Saturday, June 19, 2010

No need for support from AMMA: Thilakan

KOZHIKODE: Actor Thilakan has said no support from AMMA (Association of Malayalam Movie Artistes) is required for acting and a camera would work without any aid from FEFKA (Film Employees Federation of Kerala).

The actor, who has been suspended from AMMA, was speaking at the �puja of �Achan, a film directed by Ali Akbar, in which he plays the protagonist, here on Saturday. Thilakan said acting was his job but he received no support from the Communist leaders when he was denied the opportunity to work. �I am a Communist, but the leaders are supporting the millionaire superstars, he said.

He said the character of the father he would be playing in �Achan was different from such roles he did before. �I will make this father very different,� he said.

24 students held on theft charges

Kozhikode: Twenty-four students, including 19 juveniles, have been arrested for allegedly stealing motorbikes, computers and automobile spare-parts from various parts of the city. Sixteen cases have been registered in this connection, the police said.

The city police produced the juveniles, studying in higher secondary schools in the city, before Chief Judicial Magistrate, Kozhikode, S.H. Panchapakesan, who is the chairman of the Juvenile Justice Board. They were released on bail.

Kuttiyadi extension project inaugurated

Kozhikode: Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan has said that the electricity sector in the State achieved commendable improvement during the last four years of the LDF governance by reducing the transmission loss and streamlining the distribution.

Inaugurating the 100-MW Kuttiyadi Additional Extension Power Project at Kakkayam in the district on Saturday, the Chief Minister said the government would declare the State totally electrified within a year.

�During the last four years, the State could generate an additional 196 MW power through various schemes. The achievement is high while comparing with the 26 MW power generated during the tenure of the previous UDF government, the Chief Minister said and added that �work on no fewer than 30 projects is now progressing in the State with a mission to generate an additional 730 MW power.�

Babies in cradle

KOTTAYAM: The Ammathottil being operated by the District Child Welfare Committee received two babies on Saturday, a nearly 12-day-old girl and a six-day-old boy.

According to the authorities of the district hospital where the �Ammathottil is kept, the baby girl was found by 3.30 p.m. while the boy, underweight and looking weak, was found at 5 p.m.

Vice-Chancellor rues poor quality of teachers

KOTTAYAM: Rajan Gurukkal, Vice-Chancellor of Mahatma Gandhi University, has bemoaned the fall in quality of teachers, especially in the higher education sector.

Inaugurating the State conference of the All-Kerala Private College Teachers Association here on Saturday, Dr. Gurukkal said teachers had degenerated as a community unwilling to take up intellectual and cognitive encounters.

He said the higher education sector was challenged by the exponential decay in teaching standards, a cancerous administrative structure and decaying norms, in addition to the perennial demand for knowledge-generation.

He said that after several decades, Kerala now boasted decision-makers who viewed higher education sector as an area which needed more investment and a total reorientation. But those at the Centre sent confusing and contradictory signals on the changes being brought about in the sector, on account of the contradictory interests of corporatism and social justice.

V.N. Vasavan, MLA, welcomed the gathering.

MG University inks pact with UGC INFLIBNET

Kottayam: Mahatma Gandhi University has added another achievement to its list of innovative ventures.

Last week, the university signed a deal with the Information and Library Network (INFLIBNET) of the University Grants Commission (UGC) to tap the potential of information technology tools to ensure better and transparent services to students and the academia.

The INFLIBNET is an autonomous inter-university centre of the UGC involved in creating infrastructure for sharing of library and information resources and services among academic and research institutions. It works collaboratively with Indian university libraries to shape their future in the evolving information environment.

The authorities said the university was the first in India to provide open access to its doctoral dissertations. The university had a collection of 1,180 doctoral theses spread over 40 subjects.

SFI, college management harden stand

KOTTAYAM: Even as efforts to find an amicable solution to the tussle at CMS College, Kottayam, continued on Saturday, both the agitating SFI activists and the College Protection Committee refused to budge from their stand.

Cyriac Thomas, chairman of the Minority Education Commission, visited the campus on Saturday. Talking to mediapersons, he said the agitation that had led to violent incidents on the campus had pained all people. �These are things that persons with common sense would never dare do, he said.

Mr. Thomas said the Commission had so far not received any complaint from the College authorities. It would look into the matter if it gets a complaint.

The College Protection Committee took out a march to protest against what they termed �an attack on a minority educational institution and an effort to destroy the institution.� The committee leaders said the management would not withdraw the disciplinary action taken against erring students.

Three of a family found dead

KOLLAM: Three of a family, including a five-year-old girl child, were found dead in their house at Padanayarkulangara, near Karunagapally, on Saturday morning. The police identified the dead as Yusuf, 35, his wife Senuja, 32, and their daughter Fida.

The police said the bodies were found in three separate rooms of the house. The child was wearing new clothes. Preliminary examinations suggested that Yusuf may have killed his wife and daughter by poisoning them and then consumed the poison himself.

The police found a �suicide note scribbled on the wall raising allegations against Yusufs wife

Seminar on �politics of land\' on Wednesday

KOLLAM: A seminar on the �politics of land will be organised here on June 23 by the Paristhiti Samrakshana Ekopana Samithy at the Public Library Hall.

The seminar will be inaugurated by Congress leader V.M. Sudheeran. Environment and human rights activist B.R.P. Bhaskar will deliver the keynote address.

Environment activist C.R. Neelakantan will present the subject. Samithy president Ganga Prasad will speak.

Samithy general convener Odanavattam Vijayaprakash said that even the lax laws for land protection were being amended to suit the interests of the land mafia.

Moneylender\'s bail plea rejected

KOLLAM: Kollam District and Session Judge Thomas Pallickaparambil on Saturday rejected the anticipatory bail application by a moneylender against whom the Kollam West police had registered a case under the Kerala Moneylenders Act.

Sources in the legal fraternity said the order assumes significance as it comes to the rescue of many people who are harassed by a section of moneylenders. The order also facilitates the registration of a case under extortion charges against such moneylenders, they said.

The order pertains to a property at Lakshminada in the city assessed to be worth Rs.1 crore. It was mortgaged to one Rajesh Khanna, a city-based moneylender, by a woman for Rs.10 lakh.

The police case against Rajesh Khanna, based on a complaint filed by the woman, was that the former had opened an office on her property without her consent. He also reportedly got the property registered in his name.

Read for social change, says writer

KOLLAM: Writer Perumbadavam Sreedharan said here on Saturday that people should engage in reading not just to while away time, but to ignite their minds. He was inaugurating a district-level Reading Week observance organised jointly by the Education Department, P.N. Panicker Foundation and the Jan Shikshan Sansthan.

Ward blueprint published

KATTAPPANA: The blueprint of the ward limits of the Munnar grama panchayat and the newly-formed Edamalakudy tribal grama panchayat has been published. The blueprint is available at the respective grama panchayat and village offices, ration shops and libraries.

The public can submit complaints and suggestions regarding the recommendations in the blueprint to the District Collector before June 28.

Indo-Soviet cardiology project begins

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Indo-Soviet Cardiology Research Project of KIMS Hospital and Peoples Friendship University of Russia was officially inaugurated at Moscow recently. A delegation from KIMS, led by its Vice-Chairman G. Vijayaraghavan and consisting of Rajesh Rajan among others, handed over a traditional lamp of Kerala to Vice-Chancellor of Peoples Friendship University of Russia Dimitry Bilibin. The function was attended by Dean of Medical Faculty Victor Frolov and Friendship University Vice-Rector Denissenko.

Three more flu deaths in State

Thiruvananthapuram: Two persons from Kollam district died of influenza A(H1N1) on Saturday, while one death reported on Friday from Pathanamthitta was confirmed as caused by the flu. Twenty-five more cases of the infection were reported in the State.

While six fresh cases were reported from Malappuram, five each were confirmed in Thiruvananthapuram and Kollam and three each from Pathanamthitta and Thrissur. Alappuzha, Ernakulam and Kannur reported one case each.

Nisha, 21, a native of Kakode in Punalur died at the Government Medical College Hospital on Saturday. Pappan Mathew, 70, from Karimthottuva, Kollam, died at Holy Cross Hospital, Kottiyam. Anish, 29, hailing from Mezhuveli, Pathanamthitta, died at Pushpagiri Medical College Hospital, Thiruvalla.

State to test cloud-computing solutions

Thiruvananthapuram: The State government has initiated testing for cloud-computing solutions. A tripartite agreement was signed here on Friday by Rathan U. Kelkar, Director, Kerala State IT Mission, Elizabeth Sherly, Director, Indian Institute of Information Technology and Management-Kerala (IIITM-K), and R. Nagesh, Coordinator, Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), Chennai.

Turn off a light, read a book

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The State government plans to give gift coupons to children from families that reduce their monthly power consumption, Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac has said.

He was speaking after inaugurating the Reading Week celebrations organised here on Saturday by the Department of Education, the Information and Public Relations Department and the P.N. Panicker Foundation.

Children will be able to redeem these coupons against books in select stores, Dr. Isaac said.

Reading, he said, should be a search for the soul of a book, for the knowing the art of literature and for falling in love with reading itself. Reading should not be restricted to a single purpose. P. N. Panicker was one who motivated people to read the works of authors such as Kunchan Nambiar or Cherussery rather than those of foreign authors. Writers of today have to try and simplify their language so that they can be understood even by a school student, he said.

