Friday, September 30, 2011

Raid in Kannur central prison; 29 mobile phones seized


Saturday, October 01, 2011: Police team on Friday conducted a raid in the Kannur Central prison under the instruction of jail ADGP Alexander Jacob.
29 mobile phones, chargers, knives, equipment which can be used as weapons, 25 CDs and 35 packets of ganja were among the articles seized. The raid which began at 6 pm on friday lasted till 9 pm.
Raid had been conducted in the fourth and fifth block. It is reported that the prisoners might have hidden the vital evidences including mobile phones during the previous raid.

Raja to boycott trial till CBI completes probe: Counsel

Friday, September 30, 2011: Jailed former communications minister A. Raja, the prime accused in the 2G spectrum case, contended on Friday in a special court here that he will participate in the trial only when the CBI clearly explains whether it has completed its investigation against him.
Raja’s lawyer Sushil Kumar has refused to file a reply to charges of criminal breach of public trust while asking the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) if the probe against him in the scam has been completed or not.
Raja’s counsel told CBI Special Judge O.P. Saini that “till the agency declares that the investigation is closed, I will not argue before this court. I will participate in this trial only once the probe is over”.
The probe agency Sep 26 approached the court to frame fresh charges against the 17 accused, including Raja.

Bahrain doctors who helped protesters jailed for 15 years

September 30, 2011 :Bahrain jailed 20 doctors on Thursday for between five and 15 years on theft and other charges, the state news agency said, in what critics claimed was reprisal for treating protesters during unrest in the Gulf kingdom this year.
A security court also sentenced a man to death for killing a policeman by driving his car over him several times and joining illegal gatherings for “terrorist goals,” the BNA news agency said. Another man was handed a life term for his involvement.

Assembly adjourned for day on Balakrishna Pillai’s issue

Friday, September 30, 2011: The Kerala Assembly witnessed some uproarious scenes over R Balakrishna Pillai’s call to the media in connection with the attack on the teacher of Valakam.
The opposition LDF squatted on the floor of the house after chief minister refused to speak on it and when things got worse Speaker G Karthikeyan stopped the assembly proceedings.
The adjournment motion on the issue was moved by Mullakkara Ratnakaran of the CPI. He said channels telecasted the response of Pillai, undergoing jail term. He sought a CBI probe on the whole incident.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy while replying said south zone IG Padma Kumar will directly probe the incident. Opposition leader VS Achuthanandan said that the DySP entrusted to probe the incident is in good rapport with Pillai.

Suspended IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt arrested

Friday, September 30, 2011: Suspended IPS officer Sanjeev Bhatt, who had testified against chief minister Narendra Modi in the 2002 Gujarat riots case, was on Friday arrested by the state police.
Ahmedabad police commisioner Sudhir Sinha confirmed this to media.
Bhatt was detained for forcing a constable to file false affidavit supporting Bhatt’s claim that he was present in the meeting of chief ministers where Modi asked police to go slow during 2002 riots.

CPM demands resignation of Chidambaram

Friday, September 30, 2011: The CPI-M today demanded the resignation of Home Minister P Chidambaram, saying there was “mounting evidence” about his “direct role and involvement” in the 2G spectrum allocation scandal.
“He (Chidambaram) has said the matter is closed. I am afraid the matter is not closed… We are demanding his resignation in light of the mounting evidence about his direct role and involvement in the policy and implementation of allocation of licenses of 2G spectrum,” party General Secretary Prakash Karat told reporters here.

Banned pesticide’s use on the rise in T’puram

Friday, September 30, 2011: The use of a banned pesticide, Gramoxone is causing serious health problems for the local residents in Thiruvananthapuram, an ACV News investigation revealed on Friday.
According to this exclusive news report the pesticide is causing major health hazards for the residents in Puliyarakonam, Thannimoodu, Mayilamoodu, Kappivila and Nellimoodu areas.

This pesticide is being used in the rubber plantations and delivers fast, efficient contact weed control of a comprehensive spectrum of broadleaf weeds, sedges and grasses, the locals said.
But the wide spread use has triggered serious health issues for the locals including skin lesions, fever, respiratory and vision problems if inhaled, eye burns and vision problems after contact with eyes.
Gramoxone has been included in the list of banned pesticides issued by the state government two months ago. Many such pesticides which have been banned or severely restricted in some countries are in use in Kerala.
The local residents have filed a complaint to Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and the Health department authorities in connection with the issue.

