Sunday, July 31, 2011

Fire breaks out at Kizhekenada SreePadmanabhaswamy temple

Monday, August 01, 2011: The KSEB Electrical inspector has ruled out an accidental short circuit as the cause of the major fire that broke out at a handicraft stall near the famous SreePadmanabhaswamy temple here on Sunday.
KSEB officials who inspected the spot today morning informed that there was no electric connection in the exhibition stall. Neither the generator was working at the time of the fire. The incident occurred at 8.30 pm on Sunday.
No casualties were reported in the fire, police said. Fire tenders rushed to the spot and extinguished the blaze, preventing it from spreading to other shops.
Police said the fire broke out in a shed which had remained closed for the last few months, about 200 metres from the temple.

Fresh chargesheet to MV Jayarajan

Monday, August 1, 2011: The Kerala High Court on Monday issued a fresh chargesheet to MV Jayarajan in connection with the contempt of court case charged against him.
The court decided to issue a fresh chargesheet after the court-appointed prosecutor S Sreekumar submitted that the chargesheet already issued was improper. The court has asked the CPM leader to appear in person.

Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple: Documentation of treasure to begin

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A Supreme Court appointed committee of experts will Monday begin documentation of the Rs.1 lakh crore treasure found in Sri Padmanabhaswamy temple, a source said Sunday.
"The entire process would be videographed unlike the first stocktaking that was conducted and stopped early this month. The decision on whether to open vault B is yet to be arrived at," said a source from the erstwhile royal family of Travancore.

School girl’s suicide in T’puram: Accused remanded

Monday, August 01, 2011: The accused, who was arrested in connection with a case relating to the suicide of a 13-year-old girl studying at private school here, has been remanded to custody.
The accused has been identified as Praveen Kumar (26), school van driver hailing from Ooruttambalam was remanded for 14 days after he was produced before the Magistrate on Sunday.

Ramadan fasting to begin in Kerala on Monday

Thiruvananthapuram, Sunday, July 31, 2011: Ramzan, the holy month of fasting for Muslims, will begin on Monday. This was informed by Panakkad Hyder Ali Shihab Thangal and Cherussery Zainudeen Musliyar.
The new moon of Ramzan was sighted today, and hence Ramzan will start tomorrow, Thangal said.

Fire breaks out at Kizhekenada Infront of Padmanabha temple

Kizhake Nada infront of Sree Padmanabha sami temple caught fire on Sunday evening in Thiruvanthapuram. The fire and rescue service rushed to the spot and are trying to put out the fire, and ceased the fire. No casualties were reported.

The cause of the incident is not known yet. More details awaited.

Investment friendly Kerala says CM

KOCHI: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has said that the state will be made investment friendly by giving consideration to environment and financially backward people.Inaugurating the golden jubilee of the Kerala State Industries Development Corporation limited (KSIDC), he said that Kerala would be branded as an investment-friendly state before other countries.Chief Minister said that a survey by the World bank in 2005 identified Kerala as second best investment-friendly state in the country. 

Bharathan was an inborn artist says Jayabharati

THRISSUR: 'Bharathan Smriti', a commemorative programme on Bharathan, organised by the Bharathan Foundation was held at the Regional Theatre, here, on Saturday. Actor Jayabharati inaugurated the function. "Bharathan was an inborn artist.

Vallasadya vazhipadu,today

Sunday, July 31, 2011: Elaborate arrangements have been made at the Sree Parthasarathy Temple on the banks of the Pampa at Aranmula for the Vallasadya on Sunday.
Travancore Devaswom Board president M. Rajagopalan Nair will inaugurate this year’s ‘Vallasadya vazhipadu’, an offering to the presiding deity.

One more held: Kothamangalam sex Scandal case

Sunday, July 31, 2011: One more person has been taken into custody in connection with the Kothamangalam sex scandal case in which a school going girl was sexually harassed by several persons in the last three years, police said.
The accused has been identified as Baiju, a native of Methala. With this, 22 persons have been arrested in connection with the case.The minor girl, studying in a high school here, was sold to several persons by her father and sexually exploited in various places.

Notorious gangster Om Prakash visit to temple kicks up row

Sunday, July 31, 2011: ADGP Venugopal K. Nair today informed that the VVIP treatment provided to notorious gangster Om Prakash during his visit to Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple, was a serious security lapse.