Sainik School old boys come together

Thiruvananthapuram: It was a homecoming, a time to relive the thrills and spills of school life. The 41st reunion of the Old Boys Association of the Sainik School, Kazhakuttam, turned out to be a celebration on the campus on Saturday.

Many of the old boys, occupying top positions in the armed forces, turned up with their families for the event.

Lt. General G.M. Nair, Military Secretary and an alumnus of the institution, was the chief guest.

On his arrival on the campus, he was presented with a guard of honour by the NCC contingent of the school.

The General laid a wreath at the Stupa

Lab to be set up to test government web sites

Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala State IT Mission is planning to set up a laboratory for testing government web sites, Rathan U. Kelkar, Director of the mission, has said.

The facility will be established in association with the Centre for Development of Imaging Technology (C-DIT), the Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT), the National Informatics Centre (NIC) and the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), he said at a two-day workshop on web site quality and accessibility, which concluded here on Saturday.

Mr. Kelkar called upon developers of government web sites to become aware of the standards available for web site development.

The workshop was organised by the mission in association with the Standardisation, Testing and Quality Certification (STQC) Directorate

Eenchakkal bus station by 2011-end

Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) is scheduled to complete the construction of the proposed bus terminal at Eenchakkal by December 2011.

Officials said the terminal would be used mainly to operate long-distance and inter-State bus services. The three-storey terminal complex will be constructed in two phases on six acres of land abutting the Chakka-Kovalam National Highway bypass. It will have rest-rooms, dormitories, cloak rooms, Internet cafes, restaurants, telephone booths and comfort stations.

Mammootty inaugurates anti-drug drive

Nedumbassery: Actor Mammootty on Saturday launched �Vazhikaatti (guide), an anti-drug use awareness campaign organised by the Care and Share International Foundation at a function held at the K.E.M. School, Alangad, near here.

Speaking at the event, he said Kerala topped the list of alcohol consuming States in the country and urged the government to forgo the revenues from the sale of liquor. Surveys have revealed the alarming fact that the average age of youngsters beginning to consume alcohol and narcotic substances is as low as 13, he said.

KSIDC set to enter entertainment sector

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC) is set to make foray into the entertainment industry by financing and supporting imaginative ventures of promising talents. The decision is expected to instil professionalism in the industry.

The projection that the entertainment sector is expected to register a combined annual growth rate of 12.5 per cent till 2013 and the job opportunities it is expected to generate in the decade ahead are some of the factors that prompted the Corporation to take the plunge.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Centre mulls subsidy on coconut oil

KOCHI: The Union Ministry of Agriculture is considering a proposal for providing subsidy to coconut oil in Kerala. The details will be worked out in consultation with the State government during the forthcoming visit of Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar to the State. A programme for providing subsidy to indigenous palm oil in Andhra Pradesh would be launched soon. The subsidy scheme for coconut oil could be on similar lines.

This was disclosed by the Union Minister of State for Agriculture K. V. Thomas while inaugurating a retail outlet for coconut products at the Coconut Development Board office complex here on Friday. The opening of outlet, called CDB- Nafed Palm Gate, is a joint initiative of the Coconut Development Board and the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Limited (Nafed).

Notification on new municipalities issued

KOCHI: The State government has issued a notification on various parameters applicable to the newly-formed municipalities and the re-configured corporations and municipalities following the merger of adjoining village panchayats with them across the State ahead of the forthcoming elections to the local self-government bodies

No new ration cards in State for now

KOCHI: Those seeking new ration cards in Kerala will have to wait until the middle of next year.

Unable to cope with the heavy rush for new ration cards, the Civil Supplies Department has stopped accepting applications.

This has come as a disappointment to lakhs of people, mainly the low-income group who make use of the public distribution system (PDS) which provides food grains at a very low price.

Since the ration card is now used as a basic document of identification for an entire family, which needs to be presented for contacts with the official machinery for a variety of purposes, the delay will cause hardship to a large number of people.

Scheme for paddy farming

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Agriculture Department proposes to increase paddy cultivation in the plains from 1,000 hectares last year to 6,000 hectares this year. The department has earmarked a sum of Rs.3 crore for the purpose. It has asked those concerned to raise paddy in at least one hectare of land in each block under the scheme.

PDP plea for medical aid to Maudany

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) working chairman Poonthura Siraj has urged the State government to send a medical team to Anvarassery in Kollam to examine party chairman Abdul Nasir Maudany.

Mr. Siraj told reporters here on Friday that Mr. Maudany, suffering from various ailments, was in a precarious condition and needed urgent medical care. The Health Minister should depute a team of doctors to review his condition at the earliest. The party would not recourse to any agitation that would disrupt peace in the State, he said.

The charges levelled against Mr. Maudany in connection with the Bangalore blasts case were nothing but a repetition of the events that culminated in his arrest in the Coimbatore blast case. After his release from a Coimbatore jail, Mr. Maudanys movements were being closely monitored by the State police and he never had a chance to conspire with anyone. The party was confident of proving Mr. Maudanys innocence in the court, he said.

Film shooting disrupts traffic

Thiruvananthapuram: Shooting of a song sequence for a Malayalam commercial movie disrupted traffic on the Manaveeyam road during the rush hour on Friday morning.

Film crew and actors appropriated the carriageway to film the song for nearly an hour. Soon, onlookers gathered on either side of the road. Their vehicles and that of the film crew were parked on either side of the road, causing a bottleneck and forcing the traffic to crawl.

City Police Commissoner M. R. Ajith Kumar ordered the police to stop the filming on receiving complaints from the public. At the instance of the police, the film crew and actors packed up and left the spot around 10.45 a.m.

Mr. Ajith Kumar said he had instructed his officers not to give permission for film and television serial shooting on busy stretches during rush hours and without his sanction. Henceforth, the police will specify timings while issuing permission for filming, he said.

Trespass: private bank managers get bail

Thiruvananthapuram: A magistrate court here granted bail to two managers of a private bank who were arrested on Thursday on the charge of trespassing into the house of a debtor with an armed gang and attempting to extort money from him.

The court directed the accused, Benjamin Wilson and J. Sivaram, to report before the investigating officer, Circle Inspector, Thampanoor, S. Anil Kumar, at 11.30 a.m. on all Mondays for the next two months

Campaign against diabetes

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The government and the private medical sector should join hands to fight the growing epidemic of diabetes in the Sate, Health Minister P.K. Sreemathy said here on Friday. She was inaugurating a campaign against diabetes, �War against Diabetes, launched by the Dhathri Group here earlier in the week.

The Indian Institute of Diabetes (IID) has been revamped by the government to launch several public health measures to fight diabetes. One of the main recommendations made by the State to the 13th Finance Commission was community-level interventions on a major scale to fight diabetes and it is expected to be approved, she said.

Awareness of the disease plays a key role in the fight against diabetes, said Shashi Tharoor, MP, who was the chief guest.

Bamboo workers seek succour

Thiruvananthapuram: When K.P. Lazar sits down to work, his deft hands produce a range of intricate designs in bamboo and reed. But, life is not exactly beautiful for this traditional artisan from Vellanad. It is, he says, a struggle for survival.

On Friday, on the sidelines of a workshop organised by the Kerala Institute of Labour and Employment (KILE), he voiced his and his co-workers concerns. �Bamboo and reed workers do not have minimum wages and the Kerala State Bamboo Corporation procures our products for a pittance. Even the supply of raw materials is erratic, he said. Bamboo and reed workers are not given proper wages and incentives, unlike their counterparts in other cottage and small-scale industries. �Collecting raw material from forests is itself an arduous task,� he said.

Earlier, inaugurating the workshop, Deputy Leader of the Opposition G. Karthikeyan exhorted the workers to be tuned to the market trends and diversify the product portfolio. K.B. Francis, representative of Bamboo Corporation said moves were on to set up community workshops and establish a factory to manufacture bamboo flooring tiles. Introduction of mechanisation and fixing minimum wages for the workers needed to be looked into, he said.

Central team concludes study

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: An expert team deputed by the Centre to study the spread of influenza A (H1N1) in the State on Friday suggested that Tamiflu (oseltamivir phosphate) tablets should be made available at the PHC level for treating the disease.

The team, which concluded its three-day tour of the disease-affected areas of Kollam and Thiruvananthpuram districts, told the media that it was happy to find that the tablet was available in sufficient numbers at a local public health centre at the tribal area of Peringamala (Thiruvananthapuram district), where there was an outbreak of the disease.

The team consisted of Sunil Gupta, Joint director of the National Centre for Disease Control, New Delhi; epidemiologist Pradeep Khasnobis; and senior research officer B.V. Tandale of the National Institute of Virology, Pune.

Mr. Gupta stressed that patients should seek treatment at the right time as early treatment was important for cure.

The disease was found to spread when there was high moisture content in the air. Temperature could also be a factor. The team would submit its report to the Centre soon.

KSCB bid to avert loss suffers setback

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Kerala State Cooperative Banks attempt to make use of its surplus funds for granting major loans, and thereby reduce its operating loss, is understood to have suffered a setback with the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) turning down a proposal of the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation (NAFED) for a working capital loan of Rs.500 crore.

