CBI files FIR against Jaganmohan Reddy in assets case

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) today filed an FIR against YSR Congress party president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy in the illegal assets case against him in the wake of the investigation ordered by the Andhra Pradesh High Court.

The CBI filed the FIR in the Emaar Properties case also as per the direction of the court to conduct an in-depth inquiry into the alleged disproportionate assets of Mr Jagan after registering a criminal case.

To conduct an in-depth inquiry, CBI officials will also file cases against companies and individuals who had invested in companies promoted by Mr Reddy, allegedly as kickbacks for land allocations.

Mr Jaganmohan Reddy is the son of late Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy.

The bureau has also simultaneously filed a petition in Nampalli Court seeking search and seizure warrants, according to CBI sources.

Meanwhile, Mr Reddy filed an appeal in the Supreme Court yesterday, challenging the Andhra Pradesh High Court order asking the CBI to probe his alleged illegal assets.


Prakash Jha's Aarakshan banned in Andhra Pradesh


The Andhra Pradesh government today issued orders to ban the release of Prakash Jha's controversial film Aarakshan in cinema theatres across the state, initially for a week.

Based on representations from Andhra Pradesh Scheduled Kulala Shamikshama Sangam and Andhra Pradesh Ambedkar Yojana Sangam, the government decided to ban the film.

"The ban has been imposed initially for a week or till a final decision was taken on receipt of the report of the committee constituted for the purpose," Government Principal Secretary B P Charya said in a release here.

In their representation, the associations requested inter-alia to suspend the release of the film as certain contents of the said film were likely to hurt the sentiments of SC, ST & BC communities.

However, based on the representation and a report from Information and Public Relations Commissioner Venkatesam orders were being issued separately constituting a committee to view the film and make recommendations to the Government, the release said.

In the exercise of the powers conferred under Section 8 of the A P Cinemas (Regulation) Act, 1955 (Act No 4 of 1955), Government suspend the exhibition of the Hindi film, the release added.


HC asks CBI to conduct full-fledged probe into Jagan & Emaar cases


In a mjaor blow to the YSR Congress Party chief Y S Jaganmohan Reddy, the Andhra Pradesh High Court today ordered a full-fledged probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the allegations of illegal accumulation of wealth by him.

Delivering the judgement on the petitions filed by Andhra Pradesh Minister for Handloom and Textiles P Shankar Rao, Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leaders Yeeran Naidu, Ashok Gajapathi Raju and Rajasekhara Reddy and Kadapa-based lawyer Mr Sharwani, a division bench comprising Chief Justice Nisar Ahmed Kakru and Mr Justice Vilas Afzalpurkar also directed the CBI to file a criminal case against Mr Reddy under the Anti-Corruption and Money Laundering Acts.

The court observed that there was prima facie evidence against Mr Reddy and the case needed a full probe.

The court took the decision based on the preliminary investigation report submitted by the CBI on July 26.

The High Court also ordered the CBI to conduct a full-fledged inquiry into the irregularities allegedly committed by Emaar Properties in its land dealings.


Acting on the petition by Mr Shankar Rao, the High Court, on July 11, directed the CBI to thoroughly investigate the allotments of government land to Emaar Properties by the Andhra Pradesh Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (APIIDC).

The court also set aside the plea by Emaar Properties for a probe by an independent agency and opined that the CBI alone would be able to thoroughly probe any illegal allotments.

The minister, in his letter, had prayed the Court to order an investigation into the lands allotted to Emaar Properties during the regime of late Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy, Mr Jaganmohan Reddy's father.

Mr Jaganmohan Reddy also moved the Supreme Court challenging the legality of the Andhra Pradesh High Court order asking the CBI to conduct a preliminary probe into his alleged disproportionate assets. However, the apex court had not given him any breather by staying the High Court order and asked him to approach the court at a later stage.


Telangana: Govt. appeals to people in AP to allow consultations to conclude

The Government on Friday made an earnest appeal to all sections of the people in Andhra Pradesh to allow the consultation process on the demand for the formation of a separate state of Telangana to reach its logical conclusion.

