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Tuesday, 12 June, 2012 2:24 AM

Centre affirms 43 teacher training institutes in West Bengal

Kolkata: The Centre has approved for establishment of about 43 new Government Primary Teachers Training Institutes (PTTI) in West Bengal.
An approval from the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) has reached the state government recently.  Presently, there are 85 PTTIs across the state.   Admission to these new PTTIs will begin from 2012-2013 academic sessions.
Apart from six new PTTIs in Kolkata, approval has been given to one each in Cooch Behar, South Dinajpur, Kalimpong, Malda, Murshidabad while two in Darjeeling, North Dinajpur, Bankura , three in Nadia, Birbhum, West Midnapore, Purulia, Hooghly, Howrah, four in South 24 Parganas and six in Burdwan , among others.
Tuesday, 12 June, 2012 12:37pm
London Olympics: Paes assured berth, Sania Mirza's fate rests on wildcard
New Delhi: India’s number one tennis player Leander Paes has assured his place in the London Olympics by retaining seventh position in the the top-10 latest Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) doubles rankings, but Sania Mirza's fate is yet to be decided.
Sania slipped to 12th  in the doubles list of the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) charts, thus failing to secure the top-10 ranking to book a London berth.
Sania would now have to depend on a wildcard to get an entry into the Games.
The top-10 rankings in doubles for both the men and women categories are eligible for direct qualification in the quadrennial event.
Today was the cut-off date set by the International Tennis Federation (ITF) for direct qualification on the basis of the rankings.
Only Paes, among the Indians, is expected to get a direct entry at the Games.
The ITF has set June 21 as the deadline to confirm the entry of eligible players for the Olympics.
Tuesday, 12 June, 2012 12:36pm
NCP denies Sangma for President Candidature
Mumbai: When former Lok Sabha Speaker and tribal leader from Northeast, Purno A Sangma is battling on to muster support for his presidential ambitions, he is now cold shouldered by his own party.
Sharad Pawar led Nationalist Congress Party has officialy announced that it would support the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) candidate in the forthcoming presidential election yesterday.
Meanwhile, former Union Minister and Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) official spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain has said his party would disclose its strategy on Presidential elections only after the ruling UPA coalition announces name of its candidate.

  Tuesday, 12 June, 2012 12:34pm
AP by-poll voting begins
 Hyderabad: The voting for the by-polls to Nellore Lok Sabha and 18 Assembly Constituencies in Andhra Pradesh has begun from today. The high security arrangements have been made to ensure free and fair polling as over 60 percent of the total polling stations had being identified as sensitive zones.Moreover, to keep tight vigil on the entire polling process, Webcasts are being used to monitor from the constituency, district and state headquarters. Over 46 lakh voters are expected to exercise their franchise at 5,413 polling stations to decide the fate of 255 candidates.
The Electoral Photo Identity Cards and Voter slips issued by the election authorities are being allowed as the only means for Voter Identity for the first time in AP by- poll election.


Government launches anti-pollution 


drive in Delhi 


New Delhi: The Delhi government has launched an anti-pollution drive starting from today. The drive will continue till June 18 next.
During this period, all the private and commercial vehicles will be checked and fined, if found running without a Pollution under Control Certificate (PCC).
About thirty mobile teams have been constituted for the drive.

NCP teamed up with BJD

Bhubaneswar: More than a hundred Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leaders and workers joined the Biju Janata Dal(BJD)  in the presence of chief minister Naveen Patnaik.
The BJD, which is keen to strengthen itself in the wake of the failed revolt, seems to have adopted an open door policy that is drawing leaders from other political parties in droves.
Telling to reporters, NCP vice-president Kulamani Deo and a retired IPS officer said that the party had become directionless after four of its MLAs joined the BJD last Tuesday. Speculation is widespread that leaders of some other political parties, including the BJP, may also join the BJD.

