Monday, October 31, 2016

Governor not invited for Nov 1 function

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala Governor P Sathasivam is yet to receive the invite for the event to be held on November 1, being the 60th anniversary of Kerala formation. As per the protocol, the governor needs to be invited. It is said that Sathasivam is cross over not getting the invitation.  He will be flying to Chennai tomorrow morning.

Also, there were reports that Prime Minister Narendra Modi would be present at the function. And in such a function, the governor was supposed be the chairperson, as per protocol. But as the prime minister cancelled his Kerala trip, the government decided not to invite him officially or unofficially.                          

The governor has also been not invited for the evening function on the day when the State will be declared as open-defecation free state.

Muraleedharan surprised, sceptical over Jaleel's Sabarimala visit

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: BJP leader V Muraleedharan has come out to criticise Minister Jaleel and Kadakampally Surendran over their Sabarimala visit on Saturday.

If Jaleel had gone to Sabarimala as a devotee, there is nothing objectionable. But, if he had seen Sabarimala as a picnic spot for photo shoot, it is unfair. He didn’t have any role in Sabarimala. Jaleel, a former SIMI man, can’t be called a secularist, if he takes bath and wear vermillion mark on his forehead, out of the blue, Muraleedharan has said.

Minister Kadakampally Surendran, who accompanied Jaleel to Sabarimala, also had come under rude criticism. “The minister has to clarify whether it is with sincerity or not that he prayed with folded hands at the sanctum sanctorum. If he had prayed with true devotion, CPM should give their interpretation on it,” he said.

Meanwhile, Jaleel said Muraleedharan was criticising him as he felt anxious about increasing secularism in the State. Some people are worried about the world coming to know about Sabarimala’s glory as the centre of secularism. I felt the place like the Golden temple in Punjab, where I had visited. I could understand the secular atmosphere that prevailed here in the past,” the minister explained.

Bar licence: Court rejects petition against CM, Excise Minister

KOCHI: Moovattupuzha Vigilance Court has rejected the petition against Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Excise Minister T P Ramakrishnan regarding the awarding of bar licence to a private hotel.

The court has clarified that it won’t be able to interfere in the petition. The petition was filed by Kodanadu native P A Joseph, questioning the granting of licence to Peurmbavoor Kodanadu Dewland hotel.     

The petitioner had sought the filing of case against eight persons including the Excise Minister and the chief minister.

The petition was filed, pointing out that the issuing of licence to the hotel, when high court stay prevailed in this matter, would come under the purview of Prevention of Corruption Act.

The case related to the granting of five star bar licence to the hotel. The hotelier had approached the government for bar licence as the hotel already had five star status. The Panchayat had also given No Objection Certificate for issuing the bar licence.

Increase in number of stray dogs, says Jaleel

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: As per the latest figures of the animal husbandry department, there has been an increase in the number of stray dogs, said Minister K T Jaleel. Steps have been taken to sterilize these stray dogs, he told U R Pradeep in the assembly.

K C Joseph and P T Thomas was informed that the government has directed to execute biometric punching system in all departments to ensure timeliness of employees.

A N Shamseer was informed that 37, 644 houses have to be completed according to IAY Project in the state. Wayanad district tops with 5746 houses and least is Kollam with 579. 2704 houses are under construction, the minister said. 

Jisha’s father files plea demanding further probe

KOCHI: Pappu, father of Jisha, a law student brutally raped and murdered in Perumbavoor, Monday filed a plea at the Ernakulam Principal Sessions Court, demanding further probe in the case. A charge sheet was filed by the special investigating team earlier.

The plea pointed that many of the conclusions reached was wrong. There are differences in the time of her death in the post mortem report and in the charge sheet. In the charge sheet, the police had stated that she was killed alone by Ameerul. However, they were not able to produce enough documents for it. The clothes worn by Ameerul at the time of the incident and the knife used to kill her were not obtained. The court will consider the plea tomorrow.

Wagamon Camp accused among SIMI activists killed

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: One of the SIMI activists killed in an encounter in Bhopal after they pulled off a daring prison break and escaped after killing a security guard at the Bhopal Central Jail, was an accused in the Wagamon case in Kottayam. He has been identified as Mehboob alias Guddu, 31st accused in the case.

The case is that the SIMI activists organised a weapon training camp at Thangalpara, Wagamon in December 2017. A probe by the NIA had found that the banned SIMI had organised camps in Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat. They also organised training in martial arts, arms training, bomb making, motor bike racing, rope climbing etc.

Guddu was also an accused in the case of killing police official Sitaram Yadav at Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh in 2009. He jumped jail while facing trial in this case. He was also an accused in almost 17 cases.

That is not my daughter’s wedding photo: Hari Sree Ashokan

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Actor Hari Sree Ashokan has come out to clarify that a marriage photo being circulated through Whatsapp as her daughter’s weeding photo is not the real one.  

The actor has clarified this on his Facebook page by posting his family photo. This has put an end to all rumours.
Ashokan’s post (English transalation):

“I have come to know that for the past few days a photo purportedly of my daughter’s wedding was being circulated. But I humbly inform everybody that this is a fake one. With this statement, I am also sharing my family photo here.”  

Steps will be taken to stop food grain pilferage during transport

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Minister P Thilothaman has informed the Assembly that necessary arrangements will be made to check the pilferage in the quantity of food grains, on their way to ration shops from godowns.   

“The National Informatics Centre has prepared a special software for this and the pilot project in this regard will be implemented in Kollam district from this month and throughout Kerala from this month onwards. With the implementation of Food Security act, the irregularities in ration shops and whole sale centres can be prevented. More products will be sold through ration shops to overcome the reduction in Ration shop owners’ commission. According to Food Safety Act, 16.25 metric tonne food is needed for the State but the Centre gives just 14.25 metric tonne food. Civil Supplies Corporation won’t be able to begin Maveli hotels for want of sufficient rice. The corporation will think about giving rice on subsidy if any NGO or Kudumbasree comes forward to begin Maveli hotels,” the minister said.

“For the unification of food price in the wake of Sabarimala pilgrimage season, the meeting of Idukki, Kottayam, and Pathanamthitta hoteliers will be called. This follows complaints that hoteliers are charging excessively from pilgrims. The unification of prices in all hotels in the State is not feasible. The previous government’s attempt for this had also failed,” he added.

Vigilance report against Tom Jose will be submitted to govt after Nov 3

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Vigilance Director DGP Jacob Thomas has said the report against Labour department Additional Chief Secretary Tom Jose will be submitted to the government before November 3.

He told media persons that he was busy with preparing affidavit in a case against him. He was answering questions posed by media persons. Earlier, there were reports that the report against Tom Jose would be submitted today.

Jacob Thomas is now preparing the affidavit regarding the petition that the CBI investigate the allegation that Jacob had taken leave and went to teach in a private college. The case will be taken up on November 3.

Govt will not compromise with those who are corrupt

THRISSUR: Making it clear that there will be no compromise on corruption, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the corrupt will not be protected in any manner. Talking at the passing out parade of the Police Academy in Thrissur, he said the efforts to eradicate corruption are pictured wrongly.