Extensive raid on sand smugglers near T’puram

 Friday, September 30, 2011: A team of Revenue officials assisted by police personnel carried out a pre-dawn raid near Chembarathivila, Vazhuthoor and Veluthottam areas following complaints that illegal sand mining have been taking place here.
After seeing the police the sand smugglers fled the spot. As many as 15 boats used for illegal sand mining and sand were seized by the officials. The boats were later destroyed using a JCB.
The operation, which started at 8 a.m lasted till night and was led by Neyyattinkara DySP P Gopakumaran Nair and other officials of the district administration were present.

Police submits probe report on Nun’s death case

Friday, September 30, 2011: The police team investigating the case relating to the mysterious death of a middle-aged nun (Mary Ancy) in Poonkulam Holy spirit convent, have submitted a report on probe progress in the Kerala High Court on Friday.
The report submitted by the investigating officer Fort Assistant commissioner Radhakrishnan Nair indicates that there were struggle marks in the corpse and Mary Ancy had died due drowning.
The police had also interrogated the two men identified as Yuijn (a policeman) and Vijayan (local resident), who were said to have left the convent compound early morning on August 17. More than 60 people have been questioned so far in connection with the incident.
The body was found in the water pit by the sisters this morning. The nun went missing from her room where she had gone to sleep last night after prayers.

College union elections; SFI gains edge


Malappuram: SFI won in 58 colleges in the college union elections out of 97 colleges coming under the Calicut University. UDSF, which is the union of KSU and MSF, won in 38 colleges. ABVP won in one college.

In Thrissur district, among the 16 colleges where polls were held, SFI won in 14, KSU and ABVP in one college each. In Palakkad of the 17 colleges, SFI in 12, KSU in 3. In Wayanad SFI won in 6 out of 8 and MSF in one. In Malappuram, UDSF won in 28 out of 36 colleges and SFI in 8.

Left parties call for hartal, demand resignation


Kollam: The CPI(M)-led Left parties called for a hartal this afternoon at Pathanapuram, the constituency of Kerala Forest Minister K B Ganesh Kumar, in Kollam district.

Police today said the hartal was in protest against the murder attempt on a school teacher of RVHS School at Valakam in Kottarakkara.

The attacked teacher, Krishnakumar was employed in RVHS school owned by the family of Kerala Congress (B) leader R Balakrishna Pillai, father of Forest Minister K B Ganesh Kumar.

The agitators alleged that Mr Balakrishna Pillai and his son hired quotation gangs for the crime.

They demanded the resignation of the Minister for impartial inquiry into the incident.

The teacher is now admitted at the Government Medical College Thiruvananthapuram. His condition is said to be serious. 

Reshuffle in DYFI: MB Rajesh may be replaced


Thiruvananthapuram: CPM is planning for a major reshuffle in the DYFI state leadership. It is learnt that around 20 state committee members, including state president MB Rajesh MP, may be shuffled. The announcement about this would be made at the DYFI state convention to be held in Thiruvanathapuram AKG hall on Saturday.

CPM state secretariat is convening a meeting on Saturday morning to take a final decision on the changes to be made in the state committee. A final decision on the state president would be taken in the meeting. It is stated that Rajesh might be replaced by the state joint secretary KS Sunil Kumar (Thiruvananthapuram) or M Swaraj (Malappuram ).

Balakrishna Pillai’s telephonic talk kicks up row


Friday, September 30, 2011: The prison department has ordered an inquiry into jailed Kerala Congress (B) leader R. Balakrishna Pillai’s telephonic conversation with the media from a hospital in Thiruvananthapuram.
Pillai, who was shifted to the hospital for treatment a few days ago, landed in trouble after he spoke to a TV reporter on Thursday about the attack on a teacher. Krishnakumar, a teacher in a higher secondary school managed by Pillai at Valakam in Kollam district, was brutally attacked by unidentified persons on Wednesday.

