Monday, 15 April 2013
Hyderabad, April 15:
Tuesday, April 16, 2013
SALEM, April 15, 2013
Laxmi with the newborn. Photo: E. Lakshmi Narayanan
Couple allege an employee demanded money to attend to her
In a shocking incident, a 27-year-old woman was delivered of a baby near a drain after she was forced to leave the Government Mohan Kumaramangalam Medical College Hospital here on Sunday, as she could not pay Rs. 1,000 allegedly demanded by an employee in the maternity ward.
Laxmi, her husband, Samuel (30), and two children, Venkatesh (5) and Naveen Gopal (2), who hail from Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh, had been in the city for the past two years.
The couple, working as labourers, used to take shelter on the veranda of Corporation’s Commercial Complex on the Old Bus Stand premises at night.
When Laxmi developed labor pain at around 4 a.m., Samuel with the help of a 55-year-old woman Bannari reached the hospital by foot.
Laxmi was allotted a bed in the maternity ward at around 5.30 a.m. An employee allegedly demanded money for the delivery. As the couple did not have money, they were forced to leave the hospital. With the help of Bannari, Laxmi was delivered of a male child at around 11 a.m. near the drain on the Commercial Complex premises.
Members of the media fraternity who rushed to the spot called the 108 ambulance and the mother was admitted to the maternity ward, while the child was admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit.
Dean Dr. R. Vallinayagam told The Hindu that an inquiry would be conducted on Monday.
CHENNAI, April 15, 2013He sent telegram to CIC following execution of Afzal Guru and Ajmal Kasab
S. Vijay Kumar
The Central Information Commission (CIC), New Delhi, will hear the petition of A.G. Perarivalan alias Arivu, one of the three convicts facing death penalty in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, through video-conferencing on Monday. The hearing pertains to a Right to Information (RTI) petition filed by him seeking to know the grounds for the rejection of his mercy petition by the President, sources in the Prison Department said. Perarivalan and the other two convicts, Murugan alias Sriharan and Santhan, are lodged in the Vellore Central Prison in Tamil Nadu.
Perarivalan had petitioned to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) in 2012 asking for the reasons why the President rejected his mercy petition. Since there was no response, he sent a telegram to the Chief Information Commissioner stating that his plea should be treated as urgent and heard on priority.
“The telegram was in the backdrop of the secret executions of Afzal Guru and Ajmal Kasab. The hearing through video-conferencing will take place on Monday and Perarivalan will explain how he was denied access to certain crucial information relating to his case,” Rajiv Rufus, one of the advocates for Perarivalan, told The Hindu on Sunday.
Recalling the petition of advocate K. Mayilsamy in 2011 to the President’s Secretariat and the MHA seeking, among things, the copy of the mercy petition rejected by the President and copies of the complete correspondence, file notings etc., relating to the mercy petitions filed by Perarivalan, Murugan and Santhan, Mr. Rufus said the CIC had given specific directions to the respondents that they should provide the copies of the mercy petitions that were rejected and disclose copies of the file notings not forming part of the ministerial advice to the President after removing the names and other references regarding the identities of the public servants.
Despite the specific directions, the MHA had not disclosed certain vital documents. For instance, on Page 25 in the bunch of documents given by the MHA, it had been mentioned that no investigation was conducted about the bomb supposed to have been used in the case and that the Multi-Disciplinary Monitoring Authority (MDMA) was directed to enquire into it, he said. The MHA said it might seek the MDMA’s comments on the making of the bomb before processing the mercy petition. “But we have not been given any copy of the correspondence conducted by the MHA with the MDMA of documents showing the results of such an investigation conducted by the MDMA...,” he said.
Also, the MHA had failed to supply any document pertaining to the correspondence with the Tamil Nadu Prison Department relating to the conduct of the convicts in prison. This correspondence to ascertain the behaviour of convicts on death row was part of a normal procedure while processing their mercy petitions, Mr. Rufus added.
The Supreme Court has issued notice to Centre and State governments on a plea seeking its direction to restrain them for spending public money on glorifying political leaders through advertisements on their birth and death anniversaries.
A bench of justices C.K. Prasad and V.G. Gowda granted four weeks time to governments to file their response.
The court passed the order on a plea of an NGO, Centre for Public Interest Litigation, seeking its intervention on the issue as crores of tax payer’s money are spend by the governments and public sector units to glorify personalities of ruling political parties by way of advertisements.
“It is submitted that the Governments and State instrumentalities are continuously and in routine manner misusing the public funds to glorify personalities of ruling political parties by way of advertisements,” advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for the petitioner, said.
He said “such a blatant and misuse of public fund by Governments in routine manner is not only breach of public trust and violation of the rule of law but it is also damaging the democratic set up of the country.”
“The political parties in power are blatantly squandering taxpayers’ money to highlight their achievements and to glorify their leaders of present or past. Such a practice is either aimed to avail unfair advantage in elections by political parties or to assert loyalties towards the political leadership of the party in power. This wasteful and wholly unnecessary exercise cannot be justified in any manner,” the petition said.
The bench, after hearing his plea, issued notice and asked the governments to file response within four weeks.
First Published: 15:37 IST(15/4/2013) | Last Updated: 15:40 IST(15/4/2013)
US Secretary of State John Kerry has proposed a 16% cut in the American aid to India, reflecting the transition from a traditional "donor-recipient" relationship to a "strategic partnership" between the two countries.
"With respect to India, for the fiscal year 2014, the State Department request is $91 million. This represents a 16% decrease from the fiscal levels 2012 (the previous actual spending)," a senior State Department official said.
This is in continuation of the trend that has emerged over the past few years.
In 2010, the United States aid to India was $126.7 million, which drooped to $121.6 million in 2011 and $108 million in 2012 and was proposed to $98.3 million in the current fiscal of 2013, which ends on September 30.
"That (drop in US aid to India this year) reflects the ongoing transition we had under way from the more traditional donor-recipient kind of relationship to much more of a strategic partnership," the official said on condition of anonymity as he was not authorised to speak to the press.
"It is a partnership that is addressing India and increasingly global developmental challenges. I think the signature initiative there is the Agency for International Development Millennium Alliance," the official said.
Of the US aid to India, the largest portion - two/third - of that is slated for the health sector.
"The biggest programme is in global health. About $61 million is going to the health programme. India still has quite a number of health challenges," the official said.
In 2012, the US aid to India in the health sector was some $76 million.
Overall the State Department budget request for FY-2014 was $47.8 billion, which is a six% cut from the previous FY-2012 of actual spending.
Zakia Jafri, wife of slain former parliamentarian Ehsan Jafri - who was killed along with 68 people during the 2002 communal riots in Gujarat - on Monday filed a protest petition in a local court in Ahmedabad challenging the clean chit given to the Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi by the Supreme Court-appointed SIT which probed the case.
“She has filed two volumes of petition and 10 CDs containing documents and other evidence. The court has directed the SIT to first argue on the matter from April 24,” a lawyer connected with the case said.
She has also demanded that the SIT report should be scrapped and another probe be undertaken by some independent agency.
Ever since the SIT headed by former CBI director Dr RK Raghavan gave a clean chit to Modi, Zakia has maintained that the SIT has “overlooked evidence she and others had presented during the court of investigation”.
She had also accused the SIT of adopting a biased and partisan approach against the victims who are fighting an unyielding legal battle against the accused.
She wants Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi and over 60 others to be arraigned as accused in the massacre case in which a former parliamentarian was put to death in broad daylight.