Pinarayi said the government will not spare anyone involved in corruption. Those engaged in anti-corruption activities are being defamed. Steps would be taken against those helping anyone engaged in corrupt practices. The police are strongly acting against the goons. Some centres are trying to divert their attention from that and this could be seen as a stand protecting the goons and mafias. The police should always stand for justice, he said.

Govt announces Kerala as drought hit

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Kerala Government on Monday declared the state as drought-hit in view of the sharp decrease in rainfall during the South West Monsoon and said that Centre would be approached for necessary assistance to meet the emergency situation.

Revenue Minister E Chandrasekharan made the announcement in the Assembly while replying to a notice seeking adjournment motion moved by Congress-led UDF opposition on the serious situation prevailing in the state due to the sharp decrease in rainfall.

The state Disaster Management Authority had been entrusted to seek necessary additional funds from the Centre to tide over the crisis, he said.

The UDF wanted Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to meet and appraise Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the seriousness of the situation to receive more funds to address the concerned issues.

"According to IMD figures, there has been a sharp decrease in rainfall to the tune of 34 per cent during the South-West monsoon. There has also been a sharp decline in rainfall during North-East monsoon also," Chandrasekharan said.

"So, the government has declared the state as total drought-hit. A high-level meeting, chaired by Chief Minister was convened on October 13 to discuss steps to be taken to meet the emergency situation," he said.

Detailing the measures planned to tackle the drought, he said the government had brought out a list containing 26 guidelines to address the drought situation. All District Collectors were asked to follow the guidelines which included steps to reduce the usage of water, recycle used water, set out priority for water usage.

"Chief Minister will conduct video conferencing with District Collectors to verify the situation. Chief Secretary will also evaluate the drought response programme being implemented," he said.

Among the measures to help farmers, who are already reeling under crisis, the government has decided to declare a moratorium on recovery of agriculture loans taken by them, he said.

"The state government will submit a memorandum to get fund from the Centre Disaster Mitigation Fund (to tackle drought)," he said.

Seeking notice for adjournment motion, V S Sivakumar (Congress) said the state received 1352.3 mm rains against the normal rainfall of 2039.7 mm, a deficiency of 34 per cent during the South West Monsoon.

Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala said the Chief Minister and Revenue Minister should meet Prime Minister and appraise him of the specifics of the state's drought situation to get more assistance.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Northeast monsoon: IMD predicts heavy rain in Kerala for next three days.

Thiruvananthapuram: With North East Monsoon reaching Tamil Nadu, several parts of Kerala received heavy rains on Sunday.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted heavy rains at isolated places in the state till November 2. The state may witness 7 to 11 cms of rain in many places.

The IMD has officially confirmed the arrival of Northeast monsoon at Tamil Nadu and Andhra coast on Sunday. The official announcement of the arrival of Northeast monsoon in Kerala will be made on Monday.

Though it is expected that the Northeastmonsoon will be normal, there are indications that it will be less in Kerala.
While the country received normal Southwest monsoon, Kerala witnessed a shortfall of 34 per cent.

Employer shoots employee in Aluva

ERNAKULAM: An employer shot his migrant employee in Aluva.

The injured has been identified as Manur Sheik of West Bengal. He has been admitted in the hospital.

The police have arrested Vijay (29) of Aluva in connection with the incident.

Thomas Isaac supports K M Abraham

ALAPPUZHA: Finance Minister Dr Thomas Isaac came out in support of finance department additional chief secretary K M Abraham in the disproportionate assets petition against him. Abraham is an official who fought against corruption. Talking to reporters here, he said the chief minister will examine whether lapses have occurred in the vigilance raid at Abraham’s house.

Abraham has a history of taking a strong stand against corruption. Isaac lauded the activities of Abraham during the tenure of the previous government and his stint in the centre. His anti-corruption stand was proved in the Sahara case. The centre obtained 20,000 crore from Sahara due to the intervention of Abraham, he pointed. If corruption has taken place during the tenure of the previous government, then the officials are not to be blamed but the government.

A vigilance raid at the house of the officer in Jagathy on Friday had sparked a controversy.  He had lodged a complaint to the chief minister. The raid was following a complaint lodged by Joemon Puthenpurackal. However, the version of the vigilance was that a raid was not conducted instead the area of the building was measured as part of a quick verification.

Goondaism will not be tolerated, says Minister T P Ramakrishnan

KOZHIKODE: Goondaism will not be tolerated in any manner, said Labour Minister T P Ramakrishnan. The government’s stand is that of what Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan announced in the assembly, he said this while replying to the question on V A Zakkir Hussain, CPM area secretary and accused in the case of abducting and threatening an industrialist in Kochi.             

Even if the goons are party activists, they will not be protected, Pinarayi had informed the assembly.

When asked whether party would take action against Zakkir, the minister said the leaders will decide about it. The government wants peace in the state and action would be taken against those who work against it, he said. 

Modi praises Kerala

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday expressed happiness on the progress made in Kerala to make the state Open Defecation Free (ODF). He expressed his happiness at a time when the state is to be declared open defecation-free state on November 1.

Addressing the nation in his monthly radio programme 'Mann Ki Baat', Modi praised people helping their respective areas to become ODF.

Kerala will be declared as open defecation-free state on its formation day on November 1. Kerala would be the third state to be declared as ODF and this would be a prestigious thing, he said.  

I am happy on the progress made in this regard by the states including Kerala. While addressing the nation on his 25th radio programme, he lauded the students for constructing toilets at the Adivasi hamlets in Idamalakudy.

Minister Jaleel’s Facebook post on Sabarimala visit goes viral

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Minister K T Jaleel’s Facebook post on his visit to the famous Ayyappa Temple in Sabarimala, has gone viral. He visited the temple to evaluate the arrangements for the festive season. The friendship between Ayyappan and Vavar, a Muslim, still exists stronger and we should rejuvenate that good old times again, he wrote in his Facebook page.

After climbing the hills, we reached Sannidhanam early Saturday morning at 1.15 am. Spent the night there. Went around the sree kovil and then came before Ayyapan. Nobody is banned here. Reached before Vavar, facing west to the sreekovil, and offered prayers, he wrote.

There was a huge response for the minister’s post. Many termed the visit as a bold step. Some commented that his visit has surprised many.

The minister visited the shrine along with Minister Kadakampally Surendran.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Teacher held on charge of sexually abusing teenage boy

KOCHI: A 56-year-old teacher has been arrested and remanded in judicial custody for allegedly repeatedly sexually abusing a teenage boy, police said today. The accused Suresh, who was arrested yesterday, used to take classes for students at a Sunday school attached to a Syrian Jacobite Church near Kothamangalam, about 50 kms from here.

Suresh, who is a neighbour of the 16-year-old victim, had allegedly sexually abused the boy since 2015 after threatening him. The victim also used to attend the Sunday school classes, they added.

The teacher has been charged with IPC Section 377, (Unnatural offences) and the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO Act), they said. He was produced before a magistrate court yesterday which remanded him in 14-day judicial custody. Three such incidents of sexual abuse have been narrated in the complaint lodged with the police, police said. 

Dubai flight makes emergency landing in Thiruvananthapuram

HIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Air India flight A X 539 that took off for its Dubai destination at 5:45 pm today made an emergency landing just a few minutes ago.

