ADVERTISEMENT

Bihar

Mukherjee condoles passing away of former Union Minister Baleshwar Ram

ADVERTISEMENT
President Pranab Mukherjee today condoled the passing away of former Union Minister and veteran Congress leader Baleshwar Ram, who passed away in Patna yesterday at the age of 87.
 
In a message to Mr Baleshwar Ram's wife Chinta Devi, Mr Mukherjee said he had served the nation in different capacities during his long public life.
 
"As a five-term Member of the Bihar Legislative Assembly and Minister in the State Government in the sixties and seventies, he made immense contribution for the welfare and development of the people of Bihar, especially weaker sections. I had the privilege of working closely with him when both of us served as Ministers in the Government led by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in the eighties," he said.
 
"Please accept my heartfelt condolences and convey the same to the rest of your family members. I pray to the Almighty to give you and other members of your family the strength and courage to bear this irreparable loss," Mr Mukherjee added.
 
Mr Baleshwar Ram is survived by his wife, two sons and two daughters.
 
Apart from being elected five times to the Bihar Legislative Assembly and serving as a Minister in various Congress governments in the state during the 1960s and 1970s, Mr Baleshwar Ram was elected to the Lok Sabha from Rosera in 1980 and appointed as a Minister in the Indira Gandhi government.
 
NNN
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Centre announces compensation of Rs 2 lakh to familes of those killed in earthquake

ADVERTISEMENT
The Union Government today announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh to the families of each of those who were killed in yesterday's 7.9 magnitude earthquake, which had its epicentre in Nepal and effected several parts of north and eastern India.
 
At least 57 deaths have been reported in India -- 42 in Bihar, 12 in eastern Uttar Pradesh and three in West Bengal.
 
More than 150 people have suffered injuries in Bihar and 30 in West Bengal, official sources said.
 
The tremors were felt in several parts of India, including Delhi, Lucknow, Patna, Kolkata, Jaipur, Bhopal and Bhubaneswar.
 
People in many parts of Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal, Sikkim, Assam and Meghalaya ran out of their offices and homes in panic.
 
The tremors were also felt in many parts of Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Gujarat, sources said.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

32 killed, 80 injured in storm in Bihar on Tuesday night

 
32 dead, 80 hurt in severe storm in Bihar
At least 32 people were killed and more than 80 suffered injuries when a severe storm hit several parts of Bihar late last night, official sources said.
 
The storm also caused widespread damage to property, including hundreds of huts, standing crops, trees, telephone and electricity poles and other structures.
 
Bihar Principal Secretary, Disaster Management Department, Vyasji told journalists here today that 25 of the deaths were reported from Purnea district, six from Madhepura and one in Madhubani.
 
With hundreds of trees and poles uprooted by the winds that reached upto 65 kmph, road traffic was disrupted in the affected districts.
 
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar told reporters that he would visit the affected areas to see the extent of damage. He also announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs 4 lakh to the next of kin of those who died.
 
Some of the other districts affected by the storm included Darbhanga, Kisanganj, Katihar, Saharsa, Supual, Araria and Bhagalpur.
 
Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to Mr Kumar about the situation arising out of the storm.
 
"Spoke to Bihar CM Nitish Kumar ji on situation arising due to storms in various parts of the State. Assured all assistance from Centre," he said on micro-blogging site Twitter.
 
Mr Modi also said Home Minister Rajnath Singh would visit Bihar to take stock of the situation.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Mukherjee to visit Chhattisgarh, Bihar on April 17-18

ADVERTISEMENT
President Pranab Mukherjee will pay a two-day visit to Chhattisgarh and Bihar from tomorrow, an official press release said here today.
 
Tomorrow, Mr Mukherjee will address the 4th Annual Convocation of Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Raipur at Raipur in Chhattisgarh. 
 
On April 18, he will inaugurate the centenary year celebrations of Patna High Court at Patna in Bihar, the release added.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

AAI proposes to develop airport at Bihta near Patna for international operations

ADVERTISEMENT
The Airport Authority of India (AAI) has proposed to develop the Indian Air Force (IAF) airport at Bihta in Patna district of Bihar as a new airport for international operations.
 
Accordingly, it has taken up the matter with the Ministry of Defence and the Government of Bihar, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Mahesh Sharma told the Rajya Sabha in a written reply to a question today.
 
He said the AAI had requested for additional land of 600 acres for Phase-I and 790 acres for Phase-II in lieu of existing Patna Airport. 
 
AAI has also prepared Master Plans for development of Raxaul and Muzaffarpur airstrips and requested the State Government to provide additional land, removal of obstructions and diversion of road in the approach funnel, he said.
 
There are a total of 28 airstrips/aerodromes in Bihar, out of which 5 airports -- Gaya, Patna, Jogbani, Muzaffarpur and Raxaul -- are owned by AAI. Among these, Patna and Gaya airports are operational, the Minister added.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

BHEL commissions 660 MW supercritical thermal unit in Bihar

Logo of BHEL.
The public sector Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) today said that it had commissioned the second 660 MW unit at the Barh Supercritical Thermal Power Project, Stage II, of NTPC Limited in Bihar.
 
The first 660 MW unit of the project was commissioned earlier and dedicated to the nation by Union Minister for Power Piyush Goyal on November 15, 2014.
 
A press release from BHEL said the company was presently executing orders for 36 sets of supercritical boilers and 31 sets of supercritical turbine generators, which are in various stages of execution.
 
