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Vijay Kumar questioned for want of appropriate documentation: Canada


The Ministry of External Affairs today said the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) had informed the High Commission of India in Ottawa that Mumbai-based documentary film-maker Vijay Kumar had been questioned for alleged want of appropriate documentation and that he was not under detention.


"It is understood that Mr Vijay Kumar flew into Vancouver from Houston (in the United States) on 16th September," Mr Vishnu Prakash, the official spokesperson of the Ministry said when asked about reports that the Indian national had been detained in Vancouver.


Mr Prakash said the Consulate General of India (CGI) in Vancouver was also in contact with CBSA and Mr Baldev Singh Sandhu, Attorney of Mr Vijay Kumar.


"Mr Sandhu, citing ‘attorney-client relationship’ and Canadian privacy laws, has declined to share any information about the status, location or plans of Mr Vijay Kumar," Mr Prakash said.


He said the CGI in Vancouver had offered to provide all possible assistance, if required, to Mr Sandhu.


Separately, the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs said in a statement that it was in touch with the Indian missions in the US and Canada on the issue.


Mr Vijay Kumar, who was arrested at the Houston airport in Texas on August 20 for allegedly carrying brass knuckles, a prohibited item under the laws of that state, was transferred back to the custody of US Immigration Authorities for "voluntary" return to India. But Mr Vijay Kumar left instead for Vancouver.


"The Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs is in constant touch with Indian missions in the US and Canada and awaiting further details and reports from them," the statement added.


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Regional Pravasi Bhartiya Divas in Durban on October 1-2

The 4th Regional Pravasi Bhartiya Divas (PBD) will be held on October 1-2 this year in Durban, South Africa on the theme "India and Africa: Building Bridges".


The event is being organised by the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs in partnership with the provincial governmento KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) and the Government of South Africa.


An official press release said between 600 and 800 delegate from all over Africa were expected to participate in the conference.


Africa is home to a large Indian diaspora and the conference aims to bring htem together. The Premier of the KZN province, the Mayor of Durban Municipality, leaders of the people of Indian origin (PIO) community, prominent businessmen, dignitaries and other distinguished persons are expected to participate in the convention.

The event coincides with Mahatma Gandhi’s birth anniversary and will also be a part of the year-long celebrations to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the arrival of Indian immigrants in South Africa from India.


Durban has historic significance for India because Mahatma Gandhi lived in Durban from 1893 to 1914 and first experimented with non-violence and passive resistance based on truth as a potent and novel tool of struggle against apartheid and imperialism in South Africa.


The South African Indian origin community currently numbers around 1.28 million and constitutes about 2.5% of its total population. About 80% of the people of Indian origin live in the province of KwaZulu-Natal.


Pietermaritzburg, the capital of KZN, is noted for its link with Mahatma Gandhi. During his 21-year stay in South Africa, Mahatma Gandhi fought against the racist regime and founded the Natal Indian Congress.

The International Convention Centre in Durban is the venue of the Conference. The pre-convention events on October 1 are a business roundtable conference and an academic seminar on "Diaspora: Heritage in the Context of Globalisation".


There will be five Plenary Sessions on October 2 beginning with the Opening Plenary on "The Relevance of Mahatma Gandhi in the 21st Century" followed by sessions on "Business: Opportunity in Africa", "Education, Youth and Gender: Leveraging Knowledge and Technology for Social Development", and "Diaspora: Heritage in the Context of Globalisation".


A cultural troupe organized by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) will perform on the first day at the inaugural function. The programme of local cultural troupes for the second day would be sponsored by Government of KZN.

The first ever Regional PBD outside India was organized in New York in September, 2007 and the second one was held in Singapore in October, 2008. The third in the series of such events was held in September last year in The Hague.


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Air India to connect Chennai, Bangalore to Agatti

National carrier Air India today said it would begin operations from Chennai to Agatti in the Lakshadweep islands six days a week from September 24.


The new flight, part of the airline's efforts to provide connectivity to lesser accessible stations, will make Agatti the 64th destination on its domestic network


An Air India press release said that, on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays the ATR flight IC 7501/7502 will operate on the route Chennai-Kochi-Agatti-Kochi-Chennai and on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays the airline will operate flight IC 7503/7504 on the route Chennai-Bangalore-Agatti-Bangalore-Chennai.


Flight IC7501 will leave Chennai at 0830 hrs and arrive at Kochi at 1000 hrs, leave Kochi at 1030 hrs to reach Agatti at 1200 hrs. The return flight IC7502 will depart from Agatti at 1230 hrs and reach Kochi at 1400 hrs, leave Kochi at 1430 hrs and reach Chennai at 1600 hrs.


Flight IC7503 on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday will leave Chennai at 0830 hrs and land at Bangalore at 0930 hrs. It will leave Bangalore at 1000 hrs and reach Agatti at 1200 hrs. On the return leg, flight IC7504 will leave Agatti at 1230 hrs, reach Bangalore at 1430 hrs, and depart from Bangalore at 1535 hrs to reach Chennai at 1635 hrs.


The operation of the service will on this sector is expected to give a major boost to tourism to the scenic islands. Passengers travelling from Delhi and Mumbai to Agatti will get same-day connections in both directions at Bangalore, the release added.


The airline also said that it was upgrading services to the Tier 2 cities by providing jet aircraft instead of earlier turbo prop services.


The flight between Delhi and Dehradun presently being operated with ATR aircraft will be operated with 122 seater Airbus A-319 aircraft from September 22. The flight will offer 8 seats in Executive class and 114 seats in Economy class. Also the flight on the Delhi-Kanpur-Allahabad-Delhi route will also be upgraded to operate with a 70 seater CRJ aircraft.


The A-319 flight IC463 will now leave Delhi at 0935 hrs and arrive at Dehradun at 1030 hrs. The return flight IC464 will now depart from Dehradun at 1110 hrs and reach Delhi at 1200 hrs.


The CRJ flight IC7801 will now leave Delhi at 1400 hrs and arrive at Kanpur at 1450 hrs, depart from Kanpur at 1520 hrs to land at Allahabad at 1545 hrs. On the final leg the flight will leave Allahabad at 1615 hrs and arrive back at Delhi at 1730 hrs.