The Government today made an earnest appeal to all sections of the people in Andhra Pradesh to allow the consultation process on the demand for the formation of a separate state of Telangana to reach its logical conclusion.

"Meanwhile, the Government would like to reiterate the appeal issued at the end of the all party meeting on January 6, 2011 that ‘peace, harmony and law and order should be maintained in the State of Andhra Pradesh," Union Home Minister P Chidambaram said in the Lok Sabha.

In a statement on a Calling Attention Motion on the situation arising out of the delay in creation of Telangana state, he said he had, following the submission of the Justice Srikrishna Committee report, he had convened a meeting of allt he major political parties in the state legislature on January 6 this year and requested them to consider the report and form an opinion on it.

"The consultation process with various political parties of the Andhra Pradesh is continuing. A suitable decision will be taken in the light of these discussions. The Government of India is keeping a close watch on the political developments as well as on the law and order situation in the State," he said.

Mr Chidambaram recalled the circumstances under which the Centre had set up the five-member committee under the chairmanship of Mr Justice (Retd.) B N Srikrishna in February 2010.

The committee was requested to hold consultations with all sections of the people and all political parties and groups in Andhra Pradesh to examine the situation in the state with reference to the demand for a separate State of Telangana as well as the demand for maintaining the present status of a united Andhra Pradesh.

The committee submitted its report on December 30, 2010. In its report, the Committee has listed the following six solutions/possible options as the way forward:

(i) Maintaining Status Quo

(ii) Bifurcation of the State into Seemandhra and Telangana; with Hyderabad as a Union Territory and the two States developing their own capitals in due course

(iii) Bifurcation of the State into Rayala-Telangana and coastal Andhra regions with Hyderabad being an integral part of Rayala-Telangana

(iv) Bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh into Seemandhra and Telangana with enlarged Hyderabad Metropolis as a separate Union Territory. This Union Territory will have geographical linkage and contiguity via Nalgonda district in the south-east Guntur in coastal Andhra and via Mahboobnagar district in the south to Kurnool district in Rayalaseema

(v) Bifurcation of the State into Telangana and Seemandhra as per existing boundaries with Hyderabad as the capital of Telangana and Seemandhra to have a new capital

(vi) Keeping the State united by simultaneously providing certain definite Constitutional/Statutory measures for socio-economic development and political empowerment of Telangana region – creation of a statutorily empowered Telangana Regional Council.

Mr Chidambaram said that, meanwhile, the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh had requested the Government of India to consider the demand to delete paragraph 14(f) of the Andhra Pradesh Public Employment (Organisation of Local Cadres and Regulation of Direct Recruitment) Order 1975.

Under paragraph 14(f) of the Order, any post of Police Officer, as defined in section 3 (b) of the Hyderabad City Police Act, 1348 F, is exempted from the purview of aforesaid Order.

This implied that Hyderabad City would be a "free zone" for the purpose of recruitment to the police. The deletion of paragraph 14(f) would include Hyderabad city in Zone VI for the purpose of recruitment to the police of the city. The Chief Minister commended the resolution of the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly dated March 18, 2010 that supported deletion of paragraph 14(f).


"After careful consideration, Government has decided to recommend to the President that clause (f) of paragraph 14 of the Andhra Pradesh Public Employment (Organization of Local Cadres and Regulation of Direct Recruitment) Order, 1975 may be deleted subject to the Resolution on the subject earlier passed being re-iterated by the Legislative Assembly of Andhra Pradesh. The decision of the Government was communicated to the State Government on July 13, 2011 for suitable action," Mr Chidambaram said.

The Chief Minister, vide letter dated August 1, 2011, has informed the Government of India that the earlier resolution of the Legislative Assembly dated March 18, 2010 still holds good and there is no change in the composition of the Legislative Assembly. He has, therefore, requested that a recommendation may be made to the President on the basis of the resolution of March 18, 2010. The matter is under active consideration, the Minister added.


Satyam case: Court rejects bail applications of Raju, others


A trial court today rejected the bail petitions of former Satyam Computers Chairman B Ramalinga Raju and seven others, who were accused in the Rs 14,000 crore fraud in the company.

