembly supported the resolution.

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State Govt to spell out its stance on irrigation scam PILs today

Bharatiya Janata Party-Shiv Sena-led Government in Maharashtra is likely to spell out its stance on Friday over the multi-crore irrigation scam effected by an unholy nexus of contractors-bureau... Read More
Bharatiya Janata Party-Shiv Sena-led Government in Maharashtra is likely to spell out its stance on Friday over the multi-crore irrigation scam effected by an unholy nexus of contractors-bureaucrats-politicians, during the hearing of contested public interest litigations (PILs) on irrigation scam. Advocate General Sunil Manohar will represent Devendra Fadnavis Government in this very important and politically sensitive matter before Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court. The new Government had publicly promised to punish those responsible for broad daylight robbery of the state exchequer by irrigation scamsters. Now, the matter has been listed before a division bench consisting of Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande.

The earlier DF Government had opposed tooth and nail the PIL citing various technicalities and had even challenged High Court’s interim order before the Apex court.

The High Court, while rejecting the preliminary objections and after perusing material on record, had observed that prima facie it showed “Indifference of or omission by the State Government even to comply with the directions issued by the Hon’ble Governor” and had expressed surprise as to why VIDC and State Government were resorting to hyper-technicalities and seeking dismissal of PILs at the threshold and not permitting a court even to look into “alleged wrongdoings” when “PIL itself is not an adversarial litigation.”

The Supreme Court had dismissed the special leave petitions (SLPs) filed by Vidarbha Irrigation Development Corporation (VIDC) against the hearing of the public interest litigations (PILs) on merit.

Jan Manch had filed a PIL before the Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court in the irrigation scam and had stated that a fraud was played on the Constitution of India as the purpose for which Article 371 was amended had been frustrated due to siphoning off of funds meant for irrigation projects resulting into depriving the backward region of Vidarbha from irrigation facilities.

Jan Manch had also filed five different reports on record before the High Court in which there were sufficient observations against the officials of VIDC.

These reports included those by Government officials Nandkumar Vadnere, H Mendhegiri, and also thereports of Central Water Commission (CWC) and Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG). Citing CAG report, the PIL had highlighted that within a span of just seven months in 2009, cost of 38 irrigation projects under VIDC had escalated by a whopping Rs 20,050.06 crore -- from Rs 6,672.27 crore to Rs 26,722.33 crore. Thirty out of these 38 projects got hurried approvals in just four days -- August 14, 2009 (11 projects); June 24, 2009 (10 projects); July 7, 2009 (5 projects), August 18, 2009 (4 projects). Cost of six of these projects went up by 6 times to 33 times of their original cost and in case of 12 projects, the cost shot up by more than twice the original estimates. VIDC in its bulky affidavit had sheepishly admitted cost escalation factor but claimed that it was Rs 17,701 in seven months in the year 2009.

Further, Jan Manch had attached the series of investigative report of ‘The Hitavada’ on multi-crore irrigation scam. Jan Manch had prayed for CBI enquiry into irrigation scam.

The PIL filed by social workers Adv Bharti Dabhadkar, Secretary of Lok Nayak Bapuji Aney Smarak Samiti, along with Mohan Karemore and Amit Khot had raised important issues pertaining to the severe backwardness of Vidarbha region with particular emphasis on delay in clearance and implementation of irrigation projects in the region. The petitioners also prayed for directions to Union of India and State of Maharashtra to hold high-level enquiry in respect of irrigation scam and to take action against the responsible officials.

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No confidence motion against Council Chairman Deshmukh

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has given notice of no confidence motion against the Chairman of Legislative Council, Shivajirao Deshmukh. Party legislators on Thursday submitted proposal of n... Read More
Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has given notice of no confidence motion against the Chairman of Legislative Council, Shivajirao Deshmukh. Party legislators on Thursday submitted proposal of no confidence motion to the Legislature Secretariat. This was confirmed by NCP’s State chief Sunil Tatkare, who incidentally is also Member of Upper House, while talking to The Hitavada.

Tatkare said that Chairman was delaying the decision on naming Leader of Opposition in the Upper House. “On Monday itself, myself being State unit chief of NCP, and our legislature party leader Ajit Pawar had met Chairman and submitted letter asking for appointment of Dhananjay Munde as Leader of Opposition. But no decision has been made till date though NCP’s numbers are more in Council. Hence, NCP has given the notice for no confidence motion, Tatkare said. As the decision was not made for last two days, the NCP has been raising the issue in Upper House without any success in its fold. Chairman has been delaying the decision on Leader of Opposition as he said, the Congress and NCP have staked claim for the post and he needed time to examine and see the Constitutional position. But, NCP has been insisting that without Leader of Opposition in the House the high traditions of democracy are being violated.

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Income-Tax Department conducts raid on Sarda Energy & Minerals

IN A major exercise, the Income-Tax Department, on Thursday, conducted search and seizure operations on Sarda Energy and Minerals Limited (SMEL), a Raipur-headquartered company having registered ... Read More
IN A major exercise, the Income-Tax Department, on Thursday, conducted search and seizure operations on Sarda Energy and Minerals Limited (SMEL), a Raipur-headquartered company having registered offices at Seva Sadan Square, Central Avenue, Nagpur. Sources said, over 150 I-T officials from Raipur, on Thursday morning, conducted search operations on factory, residential and office premises of Sarda Energy & Minerals Limited (SEML), spread across 23 different places in states of Chhattisgarh (Raipur), Maharashtra (Nagpur, Mumbai), West Bengal (Kolkata) and Andhra Pradesh (Visakhapatnam). Kamal Kishore Sarda is the Chairman and Managing Director of SEML.

In Nagpur, other directors’ -- Jugalkishore Sarda and Ghanshyam Sarda, business premises and residential premises at Shivaji Nagar were covered in the investigation.

The company manufactures steel and alloy products and sponge iron ingots. It also makes iron, billets, ingots, TMT bars and is one of the largest manufacturers and exporters of ferro alloys in India. Headquartered in Raipur, Chhattisgarh, the company had merged with Chhattisgarh Electricity Company Limited (CECL) in 2007 with a vision of becoming a leading energy and minerals company. It has customer base in more than 60 countries.

It is listed on the BSE and the NSE. In 1979, the Sarda Group took over Raipur Alloys and Steel Limited (RASL) (earlier Raipur Wires & Steel Limited), a sick and closed entity. It has also acquired iron ore, coal and manganese mines in the country.

On condition of anonymity, a top official of the Income-Tax Department, Raipur, told The Hitavada that the search operation was the fallout of illegal financial transactions, to the tune of over Rs 200 crore, done by the group through ‘Hawala’ from the tax-haven overseas countries like Malaysia, Hong Kong and New Zealand.

“Sarda Energy & Minerals Hong Kong Limited (SEMHL), a subsidiary of SEML incorporated in the year 2007 as international trading and investment arm of the company, is one of the dozen other companies of this group involved in illegal routing of the unaccounted money to India through Hawala,” the official maintained.

According to this official, the entire operation was being overseen by the Director Investigation (DI) Dinesh Kumar Chablani, while the supervision of group operation was constantly being monitored by the Joint Director Investigation (JDI) Sanjay Kumar.

IT sleuths in Raipur covered factory premises of Raipur Alloys and Steel Limited (RASL) in Siltara; office premises at JMG House in Civil Lines area and Shankar Nagar-situated posh and massive bungalow of Kamal Kishore Sarda.. IT sleuths also searched a big dairy farm owned by Kamal Sarda in downtown Kharora, some 40 kilometers from Raipur city limits. Sources, in the meantime, also disclosed that cash worth over Rs 3.50 crore was seized from Sarda’s residential premises in Shankar Nagar, Raipur, and documents pertaining to overseas financial transactions, bogus payments etc., were confiscated.

About 12 group of companies of SEML are under scanner of I-T Department. They include Sarda Energy & Minerals Hong Kong Limited (SEMHL); Sarda Metals & Alloys Limited; Sarda Energy Limited; Global Venture Private Limited; Madhya Bharat Power Corporation Limited; Parvatiya Power Private Limited; Chhattisgarh Investments Limited; Shri Ram Electricity; Chhattisgarh Hydel Power; Raipur Infrastructure Company Limited; Sarda Hydro Power Private Limited and Madanpur South Coal Company Limited.

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Chief Minister announces Rs 41,500 cr package for Vidarbha, Marathwada

Promising to make Maharashtra drought-free by 2019, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis announced a massive package of Rs 41,500 crore for drought-hit farmers of Vidarbha and Marathwada including an... Read More
Promising to make Maharashtra drought-free by 2019, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis announced a massive package of Rs 41,500 crore for drought-hit farmers of Vidarbha and Marathwada including an immediate relief package of Rs 7,000 crore and Rs 34,500 crore for long term measures for the state to make it drought-free. This ambitious package is aimed at wiping out tears of drought-hit agriculturists and also to undertake concrete farm development works so as to prevent recurrence of such natural calamity in future. Giving a solemn promise to all farmers, Fadnavis assured them that Government and entire House was with them in this hour of crisis and made an emotional appeal to them not to take any extreme step.

Going a step further, Chief Minister took an unprecedented step of paying tributes to farmers, who were forced to abruptly end their lives due to economic hardship and distress. This has happened for the first time in the history of Maharashtra Legislature when the Chief Minister acknowledged farmers’ suicides as collective failure of entire machinery and paid condolence on the floor of the House. Bringing smiles on the face of farmers and Treasury benches, Fadnavis made this important announcement during his brilliant and well-studied speech. The extent of package and minute details included in it surprised even the Opposition benches, which never anticipated such a quick and generous relief from the Government.

Making a plethora of announcements after marathon debate of 10.30 hours in the Assembly on Wednesday, the Chief Minister replied to entire debate on Thursday. Chief Minister said, the Government is committed to wiping out debt-burden of five lakh farmers who are indebted to licenced private money lenders in the state. The state government will pay the dues of Rs 373 crore of the farmers to private money-lenders.

Fadnavis, in his 55-minute-long flawless speech, said, Government will provide institutional loans to the farmers as loan provided by private money-lenders is a major cause for farmers’ suicides. He said, Government has decided to waive latest quarterly energy bill of farmers of Vidarbha and Marathwada as they are in distress and as an exceptional measure. To provide additional relief to farmers, Chief Minister also extended period of Krishi Sanjeevani Scheme by March 15, 2015 in which penalty is waived for power dues and even bill amount is divided into installments.

Chief Minister said, Government will reschedule loan of farmers availed from co-operative banks in the state. The Government will pay interest and 15 per cent margin sum of Rs 915 crore to the banks so that farmers can avail crop loan from the central co-operative banks. Making emotional appeal to the farmers, Chief Minister Fadnavis admitted that farmers suicide is shame for entire State. Paying tributes to deceased farmers in the state, Fadnavis said, “We admit mistake in planning from our part (Government). The entire Maharashtra Legislature is firmly behind the distress farmers in the state and they should trust the new Government and keep some patience. The Government will provide every possible help to them. It is not possible to give more rates to farm produce therefore, we have to increase our productivity in the state to make farming financially viable.”

Chief Minister emphasised on farm development scheme rather then expenditure on tacking drought like situation in the state. He said, it is unfortunate that State Government had spent Rs 8,377 crore in last five years to tackle drought-like situation while it had spent only Rs 2,692 crore for farm development schemes. The paradigm of this expenditure should be shifted, he asserted.

Chief Minister said, the Government will give more attention towards creating irrigation potential, water conservation schemes and micro irrigation. It will initiate “farm ponds scheme” and integrate schemes of various departments. He also batted for water auditing in the drought-hit villages for better co-ordination and implementation of schemes. He urged big corporate houses to help Government under “Corporate Social Responsibility” schemes. He refused the charges levelled by the opposition parties that Government did not send report of drought like situation to Central Government. He said, Government has sought financial assistance from Central Government to handle the situation. A central team will arrive on December 14 and 15 for assessment of the drought situation in the state.

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Fill all vacant posts in Lokayukta office within 15 days: HC to Govt

A division bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Justice Ajit Singh and Justice N K Gupta on Tuesday directed the State Government of Madhya Pradesh to fill all vacant posts in Lokayukta ... Read More
A division bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Justice Ajit Singh and Justice N K Gupta on Tuesday directed the State Government of Madhya Pradesh to fill all vacant posts in Lokayukta office within 15 days. On Tuesday, the petitioner filed application before the court that recently Lokayukta Justice P P Navlekar had said in a press conference that inquiry has been pending against six ministers in Lokayukta. The division bench has permitted the petitioner to file said paper copy regarding a press conference added by Justice P P Navlekar. Counsel for the State on November 5, 2014, had invited our attention to affidavit dated on May 27, 2014, and pointed out that process of appointment is at an advanced stage for which four weeks time may be granted for reporting compliance. The division bench on November 5, 2014, had said that all other issues in the matter will be considered on that date. We place on record satisfaction expressed by the office of the Lokayukta about progress of appointment of Deputy Superintendent of Police, Inspectors and Constable, respectively. Earlier, Lokayukta had presented status report regarding investigation going on against as many as three ministers of the State including Babulal Gaur, Jayant Mallaiya and Anoop Mishra. Lokayukta is doing inquiry for last seven years. The status report exposed that investigation on as concerned departments have not yet submitted report before the Lokayukta. Lokayukta in reply said that at present investigation is going on against four ministers including Cabinet Minister Gaurishankar Bisen apart from aforementioned three ministers. Earlier, the division bench had asked Lokayukta to reply in the matter related to pendency of large number of complaints of corruption against ministers and secretaries involved in serious allegations and are pending before Lokayukta.

The division bench had asked the Lokayukta to file name of ministers to whom clean chit have been given by organisation along with reason why the ministers, under investigation, have been given clearance and also names of ministers and progress of investigations in complaints of corruptions filed against them. The public interest litigation was filed by Dr P G Najpandey, State President, Nagrik Upbhokta Margdarshak Manch stated in petition that these ministers against whom complaints are pending before the court, but Lokayukta has given clean chit to them. He also alleged that Lokayukta has not given information to the court and given clean chit to ministers, which is highly objectionable. Earlier, the Lokayukta had submitted answer before the court in the issue related to large number of complaints of corruption against ministers and secretaries involved in serious allegations are pending before the Lokayukta. The current position of some of the categories of cases as shown pending are submitted that Lokayukta is carrying out investigation against two ministers amongst complaints against total 11 ministers.

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Two bail pleas filed by OSD Shukla to be heard on Dec 15

A division bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice K K Trivedi on Tuesday has listed two bail applications filed by Om Prakash Shukla posted as OS... Read More
A division bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice K K Trivedi on Tuesday has listed two bail applications filed by Om Prakash Shukla posted as OSD with the then MP Technical Education Minister Laxmikant Sharma till December 15 for hearing as per prayer of the Counsel for the applicant. The division bench in its order said, “We have perused interlocutory application.

Although the applicant wishes to make grievance about inappropriate medical facilities given at Hamidia Hospital, the averments made in the application are not sufficient. We cannot decide grievance on the basis of some press news annexed to the application. The applicant must clearly state the nature of medical treatment given to him in Hamidia Hospital and point out why that treatment is not befitting the medical standards or inadequate as the case may be, necessitating treatment in some better equipped hospital. Secondly, the applicant may have to state about his physical position. Only after these material facts are placed on record, the respondents can be called upon to respond and the issue can be answered appropriately.” Realising this position, counsel for the applicant prays for time till December 15. The division bench has listed the applications for December 15. An advance copy of the proposed affidavit be made over to the respondent preferably before December 11, 2014, so that the respondent would be able to respond to the said factual position on the next date.

Senior Advocate Ajay Mishra with Gourav Tiwari appeared on behalf of the applicant, while P K Kaurav, Additional Advocate General with Prakash Gupta for the State.

O P Shukla was posted OSD with the then Minister Laxmikant Sharma

It may be recalled that O P Shukla was an Officer on Special Duty (OSD), an accused in Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board (MPPEB) scam. Shukla was posted as OSD with the then MP Technical Education Minister Laxmikant Sharma. After a long probe, STF had registered a case in December 2013 against 130 people including Sharma and Shukla in MPPEB scam. He had allegedly taken Rs 85 lakh from students for clearing pre-medical test.

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Ravish Chandra Agrawal takes charge as Advocate General

Senior Advocate Ravish Chandra Agrawal on Tuesday took over charge of Advocate General Office as Advocate General of Madhya Pradesh on Tuesday. Law and Legislative Department of Madhya Pradesh on... Read More
Senior Advocate Ravish Chandra Agrawal on Tuesday took over charge of Advocate General Office as Advocate General of Madhya Pradesh on Tuesday. Law and Legislative Department of Madhya Pradesh on December 8, 2014, issued notification for appointment of Ravish Chandra Agrawal as Advocate General of Madhya Pradesh, thereafter, on Tuesday, Advocate General Agrawal took over the charge as per tradition.

Former Advocate General of Madhya Pradesh R D Jain had sent his resignation letter to the Chief Minister, Madhya Pradesh Government. Former Advocate General Jain had resigned from the post of Advocate General after working for five-and-half years. After confirmation of resignation letter, Senior Advocate Ravish Chandra Agrawal has been appointed as Advocate General of Madhya Pradesh. Ravish Agrawal is a Senior Advocate in Jabalpur High Court and he is also former Advocate General of Chhattisgarh High Court. Agrawal started advocacy in 1962. Talking to the mediapersons on the occasion, Advocate General of Madhya Pradesh Advocate Agrawal said that his first priority is to streamline work by ensuring timely execution of directions of the High Court, programmes related to legal fraternity and to maintain proper communication with the government and different authorities concerned. He also highlighted issue of vacant posts of staff in AG Office due to which functioning is affected to some extent.

Eminent amongst those who welcomed Agrawal on the occasion includes Chairman of State Bar Council of Madhya Pradesh Rameshwar Neekhra, Senior Advocate R P Agrawal, President, High Court Advocates’ Bar Association, Manish Tiwari, Secretary, High Court Bar Association, M L Jaiswal, Senior Bar Association, Former Advocate General, R N Singh, Former Advocate General V S Shroti, Senior Advocate T S Ruprah were present in welcome ceremony.

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Reservation of 79 wards done peacefully thru lottery

The revised process of reservation of 79 wards of Jabalpur Municipal Corporation (JMC) amongst various categories was done peacefully through lottery system at Manas Bhawan, chock-a-block with pu... Read More
The revised process of reservation of 79 wards of Jabalpur Municipal Corporation (JMC) amongst various categories was done peacefully through lottery system at Manas Bhawan, chock-a-block with public representatives and citizens, on Tuesday.

The previous ward delimitation process held on October 14 was challenged in Madhya Pradesh High Court in a PIL. According to direction of Madhya Pradesh High Court delimitation process adopted by government was declared invalidated.

On this basis fresh process was adopted for delimitation of wards and in next step fresh reservation of wards was done, on Tuesday.

Collector S N Roopla conducted process under Section 10 (A) of Madhya Pradesh Municipal Corporation Act 1956 and as per information published under provisions of Madhya Pradesh Municipal Corporation Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe, Other Backward Classes and reservation for Women Act 1994. The process was carried out in presence of public representatives and citizens to reserve wards for Scheduled Tribe (ST), Scheduled Caste (SC), Other Backward Classes (OBC) and for women in each category.

As per process, as many as 50 per cent wards kept reserved for women. At first reservation of wards was done for Scheduled Caste, later for Scheduled Tribe and thereafter 50 per cent wards were reserved for women, then remaining wards for OBC then for OBC women and left for unreserved category. The reservation process continues with 50 per cent wards kept reserve for women in all categories. At first reservation of wards was done for Scheduled Caste, later Scheduled Tribe and thereafter for Other Backward Classes and General or Unreserved.

As per process as many as 11 wards have been reserved for SC, amongst same five wards are kept reserve for women. Similarly, four wards have been reserved for ST amongst the same two are kept reserve for women. As many as 20 wards have been reserved for OBC, amongst the same 10 are kept for women. Likewise, 22 wards have been reserved for women amongst unreserved wards while equal number of wards, i.e. 22 wards are kept unreserved.

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Reservation of 85 wards to begin today

With the release of the gazette notification regarding formulation of 85 wards in the Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC), the final reservation process will be held on Wednesday in the premises... Read More
With the release of the gazette notification regarding formulation of 85 wards in the Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC), the final reservation process will be held on Wednesday in the premises of Gandhi Medical College of the city. Once the reservation process is complete, political parties will start identifying suitable candidates to be given the ticket for the civic body elections. It is to be noted that the 85 wards have been formed in BMC with merger of Kolar Municipality and 20 other villages. It is being widely expected in the political arena of the city that both the major political parities Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress will start brainstorming over the candidate list from Wednesday evening. Meanwhile, it will be interesting to see weather if they keep the same faces as planned before the cancellation of the notification or new changes are introduced in the wards. Both the parties when asked about the possible names of candidates echoed that the focus this time will be on giving candidacy to young faces and local leaders who have worked among people. BJP at the moment is widely working at base level with the membership campaign underway they are already gearing up for the local body elections. Congress party has also formed its panel for the purpose on a booth wise level to attract voters. Arun Yadav, State Congress President, when asked about the strategies regarding distribution of tickets for the civic body elections, said that anything can be said only when the reservation of wards is completed by district administration. He added that preparations for the elections are going on at full scale in city and workers are all in high spirits for the elections. It is worth mentioning that earlier before quashing of the notification by High Court, district administration had formulated 85 wards in Bhopal Municipal Corporation with the merger of Kolar Municipality and 20 other villages. After completion of reservation process over these 85 wards 2 were reserved for women, 34 wards were reserved for Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribe (ST) and Other Backward Classes (OBC) while 26 wards remained unreserved.

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Class X girl commits suicide in Misrod

Another student committed suicide under Misrod police station in State capital on Monday night. This month is proving to be ‘black December’ with sudden rise in suicides by students. This m... Read More
Another student committed suicide under Misrod police station in State capital on Monday night. This month is proving to be ‘black December’ with sudden rise in suicides by students. This month alone, 8 students have ended their lives.

Police told that Pooja Patel, 18, daughter of Ramcharan Patel, used to reside in Bagroda village and was studying in 10th standard in a private school. Her father works as a labourer in farms. On Monday afternoon, Pooja consumed Sulphas tablets after which her health deteriorated. Her parents rushed her to a hospital.

While undergoing treatment, Pooja succumbed to internal injuries around 3:30 on Monday night. Police reached the hospital on getting information from hospital staff and seized the body. Police sent the body for autopsy at Hamidia hospital.

Investigation Officer in the case, Assistant Sub-Inspector Chandrabhan Rajput told ‘The Hitavada’ that Pooja has not left any suicide note behind and in the initial investigation it is observed that she was short-tempered, as her parents told, and used to shout at the family members.

Sources informed that Pooja used to get fits since childhood. Local villagers believed that she had some spiritual powers so used to come to her for help. Police have registered a case under Section 174 of CrPC after initial investigation. Police have also sent the body for post-mortem. Police are now investigating to know the reason behind Pooja’s extreme step as she has not left any suicide note which could throw light on the reasons. Meanwhile, in another incident a 27-year-old labourer committed suicide in HT quarters under Shahjahanabad police station here on Monday night.

Police told that Jeetendra Sen aka Jeetu, 27, son of Mathura Prasad was a resident of HT quarters in Shahjahanabad. Jeetu used to work as a casual labourer.

On Monday night, Jeetu hanged himself with the ceiling fan of his room. On Tuesday morning when the family members noticed him hanging they rushed him to a hospital where he was declared brought dead by the doctors. Jeetu has not left any suicide note behind which could throw light over the reason behind extreme step. Though according to family members, Jeetu was habitual drinker and was intoxicated on Monday night also.

Police have registered a case under Section 174 of CrPC and have sent the body for post-mortem.

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BMC begins repair of leakages in Kolar pipeline

With lot of leakages identified in Kolar water pipeline Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) started repairing work from Tuesday. Due to repairing works going on there was no water supply in some... Read More
With lot of leakages identified in Kolar water pipeline Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) started repairing work from Tuesday. Due to repairing works going on there was no water supply in some parts of the city as the Kolar water pump remained shut on the day.

The leakage has been detected in the areas of Kajlikheda, Gehukheda and near Kalyani Hostel in Shivaji Nagar.

In the early hours of Tuesday, the Water Works Department of the corporation killed the Kolar water pump so that gravity pipeline could be dried and water be removed in order to begin repairing work.

Once the pipeline went dry corporation officials started repairing work. Officials in the department said that the supply will remain affected on Wednesday as well, however, water supply will start partially from Wednesday evening in some parts of city. Meanwhile, once the water supply is restored it will take around 10-12 hours to reach city from Kolar water pump. On Monday, people living in the area of Arera Colony (E-1-E-5), Railway Colony Habibganj, Janata Quarters, Meera Nagar, Chaar Imli, Panchsheel Nagar, Chandbad, JP Nagar and adjoining areas faced shortage of water as the supply remained affected.

Meanwhile, the areas of PGBT College, Kaji Camp, Shahjhanabad, Balvihar, Putlighar, Chandbad, Bhopal Memorial Hospital and Research Center, Congress Nagar, Janata Quarters, Arera Colony (E-6,E-7) Jawahar Chowk, Bhim Nagar, Paras City, Imamigate, P&T Colony and adjoining areas will face water crisis on Wednesday due to the repairing work.

Kishan Surywanshi, In-charge of Water Works Department, when asked about the water crisis said that the repairing work started from Tuesday morning thus the Kolar water pump was shut which slacked water supply in the area. They added that people are being advised to store water in advance through SMS for the first time. Meanwhile, water tankers will also be doing rounds throughout the day.

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Tenders of Rs 100 crore off-grid based solar energy projects approved

New and Renewable Energy Minister Rajendra Shukla chaired a meeting of Madhya Pradesh Energy Development Corporation here today.

At the meeting, off-grid based solar energy projects of upto... Read More
New and Renewable Energy Minister Rajendra Shukla chaired a meeting of Madhya Pradesh Energy Development Corporation here today.

At the meeting, off-grid based solar energy projects of upto Rs 100 crore were sanctioned. Specially, rates were fixed for solar power plants of one kilowatt to 100 kilowatts.

Consent was also given at the meeting on fixed programme for solar energy-based projects.

Power plants will be installed at various places under Forest Department, police posts, hospitals, other departments and institutions under off-grid based solar energy projects.

At the meeting, consent was also granted to install solar traffic signals on all busy crossings in various cities of the state. Solar traffic signals will be installed at over 50 places at Bhopal and other cities.

The meeting of Board of Directors also decided to install 20 solar lights at Rani Talab tourism area in Rewa.

This will create interest in solar energy among tourists and people.

Additional Chief Secretary of New and Renewable Energy S R Mohanthy, Managing Director Energy Development Corporation Gauri Singh and Director Budget Sandeep Yadav were also present in the meeting.

Ministers to table reports before people

On completion of three years of Shivraj Singh Chouhan Government in State, two ministers every day from December 13 till December 25, will table report card of their concerned department before public. This decision was taken in the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday. Health Minister Narottam Mishra said that ministers through the medium of media would table report of their work before masses.

Cabinet also approved the proposal to form project development company on the basis of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. This company will take loan from market for light metro till development of big infrastructure of civic bodies. Experts of various fields would be kept in the company and they would do work of survey of big constructions. In starting phase, government would provide Rs 60 crore to company.

Cabinet also approved to fix retirement age of teachers of Nanaji Deshmukh University till 65 years. Among other main decisions, Cabinet decided to take disciplinary action against then Executive Engineer Krishna Gohar on the charges of irregularity in Neemuch Manasa Pench repair work. The approval was also given for merger of oil seed workers into OBC, minorities and Women and Child Development Department.

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Urea being supplied to farmers as per demand

Urea is being supplied to farmers as per their demand. More urea has been distributed by cooperative societies in 33 such districts till December 8 this year as compared to last year. In state... Read More
Urea is being supplied to farmers as per their demand. More urea has been distributed by cooperative societies in 33 such districts till December 8 this year as compared to last year. In state’s districts, one lakh 19 thousand MT urea has been made available only during December 1 to 8. Meanwhile 56 thousand MT urea of the same period is in transit. The state is getting 5 rakes of urea daily since November 11, 2014.

This year, total 6 lakh 48 thousand MT urea has been made available to the state from October 1 to December 8 including transit. This is almost equal to last year’s quantity. It is noteworthy that the state government is making every possible effort to make urea available to farmers. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan had met Union Minister of Chemicals and Fertilisers on September 14 and 20 and December 2, 2014 and urged for supply of urea as per demand. Chief Minister Chouhan has undertaken efforts to tighten up urea supply arrangements at the state level also. In this context, during a video-conferencing on December 5, he directed commissioners and collectors to keep a constant vigil over distribution of urea from private and cooperative sectors.

In the same video-conference, collectors were authorised to fix ratio of urea allocation to private and cooperative sectors as 75:25 as per demand instead of present 50:50 ratio. In the conference, Chief Minister Chouhan had directed to undertake joint surprise inspections of private and cooperative sales centres by Revenue and Farmers Welfare and Agriculture Development departments to curb blackmarketing of urea and other fertilisers.

Besides all, DAP and Complex fertilisers have also been supplied more this year than the last year. So far this year, 2 lakh 89 thousand MT DAP has been distributed as compared to 2 lakh 65 thousand MT.

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Lokayukta, Dy Lokayukta Amendment Bill passed in Assembly

Madhya Pradesh Assembly passed Lokayukta and Deputy Lokayukta Amendment Bill on Tuesday. Throwing light on the bill, General Administration Department Minister Lal Singh Arya said it is in the ... Read More
Madhya Pradesh Assembly passed Lokayukta and Deputy Lokayukta Amendment Bill on Tuesday. Throwing light on the bill, General Administration Department Minister Lal Singh Arya said it is in the Lokayukta and Deputy Lokayukta Act’s Section 5 in which tenure of Lokayukta and Deputy Lokayukta, service and other conditions are given. Referring to main act, he said post becomes vacant after service tenure of Lokayukta post comes to end. In want of appointment of successor, organisation related works are affected in adverse manner. By seeing the time taken to complete the appointment process, this Bill has been brought. According to amendment, Lokayukta, notwithstanding that his tenure has ended, could remain on post untill his successor is not appointed and he does not assume the charge. However, the increased tenure limit could not be more than one year in any situation.

While taking part on the debate on the amendment bill, senior Congress MLA Ramnivas Rawat protested the prescribed increased time limit of one year and said six months is enough for new appointment. He wanted to know that whether Government would not be able to search eligible person for post till one year. Interestingly, ruling party MLA Bhawar Singh Shekawat also protested the proposed one year increased tenure by saying that six months is enough. Senior Congress MLA and former minister Dr Govind Singh wanted appointment on post with in one or two months.