NABARDs clearance is imperative for the KSCB to sanction loans. The proposal has been rejected in spite of the Central government giving a letter of assurance for sanctioning the Rs.500-crore loan. The national federation, which works for providing remunerative prices to farmers for their produce, is involved in the procurement of copra and paddy, among other produce. The proposal forwarded by the bank for NABARDs clearance on April 7 was returned after a month with a note that the proposal was �carefully examined but could not be acceded to in the present circumstances. The negative network of the KSCB was cited as a reason for rejecting the proposal

A fishing village clings to hope

Thiruvananthapuram: It is a long wait for the family of Mani (Varghese), 53, and his son Satheesh, 18, hailing from the coastal village of Mariyanadu. The duo had set out to sea from the Colachel harbour in Tamil Nadu, along with five others from Eraviputhenthurai in Kanyakumari district, on May 31.

The deep sea fishing boat named Mojanam registered with the Department of Fisheries, Tamil Nadu (Reg.No. TN/15/MFB/075) failed to return as scheduled on June 8. For residents of Mariyanad area and Thoothoor region of Kanyakumari, anxiety over the fate of the fishermen mounts with each day.

�We are keeping our fingers crossed, waiting for their safe return, says Vijayan, Secretary, Eraviputhenthurai Unit of the Association of Deep Sea Going Artisanal Fishermen. The Tamil Nadu natives aboard the missing boat include Biju, 36, Binu, 26, Shaji, 29, Cleetus, 48 and Essak, 52. Mr. Vijayan said the case of the missing fishermen was conveyed to the Assistant Director of Fisheries, Kanyakumari District, Director of Fisheries, Government of Tamil Nadu and the Coast Guard stations at Mandapam and Vizhinjam.

University preparing for re-accreditation

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The University of Kerala which was accredited by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) for a five-year period ending March 20, 2008, will soon submit a request to the Council for re-accreditation.

The online Letter of Intention will shortly be submitted to the NAAC, University officials said here. As per the Councils guidelines, universities should submit the Re-accreditation Report (RAR) as per the Manual of Self Study. The manuals format is available on www.naacindia.org and in www.naac.gov.in.

A letter written by B.S. Ponmudiraj, assistant advisor of NAAC to the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Kerala on May 13, 2010, points out that a university is eligible for re-accreditation if the institution volunteers for the same through an online Letter of Intention and if the institution fulfils the Minimum Institutional Requirements (MIRs). These include the establishment of an Internal Quality Assurance Cell (IQAC) and the submission of Annual Quality Assurance Reports.

Jailbreak: criminal to be brought to Kannur

KANNUR: The arrest of T.H. Riyaz, 26, at Kasaragod on Thursday, a day after the arrest of his cell mate Jayanandan with whom he escaped on June 14, followed dramatic scenes, including a car chase.

A hardcore criminal, Riyaz, was arrested from Kasaragod by a special team led by Deputy Superintendent of Police P. Vikram at 8 p.m. If the daredevil escape of Riyaz and Jayanandan from the Central Jail here on June 14 exposed a major security lapse on the part of the jail authorities, the dramatic arrests of both within days of their escape have brought accolades to the police.

Superintendent of Police in Kasaragod P. Prakash told reporters in Kasaragod on Friday that the special team that had nabbed the absconding criminals was assisted by the special squad investigating temple burglary cases. He was trying to escape in an Alto car on Thursday night when he was captured by the police team, Mr. Prakash said

Prison security under the scanner

The brazen pre-dawn jailbreak by two hardcore criminals from the high-security Kannur Central Jail has exposed the vulnerability of jails in the State. Though the escapees have been nabbed from Udagamandalam in Tamil Nadu and Kasaragod, the incident has led the authorities to review the security of the jails.

The Kozhikode District Jail, constructed between 1905 and 1907, is no exception when it comes to providing low prison security.

An acute shortage of trained staff is a major problem. There are only 32 warders entrusted with watch-and-ward duty for 287 inmates, including 10 women. Only six have been directly appointed through the Public Service Commission. The others have been recruited on a daily basis from the Employment Exchange.

Preference is usually given to ex-servicemen.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Nalla Thampi Thera dead

KALPETTA: Nalla Thampi Thera Paramananda, a prominent fighter for the cause of the tribal people, died here on Wednesday night following cardiac arrest. He was 77.

Coir festival in Alappuzha from tomorrow

ALAPPUZHA: A Coir Fest, part of the governments observance of this year as the �Coir Year and aimed at popularising the latest coir products, will be organised at the SDV School grounds here from June 19 to 23.

The festival is a prelude to the International Coir Fest that will be held here in November.

The event, which will showcase traditional coir products along with handloom, khadi, bamboo, cashew and clay products, will be inaugurated by actor Mammootty at 5 p.m. on June 19.

P.P. Chitharanjan, municipal chairman, and G. Venugopal, State Coir Corporation Chairman, said a medical pavilion would be set up by students of the Kochi Cooperative Medical College.

9 women hospitalised

ALAPPUZHA: Nine women, all employees of an umbrella manufacturing unit here, were admitted to the Alappuzha General Hospital on Thursday, after they complained of breathing trouble, nausea and vomiting.

The women said they suspected the foul smell from a private fertilizer/pesticide wholesale dealership store adjacent to their unit to be the cause of the uneasiness.

They had arrived at the umbrella unit at 8.30 a.m. and since then, the air was heavy with a foul smell as well, making it difficult for them to breathe.

By 10 a.m., some of them fainted and others began to vomit and the owners of the group immediately rushed them to the hospital.

NTPC to adopt Arattupuzha

ALAPPUZHA: The National Thermal Power Corporations Rajiv Gandhi Combined Cycle Power Project at Kayamkulam will adopt the tsunami-hit village of Arattupuzha, according to K.C. Venugopal, MP.

In a release, Mr. Venugopal said Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde had informed him of the decision, which was taken after Mr. Venugopal submitted a petition requesting NTPC to take over the village, which was hit by the tsunami in December 2004, and to help development there as part of the Corporations social commitment programmes.

Basic infrastructure development, drinking water supply, rural health and sanitation, education, improvement of technical capabilities of the villagers and so on will be the focus of the projects to be designed by NTPC for Arattupuzha, Mr. Shinde told Mr. Venugopal.

Ombudsman\'s directive to grama panchayat

KOCHI: Ombudsman for local self-government institutions M.R. Hariharan Nair has directed the Thrikkakkara grama panchayat authorities to take all necessary steps to resolve the crisis emanating from its unscientific disposal of garbage.

Mr. Nair visited the dumping yard, a naturally-formed trench sandwiched between the offices of the grama panchayat and the district panchayat, and the residential areas hit by the overflowing garbage during the heavy rain last week.

Lives of families living in Kiliyankal and Alapat Nagar residential areas adjacent to the dumping yard were affected when stinking waste packaged in plastic covers floated into their properties

Ayurveda medical camp

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: An Ayurveda medical camp being organised by the Kudappanakunnu grama panchayat and the district Ayurveda wing at the U. P. School, Kusuvarakal, on June 19 will be inaugurated by V. Sivankutty, MLA.

Isaac gets Public Works

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Governor R.S. Gavai has issued notification allocating the Public Works portfolio to Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac. Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan was holding the portfolio of Public Works after Public Works Minister P.J. Joseph was dropped from the Ministry in April this year.

Private bank managers arrested

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The city police on Thursday arrested seven persons, including two managers of a private bank, on the charge of trespassing into the house of a debtor and threatening his family.

The police identified the main suspects as Benjamin Wilson of Iravipuram in Kollam and J. Sivaraman of Subash Nagar, both managers of the bank. They also arrested Sathish, Sarath Mohan, Vinod Kumar and Sreejith, all employees of a �loan recovery agency contracted by the bank. City Police Commissioner M.R. Ajith Kumar said the accused trespassed into the house of a government employee at Jagathy and threatened to kill his family on June 7, 2010. The employee had taken a loan from the bank but failed to repay the final instalment in time. The accused persons arrived at his house in a van, barged into the home and threatened his wife, children and elderly parents. Circle Inspector, Thampanoor, S. Anil Kumar arrested the suspects.

Violence is not agitation: Chief Minister

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Violence is not a substitute for agitation and violence is not agitation, Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan has said.

He was speaking after unveiling a statue of Mahatma Gandhi at the Central School Attakkulangara here on Thursday. The statue was gifted to the school by the NIMS Heart Foundation.

Agitations launched by some organisations, especially students, often turned violent. It was not rare that some agitations descend to the level of breaking windows, smashing equipment belonging to institutions and destroying public property. Such incidents were not agitations and those behind it were not agitators. They would have to be seen as criminals, he said. Gandhian principles had a lot of relevance even today. Student organisations carry out agitations demanding one thing or the other. The most used method for such agitations was the Gandhian method of satyagraha or dharna, Mr. Achuthanandan said. Mayor C. Jayan Babu distributed learning material to children from 55 schools

Dalawa\'s sword to be handed over to State on Sunday

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The sword of Velu Thampi Dalawa will be handed over to the State government at a function at the University Senate Hall on Sunday evening.

Culture Minister M.A. Baby told the media here on Thursday that the sword now kept at the National Museum, New Delhi, was being returned to the State following the Culture Departments request to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

When the first President Rajendra Prasad visited the State, the then head of the Kilimanoor royal family K.R. Ravi Varma Raja handed over the sword to him on August 14, 1957, in the presence of the then Chief Minister E.M.S. Namboodiripad.

The sword was kept at the Presidents office for a year and then handed over to the National Museum. Following the request of the Culture Department, the Centre decided to return the sword.

