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Since 1st March, 1999
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Nation at a Glance

Pre-Cup swoop on betting kingpins

Mumbai (PTI): Mumbai police arrested four bookies just before the World Cup began in South Africa on February 9.

Vijay Chandulal Shah of Worli in central Mumbai was arrested on February 8. Three others — Nitin Mehta from Bhandup in northeast Mumbai, Kushal Vasaria from Wadala in central Mumbai and Suleman Abdul Sheikh from Goregaon in north Mumbai — were held during the weekend, deputy commissioner of police (enforcement) Surendra Pande said on Wednesday. The accused were remanded in judicial custody.

Telephone equipment, mobile phones and computers were confiscated from their places of operations, the police official said.

Pande said that, with the easy availability of mobile phones and pre-paid cards, bookies often change the place of operation, making it difficult to locate them. “It is not so easy to trace them as it used to be when the bookies were using MTNL land lines,” he said.

“Mumbai police are on the track of several bookies and we have asked mobile phone companies to assist us,” the officer said. “We are well equipped to nab them. We are also monitoring the clients.”

In Delhi, police smashed a racket involved in betting by arresting a couple in south Delhi.

Tajinder Singh, alias Ashu, and his wife, Parabcharan Kaur, were arrested by crime branch sleuths on Tuesday from their house in Srinivaspuri when they were allegedly engaged in playing satta over the Australia-Pakistan match, joint police commissioner (crime) U.K. Katna said. Preliminary investigation revealed that they had played satta worth around Rs 3 lakh within a few hours of the match, he said.

PWG kills two constables

Hyderabad: People’s War Group members killed two police constables in Karimnagar district on Tuesday night after labelling them “covert operators or double agents”, reports our special correspondent.

Venku Naik and Krishna of Kodimela police station in Siricilla Mandal were killed near V. Lakavat Thanda. The constables, on duty during the BJP bandh, had taken a break for lunch and gone to visit a relativein the locality.

The PWG squad under the Nizamabad division commander Ramakrishna and the Siricilla local guerrilla squad led by Komma Babu waylaid the duo. After killing them, the Naxalites dumped the bodies in the forest.

Villagers took the bodies to Thanda and informed the police.

Karimnagar police superintendent Pravin Kumar, who went to the spot this morning, has ordered that the Siricilla division of the forest be searched to arrest the activists.

Car plates plan postponed

New Delhi (PTI): The Centre has announced the postponement of the implementation of high-security registration number plates for automobiles throughout the country to January 2004 from the earlier deadline of April 2003.

“We have postponed it to January 2004,” minister of state (independent charge) for road, transport and highways B.C. Khanduri said. The number plate scheme for old automobiles, he said, will be implemented by January 2006.

Criminal held

Jaipur (PTI): Criminal Jogendra Singh, alias Bhichhu, was arrested from Morena, police said. He was wanted in connection with several cases, including the abduction of the wife of a local jeweller.

Killer exam tension

Vadodara (PTI): A Class X student committed suicide here on Tuesday. Police said Hemal Mehta of Kelvani Trust Vidyalaya hanged herself in her house as she feared that she would be unable to score good marks in the examinations. Her friend, Hiral Joshi, a Class XII student of Baroda High School, had killed herself on January 10.

Twins dead

Dharmapuri (PTI): Siamese twins born with a single heart at a hospital here on Wednesday died 15 minutes after birth, hospital sources said. Dr Thangam Ramasenthil, who performed the caesarean operation to deliver the twins, said they might have survived had they been born with separate hearts.

Teacher suspended

Nashik (PTI): The headmaster of Thangaon Zilla Parishad Primary School was suspended on Tuesday for allegedly coming to the school in an inebriated condition on Monday. Residents of Thangaon alleged that Baban Sadgir (41) had been coming to school in such a state for the past few months.

Petrol pump attack

Madurai (PTI): A three-member gang attacked the owner of a petrol station and decamped with Rs 1.5 lakh. The owner gave them a chase in his car and managed to ram the bike. However, they managed to flee.

A three-day symposium on ayurveda, beginning in Delhi from Thursday, will discuss issues like regulatory matters, bio resources, globalisation and technology adoption. An Indian delegation will soon visit EU countries to create awareness on ayurveda.

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