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Saurabh Singh issue rocks Assembly even on day 2

Even on consecutive second day on Tuesday, issue related to alleged attack on Congress MLA from Bahoriband, Kunwar Saurabh Singh rocked the Assembly session. Opposition moved adjournment propos... Read More
Even on consecutive second day on Tuesday, issue related to alleged attack on Congress MLA from Bahoriband, Kunwar Saurabh Singh rocked the Assembly session. Opposition moved adjournment proposal on the incident which was after long discussion rejected by Speaker Dr Sithasaran Sharma.

After question hour, Opposition members moved the adjournment proposal on the incident in which Saurabh Singh was injured. Speaker allowed discussion on proposal.

Home Minister Babulal Gaur gave his reply on the incident but opposition was not satisfied with Government’s answer.

During discussion, ruling party and Opposition locked horns on many occasions and this led to pandemonium in house.

Congress MLA Mukesh Nayak started discussion on the adjournment proposal and said Saurabh was attacked at the polling booth of Katni. Claiming that it was in the melee that chain of MLAs revolver got broke, he added that apart from having fracture on nose and hand, ribs of victim MLA had also developed fractures. He expressed surprise that police have slapped both victim MLA and accused under the same charges.

BJP MLA Sanjay Pathak accused Saurabh Singh of intimidating his cousin brother and independent corporator Manish Pathak and alleged that people have said that it was Saurabh, who opened fire on Manish but he had a miraculous escape. He claimed that he is having video clips and photos to prove his allegations.

Senior Minister Gaurishankar Shejwar tried to corner Saurabh Singh by saying that he is having injuries on hand not on legs but he was brought on wheel chair. Opposition contested the statement of Shejwar with full strength. Opposition said how one can walk with broken ribs. Shejwar requested Speaker not to accept the adjournment proposal and alleged that Opposition was rather trying to save person responsible for the incident.

BJP MLA Vishwas Sarang said that his friend had seen Saurabh Singh walking when he was boarding train to come to Bhopal and yesterday concerned MLA came on wheel chair. House witness din as Opposition had protested the claim of Sarang in strong manner. When Saurabh Singh was given chance to put up his side, he made one objectionable statement against BJP MLA Sanjay Pathak. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Narottam Mishra and other ruling party members protested Singh’s statement in strong words and sought apology from him. Opposition and ruling party traded charges against each other and this created noisy scenes in house. Amid chaos, Ajay Singh sought apology on behalf of Saurabh Singh, but ruling party members especially Narottam Mishra were demanding apology direct from Saurabh Singh.

Seeing the noisy scenes, Speaker adjourned house for five minutes. When house resumed, Narottam Mishra again demanded arrangement on the subject raised by him. Speaker turned towards Saurabh Singh and wanted to know that whether he would apologise for his statement but latter had not responded. He rather said Sanjay Pathak had taken his words in other form. Later, Speaker said that he is rejecting the adjournment proposal.

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Manager cheats businessman, flees with cash Rs 44 lakh

Putting too much trust on his manager cost dearly to a businessman, as the manager disappeared with Rs 44 lakh, which was given to him to take home. Manager was asked to deposit Rs 2 lakh in Ba... Read More
Putting too much trust on his manager cost dearly to a businessman, as the manager disappeared with Rs 44 lakh, which was given to him to take home. Manager was asked to deposit Rs 2 lakh in Bank and take the remaining money to businessman’s home. Civil Lines Police informed that Sumit Gupta, a businessman, on Tuesday lodged complaint against Somnath Chakraborty, who worked as the manager in his company for last 3 years. Sumit said that he had given Rs 44 lakh to Somnath and asked him to deposit Rs 2 lakh in the bank and keep the remaining amount in his home on November 6. Sumit said that Somnath was trustworthy person, who was staying in his own home for last four years. He had often trusted with small amount of cash on several occasions. But on November 6, Somnath betrayed him. Somnath left office at around 11:30 am with the cash. Sumit called him three times at around 11:45 am, but Somnath didn’t receive the call and when Sumit called him fourth time, Somnath’s phone was switched off. Sumit reached home at 2:00 pm, but Somnath wasn’t even there. However, the bike that Somnath took from office was parked at home; his personnel belongings were not in his room. On his complaint, Civil Lines Police has booked Somnath Chakraborty under Section 406 of the Indian Penal Code and launched search operation.

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‘Possibilities of investment in C’garh are attracting many American companies’

Thomas L Vajda, US Consul General in Mumbai during meeting with Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh said that major American companies are very much impressed with the immense possibilities of invest... Read More
Thomas L Vajda, US Consul General in Mumbai during meeting with Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh said that major American companies are very much impressed with the immense possibilities of investment in Chhattisgarh and want to hold a round table conference with the Chief Minister. This was observed by the Consul General during his courtesy meeting with Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh at his official residence on Tuesday evening. In this direction the Consul General invited the Chief Minister to Mumbai in the near future.

Chief Minister while extending his gratitude for the invitation and told the Consul General about the proposed Global Investors Meet which will be held in January-February 2015.

During interaction Dr Singh told the Consul General that the state government will be holding shows in metros including Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru, etc and representatives from Chhattisgarh government will interact with sector-wise investors. He said the state is propagating to hold sector-wise meetings on sectors like solar energy, information technology, pharmaceuticals, minor forest produce, food processing, etc., environment friendly industries. Chief Minister further stated that a strong proposal will be prepared for the investors.

The Chief Minister also informed that in iron ore production the state is contributing 20 percent share at the national level while in coal production it is contributing 18 percent. In Aluminium production the state’s contribution is 30 percent approximately. During the meeting the US Consul General enquired about the Naxal problem in Chhattisgarh.

Dr Singh while maintaining that the problem is a national one said coordinated efforts have been initiated for its eradication. He further added that Centre is providing all necessary assistance and both the centre and state are working in coordination to end the menace. Integrated strategy has been prepared to solve the problem. Also initiative has been taken towards socio-economic development of the rural populace through initiatives like skill development, infrastructure development, employment oriented programmes, development of agriculture and irrigation facilities.

Present on the occasion were Chief Secretary Vivek Dhand, ACS to Chief Minister N Baijendra Kumar, Commerce Secretary Subodh Singh, Joint Secretary to Chief Minister Rajat Kumar, Director Commerce and Industries Kartikeya Goyal, etc.

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Who cares for SC orders! Have a look at school buses, vans in State

It seems that private transport agencies do not take the directives of Supreme Court of India strictly as private schools vans and autos in the Durg district continued to be overloaded and do n... Read More
It seems that private transport agencies do not take the directives of Supreme Court of India strictly as private schools vans and autos in the Durg district continued to be overloaded and do not feel regret in putting the life of little ones in danger. Even after two years of SCI’s directives implementation regarding safety of school children in private vehicles and owners still carry school much than the seating capacities of the vehicles.

It is may be mentioned here that last year (June 2012), the Apex Court had made guidelines for private buses, vans and tempos of all 29 states and 7 union territories including Chhattisgarh. As one of its guidelines for school cabs, vans and autos, they can carry only one and half times the seating capacity in case students are less than 12 years of age, which means that unlike 14 seats in any vehicle, seating capacity should perfectly be 10 students.

But in Durg district (both urban as well as rural parts), most of private cabs and autos carry 16 school students in their 14 seat carrying capacity vehicle and in many cases, drivers seat schoolchildren on upper part of the seats in the vehicles which is highly dangerous as any jerk may through them out.

‘We feel helpless as no one from the administration takes any strict action against these culprits’ said Reena Sahu, a mother of school going children and a resident of Shankar Nagar Durg. ‘All people including authorities and owners of private vehicles take guidelines of the court according to their convenience’ she alleged.

As per new guidelines of motor vehicle act, tie of seat belt is must for passenger and driver on front seat of any four wheeler but when these school vehicles carry three small children in front seat at stake then why traffic cops do not show their activeness in taking of strict action against them. Nagendra Sharma, Advocate informed that when Supreme Court has made directives for school vehicles then why owners of all vehicles take it for granted and ignore it completely without fear. If RTO is permitting these vehicles, then it is contempt of Supreme Court.

In this regard, JK Dhruv, Assistant Director of Durg Regional Transport Office (RTO) said as per the guidelines of SCI, children less than 12 years of age have been considered as half passengers. Meanwhile, on SCI’s directive which clearly mentions that seating capacity should not surpass more than one and a half times of the capacity, he asserted that he have no knowledge of it.

RK Baksh, Social Activist expressed his concerned over this irregularity and told actions against these vehicles would be taken when one big mishap would occur in future.

SCI guidelines for school vehicles: Age of school vehicles shall not be more than 15 years

If age of school children is below 12 years, number of children carried shall not exceed 1.5 times the permitted seating capacity School children over 12 years should be treated as one person, in case of vehicles fitted with LPG kit, the authorized LPG Kit to be installed by registered authority and no seating arrangement over LPG Tank. No roof carriers allowed and no bags shall be hanged on the outer portion of the vehicle. The vehicle used as school cab should be closed body type with hard top.

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‘New Mayor should have concern for cleanliness’

Raipur is going to have a new Mayor in a few days to come. Experts from the field of medical services in the city now finds an opportune moment to vent their aspirations, saying that tasks of m... Read More
Raipur is going to have a new Mayor in a few days to come. Experts from the field of medical services in the city now finds an opportune moment to vent their aspirations, saying that tasks of maintaining cleanliness, availability of pure drinking water, biomedical waste disposal that needs to be accorded due importance and accomplished on war footing.

“Raipur looks like a big sub-urban location and not a state capital. Consulted effort is needed to make it a capital of national repute,” said Dr Rakesh Gupta, who is President of Chhattisgarh Nagrik Sangharsh Samiti. Basic amenities like drinking water and electric supplies, reputed schools and hospitals and entertainment facilities are needed for the common man, Dr Gupta added.

Medical and health services should not be ignored. It should not be a realty again that drainage water is getting mixed with drinking water and causing jaundice. The dust problem must be solved and cleanliness must be maintained regularly. Mosquito breeding must be checked, said Dr Arvind Neral, Head of the Microbiology department, Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Medical College.

Infrastructure has improved and good roads have been made, but the problem of garbage and filth was more over the past few months. It cast adverse impact on health and increase in asthma patients was recorded. It is expected that the new Mayor will give special attention on cleanliness so that vector borne diseases are finally controlled, said President of Indian Medical Association, Raipur branch Dr Ashok Tripathi.

It is not at all acceptable after so many years of independence that people in a capital city do not get pure drinking water and complain of Hepatitis-E and deaths are recorded due to the disease. It is time to discard open drainage system because there will be the problem of mosquitoes and flies so long such system continues. Tasks for ensuring availability of pure drinking water to each and every individual and sanitation should be done on war footing. Scientific disposal of biomedical waste is needed very much in the city and it needs incinerator which a municipal corporation can install. This is another task that needs to be done on war footing, said Managing Director of Ramkrishna Care Hospital Dr Sandeep Dave.

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Candidate files nomination for Mayor's post

On the second day of filing of nomination 1 candidate filed nomination for the post of Mayor and 3 for the post of corporator. Among the 100 nominations procured included 6 for the post of Mayor ... Read More
On the second day of filing of nomination 1 candidate filed nomination for the post of Mayor and 3 for the post of corporator. Among the 100 nominations procured included 6 for the post of Mayor and 94 for the post of corporator.

According to information, Congress candidate Ragini Devi Soni filed the nomination for the post of Mayor.

Ragini Soni, along with her husband Dhruv Kumar Soni and proposer and supporter reached the Collectorate and filed the nomination.

Though the Congress has not declared its official candidate, Ragini Devi after filing the nomination stated that she was confident of getting the party ticket hence filed the nomination on Tuesday.

Similarly, three candidates Ravi Mishra from ward No. 32; Jagdish Prasad Gupta from ward No. 45 and Pushpa Sonkar from ward No. 2 filed nomination for the post of corporator respectively.

There was great enthusiasm among the candidates in procuring and filing of nominations. The Mayoral and corporator candidates, along with their supporters reached the District Collector since morning and the enthusiasm prevailed till 4 pm.

Couple procures nomination form from same ward

Though it is not confirmed, who will contest the elections for the post of corporator from ward No. 1, Nayapara, a husband and wife have made up their mind to contest the elections. According to information Yogendra Sahu and his wife Chameli Sahu have procured nomination forms for the post of corporator from ward No. 1, Nayapara.

It may be mentioned that Yogendra Sahu contested the elections in the year 2004 and lost the elections. But his wife Chameli Sahu won the 2009 elections and still corporator of the ward.

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Physiotherapists’ fast unto death continues

Physiotherapists continued their protest as fast until death under the banner of Chhattisgarh Association of Physiotherapists (CAP) on Tuesday. Fresh seven of their associates including a 19-ye... Read More
Physiotherapists continued their protest as fast until death under the banner of Chhattisgarh Association of Physiotherapists (CAP) on Tuesday. Fresh seven of their associates including a 19-year girl student were admitted in the state run Dr BR Ambedkar Memorial Hospital (BRAMH) as their health condition deteriorated as a result of the fast.

Out of the eight female physiotherapists, who were admitted on last Monday, six were discharged while two others Jaya Kasi and Shikha Sharma were still admitted. Thus till Tuesday night nine physiotherapists were in BRAMH, CAP state Coordinator Dr CP Sen informed. Another state coordinator Parul Pandey was also taken to the hospital. Pandey informed that she has returned to the dharna site at Budhatalab and continued the fast. Sen said that the association in pursuing the demand of physiotherapy council today met Director of Medical Education Pratap Singh, but could not meet Principal Secretary Dr Alok Shukla. The association however expressed the hope of meeting with the principal secretary on Wednesday, Sen added. The seven persons admitted in the hospital today were a student Shobha Verma and the six others were Anil Ogrey, Divya Gunjan, Deepak Sethia, Swati Singh, Kulastha Sahu and Manik Sahu. The nine persons who were admitted till Tuesday night included five females.

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BJP President Amit Shah in Raipur on 12th

Bharatiya Janata Party State President Dharamlal Kaushik informed that BJP National President Amit Shah who will be reaching Raipur on December 12, will be addressing a mega congregation of par... Read More
Bharatiya Janata Party State President Dharamlal Kaushik informed that BJP National President Amit Shah who will be reaching Raipur on December 12, will be addressing a mega congregation of party workers and office-bearers at Science College grounds in the afternoon. He said atleast 40,000 party workers from all over the state will be present on the occasion. He informed that presently there are 13.57 lakh BJP party workers in the state which will be tripled during the on-going membership drive.

Adding that the party workers are enthusiastic with the visit of the National President, the State President said along with the party workers, the congregation will be attended by state, regional, district and mandal level party office-bearers as well as all office-bearers from several morcha and cells including joint conveners, conveners, MLAs, MPs, Mayors, Chairmen, Presidents/Vice Presidents of Municipal Councils and Nagar Panchayats will also attend the programme. However Panchayat representatives and booth level workers have not been invited. Kaushik further stated that continuous meetings at the state, district and mandal level are taking place for membership drive which will continue to March 31, 2015. He added that after making a clean sweep in the Urban Bodies’ election, the membership drive will be further intensified. He further state that the party has almost completed all its preparations for the urban bodies’ election. Mandal and district level meetings have been completed and Division level meeting will be initiated from Wednesday and in all probability the names of candidates will be announced on December 13. He informed that MP Ramesh Bais will be arriving on Wednesday. After his arrival the meeting of Raipur Division Election Committee will be held.

Meanwhile Programme Coordinator Rajesh Munat inspected the meeting site at Science College grounds on Tuesday and gave necessary instructions for preparations. He also discussed the route from Swami Vivekananda Airport to the programme site with the security officials. Munat informed that will reach Raipur on December 12 through a special plane and will be accorded grand welcome by the party office-bearers at state hanger. Approximately 5000 BJP and BJYM workers will lead the procession from airport to the programme site. Present on the occasion were Vice President Sachidanand Upasne, MLA Srichand Sundrani, Chagan Mundra, Sanjay Srivastava, Sunil Soni, Rajeev Agrawal, and others.

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Winter Session from 15th: Cong all set to make a stormy start against BJP

The Winter Session of Chhattisgarh Assembly will be tumultuous as the opposition Congress will try to corner the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party Government on issues like sterilization deaths, di... Read More
The Winter Session of Chhattisgarh Assembly will be tumultuous as the opposition Congress will try to corner the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party Government on issues like sterilization deaths, dishonour of martyrs, ration cards, etc. On the other the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party has geared itself up for shielding the opposition onslaught.

Meanwhile, the Legislators from both Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party have registered exactly 1371 questions, according to which every day approximately 200 questions will be tabled in the House. Meanwhile, the opposition has planned to interrupt the House proceedings on the first day on Tuesday by taking up the issue of sterilization deaths. The Winter Session of Chhattisgarh Assembly will commence from December 15 and continue till December 24. During the meeting altogether seven meetings will be held with holidays on December 18, 20 and 21. For the seven meetings Bharatiya Janata Party, Congress as well as Bahujan Samaj Party and Independent Legislators have registered 1371 questions. However the registration of questions has finished and from Monday the notices for Call Attention Motions are being accepted. It is worth mentioning here that the state government will be tabling the proposals for second Supplementary Budget for the financial year 2014-15 apart from tabling of six Bills for amendment.

According the information received from Assembly Secretariat, two days each has been reserved for Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh, Women and Child Welfare Minister Ramsheela Sahu, Panchayat Minister Ajay Chandrakar and Food Minister Punnulal Sahu while one day each has been reserved for other Ministers. It is worth mentioning here that maximum number of questions has been received for Health Department.

Although questions for Health Department has been earmarked for the third day during the session, the opposition Congress has planned to corner Health Minister Amar Agrawal through Adjournment Motion on day one itself. However, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party has also geared itself for giving befitting reply to the opposition.

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Sarora Govt School Principal arrested for molesting girl students

Urla Police on Tuesday arrested the Principal of Sarora Government School under the charge of molesting girls of his school. As many as five girls have levelled serious allegation of molestation ... Read More
Urla Police on Tuesday arrested the Principal of Sarora Government School under the charge of molesting girls of his school. As many as five girls have levelled serious allegation of molestation against Principal in a FIR registered with the Urla Police Station on Tuesday.

A 15-year-old girl of Class-VIII turned up at the Urla Police Station along with her parents and four other girls to register a complaint against the Sarora School Principal Arvind Tiwari (36), resident of Sunder Nagar. At first they feared to reveal it, but now when their parents have supported them, they decided to register a police complaint.

Bursting in tears in front of a woman police officer, girls stated that the Principal made indecent gestures and groping on the pretext of teaching dance in his office. Surprisingly, other students, particularly boys, said that Arvind used to take the class on English subject. Arvind has molested many other girls but most chose not to report for the fear of social stigma and police/court hassles, girls added.

Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP) Crime Neeraj Chandrakar said that FIR has been registered on the statements of the five girls, who have mustered courage to forward against the molestation. It’s still unknown for how long Arvind was molesting the girls but as they are expecting more girls to come forward, things will get clear in coming future. Arvind was recruited as the Grade-1 Shikshakarmi. He was once suspended during his tenure at a school of Antagarh in the past. But, he was reinstated in the school of Sarora. Presently, he was working as the Acting Principal of the School. Arvind was immediately arrested and sent to jail after being booked under Section 354 of Indian Penal Code and relevant sections of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act 2012.

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Rural cops bust inter-state gang from Haryana for duping city businessman to the tune of Rs 24 lakh

Nagpur rural police have busted a seven member gang hailing from Haryana and Delhi for duping a businessman of Umred town to tune of Rs 24 lakh. The accused were also on radar of Rajasthan, Mad... Read More
Nagpur rural police have busted a seven member gang hailing from Haryana and Delhi for duping a businessman of Umred town to tune of Rs 24 lakh. The accused were also on radar of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Goa police for duping number of persons to tune of crores of rupees.

According to police, the complainant Amit Ashok Gupta (34), a resident of Itwari Peth, Umred, on April 24, 2014 received a call from call center of ICICI Prudential company. The caller first informed him about details of his policy so as to gain confidence of Amit. The caller further asked Amit to open five new policies of ICICI to nominate himself in diamond category and further said it will give him impressive returns of Rs 47 lakh. The caller started daily calling to Amit from the call center and convinced him to purchase new policies.

Amit transferred Rs 24 lakh in various banks accounts which were given by the prank caller. The caller also sent email of confirmation of received amount on Amit's email id. Amit was relaxed about the bonus of Rs 47 lakh. However his dream was shattered when the caller made demands for additional money. Now Amit got suspicious and inquiries revealed he has been duped and approached Umred police station. The police had registered the case under sections 420, 467, 468, 471 and 34 of Indian Penal Code read with sub-section 66 (d) of Information Technology Act 2000. During investigation the phone numbers and the bank accounts number were primary information for the police to identify the accused and get their location. As the police got information about detail address of the accused, Superintendent of Police (SP) Dr Aarti Singh directed Umred police to arrest the accused. The team moved to Faridabad and arrested two accused first and later picked-up rest of them with help of local police there.

The accused are identified as Ankush Wasudev Gulati (22), a resident of Sonepat, Haryana; Jatin Sureshkumar Arora (22), a resident of Delhi, Sachin Girichandra Tripathi alias Yashvant Gandhi alias Avinash Sharma (24), a resident of Delhi; Anil Bansilal Kapoor (23), Dilipkumar Ayodhyaprasad Gupta (27), both residents of Faridabad; Umesh alias Rajendrakumar Khurana, a resident of Haryana and Nitin Omprakash Gera (24), a resident of Faridabad. The police have recovered Rs 12 lakh from their bank accounts so far. SDPO Shankar Singh Rajpur, Police Inspector Sanjay Pawar and staff of Umred police station including Sudhir Dhnyanbondawar, Mamta Dokharmare, Sushma Thakur and others were made the arrest.

Accused are Call Center employees

According to police, the accused are employees at a Call Center located in Delhi and Noida areas and their duty was to call ICICI's policy holder and promote new policies. As the accused had access to the information of policies, they used it to cheat the ICICI bank customers. SP Dr Aarti Singh said that police of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Goa were also searching for the accused.

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‘Kelkar panel is a ploy to deny Vid its legitimate due’

Appointment of Kelkar Committee to shift the backlog discourse by erstwhile Democratic Front (DF) Government was an exercise to perpetuate injustice against Vidarbha and to allow Western Maharash... Read More
Appointment of Kelkar Committee to shift the backlog discourse by erstwhile Democratic Front (DF) Government was an exercise to perpetuate injustice against Vidarbha and to allow Western Maharashtra dominated Government to continue step-motherly treatment towards region, alleged former MLC Prof B T Deshmukh. Considering Taluka as an indicator of backlog goes against constitutional norm, Deshmukh alleged while lashing out at former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan for trying to change the basic parameter of backlog with an oblique motive to deprive Vidarbha from getting its legitimate due.

Deshmukh was delivering his presidential address at the book release function of 'Anushesh Vidarbhacha 2014' penned by VSDB expert member Adv Madhukar Kimmatkar held at Shrimant Baburao Dhanwate Hall on Tuesday. Earlier, the book was released at the hands of Transport Minister Diwakar Raote. Girish Gandhi, Adv Madhukar Kimmatkar, B.T.Deshmukh, Someshwar Pusatkar and Bandu Umarkar also shared dais.

Quoting from the interview of former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan in which he boasted as to how new backlog would be calculated and how the focus would shift to balanced development of the state, Deshmukh stated that outcome of such exercise would create a new backlog and push Vidarbha in crisis beyond repair.

Development of irrigation project and removal of backlog in irrigation are two separate issues. When the per hectare average of irrigation capacity of Maharashtra was 22 for every 1000 hectare; the Vidarbha had a backlog of 5.27 lakh hectares and that of Marathwada was 2.60 lakh hectares. In 1994, the average of irrigation had gone up to 37 percent but the backlog of Vidarbha gone up to 11.62 lakh hectares and that of Marahwada it was 5.60 lakh hectares. The 1994 report of Indicator and Backlog Committee came out in 2001 and still Government has made no efforts to remove the backlog, he added. Deshmukh also mentioned, when the information on use of electricity was collected in Maharashtra. The entire state had consumed 80,000 million units of power out of which Pune division along utilised 24 to 25,000 million units and the consumption of Nagpur and Amravati was 7000 and 4000 million units respectively.

Sena leader Diwakar Raote termed Adv Madhukar Kimmatkar and B.T Deshmukh as great visionaries. The funds which Vidarbha and Marathwada are receiving for development from the Government, is the result of perseverance and dedication of both Kimmatkar and Deshmukh, Raote stated. Both have constantly pursuing the issue of backlog since 1980 and our Government will give priority to remove the backlog of Vidarbha level, he asserted.

Adv Madhukar Kimmatkar took a brief review of his struggle for Vidarbha backlog. He explained the status of Vidarbha from pre historic period to its inclusion in Maharashtra in 1960. After its inclusion in Maharashtra state, Vidarbha is facing injustice from the Government. This region has been deliberately deprived by the state Government from gettig its legitimate due and in last 10 years, the Government had diverted funds of Rs 60,000 crores or more from Vidarbha to rest of Maharashtra. MLAs and Ministers from Vidarbha will take up this issue and give justice to the region, he hoped.

Someshwar Pusatkar made introductory remarks. Senior Journalist Bal Kulkarni conducted the proceedings and Bandu Umarkar proposed a vote of thanks.

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United opposition stalls Council demanding package for farmers

The second day in the Legislative Council began and ended with entire Opposition raising slogans against the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party and Shiv Sena government. The opposition Congress and ... Read More
The second day in the Legislative Council began and ended with entire Opposition raising slogans against the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party and Shiv Sena government. The opposition Congress and Nationalist Congress Party were united in raising slogans and demanding package for farmers, affected by draught for the second consecutive year.

The issue was raised on the first day. However, there was not much on the agenda of the day. On Tuesday, the Opposition started the day with sloganeering. They entered the well immediately on arrival of the Chairman Shivajirao Deshmukh. The House was adjourned four times, before the final adjournment for the day. The Opposition demanded that first package for the farmers be announced and then discussion allowed. The House was required to be adjourned within two minutes of its assembly at 11 am. The first adjournment of 20 minutes was followed by another adjournment for 30 minutes.

Deputy Chairman Vasant Daokhare was in the chair after the second adjournment. The opposition members entered the well, reached the Chairman's podium with their demand of allowing discussion on the issue, raised by Congress leader Manikrao Thakre on Monday. In the pandemonium that prevailed in the House Chief Minister Introduced Chandrashekhar Bawankule to the House and also the first question was called, when barely two minutes of the scheduled question hour were left. The question was raised by Jogendra Kawade and Higher Education Minister Vinod Tawde replied. Nothing, however, was clearly audible, as the Opposition members were raising slogans continuously.

The House was adjourned for the fourth time at 12.20 pm and Daokhare announced that the members should meet the Chairman in his chamber.

When the House reassembled at 1 pm, the Opposition members again started raising slogans and the House was adjourned for the day.

ZP directed to stay orders issued by Someshwar Netam

State Education Department has stayed disbursement of salary grants to schools in Nagpur Zilla Parishad area where irregularities were detected in the inquiry committee set-up in aftermath of expose of corrupt deals by then Education Office (Primary) Someshwar Netam. The stay on disbursement of salaries of teaching and non-teaching staff would continue till the probe absolves them of any violation of rules. The schools are named in the letter dated 14/7/2014.

Also Education Department has stayed 20 orders issued by Netam who came under lense of Anti-Corruption Bureau on the last day of his superannuation. As per recommendations of inquiry committee set-up by Deputy Director, Education, Nagpur, Education Officer (Primary), Zilla Parishad, Nagpur, was directed to stay the orders issued by Netam during his last days in office.

This was stated by Education Minister Vinod Tawde in Legislative Council during the question hour. He was replying to question raised by Nago Ganar and Anil Sole on Someshwar Netam, the then Education Officer (Primary), Nagpur Zilla Parishad.

The two legislators wanted to know details of action taken on the inquiry committee set-up by Education Department against Netam after ACB seized number of files and exposed corrupt deals of the officer.

Tawde in his written reply further stated that order has been issued to EO (Primary) to conduct hearing of individual school where prima facie violation of rules has been notice and submit the report of inquiry forthwith.

Sub-committee on higher edn suggests one Varsity for 100 colleges formula

A sub-committee formed under Chairmanship of Kumud Bansal on Education has suggested establishment Maharashtra State Commission for Higher Education and Development (MAHED) to implement recommendations of several committees about changes in higher education field of State. The committee examined recommendations of Dr Ram Takwale and two others committees, which called for decentralisation by way of setting-up sub-varsities. Dr Takwale committee suggested putting maximum limit of 100 colleges per varsity and called for bifurcation of Mumbai and Nagpur Universities. This was informed in written reply in Legislative Council on Tuesday by Higher and Technical Education Minister Vinod Tawde.

The question was raised by Amarsingh Pandit, Satish Chavan, Dhananjay Munde, Abdulkahn Durrani, Adv. Niranjan Davkhare and Rajendra Jain.

Bansal further suggested chalking out phase wise road map for introducing the changes in higher education field in the State. These changes should be routed through MAHED which should also incorporate suggestions made by Dr Arun Nigwekar Committee which recommended changes in statues of varsities.

Tawde further said a major focus of the suggestions is to have university sub-centres so as to speed-up decision making in wide area of that university jurisdiction. Since all the suggestions are inter-linked to university act Maharashtra Government is giving final touches to enactment of amendments and only after that the necessary changes suggested by various committees would be implemented.

Gondwana University’s Sub-centre at Chimur soon

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has ayed a demand to establish a sub-centre of Gondwana University at Chimur in Chandrapur district. Disclosing this Higher Education Minister Vinod Tawde informed the Legislative Council that Director, Higher Education, Pune, has been directed to submit a detailed proposal about this sub-centre. The question was asked by Mitesh Bhangdia and Nago Ganar. The local representatives in the region had met Chief Minister and asked for a regional centre keeping in mind interest of students in the area.

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Govt promises stringent punishment in Wardha human sacrifice case

Wardha Police had arrested six persons in human sacrifice case of nine-years old boy Rupesh Mule. This was informed in legislative assembly by Minister of State for Home Prof. Ram Shinde while repl... Read More
Wardha Police had arrested six persons in human sacrifice case of nine-years old boy Rupesh Mule. This was informed in legislative assembly by Minister of State for Home Prof. Ram Shinde while replying to a call attention motion moved by Shashikant Shinde, Jitendra Awhad, Ramesh Kadam and others. The Minister promised most stringent punishment to perpetrators of this heinous and shocking crime. Rupesh Mule from Vadar community was found dead with his both eyes, kidney and private parts missing behind a school. The brutal killing of innocent kid led to public outroar and investigation revealed that it was a case of human sacrifice by some perverts. Minister said, cops arrested six accused for human sacrifice case. Main accused has confessed that he killed Rupesh in the pursuit of hidden treasures and to acquire superpowers. The Government has registered offence under Maharashtra Prevention and Eradication of Human Sacrifice and other Inhuman Evils and section 3 of Aghori Practice and Black Magic Act 2013 against the accused persons.