XXI Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (ACMM) Court reserved its order on Tuesday last for today on the bail petitions of Mr Raju and others.

Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Counsel K Surender had opposed the bail application of the accused claiming there was no change in circumstances and hence bail was not necessary.

He recalled the Supreme Court had earlier rejected bail petitions of the accused and since the trial in the case was not yet over, granting of bail at this juncture was not necessary.

Senior Advocate E Umamaheshwar Rao and three other counsels, who appeared for the accused, contended there were indeed changed circumstances and his clients were exercising the right for bail.

Seeking Mr Raju's release on bail, Mr Rao also wanted the court to consider the good behaviour of his client and the cooperation he extended during the remand period.


The CBI, however, expressed apprehension that they would tamper with the evidence if they were released on bail.

Mr Raju, Satyam's former MD B Rama Raju, ex-Satyam Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Vadlamani Srinivas, former employees G Ramakrishna, D Venkatpathi Raju and Srisailam and former Price WaterHouse Coopers(PWC) auditor Subramani Gopalakrishnan had sought bail two days back on the grounds that the trial in the case was not completed before the stipulated date of July 31 and all the prosecution witnesses were examined.

Earlier, cancelling Mr Raju's bail in October 2010, the Supreme Court directed the accused can file bail applications only after July 31, 2011 if the trial in the case was not completed in the local court by then.


Andhra Pradesh Lokayukta issues notices to Minister, family


The Andhra Pradesh Lokayukta today asked Minister for Handlooms and Textiles P Shankar Rao to submit the details of his assets and those of his family members within six weeks.

The Lokayukta, Justice Ananda Reddy, has taken up the case after the Minister wrote a letter to him a few days ago seeking a probe into allegations levelled against him and his family members.

Taking suo motu notice of Dr Shankar Rao's letter, the Lokayukta had issued notices to the minister and his family members, asking them to submit the details pertaining to their asssets within six weeks.

The Minister had also sought a Lokayukta probe into illegal alloment of mines and land from the period of the Telugu Desam Party's regime till the present.

It was Dr Shankar Rao's letter to the Andhra Pradesh High Court which had paved the way for a CBI probe into the assets of YSR Congress chief Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy.

Welcoming the notice, Dr Shankar Rao saidthat he would submit the list of the assets owned by him and his family before the deadline set by the Lokayukta.


Court sends Chiranjeevi's son-in-law Sirish to judicial custody


A local court today sent G R Sirish Bharadwaj, estranged son-in-law of Telugu film actor K Chiranjeevi to a 14-day judicial remand in an alleged dowry harassment case.

Earlier on May 30, the Supreme Court had rejected his anticipatory bail plea.

Sirish had eloped with Chiranjeevi's younger daughter Srija and married her in 2007. The elopement hit the headlines after the couple appeared before the Delhi High Court and sought police protection as the marriage took place reportedly against the wishes of the star's family.

Following a bitter break-up, Srija filed a complaint with the police on March 15 alleging that Sirish and her mother-in-law had tortured her mentally and physically for dowry. The couple have a two-year-old daughter.

While rejecting his anticipatory bail plea, the Supreme Court had advised him to surrender before the concerned local court and seek a regular bail after arrest.

As per the directions of the Supreme Court, Sirish surrendered before the court today. After the Nampally Court pronounced its order, the CCS police shifted him to Chanchalguda Jail.

The CCS police had filed a petition in the court to permit five-day custody for Bharadwaj.

Earlier, the Andhra Pradesh High Court had on April 7 dismised Sirish's bail plea in the case registered with the Hyderabad City Police on March 14 alleging that he and his mother G R Suryamani were harassing Sirija by demanding Rs 50 lakh as dowry.


CBI submits reports to HC on Jagan's assets and Emaar properties

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) today submitted two preliminary inquiry reports in separate sealed covers to the Andhra Pradesh High Court on the wealth of YSR Congress President Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy and on the irregularities in the Emaar properties.

The High Court had directed the CBI to submit a preliminary report on Emaar irregularities and Jagan's assets to ascertain if they were disproportionate to his known sources of income.

