Wednesday, August 31, 2016

FIR against Mani for giving illegal tax concessions

KOCHI: The vigilance has filed another FIR against former finance minister K M Mani facing further probe in the bar bribery case. The fresh FIR was filed for granting tax relaxations to a poultry company.   

The FIR against him is for giving illegal tax concessions for an Ayurvedic cosmetic company and for waiving a fine of Rs 64 crore imposed by the sales tax department on Thomson Group, a poultry import company in Thrissur. The FIR was filed at the Moovattupuzha Vigilance Court after recording Mani’s statement at his daughter’s residence.

Vigilance director had ordered a quick verification against Mani in July on the complaint of advocate Noble Mathew, a former Kerala Congress leader and a BJP state panel member now. A case was registered after a probe conducted found the allegation to be true. Apart from Mani, his former additional secretary Jayachandran and two companies have been made accused.

In his statement, Noble had mentioned that Mani obtained an amount of Rs 15.5 crore as bribe for these two dealings. The special investigating team of the sales tax department had found that Thomson Group had evaded tax and so imposed a fine of Rs 64 crore on them. Though they approached the Supreme Court against it, their plea was rejected.  Mani later appointed a deputy commissioner to waive the tax for them. Noble had stated that Mani accepted a fine of Rs 50 lakh for it.

A 12.5% tax was imposed on Ayurveda cosmetic products during the tenure of the previous government. Though some companies approached the court against it, a favourable verdict was not obtained. However in the 2012 budget, he reduced tax by 5% with effect from 2009 and 4% in 2014. The concessions cost Rs 150 crore loss to the government, Noble’s statement said.

Don’t obstruct people going to work on strike day: Justice J B Koshy

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Human Rights Commission Justice J B Koshy has said employees going to work during September 2 strike day should be given protection by the government. The government should make necessary arrangements so that those who are willing to work are not inconvenienced.

“People have the legal right to strike work but it is not their fundamental right. Doing a work is their fundamental right and hence no one can prevent a person from working,” he said at a press conference here on Wednesday.

“We have to consider the fact that daily wage employees and those under probation can’t afford to strike work. In the name of hartal and strike, antisocial elements destroy public properties. In that case, the government should compensate; it should compensate damages caused to private properties also. The amount for this should be collected from the ‘destructors’. There is a Supreme Court ruling that not allowing employees to work is an offence. If the government doesn’t intervene in this case wilfully, the judiciary will have to..,” he said.
After his five year term as Human Rights Commission chief, Koshy will retire on September 4. He said he had disposed of 54000 cases over his five-year tenure.

Senior CPM leader V V Dakshinamoorthy dies

KOZHIKODE: CPM State Secretariat member and former Deshabhimani Chief Editor V V Dakshinamoorthy (82) passed away on Wednesday. The end came at Kozhikode Cooperative hospital, where he was under treatment for lung cancer. Earlier he had been under treatment in Kozhikode PVS hospital and MIMS. Though he came back to his house at Palery, he was admitted to Cooperative hospital as his condition started worsening.

A native of Palery near Perambra in Kozhikode, he was born in 1934 at Panakkat. For 19 years, he had been Deshabhimani Kozhikode unit manager. He was elected to Assembly from Perambra in 1965, 67 and 80.

From 1980-82, he had been CPM Assembly whip. He was Malabar Devaswom Employees Union (CITU) State president at the time of death. For a long time he had been Calicut University Syndicate member.

He joined Communist party in 1950 when he was 16. For 26 years he worked as school teacher and in 1982, he retired from Vadakkumbadu high school.

In the same year, he became CPM State committee member. Then he worked as Kozhikode district secretary for some time. During emergency period he served jail term for 16 months.

Retired teacher T M Nalini is his wife.

President Pranab Mukherjee to attend special Onam programme 'Kairali' on Sept. 3

NEW DELHI: President Pranab Mukherjee will attend a special Onam Programme called Kairali on September 3 at the Rashtrapati Bhavan.

The programme organized by the Government of Kerala will comprise of an ensemble of music and dance forms of Kerala such as Vadyam, Mohiniattam and Kathakali as well as a specially choreographed show portraying the Onam festival and the heritage of the State, which will include cultural forms such as Oppana, Mayura Nritham, Theyyam, Kalari, Kerala Natanam, Thiruvathira, and Margam Kali.

Vice President Mohd. Hamid Ansari, Governor of Kerala, Justice P. Sathasivam, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Union Ministers are expected to attend the event.

The people of Kerala will celebrate Onam on September 13th and 14th this year.

Bar owners took money to change statements in bar case

KOTTAYAM: Bar owners’ took money and benefits to change statements in the bar case, alleged controversial industrialist V M Radhakrishnan. The money collected in the name of legal fund was handed over as bribe. Radhakrishnan gave this statement on the complaint regarding the irregularities in the bar hotel association which is before the Kottayam district registrar.

An amount of Rs 250,000 each was collected from the hands of each bar owner. The association later decided to give this amount to politicians to get the bar license. Apart from misusing the collected money, some from the association accepted the benefits also. A report after auditing the accounts of the association was not given, he said. 

Govt raises limit for bonus of govt employees

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The cabinet has taken a decision raising the limit for bonus of government employees. Those having salary upto Rs 21,000 will get bonus. Earlier, bonus was given to employees having salary till Rs 18,000.

