To prevent girls from ‘straying’, Bihar panchayat bans jeans, mobiles

Gopalganj: A village panchayat in Bihar has banned girls from wearing jeans and using mobile phones claiming that they increase the chances of girls “going astray”.

Confirming that such a diktat has been issued in Singha panchayat in Hathua block of the district, Hathua Block Development Officer Jitendra Kumar said the decision was taken at a general meeting of panchayat officials in which mukhiya Krishna Chaudhary and Sarpanch Vinay Kumar Shrivastav were present.

The village sarpanch said, ” We brought this motion so that the girls are saved from western influence and they are moulded into our Indian ways of life. It’ll be good.”

“According to the panchayat decision, the ban will be enforced within its jurisdiction with mutual understanding and without any coercion,” the BDO said.

Mukhiya Krishna Chaudhary said jeans, trousers, and cell phones for girls have been banned as these have “pernicious effect” on them – mentally and physically. These also increase the chance of their “going astray”.

“The ban will come into effect from January 1, 2015. We have already requested parents and guardians in our area not to buy jeans and mobile phones for girls in their families. There will be no coercion in enforcing the ban,” Chaudhary said.

There are no provisions to fine or punish if anybody flouts the ban, he added.

Courtesy: PTI

Bihar cop kills Dalit colleague for taking front seat

A sub inspector (SI) of the Bihar police, who allegedly killed a fellow officer for ‘occupying the front seat of a vehicle despite being a Dalit’, is on the run and the state rights panel has ordered action against him.

The State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) has directed Saran range deputy inspector general of police and superintendent of police to ensure that the property of the ‘killer’ SI, Ajay Kumar Singh Yadav, is attached.

The police have also been asked to complete the investigation into the case by January 31, 2015.

The commission has also asked the district magistrate of Saran in north Bihar and the state home department whether compensation has been paid to the family of the deceased, SI Krishna Baitha.

Baitha’s next of kin are entitled to a compensation of Rs. 7.5 lakh as admissible under the provisions of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Rules, 2014.

The case relates to a complaint filed by Surendra Kumar Rajak of village Jaisingh under Turkvalia police station of north Bihar’s East Champaran district.

In his complaint, Rajak said his father, an SI at Saran’s Baniapur police station, was killed in September, 2013 by Yadav, over a trivial issue of who would sit on the front seat of a Bolero.

“SI Yadav told my father that being a dhobi (a scheduled caste), how could he sit in the front seat of the vehicle. He then took out his service revolver and fired at my father,” Rajak claimed.

“My father was rushed to the Patna Medical College Hospital where he regained consciousness for a while but died later that night,” he said in his complaint.

He claimed though an FIR had been registered after some delay on September 2, 2013, Yadav was never arrested.

Rights panel member Neelmani said in his initial response to the commission’s notice, the DIG cited the report of Saran SP, stating a definite conclusion could not be arrived at about the guilt of the accused.

“Finding undue delay in investigation of such an important case, the commission directed the DIG to appear before the commission with a definitive report,” he said.

Thereafter, the DIG appeared and submitted a report from Saran SP, saying the case against Yadav had been held true.

He was found liable for offences u/s 302/IPC, 27 arms act and the 3(2)(v) SC/ST act. The accused SI was placed under suspension and was on the run since then.

The DIG said the order for attachment of the accused SI’s property had been obtained from court on July 6, 2014 and a proposal for payment of compensation was being submitted.

Courtesy: Hindustan Times

Four weapons seized in Bihar

Nawada: Four weapons, reportedly belonged to Maoists, were recovered from a house in Adgawana village in Nawada district on Sunday.

Acting on a tip off, police raided the house and seized three country-made rifles and a double barrel gun, Deputy Superintendent of Police Safiur Rahman said.

The weapons reportedly belonged to a group of Maoists who had come to the village to collect levy from a contractor, he said, adding the ultras escaped by taking advantage of thick fog.

Courtesy: PTI

Undertrial commits suicide in Bihar jail: Police

An undertrial prisoner has committed suicide by hanging himself in Bettiah district jail, police said today.

Manmohan Patel (30) committed suicide by hanging himself in an abandoned toilet in the district jail premises last night, Superintendent of Police Saurabh Kumar Sah said.