Law and order situation worsening: Chennithala

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee president Ramesh Chennithala on Thursday held the government, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and its feeder organisations responsible for �the deteriorating law and order situation in the State

Road widening: traders demand rehabilitation package

Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala Vyapari Vyavasayi Ekopana Samithi (KVVES) has demanded a rehabilitation package for traders who will be evicted for widening of national highways (NHs) in the State.

Addressing a press conference here on Thursday, KVVES leaders Alex M. Chacko, Mariyil Krishnan Nair and Peringammala Ramachandran urged the government to cap the width of the national highways in the State at 30.5 metres. They also called for amending the existing laws to ensure proper resettlement of the evicted families and adequate compensation for traders who lose their livelihood.

The leaders said the government had failed to utilise the land already acquired for widening the NH 47 and NH 17. �The acquired land has been lying idle for years. The evicted families have not been adequately compensated. The same fate might befall the proposed widening project also, they said.

Mr. Ramachandran said thousands of traders on both sides of the highway would lose their means of livelihood if they were evicted.

�They have invested heavily in shops and showrooms. Thousands of people depend on these establishments for a living,� he said. �Traders are not against widening of roads. But they cannot give up their means of livelihood for development purpose,� he said.

Drive against banks using thugs to recover loans

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The city police have initiated a crackdown on private banks and finance companies which employ thugs to recover loans from defaulters.

The Supreme Court had deplored the crude practice recently and ruled that recovery of loans be made only through legal means.

A significant number of people, who failed to repay loans in time, endured beatings, threats and public humiliation from musclemen on the payroll of private banks. Most of them suffered their ordeal in silence and rarely reported the excesses to the police.

Financial disputes, chiefly regarding non-payment of vehicle and housing loans, have resulted in kidnappings, forcible occupation of homes, illegal eviction, extortion and appropriation of private property in the district.

City Police Commissioner M.R. Ajith Kumar said the police had taken decisive action wherever there were specific complaints. The police had been directed to collect information on such gangs operating in the city, he said.

Major outbreak of H1N1 infection at tribal school

Thiruvananthapuram: Widespread transmission of Influenza A(H1N1) virus in the community has resulted in a major local outbreak of the infection in a residential tribal school at Njaraneeli in Peringammala panchayat, where five out of a cluster of 51 cases of fever with cold were confirmed as H1N1 infection on Thursday.

�Five children tested for H1N1 on a random basis were positive and that all the 51 children could be having the infection. Oseltamivir medicine has been started for the children. All the students and staff at the Ambedkar Vidyaniketan School have been put under surveillance, a senior health official told The Hindu.

The district heath administration has issued a high alert directive to doctors in the periphery.

It was on Wednesday that the medical officer at the Peringammala primary health centre reported to the district headquarters that a large number of children in the school were having fever with additional symptoms of cold.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Students complain of neglect in Kyrgyzstan

MALAPPURAM: Indian students trapped in Kyrgyzstan, the violence-torn Central Asian country, had to go without proper food and accommodation for the third day on Wednesday. Although they were shifted to safer places, the students are unhappy about the �neglect shown by the Indian authorities. �The Indian Embassy here told us today to buy flight tickets on our own if we want to return home,� M. Noufal, a medical undergraduate from Thalakkadathur, Tirur, told The Hindu on Wednesday evening.

Mr. Noufal is among the 105 Indian students trapped in Kyrgyzstan. Besides him, three other Keralites are also studying at Osh State University of Kyrgyzstan. They are Anil K. Mathew from Moothedam, Nilambur; M. Fazil from Karulai, Nilambur; and Abdul Gafoor from Pattarkulam, Manjeri.

Rain in Tamil Nadu, high prices in city

Kozhikode: The market price of vegetables in the city shows no sign of climbing down. Wholesale and retail dealers say that a respite is unlikely in the coming months too as supply from Tamil Nadu will only drop due to adverse climate conditions.

Drumstick costs Rs.45 a kg as against the Rs.28 or thereabouts for the past six months. The price of elephant yam is also witnessing an unexpected rise and now stands at Rs.35 a kg. �Local production of vegetables has come down drastically. Hence a decline in price in the near future can be ruled out. Earlier, many farmers used to supply drumsticks to the market. Not any more, says Raghu Uthaman, a vegetable vendor in Kozhikode. He, however, adds that the buyers are willing to cope and have stopped being choosy.

In-demand vegetables like beans, cabbage, beetroot and bitter gourd now figure on the �expensive list. According to vendors, the price of beans rose by Rs.25 a kg within six months. Beetroot is close behind, shooting up from Rs.15 to Rs.24 in the same span.

Pavanan Award announced

Kottayam: The Pavanan Trust has selected Kuripuzha Sreekumar for this years Pavanan Award.

The award commemorates the life of rationalist and literary critic Pavanan. The Trusts �Mathamillaatha Jeevan Award for outstanding academic performance went to Anamika S., Sangeetha P.S. and Ajitabh K.S., said a pressnote here on Wednesday

Centralised Allotment Process to bring in transparency in PG admission: VC

KOTTAYAM: Prof. Rajan Gurukkal, Vice-Chancellor, Mahatma Gandhi University, has said that the introduction of the Centralised Allotment Process (CAP) for the postgraduates programmes offered by the colleges affiliated to the varsity during the current academic year will �bring in a sense of distributed justice, render transparency and free the existing system from all sorts of influences.

He was inaugurating a special meeting of the Principals of affiliated colleges to finalise the strategies for the implementation of CAP, designed by the LBS Centre for Science and Technology, held here on Wednesday.

10-acre club property attached in Wagamon

KATTAPPANA: The Peerumade tahsildar on Wednesday attached a 10-acre property, owned in the name of one Malayali Club at Wagamon. The attachment was effected as per the order of the District Collector.

The club was in the land owned by the Tourism Department. The case began one-and-a-half years ago and the then Peerumade tahsildar, who enquired into a complaint of encroachment on government land, had submitted a report.

Later, as per the Collectors order, the Idukki Sub-Collector inquired into the case and found that the title deeds were bogus. Following this, the Collector had inspected the Peerumade taluk office and village offices in Elappara and Upputhara and found that the title deeds had been created by tampering with the official documents.

The parties who claim ownership of the land then moved the High Court.

Viral fever: 53 rapid response teams set up in Idukki

KATTAPPANA: The Health Department has set up rapid response teams in 53 primary health centres (PHCs) and community health centres (CHCs) in the district to counter the spread of viral diseases and other epidemics.

A special team with experts from the Kottayam Medical College will evaluate the action taken and the kind of diseases spreading in various areas, in addition to the measures needed to streamline the supply of medicines.

Talking to The Hindu on the steps taken to counter the spread of monsoon-related diseases, District Medical Officer Siby Thomas said that awareness campaigns and mosquito eradication steps like fogging has been intensified in areas prone to the spread of viral diseases.

Compared to the same period last year, the total viral fever cases has gone up with 8,061 cases reported from January till June 15 this year.

The total dengue fever cases reported so far this year is 94. Seventeen cases of leptospirosis were reported�five cases in May and six cases during the first half of June. Eighteen cases of Malaria, contracted from outside the State, were also reported. Only one case of H1N1 disease was reported so far this year. During the same period last year, 53 cases of H1N1 fever with two casualties were reported.

Eviction operation in Wayanad incomplete

KALPETTA: Though the Wayanad district administration swung into action on Wednesday to evict tribal people who had encroached upon two private plantations at five locations in the district, the action could not be completed owing to resistance from Communist Party of India (Marxist) activists.

The action, assisted by a police team led by Superintendent of Police (SP) G. Spurjankumar, began at 7.30 a.m.

Ornaments, gold stolen from jewellery

ALAPPUZHA: Gold and ornaments worth over Rs.30 lakh have been reported stolen from a jewellery at Haripad near here.

According to the police, a person residing near the shop noticed the broken lock of the backdoor and grill of the shop on Wednesday morning and alerted the owner, who in turn informed the police. Though the owner first told the police that silver weighing two kilograms too had gone missing, the police found the silver in the shop itself. Further enquiries revealed that a total of two kilos of gold was missing from the shop. Police have registered a case and are investigating

Siblings in the Army dead

ALAPPUZHA: The bodies of two brothers, both of whom were working with the Indian Army, were found at different places on Monday and Tuesday, relatives here said.

Varghese of Champakulam received information from the Army on Monday that his son Jobin Varghese, 25, was found dead at Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh, where he was posted with the Signals division of the forces. Just as the family was waiting for his body to arrive, they received information from the Erode police that Jobins elder brother Jomon, 33, who was on his way to Kerala from Punjab, where he was posted with the Artillery wing of the Army, was found dead in the Erode Station on Tuesday evening. Jomons body is said to have been found with marks reportedly resembling that of electrocution. The Erode Police suspect that he could have come into contact with the electric wires over the trains.

The bodies are expected to be brought here on Thursday.

Tourism zone cleared of plastic

KOCHI: Abandoned drinking water bottles are bringing revenue to the Vazhachal Forest Division. And saving the environment too.

The division is planning to sell the plastic bottles collected from the Athirapally tourism zone after pressing them into compact blocks.

The division has already received offers from plastic traders who plan to recycle the clean plastic collected from here, said A. Ranjan, Divisional Forest Officer, Vazhachal.

The campaign was originally launched to curb the plastic waste menace.

Eventually, it turned out to be a revenue earner and a bonus for protecting the environment too.

The authorities have collected around 10,000 plastic bottles abandoned by visitors to the Athirapally tourist zone alone in three weeks.

