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Andhra Pradesh

8 die as cyclone Titli batters Andhra, Odisha coast

A very severe cyclonic storm, Titli, unleashed havoc in north coastal Andhra Pradesh and south coastal Odisha on Thursday, claiming eight lives in Andhra and causing widespread destruction, officials said.

 
Cyclone Titli makes landfall in Odisha, Andhra Pradesh
A very severe cyclonic storm, Titli, unleashed havoc in north coastal Andhra Pradesh and south coastal Odisha on Thursday, claiming eight lives in Andhra and causing widespread destruction, officials said.
 
The cyclone, which made landfall between Andhra Pradesh and Odisha early on Thursday, triggered widespread rains in the two states, uprooted trees, electricity poles, communication towers, damaged houses and crops and snapped electricity supply.
 
Srikakulam and Vijayanagaram districts of Andhra Pradesh were affected by the cyclone, which hit the coast near Palasa close to the border with Odisha. Srikakulam district bore the brunt as the strong winds uprooted a large number of coconut trees.
 
Officials said five deaths were reported from Srikakulam district while three persons were killed in neighbouring Vijayanagaram district. Six fishermen were among the dead.
 
According to the Visakhapatnam Cyclone Warning Centre, Titli crossed between North Andhra and South Odisha coast near Palasa with wind speed of 140-150 km per hour.
 
Parts of the two Andhra districts received heavy rainfall triggered by the cyclone. A few places in Srikakulam district got over 20 cm rainfall, flooding the low-lying areas and roads.
 
Uprooted trees fell on the roads, disrupting vehicular traffic. The state-owned road transport corporation suspended all bus services on the Andhra-Odisha border area.
 
Several trains were cancelled or diverted due to the cyclone.
 
According to East Coast Railway, railway stations were damaged at several places. The station at Palasa suffered massive damage. Teams of railway officials were studying the impact of cyclone between Palasa and Brahmpur.
 
Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu reached Visakhapatnam on Thursday evening and left for Srikakulam by road to review the situation.
 
Titli triggered heavy rainfall in eight districts in Odisha. However, there was no loss of life in the state.
 
Heavy rains lashed Ganjam, Gajapati, Khurda, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak and Balasore districts as Titli left behind uprooted trees and displaced three lakh people.
 
Odisha is facing a possible flood in its coastal belt on Thursday, an official said.
 
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said that heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places and extremely heavy rainfall at isolated places were very likely in Odisha in the next 24 hours.
 
"We believe that the entire state, except some western parts, is likely to receive rain throughout the day. Depending upon the rainfall, we may see some flood in coastal Odisha. However, there is no flood-like situation as of now," said Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi.
 
"There may be flooding of the Vansadhara river as Gajapati and Rayagada districts received heavy rainfall due to the cyclone," he added.
 
The officer said that Gajapati district, which was most affected, received more than 200 mm of rainfall while Mohana block in the district received the maximum rainfall of 315 mm.
 
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday reviewed the cyclone situation.
 
Around three lakh people have been evacuated in the coastal state and 1,112 relief camps set up for the evacuees. As many as 105 pregnant women in Ganjam and 18 in Jgatsinghpur were shifted to hospitals.
 
All schools, colleges and anganwadis would remain closed on Thursday and Friday. Trees have been uprooted in large numbers in the coastal belt.
 
The system is very likely to move northwestwards for next 12 hours and then re-curve northeastwards towards Gangetic West Bengal across Odisha.
 
The coastal alert has been put at 10 -- the highest with fishermen prohibited from venturing into the sea for the next few days.
 
IANS
 

Five dead as truck collides with Bangalore-Nanded Express in Anantapur district

Five people, including a member of the Karnataka Legislative Assembly, died when a truck laden with granite crashed through the gate of a manned level crossing and rammed into the Bangalore City-Nanded Express in Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh in the early hours of Monday.

 
Five dead after truck rams into Bangalore-Nanded Express in Anantpur
 
Five people, including a member of the Karnataka Legislative Assembly, died when a truck laden with granite crashed through the gate of a manned level crossing and rammed into the Bangalore City-Nanded Express in Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh in the early hours of today.
 
Those killed in the incident included three passengers of the train, a railway AC mechanic, who was travelling in the AC I coach which bore the brunt of the collision, and the driver of the truck, South Western Railway and Anantapur police officials told NetIndian.
 
The victims included senior Congress leader A Venkatesh Naik, 79, four-time member of the Lok Sabha from Raichur in Karnataka and the current member of the state legislative assembly from Devadurg constituency, they said.
 
At least three other people suffered injuries in the mishap, which occurred at around 2.23 am when the 16594 Bangalore City – Nanded Express was crossing the level crossing gate number 77 between Rangepalli and Penukonda stations on the Dharmavaram section of Bangalore Division of South Western Railway.
 
The officials said the driver of the truck appeared to have lost control over the vehicle and it crashed through the level crossing gate and hit the train.
 
Four coaches of the train -- an AC I coach (H1), an AC III coach (B1) and two sleeper coaches (S1 and S2) derailed due to the impact of the collision.
 
Top railway officials, police and district administration officials have rushed to the scene of the mishap and efforts were being made to restore normal traffic on the affected station.
 
As a consequence of the accident, the Railways have diverted the following trains to run on alternate routes:
 
1. Train No. 17308 Bagalkot – Mysore Basava Express which left Bagalkot on 23.08.2015 is diverted to run via Bellary, Raidurg.
2. Train No. 12735 Secunderabad – Yesvantpur Garibrath Express which left Secunderabad on 23.08.2015 is diverted to run via Bellary, Raidurg.
3. Train No. 18463 Bhubaneswar – Bangalore Prasanthi Express which left Bhubaneswar on 23.08.2015 is diverted to run via Bellary, Raidurg.
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4. Train No. 12252 Korba - Yesvantpur Express which left Korba on 23.08.2015 is diverted to run via Bellary, Raidurg.
5. Train No. 16339 Mumbai CSTM – Nagercoil Express which left Mumbai on 23.08.2015 is diverted to run via Gooty, Renigunta.
6. Train No. 17603 Kacheguda - Yesvantpur Express which left Kacheguda on 23.08.2015 is diverted to run via Gooty, Renigunta.
7. Train No. 12628 New Delhi – Bangalore Karnataka Express which left New Delhi on 22.08.2015 is diverted to run via Bellary, Raidurg.
8. Train No. 12785 Kacheguda - Bangalore Express which left Kacheguda on 23.08.2015 is diverted to run via Dharmavaram, Pakala, Katpadi.
9. Train No. 12591 Gorakhpur - Yesvantpur Express which left Gorakhpur on 22.08.2015 is diverted to run via Dharmavaram, Pakala, Katpadi.
10. Train No. 22692 H.Nizamuddin – Bangalore Rajadhani Express which left Hazarat Nizamuddin on 22.08.2015 is diverted to run via Dharmavaram, Pakala, Katpadi.
11. Train No. 11301 Mumbai CSTM - Bangalore Express which left Mumbai on 23.08.2015 is diverted to run via Dharmavaram, Pakala, Katpadi.
12. Train No. 22133 Solapur - Yesvantpur Express which left Solapur on 23.08.2015 is diverted to run via Dharmavaram, Pakala, Katpadi.
13. Train No. 16572 Bidar - Yesvantpur Express which left Bidar on 23.08.2015 is diverted to run via Dharmavaram, Pakala, Katpadi.
 