Kottayam: Woman, daughter found dead in well


Friday, September 30, 2011: Bodies of a woman and her two-year-old daughter were found in a well near Mattakkara here, police said on Friday.
Police said the woman, whose husband had died recently due to various ailments, allegedly threw her daughter into the well and then jumped herself. The bodies have been kept at the Medical College hospital here, sources added.

VS calls for CBI probe into brutal assault on teacher


Friday, September 30, 2011: Opposition leader and CPM veteran VS Achuthanandan on Friday demanded for a CBI probe into the incident in which a 47-year-old school teacher belonging to the RVVHS school in Valakom was brutally assaulted by a gang of unidentified persons.
Speaking to the reporters here on Friday, VS alleged that the state government had taken a biased stand in the ongoing investigation. Chief Minister Oommen Chandy was providing all sorts of facilities to Kerala Congress (B) leader R Balakrishna Pillai, who is now serving one year imprisonment in a corruption case.

Balakrishna Pillai shifted to ICU


Friday, September 30, 2011: Kerala Congress (B) leader and former Minister R Balakrishna Pillai, has been shifted to the Intensive care unit (ICU) at a private hospital here after his blood pressure shot up.
Pillai’s condition worsened due to the mental tension he endured after his telephonic call to the media from hospital sparked a controversy. He was shifted to the ICU as per the advice of doctors. Pillai, who was in Poojappura Central jail, was hospitalised a month before.
According to the hospital authorites Pillai condition is stable now. Pillai, who was shifted to the hospital for treatment a few days ago, landed in trouble after he spoke to a TV reporter on Thursday about the attack on a teacher.

Accused found guilty in SSLC question paper leak case


Friday, September 30, 2011: The Ernakulam CBI special court on Friday has found all the two accused guilty in the SSLC question paper leakage case. Bindhu Vijayan of Vanchiyoor, Thiruvananthapuram and Sindhu Surendran of T Nagar, Chennai, are the accused in this case.
The prosecution case is that in January 2005, the duo entered into a conspiracy with K Suresh, a casual employee of Viswanathan (Printers and Publishers) Pvt Ltd, Chetpet, Chennai, where the question papers of SSLC examination 2005 were printed, to steal the SSLC question papers from the press to help Bindhu’s son, who was to appear for the SSLC exam that year.
Suresh was also an accused in this case, but he has been made an approver by the CBI.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Assault on school teacher: IG to head probe


Friday, September 30, 2011: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said that a special team under the supervision of IG will probe the attack against the teacher Krishnakumar of the Vallakam RVHS School.
The condition of Krishnakumar under treatment at the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College Hospital has shown a mild improvement and doctors said there is no need to worry about his health.
Police will file a request at the Thiruvananthapuram CJM court on Friday to record his statements about the incident. The investigation would be headed by Kottarakara Rural SP PTV Prakash.
Kollam Asst Commissioner Ajith, Kollam Rural Admistrative DySP A Shanawaz and Kottarakara DySP K M Anto will probe the attack.
Opposition leader VS Achuthanandhan demanded a CBI probe into the attack in the Assembly. The opposition created an uproar in the Assembly over the incident.

Thekaddy boat tragedy victims remembered


Friday, September 30, 2011: The victims of the Thekkady boat tragedy were remembered on the second anniversary of the accident near here on Friday.
The Thekkady boat disaster occurred when the double-decker passenger boat Jalakanyaka sank in Lake Thekkady, Periyar National Park, Kerala, on September 30 2009, When the boat capsized, 45 tourists died, most of them from Delhi and Kolkata.

Attack on teacher: Opposition demands CBI probe


Friday, September 30, 2011: CPM-led LDF opposition today demanded CBI probe into the incident in which a 47-year-old school teacher belonging to the RVVHS School in Valakom was brutally assaulted by a gang of unidentified persons.
Krishnakumar (47), a teacher in the private RVVHS School at Valakam in Kollam district,was brutally attacked by unidentified persons. He is undergoing treatment in the Medical college hospital.

Jail ADGP orders probe into Pillai’s response to media


Friday, September 30, 2011: Jail ADGP ordered a probe on the response of former minister R Balakrishna Pillai, undergoing a jail term in the Idamalayar case, to the media in connection with the attack on a teacher of a school in Valakam. PA Varghese, jail welfare officer will probe the incident.
Pillai had yesterday told a private channel that he has no role in the incident. Pillai talking to the media while undergoing a jail term has created a controversy.

