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Since 1st March, 1999
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Nation at a Glance

Owners put off theatre strike

Mumbai: Producers of big banner films are a relieved lot after theatre owners postponed their indefinite strike, scheduled to begin on Friday, by another 90 days, reports our correspondent.

Theatre owners had threatened to go on indefinite strike if the state government did not meet their 11 demands, chief among which is a reduction in entertainment tax. But chief minister Sushil Kumar Shinde saved the day, assuring the theatre owners on Thursday that their demands would be examined.

Other than Ishq Visk which released last Friday, there has been just one release — the Sunny Deol-starrer The Hero — in the last month and a half. This is due to the ongoing dispute between producers and distributors over entertainment tax.

A Cinematograph Exhibitors Association of India statement said the strike had been deferred following Shinde’s assurance. The chief minister’s move follows an ordinance from Governor Mohammed Fazal stating that entertainment tax would be reduced.

Theatre owners have said their profits are not keeping apace with the 60 per cent entertainment tax levied on cinemas.

3 years for Lakme fashion week

New Delhi: The Lakme India Fashion Week 2003, scheduled for July 18 to 23, expects a business turnover in excess of Rs 20 crore and has already drawn up a list of senior fashion designers who are going to showcase their work, reports our correspondent.

The Fashion Design Council of India, the apex body of Indian designers, has also announced Lakme as the title sponsors for the fashion week for the next three years — 2003 to 2005.

Vinod Kaul, executive director of the fashion council, said: “The Rs 200 crore fashion design industry is in a growing mode, growing at the rate of about 20 per cent.” Kaul said this estimate is based on a study by consultancy firm KSA Technopack.

“Tarun Tahiliani, Wendell Rodricks, Ritu Kumar, Raghvendra Rathore, Rajesh Pratap Singh, Anshu Arora Sen and Rana Gill are some of the well known and senior fashion designers who will take part in the fashion week,” said Kaul.

Lakme has been the title sponsor from the inaugural Lakme India Fashion Week in 2000 and the initial title sponsorship agreement ended with last year’s event — Lakme India Fashion Week 2002. According to sources, this year, UB group’s Kingfisher was a prime contender for the fashion week. The venue of the event will either be Delhi or Mumbai. The council will hold a meeting next week which will decide upon the venue, said Kaul.

Baby stolen from hospital

Kanpur (PTI): A newly born boy was stolen from a maternity hospital affiliated with GSVM Medical College here, police said.

Snehlata, a housewife, had given birth to a boy eight days ago in the hospital. An unidentified woman on Wednesday tried to develop an intimacy with her. When Snehlata went to toilet, the woman allegedly fled with the baby.

Court firing bid

New Delhi (PTI): A man tried to shoot at a person in the Patiala House court complex here around 2 pm. While the man managed to escape, one of his accomplices was caught and a country-made weapon seized from him.

Officer acquitted

New Delhi (PTI): Nearly five years after the CBI registered a corruption case against a Delhi Vidyut Board officer, a special court has acquitted him on the ground that the prosecution story was built on false allegations levelled by a businessman. Special judge R.K. Gauba directed the chief metropolitan magistrate to register a complaint against Tarun Kalra for falsely alleging that the officer had taken bribe for restoring power to his factory.

Chohan murder

London (PTI):The Scotland Yard has made a breakthrough in the murder of Indian millionaire businessman Amarjit Chohan with the arrest of one of the three accused. “A 38-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the murder of Amarjit Chohan. He will be brought to a central London police station for questioning,” a Scotland Yard spokesman said. Chohan’s body was found in the sea in April after he and his family had vanished from their home in Hounslow, west London, in February.

ITBP man in net

Srinagar (PTI): A chargesheet has been filed against an Indo-Tibetan Border Police officer who was arrested following recovery of two kilograms of looted gold ornaments from him, official sources said. Police arrested deputy commandant of ITBP J.H. Shehrawat along with three other jawans within three weeks of lodging of an FIR by one Zahoor Ahmad. He claimed the accused had snatched the jewellery from him during a checking.

Kurukshetra is gearing up to receive about 10 lakh pilgrims, who will take a dip in the Brahma sarovar and Sannehit sarovar on the occasion of solar eclipse on May 31. Information centres will be set up in different parts of the city to guide the pilgrims.

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