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IISc, IIMB agree to collaborate on technology, innovation

The Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore (IISc) here has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore (IIMB) in a move aimed at deepening the academic exchange and collaboration between the two institutions.


A press release from IIMB said the MoU focused on two goals: to have closer academic collaborations between the two institutes and to initiate Technology and Innovation Management activities related to science-based Intellectual Property generated at IISc and co-created between the two Institutes.


It said the academic activities would cover joint academic programmes in all areas of Science (pure science and engineering) and Management, and will share the wealth of complementary wisdom and pedagogic experience the two institutes possess.


The Technology and Innovation Management activities will involve joint identification of Intellectual Property at IISc, strategies for its marketing, joint incubation and start-up companies between IISc and IIMB. Faculty, students and alumni of the two institutes will be involved in this MoU. A Joint Board will be constituted between IISc and IIMB, the release said.


Prof P Balaram, Director, IISc, sees the need for closer ties between these institutes to bring innovations in science closer to society, and thus make Jamsetji Tata’s dream a reality. It was the vision of Jamsetji Tata, the founder of Indian Institute of Science, to build scientific institutions in India which will serve industry, healthcare and society in general.


"We are delighted to enter into this partnership with IISc," said Prof Pankaj Chandra, Director, IIMB. "In this technology-driven age, such collaborations are crucial for development, as academic research benefits society when converted into etrepreneurial opportunities. The intersection of science and management offers exciting opportunities and this collaboration will certainly enhance the output from Bangalore as a knowledge centre."


The release said the collaboration hoped to bring together an appropriate mix of transnational R&D, business angels and venture capitalists.


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ISB iDiya announces seed funding for social ventures

ISB iDiya, a social ventures competition organised by students of the Indian School of Business (ISB) here, has announced opportunities for seed funding for aspiring social entrepreneurs.


A press release from the organisers of the event, said the combined funding amount of Rs 45 lakhs had been contributed by GiveIndia, cKinetics and Villgro and would be made available to winners of the competition.


It said the objective of iDiya was to promote social entrepreneurship in India by inviting ideas from working professionals for profitable business models with measureable social impact.


Ideas can be submitted online at www.isb.edu/iDiya. The deadline for submissions is 19September 2010.


According to the release, the iDiya investing partners will evaluate teams in focused verticals to assess their suitability for funding.


cKinetics, a venture accelerator in the sustainability space, has offered to provide seed funding of up to Rs 10 lakhs for the best Environmental Sustainability idea at the ISB iDiya boot camp.


Villgro will provide incubation services for the best business ideas in Agriculture, Energy, Water and Dairy sector which have the potential to impact rural households.


The best business idea that can transform rural households will win a chance to receive Rs 25 lakhs through the Villgro Incubation Programme. Incubation services include seed funding, pilot marketing services, support in Board formation, providing talent and support in raising external investments.


The release said GiveIndia would provide seed funding of up to Rs 10 lakhs for the best not-for-profit idea in the Philanthropy and Fundraising space. Winning ideas may additionally benefit from the opportunity of being incubated /supported by the GiveIndia team and its volunteers. This investment opportunity is restricted to non-profit ventures.


Winners of the iDiya competition will also be eligible to apply to the Entrepreneurship Development Initiative at the Wadhwani Centre for Entrepreneurship Development (WCED) at the ISB.


The release said that, to be eligible for these opportunities, teams must have a viable, self-sustaining and profitable plan entered in the ISB iDiya challenge. Only teams that are selected for the iDiya bootcamp are eligible.


The ISB iDiya Challenge is organised by the Net Impact Club at the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad.


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"Fairy Queen" to haul heritage train from Oct 23-March 12

Fairy Queen.
Fairy Queen.

The Fairy Queen, the oldest surviving functional steam engine in the world, will be again back at work this season to haul a heritage train from Delhi to the Sariska National Park, Alwar in Rajasthan.

The train, which is very popular with steam engine lovers across the globe, will run between Delhi Cantonment Station and Alwar from October 23, 2010 to March 12, 2011.

An official press release said here that the Northern Railway planned to run an additional trip of the train on October 9 during the XIX Commonwealth Games that will be held in Delhi from October 3-14.

As part of this heritage trip, the Rajasthan Tourism Development Corporation will provide a comprehensive two-day tourist package including on-ground catering, boarding, lodging, transfer facilities, visit to Sariska National Park, cultural programmes and so on.

The Fairy Queen train will depart from Delhi Cantt. on day one at 9.00 a.m. to reach Alwar at 3.00 p.m. the same day, and the passengers would be lodged in Hotel "Tiger Den" at Sariska, as has been done in the past.

On day two, the train will depart from Alwar at 1.00 p.m. to reach Delhi Cantt. at 6.45 p.m. the same day. It will stop for 10 minutes each at Garhi Harasuru, Pataudi Road, Rewari, Ajarka and Khairthal stations en route in both the directions.

The tariff for the full package is Rs. 10,200 per adult and Rs. 5,100 for a child (half fare).

Journey between Delhi and Alwar with sightseeing and stay at Sariska would be Rs. 7,100 per adult and Rs. 3,550 for a child while one-way train journey between Delhi and Alwar only would be Rs. 3,200 per adult and Rs. 1,600 per child.

The tourist train will make about two trips every month from October this year to March 2011.

The first trip will be on October 23 and the subsequent trips will be on November 13, November 27, December 11, December 25, January 8, January 22, February 12, Febrary 26 and the last trip on March 12.

The steam engine of the Fairy Queen rolled out for the erstwhile East Indian Railways in 1855. After 1908, it rolled out again for the first time on February 1, 1997 from Delhi to Alwar after a complete overhaul at the Perambur workshop of Southern Railway.

The engine is the oldest working locomotive in the world and finds a place in the Guinness Book of World Records.

The train has a 60-seater air-conditioned chair car specially designed with a large glass window from where passengers can have a frontal view of the locomotive. There is also a well-maintained pantry car for on-board catering.

The train has a lounge in the front which provides a scenic view of the countryside.

