Monday, August 31, 2015

Local polls can be held in November last, govt tells HC

KOCHI: The state government Monday informed the Kerala High Court that the local polls can be held on November 24 or 26. The affidavit produced by the government had stated that the new administration can assume power on December 1. The government also said that as the polls are delayed, the charge can be given to the administrator. As the election commission has the right to announce the date, the government has not specified a special date in the affidavit. The polls are held in new municipalities and Kannur corporations. Usually the polls are held in October and the new administration assume office on November 1st.

The government has informed the court that they have reached an accord with the election commission to conduct the polls in November. The election notification will be released on October 19. The final list of the block panchayat will be published on September 14 and the list of the district panchayat on September 16. The final list of reservation wards will be published on September 17 and ward bifurcation can be completed on that day itself. The votes will be counted on November 28.

The court had earlier approved the formation of new municipalities and Kannur Corporation.

Local polls can be held in November last, govt tells HC

KOCHI: The state government Monday informed the Kerala High Court that the local polls can be held on November 24 or 26. The affidavit produced by the government had stated that the new administration can assume power on December 1. The government also said that as the polls are delayed, the charge can be given to the administrator. As the election commission has the right to announce the date, the government has not specified a special date in the affidavit. The polls are held in new municipalities and Kannur corporations. Usually the polls are held in October and the new administration assume office on November 1st.

The government has informed the court that they have reached an accord with the election commission to conduct the polls in November. The election notification will be released on October 19. The final list of the block panchayat will be published on September 14 and the list of the district panchayat on September 16. The final list of reservation wards will be published on September 17 and ward bifurcation can be completed on that day itself. The votes will be counted on November 28.

The court had earlier approved the formation of new municipalities and Kannur Corporation.

Cop found dead under mysterious circumstances

PEROORKADA: A cop who was on guard duty at the special armed police (SAP) camp was found dead under suspicious circumstances. Abdul Rasheed (53) of Mannanthala and a civil police officer, who was on guard duty at the work shop last night, was found dead this morning.

Rasheed was found dead near the workshop by the cop who came for the new duty at 6 am Monday morning. He had to jump the gate as it was not opened. The reason for the death is not known. Rasheed was not in uniform. Following the incident, battalion ADGP Rishiraj Singh, SAP commandant, control room AC, and Peroorkada circle inspector prepared the inquest. The body was later shifted to the medical college hospital for postmortem.

He leaves behind his wife Firoza and children Shijin and Sherin.

Muthoot murder case verdict tomorrow

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A special CBI court here on Monday postponed the pronouncement of the verdict in the sensational Paul Muthoot George murder case till Tuesday.

The verdict that was to come out on Monday did not take place after the court found that three of the 19 accused had not turned up.

The court directed all the accused to be present on Tuesday.

George, 32, was killed under mysterious circumstances near Alappuzha on August 21, 2009 while travelling in a car with Om Prakash and Rajesh, two men who face several criminal cases in the state.

George, a bachelor, belonged to the wealthy Muthoot business family, which is into successful private banking and has numerous other business ventures.

Police first investigated the murder mystery and it was later transferred to the crime branch which arrested 14 people.

Later, George's father sought a CBI probe. The central probe agency took up the case in January 2010.

According to the probe, it was Kaari Satheesh who stabbed George to death.

The motive of the crime, according to the investigating agency, was sudden provocation by the accused after George's speeding vehicle knocked down a two-wheeler.

The accused and his group of men who saw this followed George and stopped his vehicle and after a verbal duel, George was stabbed to death.

Muthoot murder case verdict tomorrow

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A special CBI court here on Monday postponed the pronouncement of the verdict in the sensational Paul Muthoot George murder case till Tuesday.

The verdict that was to come out on Monday did not take place after the court found that three of the 19 accused had not turned up.

The court directed all the accused to be present on Tuesday.

George, 32, was killed under mysterious circumstances near Alappuzha on August 21, 2009 while travelling in a car with Om Prakash and Rajesh, two men who face several criminal cases in the state.

George, a bachelor, belonged to the wealthy Muthoot business family, which is into successful private banking and has numerous other business ventures.

Police first investigated the murder mystery and it was later transferred to the crime branch which arrested 14 people.

Later, George's father sought a CBI probe. The central probe agency took up the case in January 2010.

According to the probe, it was Kaari Satheesh who stabbed George to death.

The motive of the crime, according to the investigating agency, was sudden provocation by the accused after George's speeding vehicle knocked down a two-wheeler.

The accused and his group of men who saw this followed George and stopped his vehicle and after a verbal duel, George was stabbed to death.

Van driver dies in accident

THRIKKAKKARA: A driver of a minivan was killed in an accident near Kakkanad Infopark. The condition of one is stated to be serious. The lorry laden with vegetables from Tamil Nadu collided with the minivan coming from the opposite direction. The van driver has not been identified so far. The condition of Biju, native of Kottayam is quite serious.

The over speeded lorry rammed the electric post and then stopped near a pit. It was the security employee of the IT firm nearby who informed the Thrikkakkara fire force.

Biju (44) was taken out of the minivan after a long effort. The driver of the minivan was taken out only after shifting the lorry using a crane. By the time he was taken out, he had lost his life. The lorry driver identified as Muniyappan has been taken into custody.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Bid to commercialize Sree Narayana Guru, says VS

ALAPPUZHA: There is a bid to commercialize Sree Narayana Guru, said opposition leader V S Achuthanandan. Some politicians and those leading some caste based organizations are behind it, he said. VS made the criticism without naming SNDP Yogam general secretary Vellappally Natesan while inaugurating the 161st Sree Narayana Guru Jayanthi celebrations in the district.

There is an attempt to change Sree Narayana Guru as the guru of Ezhavas. Some political leaders and those leading caste based organizations are trying to create a rift amongst the people and suck their blood. Some among them are misusing the name of Guru. The attempt to make Guru as the private property of Ezhavas should be seen seriously. A joint strike should be staged against it, he said.

Volvo bus gutted in fire

HYDERABAD: The Volvo bus proceeding towards Kozhikode from Hyderabad was gutted in a fire early Sunday morning.  However, no casualties were reported.

The incident happened at 1 am this morning at Ananthapur on the Hyderabad-Bengaluru national highway. The Volvo bus of Kallada Travels was gutted in the fire.  

There were 35 passengers in the bus which left Hyderabad Saturday evening. A passenger identified as K R Anwar alerted the driver seeing the fire on the back side of the bus. He stopped the bus and all the passengers alighted immediately after which the bus got gutted completely. The luggage and other expensive items of the passengers were gutted in the fire. The loss has not been estimated so far. The reason of the fire is not known. 

Actress Muktha gets married

KOCHI:South Indian actress Muktha got married to Rinku Tomy, brother of singer Rimi Tomy at St George Syro-Malabar Catholic Forane Church in Edappally, Kochi on Sunday. The bride wore chatta and mundu, the traditional dress of the Christians. Rinku wore a mundu and a white shirt. Margamkali, traditional dance form of Christians was highlighted.

