Rahul Gandhi blames Haryana govt. for Dalit killings in Faridabad

Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday visited Sunped village in Haryana, where two children died and their parents suffered injuries in an arson attack on ther house on Tuesday, and blamed the Bharatiya Janata Party government in the state for the killings.
Rahul Gandhi says visit to Faridabad village no photo op
Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi today visited Sunped village in Haryana, where two children died and their parents suffered injuries in an arson attack on ther house on Tuesday, and blamed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in the state for the killings.
"Today, in India, those who are weak, those who are poor are facing such atrocities," he told newspersons after meeting the father of the children, Jitender, and other members of the family.
"They asked me, 'What was our fault, what wrong did we commit?'" he said.
"They did not commit any mistake. They are poor and weak and that is why they were attacked," he said.
Mr. Gandhi said that he was told that a group of people had met administration officials to convey their fears. The officials told them to go back to their homes because no one had actually died, he said.
"It is the Chief Minister's responsibility to protect the people of the state. Different incidents are happening, in Haryana and elsewhere around the country," he said, calling for strict action against those responsible for the attack as well as the policemen who were negligent in their duties. He said the family of the victims wanted a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
"The truth is that this is not a government of the poor and the weak. I have offered all possible help to the family. Whatever they need, they just have to ask," he said.
Mr. Gandhi said these incidents were the result of an "attitude" that is shared by the Prime Minister of the country, the Chief Minister of Haryana, the ruling BJP and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), its ideological mentor.
"The attitude is that if somebody is weak, he can be crushed," he said. "What you are seeing is the result of this attitude."
"We don't want such incidents to happen, and we will fight to ensure this," he said.
Mr. Gandhi reacted angrily when a reporter asked him about the BJP accusation that his visit was just a "photo op".
"It's insulting when someone says that when someone comes here. It's not insulting to me, but it's insulting these people. What do you men by 'photo op'? People are dying left, right and centre in this country. People are being beaten up in this country. What do you mean that it is just a photo op?" he asked.
"Absolutely, I will visit. I will visit again, again, and again," he added.
Jitender's wife Rekha, four-year-old son Vaibhav and eight-month-old daughter Divya suffered burns in the attack. The children succumbed to their injuries yesterday, while their mother is battling for survival in a hospital. Jitender also suffered minor injuries while trying to save his family, souces said.
Angry villagers blocked the busy Faridabad-Mathura highway in protest against the incident and demanded the immediate arrest of those named in the police complaint. 
Seven policemen, including those tasked to guard the village, have been suspended by the authorities for alleged negligence. Three suspects have been arrested in connection with the incident.
Apart from Mr. Gandhi, Communist Party of India-Marxist leader Brinda Karat, former Union Minister and Haryana Congress leader Kumari Selja, Haryana Janhit Congress (Bhajan Lal) leader Kuldeep Bishnoi and National Commission for Scheduled Castes member Ishwar Singh visited the village to meet the bereaved family.

Fire breaks out in Telangana Express near Delhi; no casualties

A major fire broke out in two coaches of the 12723 Hyderabad-New Delhi Telangana Express near Ballabhgarh in Haryana near here on Thursday, fire officials said. No injuries have been reported.
The blaze in the train was reported near the Asaoti station at around 7.43 a.m., following which several fire tenders were rushed to the spot, a senior railway official said.
The train had passed Asaoti station but it had to be stopped between Asaoti and Ballabgarh, about 36 km from here. Due to heavy smoke, movement on the track has also been stopped, the official added.
The fire broke out from the brake binding of the wheels of the 9th coach, the official said, adding that two coaches caught fire and both have been isolated now.
"All passengers were shifted to the front portion and the train departed at around 10.35 a.m. The services on the track have resumed," the officer added.

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Golf: Harendra Gupta fires 67 for five-shot win in PGTI Feeder Tour Order of Merit

