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NATION BRIEFS

Reward on Indian

Melbourne, Aug. 7 (PTI): Australian police today announced a reward of $1 lakh on an Indian who fled the country after being accused of negligent driving that killed a pedestrian. This is the first time a reward has been announced on an absconding traffic offender.

eet, 19, was a learner-driver when he lost control of his vehicle and hit two students — Dean Hofstee and Clancy Cloker — in October, 2008. Hofstee died immediately while Cloker suffered critical injuries.

eet was charged with culpable driving and negligently causing serious injury. Experts estimated that he was under heavy influence of alcohol at the time of the accident. He was granted bail under strict conditions, including surrender of passport. But on June 12, 2009, Puneet fled the country using his friend’s passport.

Maoists kill 2

Raipur: Suspected Maoists killed two CRPF jawans in Chhattisgarh’s Bijapur district on Tuesday, a day after a jawan died in a rebel-triggered blast. The CRPF jawans were travelling in a matador carrying ration when the Maoists blew up the vehicle.

Gutkha ban

Mumbai (PTI): Bombay High Court has directed the Maharashtra government not to destroy seized gutkha and pan masala packets, pending hearing of petitions filed by several manufacturing companies. The companies have challenged the ban on sale or manufacture of these tobacco products.

Scam taint

Muzaffarnagar (PTI): The social welfare department has lodged a criminal case against 12 officials, including a former social welfare official of this Uttar Pradesh district and three public sector bank managers, for alleged involvement in a scam. The 12 are accused of opening 30 fake bank accounts worth Rs 45 crore.

Ladakh quake

Srinagar (PTI): A moderate intensity earthquake measuring 4.6 on the Richter scale shook Ladakh on Tuesday. The epicentre of the quake was at southern Xinjiang in China. No damage has been reported, an official of the disaster management cell said.