CBI Inspector General Lakshminarayana submitted the reports to High Court Registrar General this evening as per the court orders.

The CBI, during its 13-day preliminary inquiry into the wealth possessed by Mr Reddy, had sent notices to about 24 companies for putting a major chunk of their investments in Jagati Publications Private Limited (JPPL), owned by Mr Jagan Mohan Reddy.

It also questioned the officials of these companies to find out what benefits they had derived from the then government headed by late Y S Rajasekhara Reddy, Mr Jagan Mohan Reddy's father.

The CBI had also gathered information from Revenue, Industry, IT and Mines departments before finalising the preliminary report.

The agency is now likely to seek permission from the court for a full-fleged probe into the affairs involving Mr Reddy's assests.

A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Nisar Ahmed Kakru and Mr Justice Vilas V Afzalpurkar earlier asked the CBI to complete the probe in two weeks after acting on the letter and petitions filed by Andhra Pradesh Minister P Shanakar Rao, senior TDP leader K Yerran Naidu and advocate Sheriwani.


AP HC orders CBI inquiry into Jagan's assets

The Andhra Pradesh High Court today ordered a preliminary inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the alleged amassing of wealth by YSR Congress chief Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy.

A division bench comprising Chief Justice Nisar Ahmed Kakru and Justice Vilas V Afzalpurkar also directed the CBI to complete the probe in two weeks and submit its report to the court in a sealed cover.

The court passed the orders on a letter and petitions filed by Andhra Pradesh Minister P Shankar Rao, senior TDPleader K Yerran Naidu and Advocate Sheriwani. The bench was of the opinion that, prima facie, an inquiry was necessary to clear doubts.

Mr Shankar Rao had submitted a letter to the High Court in the begining of this year seeking a probe  by CBI into the alleged "ill-gotton" wealth of Mr Jagan, son of former Chief Minister Y S
Rajasekahra Reddy.


Strike cripples normal life in Telangana region for second day

Normal life was paralysed in Telangana region of Andhra Pradesh for the second consecutive day today due to a 48-hour general strike called by the Telangana Political Joint Action Committee (TPJAC) to press its demand for separate state of Telangana.

As precautionary measures, the AP State Road Trnsport Corporation (APSRTC) had suspended nearly 10,000 bus services across the twin cities of Secunderabad and Hyderabad and in nine other districts of the Telangana region since yesterday.

The shutdown also forced APSRTC to suspend all services between Hyderabad and other cities like Vijayawada, Visakhapatnam, Kurnool and Tirupati. The Corporation, which suffered a loss of Rs 9 crore on the first day of the strike yesterday, plans to resume services in the evening.

Shops, business establishments, hotels, petrol bunks and educational institutions in Telangana region remained closed on the second consecutive day today.

Local train services were also cancelled for the second day. The services are likely to be resumed in the afternoon, according to South Central Ralway (SCR) sources here.

Coal production in Singareni Collieries Company Limited (SCCL) was affected for the second day as a majority of the nearly 70,000 employees in the mines are from four Telangana districts.

The shudown badly affected the work in government offices as a majority of employees belong to Telangana region.

All the roads leading to the Assembly were closed in view of the rally organised by Osmania University students from the Arts College to Gun Park near Assembly today, protesting against the delay in deleting clause 14 (F) from the Presidential Order.

Meanwhile, the city police arrested TPJAC convener Prof Kodandaram while he was proceeding to Osamania University campus to support the students' rally.


TRS chief, Andhra minister resign demanding Telangana state

Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) President K Chandrasekhar Rao and actress Viajyashanti resigned from their Lok Sabha seats today to press their demand for a separate Telangana state.

While Mr Rao represents the Mahaboobnagar constituency, Ms Vijayashanti was elected on the TRS ticket from Medak.

Their resignations came a day after Congress MLAs, including Ministers, and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) MLAs quit their seats in support for the demand for carving out a separate state of Telangana from Andhra Pradesh.

Both TRS MPs faxed their resignation letters to Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar. Mr Chandrashekara Rao would meet the Speaker personally in a day or two, according to party sources here.