Technical snag is said to be the reason for this. It is not known how many passengers are inside the flight.

Kidnapping: Zakeer Hussain at Kudaku, says police

KOCHI: Police have got the information that CPM Area Secretary Zakeer Hussain, who is the main accused in the case related to kidnapping a business man, is currently in Kudagu in Karnataka. The investigation team has confirmed that they had intensified search to nab him. He was in the party village till Friday. So the police believe that he must have slipped to Karnataka today.

Police said his arrest was being delayed as his mobile was switched off. The police have also decided to put up look-out notices at airports.

Meanwhile, Zakeer has applied for anticipatory bail, in Ernakulam district court and this will be considered on Monday.    

Zakeer, who is also a district committee member, went to hiding after he was charged under non-bailable offence. The City Task Force, formed to supress goons, is now searching for the absconder. The locals said Zakeer was present in Kalamassery office till Thursday evening.

The force had filed case against Zakeer on October 27 for kidnapping the business man and threatening him.

Vigilance case against me is conspiracy, Shankar Reddy writes to director

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Former Vigilance Director Shankar Reddy has given a letter to Vigilance Director Jacob Thomas stating that complainants Payichara Payichira Navaz and certain top officials in the Vigilance connived in filing a complaint against him in bar bribery-solar cases.  

Shankar Reddy also says in the letter that Navaz has a criminal background. “All cases now in the court against him are part of the controversy within the Vigilance. When information about me is asked via RTI, wrong information are given from the Vigilance office. This is done with the sole intention to trap me. All reports given in the court against me are wrong. Again there are chances for this and hence the Vigilance director should be alert.”  

Shankar Reddy says that the allegation that he had sat on the complaints regarding Solar Case, when he was the Vigilance director, is baseless. “The day after solar scam accused Saritha submitted her complaint before Solar Commission a person called P D Joseph gave a petition in the Thrissur Vigilance court and the court ordered inquiry into it after registering a case. But the next day, the accused in the complaint got a stay and that prevented the Vigilance from acting on any further complaints. All these facts were hidden in the report against me,” Reddy said.

Tom Jose may be suspended; Vigilance will support submit report next week

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The government may soon take action against Labour department additional chief secretary Tom Jose in the wake of Disproportionate Assets Case filed against him. There are hints that he may be suspended based on the Vigilance report.

The Vigilance will hand over the report to the government on Sunday as it is Diwali holidays now.

The report may recommend that Tom Jose be removed from the service as he is found to have amassed Rs 1.19 crore wealth disproportionate to his source of income. The report will be submitted to the government via the home secretary. As there is no hindrance in taking action against IAS officers in Kerala, the government will take action after considering the recommendations of the home secretary and chief secretary.

As per rules action can be taken against IAS officers with the knowledge of the Centre.

Vigilance sleuths on Friday conducted searches at the residence and office of a top Kerala IAS officer Tom Jose in connection with disproportionate assets case, even as the official denied any wrong doing and described it as "deliberate" attempt to tarnish his image.

A day after Vigilance and Anti Corruption bureau filed an FIR in the Mutvattupzha court, officials armed with search warrants conducted simultaneous searches at the flats of Jose at Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and his office at the State Secretariat.
The house of his wife at Irinjalakuda in Thrissur was also searched, vigilance sources said.

The FIR alleged that the officer had committed offence punishable under Prevention of Corruption Act. Reacting sharply to the development, Tom Jose, Additional Chief Secretary (Labour) said the case had been inquired by the Home Secretary much earlier and had been closed.

"All these allegations were examined by Home secretary earlier and I had given my property statement from 2010
There is nothing new. This is a deliberate attempt to humiliate me", he said adding they (vigilance) have come with a search warrant with yesterday's date.

Airport necessary, but not in Aranmula: CM

PATHANAMTHITTA: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has said the LDF and CPM are not averse to a new airport coming up in the State.  But he said they would oppose Aranmula airport project.

The chief minister was inaugurating the new crop cultivation programme at the 58 acre land adjacent to the land earmarked for the Aranmula project.

“There will not be any stand from government favourable to the KGS group, who are the developers of Aranmula project. KGS group representatives had met me. Don’t think that the government will change its stand though the KGS group had met me and made certain claims and justifications. They will be again coming to meet me. Though I may not deny natural justice to anyone, what is needed is a development and protection of environment at the same time, ” he said   

The chief minister also said that the LDF government would give more emphasis to agriculture and increasing farm products.  “The LDF government has kept its election promise of cultivating barren lands. Within a month of assuming office, the Agriculture Minister himself reached Aranmula and launched crop cultivation. The result of change brought in vegetable cultivation was visible during the Onam season; the vegetable price rise didn’t happen during the last Onam.” 

Friday, October 28, 2016

New govt circular imposes strong restriction on fire works

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Explosives department has imposed strong restriction on firework displays in the State. It has sent a new circular to Thrissur Pooram organisers, district collectors to ensure that crackers like ‘gund’ and ‘amit’ with high explosive power are not used in fireworks.

The decision was taken on the basis of studies conducted following the Kollam Poottingal fire tragedy. Among the explosives used in fireworks, Potassium Chlorate should not be used. The district collector should inspect the place where the firework will be held and he should give permission for it only after checking the safety aspects of the place. The fireworks should not be conducted between 6 am and 10 pm, according to the circular.

I was humiliated by presenting me as encroacher, says Mamukoya

KOZHIKODE: Actor Mamukoya has complained that Kozhikode Corporation authorities had humiliated him by depicting him as an illegal encroacher of government land. He alleged that the police had behaved with him impolitely in the name of evacuating old settlements in the area.

The Corporation had yesterday dug up the concrete path way leading to Mamukoya’s house as part of road expansion.

Assembly discusses street dog issue; Jaleel points out hurdles

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Opposition leader today created din in the Assembly over street dog issue, blaming the government for it. They gave notice for adjournment motion. The Opposition said four people were allegedly killed over the last four months due to dog-bites. They said the government had failed in controlling the street dog population.   

The notice for adjournment motion was given by the Opposition in the wake of an old man in Varkala allegedly being mauled to death by a few street dogs.

Meanwhile, Minister Jaleel said, there were certain obstacles in controlling the dog population. “The government steps will take time to complete. In the State there are 2:5 lakh street dogs and this number can be reduced within a time span of 2:5 years,” he added.

Didn’t get summons in solar case, no mention of my role in scam: Oommen Chandy

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Former Chief Minister has responded to the Bangalore court order that has punished him over the solar scam case. Oommen Chandy reiterated that he had not got the summons from the court. “It was my fault that I didn’t take the case seriously. Nowhere in the complaint or in the FIR, is it mentioned that I had a role in the scam,” Oommen Chandy claimed.

Earlier, Chandy had said that the court verdict was unilateral and the verdict was given without hearing his side.

Chandy and others were fined for cheating money out of Malayali businessman M K Kuruvila, who had filed a case against the former. The court in its order had asked Chandy and others to pay back One crore 60 lakh as fine within six months.     

In the complaint, it is said that the accused took money by offering the complainant South Korean technical knowledge and Central government subsidy related to a solar project.