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Delhi Metro trials extended to Okhla


The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) today said it had energised the Metro section between Nehru Place and Okhla this evening and the first train was expected to start trials on the section tonight.


The first train which will move on this section will have officers from the Signalling and Telecom (S&T), Track, Permanent Way (Civil) and Electrical Departments who will travel in the cab alongwith the train operator to monitor the first trial run.


A press release from DMRC said the energization of this three km. long section involved the erection of 225 electrical overhead masts (poles) which were erected in a record time of only 15 days which normally would have required at least 45 days.


The work was speeded-up by DMRC by employing extra manpower and resources since it wants to commission this line by the end of this month to keep its target of opening it before the Commonwealth Games that Delhi will host from October 3-14.


The line was sanctioned in April 2007, which meant DMRC had just 41 months to construct this line.


This is the second Standard Gauge corridor of the Delhi Metro after the Inderlok-Mundka corridor.


The line consists of 16 stations with Central Secretariat, Khan Market, Jawarharlal Nehru (JLN) Stadium, Jangpura Metro stations being the underground ones and Lajpat Nagar, Moolchand, Kailash Colony, Nehru Place, Kalkaji Mandir, Govindpuri, Okhla, Jasola, Sarita Vihar, Mohan Estate, Tughlakabad and Badarpur Metro stations being the elevated ones.


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India committed to development of region through SAARC: Krishna


External Affairs Minister S M Krishna today said India remained fully committed to working within the South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC) to contribute to the development of the region through social development and economic integration.


"We also remain committed to pursuing these objectives in a non-reciprocal manner," he said in his inaugural address to an international conference here on SAARC @ 25.


The conference has been organised to 25th anniversary of the SAARC. The Charter of SAARC was adopted by seven leaders of South Asian countries on December 8, 1985 at Dhaka.


Mr Krishna said the regional grouping had come a long way in the last 25 years in shaping regional economic cooperation and development in the face of multi-faceted challenges.


He said the most visible aspect of this cooperation had been in the area of trade. At the same time, increasing regional engagement in core areas of development including education, health, agriculture, energy and infrastructure had also contributed significantly in delivering the fruits of development to South Asians at the grassroots level, he said.


He said there had also been a significant increase in intra-regional tourism, people-to-people exchanges through cultural and social activities and the exchange of ideas.


The Minister said the implementation of the South Asia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA) in 2006 was a significant milestone in this effort. Intra-regional trade in South Asia has begun to grow and has doubled over the past five years., he said.


He said this figure touched close to $ 550 million in 2009, from just $ 10 million in 2006 when SAFTA came into force. Intra-SAARC exports, as a proportion of total SAARC exports, have more than doubled in these last 25 years.


He said there was considerably greater potential to increase the share of intra-regional trade and investment flows as has been witnessed in East and South East Asia.


Mr Krishna said the signing of the SAARC Agreement on Trade and Services earlier this year should strengthen economic cooperation in the region further by expanding intra-regional investment and production opportunities.


He said India had very recently ratified this Agreement and hoped that the early ratification of this Agreement by other member states would give a boost to realising the full potential of trade in services in the region.


He called for progress in the areas of transport connectivity and infrastructure so that the high transaction costs of trade could be brought down. He said climate change was another challenge facing the region, which is rich in natural resources and includes diverse ecosystems.


Mr Krishna called for early finalisation of the agreement to develop a Natural Disaster Rapid Response Mechanism under the SAARC Disaster Management Centre (SDMC) in New Delhi.


He referred to other initiatives such as the SAARC Food Bank, a Regional Seed Bank, the SAARC Social Charter and the SAARC Development Fund aimed at bringing the member-countries closer to each other.


He said he was particularly pleased at the progress achieved in the establishment of a South Asian University in Delhi, with its first academic session beginning on August 26 with two initial courses having the participation of 50 students from across the region.


"I am optimistic that the University, once fully operational, will provide world class education opportunities to the youth of South Asia. This $ 300 million undertaking, co-shared by SAARC Member States, should establish itself as a centre of excellence producing generations of scholars and professionals in disciplines of developmental relevance to the region. It should also help to create a genuine South Asian identity for the youth of the region, which itself should go a long way in furthering the objectives of SAARC," he said.


He said SAARC must take stock of the progress achieved so far and draw lessons from the past.


"We need to look to an inter-related South Asian future where trade and cross-border links flourish and bring prosperity to all our people. As a region blessed with an abundance of natural and human resources, a youthful population and a unique spirit of enterprise, this should surely be an achievable goal," he added.


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Farooq says Omar has no plans to quit

Union Minister and National Conference (NC) President Farooq Abdullah today held meetings with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi and asserted afterwards that Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had no plans to step down.


Dr Abdullah's meetings with the two Central leaders came a day after the all-party convened by the Prime Minister on the serious crisis in Jammu and Kashmir and against the background of media reports that the Congress was reaching out to the People's Democratic Party (PDP), the NC's main rival.


Talking to reporters after the meetings, Dr Abdullah, the Union MInister for New and Renewable Energy, declined to give out any details of the discussions he had with Dr Singh and Ms Gandhi.


But asked about the reports that Mr Omar Abdullah, his son, was planning to quit, he blamed the media for creating situations which led to tragedy for the country.


"Omar Abdullah has no intention of stepping down, nor is there any such move being made," he said.


He said the media often played "tricks" to bring one person down and push somebody else up. He referred to the case of former Minister of State for External Affairs Shashi Tharoor and said the media had no interest in him after he had stepped down in the wake of a controversy related to the IPL cricket tournament.


Asked about whether he was upset that the Centre had not yet taken a decision on withdrawal of the controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from some parts of the troubled valley, he said the Governmet had to consider various aspects, including the security angle, before deciding on such matters.


"These things don't happen like this...these things take time. They have to study situations, they have to study situations at borders of the State. The integrity of the country is most vital," he said.


On the proposed all-party delegation's visit to the State next week, he said all groups which wanted to meet the delegation were welcome to do so. "Nobody is going to push anybody," he added.