The Railways have set up the following helplines:
 
Bangalore City Railway Station: 080 22354108, 09731666751, 080 22156553
Bangalore Cantonment: 080 2333 9163, 
Hindupur Station: 08556220444
Penukonda Station: 0855220244
Dharmavaram Station: 08559224422
Accident spot: 09701374062, 09493548005, 09448090399, 00873-763945549
Anantapur :- 09100992941, 09676903449; 08554-236444
Dharmavaram: - 08559-222555
Guntakal:- 09676903466
Yadgir:- 078999300084; 08473250365
Tandur:- 08411-272010
Vikarabad:- 08416-252013 
Bidar:- 08482-226329
Parli:-02446-222008
Nanded:- 09730471077
 
 
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Kiran Reddy quits as Andhra Pradesh CM day after LS passes Telangana Bill

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy announced his resignation on Wednesday in protest against the decision of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance Government at the Centre to go ahead with its decision to carve out Telangana from Andhra Pradesh as the 29th state of the Union.

Andhra Pradesh CM Kiran Reddy resigns, quits Congress
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy announced his resignation today in protest against the decision of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government at the Centre to go ahead with its decision to carve out Telangana from Andhra Pradesh as the 29th state of the Union.
 
Mr Reddy handed in his papers to Governor E S L Narasimhan a day after, amid noisy schenes, the Lok Sabha passed the Andhra Pradesh Reorganization Bill, which seeks to bifurcate the state to create the new state of Telangana.
 
Before driving down to Raj Bhavan to submit his resignation, Mr Reddy addressed a press conference at which he hit out at his Congress party for allegedly flouting Parliamentary procedures in its haste to get the Bill passed.
 
"I am ashamed. They did it like thieves, blacking out the live telecast. What was the need to do all this?" he asked.
 
Thanking the party for giving him the chance to serve as Chief Minister, he, however, made it clear that he could not continue in the Congress because, according to hi, it had betrayed the Telugu people.
 
He said he would also resign as a member of the Legislative Assembly as well as from the membership of the Congress.
 
Mr Reddy said the Congress and the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had got together in the Lok Sabha yesterday to get the Bill passed.
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He was particularly upset that the Bill was passed in the absence of several MPs from Andhra Pradesh, who had been suspended from the House for disrupting proceedings on February 13.
 
There has been media speculation about Mr Reddy planning to launch a new party but he did not touch the topic today. "My future is not important," he said when asked about it.
 
Some of his Cabinet colleagues from the Seemandhra region, who were opposed to the bifurcation of the state, and several legislators were present at the press conference.
 
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Gadkari inaugurates, lays foundation stone of 39 National Highway projects in Andhra Pradesh

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Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways Nitin Gadkari inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of 39 National Highway  Projects in Andhra Pradesh at a function at Akidu in West Godavari district on Monday.These include construction of eleven road over-bridges (ROBs) under Setu Bhartam programme. 
 
The projects have in all a length of 1384 kms, and involve investment of Rs 16,878 crore, an official press release said.
 
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Gadkari said the length of National Highways (NHs) in Andhra Pradesh had gone up from 4193 km before May, 2014, when the present government took over at the Centre, to 7246 km (including in-principle NHs) -- an increase of 3053 km length.
 
He said the total likely investment for development of national highways in the state was Rs. 1,00,000 crore.
 
Under the Bharatmala scheme, about 2,520 km of roads amounting to Rs 44,000 crore have been envisaged. Under SethuBhartam, 31 ROBs have been approved with cost of about Rs 2,500 crore. Out of these, 18 ROBs amounting to Rs 1,310 crore have been sanctioned which are at construction/award stage. In addition, 136 CRF works for total length of 1,805 km amounting to Rs 1,769 crore have been sanctioned since May 2014 in Andhra Pradesh. Out of these, 56 works for total length of 835 km amounting to Rs 570 crore have been completed, he said.
 
He said a total of 108 projects costing Rs. 1,64,719 crore were identified for the State. Of these, 19 projects worth Rs. 2242 crore have been completed till October 2018. He said 53 focus projects of Rs 33,042 crore are planned for completion during 2018-20. 
 
As many as 27 projects are under implementation with investment of Rs 83,713 crore and 38 projects with investment of Rs 74,000 crore are under various stages of development. Further, detailed project reports (DPRs) are under preparation for 23 projects worth Rs 4,151 crore, he said.
 
Mr. Gadkari, who also holds the portfolios of Shipping, Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, said a roadmap had been developed for increasing the capacity of Visakhapatnam Port to 211 MMTPA by 2025 from the existing 152 MMTPA.
 
Eleven port capacity expansion projects costing Rs 2,536 crore have also been identified to add 71 MMTPA capacity.
 
He said 36 road projects are planned for the State under Sagarmala Programme. Of these, 35 are by NHAI/ MoRTH, and one by the Port Trust. He said three projects have been completed and eight projects are under implementation. 
 
He said 19 Railway Projects worth Rs 10,000 crore are also planned, of which nine are by Indian Railways, six by IPRCL and four by Andhra Pradesh Ports department. He said, six projects have been completed, and another six are under implementation.
 
Mr. Gadkari said nine industrial clusters are being developed under Sagarmala programme in the State. These include, port-based mega food processing park in Kakinada-Godavari Mega Aqua Food park costing Rs 373 crore which has already been completed. 
 
APIIC Mega Food Park worth Rs 375.3 crore, Greenfield Electronics manufacturing Cluster in Renigunta and Yerpdeu Mandal- Chittor District- Tirupati costing Rs 9706.75 crore, Greenfield Electronics manufacturing Cluster in Vikruthamala Village - Yerpadu Mandal - Chittor District – Tirupati costing Rs 5719.8 crore, Greenfield Electronics manufacturing Cluster in Cherivi Village - Satyavedu Mandal - Chittor District – Tirupati costing Rs 1604.41 crore, and 6340 MW Power Cluster - Krishnapatnam worth Rs 37428 crore are under implementation. 
 
DPR is to be prepared for Petrochemical cluster worth Rs 4520 crore in Kakinada, Export based apparel cluster in central AP for Rs 3321 crore, and Cement cluster in AP worth Rs 24500 crore.
 
The Minister said, under the coastal community development programme, Center of Excellence for Maritime & Shipbuilding is being set up in Visakhapatnam with total cost of Rs 574 crore. 
 
He said DPR has been prepared for five fishing harbor projects worth 1500 crore under Sagarmala. These include, Fishing Harbour in Juvvaladinne in SPSR Nellore District  for 242 crore, Phase 2 development of existing fishing harbour at Machilipatnam in Krishna district – Rs 252 crore, Phase 2 development of existing fishing harbour at Nizampatnam in Guntur district - Rs 341 crore, Development of fishing harbour at Vodarevu in Prakasam district for Rs 409 crore, and Development of fishing harbour at Uppada -V U. Kotapalli -M in East Godavari district - Rs 289 crore.
 
Under the Coastal Berth Scheme, nine Ro-Ro and tourism jetty projects worth Rs 560 crore have been taken up, in addition to another three projects worth 200 crore.
 
The Minister said, National Waterway-4 with total length of 1078 km was declared in November 2008. These include, River Godavari (Bhadrachalam to Rajahmundry) - 171 kms, River Krishna (Wazirabad to Vijayawada) - 157 kms, Kakinada Canal (Kakinada to Rajahmundry) -  50 kms, Eluru Canal (Rajahmundry to Vijayawada) - 139 Kms, Commamur Canal (Vijayawada to Pedaganjam) - 113 kms, North Buckingham Canal (Pedaganjam to Chennai) - 316 kms, South Buckingham Canal (Chennai to Merkanam) - 110 kms, and Kaluvelly Tank (Markanam to Puducherry) - 22 kms. He said, NW-4 was extended to a revised length of 2890 kms by NW Act-2016 by including River Krishna from Wazirabad to Galagali (628 Km) and River Godavari from Bhadrachalam to Nasik (1184Km).
 
