Friday, December 31, 2010

New Year Bonanza for Kerala Tourism

Mumbai: The State-run Air has decided to relocate the headquarters of its low-cost arm Air India Express from Mumbai to Cochin. The Main Engineering facility will however be located at Thiruvananthapuram.

Air India Chairman and Managing Director Aravind Jadav has signed on the ordinance on relocation.

The shifting of Air India Express headquarters to Kerala has been a long pending demand of the state and the non-resident community from the state is likely to benefit from the relocation.

The relocation of Air India Express HQ will also help in faster resolution of complaints regarding delay and cancellation of fights. More than 70 per cent of the flights of the low-cost arm of the Air India originate from Kerala. The airline also run the most number of services to Kochi after Mangalapuram.

The Central Administrative office of the Air India Express is likely to be located in the Indial Airlines building in Durbar Hall Road after renovation. Around 60 employees are likely to be transferred to Kochi. The engineering facility to come up in Thiruvananthapuram is likely to generate employment for around 500 people.

India’s first web TV "Indiavibes" to be launched on Jan 1

Kochi: India's first Web TV 'Indiavibes' would be launched here on Jan one. The new media platform, being promoted by the Kochi-based Vibes Visual & Media Pvt, will be inaugurated by media personality K Sasikumar on Jan 1 at Gold Souk Grande Kochi. This would be followed by a panel discussion on Journalism, New Media and emerging trends.

Indiavibes would be creating contents and programme of its own giving its users ultimate freedom to watch their choice of contents and appreciate the nature and demands of internet spectators, ultimately their taste and priority will be the content. "Web TV" concept has never been effectively tried in the market because the challenge of making visually appealing content to the general public is not an easy task. The backbone of this concept is the confidence; it can create visually appealing, quality content that has not been tried in any other mediums in the market before.

The team is backed up by people who have immense experience in terms of developing innovative concepts in the most challenging situations. "We cover all categories fashion, music, films, business, technology, blogging, lifestyle, current affairs and almost everything that this century and the years ahead would ever need. We are focused on targeting people and not on celebrities', Andrine Mendez, Founder Vibes Visual &Media private ltd told reporters here. There are plans to set up production hubs at Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Banglore to start with and from then move on to er Tier 1 & tier II cities.

The company has also plan to set up production hubs at UAE, US & UK, he said. 'Our vision is to showcase the richness of India's entertainment culture to the world. We wish to make Indiavibes as its name suggests the one stop shop for all the entertainment for global audiences," he added. pti ud Public can access all contents from from Jan one onwards.

For best user experience, it needs to have atleast 1 Mbps broadband speed though. Through 3G these can also be accessed through mobiles. The company is looking for partnerships with ISPs and broadband providers to ensure more data traffic to these providers and it also helps to reach people better. Vibes Visual & Media Pvt Ltd is a fully fledged visual production company, with Indiavibes Entertainment portal its flagship project. English will be the primary language of communication. Internet having a viral effect for such concepts, the idea will spread like a wildfire in the market attracting people of all age groups.

25 paise and below coins not acceptable from June 30

December 30, 2010

New Delhi: Come June 30, 50 paise will be the minimum coin accepted in the markets as all denominations below it will cease to be legal currency. "From this date, these coins (denomination of 25 paise and below) shall cease to be a legal tender for payment as well as on account," the Finance Ministry said in a statement Thursday.

It further said that the minimum denomination coin acceptable for transaction will be 50 paise from that date.

Also, the entries in books of accounts, pricing of products, services and taxes should be rounded off to 50 paise or whole rupee from that date. "The procedure for call in shall be notified separately by the Reserve Bank of India," it added.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Krishna Iyer wants a probe into former CJI Balakrishnan’s assets

Dec 28, 2010

Former Supreme Court Judge Krishna Iyer , who completed 95 years last month, wants a thorough inquiry into the allegations claimed by a local Malayalam news channel, Asianet in to the assets of former CJI K.G Balakrishnan .

Asianet News had reported that Balakrishnan's son-in-law, PV Sreenijan, had amassed crores of rupees in the past four years. As a Congress candidate from the Njarackkal assembly constituency, Sreenijan in the 2006 had declared just Rs 25,000 in his bank and no land but later went on to amass property worth at least Rs 7 crore in the past four years.

Speaking at a press conference Justice Iyer said, “I myself feel sad that I was a judge. I used to say that an era had begun when K G Balakrishnan became the first Dalit chief justice. Now, I don’t feel that way”.

“The Press has disclosed now that the son-in-law and daughter have amassed wealth under suspicious circumstances indirectly due to dubious linkage with the Chief Justice. This is atrocious and must be inquired,” said Justice Krishna Iyer.

Deccan Herald has reported the growth in Sreenijan’s assets over the last four years. Sreenijan had declared he possessed no landed property and that his wife had only gold worth Rs 4.38 lakh and a little over Rs 1 lakh in cash in 2006.

Three years later, Sreenijin and his wife K B Sony, both lawyers, declared Rs 35 lakh while filing their income tax returns. However, according to reports now, the couple, who have not declared any sources of income other than their legal profession, own property worth crores and are constructing a river-front resort in Thrissur.

“We have more evidence to prove that the former CJI’s relatives have property in Dubai, Bangalore and Tamil Nadu. The needle of suspicion naturally points to Justice Balakrishnan himself,’’ said DYFI state president and MP M B Rajesh.

Justice Krishna Iyer also demanded a probe into to find the truth about Balakrishnan's statement regarding then Madras High Court chief Justice H L Gokhale's letter that a central minister had tried to influence a judge of that court.

Justice Balakrishnan is currently serving as the Chairman of the National Human Right Commission and several activist groups have even demanded his resignation from NHRC.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Karunakaran was a kingmaker in national politics: Antony

Thiruvananthapuram, Dec 23: Defence Minister A.K. Antony paid glowing tributes to departed Congress leader K. Karunakaran Thursday, describing him as a kingmaker in national politics.

Four-time chief minister of Kerala, Karunakaran passed away Thursday evening at 5.30 p.m. at a private hospital here.

'At one point of time, Karunakaran went on to be a kingmaker of national politics, such was his stature,' said Antony.

Antony arrived at Karunakaran's home late in the evening to pay his tributes.

'I am sad that I was not able to see him after he was admitted to the hospital. I reached here cancelling a programme that I had when I learned that he was serious. I reached two hours late and hence could not see him.

'I first came in contact with Karunakaran 46 years back when I was elected as the Kerala Students Union president and since then, we have had a long and enduring relationship. It is true that at times we have had differences of opinion but even during that time, we had the best of personal relations and we made sure that there was always a mutual respect,' said Antony.

'I always believed that Karunakaran was one who led the party from the front in the state. I used to meet him every time I came to the city,' he added.

Antony occupied the Kerala chief minister's post thrice and also replaced Karunakaran on two occasions following political developments.

Centre of non-Marxist Kerala politics for 40 yrs

KOCHI: K Karunakaran rose to political prominence in the 1960s making the impossible possible. He pulled down a Communist-led coalition government that had swept the 1967 assembly elections and with the deftness of a magician, cobbled up an alternative front that could grab power by quietly breaking up the ruling alliance.

From being the leader of the opposition with only a handful of MLAs, the Congress leader became deputy chief minister and home minister under a CPI chief minister, and in later years headed government after government. For close to four decades, the non-Marxist politics in Kerala, if not the state politics itself, revolved largely around him.

The developments also made Karunakaran a close confidant and loyalist of the central party leadership — the Nehru household rather — with which he stood through thick and thin. The only aberration was his brief exit from the party, on his own volition, initially to form the Democratic Indira Congress (DIC) and later to join the Nationalist Congress Party of Sharad Pawar. Karunakaran returned to Congress within a short span.

Karunakaran was one of the best practitioners of the essentially all-encompassing Congress ethos. The Congress-led alliance in the state, the UDF which he had fashioned, represented a broad spectrum across the religious and communal divide — carrying with it Hindus, backward communities, dalits, Christians and Muslims in a happy embrace.

Simultaneously, he also had to face charges of communal appeasement and pitting one community against another.
Karunakaran's high point was in the early 1990s when he was CM and late P V Narasimha Rao was Prime Minister. He was Rao's closest adviser.

''It was a unique period in the political history of independent India when a CM had central ministers waiting for his appointment whenever he was in Delhi. It was Karuna-karan's tireless efforts and clever strategies that saw the Rao government succeed two no-trust votes after falling short of numbers. He must have spoken to 3,000 to 4,000 leaders within a span of three to four days preceding the no-trust vote,'' recalls K S Premachandra Kurup, a former aide and retired civil servant. ''No Congress leader was close to late Indira and Rajiv Gandhi as Karunakaran then,'' he added.

People of Kerala remember Karunakaran more for his decisive interventions in shaping the political, economic and social framework of the state. But for his determination, the international airport at Nedumbassery near Kochi would not have become a reality, considering the challenges it had to face, both economically and administratively.

There are, however, skeptics who feel that Karunakaran did not fully deploy his clout for the development of the state.

Sonia, Chidambaram pay homage to Karunakaran

Thiruvananthapuram: A steady stream of mourners led by Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Friday paid homage to veteran Congress leader K Karunakaran at his residence here where his mortal remains are kept.

The UPA Chairperson, accompanied by Union Home Minister P Chidambaram, placed a wreath and paid her respects to
Karunakaran, who passed away at a private hospital on Thursday after a prolonged illness. Gandhi spoke to Karunakaran's politician son Muraleedharan and daughter Padmaja Venugopal and conveyed her condolences.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is scheduled to attend the funeral, Congress sources said.Union Ministers A K Antony, Vayalar Ravi, and other senior Congress leaders from the state paid their respects to the departed leader.Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is expected to arrive in Thrissur Saturday where the veteran leader is to be cremated.

Sonia, who reached the capital along with Chidambaram in a special flight at 10 am, was welcomed by union ministers Vayalar Ravi, Mullapally Ramachandran and KPCC president Ramesh Chennithala at the airport.

At 8.15 a.m. Friday, his body was moved to the party headquarters where a huge crowd was waiting to have a last glimpse of the veteran. Karunakaran's body will be taken to the Durbar Hall in the State Secretariat.

By noon, his journey began to his hometown Thrissur where he will be cremated Saturday. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is expected to attend the last rites.

Party officials said all efforts are being made to see that the funeral procession makes brief stops at major towns like Kollam, Alappuzha and Ernakulam for people to pay their respects.