BJD sources also suggested the possibility of changing in the administrative set up in the wake of the political developments during the past two weeks. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 
SAD-BJP sweeps Punjab municipal polls

Chandigarh: The ruling Shiromani Akali Dal and Bharatiya Janata Party (SAD-BJP) combine swept the Punjab municipal corporation polls, thrashing the opposition Congress in the first trial of strength after the State Assembly election.
The combine SAD-BJP candidates won most of the wards in Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Amritsar and Patiala Municipal bodies. The alliance bagged 48 wards in Amritsar Municipal Corporation, 38 in Patiala, 35 in Jalandhar and 40 in Ludhiana.
A ward each went in favour of People's Party of Punjab and BSP in Jalandhar while Independents won 14 wards in Ludhiana and rest of the wards in four corporations were bagged by the Congress.
The SAD-BJP combine claimed to have notched up wins in 26 Nagar Panchayats and three municipal councils in Jagraon, Machiwara and Sanehwal.
The SAD had bagged two Jalandhar municipal wards and one ward for the Amritsar municipal body unopposed.

Assam flood: Brahmaputra eats up Sonitpur

Tezpur : Perennial floods and erosion in Assam causes miseries to thousands of people in Sonitpur district. The flood loses crores of rupees from the exchequer of cash-starved state. 
The Brahmaputra and its tributaries like Jiabharali, Gabharu and Belsiri are posing a serious threat to lakhs of bighas of standing crops and residential plots.
People of Gohpur, Biswanath, Tezpur, Barchala and Dhekiajuli in Sonitpur district, especially those who have been living on the banks of rivers have expressed their strong resentment over the alleged indifference of the government and even the local public representatives towards the serious problem.
According to an RTI report, stretches measuring over 59 km have been eroded in Sonitpur by the aforementioned rivers till date. During the past 10 years, crores of rupees have been spent for checking the problem, but to no avail. The problem persists even after crores of rupees have been sanctioned following the indifferent attitudes of the department concerned and a section of officials.


Railway services yet to be restored in Northeast


Silchar: Train services between the northeastern states of Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram, southern Assam and the rest of country are yet to be restored even after 10 days of disruption following landslides.
Railway services were suspended in the region on June 1 following heavy landslides and damage to tracks due to torrential rains between in southern Assam’s Dima Hasao district.

According to an official source, engineers and railway workers are working round the clock to clear the debris at many places in southern Assam’s Dima Hasao district. Huge mudslides covering more than 150 metres of rail track have been cleared so far.
The official sources said an engine and four bogies of a goods train were derailed late Saturday night when the loaded train was running on a trial basis through the renovated railway track.

Raja says 2G case sensationalised by media and political parties


Coonoor: Former Telecom Minister and dalit face of DMK, A Raja, who is prime accused in the 2G scam, lashed out at media and certain political parties’ for blowing out of proportion the false charges against him on the spectrum issue.
A Raja alleged that the 2G case was nothing but sensationalised by media and political parties. He said that the media was chasing him to get some news and to create sensation and in the meantime his case was very much different from the cases like many politicians who were facing corruption charges and have been accused of amassing wealth disproportionate to their known source of income.
He also claimed that the investigation team that raided and searched the houses of his relatives and friends could not find any unaccounted money or wealth from there.
A Delhi court had on Thursday allowed Raja to visit Tamil Nadu between June 8 and June 30 accepting his plea.


Ramdev meets Naidu, seeks his support against corruption

Ramdev meets Naidu, seeks his support against corruption
Hyderabad: Yoga guru Ramdev met Telugu Desam Party (TDP) president N Chandrababu Naidu to seek support for his anti-corruption movement in Hyderabad early this morning.
Chandrababu has assured to support both Ramdev and Anna Hazare in the fight against corruption and in this regard, he has organised various apolitical campaigns in Andhra Pradesh.
Ramdev has been meeting various political leaders to strengthen and gain supports for his movement against corruption. However, it is the second meeting between the two in recent months against corruption and black money issues.