The real name of Muktha, daughter of George and Sali of Kothamangalam, is Muktha Elsa George. She reached the film industry through television shows and Kalotsava venues. Her name in Tamil is Bhanu.

Muktha, who began her career in Lal Jose's Achanurangatha Veedu has acted in Tamil, Telugu and Kannada languages. She has acted in Chirakodinja Kinavukal, U to Brutus, Goal, Nasrani, Hailasa, Kanchipurathe Kalyanam etc. She will continue acting after marriage.

Rinku, son of Rani, is managing an event management group in Kochi. He is a native of Pala. He manages his sister Rimi Tomy’s shows.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Pinarayi alleges Chandy-RSS nexus

KANNUR: The government led by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy is supporting the RSS to unleash violence in the state, alleged CPM politburo member Pinarayi Vijayan. Chandy is trying to foster the RSS and the murder of a CPM activist in Kasargod was part of it, he said.

The Congress has made a special nexus with the RSS aiming the panchayat polls. Chandy encourages the communal forces. Pinarayi condemned the murder of CPM activist in Kasargod. The police is protecting the RSS activists involved in the case, he said.

Pinarayi alleges Chandy-RSS nexus

KANNUR: The government led by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy is supporting the RSS to unleash violence in the state, alleged CPM politburo member Pinarayi Vijayan. Chandy is trying to foster the RSS and the murder of a CPM activist in Kasargod was part of it, he said.

The Congress has made a special nexus with the RSS aiming the panchayat polls. Chandy encourages the communal forces. Pinarayi condemned the murder of CPM activist in Kasargod. The police is protecting the RSS activists involved in the case, he said.

Pinarayi alleges Chandy-RSS nexus

KANNUR: The government led by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy is supporting the RSS to unleash violence in the state, alleged CPM politburo member Pinarayi Vijayan. Chandy is trying to foster the RSS and the murder of a CPM activist in Kasargod was part of it, he said.

The Congress has made a special nexus with the RSS aiming the panchayat polls. Chandy encourages the communal forces. Pinarayi condemned the murder of CPM activist in Kasargod. The police is protecting the RSS activists involved in the case, he said.

CPM, BJP activists killed in Kasargod and Thrissur

KOZHIKODE/THRISSUR: After an interval political murders have been witnessed in the state again. A CPM activist and a BJP activist have been killed in Kasargod and Thrissur. The CPM and the BJP are observing a hartal in Kozhikode and at Kodakara panchayat in Thrissur in protest against the attacks.  

The two attacks happened on the Thiruvonam day. C Narayanan, a CPM activist of Kodombeloor in Kasargood was stabbed to death. His brother Aravindan had been admitted to a hospital in Mangalore with serious injuries. The incident happened at 3 pm yesterday. A team who came in bikes stabbed him to death. Aravindan was hacked when he came to save his brother. Narayanan died on the spot itself. BJP is behind the attack, alleged the CPM.

Abhilash (31) of Vellikkulangara in Thrissur was hacked. The incident happened Friday afternoon when he was pillion riding on his friend’s bike. His friend has been admitted in the hospital with injuries. A clash was witnessed between the CPM and the BJP in this area earlier.

Three killed in car-traveller collision

KOZHIKODE: Three persons were killed when two cars collided with a tempo traveller at Azhinjilam on the national highway in the district. The passengers in the car identified as Manjunath, Tilak Nath and Anil Choudhari, natives of Karnataka were those killed in the accident. Two persons who sustained serious injuries have been admitted at the Kozhikode Medical College Hospital. 17 passengers of the tempo traveller too sustained injuries.

The incident happened early Saturday morning at 3 am on the turning in Azhinjilam. The team who came to visit the temples of Kerala were those involved in the accident. The car has been completely damaged in the collision. The passengers of the car were taken out jointly by the locals and the police.  Transportation came to a standstill for some time on the national highway following the accident.

CPM, BJP unleashing violence in state, says Chennithala

KOCHI: Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala accused the CPM and the BJP for unleashing violence in the state, said. A planned move is on to conduct political murders. The minister asked the CPM and the BJP to withdraw from it, he said.

The two are trying to deteriorate law and order by unleashing violence in the state. Action will be taken for letting lose violence and nobody would be spared, he said. The CPM and the BJP would be suppressed if they carry out attacks. The accused in connection with the murders in Kasargod and Thrissur would be brought before law, he said. 

V S seeks for CBI inquiry into 108 ambulance project.

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan has sought a CBI inquiry into alleged corruption related to ‘108’ ambulance project. “As the Rajasthan government has ordered a CBI inquiry into a similar kind of corruption regarding 108 ambulance in that state, a CBI inquiry here also becomes relevant,” Achuthanandan said in a statement on Saturday.  

The Comptroller and Auditor General had mentioned in his report, the graft and anomalies regarding the implementation of ‘108’ ambulance project. Based on that report, the CBI had filed a case against Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, Congress State President Sachin Pilot, former Union Minister P Chindambaram’s son Karti Chidambaram and Vayalar Ravi’s son Ravi Krishnan. In Kerala also, allegation against the same company was raised. Former finance advisor of Chief Minister Oommen Chandy Shafi Mehtar had also come under criticism for the alleged corruption. An attempt is being made to brush the issue under the carpet as the case has got inter-state connections and those involved in the case are highly influential persons financially and economically. Hence, the case should be handed over to the CBI,” the statement said.  

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Vizhinjam case: SC criticises green tribunal

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court harshly criticised the green tribunal on the order against the Vizhinjam project. The court asked whether the tribunal has the right to intervene in all issues. One cannot say that they have the right equal to the high court. The tribunal has only a legal power, the court said.

The court directed the state government to inform the details of the project. They have also been directed to file an affidavit making clear the assets transferred.

Kunhalikutty threatened election commission, says Pinarayi

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Minister P K Kunhalikutty had threatened the election commission, said CPM politburo member Pinarayi Vijayan. Instead of correcting Kunhalikutty, the chief minister is supporting him, he said.

The bifurcation was done for the League to possess panchayats and the UDF are scared to face the polls, he said.

Local polls can be held after Nov 20, says govt

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The government Wednesday said polls to local bodies can be conducted either on November 23rd or 25th. The government will inform this to the court through an affidavit when the case is considered on September 3. The decision was taken after talks were held between the chief minister, ministers and the chief secretary.

If the polls are held on Nov 23rd Monday or 25th Wednesday, then votes can be counted on the remaining days and by December 1st, the new administration can assume office. The government said before informing the court their stand they will inform the election commission.

The government will also inform the court that financial aid from centre is falling as number of corporations are not rising. The government had lost centre’s financial aid of Rs 2000 crore last year.

Six killed as boat sinks after collision off Kochi

KOCHI: Six persons were killed when a boat carrying around 30 passengers capsized and sank in the harbour mouth off Fort Kochi after colliding with a fishing craft Wednesday, police said.

Around 20 passengers have been rescued so far by personnel of Coast Guard, Navy and Marine police with the assistance of local fishermen, they said.

Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala, coordinating the rescue operations, told reporters that six passengers have lost their lives in the accident.