As a mark of respect to the departed leader, the state government has declared a public holiday Friday and all university and state public service examinations and interviews has been postponed.

Karunakaran's condition deteriorated last week and he was put on the ventilator. His condition improved in a few days but he suffered a stroke Wednesday. He died at 5.30 p.m. Thursday. He is survived by his politician son K. Muraleedharan and daughter Padmaja Venugopal.

Karunakaran's death has cast a shadow of sorrow on Kerala, almost eclipsing the Christmas spirit and joy.

Thiruvananthapuram comes to a halt, political leaders praise Karunakaran

Thiruvananthapuram : Huge crowds thronged the roads outside the hospital where four-time former chief minister K. Karunakaran died and along the route to his home as political leaders cutting across the divide acknowledged his tall stature.

The capital city came to a halt and traffic stopped when the ambulance carrying the body of Karunakaran, who passed away Thursday evening at 5.30 p.m., was taken from the Anathapuri hospital to his home near here.

A large police force found it difficult to control the surging crowds that had gathered at the hospital upon hearing of the demise of the 92-year-old veteran Congressman.

Tears rolled down the cheeks of many people. Senior Congress leaders found it difficult to come near the body of Karunakaran with his ordinary supporters jostling for space to have one last look of the departed leader.

Even Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan, who rushed to the hospital on hearing of the demise of his long time political adversary, had a tough time trying to come near the body.

'He was one who relentlessly worked for the development of the state and his attachment with the ordinary worker was something which was unique to him only,' said Achuthanandan.

Leader of Opposition Oommen Chandy described Karunakaran as one who was a 'practical politician'.

'My relation with him dates 40 years back when I first arrived as a legislator in the assembly and he was the leader of party. Over the years through his hard work and determination he went on to be the senior most leader in our party. His greatest virtue as I see was his closeness with the ordinary supporter of the party and his loss is a great loss for the country,' said Chandy.

As the body reached his home in the city, the skies opened up. However, that did not deter the massive crowd of supporters who were waiting for the body to arrive.

Left Democratic Front convenor Vaikom Viswan, in his message, said that though he had differences of opinion with the departed leader, one aspect of Karunakaran that made him dear to even his adversaries was the way he used to behave with all.

'His behaviour was exemplary in nature and it was this character of his which won him accolades,' said Viswan.

K.M. Mani, who served in all of Karunakaran's four cabinets, said it was amazing to see him handle crises.

'Karunakaran's greatest ability was to come out unscathed from any crisis, and it was the thing that made him a great leader because in times of crisis he always appeared to be a man of great determination,' recalled Mani who heads the Kerala Congress (Mani).

R. Balakrishnan Pillai, a veteran Kerala politician who was close to Karunakaran and was in three of his cabinets, described him as a leader with a vision who used his Delhi connections for the development of the state.

'He was the one who virtually single handedly guided the Congress party when it went through bad times,' said Pillai.

The cremation will be held in his home town in Thrissur Saturday morning, president of the Congress' state unit Ramesh Chennithala told reporters outside the hospital where Karunakaran was admitted since Dec 10.

Friday has been declared a public holidy, and Saturday is a holiday on account of Christmas.

'The body would be taken to his home and Friday morning it would be taken to the Congress party office. From there it would be kept at the Durbar Hall at the State Secretariat and in the afternoon It would be taken through the national highway to Thrissur. The cremation would take place at the same place where his wife has been laid to rest,' a tearful Chennithala said.

The 92-year-old veteran leader's condition deteriorated last week and he was put on the ventilator.

He recovered a few days later and was removed from the ventilator, but his condition worsened Wednesday morning and he suffered a stroke. He breathed his last at 5.30 p.m. Thursday.

Kerala mourns as ’Leader’ departs, cremation Saturday

Thiruvananthapuram: Veteran Congress leader K. Karunakaran, a four-time chief minister of Kerala who was a pale shadow of his original self in his final days, died here Thursday evening of old age and illness, enveloping the entire state in sorrow.

Despite rains, thousands poured on to the streets as the body of the 92-year-old was taken from the Ananthapuri Hospital, where he was admitted Dec 10, to his home less than 10 km away in a closed ambulance as news of his death spread rapidly.

Congress president Sonia Gandhi will visit Kerala Friday to pay homage to a man who once rubbed shoulders with Jawaharlal Nehru and was a confidant of Indira Gandhi, a closeness that made him Kerala's undisputed Congress leader. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will attend the cremation Saturday.

The Marxist-led Kerala government announced a public holiday Friday. The cremation will take place in his hometown Thrissur Christmas day Saturday, the event expected to draw a mass of people from all over Kerala.

Karunakaran's condition deteriorated last week and he was put on the ventilator. His condition improved in a few days but he suffered a stroke Wednesday. He died at 5.30 p.m. Thursday. He is survived by his politician son K. Muraleedharan and daughter Padmaja Venugopal.

As Congress leaders described his death as a huge loss to the party, Marxist Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan rushed to the hospital to salute a man he had politically opposed all his life.

"He was a leader who relentlessly worked for the development of Kerala, and his attachment to the ordinary worker was something that was unique to him," Achuthanandan said.

So thick was the rush of mourners that the chief minister had to struggle to enter the hospital. Later, as the body was taken to his home, the rains began to batter the city, drenching everyone.

K.M. Mani, who served in all his four cabinets, said it was amazing to see Karunakaran handle crisis moments.

"It was a thing that made him a great leader because at times of crisis he always appeared to be a man of great determination," said Mani, who heads the Kerala Congress (Mani).

On Friday, his body would be taken to the Congress office and kept at the Durbar Hall at the State Secretariat for people to pay homage.

Born in Kannur July 5, 1918, Karunakaran tasted his first electoral victory in in 1945 when he was elected to the Trissur Municipal Council on a Congress ticket.

He was elected to the Kerala assembly seven times consecutively from Mala in Trissur, from 1967 to 1991. He was a minister, leader of the opposition thrice, chief minister four times, and was elected to the Rajya Sabha and the Lok Sabha thrice and twice respectively.

Karunakaran survived two serious road accidents in the 1990s, one of which needed treatment in the US.

But even as he built up the Congress in Kerala, making it a formidable opponent of the well-entrenched Communists, no party leader could rise in the state unless minus Karunakaran's blessings.

His main rival in the Congress was A.K. Antony, now the defence minister.
He groomed more than three dozen Congress leaders including the present state party president, Ramesh Chennithala.

His first major setback came when he had to resign as chief minister a month after taking charge following a judicial stricture over the death of a young man accused of being a Maoist, post-Emergency.

The disappearance of Rajan, the engineering college student, haunted Karunakaran for the rest of his life.

He had to quit as chief minister again in March 1995 when his name was linked to a police official in what was known as the "ISRO spy scandal".

Karunakaran was the industry minister in the cabinet of P.V. Narasimha Rao.

It was his undisguised love for his son Muraleedharan, who took to politics after failing in business and was elected to the Lok Sabha, that began to turn many Congress members against him.

As rival Antony grew in strength, in New Delhi and Kerala, Karunakaran made political mistakes.

To hurt Antony, he did the unthinkable and supported the Left in a Lok Sabha election. Then, he dramatically dumped the Congress and formed his own party in 2005, with the intention of crossing over to the Left.

That did not happen and he returned to the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF). He later merged his party with the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), a Left ally.

Finally, Karunakaran returned to the Congress. But his son refused to follow suit and, to his shock, renounced all ties with his father.

From then on, Karunakaran was a broken man. He occasionally visited the Congress office but was no more the giant of a leader that he was for four long decades.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Left reduced to non-entity in Bihar

Nov 25, 2010
PATNA: Both the 2009 Lok Sabha polls as well as the just-concluded Bihar assembly election results have established that mass-base of Left parties CPI, CPM and CPI(M-L) have faired badly.

In Lok Sabha elections the Left bloc could not win even a single seat out of the 40 Lok Sabha seats whereas in assembly polls the Left could win only one seat.

In outgoing 14th Bihar assembly, the three Left parties had nine seats CPI (M-L) (five), CPI (three) and CPM (one). However, in the recent assembly polls the result of which was declared on Wednesday, the Left would be represented by a lone CPI member who was elected from Bachchwara in Begusarai district.

The CPI (M-L), which boasted of being the largest Left party in Bihar till the poll results came in, has now been reduced to a non-entity in state politics as it could not retain even one of its five seats.

The CPI, the oldest Left party of the state, failed to retain any of the three seats which it had won in the last elections Barauni (now known as Teghra), Harlakhi and Bakhri. It, however, succeeded in at least making its presence this time by winning Bachchwara seat. However, the other two relatively younger Left parties CPM and CPI (M-L) emerged really proletariat in terms of their strength in state legislature "nothing to lose but chains".

While CPM veteran Ram Dev Verma lost the Bhibhutipur seat in Samastipur district, the CPI lost the Teghra seat for the first time since 1956.

Left watchers here feel that the Left parties leadership has miserably failed to visualise changing political scenario in Bihar and could not chalk out a proper strategy to consolidate its position.

Like the in Lok Ssbha polls, the stubborn attitude of the CPI (M-L) state leadership led to its failure to unite the Left parties even in these elections. It led to "friendly fights" even between the Left candidates. The CPI

(M-L) had "friendly fight" with CPM in six seats and in 17 seats with the CPI. Such a friendly fights sent wrong signals even among the Left supporters.

It is now certain that the coming days will certainly prove to be a Herculean task for the Left to re-establish itself in state politics. The huge defeat in the assembly polls is bound to give the Left parties' leadership sleepless nights.

Bihar poll results disappointing, says CPI(M)


The CPI(M) today said it was disappointed by the Bihar Assembly poll results.

“Our number of seats have gone down in Bihar Assembly...naturally we are disappointed,” CPI(M) leader Brinda Karat told reporters outside Parliament.

CPI and CPI(M) have so far drawn a blank in the Bihar polls which have been swept by the JD(U)-BJP alliance.

Congratulating JD(U)-BJP on their good performance, she said, “We all congratulate Nitish Kumar for the victory in Bihar. His alliance has made a record victory in Bihar“.

However, Ms. Karat refused to comment on Congress’s poor performance despite the high voltage campaign by Rahul Gandhi.

Taking a dig at the BJP for not removing B S Yeddyurappa for certain “caste consideration” in Karnataka, Ms. Karat said, “In Bihar they (BJP) do not believe in caste combination. Bihar elections have risen above caste and in Karnataka, obviously, they are using certain caste factors to protect somebody who is so corrupt and guilty of wrong-doing.”