These orders include orders from Central and State sector as well as private sector companies. Supercritical units are more efficient, consume lesser coal and are eco-friendly, it said.
 
As in the sub-critical segment, BHEL has retained its market leadership in the country’s supercritical segment also, it said.
 
The key equipment for the project has been manufactured by BHEL at its Haridwar, Trichy, Hyderabad and Bengaluru works, while the construction of the plant was undertaken by the company's Power Sector - Eastern Region.
 
To keep abreast with the latest technologies, BHEL has already taken up the indigenous development of the Advanced Ultra Supercritical (AUSC) technology with NTPC and IGCAR, which will result in a further reduction of about 11% in coal consumption and CO2 emission.
 
BHEL supplied thermal sets fully meet the performance standards notified by CEA. As per a recent CEA study on the performance of installed power generating sets, BHEL supplied sets have demonstrated a better operating heat rate resulting in less coal consumption per unit of power produced, the release added.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Nitish Kumar to be sworn in as Bihar Chief Minister on Sunday

ADVERTISEMENT
Janata Dal (United) leader Nitish Kumar will be sworn in as the Chief Minister of Bihar for a fourth time this evening, two days after his loyalist-turned-political foe Jitan Ram Manjhi resigned from the position hours before a trust vote in the state legislative assembly here on Friday.
 
Mr Kumar, 63, and his Ministers will be administered the oaths of office and secrecy by Governor Kesari Nath Tripathi at a ceremony at 5 pm today.
 
Mr Manjhi had met Mr Tripathi and handed in his papers on Friday morning. Shortly thereafter, Mr Kumar had called on the Governor and staked his claim to form the next government.
 
Mr Tripathi invited him to form the new government and has asked him to prove his majority on the floor of the assembly within three weeks.
 
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is among those expected to attend the swearing-in ceremony.
 
"Nitish ji has invited me to his oath ceremony on Sunday. Yes, I am attending. Looking forward," she said on micro-blogging site Twitter.
 
Mr Manjhi's resignation came after it became clear that he did not have the numbers to win a trust vote in the 243-member assembly even though the  Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which has a score to settle with Mr Kumar, had thrown its weight behind him.
 
Mr Kumar has been claiming that he has the support of 130 MLAs in the House, including 99 of his own party, 24 from the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and five of the Congress.
 
The RJD, the Congress and other allies of the JD (U) have not given any indication about whether they would join Mr Kumar's government or prefer to give it support from outside.
 
Ahead of his meeting with the Governor, Mr Kumar, a former Union Minister, had promised on Friday to provide good governance if given another chance to serve the people of Bihar and apologised to them for his decision to resign on May 17 last year after his party's poor performance in the Lok Sabha elections in the state.
 
Mr Kumar's party had ended up with just two of the 40 Lok Sabha seats from Bihar, while the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), its erstwhile partner in the state, won as many as 22.
 
The Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) of former Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan, an ally of the BJP, got five seats. The Congress won two seats, the NCP one, the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) four and the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party won three.
 
On June 16, 2013, the JD (U) had formally withdrawn from the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and ended its 17-year-old partnership with the BJP in Bihar after it became increasingly clear at that stage that Mr Narendra Modi would be the Prime Ministerial candidate of the party.
 
Mr Manjhi, who was the Minister for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, Backward and Economically Backward Classes Welfare, was handpicked by Mr Kumar to succeed him on May 19 last year.
 
"I assure the people of Bihar that if I get an opportunity again I will serve them in the same spirit I did for eight and a half years earlier. Good governance was and will remain my priority," Mr Kumar told journalists on Friday.
 
"I also apologise for my decision to quit. I will never take an emotional decision again. Now I am ready to lead from the front," he said.
 
ADVERTISEMENT
The JD (U) has 115 members in the assembly, and most of them back Mr Kumar. The BJP has 88 members and the support of three independents.
 
Mr Kumar had staked claim to form the next government 12 days ago after the JD (U) removed Mr Manjhi as the leader of its legislature party and elected him to the position to enable him to return as Chief Minister. Mr Manjhi had refused to oblige and was expelled from the party. He then decided to seek a trust vote, banking on the support of the BJP.
 
Mr Kumar said Mr Manjhi had decided to quit after all the efforts made by the BJP to wean away MLAs from the JD (U) had failed.
 
Mr Manjhi, however, told journalists that he had decided to quit to protect MLAs supporting him, saying they had received death threats in the past few days. 
 
Mr Kumar has a degree in electrical engineering from the Bihar College of Engineering, Patna, now the National Institute of Technology (NIT), Patna. He joined politics after a brief stint in the Bihar State Electricity Board.
 
At the Centre, Mr Kumar has handled the portfolios of Railways and Agriculture.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

"Govt. wants me to cease being Chancellor of Nalanda University": Amartya Sen

Amartya Sen
Amartya Sen
Renowned economist and Nobel laureate Amartya Sen has said that he did not wish to stay as Chancellor of the Nalanda University beyond July this year because it appeared to him that the Government did not want him to remain in the position despite the unanimous decision of its Governing Board granting him a second term in office.
 
"It is hard for me not to conclude that the Government wants me to cease  being the Chancellor of Nalanda University after this July, and technically it has the power to do so," he wrote in a letter to fellow members of the Nalanda Governing Board.
 
Dr Sen was referring to, in particular, the delay by the President, as Visitor of the University, in giving his assent to the decision of the Governing Board of the University, at its meeting on January 13-14 this year, that he should be asked to serve as Chancellor of Nalanda University for a second term after his present term expired in late July.
 