Chandigarh’s Harendra Gupta shot a superb  five-under 67 last round to chalk out a five-stroke win at the Tata Steel PGTI Feeder Tour event at the Aravalli Golf Course here on Thursday.
Gupta (70-64-67), who totaled 15-under 201 for the week, bagged his 10th title on Thursday. It was his first win in three years.
Mumbai’s Anil Bajrang Mane (70-70-66) fired the day’s joint best score of six-under 66 to finish runner-up at 10-under 206. His second-place finish propelled him into the lead in the PGTI Feeder Tour Order of Merit.
The winner, leading by four shots going into the final round, brought all his experience to the fore on Thursday as he made an eagle, four birdies and a bogey. Playing without any pressure, he managed to drive home the advantage that he had gained in the previous round. After a birdie on the third, he drove the par-4 green on the eighth and chipped in from 30 yards for an eagle-two. It was his third eagle-two in two days.
Harendra made his only bogey of the day on the 10th but then roared back with three more birdies on the 11th, 16th and 17th. He drove the par-4 16th green to set up a two-putt birdie and sank putts from a range of 15 to 20 feet on the 11th and 17th.
“I just built on the momentum from yesterday. It’s been a terrific week. I made four eagles and four chip-ins this week. The second round of eight-under 64 was one of my best in recent times. It served as a huge confidence-booster," Gupta said after the win.
“Today I didn’t feel any pressure as such. I struck the ball really well and drove two of the par-4 greens. I’ve won after a long time and, hopefully, this win will give me the much-needed self-belief to get my game back on track.”
Mane, who was overnight tied-seventh, climbed five spots to second place on day three courtesy his 66 that included seven birdies and a bogey. He drained a 20-footer for birdie on the 17th. It was his third runner-up finish on the Feeder Tour. He had finished fourth at last week’s Feeder Tour event at Chhawla. His consistency on the tour so far this year has given him the lead in the Feeder Tour Order of Merit.
Delhi’s Sachin Baisoya (72) took third place at five-under 211. Faridabad’s Abhinav Lohan (72) shared the fourth place along with Chandigarh’s Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (66) and Pune’s Sagar Raghuvanshi (66) at four-under 212. Ramesh Kumar (70), the other Faridabad golfer in the fray, finished tied-seventh at three-under 213.

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Golf: Harendra Gupta fires 64 to emerge second round leader

Chandigarh’s Harendra Gupta fired a blistering eight-under 64 to emerge leader by four shots at 10-under 134 after the second round of the Tata Steel PGTI Feeder Tour event at the Aravalli Golf Course in Faridabad here today.
Nine-time winner Gupta’s stunning round featured two eagles-twos, six birdies and a double-bogey.
There was a three-way tie for second place at six-under 138 between first-round leader Chandigarh-based rookies Amrit Lal (72) and Shabeg Singh Kooner (69) and Sri Ganganagar’s Sandeep Singh (69). 
Delhi’s Sachin Baisoya carded an error-free seven-under 65 to take a share of fifth place at five-under 139 along with another Delhi golfer Jaiveer Singh Atwal (72).  
Gurugram’s Kushal Singh sank two eagle-twos during his round of 70. He ended the second round in tied 10th at three-under 141. The two local  golfers, Abhinav Lohan (four-under 140) and Ramesh Kumar (one-under 143) were placed tied seventh and tied 12th, respectively.
The cut was applied at six-over 150. Thirty-eight golfers made the cut for the third and final round.
Harendra Gupta (70-64), who was overnight tied ninth, leapfrogged the rest of the field on Wednesday thanks to his outstanding wedge play. Harendra was one-over through four holes after a double-bogey on the fourth where he hit a poor bunker shot and followed that up with a missed putt from two feet.
However, Gupta then made a tremendous recovery that began with birdies on the eighth and ninth. He landed his approach within inches of the flag on the ninth. A couple of quality chip-putts earned him two more birdies on the 11th and 12th.
The seasoned Harendra finally enjoyed a fantastic finish picking up five shots on the last three holes. On the 16th he holed his second shot from 65 yards and on the 17th he again holed his second shot, this time from the bunker, from 30 yards, to pick up consecutive eagle-twos.
Gupta capped the round with another terrific wedge shot from 120 yards on the 18th that resulted in a four-feet birdie conversion.
Harendra said, “My wedge play today was probably the best it has ever been. It was unbelievable to make two eagle-twos in succession and then back it up with another birdie right at the end. It was a remarkable recovery considering I was one-over through the first four holes.
“I’ve not had a very consistent season so far so this round will do me a world of good. I’ll need to be accurate with the tee shots in the final round as the fairways are narrow and the rough is up.”

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Golf: Rookie Lal grabs first round lead, Gulfam shines with two eagles

Teenaged rookie Amrit Lal of Chandigarh shot a  six-under 66 to grab the first-round lead in the Tata Steel PGTI Feeder Tour event at the Aravalli Golf Course in Faridabad, Haryana on Tuesday.
Delhi's Jaiveer Singh Atwal carded a five-under 67 to occupy second place.
Fifty-two-year-old veteran Gulfam (Delhi) produced an incredible two eagles during his opening round of four-under 68 to share the third spot with another Delhi-based golfer Bhanu Pratap Singh and Pune’s Sagar Raghuvanshi.
Chandigarh’s Harendra Gupta, one of the leading names in the field, fired a 70 to be placed tied ninth.
The two Faridabad golfers, Abhinav Lohan (71) and Ramesh Kumar (73), were placed tied 13th and tied 23rd, respectively.
Amrit Lal, playing in only his third professional event, sank nine birdies in exchange for a bogey and a double-bogey on Tuesday. He made consecutive birdies on the seventh, eighth and ninth and on the closing three holes, the 16th, 17th and 18th.
Lal was sharp with his short-game as he chipped in from the bunker for a birdie on the seventh and drained two 20-feet birdie putts on the first and the 18th. He also converted four chip-putt birdies.
He said, “My driving and my short-game were spot-on today. I also played a couple of excellent bunker shots. I only had one bad hole and that was the fifth where I found the hazard and subsequently three-putted for a double-bogey.
“This performance is a huge confidence-booster as these are early days for me in professional golf. Hitting good tee shots will hold the key on this course over the next two days.”
Gulfam, who won an event on the Feeder Tour in 2014 and also sealed the number one spot on the tour’s Order of Merit the same year, holed his approach shots on the first and 17th, both par-4s, to make two eagle-twos during his round. The experienced campaigner’s rescue shot found the hole from 185 yards on the first while on the 17th he holed his wedge shot from 90 yards.
He also made two birdies and two bogeys in round one. He left himself a tap-in birdie on the par-3 fourth where his brilliant tee shot landed two feet from the flag.
Gulfam said, “It’s the first time ever that I’ve made two eagles in a round. Two eagle-twos are even more special. I felt it was a day when luck also seemed to favour me as I holed out two shots from a long distance. My ball-striking was fantastic. However, my putting still isn’t up there so I’ll need to get it going to create more chances in the next two rounds.”

