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Heavily armed militants surrender

A Correspondent
Agartala, July 2, 2010: 13 heavily militants of the outlawed All Tripura Tiger Force (ATTF) led by self style captain Jagadish Debbarma widely known as Jester Debbarma, a ferocious underground leader, laid down 15 sopishitcated weapons at the Assam Rifles sector headquarters in Agartala Friday.

Jester and his fellow returnee Lemon Debbarma were wanted in connection with serial blasts that rocked Agartala city on evening of 3 November 2008 and figured in charge sheet submitted in the court by Criminal Investigation Department (CID). However Inspector General of Police (Intelligence) Bishnu Debbarma who was present on the occasion said the government would initiate to withdraw the charges against them.

“When the matter (process of surrender of the militants) was brought to our attention by the Assam Rifles we agreed to take out the pending cases against them”, Debbarma told the Hindustan Times. About one hundred people were injured many of them critically in the blasts at five places of the city detonated by using cell phone as timers.

Tripura state Director General of Police K. Salim Ali who was the main guest informed that there has been a policy to withdraw charges against surrendered militants except that concerning crime against women. He said with day's surrender a total 108 militants from the ATTF and the National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT) joined mainstream of life this year.

Jester who was carrying rupees two lakh reward for information leading to his arrest, and his team deposited a huge cache of weapons including eleven AK-47 rifles, 3 self loading rifles and one 303 rifle, 350 rounds of ammunition, 25 magazines and 24 kg explosives. It was an occasion after many days where all the returnee militants deposited arms which are sophisticated in nature.

The border security force (BSF) facilitated entry of the rebels from their Satchari camp in Bangladesh in compliance with the initiative taken by the Assam Rifles. “We have arranged their arrival Thursday night”, BSF DIG A.K. Garg informed.

Parliamentary committee visits Tripura

A Correspondent
Agartala, June 30, 2010: The parliamentary committee of Union Agriculture Ministry will recommend setting up setting up of buffer stock of fertilizers in Tripura to facilitate smooth supply of fertilizers.

Read more: Parliamentary committee visits Tripura

Court orders NGOs to pay 50-lakh damage

A Correspondent
Tura (Meghalaya), June 27, 2010:  In a landmark judgment in defamation case, the court has ordered NGOs in Meghalaya to pay a hefty compensation of 50 lakhs to senior state government official Santosh R Marak, after a sensational three-year legal battle that nearly stirred civil unrest in the Garo Hills.

In a recent judgment the district court of West Garo Hills has asked Garo Students' Union (southern zone), Youth Development Vigilance Committee, Mother Union (Garo Hills), and Southern Youth and Cultural Organisation  to pay a compensation of 50 lakhs as damages to SR Marak.

West Garo Hills additional deputy commissioner and district magistrate, R.S. Sangma, passed the order after its final hearing to the case (DM-S-1/2008) held on June 2 last. The court directive vindicated all corruption charges levelled against Marak and decreed against 10 defendants who were representatives of the NGOs.

“The plaintiff (SR Marak) is entitled to a decree for a sum of Rs. 50,00,000 as prayed for payable jointly and severally by all the 10 defendants (members of NGOs),” reads the order issued by the civil judge Sangma.   

In 2007, the NGOs falsely implicated Marak, who was then posted as former additional deputy commissioner and additional district magistrate at Baghmara, of misappropriating SSA Mid Day Meal Scheme and other development funds of South Garo Hills. In this wake the Garo Hills based organisations went on record alleging the senior official of embezzling public fund and planted series of false and malicious reports in local papers.

Further, the organisations launched a poster campaign purportedly to incite public sentiment in their favour against Marak. They also made demand to the state government to remove him from his post by calling indefinite bandh in South Garo Hills on July 24, 2008.

Marak, after his repeated demand to furnish proof against the charges failed to evoke any response from the NGOs, filed for damages in the civil court at Baghmara in 2008. The case was later trasferred to the district court at Tura.

In the mean time, the NGOs also made many attempts to derail the case by challenging the jurisdiction of the court and filed an appeal to try the suit at Gauhati High Court (Shillong Bench), which dismissed their appeal subsequently.      

Marak, a cadre of Meghalaya Civil Service, is currently posted as civil SDO of Resubalpara, East Garo Hills.

Authorities move to contain epidemic in Tripura village

A correspondent
Agartala, June 26, 2010: Though belated the health officials have swung into action to contain epidemic in Kangrai area under Kanchanpur subdivision in north Tripura after spate of deaths in malaria and viral fever. Though authorities confirmed death of 15, but reports reaching the state capital suggest that at least 24 tribal, mostly children, died after contacting the diseases in current month.

“Another 50 people majority of them children are sick. Condition of some is serious”, a health official who demanded his name be withheld told over phone. He admitted that the health officials showed apathy in dispatching medical relief to the remote area.

State's health department which has expertise to suppress the casualties as result of health hazard or dismal health situation especially during monsoon resorted to some measures after visit of opposition leader Subal Bhowmik to the area. Even health minister Tapan Chakraborty who normally refrains from visiting affected people rushed to Kanchanpur.

Health department commissioner Yaspal Singh also inspected the measures in the area Saturday. Officials said doctors, technicians and paramedical staffs equipped with adequate medicines are camping in the area.

Congress leader Subal Bhowmik who in fact brought the humanitarian situation to the center stage claimed that the death toll is at least 50 if note more. “I have records and can challenge”, he stated.    



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Indo - Bangla Meet on Trade

A Correspondent
Agartala, June 20, 2010: The trains running in Tripura is nothing but toy trains and for further connectivity of the region with the neighboring country Bangladesh immediately it should be converted in broad gauge. Along with this direct air connectivity between this region and Bangladesh should also be started said Tripura Chief

Read more: Indo - Bangla Meet on Trade

Prison learners facilitated

A Correspondent
Agartala, June 17, 2010: It was indeed a different type of felicitation programme at Agartala. In a unique gesture the Jail authorities of Tripura felicitated those prison inmates who had had successfully passed in Madhyamik, Higher Secondary and graduate level examination this year.

Read more: Prison learners facilitated

Veteran tribal leader dead

A  Correspondent
Agartala, June 11, 2010: One of prominent tribal political leaders of northeast India, writer and journalist Shyamacharan Tripura breathed his last at his home in Agartala Friday morning. He was 80.

Read more: Veteran tribal leader dead

Naga peace talks at Kohima

A Correspondent
Kohima, June 1, 2010: Formal talks between Union Government emissaries and the Naitonal Socialist Council of Nagaland held at Kohima for the first time Tuesday. The Centre represented by its Interlocutor, R.S. Pandey and Special Director, Intelligence Bureau, Ajitlal and the NSCN (IM) delegation led by its General Secretary, Th. Muivah.

Read more: Naga peace talks at Kohima

Shiva Thapa, a hero in the making

By Abdul Gani
Guwahati, May 28, 2010: One of the most dynamic up-coming boxers of India, Shiva Thapa was felicitated by Assam Boxing Association recently at the office of the

Read more: Shiva Thapa, a hero in the making