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Rahul Gandhi backs Omar, says give him time, support

Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi on Thursday backed Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, saying he was performing a tough job and needed to be given time and support.

Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi today backed Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, saying he was performing a tough job and needed to be given time and support.

Talking to mediapersons in Kolkata today, Mr Gandhi, the son of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, pointed out that the Central Government had supported Mr Abdullah.

He said the National Conference was the party in power in Jammu and Kashmir and it had chosen Mr Abdullah as its leader. The Congress was the NC's partner in the State and supported Mr Abdullah, he said.

"Kashmir is a tough and sensitive job. We should give Omar some time and support," Mr Gandhi said in reply to questions about the perceived governance deficit in the State.

"Omar is a youngster and Kashmir is a difficult place. I think Omar is doing a tough job," he said.

Mr Gandhi said he needed to understand the issues in Kashmir much more before he could comment on complex matters such as the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) and the plans to partially withdraw the controversial law from some parts of the Kashmir valley.

Asked if he would get involved in the Kashmir issue, Mr Gandhi said tackling the problem was not a "part-time" job, but a "full-time" one. This meant that he would have to give up whatever else he was involved in, he said, adding that he would like to complete the work assigned to him by the party.

Mr Gandhi's remarks were seen as a major morale booster for Mr Abdullah, whose handling of the ongoing crisis in the State has attracted a lot of criticism. The Chief Minister told a television channel he was grateful for the backing, and said he would talk to Mr Gandhi directly to convey his gratitude.

To a question about his party's alliance with the Trinamool Congress headed by Railways Minister Mamata Banerjee, Mr Gandhi said the two parties would fight the Left Front together in the coming elections. But he said the Congress would have to be respected in such a partnership. "That is my view, my personal view," he said.


"We have a partnership with Trinamool Congress in West Bengal. We are going to hold hands with Mamata Banerjee. She is a senior leader. She has worked with my father. I respect her. However, we are not going to bow our heads. We will do whatever we do with dignity and respect," he said.

Mr Gandhi said the Left front was the single biggest problem in West Bengal. He said there was a Bengal of the Left Front where people could beat, kill and steal from anybody and another Bengal which is with the Bengalis. "Bengal has to go back to the Bengalis," he said.

He said the Left Front government in the State was guided by a "dead ideology, which has failed worldwide, including Cuba."

According to him, even the Chinese were "astounded" by what was happening in West Bengal. He said, during his visit to China, he was asked by senior leaders there about events in West Bengal.

"The energy of West Bengal has been tied by this ideology. What Bengal needs today is to get back to the path of development," he said.

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Ahead of Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid verdict, Govt. appeals for calm

Ahead of the Allahabad High Court verdict on the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title suit, expected on September 24, the Central Government today urged all sections of the people to maintain peace and order in the aftermath of the judgement.


In a resolution adopted at its meeting here today, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the Union Cabinet noted that the judgement would be the outcome of a long judicial process.


"It goes without saying that the judgement needs to be treated with the utmost respect. At the same time, we must remember the fact that the judgement, at this stage, is one step in the judicial process. The determination of the issues need not necessarily end with this judgement unless it is accepted by all parties. In case any of the parties feels that further judicial consideration is required, there are legal remedies available which could be resorted to," the resolution said.


"Keeping this in mind, it is necessary for all sections of the people of India to maintain equanimity and tranquility in the aftermath of the judgement. There should be no attempt whatsoever made by any section of the people to provoke any other section or to indulge in any expression of emotion that would hurt the feelings of other people," it said.


The Cabinet appealed to all the people of India to ensure that the delivery of the judgement was seen in its proper perspective as part of a judicial process. It further appealed to all sections of society to maintain peace and order after the delivery of the judgement.


The appeal was read out to the media by Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni.


"It is important for all to ensure that the highest traditions of Indian culture and respect for all religions are fully maintained. India is firmly and resolutely on the path of inclusive growth. This is recognized all over the world. Nothing must be said or done and nothing must happen that may cause us to deviate from our goals and our objectives," the resolution added.


The statement came against the backdrop of worries that some elements might exploit the situation and fan communal passions if the verdict in the 60-year-old suit went either way.


Dr Singh had held a meeting with his senior cabinet colleagues in this regard recently.


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Indian Navy ship neutralises pirate boat in Gulf of Aden

An Indian Navy ship yesterday successfully neutralised a pirate boat, the third in four days, while escorting merchant vessels as part of an anti-piracy mission in the Gulf of Aden.


A press release from the Ministry of Defence said the INS Delhi was escorting six merchant vessels with a total of 147 crew members, including 40 Indians.


At about 10 am yesterday, at a position 108 km south of the Yemeni coast in the International Recommended Transit Corridor (IRTC), a dhow was detected approaching the formation.


The release said the dhow was intercepted and boarded by a team of Marine Commandos. A cache of arms, including a 7.62 mm rifle, six Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPGs) and ammunition, was found on board the dhow. The dhow was disarmed.


INS Delhi had similarly disarmed boats on September 5, 12 and 13. Since the Indian Navy started its anti-piracy operations in October 2008, this is the 18th piracy attack that has been prevented, the release added.


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CCEA nod for revised cost estimates for E-Courts project

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) today approved an amount of Rs 935 crore as the revised cost estimate for implementing the E-Courts project in the country.


The cost approved earlier for the project in 2007 was Rs 441.80 crore. E-Courts is one of the Mission Mode projects under the National E-Governance Plan.


According to an official press release, the revised cost estimate for the project now covers 14,249 courts in 3069 court complexes as against 13348 courts in 2100 court complexes approved earlier.


It said comprehensive computerization and ICT enablement of 12,000 courts in 2100 court complexes will be completed by 31 March 2012.


The remaining 2249 courts in 969 court complexes will be fully computerized by 31 March, 2014.


Among other things, the revised cost estimates make provisions for Wide Area Network connectivity and data entry of pending cases and providing for equipment for uninterrupted power supply for the ICT infrastructure in the courts.


The release said an Empowered Committee would be constituted in the Department of Justice that would be responsible for providing strategic direction and guidance to the project.

The implementation of the project is expected to result in transparent flow of information on case status, verdict of cases, and so on to the litigants and other stakeholders. It will also help in improving case flow and court management.