Monday, November 22, 2010

P.M and a host of Dignitaries visit Puttaparthi on Sai Baba's birth day eve

The annual convocation of Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning was held in Sai Kulwant Hall in a glittering ceremony graced by the Chancellor of the Institute Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba attended by Chief Guest for the convocation His Excellency The Prime Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh along with a host of glitterati from the political world.

The host of dignitaries included Sri K. Rosaiah, Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Sri E.S.L. Narasimhan, Governor of Andhra Pradesh, Sri Y.S. Yeddyurappa, Chief Minister of Karnataka, Sri Shivraj Patil, Governor of Punjab, Sri M.K. Stalin, Deputy Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Sri Sushil Kumar Shinde, Union Minister for Power, Sri Ashok Chavan, former Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Dr. Ratan Tata, Chairman of Tata Sons, Tata Consultancy Services Chairman Sri N. Chandrasekaran, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Tata Consultancy Services.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Karnataka ready to build dormitory at Sabarimala for its pilgrims

November 15


Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa will hold talks with Dewaswom Minister Ramachandran Kadannappally on constructing a dormitory at Sannidhanam for pilgrims from Karnataka and improving vehicle traffic at Pampa.

A team headed by the chief minister including Planning Commission vice chairman Ramachandra Gowda and Yeddyurappa's son Raghavendra M.P.

The chief minister will inaugurate the resting place for pilgrims built by a private firm in Chennai on the shores of Pampa.

The Karnataka government had set aside Rs 5 crore for the benefit of the pilgrims from the state in its last budget.

But Karnataka Minister V.S. Acharya had assured the former Dewasom commissioner P.V. Nalinakshan Nair that the state was ready to spend up to Rs 25 crores for construction purposes in the area.

The Dewasom Board had agreed to give five acres of land at Nilakkal for the purpose and the primary survey was conducted.

Both the states were drawn to the table for talks by the former Sabarimala Development High Power Committee chairman K. Jayakumar.

This time Karnataka's demands will be centred on the Sabarimala Development Master plan.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Karnataka HC upholds rebel BJP legislators' disqualification

Posted on: 29 Oct 2010

Bangalore: The Karnataka High Court Friday upheld the disqualification of the 11 rebel legislators of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) from the state assembly by Speaker K.G. Bopaiah.

Delivering the judgment in a packed courtroom, Justice V.G. Sabhahit said the rebel legislators stood disqualified under the 10(a) schedule of the anti-defection law.

CM welcomes court verdict

Hailing the Karnataka High Court verdict upholding the disqualification of 11 BJP rebel MLAs, Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa today described it as 'epoch making' and a major step towards eradicating the menance of defection in the country.

'This order has come as a warning bell to those who indulge in defection. I hope this will herald a new era in bringing an end to defections in the country,' Yeddyurappa told PTI.

Yeddyurappa, overwhelmed by Justice V G Sabhahit's ruling upholding disqualification of the rebel MLAs for withdrawing support to his government, said 'this has enhanced my responsibilities now. Now I have to give a further fillip
to development activities'. PTI

Left routed in Kerala civic polls

October 29, 2010

Reaffirming once again that the end of the Left’s supremacy in Kerala politics is imminent, the people of the State voted the CPI(M)-led ruling LDF out of power in majority of the local administration bodies.

As the results of the civic elections held in two phases on October 23 and 25 came out on Wednesday, the LDF suffered jolts at all the three levels of the local administration system. The Left’s setback was a near replication of the setback the CPI(M) suffered in the last municipal elections in West Bengal.

As the present setback has come after its terrible defeats in the last Lok Sabha election, by-polls to three Assembly seats and several local council byelections, observers expect the LDF to be thrown out of power in the State elections in April-May next.

The Left was defeated in two of the four city corporations where counting of votes was held on Wednesday. The poll results in the municipal councils were shocking to the Left as the results of the 2005 elections were more than reversed. Of the 57 municipalities for which votes were counted, the Congress-led UDF bagged 30.

The Left, which had won 34 municipalities in the 2005 civic elections, was reduced to just 12 seats. Though it managed to win more seats than the Congress-led front in some other municipal councils, this became meaningless as they could not muster enough seats to rule. In 15 municipalities, no party was in majority.

In results in the prestigious Kochi Corporation, which it ruled for 32 years continuously, was shocking for the Left. Of the total 74 seats in this corporation, the LDF was reduced to 21 seats while the UDF bagged 44 divisions. The BJP won two seats. The LDF also lost power in the Thrissur Corporation.

The Left win in the Thiruvananthapuram Corporation was absolutely unconvincing as it was by just one seat in the 100-division council. The UDF, which had won only ten seats in the last election, bagged 41 seats this time.

The BJP won in six divisions. The only corporation where the Left had a convincing win was Kollam.

However, the severest shock for the Left came from the Grama Panchayats, where the votes came from the grassroots, said to be the support base of the proletarian CPI(M). As the results for the 902 Grama Panchayats in which counting was held trickled in late on Wednesday evening, the LDF had won or was leading only in 361 while the UDF led in 534.

This was almost a total reversal of the results of the 2005 civic polls in which the Left had won 668 of the total 978 Grama Panchayats. The CPI(M) might explain away the defeats in the urban areas as an elitist reaction but the setback in the village bodies is clearly an indication of how the party’s basic support system has crumbled.

The situation in the Block and District panchayats was also not very different. In the 140 Block Panchayats for which vote-counting was on, the LDF was leading only in 60 while the UDF was in the lead in 80. The LDF had won 13 of the 14 district Panchayats in 2005 but this time, the UDF was leading in eight.

Despite its startling defeat, the CPI(M) tried to put up a bold face. State CPI(M) secretary Pinarayi Vijayan said the LDF’s position had improved when compared to the Lok Sabha election while several other leaders termed the Left defeat as a result of the “unholy alliances” of the UDF.


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) has registered an impressive victory in the local body elections in Kerala, securing majority in two of the five City Corporations and 38 of the 59 municipalities.

Initial trends point to the UDF leading in 7,584 grama panchayat wards, 1,103 block panchayat wards and 180 district panchayat divisions. The CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) retained Thiruvananthapuram and Kollam Corporations and secured 16 municipalities. It has secured a lead in 5,887 grama panchayats, 757 block and 122 district panchayat divisions. The results of the Corporations and the municipalities were the first to be announced as electronic voting machines were used there. The first round of manual counting of ballots for the district, block and grama panchayats is progressing. A final picture is expected to emerge by Thursday evening. Counting at the Kozhikode Corporation will be taken up on October 31.

BJP fares well

The BJP has improved upon its tally compared to the previous local body polls. The party has got significant representation in Thiruvananthapuram Corporation — six seats, two in Kochi, one in Thrissur and 76 seats in various municipalities, the highest of 15 in Palakkad municipality. The party candidates finished runners-up in eight wards in Thiruvananthapuram Corporation. The party will play a crucial role in deciding the rulers in four municipalities. The SDPI has also opened its account by securing one seat each in Kannur and Thodupuzha municipalities.

A distinct feature of the local body elections this time is that 50 per cent of the over 21,000 seats are reserved for women in the multi-tier local self-government bodies.

The UDF wrested the Kochi Corporation from the LDF after three decades, winning 46 out of the 74 seats. The LDF won 23 wards and the BJP, 2 and Independent, 3. The UDF also emerged victorious in the Thrissur Corporation, winning 44 out of the 55 seats. Here, the LDF got six seats, the BJP, one and Independents, four seats.

The LDF has retained the Thiruvananthapuram Corporation winning 51 out of the 100 seats, leaving 41 to the UDF, six to the BJP and two to Independents. The LDF won the Kollam Corporation for a third successive term bagging 34 out of the 55 seats. The UDF got 18 seats and others, three seats.

No majority

As per the figures of the State Election Commission, none of the fronts secured majority in Neyyattinkara and Nedumangad municipalities in Thiruvananthapuram, and Changanassery in Kottayam district.

In Thiruvananthapuram district, the LDF retained Attingal municipality and the UDF wrested Varkala from the LDF. In Kollam district, the LDF won Paravur and Punalur municipalities, while the UDF registered an impressive victory in Karunagapally municipality. In Pathanamthitta district, the UDF secured majority in Adoor and Pathanamthitta municipalities and emerged as the largest group in Thiruvalla with 17 seats. While the LDF got 13, the BJP bagged five seats. The LDF won Alappuzha municipality and the UDF Cherthala in the district. The UDF emerged victorious in Kottayam, Vaikom and Pala municipalities. In Ernakulam district, the UDF won 12 and the LDF, one municipality. The LDF won four and the UDF two municipalities in Thrissur district. In Palakkad, the fronts shared two municipalities each. The rival fronts maintained status quo in Kannur district. Of the total six municipalities, elections were held to five. While the LDF retained Thalassery, Koothuparamba, Taliparamba and Payyannur , the UDF fortified its position in Kannur municipality. Elections to Mattannur will be held later.

In Kasaragod district, the UDF registered a thumping victory in Kasaragod and Kanhangad municipalities, while the CPI(M) defeated the UDF in Neeleswaram.

The UDF won the lone municipality in Wayanad district, Kalpetta, capturing 20 of the 28 wards. The Congress and the Indian Union Muslim League won eight seats each and the Socialist Janata (Democratic) four seats. In Malappuram, the UDF retained power in Malappuram, Manjeri and Tirur municipalities and toppled the LDF in Ponnani and Perinthalmanna municipalities. The UDF will rule the newly-formed Kottakkal and Nilambur municipalities. The UDF also won 17 seats in Perinthalmanna and the LDF 16. One seat went to an Independent candidate.

In the campaign, both the LDF and UDF had described the civic body elections, held on October 23 and 25, as a referendum on the government's performance.

Monday, October 25, 2010

B.J.P Sweeps in Gujarat Panchayat Elections

BJP sweeps Panchayat Elections in Gujarat. The party has won 22 of 24 district panchayats, 178 of 208 block panchayats and 47 out of 52 municipalities that went to the polls on Thursday last. The BJP has also wrested tribal district of Dang and Anand in central Gujarat from the Congress. Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi has describes the poll outcome as victory of BJP's development agenda.
BJP sweeps Panchayat Elections in Gujarat. The party has won 22 of 24 district panchayats, 178 of 208 block panchayats and 47 out of 52 municipalities that went to the polls on Thursday last. The BJP has also wrested tribal district of Dang and Anand in central Gujarat from the Congress. Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi has describes the poll outcome as victory of BJP's development agenda.
Meanwhile, State Congress President Sidharth Patel and Congress Legislature Party Leader Shaktisinh Gohil have resigned from their posts citing poor performance of the party in Panchayat polls.