Dr Sen had recused himself from that meeting, leaving George Yeo to chair the Board meeting at that time.
 
"The unanimity was, I was pleased to be told, firm and enthusiastic, coming from all members of the Board , which – as you know – consists of representatives from different Asian countries (including China, Japan, Singapore and others), in addition of course to Indian academics and professionals. 
 
"However, the decision of the Governing Board becomes operational, according to the Nalanda University Act of Parliament, only after the  Visitor of the University (the President of India, ex-officio) gives his assent to the decision," he said.
 
Dr Sen said that the the Board’s decision was conveyed to the Visitor in mid-January, immediately after the meeting of the Governing Board, drawing his attention to the urgency of the matter, since the planning and implementation of new teaching and research arrangements were proceeding rapidly in the newly functioning University.
 
"More than a month has passed since then, and it now seems clear that the  Visitor has been unable to provide his assent to the Governing Board’s unanimous choice, in the absence of the Government’s approval. The Governing Board has not been favoured with a reply to its request, either from the President’s office or from the Ministry of External Affairs. As Board members are aware, our Visitor – President Pranab Mukherjee – has always taken a deep personal interest in the speedy progress of the  work of Nalanda University, and given that, we have to assume that something makes it difficult – or impossible – for him to act with speed in this matter.
 
"Non-action is a time-wasting way of reversing a Board decision, when the Government has, in principle, the power to act or not act. This, as you might recollect, also happened to the revised Statutes that the Governing Board passed unanimously last year. Many of these Statutes (including the one pertaining to the Chancellor’s term of office) also never received formal acceptance or rejection from the Ministry of External Affairs, which had the role of coordinating with the Visitor’s office," he said.
 
Dr Sen said the delay as well as the uncertainty involved was leading, in effect, to a decisional gap, which was not helpful to Nalanda University's governance and its academic progress.
 
"I have, therefore, decided that in the best interest of Nalanda University, I should exclude myself from being considered for continuing as Chancellor of Nalanda University beyond this July, despite the unanimous recommendation and urging of the Governing Board for me to continue. I take this opportunity also to thank the Governing Board  very warmly for its confidence in me. As you would also remember, there was considerable disquiet among Board members about the Government’s evident unwillingness to appreciate the international character of Nalanda University and to pay appropriate attention to the multi-country Governing Board of Nalanda.
 
"In particular, the Governing Board was kept completely in the dark about an attempted unilateral move by the Government to rapidly reconstitute the entire Board, and to do this in violation of some of parts of the Nalanda University Act (reflected especially in the letters that have already been sent out to foreign governments, departing from the provisions of the Act as it now stands).
 
"I write this letter with a heavy heart since re-establishing Nalanda has  been a life-long commitment for me (as it is important also to you).  While classes have very successfully started, on a small scale, in two Schools (the School of History and that of Environment and Ecology), we are, as you know, in the process of planning other Schools, including a School of Economics, a School of Public Health, and a School of Buddhist Studies, Philosophy and Comparative Religion, and also of augmenting the intake of students. I have been personally much occupied with this planning, but I will, of course, pass on the work-in-progress to the Vice-Chancellor," he said.
 
ADVERTISEMENT
Dr Sen said that he was also sad, at a more general level, that academic governance in India remained so deeply vulnerable to the opinions of the ruling Government,  when it chooses to make political use of the special provisions. 
 
"Even though the Nalanda University Act, passed by the Parliament, did not, I  believe, envisage political interference in academic matters, it is formally the case – given the legal provisions (some of them surviving from colonial days) - that the Government can turn an academic issue into a matter of political dispensation, if it feels unrestrained about interfering.  As a proud and concerned citizen of India, I take this particular occasion to communicate my general disquiet in public, which is why I am openly sharing this letter. Also, since I receive a great many constructive suggestions every week about teaching and research at Nalanda University for possible implementation (a number of these suggestions coming from the public have indeed been extremely useful for the academic planning of Nalanda), I am using this occasion to publicly communicate that I shall do  whatever I can over the remaining time I have, though the leadership of the long-run planning of Nalanda has, obviously, to come from someone else," he added.
 
The University was set up in November 2010 at Rajgir in Bihar, in the vicinity of the original Nalanda University site of yore. It is meant to facilitate the revival of Nalanda as a centre of excellence in East Asia and South Asia, reflecting in some measure the role played by the Nalanda University in ancient times. 
 
Dr Sen had chaired the Nalanda Mentor Group which had drafted the first statute for the University in August 2010.
 
The Group, constituted by the Government of India in June 2007, went on to become the first Governing Board of the University.
 
A stand alone international university unlike any other in India, Nalanda University is mandated to be "an international institution for the pursuit of intellectual, philosophical, historical and spiritual studies". 
 
Designated as an institution of national importance, the university is premised on the shared desire of member States of the East Asia Summit countries to re-discover and re-strengthen "educational co-operation by tapping the East Asia Regions centres of excellence in education…[and] to improve regional understanding and the appreciation of one another's heritage and history".
 
Its foundational philosophy seeks to recover the lost connections and partnerships that existed in Asia, before the onset of historical forces that led to their dissolution. 
 
Then President A P J Abdul Kalam had, while addressing the Bihar State Legislative Assembly, in March 2006 mooted the idea of  reviving the Nalanda university.  In his speech he envisaged it as a university that would revive the glory of the ancient  seat of learning.    
 
