The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Nation at a Glance

Centre in no hurry for PM residence

New Delhi: The Centre has assured Delhi High Court that the search is on for a house for the Prime Minister. Unlike other countries, India does not have a official address for the Prime Minister, reports our special correspondent.

Indian Prime Ministers stay in the house of their choice though 7, Race Course was home to Narasimha Rao, I.K. Gujral, H.D. Deve Gowde and now, Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

The court, however ordered the government to look for a permanent residence, an address which will become officially associated with the Prime Minister’s office like 10, Downing Street in Britain, or even the White House in the US.

“The issue is being discussed at the highest level. It is more than what has been stated in the order (by the court),” additional solicitor general K.K. Sud told the court on Thursday.

The issue came up in the court of Justice Manmohan Sarin, who is hearing a writ petition by the Delhi Gymkhana Club, which challenged the move to attach a portion of its land to the existing residence of the Prime Minister for security reasons.

Despite the government’s assurance, the decision to look for alternative accomodation for the Prime Minister is not being seriously considered. The court asked the government why Teen Murti, where Jawahar Lal Nehru stayed, should not become a permanent official residence for the Prime Minister.

“There is no way that this Prime Minister will dismantle the Nehru memorial museum and library and convert Teen Murti into his official residence,” a senior government official said. “For him 7, Race Course will remain. Maybe at a future date, some other leader will make the move,” he added.

Age twist in Delhi rape case

New Delhi (PTI): The medical college student gangrape case took a new turn on Thursday with main accused Rahul producing before a Delhi court a Municipal Corporation of Delhi birth certificate claiming that he was a minor.

As soon as the proceedings began, Rahul’s counsel Ajay Digpaul submitted the certificate according to which Rahul was born on October 10, 1985, at the Girdhari Lal Memorial Hospital in Kamla Market here.

Metropolitan magistrate Bharat Parashar, while taking the said proof on record, directed police to verify its authenticity from the MCD records and file a report before the court on December 13.

He also directed the police to conduct an ossification test on Rahul from Safdarjung Hospital or RML Hospital to put the age controversy at rest. The test relates to the bone condition. On a similar claim by co-accused Amit, the court asked the police to verify it and inform the court.

Leak cloud on defence men

New Delhi (PTI): Fortyfive defence personnel have been found involved in passing sensitive information to Pakistani officials during the last three years, defence minister George Fernandes said.

Eight of them have been dismissed or removed from service, while one person has committed suicide and another is absconding, he told the Lok Sabha. Fernandes said disciplinary, general court martial and investigation proceedings are in progress against the remaining 35 personnel.

Cops pay for death

Jaipur (PTI): A custodial death has led to the transfer of the entire staff of Shahjahanpur police station in Alwar district for dereliction of duty. Ali, who was arrested along with two others on dacoity charge, hanged himself on Wednesday night, the superintendent of police said.

Gang busted

Moga (PTI): Punjab police claimed to have busted an international gang of former dreaded terrorists by arresting two of its kingpins, who had allegedly turned into India’s most-wanted extortionists receiving money through hawala transactions. Police claimed the gang was not only involved in dacoities but also kidnapped a contractor.

Sodomy probe

Moga (PTI): A court has ordered a probe into the complaint of a minor, alleging sodomy by another jail inmate when he was in judicial custody in a theft case. The complainant, who was released on November 28, told the court that he was sodomised by another inmate after being forcibly administered some intoxicating tablets. He alleged the jail authorities tried to hush it up.

Quake in Andaman

New Delhi (PTI): An earthquake of low intensity rocked regions of north Andaman Islands early Thursday. The tremors measured 4.2 on the Richter Scale.

Youth arrested

Nagpur (PTI): A 22-year-old youth was arrested for physically assaulting a minor, police said. He allegedly lured the six-year-old girl on the pretext of offering sweets and assaulted her.

The world-famous choir of Trinity College, Cambridge, which dates back to the establishment of the King’s Hall by Edward II in 1317, will perform on December 8 at the Tata theatre in Mumbai. It will also tour Delhi, Calcutta, Bangalore and Chennai.

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