Meantime, limit for the bonus amount and festival allowance have not been increased. Current bonus is Rs 3500.

The cabinet decided to increase the festival allowance of anganwadi workers from Rs 1000 to 1100. The cabinet also decided to create new posts in health and social welfare departments.

The cabinet decided to appoint 44 government senior pleaders.

A group in CPM leaving Communism to join Criminalism, says Sudheeran

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: KPCC president V M Sudheeran has remarked that a group of people in CPM have left Communism and taken to Criminalism. At a press conference, he said that group had been converted to criminals.  

“In Kerala, law and order situation has gone haywire. Atrocities towards Dalits are on the rise. Congress activists are attacked. Under Pinarayi’s rule, CPM activists are getting justice, leave alone Congress activists’ case,” he said.

Nod for Aranmula Airport cancelled, govt informs HC

KOCHI: The government Wednesday informed the Kerala High Court that permission for the proposed airport in Aranmula has been cancelled. The government has also stated that the order announcing the area for the airport as industrial sector has also been annulled.

A full permission was not given for the project. Nod was given only in principle and the government had cancelled it now. They informed the court that the permission is being cancelled following stiff protests from the public.

Permission was given during the tenure of the previous UDF Government. Following that, the project promoters KGS Group approached the union forests and environment ministry and produced a plea for a study on the environment. Though environmental clearance was obtained, the national green tribunal cancelled the permission pointing that Enviro Care who conducted an impact study has not sufficient eligibility. The Supreme Court too upheld it.

The KGS Group had spent more than 420 crore for the project estimated at Rs 2000 crore. They have so far acquired 500 acres for the project.

Former acting chief justice G Rajashekaran dies

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: G Rajashekaran, former acting chief justice of the Kerala High Court, died here last night. He was 80. He died at his house in Manacaud in the capital city. He, who started his career as a munsif in 1969, was the first Keralite to become the acting chief justice of the high court. He retired from the high court in 1999.

He leaves behind his wife Shantha, sister of former congress leader Kaviyad Divakara Panicker, children Anima and Avinash Praveen and son-in-law Jayadevan. phone 9895011555

Fire at plywood factory

KOLENCHERRY: A fire that broke out at a plywood company in Kummanod near Pattimattom in Ernakulam has been engulfed in flames. Goods worth lakh have been destroyed. The company, boiler including the stocking yard at the Kemi Plywood Company located in four cents at Kummanod have been completely gutted in the fire. The fire broke early Wednesday morning at 4.45 am. Employees staying in the quarters adjacent to the company saw the fire first. They soon informed the fire force at Pattimattom. Though a fire engine from the unit having a single vehicle reached the spot, they were not able to douse the fire.

A major tragedy was averted after fire engines from Aluva, Moovattupuzha and Perumbavoor controlled the fire. Initial reports say short circuit from the boiling unit may have caused the fire.

Vigilace and anti-corruption bureau raid at residences of SIDCO former MD

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A raid is being conducted by the vigilance and anti-corruption bureau at the houses of SIDCO former MD Saji Basheer in connection with amassment of wealth disproportionate to his known sources of income. The raid led by special cell SP Rajendran started soon after a first information report was produced in the court by Thiruvananthapuram vigilance special unit alleging that he amassed Rs 25 lakh when he was the head of government’s public sector undertakings.

The raids which started at 7 am Wednesday morning were held at his house in Mannamoola, Peroorkada, his flat in Vattiyoorkavu, family house in Chozhiyakod and his wife’s house in Manacaud at the same time. A complaint was lodged against him after he was found to have amassed wealth of Rs 23 lakh disproportionate to his known sources of income during 2008-2015 while serving as the managing director of SIDCO and Kerala Industrial Enterprises.

The vigilance was able to recover many documents and evidences in connection with the amassment of wealth. Saji Basheer, his wife and child were at home at the time of the raid. The special cell registered an FIR against him again at a time when a probe against him in six cases was continuing over the corruption and irregularities noticed in the appointments when he was holding the top posts.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Govt issues order restricting Onam celebrations at office hours

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The government has issued an order restricting Onam celebration at government offices during office hours. The government staff will have to reschedule their celebration dates so as to avoid working hours getting affected by it.

The Principal Secretary has asked top officers in respective departments to ensure that Atthapookoolam laying function and other celebrations  are not held during office hours.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijyan had recently asked the government staff not to celebrate Onam during office hours. “In September, there will be long duration of holidays and the staff should try their maximum to avoid                     inconvenience to the people who reach the Secretariat, seeking their service,” he had said.

I’ll light lamp again, if need be: G Sudhakaran

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Minister G Sudhakaran has said if it is necessary, he will light lamps at functions he attends. But there is no change in his stand on lighting lamp. “I had made the comment on lighting lamp as part of spreading a viewpoint. That doesn’t mean I shall never light a lamp. I was not talking about functions in our homes. What I tried to convey was lighting of lamp need not be mandatory at government functions,” he said.  

The minister said there is no such tradition in administration. In the article written by EMS 50 years ago also, this was mentioned. At a government function, C H Muhammed Koya said he would not light lamp and EMS supported that.

“My opinion was well-received by people. T Padmanabhan congratulated me. My 87-year-old mother lights lamp even today. When I won election from Kayamkulam, my mother went to Ochira and brought a pot of water from there and poured over my head… In Muthukulam I made that comment while speaking at a function against casteism. I said that with the intention of fostering secularism in children. The controversy was made to create the impression that Sudhakaran is a controversial person,” he explained.