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Haryana Congress leader shot dead in Faridabad

Haryana Congress leader Vikas Chaudhary was shot dead by two assailants outside a gym in Faridabad on Thursday, police said.
Chaudhary, 42, who was considered close to state Congress Chief Ashok Tanwar, was fired at from close range when he came out of the gym. 
He was rushed to a hospital where doctors declared him dead.
The crime was recorded on CCTV camera, the police said.

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Two kids among three killed in fire at Faridabad school

Three people, including two children, died in a major fire that broke out at a private school in Haryana's Faridabad on Saturday.
According to Fire Department officials, the fire started from a cloth godown inside the school located in Dabua Colony. 
"Fire tenders were rushed to the spot and the blaze has been brought under control. Its cause is yet to be ascertained," said an official. 

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ECI orders repoll at Faridabad booth

The Election Commission of India (ECI) on Monday ordered repolling at a polling station in Faridabad Lok Sabha constituency on May 19 after a polling agent was arrested for influencing voters.
The re-poll will be held at the polling station in Prithla assembly segment of the constituency. 
The Election Commission said that Ashok Kumar Garg IAS has been posted by the Commission as new Returning Officer of Faridabad parliamentary constituency. He has been directed to join at Faridabad by forenoon on Tuesday.
It said that "a complaint of violation of secrecy of voting was reported from polling station number 88 Asaoti of Prithla assembly constituency segment". 
"On inquiry by the Observer, the complaint was found to be true. The Commission has therefore ordered a fresh poll at this polling station on May 19, 2019," the EC said in a statement.
It said that an FIR was lodged against the polling agent Giriraj Singh. 
The presiding officer Amit Atri has been placed under suspension for the dereliction of duty and criminal action is also being initiated against him.
The Commission said that micro observer Sonal Gulati has not reported the incident correctly for which she has been barred from any election- related work for three years. 
The EC said it took a serious note of the failure to take immediate action on the incident and transferred the Returning Officer from present posting. 
The agent was arrested after a video of him allegedly trying to influence voters went viral on social media. 
Polling took place in Faridabad on May 12 along with other constituencies in Haryana.

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Air pollution 25 times higher in Faridabad

While the air-quality across the national capital was deteriorating, Faridabad on Sunday recorded the worse pollution levels in the region, over 25 times higher than the safe limit, causing confusion among weather experts.
According to Faridabad's pollution monitoring station, the PM2.5 or particles with diameter less than 2.5 mm, was found 1,515 microgrammes per cubic metres at 9 a.m., while by 12 p.m. it dropped to 1,457 units and 1,452 units by 1 p.m.. 
The permissible limits of PM2.5, one of the finest pollutant in air, is 60 units as per national and 25 units as per international standards.
The experts have however, claimed the high readings might have been a technical glitch despite the fact that air-quality of the region was "very-poor" .
"This must be a technical glitch, pollutants cannot be so abnormally high. The 1,515 units of PM2.5 is way more. We are looking into the matter," Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) Member Secretary Prashant Gargav said.
On Sunday, the national capital continued breating toxic air, as the air quality remained very-poor.
By 1 p.m., the average PM2.5 across 36 regions in Delhi was 223 units while average of 48 units in 247 units across NCR.