The bodies of Azheekode native Sainaba, Fort Kochi natives Joseph and Volga, Mattanchery native Sudheer, Kalamukku native Ayyappan and Chellanam native Sindhu have been identified.

Intense rescue operations are underway and the exact number of passengers on board the ill-fated passenger boat was yet to be ascertained, police said.

The passenger vessel was on its way from Vypeen to Fort Kochi when it collided with the country fishing boat at the harbour mouth at around 1.45 pm.

The rescued passengers have been taken to various hospitals, police said.

According to a witness, the fishing boat was reversing when it hit the passenger boat.

"The accident took place about 100 metres from the Fort Kochi boat jetty, which is the international shipping route. Hence, even if someone is a swimmer, it's difficult to survive," said Samson, the witness.

"The place is frequently dredged and hence the place where the accident took place is very deep," Samson added.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Drug abuse rises after closure of bars, says Antony

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: There has been an increase in drug consumption in the state after the closure of bars, said senior congress leader A K Antony. The consumption of ganja and drugs are increasing. In the present situation, children are addicted to drugs. The stuff is available in schools also.

Inaugurating the birth anniversary celebrations of Jawaharlal Nehru organised by KPSTU, he said the standard of studies is seen declining in the state. The state is behind in the quality of schools. Teachers and the government should jointly take steps to raise the standard of studies, he said. Ensure social and communal amity in all levels, he said.

Drug abuse rises after closure of bars, says Antony

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: There has been an increase in drug consumption in the state after the closure of bars, said senior congress leader A K Antony. The consumption of ganja and drugs are increasing. In the present situation, children are addicted to drugs. The stuff is available in schools also.

Inaugurating the birth anniversary celebrations of Jawaharlal Nehru organised by KPSTU, he said the standard of studies is seen declining in the state. The state is behind in the quality of schools. Teachers and the government should jointly take steps to raise the standard of studies, he said. Ensure social and communal amity in all levels, he said.

Mass killing of stray dogs in Kannur

KANNUR: The mass killing of stray dogs at Poozhathi panchayat in Kannur, by injecting cyanide, is sparking a controversy.

The panchayat authorities decided to kill the dogs following complaints on the disturbance of them. They were killed after catching them with the help of dog snatchers.

Almost forty dogs were killed by injecting cyanide in four days. The dogs were buried in places belonging to the panchayat. The authorities stopped the act after animal lovers came forward with protests.

Union Minister Menaka Gandhi had directed Kerala not to kill them. She had warned action if directions are violated.

Don’t depend on community organizations, directs CPM central panel

NEW DELHI: The CPI (M) central panel has directed the state faction not to depend on community organizations in Kerala. The direction came as their attitudes are against the party. The central committee convened in Delhi decided to toughen their campaign against communalism.

Interaction with the public should be strengthened. Steps should be taken to fight the growth of BJP in Kerala. The panel directed to see seriously the breakthrough of the BJP in the Aruvikkara bypolls. The unity in the party should also be maintained.

The central committee also decided to convene the CPM plenum from December 27-30 at Kolkata to discuss organizational problems.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Couple dies in accident

KOOTHATTUKKULAM: A couple was killed after a lorry struck their bike at Ambalamkunnil near Koothattukkulam. The couple has been identified as Joseph (55) and Elsy (50) of Mangalathuthazhathu Veettil.

Permanent police security for TP’s memorial

VADAKARA: A five-member team will probe the incident where the memorial of TP Chandrasekharan was damaged in Vallikad. Top police officials informed that two cops will permanently watch the memorial.

CCTV cameras will be installed in the premises. The memorial of TP was damaged early Monday morning.

Death at CET: Baiju remanded

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Judicial Magistrate Court in the capital city has remanded Baiju, the main accused in connection with the death of a student of College of Engineering, Thiruvananthapuram, for 14 days.

Thasni Basheer, the student of the college was mowed down by the jeep driven by Baiju.

He told the magistrate that the act was not a deliberate one

Fame of playback singers falling, says K S Chitra

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The fame of playback singers in films are seen falling, said noted singer K S Chitra. Earlier, we used to tell new singers to take singing as profession, but today we cannot say that.

Talking to the media when she came to attend the Onam celebrations of the tourism department, she said many singers are seen coming and going. We are not able to identify the singer by hearing their songs. Malayalam films accept singers of other languages but the singers of Malayalam films are not accepted there. Shreya Ghoshal is a first class singer. Her songs and the recognition she gets cannot be blamed. Along with that chances should be given to our children also.

It is good to move with the flow of music. New generation music and old ones should not be seen separately. As our lifestyles have changed, music is also changing. Our work is over after a song is recorded. We don’t go behind that and ask how that was mixed. Children are getting trained through reality shows. The shooting of all shows is not reality, she said.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Four killed in bus-car collision in Cherthala


CHERTHALA: Four persons were killed after a KSRTC bus fell on top of a car on the national highway at Thiruveezha near Cherthala. The condition of five out of the many injured is stated to be serious. They are admitted at the Alappuzha Medical College Hospital.

The accident happened when the ordinary bus proceeding to Cherthala collided with the car going to Alappuzha. The bus fell on top of the car when it tried to save a motorist while overtaking.

CBSE School State Youth festival in Thrissur

KOCHI: CBSE School State youth festival will be held in Thrissur this time. This will be co-organised by Kerala CBSE school management association and Confederation of Sahodaya Complex. 

A joint meeting held by the organisations on Tuesday decided on the conduction of the  festival.

A meeting will be held on September 13 in Thrissur to form the reception committee.

Union Human Resources minister had earlier declared that Kerala model CBSE festival will be held as 
The steps have also been taken to award recognition to festival winners, who deserve it

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Registration made mandatory for elephants

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court Tuesday ordered making mandatory registration for elephants used in processions and rituals in temples. As per wildlife act, district level monitoring panels’ led by chief wildlife ward should register the elephants, the court said while considering a plea on the procession of elephants in festivals.

The court asked the owners to collect their certificates after completing the registration in six weeks. It should be produced when officials ask for it. The government and the owners should assure that the elephants used in temples are not harassed. The division bench said that if the elephants are found harassed, action would be taken against the guilty.

The state government told the Supreme Court that using of elephants in temple rituals is a tradition followed from times and that it should not be controlled.

Body of youth found abandoned in sea

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The body of a youth was found on the sea shore at Irayimmanthura in Kanjiramkkulam. The youth is yet to be identified. The body was found in a sack with his mouth gagged.

The police suspect it to be a murder.

The youth dressed in black shirt and while pants was in his early 30s. After murdering him, the body is suspected to have dumped in the sea. Some injured marks were seen on his neck. The body was in a decomposed state.

People have crowded the area. A dog squad and finger print experts had reached the spot. The body have been shifted at the medical college hospital for port mortem.

Three held for hacking yuva morcha activist

VALAPPATTANAM: The Valappattanam police Tuesday arrested three persons for hacking a Yuva Morcha activist on the Puthiyatheru Kattamballi Road. The arrested has been identified as Ajinaz (26) Mubarrak (21) and Sujith (22). A police team led by circle inspector is questioning them.