Meanwhile, State Textiles Minister Shankar Rao, who was on a visit t the United States, also faxed his resignation to Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly Deputy Speaker Mallu Batti Vikramarka.

With this, the number of state ministers who have quit has gone up to 12.

Out of 119 MLAs from Telangana (one seat is vacant) as many as 82 MLAs, including 12 ministers, 14 Members of Parliament, including one from Rajya Sabha, and 17 MLCs belonging to Congress and TDP have resigned their seats so far to mount pressure on the Centre to act in the matter.


Normal life hit as 48-hour Telangana strike begins

Normal life came to a standstill in Telangana districts, including the twin cities of Secunderabad and Hyderabad, as a 48-hour general strike called by the Telangana Political Joint Action Committee (TPJAC) demanding the formation of a separate state of Telengana began today.

Transport services in Hyderabad and nine other Telangana districts were paralysed since morning while shops, business establishments including petrol bunks and educational institutions remained closed.

Buses of state-owned road Transport Corporation (RTC) could not come out of the depots since morning and long-distance buses coming from Visakhapatnam, Vijayawada and other parts of the state to Telangana areas were also cancelled by the Corporation in view of the strike.

South Central Railway (SCR) had already cancelled MMTS train services between Secunderabad and Faluknama since last night.

Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) activists and all JAC members and associates including doctors, advocates, teachers, students and employees of the state government and public sector undertakings observed rallies and dharnas at various places across Telangana region as part of the "bandh:. However, there was no report of any violence.

Besides imposing prohibitory orders around the Secretariat, Chief Minister's Camp Office, Hyderabad and Rangana Reddy Collectorates, a large number of paramilitary forces have been deployed in the city as a precautionary measure.

Coal mining operations in state-owned Singareni Collieries Company, spread over four districts of Adilabad, Khammam, Karimnagar and Warangal, were also affected as the employees joined the strike.


Congress MPs, MLAs, MLCs from Telangana region to resign on July 4

Even as Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is in charge of the Congress' affairs in Andhra Pradesh, today said that a decision on the demand for statehood for Telangana would take some more time, the party's elected representatives from the regionhave decided to resign en masse on July 4.

The Congress Ministers, MPs, MLAs and MLCs from Telangana region would submit their resignations to the respective presiding officers, they said.

Talking to reporters after holding a three-hour meeting with the party's elected representatives from the region here, Andhra Pradesh Panchayat Raj Minister K Jana Reddy and Rajya Sabha member K Keshava Rao said there was no option other than submitting resignations to instil confidence among the Telangana people.

They said the Ministers, MLAs and MLCS would submit their resignations to the Speaker and Chairman here, while the MPs would submit theirs to the Speaker and Chairman in Parliament.

The leaders also made it clear that they would fight for a separate Telangana by remaining in the Congress and strengthen the leadership of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, even after tendering their resignations.

Mr Reddy said they would not stick to their posts and were ready for any sacrifice to fulfil the wishes of the four crore people of Telangana.

However, Sangareddy MLA T Jayaprakash Reddy, who opposed the resignations, said he would fight for Telangana state by being a legislator.

"We tried our best to convince the High Command, but as there was no positive response from the Centre, we have no option but to resign," Mr Jana Reddy said.

Telangana Telugu Desam Party (TDP) Forum convener Erraballi Dayakar Rao has also declared his plans to resign and a final decision would be taken tomorrow.

He said the TDP elected representatives from Telangana region would pay homage to the martyrs near the Assembly and submit their resignations to the Speaker.

Meanwhile, Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) President K Chandrasekhara Rao welcomed the decision taken by the leaders. He said the Telangana people were waiting for the resignations of political leaders from the region for a long time.

The Centre without delaying further, should immediately start the process of formation of Telangana state, Mr Rao demanded.

Telangana NGOs General Secretary Swami Goud said those who resigned for the cause of Telangana state, would be re-elected.

Telangana Political Joint Action Committee (JAC) Chairman M Kodandam Ram after chairing the steering Committee meeting said those elected representatives from respective parties who failed to resign would not be allowed to move in their constituencies in Telangana region.