Later, then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh shared the proposal with the 16 member states of the East Asia Summit at the Cebu Summit in the Philippines in January 2007. The member states welcomed the initiative. At the fourth summit held in October 2009 at Hua Hin, Thailand, members supported the establishment of the Nalanda University and encouraged regional networking and collaboration between the University and existing centres of excellence in East Asia. 
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Security forces unearth Maoist dump in Bihar

ADVERTISEMENT
Security forces in Bihar have made a major haul of arms, explosives and improvised explosive devices allegedly stored by Maoists in the Chakarbandha forest aea in the Dumaria area of Gaya district of Bihar yesterday.
 
The recovery was made during a joint operation by the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and the State Police on the basis of a credible intelligence input generated by a CRPF officer.
 
The dump was found inside a deep cave located in a dense forest, a press release from the CRPF said.
 
According to it, the recoveries included a number of can bombs weighing 40, 25, 10 and 2 kgs, 25 petrol bombs, 23 hand grenades, 90 kg of explosives, 9 kg ammonium nitrade, cordex wire, detonators, radio sets, suitcase IED weighing 20 kg, three 12 bore guns and other miscellaneous articles used for making indigenous explosive devices. 
 
In an earlier operation on February 2 also, the security forces had unearthed another dump in the same area.
 
Chakarbandha forest, spread over Gaya and Aurangabad districts of Bihar touching the fringes of neighbouring Jharkhand, was a stronghold of CPI (Maoist) till about two years ago. Since establishment of  CRPF camps in the forest in 2013, the Maoists activities have been effectively checked though their presence continues, the release said.
 
These recoveries are attributed to the CPI (Maoists) of the Madhya Zone of  Bihar Jharkhand Special Area Committee, the release added.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Centre promises help to Eastern states to boost internal security, combat Naxalism

ADVERTISEMENT
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has assured all possible assistance from the Centre to the four Eastern states of Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal for strengthening internal security.
 
Presiding over the 21st meeting of the Eastern Zonal Council here yesterday, he emphasized the need for better coordination between state and Central agencies, particularly in the matter of combating Naxalism.
 
On the issue of fund requirements for modernization of state police forces, Mr Singh said that the Centre would consider it on merit. He also promised to consider the demand for deployment of additional Central forces in the Naxalite-dominated "Red Zone" areas of the four states.
 
Bihar Chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi, Jharkhand Chief Minister  Raghubar Das and representatives of Orissa and West Bengal were among those who attended the meeting.
 
The discussions covered issues such as Naxalism, police modernisation, border disputes, road connectivity, railway projects, water management, flood control, food problem, rural housing and more Central allocation for developmental activities.
 
The Council, which met after a gap of two years, also reviewed the progress in the implementation of the recommendations made at the last meeting of the Council held in Kolkata in 2013. 
 
The Council also took up issues relating to release of water by West Bengal for the upper Mahananda irrigation project in Bihar, allocation of additional rice to the States, maternal and child nutrition for addressing malnutrition, measures for bringing green revolution to Eastern India and governance issues in relation to States for export promotion, issues relating to Geological Survey of India (GSI) concerning states of Eastern Zone, and implementation of India Statistical Strengthening Project (ISSP) in the States of the eastern zone. 
 
ADVERTISEMENT
The meeting decided to increase the cross-border coordination and emphasized on timely sharing of information. The issues relating to disaster management and curbing of drugs trafficking in the Eastern Zone were also discussed. 
 
The Council also took up items suggested by the Inter-State Council in relation to amendments in the EZC rules and in relation to holding meeting of the Council as well as of the Standing Committee regularly. 
 
In the meeting, Bihar raised the demand for grant of special status to the state. Further, issues of power shortage, management of river water for draught & flood control were also primarily raised by Bihar during the meeting. 
 
Jharkhand put forth its concern about pending railway projects, need of better road connectivity for development and other issues. 
 
The next meeting of the Council will be held at Ranchi, the capital of Jharkhand, later this year. 
 
NNN
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Eastern Zonal Council to meet in Patna on January 16

ADVERTISEMENT
The 21st Meeting of the Eastern Zonal Council, comprising the States of Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal, will be held tomorrow in Patna under the chairmanship of Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh. 
 
The agenda for the meeting was finalized at the 8th Meeting of the Standing Committee of the Eastern Zonal Council, comprising the Chief Secretaries of the four states, held in Patna on November 7, 2014.
 
Besides this, some additional items are likely to bepresented in the meeting by the concerned State Governments, an official press release said here today.
 
The release said the agenda finalized by the Standing Committee includes issues of Inter-State and Centre-State cooperation, allocation of additional assistance to the States to provide relief to the tribals and issues relating to security.
 
There are five Zonal Councils -- Eastern, Western, Northern, Southern and Central Zonal Council -- which are advisory bodies and discuss any matter in which some or all of the States represented in a Council have a common interest. These Councils advise the Central and State Governments on any matter of common interest in the field of economic and social planning, linguistic minorities, inter-state transport, matters connected with or arising out of the reorganization of states and matters concerning border disputes. 
 
Government had constituted a Commission on Centre-State relations under the chairmanship of Justice M M Punchchi, former Chief Justice of India, to look into the changing dynamics of Centre-State relations in the context of emerging social, political, economic, environmental and governance issues in the country. This Commission had recommended that the Zonal Councils should meet regularly with an agenda proposed by the States concerned to maximize coordination and promote harmonization of policies and action having inter-state ramification. 
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Justice Lingala Narasimha Reddy appointed Chief Justice of Patna High Court

Justice Lingala Narasimha Reddy
Justice Lingala Narasimha Reddy
The President has appointed Mr Justice Lingala Narasimha Reddy, Judge, High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad for the State of Telangana and the State of Andhra Pradesh, to be the Chief Justice of the Patna High Court.
 