Gujarat Narendra Modi plans Rs 50,000 cr over the sea dam

NEW DELHI: In a first, Gurajat is planning to build an over the sea dam in the northern portion of the Gulf of Khambat (Cambay) with an investment of over Rs 50,000 crore.

The 35-kilometre dam project named Kalpasar Dam Alignment would lead to a sweet water reservoir. Besides, it will also have a road and rail overbridge, which will reduce the distance between Bhavnagar and Surat by 200 kilometre.

While, the main dam help generate tidal power, the reservoir is expected to supply water for drinking and agricultural purposes.

"The project envisages dam and road and rail overbridge from just north of Bhavnagar in the west coast of Gulf of Cambay to Alandar in Dahej in the east coast. Though final cost is to be worked out in detail, it will be over Rs 50,000 crore," a senior state government official said.

The timeframe will be decided once the environmental and other clearances come.

The Gujarat government has already set up a dedicated department for the project -- the Kalpasar department.

"Besides creating a fresh water reservoir in the northern portion of the Gulf of Khambat, the road and rail overbridge will reduce the distance from Bhavnagar and Surat to 150 kilometre from the existing 350 kilometre," the official said.

Travelling between Bhavnagar in Saurashtra and Surat in South Gujarat currently require a long detour through Ahmedabad.

The dam is also expected to take thousands of square kilometre in the northern coast of the Gulf of Khambat out of Coastal Zone Regulation (CZR) rules.

"This will allow development activity in a zone, which has high salinity and also create fishing opportunity in the envisage area," he said.

With the construction of the dam, which is 160 kilometre from the Pipavav port, the nearby port of Bhavnagar is also likely to be upgraded as a prime port. The Dholera Special Investment Region lies close to the proposed dam area.

"The State Maritime Board is studying the proposal for upgradation and expansion of the Bhavnagar port," the official said.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

LeT commander,held in Kerala by Karnataka Police

Umar Farooq, 35, of Parappanangadi in Malappuram, Kerala, and Ibrahim Moulavi, 50, of Vellimunda in Wyanad, Kerala, werearrested by the anti-terrorist squad of the central crime branch police.

City police commissioner Shankar M Bidari said Farooq was arrested from Ajmer in Rajasthan, while Moulavi was held at Kasargod in Kerala. Both of them were brought to the city on Saturday, and a city magistrate remanded them for 13 days in police custody.

Both of them were suspected terrorists and were being interrogated at an undisclosed location.

“The investigation into the serial blasts revealed the involvement of Umar and Ibrahim. Further probe will reveal their exact roles in the incident,” Joint commissioner of police (crime) Alok Kumar said.

Police claimed that the men were actively involved in the July 25, 2008 blasts which killed a woman and injured several others. They had visited Bangalore before the blast and were involved in the criminal conspiracy to plant explosives in the city, police said.

As many as 32 persons were named in the chargesheet. The 31st accused, People’s Democratic Party leader, Abdul Nasser Madani was arrested from Kerala’s Kollam district in August.
Police sources said they had been monitoring Farooq and Moulavi for the past six months, and succeeded in nabbing them on the same day from two different states.

Farooq was picked up from the Ajmer railway station, where he had gone to drop off a friend travelling to Ernakulam.

Police refused to reveal the identity of Farooq’s friend.
Farooq had been absconding ever since the Bangalore blasts.

He had stayed in Ajmer for some time before going to Tamil Nadu and other parts of India to escape arrest.

A police team comprising assistant commissioners HM Omkaraiah, SY Hadimuni and NH Siddappa rushed to Ajmer on learning that Farooq had returned to that place.

Moulavi was arrested from Badiyadukka in Kasargod district by a CCB team headed by inspector Nagaraju. Police said the accused had also absconded after the blasts, and returned to Kerala recently.

Police sources said both of them were active in recruiting youth for terror training camps. An additional charge-sheet against them had been filed earlier before the court. A warrant was also pending against Farooq.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Modi's big day: BJP sweeps municipal elections

Press Trust of India, : October 12, 2010

Ahmedabad: Ruling BJP has swept the polls to six municipal corporations in Gujarat retaining power with two-thirds majority in all but one of them, in a big victory for Chief Minister Narendra Modi who put all his might behind the civic election campaign.

Besides Ahmedabad, the BJP won the civic polls in Vadodara, Surat, Rajkot and Bhavnagar with a two-thirds majority. The party, which decimated the Congress, got a simple majority in Jamnagar.

Savouring the win, Modi profusely thanked the people of Gujarat for reposing faith in the party.

He said BJP bagged 80 per cent of the votes in almost all the places with the remaining being accounted for all the other parties and Independents put together.

The poll victories came just a few weeks after the BJP won Kachlal in Anand district in a bye-election, bagging the assembly constituency - a Congress bastion - for the first time in the history of the state.

Senior BJP leader L K Advani congratulated Modi for the spectacular showing for the party and noted that the Congress has been wiped out.

On-line voting was introduced for the first time in the civic polls.

Over 2,100 candidates were in fray for more than 558 seats for elections in six municipal corporations in Gujarat.

Ruling BJP as well as Opposition Congress had campaigned extensively and had also roped in national leaders for the polls.

The BJP had won all the six municipal corporations in the last elections held in 2005

It had made the arrest of Amit Shah, close aide of Modi, by CBI in Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case, as one of the main issues, as all its national leaders alleged that the arrest amounted to misuse of CBI by the Congress and asked people to give its mandate through the ballot papers.

During the campaign, Modi also took a swipe at Prime Minister Manmohan Singh over the tardy pace of preparations for the ongoing Commonwealth games in Delhi.

Congress on the other hand had focussed more on local issues saying that the corporation polls were about civic amenities and highlighted assistance given to the state under Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission for development of infrastructure in cities.

In Ahmedabad, the BJP has so far won 129 of the 156 seats declared with results for remaining 33 seats yet to be announced.

The saffron party notched 95 of the 114 seats in Surat while it bagged 61 of the 75 in Vadodara.

The Rajkot Municipal Corporation where BJP won 58 seats in the 69-member house was the only civic body where it could not get a two-third majority.

The Congress bagged the remaining 11 seats and improved its tally by one from 10 it had won in the 2005 elections. Among the winners were Mayor Sandhyaben Vyas of BJP.

Modi had campaigned extensively in Rajkot addressing three public rallies in the last week of campaigning.

Accepting defeat, local Congress leaders said they had expected a good show in the RMC polls by the party as it had wrested the Rajkot Lok Sabha seat from the BJP after many years during the 2008 parliamentary polls.

BJP retained its two-third majority in the Bhavnagar Municipal Corporation (BMC), bagging 41 out of the 51 seats with Congress winning the rest.

BJP, which had won 39 seats in the 2005 BMC elections, improved its tally by two, while the Congress saw its seat strength reduce from 12 to 10.

The ruling party had emerged as a clear favourite in Bhavnagar due to infighting and absence of strong local leaders in the Congress.

Elections to the BMC were held two months earlier than scheduled, as the BJP decided to go for the polls along with the other five other municipal corporations in the state on October 10.

BJP retained a clear majority in the Jamnagar Municipal Corporation (JMC) pocketing 35 seats out of 57.

Opposition Congress won 16 seats, while Independents (3), NCP(1), BSP (1), and SP (1) bagged the remaining seats.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Muralidharan appears on Congress platforms

06 Oct 2010

Thiruvananthapuram: With local bodies' elections around the corner K Muralidharan has started appearing the platforms of Congress campaigns. Murali's official re-entry into Congress appears to be a mere formality now.

Murali knew that Congress needed his support for a UDF victory in the Malabar region. In Kozhikode many candidates came to him for blessings before filing nomination papers.

Getting the message top brass from the district Congress committee, including the president K C Abu and people like N P Moideen, A Sujanapal, P Sankaran and Muslim League leader Mayin Haji came to Murali's house to invite him for campaigning. Murali obliged.

NII researchers develop once-in-3-month insulin to treat diabetes

Indian scientists at the Delhi-based National Institute of Immunology have developed a new technology that could produce once in 3-month insulin injection for diabetic patients.

Currently, insulin is injected multiple times a day to control blood sugar in diabetes patients.

The new insulin formulation follows a simple technique in the hormone is clumped together into complexes called oligomers.

These oligomers are then injected into rats, mice, and rabbits with chemically induced diabetes. A single injection maintained basal glucose levels for up to 3 months, whereas other diabetic mice needed daily injections.The diseased mice mice not given insulin died within 40 days.

The NII researchers tested the oligomer insulin on mice and rabbits using bovine and recombinant human insulin. A single dose using bovine insulin was able to give coverage for over 120 days while that with recombinant human insulin sustained over 140 days.

The oligomers act like “an insulin depot” at the injection site, releasing a steady, low insulin dose, according to Dr Avadhesha Surolia, director of the National Institute of Immunology here, who led the research team.

“The just above basal level of human insulin released in a sustained manner has been found to be effective in not only controlling the upsurge in the level of blood glucose after meals, but also in preventing the dreaded early morning hypoglycaemia, which is caused by low glucose levels,” stated Dr Surolia.

The oligomer technique primarily involves getting individual molecules of insulin to come together and form multi-molecular or supra-molecular assemblies.

Oligomer insulin utilizes the basic principles of protein folding to harness the inherent aggregative property of insulin molecules to generate a form that exhibited a controlled and sustained release of the molecules over prolonged periods, explained Dr. Surolia, who is also a professor at the Bangalore-based Indian Institute of Science’s Molecular Biophysics Unit.

Since oligomers do not lead to the activation of enzymes that destroy insulin, it does not cause cancer which many currently available insulin analogues are associated with.

The researchers observed no side effects in the animal studies.

NII has transferred the technology to Life Science Pharmaceuticals in Darien, Connecticut for further development including clinical trials. The US firm plans to launch clinical trials to test the oligomr insulin later this year.

If it comes out successfully through all clinical testing, the oligomer based insulin could be available in the market in about six years after, Dr Surolia hoped.