The project also provides for establishment of video-conferencing facilities in courts and prisons to facilitate production of under-trial prisoners, the release added.


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Cabinet nod for issues related to Indian pilgrims for Haj 2010

The Union Cabinet today gave its approval to various issues concerned Haj 2010, which will see about 1,70,000 pilgrims from India going to Saudi Arabia for the annual pilgrimage.


An official press release said about 1,25,000 of these pilgrims would go through the Haj Committee of India.


The number of pilgrims who could perform Haj during a particular year is decided by the Saudi Arabian Government.


The release said air travel arrangements for these 1,25,000 pilgrims would be made by the Ministry of Civil Aviation. They will be carried from 21 embarkation points through chartered flights. Bhopal and Goa have been added as new embarkation points this year.

This year each pilgrim going on Haj through the Haj Committee of India will pay Rs.16,000 ( plus airport charges) as air fare and the balance air fare (cost of operations) will be borne by the Government.

This year most of the pilgrims will be carried by Saudi Arabian Airlines, National Private Air Services Company Limited (NAS) and Al-Wafeer Air, which have been selected through a sealed tender process.


National carrier Air India will coordinate the operations and provide support on cost basis, wherever required, the release added.


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Cabinet approves exchange of defence land in Belgaum

The Union Cabinet today approved a proposal for the exchange of defence land in Fort Belgaum with non-agricultural land owned by the Ramakrishna Mission Ashram at Nanawadi village in Belgaum.


An official press release said the proposal involved the exchange of 3267 sq ft of defence land in GLR Survey No. 346 in Fort Belgaum with 5400 sq ft of non-agricultural land of the Ramakrishna Ashram in Survey No. 31/2 at Nanawadi village.


The defence land in this area is sandwiched between civil pockets and cannot be effectively used for Army purposes, the release said.

"The land offered by Ramakrishna Mission Ashram is contiguous to defence land and non-agricultural, which can be gainfully used by Army. Thus the exchange is beneficial to the Government," the release added.


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Cabinet okays release of additional DA for Central Govt. employees

The Union Cabinet today decided to release an additional instalment of Dearness Allowance (DA) to Central Government employees and Dearness Relief (DR) to pensioners with effect from July 1.


An official press release said this represented an increase of 10 per cent over the existing rate of 35 per cent of the basic pay/pension and was meant to compensate for the price rise.


The increase is in accordance with the accepted formula, which is based on the recommendations of the 6th Central Pay Commission, it said.

The combined impact on the exchequer on account of both Dearness Allowance and Dearness Relief will be of the order of Rs. 9,303.2 crore per annum and Rs. 6,202.1 crore in the financial year 2010-2011 (for a period of 8 months from July,2010 to February, 2011), the release added.


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Kerala Tourism to launch global campaign in London

Kerala, which has successfully marketed its stunning backwaters, pristine beaches and serene countryside to travellers from around the world, will soon launch a global publicity blitz to consolidate its position as one of the top tourist destinations in the world.


As part of the campaign, Kerala Tourism will hold the world premiere of its newest advertising film in London at the end of this month.


A press release from Kerala Tourism said the high-profile event would be attended by high-fliers, celebrities and other guests from the United Kingdom.


The film, directed by the acclaimed Prakash Varma, aims to project Kerala as a "must visit" destination and highlights the state's top-rate hospitality.


"Kerala is a superbrand and a highly acclaimed destination and I wanted to be part of the project straightway," Varma said.


"This film is really going to have everyone talking about the destination. It is surreal and communicates the languid beauty, the rawness, and the sensual and spiritual flow of the land in a stirring and moving way," he said.


According to the release, the film represents a departure from the usual product-specific campaigns associated with tourism boards and targets the experiential traveller.


Following the premiere in London, the campaign will hit cinemas in the UK screening "Eat Pray Love", the Julia Roberts-starrer that is based on the real life story of an American divorcee and writer Liz Gilbert who spent a year travelling in Italy, India and Bali in search of spiritual fulfillment.


The release said the campaign would also roll out in other major markets in Europe, including Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Belgium and Switzerland.


A focus area of the campaign will also be domestic tourists, a fast-growing segment for tourism in Kerala. Kerala Tourism had staged road shows in all metros and major Indian cities earlier this year in a special domestic campaign, it said.


In 2009, Kerala Tourism had launched an innovative campaign by wrapping 120 taxis in the UK in attention-grabbing imagery of Kerala. The campaign was a huge hit with the British, who account for a third of the 650,000 foreigners who visit the state every year.


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India's domestic airlines carry 3.969 million passengers in August

India's domestic airlines carried a total of 39.89 lakh passengers in August this year, slightly less than the 40.84 lakh they reported in the previous month.

Of these, private sector carrier Kingfisher Airlines carried 7.97 lakh pasengers, followed by Jet Airways with 7.79 lakh passengers, national carrier Air India 7.30 lakh, Indigo 6.56 lakh, Spice Jet 5.02 lakh, Jet Lite 2.99 lakh, and Go Air 2.26 lakh.

Kingfisher had a 20 per cent share of the market, followed by Jet Airways 19.5 per cent, Air India 18.3 per cent, Indigo 16.4 per cent, Spice Jet 12.6 per cent, Jet Lite 7.5 per cent and Go Air with 5.7 per cent.

Kingfisher also hd the highest seat factor in the month at 80.9 per cent, followed by Indigo 74.5 per cent, Jet Lite 73.2 per cent, Go Air 72 per cent, Jet Airways 70.4 per cent, Spice Jet 70.3 per cent and Air India 65.5 per cent, an official statement added.

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Bank manager sentenced to four years in jail in fraud case

A special court in Chennai has sentenced Mr V Pattabhiraman, the then Branch Manager of the public sector Central Bank of India's Royapettah Branch in Chennai to undergo four years of imprisonment with a fine of Rs 2.40 lakhs in a bank fraud case.


The Additional Special Judge for CBI cases in Chennai also sentenced Mr V M S Haji Mohammed, proprietor of Maharaja Forest Products, Chennai to undergo four years of imprisonment with a fine of Rs 11 lakhs in the same case.