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Jaitley says GST slabs can be reduced only when it becomes revenue neutral plus

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said that there was room for improvement in the Goods and Service Tax (GST) regime but there would be scope to think in terms of fewer slabs only when it became revenue neutral plus.
"To ensure this, we have to certainly ensure larger presence," he said while delivering the valedictory address at the NACIN Founding Day and Passing-out Ceremony of the 67th Batch of IRS (C&CE) at NACIN in Faridabad near here.
Mr. Jaitley said there are no grey areas in implementation of tax laws. Taxes which are payable have to be paid and which are not payable do not have to be paid, he said. 
He urged the officers to choose the path of working with dignity, self-respect and honesty from the very beginning of their careers. The peer group is the best to judge the performance of an officer, he said.
National Academy of Customs, Indirect Taxes and Narcotics (NACIN) celebrated its founding day today for the first time. It started as a Training School on this day in 1955.
On the occasion, the passing-out ceremony of Indian Revenue Service (C&CE) probationers of the 2015 batch was also held. The Finance Minister also inspected the passing-out parade and took the salute. Ms. Vanaja N. Sarna, Chairperson, CBEC, welcomed Mr. Jaitley on behalf of NACIN. 
The 2015 batch consisted of 147 officer trainees, including 32 women officers. 
Mr. Jaitley awarded medals to the five officer trainees who have excelled in different areas of training for their exceptional achievement. Young officer Farah Zachariah was awarded with the Finance Minister’s gold medal for being the overall best officer trainee. 
He also unveiled the NACIN Coffee Table Book and Year Book on the occasion. The Coffee Table Book traces the history of the academy as well as of the IRS. 
During the ceremony, international capacity building partners of NACIN such as WCO, UNEP, UNODC, ADB and others were also felicitated by the Finance Minister. 

Municipal solid waste segregation at source in National Capital Region to be launched on Monday

Union Minister for Urban Development M. Venkaiah Naidu will launch a campaign for segregation of municipal solid waste at source -- households, hotels, restaurants and so on -- in Delhi, Gurugram, Faridabad, Noida and Ghaziabad tomorrow.
Under the new system, wet waste will be collected in green bins and dry waste in blue bins, an official press release said.
This major new initiative to address the problem of solid waste management will be launched in 130 cities where waste-to-compost plants are either functional or under construction, it said.
Mr. Naidu will launch the segregation campaign in National Capital Region covering a total of nine urban local bodies including five of Delhi by flagging off segregated waste collection vehicles from Talkatora Indore Stadium in the national capital. Residential Welfare Associations, Hotels and Restaurants who have taken commendable initiatives in this regard will also be felicitated. 
In the National Capital Region, about 15,000 tonnes of municipal solid waste is being generated every day while about 65 million tones of such waste is produced every day in urban areas of the country. 
Launch of waste segregation at source is being done in the backdrop of 145 waste-to-compost plants becoming functional across the country, increasing compost production from 1.50 lakh tonnes in March, 2016 to 13.13 lakh tonnes at present. Another 150 compost making plants are under construction with total compost production capacity of 95 lakh tonnes per year. 
Incorrect disposal and burning of solid waste results in emission of climate change causing greenhouse gases like methane and carbon dioxide to the tune of 12.69 million tonnes of carbon dioxide in the country per year, i
A recent study revealed that improper solid waste management causes 15 diseases including hepatitis, cholera and malaria. Segregation of dry and wet waste at source leads to removal of carcinogenic and heavy metals from organic waste resulting in production of good quality compost. Segregation also assists in conversion of non-recyclable dry waste to RDF (Refuse Derived Fuel) or energy through Waste-to-Energy/RDF Plants, with minimal amount of inert waste going to landfills. 
Tirunelveli in Tamil Nadu is the only city so far to have ensured 100% segregation of solid waste at source, the release said.
Mr. Naidu will also launch the waste segregation at Indore tomorrow. In other States, Governors and Chief Ministers will be doing the same. 
Under Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban), 100% door-to-door collection, transportation and processing of solid waste is targeted by October, 2019. While 100% door-to-door collection and transport of solid waste has been achieved in over 41,000 of the total 81,000 urban wards in the country, processing of such waste is about 22%, the release added.

Progress under urban missions in Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh to be reviewed

Implementation of new Urban Missions -- the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT), Smart City Mission and Swachh Bharat Mission -- in the States of Punjab and Haryana and the Union Territory of Chandigarh will be reviewed at a meeting in Chandigarh today.
Mr Rajiv Gauba, Secretary (Urban Development), along with concerned Mission Directors from the Ministry of Urban Development, Chief Secretaries of Punjab and Haryana, Advisor to the Administrator of Chandigarh and concerned officials besides some Municipal Commissioners will attend the day-long review meetings to be held separately state-wise at the Secretariats of Punjab, Haryana and UT Guest House. 
District Collectors and other field officials will participate in the review through video-conferencing, an official press release said.
These meetings are being held as a part of State-wise review meetings being held by the Ministry of Urban Development. Such reviews have so far been held in Bengaluru, Mumbai, Jaipur and Visakhapatnam.
As many as 20 cities in Haryana, 16 in Punjab and Chandigarh have been included in the Atal Mission which is aimed at improving basic urban infrastructure relating to water supply, sewerage networks, storm water drains, urban transport and open and green spaces.
For the year 2015-16 under AMRUT, an expenditure of Rs. 408 crore has been approved for Haryana, Rs. 710 crore for Punjab and Rs. 573 crore for Chandigarh for improving basic infrastructure in mission cities. 
The Central Government has agreed to provide an assistance of Rs. 219 crore for Haryana, Rs. 276 crore for Chandigarh and Rs. 319 crore for Punjab for the State Annual Action Plans approved for 2015-16. Action Plans for 2016-17 of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh under AMRUT will be considered for approval soon.
Under Smart City Mission, Ludhiana in Punjab was selected among the first batch of smart cities and the Ministry has approved Ludhiana’s Smart City Plan with a proposed investment of Rs. 1,049 crore. The Ministry of Urban Development has already released Rs. 200 crore for 2015-16 for Ludhiana.
Faridabad in Haryana and Chandigarh have been subsequently selected among the second batch of 13 smart cities in a Fast Track Competition.
Under Swachh Bharat Mission, Central assistance of Rs. 56 crore has been released to Punjab, Rs. 30 crore for Haryana and Rs. 1.70 crore for Chandigarh.
The Coordination Committee for Development of Chandigarh will also meet today, the release added.