Yoga & meditation good for an individual, says Ansari

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM:  Vice President M Hamid Ansari Tuesday said Yoga, meditation, spirituality and praying have a positive effect on the overall well-being of an individual.

Speaking at the inauguration of the 90th birthday celebrations of Navajyothi Sree Karunakara Guru at Shanthigiri Ashram in nearby Pothencode, he said there were several examples of how some people overcame trauma such as abduction, war and imprisonment by seeking comfort in spirituality.

"Spirituality can force one to evaluate his or her life and gradually change it for the better", Ansari said.

Referring to Yoga, Ansari said the systematic practice of Yoga has been found to reduce stress, decrease depression and anxiety, regulate blood pressure and increase feelings of well-being.

Similarly, meditation can induce feelings of calm as well as improve concentration and attention, he said.

"Some researchers have reported that meditation increases the brain's neural activity, which can reduce sensitivity to pain, enhance one's immune system, regulate difficult emotions and relieve stress," he said.

With regard to praying, Ansari said, "It may also elicit a relaxation response, along with feelings of hope, gratitude and compassion, all of which have a positive effect on overall wellbeing of the individual, and by extensions, the society".

Governor Justice (retd) P Sathasivam, Minister K Raju, Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman P J Kurian were among those present on the occasion.

Swami Gururethnam Jnana Thapaswi, organising secretary of Shanthigiri Ashram welcomed the Vice President and other dignitaries.

Thiruvananthapuram-Chennai Mail jumps signal

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Thiruvananthapuram-Chennai mail today jumped the signal and ran on the track for about one hour. The train moved from Kollam to Ochira.

The loco pilot was subjected to medical examination after doubts were raised that he was drunk. For more than one hour , the train has been halted.

The train had reached Kollam at around 6:20 pm and when the train left the station at 6:25 pm, it had not received the green signal. After running for an hour, it was made to halt at Ochira. The passengers got out of the train and protested.

Suicide attempt by dalit: Case against Shamseer and Divya

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes Commission Tuesday registered a case against Thalassery MLA A N Shamseer and Kannur district panchayat vice president P P Divya in connection with the suicide attempt by a dalit girl in Thalassery. Chairman P N Vijaya Kumar has asked both to appear on September 27 and give an explanation. The police had earlier registered a case against the two.

The girl had stated that she took the extreme step following the allegations of the two. She attempted suicide by consuming sleeping pills. Relatives alleged that Anjana was driven to suicide by a CPM leader’s comment on a TV channel calling the sisters a public nuisance. The two sisters were arrested following the complaint of the CPM. She took the extreme step after released on bail.

Left Front sweeps police association election

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The LDF has swept the police officers association election, the lone organisation of officers from assistant sub inspector levels to circle inspector.  Left candidates did not have any opponents in 28 police districts. Meantime, the selection of grade ASI C R Biju, an accused in corruption case, as the association’s general secretary has led to protests in the force. Circle inspector D K Prithviraj of Thampanoor station is the president.   

The office bearers of the organisation were decided at the meet led by CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan at the AKG Centre last week. This decision was approved at the polls held in the police training college today. 11 representatives each from 28 police districts voted at the organisational polls. V Shaji (SI, Thiruvananthapuram rural), K P Bhaskaran (SI, Kozhikode rural) and K G Prakash Kumar (ASI, Kannur) are the vice presidents.

R Prashanth (SI, Thiruvananthapuram Devaswom Vigilance), Premji K Nair (ASI, Kottayam), P Babu (ASI, KAP 4) are joint secretaries and KS Ouseph (ASI, Idukki) is the treasurer.

Speed regulation for trains plying Ernakulam-Shoranur route

KOCHI: Following the derailment of Thiruvananthapuram-Mangalapuram Express train at Karukutty, the Railway’s Chief Safety Officer has given instructions to the station masters of several stations to reduce the speed of the train at 15 places.  The speed limit has been set at 30 km/hr at these places where the rail tracks are not in good condition.  

The Railways has also started steps to remove tracks with repair works and re-lay new ones. In the wake of the accident, Railway Engineering department had pointed out that more tracks with complaints still existed and instructions were given to stations masters to change the faulty tracks.  

Meanwhile, the meeting of the expert committee probing Karukutty mishap is progressing in Ernakulam South Railway Station. The statements of pilots, guards and engineers are being recorded by the four-member committee chaired by South Railways Chief Security Officer. They are also perusing related documents. The detailed report will be submitted within a week.  

Meanwhile, allegations have been raised against certain top railway officials that they had neglected the warning given by officials regarding the fissure on the track at the accident spot. But shortage of new railway tracks was pointed out as the reason for their inaction.

Chandy blames govt for not moving court in self-financing issue

KOTTAYAM: Why didn’t the government move the court against the high court verdict if the decision taken in self-financing medical admissions is right, asked former chief minister Oommen Chandy. The government has taken steps helping the management in self-financing issue, blamed Chandy while inaugurating the collectorate dharna staged all over the state against the anti-people stance of the central and state governments.

The people is fed up with the price rise. Even after assuming power fighting against inflation, they did not take any steps to curb it. The education minister is still not aware that even after Onam exams have started, text books have not been distributed.