Another person, Mr Thillai Selvan of Chennai, was sentenced to one year in jail with a fine of Rs 1.20 lakhs in the case, a press release from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) said here today.


According to the release, the CBI had registered a case on March 19, 2002 against Mr Mohammed and the two others for criminal conspiracy, forgery of valuable securities, using forged documents as genuine, criminal breach of trust and abuse of official position (by public servant) for releasing credit facilities favouring a firm, Southern Timber Traders, Chennai in the form of inland / import LC for business in timber. The accused persons caused loss to the Central Bank of India to the tune of Rs.225.51 lakhs, the agency said.


After investigation, a chargesheet was filed on December 26, 2002 and the trial court found the accused persons guilty and convicted them, the release added.


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All-party delegation to visit Jammu & Kashmir, gather all shades of opinion


The all-party meeting that was convened here today by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to find ways of dealing with the serious situation in Jammu & Kashmir decided to send an all-party delegation to the State to gather all shades of opinion and help the Government evolve its response to the crisis.


An official statement issued after the meeting said the leaders of various political parties who attended the meeting made valuable suggestions on ways and means to resolve the vexed issues facing the nation in Jammu and Kashmir.


"They agreed that the Constitution of India provides ample scope to accommodate any legitimate political demand through dialogue, civil discourse and peaceful negotiations," it said.


The statement said the leaders agreed that the all-party delegation should meet all sections of the people in the State and gather all shades of opinion.


The visit of the delegation would be facilitated by the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Government of Jammu and Kashmir, it said.


"The Government will take into account the deliberations at today's meeting while considering measures and initiatives to reach out to the people of Jammu and Kashmir. The feedback received from the all-party delegation would form an important input into the Government's evolving response on various issues relating to Jammu and Kashmir," the statement added.


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PM says dialogue only way to peace in J&K, urges youth to eschew violence

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said on Wednesday the only path for lasting peace and prosperity in Jammu and Kashmir was that of dialogue and disucussion.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh chairing the All Party Meeting on Jammu & Kashmir, in New Delhi on September 15, 2010.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh chairing the All Party Meeting on Jammu & Kashmir, in New Delhi on September 15, 2010.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said the only path for lasting peace and prosperity in Jammu and Kashmir was that of dialogue and disucussion and appealed once again to the people fo the troubled State, especially the youth, to eschew violence.

"We are ready for dialogue with anybody or any group that does not espouse or practise violence," Dr Singh said in his opening remarks at the all-party meeting on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir convened by the State.

The meeting began with a minute's silence as a mark of respect to those who had lost their lives in the recent violence in the State.

"Friends, we meet in sadness. Sadness over the loss of lives, sadness over the injuries suffered by the people, the police and the security personnel. Sadness over the huge disruption in the daily lives of the common man and the financial losses suffered by hardworking ordinary people like tour operators, apple farmers, daily wage earners and houseboat owners. I am sure all of us share a deep sense of distress over the unfortunate sequence of events, during and after Eid, particularly in the context of a reported act by a misguided person thousands of miles away," he said.

Dr Singh said that it was indeed tragic that some people had forsaken the path of dialogue and discussion during the recent days. He said he was shocked and distressed to see young men and women, even children, joining the protest on the streets.

"While some of these protests may have been impulsive or spontaneous, it cannot be denied that some incidents were orchestrated by certain groups. What we have seen over the past three months must persuade us to reflect and deliberate on the way forward," he said.

The Prime Minister said it was important to talk to each other. He said those who had grievances against the Government had to talk to the administration.

But he said it was also true that meaningful dialogue could happen only in an atmosphere free from violence and confrontation.

"Discussions can take place only if we have calm and public order. The Central and State Governments have already appealed to the people of Jammu and Kashmir, especially the youth, to eschew violence. I reiterate that appeal. We are ready for dialogue with anybody or any group that does not espouse or practice violence," he said.

Dr Singh said the Centre had also told the State Government to restore peace and public order in order to create conditions congenial to a dialogue process. The Central Government will provide all possible assistance in this task, he said.

He said that, over the past few months and weeks, several leaders, from across the political spectrum, had spoken or written to him on issues concerning Jammu and Kashmir, giving many useful suggestions.

He said he had also held discussions with an all-party delegation from Jammu and Kashmir that shared its views with him and his senior cabinet colleagues.

The J&K leaders attending an All Party Meeting, chaired by the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, in New Delhi on September 15, 2010.
The J&K leaders attending an All Party Meeting, chaired by the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, in New Delhi on September 15, 2010.

"As a part of this ongoing process of consultation that our Government has been following, we thought it would be in the fitness of things to also seek guidance from various political parties represented in Parliament on the complex issues that we face in Jammu and Kashmir today," he added.

Those who attended today's meeting included ruling United Progressive Alliance Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Union Ministers Pranab Mukherjee, A K Antony, P Chidambaram, S M Krishna, Sharad Pawar, Ghulam Nabi Azad, and Prithviraj Chavan, BJP leaders Lal Krishna Advani, Nitin Gadkari and Sushma Swaraj, Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Prakash Karat and Communist Party of India leader A K Bardhan.

Also present were Janata Dal (United) chief Sharad Yadav, Lok Janshakti Party's Ram Vilas Paswan, Samajwadi Party's Mulayam Singh Yadav and former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda.

Jammu and Kashmir leaders at the meeting included Dr Farooq Abdullah of the National Conference, Ms Mehbooba Mufti of the PDP and Mr Saifuddin Soz of the Congress.

The decision to convene the all-party meeting was taken after the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) met here for nearly three and a half hours on Monday to consider the situation in the State.

Defence Minister A.K. Antony had yesterday indicated the Government was planning some important initiatives to tackle the serious crisis after today's meeting.

"Important decisions have to be taken after carefully assessing all aspects. The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) had a long meeting yesterday. Ultimately we thought before we take a final decision, we have to take into confidence all the major parties so that everybody is involved," Mr Antony told journalists yesterday.

He was answering questions on why the CCS had not taken a decision in the matter at its meeting on Monday.