P.G. Viswambharan dead

KOCHI: P.G. Viswambharan, noted Malayalam film director, died here on Wednesday early morning.

He was 60. Mr. Viswambharan was undergoing treatment at a private hospital here. He is survived by wife Meena, son Vinod, and daughter Vimi. People from various walks of life paid last respects to the filmmaker at �Viminas, his residence at Azad Road, Kaloor. Popular for his commercial movies that mapped various family-oriented themes, Mr. Viswambharan had directed more than 60 films during his career. He entered the Malayalam film industry through the movie, �Ozhukkinethire, in 1975. He gave actor Mammootty the launch pad in the industry through the movie, �Sphodanam.

Toll collection for overbridge opposed

KOCHI: The corporation council expressed its reservation against collection of toll from the Thamannam-Pullepady overbridge before the completion of works of the approach roads to the bridge.

Though the corporation council had earlier suggested that toll should be collected for recovering the cost incurred by the Roads and Bridges Corporation for constructing the bridge from the passengers, it would be unfair to collect the toll at this stage, opined councillors of both the ruling front and the opposition.

K.V. Manoj, chairman of the Tax Appeal Standing committee of the corporation, said that the council had passed a decision in favour of collecting the toll. However, it should not be collected at this stage.

Deputy Mayor C. K. Manisankar said that the many residents were offering land for the approach roads after the opening of the bridge. The corporation obtained around two acres the other day, he said.

Funds for waste treatment plants

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: There is no hitch in sanctioning funds to local self-government institutions for setting up refuse processing plants, Local Administration Minister Paloli Mohammed Kutty has said.

Distributing the Nirmal Grama Pursakaram, 2009, instituted jointly by the Central and State governments to civic bodies which take up notable initiatives in the total sanitation drive here on Wednesday, Mr. Mohammed Kutty said acute space constraint was an issue that civic chiefs were grappling with on the waste management front. The only sensible option was to decentralise refuse management by setting up small processing plants.

He said attempts to set up major plants often invited public resistance and civic bodies were forced to relinquish the projects. There were no constraints in funding viable proposals, but civic bodies should come up with innovative ideas to tackle the issue.

Strengthen sea walls: Tharoor

Thiruvananthapuram: Shashi Tharoor, MP, has urged the government to take measures to strengthen the sea walls in the coastal areas hit by severe erosion over the past few days.

Mr. Tharoor visited the Beemapally, Poonthura, Cheriyathura and Valiathura areas and the relief camps for the affected people on Wednesday. He called upon the government to rehabilitate the families who had lost their houses to the waves pounding the coast. He proposed that the victims of coastal erosion be given priority in allotment of the new houses constructed under the tsunami rehabilitation project. The people complained that the unscientific construction of sea walls was responsible for the heavy damage to the coastal defence structures.

Warning against lake pollution

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Kerala State Pollution Control Board has issued a warning against polluting the Sasthamcotta freshwater lake in Kollam by discharging poisonous and noxious matter into the water-body.

A board notification issued here on Wednesday warned against polluting the freshwater lake by discharging waste water from hotels, commercial establishments, industries and others into drains or pathways leading to the lake.

Against corporal punishment

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Even as the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) gets ready to recommend enforcement of its policy against corporal punishment in schools across the country, an organisation in the State capital is getting ready to launch a movement against the practice in Kerala schools.

Led by Philip M. Prasad, one-time leader of the Naxalite movement and a practising lawyer, the organisation is planning to hold a sit-in in front of the Secretariat on August 15 to press its demand for an end to corporal punishment in schools. Prominent persons from different walks of life will participate in the sit-in, along with parents of schoolchildren, Mr. Prasad said here on Tuesday.

State to deal with situation, says VS

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan has said the government will carefully deal with the protests against the non-bailable warrant issued against Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leader Abdul Nasir Maudany.

The Chief Minister was replying to questions at his weekly Cabinet briefing here on Wednesday about the warrant issued by a local court in Bangalore and the State governments stand on any move to execute the warrant.

�The government will meticulously do what is required. Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has already stated the governments stand in the matter, he said.

The Chief Minister said the Cabinet had approved a panel of 15 sub judges and district magistrates for appointment as district judges.

The exemption granted to Scheduled Castes from affixing court fee stamp on applications for various certificates from local self-governments would be extended to Scheduled Tribes also.

The Cabinet had also approved creation of 180 posts, including that of three joint secretaries and 44 deputy directors and 44 audit officers, as part of restructuring of the Local Fund Audit Department.

Silence as message and medium

Thiruvananthapuram: Despite the challenges in production and the lack of technical perfection, short films can be a good means of expression, helping to bridge the void between the filmmaker and the viewer, according to a group of directors participating in the International Documentary and Short Film Festival which concluded here on Tuesday.

At an interaction with reporters, they lamented that short films were not taken seriously. �Such films often suffer from poor viewership, said Aparna Warrier, a student of Nehru College, Coimbatore, whose maiden directorial venture was exhibited at the festival. Her film �Mirage does not have dialogue in it.

�Silence can be the best means of communication,� Ms. Warrier said.

Dr. Prasad, whose work named �Father was also exhibited, agreed. �Short films are an expression, like a poem. Visuals are as effective as sound.�

Dr. Prasad said short films were emerging as a good medium in Kerala. �Mobilising funds for making short films is a big problem. Getting creative editors is another major challenge,� he said.

VS\' security strengthened

Thiruvananthapuram: The city police barricaded more than 100-square-metre area in front of the stage at a function attended by Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan at Thycaud here on Wednesday.

City Police Commissioner M.R. Ajithkumar said Mr. Achuthanandan was accorded �Z category protection and this required creating a �sterile zone segregating him from the audience at public functions.

Central team assesses epidemic situation

Thiruvananthapuram: The three-member team from the Centre, here to conduct a detailed epidemiological investigation into the H1N1 epidemic in the State and the possible changes in virus behaviour in the wake of the monsoon, visited major government and private hospitals and the Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology on Wednesday.

National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Joint Director Sunil Gupta, NCDC epidemiologist Pradeep Khasnobis and B.V. Tandale, from the National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune, had detailed discussions with Health Department officials, including Health Secretary Manoj Joshi, Director of Health Services M.K. Jeevan and State H1N1 Nodal Officer Amar Fettle.

�They will focus on the H1N1 spell in Thiruvananthapuram and Kollam, from where the maximum number of cases and deaths have been reported. We have made all case sheets of patients and deaths records available to them.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Security at jail to be strengthened

KANNUR: Admitting that the escape of two convicted hardcore criminals from the Central Jail here is a serious security lapse, Additional Director General of Police (Prison) Alexander Jacob has said that steps have been taken to strengthen security arrangements in the jail as also to reduce the number of inmates there.

��It is normally impossible for prisoners kept in the high security Block 10 of the jail to escape as it is a closed prison, Mr. Jacob told presspersons after completing his inquiry in the prison into the jailbreak by convicts Jayanandan, 39, and Riyaz, 26, in the early hours of Monday.

He visited the jail, examined the arrangements there and issued orders required for strengthening the jail security. Five jail personnel, including a Deputy Jailer, had been placed under suspension following the escape.

He said a special team of police officers had been constituted to investigate the jailbreak. Alert notices had also been issued in four southern States, he said.

Night traffic ban: stir to be intensified

KALPETTA: The National Highway Transport Protection Committee, a peoples movement against the ban on night traffic on National Highway 212, has decided to intensify its agitation. An agitation declaration convention was held at Sulthan Bathery on Tuesday.

In the first phase, the committee will conduct an evidence data collection drive on June 20. The data submitted by green movements in various courts was wrong. A peoples rally and a public meeting would be held in Sultan Bathery on June 26. A team of delegates will visit Delhi on June 27 and submit memoranda to the Prime Minister, Leader of the Opposition and the Union Ministers concerned.

If the issue is not solved within a month, the committee will take out a march to Parliament on July 25 to press its demand

M.Sc. interview

KOCHI: The interview for the M.Sc. Industrial Fisheries course offered by Cochin University of Science and Technology will be held from June 23 to 25 at the School of Industrial Fisheries, Fine Arts Avenue, Ernakulam, at 10 a.m. For details, contact: 0484-2354711/2863711

1,264 fever cases reported

KOCHI: Total fever cases reported on Tuesday are 1,264. Of this 101 patients were admitted as In-Patient at various government hospitals. So far this season, 15 H1N1 and 46 dengue fever cases have been reported in the district, said Dr. R. Sudhakaran, district medical officer in-charge

Applications invited for finishing school

KOCHI: Model Finishing School, Kochi, is conducting a 40-day-long employability enhancement course for computer science, information technology and engineering graduates.

The course will bridge the gaps between professional qualifications and employability of young graduates, the finishing school, which is a joint initiative of the IT Department of Kerala and Institute of Human Resources Development. The course fee is Rs. 10,000. Applications can be made online also before June 23. The course will begin on June 25

St. Teresa\'s celebrates UGC recognition

KOCHI: St. Teresas College on Tuesday celebrated its being accorded the �college with potential for excellence recognition by the University Grants Commission (UGC).

Cyriac Thomas, member of the National Commission for Religious and Linguistic Minorities Education, delivered the keynote address on the occasion. Dr. Thomas exhorted the students to take up positions of leadership in politics and administration. He also urged the parents to allow their children to pursue the path of their dreams.