Aryadan too comes out against liquor policy

Malappuram, Sunday, July 31, 2011: Congress leader and Electricity Minister Aryadan Mohammed too came out in open against the newly announced liquor policy by the state government.
Aryadan said that the draft of the policy was passed without much discussions and talks. He said that at present only the cabinet had agreed to the policy and now it needs to be recognized by the people here which need more discussions.
He said that the electricity charge won’t be hiked at any cost and attempts are being made to increase the revenue of the board without hiking the charge.

VS warned for violating party discipline

Sunday, July 31, 2011: In a press release, the CPM state secretariat warned Opposition Leader VS Achuthanandan indirectly for his statement on the action taken against those agitated when seat was denied to him.
The release said that violation of party discipline is considered seriously. The central committee said that they have not accepted the agitations staged by those owing allegiance to VS when seat was denied to him in the assembly polls.

Govt. to convert 1.5 lakh post offices into banks: Sibal

Sunday, July 31, 2011: The humble post office is all set to undergo a radical change with a proposal to convert over 1.5 lakh post offices across the nation into full fledged banks on the anvil.
Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal wants to reach out to the masses in the rural areas with modern banking facilities through the post offices. “We want to commercialise the department. We will seek a licence from the RBI to convert all our post offices into banks,” Sibal said.

Self-financing issues to be resolved soon: Minister

Sunday, July 31, 2011: Minister Adoor Prakash today opined that the UDF government’s aim was to resolve the issues prevailing in connection with the admissions to the self-financing colleges in the state.
Speaking to the reporters here on Sunday, Minister added that the operations of Justice P.A. Mohammed Committee will be monitored in connection with the admissions to SFCs. The government will also hold discussions with the committee, he added.
The committee’s directives in connection with SFC admissions were questioned in the Court repeatedly and had come under severe criticism recently.

Sadananda Gowda may succeed Yeddyurappa

Bangalore: Former state BJP President D V Sadananda Gowda on Sunday appeared to emerge as key contender to succeed Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa, who is believed to have suggested his name to the central leadership. According to party sources, Yeddyurappa is slated to tender his resignation to the Governor H R Bhardwaj any time after 1 pm today, after which his successor.

Kochi Metro rail to be implemented soon: DMRC

Sunday, July 31, 2011: The Managing Director of Delhi Metro Rail Corporation E Sreedharan on Sunday said that the Kochi metro rail project can be completed in four years’ time after the centre’s approval.
Speaking to the mediapersons he said that there is no more difficulties for going ahead with the project as no large area of land is required for it.
Sreedharan also said that Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has entrusted a big responsibility of timely completion of the project and that will be fulfilled accordingly.

Trawling ban in Kerala to end today

Sunday, July 31, 2011: This year’s annual 47-day-ban on trawling which came to effect from July 15 will end by Sunday midnight. The ban was imposed within 12 nautical miles (22.22 km) from the shoreline till July 31.
The ban aims at conserving fish species during the monsoon, which is the spawning season for many varieties of fish, including shrimp. During the ban period all those working in mechanized boats, peeling sheds and fishing harbours in the state are provided with free ration.

Yeddyurappa sends resignation to Gadkari, to meet Governor

Sunday, July 31, 2011: Ending three days of suspense,Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa today sent his resignation to BJP President Nitin Gadkari and expressed his ”full support” to the party.
Yeddyurappa, who was asked by the Central leadership to quit after the state Lokayukta indicted him in mining issue, faxed the letter to Gadkari who accepted it, party sources said here. In the letter, the Chief Minister has given reasons for the delay in putting in his papers and cited astrological issues as the main cause, they said.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

I had nothing to do with 2G pricing: Pranab

Saturday, July 30, 2011: Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee today rejected suggestions that he had anything to do with the pricing of 2G spectrum and hit out at those spreading “disinformation” on the issue.
In 2007 when he was External Affairs Minister, Mukherjee had been appointed Chairman of a Group of Ministers (GoM) on vacation of 3G spectrum which, he said, had nothing to do with 2G and its pricing.

Paravoor sex scandal case: one more held

Saturday, July 30, 2011: An accused in the sensational Paravur sex scandal case in which a minor girl was sexually exploited by many including her own father, by promising her role in films, has surrendered before police on Saturday.
The accused has been identified as Jalil hailing from Kodungaloor, police told. The Crime Branch team has arrested as many as 70 persons in connection with the case so far.