He said it was better to involve all the parties in such matters because it was an important national issue.

"So, don't worry, we will take a decision. Tomorrow is the all-party meeting. After that, we will not delay, we will take a decision," he sad.

The CCS, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, had reiterated the Government's decision to restart the process of dialogue with different sections of the people.

"Government hopes that, following the all party meeting, it would be able to engage the people of Jammu & Kashmir and also take certain initiatives and measures that will build confidence among the people of Jammu & Kashmir," an official statement issued after the CCS meeting had said.

There was a lot of speculation that Monday's meeting of the CCS would take a decision on partial withdrawal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), but the statement made no mention of it.

The withdrawal of the AFSPA from the Kashmir Valley is one of the main demands of Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah.

Meanwhile, Indian Air Force (IAF) chief Air Chief Marshal P V Naik, who is also the Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee, yesterday stressed the need for soldiers to have legal protection while doing their duties if they were to be efficient.

"I believe that a soldier, while involved in performing his duties, deserves all the legal protection he can get," Air Chief Marshal Naik told reporters when asked about the reported moves for a partial withdrawal of AFSPA from Jammu and Kashmir.

He said the Government was fully sensitive to the issue and he was confident that it would take the correct decision in the matter.

Ahead of the all-party meeting, senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Lal Krishna Advani yesterday accused the United Progressive Alliance Government of being totally clueless and spineless in the matter.

"The situation in the country is a cause of concern on many counts. In Jammu & Kashmir, it is indeed alarming," the former Deputy Prime Minister said, providing a clue to the stand that his party was likely to take at today's meeting.

Mr Advani said each passing day strengthened the BJP's apprehension that the UPA Government was about to capitulate before Pakistan-supported secessionists.

He said there was talk of a "political solution" to the Kashmir issue and, instead of giving a fitting reply to the secessionists, the Government had been demonising the security forces.

He said there was continuing talk of diluting the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) and withdrawal of forces.

"This is nothing but a surrender before Islamabad’s strategy of breaking India’s post-1947 unity," he said.

Mr Advani said this was what the military rulers of Pakistan had been dreaming of ever since their defeat in the Bangladesh's War of Liberation in 1971.

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Antony hints at important initiatives on Kashmir after all-party meet

Defence Minister A.K. Antony on Tuesday indicated the Government was planning some important initiatives to tackle the serious crisis in Jammu & Kashmir after Wednesday's all-party meeting on the situation in the State.

Defence Minister A.K. Antony today indicated the Government was planning some important initiatives to tackle the serious crisis in Jammu and Kashmir after tomorrow's all-party meeting on the situation in the State.

"Important decisions have to be taken after carefully assessing all aspects. The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) had a long meeting yesterday. Ultimately we thought before we take a final decision, we have to take into confidence all the major parties so that everybody is involved," Mr Antony told journalists.

He was answering questions on why the CCS had not taken a decision in the matter at its meeting.

He said it was better to involve all the parties in such matters because it was an important national issue.

"So, don't worry, we will take a decision. Tomorrow is the all-party meeting. After that, we will not delay, we will take a decision," he sad.

The CCS, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, had reviewed the situation in Jammu and Kashmir yesterday and reiterated the Government's decision to restart the process of dialogue with different sections of the people.

Towards this end, the CCS had decided to convene a meeting of all political parties here on Wednesday and elicit their views on the way forward.

"Government hopes that, following the all party meeting, it would be able to engage the people of Jammu & Kashmir and also take certain initiatives and measures that will build confidence among the people of Jammu & Kashmir," an official statement issued after the CCS meeting had said.

There was a lot of speculation that yesterday's meeting of the CCS would take a decision on partial withdrawal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), but the statement made no mention of it.

The withdrawal of the AFSPA from the Kashmir Valley is one of the main demands of Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, who met Union Home Minister P Chidambaram and Congress President Sonia Gandhi, among others, here yesterday.

Meanwhile, Indian Air Force (IAF) chief Air Chief Marshal P V Naik today stressed the need for soldiers to have legal protection while doing their duties if they were to be efficient.

"I believe that a soldier, while involved in performing his duties, deserves all the legal protection he can get," Air Chief Marshal Naik told reporters when asked about the reported moves for a partial withdrawal of AFSPA from Jammu and Kashmir.

He said the Government was fully sensitive to the issue and was confident that it would take the correct decision in the matter.

The Government is deeply distressed by the turn of events in the State since Eid last Saturday.

Ahead of tomorrow's all-party meeting, senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Lal Krishna Advani today accused the United Progressive Alliance Government of being totally clueless and spineless in the matter.

"The situation in the country is a cause of concern on many counts. In Jammu & Kashmir, it is indeed alarming," the former Deputy Prime Minister said, providing a clue to the stand that his party was likely to take at tomorrow's meeting.

Mr Advani said each passing day strengthened the BJP's apprehension that the UPA Government was about to capitulate before Pakistan-supported secessionists.

He said there was talk of a "political solution" to the Kashmir issue and, instead of giving a fitting reply to the secessionists, the Government had been demonising the security forces.

He said there was continuing talk of diluting the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) and withdrawal of forces.

"This is nothing but a surrender before Islamabad’s strategy of breaking India’s post-1947 unity," he said.

Mr Advani said this was what the military rulers of Pakistan had been dreaming of ever since their defeat in the Bangladesh's War of Liberation in 1971.

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Antony dedicates IAF's new digital information grid to nation

Defence Minister A K Antony today inaugurated the Indian Air Force's (IAF) new gigabyte digital information grid, the Air Force Network (AFNET) and said it would have the potential to support net-centric operations.


Mr Antony dedicated the network to the people of the nation as the IAF crossed a significant milestone in its quest for achieving capability for network centric operations.


Union Ministers A Raja, M M Pallam Raju and Sachin Pilot, Marshal of the Air Force Arjan Singh, Chief of Air Staff P V Naik, Chief of Army Staff V K Sharma and other officials from the three services were present on the occasion.


Mr Antony outlined the two-fold aim of the 'network for spectrum' approach of the Government - to facilitate the growth of national teledensity on the one hand, and ensuring modernisation of defence communications with state-of-the-art infrastructure.