This is the first agitational programme after Mani Group left UDF. However it was noticed with the participation of the public. UDF leaders had specially taken care to make the programme a grand success by involving small allied parties, he said.

Charge sheet filed against son for killing father at Chenganur

CHENGANUR: The police have filed charge sheet against Sherin John for killing his US settled father Joy V John and then chopping his body into pieces and dumping them at different places.

The 150-page charge sheet was filed in the Chenganur first class judicial magistrate court on the 88th day of the arrest of the accused. He has been charged with murder, destruction of evidence and possessing weapons. 98 persons have been made witnesses from the 340 questioned. 152 documents were also produced in the court. Six persons gave their secret statements before the magistrate, said DySP K R Sivasuthan Pillai.

Among the things produced in the court include the tab which captured the murdered clippings, mobile phone, call details, hard disc containing the clippings of the CCTV.

On May 25, the father and son had a heated argument apparently over rent collected from one of their buildings. The fight happened during their journey back from Thiruvananthapuram after getting their car’s air-conditioner repaired, said police.

Sherin, according to the police, then used his father’s gun to fire four rounds at him.

The incident took place at a desolate place in Mulakkuzha.

Sherin later cut the body into pieces, packed them in bags and threw them away at various places during the night.

Joy later called up his mother Mariyamma and told her that his father was killed in an accidental firing and sought an apology. Mariyamma then informed the police, who tracked him down to a hotel in Kottayam on May 27.

The police claimed that since childhood, Sherin had a strained relationship with his father, who was not willing to part with his property to help him out. John, they added, had a good relation with his two other children, both medical professionals.

Attempt to create rift between CPM and CPI, says Kodiyeri

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan intervenes in the verbal spat between M Swaraj and the CPI. In his Facebook post, he said the CPM and the CPI are working unitedly and the result for this unity was witnessed in the recent assembly polls.

The situation at present is to work more unitedly. Some centres are trying to create a rift between the two. Everyone will understand why this is for. If there are any differences of opinion between the two, there is a situation to sort it out. There is no need to air it openly.  

Opportunistic stand is not beneficial for the growth of the Left Front and it is understood from the incident which happened after the split of the communist party in 1964. The CPI now accepts the stand supporting emergency at that time was not right. There are no issues between the party in the all India and state levels. An attempt by vested interests are trying to create rift between the two. However, the CPM is not willing for it, he said.

Theft bid at Perumbavoor

KOCHI: There was an attempt to loot the ATM counter of South Indian Bank at Vengola in Perumbavoor. No cash has been lost. The incident happened early Tuesday morning at the ATM Machine situated at the canal bund road in Vengola. There was no guard at the ATM. The burglars left the place when the siren started ringing.

When the siren was received at the bank head office, they informed the police. A man with a covered face was seen in the camera. He tried to break the ATM machine using an iron rod. The police and forensic finger print experts have reached the spot. A migrant is suspected to be behind the incident.

If CPM feels anti-Hindu stand is secularism, they will have to repent in future: Kummanam

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: BJP State chief Kummanam Rajasekharan has said if the CPM thinks that their anti-Hindu stand will create an impression that the party is secular, it will have to repent for it later.  

In his Facebook page, Kummanan says CPM has celebrated Sree Krishna Jayanti and Chattampi Swami Jayanti simultaneously and at the same time declared that there was no need for prayers. CPM State Secretary came up with the instruction that one need to celebrate Sreekrishna Jayanthi only in temples. Then what was the need for the CPM to hold processions?

Kummanam alleges that ministers and leaders were involved in unnecessary controversies to hide the failures of the LDF government. The government has not been able to make available text books in classrooms in Kerala even months after the school reopened. The government has almost come to a standstill.

M Swaraj comes down heavily on CPI

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: CPM MLA M Swaraj has come down heavily on the CPI for the article published in their mouthpiece Janayugam comparing him to a ‘communist donkey who doesn’t know history’.

In his Facebook post, Swaraj said the article reveals the culture of the person who wrote it. I mentioned about the congress flag in the speech delivered at Udayamperur. Why this is upsetting the CPI. ‘What I said and what they heard’, the heading posted in his Facebook asked. All my doubts have been cleared when I heard the name of the reporters who wrote the article against me, he said.  

I did not feel bad as such kind of abuses have hurled against me earlier also. However I haven’t understand about peanut communist. Is eating peanut anti- communist. I like peanuts a lot. I don’t know whether the CPI has passed any resolution on peanuts. I tender an apology if I’ve done anything against it, mocked Swaraj.

Chennithala likens Welfare Schemes to King’s Onam gift: Chennithala

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala has said CPM is giving Welfare pension to people like kings in olden times giving Onam gifts to his subjects.

“The CPM has made the government’s Welfare pension distribution look like a CPM programme. CPM leaders who are Cooperative Society office-bearers gather people and make distribution of Welfare funds a big celebration,” Chennithala said at a press conference held at Cantonment house on Monday.

“There are reports that after distributing welfare pension in the name of Onam gift, leaders are taking back a share from them. Cooperative societies for pension distribution should be chosen through District Cooperative with the permission of Registrars. The present government is not giving pension to anyone other than the beneficiaries during the time of former government,” he said.