A panchayat level hartal called by BJP-Yuva Morcha panchayat committees in connection with the incident is total. Yuva Morch Azheekode mandalam general secretary M Arjunan (28), seriously injured has been admitted at Kozhikode Medical College Hospital.

Murder of Haneefa: Second accused Shafi, two aides held

THRISSUR: The police Tuesday arrested Shafi, second accused in the Haneefa murder case, from a lodge located on the Malappuram-Thrissur border. Aabid and Saddique, aides of Shafi, were arrested from Shornur railway station.

With this, eight persons have been arrested so far.

Haneefa of Congress ‘A’ was murdered following group squabbles. Mandalam president Gopaprathapan, an ‘I’ group activist, was removed from his post on suspicion.

Local body election can be held in November, Govt tells court

KOCHI:  Local self-governing polls based on renewed ward bifurcation can be held in November, the government has informed the court. The government also submitted that it would be difficult to hold polls as per the war division of 2010.    

The government clarified its stand while the court was hearing the argument on the appeal filed against Single bench order cancelling the ward division. 

“The ward division of 2010 is based on the 2001 census. But there has been proportionate change in population since then. And hence, allow the bifurcation of wards according to 2011 census. If the single bench order is stayed, the polls could be completed within 86 days,” informed the government. 

The government rejected in the court the State election Commissioner’s stand that six months are required to conduct the election. “The Commissioner’s argument is wrong. In 2010, 978 wards were divided in 68 days.  This time 204 wards are going to be divided and for this 51 days are sufficient,” the government said and assured the court that it would recruit 50 additional officers to complete the ward bifurcation early.  

Meanwhile, the Commission has reiterated the stand that it needs 6 months’ time to conduct the election.

Local polls: Interim order on Thursday

KOCHI: A division bench of the Kerala High Court will Thursday pass an interim order on government’s plea seeking a stay on single bench’s order cancelling bifurcation of wards before the local body polls.

The government had informed the court that only 86 days are enough to conduct the polls if the order of the bench is stayed. A bench led by Chief Justice Ashok Bhooshan said the argument on government’s plea will continue on September 3.

Meantime, the division bench said the court is not intervening in election commission’s authority to conduct the polls. Whatever be the interim order, it will not affect the commission’s functioning. At what time the polls should be held is the constitutional obligation of the commission, the court pointed.  If anybody intervenes on it then can approach the court, the division bench said. 

Rumours over ward division shows League in bad light: KPA Majeed

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Muslim League General Secretary K P A Majeed has said that certain persons and newspapers are trying to spread the rumour that the panchayat ward division is being done in the sole interest of Muslim League.  

“If the court order regarding local polls is against the government, we shall reveal everything to the public in this regard,” he told media persons.   

Some are spreading the rumours that the League is snatching away all benefits from the government. The League is an ally of the UDF and it has the right to speak out as others in the Front do. After the court order is out, the party will give its reply to the criticism that panchayat ward division is done according to the sole wish of the League

“The Muslim League has not boycotted the signing function of Vizhinjam port construction. Party ministers and other MLAs did not take part in the function as a very important function of the party was going on at that time. The League is not opposed to the contract and the chief minister had invited us to the function,” Majeed added    

Rift between govt and election commission in HC

KOCHI: The rift between the state government and the election commission over the local body polls has turned worse. The election commission Tuesday informed the court that the state government is fully responsible for the delay in conducting the polls. They told the court that it is impossible to conduct the polls after dividing the wards again.  

If the polls are to be held in 2015, the arrangements should have started before three years. The commission had asked the state government to start preparations for the polls from 2012. However, the government never pay heed to it. A commission was entrusted for the division of wards only this May. Division of wards and conducting the polls is impossible again. If polls are held on the basis of bifurcation of wards it will take at least six months. Meantime, the government informed the court that polls can be conducted in 86 days.

Woman catches chain snatcher

KOCHI: A 26-year-old woman caught hold of a chain snatcher who was trying to flee after snatching her chain in Tripunithura on Monday evening. The snatcher was later handed over to the police. The victim was on her way back home when the accused, Sreekumar (26), on his bike approached her in the guise of asking a route. “While she was explaining the route, the accused suddenly snatched her gold chain and tried to flee. She defended and pushed the youth along with his bike,” police explained.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Vigilance’ factual report seeking Mani’s prosecution revealed

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The factual report of the vigilance recommending to prosecute Finance Minister K M Mani in the case of accepting a bribe of Rs one crore to open the closed bars, has been exposed. The report of vigilance SP says that there is proof for Mani accepting bribe. Vigilance director Winson M Paul submitted a report acquitting Mani at the vigilance court when this report existed.  However, when the court directed to produce all documents, this report also reached there.

The report said Mani accepted a total bribe of Rs 25 lakh-- Rs 10 lakh at his house in Pala and 15 lakh at his official residence in the capital city. The report says even though Mani denied meeting bar owners, the latter had accepted it. There are proof for giving money to Mani on March 22 in 2014. The amount collected for Mani in March, April and May months has not been entered in bar hotel association’s register. There is no reply for the question for what purpose the money was collected.

The statement of Ambili, driver of Biju Ramesh, who levelled the allegation against Mani, has been proved right in the lie detector test, conducted on him. The 386-page report said bar association president Rajkumar Unni and bar owner Sreevatsan not appearing for the lie detector test also raised suspicion.

LDF not to cooperate with Vizhinjam project, VS tells Adani

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The LDF will not cooperate with the Vizhinjam harbour project, opposition leader V S Achuthanandan told Gautam Adani, chairman of Adani Ports Company, who reached the capital city to ink the agreement.

The opposition is not against the project, but will not cooperate with it, he told reporters later.  Meantime, Gautam Adani said that it was a formal meeting.

Dallal Kumar with VS
It was T G Nandakumar alias Dallal Kumar who received Gautam Adani at the Cantonment House. Nandakumar was present when the two held talks. VS told reporters that Adani invited Nandakumar. Nandakumar later told reporters that he attended the meet as a friend of Adani. Nandakumar was not willing to divulge more about it.

Deal signed for Vizhinjam harbour project

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The state government has signed the concession agreement for the Vizhinjam harbour project, the dream project of the state. James Varghese, Principal Secretary of Ports signed the agreement on behalf of the government and Santhosh Mahaparta, CEO, Adani Vizhinjam Port Pvt Ltd on behalf of the Adani Group.

The function held at the Durbar Hall in the secretariat was attended by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, Adani Ports Company chairman Gautam Adani, Harbour Minister K Babu, Finance Minister K M Mani, Speaker N Shakthan, MLAs and Adani Group directors. The Left Front boycotted the function in protest against the terms and conditions of the agreement.

An amount of Rs 5552 crore will be spent in the first phase. 3600 crore of the amount is invested from outside the state. The construction of the project will begin on November 1, Kerala Day. The first phase will be completed in two years. The Adani Group announced the outline of the construction of the harbour at the time of signing the agreement. The construction is to be completed in four years.

Youth arrested for 'abusing' nine-yr old girl


KOLLAM: Kottiyam police have arrested the youth who had “sexually abused” a nine-year-old girl, who is also his cousin.