An official press release said the appointment would be with effect from the date he assumes charge of his office. 
 
Mr Justice Reddy, 61, who has already taken up his new assignment on January 2, completed his B. Sc. degree in the C K M College, Warangal before obtaining a Bachelor's as well as Master's degree in Law from the Osmania University in Hyderabad.
 
He was enrolled with the Bar Council of Andhra Pradesh in February 1979. He served as the Senior Central Government Standing Counsel for the Government of India in the High Court of Andhra Pradesh for some time. 
 
He was appointed as an Additional Judge of the High Court on September 10, 2001 and as a permanent judge on July 31, 2002.
 
NNN
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

 

5 killed, 4 injured as train hits SUV in Nawada district of Bihar

 
5 killed, 4 injured in train-SUV collision in Nawada
At least five persons were killed and four others suffered injuries when a Mahindra Bolero sports utility vehicle (SUV) carrying them was hit by the Howrah-Gaya Express in Nawada district of Bihar this morning.
 
Nawada District Magistrate Lalan Prasad told NetIndian over the telephone that the injured had been rushed to the district hospital for treatment.
 
Mr Prasad said the victims, all men, were returning to Pakri Baraya village from a wedding around 8.45 am when their vehicle was attempting to crossed the railway track near Shafiganj village. He said there was no level crossing at the point, but the people of the area had made an approach path to help them cross the tracks.
 
He said preliminary reports suggested that the wheel of the vehicle got stuck on the tracks and it could not get out of the way before being hit by the oncoming train.
 
The movement of trains on the Nawada-Keul section was disrupted for some time as a result of the mishap.
 
Senior railway and district officials rushed to the spot to supervise the rescue efforts and the restoration of rail services.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Keshari Nath Tripathi to hold additional charge as Governor of Bihar

ADVERTISEMENT
The President has appointed Mr Keshari Nath Tripathi, Governor of West Bengal, to discharge the functions of the Governor of Bihar, in addition to his own duties.
 
A press communique from Rashtrapati Bhavan said Mr Tripathi would hold the additional charge until regular arrangements for the office of the Governor of Bihar are made vice Dr. D.Y. Patil, who will complete his tenure on November 26.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Mukherjee condoles loss of lives in Patna stampede

ADVERTISEMENT
President Pranab Mukherjee today expressed his condolences over the loss of lives in a stampede during the Dussehra festival celebrations at Gandhi Maidan in Patna, Bihar, yesterday evening.
 
“I am saddened to learn about the accident in which a number of persons have lost their lives and some were injured during the stampede in Dussehra celebrations," he said in a message to Bihar Governor D Y Patil.
 
"I call upon the State Government and other agencies to provide all possible aid to the bereaved families, who have lost their near and dear ones as well as medical facilities to the injured. 
 
"Kindly convey my heartfelt condolences to the family members of the deceased. I pray to the Almighty to give them the strength and courage to bear this irreparable loss. I wish speedy recovery to the injured persons," he added.
 
At least 32 people died and more than 50 others suffered injuries in the stampede, which occurred during the "Ravan Dahan" ceremony at the ground.
 
NNN
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

32 killed, 50 injured in stampede during Dussehra celebrations in Patna

At least 32 people died and more than 50 others suffered injuries in a stampede that occurred during the "Ravan Dahan" ceremony on the occasion of Dussehra at Gandhi Maidan in Patna this evening.
 
32 killed in stampede in Patna
At least 32 people died and more than 50 others suffered injuries in a stampede that occurred during the "Ravan Dahan" ceremony on the occasion of Dussehra at Gandhi Maidan in Patna this evening.
 
The tragedy occurred around 7 pm when thousands of people were present at the ground to witness the burning of Ravana's effigy at the end of Navratri.
 
Chaotic scenes were witnessed at the Patna Medical College Hospital where the injured were rushed in ambulances and other vehicles as hundreds of angry relatives of the victims gathered outside its gates.
 
The Bihar government has ordered an inquiry by the Principal Secretary, Home into the incident and announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh to the next-of-kin of those killed.
 
Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi and reviewed the situation arising out of the stampede.
 
Mr Modi condoled the loss of lives in the incident and sanctioned Rs 2 lakh to the next-of-kin of those killed and Rs 50,000 for those who have suffered critical injuries from the Prime Minister's National Relief Fund (PMNRF).
 
Bihar Principal Secretary, Home, Amir Subhani confirmed to mediapersons that at least 32 people had died in the stampede.
 
Several of the victims were women and children and many of them had died due to suffocation, sources said.
 
Some media reports said that the stampede took place after a rumour spread that a live electric wire had snapped and fallen to the ground. Several of those at the venue started rushing to the exit gate, leading to the stampede, they said. Poor lighting added to the confusion, they said.
 
Police and teams of the Rapid Action Force and the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) rushed to the scene to help in the rescue efforts.
 
Officials told reporters that the stampede occurred because the crowds had become unmanageable.
 