School girl’s suicide in T’puram; one held

Saturday, July 30, 2011: One person has been taken into police custody in connection with the suicide of a 13-year-old girl studying at Holy Angels’ school here on Saturday.
The accused has been identified as Praveen Kumar (30), school van driver hailing from Ooruttambalam, police told. According to the reports the girl had committed suicide on Thursday due to sexual exploitation by the driver.

Finally, Mercy Kuttan to get house plot

KOCHI: In a face-saving exercise, the government has decided to allot suitable residential plot to Olympian Mercy Kuttan after having cancelled its earlier order allotting 11 cents of land at Kundannoor in Maradu Municipality.
Ernakulam District collector P I Sheikh Pareeth said that alternative land will be identified within a week.

Literacy: Kottayam, Kollam, Alapuzha on top

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM:  The decennial census exercise has thrown up an interesting detail; that Kottayam, Alappuzha and Kollam are special when it comes to reading and writing skills. They are the only districts in Kerala where literacy rates are higher in rural areas than the urban.
97.17 per cent of the rural populace of Kottayam are literate, say Census 2011 Provisional Population Totals on Rural and Urban Distribution released recently. Urban literacy in Kottayam is slightly lower 94.49 per cent. Literates number 96.40 per cent of the total population in the district.

'Many Engg college teachers lack qualifications' : HC

KOCHI: In a shocking finding it has come to light that those without engineering qualification are taking classes for BTech in some of the engineering colleges in the state. The finding was reported by an expert panel appointed by the state government to look into the facilities in engineering colleges. The report was submitted before the Kerala High Court on Friday.

City corporation suggests name for T’puram Int. Airport

Saturday, July 30, 2011: The city Corporation has come up with a name to be bestowed on the Thiruvananthapuram International Airport and wants the airport to be named after Sree Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma, the last ruler of the erstwhile Travancore kingdom.
A resolution approved in the Corporation Council that met here on Friday, which had been introduced by Welfare Standing Committee Chairman Palayam Rajan, decided to ask the Department of Aviation and the Chief Minister to endorse the suggestion.

IUML expresses displeasure over new liquor policy

Malappuram, Saturday, July 30, 2011: The Indian Union Muslim League has today expressed displeasure over the UDF government’s new liquor policy announced by Excise Minister K Babu. League general secretary, KPA Majeed opined that there are several deficiencies in the new liquor policy which will be pointed out the government.

Thachankary’s reinstatement: CM sticks to earlier stance

Saturday, July 30, 2011: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy today informed that IG Tomin J Thachankary was reinstated into service as per the instructions of the Central government.
Speaking to the reporters here on Saturday, Chandy added that the Centre had send an intimation to the state government asking for Thachankary’s reinstatement.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Chandy seeks ADB help for Kerala

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy Friday sought the support of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for the speedy development of the state.

Chandy made the plea while delivering the inaugural address at the Tripartite Portfolio Review Meeting of ADB assisted projects organised by the union finance ministry's department of economic affairs (DEA).

VS visits Berlin, has a glass of tender coconut water

Kannur: Veteran leader V S Achuthanandhan, crossing party diktat, visited ousted veteran communist leader Berlin Kunhananthan Nair's house here on Friday. As he was banned from the party, VS told mediapersons that he would not lunch with Berlin. VS had a glass of tender coconut water from his house and said that there is no ban on that.

1000 Mini supermarkets for Kerala

Kochi: Kerala State Co-operative Consumers' Federation Ltd (CONSUMERFED) will open 1000 mini supermarkets across the state soon as part of their initiative in market intervention and providing essential commodities at affordable price to the common man, its new President Advo. Joy Thomas said today.

Obama blames growing demand in India

Washington: Blaming growing demand for oil in countries like China and India for rising gas prices, President Barack Obama has unveiled a plan to improve the fuel efficiency of US vehicles to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025.

'For the last few months, gas prices have just been killing folks at the pump,' he told auto industry executives Friday at an event here announcing new auto fuel-economy standards beginning in 2017.

Pregnant woman can now announce status on Facebook

London: Expectant mothers can now announce their pregnant status on social network site Facebook -- complete with baby names and the expected time of birth.