One killed as EMU train rams into Lokmanya Tilak Express near Palwal in Haryana

One dead in train mishap in Palwal, Haryana
The driver of an electric multiple unit (EMU) train died when it rammed into the stationary 12171 Lokmanya Tilak Express near Palwal in Haryana this morning.
The Lokmanya Tilak Express was on its way from Lokmanya Tilak Terminus (LTT) in Mumbai to Haridwar when the mishap occurred between Palwal and Asaoti railway stations near here around 8.25 am.
The deceased EMU driver was identified as Yashpal.
Railway officials said the guard of the Lokmanya Express, B B Gupta, suffered injuries in the mishap, while there were no reports to passengers of both trains. The guard has been admitted to a trauma centre nearby for treatment.
Officials of the railways, the district administration and the police have rushed to the spot. An accident relief van and medical teams were also sent to the scene and rescue and relief efforts were underway, official sources said.
The Northern Railway has opened the following helpline numbers:
Hazrat Nizamuddin -- 011-23459748
New Delhi -- 1072, 011-23341074
Meanwhile the trains enroute o­n the Palwal-Asaoti section, which were held up because of the accident, are being cleared through the up and fourth line at the site.

Cabinet nod for introduction of Regional Centre for Biotechnology Bill in Parliament

The Union Cabinet today gave its approval for introduction of a Bill for establishment of a Regional Centre for Biotechnology at Faridabad in Haryana, near here. 
The objective of the Regional Centre for Biotechnology Bill, 2015  is to provide a legal status to the Centre so as to function independently as an autonomous body and also an Institution of National Importance for education, training and research in the areas of biotechnology. 
The Centre has already been established by an executive order of the Government of India in November, 2008 after the approval by the Union Cabinet. It is currently operational at the NCR Biotech Science Cluster, Faridabad and the enactment does not involve any financial implications at this stage, an official press release said.
The Centre is a regional hub for interdisciplinary education, training and research in biotechnology with emphasis on novel education programmes relevant to industry, including bio-drug discovery science, nano-science and medicine, imaging techniques, designer crops, bioengineering and biomaterials, intellectual property, technology transfer and regulation to fulfil and overcome the acute shortage of skilled human resources in India. It would be a hub of biotechnology expertise in the countries in South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) region, and more generally in the Asia region, and to address human resources needs in the region. 
The Centre is an inter-disciplinary institution in life sciences and biotechnology and offers novel educational & training courses in the interdisciplinary and related areas of biotechnology. It would also address designing of new and novel programmes for education and training which could then be assimilated by the existing universities in India and the region, the release added.

APM Terminals Pipavav launches second weekly double stack rail service

APM Terminals Pipavav (Gujarat Pipavav Port Ltd), one of western India’s fastest growing gateway ports, has commenced a second weekly double stack rail service to the industrial centre of Faridabad in Haryana, near Delhi.
The dedicated double stack operations, which can carry two containers placed one on top of another in specially designed rail cars, will be operated in association with Gateway Rail and NYK India.  
Known as "Sakura II", the service will operate between Pipavav Port and ICD-Faridabad (Piyala)/ICD-Garhi Harsaru, covering a distance of 1,015 km exclusively for Japanese NYK Shipping Line. 
The existing Sakura I dedicated double stack rail service, is operated by NYK exclusively for containers being imported by Maruti Suzuki India Ltd.
The inaugural service was flagged off from Pipavav Port by Mr. Keld Pedersen, Managing Director of APM Terminals Pipavav, and Mr. Yasuhiro Ishi, General Manager, NYK Line.
“We are very pleased with this partnership with NYK Line, and Gateway Rail, providing fast, consistent Just-In-Time cargo delivery, while reducing transportation costs, pollution and roadway congestion through dedicated double stack rail service," Mr. Pedersen said.
Double stack rail movements were pioneered in India by APM Terminals and the Indian Railway in 2006 with service from Pipavav to Rajasthan, terminating in Jaipur.
Pipavav Port is currently moving block trains between Garhi Harsaru and Pipavav and between Ludhiana and Pipavav.
APM Terminals Pipavav, India's first public-private partnership (PPP) port, is a part of the APM Terminals Global Terminal Network of 62 operating ports, terminal facilities and 135 Inland services. 