Court orders vigilance probe against K C Joseph

THALASSERY: The Thalassery vigilance court ordered a vigilance probe against former minister and congress leader K C Joseph over the amassment of wealth. The vigilance court has directed Kozhikode vigilance cell to hand over the investigation report before November 29.

The case is that Joseph, his wife and son Ashok Joseph had amassed wealth. When Joseph was a minister, a transaction of Rs 1.5 crore had taken place via Ashok Joseph’s bank account. The bank had then registered it as a heavy transaction.

The court passed the order following a public interest plea demanding a probe on the source of this dealing. Meantime, Joseph had mentioned that his son has a good job and salary abroad. The court has ordered to probe it also.

Raids deliberate attempt to insult me, says Tom Jose

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: After the vigilance and anti-corruption bureau raided flats of president of IAS Officers Association Tom Jose, the senior IAS officer on Friday alleged that all the documents and information with regard to his properties had already been produced, and the "raids were being conducted deliberately to insult him".

As per report, Jose's flats in Ernakulam and Thiruvananthapuram were raided simultaneously by the vigilance sleuths for collecting evidence in a case of disproportionate assets.

In this connection, an FIR was also filed against Jose in Muvattupuzha vigilance court.

Reports suggested that Jose is facing the charge of "illegally" buying land in Maharashtra's Sindhudurg.

Vigilance raid at flats of Tom Jose

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The vigilance conducted a raid at the flats of additional chief secretary Tom Jose IAS. His flats in Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram were raided in connection with the amassment of wealth disproportionate to his known sources of income.

The raid was in connection with the amassment of wealth including the purchase of land at Sindhudurg in Maharashtra during his tenure as principal secretary, Public Works. An FIR has been registered against him at the Moovattupuzha Court. Financial dealings in connection with the flat in Kochi will also be probed. Tom Jose is presently the secretary of labour department and is also the state president of the IAS Association.

Meantime, he said the details of his assets have been revealed precisely and that this is a planned move to taint him personally. The complainants have a criminal background, he alleged. 

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Street dog issue: Menaka Gandhi quoted out of context

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Union Minister of Women and Child development Menaka Gandhi has said her statement regarding invoking of Kerala Anti-Social Activities (Prevention) Act (KAAPA) against street dog killers was quoted out of context.  She said the statement was part of her short interview with a private TV channel that was taken long before yesterday’s Varkala dog bite incident.

In the interview Menaka Gandhi was seen saying that KAAPA should be invoked against those who kill dogs, get arrested, come out on bail and then commit the same offence a number of times. “Certain businessmen in Kerala are trying to become heroes by killing dogs. Such people have mental absurdness. They kill dogs now and slowly they will start killing cattle, women and children,” she had said.

When contacted via email over the context of her statement, the minister said, “The interview was given long before the incident (Varkala dog bite incident on Wednesday).”

TV channels had played up Ms Gandhi’s statement, sensationalising the issue and clubbing it with the report on 90-year-old man’s death in Varkala allegedly due to dog bite. Animal activists says, “today’s illegal killing of more than 30 harmless street dogs in Varkala  under the direction of Jose Maveli and his accomplices could be seen as a fall-out of this kind of unethical journalism”. 

The TV report had also resulted in Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala, KPCC president V M Sudheeran and Minister Jaleel criticising the Union Minister. 

Encroachment: Concrete pathway leading to Mammukkoya’s house dug up

KOZHIKODE: As part of the road-widening operation, the concrete pathway leading to famous film actor Mamukoya’s house, was dug up by the Kozhikode Corporation today, leaving the actor fuming. The operation was carried out today morning by Corporation authorities, who had arrived at the place with a JCB.

The decision to evacuate illegal encroachments in the area for road expansion was taken by the Corporation long back.
All shops in front of Mamukoya’s house were pulled down. Mamukoya alleged that the officials dug up pathway that lay far away from the main road. “I have not made any encroachment. Marad police and the Corporation had connived to dug up the pathway. I was at home when they came but they didn’t even have the minimum courtesy to inform me about their plan,” Mamukoya said.   
Meanwhile, the Corporation authorities said they had issued a notice prior to the demolition of illegal construction. But Mamukoya said he had not received any notice on encroachment on demolition. “I had tried to contact Mayor over phone but I couldn’t after which I informed the Deputy Mayor,” he said.

Shoppers in the area also protested the evacuation.

Corruption of 10.34 crore in import of cashew nut, says V D Satheesan

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: V D Satheeshan alleged corruption in the assembly against the Cashew Corporation and CAPEX over the import of cashew nut. During finance request discussion, he said there is a corruption of Rs 10 crore in importing cashew nut directly.  

The cashew corporation incurred a loss of Rs 6.87 crore in importing 3900 metric tonne of cashew nut. A loss of Rs 3.47 crore was incurred while importing 2000 metric tonne of cashew nut. He said those helming these two public sector organizations are tainted.

However, Minister J Mercikutty Amma denied the allegations levelled by him. He is levelling baseless allegations, she said. The government wants to open the closed public sector organizations. The managing directors were appointed after getting vigilance clearance, she said.

Kummanam disapproves of case against Sasikala teacher

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: BJP State chief Kummanam Rajasekharan has said filing of case against Viswa Hindu Parishath State General Secretary K P Sasikala was a wrong move. This is part of the game plan to destroy institutions.

 “We don’t know the circumstance that led BJP MLA O Rajagopal to support Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and his government. Rajagopal’s statement will be examined,” he said.

Hosdurg police had filed a case against Sasikala teacher for allegedly making communal speeches, which had appeared in social media. The case was based on the complaint given by the government pleader a month ago to District Police Chief.

RSS using temple premises for weapons training should be stopped: P Jayarajan

KANNUR: CPM Kannur district secretary P Jayarajan handed over a letter to the district collector pointing weapons training by the RSS in temples of Kannur, government firms and schools. The arms training are held in 25 temples, 20 schools and 13 government firms. Steps should be taken to stop all these, the letter demanded.

The letter carried a detailed report on the centers where the training is held. Other terrorist organizations are also trying to misuse worship centers along with the RSS. This is a threat to religious harmony. The letter has carried the details of the places where RSS shakhas are held.

Jose Maveli orchestrates killing of street dogs in Varkala; case filed

VARKALA: Jose Maveli, an accused in a number of dog killing cases, today pounced on yet another opportunity to kill dogs in Varkala Mundayam, where Raghavan (90) had died of cardiac arrest hours after he was allegedly bitten by street dogs on Wednesday.  He, with the support of Guruvayur Shanti Medicals Information Director Uma Preman, paid certain men to heinously kill more than 30 harmless street dogs that roamed the area.

Though the police have registered a fresh case against Maveli and his accomplice Uma Preman, the duo had mobilised a few locals to prevent their arrest. Police returned later as they didn’t want to turn the situation from bad to worse.

Jose Maveli, who is financially backed by businessman Kochouseph Chittilappilly, had roped in poor and illiterate people including women to stage a protest against police. Raghavan’s daughters Soosamma, Shobhana and Ammini were also present in the protest. A police team led by Varkala CI Saji Menon had rushed to the place to arrest the perpetrators of the crime soon after they were informed about the incident in the morning. But, they couldnt execute the law.  