Former Union Minister G Venkatswamy admitted to hospital in Hyderabad


Senior Congress leader and former Union Minister G Venkatswamy was admitted to the Care Hospital at Banjara Hills here today.

The 82-year-old leader was admitted to the hospital by his family members following illness, according to family sources.

The former Union Labour Minister, who is popularly called as "Kada" in political circles, was admitted to the same hospital last month. He was discharged on June 9, following an improvement in his health, the sources added.


Court grants divorce to badminton stars Jwala Gutta, Chetan Anand

File photo of Jwala Gutta
File photo of Jwala Gutta

The Hyderabad Family Court today granted divorce to badminton star couple Jwala Gutta and Chetan Anand, who had applied for it six months ago.

The couple had been living separately after differences cropped up between them.

The sportstars fell in love during the 1999 Junior Badminton tournament and continued dating till 2005. They got married on July 17, 2005.

Differences cropped up between them thereafter and the efforts of both families to keep them united failed and finally led to legal separation.


Saina Nehwal fails to defend Indonesia Open title

Saina Nehwal in against Wang Yihan of China in women's singles final in the Indonesia Badminton Open Superseries Premier 2011 in Jakarta on June 26, 2011.  EPA/UNI PHOTO
Saina Nehwal in against Wang Yihan of China in women's singles final in the Indonesia Badminton Open Superseries Premier 2011 in Jakarta on June 26, 2011. EPA/UNI PHOTO

Ace Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal failed to script history as she went down to China's Yihan Wang in the finals of the Indonesia Open Super Series badminton tournament here today.

The 21-year-old Hyderabad girl lost 21-12 21-23 14-21 to world number three Wang.

A win at this tournament would have created a hat-trick of titles for the fourth seeded Indian.

Nehwal had been in top form throughout the tournament but was not able to replicate her performance in the final clash.


Police arrest Chaitanya in Jaipal Reddy's niece's murder

The city police today arrested Chaitanya Reddy on the charge of murdering his wife, Dr Kiran Reddy, a niece of Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas S Jaipal Reddy.

According to city Deputy Commissioner of Police Stefen Ravindra, he was arrested and produced in Nampally court here for judicial remand, based on the autopsy reports submitted by the doctors.

During interrogation, Dr Kiran Reddy's husband also admitted to the crime, he said. The forensic reports stated that a soft pillow was used to smother her to death.

Kiran Reddy, 26, was found dead in suspicious circumstances at her residence in Jubilee Hills on Saturday last.

Initially, a case of suspicious death was registered and based on the complaint from the deceased's father Raghottam Reddy that his daughter's death was not natural, the case was later altered to murder case.

Kiran Reddy, daughter of Jaipal Reddy's younger sister Bharati, was working as a dermatologist. She was married to Chaitanya Reddy five years ago.


Rajanarasimha appointed Dy CM of Andhra Pradesh


Andhra Pradesh Minister for Agriculture and Higher Education C. Damodar Rajanarasimha was appointed as Deputy Chief Minister by Governor E S L Narasimhan here today.

In a notification, Government Chief Secretary S.V.Prasad said the Governor, on the advice of the Chief Minister N.Kiran Kumar Reddy appointed Mr Narasimha as Deputy Chief Minister with effect from the forenoon of today.

Mr Rajanarasimha, was elected to the Legislative Assembly from Andole constituency in Medak District for the third time in a row.

He was elected during 1989, 2004 and 2009 elections and had served as Minister for Marketing during Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy's rule in 2004-2009 and continued in the cabinet of Mr K Rosaiah.

In Mr Kiran Kumar Reddy's cabinet, he was given the important portfolio of Higher Education and additional charge of Agriculture after Mr Vivekhananda Reddy resigned.


The 53-year-old Dalit leader, who was born in Hyderabad, had entered active politics only after his father and former MLA Cilarapu Rajanarsimha's death.

He had also served as Chairman for the SC Finance Corporation earlier.


N Manohar elected Speaker of Andhra Pradesh Assembly


Mr Nadendla Manohar of the Congress was today elected Speaker of the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly.