He said, development work on some of these stretches has commenced in 2017-18. Ro-Ro services from Ibrahimpatnam to Lingayapalem are ready for commencement. He said development of this stretch will provide an efficient logistics solution to boost the economic growth of the region and facilitate the development of the capital city Amravati during its early development stage as substantial construction material is expected to be transported on this stretch of NW-4.
 
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Mega irrigation project Polavaram sets two new records

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Navayuga Engineering Company Limited (NECL), which is building the world's largest flood discharge capacity dam at Polavaram in Andhra Pradesh, has claimed that it has entered the Guinness World Records for the most concrete continuously poured in 24 hours and the largest continuous concrete pour while working on the project.
 
A press release from the company said it had created the world record by pouring 32,315 cubic metres of concrete in 24 hours. The concrete work to make the spillway began at 8 am on Sunday, January 6 and concluded at 8 am on January 7, Monday.
 
"It was the unparalleled planning and engineering skills of NEC that made realize a task of such mammoth proportions," it said.
 
Polavaram witnessed 20 agitator trucks delivering concrete from 10 batching plants and 90 transit mixers that were engaged in this incredible engineering feat. The attempt was monitored by an official adjudicator from Guinness World Records in the presence of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, the release said.
 
Mr. Naidu, who was on his 30th visit to the Polavaram Irrigation Project site, said, “We congratulate the team at Navayuga and everyone who has been part of the project for achieving the feat and developing such a mammoth project in such a short period of time. For those who say Indians can't perform, Polavaram Irrigation Project is an answer to them. India has not seen a project of this size and scale. We have not just accomplished a colossal infrastructure milestone but have brought India on a global map by breaking the earlier records. Every Monday has been a ‘Polavaram Day’ as we have been reviewing the status of this project every Monday consistently. In the process we have countered and resolved multiple challenges and have been able to accomplish the work in a very short period of time. We aim to complete this project by May this year which will solve the water problems of millions of people."
 
Mr. Sridhar Chinta, Managing Director, Navayuga Engineering Company Limited said, “It is an extremely proud moment for Navayuga to be a part of such an iconic and landmark project in terms of its scale, expanse and impact on livelihood. Taking up the challenge of building this mega project is a perfect showcase of NEC’s superior and world-class engineering capabilities. Working tirelessly round the clock to achieve an epoch-making feat in just 24 hours is a true testament to the hard work, dedication and sincerity of every member of the Navayuga family. This is a significant step towards achieving the real victory, delivering a half-century old dream of the people of Andhra Pradesh, the Polavaram Project, before the start of the next monsoon season. This is indeed a very proud moment not just for NEC, but also for the state of Andhra Pradesh and the nation.”
 
The project once completed will irrigate a total of 42 lakh acres ayacut in two phases and influence the supply of water to all 13 districts of Andhra Pradesh. The project envisages meeting the water supply needs of an aggregate population of 20 million.
 
The project has a total of 48 gates, each of height 20 m and a width of 16 m and spanning a total of 1,119 m. It required pouring of 36.7 lakh cubic meters of concrete, 50,000 tonnes of steel and 9,30,000 tonnes of cement, all in record time to complete the project. 
 
The Polavaram spillway is set to have one of the highest discharge capacities in the world. At 50 lakh cusecs, it is all set to surpass even the 3 Gorges Dam of China, one of the largest dams in the world, which has a discharge capacity of 47 lakh cusecs. The total storage capacity of the water reservoir is 119 TMC, the release added.
 
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Foundation stone laid for Andhra Secretariat Complex in Amaravati

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Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu on Thursday laid the foundation stone for the State Secretariat Complex in this upcoming state capital.
 
The launch of the work on the complex at Rayapudi village in Guntur district on the banks of river Krishna comes four-and-half years after the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh.
 
Naidu said the foundation stone for the complex, which comprises five towers, marked a major milestone in the development of the state capital.
 
He thanked the farmers for parting with 33,000 acres of land under the land pooling process for developing the State capital.
 
Naidu said the whole world was looking at Andhra as the Secretariat Complex would be a jewel in the crown.
 
Coming up on a 41-acre site, the complex is expected to be amongst the largest such constructions in the country featuring 50 storeys and built-up area of 6.9 million square feet.
 
The complex, housing the seat of governance, can accommodate 145 departments, over 16,000 employees and 10,000 visitors.
 
Four towers will have 40 floors each, while the fifth will have 50 floors and will also house the Chief Minister's Office and General Administration Department.
 
The complex, to be built at a cost of Rs 4,890 crore, will also have 1.3 million square feet parking facility for 4,000 cars.
 
According to officials, Foster Partners have provided the master design for the Complex. Construction major Shapoorji Pallonji are executing the construction work.
 
The Capital Regional Development Authority (CRDA) and the Amaravati Development Corporation (ADC) will oversee the work.
 
Currently, the State Secretariat is functioning from an interim complex built at Velagapudi village in capital region Amaravati in 2016.
 
IANS
 

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Andhra Pradesh, Telangana to have separate high courts from January 1, 2019

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Andhra Pradesh and Telangana will have separate High Courts from January 1, 2019 with an order in this regard signed here today by President Ram Nath Kovind.
 
The order, issued by the Department of Justice, Ministry of Law and Justice said the President had, under it, constituted a separate High Court for the State of Andhra Pradesh from January 1, 2019 with its principal seat in Amaravati.
 
The order was signed by President in exercise of powers conferred under clause (a) of sub-section (1) of section 30, sub-section (1) of section 31 and sub-section (2) of section 31 of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014.
 
It said the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad shall become the High Court forthe State of Telangana.
 
The order said that, with  the constitution of the High Court of Andhra Pradesh, the following Judges of the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad for the States of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh shall cease to be the Judges of the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad, and shall become the Judges of the High Court of Andhra Pradesh at Amaravati with effect from January  1:
 
(i) Justice RameshRanganathan (presently working as Chief Justice of High Court of Uttarakhand);  (ii) Justice Chagari PraveenKumar; (iii) Justice Sarasa Venkatanarayana Bhatti; (iv) Justice Akula Venkata Sesha Sai; (v) Justice Dama SeshadriNaidu (presently working on transfer as Judge, High Court of Kerala); (vi) Justice Mandhata Seetharama Murti; (vii) Justice UpmakaDurga Prasad Rao; (viii) Justice Talluri Sunil Chowdary; (ix) Justice Mallavolu Satyanarayana Murthy; (x) Justice Gudiseva Shyam Prasad; (xi) Justice Kumari Javalakar Uma Devi; (xii) Justice Nakka Balayogi;  (xiii) Justice Mrs. Telaprolu Rajani; (xiv) Justice Durvasula Venkata Subramanya Suryanarayana Somayajulu; (xv) Justice Mrs. Kongara Vijaya Lakshmi; and (xvi) Justice Manthoj Ganga Rao.
 
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The following Judges shall cease to be the Judges of the common High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad and shall become the Judges of the High Court for the State of Telangana with January 1:
 
(i) Justice Puligoru Venkata Sanjay Kumar; (ii) Justice Mamidanna Satya Ratna Sri Ramachandra Rao; (iii) Justice Adavalli Rajasheker Reddy; (iv) Justice Ponugoti Naveen Rao; (v) Justice Challa Kodandaram Chowdary; (vi) Justice Bulusu Siva Sankara Rao; (vii) Justice Dr. Shameem Akther;  (viii) Justice Potlapalli Keshava Rao;  (ix) Justice Abhinand Kumar Shavili; and (x) Justice Todupunuri Amarnath Goud.
 
