Blood spills in Holi clashes
Lucknow: The Rapid Action Force of Uttar Pradesh police flagmarched in curfew-bound areas of Gorakhpur for the second day on Thursday as the toll in post-Holi communal riots touched three, reports our special correspondent.
The eastern town of Gorakhpur erupted in violence on Wednesday when a procession of Holi revellers, led by local Hindu Mahasabha MP Mahant Adityanath, allegedly damaged Muslim properties in parts of the city.
Later, the Imam of Ghazi Rauza mosque and another person were killed and 50 were seriously injured. Another injured person died on Thursday.
Though state additional director-general of police (law and order) Vikram Singh said the situation was “tense but under control”, sources in Gorakhpur said they feared the trouble could spread to other parts of the region. Adityanath, they alleged, had been inciting communal passions in the region for the last one year. Local Muslim leaders accused the MP of sparking trouble with the patronage of chief minister Mayavati.
Adityanath, also the head priest of Gorakhnath temple, rebuffed the charges and claimed the killings were part of a conspiracy to eliminate him.
B>Bihar killings: Seventeen people were killed during Holi in isolated clashes in various districts of Bihar, police sources said in Patna. The police rounded up 23 people across the state and paramilitary forces were also deployed. Some of the worst clashes broke out in Bhagalpur, Nawada and Purnia districts.
Pak nod for coastal link plan
islamabad (PTI): Pakistan’s Cabinet has approved a proposal for establishment of a communication link between Pakistani and Indian Coast Guards to prevent violation of each other’s territorial waters by fishermen from both countries.
The proposed communication link between the Pakistan Maritime Security Agency and the Indian Coast Guards would also help in preventing the violation of each other’s economic exploitation zones, exchange of information about pollution, co-ordination over control of major oil spills and exchange of information relating to anti-smuggling and anti-narcotics incidents, an official release here said.
It will help facilitate co-ordination and conduct of search and rescue operations as per international conventions, the release added.
The measures, the first of their kind between the two countries, were approved by Prime Minister Mir Zafarullah Khan Jamali’s Cabinet on Wednesday night.
Govt panel to boost trade
new delhi (PTI): The government has constituted a 16-member inter-ministerial committee for the development of land customs stations to facilitate trade with neighbouring countries, says our special correspondent.
The move is expected to aid development in the Northeast. The six land customs stations identified for development in the first phase of the programme include Petropole in West Bengal, Sutarkhandi in Assam, Agartala in Tripura and Dawki in Meghalaya, all bordering Bangladesh.
nashik (PTI): The Maharashtra forest department has launched steps, including radio collaring of panthers, to prevent them from straying out of the forests.
RBI currency drive
new delhi (PTI): Delhi High Court has fixed April 1 to hear on a daily basis arguments on the reference received from the trial court for confirming the death penalty awarded to three convicts in the Parliament attack case.
kochi (PTI): Two women were injured, one of them seriously, when they were allegedly pushed out of a train in Thrissur district. The women resisted two masked men from robbing passengers in a women’s compartment.
Shivani trial begins
new delhi (PTI): Trial in the Shivani Bhatnagar murder case started in a Delhi court on Thursday with the doctors who examined the reporter’s body after the incident on January 23, 1999, saying that Shivani was “brought dead” to the hospital.
Tamil Nadu has become the first state in the country to have a video conferencing network covering all 29 districts and the entire range of police officials. The project is part of a policy to introduce information technology to tone up the administration.