Congress President Sonia Gandhi also expressed shock over the tragedy and said she was "dismayed" by the loss of lives.
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

International Buddhist Conclave to be held at Bodhgaya, Sarnath from Sep 26-28

ADVERTISEMENT
The Ministry of Tourism has organized the 4th International Buddhist Conclave in Bodhgaya and Sarnath, in collaboration with the State Governments of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh from September 26-28 to showcase and project India's Buddhist heritage and pilgrim sites.
 
India, the birthplace of Buddhism, has a very rich Buddhist heritage, with several important sites associated with the life of Lord Buddha which are essential pilgrimages for followers of Buddhism the world over, an official press release said.
 
It said the event would give the participants an opportunity to interact, promote, package and sell pilgrimage itineraries to the Buddhist sites in the country for overseas visitors. 
 
International Buddhist Conclaves have earlier been organized in New Delhi and Bodhgaya (February 2004); Nalanda and Bodhgaya (February 2010) and Varanasi and Bodhgaya (September 2012). 
 
The conclave is one of the initiatives being taken by India as its commitment as the land of origin of Buddhism and to improve the experience of pilgrims as well as tourists wishing to savour the essence of Buddhist heritage, at the Buddhist sites of the country. 
 
The release said the conclave would include presentations, panel discussions, business to business meetings between international and domestic tour operators, an exhibition highlighting the Buddhist attractions in India, as well as visits to important Buddhist sites in and around Bodhgaya and Sarnath. State Governments will set up booths at the conference venue for interacting with the international delegates and for showcasing India’s Buddhist Heritage. 
 
Participants in the event will include international Buddhist opinion makers, tour operators and media, as well as State Governments and domestic tour operators promoting pilgrimages to the Buddhist sites in the country. 
 
Approximately 120 international delegates comprising tour operators, media representatives and opinion makers from 32 countries are participating in the conclave. 
 
In addition to Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, the State Governments participating in the conclave include Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Telangana and West Bengal. 
 
The conclave will be inaugurated on September 27 at the Kagyupa International Monlam Trust, near Terger Monastery, Bodhgaya, by Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi and Union Minister for Tourism and Culture Shripad Naik.
 
NNN
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

GAIL says to begin work soon on Jagdishpur-Phulpur-Haldia natural gas pipeline

The public sector gas major GAIL (India) Limited today said it was all set to begin work soon on the 2050 km Jagdishpur-Phulpur-Haldia natural gas pipeline which will serve as the "energy highway" for carrying efficient and environment-friendly fuel to West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh.
 
The project will fulfill the commitment made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a speech in Ranchi, Jharkhand last week for the overall development of Eastern India and meeting its energy requirements, a press release from GAIL said.
 
According to it, the pipeline will benefit millions of people in the four states and lead to setting up of city gas networks in 17 major cities of the region.
 
These include Varanasi,  Allahabad, Patna,  Gaya, Chhapra,  Siwan,  Gopalganj, Mujaffarpur, Bettiah, Bhagalpur, Bokaro,  Dhanbad,  Ranchi,  Jamshedpur,  Asansol,  Durgapur and Kolkata. 
 
This means that residents of these cities can enjoy the convenience of piped natural gas (PNG) that directly reaches households and the economical compressed natural gas (CNG) for vehicles.
 
Besides city gas distribution, the pipeline will supply feedstock/fuel to fertilizer and power plants and major industries located in the region.
 
The estimated investment for the project is about Rs 10,000 crores. The first phase of the pipeline will have a capacity of 16 MMSCMD which would be augmented to 32 MMSCMD in the second phase.
 
The fertilizer plants which will benefit from the project include units at Gorakhpur, Barauni, Sindri and Matix Durgapur. In addition, the pipeline will also supply natural gas to refineries at Barauni and Haldia, steel industries, power plants and other large SME manufacturing units in the region. The pipeline will also boost agricultural and economic development and generate employment opportunities in the region, the release said.
 
The pipeline will consist of a 922-km main line (36 inch-diameter) and 1,128 km of spur lines and feeder lines (12 to 30 inch diameter). The compressor station will be located at Haldia in West Bengal.
 
GAIL has already started activities related to detailed survey of the pipeline route. The survey will include engineering survey (topography, population density index, soil resistivity and soil investigation survey) and cadastral survey (collection of revenue details of every village along the route along with ownership details). Actual construction activities will commence once the survey is completed, the release said.
 
It is estimated that the project will have 46 river crossings, 17 railway crossings, 14 State Highway crossings and 12 National Highway crossings, thus making it one of the most difficult engineering projects of its kind, it said.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

18 killed as train hits crowded autorickshaw in Bihar's East Champaran district

ADVERTISEMENT
At least 18 people were killed when the crowded autorickshaw in which they were travelling was hit by a speeding express train at a level crossing near Sugauli station in East Champaran district of Bihar today, official sources said.
 
East Champaran district magistrate Abhay Kumar Singh told NetIndian over the telephone that two others had suffered injuries in the incident and had been taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.
 
He said the incident occurred around 4 pm at a manned level crossing, about 100 km west of Muzzaffarnpur town, and investigations were on to establish the circumstances in which the tragedy occurred.
 
The Vikram autorickshaw, which is larger in size than its urban counterparts and is popular in rural areas, was hit by the Rapti Ganga Express.
 
Mr Singh said most of the victims belonged to the same larger family and were returning to their village after participating in a prayer at a nearby temple.
 
Mr Singh and other senior officials of the district administration, police and other agencies rushed to the spot to supervise the rescue and relief operations.
 