The order said Mr. Justice R. Subhash Reddy, who was a Judge of the common High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad and who has been elevated as Judge of the Supreme Court of India, had exercised the option for allocation to High Court for the State of Telangana.
 
Telangana came into existence as the 29th state of India on June 2, 2014, marking the culmination of decades of struggle in the region for carving out a state from Andhra Pradesh.
 
Article 214 of the Constitution provides that there shall be a High Court for each State.
 
The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014 was enacted with a view to provide for the reorganisation of the existing State of Andhra Pradesh and for matters connected therewith.
 
Clause (a) of section 30 of the said Act provided that the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad shall be the common High Court for the State of Telangana and the State of Andhra Pradesh till a separate High Court for the State of Andhra Pradesh is constituted.
 
Sub-section (1) of section 31 of the Act provided that subject to the provisions of section 30, there shall be a separate High Court for the State of Andhra Pradesh and the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad shall become the High Court for the State of Telangana.
 
Sub-section (2) of section 31 of the Act provided that the principal seat of the High Court of Andhra Pradesh shall be at such place as the President may, by a notified Order, appoint.
 
The Supreme Court had earlier this year held that there is no embargo for the Competent Authority to issue a notification bifurcating the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad into the High Court of Telangana and the High Court of Andhra Pradesh.
 
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Cyclone 'Phethai' hits Andhra coast, triggers heavy rains

 
Cyclone Phethai makes landfall in Andhra Pradesh
Cyclonic storm ‘Phethai crossed the Andhra Pradesh coast in East Godavari district on Monday, causing widespread rains, uprooting trees, paralyzing transport and damaging crops.
 
‘Phethai' made the landfall near Katrinekonda in East Godavari district with a wind speed of 80 kmph and re-emerged into the Bay of Bengal before crossing the coast between Kakinada and Yanam, an enclave of Puducherry in the same district. 
 
Authorities heaved a sigh of relief as no loss of life was reported till Monday evening. The coastal region was also spared of major losses, barring damages to standing crops over hundreds of acres.
 
According to officials at the Visakhapatnam Cyclone Warning Centre, the severe cyclonic storm weakened due to unfavourable environmental conditions and crossed the coast as cyclonic storm. After crossing the coast, it moved towards Odisha.
 
The incessant rains accompanied by gusty winds lashing the coastal district since Sunday inundated low-lying areas, disrupted electricity and drinking water supply throwing normal life out of gear. The cyclone also paralysed road, rail and air traffic in the region.
 
East Godavari District Collector Kartikeya Mishra said electricity supply was disrupted to 99 villages and it would be restored soon.
 
Over 5,000 people from some coastal and low-lying villages were shifted to relief camps opened by the East Godavari district administration.
 
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Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu monitored the situation from Real Time Governance Society (RTGS) control room in Amaravati. 
 
Home Minister N. Chinna Rajappa, who monitored the situation at the Collector's office in Kakinada, said all measures were taken to tackle the situation. He said efforts were on to restore normalcy in the affected areas.
 
RTGS officials said the measures taken by the authorities and the precaution by people ensured that there was no loss of life and also minimised the property damage.
 
National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) and naval helicopters were on standby along with 10,000 government employees as part of disaster preparedness.
 
Rescue workers were busy removing fallen trees, electric poles and debris from roads to restore vehicular traffic.
 
Turbulent weather conditions forced the authorities to cancel 14 flights to the port city of Visakhapatnam and divert many others to Hyderabad. Over 700 passengers were stranded at Visakhapatnam airport due to cancellation of flights.
 
A holiday was declared for all educational institutions in the coastal region. Authorities also suspended long-distance bus services and cancelled over 50 trains as a precaution.
 
The cyclone, the second to hit Andhra coast this year, had its impact on seven out of nine coastal districts. The rains inundated roads and low-lying areas in Vijayawada, bringing vehicular traffic to a halt.
 
‘Phethai' also had impact on neighbouring Telangana state with heavy rains lashing many districts. Paddy, cotton and other agriculture produce brought by farmers to the markets for sale were damaged. 
 
The weather in Greater Hyderabad was cloudy and chilled. Parts of the city experienced showers. 
 
IANS
 

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Cyclone Phethai: Over 50 trains cancelled in Andhra

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The South Central Railway has cancelled over 50 trains in coastal Andhra Pradesh in view of severe cyclonic storm Phethai, which is set to hit the coast near Kakinada on Monday afternoon.
 
Many trains from Vijayawada to various destinations in coastal Andhra were suspended as a precautionary measure.
 
The Visakhapatnam-Guntur Simhadri Express, Guntur-Visakhapatnam Simhadri Express, Visakhapatnam-Vijayawada Ratnachalam Express, Vijayawada-Visakhapatnam Ratnachalam Express, Narsapur-Nidadavolu Link Express and Nidadavolu-Narsapu Link Express were among the trains cancelled.
 
Passenger trains between Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam, Rajahmundry, Guntur and Bhimavaram were also cancelled.
 
Mainline Electric Multiple Unit (MEMU) passenger trains between Vijayawada and destinations like Rajahmundry, Kakinada Port, Tenali, Bhimavaram, Guntur and Machilipatnam, MEMU trains between Rajahmundry and Visakhapatnam, Visakhapatnam and Kakinada Port, Tenali and Guntur, Visakhapatnam and Rajahmundry, Rajahmundry and Bhimavaram, Bhimavaram and Nidadavolu, Rajahmundry and Narasapur and Narasapur and Guntur were also cancelled.
 
The other cancelled trains include Kakinada Port-Kotipalli Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU) passenger, Kotipalli-Kakinada Port DMU passenger, Machilipatnam-Gudivada, Bhimavaram-Rajahmundry, Nidadavolu-Bhimavaram, Ongole-Guntur passenger trains.
 
Vinod Kumar Yadav, General Manager, South Central Railway directed officials of divisions likely to be affected to be prepared to handle any emergency situation.
 
Helplines were opened at Vijayawada, Guntur and Guntakal station for round-the-clock monitoring of the situation.
 
IANS
 

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Heavy rains lash coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh

 
Cyclone Phethai: Storm to hit AP coast
Heavy rains accompanied by squally winds were lashing parts of coastal Andhra Pradesh on Monday as the severe cyclonic storm 'Phethai' is set to hit the coast near Kakinada later in the day, officials said.
 
Incessant rains were lashing East Godavari, West Godavari, Krishna and Guntur districts since Sunday night under the impact of Phethai in Bay of Bengal. Squally winds have uprooted trees and electricity poles in some places.
 
Electricity supply to Kakinada town and several other parts of East Godavari district was snapped. The meteorologists have asked people to remain indoors during the landfall of the storm.
 
Authorities have sounded red alert in seven out of nine coastal districts and opened over 300 relief camps to provide shelter to people evacuated from coastal villages and low-lying areas.
 
A holiday was declared for all educational institutions in the coastal districts. Authorities have also suspended long-distance bus services and cancelled several trains as a precautionary measure.
 
Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu reviewed the situation with district collectors through vide-conference from Amaravati. He directed them to treat this as an emergency situation and gear up the district administration to prevent loss of life.
 
Naidu asked officials to keep helicopters on standby for rescue and relief operations. 
 
Teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) were already deployed in the districts likely to be impacted by the cyclone.
 
According to the Met Department, Phethai lay centred at 160 km southeast of Machilipatnam and 190 km south of Kakinada early Monday. 
 
"It is very likely to move northwards and cross Andhra Pradesh coast around Kakinada during 17th December afternoon. However, due to unfavourable environmental conditions, it is likely to weaken before landfall and cross coast as a cyclonic storm with a wind speed of 70-90 kmph gusting to 100 kmph," it said.
 