SBI security guard fires rifle by mistake


KOTTAYAM: K C Dominic,   security guard of the State Bank of Travancore here, fired his rifle ‘by mistake’ while testing it on Wednesday.  The incident has created panic among both the employees and visitors of the bank.  The bullet pierced the wooden door of a room inside which the security guard was handling his gun.
The police rushed to the spot. “However, as the bank has not given any complaint we haven’t registered any complaint,” the police said.
The sound of firing drew the attention of a large number of people. .The firing also led to speculations of robbery similar to the one which had took place recently at a jewellery shop near the bank. When contacted, an official in the bank said that it was a case of ‘misfire’.  However, he refused to give more details about the incident.

Cabinet nod for teachers’ revised package


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Cabinet on Wednesday approved the package for teachers effecting certain changes in the original package prepared by the government.Briefing mediapersons about the Cabinet decisions on Wednesday, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy  said that 8,076 teachers would be included in the teachers’ bank.  The teachers’ bank would be prepared at the revenue district level.
Issuing a stern warning that strict action would be initiated against those schools which tried to inflate the number of students, the Chief Minister said when the new  ‘teacher-student ratio’ comes into effect, the schools will have new vacancies for teachers. He said teachers who worked without salary, protected teachers and those who had been appointed in the vacancies sanctioned during 2010-11 and worked for at least one day, will get the benefits of the package. When the new ratio gets implemented, the first vacancy arising in the school will be filled from the teachers’ bank. He said that forcing teachers to go on leave and creating vacancies artificially will not be allowed in future. The special teachers also will be get appointed to the vacancies from the teachers’ bank.  The package will cover 2,987 protected teachers who had lost jobs and 1,700  teachers who became jobless due to the shortage of students.

The gruelling wait for ration card


TRIPUNITHURA: “Sir, I am a panchayat president and this is the third time I am here for getting my ration card”,  the middle-aged woman told the Kanayannur Taluk Supply Officer.  
“Madam there is no distinction here. Though the number cards to be issued in a day is forty, we are dealing with hundreds of applications. You are in the queue and will surely get yours when the turn comes”, the Supply Officer replies.
This is not a one-off incident.This is the regular scene at Kanayannuur Taluk Supply Office here, which has to deal with the applicants from  11 panchayats and four municipalities.
The average number of applicants queuing up in front of the Supply office on Wednesday -- the day meant for issuing new ration cards -- are anywhere between 400 and 500.  But, the the officers are able to serve only 40 to 50 applicants .
“To deal with this, what we have is just four clerks, two Class IV staff and a defaulted computer”, said the Supply Officer.

KFC closed after protests over waste disposal


KOZHIKODE: With the raging issue of waste disposal creating headaches for the authorities, the city on Wednesday witnessed the anger of the people in a different way. In protest against the dumping of wastes by the KFC Restaurant on the Bank Road in various places along the roads from West Hill to Kakkodi, people from these areas, DYFI workers along with corporation councillors collected the wastes and dumped it back on the restaurant premises. Later people led by councillors C S Sathyabhama, C P Salim, T Sujan Krishnadas and O M Bharadwaj protested in front of the outlet for several hours.
The incident led to the closure of the restaurant. Later Corporation authorities held discussions with the restaurant owners and asked them to close the hotel until a better waste disposal plan is chalked out. Corporation Health standing committee chairperson has also served showcause  notice on the restaurant.
Meanwhile, Corporation health officer has said that stringent action will be taken against the restaurant.

Chandy cabinet fast and quick in foreign trips!