Though users have been able to add family members to their accounts since December 2010, they can now also add an 'Expected: child' item to their page to let others know their baby news, says the Daily Mail.

Yeddyurappa dares BJP

New Delhi: The BJP may have shown the door to Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa after the controversial mining report, but Yeddyurappa has made it clear that he will leave on his own terms. The message to national leaders Rajnath Singh and Arun Jaitley was clear in the orchestrated scenes created by Yeddyurappa's supporters outside his house - the CM is still the king and he wants his man to take his position.

Lokpal Bill in present form not acceptable: CPM

Saturday, July 30, 2011: CPM slammed the Lokpal Bill approved by the Union Cabinet, describing it as ‘toothless’ and said it was not going to serve the purpose of fighting corruption, maintaining that the bill without including Prime Minister in its ambit, was unacceptable.
The bill was a “betrayal” by Congress on its own commitment to bring in an effective Lokpal Bill to fight corruption, he said, adding, the Left would step up its agitation for an effective Lokpal Bill.

NADA conducts surprise raid at PT Usha School of Athletics

Saturday, July 30, 2011: Continuing its drive to catch drug cheats following the athletics doping scandal, the National Anti Doping Agency officials conducted a surprise raid at the PT Usha School of Athletics.
A team of officers from Delhi, headed by Senior Project Manager V Jayaraman, checked the rooms of the athletes and also took urine samples.

Road cleared for multi-brand retail

New Delhi: Consumers will soon have more options to choose from as the Committee of Secretaries (CoS)  agreed to open up the retail sector. The CoS has recommended a 51 per cent foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail formats.
This will open up doors for retail giants like Walmart, Carrefour and Metro AG who've been eyeing the Indian market for some time.
The panel has proposed a minimum investment of $100 million. The cabinet will now take a final decision.

Faulty metal detectors guard Kerala temple treasure

Thiruvananthapuram: The four metal detectors placed at the Sri Padmanabhaswamy temple - estimated to house treasure valued at Rs.1 lakh crore - are faulty, police said Friday.

Additional Director General of Police Venugopal K. Nair, who is currently overseeing the security of the temple, told IANS that the metal detectors work on and off.

Asianet TV channel had earlier reported that of the four metal detectors kept at the four entrances leading to the main temple, two do not work while the other two always have the red light on.

Sangeetha Nataka Akademi gets new chairman

Friday, July 29, 2011: Soorya Krishnamoorthy has been appointed as the new chairman of Kerala Sangeetha Nataka Akademi. K.A Francis will be the chairman of Lalit Kala Akademi and Mohammed Ahamed will be the chairman of Folklore Akademi.
M.G. Sasibhushan- (Vyloppilli Cultural Centre), M.G.S Narayanan- (Tripunithura Centre for Heritage studies). Balachandran Vadakkedam has been appointed as the vice chairman of Sahitya Akademi.

Four malayalees killed in road mishap in Mecca

Mecca, Friday, July 29, 2011: Four malayalees were killed in a road mishap that occurred at the Holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia on Friday. The dead have been identified as Sebastian, Benny, Safwan, another person has not been identified so far.
According to police the accident occurred after the vehicle in which they were traveling lost control due to the tyre burst.

BSY demands Karandlaje as CM

BANGALORE: In return for relinquishing the Karnataka chief ministership, BS Yeddyurappa is bargaining with the BJP for state presidentship of the party and for having Shohba Karandlaje as his successor. 
BJP leaders Arun Jaitley and Rajnath Singh are in Bangalore to oversee the election of a new legislative party leader. 

Drowned fisherman’s body found

KOCHI: The body of Nagesh, 35, a fisherman, who drowned in the Kochi backwaters at Mulavukadu was found on Thursday. The coracle on which Nagesh and his daughter Sainika,10, were fishing had capsized on Wednesday.
The search for the girl is still continuing. Mulavukadu SI Byju S said the post-mortem examination has been conducted and the body will be sent to his native place in Mysore. Fire and Rescue Services personnel and the local people will continue the search for the girl, he said.