Modi says soldiers who retire prematurely will also benefit from OROP

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday that respect for armed forces veterans and those who laid down their lives for the nation was paramount for the country and pointed out that, with the announcement made on Saturday, he had fufillled his promise of delivering one-rank, one persion for ex-servicemen.
Opposition spreading rumours about OROP: Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said that respect for armed forces veterans and those who laid down their lives for the nation was paramount for the country and pointed out that, with the announcement made yesterday, he had fufillled his promise of delivering one-rank, one persion (OROP) for ex-servicemen.
Speaking after inaugurating the Badarpur-Faridabad Metro Line at Faridabad, near here, in Haryana, he said the cost of implementing the promise would be around Rs 8,000 crore to Rs 10,000 crore, significantly higher than some estimates made earlier.
Mr Modi regretted that it had become a "fashion" to politicize every decision taken by the Union Government for the progress of the country. 
Stating that no one should mislead the jawans and the people of the nation, the Prime Minister said that the country would progress not through Raj-neeti (politics), but through Rashtra-neeti (nationalist policies). 
Mr Modi said previous governments, over the past four decades, had only paid lip-service to OROP and had never gone into the issue in detail to ensure its proper implementation.
He made it clear the OROP scheme would be applicable to those who take premature retirement from the armed forces and said some people were trying to mislead the soldiers by raising the bogey of "voluntary retirement".
He said soldiers who had to quit service because of injuries and medical disability would be able to avail the benefits of OROP.
"Some people think that soldiers who left service after working for 15 to 17 years will not be covered under OROP. It is wrong," he said.
"We have promised to implement OROP for people who live and die for the country," he said.
Mr Modi said that a significant proportion of army jawans were from Haryana, and therefore, the announcement of OROP would contribute significantly to the state's economy. 
Reiterating that development is the solution to all problems, he  said the Union Government is taking various steps for India's development. He said the whole world had recently faced economic difficulties, but India's economy had stood firm. He added that all State Governments and the Union Government had to move forward shoulder to shoulder. He reiterated his Government's resolve for Housing for All by 2022. 
He said development would ensure jobs for the youth, fair prices to the farmer for his produce, the children of the poor would get good education, the poor and the aged would get better health facilities, and the poor would get houses to stay in.
"That is why my government is working with development as its sole aim. We have only one mantra, one goal, one path and one destination and that is development," he said.
He said the people of the country wanted development. They wanted good roads, good schools and good hospitals and that is why the government was focused on such areas, he said.
Mr Modi said that, if these things had been achieved in the past 60 years, the country would have crossed great heights by now.
"But a lot of such work is incomplete and that does not mean that I just that I can just criticise past governments and not do anything about it. It is this government's responsibility to solve just problems and find new ways of ensuring development to take the nation to new heights," he said.
He said the government had accorded the highest priority to infrastructure, including railways and roads. He said his government had taken up a mission to ensure housing for all by 2022, when the nation would celebrate the 75th year of independence.
Mr Modi said the new metro line owuld be further extended to Ballabhgarh in the coming years.
The Prime Minister travelled from Janpath in Central Delhi to Bata Chowk in Faridabad, a distance of 32 km, and back, by metro. In the course of the journey, he interacted with several people, especially youth, who were also travelling on board the train. 
The Badarpur – Escorts Mujesar (Faridabad) Metro corridor is 13.875 kilometres long and is an extension of the presently operational ITO – Badarpur section (Line 6) of the Delhi Metro.
There are nine elevated stations in this section: Sarai, NHPC Chowk, Mewala Maharajpur, Sector – 28, Badkal Mor, Old Faridabad, Neelam Chowk Ajronda, Bata Chowk and Escorts Mujesar. This corridor is also being extended up to Ballabhgarh now. 
Inside Delhi, the corridor is being further extended from ITO till Kashmere Gate. After completion, the Kashmere Gate – Ballabhgarh corridor will be 46.6 kilometres long. The estimated daily ridership by the end of 2015 is approximately 1.95 lakhs.