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Govt to adopt tough stance against naxals

Maharashtra Government is giving Guerrilla warfare training to police personnel at Gadchiroli to control naxal menace, informed Prof. Ram Shinde, Minister of State for Home (Rural). He was repl... Read More
Maharashtra Government is giving Guerrilla warfare training to police personnel at Gadchiroli to control naxal menace, informed Prof. Ram Shinde, Minister of State for Home (Rural). He was replying to an question raised by Balasaheb Murkute during question hour about growing menace of naxalism.

Murkute asked regarding death of one Indian Reserve Battalion (IRB) jawan and serious injury of four others in a Claymore mine blast triggered by Naxals near Yerkad in Dhanora tehsil of Gadchiroli in September. A combined squad of 18-member security force, comprising district police and IRB, was heading towards weekly market at Yerkad village when the mine planted on the side of the road exploded, killing one jawan instantly.

Minister of State Prof. Shinde said, a jawan Chetan Salve was declared brought dead at Orange City Hospital, Nagpur. Another IRB jawan, Nitesh Bandekar's condition is still critical. He said, Maharashtra Government is trying its level best to give tough answer to naxals in Gadchiroli district. He said, Government has provided ample arms and ammunitions with modernised communication system, vehicles, and anti-land mine vehicles and helicopters. District Police, Central Reserve Police, and others are controlling naxal activities. The Government is also providing security to common people. The Government has deployed Central Reserve Police Force, Cobra Battalion, State Reserve Force and Special anti-naxal force C-60 commandos in naxal areas. He said, till now, 13 jawans lost their lives in naxal ambush during last 11 months while Maharashtra Police has conducted 41 encounters thereby considerably reducing the strength of naxals.

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Demanding package for drought-hit ryots, Cong-NCP stall Assembly proceedings

Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) legislators on Tuesday stalled the business of the Legislative Assembly demanding announcement of financial package for drought hit farmers' in Vid... Read More
Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) legislators on Tuesday stalled the business of the Legislative Assembly demanding announcement of financial package for drought hit farmers' in Vidarbha and Marathwada regions. On Second day of the winter session, the Congress and NCP did not allow ruling party to conduct the business forcing three adjournments and later Speaker Haribhau Bagade was compelled to adjourn the house for the day after transacting scheduled business amidst ruckus.

The floor management of Congress and NCP was comparatively good and leaders of both the parties had better co-ordination in the house and also outside the house. The ruling party, that is enjoying the benefits of divided opposition, faced the heat of united opposition in the session. The bonhomie between two estranged partners was quite visible during agitation staged inside and outside the house as a counter-move to ruling alliance's plan to hold discussion and then announce package for drought hit areas.

As soon as the Assembly session began on Tuesday, Congress Group leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil demanded to allow adjournment motion under rule 57 of Legislative Assembly. Making his point, Vikhe Patil said, Speaker should suspend question hour and start discussion on farmers' issue without any delay.

However, the Speaker Haribhau Bagade rejected their demand and called for question hour. He said, as the issue has been included in today's business as a motion moved under rule 293 by ruling party, therefore, there is no question to suspend the business before the house. The opposition members under the leadership of Jitendra Awhad, and Vijay Wadettiwar trooped into the well and demanded suspension of question hour. Within two minutes, the speaker adjourned the business for 10 minutes. Earlier, NCP members entered house shouting slogans demanding package for farmers'. It was a classic case of role reversal for many NCP and Congress veterans who enjoyed power for past 15 years and were required to enter the well of the house to stage agitation and perform duty of a vigilant opposition party.

As house reconvened after 10 minutes, Congress and NCP members again gathered in the well and shouted slogans. Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse said, Government is ready for initiating discussion on this issue. The matter is included in today's business therefore, opposition parties should co-operate in conducting business, he urged.

Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar said, Government is willing to initiate discussion on this issue. Launching frontal attack on then DF Government, Mungantiwar alleged that in last 15 years, the DF Government did not pay any attention towards the pressing issues of farmers' and now, they are shedding crocodile's tears.

However, Congress and NCP members were in no mood to allow Government to transact business in the house. Bhaskar Jadhav, Rajesh Tope, Ravi Rana, Yashomati Thakur, Vijay Wadettiwar, Hasan Musrif, Varsha Gaikwad, Gopal Agrawal, Shashikant Shinde and other members assembled before the Speaker's Chair.

Amidst sloganeering and pandemonium, Speaker Bagade completed question hour before the house. During transaction of business in turmoil, former Ministers Chhagan Bhujbal, Jayant Patil and even former Speaker Dilip Walse Patil tried to convince Speaker for initiating discussion but he completed question hour. Bhujbal advised him to call a meeting of treasury benches and opposition parties group leader to sort out the issue. After completion of question hour, Haribhau Bagade adjourned the house for 30 minutes. As house resumed, panel speaker Varsha Gaikwad adjourned house for another 30 minutes.

As house assembled after this one hour forced break, Speaker completed the business pending before the house. Speaker Bagade allowed Senior BJP legislator Chainshukh Sancheti to initiate discussion on drought hit areas of Vidarbha and Marathwada. Sancheti tried to grill the opposition saying the situation has worsened due to bad governance during Congress-NCP's 15-year rule. He also virtually held the previous Government responsible for farmers' suicides. However, the opposition parties continued with their agitation and sloganeering. As ruckus continued and repeated plea from the chair had no desire effect, the Speaker adjourned the House for the day.

Govt politicising the debate, claims opposition

NCP leaders Ajit Pawar and Chhagan Bhujbal while speaking to mediapersons alleged that ruling alliance is politicising the whole issue and making unnecessary references by claiming that the previous Congress-led coalition government was responsible for the drought and farmers' suicides. They said that the ruling alliance could criticise the Congress-NCP government later, but this was not the time for playing a blame game when farmers were committing suicide. It is unfair on part of the State Government to neglect farmers who are in distress, they added. Congress group leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil alleged that the government was indulging in partisan politics and was not serious to tackle the drought-like situation. By May and early June, the situation may go from bad to worse. Therefore, a full package for affected persons should be announced immediately, he demanded.

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Kelkar panel shifts emphasis from ‘backlog’ to ‘devpt gap’

Following the announcement that the much-awaited Kelkar Committee report on balanced regional development will be tabled during ongoing winter session of State Legislature, curiosity is buildin... Read More
Following the announcement that the much-awaited Kelkar Committee report on balanced regional development will be tabled during ongoing winter session of State Legislature, curiosity is building up over its content. Getting a peep into the report, ‘The Hitavada’ has learnt that the report has shifted the emphasis from ‘backlog’ to ‘development gap’. The committee has made certain important recommendations for Vidarbha and other regions, with an expectation that the Government will implement those by the year 2022.

State Government had constituted the high-powered committee over balanced regional development a couple of years ago. After various rounds of consultations in different regions and a couple of extensions, the committee submitted its report to the Government in October 2013. The erstwhile Congress-NCP Government shied away from tabling the report. The new BJP-Sena Government organised a presentation on the committee report, during one of its recent cabinet meetings. Later, the Government announced to table the report during winter session of State Legislature.

‘The Hitavada’ has gathered that the 571-page report has shifted the focus of the debate from the concept of 'backlog' to 'development gap'. "Backlog is a single dimensional concept and it is more in financial and accounting terms. However, to achieve balanced regional development, we need to consider changes in economy and reforms in the past decades and change the context accordingly. Hence, we have talked about the development gap," noted economist Dr Vijay Kelkar, who headed the committee, told 'The Hitavada'. According to him, the concept of 'development gap' is multi-dimensional one. Emphasising on that, the committee has suggested a 'comprehensive development strategy' involving resource transfer on the basis of development distance.

Explaining the concept of development distance, a member of the committee Dr Vinayak S Deshpande said that development distance was a distance from a milestone of development reached by the State as a whole. It encompasses a lot many things including opportunities available to a region, assets created, utilisation of plan expenditure, per capita income etc. "We have tried to identify strength of various regions, on the basis of which development distance or development gap will be reduced," said Dr Deshpande, who is currently Acting Vice-Chancellor of Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University (RTMNU).

The committee has also discussed the debate whether to consider district or tehsil as unit for carrying out development strategy. While doing so, it considered the report of Ranganathan Committee on drought-prone tehsils, and some other reports. "We have considered drought-prone tehsils, ex-Malgujari tanks in East Vidarbha, and saline belt in West Vidarbha while making recommendations on planning process," Dr Deshpande said. The tehsils were considered drought-prone on the basis of their featuring commonly in different reports, and also on parameters like water supply through tankers, ground water level, absorption level of soil, need for fodder camps for number of years etc.

Apart from philosophical emphasis on the concept of 'development gap' and recommending resource transfer on that basis, Kelkar Committee has also made certain important recommendations that will benefit Vidarbha region. These include emphasis on time-bound completion of projects, Green Bonus to areas that have conserved forest for years but have been deprived of developmental projects for the same, Nagpur-Surat connectivity to benefit cotton belt in Vidarbha, setting up Agricultural University at Sindewahi in Chandrapur district, railway connectivity to district headquarters of Yavatmal and Gadchiroli etc.

Dr Kelkar added that the report has proposed a concept of Virtual Region for tribals. The population of tribals is scattered across Maharashtra, and the group needs to be given special consideration in development process. As tribals could not be bound to a particular region, the concept of 'Virtual Region' has been introduced by the committee.

The committee report links allocation to District Planning Committees (DPCs) to performance in utilisation. Higher the utilisation, higher the incentives, said Dr Deshpande. The recommendations pertain to the plan expenditure of Maharashtra. Asked as to why allocation principle has not been recommended in case of non-plan expenditure, Dr Deshpande said that capital assets were created through plan expenditure only and non-plan expenditure could be done only if assets have been created through plan expenditure. Hence, it allocation principles are applied in case of plan expenditure and assets are created, non-plan expenditure also will increase proportionately.

The committee headed by noted economist Dr Vijay Kelkar comprised experts namely Dr Madhav Chitale, Dr Abhay Bang, Dr Abhay Pethe, Dr Vinayak Deshpande, Vijay Borade, Dr Sangita Kamdar, Dr Dilip Nachane, Dr V M Mayande, Dr Sanjay Chahande, Dr Mukund Ghare, Kumud Bansal, Dr R P Kurulkar. K P Bakshi, Additional Chief Secretary (Planning), was the Member Secretary. The report is likely to be tabled in State Legislature next week. The report also has sub-volumes dedicated to different regions including Vidarbha. Once the report is tabled, these sub-voumes will be made available online.

Panel recommends Vid Tourism Development Corporation

For better development of tourism sites in Vidarbha in a focussed manner, Kelkar Committee has recommended that the Government should set up Vidarbha Tourism Development Corporation on the lines of Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation. Vidarbha region has got several strengths including eco-tourism, various anthropological, archaeological, agri-tourism sites, forts. Besides, it has got prominent tourist destinations like tiger reserves and wildlife sanctuaries, Lonar crater, Ramtek, Shegaon, Markanda Devsthan, Chikhaldara, etc.

Vid Development Cess on power, competitive tariff

The high-powered committed headed by Dr Vijay Kelkar has also discussed the idea of levying 'Vidarbha Development Cess' on power generated in the region and supplied to other parts of Maharashtra. According to Dr Vinayak Deshpande, Vidarbha region is a major power generation centre. Power is supplied to other parts of the State also and assets are created there using this power. The cess so levied on power should be utilised for expediting development of Vidarbha region, he added. Further, the committee has recommended to make the power tariff competitive to attract investment to Vidarbha. At present, despite having resources, industries are not coming to Vidarbha region owing to high power tariff. The power tariff is higher than that in adjoining states of Telangana, Chhattisgarh, and Madhya Pradesh. As a result, industries go to these states instead of setting up units in Vidarbha. Hence, there is a need to make power tariff for Vidarbha region comparable with adjoining states.

'No comment made on Vidarbha statehood'

Referring to reports in a section of media that Kelkar Committee has favoured statehood to Vidarbha, the panel chief Dr Vijay Kelkar said that the committee's mandate did not include the issue. "We had a clear task pertaining to balanced regional development. We have done that," he said. The report includes narration of the sentiments expressed by stakeholders during consultations held in various regions including Vidarbha. The narration sums up the sentiments of stakeholders from Vidarbha who said that if the region did not get priority in development strategy, the demand for statehood would be inevitable. "This is not the comment of the committee," he said.

CM should head Development Boards

Kelkar Committee has recommended that the role and responsibilities of Development Boards for various regions should be changed, but they should continue to function. However, to ensure that the Boards have a vital role to play, Chief Minister should head them, the committee has recommended. The Boards should have two local leaders and two experts as members. "We believe that the Boards should continue till desired equalisation of regions is achieved," said Dr Vinayak S Deshpande. It may be mentioned here that recently the State Cabinet has extended the tenure of Development Boards till March 2020.

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Police arrest Satvik Group’s Amol Dhake

Amol Dhake, promoter of Satvik Group, the latest name in the long list of investment firms that duped gullible investors, was arrested on Sunday by Ambazari police. Dhake was on the run after h... Read More
Amol Dhake, promoter of Satvik Group, the latest name in the long list of investment firms that duped gullible investors, was arrested on Sunday by Ambazari police. Dhake was on the run after his investment firm went bust, just about the time when the term deposits accepted by him were maturing.

Police arrested Amol Dhake from Ram Nagar where he was meeting the aggrieved investors to convince them about his intention to return their money. Police will produce Dhake in court on Monday to secure his police custody remand (PCR) for interrogation.

Police Inspector of Ambazari police station, Balasaheb Khade said that Dhake was picked-up after they learnt about his meeting with the investors. The sudden appearance of Dhake in city was quite mysterious as was his disappearance from city last year after wounding-up his business and other establishments. A senior police officer said that investigation in the case would now get momentum as Dhake would shed light on the whereabouts of money that he collected from the investors. So far, the amount misappropriated by Dhake is to tune of Rs 33 lakh but police said, as more investors are turn-up, the swindled money could swell.

Dhake, after disposing of the assets, had fled to his native village in Jalgaon. His family including wife, who is also an accused in the case, is still hiding in Jalgaon, the sources claimed. After Dhake, now cops are likely to track the other four Directors of the firm also as they are gathering details about the firm’s transaction, investments and properties, if any, acquired by the accused persons. The police still have no clues about address of other Directors, as investors knew very little about them.

Acting on the complaint by one of the investors, Sanjay Prakash Kashikar (50), a resident of house no. 808 (a), Karnalbag, the police had booked Chairman Amol Dhake and his wife, Mahendra Kohad, Atul Dikshit, Sandip Mahajan and Mohan Joshi. So far, police have received 16 complaints of cheating against Dhake till date.

As per primary information, maximum investors in Dhake’s firm were either his close relatives and friends who believed in promises of high returns. The investors used to meet Dhake in his office to get back their money as after maturity the promised returns on investments did not materialise. Dhake shielded himself from rage of the investors by assuring them to meet his commitments as he has enough properties to meet the liabilities. But that time little did investors knew that the businessman was only busying time as once Dhake sold his entire property he was simply untraceable. After Wasankar, Shreesurya, Raviraj and many other investment companies, Satvik Group allegedly defaulted on payments and thus left the investors high and dry again. Dhake floated prospective investors by promising astronomical returns on investment schemes. Hundreds of investors fell prey to ponzy schemes of Satvik Group.

Ambazari police had registered the case under Sections 420 and 406 of the Indian Penal Code read with Section 3 of the Maharashtra Protection of Interest of Depositors (MPID) Act.

Cops await details from banks

After registering case against Satvik Group, Ambazari police had sent notices to Samruddhi Co-operative Bank and Indian Overseas Bank where Dhake did most of his transactions. The police have asked for information about transactions of Dhake since year 2005, under Section 91 of Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC). The details would form an important part of investigation in the case.

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Costly industrial power tariff takes its first toll

High tariff has high price! The recent decision of Maharashtra Government to stop monthly subsidy of around Rs 706 crore has taken its toll. Many steel units have decided to down their shutters a... Read More
High tariff has high price! The recent decision of Maharashtra Government to stop monthly subsidy of around Rs 706 crore has taken its toll. Many steel units have decided to down their shutters and move to neighbouring states where cheaper power is available round the clock.

One steel unit in Kalmeshwar closed down shop on December 1 and is contemplating move to neighbouring Chhattisgarh. Many other units have given closure notices, thus threatening deterioration in the industrial scenario.

The average industrial tariff has climbed up by Rs 1.50 per unit shattering all the calculations of entrepreneurs who were anxiously waiting that the new State Government would provide them succour when it comes to development. The new government in Maharashtra which inherited mess in power sector from previous DF Government, has been caught off-guard by this worrisome development which may hamper its ambitious plan to attract more manufacturing units in Vidarbha.

The situation of steel industry has worsened to such an extent that several entrepreneurs running steel units have made up their mind to shut operations and migrate to adjoining states of Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh. Out of 15, ground furnace units, 12 have downed shutters in Nagpur. Rolling mills are also facing similar situation. Of the total 60 units, 40 have stopped production and others also may follow the suit in coming days, sources said. The average industrial power tariff for single shift has been hiked from Rs 6.50 per unit to Rs 8 per unit and for three shifts it has been inflated from Rs 6.15 per unit to Rs 7.15 per unit.

Unable to withstand the circumstances, Omco Steel Private Limited, Kalmeshwar has surrendered power to MSEDCL. The unit with a turnover of Rs 35 crore registered in last fiscal, has 60 employees. Talking exclusively to The Hitavada, Omprakash Mundra, Director of the company, said, “We have received electricity bill for the month of October with inflated charges. Earlier, I used to get power bills with a charge of Rs 7.03 per unit. Now, the same has been hiked to Rs 9.43 per unit which we cannot easily assimilate in the present situation.”

The industrial power tariff vary from one category to another. The average industrial power tariff in Chhattisgarh is Rs 4.30 per unit, in Madhya Pradesh it is Rs 5.20 per unit and in Gujarat it is Rs 4.50 per unit. Omco Steel consumes 13 lakh to 14 lakh units per month for producing steel. “We cannot pay Rs 30 lakh per month extra for power and continue to run the unit. I have also made up mind to shift to neighbouring states and have started scouting for suitable land,” he disclosed.

“Another unit in Kalmeshwar-- Bramha Ispat Private Limited is also trying to surrender power and is suspending operations,” Mundra said. He added, there is entry tax of 3.5 per cent in Chhattisgarh. “If we add CST and transportation cost, for one tonne of steel produced in a unit in Chhattisgarh, it comes to Rs 1,000 while for the same produced in Maharashtra, the cost comes to Rs 1,500. How can we compete with our neighbouring states and sustain in the market,” he argued. He further said, daily 200-truck-load of steel enters in Maharashtra border from Chhattisgarh. “There is no entry tax in Maharashtra and therefore steel-markers from Chhattisgarh are making hay of the situation,” he disclosed.

If Maharashtra Government imposes entry tax, it would earn revenue worth Rs 400 crore per year, he suggested. Mundra also said, steel industry is already reeling under recession with slump in the market. If State Government turns a blind eye towards the woes of steel-markers, they will be left with no option but to wind up operations which would make a large army of workers jobless further leading to social tensions. “We will be dependent on other states for our requirement,” he noted.

Mundra who came from Odisha in 1989 in Nagpur with glee mood, acquired sick units and pumped life into them. “There was industry-friendly policy of State Government. Labour and power was cheaper. I left my ancestral home in Odisha and decided to settle here,” he said. Omco Steel was started by Mundra in 2004. “I am really disappointed with the present State Government’s negligence towards steel industry. Government should continue power subsidy and give ear to plights of steel-makers, he suggested. When contacted, R B Goenka, Chairman of VIA Energy Cell, said, he would conduct meeting of industrialists soon and discuss future course of action. Mahagenco had stated that it was suffering losses worth Rs 2,000 crore and was filing petition before MERC. “If the petition of Mahagenco is considered by MERC, then industrialists have to get ready to shell out more bucks on power bills,” he said.

The previous Government of Congress-NCP was giving subsidy of Rs 706 crore per month. The same has been rolled back by the newly elected State Government flunging reason that the financial health of the state was sick.

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NCP locks horn with Congress, wants LoP’s post in both Houses

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has indicated locking horns with its erstwhile ruling partner, Congress, on issue of Leader of Opposition (LoP) in Maharashtra Assembly. NCP is eyeing LoP’s p... Read More
Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has indicated locking horns with its erstwhile ruling partner, Congress, on issue of Leader of Opposition (LoP) in Maharashtra Assembly. NCP is eyeing LoP’s post in both houses and also Chairman of Legislative Council where it had more members than Congress.

Senior NCP leader and former Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar addressing a press conference on Sunday evening disclosed that they would submit signatures of 45-members in support of its claim of LoP in Assembly and as to Council we already have more numbers than Congress. “Our leaders are going to meet Speaker Haribhau Bagde and submit letter of support from Bahujan Vikas Aghadi and other smaller groups to prove that NCP has more numbers than Congress,” he claimed. Congress Party too has claimed LoP’s post, saying it has third largest number of legislators in Assembly after ruling BJP and Sena and better voting percentage than NCP.

Pawar clarified that its support to BJP was to ensure a stable Government but this support cannot be constructed as being part of the Government.

About the State debt burden, the former Finance Minister said the new Government should stop cribbing about it and start fulfilling the mandate given to it by the people. New Government must get down to helping the farmers in State who are in distress, he claimed.

The absence of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis for the customary tea party is not a good sign for the democracy, Pawar said in response to a question about boycott of customary tea party on eve of winter session in city. The sanctity of established democratic conventions must be upheld by everyone and Chief Minister could have adjusted the time if he needed to attend the meet of Prime Minister, he stated. Fadnavis could have called us in the morning or invited Opposition for dinner late in night after returning from Delhi. The NCP was ready to discuss the aggravating problems of farmers owing to drought with Chief Minister during the tea party, he claimed.

As to farmers’ problem, the NCP felt that Government should enhance compensation before the situation goes out of hand. Now, even sugarcane growers are feeling the heat of crashing sugar prices and asked State Government to offer them package as was done by previous UPA and DF Government.

Pawar blamed BJP Government for poor handling of case in Maratha and Muslims reservation in High Court which struck down the Government Resolution of earlier establishment. Now in Supreme Court, Maharashtra Government should field legal luminaries as the issue is quite defendable and referred to Tamil Nadu where reservations exceed beyond 50% limit. NCP State unit chief Sunil Tatkare, former Ministers Manohar Naik, Anil Deshmukh, MLC Prakash Gajbhiye and other NCP leaders were also present at the press conference.

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Cong boycotts customary tea party

In what could be called a role-reversal, Congress party decided to boycott the customary tea party hosted by Chief Minister on the eve of commencement of winter session of State Legislature. Cong... Read More
In what could be called a role-reversal, Congress party decided to boycott the customary tea party hosted by Chief Minister on the eve of commencement of winter session of State Legislature. Congress is also taking out its ‘Halla Bol’ morcha on the very first day of winter session demanding immediate relief to drought-hit farmers of Vidarbha and Marathwada.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had invited various political parties for customary tea party but informed them that he would not be present as he was attending a crucial meeting called by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Delhi regarding Planning Commission. “Not attending the customary tea party on the eve of winter session shows lack of seriousness on part of Fadnavis Government. This is insult of healthy legislative tradition. Hence, we decided to boycott the tea party,” said Manikrao Thakre, President of Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC).

Addressing a press conference on Sunday afternoon at Hotel Tuli Imperial, Thakre accused the Chief Minister of being ‘insensitive’ to issues concerning farmers. When more than half of the villages in State are facing drought-like situation, the Government should have come forward extending financial aid to farmers, he said. However, he alleged, the Government was disinterested. During past couple of months, the atrocities against Dalits had increased and the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) also failed in finding out solution to Local Body Tax (LBT) and toll collection, he said.

Against the backdrop of the current crisis looming large over farmers, Thakre said, Fadnavis Government should announce financial help of Rs 25,000 per hectare to farmers in rainfed areas and Rs 50,000 per hectare to farmers in irrigated areas. Besides, the Government should ensure uninterrupted power supply for agriculture and stop forcible recovery of electricity bills from farmers. “The Government has not taken any decision on loan waiver,” he said. When Congress was in Government, it had offered various financial packages to the tune of Rs 10,000 crore to farmers in crisis, Thakre claimed.

MPCC chief announced that Congress would take out a morcha of farmers to Vidhan Bhavan on Monday, the opening day of winter session of State Legislature. Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil, Congress Group Leader in Legislative Assembly; Vijay Wadettiwar, Deputy Leader; Vilas Muttemwar, former MP; Satish Chaturvedi and Nitin Raut, former ministers; Sanjay Dutt, Abhijit Wanjari, Sunita Gawande also were present at the press conference.

Replying to a question on Congress’ stand over irrigation scam, Vikhe-Patil said that probe and subsequent action should be taken against the guilty. “We will make clear our stand in Legislative Assembly,” he quipped. Wadettiwar said that taking action was the responsibility of the Government.

‘Congress high command yet to clear stand on Vid statehood’

Replying to a question on Vidarbha statehood, MPCC chief Manikrao Thakre said that Congress’ central leadership had not yet taken any decision on the issue. “A committee headed by then senior Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee was appointed some years ago, and it submitted its report to central leadership of Congress. The leadership is yet to take any decision on the issue. Our stand will be the same as that of party high-command,” Thakre said. Personally, he said, his stand need not be reiterated.

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Oppn divided, Cong asks NCP to make clear if it is in Govt

On the eve of winter session, the Opposition stood divided on issues, strategy and seems to be groping in dark to occupy the Opposition space after being in power for last 15 years. Congress an... Read More
On the eve of winter session, the Opposition stood divided on issues, strategy and seems to be groping in dark to occupy the Opposition space after being in power for last 15 years. Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) both have staked claim for the post of Leader of Opposition (LoP) and the differences between them appeared to have widened. This may prove to be advantageous for the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena combine during winter session as the alliance has comfortable numbers in the Assembly.

On the eve of winter session, Congress alone represented the Opposition and addressed the customary press conference.

Asked about absence of other parties, especially NCP, that are not part of the Government, MPCC chief Manikrao Thakre said, “NCP has not declared whether it is in the Government or in the Opposition. Often, they have claimed of working to save the BJP Government. Besides, NCP leaders including Ajit Pawar have not shown any aggression or interest in the issues of farmers facing drought-like situation in the State. We are performing our duty as principal opposition party.”

Asked about NCP also staking its claim over the post of LoP, Thakre said that only Congress had rightful claim over the post.

“Our numbers are more than NCP. Even if numbers are equal, decision about the post of Leader of Opposition is taken considering the percentage of total votes polled by parties that have not joined the Government. Going by that logic also, Congress has polled 18 per cent votes and NCP has polled less than that,” he explained. Still, he added, the fact remained that the Leader of Opposition was not yet appointed and it would be interesting to watch how ‘serious’ the Speaker was about it.

Thakre’s taking dig at NCP and Ajit Pawar clearly indicates that there is lack of communication between Congress and NCP, due to sharp differences over the post of LoP. Interestingly, political circles were full of talks that NCP was planning to bring ‘no trust motion’ against Shivajirao Deshmukh, Chairman of Legislative Council and a senior Congress leader.

Asked about it, Manikrao Thakre said, “We will fight it out.” This is a clear indication that the Opposition bloc may remain divided throughout the winter session.

It may be mentioned here that Congress has 42 seats in Legislative Assembly, and NCP has 41. After Shiv Sena joined BJP Government led by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Eknath Shinde resigned as Leader of Opposition and was made a minister.

As a result, the next biggest party -- Congress -- staked its claim over the post of Leader of Opposition. NCP claimed support of some Independent MLAs and moved in for the post of LoP.

Meanwhile, NCP also held a separate press conference at the residence of former Minister Anil Deshmukh here on Sunday. Addressing the press conference, former Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar said that NCP would play the role of constructive Opposition and also took a dig at Congress. He said that NCP had the claim over the post of Leader of Opposition.

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Khadse hints at 40% cut in expenses, blames DF for ‘fiscal mismanagement’

On the eve of winter session of State Legislature, Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse hinted at up to 40 per cent cut in expenses owing to ‘fiscal mismanagement’ of the erstwhile Congress-NCP G... Read More
On the eve of winter session of State Legislature, Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse hinted at up to 40 per cent cut in expenses owing to ‘fiscal mismanagement’ of the erstwhile Congress-NCP Government. Reiterating that the Government was committed to addressing issues of farmers, he appealed to the Opposition parties to extend co-operation in discussing vital issues during winter session.

“We have inherited empty coffers, fiscal deficit is Rs 26,000 crore, and debt burden is over Rs 3 lakh crore. In such a situation, we are left with limited options of borrowing and plugging leakages. There is limit to borrowings and hence we will focus on plugging leakages. For remainder of the current financial year, we will not increase taxes but plug leakages,” said Khadse.

Khadse was addressing a press conference at Ramgiri, the official bungalow of Chief Minister, on Sunday in absence of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, who had gone to Delhi to attend Chief Ministers’ meeting called by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss future of Planning Commission. Khadse told reporters that ahead of Assembly elections, erstwhile Congress-NCP Government had taken several decisions with an eye on political gains. These decisions will have to be kept on hold for implementation till the end of current financial year.

Replying to a question he said, “It is not that we are the first to cut expenses. Congress-NCP Government also opted for budget cut up to 40 per cent.”

During the winter session, which will be the first full-fledged session of the new BJP-Sena Government, several important matters will be taken up for discussion. These include Kelkar Committee on development of backward regions, drought-like situation prevailing in the State, improving financial health of the State, industrial development outside MIDC areas, Maratha and Muslim reservations, etc. The Government would also discuss on Right to Service Bill, ‘Make-in-Maharashtra’ initiative to attract investment to Maharashtra, changes in labour laws.

Responding to the allegations of Congress, Khadse said that the new Government had already taken several measures to provide relief to farmers facing drought-like situation. “We are thinking of all other options including paying special bonus to cotton-growers, but keeping in mind financial health of the State,” he said.

Asked about farmers’ suicides and meager aid given to the kin of deceased farmers, Revenue Minister said that the Government was talking to insurance companies about a proposal under which the State Government would pay premium. Possibility of increasing the aid to kin of farmers from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 5 lakh was being explored, he added.