Meanwhile, Mureen Hand, a heart-broken volunteer of Operation street Varkala, an NGO involved in rescue operation and ABC programme for street dogs confirmed that all dogs killed today were killed in a brutal manner.   

Another volunteer Elaine Philpott posted on its Facebook: “So very sorry, it seems now that anyone can kill dogs. You don't like dogs, ok let’s kill them. There is no punishment. All we can do is continue the fight to protect them, and hope that things change in the future. Sadly, I do not think this will happen in my life time...”

Communal speech: Case filed against Sasikala teacher

KANJANGADU: Hosdurg police have registered a case against Viswahindu Parishath State Secretary K P Sasikala for allegedly making communal speech. The police said the case was filed under Section 153 (A) on the basis of the complaint filed by Government pleader.

The government pleader had complained to the district police chief after the teacher’s speech started appearing in social medias. Hosdurg police filed the case based on the direction of the district police chief.

A similar case filed by Hosdurg police against VHP secretary general Praveen Togadia  is under the consideration of the court.
In December, 2014, the court had declared him as an absconder. The case pertains to Togadia’s speech he made at Kanjangadu VHP conference in 2011. He was declared absconder after he didn’t turn up at the court after several summons.  

Dog 'bites' housewife in Varkala

VARKALA: A dog allegedly bit a house woman in Varkala two times today. The victim has been identified as Munda Watchermukku native and Ranjith Bhavan resident P Sunitha (49). She has sought treatment from Varkala Government hospital.

The incident happened yesterday when Sunitha was in her kitchen. She was alone in the house as her husband Rajeev had gone out. Her sons were not in the house.

She was first bitten on her right leg after which she went to the hospital, took treatment and came back. When she was sleeping in her room, the same dog allegedly came at around 3:30 again and bit her right leg.

At that time Rajeev was around and as he reached home hearing her cries, the dog fled the scene. Attempt to locate the dog with the help of the locals did not succeed.

Animal activists say dogs turn violent usually when they are hungry, thirsty and enter homes in search of food and water. The previous government also didn’t use effectively the fund allotted by the Centre for Animal Birth Control programme.

Chennithala calls Maneka Gandhi a hypocrite

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala on Thursday called Union Minister Maneka Gandhi a "hypocrite" for opposing the killing of stray dogs in Kerala.

"Maneka Gandhi is a hypocrite. Who does she think she is? Even the Chief Minister is not spared. Who gave her all this authority? This is in no way acceptable," Chennithala told the assembly.

Chennithala spoke after question hour, highlighting the menace of stray dogs in the state.

On Wednesday, there was uproar after Gandhi -- also an animal rights activist -- said the Kerala Anti-Social (Prevention) Act (KAPA) should be used against those who kill stray dogs and those who instigate people to kill them.

Media reports say a 90-year-old man succumbed to his injuries when stray dogs attacked him while he was sleeping in the veranda of his house at Varkala in Thiruvananthapuram.

IAS association expresses protest on raid at K M Abraham’s house

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The rift between the IAS and IPS officers is into a new level after the raid conducted at the house of K M Abraham, additional chief secretary, finance department.

The vigilance team probing the disproportionate assets case conducted the raid at the house of Abraham in Jagathy Wednesday morning following the directive of its director Jacob Thomas. Abraham was not at home when the vigilance team reached his place. The team left after collecting details from his wife.

Abraham conveyed his dissatisfaction on the raid to the chief secretary yesterday itself. A senior official of the IAS Association met chief secretary S M Vijayanand and conveyed their protest. The association told the chief secretary that the act of the vigilances will blemish the officials’ image. The vigilance act degrades the self-confidence of the IAS officers.  It is not right to level baseless allegations against honest officers, they said.

Cases are being registered against IAS officials after Jacob Thomas assumed power as vigilance director. This is not a good procedure. The association registered their dissatisfaction towards the act of Thomas. They also proposed to direct the vigilance to withdraw from such stands.

Kunchacko Boban gets UAE driving licence

DUBAI: Film actor Kunchacko Boban got his UAE driving test after Mohanlal, Mammootty and Dulqar Salman. He obtained the license in his first attempt after getting trained from Dubai driving center. He was trained under Noushad Sharahabeel, a native of Varkala.  

The actor got easily through the theory test, driving classes, parking test, assessment test, road test etc. The road exam was on October 25 at the Jumaira Road.

The license was handed over to the actor by El Fateh Abdul Baqi Eljack, General Manager of Dubai Driving Center. Branch manager Pratheesh K Nair and other senior officials were also present.

Abstain from buying poultry from Kerala, T N tells farmers

Chennai : After reports of birds testing positive for avian influenza AH5N8 emerged in States, including neighbouring Kerala, Tamil Nadu Minister for Animal Husbandry B Balakrishna Reddy directed the officials to take immediate steps to prevent its outbreak in the state.
chairing a high level meeting in which top officials participated, he directed officials to be on vigil and set up check-posts in areas bordering other States.
Vehicle checks should be carried out and disinfectants should be sprayed on all vehicles entering the State, he told officials.
"Awareness should be created among poultry farmers of our State to prevent buying poultry including  chicken, ducks, and eggs from Kerala," he told officials, Tamil Nadu government said in an official release.
Poultry farmers should be trained on disease prevention steps, and safety measures should be intiated in poultry farms, he said.
He further said District Collectors should hold meetings to coordinate action among various departments as part of measures to prevent the outbreak of bird flu.
Birds in Delhi, Madhya Pradesh and Kerala have tested positive for avian influenza AH5N8, which according to the World Health Organisation (WHO) is considered less risky of being transmitted to humans.
In view of bird flu scare in Delhi and other parts, the Centre has set up a high-level committee to monitor the situation and help state governments take steps to contain the disease.
Avian influenza, commonly called bird flu, is an infectious viral disease of birds.

Coastal Highway to be reality soon

Koyilandy : The coastal highway from Thiruvananthapuram to Kasargod will become a reality soon. 
The 500-km highway  is expected to cost Rs 1,300 crore.
The 50- metre-wide road will need rehabilitation of 20,000 families. KIFBI is expected to fund the project. The new road, part of the larger plan of the state to expand the tourism and allied infrastructure in the state, will come up stringing together a large number of the existing roads.
Any future building and construction plans will be sanctioned with a 50-metre margin from the shoreline. The families that are being displaced will be given 500 square feet houses built by the government. The two-lane road will consume 15 metres of the 50 metres acquired. Trees will be planted  between the road and the sea and 35 metres will be maintained as green buffer zone in the eco-friendly construction. 
There will no residential settlements on the western part of the road. Rs 7000 crore is apparently being loaned from an agency called Green Private Fund. The project has been moved into a fast track mode following the initiative of Fisheries Minister J Mercykutty Amma. The Fisheries and Harbour ministries will jointly oversee the project.
The alignment and survey work on the bridges over the rivers and even the sea at some points, together measuring 9.5 kilometers will start in a short while. A meeting will be held at Thiruvananthapuram in the first week of November to discuss the project with the MLAs, all of whom are expected to come on board for the project which will also enhance the green cover along the seashores.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Half of water pumped by Water Authority is lost

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Minister Mathew T Thomas informed the Assembly that half of the water pumped by the Water Authority every day is lost.