Sr. Christabelle, Principal, presided over the meeting. Shally Joseph, Reader, Department of Sociology and co-ordinator of research and development, presented the report on the occasion.

Sr. Francis Ann, Provincial Superior and Manager, spoke.

Daughters-in-law and sons as tormentors

KOCHI: Elderly persons in India face more abuse by their own family members than by those outside home.

And, sons and daughters-in-law are the main abusers at home.

These are the findings of a study on elder abuse in India conducted by HelpAge India, an NGO working with elder people, in eight cities.

One-third of the elderly persons faced abuse over property. But rarely do they complain to the police.

About 14 per cent faced physical abuse.

Over 40 per cent of the older people complained they were disrespected and they considered this as abuse. Another nearly 40 per cent faced verbal abuse.

To induct 100 women candidates

KOCHI: The Indian Institute of Management, Kozhikode will induct close to 100 female students this year for its flagship programme�Post Graduate Programme in Management.

It will be the first business school in India to offer about 30 per cent of the seats to female candidates, according to institute Director Debashis Chatterjee. ��We are looking at Indian and global women CEOs who have their origin at IIM-K, he said. The institute aspires to create the first batch of women leaders for global and Indian businesses in the next 15 years

NCP wing plans stir

KOCHI: The Nationalist Karshaka Thozhilali Forum of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) is launching an agitation against the destruction of paddy fields and wetlands in the State.

Forum general secretary Gopi N. Menon said here on Tuesday that in spite of a powerful law, large tracts of paddy fields and wetlands were being converted into commercial land and house plots. He said the Kerala Conservation of Paddy Land and Wetland Act of 2008 was effective in checking the violation but the authorities were reluctant to use its provisions. However, citing two instances of the positive use of the Act, Mr. Menon said that determined implementation of the law could save paddy fields. At Pothanikkad in Ernakulam district, the owner of a paddy field had planted rubber saplings.

Major projects of cluster colleges hanging fire

KOCHI: Major projects of the Ernakulam cluster of colleges including the �smart classroom project and digitisation of archeologically valuable documents are hanging fire.

The cluster, which consists of Maharajas College; Government College, Thripunithura; Sanskrit College, Thripunithura; and Cochin College, had decided months back to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Centre for Development of Imaging Technology (C-DIT) to launch the ambitious �smart classroom programme.

The cluster had also decided to sanction Rs. 22 lakh for implementing the first phase of the project. C-DIT had already prepared an action plan for initiating the project among the partnering colleges in the Ernakulam cluster

Sanitation drive makes progress

KOCHI: The Total Sanitation Mission has spent Rs. 6.81 crore out of the Rs. 7.39 crore allotted by the Union and State governments to make Ernakulam a completely sanitised district during the last four years.

Addressing a press conference in connection with the fourth anniversary celebrations of the State government, Total Sanitation Campaign project coordinator N. Vinodini said that till March, the mission had built 28,669 toilets at a cost of Rs. 3.73 crore for families belonging to the Below Poverty Line with the assistance of the local self-government bodies.

In government schools, Rs. 72.80 lakh was spent on building toilets in proportion to the student strength. More than 300 toilets were built in this manner. Besides, another Rs. 17.25 lakh was spent on constructing 35 girl-friendly toilets, Ms. Vinodini said.

Director-General of Prosecution passes away

Kochi: Director-General of Prosecution V.G. Govindan Nair, 73, died on Tuesday at a private hospital here.

He is survived by his wife and a daughter. He had been under treatment for cancer at the hospital.

The body was kept for public viewing at the office of the Bar Council of Kerala. Chief Justice J. Chelameswar, judges, Advocate-General C.P. Sudhakara Prasad, Kerala High Court Advocates Association president V.V. Sidhardhan and lawyers paid homage. Later, the body was taken to Thiruvananthapuram.

Six killed in rain-related incidents

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Six persons lost their lives in monsoon-related incidents in the State on Tuesday, according to the calamity monitoring cell of the State government.

Two of the deaths were in Kannur district and one death each was in the districts of Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Malappuram and Wayanad. Seventeen houses were destroyed and 460 houses damaged in squally weather conditions or sea erosion. Loss to crop and properties was put at Rs.3.06 crore, an official at the monitoring cell said.

Centenary of college

Thiruvananthapuram: The Government College of Teacher Education, the oldest training college for teachers in Kerala, is getting ready to celebrate 100 years of existence.

The brainchild of Englishman G.F. Clarke and actively promoted by Diwan Sir C.P. Ramaswamy Iyer, the institution started off as a normal school modelled on the lines of the grammar schools of England. In 1911, it was upgraded to the status of a training college.

College Principal M.S. Geetha said here on Tuesday that the centenary celebrations would be inaugurated by Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandanon Wednesday.

Campaign for food security launched

Thiruvananthapuram: As many as 50 school teachers signed a pledge at MV Higher Secondary School, Arumanoor, near here, on Monday promising to spend at least 30 minutes a day on activities related to food production.

The pledge was part of a State-wide campaign for food security launched by the Hind Swaraj Centenary Committee, Santhigram and Mitraniketan to observe the centenary of Hind Swaraj, the book authored by Mahatma Gandhi. Mitraniketan director K. Viswanathan inaugurated the campaign by planting a mango sapling on the school premises.

Hind Swaraj Centenary Committee general convener Sunny Paikada received the pledge. School manager V. Jayachandran administered a community pledge on food security.

Rs.39 lakh project to improve Rajaji Nagar

Thiruvananthapuram: Residents of the Rajaji Nagar Colony at Oottukuzhy will soon have better roads, footpaths and drainage facilities.

The City Corporation on Tuesday launched a Rs.39-lakh infrastructure development project to improve living conditions in the colony.

The project will be taken up under the Community Infrastructure Fund of the Kerala Sustainable Urban Development Project (KSUDP). It involves the construction of 894 metres of concrete roads of three metre width, footpaths and 30 metres of drainage.

The function held on Tuesday evening to launch the programme was marred by heated exchanges between residents owing allegiance to rival political parties.

A section of residents raised slogans demanding water and electricity connection for the flats constructed in the colony.

Taking welfare schemes to the masses

Thiruvananthapuram: People should insist on getting information about the development and welfare activities being implemented by the government, Shashi Tharoor, MP, said here on Tuesday.

Speaking after inaugurating a five-day Bharat Nirman public information campaign at Vellarada near here, he said the success of these programmes depended on the people knowing about them.

District panchayat president Anavoor Nagappan presided over the function.

Various Central and State government organisations have set up 50 stalls at the venue to highlight various welfare schemes and development projects. The Directorate of Field Publicity is organising programmes at 38 villages around Vellarada as part of the campaign.

Later, inaugurating a seminar on welfare of minorities, Kovalam MLA George Mercier exhorted officials to implement welfare programmes with a sense of social obligation.

Lalitha Bai, Under Secretary, presented the theme paper. C.Ashok Kumar, vice-president, Vellarada grama panchayat, presided over the function.

Silence as message and medium

Thiruvananthapuram: Despite the challenges in production and the lack of technical perfection, short films can be a good means of expression, helping to bridge the void between the filmmaker and the viewer, according to a group of directors participating in the International Documentary and Short Film Festival which concluded here on Tuesday.

At an interaction with reporters, they lamented that short films were not taken seriously. �Such films often suffer from poor viewership, said Aparna Warrier, a student of Nehru College, Coimbatore, whose maiden directorial venture was exhibited at the festival. Her film �Mirage does not have dialogue in it.

�Silence can be the best means of communication,� Ms. Warrier said. Dr. Prasad, whose work named �Father was also exhibited, agreed. �Short films are an expression, like a poem. Visuals are as effective as sound.�

Dr. Prasad said short films were emerging as a good medium in Kerala. �Mobilising funds for making short films is a big problem. Getting creative editors is another major challenge,� he said.

Rajeevkumar, director of �Nobody is Speaking, said technical perfection was not important for short films. �The film has to create a communication between the director and the viewer.�

Also present were Harshad, director of �Yellow Glass, a film that highlights exploitation by the pharmaceutical industry; script writer Radhakrishnan Perambra and Dnyanesh Zoting and Tanmayee Deo, makers of �A Family Drama.

Delimitation of civic wards begins

Thiruvananthapuram: The process of delimitation of wards in 16 new urban local bodies created by adding adjoining grama panchayats has been launched.

According to an official statement, the delimitation process in Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode corporations and in the municipalities of Kottayam, Thripunithura, Irinjalakuda, Kodungalloor, Guruvayur, Karunagapally, Trikkakara, Eloor, Maradu, Kottakkal, Nilambur and Neeleswaram will be completed by June 25.

The respective local body secretaries will submit delimitation reports to the District Collector by June 25. The District Collector, after preliminary evaluation, will publish the draft report on June 28.

Complaints and suggestions will be received till July 12 and the investigating officers, after considering them, will submit their report by July 19 to the Delimitation Commission.

At the end of this process, the Delimitation Commission will conduct hearings on the complaints.

Call to foster culture of research

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Considering the fact that it is engineering research that helps convert new ideas in science and technology to products useful for mankind, it is vital that there emerges a culture of research in engineering colleges in Kerala, Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan has said.

He was speaking after inaugurating the Centre for Engineering Research and Development (CERD) at the College of Engineering here on Tuesday.

Various studies have predicted that there will be a ten-fold increase in investment in the engineering research sector. If Kerala is to be able to fully utilise this investment boom, its engineering colleges should give due importance to research. It is with this in mind that the government has set up CERD.