Further, the Government had got approval from Central Government to primary reports of three river-linking projects in State. These include diversion of water from Konkan to Godavari basin, and that from Madhya Pradesh to Tapi basin. Central Government had given in-principle nod to 18 primary reports, he said.

Girish Bapat, Parliamentary Affairs Minister; Chandrakantdada Patil, PWD Minister; Chandrashekhar Bawankule, Energy Minister; Subhash Desai, Industries Minister; Eknath Shinde, MSRDC Minister; Diwakar Raote, Transport Minister; Dr Deepak Sawant, Public Health Minister; Dilip Kamble, Minister of State for Social Justice; Vidya Thakur, Minister of State for Woman and Child Development; Ravindra Waikar, Minister of State for Housing, and others were present prominently at the press conference.

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NMC clears proposal for 33% addl FSI in non-congested areas

In a significant move that would cheer plot-holders and house-owners, Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) on Friday cleared a proposal to allow 33 per cent additional Floor Space Index (FSI) in no... Read More
In a significant move that would cheer plot-holders and house-owners, Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) on Friday cleared a proposal to allow 33 per cent additional Floor Space Index (FSI) in non-congested areas. The proposal was cleared in the NMC general body meeting held on Friday. Now, the proposal would be sent to the Government for final seal of approval. If the Government also clears it, the decision will empower NMC sanction additional FSI in lieu of premium. This is expected to bring down the rates of Transferable Development Right (TDR) and also curb illegal construction and resulting post-facto sanction to unauthorised constructions. Town Planning Department had proposed to sanction 33 per cent FSI to buildings in B or C zone on 60 per cent premium as per ready reckoner rates. The local body would allow additional FSI for commercial purpose on 90 per cent premium. This is a major amendment in Development Control Rules (DCR) and local body will have to issue notice under section 37 of MRTP Act, 1964. NMC would invite suggestions and objections from stakeholders and send the proposal to State Urban Development Department for its nod. The additional premium revenue will add to NMC revenue on the lines of Kolhapur Municipal Corporation. Presently, the local body has allowed 2 FSI for commercial purposes and 1.5 FSI for residential purpose in congested areas. The permissible FSI in non-congested area is 1 for plots admeasuring upto 1,000 sq mts and 1.25 FSI for plot with more than 1,000 sq mts area.

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‘Anti-corruption panels functioning without non-government members’

Maharashtra Government has not appointed non-government members on various anti-corruption committees in region as envisaged in its agreement with social activists and Padmabhushan Anna Hazare.... Read More
Maharashtra Government has not appointed non-government members on various anti-corruption committees in region as envisaged in its agreement with social activists and Padmabhushan Anna Hazare. The glaring omission was brought to the notice of Anna Hazare by local anti-corruption activist Mohd. Shahid Sharif and others during his visit to city.

Government has appointed such committees at Tehsil, District and Divisional levels and its has top district and divisional functionaries and in non-government member it is to be suggested by Hazare’s Bharastachar Nirmulan Samiti. For last two years, these committees are functioning without appointment of non-government members, Sharif pointed out to Hazare who promise to send names for the same very soon to the Government.

Sharif claimed that Hazare said he is going to dissolve all his organisational committees in State and reorganise them soon so that person who are at forefront in rooting out corruption from government system get representation on it, Sharif said in his release issued.

The delegation that met him also included Kamal Namalpalliwar, Mohd. Farhan, Surendra Pal, Gyanendra Tiwari and others.

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Wireless coin box phone installed at central prison

In a major respite to prison inmates, the Jail authorities have finally installed wireless coin telephone box at Nagpur Central Prison. This was done following a petition filed by Ashrat Shafiq... Read More
In a major respite to prison inmates, the Jail authorities have finally installed wireless coin telephone box at Nagpur Central Prison. This was done following a petition filed by Ashrat Shafique Ansari, an accused in Mumbai bomb blast case awaiting execution of his death sentence.

Ansari was sentenced to death in the year 2002 by Mumbai Sessions Court in bomb blast case that rocked Gateway of India. He knocked the doors of High Court seeking installation of coin box telephones in prisons across Maharashtra. It will enable lawyers to contact the inmates for legal matters and to obtain instructions, also prisoners will be easily able to talk to their relatives on phone. It will lead to easing of mental pressure and reduction in untoward incidences in prison. It will go a long way in changing psychological conditions of prisoners, the petitioner claimed.

Adv Mir Nagman Ali appearing for Ashrat informed court that coin box phones have been installed in Thane Central Jail, Navi Mumbai Jail, Pune’s Yerewada Prison, Delhi’s Tihar Jail and Cherapally Central Prison in Tamilnadu. He further contended that, in Delhi’s Tihar Jail prisoners are allowed to speak to their relatives on daily basis for five minutes.

There are instances reported wherein prisoners are found to be using telephones illegally and many prison officials faced departmental probe for allowing mobiles inside the prison in violation of existing ruules. Relatives have to come from other states travelling miles just to meet prisoners for 20 mins. Lawyers are required to talk to prisoners for instructions. Relatives of some prisoners never come to visit them for years due to distance and other inconvenience, petitioner claimed and submitted that, installing telephones will reduce such problems. He further submitted that, prison officials can watch them or CCTV can be installed to keep a watch on them while they talk.

Prison authorities had informed the court that, it was not viable to install regular wired telephone in prison due to infrastructural constraints and therefore they had moved proposal with BSNL office to install wireless telephone.

APP M K Pathan representing authorities informed a division bench consisting of Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande, that on November 25 the prison authorities have installed wireless coin box telephones. This marks a significant development in prison reforms.

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Din in NMC meeting over scam in firewood supply to crematoriums

Noisy scenes prevailed in the general body meeting of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) on Friday, over the issue of scam in supply of firewood to crematoriums. While the Opposition wanted NMC... Read More
Noisy scenes prevailed in the general body meeting of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) on Friday, over the issue of scam in supply of firewood to crematoriums. While the Opposition wanted NMC to lodge FIR against supplier firm, Mayor Pravin Datke favoured seeking legal opinion before taking any such action. Amid chaos, the meeting was adjourned indefinitely.

Amid heavy sloganeering, the meeting was adjourned for indefinite period after approving subjects on the agenda. As the meeting started at Town Hall, Leader of Opposition (NMC) and senior Congress leader Vikas Thakre raised the issue of alleged massive scam in supply of firewood at crematoriums. He quoted findings from an audit report.

“NMC must reveal names of contractor supplying firewood at crematoriums and also make known if there are political connections,” said Thakre.

Administrative officials and Mayor Pravin Datke tried to pacify the Opposition. Datke said that already fine was recovered from the contractor-firm and Municipal Commissioner had ordered departmental enquiry against officials concerned.

Still, NMC would first seek legal opinion and if there was any provision for lodging FIR on the basis of audit report, the action would be taken within eight days. He assured that appropriate action would be initiated against those found guilty.

However, it failed to calm down the Opposition corporators, who gathered near the chair of Mayor and resorted to heavy sloganeering. Some corporators hurled audit report papers at the chair of Mayor. Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) corporators also joined Congress corporators.

In response, BJP corporators also rose from their seats and entered the well of the House. Amid pandemonium, the meeting was adjourned for five minutes.

When the house re-assembled, the Opposition resumed sloganeering over the issue. Amid sloganeering, it was declared that all the items on the agenda were passed, and the meeting was adjourned indefinitely.

Vikas Thakre alleged that Nitin Fukey and Mahesh Barange were owners of Mahesh Sales Corporation, which was appointed to supply firewood to crematoriums. Raising question over actual ownership of the company, Thakre alleged that the address of the company was 144, Parinay Apartment, Hilltop, Ambazari. “Audit report findings are pretty clear. Still, why has not been the company blacklisted,” he asked.

Many competent companies were keen to get the contract. However, the contract was given to Mahesh Sales Corporation. Instead of taking stern action against the company, Ruling Party members were shielding the firm owners and giving money to lawyers, Thakre alleged.

Ruling Party members objected over Thakre’s comment and asked him to apologise for the comment. Many NGOs are ready to give their services free-of-cost at crematoriums, but NMC had given the contract to private company, he said.

Demanding stern action against the contractor-firm, Bahujan Samaj Party group leader Kishore Gajbhiye also pressed that NMC should lodge FIR against the firm.

Mayor Pravin Datke said that rather than creating chaos, the Opposition could discuss the issue. NMC would take stern action against contractor firm and offence would be registered only if there was a provision in the law, he said. No one will be spared, he added.

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‘CCI also to start cotton purchase’

Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) has agreed to start cotton procurement centres in Vidarbha and Marathwada regions with immediate effect, said Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister of Road Transport and... Read More
Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) has agreed to start cotton procurement centres in Vidarbha and Marathwada regions with immediate effect, said Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister of Road Transport and Shipping, and chief promoter of Agrovision agricultural exhibition.

Addressing a press conference at Agrovision venue in Reshimbagh on Friday, Gadkari said that CCI decision would provide a big relief to farmers in Vidarbha and Marathwada regions. Currently, Maharashtra State Co-operative Cotton Growers Marketing Federation is the sole agent working under CCI, and has opened 78-80 centres for purchasing cotton in these regions. “I discussed the issue with CCI Managing Director D K Mishra, and he assured to start CCI’s cotton procurement centres immediately,” Gadkari said.

Gadkari met CCI officials against the backdrop of cotton growers ending their lives as cotton prices have gone below Minimum Support Price (MSP) in open market. Once CCI also starts cotton procurement centres, farmers will get big relief as they will get assured MSP for cotton, he added. He also discussed the issue with Chandrakantdada Patil, Maharashtra Co-operation Minister, and asked him to start cotton purchase immediately.

Gadkari reiterated before the reporters that the Government would soon start Dry Port at Sindi in Wardha district, and cotton from Vidarbha region will be exported directly to other countries. Dry port is being established to cut down transportation cost of cotton. Cotton export also will help farmers get better price to the commodity, he added.

The Union Minister appealed to cotton-growers to start household weaving with the help of solar charkha. A proposal for distributing one lakh charkhas is pending with Central Government, due to certain reservations of Khadi and Village Industries Corporation. If the Government is successful in distributing charkhas to villages, employment generation will get a boost in villages. Wardha and Yavatmal districts will soon have Special Economic Zones (SEZs) for cotton and textile, he added.

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With 6 more ministers in cabinet, power centre shifts to Vidarbha

The most important feature of the first expansion of State Government led by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is that of a total 20 ministers who sworn-in on Friday, as many as six are from Vid... Read More
The most important feature of the first expansion of State Government led by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is that of a total 20 ministers who sworn-in on Friday, as many as six are from Vidarbha. It is being seen as a reward to the region that elected BJP candidates from as many as 44 out of total 62 seats, thus contributing immensely to BJP’s coming to power in Maharashtra.

Another interesting feature is that after several decades, the power centre has shifted to Vidarbha in a real sense. Devendra Fadnavis, who hails from Nagpur, is Chief Minister and holds important portfolios like Home and Urban Development. Sudhir Mungantiwar, who hails from Chandrapur district, has got two more important portfolios of Finance and Forest.

In the expansion effected on Friday, another MLA from Nagpur district Chandrashekhar Bawankule has been given the significant portfolio of Energy. MLA from Bhandara district Rajkumar Badole is likely to be given Social Justice Department. All of these are pretty important portfolios financially, socially, and politically. After a long gap, Vidarbha has got such a prominence in State Cabinet.

As Fadnavis and Mungantiwar were already sworn-in as ministers, the induction of six new ministers on Friday has raised the number of ministers from Vidarbha region to eight. Of the six ministers inducted on Friday, five are from BJP and one from Shiv Sena. While expanding the cabinet, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has struck a fine social and regional balance.

Shiv Sena, however, gave only one ministerial berth to Vidarbha in Digras MLA Sanjay Rathod, as it could win only four seats in the region. Rathod is Yavatmal district president of Shiv Sena and is a third-term MLA from Digras. The Banjara leader had defeated MPCC chief Manikrao Thakre in 2004 Assembly polls.

As far as BJP is concerned, it has given opportunity to Chandrashekhar Bawankule, third-time MLA from Kamptee in Nagpur district. He started his political career from Panchayat Samiti and rose to Zilla Parishad, and holds quite an influence in rural politics of Nagpur district. He is a former President of Nagpur rural unit of BJP, and currently State General Secretary. He is known for having sharp knowledge of budgetary allocations in various sectors, and is well familiarised with power sector.

Rajkumar Badole from BJP is known as a staunch supporter of Union Surface Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari. He is a second-term MLA from Arjuni Morgaon in Bhandara district. He worked with Water Resources Department before joining politics. He is likely to get the portfolio of Social Justice as Cabinet minister.

BJP has inducted two MLCs from Amravati and Akola districts in the cabinet as Ministers of State. Of these, Pravin Potey (Amravati) is a supporter of Union Minister Nitin Gadkari. He is a builder and got elected to Legislative Council in 2012. He runs P R Education Society. Dr Ranjit Patil (Akola) defeated stalwart B T Deshmukh from Amravati Division Teachers’ Constituency and got elected to Legislative Council. His father Vitthalrao Patil also was MLC from Akola-Washim-Buldhana local authorities’ constituency. However, representation to two MLCs from Amravati Division in cabinet, has left the elected MLAs quite unhappy.

Another interesting induction is that of 28-years-old Raje Ambarish Rao Atram, the first-time MLA from Aheri constituency in Gadchiroli district. He is grandson of late Raje Vishveshwarrao Atram, who was MP and President of Nag Vidarbha Andolan Samiti; and son of two-term MLA Satyawanrao Atram. A descendant of Aheri’s royal family, he was a student of Business Law in UK’s Birmingham.

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Nirbhaya case in Nagpur: 21-year-old teacher gangraped

A 21-year-old teacher with a city school was gang raped by five youth after being abducted from Kapsi bridge on old Kamptee road under the jurisdiction of Kalamna police station. According to t... Read More
A 21-year-old teacher with a city school was gang raped by five youth after being abducted from Kapsi bridge on old Kamptee road under the jurisdiction of Kalamna police station. According to the victim, the youth posed as cops when they stopped them, she and her boyfriend, who were heading towards Kapsi. The incident occurred on Monday night and the incident as narrated by the victim borders on the infamous Nirbhaya case that had rocked New Delhi.

The accused had blind folded the girl after abducting her and moved to a dense wooded area to commit the heinous crime. The police are still trying to figure out the names of accused persons involved in the dastardly act. The victim girl was with her boyfriend when they were accosted by the five youth. The youths identified themselves and cops and asked what the two were doing during the night time. After having subjugated the two, the accused youth asked the girl and her boyfriend to accompany them for further investigations. The five unidentified persons were reportedly in 20-40 years age group and the incident police said occurred between 8 to 9.30 pm.

Though the victim had asked youth for their identity cards, the accused browbeat her and caught hold of the boyfriend. The girl attempt to fight back failed as she was quickly overpowered and immediately blindfolded. The youth was also blind folded and he and the girl were gagged to ensure they do not call for help. The road at that time was sparsely populated and after going some distance the girl's boyfriend was pushed down on the road while the five youth fled with the victim. The girl was taken to an isolated spot along the highway where the five youth raped her at knife point.

The youth brutalised the girl turn by turn and later deserted her. She was also issued life threats if the matter was reported to police. The girl however managed to reach home and reported the case to police.

Police have registered an offence under secs. 376(D), 367, 363, 506 (B), 170 of IPC. A senior police officer informed that special teams of police station and Crime Branch are working overtime to get headway and nab the culprits.

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Businessman shot at near CM’s Dharampeth residence

A Chandrapur based businessman was shot at and injured seriously on Tuesday afternoon at Dharampeth, leaving the city police machinery red faced. The shooting spot, the lane behind Sudama Theatre... Read More
A Chandrapur based businessman was shot at and injured seriously on Tuesday afternoon at Dharampeth, leaving the city police machinery red faced. The shooting spot, the lane behind Sudama Theatre, is in close viccinity of Dharampeth residence of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, who incidentally was in city till noon.

The businessman is identified by police as Sagir alias Tunnu Siddiqui (28), who police said is known history sheeter from Ghughus. Shagir was driving the luxury sedan, Audi Q5, when he was hit by the single bullet fired from German Mauser, a 9mm caliber sophisticated pistol. He was accompanied by three other friends, all residents of city, whom police are now grilling to reconstruct the firing incident. The trio have been detained till further investigations as cops are trying to figure out the purpose of Shagir's visit to city and his other ventures.

The spot behind Sudama is about 500 metres from CM's residence and expectedly triggered panic in security establishment as well as society in general as the area is a mix of business hub cum residential zone. As the bullet pierced through Shagir's neck he lost control of steering and the car rammed into compound wall of Adv. Sahil Bhangde's house.

Initially there was much confusion and even police thought it was a case of rash driving that resulted in the mishap. Only when police were alerted by hospital authorities, Shagir’s was rushed to Wockhardt Hospital at Shankar Nagar by his three friends, the full impact of the incident dawned upon cops. And then all top brass of police made a dash to the spot to figure out the incident and by afternoon the city was agog with reports of firing near CM’s residence.

The three youth with Shagir at time of the incident are identified as Shakti Manpia, a resident of Pandhrabodi, Zakir Khan and Ashish Parocha. The cops are probing the incident from all angles given the high stakes involved in it.

The incident police said occurred at around 1.30 pm. Shagir and his friends were earlier seated in a restaurant at Coffee House Square with Adv Mithil Kolte and latter's clients Om Thakur and Vikram Murare discussing a court matter. Adv Bhangde told 'The Hitavada' that he was at his office-cum-home when he was jolted in his chair in aftermath of car's crashing into the wall compound. The police later said Shagir's accidentally pushed the car's accelerator causing it to gather top speed in matter of seconds just before the crash.

The lawyer said three youths emerged from the car and opened door towards driver side. One of the youth was in tears that time and fervently inquiring ‘kya ho gaya mere bhai ko’ (What happened with my brother) after the drive side of car’s door was opened. One of the youth stopped a passing WagonR car (MH-31/DK-3101) while other youth took out cash from the car and stuffed it in his pocket. They bundled Shagir in the WagonR car and zoomed to Wockhardt Hospital before Adv. Bhangade could figure out further as to what had happened.

Before crashing into wall of the house, the car rammed into a moped (MH-40/AB-1048) that was parked in front of the house, the lawyer stated further. Adv Bhangde said he promptly informed Police Control Room about the incident. Senior police officers including Joint Commissioner of Police (Jt. CP) Anup Kumar Singh, Additional Commissioner of Police (Addl. CP) Deepak Pandey, DCP Zone I Abhinash Kumar and DCP Zone II Ishu Shindhu visited the spot in view of its proximity to CM's residence.

Commissioner of Police K K Pathak too later inspected the crime spot and discussed the line of probe with his officials.

A doctor meanwhile has informed that the bullet though did not damage Shagir's spinal cord but he continues to be in critical condition.

Sitabuldi police have registered the case under sections 307 and 34 of Indian Penal Code read with sec. 3/25 of Arms Act. Further investigations are on.

Injured Siddiqui is a history -sheeter

Shagir Siddiqui is a known history -sheeter of Ghuggus, a coal mining area of Chandrapur district. According to police, cases of attempt to murder and serious assault are registered against the businessman with Ghuggus police station. After police learnt about criminal past of Shagir they are closely examining the statements of youth.

The sources disclosed that police also learnt that Shagir was recently booked on charges of extortion on a complaint lodged by a Khaparkheda based businessman who recently started coal transport operations from Ghughus. Shagir too was involved in coal transport and had amassed wealth to tune of crores of rupees in very short period of time.

Ghughus mine area comes under Western Coalfields Ltd. and it has dubious distinction of being a hot bed of coal mafia. In the past the rivalry between different factions led to brutal killing of an office bearer of then ruling National Congress Party (NCP) in full public view.

The preliminary investigations by police revealed that Shagir and other three youth entered Vrundavan Restaurant, located at Coffee House Square, sometimes after 12 noon. That Shagir could easily carry a sophisticated firearm that too when Chief Minister was in close proximity is sure to raise eyebrows in the security establishment. In light of today's incident, in future some extra security measures might come into force in Dharampeth area, especially during Chief Minister's visit to city.

The quartet led by Shagir exited from the restaurant after being there for nearly 20 to 30 minutes, the sources said and claimed police have got the CCTV footage from the restaurant. It is also learnt that the youth are trying to hoodwink the police by claiming that Shagir was fired upon from outside as car's door was open that time they further claimed.

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Fadnavis meets Bhaiyyaji Joshi

Dodging the media glare, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis met Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) Sarsanghchalak Bhaiyyaji Joshi, at an undisclosed place in the city on Tuesday morning.

Sou... Read More
Dodging the media glare, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis met Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) Sarsanghchalak Bhaiyyaji Joshi, at an undisclosed place in the city on Tuesday morning.

Sources claimed that they met at an undisclosed place and later the Chief Minister left for New Delhi by a flight. Fadnavis reached Nagpur on Tuesday morning, and went straight to his Dharampeth residence. After some time, sources said, he left home in a private vehicle to meet Bhaiyyaji Joshi. He travelled in a private vehicle to avoid media glare. However, it was not revealed where Fadnavis and Joshi met. What did they discuss also could not be known. Police and party workers denied any meeting between Chief Minister and Joshi.

The official vehicle of Chief Minister was stationary for almost two hours in front of his Dharampeth residence. After meeting Joshi, Chief Minister reached his home. Later, in official vehicle, he went to the airport to fly to New Delhi. RSS sources also did not confirm meeting between Fadnavis and Joshi. Earlier, it was decided that all Maharashtra cabinet Ministers would come to the city and Bhaiyyaji Joshi would address them. But, the programme was cancelled later. It may be mentioned that Tuesday's was the first meeting between Fadnavis and Joshi, since BJP formed the Government in Maharashtra. Meanwhile, after reaching Nagpur Chief Minister Fadnavis interacted briefly with media and said, “Talks with Shiv Sena are in the last phase, and final decision will be taken in a day or two.”

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‘Insurgency menace can only be halted by political, social, economic thrust’

“The menace of Maoists and other insurgents can be brought to an end only by a politically-led, economy-based, and socially inclusive policy of the State, supported by the Government at the ... Read More
“The menace of Maoists and other insurgents can be brought to an end only by a politically-led, economy-based, and socially inclusive policy of the State, supported by the Government at the Centre," observed Lt Gen (Retd) V R Raghavan PVSM UYSM AVSM and former Director General of Military Operations (DGMO) in an exclusive chat with 'The Hitavada' on Tuesday.

Commissioned in the Punjab Regiment, Lt Gen Raghavan is a veteran who has seen action in 1965 and 1971 operations. He was General Officer Commanding, Siachin Glacier; and has authored various books including 'Siachen: Conflict Without End', which is considered a definitive work on the subject. One of the leading strategic thinkers of India, Lt Gen Raghavan was involved closely in formulation of Sino-Indian accord on maintaining peace on the borders and in the series of negotiations with Pakistan on Siachen dispute. Lt Gen Raghavan spoke at length in his leisurely yet convincing style on many issues, during his visit to 'The Hitavada' on Tuesday. Referring to the latest Maoist attack in which 14 CRPF men were killed in adjoining state of Chhattisgarh, Lt Gen Raghavan said that political-criminal nexus and wanton exploitation of tribals had left the people with a feeling of insecurity. "Military action in this direction may just cap the conflict, but the real long-term solution lies in dealing with the issue economically, politically, and socially, by winning over the confidence of the people," he observed.

The highly decorated officer expressed his happiness over young leadership at the Centre, in Maharashtra, and strife-torn states. We are well prepared. Any proactive measure will have strategic setback for both and because of India’s dominance. As a result the long Proxy war in J & K is petering out. More over no nation wants a full scale war due to possession of Nuclear Weapons and tremendous International pressure felt Gen Raghavan. He spoke of how the Indian Government, after the attack on Parliament, was softened due to mounting International Pressure. “Our strategy and priority therefore remains economic growth, poverty removal and close strategic partnership with all major powers.

Speaking about China, he observed that it was not in our interest to compete with China in terms of number of Aeroplanes, tanks, Ships. “We must have the capability to raise the cost of conflict for such nations. Our infrastructure needs improvement in Border areas, like raising Mountain Division, preparing more airfields for Fighter Aircraft to operate. He spoke on the dominance of China in South China Sea, South Korea, Japan, Philipines .

“Their growth in activity and influence around India also is real and worth tasking note of, but at the same time it remains for certain that no country will allow China to expand, that can adversely affect Sea Links of communication as nations can also retaliate to choke China’s oil supplies” he averred. Gen Raghavan expressed his appreciation on the spread of Indian Navy’s foot print in the neighbourhood from Japan to the Mediterranean, which is a re assuring sign. Combined Naval exercises with Super powers and other countries has given further fillip to the dominance and growing strategic partnership with countries” he ascertained.

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I-T raid on Radha Madhav Developers, Rajesh Steel & Wire

IN A major exercise, the Income-Tax Department, on Tuesday, conducted search and seizure operations on two groups -- Radha Madhav Developers and Rajesh Steel and Wire Industries -- creating flutt... Read More
IN A major exercise, the Income-Tax Department, on Tuesday, conducted search and seizure operations on two groups -- Radha Madhav Developers and Rajesh Steel and Wire Industries -- creating flutter among trade circles. Radha Madhav Developers is coming up with 'Vrindavan', a modern township in Jamtha, near VCA Stadium, Wardha Road, Nagpur.

Sources said that at around 8 am, more than 50 officials of the Income-Tax Department, Nagpur, descended on 15 business and residential premises of Sanjay Gaurishankar Agrawal (Chotu Agrawal) and Rajesh Agrawal, both partners in Radha Madhav Developers and Suresh Bajoriya, Director of Rajesh Steel and Wire Industries and the site office of Vrindavan township at Jamtha. Radha Madhav Developers' office is located at 125, Abhyankar Road, Sitabuldi and Rajesh Steel and Wire Industries' office on Ghat Road. The Income-Tax Department confiscated all the incriminating documents from the possession of both the groups and bank lockers were sealed. The officials may lay their hands on ample unaccounted cash and valuables from both the groups. Looking at the business volume of the groups, the investigation is likely to continue for another two days.

Rajesh Agrawal had sold Rajesh Steel and Wire Industries to Suresh Agrawal after he suffered losses in the business. He went to Dubai and established his own enterprises. Chotu Agrawal, who was one of the leading bookies in the cricket world till 2006, too, had amassed wealth from the global world, sources disclosed. Sources said that both the partners purchased 111 acres of land at Jamtha and parked huge amount of money in the Vrindavan township. The township has 1 BHK-4 BHK apartments, 1 BHK-2 BHK row-houses, 4 BHK-6 BHK bungalows and 3 BHK-4 BHK duplexes. It boasts of club house, temple, hospital, CBSE school/college, community hall and multiplex and other recreational facilities such as tennis and basketball court, a gymnasium, garden and children's playing area.

The huge investment made by both the partners in the township and not mentioned in the books might be one of the reasons which prompted the Income-Tax Department to conduct searches on the Radha Madhav Developers group, sources said. A broker of the Radha Madhav Developers, who used to approach prospective customers for purchasing dwelling units in the modern Vrindavan township, also came under the lens of the Income-Tax Department.

The Income-Tax Department is keeping a close eye on the money brought from countries where there is no Income-Tax. These countries are Monaco, Kuwait, Bermuda, UAE, Andorra, British Virginia Islands, Qatar, Bahamas, Oman, Brunei, Cayman Islands, Anguilla, Maldives, Turks and Caicos, and Vanuatu.

Rajesh Steel and Wire Industries is a well-known supplier of an exceptional range of products used in construction and building applications. The range of products include mild steel products, TMT bars, etc. The company specifically trades in products of the reputed brands and all its products comply with the ISI standards.

During the course of assessment, the Income-Tax Department had discovered a huge tax evasion in Rajesh Steel and Wire Industries. An accountant, who was also playing an advisory role in the company, also came under the scanner of the Income-Tax Department.

Rumour millers were telling several reputed names of companies and builders in the city, who too were facing music from the Income-Tax Department. However, they were proved wrong in the evening. Nagpur, although famous for oranges, also figured in the list of tax-evaders as several people from various segments like builders, doctors, steel traders, coal dealers, etc., were pulled up by the Income-Tax Department.

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State Govt to issue White Paper on debt burden: Mungantiwar

“We have inherited empty coffers and a huge debt burden of Rs 2,36,000 crore from previous Government led by Congress. Every day, State has to pay Rs 63 crore as interest on the debt. There was... Read More
“We have inherited empty coffers and a huge debt burden of Rs 2,36,000 crore from previous Government led by Congress. Every day, State has to pay Rs 63 crore as interest on the debt. There was criminal judgement on part of Congress-led Government as far as utilising the debt was concerned. Hence, we have decided to bring out a White Paper on debt burden,” said Sudhir Mungantiwar, Finance and Forest Minister of Maharashtra.

How much of employment was created from the money spent out of such a huge debt burden, how many projects were completed, whether the State created capital assets that resulted in increase in revenue, etc are the points of assessment for the new Government, said Mungantiwar. Stating that obtaining debt was not a bad thing, but alleged that the previous Government did not utilise the debt for productive purposes. He was interacting with reporters at ‘Meet the Press’ programme organised by Nagpur Union of Working Journalists (NUWJ) and Tilak Patrakar Bhavan Trust (TPBT) at Patrakar Bhavan here on Tuesday evening. Elaborating further, Mungantiwar said that department-wise assessment of debt obtained, utilised, assets created etc was in progress. “The assessment will be completed by March,” he said, hinting that the White Paper will come out during budget session of State Legislature. The exercise has been taken up, as there was utter lack of financial planning during erstwhile Congress-NCP Government, he added.

Already, he said, BJP Government has initiated certain steps towards restoring fiscal discipline. These include curbing the practice of spending more than 15 per cent of allocation in March (end of financial year), department-wise assessment of requirement of funds, etc. Various departments have 1,250 schemes.

Besides, said Finance Minister, he would visit every district headquarter in the State in January 2015 to know their requirements and set developmental priorities for the Government. “Based on this realistic assessment, I will be presenting the budget for the year 2015-16. Our objective is to correct the mistakes committed by Congress,” he said. The priorities will be set vis-a-vis State’s resources for the next five years. If needed, BJP Government also will avail debt but emphasise on its proper and effective utilisation on productive purposes. Care will be taken to ensure that Five Year Plan objectives are reflected in the budget.

Replying to a question, Finance Minister said that certain regions remained developmentally backward due to neglect. BJP Government will focus on balanced development of all regions, and make a special provision for developmentally backward regions. Asked about report of Kelkar Committee on balanced development of various regions, Mungantiwar said that the report would be tabled during winter session of State Legislature scheduled to commence from Monday in the city. He hinted at a special plan for Naxal-affected areas, and also considering human development index (HDI) as basis for development.