A major issue with diabetes management with the current practice of multiple injections in a day was the fear of pricking oneself. This often lead to the patient not adhering to the treatment in toto, resulting in complications such as diabetic cardiopathy, cataract and nephropathy.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Petition of Madani's relative dismissed

01 Oct 2010

Kollam: A local court here has dismissed a petition filed by a relative of PDP leader Abdul Nasser Madani alleging that
the Karnataka police had not adhered to procedures during the arrest of Madani in connection with the Bangalore blasts case.

Kollam Chief Judicial Magistrate Soundaresh dismissed the petition by Abdul Salam, a relative of Madani, against Bangalore city assistant police commissioner Omkaraiah and Kollam SP police Harshitha Attaluri.

The petitioner argued that Madani should have been produced in a local court before being taken to Bangalore after his arrest on August 17.

Dismissing the petition, the Court said the charges in the petition was ill-intentioned. The Court also approved the arguments of the counsels for Omkaraiah and Attaluri that Madani could be produced before a judge in Bangalore within 24 hours of his arrest.

Madani, who was arrested from Anwarssery near here at 1.20 pm was produced before was produced before the Bangalore judge the same night at 11.20 pm, the cousels for the police said. PTI

Palakkad municipal chairperson P Devyani joins BJP

01 Oct 2010

Palakkad: Municipal chairperson P Devayani from Palakkad has resigned from the Congress and joined the BJP. Devyani will contest as a BJP candidate in the coming LSG polls. Devyani held discussions with the BJP leaders on Friday morning and the latest move is an outcome of this.

It is learnt that Devyani was unhappy with the leadership for not giving the reserved seat of her choice. She had asked for Ward 7 but offered Ward 14 by the Congress under the general category instead of a reserved seat.

The BJP party has decided to offer the seat of her choice. She told mediapersons that as she was offered a seat under the general category by the Congress she has decided to join the BJP. She also alleged that she had been offered Ward 15 without her knowledge. She also added that she would contest Ward 15 under the BJP ticket.

Palakkad DCC president P V Balachandran said that Devyani had not officiallly announced the resignation to the DCC.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Ayodhya Judgement: Site birthplace of lord Ram

September 30th, 2010

Lucknow: The 3-judge Lucknow bench of the Allahabad high court has reached a verdict on the decades-old title suits over the disputed Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid site in Ayodhya.

According to media reports, the waqf board suit was reportedly dismissed.

The verdict also stats that the site is the birthplace of lord Ram.

The disputed land is to be divided into 3 parts. 1/3rd of the land to go to the Muslims, 2/3rd to go to the Hindus. The 3rd part is to go to Nirmohi akhara.

The verdict was delivered by the 3-Judge bench consisting of Justices S U Khan, Justices Sudhir Agarwal and Justice D V Sharma at 4:30 PM today.

The first suit in the case was filed 60 years ago by a Hindu seeking right to worship.

After twists and turns the UP Central Sunni Board of Waqfs moved to file a claim in 1961 followed by another civil suit in 1989 in the name of Lord Ram for declaration and possession of the Masjid complex.

All the cases were transferred from a Faizabad court in 1989 to a special bench of the High Court.

As the issue was hanging fire, the BJP and Sangh Parivar outfits mounted a campaign for building Ram temple in Ayodhya at the dispute site claiming it was his birth place.

The campaign reached a crescendo in 1992 when the 500-year-old Babri Masjid was razed to the ground.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Madani Judicial Custody Extended till Oct 12

Bangalore, Sep 29: The judicial custody of People’s Democratic Party leader, Abdul Nasser Madani, accused in the 2008 serial blasts in the city, has been extended till October 12.

In addition to Madani, his alleged associate, T Nassir, and 12 other accused, who are put up in Parappana Agrahara jail in the city, were produced in the court through video conferencing facility on Tuesday September 28, as their judicial custody terms had ended.

Judge, Venkatesh Hulagi, who confirmed the identities of the accused by calling out their names, extended their custody by two weeks.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Figures suggest, 65% of Muslim voters voted for BJP in Kathlal

Kathlal, 17 September, 2010

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi today said, he has been informed with figures that the Bharatiya Janata Party has secured about 65% votes in those Kathlal booths where Muslims have dominating population.

“65% votes of Muslim community in favor of BJP means if Ramzan is near, we are benefited from that, because one would do only right thing in Ramzan. Those who malign Gujarat here and there should understand that Gujarat wants peace and Gujarat wants development. And Kathlal people have proved this,”Modi added.

Modi said this in his victory speech during a rally held at Kathlal.

Meanwhile Kheda district BJP Chief Bimal Shah said that Muslim Youths actively participated in the election in favor of BJP. Shah said, the Muslim youths used to visit the party election office and told that elder Muslims might vote for Congress but the youths would definitely vote for BJP.

Modi on a high after winning in Cong bastion

Sep 20, 2010

Gugarat - Kathlal: The victory of Bharatiya Janata Party in the Kathlal by-election in Gujarat has confirmed Chief Minister Narendra Modi's appeal in the state. Modi won in a traditional Congress bastion with a large Muslim population and the election result could redefine his political career.

Ayub Chauhan, 35, is one of the Muslim voters of Kathlal constituency in Central Gujarat who voted for the BJP. It's for the first time BJP won the Assembly constituency and Chauhan does not want to be left out of Gujarat's development story being scripted by Modi.

"We thought it's our Congress and kept voting for it. But the BJP is in Gujarat and everybody is benefiting. We thought why we should be left out," said Ayub Chauhan.

It is not just Ayub Chavan, others too echo similar sentiments. BJP supporters blame the Congress for neglecting their welfare in the past 50 years.

"This time round, we decided to work together. We told our Muslim brothers. Come with us. We will make BJP's Kanu Dabhi win," said BJP sympathiser Ghanshyam Patel.

"We had two options. Either to take the road that goes backwards or the one that goes forward. We chose the road ahead," added a Kathlal resident, Irfan Malik.

The Kathlal Assembly has traditionally been a Congress seat with 65 per cent of the 1.75 lakh voters being Muslims. The defeat is an embarrassment to the Congress and a blow to leader Shankersinh Vaghela in charge of the campaigning here.

Modi was quick to call the result a referendum, especially by Muslims, on the alleged misuse of the CBI by the Congress.

"A lesson has been taught to those who do vote bank politics in the name of secularism. Gujarat's Muslims have taught these people a lesson," said Modi.

It is not the first time that Modi has proved his critics wrong. Contrary to popular perception, he rode back to power in the 2007 Assembly elections. Now, with his close confidante Amit Shah in jail and the CBI hot on his heels, Modi has stormed yet another Congress bastion.

Bangalore police question two security guards of Madani

20 Sep 2010

Bangalore: Police began questioning two of the former security guards of PDP chairman Abdul Naser Madani. Shajahan and Nabeel were questioned on Sunday and the rest two would be questioned on Monday. Earlier, the Kerala police had given official permission to four constables to give their statement after presenting before the Karnataka police. The permission was given as per the information of the Karnataka police which sought permission to question the constables Shajahan, Basheer, Sajeevan and Nabeel.

In the charge sheet, Karnataka police alleged that Madani held a meeting with Thadiyantevida Naseer at Kodagu. So according to them, questioning the constables who were Madani's security guards at the time is important.

Though Madani says that he had not visited Kodagu, the questioning aims to collect more information about the same. The four guards who reached Sesadripuram station of Bangalore city police were shifted to the interrogation centre in a special vehicle by the crime branch. The questioning is progressing and is led by investigation head HM Omkarayya.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Abdul Nasser Madani's custody extended to September 28

Sep 14, 2010
Bangalore PTI

A local court today extended to September 28 the judicial custody of PDP leader Abdul Nasser Madani, an accused in the 2008 Bangalore serial blast case.

Though some of the other accused in the case were produced before the first additional chief metropolitan magistrate Venkatesh Hulagi through video conferencing, the People's Democratic Party leader was not produced in court.

Hulagi then directed jail authorities to produce Madani through video conferencing on September 28 and extended the judicial custody of all 14 accused, including Madani to that date.

The magistrate also directed the investigating officer Omkaraiah to furnish a copy of the charge sheet (which had not been given so far) to Madani.

Along with Madani, 31 persons are accused in the blast case in the city, which left a woman dead and 20 others injured.

Fourteen of the 32 accused have been arrested so far.

The court had yesterday dismissed Madani's bail plea, citing security interests and said material produced by the prosecution so far revealed there was a prima facie case against him.

The court had also said that since investigation was in progress and allegations against Madani came under the purview of Unlawful Activities Act, bail cannot be granted.

The Peoples Democratic Party leader was also an accused in the 1998 Coimbatore bomb blast case but was acquitted by the trial court.

The serial blasts before an election meeting to be addressed by senior BJP leader LK Advani had left 58 people dead and over 200 others injured.

SIT notice for Madhani bodyguards

September 14, 2010

Kollam: The Special Investigation Team probing the 2008 Bangalore serial blasts case has asked the police constables who worked as Madhani’s body guards to appear before them within a week.

The police men Shajahan, Basheer, Sajeevan and Nabeel have been named as witnesses in the case. The will be interrogated regarding Madhani’s alleged visit to Coorg.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Abdul Nasser Madani's bail plea dismissed

Sep 13, 2010
Bangalore PTI

Citing security interests of the state and the country, a local court today dismissed the bail plea of PDP leader Abdul Nasser Madani, an accused in the 2008 Bangalore serial blast case.

In its order, the fast track court said the material produced by prosecution so far revealed that there was a prima facie case against Madani.

Since investigation was under progress and allegations against Madani came under the purview of the Unlawful Activities Act, the bail cannot be granted, judge Shrikant Watawati in his over 30-page order.

Speaking to reporters, counsel for Madani, P Usman termed the order "lopsided".

"The arguments put forth by me have not been accepted and the order is based totally on the case made out by the prosecution," he said.

"However, once we get a certified copy of the order we will file a bail petition in the high court," Usman said.

The judicial custody of Madani, who was arrested at Kollam in Kerala on August 17, ends tomorrow.

Holding that there was a prima facie case against Madani, the Karnataka High Court last week had dismissed a criminal petition filed by him, seeking quashing of a charge sheet regarding the case.

The Peoples Democratic Party leader was also an accused in the 1998 Coimbatore bomb blast case but was acquitted by the trial court.

The serial blasts before an election meeting to be addressed by senior BJP leader LK Advani had left 58 people dead and over 200 others injured.