Patel was found missing during roll call last evening and he was found hanging during a search in the jail premises, he said.

A native of Purani Gudari locality of Bettiah town, Patel was lodged in the district jail after he was arrested in connection with an incident of kidnapping three months ago, he said.

Courtesy: PTI

Bihar alleges 20% cut in fund under MGNREGA

Patna: Accusing the NDA government in the Centre of “discriminating” with Bihar, the state government on Saturday alleged there has been about 20 per cent cut in release of fund under MGNREGA to it in the current year.

“While a sum of over Rs 1582 crore was given to Bihar by November last time its only over Rs 769 crore by November this time,” a statement from state Rural Development Department said here.

It said inadequate availability of fund was impacting implementation of the employment guarantee scheme and also causing problem in payment of wages to beneficiaries.

“By end of December month, the due of the state on the Centre would pile up to Rs 1335 crore under MGNREGA,” it said.

The statement said that work under MGNREGA scheme has been stalled in the state in the last three months.

It said that for the financial year 2014-15, the state has sent a proposal of Rs 13.01 crore man days under the programme but the Union government has sanctioned only Rs 8.48 crore to the state.

Birendra Singh is the Union minister for Rural Development while Ramkripal Yadav, who hails from Bihar, is Minister of State in the ministry.

Courtesy: PTI

CM inaugurates Junior National Badminton meet

Patna: Reigning junior national champion Rituparna Das of Telengana and Roshni Rani of Bihar launched their campaign on winning note at the 39th National Junior Badminton Championship at Patliputra Sports Complex on Saturday.

Das defeated Anshumita Srivastava (Bihar) 21-8, 21-3. Roshni Rani of Bihar beat N Mansotra of Jammu and Kashmir 21-19, 21-17 in the girls’ under-19 age group championship.

Nitesh Kumar of Bihar defeated M Inson of Nagaland 21-17, 21-18 in the boys’ U-19 category and moved into the second round.
About 550 shuttlers from 33 states are competing in the five-day championship.

Chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi inaugurated the championship. He said sports is one field where one learns discipline, honesty and sincerity. Referring to the controversy over the Bihar Sports (Registration, Recognition and Regulation of Associations) Act, 2013 and the fear that Indian Olympic Association may not allow Bihar to participate in the National Games to be held in Kerala in January, he said the matter would be sorted out soon. Manjhi said the loopholes in the Act would be plugged to ensure that Bihar players play in the National Games.

Art, culture and youth affairs minister Binay Bihari and chairman of the organizing committee and former minister Abdul Bari Siddiqui were present during the inaugural function which was marred by a group of protesters who wanted Bihar Badminton Association secretary K N Jaiswal removed. They were upset over selection of Bihar team for the championship.

Courtesy: TNN

Common Admission Test (CAT 2014): Results to be declared on December 22

After much speculation about Common Admission Test (CAT) results 2014, they are finally going to be declared on December 22. The result had been delayed since a few weeks. Candidates wanting to secure admission at Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) and other Business schools had been waiting impatiently with their admission procedures being stuck. CAT Exam 2014: 1.96 lakh students to appear the competitive exam

According to a report from MBA Universe, Dr Rohit Kapoor, faculty IIM Indore and CAT 2014 convener said that he had been struggling so that the results are declared on time after CAT results were not declared within the mentioned time span. He has now ensured on smooth functioning on other proceedings candidates will have to go through after the results are out.

He has also confirmed to the website that CAT 2014 results are confirmed to be declared on December 22, 2014. Dr Rohit Kapoor said, “We will announce the exact date of declaration of CAT 2014 result on Dec 22 once we are through the process ensuring transparency and fairness.”

Candidates aspiring to appear for CAT 2014 could also apply for the six new Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) (outside the existing 13), which are expected to be set up in Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Bihar, Odisha, Himachal Pradesh and Punjab. CAT website has also informed candidates that IIM Kashipur will offer Fellowship Programme in Management. Separate Advertisement will be released by IIM Kashipur in due course. Those who are interested can apply in response to the said advertisement.