The arrested person has been Ansar (29) a native of Thazhuthala Perayam.

The police version is: When Ansar went to the fourth standard student’s house, her parents were not there but two other boys were there. Ansar sent them with money to buy SIM cards and harassed the girl, taking advantage of the situation.  

Ansar also threatened the girl that he would kill her if she revealed to anyone what he had done to her. The girl who reached the school the next day started behaving in an abnormal manner. Her teacher who grew suspicious of her behaviour, prompted her to speak out her problem, following which she spilled the beans. 

The teacher soon called her parents to the school and informed them about the incident. The parents later lodged a complaint with the police and the girl was admitted to the District hospital for medical test. In the inquiry that followed under Kottiyam SI Fayaz, Ansar was arrested.

PSC will collect verification fee from candidates whose appointments are confirmed


 
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Kerala Public Service Commission, which is facing financial crunch,  has decided to levy verification fee on candidates whose appointment has been confirmed. The PSC meeting held today decided to charge Rs 1000 as verification fee from candidates whose appointment has been confirmed.

The PSC has also instructed the Examination Controller to submit special report on controlling the expenditure for conducting examinations as it is a “costly affair”.

Making recruitments to opted posts will also be temporarily stopped. A huge amount is incurred by the PSC when it conducts examinations before vacancies are reported. This is the reason why recruitments to posts based on choices have been frozen. 
The number of candidates in a class will be increased to 30. At present 20 students are allowed in  a class. The PSC has decided to discard old vehicles in order to curb the expense due to them.    

The meeting also has decided to demand for withdrawing the fee charged on grounds used to conduct physical test for various posts.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Local body polls: CPM to seek people’s opinion

THIRUVANANTAHPURAM: The party will seek opinion from the public on the issues to be discussed during the polls held to local self-governing bodies, said CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan. This is for the first time the CPM is seeking opinion from the public, he said.  

Addressing the media, he said the party will campaign on the party’s political policy. The three-day state committee meet decided to strengthen the functioning of political activities in local self-governing bodies’ ahead of the polls.

The aim is to form a political policy against the BJP and the congress. A manifesto will be released on the things to be done if taken charge in the local polls. A seminar will be organized in panchayat, municipality and corporations. People’s opinion will be sought on the topics of the seminar.

Boxes will be kept in libraries, bus stands and markets to register their opinions. A topic for the seminar will be chosen as per the opinion of each panchayat. The party has also decided to organize an anti-communal seminar on September 12 against the increasing communalism of the country. The congress is trying to obtain majority by bifurcating wards as per their interest. A protest will be staged against it on August 20 in front of local self-governing bodies.

Murder of congress activist: Probe a farce, says Pinarayi

THRISSUR: CPM politburo member Pinarayi Vijayan said the ongoing investigation in the murder of Chavakkad Congress activist A C Haneefa was nothing but a farce. The government is making the probe a farce by tying the hands and legs of the police. Talking to reporters after visiting the house of Haneefa, he said an impartial and honest probe is needed in the case.

He said those who led the murder is walking freely. The congress leadership is protecting the culprits. It was the locals who handed over the accused to the police. The government should entrust an honest team for the probe. Instead of catching the accused, the government is trying to grow anarchism in the state

LDF’s political base not dented in Aruvikkara, says Kodiyeri

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The political base of the Left Front has not been dented in Aruvikkara, said CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan. However, lapses occurred in focusing campaign against the BJP, he said at a press meet.

The UDF and the BJP joined hands to dent the political base of the LDF. The LDF obtained more votes than they attained in the assembly polls in Aruvikkara. The RSP was with the LDF last time and this time with the UDF. Still votes increased, he said.

CPM not against Vizhinjam project, says Kodiyeri

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The CPM is not against the Vizhinjam Harbour Project, said party state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan. The party is opposing the non-transparency in signing the project, Kodiyeri said at the press meet.

The CPM wants the project to be made a reality. Adani Group is spending only 2500 crore in the 7500 crore project. The remaining amount is out of public participation.If that is so, then why the project is not implemented in the public sector. The previous LDF Government under V S Achuthanandan took the initiative for the project. The government had then formed a consortium of 4500 crore.  However, the UPA Government did not give sanction for the project. The BJP gave sanction as it is now helmed by Adani. If it was somebody else, would the BJP government given sanction, asked Kodiyeri.

The LDF is not aware of signing the project and so will not go for the function.The anxiety raised by Archbishop Soosapakyam on the project is true. The CPM will support their strike and if they withdraw from it, then should make clear the reason for it, he said.

Chandy meets Latin Church representatives over Vizhinjam

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy on Saturday held discussions with representatives of the Latin Catholic Church in an effort to assuage their apprehensions over the Vizhinjam project.

The meeting was held at the Chief Minister's residence here.

A Church spokesperson later said that Chandy had given them a patient hearing and they were expecting a 'favourable' response from the government.

The Latin Church had stated that nearly 50,000 fishermen would have to be rehabilitated due to the project and would lose their livelihood once it becomes a reality.

The church wants the government to address the concerns of the fishermen community and has also threatened to launch an indefinite agitation from Aug 17, when the government will be signing a MoU with Adani Vizhinam Ports Ltd, the SPV floated by Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd.

The fishermen have demanded a better rehabilitation package for those getting affected by the deep water seaport and have demanded that government should not go ahead with the project without addressing their issues.

Yesterday Chief Secretary Jiji Thomson had met Archbishop Soosa Pakiyam along with CEO of AVPL, Santosh Kumar Mahopatra.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

24-hr control rooms opened to check spurious liquor flow

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Excise department has opened the control rooms that will function round the clock in order to check the flow of spurious liquor and spirit into the State during Onam season. The control rooms have started functioning in district and Taluk head offices, informs Assistant Commissioner.

The activities in bar hotels, beer and wine parlours, Ayurveda and medical shops and toddy shops will also come under police surveillance.

The department has started special patrolling in border areas and the special enforcement drive will continue till September 9. A shadow team has been formed under Thiruvananthapuram division Excise Inspector.

Assistant Commissioner has requested the public to inform the police about Abkari crimes and sale of illegal drugs.



Control room numbers



District control room: 0471 2473149



Excise Special Squad, Thiruvananthapuram: 0471 2312418

Man dies on his way to vavu bali

ARYANAD:  A person slipped off the staircase from the second storey of his house and fell to death when he was going out to perform vavu bali on Friday. The dead was Ramesh (47) of Kovilvila house. 

The incident happened in the wee hours at around 3 am. Ramesh who was sleeping in second floor of his house fell down when he climbed down the staircase which had no railings.

Though he was  soon taken to the Medical College, he was declared brought dead.

The body was cremated after post-mortem.

 Ramesh ws a carpenter and he is survived wife Sahlini and wards Gokul and Rudra

AG cannot be barred, says SC

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court Friday said they cannot bar Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi from appearing for bar owners in the case against the state government’s liquor policy.

A division bench of Justices Vikramjith Sena and Sivakeerthi Singh said he was not appointed by the court. The advocate of congress MLA T M Prathapan demanded to bar him from appearing for the bar owners.