The State has witnessed fast-paced developments in science education and research during the last four years. Thanks to strong pressure exerted by the State (on the Centre), an IISER was able to begin operations in Kerala. The State was also able to get a Central university. However, the Central government is yet to accede to Keralas request for an IIT. There is no justification for the State not having an IIT, he said.

Dubai visa processing centre in city soon

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Emirates, which has tied-up with VFS Global to set up the Dubai Visa Processing Centre (DVPC) in India to enable processing of temporary visas, is to expand it services to the State capital.

With this, the passengers from here flying on Emirates to Dubai or other destinations will be able to procure a Dubai Visit Visa or a Dubai Transit Visa with Emirates as a sponsor. �This will be specifically for Emirates flyers. We will be soon launching the centre in Thiruvananthapuram, Orhan Abbas, vice-president � India and Nepal, Emirates Airline, said here on Tuesday.

If the application submitted through the centre is approved by Dubai Immigration authorities, the visa approval number will be uploaded on the Emirates Passenger Name Record (PNR). Already, the DVPC has been set up in key centres, including Kochi and Kozhikode, by the Emirates

IIM-K plans Kochi centre

OCHI: The Indian Institute of Management, Kozhikode (IIM-K), one of Indias top business schools, will set up a centre in Kochi for conducting short-term programmes. It is looking for a suitable location from where the facility can be launched, Debashis Chatterjee, Director, has said.

The IIM-K is conducting short-term leadership programmes for CEOs and prospective heads of companies in Mumbai.

The Kochi centre, in a concept stage, is intended to provide a similar programme. It will be a centre of excellence where special year-long management training courses can also be conducted, he said.

The IIM-K aims at partnering with the government of Kerala to create leaders in education, tourism and health.

It intends to perform the role of a catalyst in the States resurgence, he said.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Rs. 350 crore collected as stamp duty, fee in district

KOCHI: District Registrar A.G. Venugopal has said that the district has collected Rs. 1,694 crore on account of stamp duty and registration fees since the LDF government came into power four years back.

Addressing a press conference to enumerate the achievements of his department in connection with the fourth anniversary of the State government here on Monday, Mr. Venugopal said that the revenue during the 2009-10 fiscal alone was in excess of Rs. 350 crore.

The district mobilised Rs. 10 crore through one-time settlement of undervaluation cases pending since 1986, he said. This was through the settlement of 37,828 cases.

Complaints at the sub registrar offices were being resolved timely to a great extent through the conduct of monthly complaint-redressal adalats. With fair price coming into force, stamp duty had fallen from 10 to 7 per cent in panchayat regions, 12.5 to 8 in municipality limits, and from 13.5 to 9 per cent within Corporation areas. Stamp duty for new flats had been reduced by five per cent

SmartCity board to meet on June 28

KOCHI: Amidst continuing stalemate over the implementation of the proposed SmartCity Kochi project, yet another meeting of the board of directors of the company would be held here on June 28.

Unlike the initial board meetings which evoked much interest triggering hopes of the project taking off, the ones held in the recent past had been just to fulfill the mandatory formalities.

The issue of right to freehold over 12 per cent land to SmartCity, the Dubai-based promoters and the resultant stalemate over the registration of the land and Special Economic Zone notification had been keeping the project in a limbo for a long time now.

In between, arguments and ultimatums flew thick and fast between the stakeholders SmartCity and the governemnt dousing the hopes of the project materializing.

Meanwhile, the government, it is learnt, was working on a draft of an intimation to be sent to the promoters asking them to start the project without any further delay.

Fast-track counters in RTO offices soon

KOCHI: All RTO and sub-RTO offices in the State would have fast-track counters where people can avail over 15 different services by spending minimal time in the queue, Transport Minister Jose Thettayil said while talking to the media here on Monday. These services would be ready from June 23.

Apart from saving on time spent for each transaction, this would increase the efficiency of the Motor Vehicles Department, he said.

Customers would be able to register their vehicles, renew licences, execute paper work for selling vehicles, get duplicates of documents, change their address, renew permits etc., through the counters. They can apply online and take a print out, which can be taken to fast-track counters. This helps ensure data entry and the correctness of each entry. The counters would be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in RTO offices, and from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. in sub-RTO offices.

Mr. Thettayil said that plans are afoot to establish an e-payment facility in the department.

Youth Congress activists caned

Thiruvananthapuram: The police swung canes to disperse a group of Youth Congress activists who threatened to stage a black flag protest at a meeting attended by Health Minister P.K. Sreemathy at a private hospital near Kochulloor on Monday.

LDF will pay dearly, says Thankachan

Thiruvananthapuram: The Communist Party of India (Marxist) and the Left Democratic Front (LDF) will pay a heavy price for its misrule, United Democratic Front (UDF) convener P.P. Thankachan said in a statement here on Monday.

Mr. Thankachan said the CPI(M), now raking up communal politics, had been using the card in all elections by wooing organisations like the Peoples Democratic Party and the Jamaat-e-Islami.

Second allotment list for Plus One

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The second allotment list for Plus One courses is out.

A press note issued here said students who figured on this list should report at the respective schools on Tuesday and Wednesday and secure admission. Details of the allotment can be had on www.hscap.kerala.gov.in and www.hscap.kerala.nic.in.

Students who receive allotment but fail to secure admission will not be considered for further allotments. Those who get allotted to their first option should pay the fee and get permanent admission. Others can opt to take temporary admission. No fee needs to be paid for securing temporary admission. Such students can also delete their higher order options. Students who earlier opted for temporary admissions and who have now received allotment to higher options should compulsorily accept such allotment, the note said.

Water supply disrupted

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The supply of drinking water to many parts of the city serviced by the reservoir of the Kerala Water Authority (KWA) at Observatory Hill was disrupted since 8 a.m. on Monday following a leak in the 700-mm pipeline that ferries water from the reservoir.

The leak was detected at a point near the Museum junction.

V. Chandran, executive engineer of the Thiruvananthapuram PH division, said here that repair work on the line would be completed by midnight on Monday and normal supply of water would be restored by Tuesday morning.

Welfare pensions to be paid in advance

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In a move that would benefit an estimated 17.5 lakh families, the Left Democratic Front government has decided to pay in advance all welfare pensions due up to September.

Of the 17.5 lakh beneficiaries, an estimated 3.3 lakh are persons who receive unemployment allowance. A large number of beneficiaries would get pension for up to six months at one go. The LDF government had enhanced all welfare pensions to Rs.300 and, therefore, the total outgo on account of the decision is expected to be Rs.400 crore, Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac told a news conference here on Monday.

Dr. Isaac said the biggest beneficiaries of the decision would be indigent agricultural workers numbering around 5 lakh, who would together get around Rs.92 crore.

Around 4.5 lakh widows and indigent persons under various categories would get Rs.81 crore and 2 lakh physically handicapped persons Rs.36 crore, taking the total outgo from the government coffers alone to Rs.243 crore. The remaining part would be borne by various welfare pension funds.

Rs.19.1 crore released for relief work

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Water level in the backwater stretches of the rice bowl of Kuttanad was inching towards danger mark on Monday as the rivers Pampa, Achencoil, Manimala and Meenachil began emptying their flood flow into the region.

Villages in this low-lying region are already waterlogged and the Alappuzha district authorities have declared two days holiday for schools in the area. Rough sea conditions along the Kochi coast prevent the flood waters from draining smoothly out of the Vembanad Lake, which stretches from Kochi up north to Kuttanad towards the south.

At the southern end of Kuttanad, the Irrigation Department has opened the Thottappally spillway and cut open the narrow stretch of sand bar separating the sea and the backwaters to facilitate the drainage of floodwaters from the region.

The sea was rough along the Thottappally stretch also. There are no reports about the collapse of any of the bunds that protect the sprawling paddy fields of the region. Farmers who have launched Kuttanads second crop are on a day-night vigil on the bunds.

Two arrested on murder charge

Thiruvananthapuram: The rural police have arrested two persons in connection with the murder of a youth, Abhilash, at Attingal last week.

A. Pramod Kumar, Circle Inspector, Attingal, said a gang fight between two groups of anti-social elements over the delay in repairing a cable television connection on the day of the inaugural match of the FIFA World Cup Football championship resulted in the murder.

The victim, Abhilash, is accused in several cases, including the murder of gang leader �Mottamoodu Ani at Karamana in 2007. He was released on bail from the Central Prison here in April.

Abhilash arrived at his brothers house at Chirayinkeezh along with some friends to view the television broadcast of the inaugural match. He was angered to learn that the cable connection was not working

State could have made Pati-BEL pay: Isaac

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac has said that the State government had virtually surrendered its claim for reparations from Pati-BEL by allowing the consortium to continue work under the Kerala State Transport Project (KSTP).

Replying to questions at a press conference here on Monday, Dr. Isaac said the objections raised by the Finance Department and its advices on the subject were overlooked by the Public Works Department when renewing the contract agreement with the Pati-BEL consortium after the latter had sought compensation for time overrun owing to the alleged failure of the government to make land available for the road-widening project.

The Finance Department, he said, had taken the position that the Public Works Department should serve notice on the consortium for realisation of compensation as it had been found that Pati-BEL had not done work even on land handed over. The Finance Department wanted the Public Works Department to pay only the difference between the governments claim amount and Pati-BELs bill amount. But the Public Works Secretary informed the Finance Department that no amount would be due to the consortium then.