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: From official trips to private ones, UDF ministers have been travelling widely at the global-level since the UDF came to power in May last.
Ten of the 20-strong Oommen Chandy Cabinet have travelled abroad in the past four months, the Assembly was told on Tuesday.
Finance Minister K M Mani toured several European cities - Paris, Madrid, Brussels and Luxembourg - as part of the Empowered Committee of State Finance Ministers on Goods and Services Tax.
Health and Coir Minister Adoor Prakash visited the UAE and China to study the potential of coir products, Tourism Minister A P Anil Kumar visited Geneva for the Geneva Festival while Rural Development Minister
K C Joseph hopped off to Tokyo for the India Vision Global Partnership Summit.
Industries Minister P K Kunhalikutty visited Qatar (private visit) and Istanbul (for the 22nd World Mining Congress and Expo 2011) while Labour Minister Shibu Baby John visited the Singapore Construction Academy.
There were also a few private visits such as Forest Minister K B Ganesh
Kumar’s trip to Dubai and the Sultanate of Oman and PWD Minister V K Ebrahim Kunju and Panchayat Minister M K Muneer’s trip to Saudi Arabia.
Food Minister T M Jacob visited England recently for medical treatment.

Govt failed in providing treatment to fever victims: PC Thomas


Friday, September 30, 2011: Kerala Congress alleged that the Congress-led UDF Government had failed in providing medical treatment and medicines to the fever affected people in the state.
Speaking to mediapersons here, PC Thomas, Chairman and V Suredran Pillai, Party Working Chairman, alleged that the government was busy solving their own problems in the front and had no time to solve people’s grievances.
Terming as ‘brutal’ the attack on a school teacher at Kollam, Thomas charged that government had failed in nabbing the culprits. On the party’s 48th birth anniversary, a convention would be held on October 9 at Kozhikode, he said.

Waste disposal units to be made compulsory at hospitals, flats


Friday, September 30, 2011: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said that steps will be taken to make waste disposal units compulsory at hospitals and flats as part of the ‘Waste-Free Kerala’ campaign. The use of bio-gas units at homes will be made wide-spread in the state.
The Chief Minister Oommen Chandy will inaugurate the ‘Waste-Free Kerala’ campaign at Kottayam on October 2. The campaign at Palakkad will be inaugurated by the Opposition Leader VS Achuthanandan on the same day.
A committee will be formed with Chief Minister at the state-level, ministers at the district-level, MLAs and Chairmen at the level of legislative assembly. Banks and public limited companies will be invited to sponsor the campaign.
About 75 percent subsidy will be given to each house for installing bio-gas plants. The cost of installing a bio-gas plant at house ranges from Rs 1500 to Rs 2500.

Balakrishna Pillai runs into row by speaking to channel


 Friday, September 30, 2011: Jailed Kerala Congress (B) leader R Balakrishna Pillai has landed in trouble by speaking to the media over mobile phone from a hospital here, where he was admitted for treatment, on the issue of attack on a teacher working in a school under his management.
Reacting to the telephonic talk by Pillai, Opposition Leader VS Achuthanandan alleged that Pillai violated jail rules by talking to the media over mobile phone. Responding to the mobile phone call from a television channel reporter, Pillai refuted the opposition charge that the attack on the teacher, Krishnakumar, was the result of a conspiracy by the school management.
Pillai, however, told the channel that he should not be quoted as he was not supposed to speak to the media as he was undergoing imprisonment. Pillai was sentenced to one-year imprisonment by the Supreme Court in February last in a corruption case.
Krishnakumar (47), a teacher in the private RVVHS School at Valakam in Kollam district,was brutally attacked by unidentified persons in the wee hours yesterday. He is undergoing treatment in the Medical college hospital. The Opposition earlier in the day raised the issue in the state assembly demanding a thorough probe into the incident including suspected role of the school management.

Casanova for Christmas release


Surpassing all hurdles and confusions, Casanova, in which superstar Mohanlal is in a new avatar, would hit the theaters for Christmas. The film was announced by Director Roshan Andrews after Notebook. But due to some reasons that were delayed further and after many years of its announcement, finally the film would be released on December 16.

Policewoman held for looting mobile of cop


Eramaangalam: A mobile, which went missing from a policeman, was found with another policewoman. The incident occurred at Perumpadappu police quarters. It was two weeks back that the mobile phone of a policeman went missing. In the probe held by the cybercell it was found that the phone was with a woman police officer in the same quarters. While questioning she agreed of stealing the mobile.

Sun TV shares tumble as CBI set to file FIR against Dayanidhi Maran


Mumbai: The shares of media major Sun TV, promoted by Kalanithi Maran, tumbled in Thursday's trade a day after the CBI told the Supreme Court that it would take a decision on bringing formal charges against his younger brother, Dayanidhi.