Delhi Metro begins trial runs on Badarpur-Faridabad corridor

Delhi Metro begins trial runs on Badarpur-Faridabad corridor
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) today commenced trial runs of trains on the Badarpur – Faridabad section of its Phase 3 project.
The first trial train on this section today travelled from the Badarpur station to Old Faridabad Metro station of the new corridor, in the presence of DMRC Managing Director Mangu Singh and other senior officials.
The construction work for this elevated stretch, which is 13.875 km long, is almost complete and is expected to be opened for commuter operations after successful trials and mandatory approvals.
"This section will be extremely helpful for residents of Faridabad who travel everyday to the national capital for work or other engagements and vice versa," a press release from DMRC said.
During the trial runs, the interaction of the Metro train with physical infringements (civil structure) will be checked to ensure that there is no physical blockage during the movement of the train on the track. The entire signaling system will also undergo rigorous testing.
In addition, the response of the train at different speeds, braking of the train and the interconnection with the Operations Control Centre (OCC) will also be monitored during the trials. The behaviour of the track system and the Over Head Electrification (OHE) will be checked repeatedly during all the trials, the release said.
There are nine stations on the elevated corridor: Sarai, NHPC Chowk, Mewala Maharajpur, Sector 28, Badkal Mor, Old Faridabad, Neelam Chowk Ajronda, Bata Chowk, Escorts
The depot for this section has been constructed near Sector 20 A in Faridabad and will be called Ajronda Depot. 
Two more stations, NCB colony and Ballabhgarh, will be added in this line by 2017, increasing its length by 3.2 kms.
As many as 37 lifts and 45 escalators have been installed at the nine stations. The lifts will be operated by the environment friendly regenerative braking technology. Regenerative braking is a method in which the kinetic energy of an elevator or lift is converted into electrical energy and regenerated back into the power supply line. 

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200 temporary firecracker stalls gutted in major fire in Faridabad

Faridabad: Over 200 firecracker shops gutted in fire
A major fire broke out this evening at the Dussehra Ground in Faridabad, near here in Haryana, where a temporary market for selling fire crackers had been set up ahead of the Diwali festival.
Sources said more than 200 temporary stalls set up on the ground were gutted in the fire.
Faridabad police sources said about three or four people had been injured in the incident.
More than 20 fire tenders had been rushed to the spot to control the fire and they had been able to localise the fire and prevent the flames from spreading.
The entire ground had turned into an inferno for some time as flames leapt into the sky and the stocks of fire crackers exploded all over the place as the fire quickly spread from one shop to the other in no time at all.

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Gateway Rail commissions new Faridabad Inland Container Depot

Gateway Rail Freight Ltd, a private container train operator and a subsidiary of Gateway Distriparks Ltd. (GDL), today said it had commissioned rail operations at its third Rail Linked Logistic Park at Faridabad in Haryana. 
After receiving all the regulatory approvals, Gateway Rail has operated the first freight train service to the newly commissioned rail terminal, a press release from the company said.
It said the new international cargo terminal at Faridabad would cater to the needs of exporters, importers and domestic clients based in Delhi, Haryana, Uttaranchal, Uttar Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh. 
"The EXIM trade based in Delhi cluster (Tughlakabad – Faridabad – Ballabhgarh – Palwal), Mathura, Agra, Sahibabad, Gaziabad, NOIDA, Greater Noida, Baddi, Haridwar has been eagerly waiting for inauguration of train service from Faridabad Terminal," it said.
Mr. Prem Kishan Gupta, Chairman and Managing Director of Gateway Rail Freight Ltd said, “This is the third offering of Gateway Rail to the manufacturing and trading community of North India. We will provide storage, customs clearance and rail transportation services for international cargo between NCR and the west coast maritime ports of JN Port, Mundra and Pipavav. In line with our principle of providing wholesome service to the trade, we will offer road transportation for door pick-up and delivery of cargo. We will also offer special consolidation services to the 3PL Freight Forwarders who provide consolidation service to the exporters and importers of North India. We have built a separate warehouse for consolidation (CONSOL) business and will also provide value added services like Garment on Hangers (GOH) and refrigerated cargo transportation (Reefer) services.”
Gateway Rail provides storage, warehousing and customs clearance service for containerised international and domestic cargo through its Inland Container Depots (ICD) based at Garhi Harsaru (Gurgaon, Haryana), Sanehwal (Ludhiana, Punjab) and Faridabad (Haryana). It also operates a Private Freight Terminal at Kalamboli in Navi Mumbai. It offers rail and road transportation solutions with own fleet of 21 trains and over 250 tractor trailers. 
Gateway Rail Freight Ltd is one of the 11 private container train operators of India who have been given permission to operate container trains over the entire Indian Railways network. It has plans to build terminals in Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, Nagpur, Bengaluru, Jaipur and Jodhpur to provide pan-India service.

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DMRC signs MoU with Haryana govt. on extension of Delhi Metro to Faridabad

The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) today signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Haryana government for extension of the Delhi Metro corridor from Badarpur in Delhi to YMCA Chowk, Faridabad in Haryana.
The MoU was signed by S S Dhillon, Financial Commissioner & Principal Secretary to Government of Haryana, Town and Country Planning Department and Kumar Keshav, Director (Project & Planning), DMRC.
Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and DMRC Managing Director Mangu Sngh were amongst those present at the ceremony.
The 13.875 km fully elevated corridor will be of standard gauge (1435 mm) and will have nine stations. They are Sarai, NHPC Chowk, Mewala Maharajpur, Sector -27 A, Badkal Mor, Old Faridabad, Ajronda, Faridabad New Town and YMCA Chowk.

Escorts ties up with Ingeteam of Spain for railway traction systems


Engineering major Escorts Limited, a leading manufacturer of critical railway components, has signed an exclusive agreement with Ingeteam Traction of Spain to provide world class traction systems to Indian Railways.