“The water authority pumps 2517 million potable water every day. The exact quantity is not known since necessary metres are not installed in pumping stations. The difference between pumped water and metred water is 1258.5 million. The main reasons for this are misuse of water at public taps, leaks and looting of water. The PWD has been given special instruction to complete pipe-laying job before road maintenance work. For this, there should be proper coordination between PWD and Water authority,” the minister said. 

Lawyers block Police by mistake

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: At Vanchiyoor court, a bunch of lawyers today blocked policemen who went there to record the statement of a sexual harassment case victim.

The policemen had gone there with cameras. Seeing them enter the court, the lawyers rushed towards them to block, thinking that they were media persons. The policemen were from the Fort police station.   

Registration-stamp paper fee will be reduced, says Thomas Isaac

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM:  The fee for registration and stamp paper increased in the budget will be reduced, said Finance Minister Dr Thomas Isaac in the assembly. What is needed to replace it will be decided by the subject committee. The government is planning to restore many things including previous tax etc. The stamp duty of the partition and release deeds was increased by a fair price of 3%. The subject committee will now take a decision on things including introducing different rates in cities and villages.

During the tenure of the previous UDF government, the limit for the registration fee was taken off. However, following stiff obstruction by the opposition, the old fee was restored. The UDF is now raising the same demand. However, Finance Minister Dr Thomas Isaac is not ready to continue the style of the former government. Instead the minister may demand the subject committee to introduce one percent fee.

Two-year-old bitten by stray dog

KOZHIKODE: A two-year old was attacked by a stray dog in the district. Fathima, daughter of Rasheed of Poolakkadavu, was attacked while she was playing in front of her house.

She has been admitted to the hospital. Doctors attending on her said the injuries are not serious.

Women journalists’ complaint will be handed over to DGP: Women's Commission

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala Women’s Commission Chairman K C Rosa Kutty teacher has informed that she would hand over to the DGP the complaint given by women journalists against lawyers.

“Humiliating women journalists in the public is a bad precedence. The lawyers themselves coming forward to break law is unjustifiable. All steps will be taken to withdraw the case against journalists in connection with the clash at Vanchiyoor court premise, if the cases are found to be fake ones. The Commission’s suggestions in this regard will also be submitted to the DGP. The lawyers have also humiliated womanhood by setting up flux boards with pictures of woman journalists. The Commission will also try to bring the real culprits before the law. Media persons should be given the opportunity to function with freely,” she said.

Man attacked by stray dogs die

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A 90-year-old man, who was seriously injured after attacked allegedly by a pack of stray dogs while lying in the sit out of his house at Varkala, died here Wednesday.

Raghavan, was attacked by six stray dogs around 6.30 am this morning, they said.

The seriously injured man was in a serious condition at the Thiruvananthapuram Medical college hospital. He received deep wounds on his head, face, neck and legs.

His relatives and local residents first rushed him to Varkala taluk hospital and as his condition turned serious, he was taken to the Medical college hospital.

Invoke KAAPA against those who kill street dogs: Menaka Gandhi

NEW DELHI: Union Women and Child welfare minister Menaka Gandhi said KAAPA (Kerala Antisocial Activities (Prevention) Act) should be invoked against persons who illegally kill dogs again and again. “The DGP should take necessary action for this. KAAPA can be invoked against a person if he commits the same offence five times. The act can be invoked if a person illegally kills street dogs, come out on bail after paying a fine of Rs 50 and again goes on killing them,” she told media persons. 

Menaka Gandhi said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had stated that he is against mass culling of dogs. And hence, the chief minister should take necessary steps to ensure that the street dogs are not killed. "The chief minister should open his mouth. Those who kill dogs today will kill cattle, women and children tomorrow. They will not feel remorse for killing."

Making an unveiled attack on Kochouseph Chittilappilly, a rich business man in Ernakulam, Menaka said certain businessmen, who are criminals are behind the killing of dogs. “They are people with mental abnormality. They are trying to become heroes by killing dogs,” she said and quipped, “actually who is ruling Kerala, is it’s the LDF government or such businessmen?”   

Meanwhile, unrepentant Chittilappily arrogantly said, he would continue the killing of dogs.

Minister Jaleel disapproves of Menaka Gandhi’s statement

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Local Administration Minister Jaleel has criticised Union Women and Child Welfare Minister Menaka Gandhi’s statement that KAAPA (Kerala Antisocial Activities (Prevention) Act should be invoked against people illegally killing street dogs. There is no circumstances that warrant invocation of KAAPA.  

"Ms Menaka Gandhi can say anything from New Delhi. She has to come to Kerala if she has to understand the reality," the minister said at a press conference today.

“I don’t think even the BJP, which is ruling the Centre, will make such a comment. In Kerala the government is not going about with mass culling of dogs, as alleged by Ms Gandhi,” he added.

Nisham’s phone calls seen seriously, says CM

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Making arrangements for Muhammed Nisham, the accused in the Chandrabose murder case to make calls from jail, are seen seriously, said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in the assembly. Replying to the submission of Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, Pinarayi said there were no security lapses in the jail.

Nisham spoke to his relatives from the cops’ phone when taken to Bengaluru. A probe was conducted and the officials responsible were suspended. A detailed probe will be conducted on his calls to the media, he said.

Man sustains serious injuries after attacked by stray dogs

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A 90-year-old man was seriously injured when he was attacked allegedly by a pack of stray dogs while lying in the sit out of a house at Varkala near here Wednesday, police said.

Raghavan, was attacked by six stray dogs around 6.30 am this morning, they said.

The seriously injured nonagenarian is in a serious condition at the Thiruvananthapuram Medical college hospital. He has received deep wounds on his head, face, neck and legs, hospital sources said.

A 65-year-old woman was mauled to death by a large pack of stray dogs in August on a suburban beach at Kanjiramkulam here.

Activists of the youth wing of a political party had taken out a procession recently carrying dogs carcasses tied to poles following which the state government was asked by the Supreme Court to file a response within three weeks on the action taken.

The apex court had on September 14 said compassion should be shown to stray dogs but these animals should not be allowed to become a menace to society and a balance needs to be struck.

Jacob Thomas writes to CBI director

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Vigilance Director Jacob Thomas has written to CBI director against the CBI filing an affidavit in the high court that probe could also be conducted against him.

He pointed out in the letter that such an affidavit was weird.

The case pertains to the allegation that Jacob Thomas took leave and went to teach in a private college. In the affidavit it is said that the CBI is ready to take over the case.

Jacob Thomas alleged that affidavit was filed without following normal procedures.

He asks in the letter whether the affidavit against him was filed with the permission of the CBI director.

The Vigilance director also questioned the special interest shown by the CBI in taking up the case, which was not allegedly shown in other cases.

Copies of the letter have been submitted to the chief secretary and home secretary. 

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Tanker lorry strike called off

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Tanker lorry strike at Indian Oil Corporation’s Irumbanam and Kozhikode plant was withdrawn late evening on Tuesday. The strike was called off after Minister A K Saseendran hold discussions with truck drivers and owners, assuring them to correct the flaws in the contract.