The younger Maran, who was the communications minister from May 23, 2004 to May 15, 2007, is alleged to have arm twisted former Aircel promoter Sivasankaran into selling his stake in the company to Malaysia-based Maxis group owned by T. Ananda Krishnan.

All 269 convicted in Vachathi rape, assault case


Dharmapuri (Tamil Nadu): All 269 police, forest and revenue department personnel accused in the 1992 assault and rape of tribals in Vachathi in Tamil Nadu's Krishnagiri district were convicted Thursday by the district court. Sentences will be pronounced later.
Seventeen of the accused were held guilty of rape of 18 women.
Of the 269 accused, 54 have died during the proceedings.




Govt salary through banks: Employees can opt



Thiruvananthapuram: The state government has issued on order for disbursing salaries of government employees through public sector banks. The employees have the option of opting for it and is not mandatory. The departmental heads have been asked to get the approval from employees.

The gazette employees preparing the salary bill also can collect the salary though banks. But govt pension wouldn't be given through banks. The system would come into effect soon.

Kerala joins World Heart day observance


Thursday, September 29 2011: Various programmes marked the observance of World Heart Day on this year’s theme of “One world, one home, one heart” in the city on Thursday.
The World Heart Day is observed to make people realize the risk of heart diseases and enlighten that such death could be avoided by adopting simple and easy ways.

Airfare hike: Ministry asks DGCA to examine the matter


 Thursday, September 29, 2011: With high festive season demand pushing up airfares, aviation regulator DGCA has been asked by Civil Aviation Ministry to examine if it could take some steps to provide any relief to air travellers.
“I have asked DGCA to use its powers and look into the matter, although beyond a point, we cannot do anything,”Civil Aviation Minister Vayalar Ravi said replying to a question on hiking air fares by airlines ahead of the festival season.Noting that there is a”flexible mechanism”that governs air fares, he said the regulator would examine the issue as it affected the travelling public.

2G issue: Pranab meets Sonia Gandhi


Thursday, September 29, 2011: In the backdrop of controversy over a Finance Ministry note on the 2G issue, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday met Congress chief Sonia Gandhi.
Mukherjee’s consultations with Ms. Gandhi came a day after his letter toPrime Minister Manmohan Singh setting out in detail the events surrounding the controversial allocation of spectrum.

2G issue: Pranab Mukherjee pacifies Chidambaram


Thursday, September 29, 2011: Pranab Mukherjee and P Chidambaram today sought to put an end to the raging controversy over the Finance Ministry note on 2G spectrum with the Finance Minister distancing himself from the statement that sought to blame the Home Minister.
Pranab said “Policy of the government was a continuation of the policy set by the NDA government in 2003 and reiterated by TRAI.”

Aircraft carrying 18 feared crashed in Indonesia


 Indonesia,September 29,2011: A small aircraft with 18 people on board is feared to have crashed on Thursday in Indonesia’s Sumatra island, officials said.
The Cassa 212, carrying 15 passengers and three crew, was flying from Medan city in North Sumatra to the nearby province of Aceh when it lost contact with air traffic control, Bambang Ervan said.

Attack on school teacher: One held


Thursday, September 29, 2011: One person was arrested in connection with the incident in which a 47-year-old school teacher belonging to the RVVHS School in Valakom was brutally assaulted by a gang of unidentified persons.
The arrested has been identified as Sreekumar, an astrologer, hailing from Kadakkal. The state government had on Thursday constituted a special team to conduct an investigation into the incident.

J Chelemeswar elevated as SC judge


Thursday, September 29, 2011: Kerala High Court Chief Justice Jasti Chelemeswar has been elevated as Supreme court judge, high court sources here said. The intimation in this regard reached the High Court today, the sources said.
Justice Chelemeswar, who was the Chief Justice of Assam High Court, was transferred to Kerala last year. He has also served as Advocate General of Andhra Pradesh. A full court reference will he held tomorrow at the High Court to bid farewell to the Chief Justice.