VS Sampath takes over as Chief Election Commissioner today


New Delhi: Veeravalli Sundaram Sampath has taken over as the 18th Chief Election Commissioner of India (CEC) at Commission headquarters today.
While Former Chief Election Commissioner SY Quraishi has retired from office at the end of his six-year tenure after serving for almost two years as the head of the Election Commission.
 Quraishi was appointed as Election Commissioner in the poll body on June 30, 2006 and had assumed the charge as the 17th CEC on July 30, 2010 replacing Navin Chawla.
Incidentally, Quraishi was the first Muslim to be appointed as India's CEC.


Property dealer dupes S. Korean embassy of Rs. 57 lakh


New Delhi: An alleged property dealer Yashwant Singh has duped the South Korean Embassy of Rs. 57 lakh, on the pretext of providing premises to set up a Cultural Centre in A-24, Greater Kailash.
First Secretary, Cultural Affairs Kim Kum Pyoung  has filed an FIR against Singh, who had earlier promised to rent out a four-storey building in south Delhi to the Embassy, despite already renting out the premises to another tenant Ashutosh Verma for next three years and concealing the fact from the Embassy.
However, the fraud came into limelight when the Embassy tried to get a phone connection installed in December 2011 but Verma objected to it and called the police.
Verma told Embassy officials that Singh had also signed another agreement in September 2011 for a period of nine years for the use of entire basement, ground floor and second floor.
Meanwhile, Singh has also failed to return the said amount to the Embassy officials despite sending a letter assuring to pay back the amount by April 30.
The proposal for establishing a Cultural Centre was made during South Korean President Lee Myung-bak’s visit to India, who had promised Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to open a Cultural Centre in New Delhi.
Will appeal for 4.5% sub-quota for minorities in Supreme Court: Salman Khurshid


A major jolt to Centre over the sub-quota issue, the Andhra Pradesh
Court has said that the Office Memorandum (OM) creating the sub-quota
was based on religious grounds and not on any other consideration.

Ahead of election in five states including Uttar Prades and Punjab in

December 22, 2011 the center announced sub quota of 4.5 per cent for
socially and educationally backward classes of citizens belonging to
minority communities out of the 27 per cent reservation for OBCs in
central educational institutions and jobs.

The very use of the words "belonging to minorities" or "for

minorities" indicates that the sub-quota has been carved out only on
religious lines and not on any other intelligible basis, the bench
observed while setting aside the sub-quota.

Union Minister for Minority Affairs Salman Khurshid today defended the

government's stand and said they will appeal to the Supreme Court
against the judgment

Khurshid while addressing a press said I know that the judgement has

raised a very interesting and important point. Keep in mind that the
Andhra Pradesh Government tried to provide sub-quotas for minorities.
On three occasions  the Andhra High Court struck down these efforts...
the last instance was struck down by a bench of 5 judges. That matter
is now pending before the Supreme Court.

The assumption is the list of backwards and the reservation is on the

basis of Backward Castes Commission's recommendations. Our stand is
that their mandate is not to give recommendations on what percentage
of reservation to be given. The 4.5% is commensurate with the
population of backward minorities - we have done this entirely on the
basis of Mandal Commission and the Indira Sahni case. The matter now
stands before a constitutional bench of the Supreme Court. We will go
to the Supreme Court by way of a Special Leave Petition and appeal.

  Delhi Autorickshaws to go on strike against hike in CNG price
Delhi Auto rickshaws to go on strike on May 31 against the hike in CNG
price in Delhi. The strike coincides with the bandh called by the Left
and BJP against petrol hike.

Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit on Monday announced that Compressed

Natural Gas (CNG) would cost more in the capital with a proposed levy
of 5% tax in Value Added Tax (VAT). This will increase the CNG price
from Rs. 35.45 per kg following the hike.

Announcing the budget for Delhi yesterday,  Dikshit announced a cut in

petrol price in Delhi. The Congress government in the capital has
decided not to impose 20 per cent VAT on petrol.

Delhi is the third state to reduce taxes on petrol prices. Kerala and

Uttarakhand, both Congress-ruled, had announced an immediate cut in
VAT on petrol to ease the burden on the common man.

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