A practice interception of simulated enemy targets by a pair of Mig-29 fighter aircraft airborne from an advanced airbase in the Punjab sector neutralizing intruding targets in the Western sector was played out live on the giant screens at the Air Force auditorium offering a glimpse of the harnessed AFNET potential to the assembled gathering.


The presentation also showcased varius other functionalities, including facilitating video from unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), pictures from an AWACS aircraft to the decision-makers on the ground hundreds of kilometres away, providing intelligence inputs from far-flung areas at central locations seamlessly. This was possible mainly because of the robust networking platform provided by AFNET, an official press release said.


The AFNET Project, with an estimated expenditure of Rs 1077 crore, comprises Internet Protocol (IP) Multi Protocol Switching Protocol (MPLS) based-network with optic fibre cables (OFC) as backbone. The project has SATCOM Network as overlay, Line Of Sight (LOS) Radio for Metro Area and difficult terrains, as a back up to OFC links. The network is secured with a host of advanced state-of-the-art encryption technologies. It is designed for high reliability with redundancy built into the network design itself.


The release said the IAF envisages using AFNET communication network and enabled IT infrastructure for all operational, techno-logistics and administrative functions to leverage developments in this field so as to enhance operational efficiency, cost-effectiveness and ease of administration.


The project involved coordination between the Ministries of Defence and Communications & Information Technology, the public sector Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) and private sector companies such as Cisco and HCL Infosystems.


The release said AFNET would also provide radio frequency spectrum for telecommunication purposes.


"The recent deployments of AFNET, IACCS and other systems have put the IAF in the fore-front of NCW enabled nations. This quantum leap in the field of Communication & Information Technology will help field units train and develop tactics, techniques and procedures to realize the full benefits of network-enabled capabilities," the Air Chief said at the inauguration.


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Advani accuses UPA of being totally clueless, spineless on Kashmir

Ahead of tomorrow's all-party meeting convened by the Centre on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Lal Krishna Advani today accused the United Progressive Alliance Government of being totally clueless and spineless in the matter.

"The situation in the country is a cause of concern on many counts. In Jammu & Kashmir, it is indeed alarming," the former Deputy Prime Minister said at the concluding session of a two-day workshop for spokespersons of the party.

"There is no government worth the name in J&K. It has completely collapsed, ceding the ground to secessionists," he said.

"However, the mess in Kashmir is not the making of only the government in Srinagar. In New Delhi, the UPA government is totally clueless and spineless," he said.

Mr Advani said each passing day strengthened the BJP's apprehension that the UPA Government was about to capitulate before Pakistan-supported secessionists.

He said there was talk of a "political solution" to the Kashmir issue and, instead of giving a fitting reply to the secessionists, the Government had been demonising the security forces.

He said there was continuing talk of diluting the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) and withdrawal of forces.

"This is nothing but a surrender before Islamabad’s strategy of breaking India’s post-1947 unity," he said.

Mr Advani said this was what the military rulers of Pakistan had been dreaming of ever since their defeat in the Bangladesh's War of Liberation in 1971.

"It is a shameful irony that if one Congress Prime Minister was responsible for India’s historic victory in that war, another Congress set-up is working towards India’s surrender to Pakistan’s proxy war on India in Kashmir," he said.

"There is talk of granting 'maximum autonomy' to Kashmir. Decoded, it means giving J&K its pre-1953 status. Far from repealing Article 370, the UPA government looks all set to repeal years and decades of our collective gains in Kashmir, all because of its lack of will, vision, commitment and competence," he said.

Mr Advani said the Union Government had extended many of its powers over Jammu & Kashmir since 1953, primarily because of the "courageous struggle" waged by the BJP's predecessor, the Bharatiya Jana Sangh.

He reminded Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi that even the country's first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru had stated in Parliament that Article 370 was a purely temporary provision.

"Rather than speeding up the 'gradual erosion', leading to abrogation, of Article 370, the UPA government is bending over backwards to placate the secessionists," he said.

Mr Advani reminded the UPA Government that when the J&K legislative Assembly adopted the so-called "autonomy resolution" in June 2000, the Vajpayee Government had rejected it outright.

"We are all in favour of giving greater powers to all states as the concept of federalism warrants. But in the name of autonomy we cannot allow the process of Kashmir’s integration to be reversed. Therefore, I would like to warn the UPA government that if they decide to bow before the secessionists’ designs in J&K, the country will not pardon them," he added.

The Cabinet Committee on Security, chaired by the Prime Minister, had reviewed the situation in Jammu & Kashmir yesterday and decided to convene an all-party meeting tomorrow for wider consultations on the steps it proposed to take to handle the crisis.

 

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Delhi Metro unveils new-look website ahead of Games

Delhi Metro Managing Director E Sreedharan unveiling the new-look website of the Metro in the capital on September 14, 2010.
Delhi Metro Managing Director E Sreedharan unveiling the new-look website of the Metro in the capital on September 14, 2010.

The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) today unveiled its official website with a new look and several new features ahead of the Commonwealth Games that the capital is slated to host from October 3-14.

The website was formally launched by DMRC’s Managing Director, Dr. E. Sreedharan, at a function at Metro Bhawan here.

According to a DMRC press release, the site would be of great help to the foreign visitors who are planning to visit Delhi during the Commonwealth Games. The main attraction of the new website is its interactive route map which will help the commuters to look for routes and fares in an extremely easy manner, it said.

The route map is also available in an easily downloadable format for the commuters. Apart from this, all major information is available on the home page itself in the form of drop-down menus which will help the commuter in finding the desired information easily,

The website also has a special section on the Commonwealth Games and tourist spots in Delhi. This section has all the information related to the facilities to be provided by the Delhi Metro to its commuters during the Games along with the details of Metro connectivity to the venues.

Other features include separate sections on the Metro Citizens Forum volunteers’ programme, the Metro Museum, the Right to Information Act and a photo gallery. The website will also have a lost and found section and an interactive feedback section. In addition, there is a separate section for the media from where they will be able to access press releases and where old articles on DMRC are also available, the release added.

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