On the promise of taking action against the corrupt in multi-crore irrigation scam, Mungantiwar said that the BJP Government wanted to give a transparent and people-oriented governance to the citizens. For the purpose, it was bringing in Right to Service Bill to ensure that every citizen got services in prescribed time-frame. This will reduce corruption, he observed. Besides, the Government was chalking out plan to complete at least half of 450 irrigation projects in five years as part of the long-term measures to provide relief to farmers who were committing suicides, he added.

Pradip Maitra, President of TPBT; Anupam Soni, Secretary of NUWJ; Ramshankar Pandey; Archana Dehankar, former Mayor; Shrikant Deshpande, Sanjay Fanje also shared the dais during ‘Meet the Press’ programme.

Rs 22,000 cr unspent with some deptts: Mungantiwar

Citing an example of financial mismanagement during the erstwhile Congress-NCP Government, Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar said that a huge tax revenue was unrealised. Besides, an amount of Rs 22,000 crore was unspent with some departments. However, he refused to disclose the departments. He said, the erstwhile Government made allocations but the departments did not utilise it.

‘BJP Govt firm on scrapping LBT’

Reiterating the BJP Government’s commitment to scrapping Local Body Tax (LBT), Mungantiwar said that a particular date for this could not be announced as finer points about possible alternatives were being worked out.

Stating that there was no difference of opinion in the Cabinet over the issue, the Finance Minister said that the State was waiting for Goods and Service Tax (GST) notification due to be issued this month by the Central Government. “Without knowing the provisions in the notification, and status of State Government in municipal finances, how can we scrap LBT or implement any new alternative? Waiting for some time does not mean that we will not be scrapping LBT,” he said.

Further, Mungantiwar explained, the Government wanted to zero in on an alternative would be acceptable to traders, and also to ensure that the autonomy of municipal corporations was not compromised. Besides, the Government would have to give a thought to the fact that the citizens were not burdened with tax. “A permanent tax system will have to be evolved and the Government is taking time for that. But, one thing is sure that LBT will be scrapped soon,” he observed.

‘BJP wants Shiv Sena to come along’

Against the backdrop of talks between BJP and Shiv Sena over the latter’s joining the Government, Sudhir Mungantiwar said that BJP was always in favour of Shiv Sena joining the Government. However, he refused to disclose the ‘seat-sharing formula’ for ministries, saying that immature disclosure would create hurdles in the smooth proceedings of talks.

State clears path for law banning cow slaughter

Replying to a question, Forest Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar said that the BJP Government had cleared the path for passage of a law banning cow slaughter in Maharashtra. The Bill was cleared in 1995 during the previous BJP-Sena Government’s tenure. However, he said, since then the Bill was awaiting the assent of the President of India as there were certain issues with the Union Home Ministry during the Congress’ rule in past 15 years. “Now, we have conveyed our consent for passage of the Bill and the law will soon be a reality,” he said. Asked about a Bill on religious freedom that he had tabled as Opposition MLA a few years ago, he said that the issue would be discussed at a later stage.

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‘Ban entry of political leaders in villages’

Shetkari Sanghatna founder Sharad Joshi on Sunday asked farmers to ban entry of politicians in their villages till they address their problems and work out a solution for them. Stop the leaders... Read More
Shetkari Sanghatna founder Sharad Joshi on Sunday asked farmers to ban entry of politicians in their villages till they address their problems and work out a solution for them. Stop the leaders irrespective of political affiliation and question them about their stance about the issue of fair price for their crops and issues related to year-round irrigation for farms. Addressing a meeting of farmers agitating in front of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’ residence in city, Joshi said, the issue is now critical and farmers should not backout and continue building pressure.

Earlier, the farmers’ morcha was stopped by city police in front of G S College of Commerce and Economics on Amravati Road on Sunday. Former MLA Wamanrao Chatap said that the farmers are demanding sufficient Minimum Support Price (MSP) for cotton, soyabean and paddy, which was promised by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) when they were in Opposition in State. Fadnavis himself was at forefront of demanding Rs 6,000 MSP for Cotton and now that he is Chief Minister, the farmers have just got Rs 4,050 MSP for cotton.

Farmer leader Ram Nevale said, as Opposition party, BJP had given plenty of promises to farmers and now it needs to keep its words. “UPA government had implemented two recommendations of Rangarajan Committee and now BJP Government’s turn to implement rest of the recommendations.

Others including Saroj Kashikar, Sheila Deshpande, Nanda Parate, Anant Deshpande, Gunvant Patil, Dr Dinesh Sharma, Shivajirao Shinde, former State DGP Prabir Chakravorty and others also addressed the meeting. Joint Commissioner of Police Anup Kumar Singh and Additional Commissioner of Police Deepak Pandey supervised the police bandobast.

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‘More than 50 per cent people in India unaware about HIV status’

Massive success has been achieved in the fight against HIV, still more than 50 per cent of people in India are not aware of HIV status. Ahead of the World Aids Day on December 1, Deputy Directo... Read More
Massive success has been achieved in the fight against HIV, still more than 50 per cent of people in India are not aware of HIV status. Ahead of the World Aids Day on December 1, Deputy Director General, National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) Dr Sunil Khaparde shared this information with The Hitavada.

Dr Khaparde said, Government of India is working towards elimination of parent to child transmission of HIV in India. About 7% of transmissions take place from mother to child. And the rate has reduced now. He said, the success has come due to concerted efforts through civil society movements, supported by national and international commitments and scientific research.

All pregnant ladies should be screened for HIV. Unfortunately, only 20-30 per cent of such woman actually opt for the test. Non-availability of testing facility, especially at PHC level, is another hurdle in further reducing the rate, he informed. “Massive gains have been achieved in fight against HIV. We now have more than 10 million people on HIV treatment globally. Efforts continue and are being accelerated to achieve the ambitious target of ending AIDS by 2030,” adds Dr Khparde.

There are 29 million annual pregnancies and 9 million women come under Prevention of Parent to Child Transmission (PPTCT). The major challenge is bridging the gap between estimated pregnant woman and actual coverage for HIV testing.

According to NACO, an estimated 2.31 million are infected with HIV in India (88.7% in 15-49 age group, 7.5% in 50+, and 3.5% in below-15). The prevalence rate of HIV/AIDS in the country is 0.27%. Women account for about 40% of the patients.

The overall adult HIV prevalence (HSS 2012-13) in Maharashtra has declined to 0.40 %.

HIV Sentinel Surveillance (HSS) to find ANC HIV prevalence shows that it has declined from 1.15 in 2003 to 0.40 in 2012-13. Under MSACS, out of an annual target of 18,75,655 ANC testing for the year 2014-15, tests have been conducted on 10,73,200 ANC mothers (57.21%) from April to October 2014, of whom 858 were found to be positive and are on the PPTCT programme with positively rate 0.07%.

The rate of HIV among migrants and truckers is still high. “In Maharashtra, 1% of migrant and trucker population is HIV positive, which is high when compared to other high risk groups. Hence, this year, we are focusing on migrants and truckers to bring down the rate among this group. We have managed to increase the coverage 12-fold in a decade. The HIV epidemic in our region is concentrated among populations most vulnerable to HIV: men who have sex with men, transgender people, people who inject drugs, sex workers, people in prisons and other closed settings. Although we have been successful in scaling up the health sector response for the vulnerable populations, more needs to be done,” says Dr Khaparde.

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Plea against Sunil Kedar’s election fails

Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande at the High Court have dismissed the petition file by two businessmen from Saoner challenging election of Sunil Kedar. The petition was place bef... Read More
Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande at the High Court have dismissed the petition file by two businessmen from Saoner challenging election of Sunil Kedar. The petition was place before the court in motion-hearing.

Observing that the writ petition filed by two businessmen from Saoner tehsil - Kishor S Chaudhari and Ujjwalkumar W Bagade - cannot be granted any relief against Sunil Kedar, who has won in Assembly elections held on October 15 last from Saoner seat as Congress candidate because several disputed facts are part of this petition and the petitioners remedy lie in election petition.

The main ground on which the petitioners wanted the election of Kedar to be declared null and void, has been that he has submitted “false information” in his nomination form and deliberately suppressed material facts. The petitioners have contended that the respondent-election officials including the Chief Election Commissioner of India, V S Sampath failed to initiate action and allowed Kedar to contest election. In support of their allegation of suppression of material facts by Kedar in his affidavit, the petitioners have referred to 41 objections raised by them with 25 documents in support.

The petitioners have also asserted that Kedar’s conduct in regard to submitting false information and suppression of facts in the affidavit annexed to his nomination form filed on September 29, 2014 has been in breach of Sections 33, 33-A and 33-B of the Representation of People Act, 1951. Advocate Gajendra Saoji appeared for the petitioners. AGP T A Mirza represented State.

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‘Replies to starred questions should reach within stipulated time’

The winter session of Maharashtra State Legislature will start from December 8. In this backdrop, the Government has come out with a circular of guidelines with instructions to handle the work re... Read More
The winter session of Maharashtra State Legislature will start from December 8. In this backdrop, the Government has come out with a circular of guidelines with instructions to handle the work related to session with priority.

The circular pointed out that to most of the starred questions, answers are not send by the respective departments in time. Not finding the answers in the printed book of question-answer, members express unhappiness. In the year 2010, directions were given to such departments seeking clarifications.

The copies of the answers to the questions should be sent by the departments within stipulated time to State Legislature Secretariat, the circular stated. Call attention motion, starred question, resolution or subject of the proposal is sent to the various departments. In some cases they are not related to that departments so the departments should send the same to related departments.

Minister or State Ministers sometimes make request that due to receipt of call attention motion a day before, the reply could not be prepared. So, such motion should be taken the next day. Now, such requests will not be entertained. It will be mandatory for the ministers to prepare the reply of the motions and allow it the same day. Such orders were issued by Speaker in budget session of 2011.

Annual reports should be submitted within stipulated time to state legislature. The cognisance of the documents is taken seriously in the meetings of ad hoc committee so all the respective departments should put the reports of various boards, corporations, activities, autonomous bodies. It should be done on priority basis. If any delay occurs then the reasons should be submitted to State Legislature Secretariat.

On government bills, the circular stated that, the approval of these bills after the discussion is an important part. Secondly, ministers are expected to give satisfactory answers to the issues raised by the members on the bills. The secretaries related to those departments should prepare proper comment and the copy of the same should be sent to Chief Minister Secretariat. Chief Secy’s order of 2000 still relevant In the year 2000, before start of the session, the then Chief Secretary Anil Bongirwar had issued certain observations. Then also, the delay was registered by the Ministers regarding the replies to starred questions. Taking a note of this, Bongirwar had said that after giving instruction, the delay was registered which was unpardonable. The Deputy Secretary of the related departments responsible for the delay in answering the question should be given written warning. Minor punishment should be given to Additional Secretary and for that necessary departmental enquiry should be started, the desk officer should be suspended. Every day at 4 pm, Principal Secretary should convene a meeting. The meeting should discuss the questions, their answers. The meeting will take a final call about it.

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e-Mutation to be made mandatory in Maharashtra from January 1

Taking another key strategic decision, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has issued instructions to Revenue Department and Settlement Commissioner to implement e-Mutation from January 1, 2015. M... Read More
Taking another key strategic decision, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has issued instructions to Revenue Department and Settlement Commissioner to implement e-Mutation from January 1, 2015. Maharashtra Government has decided to stop manual mutation in State from December 31, 2014. Chief Minister has set the dead line for issuance of digital certificate in the state. With this, the 7/12 abstract record will not be available manually from April 1, 2015.

The government has declared to observe year 2015 as - Year of Digitised and Time-bound Services.

Recently, Chief Minister took a meeting to review Digital India campaign and directed the officers concerned to ensure a task force on the e-Governance is formed which will include stake-holders from industry and government. This task force will act as a think-tank and meet periodically to discuss on various aspects of IT, e-Governance and the industry and advice the government on the measures to be taken.

Waiting for the updating of the 7/12 abstract records should not be an excuse for delay in starting the e-Mutation, said Fadnavis. He also said, the department should start digitisation process for remaining records so that from April 1, 2015, it can be guaranteed that 7/12 print out from the website will be no different from actual record with Talathi.

Chief Minister instructed the officers concerned to draft new State IT/ITeS policy at the earliest by December 31, 2014 and invite suggestions on the policy by putting the draft in public domain. The final policy will be submitted to cabinet for approval. The government has decided to issue e-Challan in Navi Mumbai and Thane from January 1,2015 and in the entire state, from July 1, 2105.

Similarly, the government will integrate all the UID schemes into scholarships, LPG, PDS, Pensions, NREGA and Prisoners data. This has been done as per the directions of Prime Minister Office (PMO) at the earliest by December 31.

Treasury Department will ensure that all salary bills from December onwards should be on computerised forms. The deadline set for computerised salary is March 2015.

Education Department will pay their bill in this form only. All the departments should link UID number with salary bills to weed out any duplicates. The Education Department will develop digital content to reduce the school bag burden for the kids. The basic scheme will be developed by December 31 of this month. The Chief Minister desired to develop concept like gamification of the content to ensure learning while playing and Massive Open Online Courses be encouraged to make education more effective and reachable. The Government has decided to roll out eKYC based system of rental agreements across that the state at a fast pace. The Chief Minister directed to start atleast 50 per cent rental agreements by January 31, 2015 across state without applicants coming out physically to Government offices. To remove backlog of SC/ST recruitments and to fast track the recruitment process, the online roster sofware should be rolled out quickly by GAD across the state. This system will start in Mantralaya from January 1 and in other parts of the state from April 1, 2015.

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Ban on govt vehicles moving out of city during winter session

For the first time in the history of Maharashtra Legislature, the State Government has imposed ban on movement of government vehicles of all Ministers, Ministers of State, and top babus includi... Read More
For the first time in the history of Maharashtra Legislature, the State Government has imposed ban on movement of government vehicles of all Ministers, Ministers of State, and top babus including officers of Legislature and Mantralaya out of Nagpur city during winter session. Devendra Fadnavis-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Government has taken the courageous decision to make winter session more business-oriented rather than ‘picnic’ session.

Earlier, ministers, ministers of state and officers used to move out of the city in their respective government vehicles, especially on weekends, during winter session rather than devoting time to the session’s proceedings for welfare of the state. Often, on every Saturdays, ministers, MoS and top bureaucrats used to visit nearby tourist spots including Tadoba, Chikhaldara, Pench, Karmaziri and even Kanha, while some used to leave for Mumbai for two days rather than staying back in city. General Administration Department (GAD) of Maharashtra Government has issued directions for using vehicles during winter session. These vehicles were acquired by Divisional Commissioner office for winter session. As per directions, government vehicles would not move outside city limits during winter session. If in case, any officer or office-bearer wants to go out of the city limits, then he will have to seek prior permission from the Divisional Commissioner Office with reason for the same.

The official vehicle should not run beyond 80 kms per day, the notification clarified. Similarly, the government has also banned use of such vehicles for private purpose. If any person or such vehicle is engaged in private work, then the government will charge Rs 8 per kms to the user. For detention of the vehicle, the government will charge minimum Rs 3 to maximum Rs 30 per hour.

This diktat of the new government may put check on use of official/government vehicles for private use as well as for visits out of the city limits. As Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is from Nagpur, he may stay in the city for the complete session. Therefore, all the ministers and officers will be bound to stay in city to assist CM in expediting pending projects.

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Rati opened her eyes, claim kin

Rati Tripathi, who was thrown off a moving train on November 19, opened her eyes for the first time after the incident on Sunday morning. According to information, family members informed Home Mi... Read More
Rati Tripathi, who was thrown off a moving train on November 19, opened her eyes for the first time after the incident on Sunday morning. According to information, family members informed Home Minister Babulal Gaur that Rati had opened her eyes on Sunday morning. It is worth mentioning that Rati slipped into coma after delay of around 18 hours in getting proper treatment. Rati had received injuries on her head and nose. She had internal swelling in head. “Rati has not regained consciousness yet, family has reported to us that she had opened her eyes today early morning. Her condition has improved further and swelling inside her head has decreased but she is still in coma,” Dr Nitin Garg, Neurosurgeon, Bansal Hospital told ‘The Hitavada’ on phone. Home and Jail Minister Babulal Gaur visited Bansal Hospital here for the second time to enquire about health of Rati Tripathi on Sunday. Gaur was informed that Tripathi’s condition is improving. Gaur said that he had prayed for Rati’s health during his recent visit to Mahakal in Ujjain.

Rati Tripathi, who works in a Delhi-based IIT-JEE coaching institute as counsellor, was on her way to Ujjain in Malwa Express when the incident occurred on November 19. Rati’s elder brother Sanjay has business in Ujjain and presently, he and his mother were staying in Ujjain.

Meanwhile, police have not been able to solve the mystery behind the incident. Over a dozen police teams in Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh are searching for the two accused. Even after interrogating 75 persons, police are nowhere near nabbing the accused. Now, it is being expected that Rati on regaining consciousness can give vital details about accused.

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India’s first community-led museum on Bhopal gas tragedy opens tomorrow

India’s first community-led museum dedicated for victims of world’s worst industrial disaster would be opened on Tuesday. All contributors for this museum are the survivors of this poisonou... Read More
India’s first community-led museum dedicated for victims of world’s worst industrial disaster would be opened on Tuesday. All contributors for this museum are the survivors of this poisonous gas leak during the deadly night of December 2-3, 1984. Rashida Bi, a leading gas survivors’ activist while informing that the Museum would be opened on December 2, said that it was an attempt to let the people know about the fight of gas victims. It doesn’t record the horror of the events that occurred during that deadly night but would also portray the ongoing fight against injustice, she added. The main focus, while preparing this museum, remained that no chemicals was used to preserve the objects. Eco-friendly strategy has been used for the purpose. Donations from Government and corporations have also not been taken for this venture. Rama Lakshmi, a senior journalist associated with The Washington Post, is also actively involved in this venture. Earlier, the trust was planning to start this venture in a travel bus which would carry across the country giving awareness about gas victims’ ongoing struggle. But unfortunately because of funds’ shortage, it was not started then. On the occasion of gas tragedy 30th anniversary this would be a way to let the world know closely about the horrific incidence.

The Remember Bhopal Museum will be opened at Senior HIG 22, Housing Board Colony at Berasia Road. She, however, said that details about the launching of the museum would be provided later. The museum is placed in a rented room managed by the trust. Along with trust, other organisations have also come forward to support this museum, she added. Rashida Bi said that this also highlights the urgent need to curb contamination of soil and groundwater which is still affecting the lives of locals near the factory. In a press conference earlier, the gas survivors’ associations have said that we have written to the office of Chief Secretary of Madhya Pradesh on February 4 and to the office of Chief Minister on July 30, 2014 urging the Madhya Pradesh Government to immediately intervene in this urgent matter. She said another set of reminders were sent to all officials concerned and ministries in November but they have not heard back from anyone.

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Study on toxic waste disposal strategy lying in cold storage

There is hardly any transparency followed over the disposal of toxic waste that is stored at Union Carbide factory. The ambiguity regarding characterisation of the 350 tonne toxic waste that is... Read More
There is hardly any transparency followed over the disposal of toxic waste that is stored at Union Carbide factory. The ambiguity regarding characterisation of the 350 tonne toxic waste that is stored at the Union Carbide factory (UCIL) site is continuing. It was also demanded by the Gas Survivors’ Association that the results be shared in public domain for better transparency over the disposal of the toxic waste. An analysis of about 15 studies to assess soil and groundwater contamination in and around the UCIL site was conducted by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) last year. This was done subsequent to stakeholders’ round-table on the subject for the remediation of toxic waste. Rachna Dhingra from Bhopal Group of Information and Action said that it had been thirty years but even after the details of study were being provided to the Government authorities, the proposal was lying without any action. It has to be mentioned that this was for the first time an agreement towards Bhopal gas disposal toxic waste was considered after taking all the parameters into consideration. Earlier, Sunita Narain, Director of CSE, also had mentioned over the need to take substantial measure over toxic waste disposal so as to avoid any further contamination of soil and water. Pollution regarding the mineral fur was also discussed in detail, which is continuing to bring ailments to throat, eyes and other such problems to the locals living around the site. The action plan suggested included securing the site and SEP (Solar Evaporation Pond) area by fencing and guarding to prevent access of people, especially children, hence their exposure to toxic chemicals; stopping construction in the SEP area; and protecting annual surface water run-off from the site during monsoon. Most of these studies confirm contamination and have more convergence than divergence. The nature of contaminants found in the soil and the place from where they were found are similar in several studies. Contamination of groundwater has also been reported in most studies.” The study involve experts from scientific institutions such as NEERI, IITR, IICT, NGRI, IIT-Bombay, IIT-Kharagpur, IIT-Madras and IIT-Roorkee. Besides, regulatory bodies such as CPCB; industry including those with expertise in remediation of contaminated sites; and organisations from Bhopal were also a part of the team.

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No tiger census results even after 11 months

Eleven months have passed since the tiger census in the State, but its results are still awaited from the Wildlife Institute of India (WII), Dehradun. Tiger census was earlier conducted in 2006 a... Read More
Eleven months have passed since the tiger census in the State, but its results are still awaited from the Wildlife Institute of India (WII), Dehradun. Tiger census was earlier conducted in 2006 and 2010. In 2006, Madhya Pradesh had more than 300 tigers. It had been given Tiger State status, while in 2010 census, tiger population fell to around 250 and the Tiger State title was awarded to Karnataka due to more than 300 tigers there.

State forest officers hope of regaining Tiger State status in census 2014 and it is the reason why the State forest officers are eagerly Awaiting tiger census results. The officers many times asked WII, Dehradoon officers for the tiger census results so that the State Government, if it regains Tiger State status, would publicise it in order to promote tiger tourism. State forest officers hoped that in census conducted in January this year, number of tigers would increase.

In last tiger census, the results were declared in the month of November. It was delayed this time. Now the forest officers hope of tiger census result in December.

“The wildlife institute scientists are still scanning and compiling tiger census data collected in January and some photographs in July. It is taking time as there is obscurity in prints and long distanced photographs taken by Drone aircraft attached cameras and the date prepared by the forest employees. One more reason of delay in tiger census result was not matching data prepared by the employees manually and photographs and it is the reason why the scientists find it difficult to prepare the tiger census results. If there was any fault, other states may appeal for rescanning photographs and census data.

When contacted, Narendra Kumar, Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (PCCF), said the tiger census result was to be declared in November but it is has not yet come. The Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun officials are compiling the data. There is no indication of dates to declare tiger census, hope it will be declared in December, he said.

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‘Tod-Fod-Jod’, a creative way to polish skills of young technicians

To hone the skills of undergraduate diploma engineers, SV Polytechnic College, Bhopal established an innovation centre ‘Tod-Fod-Jod’ at its campus, where students will gain expertise in eng... Read More
To hone the skills of undergraduate diploma engineers, SV Polytechnic College, Bhopal established an innovation centre ‘Tod-Fod-Jod’ at its campus, where students will gain expertise in engineering through unused devices.

After setting up the centre, faculty members of the institute started donating their rejected mobile phone, fridge, cooler, motorbike and other home appliances. However, proper functioning of the innovation centre will commence from January 2015 as students are busy in academic examination till December-end.

The unique idea will make students receptive to practical knowledge from the theoretical output read in the books. The centre will impart practical knowledge to the student everyday for 2 to 3 hours. “I have also donated my old Hero Puk which is of no use now. Students will get to learn through the machine. It is really nice initiative to sharpen the skills of budding engineers,” said Professor Mukesh Lal of the institute. He further said that after establishing the innovative centre, officials were gathering equipment from faculty members and other people, who wished to donate their rejected gadgets or home appliances. According to Professor Lal, department had already received five computers, Hero Puk, fax machine, printers, etc. gadgets by faculty members of the institute for further training of budding diploma engineers. “It is a unique idea for imparting practical training to the engineering students. The department has also invited parents and outsiders to donate their unused articles for training of students. The unused gadgets and machines will be re-opened and repaired by students under guidance of faculty members,” Professor Lal informed, adding that the unique project had been launched by Directorate of Technical Education (DTE) in four districts of State, including Bhopal, Ujjain, Sagar and Rewa. DTE has asked the selected institutes of these four districts to start such centres in the month of September 2014. As per need of students, subject experts will also be called to guide the students for repairing these unused machines.

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Madhya Pradesh tops in implementation of PM Jan-Dhan Yojana

Madhya Pradesh has topped in implementation of Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana. It is the first among major states to achieve cent percent target of opening bank accounts of all families. As a r... Read More
Madhya Pradesh has topped in implementation of Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana. It is the first among major states to achieve cent percent target of opening bank accounts of all families. As a result, none of the total 1,53,86,853 families in the State is without a bank account.

Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana was launched simultaneously in the country on August 28 this year. Under the scheme, January 26, 2015 was fixed as the date for achieving cent percent target. Madhya Pradesh has achieved this target far early on November 30, 2014.

As per a survey, 1,04,39,216 families already had bank accounts in the State. During the drive, 49,47,637 families were linked with banks by opening their accounts. In all, 58,64,452 bank accounts were opened under the scheme.

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan had been intensively reviewing implementation of Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana from day-one. During 155th meeting of State Level Bankers Committee also he had reviewed progress of the scheme and directed that the target must be achieved positively latest by December 31, 2014.

The State Government has decided to felicitate at the state-level the collectors and district Lead Bank Managers who had achieved cent percent targets first. Similarly, state-level heads of banks having achieved the target first of all at the state level will also be felicitated. It has also been decided to give away citations to sarpanchs and banks of all villages covered by Sub Service Area (SSA) at development block level functions and in-charges of wards in the urban areas. After assessment, the Chief Minister will honour district collectors and Lead Bank Managers. Of the 58,64,452 bank accounts opened under the scheme, 45,55,625 accounts are in rural and 13,08,686 bank accounts in urban areas.

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Elderly couple gravely injured by miscreants at Betwa Apartment

Two miscreants armed with sharp-edged weapons attacked an elderly couple in their flat in posh Betwa Apartment at Roshanpura Square under TT Nagar police station of State capital on Sunday dawn. ... Read More
Two miscreants armed with sharp-edged weapons attacked an elderly couple in their flat in posh Betwa Apartment at Roshanpura Square under TT Nagar police station of State capital on Sunday dawn. Courageous act of police personnel led to the arrest of one of the miscreants.

The couple was alone at the house at that time but their presence of mind led to the arrest of one of the miscreants. Police said that Ravindra Kumar Mehta, 72, and his wife Pushpa Mehta, 65, resided alone in a flat on the fifth floor of the high rise building. On Sunday morning, someone pressed the bell of their door. When Mehta opened the door, one of the accused attacked him with sharp-edged weapon. Meanwhile, the other miscreant targetted Pushpa.

Mehta somehow managed to get away from miscreants and raised alarm from his balcony. Head Constable Deviram Chowdhury and Constable Anil Arya were patrolling nearby and on hearing Mehta shouting for help, they rushed into the complex and managed to nab one of the miscreants Rahul Singh, 24, son of Kewal Ram, while his accomplice fled.

“In an attempt to flee, Rahul also pointed a firearm on the police personnel but least bothered about their own security, they nabbed him, though later, it was found that the firearm was a fake one. Other police personnel rushed to the crime spot and encircled the area,” said R D Bharadwaj, CSP, TT Nagar. Police have also identified the other accused but keeping his identity secret for security reasons. After the incident, the elderly couple was in a state of shock. They were rushed to Narmada Hospital, where doctors declared both of them out of danger while Pushpa was still admitted in ICU ward.

“IG Yogesh Choudhary has declared Rs 5,000 reward for Deviram and Anil each and Rs 1,000 cash award to ASI Mahadev, Mahesh Manjhi, Antram, Balram and Raj Kishore,” said Bharadwaj.

It is worth mentioning that one of the accused had earlier visited the apartment as a plumber so he also knew that Mehta couple stayed alone. That is why they targetted them. It is worth mentioning, the failed efforts of Police Department in controlling thieves and miscreants is resulting in increased criminal acts by the accused.

Police have registered a case against the held accused and his accomplice under section of IPC and investigation is being carried out.

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CKAF to gherao Assembly on December 17

To press their two points demand, Chhattisgarh Karamchari Adhikari Federation(CKAF) will gherao Assembly on December 17 during the winter session. The decision was taken during the meeting of the... Read More
To press their two points demand, Chhattisgarh Karamchari Adhikari Federation(CKAF) will gherao Assembly on December 17 during the winter session. The decision was taken during the meeting of the members here on Sunday. According to CGKAF state spokesperson, Virender Namdev the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party government in their election manifesto promise to increase the dearness allowance of the government employees by seven per cent. But, despite promise and coming into the power ruling BJP government has failed to fulfill the promise and there is heavy resentment among the employees.

To stage protest, Namdev informed that members of various government associations including class two, three and four will take out massive rally will gherao winter session of Assembly on December 17. To give final shape to the agitation federation will another meeting of the members on December 4 which will be attended by Subhash Mishra, CL Sahu, N H Khan, Sudhir Gautam,Vijay Jha, Amod Shrivastav, Alok Mishra, Ajay Tiwari, Pradeep Bogi and Idarish Khan.

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President honours city girl with gold medal at Symbiosis Intl University

It was a moment of pride for the State capital Raipur as well as the entire state of Chhattisgarh when recently Payal Gwalani, a girl from Raipur who had pursued B.Tech from Symbiosis Internation... Read More
It was a moment of pride for the State capital Raipur as well as the entire state of Chhattisgarh when recently Payal Gwalani, a girl from Raipur who had pursued B.Tech from Symbiosis International University was awarded with a gold medal in the 11th convocation ceremony of the university by hands of honorable President of India Pranab Mukherjee in the presence of Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis and Governor Chinnamalai Vidyasagar Rav. Besides her, Sant Dada JP Waswani of Sadhu Waswani Mission was awarded with the Lifetime Achievement Award in the same programme and also conferred the degree ofD.Lit (Doctor of Literature). It need be mentioned here that around 45000 students from 20 countries pursue education at Symbiosis International University. Besides the family members of Payal Gwalani, Member of Legislative Assembly Shrichand Sundarani, Executive President of Chhattisgarh Sindhi Panchayat Lakhmichand Gulwani, Chairman of Chhattisgarh Chamber of Commerce Amar Parwani, Convener Amar Dharna and others have congratulated her on the accomplishment.

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Govt Secretary Surendra Kumar Behar has narrow escape as car turns turtle

IT was narrow escape for Chhattisgarh Government, Secretary, Surendra Kumar Behar and his wife when the car they were traveling in turned turtle after it was dashed by a rashly driven truck at ... Read More
IT was narrow escape for Chhattisgarh Government, Secretary, Surendra Kumar Behar and his wife when the car they were traveling in turned turtle after it was dashed by a rashly driven truck at four-lane highway in Bhilai on Sunday noon.