The AG is centre’s legal expert. The centre appoints legal experts like him and so they can only bar him.  If the appearance is violation of rules, then steps should be taken by the centre, the court said.

Meantime, the Kerala government who opposed AG appearing for the bar owners earlier not opposing it today was noticed.

DGP issues new circular to police

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: DGP T P Senkumar Friday issued a new circular on how to behave with the public at the time of vehicle checking and other times. The circular has asked to address the public respectfully. If the public has done any help to the police then should express gratitude.

If the police has committed any wrong, then they should have the courtesy to say sorry. Abusive and double meaning words should not be used. The police should behave with dignity at the time of vehicle checking. The circular also says vehicles should not be made to wait for a long time.

SC to examine discrimination if any in liquor policy

NEW DELHI:  The Supreme Court Friday said they will examine if there is any discrimination in the liquor policy. The court made the statement when the bar hotel association pointed out that giving bar license to only five star hotels is part of discrimination.  

Government’s act giving bar licence only to five star hotels when denying it to bars of four star status is seen as discrimination. Advocate for bar hotel association informed the court that one policy for standard four star bars and another for five star hotels cannot be accepted at all.

Meantime, advocate of Congress MLA T M Prathapan requested to warn Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi from appearing for bar owners. AG was not in the court at that time. A division bench consisting of Justices Vikramjith Sen and Sivakeerthy Singh said their stand will be informed when the matter is voiced when the AG is present in the court.

Govt likely to explore other options on local body election: Muneer

KOZHIKODE: Minister M K Muneer , who is in charge of Panchayat affairs, has said that the government will think about further action, after coming to know about the court’s response on the government’s appeal regarding local body election. “The   government will explore other options, if the court verdict turns unfavourable to it. We can’t give a clear response unless the verdict is out,” he said.

“I don’t think there is a need for a detailed trial on this issue. The division bench will be examining the Single bench order. Earlier governments have also done ward bifurcation according to their wishes. The government and the election commission are against delaying the election,” Muneer added.    

Flight carrying CM trapped in sky

NEDUMBASSSERY: Heavy fog forced a flight carrying Chief Minister Oommen Chandy to hover over 30 minutes before it landed safely at Nedumbassery, giving some anxious moments. AI466 flight was not able to land at its scheduled time at 6.31 am as there was no clear visibility.

This forced the aircraft to hover in the skies for about 30 minutes and finally touched ground at 7.14 am.Chandy is in the district to attend various programmes.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Elephant poaching case to be handed over to CBI

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The state government will sent a letter seeking a CBI probe in the elephant poaching case.

Presently forest department is probing the case.

The government order on it will be issued today. It is being handed over to the CBI following links with other states.

Govt comes under attack again

KOCHI: The state government on Thursday came under severe criticism from the Kerala High Court. The court criticised them for the delay in implementing their order and said it is like disrespecting them. Justice Alexander Thomas who criticised the government earlier did the same thing today.

The details asked by the government should be given then itself. The Additional chief secretary has been entrusted to reply in writing on the delay. If a reply is not given, then should directly appear in the court on August 20.

Govt comes under attack again

KOCHI: The state government on Thursday came under severe criticism from the Kerala High Court. The court criticised them for the delay in implementing their order and said it is like disrespecting them. Justice Alexander Thomas who criticised the government earlier did the same thing today.

The details asked by the government should be given then itself. The Additional chief secretary has been entrusted to reply in writing on the delay. If a reply is not given, then should directly appear in the court on August 20.

Govt comes under attack again

KOCHI: The state government on Thursday came under severe criticism from the Kerala High Court. The court criticised them for the delay in implementing their order and said it is like disrespecting them. Justice Alexander Thomas who criticised the government earlier did the same thing today.

The details asked by the government should be given then itself. The Additional chief secretary has been entrusted to reply in writing on the delay. If a reply is not given, then should directly appear in the court on August 20.

Govt comes under attack again

KOCHI: The state government on Thursday came under severe criticism from the Kerala High Court. The court criticised them for the delay in implementing their order and said it is like disrespecting them. Justice Alexander Thomas who criticised the government earlier did the same thing today.

The details asked by the government should be given then itself. The Additional chief secretary has been entrusted to reply in writing on the delay. If a reply is not given, tehn should directly appear in the court on August 20.

Woman receives serious head injuries

POTHENCODE: A woman sustained serious head injuries after a crane losing control damaged their house and shop. The incident happened at Shanthi Nagar in Kulathur Thursday morning. The woman has been identified as Vilasini (62).

The crane taken on rent by the KSEB lost control and damaged the house and stationery shop situated near the Karuna Complex. Vilasini was sitting in the shop adjacent to her house. Two electric posts, a zen car and an auto were also damaged. The crane was going to Chakkai via Kazhakoottam.

The driver has been taken to the Thumba police station. Power supply has been partially disrupted in Shanthi Nagar. Injured Vilasini has been admitted in a private hospital.

Guilty would be brought to book, says Chennithala

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: None of the accused in the murder case of A C Haneefa will be allowed to escape, said Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala.  If anyone is found guilty, he would be definitely brought to book. Nobody will protect them. All the accused will be brought before law, he said.

Chennithala said there is nothing wrong in handing over one of the main accused to the police. The accused surrendered due to pressure from police and no lapses were noticed in the probe, he said.

Sudheeran has taken revenge on me, says Gopaprathapan

THRISSUR: By ousting me from the party in connection with the murder of Chavakkad Congress leader A C Haneefa, KPCC chief V M Sudheeran has taken revenge on me, said Guruvayur mandalam president Gopaprathapan. Talking to the media, he said the revenge is for criticizing Sudheeran for contesting the polls in 2009.

Sudheeran had written to Sonia that he will not be contesting again and when he decided to contest the polls again, I criticized him and was under suspension for six years. When a case was filed again, he is punishing me. Action was taken against me after appointing a single commission before the police filed an FIR.

Camera for all check posts sought

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Vigilance director sought installation of cameras in all check posts of the state. The camera is for capturing the money dealings seen in check posts.

He sought installation of install cameras following allegations of bribe by the officials in the check posts.

Muslim League is the chief minister now: VS

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan has alleged that the Congress  has surrendered its power to rule the State to the Muslim League. “When a majority of Congressmen was against the postponement of local body polls, the government has gone in appeal against the HC’s order to cancel the Panchayat formation. This shows Muslim League is ruling the State,” VS said.  

“The Election commission had decided to conduct election taking cue from 2010 situation. Only by following that practice, new local self-governing bodies will come into existence as per the constitutional obligation. The State Election Commissioner is also of the stand that they can’t go back on that stand. The chief minister also says that he agrees to the Election Commission’s decision. If he says that with sincerity, he and his friends should help the commission conduct election within the specified time,” VS said.      

Murder of Haneefa: Main accused taken into custody

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The locals handed over one of the main accused in the murder case of A C Haneefa, a congress activist in Chavakkad, to the police. The main accused identified as Anzar was nabbed from his own house in Puthenkadappuram. The police was in search of him for the past five days. Afzal and Shameer were nabbed earlier.

