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Nation at a Glance

Power grid crash in west Maharashtra

Mumbai (PTI): Western Maharashtra, Marathwada and several parts of Mumbai were affected by a major power breakdown on Saturday afternoon in the third instance of a major grid collapse in a month.

Low voltage in the 400-KV Dhule-Itarsi transmission line around 12.30 pm caused a cascading effect and plunged western Maharashtra and the Marathwada region into darkness, a Maharashtra State Electricity Board official said.

Electricity supply to the Vidarbha region was partially cut off as only a few generating sets at the power stations there, including Chandrapur and Koradi, were affected, he said. It could take several hours before the supply is fully restored, the official added. Power supply in Reliance’s BSES area in Mumbai was also cut off and officials are battling to restore normality.

Most parts of the city were, however, unaffected as the Tata Power Company islanded itself around 12.38 pm, minutes after the grid collapsed.

A senior electricity board official blamed overdrawing of power by a neighbouring state for the grid collapse. “Overdrawing of power by a neighbouring state and low voltage has led to power disruption,” he said. The same problem, he claimed, had occurred last month, referring to the power failure that lasted for three to five hours in Maharashtra and Gujarat on November 5 and 7.

Public appointments in J&K

Jammu (PTI): Mufti Mohammad Sayeed has distributed appointment letters to 430 newly-recruited teachers at a function in Udhampur.

Speaking on the occasion on Friday, the Jammu and Kashmir chief minister said publicly handing over the appointment letters would ensure transparency and fair play.

Dismissing scepticism about the public distribution, Mufti said the government adopted this practice to show transparency and also eliminate the bureaucratic hassles that normally delay the process.

Making the appointments public, he said, would enable the locals to identify those who have been selected and the government to gauge the reaction of the people to such selections.

The teachers have been appointed under the Rehbar-e-Taleem norms for Udhampur district, 66 km from here.

Addressing the gathering, education minister Harshdev Singh said the state has set a record by selecting such a large number of teachers purely on basis of merit and without any interference. He challenged anyone to cite any instance of favouritism.

Unicef protests vehicle misuse

Lucknow (PTI): A protest lodged by the Unicef against the reported misuse of vehicles provided by it for child welfare programmes in Uttar Pradesh has prompted the Directorate of Integrated Child Development Scheme to order departments using the vehicles to immediately return them.

Taking exception to the use of Unicef vehicles for purposes other than what the organisation had provided them for, directorate minister Ram Gobind Chaudhary issued the order.

2 die in gas leak

Mumbai (PTI): Two persons were killed and one injured after poisonous gas leaked from a chemical plant at Taloja in Navi Mumbai on Saturday morning. Police said the gas leaked from private chemical plant Oxogen Company. Balaram Patil, 35, and Jitaram Patil, 23, died on inhaling it, while Sudam Mhatre was admitted to hospital.

Court surety racket

New Delhi (PTI): A city court has asked police to probe a fake surety racket allegedly being run in Tis Hazari court. Additional sessions judge R.K. Yadav said police should investigate and unearth the racket of bogus sureties operating in Tis Hazari court and ordered the station house officer of Sabzi Mandi police station to register a case against Devraj alias Shankar, 42, who stood bogus surety to an accused in a robbery case.

Naxalite attack

Hyderabad (PTI): Naxalites of the People’s War Group blew up the house of a local Telugu Desam Party leader at Sirikonda village in Karimnagar on Friday night. Police said rebels from the outlawed outfit blasted detonators in a bucket inside the house of J. Srinivas Rao. The rebels asked his wife and children to go out before detonating the explosives.

Tourist trouble

Thiruvananthapuram (PTI): An Austrian tourist under treatment at a private hospital here has been flown back home in an “aero ambulance” brought from Europe. Airport sources said Hubert Warter was injured after he fell into a well while holidaying at Kovalam beach resort near here. Two doctors who came in the ambulance that arrived here on Friday accompanied Warter back home.

Tick

Landmarks of Mumbai — Gateway of India, Taj Mahal Hotel, gardens around villas of film stars and the Marine Drive — will feature on 24 Hours of French channel TV5. Shooting for the documentary 24 Hours in the Life of Mumbai will begin from Sunday.


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