The police said that the mishap occurred when the car made a bid to overtake the truck and Surendra Behar was on wheels. Police sources informed that at about 2 pm on Sunday, Surendra Kumar Behar and his wife Shobha Behar were on way to Durg in a car (CG02/6101) when a recklessly driven truck (CG04/G/7160) dashed their car near bus stand in Power House, Bhilai and in the mishap the car overturned. Behar couple was rushed to Chandulal Chandrakar Hospital, Bhilai from where they were discharged following medical examination.

The police also said that after information a Chhaoni police team rushed to the spot and took the accused drivers into custody along with seizing vehicles involved in the mishap. The accused truck driver was identified as Chandrashekhar and the police registered the offence against him under sections 279 and 337 of IPC.

When contacted, Alexander Kiro, SHO, Chhaoni Thana confirmed the details and added that the police were investigating the mishap. Anil Kehri, the friend of Surendra Behar reported the matter, SHO Kiro informed.

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Cong questions on medicines with rat poison in sterilization ops

Reacting to reports that another medication Ibruprofen also contains rat poison, Chhattisgarh Congress General Secretary Shailesh Nitin Trivedi expressed his shock that two medicines supplied and u... Read More
Reacting to reports that another medication Ibruprofen also contains rat poison, Chhattisgarh Congress General Secretary Shailesh Nitin Trivedi expressed his shock that two medicines supplied and utilized in Bilaspur sterilization operations turned out to contain lethal rat poison.

Terming the whole episode to be a major conspiracy, he lashed out at the state government for describing the whole incident as lapse. He also questioned as to how Ibruprofen medication got procured when it was banned according to state government.

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Bhola Nagar slum razed; High Court issues notice to State Govt

Raipur Municipal Corporation razed Bhola Nagar slum locality round about fifteen days before Diwali. A petition was filed in the High Court of Chhattisgarh, Bilaspur by 28 affected families. Th... Read More
Raipur Municipal Corporation razed Bhola Nagar slum locality round about fifteen days before Diwali. A petition was filed in the High Court of Chhattisgarh, Bilaspur by 28 affected families. The High Court Single Bench of Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra has ordered for issuing notice to the state government and stipulated the time till January 13, 2015 for the government to give reply. This was informed by Advocates Janmejay Sona and Bhagwanu Nayak while addressing a press conference at Raipur Press Club on Sunday. The affected families had filed the petition in the High Court through these advocates. The people who dwelled in the slum were rickshaw pullers, domestic servants and similar people. These people were financially poor, but were making their children learn in schools. No prior notice was given to these people that their slum would be razed and it was all of a sudden the municipal corporation employees went with police force and bulldozers and razed the slum forcefully. Women and children of the slum locality cried out before the corporation staff and police to stop the act, but their pleas were not heard. These people have been settled in BSUP houses in Saddu where they are not getting pure drinking water, electricity and they are not finding any source of employment. The education and future of their children is badly affected. It is a violation of human rights of these people, the advocates added.

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Shankar Nagar theft case solved; four including three minors arrested

It began with a big bang and ended into trifle, the theft at a Bungalow on VVIP Shankar Nagar road was busted with the arrest of 4 boys including 3 minors, who had confessed of stealing only copp... Read More
It began with a big bang and ended into trifle, the theft at a Bungalow on VVIP Shankar Nagar road was busted with the arrest of 4 boys including 3 minors, who had confessed of stealing only copper wires.

No CCTV, no LED, no servers and certainly not CPUs, the boys arrested by the Civil Lines Police said that they only stole copper wires so that they could make some money to buy psychotropic drugs. The initial claim of Bungalow owner Amit Agrawal that thieves have stolen aforementioned electronic equipment worth over 20 lakh are turning out to be false alarm.

Three minors including an 18-year-old boy Navneet Singh alias Sonu said that they there was no such equipment in the Bungalow. To steal the wires, they entered the home for 5 to 6 times each day over a period of one week. They only took out copper wires and conduction pipes from the air-conditioner systems, which are only worth about Rs 2500.

Boys said that they sold the wires to a scrap dealer at Devar Basti after burning the rubber coating of the wires in a ground. Police perplexed over the conflicting statements of the complainant and thieves. Hence, any further confirmation on the stolen stuffs will only come after the investigation and confirmation. Even if the theft wasn’t so big, police security in the VVIP area is still under scrutiny.

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City police nab 3-member inter-state gang of thieves

After facing the barrage of criticism from media and public, Raipur Police relished the melodious appreciation from same corner with the arrest of 3-member inter-state gang of thieves, which wr... Read More
After facing the barrage of criticism from media and public, Raipur Police relished the melodious appreciation from same corner with the arrest of 3-member inter-state gang of thieves, which wrecked havoc by pulling out one of the biggest and audacious thefts worth in crores at posh areas like Samta Colony, New Rajendra Nagar and Tagore Nagar in past one week.

In a jam-packed press conference, Raipur Range Inspector General of Police (IG) GP Singh said it was the result of Raipur Police and Central Crime Branch (CCB) team’s concerted efforts and synergy that the inter-state gang has come to the clutches of law. IG also informed that they have recovered all the cash Rs 72, 45,000 and stolen ornaments including 50 Tola (500 gram) Gold, silver Jewellery about 1 kilogram and other stuffs such as watches and semi-expensive jewellery with total worth 1.05 crores from the Meerut, Uttar Pradesh (UP) based gang.

Raipur Police and the CCB had come under immense pressure after the sudden spurt in incidents of theft in the Capital city. The trio Imran Saifi (23), Mohammad Rashid (21) and Mohammad Shahnawaz (20), all residents of Rasulpur Aurangabad under Bhawanpur Police Station in District Meerut, were caught from different places as the arrest of one led to the catch of another. Still, two members of the gang, whose names are not yet known, are still reportedly at large.

Three cases of theft were reported by Kishore Sadhwani atTikrapara Police Station and by Anup Vaswani at New Rajendra Nagar Police Station on November 25 and two days later at Saraswati Nagar Police Station by Vijay Agrawal on November 27. Cash and Ornaments stolen in all these cases have been recovered, police claimed.

A team of CCB led by Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP) Crime Ajatshatru Bahadur Singh collected the intelligence data in a meticulous investigation of the Crime Scene at Samta Colony on November 27. After the scientific analysis of data and rigorous checking of staying facilities in the Capital City, CCB sleuths came to know that the Burglars were staying in hotel near Station and after big theft at Samta Colony, they left the City in a train on the same day. CCB immediately went interrogated the Railway employees at ticket counters and found that they bought ticket for Samta Express to Meerut.

Hence, one of the teams of CCB immediately flown to New Delhi to establish identity and keep eyes on the accused trio travelling in the train. Team reached Mathura and got onboard the Samta Express. Then after checking the entire train and going through the reservation list, they established identity of thieve, which was like searching a hair pin in stack of husk. Soon, the CCB Inspector In-charge Sanjay Singh also touched down in New Delhi. Two of the three accused Imran Saifi and Mohammad Shahnawaz were caught as the train arrived at Hazrat Nizamuddin Station. All this while CCB team in the train was in continuous contact with the Senior Officials in Raipur.

In the initial interrogation, two arrested accused informed that Mohammad Rashid, who had involved in all the thefts, had got off of the train with all the cash and ornaments at Nagpur Station. So, one more team was dispatched to Nagpur while the interrogation with the two arrested in Delhi continued. Eventually, Mohammad Rashid was also arrested from Nagpur Station.

In the preliminary interrogation, trio has confessed committing thefts at Shailendra Nagar, Tagore Nagar, Amlidih, New Rajendra Nagar, Shanker Nagar, Devendra Nagar, Pandri, Samta Colony, Sunder Nagar, Rohinipuram, Avanti Vihar and some other posh areas of the Capital city.

MODUS OPERANDI

Imran Saifi, the mastermind of the Gang, used to hire auto-rickshaws and carried out reconnaissance in the pretext of Gas Stove Repairing or selling Winter Jackets/Clothes in uptown colonies. While one of the three accused stays with the auto-rickshaws at some distance from the target home, one stand watch outside it and the third one used to break the locks and steal the stuffs. They select hotels and lodge, which are situated near the bus stands and railway stations. The gang arrived in Raipur on November 24, 2014 and the thefts began from November 25.

CRIMINAL BACKGROUND

Imran Saifi has confessed of pulling out thefts in Faridabad with the help of Mohammad Rashid whereas Mohammad Shahnawaz has confessed of thefts in Raipur only.

OTHER INFO ABOUT TRIO

Imran Saifi had education up to Class-X and his brother has a cloth shop in Meerut. He has spent quite a lot of tie in Delhi and often used to visit his friends at Kolkata and Cochin. Shahnawaz only studied up to Class-VI and was a mobile Vendor. Mohammad Rashid dropped out of school after Class-II and used carryout small thefts in Delhi.

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Amit Shah to address mega gathering of party workers on December 12

On the occasion of completion of one year of the third tenure of Bharatiya Janata Party Government led by Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh in the state, it is all likely that Bharatiya Janata Party ... Read More
On the occasion of completion of one year of the third tenure of Bharatiya Janata Party Government led by Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh in the state, it is all likely that Bharatiya Janata Party National President Amit Shah will be addressing a mega gathering of party workers and office-bearers at Science college grounds here in the capital on December 12.

According to the party sources, the BJP National President was due to visit Chhattisgarh on December 10 but on the request of senior party leaders he postponed his visit till December 12 as on that day the first year of the third term of BJP Government in the state will complete. On the occasion the state BJP has decided to hold a mega programme on that date. On the occasion, the BJP National President will be addressing a mega gathering of party workers and office-bearers who will gather from all over the state.

BJP State President Dharamlal Kaushik who is presently canvassing for the party in Jharkhand, will be returning within 2-3 days. Thereafter he will be holding meeting for preparation of National President’s visit. It is worth mentioning here that the numbers of active members in the state are approximately 23,000 while there are three lakh primary members.

After being nominated as the BJP National President, it will be a maiden visit of Amit Shah in Chhattisgarh. Hence the state unit of BJP is preparing for giving him a rousing welcome. Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh has already conducted a preliminary meeting with the senior leaders of the party in this direction.

During his stay in Raipur, the BJP National President will also hold separate meetings with senior leaders, MLAs and Members of Parliament. During his stay in Chhattisgarh the National President will be discussing various issues pertaining to the state as well as suggest ways to thwart the opposition onslaught.

Cong to finalise strategy on assembly session on Dec 4

Various aspects of botched up sterilization operations in Bilaspur as well as paddy procurement related woes of the farmers would be amongst the prominent agenda which would be discussed in meeting of Congress legislators on December 4.

Talking to The Hitavada over phone, CLP leader TS Singhdeo said that he expected state government to allow peaceful discussions on these vital issues of public interest. In so far as issue of bringing in fresh no-confidence motion against Vidhan Sabha Speaker Gaurishankar Agrawal is concerned, Singhdeo said that party is exploring the issue in all its aspects including legal.

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Five people injured as speeding Safari overturns

Five persons were injured in a road accident when a speeding Safari vehicle they were travelling in overturned in village Kaladehi under jurisdiction of Bargi police station on Sunday. The inju... Read More
Five persons were injured in a road accident when a speeding Safari vehicle they were travelling in overturned in village Kaladehi under jurisdiction of Bargi police station on Sunday. The injured have been identified as Deshant Patel (17), a resident of Shahpura Bhitoni area, Piyush Jain (17), resident of Super Market area in Lordganj, Himanshu Agrawal (19), a resident of Railway Station area in Bargi, Aniket Patel (17), resident of Dhanvantri Nagar area in Garha and Hitesh Kori (18), a resident of Shastri Nagar area in Garha. According to police, they received information about a road accident in Kaladehi village. Receiving the information, a police team reached the spot and found that a Tata Safari (MP-20T-9485) had overturned. Police team rescued travellers with the help of locals and rushed them to Suvidha Hospital, Jabalpur with the help of 108 Ambulance Service. The injured informed that they were on their way towards Hanumantal temple in Kaladehi village when their vehicle overturned. Condition of injured is reported to be stable and is undergoing treatment at hospital. Police have registered a case against the accused driver under Sections 279 and 337 of the IPC while further investigations are underway.

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Man held for duping people on pretext of recruitment in GRC

Gwarighat police have apprehended a man involved in duping of unemployed persons in the name of their recruitments in GRC on Sunday. The accused has been identified as Sukesh Kumar Rajput (30),... Read More
Gwarighat police have apprehended a man involved in duping of unemployed persons in the name of their recruitments in GRC on Sunday. The accused has been identified as Sukesh Kumar Rajput (30), son of Shyamlal Rajput, a native of Noorwala in Panipath district.

SHO of Gwarighat police station Sub-Inspector Nehru Singh Khandate informed that Bhagwandas Sharma (40), an employee of Grenadiers Regimental Centre (GRC) filed a written complaint that he is deployed in ongoing recruitment process in GRC started from October 3. He received information about a man who was alluring unemployed persons in the name of their recruitment in GRC against cash of Rs 2 lakh per candidate. Receiving the information, he immediately contacted his Naik and Lance Naik and started search for the accused.

Acting on the information, he along with a team reached Narmada Nagar in Gwarighat area and found a man who was busy in teaching seven boys on a notepad. The accused informed that he was operating a coaching class.

In the search of his premises, they recovered some documents having seal of Army authorities. When the students named Manjeet Kumar, Chetan Singh, Vikas Kumar, Anoop, Bhupendra, Sunil Kumar and Anurag were inquired, they disclosed that Sukesh Kumar assured them for their recruitment in GRC and was informing them about written examination scheduled on Sunday. He also took cash of Rs 2 lakh each from them for their recruitment in GRC. Acting on the complaint, police have registered a case against the accused under sections 420 and 511 of the IPC and apprehended the accused while further investigations are underway.

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Miscreant attacks woman with blade in her house

Panagar police have registered a case of attempt to murder for assaulting a woman with a blade in her house on Sunday. The injured has been identified as Prabha Sharma (35), a resident of Panag... Read More
Panagar police have registered a case of attempt to murder for assaulting a woman with a blade in her house on Sunday. The injured has been identified as Prabha Sharma (35), a resident of Panagar area and owner of general store.

According to police, they received information from hospital that a woman was admitted for treatment of critical injuries. Receiving the information, a police team reached the spot and found that a woman named Prabha Sharma had sustained injuries on her neck and face. In her statement, injured informed that she runs a general store in her house.

On Saturday night, she closed the shop and entered the house when a local man named Jittu Patel knocked the door. When she opened the door, Jittu started abusing her husband and threatened her. Before she learnt the intensions of miscreant, he attacked her with a blade and wounded her neck and face. She was immediately taken to Government Hospital Panagar where she was given primary treatment and referred at Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Medical College and Hospital, Jabalpur. Acting on the complaint, police have registered a case against the accused under section 307 and 452 of the IPC and started a rigorous search for him.

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Advocates must endeavour hard to get justice for their party: Justice Mishra

Adhivakta Parishad Madhya Pradesh organised a law lecture on Human Rights at Vindhya Bhawan, Katanga, on Sunday. Supreme Court Judge Justice Deepak Mishra was chief guest of the programme. Justic... Read More
Adhivakta Parishad Madhya Pradesh organised a law lecture on Human Rights at Vindhya Bhawan, Katanga, on Sunday. Supreme Court Judge Justice Deepak Mishra was chief guest of the programme. Justice Mishra along with Justice A M Khanwilkar, Chief Justice of Madhya Pradesh High Court, National General Secretary of Adhivakta Parishad, D Bharat Kumar and State President T S Ruprah inaugurated the lecture by lighting the lamp.

Speaking on the occasion, Justice Deepak Mishra shed light on role of advocates in implementation of Human Rights. He said advocates must endeavour hard and work with full devotion to get justice for their party. He said advocates know human rights well hence they should come forward and fight for justice. It is not necessary that advocates are appointed by anybody on any special post.

They on their own accord should work for righteousness, added Justice Mishra. He also shared his experiences with advocates.

Expressing his views on the occasion, Chief Justice of Madhya Pradesh High Court Justice A M Khanwilkar said it is worthwhile to memorise contribution of Barrister Mohan Das Karamchand Gandhi in getting implemented human rights in India. He played a pivotal role in developing a feeling of equality amongst all and making India a national from a country. Justice Khanwilkar called upon advocates to ensure their contribution in protection of human rights. Later, Jai Sachdeva, Secretary, District Unit of Adhivakta Parishad also urged advocates to work to safeguard human rights. He said legal fraternity could work better in this matter. Earlier, Adhivakta Parishad welcomed the guests.

Advocate Surendra Singh conducted the proceedings of the programme while senior Advocate R K Agrawal proposed a vote of thanks. Those who participated in the programme were senior Advocate Rajendra Prasad Tiwari, former Advocate General Ravinandan Singh, B S Shroti, P R Bhave, Vijay Shukla, Purushendra Kaurav, Vijay Pandey, P S Paliwal, Ashish Pathak, R S Patel, Harish Agnihotri and others.

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Man booked for attempt to murder

Lordganj police have registered a case of attempt to murder by firing a bullet in Shyam Band gully in Kacchiyana area, on Sunday. According to police, Ritesh Nayak (37), a resident of Kacchiyan... Read More
Lordganj police have registered a case of attempt to murder by firing a bullet in Shyam Band gully in Kacchiyana area, on Sunday. According to police, Ritesh Nayak (37), a resident of Kacchiyana area filed a written complaint that he has a plot near Bhargava building where construction work is underway since one month.

On Sunday, he was monitoring construction works, when Ravi Bhalla along with his brother Rocky Bhalla arrived and started abusing him for uninstalling air conditioner. He informed that air conditioner was uninstalled due to ongoing construction works. They insisted for reinstallation of air conditioner and Ravi Bhalla took out a pistol and opened fire at him.

It was a lucky escape for him that the bullet brushed passed his head. Hearing the loud noise of fire, neighbourers gathered on the spot and miscreants managed to escape. On the complaint, police have registered a case against the accused under sections 307, 448, 294, 323 and 34 of the IPC and started a search for the accused.

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Unidentified thieves burgle house in Dixitpura, flee with jewellery, cash

Unidentified thieves burgled a house and took away jewellery and cash worth lakhs in Dixitpura area under jurisdiction of Lordganj police station in intervening night of Saturday and Sunday.

... Read More
Unidentified thieves burgled a house and took away jewellery and cash worth lakhs in Dixitpura area under jurisdiction of Lordganj police station in intervening night of Saturday and Sunday.

The incident took place when members of Jha family went to attend a marriage function of a relative in Gwarighat area when thieves entered the house. According to police, house owner Rajni Jha, owner of beauty parlor informed that she along with her husband and other family members went to attend a marriage function of new niece in Gwarighat area on Saturday.

On Sunday morning, a customer contacted her on phone that lock of entrance door of her house was broken.

Receiving the information, she along with her husband immediately rushed the house and found that commodities were disturbed inside the house and almirah was open. She informed that unidentified person broke the lock and entered the house. Thieves took away precious jewellery worth lakhs and Rs 50,000 cash from safe of almirah. Learning about the incident, a police team reached the spot and started investigation into the case. Police have registered a case against unidentified thieves and started a rigorous search for them.

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Man killed, another critically hurt in road accident on Amkhera road

In a tragic incident, a man was killed and another sustained critical injuries in a road accident reported on Amkhera road near country liquor shop under jurisdiction of Gohalpur police station... Read More
In a tragic incident, a man was killed and another sustained critical injuries in a road accident reported on Amkhera road near country liquor shop under jurisdiction of Gohalpur police station on Sunday. The deceased has been identified as Manish Kushwaha (30), a resident of Narmada Nagar area, while Sudama Kori (40), a resident of Kudwari village sustained critical injuries.

According to police, receiving the information of accident at Amkhera area a police team reached the spot and found that a motorcycle rider was killed after being hit by a moped while the rider of moped also sustained critical injuries.

The injured was immediately rushed to hospital with help of 108 Ambulance Service while body was sent for post-mortem to Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Medical College and Hospital. The accident took place when rider of motorcycle (MP-20MV-8169) travelling towards Gohalpur from by-pass area while moped rider was travelling towards Kudwari village from Gohalpur area.

Later, the deceased was identified as Manish Kushwaha. Police have registered a case under Section 304 (A), 279 and 337 of the IPC while further investigations are underway.

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3 members, including 2 women, of a family killed in mishap in Ujjain

In a tragic incident, three members of Kumod family of Jabalpur, including two women, were killed in a road accident in Ujjain, on Sunday. The deceased have been identified as Sadanand Kumod an... Read More
In a tragic incident, three members of Kumod family of Jabalpur, including two women, were killed in a road accident in Ujjain, on Sunday. The deceased have been identified as Sadanand Kumod and Shanta Kumod, residents of A-14 at Ratan Nagar area and their relative Sadhna Kumod, a resident of Shakti Nagar area in Garha. According to information, Sadanand Kumod, retired from LIC, Shanta Kumod, employee of Bank of India along with Sadhna Kumod went to attend a marriage function of a relative in Ujjain.

They left for Ujjain on November 29. The incident took place when they were travelling in an auto-rickshaw on Indore–Ujjain road when a speeding bus rammed into their auto-rickshaw near Meghdoot Dhaba.

In the mishap, the auto-rickshaw was entangled with the bus and skid with the bus at around 300 metres.

The auto-rickshaw was completely damaged while Sadanand, Shanta, Sadhna along with the driver were succumbed to their critical injuries on the spot. News of incident reached residence and a large number of relatives, locals and neighbourers were gathered at house in Ratan Nagar area. Members of Kumod family left for Ujjain for taking the bodies. The incident has spread a wave of sorrow throughout the area.

Man crushed by mini-truck on Katangi–Jabalpur road

A man was crushed to death by a mini-truck on Katangi– Jabalpur road under jurisdiction of Katangi police station. The deceased has been identified as Mahesh Vishwakarma (45), son of Rajaram Vishwakarma, a resident of village Bhiloda and working as taxi driver in Jabalpur.

According to police, they received information about a road accident at Katangi-Jabalpur road and a police team reached the spot. Police found that a man was run over by a speedy 407 mini truck (UP-83-9305). The incident took place when the man was waiting for public transport vehicle at roadside when a speeding mini truck being driven recklessly by the driver hit him. In the mishap, Mahesh Vishwakarma sustained critical injuries and died on the spot due to profuse bleeding. Witnessing the incident, onlookers gathered at the spot and succeeded in stopping the mini truck. Police sent the body for post-mortem at Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Medical College and Hospital after carrying out Panchnama and registered a case against the accused driver under section 304 (A), 279 and 337 of the IPC. Continuing a rigorous search, police succeeded in apprehending the accused truck driver while further investigations are underway.

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CM holds meeting of all MPs from C’garh

On the eve of the initiation of Winter Session in the Parliament, Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh called a meeting of all Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha members from the State. During the meeting Chief ... Read More
On the eve of the initiation of Winter Session in the Parliament, Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh called a meeting of all Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha members from the State. During the meeting Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh, Health Minister Amar Agrawal and Principal Secretary (Health) Dr Alok Shukla gave a detailed presentation about the sterilization incident which took 13 lives in Bilaspur district. The Members of Parliament were informed about the steps initiated by the State Government. During the meeting the Chief Minister and officials also informed about the development proposals pending for Central approval.

The meeting of Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha Members was chaired by Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh. The meeting which was held at the Chief Minister’s official residence was attended by MPs including Ramesh Bais, Chandulal Sahu, Dr Banshilal Mahto, Dinesh Kashyap, Kamalbhan Singh, Lakhanlal Sahu, Abhishek Singh, Ranvijay Pratap Singh Judeo, Dr Bhushanlal Jangde. Also present were Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ajay Chandrakar, Advisor to Chief Minister Shivraj Singh, Chief Secretary Vivek Dhand, ACS M K Raut, Principal Secretary to Chief Minister Aman Singh, Secretary Subodh Kumar Singh, Joint Secretary Rajat Kumar and Director Health Services R Prasanna. During the meeting extensive discussion was also held on the selection of villages under MP Model Village Scheme launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and on their development work plan. Keeping in view the raising of questions on sterilization case in Bilaspur in Parliament, the MPs were made acquainted about the facts and figures and steps taken by the State Government.

They were also informed about the compensation and the facilities being extended to the children who died in the grievous incident. Also of the 121 women, 104 women have been cured and were discharged from the hospital while 17 others are recuperating at various hospitals. While two health department officials have been terminated, four others have been suspended.

Also after registering FIR, the surgeon has been arrested. On getting complaints against spurious drugs supplied for operation, all the medicines supplied by concerned drug manufacturers have been banned, the manufactures have been arrested and cases lodged against them.

During the meeting it was informed that under MP Model Village Scheme, 15 villages have been short-listed. The Chief Minister directed the senior officials to direct all concerned district collectors to prepare and present development work plan for these villages at the earliest. A meeting will be scheduled soon for the same. Keeping in view the Winter Session from Monday, the Chief Minister also informed that MPs about the pending proposals which are pending with the Centre.

These proposals include establishment of Tribal University in Chhattisgarh, special package for the construction of Naya Raipur, laying of broad-gauge line between Mandir Hasuad-Naya Raipur-Kendri and to transfer 80 acres of land under narrow gauge to the state government against 150 acres land being provided for above broad gauge line. Also NRDA had forwared Rs 742 crore scheme under Smart City Scheme for Naya Raipur as well as information on several other pending schemes were exchanged.

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Survey reveals shocking statistics on literacy level in C’garh

During last one decade, the literacy level across the Chhattisgarh has been improved but sicken part is that still one in 12 households of the State does not have even a single literate member.... Read More
During last one decade, the literacy level across the Chhattisgarh has been improved but sicken part is that still one in 12 households of the State does not have even a single literate member. In rural parts of the State condition is more horrible as in every 7th house, all the family members were found to be illiterate.

According to the statistics of literacy released by Census of India on Saturday, Chhattisgarh has total number of 5640620 households (both rural and urban parts) and out of which 721631 households where not a single family member know how to read and write that means all of family persons were found to be illiterate and it accounted of 12.25%. But the positive factor is that amongst these households, in 1.78 lakh households which accounted of 31.6%, four members of the family know how to read and write. It is clearly shows that efforts of different government agencies and NGOs got success and literacy level in the state witnessed a little improvement. As a decade back (in 2003-04), 37.2% of the households had at least four literate members and 15.3% had none.

In rural areas, there has been no change in the illiteracy level and still it has to be found high in many districts of the state. Among the 43.58 lakh households in rural areas of the Chhattisgarh, in 6.55 households, none of the family member was found to be literate that accounted of 16.02%. On the other hand in urban areas, literacy level saw a little improvement as out of the 1.28 lakh households, only 66739 households do not even one literate among its members.

The shocking part is that many districts of the state such as Durg and Rajnandgaon which were declared highest literate districts of the Chhattisgarh have also recorded many households where not a single member was literate. In Durg district, 47528 out of 7.01 lakh households where not a single member is literate whereas in Rajnandgaon, 25296 amongst 3.17 households which do not have one literate member.

In tribal districts of the stat, condition is horrible as all the districts which come under Bastar Division such as Bastar, Dantewada, Kanker, Bijapur and Naryanpur witnessed 38% households without a literate family member. In Scheduled Caste (SC) category households of the state, 13% houses do not have a single literate family member and in Scheduled Tribe (ST) category household, 19% households do not have a single literate family member. A senior officer of Census of India informed all of these statistics have been prepared after analyzing the data of Census 2011, literacy data of 2013-14 and annual health survey for 2013-14.

‘It is true that overall literacy of Chhattisgarh has gone up owing to various schemes of government agencies but it is also a saddest factor still so many people have no knowledge of reading and writing and they are still illiterate’ said Dr P S Gupta, HoD of Sociology Department in Pt Ravishankar Shukla University Raipur. ‘Households without even a single literate member must be in remote areas and among migrant labourers. People of these sections are still unaware of the utility of education and prefer work over education’ asserted Gautam Banerjee, Centre Coordinator of Shiksha, a national level NGO works for education and literacy. He also added that for rising the literacy level, Chhattisgarh should adopt the policies of southern states like Kerala and Tamil Nadu where only 1.5% and 2.8% respectively households without a literate member.

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Warlyani bats for super-speciality hospital in Jagdalpur to cater to injured jawans

Senior State Congress leader Ramesh Warlyani has alleged that state government is not serious towards providing urgent medical care to injured security personnel.

He was referring to recen... Read More
Senior State Congress leader Ramesh Warlyani has alleged that state government is not serious towards providing urgent medical care to injured security personnel.

He was referring to recent incident where four security personnel were injured in Sukma after leftist insurgents fired at them. Warlyani had visited injured jawans at Ramkrishna hospital in Raipur on Sunday. He said that some of the injured jawans were brought to Raipur which caused delay of several hours in extending medical treatment.

Warlyani pointed out that gunbattle between Naxals and jawans is frequent and there have been occasions when security personnel lose their lives due to delay in medical treatment while on way to Raipur.

He suggested that state government should instead institute a super-speciality hospital in Jagdalpur itself with senior most doctors posted there. He also took potshots at the state government claims that Chhattisgarh has become free of Naxal menace when such incidents are coming to fore where Naxals are not even sparing a helicopter. Congress leaders Inderchand Dhariwal, Sheikh Shakeel were also present during Warlyani’s visit.

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SRLM focusing on intensive VOA training for six resource blocks in Chhattisgarh

Aiming to achieve the objective of economic empowerment of rural women in State, the State Rural Livelihood Mission (SRLM) of Chhattisgarh is actively roping in successful practices from neighbor... Read More
Aiming to achieve the objective of economic empowerment of rural women in State, the State Rural Livelihood Mission (SRLM) of Chhattisgarh is actively roping in successful practices from neighboring Andhra Pradesh. Rural women in batches from six identified resource blocks are being trained to maintain account books of loans availed by women members as well as work collectively while maintaining strict fiscal discipline. The identified resource blocks by SRLM in Chhattisgarh includes Bastar (Bastar), Rajnandgaon (Rajnandgaon), Narharpur (Kanker), Kurud (Dhamtari) and Balrampur (Balrampur).

It is to this end that Chhattisgarh SRLM has roped in the services of Society for Elimination Rural Poverty from Andhra Pradesh to send in their trainers and train Village Organisations Assistants (VOAs). Officials in the SRLM informed that women are being organized in Self Help Groups and Village Organizations to avail loans and start their own small level enterprises locally. But, officials added, fiscal discipline and regular meetings are also inculcated to ensure that these women are able to sustain economic empowerment on a long-term basis.

SRLM officials informed that only recently they had conducted a 10-day training for women from Bastar, Rajnandgaon and Kanker districts, a fresh batch of women from Balrampur, Bastar and Chhura blocks have been identified to go training in maintaining account books and help women members maintain strict fiscal discipline.