Chennithala also criticised Pinarayi for his opinion that Secretariat employees should not lay Atthapookalam during working hours. “His comment tantamount to blatant ridicule of the employees. There is nothing wrong if staff laid Atthapookalam after office hours. It is irony that this is said by a person who calls for strike during Onam seasons,” he said.

RSS turning temples into armoury

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Devaswom Board Minister Kadakampally Surendran has alleged that RSS has been trying to distant believers from temples and convert them into armouries, where training in weapon is also given. On his Facebook page, the minister says he has been receiving many complaints in this regard and the government will take immediate actions in this regard.

“Temples are centres of customary rituals and beliefs. The government will not allow RSS to change them into centres of antisocial activities that disturb the peace and communal harmony. The government will take steps to put an end to such illegal activities,” he says.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Kamal Hassan thanks CM

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Actor Kamal Hassan Monday thanked Kerala  Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan for congratulating the former soon after he was chosen for the French Government’s Chevalier Award.

When someone remarked “How nice of another state's head to lavish you with praise. I interjected "He is not another states CM. He is my state's CM. Ask any film going Malayalee which state I belong to”.

In a letter sent to Kamal Hassan, Pinaryi said Haasan had succeeded in elevating the glory of Indian cinema to new horizons through this honour. “You have been chosen for the prestigious Chevalier Award for placing the Indian cinema on the top of world films through your multi-faceted personality,” he said.

The Chief Minister also said the actor’s humility had been revealed through his act of dedicating the recognition to his fans and well-wishers.

Shankar Reddy an efficient official, says Chennithala

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Vigilance former director Shankar Reddy is an efficient official and I firmly believe that he will not do anything against law, said opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala.

Let further probe in the bar case as directed by the court go on. One cannot believe the opinion of those changing their views always.

 The new revelation of SP Sukesan can be interrupted in any way. There is no change in the stand of the UDF in connection with the role of K M Mani in the bar case. His role was not seen in the two probes conducted, he said.

Medical admission uncertainty continues

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Uncertainty still continues in the admissions to self-financing medical colleges. The first phase of talks held between the government and the managements failed to find a solution. Talks will be held again later. The talks failed as the managements stuck to their stand of unified fees and the government firm in their 50% merit seats.

Meantime, the management representatives have clarified that they are willing to give 50% seats if the unified fee stand is approved.  The management association stated that they still have hope on talks with the government. Some suggestions are acceptable and some others impractical. Both should be ready for a compromise on it. The association has stated that if the government responds favorably then the management is ready for a compromise. 

Girl beaten up for complaining against her stalker

KOCHI: A 16-year-old girl was beaten up badly for complaining against a boy who allegedly went after her, wooing her. The victim is a native of Perumbavoor.

She was attacked by her neighbour Elson and his friends. Police have started inquiry against him.

The girl and her parents lodged a complaint the other day with Kodanad police, after they developed fear for Elson who used to follow her persistently and woo her.   To avenge this act, Elson and his friends barged into the girl’s house, beat her up and caused injuries using blade. All over her body there are blade injury marks. She is under treatment in Perumbavoor Taluk hospital.

At the time of the attack, her parents were not in the house. But at this time the girl’s sister and grandfather was there.

The police said none of them saw Elson attacking the girl. There are allegations that a complaint given earlier by the victim was not considered seriously by the police.

Dr couple’s deranged son dies in accident

KOTTARAKKARA: In a shocking incident, a 24-year-old-youth died after he was fatally knocked down by a lorry while undergoing treatment for mental derangement. He was knocked down after he ran to the road during treatment. He has been identified as Ashwin Abraham (24), son of Dr Abraham Skaria and Dr Shirley Abraham. He died in front of the Kottarakkara taluk hospital at 7 am Monday morning.

Ashwin after undergoing treatment in a private hospital reached home last week.  Ashwin, who lost his balance today was taken to Kottarakkara taluk hospital. The doctor of the psychiatry department here referred him to Thiruvananthapuram Medical College Hospital. He ran to the road while he was being taken to sedate.  Though the employees in the hospital ran after him, a lorry proceeding to Kollam from Punalur knocked him down. Ashwin was a PG graduate.

Train derailment: Way Inspector suspended

KOCHI: The initial investigation into Sunday’s train derailment incident at Karukutty in Angalamy revealed that certain railway official’s flaw was the reason for the mishap. The permanent Way Inspector, who is in charge of minor repair works, was today suspended, pending inquiry.            

The Railways has also ordered a detailed investigation into the incident. After the probe report is obtained the Railways will decide on taking action against more officials, if need be. The probe will be carried out by a team led by top railway officials.

In the examination conducted using Railways OMC machine, there was a fissure on the track. Instead of cutting out that part and welding a new portion to it, nuts were used to tighten it. When the train passed over it, the nuts loosened and the track snapped apart.

Based on the above initial findings, the official in charge of the repair works was suspended. Moreover, the slabs on which tracks were laid were also very old ones and their replacement was found to be due.    

Meanwhile, Ernakulam Railway Police have filed a case over the incident. The primary investigation report will be submitted to Thiruvananthapuram divisional Manager before Tuesday.

The incident in which all passengers in the derailed bogies had a narrow escape, took place on Sunday at around 2:15 am. 13 bogies had derailed.

CPI mouthpiece slams M Swaraj

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: An article harshly criticizing CPM MLA M Swaraj was published in the mouthpiece of the CPI. The article published in Janayugam has called Swaraj a communist donkey who doesn’t know history. The article has asked the Marxist leadership to identify such crooks.