Meantime, Chavakkad circle inspector Abdul Muneer, a member of the special investigating team in the murder case, has been transferred. The family of Haneefa had requested to remove him from the team. Guruvayur circle inspector K Sudarshan has also been transferred.

Following group squabbles, a seven member team stabbed Haneefa (42), an ‘A’ group activist, to death in front of his house on August 7. Haneefa was with his mother at the time of the incident.

Actor Archana Kavi is going to get married

MUMBAI: Actor Archana Kavi is going to get married. Abeesh Mathew who earned fame through Solo comedy stage shows is the bridegroom. Her relatives hinted that the marriage would happen in January.

Like Archana, Abheesh was also born and brought up in New Delhi. Abheesh who started his career as radio jockey became famous through comedy shows. He also shined as singer and actor. He even acted in certain Bollywood films. He is living in Mumbai and he has long friendly relationship with Archana.

Their plan is to hold engagement in December and marriage in January. However their family members are keeping the marriage details under wraps.

Karkkidaka vavu tomorrow


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: All arrangements have been made in the State for balitharppanam (offerings made to forefathers) on Friday, being karkkidaka vavu.

The bali will be performed from early morning 3 to 10 am at places such as Varkala Papanasam, Thiruvallam, Kollam Thirumullavaram, Aluva manalpuram, Thirunelli and Thirunavaya.

On the occasion, KSRTC will run special services to these centres from early morning.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

SFI march turns violent in capital city

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A march staged by the SFI turned violent in the capital city. The march was staged by the SFI for sabotaging spot admission of government colleges. The activists who entered the secretariat were arrested and removed from the site.

The march which started at 11.30 am was stopped by the police with barricades near the secretariat. The police used water cannons and tear gas when they tried to topple the barricades.

The clash turned violent when the police tried to prevent the students from entering the secretariat. The situation was later calmed with the intervention of V Sivankutty MLA. Three injured activists have been admitted in the hospital.

IG Jose has copied, says report

KOCHI: The report of the sub-panel entrusted by M G University syndicate has stated that IG T J Jose has copied in the LLM exam. The report submitted to pro vice chancellor Sheena Shukoor has mentioned that Jose left the hall without giving the paper used for copying to the invigilator. Further steps will be taken after holding talks with the vice chancellor and the syndicate, said Sheena. The panel can recommend for a ban on Jose for three years after he was found copying.

Jose was found copying for the LLM exam held at the St Paul’s College in Kalamassery on May 5. He used small pieces of photostat copies for copying.

When he was caught for copying, he left the hall without giving the piece to the invigilator. Five judicial officers who wrote the exam with the IG had given statement against him.

Corruption in national games: CM, sports minister exempted

KOCHI: The Kerala High Court Wednesday exempted chief minister and sports ministers, who had been made opposite parties in the case in connection with the corruption in conducting the 35th National Games in the state.

A petition filed by CPM MLA V Sivankutty seeking a CBI probe had asked to make the two opposite parties in the case.

Accused in idol theft case held in capital city

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM/KOLLAM: The police Wednesday took into custody the main accused in connection with the theft of panchaloha idol worth crore from the  Anandavalleeswaram temple in Kollam coming under the devaswom board.  He was arrested from his rented house at Pothencode in the capital city. The person taken into custody has been identified as Shyam Kumar alias Sanal Kumar (40) of Balaramapuram.

The police recovered an idol from his house kept for sale. He was taken into custody by the special squad of Kollam city police commissioner with the help of Pothencode police. Police have intensified search for his close aide. Shyam involved in many theft cases in Kollam was released from Kollam district jail a few months before.

Smoke in Inter City triggers panic

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Tension gripped passengers travelling in the Inter City Express coming from Guruvayur to Thiruvananthapuram after smoke emanated from a bogie. The passengers ran to safety thinking the train would catch fire. The incident happened Wednesday morning when the train reached Kazhakoottam railway station. The train resumed service after examining the snag.

Passengers of the train which started from Guruvayur at 3.30 am this morning pulled the chain soon after the train left Varkala station on suspicion that a youth fell into the railway track. When the train started after stopping at Murukkumpuzha and was about to reach Kazhakoottam station, fire was seen emanating from the fourth bogie.

When the train stopped at Kazhakoottam station, the passengers of the bogie panicked seeing the fire. In the examination conducted by the railway officials, it was a technical snag found in the breaking system. If a snag is seen in the breaking system, first a burning smell and then smoke will emanate.  After halting for 15 minutes, the train resumed its journey.

Appropriate climate needed for completion of Vizhinjam project: Minister Babu

THIRVANANTHAPURAM: For the completion of the Vizhinjam project the right socio-political climate should prevail, Port Minister K Babu has said. He was making the presidential address at the seminar titled 'Vizhinjam harbour and Kerala Development', organised by Kerala Kaumudi at the Thiruvananthapuram press Club on Tuesday.

"Vizhinjam project is a dream project and government has worked systematically to make the dream come true. Media including Kerala Kaumudi have supported the project," the minister said.

He said though Vizhinjam was touted to be a 'gold mine' that would benefit private enterprises, no one came forward to submit the tender. Later the chief minister virtually wooed the bidders and sought a way out to make the project a reality. From 2010 all moves regarding the project were made in an orderly and transparent manner. Of that the most important was environmental studies conducted. Now the project would be implemented with the consent of all allies," he added.

Innocent to seek treatment in America

IRINJALAKKUDA: Actor and politician Innocent MP will be flying to America for expert treatment.

He who is undergoing chemotherapy in Delhi AIIMS is going to America as per the advice of his doctor relative.

His wife will also accompany him.

The actor has started paperwork for seeking medical treatment in America. He would be trying to reach America before his next chemo schedule.

Innocent was afflicted with cancer three years ago. He survived it and even contested LS polls to win the election. As symptoms appeared again he underwent a surgery in March. Though he had then resumed his public life, in July he was again detected with symptoms of cancer inside his nose.

Onam markets not to be affected, says Chandy

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said that there is no such situation that the functioning of Onam Markets would be affected in the name of financial crisis faced by the Consumerfed. The amount required by consumerfed has been given. Apart from that, permission has been given to take a loan of 150 crore in government’s guarantee. Even after giving government’s guarantee, they were not able to achieve that amount.

When asked on the complaint that the accused in elephant poaching case was harassed cruelly, he said the government is against custodial death.Strict steps will be taken if a complaint is lodged, he said.

The cabinet decided to sanction the required financial help to actor Innocent going abroad for cancer treatment.  As an MP, he is eligible for the benefit. Any kind of help would be provided to him, he said.

Law to regulate food prices in hotels in next Assembly session: Anoop Jacob

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Food minister Anoop Jacob has said that in the next Assembly session, bill to regulate food prices in hotels will be introduced. 

There will be no compromise in that. The next Assembly session will happen in December. Going by the minister’s words, the law to rein in uncontrollable prices of hotel food will come into effect soon. 