The IMD has forecast rainfall at most places with heavy to very heavy falls at a few places over coastal Andhra Pradesh and extremely heavy falls at isolated places over north coastal Andhra Pradesh and Yanam district of Puducherry, which is an enclave in East Godavari district.
 
The Met office warned that storm surge of height of about 0.5 to 1.0 metres above the astronomical tides may inundate the low lying areas of East Godavari, West Godavari, Vishakhapatnam and Krishna districts and Yanam district of Puducherry at the time of landfall.
 
Fishermen were advised not to venture into the sea and those already out in deep sea were advised to return to the coast.
 
IANS

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National Medical Devices Promotion Council to be set up under DIPP

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A National Medical Devices Promotion Council will be set up under the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Union Minister of Commerce and Industry Suresh Prabhu announced here on Friday. 
 
Addressing a programme on the occasion of 4th WHO Global Forum on Medical Devices, at Andhra Pradesh Medtech Zone here, Mr Prabhu said it would give a fillip to the medical device sector, a sunrise sector.
 
The Medical Devices Industry (MDI) plays a critical role in the healthcare ecosystem and is indispensable to achieve the goal of health for all citizens of the country. The manufacturing and trade in MDI are growing steadily which includes a wide range of products, an official press release said.
 
Although the industry has been growing in double digits, it is predominantly import-driven with imports accounting for over 65% of the domestic market, an official press release said.
 
As Indian manufacturing companies and startups move towards creating innovative products, the setting-up of the Council will spur domestic manufacturing in this sector, it said.
 
The Council will be headed by Secretary, DIPP. Apart from the concerned departments of the Union Government, it will also have representatives from the healthcare industry and quality control institutions. Andhra Pradesh MedTech Zone, Visakhapatnam, will provide technical support to the Council.
 
It will act as a facilitating and promotion & developmental body for the Indian MDI. The council will hold periodic seminars, workshops and all related networking activities to garner views of the industry and understand best global practices in the sector and deliberate on various parameters for inclusion in the industrial and trade policies in medical devices.
 
It will identify redundant processes and render technical assistance to the agencies and departments concerned to simplify the approval processes involved in medical device industry promotion & development.
 
The council will enable entry of emerging interventions and support certifications for manufacturers to reach levels of global trade norms and lead India to an export-driven market in the sector.
 
It will support dissemination and documentation of international norms and standards for medical devices, by capturing the best practices in the global market and facilitate domestic manufacturers to rise to the international level of understanding of regulatory and non-regulatory needs of the industry.
 
The council will adopt a robust and dynamic Preferential Market Access (PMA) policy, by identifying the strengths of the Indian manufacturers and discouraging unfair trade practices in imports while ensuring pro-active monitoring of public procurement notices across India to ensure compliance with PMA guidelines of DIPP and DoP.
 
It will undertake validation of Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs) and other such entities within the MDI sector, which add value to the industry strength in manufacturing to gain a foothold for new entrants.
 
Make recommendations to government based on industry feedback and global practices on policy and process interventions to strengthen the medical technology sector, including trade interventions for related markets.
 
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Cyclone Phethai likely to cross Andhra Pradesh coast on Monday afternoon

Cyclone Phethai (pronounced Pay-Ti) over southwest Bay of Bengal is very likely to intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm during  the next 24 hours and cross the Andhra Pradesh coast between Machilipatnam and Kakinada tomorrow afternoon, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said today.
 
A bulletin issued by IMD at 0530 hours today said Phethai had moved further north-northwestwards with a speed of 17 kmph during the past six hours and lay centred at 0230 hrs IST today over southwest Bay of Bengal near latitude 11.1°N and longitude 84.5°E, about 450 km east-northeast of Trincomalee (Sri Lanka), 510 km southeast of Chennai (Tamil Nadu) and 670 km south-southeast of Machilipatnam (Andhra Pradesh). 
 
"It is very likely to intensify further into a Severe Cyclonic Storm during next 24 hours. It is very likely to move north-northwestwards and cross Andhra Pradesh coast between Machilipatnam and Kakinada during 17th December afternoon," the bulletin said.
 
Under its influence, rainfall is very likely at most places over coastal Andhra Pradesh today and tomorrow, with heavy to very heavy falls at a few places, it said.
 
Extremely heavy falls (20 cm or more) were also likely at isolated places over north coastal Andhra Pradesh on December 17.
 
Rainfall was likely at many places over adjoining districts of north Tamil Nadu today, with heavy falls at isolated places.
 
Rainfall was also likely over most places in Odisha and Chhattisgarh today and tomorrow, with heavy to very heavy falls at isolated places.
 
Rainfall is also expected over Jharkhand and Gangetic West Bengal today and tomorrow, it said.
 
The bulletin said squally winds, with speech reaching 45-55 kmph, gusting to 65 kmph, are likely to commence along and off South Andhra Pradesh, north Tamil Nadu and Puducherry coasts from this morning. They are very likely to increase gradually, becoming gale winds with speed of 80-90 kmph, gusting to 100 kmph, along and off central Andhra Pradesh coast and Yanam district of Puducherry tomorrow.
 
Gale winds with speed reaching 60-70 kmph, gusting to 80 kmph, are likely to prevail along and off the remaining parts of Andhra Pradesh coast and squally winds with speed 40-50 kmph, gusting to 60 kmph, are likely to prevail along and off north Tamil Nadu and Puducherry coasts on December 17.
 
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The bulletin said gale winds with speed reaching 60-70 kmph, gusting to 80 kmph, would prevail over southwest and adjoining southeast Bay of Bengal. They are very likely to increase gradually and become gale winds with speed reaching 80-100 kmph, gusting to 110 kmph, over westcentral and adjoining southwest Bay of Bengal tomorrow.
 
The sea condition is high over southwest and adjoining southeast Bay of Bengal. The sea condition is very likely to be high to very high over southwest and adjoining westcentral Bay of Bengal from today morning and over westcentral and adjoining southwest Bay of Bengal from today evening to tomorrow evening.
 
It is very likely to become rough to very rough along and off south Andhra Pradesh, north Tamil Nadu and Puducherry coasts from today morning and very rough to to high along and off central Andhra Pradesh coast and Yanam district of Puducherry from today evening to tomorrow evening.
 
Storm surge of height of about 0.5 m to 1.0 m above the astronomical tides is likely to inundate the low-lying areas of coastal Andhra Pradesh (East & West Godavari, Vishakhapatnam, Krishna and Guntur districts) and Yanam district of Puducherry at the time of landfall, the bulletin said.
 
The cyclone could cause damage to thatched huts and  minor damage to power and communication lines due to breaking of branches. There could be major damage to "Kutcha" and damage to "Pucca" roads. 
 
There could be uprooting of small trees and some damage to paddy crops, banana, papaya trees and orchards. Sea water inundation is likely in low-lying areas after erosion of "Kutcha" embankments.
 
The bulletin advised total suspension of fishing operations along and off Andhra Pradesh coast today and tomorrow. Fishermenn were advised not to venture into southwest and westcentral Bay of Bengal and along and off Andhra Pradesh, north Tamilnadu and Puducherry coasts till December 17. Those who are out in deep sea areas were advised to return to the coast.
 
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'Mother of Telangana' Sonia says Congress paid price for creating new state

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United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi on Friday said the Congress carved out Telangana state, though it had to pay a political price for it.
 
On her first visit to Telangana after it came into being as a separate state in 2014, the former Congress president said the Congress accorded statehood though it had to pay a price for it.
 