Senior railway officials from the Samastipur division also rushed to the scene of the tragedy, sources added.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

 

Flood situation in UP, Bihar remains grim, NDRF teams deployed for relief operations

Several rivers continued to flow above or near the danger mark in Uttar Pradesh, where floods have affected more than a thousand villages in nine districts and claimed at least 28 lives so far, official sources said.
 
17 dead, 200 injured in latest floods in UP
Several rivers continued to flow above or near the danger mark in Uttar Pradesh, where floods have affected more than a thousand villages in nine districts and claimed at least 28 lives so far, official sources said.
 
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh told journalists yesterday that the Centre was extending all possible help to Uttar Pradesh and other states affected by floods and heavy rains.
 
Uttar Pradesh Chief Secretary Alok Ranjan told reporters in Lucknow yesterday that more than a thousand villages in nine districts -- Bahraich, Shravasti, Balrampur, Gonda, Lakhimpur, Barabanki, Sitapur, Faizabad and Azamgarh -- had been affected by the floods.
 
He said Bahraich was the worst affected district, where floods had hit more than 200 villages and claimed 14 lives so far.
 
He said teams from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) had been sent to the affected villages and two army helicopters were being used for rescue and relief work.
 
Mr Ranjan said two people had died in Shravasti district, where the flood waters were receding. He said about 117 villages in two tehsils, with a population of around 60,000 people in all, had been affected by the floods.
 
The Uttar Pradesh government has announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs 1.5 lakh to the next-of-kin of those who have died in the floods and Rs 65,000 to those who have suffered injuries.
 
The Union Ministry of Water Resources had said in a statement yesterday that the river Rapti in Balrampur district was flowing at an unprecedented level of 105.41 metres, 0.79 metres above its danger level of 104.62 metres. Its previous high flood level (HFL) was 105.25 metres recorded on September 11, 2000, the statement added.
 
The Ghaghra and Saryu were some of the other rivers in spate.
 
Meanwhile, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President Amit Shah has expressed concern over the flood situation in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Assam and urged the party's Members of Parliament, Members of Legislative Assemblies, leaders and workers to help in the flood relief efforts.
 
In Bihar, Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi, accompanied by top officials, made an aerial survey of the flood-hit areas on Sunday and asked the authorities to provide immediate relief to the affected people.
 
NNN
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

 

No immediate threat of flooding in Kosi river in Bihar: Centre

ADVERTISEMENT
The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) today said that it appeared that there is no immediate threat of flooding in the Kosi river in Bihar where thousands of people had been evacuated to safety as a precautionary measure after a landslide in Nepal blocked the flow of the river Sunkoshi/Bhotekoshi on Saturday.
 
"In view of the steady release of water from the artificially pounded area on river Bhutakoshi in Nepal and the absence of any significant rainfall in the upstream region, there appears to be no immediate danger to the poundage area," a statement from MHA said.
 
"Besides this, the water level at Bahrabise, Pachuwrghat, and Chatara in Nepal is below the danger level. Looking further at water level at Birpur, Basua, Baltara and Kursela in Indian side, it appears that there is no immediate threat of the flooding in the Kosi river," it said.
 
The Ministry said the Bihar administration had placed a Secretary level officer in charge of the each of the districts likely to be affected in case of flood. 
 
More than 65,000 people have been moved to 128 camps from the areas likely to be affected over the past few days.
 
The Central Government is monitoring the situation regularly through the National Crisis Management Committee and has promised to extend all possible help to the State Government. 
 
As many as 19 teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) have been deployed in these areas.
 
Air force aircraft and helicopters as well as diving teams of the Indian Navy are also on standby to deal with any eventuality.
 
Nepalese Water Commission is in constant touch with India's Central Water Commission (CWC) and although there is no immediate cause for alarm in the near term all steps are being taken for enhanced preparedness, the statement said.
 
"The situation is being monitored closely," it added.
 
NNN
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Bihar authorities evacuate 44,000 people following flood threat in Kosi river

 
Bihar flood threat: CM appeals to people to take shelter in relief camps
The Bihar government has evacuated more than 44,000 people so far as a precautionary measure against possible floods in the Kosi after a landslide  landslide blocked the flow of the river Sunkoshi/Bhotekoshi in Mangkha Village Development Committee area in Sindhupalchowk district of Nepal yesterday.
 
The authorities are worried that the formation of a large water body upstream could create a potential danger of inundation in areas downstream of the Kosi barrage, which is about 270 km from the location of the blockage.
 
The Centre has urged the state administration to speed up the process of evacuation of people. As many as 107 camps have been set up and 30 cattle camps have also been set up.
 
The evacuation has been carried mainly from villages lying within the embankment area in 22 panchayats of Supaul district and seven other districts.
 
A six-member team, consisting of two officials from the Central Water Commission (CWC), two from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and one each from the Indian Army and the Geological Survey of India (GSI), reached Nepal last night to make an initial assessment of the situation.
 
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed concern over the situation and directed that all possible assistance should be made available to the state government.
 
Cabinet Secretary Ajit Seth has chaired three emergency meetings of National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) since yesterday afternoon.  Two meetings were held yesterday.  One meeting was held today morning and another meeting is scheduled in the evening today, an official press release said.
 
Mr Seth is in constant touch with the Bihar Chief Secretary, the release said.
 
The release said the CWC was doing a computer simulation exercise to assess the likely impact of sudden release of water.
 
"Water discharge so far is not alarming.  But it cannot be predicted when the flow might increase suddenly.  CWC is issuing advisories," it added.
 