Swaraj had scorned at the flag of the CPI. Fake Marxists who doesn’t know history will say many things. Nobody should forget that CPI’s student wing AISF had wrested control of the union at Patna University. The AISF led by Kanhaiya Kumar wrested power at the JNU in Delhi also. Red flag for them is not a cheap cloth. When the children of Patna have made communism their life theory, Swaraj is unaware of the CPI and communism.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Kerala not being served well by railways:G Sudhakaran

Thiruvanandapuram : The railways are short-changing Kerala while earning handsome revenue from the state, resulting in incidents like sunday's derailment,PWD Minister G Sudhakaran said. 
In a letter to Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu, Sudhakaran expressed concern over the derailment of the Thiruvanandapuram-manglore express in Kerala and said the state had been treated unfairly in provision of infrastructure. 
"Kerala provides the biggest revenue to southern railway. But when it comes to Railway infrastructure, Kerala's need is always ignored" Sudhakaran wrote.
"The quality of the coaches on trains in Kerala is the worst. Then there are no timely repairs and maintenance of the track in the state.All this could be reason for frequent derailment" minister said. 
He sought Prabhu's intervention to see that the situation that caused the derailment was remedied and normal rail traffic was restored at the earliest. The railway should also investigate what caused the derailment, he said.

Big fire at garment shop near Padmanabha Swamy temple

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Fire was spotted in the godown of a garment shop in front of Padmanabha Swamy temple, causing alarm in the area as it comes under high security zone. Firemen are toiling hard to put out the fire.

The fire is said to have spread from an iron box and short-circuit is said to be the reason for the fire. No casualty was reported as the employees were not inside the go down but fire has been raging even after two hours. The fire which broke out at the Richmond uniform housed in Rajadhani buildings at 3 pm started spreading to other shops by 5 pm.

If Mani goes out, Kerala Congress will survive, says PC George

PATHANAMTHITTA: PC George MLA has said if the Kerala Congress (M) has to survive the current bad times, it should expel its chairman K M Mani from the post he is holding.

“Mani will not resign on his own and hence the only way is to expel him from the post,” said George after inaugurating Ayyankali birthday celebrations organised by DHRM.

12 coaches of TVM- Mangalore express derail in Karukutty, none injured

KOCHI: Twelve coaches of Thiruvananthapuram- Mangalore express derailed in the wee hours today near Karukutty station, around 45 kms from here, Southern Railway said.

No casualties were reported in the incident.

The incident took place around 2.30 am when the 16347 express train derailed between Aluva and Karukutty stations in Ernakulam district after leaving from Thiruvanathapuram at 8.40 pm yesterday, a Southern Railway spokesman said.

Following the incident, buses and local trains were arranged to ferry the stranded passengers to Kochi and Thrissur.

Traffic on both the lines of the route is affected due to the derailment and six to 10 hours are expected to complete the repair works of the damaged tracks on Ernakulam-Thrissur route, he said.

Some local trains connecting major stations of Kerala have been cancelled because of the derailment. 

Aslam murder: Main accused under arrest

KOZHIKODE: The main accused in the case related to the murder of Thooneri Youth League activist Aslam was arrested today.   
The arrested person is CPM activist and Nadapuram Vellore native Rameesh. He is the person who allegedly plotted the murder and stalked Aslam, giving directions to the murderers. The deserted car that was used by them to execute the plot was earlier found by the police. Four persons have been arrested till now in connection with the case. CPM worker Nithin alias Kuttu has also been arrested.

Kankai native Kaliyaparambathu Aslam (24) was killed in August 11. He was going towards Naronkunnu from Nadapuram on his scooter to a playground. The gang which followed Aslam in an Innova car knocked him down at the beginning of Vellore road and then hacked him to death.

The attackers came in the car on which a sticker which read Masha Allah was pasted. There were about eight people inside the car, according to reports. It is believed that such a sticker was stuck on the car to mislead the police. 

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Baby bitten by stray dog in Thrissur

THRISSUR: There was an attack by stray dogs in Thrissur again. Three including a six-month old baby was bitten by a dog at Kuthambully. The dog attacked Thara, daughter of Vinod of Chamundi Nagar in Kuthambully, when her mother was bathing her in the courtyard. The baby has been admitted in the hospital. Manikandan and Adarsh are the other two who sustained dog bites.

It was confirmed yesterday that the dog that bit six including children at Poyyayil was rabid. Five-year old Ayus, Jefin (6), Athul (12), Anna (10), Gauri (53) and P C Thomas (57) are those undergoing treatment in the hospital.

Self-financing admission: Verdict unclear, says CM

KOCHI: The verdict of the Kerala High Court in connection with the admission in self-financing medical colleges is unclear, said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. If required, the government will approach the Supreme Court against the high court verdict, he told reporters here.

A final decision in approaching the court has not been taken. The government does not want a dispute with the self-financing managements. A decision will be taken after holding talks with the managements on Monday, the chief minister said.

The high court had temporarily stayed the action of the government taking over all the seats of self-financing medical and dental colleges.

DYSP Najmal Hassan to probe bar case

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Though the vigilance court had ordered a further probe against former minister K M Mani in the bar bribe case, the case will not be probed by R Sukesan. Instead of Sukesan, DYSP Najmal Hassan of the special investigating team will probe the case. Vigilance director DGP Jacob Thomas said the case has been handed over to another official as Sukesan was not keen in probing it. The probe in the case has not been completed and more scientific examinations are needed, he said.