Madhani named as accused in 8 more cases

13 Sep 2010

Bangalore: The Bangalore police included PDP chairman Abdul Nassar Madhani as an accused in 8 more cases. He has been included as an accused in the bomb blasts cases in the city and in a case registered at the Mattivala police station.
Home minister V S Acharya said that Madhani would be included as an accused in all cases charged against him also revealed that he had been maintaining close links with some political leaders in Karnataka. He said that the Bangalore police have found out those who have links with Madhani in their investigations.

HC throws out Madani's petition

Sep 10, 2010,

BANGALORE: The Karnataka High Court on Thursday dismissed the criminal petition filed by Abdul Nasser Madani, the People's Democratic Party leader from Kerala, which challenged the chargesheet filed against him in the July 2008 Bangalore serial blasts case.

"The magistrate has taken cognizance of the issue and the matter is under investigation against the petitioner. The offence alleged against the petitioner is not against any single individual but the State and security of the nation. It needs to be examined and investigated in detail," Justice Subhash B Adi observed in his verdict.

Justice Adi also said that based on statements of other witnesses that Madani had talked about waging a jihad, investigation was on and more material may be collected. "If this petition is allowed, it would amount to harming the investigation," he said.

Madani had claimed there is no evidence against him and police are trying to implicate him on the basis of a voluntary statement of T Nazir, an accused in the case. He also claimed that necessary sanction was not obtained from the central government before proceeding under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act.

Bangalore police took Madani into custody at Kollam last month. Madani challenged the June 11, 2010 additional chargesheet filed before the sessions court by the City Crime Brach police alleging he was involved in the July 25, 2008 Bangalore blast case by conspiring with the other accused.

The fifth fast track court had dismissed Madani's anticipatory bail application on July 9. The high court also dismissed his anticipatory bail plea. CCB police named Madani as 31st accused in the additional chargesheet along with six others. His bail plea is pending before a city court. TI

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Prominent actor, director Venu Nagavally (61) passed away

September 9, 2010

Thiruvanathapuram: Prominent actor, film director Venu Nagavally (61) passed away at 1 am Thursday at a private hospital here.

Nagavalli has been undergoing treatment for stomach-related ailment for the last ten days here. The funeral will be held Santhikavadam, Thycaud at 4 pm Thursday evening.

He is survived by his wife Meera, son Vivek who is an LLM student.

Venu, son of writer, dramatist and script writer Nagavally R.S. Kurupu and Rajamma, started his career as an announcer in AIR.

He started his acting career in the film Ulkadal directed by K.G. George in 1978. After that he acted in several films including Shalini Ente Koottukari, Oru Swakaryam, Meenamasathile Sooryan, Chillu and Pakshe.

What made him noted as an actor is his roles as a melancholic lover.

Nagavally became a script writer through Ee Ganam Marakkumo directed by N. Shankaran Nair.

After that he penned scripts for several films including Gayathri Devi Ente Amma, Guruji Oru Vaakku, Deivathe Orthu, Artham, Aham, Kilukkam and Vishnu.

His directorial debut was in 1986 with the film ’Sughamo Devi’. He then went on to prove his talent as a director through films like Sarvakalasala, Lal Salam, Aye Auto and Agni Devan.

The Hooch Trajedy

Madani bail plea posted to September 13

Sep 8, 2010
Bangalore PTI

A local court today posted to September 13, the bail plea of PDP leader Abdul Nasser Madani, one of the accused in the 2008 Bangalore blasts.

When Madani's bail plea came up for hearing before the fifth fast track court (FTC), judge Shrikant Watawati posted it to September 13 for orders after conclusion of arguments by the counsel and the prosecution.

Madani is in judicial custody till September 14 and is lodged in the Central Jail, Bangalore.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

'Madani Part of Conspiracy to Wage War Against Country'

Bagalaore Sep 07, 2010

PDP leader Abdul Nasser Madani, an accused in the 2008 Bangalore blasts case, was "part of a conspiracy to wage a war against the country" and there was prima facie case against him, the prosecution told a court today.

Opposing his bail plea, Special Public Prosecutor Rudraswamy told the fast track court that evidence gathered so far showed Madani had conversations with the other accused on three mobile phones in his possession.

The phone connections had been taken in different names and addresses by Madani, now under judicial custody, he charged.

The bombs used in the explosions that rocked the city on July 25, 2008 were placed in thickly populated areas with the "intention to take the life of more citizens and to destroy public property and buildings", he said.

"And this waging a war cannot be accidental, a lot of preparation has gone into it, it is a conspiracy by anti- national elements who are helped by some international organisations," he said.

Rudraswamy submitted that "materials including a microchip timer, ammonium nitrate found at places where explosions took place were similar materials as those used in terrorist attacks". All the explosive materials were sourced from Kerala.

As per the Intelligence report, he said the Bangalore blasts which were followed by explosions in Ahmedabad and Delhi were part of "BAD operation" (Bangalore, Ahmedabad and Delhi).

Investigations also revealed that after the Bangalore blasts, three suspected terrorists tried to escape to Pakistan. While two were were shot dead by the army, one escaped.

"Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation bus tickets were found with the dead terrorists which proved that all the three traveled in Bangalore city," the prosecution contended.

It rejected Madani's contention that he was initially treated as a witness and later named as one of the accused.

At no point was Madani treated as a witness, it said.

One woman was killed and 20 were injured in the serial blasts. Madani was arrested from Kerala last month after he was named as an accused in an additional charge sheet in the Bangalore blasts case.

80's Heros and Heroines with Mohanlal

Some Gulf Malayalees underwent terror training in Pakisthan-G.K.Pillai

07 Sep 2010

Thiruvananthapuram : Union Home Secretary G.K. Pillai on Monday warned that the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Toiba (Let) militant outfit is planning to attack key installations in the country from the Indian coastline. He said the terror outfits like ISI and Lashkar-e-Toiba are recruiting some Malayaless moving towards gulf countries in search of jobs. They would be later shifted to Pakistan after issuing Pakistan passport to them and will be provided with training in terror cells. Again they would be brought to Gulf countries and will return to India in their Indian passport.

Interacting with media persons here, Pillai said the government has acquired intelligence inputs that reveal that the LeT is conducting training of its cadres in the coastal areas of the country.He said the Union Home Ministry has alerted the state governments of Kerala, Karnataka, Gujarat, Orissa, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu to put their respective police forces on alert in anticipation of this eminently dangerous terror threat.

Asked for his comments on the incident involving the axing of an arm of a Kerala college lecturer by activists of radical outfit Popular Front of India (PFI), Pillai said the Government of Kerala has forwarded a request for a probe by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) to the Union Home Ministry, which is being studied.

NRI businessman - Ravi Pillai - sponsors marriages of 107 women

29 Aug 2010

Kollam : Marriages of 107 women were organised here Monday by a social organisation supported by non-resident Indian (NRI) Ravi Pillai, who is considered as the largest employer of Indians in the Middle East.
Each groom was first handed a 'thali' by a guest and after the knot was tied, the couple was handed a token gift of Rs.25,000.

The event, organized by the Ravi Pillai Foundation, was witnessed by hundreds of people and dignitaries here.

Union Heavy Industries Minister Vilas Rao Deshmukh and Union Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi, Kerala Water Resources Minister N.K. Premachandran, Education Minister M.A. Baby, Leader of Opposition and Congress leader Oommen Chandy, and state Congress president Ramesh Chennithala besides more than a dozen legislators and a few Lok Sabha members were present on the occasion.

Religious leaders and personalities from the film fraternity were also present.

Speaking on the occasion, Deshmukh said: 'I will come again for such programmes.'

Kovoor Kunjumon, a ruling Left Front legislator who took part in the function, said that it was a great humanitarian gesture on the part of Pillai.

'The foundation will now provide employment to all the men abroad and if someone does not want a job, financial assistance would be provided to them to start a small business,' said Kunjumon.

'The couples were selected after a screening process which was first recommended by the local legislator. I myself recommended five and they got married today (Monday),' said Kunjumon.

The foundation also handed a cheque of Rs.1 million to noted environmentalist and poet Sugatha Kumari.

Hailing from this town, Pillai employs more than 25,000 Indians in his Nasser S Al-Hajri Corporation which is headquartered in Bahrain.

His company is engaged in construction at oil and gas refineries and petrochemical companies in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain and the UAE.

A Padma Shri awardee, Pillai has also won the Pravasi Bharatiya award.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Kerala deity( Chakkulathukavu Amma ) draws devotees in Singapore

Sep 5, 2010 , Singapore

HUNDREDS of Hindu devotees flocked to the Sri Vairavimada Kaliamman Temple in Toa Payoh yesterday, all in the hope of seeing and receiving blessings from a visiting deity from Kerala, India.

The deity, Sree Bhagavathy Amman, is popular among women who seek comfort from problems such as family abuse and alcoholism.

This is the first trip the idol, measuring about 30cm, has taken outside of India. It hails from the 5,000-year-old Chakkulathukavu Sree Bhagavathy Temple in Kerala.

It is a smaller version of the main idol, which is said to have been fashioned naturally out of a rock and cannot be removed from the temple. About 1,000 Singaporeans make the trip to Kerala to visit the deity each year.

In Singapore since Thursday, the idol was displayed at Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple in Serangoon Road before being moved to Toa Payoh on Friday evening. It will return to India tonight.

Yesterday, a group of devotees sat barefoot on the floor of the Sri Vairavimada Kaliamman Temple chanting the 1,008 names of the deity, each signifying a different quality of her. Devotees offered the deity a plate of flowers at the end.

Bangalore: Madani’s Close Aide Arrested by CCB Police

Bangalore, Sep 4: Abdul Aziz, a Kerala-based close aide of Abdul Nasser Madani, was arrested by the policemen of city crime branch on Friday September 3.

Aziz, a prominent leader of People’s Democratic Party floated by Madani, was in the city, trying to get bail for Madani. The policemen, who got wind about his presence here, gathered information about his whereabouts and arrested him. Abdul Aziz reportedly had played a major role in the serial blasts of 2008 in the city and subsequent blasts near Chinnaswamy Stadium last year at the time IPL matches were in progress.

The arrests were made on the basis of information provided by Madani, who is in judicial custody here, during interrogation. Aziz had been nominated by Madani for guiding terrorist activities in the city, it is learnt.

Madani also had revealed that Aziz had duped a bank before getting involved with the above blasts, it is learnt.