The product has large scale application on Electric Locomotives, Diesel-Electric Locomotives, Diesel Electrical Multiple Units (DEMU) and Electric MultipleUnits (EMU) of Indian Railways, a press release from Escorts said. The product can also be used on metro rail coaches, it said.

The agreement marks Escorts' entry in the niche domain of rail traffic systems. To begin with, Escorts will supply Traction Control Converter (TCC) and Locomotive Control Converter (LCC) with accessories for DEMU application on Indian Railways.

Strong earthquake jolts Delhi, neighbouring areas


A strong earthquake jolted many parts of Delhi and surrounding areas late tonight, forcing thousands of panic-stricken people to run outdoors as a precautionary measure.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said the quake was of slight intensity and measured 4.2 on the Richter scale.

The quake, which had its epicentre at latitude 28.6 degrees North and longitude 77 degrees East, near Sonipat on the Delhi-Haryana border, occurred at 2328 hours at a focal depth of 10 km, the IMD said.

The tremors, which lasted for a few seconds, were felt in several areas of Delhi, Noida and Ghaziabad in Uttar Pradesh, Faridabad and Gurgaon in Haryana and even farther away and thousands of people rushed out of their homes.

Though the IMD said the quake was mild in intensity, people in and around the capital thought it was much stronger, perhaps, because of the proximity to its epicentre.

Many people had already gone to bed and ran out in their night dress and stayed out for a long time, too scared to go back. There were, however, no reports of any damage to life or property.


Strong quake felt on Delhi-Haryana border


A strong earthquake was felt in many parts of Delhi and surrounding areas late tonight, forcing people to run outdoors as a precautionary measure.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said the quake was of slight intensity and measured 4.2 on the Richter scale.

The quake, which had its epicentre at latitude 28.6 degrees North and longitude 77 degrees East on the Delhi-Haryana border, occurred at 2328 hours at a focal depth of 10 km, the IMD said.

The tremors, which lasted for a few seconds, were felt in several areas of Delhi, Noida and Ghaziabad in Uttar Pradesh and Faridabad in Haryana and people rushed out of their homes.

Many of them had already gone to sleep and ran out in their night dress and stayed out for a long time, too scared to go back. There were no reports of any damage to life or property.


Man accused of 1992 murder of Indian family in Dubai sentenced to death

A CBI court in Ahmedabad has convicted Ravjibhai Manubhai Pawar of the murder of his Indian employer and four other members of his family in Dubai in 1992 and sentenced him to death.

A press release from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) said that its investigations had shown that Pawar, while working as a domestic servant in Dubai, had kileld Mr Ramesh K Sagar and four others of Mr Sagar's family on January 4, 1992.

He was also accused of rape and of stealing household articles, including clothes, ornaments and cash.

Pawar feld from Dubai on January 5 and came to India. On the basis of an Interpol alert, he was nabbed on January 10 by the Gujarat police and a first information report (FIR)was registered.

Since the accused was an Indian national and the offence took place outside India, the case was entrusted to the CBI. The Dubai Police had also registered an FIR and collected evidence, which was used by the CBI during investigation and trial of the case, the release said.

The chargesheet was filed on January 23, 1992 in the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate, Chikhli. The trial court found him guilty and convicted him.

The case was registered by the CBI, Ahmedabad (now Gandhinagar) Branch on April 27, 1992 on the basis of the request and consent of the Government of Gujarat for futher investigation of the case filed at the Chikhli Police Station, the release added.


Centre clears extension of two Delhi Metro lines to Haryana


The Centre has cleared proposals for extension of Delhi Metro's services to Haryana -- from Badarpur to YMCA Faridabad and from Mundka to Bahadurgarh.

Stating this here today, a Haryana government spokesman said that, out of the total cost of Rs 2533 crore for the extension of the Metro from Badarpur to YMCA Faridabad, 80 per cent of the amount (Rs 1588 crore) would be borne by Haryana Government and Rs 544 crore by the Central government. For the rolling stock, the expenditure of Rs 400 crore would be borne by Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC).

The Metro Rail from Badarpur to YMCA Faridabad would cover a distance of 13.875 km and it would have nine stations. The work is expected to be completed by August 31, 2014. However, efforts would be made to finish the work by March 31, 2014.

He said that these projects were cleared at the meeting of the Group of Ministers (GoM) held in New Delhi yesterday.

The meeting was chaired by Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee and attended by Home Minister P Chidambram, Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Delhi Chief Minister Shiela Dikshit, Delhi Lt Governor Tajendra Khanna and officials concerned.

He said regarding extension of Metro Rail from Mundka to Bahadurgarh, it was decided that it would be put into supplementary phase-III. From Mundka to Tikri Border the work will be got completed by Delhi Government through DMRC and for the remaining portion of about five km from Tikri Border to Bahadurgarh, the expenditure would be borne by Haryana Government.


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