The minister said it had been decided in the meeting to suspend all Tendering procedures till December 3. The meeting was attended by management representatives and workers’ co-ordination committee representatives.

“The employees’ demands will be met before December 3. They have also been told not to strike without informing the government,” the minister said.

The strike committee also decided to ply tanker lorries as usual from tomorrow morning.

IOC tanker lorry strike enters fourth day; pumps running out of fuel

 KOCHI: As the IOC truckers and truck owners strike entered the fourth day, the fuel shortage became severe. All pumps in Kollam, Pathanamthitta and Thiruvananthapuram have already been closed due to the shortage of petrol.    

IOC has about 950 pumps in the State. The indefinite strike started last Saturday and the strikers demand that IOC rectify the deficiencies in tender procedures and bear the expenses of sensor and locking facility fixed on the tanker.

The compromise meeting called the other day in Kozhikode had also failed. BPCL, HPCL companies have also warned of strikes in case today’s talk fails.

Meanwhile, Indian Corporation said the strikers aim was to increase the tariff of fuel transportation and this would ultimately result in fuel price hike.

Budget cement in state soon: CM

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Taking a leaf from neighbouring Tamil Nadu's 'Amma Cement' scheme, CPI (M) led LDF government in Kerala is planning to introduce a programme in which the key construction component would be distributed at a budget price.

Replying to a calling attention in the assembly for the present situation due to increase in cement price in the state, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said a scheme similar to Amma cement would be worked out in consultation with cement producers.

"Government will hold discussions with cement producers to finalise the scheme. Certain guidelines also has to be made," he said, but rejected a suggestion for supplying cement at subsidy rates.

State run Malabar Cements production meets only 10 per cent of state's demand. The PSU also supplies its cement at Rs 25 less than the retail price of other brands in the market to capture more business, he pointed out.

It was a fact that retail price of cement was increasing in the state, he said.

At a recent meeting of cement distributors it was told that cement producers directly supply cement to realtors at a lower price than that of retail price, he added.

P T Thomas (Cong) wanted government to take steps to make cement available to the lower income and middle class people at a concessional rate.

Time extended for correcting draft entries

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Food and civil supplies minister P Thilothaman informed the assembly that time has been extended upto November 5 for correcting the mistakes in ration cards. Time was earlier given till October 30. Taluk offices will function on holidays for receiving the applications.

Time was extended following the difficulties faced by the people as enough arrangements were not made in the Neyyatinkara taluk supply office for receiving applications of those whose names have been taken off from the BPL list.

The authorities published the draft list of the new ration card on October 20. It was directed to produce the specified application before 30th of those who have complaints.  The authorities were not able to reach to the public on time even after informing that the draft list would reach local self-governing bodies. This led to an unprecedented rush. Almost 5000 turned up with the applications at the taluk office in Neyyatinkara yesterday. The number of counters to receive the applications were also less.

Staff strike: Kannur Medical College will be shifted to Malappuram

KANNUR: In the wake of ongoing CITU-led strike, the management of Kannur Medical College is getting ready to shift the college from Ancharakandi to Malappuram. This was declared by the management in its affidavit submitted in the high court.

The management informed the court it had started the spade work to shift the college to Malappuram. This might take a year’s time. This is one of the medical colleges that didn’t enter into any agreement with the government over self-financing college fee issue.

Kannur Medical College is functioning under Prestige Education Trust, chaired by M Abdul Jabbar. The medical college was started in 2006. The college has been conducting admission procedures as per its own bylaw. The management has also asked the court for the Central government forces’ protection for the colleges till it will be shifted to Malappuram.

Currently, there are about 6000 students studying various courses. About 100 employees of the college had started strike on the 13th of last September over minimum wages, provident fund and bonus.

The management were ready for just paying Rs 2000 as bonus, after which the college premises witnessed tense situation. Four vehicles parked in front of the college were also damaged on Friday.

Cooperative dept ready to construct pay wards in govt hospitals

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The cooperative department is ready to construct pay wards in government hospitals, said Minister A C Moideen. The permission of the health department is needed again. One lakh employment opportunities would be created in the cooperative sector, he said.

The government is thinking of making permanent many including deposit collectors who have been working for the past 10-15 yearsin primary cooperative societies.

There are 2485 employees in KTDC. Outside contractors and trainees are the most. There are no special rules for appointing outside employees. Some of the hotels of KTDC are running at a loss due to this.

Three star hotels would be constructed in Muzhappilangad and Kozhikode, a five-star hotel in Munnar and 15 new cottages would be built in Pondmudy, he said. 

CPM will not protect goons, says Kodiyeri

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The CPM will not protect the goons who indulge in goonda activities, sad party state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan. Nobody in the party is engaged in such activities. The opposition gets nervous when they hear about Kannur, he told reporters here. He made the statement soon after Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan made a statement in the assembly that goons would not be protected.

Vigilance director Jacob Thomas just expressed his doubt that his phone is being tapped. Allegations can be levelled against anybody. They are just allegations till it is proved. Thomas is an official is against corruption, pointed Kodiyeri.

The court verdict against former chief minister Oommen Chandy in the solar case has proved right the allegations levelled by the LDF. His stand that his version was not heard is not suitable for his post.

The reporters should be given a situation to work freely. Those who attack reporters should be seen as criminals. A section of the advocates work against the society, he said.

Anti-piracy raid across State; 8 arrested

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Eight persons were arrested for alleged possession of pirated CDs in the raid conducted by Crime Branch Anti-piracy cell across the State on Tuesday. Computers, Hard discs, pen drives and memory cards were seized from them.

The arrested persons were Thiruvananthapuram Vizhinjam Mukkola Crazy Shop owner Prasad Swaminath, Thiruvallam Mobile Zoom owner Abhijith, Thodupuzha Mobile Care owner Aswin Thomas, Muttam Friends Mobile Duty Paid shop owner Subai Moideen Kunju, Karimban area New Times Kasim Abdul Rahman, Kaibees Mobiles Shop owner Anarkhan, Adimali Police Station E Planet Electronics and Mobiles Shopowner Roshen K Pathrose, Munnar Mobile Mart owner Manoj Kumar.   
Anti-piracy Cell SP informed that more than 1000 fake CDs, 8 computers, Laptops and External hard discs were seized from them.
The police also found out that some of these shops sold porn videos to school students. The raid was conducted on a tip off received by SP B Rajeev.

Don’t put the chair under pressure via gestures, says Speaker

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The speaker of the assembly gave a ruling asking not to put the chair under pressure through gestures. His request made the members laugh when the members lifted their hands seeking a chance to ask sub questions during question hour.

Even though making active the question hour is a happy thing, almost 40-45 persons are lifting their hands for sub-questions. More members sought chance yesterday for asking questions on tourism projects. More members will get a chance if the question and answers are shortened, he said. 

Special team to tackle goons, says Pinarayi

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayansaida political cover will not be arranged for goons in the state. A special police team will be entrusted to tackle them, he informed the assembly. The chief minister said this while replying to the notice for the adjournment motion demanding a discussion on the rise in goon attacks.  