SRLM officials also informed the once a substantial number of VOAs receive training and become conversant with the subject, these women would then be sent out as trainers to other districts of Chhattisgarh to train more VOAs.

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It’s not pad yatra but Congress’ political yatra

Coming down heavily on the Congress for politicizing the issue of sterilization deaths, Bharatiya Janata Party on Sunday stated that that the so called ‘Pad Yatra’ to be launched by Congres... Read More
Coming down heavily on the Congress for politicizing the issue of sterilization deaths, Bharatiya Janata Party on Sunday stated that that the so called ‘Pad Yatra’ to be launched by Congress is nothing but a ‘political yatra’. Talking to the media persons BJP Spokesperson Srichand Sundrani said the Congress neither has any sympathy with those who have died nor they are perceptive towards those who are recuperating after the incident. They’re just trying to get to their bewildering political objective, while taking the cover of unfortunate deaths.

Sundrani while addressing the media persons during a press conference at Ekatma Parisar termed the ‘Mahatari Nyay Yatra’ being taken out the Chhattisgarh Pradesh Congress Committee as farce and stated it to be a ‘Political Yatra’ of CPCC President Bhupesh Baghel. BJP State Spokesperson Srichand Sundrani while asserting that the Congress should abstain from doing politics on dead, said the Congress leaders during the so called pad yatra had reached the ‘Manch’ by SUVs through bypass roads and then again they disappeared. Sundrani claimed that the Yatra is not getting any response from Congressmen, forget about people.

Adding that the sterilization deaths are unfortunate and grievous and the state government is committed to punish all those who are guilty for the deaths, the BJP Spokespersons stated that no persons found guilty in the on-going enquiries will be spared.

The spokespersons further added that the state government has provided all necessary and possible health care and compensation to the victims and the prompt action taken by the state government has resulted into saving of many lives. The state government has not only acted sensitively on behalf of victims but has also taken necessary action to punish the guilty.

Adding that the Congress by taking out such political gimmicks is trying to mislead the people, they stated that neither the Congressmen in Chhattisgarh nor the AICC Vice President have any sympathy towards the people who died. They are only interested to achieve some political gain from the incident, which is unfortunate. They added that the people have seen the Congress rule since last 60 years and very well understand their policy and intentions.

Sundrani said that by taking a sensitive initiative towards family members of the women who lost their lives in the sterilization case at Bilaspur district, the state government has decided to adopt their children. Accordingly, a fixed deposit worth Rs 2 lakh will be made in the name of every minor child of the women who had lost their lives during sterilization camp in Bilaspur district. Apart from providing every child free education a health-card of every child will be made, on whose basis, the child can avail free medical treatment at Apollo Hospital Bilaspur till he attains the age of 18 years.

Sundrani said apart from these the Chief Minister had announced a compensation of Rs 4 lakh each to the family members of women who had lost their lives and a compensation of Rs 50,000 each and free treatment to the remaining women who had undergone sterilization operation during these camps.

In order to provide speedy and best medical treatment teams of senior doctors from AIIMS Delhi and Apollo Hyderabad were called and best possible treatment had been provided.

The state government has terminated the services of two officers while two others had been suspended. Surgeon who had conducted the operations had not only been terminated but criminal charge was registered against him and was subsequently arrested.

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Dr Sharma’s termination in web of controversy

Controversy erupted following the orders terminating the services of suspended Health Director, Dr Ashok Sharma as the department’s minister not only expressed ignorance over development but ... Read More
Controversy erupted following the orders terminating the services of suspended Health Director, Dr Ashok Sharma as the department’s minister not only expressed ignorance over development but reportedly, also took the issue to the Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.

It was said that before issuing service termination orders of Dr Ashok Sharma, suspended about three years back, Principal Secretary, Health, Praveer Krishn did not have necessary approval of the Chief Minister and Health Minister that was needed in case of a severe action on class one officer of any Government department.

When the media raised this issue of ignoring departmental minister by a Principal Secretary, he suddenly reached city, leaving local body election meetings at Chambal region to enquire Principal Secretary Praveer Krishn on Dr Sharma’s service termination order.

When some mediapersons had asked Narottam Mishra, Health Minister whether Principal Secretary, Health had brought matter of Dr Sharma’s service termination into his knowledge before issuing orders, he answered in the negative. Dr Ashok Sharma, former Health Director had said that the court had already given stay order on any action against him on matter of irregularities in Pandit Deendayal Mobile hospitals. The Government has not yet vacated the stay so the service termination orders was not as per rule. “I will approach the court, challenging the Government order,” he said. When contacted, Praveer Krishn, Principal Secretary, Health, said that everything circulated in media was false about service termination order of Dr Ashok Sharma.

“Chief Minister and Health Minister both, have been made aware about this action. It is simply departmental action and whatever I have done is keeping in mind all rules and regulations and it is right,” he said. Many efforts were made to contact Narottam Mishra, Health Minister but he did not respond to phone calls.

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Preparations in full swing prior to health officials’ visit

PREPARATIONS are in full swing at Government Hospital in the district prior to visit of Principal Secretary, Public Health and Family Planning Department, Praveer Krishna and other higher offic... Read More
PREPARATIONS are in full swing at Government Hospital in the district prior to visit of Principal Secretary, Public Health and Family Planning Department, Praveer Krishna and other higher officials of Health Department scheduled next week.

Health Commissioner, Mission Director, National Rural Health Mission, Madhya Pradesh, are likely to accompany him during the visit. Chief Medical and Health Officer Dr B S Chouhan conducted meeting of higher officials including District Programme Manager, National Rural Health Mission, District Immunisation Officer, District Health Officer, District Tuberculosis and AIDS Officer and other officers concerned of district health services to review ground status of execution of various health beneficiary schemes and ensure that benefits of each health beneficiary scheme should reach the desired beneficiary. He also directed officials to maintain record keeping of each immunisation of child and mother, other medicines being offered to pregnant women, family planning programme, pathology test, other medication to pregnant women under Mother and Child Tracking System. He said special stress must be laid on HIV test during pregnancy, timely detection of pregnant women under high risk category to bring down Mother Mortality Rate (MMR) and Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) which is comparatively higher in the district since last couple of years.

DPM and District Immunisation Officer have been directed to visit, Community Health Centre, Primary Health Centre, Delivery Points, dispensary in the city area and check ground status like medical staff presence on every day basis, keeping of record related to immunisation, Anti-Tuberculosis Programme, AIDS Programme, Malaria Programme.

Multi-Purpose Health Worker (MPHW), Auxiliary Nurse Wifery (ANM) and Supervisor at block-level in rural areas have been asked to execute government health beneficiary programme like collection of malaria slide, check haemoglobin of pregnant women through haemoglobin meter to trace women falling under high risk category, distribution of calcium and iron, Albendazole tab among pregnant women.

The Principal Secretary would like to review benefits of ongoing health beneficiary schemes reached to desired person beneficiary, shortcoming in execution of government beneficiary schemes like Immunisation, Mother and Child Tracking System, Delivery points, Family Planning Programme, Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel Nishulk Aushadhi Vitran Scheme and Free Pathology Scheme in the meeting of problems related to health workers and other medical staff during meeting of high-level officers of Health Department. He is likely to conduct surprise inspection of hospital and health care centre and inquired about services with the patient. Proper disbursement of funds allocated for development and purchase of medical equipment and government health care centres and government hospitals.

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More amusement activities being planned in Van Vihar

The beautification of Boat Club area was mainly focussed to bring in more local tourist influx in the area. From development of food zones, service areas to more amusement activities are being pl... Read More
The beautification of Boat Club area was mainly focussed to bring in more local tourist influx in the area. From development of food zones, service areas to more amusement activities are being planned in the area. Besides this, proposal of fully fledged Van Vihar Vathika Museum was also in process.

Van Vihar National Park is going to have model replica of forest reserves in the museum. The Vihar Vathika museum, which will be built inside the national park, will carry details of all forest reserves in the State including Dhoopgarh, Amarkantak, Pachmarhi. Details of flora and fauna would be incorporated in the museum.

Tender process for construction of the museum was being invited, as per the official. Earlier, Centre for Environment and Education, Ahmedabad was given the assignment but it was unable to materialise and tender had been called for again. Forest museum would have all details about flora and fauna, including rivers, mountains and specialities of forest reserves.

Winter season is considered as one of the favourite seasons, where rush of locals is high at places like the national park. Recently, jungle safari was started as a method to facilitate the process of giving people a closer look of wildlife.

The forest museum is supposed to be developed as infotainment centre, where information of the flora and fauna of the major forest range and reserves in Madhya Pradesh would be provided to the tourist. The information will also help to educate the children to have better knowledge about the natural resources in the State. However recently, the status shows that inspite of having largest forest cover in the region, the forest area had been shrinking due to cutting of trees, including in Sidhi, Mandla, Satna, Umaria, Jabalpur, Jhabua, East Nimar, Dewas, Chhindwara, Chhatarpur and Balaghat districts. The museum is supposed to provide and raise awareness about forest conservation too.

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Congress expels rebels for 6 years

State Congress President Arun Yadav has expelled rebels from party for the period of six years. They have been accused of fighting against declared party candidate in independent manner and tryin... Read More
State Congress President Arun Yadav has expelled rebels from party for the period of six years. They have been accused of fighting against declared party candidate in independent manner and trying to sabotage. The names of expelled rebels are: Ram Singh Rathore (Nagda), Sachan Prakashchandra (Unhel), Chaaya Patni (Unhel), Seema Atulkar (Amla), Fazlehak Pathan (Ratlam), Anjulata Shrivastava (Panagar), Hafeez Mev (Malhargarh), Saroj Suresh Sethia (Bhanpura), Shahnaz Maqsood Ahmad (Bhanpura), Maheshchandra Daheria (Bhairoganj), Ranjeet Vasnik (Barghat), Anil Soni (Balaghat), Manish Vajpayee (Bijawar) and Manoj Bhatnagar (Bijawar). Notably, after ticket distribution process, there was strong resentment among those Congress workers, who were eying ticket and they had filed their nomination papers from their respective places as independents. Party has taken serious note of their act and finally, axe fell on them. Dissatisfied leaders had come to protest at party headquarters. Most important of them was ex MLA from Banda (Sagar) Narayan Prajapati and ex MLA Ranveer Jatav. At least three vice presidents including Manak Agrawal, Premchand Guddu and Dr Govind Singh have resigned from their posts by saying that tickets were not distributed in proper manner. However, they vowed to work for party.

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SPCB makes action plan to prohibit use of diesel generators

State Pollution Control Board (SPCB) has made an action plan to prohibit use of diesel generators (DG) set found indulged in violation of pollution norms to run DG sets prescribed Central Polluti... Read More
State Pollution Control Board (SPCB) has made an action plan to prohibit use of diesel generators (DG) set found indulged in violation of pollution norms to run DG sets prescribed Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

Sources in the department revealed that the team constituted by State Pollution Control Board will conduct inspection to check pollution violation level of diesel generators in wake of coming marriage season.

The team will check status of diesel generator set installed at mobile towers, run during marriages, big DG sets installed at various offices and other public places.

The team will recommend further course of action like imposing penalty, closing down of DG set, action against the civic body, individual and firm etc found indulged in violation of Environmental Protect Act, The Air Act, 1981, The Water Act, 1974, Noise Pollution Control Rules. CPCB has made a recommendation that case should be registered against the DG set found indulge in violation of pollution level for second and third time, even after repeated warning.

It is learnt that in absence of specific guidelines for operations of Diesel Generator (DG) set installed at Mobile Tower, DG Set running in Marriages, installed at Apartment, Big offices complaint of causing noise and Air Pollution has been surfaced repeatedly before SPCB. It was also difficult for State Pollution Control Board to categorise them, to check Air and Noise pollution violation level. Large number of mobile towers are not registered at Jabalpur Municipal Corporation yet, it would become difficult for SPCB to specify and categorise DG Set installed at Mobile Tower, running during the marriages for lighting, under various pollution control acts.

L Patel, Regional Officer, State Pollution Control Board confirming this said, as per direction of CPCB, necessary action like imposing penalty, closing down of DG set causing pollution and legal prosecution would be initiated under norms of environmental acts against the person, Civic bodies, individual and firms, if they found indulge in violation of the same after repeated warning.

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Man booked for selling mortgaged property to ex-serviceman

OMTI police registered a case against accused for selling mortgaged property to a family of ex-serviceman and grabbed money worth Rs 23 lakh at Triveni Green Residency in Polipathar area. SHO of O... Read More
OMTI police registered a case against accused for selling mortgaged property to a family of ex-serviceman and grabbed money worth Rs 23 lakh at Triveni Green Residency in Polipathar area. SHO of Omti police station Indramani Patel informed that Tek Bahadur (49), a resident of Triveni Green Residency, Polipathar, filed a written complaint that he retired from the Army. He received information that owner of B-7 house at Triveni Green Residency, Polipathar named Arun Chopra was selling his house. Receiving the information, Tek Bahadur contacted the house owner and decided to purchase house for Rs 23 lakh.

Thereafter, he made registry of purchasing the property at the office of Assistant Registrar and took possession of the property. After some days, some employees of HDFC bank reached the house and asked about Arun Chopra, his wife and Tripti Chopra for recovery of loan amount of Rs 55 lakh which they had bought against their property in 2013.

They learnt that members of Chopra family had duped him by selling their mortgaged house without clearing the loan. On the complaint, police have registered a case against the accused under sections 420, 120 (B) and 34 of the IPC while further investigations are underway.

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Blind murder mystery of woman solved, accused held

GARHA police have solved blind murder mystery of a woman and succeeded in apprehending the accused. The woman was killed following illicit relation with an auto-rickshaw driver. Auto-rickshaw d... Read More
GARHA police have solved blind murder mystery of a woman and succeeded in apprehending the accused. The woman was killed following illicit relation with an auto-rickshaw driver. Auto-rickshaw driver killed her due to increasing demands of the woman. The accused has been identified as Nikhlesh alias Nikku Sharma (42), son of Harish Sharma, a resident of Singhai Colony, Hanuman Lassi Wali Gully in Kotwali area. IPS, Isha Pant, Additional Superintendent of Police (West) disclosed this while addressing a press conference on Sunday.

Body of an unidentified woman was found behind community hall situated at Sharda Mandir area in Garha on November 20. It was difficult to identify the woman as her head was smashed with a stone.

Taking a serious note into the case, Superintendent of Police Harinarayanachari Mishra constituted a police team under supervision of ASP Isha Pant for further investigation into the case and apprehending the accused. The police team led by CSP, Gorakhpur, MP Prajapati started investigation into the case for identifying the deceased and reason of her killing.

Investigating the case, a man named Purushottam Chouksey filed a complaint of missing of his daughter at Kotwali police station on November 22. Identifying the body of woman, police started further investigation into the case and found fresh locations of her mobile phone at village Mangeli and Gwarighat area. With the help of cyber cell, police team succeeded in detaining a man who possessed mobile of the deceased. In rigorous questioning, the accused Nikhlesh Sharma confessed to have murdered the woman by strangulating her and crushing her head with a stone. He further revealed that he works as an auto-rickshaw driver and met Meera Bai one year ago. They started meeting regularly and several times visited Nagpur and Singrampur. They were also habitual of consuming liquor. Nikhlesh held an argument with Meerabai over an issue of demanding money. Thereafter, Nikhlesh decided to end his trouble by killing Meera Bai. He planned to murder her and consumed liquor with her. They reached hilly area of Sharda Mandir and then he strangulated her. He smashed her head with a stone for hiding her identity and escaped with her mobile phone and purse.

On the achievement of police team, Superintendent of Police Harinarayanachari Mishra congratulated members of police team led by SHO of Garha police station, RP Tiwari, comprised of Sub Inspector, Aruna Vahane, ASI, Ram Kumar Marco, Head Constable, Rajesh Shukla, Santosh Pandey, Constables, Satish, Virendra, Ajay and Harshvardhan.

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Supreme Court upholds protection granted by HC to IOC staffer

The Supreme Court of India has upheld protection granted by the High Court (HC) to Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) employee. The bench consisting Justice J S Khehar and Justice Arun Mishra dismiss... Read More
The Supreme Court of India has upheld protection granted by the High Court (HC) to Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) employee. The bench consisting Justice J S Khehar and Justice Arun Mishra dismissed the special leave petition filed by IOC, challenging the protection granted to its employee Mahendra Kumar Hedaoo by Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court. Hedaoo was appointed in the year 1997 in IOC and was working at IOC situated at Virangram, Ahmedabad and his caste claim was referred to the caste scrutiny committee. The committee invalidated the same on November 13, 2013 and respondent IOC terminated the services of the petitioner on January 8, 2014. The division bench of Bombay High Court had stayed the termination and finally allowed the same and granted service protection. The High Court has held that the issue regarding question as to whether Halba Koshtis were entitled to benefits of scheduled tribe or not was under limbo for considerable time right from 1984 to 2000 when the constitution bench of the Apex Court on November 28, 2000 held that no alternation or modification is permissible in Presidential Order and as such Halba Koshtis are entitled to benefits of Scheduled Tribe and the Apex Court has held that such appointments and education degrees which are become final should not be disturbed. The High Court has held that the petitioner was continuously working with respondent since 1997 though petitioner’s appointment was subject to caste validity. But, since the petitioner worked for 18 years there was nothing brought on record to show that the petitioner’s services were adverse and not satisfactory and therefore find that the petitioner’s probationary period shall be deemed to be confirmed and will be continued as candidate who has completed and his probation and the petitioner’s initial appointment of the year 1997 stands protected. It is made clear that the petitioner would be entitled only for protection of his initial appointment and the petitioner shall be herein considered to be candidate belonging to open category for all purposes. Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi appeared for the Indian Oil Corporation while Adv Ram Parsodkar appeared for the employee.

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Nagpur property boom shifts to rural areas

After exceeding target for two consecutive years, stamp duty collection in Nagpur Division has dipped at the end of October this financial year. According to officials, the collection is almost... Read More
After exceeding target for two consecutive years, stamp duty collection in Nagpur Division has dipped at the end of October this financial year. According to officials, the collection is almost 10 per cent lesser than expected. The official data makes an interesting revelation that due to high property prices in Nagpur city, the demand for property is more in Nagpur Rural resulting in the latter area exceeding the target at the end of October itself.

Senior officers in the Department of Registration and Stamp Duty told ‘The Hitavada’ that the dip in collection could be attributed to a variety of reasons. However, they said, the main reason was slump in realty market. “High prices of properties has resulted in lesser number of documents getting registered,” said an officer. Further, he said, the increase in stamp duty collection targets has affected the recovery percentage.

As per the official figures, the stamp duty collection target was Rs 687 crore in 2013-14 for six districts of Nagpur Division. Later, with good recovery, the target was revised to Rs 920 crore. Against this, the actual recovery was Rs 929.43 crore. For the current year 2014-15, the department has given target of Rs 1,095 crore. Against this, the department has been able to collect stamp duty of Rs 498.06 crore. “Compared to the previous year, the collection this time also is good. However, the collection is 45.48 per cent of increased target. Despite increased target, the collection should have been at least 55 per cent of the target,” said an officer.

As far as district-wise figures are concerned, the highest target of Rs 839 crore is given to Nagpur city, where the collection till October is Rs 323.63 crore. This is 38.57 per cent of the target, lower than the Division average. Quite interestingly, the target of Rs 75 crore has been exceeded in Nagpur Rural at the end of October only. The collection of stamp duty is Rs 75.62 crore in Nagpur Rural. This also shows that the demand for property is shifting towards rural areas, with the prices sky-rocketing in Nagpur city. The scene is likely to turn better for property in rural parts of Nagpur, said the officer.

Among remaining four districts in Nagpur Division, stamp duty collection is better than the division average. Gadchiroli district, which had the lowest target of Rs 8 crore only, has already crossed the target. The stamp duty collection in Gadchiroli district, at the end of October, is Rs 8.55 crore. Sources said that this is on account of a single land deal in Chamorshi tehsil yielding stamp duty of over Rs 4.50 crore.

Maximum stamp duty payment through GRAS

Government Receipt Accounting System (GRAS), an e-payment system, has worked wonders for State Government as far as payment of stamp duty is concerned.

According to officials, the collection of stamp duty through GRAS has increased tremendously. In fact, maximum of the collection is through GRAS. As far as the current financial year is concerned, of a total Rs 498.06 crore stamp duty collected till October-end, a whopping Rs 441.66 crore has been collected through GRAS. Only Rs 56.40 crore has been collected through Department of Treasury.

Finance Department, Government of Maharashtra, has decided to receive payments electronically. GRAS is e-payment mode in addition to conventional methods of payment offered by the Government.

The system of accepting online payment of Maharashtra State’s Taxes through Internet portals of various banks has been developed, without having any implication on the existing procedure of the executive and accounting agencies of the department. GRAS is a 24x7 facility and citizen can make payment any time of the day. Online filling of single challan form facilitates minimum fields of the challan to be filled. Instant online receipts for payment made and instant online bank transaction number become available under the system. Further, one can pay personal taxes as well as on behalf of a firm, company, and others.

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Congress to stall House proceedings during winter session over ryots’ issue

Congress leadership said, it won’t let the House function during the winter session of State Legislature in city, unless the problems faced by farmers are resolved by the Maharashtra Governme... Read More
Congress leadership said, it won’t let the House function during the winter session of State Legislature in city, unless the problems faced by farmers are resolved by the Maharashtra Government.

Terming the performance of Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) as lackluster, Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) chief Manikrao Thakre said, the Congress is launching state-wide agitation beginning December 1 and culminating with massive morcha to Vidhan Bhawan on first day of winter session. The morcha is to attract attention of Government to plight of farmers and to demand a CBI probe in Javkhed massacre of Dalit family whose culprits are still at large. Farmers are in distress due to drought or poor rains and State Government is busy discussing whose support to take or how to muster majority while people and farmers in particular suffer. BJP leadership seems to have forgotten tall promises made during elections and are now backtracking on the same, he said while addressing a press conference in city on Sunday.

Thakre said, on December 1, Congress has organised dharnas at all tehsil places in State and later presentation of memorandum to Revenue officers, demanding compensation of Rs 25,000/Ha to farmers in non-irrigated areas and Rs 50,000/Ha to irrigated land holders to bail them out of present crisis. While major part of State is in grip of drought, the position of cotton and soyabean cultivators is not too good. For cotton the Government should provide guaranteed price of Rs 6,500 and since current price in market is below, the Government should bridge the gap.

Spelling out the action plan of Congress, which he claimed is real opposition in State, MPCC chief said, on December 4 ‘rasta roko’ agitation will be launched in Vidarbha and Marathwada if Government failed to accept their demands. Similarly, he said, Congress would not let the House function if farmers are not given aid package. He said that Congress Government had given aid package whenever farmers in State faced hard time and now its time for BJP Government to do the same.

On Javkhed killings, Thakre criticised Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis for not sparing time to visit the village where three people of Dalit family were brutally murdered. The police have failed to crack the case and hence State should hand over the probe to Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI). Also he took swipe at Governor for not visiting Javkhed.

BJP is trying to manufacture majority in the House during trust vote by trampling upon democratic norms, Thakre quipped. Former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan was also present at the press conference. He dubbed the BJP Government in Maharashtra as unconstitutional as it lacks majority. The procedure of voice vote for proving majority by BJP made mockery of democratic traditions and was also unconstitutional and gave reference of norms. He said, Governor’s directive were not followed by BJP and majority is proven by division of votes only.

Chavan urged Governor to direct BJP to prove its majority in a special session of Assembly or on first day of winter session in city. Normally, the leader of single largest party hands over list of supporting MLAs to Governor and then majority is proven by division of votes on floor of Assembly. But all these norms were given a go by in Maharashtra and hence Congress is keen on judicial intervention. Chavan also criticised Speaker Haribhau Bagade for changing the agenda on the day of trust vote without nod from the House and for unilaterally declaring that Government has won trust vote by voice vote.

Asked about suspension of its MLAs by Speaker, the former Chief Minister said, Congress legislators were within their democratic right to protest the unconstitutionality of Government and have done nothing wrong.

Chavan also feared that BJP may try to prove its majority by reducing the strength of Congress MLAs as Speaker-led committee is contemplating suspension of a few others for trying to prevent Governor from entering in the House on the day of trust vote. Chavan also said that the demand by Congress for video clip of House proceedings was not granted by the Speaker. Footage of the proceedings can bring out the truth, he said.

Asked about LBT issue, Chavan expressed surprise and said, why BJP has now backtracked from its promise and wondered whether it’s going to at all fulfill the promises made during the election. Bringing out discrepancy in statement of BJP leaders who are speaking in different voices on abolishing LBT, Chavan said, while Chief Minister Fadnavis stated that only after Goods and Services Tax is implemented the LBT would go, Union Surface Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari claimed that BJP Government would abolishing the tax within one month’s time.

Congress legislators including Deputy leader in House Vijay Wadettiwar, Virendra Jagtap, Abdul Sattar, Amar Kale, Rahul Bondre, ex-Ministers Dr Nitin Raut, Anees Ahmed, Rajendra Mulak, President of Nagpur City Congress Committee Vikas Thakre, corporator Prafull Gudadhe, Atul Kotecha and others were present.

‘Cong to move HC over trust vote procedure’

Former Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan hinted at approaching court against the procedure adopted by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to win the trust vote. Bombay High Court is currently hearing a bunch of public interest litigations (PILs) and Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee may join as intervener, but added that current we are holding discussion on the move, he further said. There is laid down procedure on seeking trust vote by minority Government and BJP did not follow the norms which is spelled out in S R Bommai case where nine-member constitutional bench of Supreme Court has spelled out guidelines.

Chavan further said the video of proceedings of House on trust vote day be submitted in court and also shown to people of Maharashtra and it would clear the things on our stand that BJP does not enjoy majority.

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Funds for Victim Compensation Scheme: HC seeks details from Principal Finance Secy

Responding to the public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Developing Intervention for Social Human Action (DISHA), Amravati, Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande at the High Court ... Read More
Responding to the public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Developing Intervention for Social Human Action (DISHA), Amravati, Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande at the High Court have directed the Principal State Finance Secretary to indicate in two weeks the details of and time frame for funds it would be making available for the Victim Compensation Scheme contemplated and formulated under Section 357(A) of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC).

The petitioner - NGO - is aggrieved as the respondent - State Government - has framed and gazetted the said scheme on April 11, 2014, but implementation has not started as required funds have not been provided for. The scheme has been framed by State Governor in co-ordination with the Central Government for providing funds for giving compensation to the victims or their dependents, who have suffered loss or injury as a result of of a crime and who require rehabilitation. It has been stated in the scheme that State Government shall allot a separate budget for the scheme every year.

The respondents including the State Law and Judiciary and Home Secretaries displayed inaction in the matter since the year 2009 till June, 2013 and the scheme was not even prepared. During pendency of preparing the scheme, the respondents have even not started functioning and passing interim orders under sub-sections (4), (5) and (6) of Section 357-A of the CrPC and also the decision taken by the Maharashtra Legal Services Authority on June 19, 2011 and communicated to all the District Legal Aid committees on July 6, 2011.

According to “DISHA”, at present, the scheme is mostly on paper. It is not functional yet. Government has not released funds by now to facilitate its implementation, which is to be monitored by the Maharashtra Legal Services Authority. The petitioner has prayed for directions to assure that the benefits flowing from the scheme reaches to the last victim of crime.

There is provision of payment up to Rs two lakh for loss of (each) life, up to Rs 50,000 for permanent disability and up to Rs three lakh for victim of acid-attack. Payment of extra amount up to Rs 2,000 for funeral expenses and up to Rs 15,000 for actual medical expenses incurred before death or on account of permanent disability. Advocate Tejeswini Khade appeared for uthe petitioner.

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CM assures to strive for justice to Gowaris

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Union Minister for Road Transport and Safety Nitin Gadkari and people from all walks of life on Sunday paid rich tributes to Gowari martyrs at the memorial at ... Read More
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Union Minister for Road Transport and Safety Nitin Gadkari and people from all walks of life on Sunday paid rich tributes to Gowari martyrs at the memorial at Zero Mile on Sunday. Thousands of Gowari community members from across State visited the memorial and paid homage to 114 martyrs, who died in the stampede 20 years ago.

Addressing a gathering after paying tributes, Fadnavis said that the condition of Gowari community was same after 20 years. The community, which had taken out a morcha to press the demands for getting facilities of tribals and lost 114 family members, are still struggling for better education and employment facilities. “I have received a number of memoranda today and will look into the every memorandum personally and do whatever possible for their for betterment,” Fadnavis assured.

Fadnavis further said that for a developed country all communities should be get opportunities in education and employment sectors and the State Government would make all efforts for achieving progress of Gowari community.

In his address, Gadkari said that he would make sincere efforts to solve problems of the community with the help of Chief Minister. Expressing 1994 stampede day as black day, he blamed the then Chief Minister Sharad Pawar for not coming at the venue and address the agitators. “The incident could have been avoided if the CM had come at the morcha venue,” said Gadkari. Informing about various Union Government’s skill development programmes, Gadkari said that the Government launched a scheme in which 4.7 crore people would be benefited. He asked members of the community to take the advantage of the scheme.

Member of Parliament Kripal Tumane, MLC Anil Sole, MLAs Krishna Khopde, Nana Shyamkule, Sudhakar Deshmukh, Vikas Kumbhare, Sudhakar Kohale, MLA Dr Anil Bonde, former state minister Anil Deshmukh, NCP City Unit Chief Ajay Patil and others also paid rich tribute at the memorial.

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BJP committed to statehood to Vidarbha: Nitin Gadkari

Union Minister for Surface Transport and Shipping Nitin Gadkari on Sunday reiterated that Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is committed for formation of separate state of Vidarbha. The party will r... Read More
Union Minister for Surface Transport and Shipping Nitin Gadkari on Sunday reiterated that Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is committed for formation of separate state of Vidarbha. The party will require 2/3 majority in the parliament to pass the bill and we appeal Congress party to support Government for this cause, he claimed. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is not averse to formation of Vidarbha, Gadkari asserted while making it clear that party has not given up its ideological commitment to form smaller states which are administratively viable.

Gadkari participated in panel discussion organised by VED at Banyan Hall, Chitnavis Centre on Sunday. TV anchor and journalist Rajdeep Sardesai co-ordinated the panel discussion. Former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan was present as guest speaker in the function.