ADVERTISEMENT
According to it, the NDRF has deployed eight teams in the areas likely to be affected and seven more would be deployed soon. Five more teams are on standby. The teams are equipped with fibre boats and other equipment.
 
A composite column of the Army and Air Force has reached Supaul and another is in Saharsa. Three more columns have been mobilised from Sukna to Katihar.
 
An Engineering Task Force (ETF) has reached Danapur and two more ETFs  being moved to the state. An AN-32 Aircraft has reached Delhi from Agra to carry persons and communication equipment to Purnia. Another aircraft is on standby at Agra.
 
Two Mi-17 helicopters each are on standby at Gorakhpur, Bagdogra and Barrackpore. Two Chetaks and four Mi-17s have been moved to Bihta near Patna. Naval diving teams are also in readiness.
 
A C-17 aircraft was scheduled to leave late this afternoon from Delhi with a 25-member medical team. Twenty civilian doctors from the government hospitals in Delhi will also leave by that aircraft.
 
The Centre has sent 15 satellite phones to the Bihar government. The Department of Space will start providing satellite inputs from tomorrow.
 
The Department of Food has been asked to provide full assistance and godowns of the Food Corporation of India (FCI)in the areas likely to be affected have sufficient foodgrains, the release added.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Bihar on flood alert after landslide in Nepal blocks flow of Sunkoshi river

ADVERTISEMENT
The Centre has put the Bihar government on alert against floods in the Kosi after a landslide blocked the flow of the river Sunkoshi/Bhotekoshi in Mangkha Village Development Committee area in Sindhupalchowk district of Nepal today.
 
"The formation of a large water body thereby can create a potential danger of inundation in areas downstream of the Kosi barrage which is about 270 kms from location of the blockage," a statement from the Ministry of Home Affairs said.
 
"Bihar Government has been put on alert. They have started taking action for evacuation of persons living in villages lying within the embankment area in 22 panchayats of Supaul district and other seven districts of Bihar. Relief camps including cattle relief camps are being organised for the evacuated families," it said.
 
Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed concern over the blockage and directed that all possible help should be provided to the affected areas.
 
Eight teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and four of the  State Disaster Response Force have been pressed into service. An additional seven teams of the NDRF are being mobilized from the neighboring state of West Bengal, the statement added.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

Bye-elections to 18 Assembly seats in four states to be held on August 21

ADVERTISEMENT
The Election Commission today said it would hold bye-elections to fill up vacancies in 18 seats in the legislative assemblies of four states on August 21.
 
The vacancies include 10 in the Bihar Legislative Assembly, three in Karnataka, three in Madhya Pradesh and two in Punjab, an official press release said.
 
The notification for the bye-elections will be issued on July 26 and the last date for filing nominations will be August 2. Counting of votes will be taken up on August 25.
 
The seats which are lying vacant include Narkatiaganj, Rajnagar (SC), Jale, Chhapra, Hajipur, Mohiuddinnagar, Parbatta, Bhagalpur, Banka and Mohania (SC) in Bihar; Chikkodi-Sadalga, Bellary (ST) and Shikaripura in Karnataka; Vijayraghavgarh, Bahoriband and Agar (SC) in Madhya Pradesh; and Talwandi Sabo and Patiala in Punjab, the release added.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

4 dead, 8 injured as New Delhi-Dibrugarh Rajdhani Express derails in Bihar

Four passengers died and eight others suffered injuries when 12 coaches of the 12236 New Delhi-Dibrugarh Rajdhani Express derailed near Chhapra in Bihar in the early hours of Wednesday, official sources said.
 
4 dead as 12 bogies of Rajdhani Express derail near Chhapra
Four passengers died and eight others suffered injuries when 12 coaches of the 12236 New Delhi-Dibrugarh Rajdhani Express derailed near Chhapra in Bihar in the early hours of today, official sources said.
 
The injured were admitted to a hospital in Chhapra and some of them may be shifted to state capital Patna later, they said.
 
They said three of the victims died on the spot, while the fourth succumbed to his injuries in hospital.
 
The mishap occurred around 2.15 am today when the 12 coaches -- B1 to B10, the power car and the pantry car -- derailed at a spot near Chhapra, about 75 km from Patna, they said. Most of the passengers were asleep and were rudely awakened by the derailment.
 
While the cause of the derailment is yet to be ascertained, East Central Railway (ECR) officials have not ruled out the possibility of sabotage.
 
"There was a general strike called by Maoists in the area and there are some other indications also pointing to possible sabotage," ECR officials said.
 
Railways Minister D V Sadananda Gowda told newspersons in Delhi that the Commissioner of Railway Safety would inquire into the accident and establish the cause of derailment.
 
He, however, said 18 coaches of a goods train had derailed today at a spot 60 km from Chhapra, and that incident appeared to be a case of sabotage.
 
Mr Gowda, who was on his way to Patna to visit the scene of the mishap, announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs 2 lakh to the next-of-kin of each of the deceased, Rs 1 lakh to each of the grievously injured and Rs 20,000 to those who suffered simple injuries.
 
Senior ECR officials from its headquarters Haipur and Chhapra, district administration and police officials and rescue and relief teams rushed to the spot immediately.
 
The passengers of the train were taken to Hajipur and will be sent to their destinations by a special train later today, ECR officials added.
 
NNN
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 

See News Videos

 
Syndicate content
© Copyright 2012 NetIndian. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of NetIndian content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of NetIndian Media Corporation. Write to info[AT]netindian[DOT]in for permission to use content. Read detailed Terms of Use.