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

Influence attempt bombshell in court

Mumbai (PTI): A Bombay High Court judge has stunned the courtroom by disclosing that the wife of the prime accused in a scam had tried to influence her for granting bail.

When the matter came up for hearing before Justice Vijaya Tahilramani on September 30, the judge said in the open court that Avinash Sanas’ wife came to her residence and tried to influence her.

Sanas, a former secretary to a Maharashtra minister and a Class-I employee of the state government, had allegedly played a major role in the multi-crore answer paper scam that rocked the Maharashtra Public Service Commission.

This, the judge said, is a serious matter and, hence, she would not like to hear the bail plea of the accused.

Justice Tahilramani referred the petition to Chief Justice C.K. Thakker and urged him to assign the matter to another judge.

The Anti-Corruption Bureau had recovered crucial evidence from his house and obtained statements from witnesses about his role in the scam. He also allegedly had links with co-accused and dismissed deputy municipal commissioner of Thane Vishwanath Kelkar.

Sanas had urged the court to grant him bail as he had been in custody for the past one year.

According to the bureau, 24 accused in this case had connived to substitute answer papers of 399 candidates who had taken written tests for the posts of mantralaya assistants, police sub-inspectors and sales tax inspectors in 1999.

Minister injured in lift crash

Bareilly (PTI): Union minister of state for heavy industries Santosh Gangwar was injured when an elevator carrying him crashed to the ground following a power failure.

The incident occurred on Thursday when the minister, after inaugurating a shop in the city, was coming down in the lift, official sources said.

The lift came to a halt about five feet from the ground due to a power failure, trapping the minister inside for a few minutes.

When power was restored, the lift started descending freely as the cable holding it had broken and crashed with a heavy thud, the sources added.

Gangwar, who suffered a fracture in his left leg, was admitted to a local hospital. Arrangements were being made to shift him to Delhi, the sources said.

2 held for army job racket

New Delhi (PTI): With the arrest of two persons, including a deputy director with the food and civil supplies ministry, Delhi police claimed to have busted an employment racket.

Police said the racket was engaged in recruiting youths into the armed forces using forged documents in connivance with staff at army recruitment centres. The case came to light after Jitender Kumar, a tout, was arrested from the Dwarka area of Delhi. During interrogation, Kumar confessed to be a member of the racket.

Kanishka trial

Vancouver (PTI): The Air-India Kanishka bombing trial has been adjourned until Monday to give defence lawyers representing the key accused in the case, Ripudaman Singh Malik, more time to work out a funding deal for his legal expenses. Justice Ian Bruce Josephson gave the government and Malik’s lawyer a weeks’ time.

Girl rescued

Jammu (PTI): With the arrest of three persons, including two women, police have busted an inter-state gang involved in trafficking of women and rescued a girl sold for Rs 18,000 in Punjab.

Interpol term

New Delhi (PTI): CBI director P.C. Sharma was elected vice-president of Interpol on Thursday to become the second Indian to be elected to the prestigious post in three decades. As vice-president representing the Asian region, Sharma will have a three-year term.

Fishermen row

Islamabad (PTI): Pakistan has linked the release of 74 Indian fishermen to the setting free of 93 Pakistani fishermen detained in Gujarat.

Pumpkin on roads

Chennai (PTI): In an effort to prevent accidents, the Chennai city police have warned people, traders and road-side shop owners not to break pumpkins on the roads during Vijaya Dasami on October 5. The warning has been issued in view of the possibility of road accidents, especially by two-wheelers, which skid while running over the broken pieces of pumpkin.


Switzerland-based NRI writer Anuradha Swaminathan and Kenyan writer Eddie Ogembo have won the top two honours in the BBC World Service International Playwriting Competition, 2003. Anuradha won the honour for her play Loyalty.

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