The investigation of the case will go the right way. The vigilance’ task is to find the corrupt, said Jacob Thomas.

A further probe was ordered by the court on the plea of Sukesan that ADGP Shankar Reddy, the then vigilance director sabotaged the case. Sukesan had alleged that Reddy corrected the report stating that a charge sheet can be filed against Mani and also submitted a report stating that there is no evidence against Mani.

Vigilance court orders further probe in bar case

THIRUVANANTAHPURAM: The Thiruvananthapuram Vigilance Court Saturday directed a further probe in the bar case against former finance minister K M Mani. The court passed the order after accepting SP Sukesan’s plea stating that vigilance former director ADGP Shankar Reddy had sabotaged the case.

Sukesan’s plea pointed that Shankar Reddy had dismissed his report demanding FIR against Mani. He deliberately manipulated the case diary. He removed the details of the statements against Mani from the report. So the investigation could not be completed as it should. My report sought a case against Mani. However, after corrections the report submitted in the court had mentioned that there is no evidence to register case against Mani.

Sukesan had found that Mani had accepted an amount of Rs 25 lakh from the one crore bribe offered to him to obtain bar license.

Vigilance is not a caged parrot now, says Jacob Thomas

KOCHI: Vigilance director DGP Jacob Thomas said a strong probe would be conducted on the revelation of S P Sukesan in the bar case if the court directs. The vigilance is not a caged parrot now, he said while talking to reporters here.

Our duty is to conduct a probe against the corrupt and it will be done properly, he said.

Sukesan had alleged that Shankar Reddy,  then vigilance director had sabotaged the bar bribery case.

Management seats: HC stays govt move

KOCHI: In the case of admission to self-financing medical colleges, the government was in for a major setback today. The high court stayed the government step taking over all seats including the management seats. The stay comes with the condition that MBBS-Dental admission should be based on NEET ranking and managements can start accepting applications.

The court also observed that the government order was against the Supreme Court verdict.

Managements can invite application online. The application should be submitted to James Committee. The managements should also put up the prospects and rank-lists on their websites. They should complete the procedures within three days. The James Committee should ensure that capitation fee is not received.

Private Management representatives said that they welcomed the verdict.

Friday, August 26, 2016

CM to write to each family on govt’s achievements

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: After completing 100 days at office, Chief Minister Pinarayi will write to each family about the achievements of his government.

The government will collaborate with the postal department to make sure that the letter reaches each house. The idea was put forward by Public Relations department.

The postal department will charge a fixed fee for delivering the letters. The chief minister said he would hold discussions with officials to ensure the cooperation of the postal department.   

On September 1, it will be 100 days since Pinarayi government took office. It is on this occasion that the chief minister has decided to communicate with people in an unusual way. The aim is to highlight the transparency of the government.

Torturing son: Mother remanded for 14 days

ADIMALI: Devikulam court has remanded Adimali (Idukki) resident Selina in police custody for 14 days in a case in which she allegedly tortured her son. Selina will be shifted to Thrissur Vanitha jail. The court also allowed her to take her three-month-old baby with her. 

Selina fatally beat her son Naufal after coming under the influence of ganja. The child’s father, Nazeer, also beat up the boy, according to the police. It was their relatives who informed the child line activists, who reached the place on August 23 and rescued the child.

Naufal was found tied up inside the house.

The child’s father is currently undergoing jail term in a criminal case.a

Misbehaving with compere: Case against ACP

KOCHI: Police have filed a case against ACP Vinayakumaran Nair for allegedly misbehaving with the compere at the Cocon International Cyber Security Conference organised by Kerala police. Kollam Anchalumoodu Police has filed the case on the basis of the girl’s complaint. He has been booked under charges of misbehaving with the girl.

Vinayakumar is the former ACP of Thiruvananthapuram Hi-tech cell. The action comes on the basis of departmental enquiry report submitted by Kollam Rural SP S Ajitha Begum before State Police Chief.

The case has been registered for non-bailable offence like talking to woman in sexual tone (IPC 354 A (1), stalking the victim with sexual intention  (IPC 354 D (2).

Though the girl had not made any written complaint, the police said her statements in front of woman rural SP would be considered as the evidence. Anchalaumoodu SI M K Prashanth Kumar said since the accused is a top police officer, inquiry would be held by high grade police officers. Vinaykumar, who was transferred from Thiruvananthapuram high-tech cell following the incident, is now in Nandavanam Police camp.

Food Security law to be implemented within six months

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Cabinet today decided to implement Food Security law within six months. In the meeting it was also decided to apprise the Centre of the State’s decision. Distribution of ration card will be completed on war footing and it is expected to complete within the next five months. 

Meanwhile, Local Administration Minister Jaleel said woman who died in Pulluvila allegedly due to dog bite would be given Rs Five lakh as compensation. Rs 50,000 will also be given to Daisy, another woman who was bitten by dogs at the same place. He added that though there were legal issues, dogs would be sterilised in time-bound manner. 

Private Bus strike postponed

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Private bus operators have postponed the bus strike that was earlier scheduled for the 30th of this month. The above decision was taken after discussions between the leaders and Transport Minister A K Saseendran. This was informed by Private Bus Operators Confederation Chairman Lawrence Babu.