Art shaped from moving images

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Video art � an art which relies on moving images � has opened up the poetic possibilities of the medium of video, short filmmaker Renu Savant said here on Monday. She was participating in a �Meet-the-Press organised at the Thiruvananthapuram Press Club in connection with the ongoing International Documentary and Short Film Festival in the capital city.

Art curator M.L. Johnny pointed out that there need not be any narrative�linear or otherwise � in video art. He cited the example of a work of video art which captures the Empire State Building in the United States for a length of time. The only way to make out that it is not a still picture is when there is a minor change of lighting in the film.

Even as video art renders technology invisible, it is also breaking the barriers between different genres of films, said Ms. Savant, a student of FTII, Pune, and maker of the short film �Dark Room which journeys through the history of the film image and records at the same time the development of the urban-industrial nature of Mumbai. The stages in the development of the city are paralleled by the changes in the image of the film through the decades.

Scheme to check fever outbreak in coastal areas

Thiruvananthapuram: The district health administration has decided to implement a special scheme in the coastal areas as part of intensifying preventive and control measures against the spread of fever, infectious diseases and other monsoon-related diseases.

Eight cases of dengue fever and one case of leptospirosis were confirmed in the district on Monday.

A meeting of the district-level Rapid Response Team held here on Monday decided that special measures be adopted in the coastal areas, including mass fogging, indoor residual spraying, biological vector-control measures such as depositing larva-eating fishes in wells, and awareness programmes to prevent the outbreak of malaria and dengue fever.

Junior health inspectors in the coastal wards will be trained under the district malaria officer to conduct mass fogging this week. The district health officials are planning to launch mass fogging in the wards on Saturday.

A week of intensive fogging will be followed by indoor residual spraying and guppy fishes will be deposited in the wells in the area. District-level officials will monitor the operations regularly. It has also been decided to call the ward-level sanitation committees and intensify local disease prevention and control activities.

Team to study re-emergence of A(H1NI) in Kerala

Thiruvananthapuram: In response to a request from Kerala, a team of public health experts deputed by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare will be in the State during the week to conduct an epidemiological study into the re-emergence of the A(H1N1) virus in Kerala during the monsoon season and its behaviour.

The Ministry has also sanctioned the States request for additional stock of six lakh Oseltamivir tablets and 20,000 bottles of paediatric syrup. Keralas request for 31,000 doses of �Sanafu, the A(H1N1) vaccine imported by the Centre for use among public health personnel, has also been approved.

�We have requested one lakh doses of Sanafu vaccine, which is recommended as safe for use among pregnant women and children.

We pointed out that we had an unusually high number of H1N1 deaths among pregnant women this season. The Ministry told us that a high-level committee is looking into this and a decision will be taken soon, Health Secretary (Health and Family Welfare), Manoj Joshi, told The Hindu.

Reshuffle in forest service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The State government has shifted some of the top-level posts at the forest headquarters here to other centres and reshuffled officers holding various posts.

The deployment of officers to centres outside the headquarters comes against the background of an increase in the number of Indian Forest Service officers holding Chief Conservator of Forests (CCF) and higher posts with no corresponding increase in staff strength at the field level.

The government order, issued here on Monday, said the changes were effected for making better use of the services of the senior functionaries

Two criminals flee Kannur Central prison

Kannur: Two hardcore criminals escaped from the Central jail here by breaking open the window grills of the high security jail in the wee hours today, police said.

Jayanand, a native of Thrissur and involved in several criminal cases including murders, and Riyas, a resident of Kasaragod and convicted in 35 burglary cases,escaped from the jails 10th block. It was recently put under Closed Circuit TV system as part of closer surveillance of inmates, they said.

The duo jumped the high prison boundary walls and made good their escape.

Kerala daily signs MoU with Abu Dhabi police

Dubai, Jun 14 (PTI) Malayalam daily Siraj has signed an MoU with Abu Dhabi police under which awareness messages from the law enforcement agency, particularly about residency laws, will be sent out to its readers.

The Kerala based Siraj daily, which also brings out an edition in Dubai, has agreed to act as a media conduit with the Indian community in the UAE.

According to a statement released on Sunday, Al Sheikh Abu Bakr Musliyar Kanthapuram, head of Siraj Publishing Group, and Major General Khalil Dawood Badran, director general of the Finance and Services at Abu Dhabi Police were present during the signing of the UAE.

M K M Abbas, editor-incharge of Siraj Malayalam, signed on behalf of the Indian paper.

Badran welcomed the agreement and stressed that the UAE is keen to boost cooperation with India.

Rains continue to lash Kozhikode district; one drowns in sea

KOZHIKODE: One person drowned in rough sea as heavy rain continued to lash the district for the second day today inundating low lying areas, official sources here said.

TP Sunil Babu (40) drowned in the Arabian Sea while alighting from a boat at Puthiyangadi near here. His body was recovered this morning near the West Hill beach.

Seven fishing boats anchored in Beypore fishing harbour were swept away. One of them was seen floating in the sea which remained rough following torrential rains.

A total of 53 persons were shifted to the local Devaswom building as water entered into 20 houses at Kacheri village near here this morning.

Only 20% of Haj applicants in Kerala make it

Over 80 per cent of the 38,154 applicants from Kerala in the government sector will not be able to go for Haj this time as the State has been given only 6,784 seats out of the annual quota. The share was decided based on the Muslim populations of the States and not on the proportion of the number of applicants from each of them.

The State Haj Committee is now concerned that those wishing to make use of the discretionary Haj quota have been asked to apply directly to the External Affairs Ministry, overruling the traditional practice of making the State Haj Committee distribute the seats. The discretionary quota comprises additional seats regularly given by the Ministry to the State, through the State Haj Committee till last year, besides the annual quota. Most number of applications for Haj comes from Kozhikode and Malappuram districts. The Karipur airport is the sole embarkation point for the pilgrims from Kerala, Lakshadweep and Mahe, which makes Kozhikode the nerve centre of all activities related to the pilgrimage from the State.

Not quite FIFA, but Kerala has its own Kakas and Messis

In this small village near Keralas famous Guruvayur temple, flags of different countries contrive a makeshift canopy high above the main road.

As they flutter in the breeze amid the coconut trees, its clear that an event you may have heard of in South Africa is making news here.

The people of Orumanayur arent content to just watch matches on television. In this parallel football universe, its an Argentina versus Brazil match thats underway. Nevermind that everyone on the Brazil team is Kaka with a Number 10 jersey.

Akshay Kumar Not Comfortable Doing Hollywood Films

June 14, 2010 (Sampurn Wire): Hollywood has always been the ultimate goal for many of our Bollywood actors. Some of the big names in Bollywood have tried their hands in Hollywood films but none could not make it very big so far.

Akshay Kumar, the Bollywood superstar, has made his mark, both in the comic and action genre, is considered to be a good pick for Hollywood. But, our Akki seems to be satisfied with the tag of the highest paid actor of Bollywood now.

Respect for all gave city park a colourful beat

This year it was for two days and combined the Exeter Council Play Day with was the most multi-cultural, diverse and biggest annual celebration since it started in 1997.

To stand up tall and hear the sound of music coming from everywhere was one of the most sensational moments of my life. It was the beat of love and tolerance, it is the beat of saying goodbye to our ignorance and defeat our fears of each other.

There was no spaces for the otherness, we were one voice, one community.

I can\'t use cheating tactics: Aishwarya Rai

She did it, but without prompting. Aishwarya Rai will be seen in the Hindi as well as Tamil versions of Raavan that is releasing Friday, but says she didnt use any prompting for either and relied on memory for her dialogues in both the languages.

I cant take prompting. First of all, I dont know the art of someone holding a placard and me reading it, Aishwarya, 36, told IANS in an exclusive interview.

അവളുടെ രാവുകള്‍ :രണ്ടാം ഭാഗത്തിലും സീമ

1978ല്‍ ഇറങ്ങിയ മലയാള സിനിമയിലെ ആദ്യ അഡണ്‍സ് ഒണ്‍ലി ചിത്രമായ അവളുടെ രാവുകള്‍ എന്ന ചിത്രത്തിന്റെ രണ്ടാം ഭാഗത്തിലും സീമ നായികയാവുന്നു .ഐ വി ശശി സംവിധാനം ചെയ്ത ആദ്യ ഭാഗത്തിലും സീമ തന്നെയായിരുന്നു നായിക .ശ്വേത മോഹന്‍ ആയിരിക്കും ഈ റോള്‍ ചെയ്യുക എന്ന് റിപ്പോര്‍ട്ടുകള്‍ ഉണ്ടായിരുന്നുവെങ്കിലും ശ്വേത ഈ ചിത്രത്തില്‍ നിന്നും ഒഴിഞ്ഞു മാറുകയായിരുന്നു .ഈ ചിത്രത്തില്‍ സീമ ഒരു സമ്പന്ന യുവതിയുടെ വേഷത്തിലാണ് പ്രത്യക്ഷപ്പെടുന്നത് .കൂടാതെ ഇവര്‍ക്ക് 18 വയസ്സായ ഒരു മകളുമുണ്ട്. ചിത്രത്തിന്റെ രചന നിര്‍വ്വഹിക്കുന്നത് ആലപ്പി അഷറഫ് ആണ് .സംവിധാനം നിര്‍വ്വഹിക്കുന്നത് പി എച് ഹമീദും ആണ് .

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