She was apparently referring to the drubbing Congress faced in Andhra Pradesh in Lok Sabha and Assembly elections in 2014.
 
Sonia Gandhi was addressing a massive public meeting at Medchal near Hyderabad to formally kick off the campaign of People's Front headed by the Congress for the next month's elections to Telangana Assembly.
 
Gandhi projected herself as the 'mother of Telangana' by stating that she is feeling happy to be in Telangana in the same manner as a mother would feel happy to see her child after many days.
 
"Every mother wants to see her children prosper, but I am pained to see the condition of the new state," she said castigating the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) government for failing to fulfill the promises at the time of formation of their state.
 
"You know if a newborn is not properly taken care of in the initial years, he has to face many problems in future. Unfortunately, the responsibility of looking after the child was entrusted to those who only looked after themselves and left the child to fend for itself," said Sonia Gandhi.
 
Stating that elections are an opportunity for people to get rid of this difficult situation, she appealed to people to use the power of vote to teach TRS a lesson and bring Congress and its allies to power with a huge majority.
 
"I remember what difficulties we had to face in taking a decision to form Telangana state. It was not an easy task," said Sonia Gandhi recalling the passage of bill in Parliament by Congress-led UPA government for bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh.
 
"We kept the interests of both Andhra Pradesh and Telangana before us but your emotions and aspirations gave Dr Manmohan Singh, Rahul Gandhi and others the strength, enabling us to take this big decision," she told a huge gathering amid loud cheers.
 
The Congress leader said they felt the pain of Andhra Pradesh and that was why they announced special schemes and promised special category status to that state.
 
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She assured people of Andhra Pradesh that the Congress stands by the commitment it made including the special category status.
 
Recalling that Telangana was achieved on the slogan of "water, funds and jobs", she alleged that TRS failed to live up to the expectations of people.
 
She said people had hoped that the new state would bring about change in their lives but it did so in the lives of those in power and their near and dear ones.
 
Stating that farmers were yet to get water for irrigation, she said their suicides were continuing. Gandhi said the youth were still waiting for jobs.
 
Telugu Desam Party's Telangana unit president L. Ramna, Telangana Jana Samithi's M. Kodandaram and Communist Party of India's state secretary Chada Venkatreddy shared the dais with Sonia Gandhi and Congress president Rahul Gandhi.
 
Rahul Gandhi said the TRS rule was about to come to an end. Without naming TRS president and Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao, the Congress president said during last five years, one person ran the state at his whims and fancies for the benefit of his family.
 
Rahul Gandhi assured the people that the alliance would fulfill their dreams which Chandrashekhar Rao failed to do.
 
"The government of the alliance will not work for one person but for all the people of the state. It will work to address the problems of farmers, provide employment to youth and carry all sections people with it."
 
The meeting was held as the first show of strength by the four-party People's Front ahead of the December 7 elections to 119-member Assembly.
 
IANS

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Andhra bars CBI officials from entering state without permission

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In an unprecedented move, the Andhra Pradesh government has barred the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) from conducting raids or carrying out investigations in the state without its permission.
 
The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) government issued the orders withdrawing 'general consent' to CBI officers to exercise jurisdiction in the state to investigate corruption charges against officials of central government and private persons.
 
The move by the Chandrababu Naidu government came amid the continuing crisis in the CBI in the wake of allegations of corruption against its director Alok Verma by his deputy Rakesh Asthana.
 
The Principal Secretary (Home) in Andhra Pradesh, A.R. Anuradha, issued the orders dated November 8, exercising powers under Delhi Special Police Establishment (DSPE) Act, 1946,
 
The state government on August 3 this year had issued orders giving its general consent to the CBI to exercise its powers and jurisdiction in the state. The same has now been revoked as per Section 6 of the DSPE Act.
 
It is under this Act that CBI exercises its jurisdiction in states. The state governments every year issue notifications to give ageneral consent' to the investigating agency to probe corruption cases.
 
Official sources said the move was necessitated by the fact that CBI had lost its credibility and integrity in the wake of recent developments.
 
The latest move by the TDP government is seen as another flash-point between the state and the Centre after TDP pulled out of BJP-led NDA in March this year.
 
TDP President and Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu had been accusing the Modi government of misusing central agencies to target TDP leaders for demanding special category status to the state.
 
There have been a series of Income Tax searches at the offices and residences of TDP leaders in recent weeks. TDP leaders had also voiced the apprehension that the Centre could use CBI and other agencies to target top leadership of the party.
 
Following the recent developments in CBI, Naidu had targeted Modi government for what he called damaging the credibility of the premier investigation agency.
 
Naidu, who is trying to mobilise all opposition parties to form a front against the BJP, alleged that Modi was weakening the central institutions.
 
IANS
 

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Cyclone Gaja to cross Tamil Nadu coast on Thursday evening

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Cyclone Gaja over southwest and adjoining westcentral Bay of Bengal is expected to cross the Tamil Nadu coast between Pamban and Cuddalore tomorrow evening with a wind speed of 80-90 kmph, gusting to 100 kmph.
 
The cyclone had moved west-southwestwards with a speed of 13 kmph during the past six hours and lay centred at 2030 hrs IST of today over southwest Bay of Bengal near latitude 12.2°N and longitude 84.0°E, about 410 km east-southeast of Chennai and 480 km east-northeast of Nagapattinam, a bulletin issued by the India Meteorological Department at 2130 hours said.
 
"It is very likely to move west-southwestwards and intensify further into a Severe Cyclonic Storm during next 12 hours. While moving west-southwestwards thereafter, it is likely to weaken and cross Tamil Nadu coast between Pamban and Cuddalore during 15th November evening as a Cyclonic Storm with a wind speed of 80-90 kmph gusting to 100 kmph," it said.
 
The IMD has issued a red alert for Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, warning that rainfall would occur at most places with heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places tomrrow. It also said that extremely heavy rainfall (20 cm or more) was also likely over Cuddalore, Nagapattinam, Tiruvarur, Thanjavur, Pudukottai, Tuticorin and Ramanathapuram districts.
 
IMD has also forecast rainfall at most places in interior Tamil Nadu and Puducherry on November 16, with heavy falls at a few places and very heavy falls at isolated places.
 
It has also issued warning for rainfall, with isolated heavy falls, over south coastal Andhra Pradesh, Rayalaseema and Kerala tomorrow. Heavy to very heavy falls were likely at isolated palces over Kerala on November 16, it said.
 
The bulletin warned that gale wind speed reaching 75-85 kmph gusting to 95 kmph prevailing over southwest Bay of Bengal was very likely to increase gradually, becoming 90-100 kmph, gusting to 110 kmph, over these areas from early morning of Thursday.
 
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Squally wind speed reaching 45-55 kmph gusting to 65 kmph is very likely to prevail along and off Tamil Nadu and Puducherry and adjoining south Andhra Pradesh coasts. It is very likely to increase, gradually becoming gale wind speed 80-90 kmph gusting to 100 kmph along and off central parts of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry coasts from tomorrow afternoon onwards.
 
Strong wind speed reaching 30-40 kmph gusting to 50 kmph was very likely over interior Tamil Nadu, Kerala, southeast Arabian Sea along and off Kerala coast, Comorian area, Gulf of Mannar and Palk Strait on Friday. Strong wind speed reaching 30-40 kmph gusting to 50 kmph was very likely to prevail over southeast Arabian Sea and along and off Kerala coast on Saturday.
 
The bulletin warned of rough sea conditions and said that storm surge of height of about 1 meter above astronomical tide was very likely to inundate low lying areas of Nagapattinam, Thanjavur, Pudukkottai and Ramanathapuram districts of Tamil Nadu and Karaikal district of Puducherry at the time of landfall.
 