The minister assured the bus operators that procedures would be initiated for issuing bus permits. He told them that a rollback of road taxes will also be discussed. Other issues will be discussed in the presence of the chief minister.

Jaya Surya now joins the bandwagon against street-dogs

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: There are many including celebrities who make passing comments on an issue when it becomes a topic of hot discussion. Most of them don’t come out with any creative or constructive solution and make any effort in their capacity to solve the issue. All they do is make some Facebook postings and forget about it. When a hue and cry is made about dog bites, little is talked about failure of the mankind to take precautions to avoid such incidents.

Actor Jayasurya today came out with his take on the street dog issue.

On his Facebook post today, he has asked whose life is more important – a dog’s or a child’s. At least, the value of street dogs should be given to the people. If solution to the street dog issue is not found, the youths themselves will find a solution to this. He has posted his comments under the title ‘Patti ni’.    

His opinion also reflects his aversion for existing law against killing of street dogs. He asks those who passed the law what they would do if the dog bites them. “If their son is bitten by dogs, will they ask him why he didn’t climb up a tree when the dog chased him?” he asks.

CM to teach on ‘Teachers Day’

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan will inaugurate this year’s Teachers Day by taking class to students on the subject ‘Life Style”. The programme will be held on September 5th at 10 am at the Attakulangara Central High School in the capital city. Ministers from the finance, health, local administration and education department will also take classes in the same school. The aim is make the students aware against liquor, drugs, tobacco products, life style diseases and unhealthy food habits etc. The cabinet decided that all ministers and MLAs should take classes in schools.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Police to help shops, banks install security cameras

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: DGP Loknath Behera has instructed District police superintends to provide technical help to commercial-business centres, banks and cooperative institutions in installing security cameras. 

These cameras will be linked to police’ observation cameras in order to enhance the security and prevent crimes.  The police will help people find right places to fix CCTV cameras and ascertain the direction in which it should be placed.

The DGP said many establishments across the State have sought the police help to install cameras. “Steps should be taken to install as many cameras as possible. Merchants have installed cameras in prime spots with the help of the police. This camera has helped police solve many criminal cases. Based on requests, CI, SI will arrive at shops or institutions and render technical help,” he said.

SBTEU express resentment over transfer or SBT CGM

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Expressing strong protest over the vindictive transfer of SBT Chief General Manager Adi Kesavan by the SBI Management, State Bank of Travancore Employees Union (SBTEU) Wednesday demanded the latter to withdraw its decision who played a pivotal role in paying back the lost money to customers in the recent ATM fraud in the State. "It is really shocking that the Chief General Manager of SBT is transferred and relieved, that too to SBI, Hyderabad all of a sudden. This high ranking upright official, who has expressed concern over the manner in which the SBI Management was stream-rolling the process of merger violating all good governance and transparency practices, is being sidelined. And in his place, a new CGM from another Bank is appointed, Union General Secretary KS Krishna said here. "It may be recalled that it was CGM S Adikesavan who came before the media and reassured and restored confidence in the Customers, especially those who lost money in the recent ATM Fraud in one of the outsourced ATMs of SBI in Thiruvananthapuram. Even though it was an SBI ATM and many SBI Customers also lost money, no one from the SBI cared to assure the Customers. SBT promptly paid the lost amount to its Customers. Adikesavan played a pivotal role in this regard. Such a gesture was widely appreciated whereas SBI's lukewarm response drew severe criticism from the Customers."

"This SBI Management owes a reason to the public as to why the CGM was transferred. But alas, such reasoning or explanation is not in the code of governance of country's largest Bank," he added. "With this vindictive action against a people-friendly Public Servant, SBI Management is again showing its anti-Employee attitude. SBI Management is challenging rule of law. SBI Management is challenging the people of Kerala. What is in store for the people of Kerala after annihilating SBT has been amply demonstrated by the SBI Management now itself," he added.

CM asks PM to look into transfer of Adi Kesavan

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to look into the complaint of the vindictive transfer of SBT Chief General Manager Adi Kesavan by the SBI Management even before the implementation of the merger of SBI-SBT. The state is against the merger of the two. The assembly too has the same stand.

SAVE SBT Forum believe that Adi Kesavan was transferred as he stood with the common feelings of the state. The letter has requested the prime minister to assure justice on the vindictive transfer of Adi Kesavan. The chief minister has forwarded a copy of the memorandum of SAVE SBT Forum to the prime minister.

Cancel transfer of Adikesavan: VS

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Veteran CPM leader V S Achuthanandan has said that transferring State Bank of Travancore Chief General Manager S Adikesavan to settle scores is condemnable.  The authorities should cancel the transfer order and retain him in Thiruvananthapuram.

“The bank employees have been strongly opposing the move to merge SBT and associate banks with the State Bank of India. This is an issue that should be discussed in detail for reaching a consensus. But SBI officials have been trying to treat with vengeance leaders who have been expressing their opposition to the merger. Adikesavan’s transfer is an example for this,” VS said.   

Merger of bank is not only an issue of man’s survival. It is it is just a chance for backdoor entry of international capitalists. Employee organisations have been jointly trying to organise protests and strikes against such policies. The national strike to be held on September 2 has also been organised as part of this. People should come forward strongly to protest against bank’s apathy towards employees’ aspirations, the statement says.