In his inimitable style Gadkari responded to all the queries posed by Sardesai. Gadkari said, any region can not propser only by attaining statehood, but the leadership of the particular region should be committed to its development. In last several years, the leaders from Vidarbha failed in this task and are responsible for lack of development, he bluntly stated. The leaders of Vidarbha were busy in opening colleges but they were less committed for the development. However, BJP has passed the resolution in its national party meeting at Bhubaneshwar and we will try our level best for the formation of state, he stated. Gadkari strongly denied that Prime Minister Modi had opposed the demand to form Vidarbha. He said that Prime Minister was replying to allegation levelled by opposition parties that BJP wanted to separate Mumbai from Maharashtra. Modi never uttered a word opposing Vidarbha state, he clarified. He accused media for twisting meaning of Modi’s statement just to create a controversy.

Gadkari said that Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis met him on Sunday morning at his mahal residence. Fadnavis assured me to remove LBT in one month, he claimed. The media wrongly interpreted statement of Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, he clarified. He said, Maharashtra is lagging behind in every sector ranging from Agriculture, irrigation, and social and financial sectors. He said, from Prime Minister Irrigation Scheme funds will be made available for construction of canal. The BJP Government will make state load shedding free in next five years, he promised. The State Government sought loan for 5 lakh agricultural pumps under rural electrification scheme.

The Central Government has sanctioned projects worth of Rs 19,000 crore in last six months for Nagpur. He said, we will remove backlog of last 25 years in next five years from the region. He appreciated Fadnavis for providing electricity at nominal rates in MIHAN-SEZ.

Gadkari refused to comment on taking support of Shiv Sena in Maharashtra. He also denied any role of RSS in Government. He said, BJP does not have any dynasty politics and we did not include any leader’s son in the cabinet while justifying inclusion of Yashwant Sinha’s son Jayant Sinha purely on the basis of merit. He said, only transparency and amendment in old acts can eradicate corruption from the country. The people of the country are more intelligent and nowadays they express their frank and fearless views on social media, he added. He admitted that we never anticipated that we will get absolute majority in Lok Sabha elections. The people of the country voted for the development, he claimed.

Gadkari and Chavan released the book “ 2014 : The election that changed India” penned by Rajdeep Sardesai.

Pot-shots between Gadkari-Chavan add spice The function witnessed pot shots between guest speakers Gadkari-Chavan and Sardesai. On one occasion Chavan alleged that Fadnavis Government has failed to prove majority on the floor of the house and this government is unconstitutional. Gadkari challenged him to table bring no confidence motion against the BJP Government in the state in winter session.

When Sardesai asked whether BJP Government will file cases against corrupt politicians of NCP, Gadkari said that he had good relation with Uddhav Thackeray, Ajit Pawar, Narayan Rane, and Raj Thackeray but we will not spare any corrupt person, he added. Personal relationship will not come in way when tackling corruption, he stated.

When Chavan said, MIHAN and Metro decisions were taken by his government, Gadkari said, take out notings in the file that proves Fadnavis Government has taken decision to reduce electricity rates in MIHAN. On one occasion, Gadkari said, Rajdeep Sardesai you don’t know me but the people of Nagpur know me well. A speaker made unwarrented comments about personal life of Sardesai rather than speaking about the book.

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More trouble for PCC, one more resignation offered

State Congress continues to face troubles as one more leader offered resignation, levelling allegations against Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) chief Arun Yadav. On the other hand, fingers are... Read More
State Congress continues to face troubles as one more leader offered resignation, levelling allegations against Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) chief Arun Yadav. On the other hand, fingers are also being raised towards the financial transaction between PCC and Jawahar Bhawan Trust. In a fresh development, Alot Nagar Parishad president Munim Ramprasad wrote a letter to All India Congress Committee (AICC) president Sonia Gandhi offering resignation from the party and leveling allegations against Yadav. Earlier, several other party leaders had leveled allegations against the PCC pointing out bungling in ticket distribution for ensuing civic polls.

During the campaign trail for civil polls, PCC chief, in a public rally at Alot, had said that the corruption brewed up in Alot Nagar Parishad during past years.

Yadav camp has been saying that this was slip of tongue as PCC chief forgot that Alot Nagar Parishad was headed by the Congress. Yadav also ridiculed Nagar Parishad office-bearers, which belong to his own party. Yadav’s party mate Munim Ramprasad is now saying that how can he stay in a party where state chief was not aware for whom he has been campaigning for. Munim is considered close to former MP Premchand Guddu, who had recently resigned from his post expressing displeasure over ticket distribution.

Meanwhile, AICC had sent a chartered accountant for examining the transaction between PCC and Congress run Jawahar Bhawan Trust. It was alleged that over Rs 12 Lakh were withdrawn by the PCC from the Trust’s account. Earlier, the amount was reported at Rs 32 Lakh. It was learnt that a secret complaint regarding financial bungling was made by to AICC by disgruntled leaders. Now, it is reported that PCC had given this amount to Trust about ten years back. Now, he only took back this amount from the Trust.

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Drugs’ storekeepers to drag Govt to court over suspensionDrugs’ storekeepers to drag Govt to court over suspension

Question has been raised over sudden suspension of 19 districts hospital drugs storekeepers on Saturday by Public Health and Family Welfare Department’s Additional Director Shailbala Martin. ... Read More
Question has been raised over sudden suspension of 19 districts hospital drugs storekeepers on Saturday by Public Health and Family Welfare Department’s Additional Director Shailbala Martin. All suspended drugs storekeepers are understood to have decided to approach High Court, challenging health department’s order of suspending them on the very petty issue.

Two drugs storekeepers pleading anonymity said that what is the use of getting drugs tested by them when no action will be on the base of their drugs testing report?. The health department has already issued orders to all districts’ Chief Medical and Health Officer (CMHOs) and district hospital Civil Surgeons that they had to make drugs manufacturing companies payment within 15 days of receiving drugs anyhow – on the basis of the companies’ drugs testing reports. The CMHOs and Civil Surgeons pay the companies as per Government directives. Last year’ some CMHOs and hospital Civil Surgeons did not make payment and waited the reports of the drugs they had got tested. Companies complained delay in payment to the department, the senior health officers on the basis of such complaints had rapped the CMHOs and Civil Surgeons.

“ Earlier , some drugs storekeepers had told the CMHOs and Civil Surgeons of substandard drugs of the companies but the company drugs assignment attached drugs testing report was good, both the CMHOs and Civil Surgeons had ignored testing report by the drugs storekeepers, they said on anonymity.

It is learnt that despite 147 drugs’ poor quality proved in state capital’ Central Drugs Testing lab, the Government did not change its order of payment to the drugs companies within 15 days of receiving drugs on the basis of company test report. No assistant to the drugs storekeepers

Sources said that the drugs store keepers in district hospitals have not been given an assistant. Only one fourth class employee has been attached with the store who cannot writing work. The health dept told them to sent drugs for testing in three days.

According to some drugs storekeepers, it is not possible them to send drugs in three days of receiving drugs. The department does not understand practical problem. Usually courier companies deny if there is liquid drugs or any sensitive drugs, anyhow they are pursued by giving some additional money but it is not possible all the time.

Many efforts were made to contact Shailbala Martine on phone but could not be contacted for comments.

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Professor couple dupes college of Rs 12 lakh

A professor couple illegally withdrew Rs 12.50 lakh from the bank account of Mansarovar Dental College in the Kolar road area of State capital. Kolar Police have registered a case against the acc... Read More
A professor couple illegally withdrew Rs 12.50 lakh from the bank account of Mansarovar Dental College in the Kolar road area of State capital. Kolar Police have registered a case against the accused.

According to police, Dr Vinay Kumar was acting principal of Mansarovar Dental College from 2011 to 2013 while his wife Dr Vinita Bhandari was professor in the same college. As the Chairman of the college was suffering from cancer he gave financial power to then Principal Dr Kumar and left for abroad for his treatment. Dr Vinay Kumar along with his wife withdrew cash from the bank account of the college from March 16, 2012 till December 10, 2013. Initially no one was able to know about the illegal withdrawal from the bank account but once the matter surfaced, the accused couple left the institution together. On the complaint of Administrative Officer of Mansarovar Dental College Abhay Shukla, a case has been lodged against accused couple. Police have registered a case of fraud against the accused couple under sections of IPC. Police have initiated investigation in the matter. None of the accused was arrested till the filing of report. Meanwhile, a 32-year-old married woman has lodged a complaint against her husband and in-laws for harassing for dowry. Hema Yadav, 32, wife of Vivek Naagar is a resident of Bagh Mugaliya. She got married to Naagar, a resident of Nikhil Homes but the accused started harassing her for dowry. The accused was later joined by his family members and they demanded Rs 10 lakh cash and a four-wheeler as dowry from the victim woman. Police have registered a case of dowry harassment against accused husband Vivek his father Dinesh and mother Pushpa.

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Timing of schools in State capital to change from today

With onset of winter season, CBSE and ICSE schools of the city are set to change their school timings from Monday. However, few schools have already changed their schedule while some schools will... Read More
With onset of winter season, CBSE and ICSE schools of the city are set to change their school timings from Monday. However, few schools have already changed their schedule while some schools will allow the new timing from December first week.

Though the winter vacations for schools will start December 24 onwards and will go on till January second week. Most of the missionary schools will start their campuses at 8 am from December first week. Central Schools have also sought permission from senior authorities and district collector to change the timing. The new timing of Central School will be at 8 am from December first week. Earlier these schools were running from 7.15 am.

Vikram School has changed its timing from 7 am to 8 am on November 16, International Public School (IPS) changed its timing from 7.30 to 8 am on November 17, Mount Forte School changed its timing from 7.15 am to 8 am on November 17, Delhi Public School (DPS) changed it timing from 7.40 am to 8 am on November 17, Jawahar Primary Wing changed its schedule from 7.45 am to 8.15 am on November 17 while its senior secondary classes have been changed from 7.30 am to 8 am on November 17, Anand Vihar School changed its timing from 7.30 to 8 am on November 17 and Maharashi Vidya Mandir (Ratanpur) changed its timing from 7.40 am to 8 am on November 21.

Schools like St Xavier and Sagar Public School is changing its timing from Monday onwards. The new timing of both schools will be 8 am. Hema Higher Secondary School, Campion School (Arera Colony) and Kendriya Vidyalayas are changing timing from December. The new timing of Hema Hr Sc School (December 1) will be 8 am, Campion School (December 4) will be 8.15 am and KV will be 8 am.

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No pugmarks found, Forest Deptt deploys special squad in Samardha range

Active movement of wild animals in Samardha range is becoming a big concern for villagers but unfortunately, the State Forest Department is yet to get any pugmarks on the area. Reportedly, the St... Read More
Active movement of wild animals in Samardha range is becoming a big concern for villagers but unfortunately, the State Forest Department is yet to get any pugmarks on the area. Reportedly, the State Forest Department officials met the villager in Hamidia Hospital on Sunday who was admitted with grave injuries on head by tiger attack .However as the movements of other animals like wild bear, wild boar is also active in the area it is becoming difficult for the forest department officials to locate the and identify the pugmarks .As per the relatives of the villager the attack was by tiger only and the movement of tigress and cubs have also been very prominent in this area .

Recently, due to the increase in human-animal conflict in the region, the villagers are in terror as mainly attack is in afternoon and evening hours when they take cattle for grazing in the region. The special team deployed in the region has also been provided with gum boots, sweater and other necessary equipments considering winter season in the area. Officially, the attack done by tiger is yet to be confirmed though special squad deployed in the region has started for looking for the pug marks Last month, a cow was killed by the tigress in the region. The wildlife activist had also pointed out that since active movements of tigers is being reported from this region quite often, the poachers have also become active. Besides this, the Special Tiger protection force has not been constituted by the State Forest department to curb poaching .As per the directives issued in the year 2009 the central government is also proving the financial assistance to constitute the Special Tiger protection force, they have highlighted earlier.

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Dr Sharma’s termination in web of controversy

Controversy erupted following the orders terminating the services of suspended Health Director, Dr Ashok Sharma as the department’s minister not only expressed ignorance over the development bu... Read More
Controversy erupted following the orders terminating the services of suspended Health Director, Dr Ashok Sharma as the department’s minister not only expressed ignorance over the development but reportedly, also took the issue to the Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.

It was said that before issuing service termination orders of Dr Ashok Sharma, suspended about three years back, Principal Secretary, Health, Praveer Krishn did not have necessary approval of the Chief Minister and Health Minister that was needed in case of a severe action on class one officer of any Government department. When the media raised this issue of ignoring departmental minister by a Principal Secretary, he suddenly reached city, leaving local body election meetings at Chambal region to enquire Principal Secretary Praveer Krishn on Dr Sharma’s service termination order.

When some mediapersons had asked Narottam Mishra, Health Minister whether Principal Secretary, Health had brought matter of Dr Sharma’s service termination into his knowledge before issuing orders, he answered in the negative. Dr Ashok Sharma, former Health Director had said that the court had already given stay order on any action against him on matter of irregularities in Pandit Deendayal Mobile hospitals. The Government has not yet vacated the stay so the service termination orders was not as per rule. “I will approach the court, challenging the Government order,” he said.

When contacted, Praveer Krishn, Principal Secretary, Health, said that everything circulated in media was false about service termination order of Dr Ashok Sharma.

“Chief Minister and Health Minister both, have been made aware about this action. It is simply departmental action and whatever I have done is keeping in mind all rules and regulations and it is right,” he said. Many efforts were made to contact Narottam Mishra, Health Minister but he did not respond to phone calls.

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Land records gutted in fire at Collectorate

Documents in record room of Collectorate caught fire on Sunday morning. Many important documents, including land records of several villages under Bhopal Collectorate, were consumed by the fire. ... Read More
Documents in record room of Collectorate caught fire on Sunday morning. Many important documents, including land records of several villages under Bhopal Collectorate, were consumed by the fire. Four fire tenders of Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) were deployed for dousing the fire. It took over an hour to control the fire. According to information, even after 30 minutes had passed since the documents caught fire, still no one was able to enter the record room due to smoke. It is worth mentioning that record rooms do not have windows due to which it caused much trouble in dousing the fire. The new record room was developed near the canteen in Collectorate. Around 11 am, people noticed smoke coming out of the room after which senior officers were informed. Fire tenders immediately rushed to the spot.

By the time fire tenders doused the fire, documents related to land records and revenue court decisions were gutted.

According to Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) Fire Officer Sajid Khan, it took more time to douse the fire as no windows except for door was available for entry. While other officers of Collectorate told that since no windows were constructed in the record room, it took more time to douse the fire. Power supply was also disrupted for dousing the fire.

According to information, land records of three villages- Misrod, Chichli and Semri had gutted. Collectorate officials are claiming that the loss of documents would be known after checking of all the records. Officials are also claiming that the record of these villages would be recovered by other sources too. Bhopal Collector Nishant Warwade, who is presently out of town, told mediapersons that all the records would be checked and gutted records would be recovered.

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Stagecraft Adda: Eight amazing short plays bring funny Friday for fans

Stagecraft Adda has come of age. Having seen the presentations for some time now, one has been a witness to their ‘growing years’, their teething problems and today what they presented, was... Read More
Stagecraft Adda has come of age. Having seen the presentations for some time now, one has been a witness to their ‘growing years’, their teething problems and today what they presented, was beyond adolescence age, a professional job that deserved the loud applause each one got.

The plays were staged under the aegis of Stagecraft Theatre, Persistent Systems Limited and Nirzar Film Society at the Kavi Kalidas Hall of Persistent Systems Limited. There were eight short plays like ‘Business as usual’ directed by Anuj Hamilton that had a cast comprising Anuj Hamilton, Ketaki Kane Salankar, Sonal Trivedi, Swati Sani, Aryan Acharya and Pratiksha Ganvir.

The story dealt with the usual deadline oriented work in an advertising agency and a dumb Secretary making it difficult for the Boss. Anuj, Ketaki and Sonal stole the thunder.

The play ‘Exiting’ Directed by Anamika Sawarkar was a classic presentation and had Raveesh Jaiswal and Onkar Ghare, two employees of a firm who happened to meet for the first time in a lift, leading to opening a can of worms leading to revealing of identities of the sacked men who happened to be the ones in the lift. Superb acting by both the individuals with equally fascinating yet typical interlude of office goers had a rollicking effect on the audience who enjoyed every bit of it.

Play ‘Adhoori Cigarette’ was another fine bit of presentation directed by Swati Sani and written by Nandan Majumdar. It had two top actors Raveesh Jaiswal and Sonal Trivedi dishing out performances that were truly sensitive and great. Play ‘Devoid’, directed by Gurnoor Bedi was good but what lacking was the volume in the dialogue delivery. The actors Vinay Pande, Leonard Naidu and Rachit Khetan performed well but seemed to speak amongst themselves. Play ‘The Usual Date’ directed by Pranjala Chauhan was quite entertaining and it was good acting by Onkar Ghare, Leonard Naidu and Shruti Ringe in order of merit that did it.

‘Face value’ directed by Vinay Pande had an unusual story of a unkept stranger who is mistaken to be a street hag and who reveals his true identity by his noble deed of returning a lady’s lost purse. Promod Naidu and Pranjala Chauhan deserve a pat on their back. ‘Choti Si Khwahish’ was superb story as it dealt with today’s parent child conflict where the child is being thrust upon with a career line it does not want to take and causes mental agony to the tender soul and how the single parent realises her folly and rectifies it in time. Arushi Thapar, once again showed her class in her performance as the student, while Ketaki Kane Salankar and Swati Sani played their part well. Play ‘Date Night’ directed by Perizad Major and written by Bianca Nazareth Arya was based on a young available girl all excited about her blind date, performed brilliantly by Anamika Sawarkar. The experimental theatre introduced by Guru Vikash Khurana is showing promising results and his bunch of dedicated performers make audiences feel assured of some good performances in the days ahead. N Y Sharma was the anchor who had some of the choicest of ‘Sher-O-Shayari’ for each presentation.

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Speedy justice: On HC order, cops remove seal from petitioners’ godown in an hour

Two brothers from Mominpura -- Afsar Khan and Akhtar Khan -- who deal in scraps, and have been feeling completely helpless and at their wit’s end for last over 6 months before the deaf and me... Read More
Two brothers from Mominpura -- Afsar Khan and Akhtar Khan -- who deal in scraps, and have been feeling completely helpless and at their wit’s end for last over 6 months before the deaf and merciless Wadi Police. Reason: The cops had seized four vehicles loaded with materials for trade belonging to them and sealed their godown at 13, Khadegaon Road, Ward No. 14 in Wadi area, on May 5, 2014. The cops, after the action, were paying no heed to several representation made by the scrap-dealers. At last, the duo could get justice at the speed of lightening and within one hour of hearing of their criminal writ petition. Due to High Court’s intervention, police have to eat humble pie and remove wax seal on the godown and release seized goods to the petitioners.

The action of seizure of goods and sealing of the godown was initiated by the cops on the ground that the material on the vehicles was “stolen goods”. Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice V M Deshpande asked two Wadi Police officers to remain personally present before them to explain under which legal provision they had acted in such a brazen manner and till date, though more than 6 months have passed and nobody coming forward and claiming ownership of those goods as stolen from him, why they did not undo the injustice done by them.

Quite angry, the Court directed the police to remove seals from the godown and release the seized goods within one hour and report compliance to the Court after the lunch recess, which was duly done and the Court satisfied with the job well done, disposed of the criminal writ petition after the petitioner confirmed this statement by the APP Rajesh Nayak on behalf of the Police.

Firm challenges declassification: HC issues notices to Labour Secy, others

Justice Vasanti Naik and Justice C V Bhadang at the High Court have, in response to the writ petition filed by M/s Power Mechs Limited, Hyderabad/Koradi, Nagpur, issued notice to the respondents - State Labour Secretary, Asst Commissioner of Labour, Mahagenco and M/s Larsen and Toubro, Koradi to show cause in reply to the petitioner’s contentions, by December 3 next in respect of wrong change in classification of the petitioner from engineering to “employment on the construction or maintenance of road or construction related industry activity.”

The petitioner is worried as due to this classification, the rates of wages due and payable to all technical and skill labour employed by the petitioner have drastically increased. This caused adverse impact on the finances of the company as impugned decision is not based on any settled position of law. In the special allowances notification wages wise, the petitioner will go up from No. 19 to No. 11. Adv S G Zinjarde appeared for the petitioner. AGP Ketki Joshi (State), Adv Mohgaonkar (Mahagenco) and Shantanu Ghate (L&T) represented the respondents.

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State Govt to launch time-bound plan for completion of pending projects

Maharashtra Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao, on Friday, and took stock of various issues including functioning of Statutory Development Boards, tribal development, and addressing the regional disparity ... Read More
Maharashtra Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao, on Friday, and took stock of various issues including functioning of Statutory Development Boards, tribal development, and addressing the regional disparity in development. It is learnt that the proposal to constitute a Task Force for speedier and time-bound completion of pending projects, also was discussed in the meeting.

Ch Vidyasagar Rao chaired a meeting that was attended by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and his cabinet colleagues including Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar. A wide range of issues including those related to development, particularly of backward regions of Vidarbha and Marathwada were discussed. The deliberations centred around functioning of Statutory Development Boards, issues related to tribal development, higher education and Swachh Bharat Abhiyan etc. Top bureaucrats also attended the meeting that was held at Raj Bhavan, Mumbai.

Governor, who has special role to protect interests of backward regions, also asked the Government to speed up the process of removal of backlog in irrigation sector in Amravati Division. In irrigation sector, physical backlog of Vidarbha is ever-mounting and the region is deprived of its irrigation potential due to unholy nexus between contractors and their political masters. Even the legally binding directives issued by the Governor have been flouted brazenly by Governments in last one decade and only financial backlog has been eradicated while physical backlog persists. Addressing the conclave, Rao observed than more than 150 TMC ft of water from Godavari river basin in the State had not been utilised fully. He asked the Government to take steps to harness the water fully for the benefit of farmers.

It is gathered that the Government is mulling over a proposal to form a Task Force for speedier and time-bound completion of pending projects in backward regions. In his address to the State Legislature earlier this month, Ch Vidyasagar Rao had dropped enough hint in this regard. He had said, “The Government will launch a time-bound plan for speedy implementation of various pending projects with special emphasis on addressing the regional disparity in the State.” The Government proposal is in tune with this. The Governor had also stated that the State required huge investments for completing many on-going projects in the areas of irrigation, transportation, and basic infrastructure. He had also stressed the need to reorient public expenditure, eliminate revenue deficit, and make more resources available for investment in capital assets.

Representation to Vidarbha in Govt jobs discussed

The meeting also discussed mechanism to provide deserving and adequate representation to Vidarbha and Marathwada regions in employment in services under the control of the State Government and opportunities for admission to vocational education institutions.

As per the data compiled by Vidarbha Statutory Development Board (VSDB) Expert Member Adv Madhukar Kimmatkar, only 9.87 per cent employment opportunity has been given to Vidarbha region, while 50 per cent posts have been bagged by those from Pune Division, 10 per cent from Nashik, and 6 per cent from Konkan region. Total 66.93 per cent jobs were given to Rest of Maharashtra while Marathwada got only 23 per cent jobs, Amravati Division got 7 per cent jobs, and Nagpur Division got only 2.67 per cent jobs.

Even the former Chairman of Maharashtra Public Service Commission (MPSC) Sudhir Thakre had written a letter in this regard to the Governor. Social activist Nitin Ronghe also had submitted a memorandum in this regard to Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao during the latter’s recent visit to Nagpur.

Observing that none of the State’s universities featured in ‘Top 200’ in the world, the Governor, who is also Chancellor of universities, called for efforts to improve the standard of higher education and research in varsities. He also emphasised on the need to have a Development Committee while implementing various initiatives pertaining to school education and other sectors.

Discussion on functioning of Statutory Devpt Boards

Further action on Dr Vijay Kelkar Committee report on balanced regional development, also was discussed in the high-level meeting. Various issues related to this also came up for discussion. Extended term of Statutory Development Board is expiring in April 2015, and it was discussed briefly whether to continue the Boards or not.

When the Kelkar Committee was appointed, cutting across party lines, leaders from Vidarbha had strongly opposed the basic premise of the panel. The previous Government had tried to change the nature of backlog discourse by appointing Dr Kelkar Committee to suggest mechanism to ensure balanced development and change all existing parameters to calculate backlog. However, the report was never made public and presuming pro-Western Maharashtra tilt, there was a growing demand to reject the finding. With the new Government headed by Devendra Fadnavis assuming office, Vidarbha region is naturally expecting a much better deal and sanctity of all Constitutional mechanisms.

Vidarbha which was merged into Maharashtra in 1960 by the then leadership ignoring recommendations of First States Reorganisation Commission (SRC), remained backward owing to consistent neglect of developmental needs. After Dr Dandekar Committee quantified backlog, measures undertaken failed to wipe out ever-mounting backlog. Finally, the President of India constituted Statutory Development Boards, but even this experiment has hardly succeeded fully in its purpose.

The Boards constituted by the Governor from time-to-time act as advisory bodies. Among other functions, the Boards assess the impact of various development efforts in removing regional imbalance and in achieving overall growth. According to a point of view, Statutory Development Boards failed to remove backlog and became toothless watchdogs. In case of Vidarbha, after much pressure, the then Government made financial allocations. Though the backlog continued and even increased in physical terms, the Government declared that the financial backlog was removed in case of Vidarbha except for some part of Amravati Division.

Against this backdrop, with the extended term of Statutory Development Boards expiring in April 2015, the initiation of discussion on functioning of the Boards assumes significance. The discussion will continue in coming months also.

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Unruly scenes mar DBA meet over polls

Unruly scenes, wordy duel which ultimately led to physical attack on a lawyer, marred the meeting of District Bar Association (DBA) on Friday afternoon. DBA Secretary Manoj Sable sustained minor in... Read More
Unruly scenes, wordy duel which ultimately led to physical attack on a lawyer, marred the meeting of District Bar Association (DBA) on Friday afternoon. DBA Secretary Manoj Sable sustained minor injuries and also rushed to lodge complaint with Sadar Police against fellow executive committee members. This free for all between DBA office-bearers has sent shock waves among legal fraternity with senior lawyers strongly disapproving of such rowdy behaviour by handful of lawyers bringing disgrace to profession.

It all started when the DBA Executive Committee was discussing the issue of holding the election and about updating the electoral rolls, which is subject matter of great controversy.

The present DBA Executive Body headed by Sudeep Jaiswal has already completed its term, but still no elections were held due to a controversial decision to freeze electoral list for members enrolled upto November 2013.

However, a majority of the members were aghast with this decision and election committee headed by Adv P K Mishra has already decided to update the voters list. But suddenly the elections were postponed by the present DBA committee to seek guidance of the general body.

During the meeting, tempers run high as Sable and many others wanted to overturn the decision, but President Sudeep Jaiswal and his supporters opposed any such move. Soon the situation went out of control and some members stopped DBA Secretary Sable from speaking and used abusive and insulting language against him. It lead to heated altercation and Sable was physically assaulted and he sustained injuries. Shocked and astonished by this unruly behaviour, Sable went to Sadar police and identified Joint Secretary Adv Randive and others as persons who assaulted him. After much persuasion, the complaint was withdrawn, and DBA tried to downplay this unpleasant episode which remained hot topic of discussion in legal fraternity.

Initially, DBA president denied any such incident, but later conceded that this unfortunate incident did take place. He squarely blamed Sable for provoking and slapping fellow lawyer due to which others hit back, Jaiswal claimed.

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No shortage of funds for Gorewada zoo, says CM

After decentralising powers to transfer junior officers in Water Resources Department and Food and Drugs Administration, Maharashtra Government will adopt similar policy in case of Forest Departm... Read More
After decentralising powers to transfer junior officers in Water Resources Department and Food and Drugs Administration, Maharashtra Government will adopt similar policy in case of Forest Department also.

In a meeting held at Sahyadri Guest House in Mumbai on Friday, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis reiterated that there would be no shortage of funds for expediting the work of ambitious Gorewada zoo project of international standard, according to Mantralaya sources.

Chief Minister was addressing a meeting called to review activities of Forest Department. He presided over the meeting.

Forest Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar and authorities concerned were present in it. At the meeting, forest officers made power presentation on priorities, progress, challenges before the department and provided required information to the Chief Minister. Fadnavis also discussed about forwarding the zoo’s master plan for approval to Central Zoo Authority and getting viability gap funding of Rs 183.63 crore from the Centre for this project.

Meanwhile, addressing a Meet-The-Press programme held in Nagpur recently, Fadnavis had assured that the government would allot Rs 27 crore required for completion of rescue centre, an integral part of Gorewada zoo project and that he would ensure early completion of this project for tourists.

When contacted, Mungantiwar told ‘The Hitavada’ that the government would allot funds to Gorewada zoo project as and when required for its completion. He said that the government has also decided to decentralise the power to transfer officers and employees of the department. The government would also implement this policy in phases in other government departments. It has decided to focus attention on achieving development activities and it would stand solidly behind the officers/employees performing good job, he added.

The sources pointed out that the Chief Minister said that his government would concentrate on achieving development of forests in the State with a view to boosting the present revenue of Rs 150 crore to Rs 200 crore. He expressed confidence in view of Mungantiwar, who also holds portfolio of Finance, the financial problems of Forest Department could be solved early to help speed up the development activities.

There are as many as 45,000 villages in the State of out of them 15,500 mainly depend on forests. An average of two crore mandays employment opportunity is generated from forest area and that highlighted importance of the department, said Fadnavis. While briefing Chief Minister, officers informed that 29 villages in Gadchiroli district had been given collective rights, where they had collected and auctioned bamboo bundles and earned income of Rs 15.60 crore.

Stressing importance of people’s participation in conservation of flora and fauna, the Chief Minister mentioned that it would help in progress of forests. The meeting also discussed issues like boosting eco-tourism by preserving bio-diversity, massive tress plantation programme to achieve the target of bringing 33 per cent forest cover of the geographical area of Maharashtra, providing employment opportunities to the tribals, giving status to tiger-centric tourism in Vidarbha, priority to mitigation of man-animal conflict, reducing load on jungle, forest fires, illicit tree felling, encroachments on forest lands, Joint Forest Management, sorting out pending cases, implementation of Forest Rights Act etc.

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CM lights up MIHAN-SEZ; power supply resumes at Rs 4.39/unit

Yes there is light at the end of tunnel. Finally, the power woes at the prestigious MIHAN-SEZ have come to an end with newly-elected Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis resolving the ... Read More
Yes there is light at the end of tunnel. Finally, the power woes at the prestigious MIHAN-SEZ have come to an end with newly-elected Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis resolving the issue. Power will be supplied uninterruptedly to industries in MIHAN-SEZ from the midnight of November 21, 2014 and that too for concessional rate of Rs 4.39 per unit.

Fadnavis has promised to find a solution to this long-pending demand of industries which set up units in MIHAN-SEZ and were finding it difficult to pay the astronimcal rate of Rs 10.50 per unit and prevailing uncertainty about pow