The bulletin called for total suspension of fishing operations along and off Tamil Nadu and Puducherry and adjoining south Andhra Pradesh coasts during this period.
 
Coastal hutment dwellers were advised to move to safer places. Other people in the affected areas were advised to remain indoors.
 
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Four of a family charred to death in Andhra

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Four members of a family were charred to death in Andhra Pradesh's Chittoor district on Sunday, police said.
 
The couple and their children were burnt alive while they were asleep at their home in Rajulakandriga village in the early hours of the day.
 
According to police, charred remains of Srinivas Reddy, 38, an autorickshaw driver, his wife Bujjamma, 33, daughter Bhaviah, 4, and son Nitin, 3, were found on a bed.
 
Senior police officers along with forensic experts rushed to the scene and gathered clues.
 
Police were investigating the cause of fire. They suspect that cooking gas leakage might have led to the tragedy.
 
IANS

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Andhra CM inducts two ministers in cabinet

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Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu on Sunday expanded his cabinet with the induction of two ministers.
 
Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan administered the oath of office and secrecy to NMD Farooq and Kidari Sravan at a ceremony attended by Naidu, his other cabinet colleagues and senior officials.
 
Farooq, a member of the State Legislative Council, had been serving as the chairman of the Upper House of the state legislature. 
 
He had earlier served as a Minister in the cabinet of N.T. Rama Rao and Chandrababu Naidu in undivided Andhra Pradesh.
 
Sravan is the son of Kidari Sarveswara Rao, who was gunned down by Maoists in Visakhapatnam district in September. Sarvesawara Rao was a member of the State Legislative Assembly from Araku.
 
With this expansion, Naidu has given representation to Muslims and tribals in the cabinet, seven months before the Assembly elections.
 
Farooq, a senior leader of Telugu Desam Party (TDP), is likely to be allotted the minorities welfare portfolio while Sarvan, who is not a member of either house of the state legislature, is expected to get tribal welfare. 
 
The induction of two ministers has taken the strength of the cabinet to 26. 
 
The two cabinet berths were vacant after two ministers belonging to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) resigned from Telugu Desam Party (TDP)-led government in March. 
 
This followed TDP pulling out of BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) at the Centre.
 
IANS
 

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Andhra Pradesh cabinet expansion on Sunday

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Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu will expand his cabinet on Sunday.
 
Governor E. S. L. Narasimhan will administer the oath to the new ministers here at 11.45 a.m., official sources said on Friday.
 
The exercise, seven months before the assembly elections, is aimed at providing representation to Muslim and tribal communities. 
 
There has been no Muslim and tribal in Naidu's cabinet since he assumed office in 2014.
 
According to sources in the ruling Telugu Desam Party, Naidu is likely to induct a representative each from the Muslim community and the scheduled tribes.
 
The Andhra Pradesh cabinet currently has 24 members, including the Chief Minister. As per the rules, it can have two more ministers.
 
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Cabinet okays setting up of Central Tribal University in Andhra

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The Union Cabinet today approved setting up of a Central Tribal University in Andhra Pradesh. 
 
 The Central Tribal University of Andhra Pradesh will be set up in Relli village of Vizianagaram District as provided under the Thirteenth Schedule to the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014 (No. 6 of 2014).  
 
The Cabinet has also approved the provision of funds of Rs. 420 crore for the first phase expenditure towards establishment of the Central Tribal University, an official press release added.
 
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Uniting opposition to save democracy, nation: Chandrababu Naidu

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Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu on Thursday termed his joining hands with other party leaders an attempt to save the nation and democracy, and accused the BJP-led union government of "destroying" institutions like the CBI and the RBI.
 
Speaking to reporters after meeting Janata Dal (Secular) leader and former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda and his son, Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy, Naidu said the Central government is using agencies like Enforcement Directorate (ED) and Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to harass political opponents.
 
Naidu's meeting with the JD-S leaders came a week after he met Congress President Rahul Gandhi in New Delhi on November 1 as part of his effort to unify the opposition.
 
"We have joined hands to save the nation, to save democracy... All institutions are (being) destroyed. CBI, the premier investigation agency, is in trouble. Even RBI is under threat," he said. 
 
The leader said the government is using the Enforcement Directorate and the Income Tax Department for "controlling opposition" and harassing politicians by "raiding indiscriminately".
 
The day being the second anniversary of demonetisation, Naidu said the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government's policies like demonetisation have thrown the country's economy into a crisis and that the mammoth note-ban exercise led to the devaluation of currency and trouble in economy.
 
He also accused the government of betrayal and of not coming good on its promises of special status to Andhra Pradesh. He said that it did not even implement the Bifurcation Act -- the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014, under which the state of Telangana came into existence after being carved out of Andhra Pradesh. 
 
"We discussed the future course of action for forging an alliance ahead of the 2019 general elections," Gowda told reporters after the meeting.
 
The meeting with Naidu was to bring together the "secular forces" in the country, said Kumaraswamy.
 
"Chandrababu Naidu is working hard, as a co-ordinator, to unite the secular parties ahead of the upcoming general elections. We (Naidu and JD-S leadership) share good political arithmetic and have been friends," the Chief Minister added.
 
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Centre approves release of Rs 229.05 crore of its share to Andhra State Disaster Response Fund

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Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday approved the release of the second instalment of the Central share of State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) amounting to Rs 229.05 crore to Andhra Pradesh, in advance for the year 2018-19, to help the State in providing relief measures to the affected people. 
 
Further assistance will be provided from the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF), based on the report of IMCT (Inter-Ministerial Central Team), an official press release said.
 
The first instalment of the same amount was released to Andhra Pradesh in June 2018. The stated had faced a severe cyclonic storm “Titli” on October 11, 2018. The storm had severely affected two districts, namely, Srikakulam and Vizianagaram.
 
Based on a preliminary memorandum submitted by Andhra Pradesh for additional assistance, the Union Government constituted an Inter-Ministerial Central Team (IMCT) immediately on October 22.  IMCT has visited ‘Titli’ affected areas in the State from October 24 to 26.
 
The Central Government had provided full support to the Government of Andhra Pradesh by mobilizing timely logistics resources to supplement the efforts of the State Government to deal with the situation effectively in the wake of Cyclone ‘Titli’.
 
The logistics support included deployment of adequate teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF); Indian Air Force and Coast Guard helicopters, Navy & Coast Guard personnel along with necessary rescue equipment.
 
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IndiGo to introduce flights from Vijayawada to Singapore in partnership with Andhra Pradesh government

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Low-cost carrier IndiGo today said it would operate two weekly non-stop services between Vijayawada and Singapore from December 4, 2018 as part of a collaborative effort with the Andhra Pradesh government to provide air connectivity between the two cities.
 
"As part of the strategic partnership between the two, the low cost airline will operate two weekly non-stop services between Vijayawada and Singapore effective December, 2018. The first flight will fly out of Vijayawada International Airport on December 04, 2018," a press release from the airline siad.
 
Mr. Ajay Jain, Principal Secretary - Energy, I&I, Andhra Pradesh government, said, “We feel exited to engage IndiGo Airline being a most preferred airline to connect state capital Vijayawada to Singapore. This will fulfil the dreams of Telugu Diaspora in Singapore and great convenience for our investors and business community”. 
 
Mr Virender Singh, CEO- APADCL said “this is just a beginning to add more such flights to many more destinations”.
 
Mr. William Boulter, Chief Commercial Officer, IndiGo said, “We feel absolutely privileged to be the first domestic airline to launch international services from Vijayawada in association with the Government of Andhra Pradesh. These twice weekly non-stop flight services between Vijayawada and Singapore will further augment our regional connectivity that we aspire to provide across domestically and internationally. IndiGo will continue to provide an on-time, courteous and hassle-free service, and affordable fares to our customers, as always.”
 