Bihar laptop market rides on students, power supply

laptops_buyingThe laptop market in Bihar is zooming ahead, thanks to students and erratic power supply in small towns and rural areas.

“The laptop market in Bihar is growing very fast. According to market figures, over 8,000 laptops per month or around one lakh laptops annually are being sold through shops in the state, and the numbers indicate a rising trend,” Sudhir Gupta, director of Krishna Agencies, a distributor for a major laptop brand, told PTI.

He says a majority of buyers of 90 per cent of laptops sold in the state are school and college students, who go for entry level or medium level laptops priced up to Rs 65,000.

“Students prefer laptops over desktops, more so if they are from smaller towns or rural areas because of the non-availability of electricity. The powerful batteries that come with most of the laptops help them overcome the problem as they offer a back-up of at least two-and-a-half hours, though there are ones that give six hours power backup too,” Gupta says.

He adds that the latest craze among the students in the state is for laptop-cum-tablets as they are economically priced and come in colourful models.

But this is not all. According to IT Association estimates, the sales figures could shoot up by several thousands if laptop sales by e-commerce sites to consumers in Bihar, as well as, commercial purchases or bulk purchases by government agencies and private institutions are taken into consideration.

Patna-based eastern region vice-president of Confederation of Indian IT Associations (CIITA) Naveen Gupta says, “A couple of months ago we conducted a survey and found that at least 25 to 30 laptops were arriving via courier from e-commerce sites daily in the state capital only. Some of the shops were also ordering them and then reselling to buyers here.

“Since we are unable to access figures for laptops sold via e-commerce sites, we can only hazard a guess about them when it comes to total units sold in Bihar. Similarly, government purchases are made through tenders either in the state or even outside,” he adds.

Gupta says that the IT associations are now fighting for regulating e-commerce companies in computers and related things as they are able to offer products at prices that are even lower than what normal shops in the country procure at.

Courtesy: PTI

Political see-saw between JD(U), BJP in Bihar

nitish-kumarPATNA: A political see-saw was witnessed in Bihar this year with BJP sweeping Lok Sabha elections which led to resignation of Nitish Kumar as Chief Minister midway but he hit back by realigning with friend-turned-foe Lalu Prasad to counter the saffron juggernaut.

11 months after Nitish walked out of NDA opposing Narendra Modi, his ruling JD(U) suffered a humiliating defeat at the hands of BJP winning only two seats out of 40. Nitish owned moral responsibility and quit the chief minister’s post on May 17.

After two-days of high voltage drama at JD(U) Legislature party meet during which MLAs initially refused to accept his resignation, Nitish sprang a surprise by handpicking dalit leader Jitan Ram Manjhi to succeed him on May 19.

Backed by Lalu’s RJD and Congress, Manjhi comfortably won trust vote on May 23 in the Assembly.

Bihar was also struck by tragedy on Dussehra this year when a stampede in Patna left 33 dead, mostly women and children, with a probe blaming “collective failure” of civic and police authorities. There were also a series of naxal attacks, derailment of Rajdhani Express near Chhapra and flood threat from Nepal during the year.

With his political career spanning over three-and-a-half decade, Manjhi (70) has served as minister in earlier regime of Congress as well RJD of Lalu Prasad. But, the journey was not smooth for the new CM as well the ruling party.

With a large number of party MLAs raising a banner of revolt after being left out in expansion of Manjhi cabinet, JD(U) which faced first real test in the by-election to two Rajya Sabha seats took a major decision to join hands with RJD.

They called each other “Bade Bhai” (Lalu Prasad) “Chote bhai” (Nitish Kumar) but Nitish faced criticism for joining hands with Lalu against whose party’s “jungle raj” he fought all along and became Chief Minister in November 2005.

Supported by RJD, Congress and CPI, two JD(U) official candidates Pavan Verma and Ghulam Rasool Balyawi were elected to Rajya Sabha from the state defeating real estate baron Anil Sharma and expelled JD(U) leader Shabir Ali, who were backed by BJP and over 20 rebel MLAs of Nitish Kumar party.

JD(U) President Sharad Yadav, who was defeated in the Lok Sabha election by RJD Rajesh Ranjan alias Pappu Yadav, had no problem entering Rajya Sabha at the same time as no candidate was fielded against him.