The government will not protect goons in any form and even if the person is close to me, it would be the same. The government will not compromise in that, he said.

P T Thomas who sought permission for the motion said the life and property of the people are in danger due to the goonda attacks. He alleged that the attacks witnessed in Kochi has links with Kannur.

Goons are letting loose terror in the state, said opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala. Kerala is like Thiruttu Gramam. Due to the competition between the police, they are not able to nab goons, blamed Chennithala.

SP feud: Shivpal, Akhilesh flock Mulayam's residence

LUCKNOW: A day after high drama at a key meeting of the ruling Samajwadi Party, its state unit chief Shivpal Yadav Tuesday said all was well in the party as he visited Mulayam Singh Yadav's residence and was joined in later by Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav.

"All is well in the party and the Mulayam family. I am with 'netaji' (Mulayam). We will abide by whatever directive is given by him," he said.

Shivpal was answering questions from media persons at the SP headquarters here which had witnessed high drama and ugly scenes with Shivpal calling his nephew Akhilesh a liar and even snatching the mike from him yesterday.

Shivpal today drove to the residence of Mulayam to see him. The SP supremo is suffering from severe toothache and is taking rest at his residence.

The Chief Minister also separately visited the residence of the SP supremo.

Outside the state SP headquarters, tension once again ran high with followers of Shivpal and Akhilesh raising slogans in favour of their respective leaders.

Police had to be deployed in large number outside the SP central office in view of the clashes between supporters of rival sides.

Cordons were set up this morning on the roads leading to Vikramaditya Marg where the SP office is situated.

Shivpal reached the party office this morning and discussed party matters with minister Gayatri Prajapati and sacked minister Om Prakash Singh.

Explosion in north Delhi, one dead

NEW DELHI: One person was killed and two others were injured in an explosion in north Delhi's Naya Bazar area Tuesday.

A senior police officer said the cause of the explosion was yet to be ascertained.

Forensic teams and officers from the Special Cell are on the spot and collecting samples.

Further details are awaited.

Delhi Police personnel have been maintaining a tight vigil in view of the festive season.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Human Rights files case against Nisham for 'making phone calls' from jail

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: State Human Rights panel has suo-motu filed a case against Chandrabose murder case convict Nisham Muhammed based on the media reports that he had made telephone calls from jail to control his business world outside.

Human Rights Commission Acting Chairman P Mohan Das ordered that jail IG probe the matter in detail and submit the report within one month.

In its sitting to be held in Kannur in November, the Commission will consider the case. The Commission pointed out that Nisham could be running business from jail with the help of policemen.

Solar case: Chandy, others fined

BAGALORE: Former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and others involved in a solar case have been fined by Bengaluru City Additional Civil and Session court. The case pertains to cheating crores of money out of Bengaluru-based business man M K Kuruvila in the name of a solar project. The court has ordered Chandy and others to pay back Rs 1,60,85,700 within six months.

Among the six accused persons in the case, Oommen Chandy is the Accused No 5. The accused took money from the business man after promising him Central government’s subsidy in a solar power project. 

Saumya case: SC order, a fallout of judges' workload, says Katju

NEW DELHI: Supreme Court former judge Markandey Katju says on his Facebook post that the workload of Supreme court judges had resulted in their commuting Saumya murder case convict Govindachamy’s death sentence. As the judges have to go through a backlog of cases, they don’t get enough time to consider every case.

The post reads thus

“In the Soumya case when I heard for the first time that the Supreme Court had issued notice to me and asked me to appear before them and explain my views, I was upset because I thought the Court was trying to humiliate me since I had criticized their judgement, and such an order was unprecedented. So I had initially thought of not appearing before the Court on 11th November ( the date fixed ).

But when I received the notice of the Court and read it, I found that the Court used very respectful language to me (part of which I have quoted in an earlier fb post), and had 'requested' me, not 'ordered' me, to appear, since they seemed to be sincere about their desire to reconsider their judgment, and did not have a closed mind.

Lord Denning, the celebrated British judge once said " The Judge has not been born who has not made a mistake ", and in Soumya's case I genuinely believe that the Supreme Court made some serious mistakes in its judgment by reversing the death penalty awarded by the High Court, and I have given my reasons in my posts on fb and blog.

Possibly these mistakes were made because the Court is so overburdened with work that it cannot give as much time to cases as they deserve which they would have otherwise done, had it not been for this heavy load of cases to decide.

We are all humans, and all of us make mistakes, but a gentleman is one who realizes his mistake, acknowledges it, and seeks to make amends. This should apply to judges too.

I myself have sometimes made mistakes in my judgments.

In Gian Singh vs. State of Punjab, SLP 8989 of 2010 I observed:

"We are of the opinion that the above three decisions require to be re-considered as, in our opinion, something which cannot be done directly cannot be done indirectly. In our, prima facie, opinion, non-compoundable offences cannot be permitted to be compounded by the Court, whether directly or indirectly. Hence, the above three decisions do not appear to us to be correctly decided.

Two youths among Athirappilly picnickers die in bike accident

KOLLAM: Two youth among the six-member picnickers who were returning after visiting Athirappilly at Chalakkudy in Thrissur died on MC Road at Kottarakkara Mylath after they met with an accident.

The dead have been identified as Pulaman Neelamvila house resident Raju’s son Arun Raj (23) and Neeleswaram Palavilathekkathil Sabu’s son Sumith Christhy (20).

The Pulsar bike on which the two were travelling met with an accident at a deserted place near Mylam MGM School at 10 in the night. The mishap occurred when there was just 2km left to reach their home. The team included six polytechnic classmates and they were travelling on three bikes.

They all were residents of Kottarakkara and nearby areas. The students who were riding the bikes in the front were unaware of the accident. After they lost track of them, they rode back only to see their friends lying in a pool of blood.

Though the police and locals rushed them to Medical College hospital, Sumith Christy died by 11:30 pm on Sunday and Arun Raj died by around 4:30 morning today.

Before they died, they had told the police that a big vehicle had collided with their bike.

Nedumbassery human trafficking: CBI files charge-sheet against four SIs

KOCHI: The CBI has filed a charge sheet against the accused including certain policemen in connection with Nedumbassery human trafficking. The accused in the case include four SIs and one constable, totalling to nine convicts.

The accusation was that 32 persons had been trafficked via Nedumbassery airport. The incident came to light after the arrest of Chirayinkeezhu native Mubeena from Mumbai airport on July 6, 2016. On June, 11, 2012, she was sent to UAE with a fake passport and there she landed in a sex racket centre. She was forcefully presented before many customers seeking sex for money. She was later sent back to Kerala with Rs 15,000 and flight ticket.

The case was first handled by the Crime Branch and later the CBI took over the case. It was during the CBI investigation that they got the information that the racket, which also included emigration officials, took bribe and helped the people with fake documents to board the flight.  

Police constable Ajeeb, who was earlier arrested in this connection, had given decisive information regarding the connection of certain high-rank officials in the case.

In the probe held on the source of Rs 55 lakh that was transferred to Ajeeb’s bank account, the role of top police officials and Travel Agency owners were evidentially established. The charge sheet has been filed based on those evidence.