Madani's security can be questioned if Karnataka demands: DGP

03 Sep 2010

Kochi: DGP Jacob Punnoose said that if Karnataka police demands the state will extend all help to question Madani's security guards. But till now no such demands were made. He said investigations are on about Thadiyantevida Nasser's visit to the Popular Front office.

The state government informed the HC the other day that it had received documents stating Naseer had visited the PFI district office near Aluva. The documents which were seized from an accused in the hand chopping case also stated that Naseer had stayed at Periyar valley house in Kunjunnikkara, Aluva.

No intimation reqarding questioning of Madani''s security men

Sep 03,2010
Kochi,Sept3 (PTI) Kerala Director General of Police Jacob Punnoose today said the state had not received any intimation from Karnataka police on questioning the personal security men of PDP leader Abdul Nasser Madani, an accused in the Bangalore serial blasts case. "If there is any intimation in this regard from Karnataka police, Kerala police will give full support," the DGP told reporters here. Investigations are on regarding the reported visit of suspected LeT operative T Nazeer, also an accused in the case to the office of radical outfit, Popular Front of India which was allegedly behind the July 4 attack on a lecturer at Muvattupuzha in the district. T J Joseph's right hand was chopped off for preparing a question paper which allegedly contained derogatory references to Propheet Mohammed. Madani was arrested from Kollam in Kerala by a Karnataka police team on August 17 after a Bangalore court issued a non-bailable warrant against him in connection with the July, 2008 blasts that left one person dead and injured 20 others.PTI

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

SC orders closure of Pappinniseri mangrove park for a month

31 Aug 2010

New Delhi: The Supreme Court has directed the Pappinisseri mangrove park to stop all activities for a month. The SC directive comes while hearing a petition filed by the Union Forest and Environment Ministry on the Kerala HC staying the Environment ministry order on closing the mangrove park.

The SC ruled that the order by the Environment ministry to close the park without even issuing a notice to the Eco tourism committee, the owners of the park, is wrong. The SC requested the Environment ministry to issue a notice within a week to the Eco-tourism society and seek its reply.

On July 20, 2010, the Union ministry of Environment has ordered all construction works relating to the mangrove theme park in Pappinisseri to be stopped. The Kerala Divisional Bench had temporarily stayed the directive on August 19. In the midst of all these the Union Environment ministry had moved the Supreme Court.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Madani quizzed along with other accused in Bangalore blasts case

30 Aug 2010

Bangalore: It is learnt that Madani was questioned between August 23 and 26.along with another accused in the Bangalore blast case. After questioning, the accused, including Thadiyantevida Naseer, were sent to judicial custody. Madani was quizzed along with Thadiyantevida Naseer, Sarfras Navas, Abdul Jabbar, Abdul Sathar and Badarudhin. Among them Thadiyantevida Naseer, Sarfras Navas, Abdul Jababr and Badarudhin were brought from Parappana Agrahara jail with special court permission. Abdul Jabbar was earlier brought from Hyderabad. He had escaped with injuries in the militants army gunbattle in Kashmir. Abdul Sathar, an explosive expert, was brought from Gujarat and is an accused in the Ahmedabad blast. His son Sharafudhin was also brought from Gujarat as both have been named as accused in the Bangalore blast case.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Police Constable Shajahan appears before Medical Board

Police constable A. Shajahan, former gunman of Mr. Maudany, appeared before a government medical board, chaired by Kollam district hospital superintendent Susan Mathew.

Mr. Shajahan had received formal directions from the District Superintendent of Police Harshita Attaluri to appear before the board.

On August 3, Mr. Shajahan had received notice to appear before the Bangalore police for questioning in connection with Mr. Maudany's alleged role in the 2008 Bangalore serial bomb blasts case. The Karnataka police suspect that Mr. Shajahan was Mr. Maudany's gunman during the latter's alleged visit to Kodagu in Karnataka.

Immediately after receiving the notice, Mr. Shajahan checked into the district hospital here. He later checked into Government Medical College Hospital, Thiruvananthapuram. A few days later, he went on medical leave. Since then, his whereabouts were not known.

Mr. Shajahan told the medical board that he was suffering from chronic knee problem. The board, which examined him, recommended surgery.

It also referred him to the Thiruvananthapuram medical college for further examination.

The board submitted a detailed report on the examination to Ms. Attaluri.

After Madani, hunt on for his guard

Aug 2010,

Three days after Bangalore blast accused Abdul Nasser Madani was arrested from his camp in Kollam, the Bangalore police are looking for his personal security guard. Police constable Shahjahan is being seen as a valuable link to the blast case, as the Bangalore police believe that Madani never travelled anywhere without him.

What the Bangalore police want to know from Shahjahan is whether he ever travelled with Madani to Coorg, where the conspiracy of the blasts was allegedly hatched.

Madani allegedly travelled to Coorg just a few days before the blasts for a meeting allegedly held in a farmhouse leased by prime accused T Nazir to conspire the blasts.

The Bangalore police had sent a notice to police constable Shajahan on 5th July directing him to appear for investigations.

However, Shahjahan went on medical leave, a day after he received the notice and since then has not reported for duty. The police are now looking for an official logsheet that would throw light on Shahjahan's movement.

Saturday, August 21, 2010


Bangalore, Aug. 21 (KMC)- The main accused in the Bangalore blast of 2008, Abdul Nasser Madani, was taken to Madikeri in Kodagu district this morning for investigation, according to highly placed sources.

PDP leader Madani, who was arrested by the Bangalore Police from his camp in Kollam, Kerala, three days ago, is suspected to have travelled to a village near Madikeri just a few days before the blasts, for a meeting allegedly held in a farmhouse leased by prime accused T. Nazir to conspire the blasts.

The Police are also looking for Madani's personal security guard, Constable Shahjahan, who is considered a valuable link to the blast case, as the Police believe that Madani never travelled without him.

The Bangalore Police had sent a notice to Constable Shahjahan on July 5, directing him to appear for investigations.

However, Shahjahan went on medical leave, a day after he received the notice and since then has not reported for duty. Police are now looking for an official logsheet that would throw light on Shahjahan's movements.

Police submit call details, other proofs

Bangalore: The Bangalore police on Wednesday submitted details of telephone contacts between arrested Kerala politician Abdul Naser Madani and the main accused in the July 25, 2008 Bangalore blasts case, Tadiyandavede Nasir, before a court.

The technical evidence along with statements of four eyewitnesses suggesting a role of the People's Democratic Party's (PDP) leader in planning the attacks and in sheltering key perpetrators like T Nasir, was placed before the court after Madani filed a petition saying he is being falsely implicated in the case and asking for quashing of the chargesheet against him.

The technical evidence was produced after the court asked the public prosecutor whether the police had any evidence against Madani other than the voluntary statement made by the main accused implicating Madani in the case.

According to the technical evidence placed before the court, Nasir using the number 9744386493 contacted Madani on the cell phone number 9349955085 registered in his wife Soofiya Madani's name on July 27, 2008, two days after the Bangalore blasts, to fix up a meeting.

Though Madani's advocate argued that he did not use the mobile number presented by the police, the public prosecutor presented a signed statement by Madani's wife saying the number was registered in her name but was used by Madani.

The police told the court that a witness in the case, Madani's brother Jamal Ahmed, had stated that Nasir and another key accused in the case, P K Shabbir, who is still absconding, were sheltered at Madani's college at Anwarserry after the blasts.

Other witnesses were cited as having seen Madani at meetings of the accused ahead of the blasts or having heard conversations with Madani about the blasts after it occurred. Madani's advocate argued that witnesses were coerced into giving statements against the PDP leader by the police.

Before reserving his orders on Madani's plea Justice Subhash B Adi observed that the issue before him was to ascertain whether the police had prima facie made out a case against Madani warranting his naming in the chargesheet. Issues like coercion could be addressed at the trial stage, he said.

Madani was on Tuesday night remanded to police custody for 10 days. His health is being constantly monitored, the police said. The police are expected to question him over the next few days.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Madani to be taken to Kodagu for evidence collection

19 Aug 2010

Bangalore: The special investigation team began to question Madani in the Bangalore blasts case and has decided to take him to Kodagu for evidence collection. There is also a move to conduct a voice test. After presenting Madani before the Bangalore Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate on Tuesday night, he was given accommodation at a guest house in the police officers mess. On Wednesday, after a health check-up, he was sent to a secret centre of the central crime branch in Yelahanka.

Bangalore city police commissioner Alok Kumar said that his heath condition is stable and special food have been arranged considering his diabetes. Arrangement have also been made for religious prayers.

Madani would be brought to Kodagu for evidence collection as it was made clear in the investigation that planning of the blast took place at Lakkeri estate in Kodagu where the prime accused Thadiyantevida Naseer was camping in the pretext of doing ginger farming. Naseer, Rafeeq and Prabhakar had given a statement that Madani had visited here.

There is also an attempt to send voice samples of Madani as the Bangalore police have recorded the chat between Madani and Naseer. Naseer had used 6 SIM cards during that period and from one of the SIM he had called Soofiya Madani before and after the blast. Soofiya had also confessed that Naseer had called in her phone to talk to Madani.

Bangalore: ‘Madani Dreams of Islamic Nation, Involved in Serial Blasts’- Govt

Bangalore, Aug 19. In its affidavit filed in the state High Court on Wednesday August 18, the state government charged Madani with conspiring to realize his dream of converting India into an Islamic nation through unleashing destructive activities all over the country. It also said that Madani was the brain behind the serial blasts in the city, and had also circulated fake currency notes to destabilize the economy.

The High Court had asked the government to file objections to the writ petition filed by Abdul Nasser Madani, People’s Democratic Party (PDP) leader from Kerala, to cancel the charge sheet and first information report filed against him relating to the serial blasts in the city.

The city crime branch policemen have named Madani as the 31st accused in the blasts case. “Setting off blasts in the city was part of a larger conspiracy to disturb law and order in the country, towards creating Islamic nation here. Madani was behind the conspiracy to set off blasts in the city in 2008. Madani had planned to engage the country in a proxy war by using PDP activists and workers of other fundamental outfits. He had got time bombs manufactured, by using improvised microchips, and had despatched them to Karnataka, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh states,” the affidavit claims. It also says that before the blasts, Madani and his associates had made preparations and undertaken drills for three months.