"The new flights are designed to cater to business and leisure travelers from Vijayawada, who are constantly on the lookout for new and affordable flying options," the release said.
 
IndiGo currently operates five daily non-stop flights between India and Singapore. These include two daily non-stop flights to Chennai and one each to Bengaluru, Tiruchirapalli and Kolkata.
 
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Jagan injured in attack at Vizag airport, TDP smells conspiracy

Jaganmohan Reddy
Jaganmohan Reddy
 
YSR Congress Party President Y. S. Jaganmohan Reddy suffered a minor injury at the Visakhapatam airport in a knife attack by a young man and was on Thursday admitted to a hospital in Hyderabad even as Andhra Pradesh's ruling TDP voiced doubts that the attack could be a political conspiracy.
 
Soon after landing in Hyderabad, the Andhra Pradesh's Leader of Opposition was admitted to a hospital. Doctors said his condition was stable.
 
The injury on his left arm was 3 to 4 inch deep and it required nine stitches, the doctors said. With doubts being expressed by YSRCP leaders that the knife could have been laced with poison, the doctors sent his blood samples for examination.
 
Jagan suffered the injury on his left arm when he was stabbed by a youth who sneaked up to him with a request to take a selfie, police said.
 
The attacker, identified as Jaripalli Srinivas, works as a waiter at a restaurant at the airport.
 
A commandant of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) overpowered the attacker, who was handed over to police. Jagan continued his journey to Hyderabad after getting first aid from the airport staff.
 
Andhra Pradesh Director General of Police R. P. Thakur said they were questioning the accused.
 
The police chief said Srinivas claimed to be a fan of Jagan. "Prima facie it appears that he resorted to the attack for publicity," he said.
 
The officer said the police had no role in the security measures inside the airport. He said it was for CISF to find out how the attacker managed to carry a knife into the airport.
 
A case has been registered by the police on a complaint by CISF.
 
The YSRCP chief, who is on a state-wide 'padyatra' for nearly a year, visits Hyderabad every Friday to attend the court in the disproportionate assets case.
 
Jagan tweeted after landing in Hyderabad that he was safe. "To everyone worried about my safety - I'd like to inform you that I am safe. God's grace and the love, concern & blessings of the people of Andhra Pradesh will protect me," he tweeted.
 
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"Such cowardly acts will not dissuade me but only strengthen my resolve to work for the people of my state," he added.
 
The YSRCP took strong objection to the DGP's "premeditated and preconceived notions" even as the state government was trying to shift the blame for lax security on CISF.
 
YSRCP spokesman Ambati Rambabu alleged that the accused was working at a restaurant owned by a TDP leader.
 
Andhra Pradesh ministers including Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu's son Nara Lokesh condemned the attack on Jagan but they voiced their doubts about the incident.
 
Four Ministers addressed a joint news conference in Vijayawada on Thursday evening to say that their may be a political conspiracy behind the incident.
 
The TDP leaders said they had doubts because Jagan took medical treatment four hours after the attack and that too after reaching Hyderabad. 
 
Atchan Naidu, one of the Ministers, said the incident could be a conspiracy against the TDP government and besides the BJP and Jagan, Jana Sena leader Pawan Kalyan and Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao could be involved in it.
 
Meanwhile, Telangana Chief Minister spoke to Jagan over phone and enquired about his health. The TRS chief wished Jagan speedy recovery.
 
Leaders cutting across party line in both the Telugu states condemned the attack on Jagan.
 
IANS
 

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YSR Congress chief Jaganmohan Reddy injured in attack at Vizag airport

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YSR Congress Party President Y. S. Jaganmohan Reddy suffered a minor injury in a knife attack by a youth at Visakhapatnam airport on Thursday, police said.
 
The Leader of Opposition, who received an injury on his shoulder, continued his journey to Hyderabad after he was provided first aid by the airport staff.
 
A commandant of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) overpowered the attacker, who was handed over to police.
 
The attacker was identified as Jaripalli Srinivas, who works at a restaurant at the airport. He came close to Reddy with a request to take a selfie but suddenly took out a small knife from his pocket and stabbed him.
 
The incident triggered tension at the airport as scores of YSRCP activists gathered outside shouting slogans against Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu and the TDP government.
 
IANS
 

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2nd ODI: Hope-Hetmyer guide Windies to tie in last ball thriller

Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli (Photo: IANS)
Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli (Photo: IANS)
India skipper Virat Kohli's 37th ODI ton went in vain as the West Indies pulled off a heart-stopping chase to hold the hosts to a tie in the nail-biting second One-Day International at the Dr. Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium here on Wednesday.
 
This is interestingly the second tied match between the two sides, with the other one, way back in December 1991.
 
Chasing a mammoth 322, powered by Kohli's unbeaten 157 off 129 balls and Ambati Rayudu's 80-ball 73, the West Indies rode on an undefeated century from Shai Hope (123 off 134; 4X10, 6X3) and Shimron Hetmyer's 64-ball 94 to get tantalisingly close to a win.
 
Needing 14 off the dramatic final over from Umesh Yadav, Hope got a single off the first ball before the second ball went for four leg byes. Ashley Nurse managed to get a single off the third before being rnn out off the fourth. 
 
With two deliveries left and Windies requiring 7 runs, Hope drove the penultimate delivery for a couple before slicing the final ball for a boundary, to which the Indian players gathered around and appreciated the effort of the right-hander as the match ended in a thrilling tie.
 
The West Indian chase centred around an excellent 143-run fourth wicket stand between Hope and Hetmyer, after the loss of the openers -- Kieran Powell (18) and Chandrapaul Hemraj (32) -- with the scoreboard ticking 64 on the board. 
 
India managed to pack back veteran Marlon Samuels (13) cheaply before the left-right combo of Hetmyer and Hope dashed their hopes for a major part of the middle overs.
 
With the dew making batting relatively easier in the second innings, the Windies duo used it to good effect as Hetmyer looked set to become the second fastest West Indian after Brian Lara to bring up a century, had Yuzvendra Chahal not dismissed him caught by Kohli.
 
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But the fall of Hetmyer did not deter Hope, who went on punishing the Indian bowlers at will, despite losing Rovman Powell (18) and skipper Jason Holder (12) in quick succession.
 
For India, chinaman Kuldeep Yadav (3/67) turned out to be the star with the ball, even as the dew made life difficult for the other bowlers.
 
Earlier, opting to bat, Kohli came up with yet another authoritative century to anchor the hosts to a comfortable position after the early dismissal of the openers. 
 
In the process, the 29-year-old skipper also reached a personal milestone of becoming the fastest batsman to reach 10,000 ODI runs.
 
Coming into the match 81 shy of the 10,000-run mark, Kohli got to the landmark in style, before racing to his sixth century of 2018 in a mere 106 balls. With the knock, Kohli also completed 1000 ODI runs in the calendar year.
 
Kohli was more importantly engaged in a 139-run fourth wicket stand with Rayudu (73 off 80 balls; 4X8) that dug the hosts out of a tricky start.
 
India lead the five-match rubber 1-0.
 
Brief scores: India 321/6 (Virat Kohli 157 not out, Ambati Rayudu 73, Shikhar Dhawan 29; Ashley Nurse 2/46, Obed McCoy 2/71) tie with West Indies 321/7 (Shai Hope 123 not out, Shimron Hetmyer 94, Chandrapaul Hemraj 32; Kuldeep Yadav 3/67).
 
IANS
 

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