Inching closer to Kochi Metro

KCOHI: Inching closer to realising the dream Metro Rail Project, the preliminary work of the rail-related projects will be launched on Saturday. The projects that will kick-start next week include the renovation of the North rail overbridge (ROB). In order to  tackle the difficulties that would arise when the overbridge is dismantled for renovation, the authorities will construct a new ROB at Salim Rajan Road. The proposed ROB will connect the Salim Rajan Road, near KSTRC bus stand, to Mullassery Canal Road. The state government will provide funds for the construction of the ROB which will be constructed above the KSRTC garage in a semi-circular shape. “The KSRTC has already given a total of one acre and seven cents of land for the project. Apart from this, three families were evicted from the area. They will be given five cents of land and rehabilitated in Thrikkakara,” Ernakulam District Collector Sheik Pareeth said.

State will be made investor-friendly: Minister

KOCHI: Labour Minister Shibu Baby John has said that the state would be made investment-friendly so that new investors would feel confident to invest here.
Inaugurating a seminar on ESI and EPF Acts and schemes organised by the Kerala Merchants Union here on Thursday, the Minister said that the labour sector would be enhanced under the UDF Government.

Inauguration of first-ever evening court

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Justice Chalameswar will inaugurate the first-ever evening court at Thiruvananthapuram District Court at Vanchiyoor on August 3.
The evening court will function from 6 p.m to 8 p.m after regular working hours on all working days.
The existing District First class magistrates will hold charge as evening magistrates on rotation basis. Presently, the service of the staff of the civil and criminal courts at Vanchiyoor court campus will be sought for the evening court.

Bailey bridge to be completed before October 31

PATHANAMTHITTA: Devaswom and Transport Minister V S Sivakumar said on Thursday the Army Bailey bridge at Sabarimala will be completed before October 31.
Inaugurating the work on the Sabarimala Pilgrim transit camp at Vettur Sree Ayiravillan temple near here, the Devaswom Minister  said that the state government would provide the basic facilities for the completion of the Bailey bridge at Sannidhanam.
Sivakumar said that the government had initiated several measures to improve the basic facilities for the pilgrims.
The Chalakayam-Pampa road would be rubberised before the beginning of the next pilgrimage season, he said.

Decision on student concession in buses after talks

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Transport Minister VS Sivakumar said the decision to hike student concession fares in private buses would be taken after having a Cabinet discussion. Though he held talks with student organizations on Friday, no decision was taken.

The representatives asked the minister not to increase the charge on student concession and make travel free till SSLC. Some of the student organizations also wanted to raise the travel limit from 40 kms to 70 kms.

KSFE officers union to stage dharna

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The KSFE Officers Union has decided to stage dharnas in all districts on August 10 to protest against the mass transfer of managers of various KSFE branches.
CPM leader Kodiyeri Balakrishnan will inaugurate the dharna here in front of the Secretariat.
Union working president Adv R Raghavan Pillai told a press conference here that 350 managers were issued transfer orders on July 25. Among them some are left with less than a year to retire and others include widows and people who suffer from serious health problems.
‘’These managers had been tirelessly working for the past few years to raise the turnover of the organisation from Rs 3500 crores in 2006 to more than Rs 13,000 crore at present. The present stance of the authorities could be viewed as an act to appease the private chit funds.  Mass transfers would disrupt the functioning of KSFE.’’ he said.             

Isaac’s poser to Mani on plan outlay

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Former Finance Minister T M Thomas Isaac wants to know how Finance Minister K M Mani plans to raise the plan outlay by Rs 980 crore, from Rs 11,030 crore to Rs 12,010 crore, when the Finance Minister had already stated in his White Paper that the state was burdened with a committed expenditure of over Rs 5,000 crore. “If we are so cash-strapped as the Finance Minister claims, from where will he mobilise the additional resources?” Isaac asked during a press conference here on Thursday.

Rajan P. Dev remembered on death anniversary

 Friday, July 29, 2011: Renowned film and stage actor Rajan P Dev (29 May 1951 – 29 July 2009) was remembered on his second death anniversary on Friday.
Rajan P. Dev was born in Cherthala in the Alappuzha district of the former state Thiru-Kochi. He had acted in over 140 films in Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu and Kannada language films. He was noted for his villain roles laced with a touch of humour. He came into limelight for his characterisation of Kochuvava in the play Kattukuthira. He died in Kochi Wednesday 29 July 2009 due to a liver disease.