Govt brings guidelines for appointments in schools


 Thursday, September 29, 2011: State government said it would introduce new guidelines for appointment of teachers in government-aided private schools.
After a cabinet meet, which approved a comprehensive ”Teacher’s package” to end the system of ”protected teachers” in the state, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said all new postings in aided schools should have prior sanction and recognition of the government.

First Haj flight leaves from Karipur


Thursday, September, 29 2011: Marking beginning of this season’s Haj Pilgrimage, a Saudi Airlines flight carrying 300 pilgrims from Kerala was flagged-off by E Ahamed, Union minister of state for external affairs from Karipur International airport today.
Karipur is the embarkation point for the pilgrims from Kerala, Lakshadweep, and Mahe. There will be two flights on the first day. Apart from the 10.45 a.m. flight, Saudi Arabian Airlines will operate another flight at 1.30 p.m.
As per the deal signed with Saudi Arabian Airlines, the airline would have to pay damages for any delay beyond four hours. Last year, flight delay had caused some embarrassment for the Haj committee.
As many as 30 government officials have been deputed for Hajj duty at the camp. Twenty volunteers from the State will accompany the 8,000-odd pilgrims.

Four acquitted in Marad case


Thursday, September 29, 2011: The special court acquitted 4 juveniles who were accused in the Marad killing case. The appeal submitted by the 4 persons against the directive of the Juvenile Justice Board was taken into consideration by the Marad special court.
The court had acquitted accused 2 to 5. The Kozhikode Juvenile Justice Board had awarded a fine of Rs 22,500 and directed the 4 persons to maintain good conduct.

Govt Higher Secondary Schools to come under KSWDC programme


 Thursday, September 29, 2011: Taking a cue from the response of college students who attended the career-orientation and women empowerment programme of the Kerala State Women’s Development Corporation (KSWDC), career guidance programmes will be held in all government higher secondary schools in the state.
In the initial phase, around 120 schools in seven districts were selected for the programme. The programme has been conducted in 20 schools and the rest will be taken up during this academic year.
’Last year the programme was held in 40 women’s colleges in the state. The idea to expand it to higher secondary schools was mooted by college students as they said that this programme would be more beneficial if conducted for Plus-II students,’’ Corporation managing director PTM Sunish said.

Opposition stages walkout over palmolein case


Thursday, September 29, 2011: Kerala Assembly today witnessed noisy scenes as the CPI(M)-led LDF opposition staged a walkout over the politically sensitive palmolein import case.
A vigilance court here had last month ordered a fresh probe into Chief Minister Oommen Chandy’s alleged role in the case. However, the High Court had on Tuesday stayed for a month the vigilance court order.
Seeking leave for an adjournment motion on the High Court order in a petition filed by senior IAS officer and fifth accused in the case Jiji Thomson, LDF alleged that the High Court passed such an order as the government pleader took a stand favourable to Thomson.
Moving notice for the motion, V S Sunil Kumar(CPI) alleged that the government pleader, who appeared in the case was a”Congress activist”and”failed to bring to the notice of the court”the relevant provisions that stipulate that no court has the power to stay investigation in corruption cases.
He said Thomson filed the petition”on behalf of Chandy”and it was a clear case of “collusion” between Chandy, Finance and Law Minister K M Mani and Advocate General.
Rebutting the allegation, Mani said it was against rules and procedures to discuss a matter pending before a court.Intervening on the matter, Chandy said he had already made his stand clear on the issue and would not do anything to obstruct the probe.
Before walking out, opposition leader V S Achuthanandan said the government was trying to scuttle the progress of the case by misusing official machinery.
The government was trying to’intimidate’judiciary leading to vigilance court judge P K Haneefa deciding to recuse himself from the case, he said.