In the election held today, Mr Manohar, the nominee of the Congress and its allies PRP and AIMIM, defeated the Opposition-sponsored TDP candidate K E Krishnamurthy by 158 to 90 votes in the State Assembly.

Pro tem Speaker J C Diwakar Reddy announced the election of Mr Manohar after the division in the state assembly here.

Mr Manohar was escorted to the podium by Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy, Opposition leader N Chandrababu Naidu, PRP leader Chiranjeevi and CPI(M) leader J Krishna Reddy amid thumping of tables.

The House had earlier adopted resolution for shifting of the voting system from secret ballot to open balloting.


TDP to move no-trust motion against Cong govt in AP

As per the decision taken at the recently concluded party's annual "Mahanadu" in the city, the main Opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP) today decided to move a no-confidence motion against the Congress government led by Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy in the Andhra Pradesh Assembly.

Addressing a press conference after an emergency meeting with MLAs at the party office here, TDP chief and former Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu said his party MLAs would give notice for the no-confidence motion to Deputy Speaker N Manohar.

"We are not going to tie up with any political party," he said, adding the motion was being moved mainly on the problems faced by farmers and the inefficiency of government in the state, which "miserably failed in all sectors".

To reflect the people's mood, the party took the decision to move the no-trust motion against Kiran Kumar Reddy Government in the State, Mr Naidu said.

"We are having 86-member strength in the Assembly against required support of one third majority in the 294-member State Assembly," he said.

The Opposition had the right to move the no-confidence motion and the party is ready for any situation, including facing elections to the State Assembly, he said.

"The government has lost the confidence of people," the former Chief Minister claimed, adding all sections of people, especially farmers, were facing problems and "the government had miserably failed to procure paddy from farmers and ensure minimum support price to them,".

As many as 30 MLAs attended the meeting.


Andhra Pradesh minister quits over Telangana issue

Andhra Pradesh Endowments Minister Jupally Krishna Rao today submitted his resignation to Governor E S L Narasimhan on the separate Telangana issue.

Talking to mediapersons later, he said he had quit to exert pressure on the Centre over the Telangana statehood issue.

"Now, I will proceed with the padayatra being conducted with Gandhian ideology at Mahaboobnagar district and if any one obstructs it, the government will be responsible," he added.

Mr Jupally's "Prajabhimanam Yatra" in support of Telangana had commenced on April 28 and the Minister went on to cover six constituencies in Mahabubnagar district.

His "yatra" was stopped on May 20 when he was taken into preventive custody on the outskirts of Gadwal.


Spice Jet's Hyderabad flight returns to Mumbai after smoke alarm in cargo hold

Low-cost carrier Spice Jet's Mumbai-Hyderabad flight, SG-401, returned to Mumbai this morning after the pilot observed the smoke alarm in the cargo hold.

"Following the standard safety procedures and checklists, the captain activated the fire extinguisher in the cargo hold and requested for priority landing. The aircraft landed back in Mumbai and all the passengers are safe," a spokesperson for the airline said.

He said the aircraft was taken to an isolation area and the investigating authorities – the Air Safety Wing of DGCA, Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad, the Bureau of Civil Aviation Safety and the Airport Fire Agencies – were inspecting the aircraft.

"SpiceJet will thoroughly investigate the aircraft and the cause as soon as we receive the investigation report from the authorities," he said.

All passengers had been deplaned safely and alternative arrangements were being made to send them to their destination with least delay, the spokesperson added.


Hyderabad lad Purudhavi Tej tops IIT JEE 2011

Immadi Purudhavi Tej of Hyderabad has topped the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) 2011 of the prestigious Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT), the results of which were announced today.

The second rank was bagged by Shubham Mehta of the IIT-Bombay Zone while Shyamak Reddy and Burle Sai Kiran from the Madras Zone got the third and fourth spots, respectively. Nishith Lohati from Bombay zone was placed fifth.

Sumedha Garg from the Roorkee zone topped among girls with an all-India rank of 12.

As many as 24 out of the 30 students of Patna's famous Super 30, a coaching centre for under-privileged children, got through this year. last year, the Super 30 had a 100 per cent success rate.

The JEE ranks are used for admission to various courses in the 15 IITs in the country as well as IT-BHU and ISM, Dhanbad.