“The accused went around the city in March 2008, and identified the spots where the bombs were to be planted. On the night of July 24 that year, the accused loaded bombs onto a Scorpio vehicle, went round the city and planted 15 time-bombs. Out of them, eight went off, killing a woman and injuring nine persons,” the government stated. It said that a person named T Nazir had called Madani on July 27 over phone, and had provided him with the details relating to the blasts, about which evidences are available. A person named Joseph Verghese from Kerala had heard Madani speaking to his associates about the blasts. When Nazir was in Madapur in Kodagu district, Madani visited him twice and paid him 2,500 rials. Madani has collected huge funds running into several crores of rupees from oil-rich nations for undertaking destructive activities in India. There are also evidences of Madani’s involvement with Coimbatore blasts, the government stressed, while vehemently opposing Madani’s writ petition.

The government also prayed the High Court to permit it to set up a special court to try the accused in the blasts case, as it said, there is a need to conduct court proceedings in the case emergently. The public prosecutor expressed apprehension that delay in conducting hearing in the case might enable the concerned to destroy evidences.

The advocate appearing for Madani said that Madani was arrested by the policemen, merely based on a statement made by T Nazir, prime accused in the case. He felt that the arrest does not stand the test of law.

High Court judge, Justice Subhash B Adi, reserved his verdict on the writ petition.

In the meanwhile, the policemen have started interrogating Madani in a secret location. The police sources said that the interrogations are being conducted in such a way that Madani does not have any problems in following the religious practices during the Ramadan month like consuming food at night, offering prayers, observing fast, etc.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Madani arrested, brought to Bangalore; sent to police custody

August 17, 2010

Kollam, Kerala: Abdul Nasar Madani, accused in the 2008 Bangalore blasts case was produced before a magistrate in Bangalore late on Tuesday night. He was sent to police custody till August 26. Madani was arrested in Kollam on Tuesday after a week of drama and suspense.

His supporters were clearly outnumbered by the more than 800 Kerala policemen who had been deployed to facilitate the arrest.

When Madani knew his arrest was imminent he hurriedly called a press conference where he announced his decision to finally surrender before the law.

"I will surrender before a magistrate court but if the police arrest me before that, I am ready for it," he said.

And the actual arrest happened as Madani was heading for the Magistrate's court. Emotional scenes followed with Madani's supporters weeping as their leader was taken away.

With Madani finally in Karnataka police custody, there was a sense of relief.

"I would like to convey my appreciation to Karnataka Police for pursuing this case seriously. I would also like to thank the Kerala government for their cooperation in the matter. Karnataka government will continue our effort to contain such anti social elements," Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa said.

Karnataka Police say they have a good case against him; Madani himself maintains his innocence and he has not given up the legal battle.

The hearing is going on in High Court and Madani wants the chargesheet against him quashed. The next hearing on that issue is on Wednesday.

Bangalore blast accused Abdul Nasser Madani arrested amidst high drama

Aug 17, 2010

Abdul Nasser Madani was arrested by the Bangalore Police on Tuesday in the 2008 Bangalore blast case. He was arrested from his orphanage-cum-madrassa complex at Anwarassery in Kollam, about 71 km from Thiruvananthapuran.

The PDP leader, who spent eight years in jail for his alleged involvement in the Coimbatore blast case, was arrested hours before the deadline set by a Bangalore court on his non-bailable warrant expired. The Karnataka Police team was waiting in Kerala for the past 8 days to arrest Madani.

Bangalore deputy commissioner of police Omkaraiah executed the warrant against Madani with the help of Kerala Police. As Madani came out in a vehicle after afternoon prayers, a contingent of Kerala Police in riot gear blocked the vehicle facilitating his arrest by Karnataka officials. Kollam SP Harshita Attalluri led the Kerala Police team.

Madani said he was on his way to surrender to a local magistrate court when he was arrested. Maintaining that he was falsely implicated in the case as part of “a deep-rooted conspiracy”, he said he wanted to surrender as he had faith in the judiciary. Only his wife Soofiya and a personal aide were allowed to remain with him.

The PDP leader was listed as the 31st accused in an additional charge sheet filed by the police last month after confessions by suspected Lashkar-e-Taiba operative T Nazir, linking him to the Bangalore blasts. A Bangalore court had on June 15 issued an arrest warrant against Madani.

“I don’t think I will return from Karnataka. You now wait and see. Once I am there in Karnataka, you need not be surprised if my name features in a case in Gujarat or even the Mumbai bomb blasts and even in the World Trade Centre blast,” Madani said.

To protest the arrest of their leader, PDP said on Tuesday that the party would observe Wednesday as black day in the state. PDP working chairman Punthura Siraj said demonstrations and meetings would be held in different parts of the state as part of Black Day

India cleric Madani held over 2008 Bangalore blasts

Police in India have held an Islamic cleric in connection with blasts that hit the city of Bangalore in mid-2008.

Abdul Nasser Madani was arrested at his home in the state of Kerala.

He accuses the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in Karnataka, whose capital is Bangalore, of "framing" him.

One woman was killed and several others injured in July 2008 when seven bombs hit crowded areas of the city, which is India's information technology hub.

Bangalore Police Commissioner Shankar Bidri said Mr Madani would be taken to court.

Police said Mr Madani was present at a meeting to plan the bombings, but he denies any role and is seeking bail.


The arrest prompted protests in Muslim-dominated parts of Kerala, with groups saying Mr Madani is being targeted by the BJP-ruled government of Karnataka - police deny this.

Mr Madani heads the Peoples' Democratic Party (PDP), which champions the cause of minorities and Dalits [low-caste Hindus].

A police team from Bangalore had to wait for a week in Kerala before making the arrest on Tuesday.

Karnataka Home Minister VS Acharya had blamed Kerala's Communist government for delaying Mr Madani's arrest.

Correspondents say the government in Kerala treaded cautiously, fearing a backlash from Mr Madani's supporters.

He founded the PDP after the demolition of the disputed Babri mosque in northern India by Hindu hardliners in 1992.

He was arrested for his role in the 1998 blasts in Coimbatore, in the southern Tamil Nadu state, in which at least 60 people were killed.

He was acquitted of all charges in 2007.

Bangalore blast accused Abdul Nasser Madani arrested amidst high drama

Aug 17, 2010

Abdul Nasser Madani was arrested by the Bangalore Police on Tuesday in the 2008 Bangalore blast case. He was arrested from his orphanage-cum-madrassa complex at Anwarassery in Kollam, about 71 km from Thiruvananthapuran.

The PDP leader, who spent eight years in jail for his alleged involvement in the Coimbatore blast case, was arrested hours before the deadline set by a Bangalore court on his non-bailable warrant expired. The Karnataka Police team was waiting in Kerala for the past 8 days to arrest Madani.

Bangalore deputy commissioner of police Omkaraiah executed the warrant against Madani with the help of Kerala Police. As Madani came out in a vehicle after afternoon prayers, a contingent of Kerala Police in riot gear blocked the vehicle facilitating his arrest by Karnataka officials. Kollam SP Harshita Attalluri led the Kerala Police team.

Madani said he was on his way to surrender to a local magistrate court when he was arrested. Maintaining that he was falsely implicated in the case as part of “a deep-rooted conspiracy”, he said he wanted to surrender as he had faith in the judiciary. Only his wife Soofiya and a personal aide were allowed to remain with him.

The PDP leader was listed as the 31st accused in an additional charge sheet filed by the police last month after confessions by suspected Lashkar-e-Taiba operative T Nazir, linking him to the Bangalore blasts. A Bangalore court had on June 15 issued an arrest warrant against Madani.

“I don’t think I will return from Karnataka. You now wait and see. Once I am there in Karnataka, you need not be surprised if my name features in a case in Gujarat or even the Mumbai bomb blasts and even in the World Trade Centre blast,” Madani said.

To protest the arrest of their leader, PDP said on Tuesday that the party would observe Wednesday as black day in the state. PDP working chairman Punthura Siraj said demonstrations and meetings would be held in different parts of the state as part of Black Day

PDP leader Abdul Nasser Madani arrested, taken to Bangalore

Tuesday, Aug 17, 2010
Agency: PTI

Ending the eight-day long suspense, PDP leader Abdul Nasser Madani was today arrested amid high drama from his camp here by the Karnataka police in connection with the 2008 Bangalore blast case.

Hours before the deadline set by the Bangalore court was to expire, a Karnataka police team executed the non-bailable arrest warrant as Madani emerged from his orphanage-cum-madrassa complex at Anwarassery here.

Bangalore deputy commissioner of Police Omkarayya executed the warrant against Madani with the support of Kerala police shortly after the PDP leader said he would be surrendering in a local magistrate court.

As Madani came out in a vehicle from his camp after mid-day prayers, a heavy contingent of Kerala Police in riot gear blocked the vehicle to facilitate the Karnataka officials to effect the arrest.

The police then took charge of the vehicle allowing only Madani's wife Soofiya and a personal aid to remain with the PDP leader.

Kollam SP Harshita Attalluri, who was leading the Kerala police team, told reporters gathered in large numbers at the spot that Madani had been arrested by Karnataka police.

The entire exercise took place without any immediate law and order problem except some slogan shouting by supporters hailing their leader and women and inmates of the orphanage weeping.

Madani was taken to Thiruvananthapuram en route to Bangalore by air so that he could be produced before the metropolitan magistrate there this evening itself.

Madani was listed as the 31st accused in an additional chargesheet filed by the police last month after confessions by suspected Lashkar-e-Taiba operative T Nazir linking him to the Bangalore blasts that left one person dead and 20 others injured.

Madhani arrested by Karnataka police

17 Aug 2010

Ending high drama and suspense of several days, Karnataka police today arrested PDP leader Abdul Nasser Madani
in connection with the 2008 Bangalore blasts case.

Bangalore Deputy Commissioner of Police Omkarayya executed the warrant against Madani with the support of Kerala police shortly after the PDP leader said he would be surrendering in a local magistrate court.

As Madani came out in a vehicle from his Anwarassery camp after mid-day prayers, a heavy contingent of Kerala police in riot gear stalled the vehicle to facilitate the Karnataka official to effect the arrest.

The police then took charge of the vehicle and got all others inside it except Madani's wife Soofiya and a personal aid.

It was Kollam SP Harshita Attalluri, who was leading the state police team, who told mediapersons assembled in large numbers at the spot that Madani had been arrested by Karnataka police.

The whole procedure took place without any law and order probelms except some slogan shouting by supporters hailing their leader and women and inmates of the orphanage weeping.

As per the present plan, Madani is expected to taken Bangalore by an afteronoon flight so that he could be produced before the Metropolitan Magistrate there this evening itself.PTI