School teacher’s condition improves slightly


Thursday, September 29, 2011: The condition of the 47-year-old school teacher (Krishnakumar) who has been admitted at the Thiruvananthapuram medical college hospital after he was brutally assaulted by a gang of unidentified persons in Kollam, has improved slightly.
The hospital authorities informed that Krishnakumar has regained his consciousness and is showing improvement in his health condition. The police investigation team is most likely to record his statements in connection with the incident.
Krishnakumar is a teacher in RVVHS School owned by the family of former state minister and Kerala Congress (B) leader R Balakrishna Pillai, who is now serving one year imprisonment in a corruption case.
Police said Krishnakumar was found in a serious condition on the roadside at Valakam near Kottarakkara in Kollam district late last night. Krishnakumar’s wife Geetha, who is also a teacher in the same school, alleged that her husband has, of late, been not on good terms with the school management.
Locals told police they saw Krishnakumar being thrown out of a white car at night and later lying in a pool of blood. Krishnakumar was first taken to Kottarakkara Taluk Hospital, but doctors there referred him to MCH.
Kottarakkara DYSP K.M. Anto said Krishnakumar was seen at Nilamel Junction at 10 pm while returning from Kadakkal.
“He was possibly attacked elsewhere and dropped at MLA Junction,” he said, adding, “We have registered an attempted murder case.”
Krishnakumar is involved in a running battle with the school management and is the prime witness in a vigilance case against it for irregularities.
His wife Geetha became headmistress of the school after winning a court case against the management.
He had recently lodged a complaint that he was getting death threats from the management, but police denied it, sources said. Meanwhile, Pillai’s son and forest minister K.B. Ganesh Kumar said he had no connection with the school.

No question of withdrawing two child norm, says Iyer


Thursday, September 29, 2011: Unfazed by protests from different communities, former Supreme Court judge Justice V R Krishna Iyer has said there was no question of withdrawing a two child norm recommended by a commission headed by him.
There was no reason for the State Commission on”Rights and Welfare of Women and Children”to fear anyone and it would not withdraw the recommendation on birth control, justice Iyer told reporters here. The commission has recommended a two child norm with cash incentives of Rs 50,000 being prescribed for women below poverty line who marry after the age of 19 and have their first child after they attain the age of 20.

Teacher assault: Special probe team constituted


Thursday, September 29, 2011: The state government has on Thursday constituted a special team to conduct an investigation into the incident in which a 47-year-old school teacher belonging to the RVVHS School in Valakom was brutally assaulted by a gang of unidentified persons.
The eight member investigation team is headed by two DySPs Ajith and Shanavaz, sources said. The state government’s decision to appoint a special probe team comes soon after the incident had triggered widespread protests.
Meanwhile the condition of the 47-year-old school teacher (Krishnakumar) who has been admitted at the Thiruvananthapuram medical college hospital after he was brutally assaulted by a gang of unidentified persons in Kollam, has improved slightly.
The hospital authorities informed that Krishnakumar has regained his consciousness and is showing improvement in his health condition. The police investigation team is most likely to record his statements in connection with the incident.
Krishnakumar is a teacher in RVVHS School owned by the family of former state minister and Kerala Congress (B) leader R Balakrishna Pillai, who is now serving one year imprisonment in a corruption case.
Police said Krishnakumar was found in a serious condition on the roadside at Valakam near Kottarakkara in Kollam district late last night.
Krishnakumar’s wife Geetha, who is also a teacher in the same school, alleged that her husband has, of late, been not on good terms with the school management.
Locals told police they saw Krishnakumar being thrown out of a white car at night and later lying in a pool of blood. Krishnakumar was first taken to Kottarakkara Taluk Hospital, but doctors there referred him to MCH.
Kottarakkara DYSP K.M. Anto said Krishnakumar was seen at Nilamel Junction at 10 pm while returning from Kadakkal.
“He was possibly attacked elsewhere and dropped at MLA Junction,” he said, adding, “We have registered an attempted murder case.”
Krishnakumar is involved in a running battle with the school management and is the prime witness in a vigilance case against it for irregularities.
His wife Geetha became headmistress of the school after winning a court case against the management.
He had recently lodged a complaint that he was getting death threats from the management, but police denied it, sources said. Meanwhile, Pillai’s son and forest minister K.B. Ganesh Kumar said he had no connection with the school.

No connection with attack on teacher: Balakrishna Pillai


Thursday, September 29, 2011: Former state minister R Balakrishna Pillai on Thursday said that he had no involvement in the attack on one of the teachers in a school owned by his family.
Pillai, Kerala Congress (B) leader, who is now serving one year imprisonment in a corruption case said that the allegation made by the leader of the opposition VS Achuthanandan was politically motivated.
The teacher, Krishnakumar, was found on roadside in a serious condition at Valakam near Kottarakkara in Kollam district.