The minister in an exclusive chat with Kerala Kaumudi said that cabinet will meet before the Assembly session and give approval to the bill 

The introduction of the bill is a long-awaited thing and for the past four years, people have been expecting it.  The high court had also observed that the government should make law to regulate the uncontrollable pirces of hotel foods.  There have also been attempt to trap it in red-tapes. Many with ulterior motives thought that the bill will not see the light. However the minister’s revelation came when Kerala Kaumudi prodded the minister.   

Light Metro: CM to meet union minister for sanction

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy will meet Union Minister for Urban Development Venkiah Naidu seeking sanction for Kozhikode and Thiruvananthapuram Light Metro Rail Projects. Chief Minister along with Public Works Minister V K Ibrahim Kunju will go to Delhi for it.

Briefing reporters after the weekly cabinet meet, Chandy said the government would go ahead with land acquisition process for the proposed project. Further steps would be taken after getting sanction from the centre. The same steps taken for Kochi Metro will be followed here also. Further steps for Kochi Metro were taken after getting sanction from the centre.  Changes will have to be made as per the condition suggested by the center.

DMRC looked after the things in connection with the light metro so far and so they will not be kept away from the project, he said. 

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Local polls: League ministers convene meet

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: There is a dispute in the UDF in connection with the local body polls. The Muslim League’s demand that polls should be conducted as per the formation of new wards comes at a time the chief minister will be holding talks with the state election commission today. The League is of the same stand taken earlier. The meet was convened at Minister P K Kunhalikutty’s house. The league ministers will move the court against the high court verdict.  

If League is adamant on the stand that polls should be conducted on the basis of new wards, then things will not move so easily.  Polls cannot be conducted in October. The demand of the League is at a time the chief minister said the polls cannot be delayed.

First Milk ATM in Nilamboor


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The ATM (Any Time  Milk) that dispenses milk anytime round the clock will come up in the State for the first in Nilamboor.

Dairy Development department has given the green signal for the project report submitted by Nilamboor corporation in this regard.

Corporation Chairman Aryadan Shaukath has said that space will be provided at the Corporation bus stand for installing the machine. The project cost is between 10 to 15 lakh.

The milk will be dispensed in accordance with the cash deposited in the ATM. The customer will have to bring a container to receive the milk from the machine.

Pasteurized and chilled milk will be made available through the ATM . If the exact amount for a packet is deposited, the customer will get a packet from the machine.

Dairy cooperative societies are ready to sell the milk for stocking it inside the ATM machine.

The plan is to make the ATM functional by December.   

25 lakh to take part in CPM’s human chain

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: From Manjeshwaram to Thiruvananthapuram Rajbhavan, the CPM will line up about 25 lakh cadres on Tuesday to form human chain in protest against various policies of the State and Central governments. The party is also preparing itself to make the day’s big protest a historical event.

The protest will start at 4 in the evening and the human chain  will extend from Manjeeswaram to National highway and from Angamali through MC road to Rajbhavan. The agitators will face east direction and sit forming human wall. They will stand up at :45 pm and at 4:50 pm will take a pledge before dispersing.   

The organisers has said that sufficient arrangements will be made to allow free flow of traffic. Chairs, paper and tarpaulin have been provided to the participants for building temporary shelters.

Air ambulance ferries organs harvested from brain dead

KOCHI: In the second instance of use of air ambulance in the state to ferry harvested organs, a chartered aircraft was Tuesday used to transport the heart and lungs of a 19-year-old brain dead patient from here to a hospital in Chennai.

A green corridor was created along the more than 30-km stretch of the road from Lakeshore Hospital here to the international airport at nearby Nedumbassery for uninterrupted passage of the ambulance carrying the organs and it covered the distance in just 25 minutes.

The organs were then taken onboard a chartered aircraft of a private airline, which has been converted into an air ambulance, hospital authorities said.

The organs, harvested in a four-hour long surgery at the Lakeshore Hospital, would be transplanted in patients at the Fortis Malar Hospital in Chennai, they said.

H Pranav, injured in a bike accident on Sunday in Alappuzha, was declared brain dead at Lakeshore Hospital, where he was admitted after initial treatment at a government hospital, and his family gave consent for donating his organs.

It was only last month that an air ambulance -- a Naval aircraft -- was used for the first time in Kerala to transport a heart harvested from a brain dead patient in Thiruvananthapuram for a recipient in Kochi.

Cadaver donation is steadily catching up in Kerala with vital organs of 138 brain dead persons having been harvested and transplanted in needy patients in the last four years.

This year, the number of donors has already crossed the 36 mark as of now and it is expected to go up to around 70 in the coming months.

Don’t extend local body poll date: KPCC-govt co-ordination committee

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: KPCC-government co-ordination committee has decided not to extend the date of local self-governing body polls. The meeting also assigned the chief minister to decide on going for appeal against the high court’s order cancelling the formation of new corporations and panchayats The chief minister has been asked to take necessary steps after holding discussions with UDF allies and legal experts.      

An opinion that came up in the meeting was that the government need not oppose conducting polls like in 2010, in case the polls are not held on the basis of ward bifurcation.   

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has said in the meeting that the party should ensure that there are no arguments in the UDF over war bifurcation. He also asked the Congress members to avoid any kind of estrangement with the Muslim League. “Keep them posted with party decisions. Any friction with them is not good,” Chandy warned.  

Murder of Congress activist due to political enmity, says FIR

THRISSUR: The FIR of the police said Haneefa, a congress activist of Chavakkad, was murdered due to political enmity. The group squabbles in the congress ended in the murder, the FIR said.  Haneefa’s mother, a key witness told police that Shameer, arrested in the case, killed her son. Afzal and Fazalu Anzar helped Shameer in committing the crime, the FIR said.

The police had earlier stated that the connection with the drug mafia is behind the murder. Haneefa, ‘I’ group leader was stabbed to death last Friday night. Shameer was taken into custody the next day itself. Party Guruvayur block president Gopaprathapan was suspended from the party for helping the accused to commit the crime.

Auto driver dies in accident

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A 32-year-old-youth was killed when a pick-up van struck his auto last night at Muttathara. He has been identified as Muthukrishnan of Karamana. The Tamil Nadu registration pick up proceeding to the airport from Kovalam struck the auto while crossing the road.

Several injured in bus-lorry collision

KALPETTA: Several persons were injured after a KSRTC bus and a lorry collided at Vythiri Tuesday morning. The bus proceeding to Kozhikode from Mysore collided with the lorry going to Mysore from Kozhikode.

The condition of eight persons including the drivers of the two vehicles are serious. The lorry driver was taken out of the vehicle after breaking open the door.  Many of the passengers sustained head injuries.

The seriously injured has been taken to the medical college hospital and the remaining at Vythiri Govt Hospital.

NCC cadet kills self in Kozhikode

KOZHIKODE: A NCC cadet has allegedly committed suicide by shooting himself in the midst of training. He has been identified as Dhanush (19), a native of Kollam and a student of St Stephens College in Pathanamthitta. The incident happened Tuesday afternoon at 1.30 pm. Though he was admitted at a private hospital, his life could not be saved.

Meantime, authorities said he shot himself. An investigation is on.