In all, 4,68,240 candidates appeared for the test conducted on April 10 this year. Of them, 13,602, including 1491 girls, have qualified for the 9618 seats in the IITs at Bhubaneswar, Bombay, Delhi, Gandhinagar, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Indore, Kanpur, Kharagpur, Madras, Mandi, Patna, Rajasthan, Ropar, Roorkee and IT-BHU Varanasi and ISM Dhanbad.

Factoring in attrition during counseling, larger number of candidates are selected than the number of seats available, an official press release said.

All the qualified candidates, from this year are expected to fill their choice of courses and pay the registration fee on-line. Candidates belonging to Physically Disabled (PD) sub-category will have to report in person to the counseling institutes for a checkup before a specially constituted Medical Board as specified in the counseling brochure, soft copy of which is already displayed in the JEE website.

For the convenience of such candidates, for the first time, Medical Boards have been constituted at IIT Kanpur and at IIT Khargapur along with IIT Bombay, IIT Delhi, IIT Guwahati and IIT Madras, the release added.

(With inputs from United News of India)


Deccan Chargers end Kings XI's dream run in IPL

Deccan Chargers put an end to Kings XI Punjab's dream run and shattered their hopes of having an outside chance to qualify for the play-offs of the Indian Premier League (IPL) with an 82-run victory at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association stadium here today.

The fairy-tale ending that Kings XI Punjab and its fans were expecting slipped through their fingers as the opposition led by opening pair of Shikhar Dhawan and Ravi Teja rattled the Punjab bowlers to set up a of 199-run target.

Dhawan, who scored an unbeaten 95 off just 57 balls, took the battle to the opposition camp and completely dominated the proceedings till the last ball.

His partner Teja also played a vital knock of 60 runs off 41 balls, thanks to Kings XI fielders who gave him several chances.

The two batsmen notched up a 131-run stand for the first wicket.

Faced with the task of making 199 for a win, Kings XI started faltering from the very start. Wrong shot selection, mounting asking rate and disciplined bowling by the Deccan Chargers, including a hat-trick by leg-spinner Amit Mishra, bundled out the Adam Gilchrist-led side for a paltry 116 runs with one over remaining in the innings.

On the third, fourth and fifth ball of the 16th over of the innings, Mishra claimed Ryan McLaren, Mandeep Singh and Ryan Harris to complete his second hat-trick of the IPL. His figures of four for nine made him pick of the bowler for his team.

The in-form batsmen - Paul Valthaty and Shaun Marsh - fell cheaply after showing a glimpse of fireworks, leaving skipper Gilchrist to wage a lonely battle. He scored an attacking 51 off 37 balls but lack of support from the other end did him in.


NIA files supplementary charge sheet against Swami Aseemanand in Mecca Masjid blasts case

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) today filed a supplementary charge sheet before the Hyderabad Special Court for NIA cases against the accused Nabakumar Sarkar alias Swami Aseemanand, alleged to be one of the main conspirators of the bomb blasts at the Mecca Masjid, Hyderabad on May 18, 2007.

As many as nine persons had lost thir lives and 58 others were injured in the blasts.

An official press release said the charge sheet had been filed under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the Explosive Substances Act against him for his alleged role in the blasts.

The investigations in the case were initially conducted by the Hussaini Alam Police Station, Hyderabad.

Subsequently, the case was entrusted to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which filed a charge sheet against accused Devender Gupta and Lokesh Sharma, who were arrested and are in judicial custody.

Swami Aseemnand was arrested on November 19, 2010 from Haridwar in Uttarakhand, where he was said to be hiding under a fictitious name "Swami Omkaranand".

Later, the Central Government had decided to transfer the case for further investigation by the NIA.

The agency started further investigation from April, 2011. Swami Aseemanand is now in Ambala jail, being an accused in Samjhauta Express bomb blast case of 2007. The NIA is conducting further investigation, the release said.

In this case, two prime accused Sandeep Dange and Ramji Kalsangara are absconding and the NIA has declared a reward of Rs. 10 lakhs each for their arrest, the release added.


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