The coming together of JD(U) and RJD heralded a new chapter in Bihar politics. Facing common enemy in Narendra Mod-led BJP, JD(U), RJD and Congress formed a grand secular alliance in Bihar.

Defending the decision as need of the time, Kumar said strengthening of “mandal forces” was needed to defeat “kamandal” (BJP which had led movement for construction of Ram temple at Ayodhya).

The Lalu-Nitish reunion came as a “sanjeevni” for the secular forces which performed well in the bypoll to 10 Assembly seats in August.

RJD, JD(U) and Congress combine won 6 out of the 10 seats in the bypoll, which was seen as their triumph to halt Modi juggernaut in the state.

The success of “Bihar experiment” inspired splinters of old Janata Parivar to come together. Efforts fructified after two luncheon meeting of leaders of old Janata parivar at residence of Samajwadi party leader Mulayam Singh Yadav.

After breaking bread on December 4, six parties SP, RJD, JD(U), JD (S), INLD and Samajwadi Janata Party (SJP) authorised Mulayam Singh Yadav to facilitate the six becoming one party under him.

While Nitish succeeded in adding muscle by teaming up with Lalu Prasad to rein in Modi-led BJP in Bihar, he was facing difficulty in his own house.

A series of controversial statements from Manjhi starting from his “admission” in August about corruption when he himself had to pay Rs 5,000 to settle an old electricity bill put JD(U) and Nitish in an embarrassing situation.

After that there was no stopping Manjhi who implored dalits who constitute 22 per cent of the population to unite so that power rests with them and threatened to chop off hands of doctors who ignore the poor. He said seven Union ministers from the state would not be allowed entry if they failed to bring desired assistance for the region but later claimed he meant it as a “sweet joke”.

A befuddled Kumar skipped several functions where he had to share dais with Manjhi. The rapprochement came after JD(U) President Sharad Yadav, facing pressure from a section of party legislators and ministers to change Manjhi, reprimanded him. Manjhi went to Kumar’s home to iron out differences.

Manjhi later described Kumar as JD(U) “supreme” leader and expressed desire to see him on CM chair after 2015 poll.

After nearly two months, Manjhi shared dais with Kumar during “Samparak yatra” of Kumar at Jehanabad on November 25.

Expressing commitment to take forward the “roadmap” of development charted by Nitish, Manjhi presented the annual report card of JD(U) government on November 25 on completion of party’s ninth year in power.

But, an unimpressed BJP issued its own assessment report on JD(U) ministry with a cartoon showing Nitish Kumar falling on feet of Lalu Prasad and a smiling Manjhi happily seated on the throne. BJP described Manjhi ministry as return of “Jungle Raj II”.

The state saw new Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi taking charge November 27.

Nitish Kumar launched 16-day long “Samparak yatra” from November 13 considered as party preparation for Assembly poll later next year targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi for what JD(U) called his “somersault” on his poll promises of bringing back black money and according special status to Bihar.

In all political meetings in 33 districts out of 38, Kumar played audio clip of Modi on black money and special status and paying special attention towards Bihar to drive home his point.

The state government also came under attack for the October 3 stampede near historic Gandhi maidan that left 33 dead and 29 others injured.

The government probe report conducted by Principal Secretary (Home) Amir Subhani and Additional Director General of Police (Headquarters) Gupteshwar Pandey submitted to the government in November end pointed out rumours, attempt of molestation and eveteasing as reasons behind the incident while also blaming poor arrangements of security, light and traffic on the day.

Government had removed top brass of Patna district administration including Commissioner N Vijaylakshmi, DIG Ajitabh Kumar, District Magistrate Minish Verma and Senior Superintendent of Police Manu Maharaj after the incident.

Derailment of Delhi-Dibrugarh Rajdhani Express close to Golden Ganj station near Chhapra on June 26 left four people dead and several others injured.

The derailment had triggered blame game between Railways and Bihar government.

Bihar faced danger of flood in Kosi belt along Indo-Nepal border due to landslide and threat of bursting of frozen Bhote lake in the Himalayan nation in early August. The event coincided with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Nepal.

The state also saw inauguration of new Nalanda International University by External Affairs minister Sushma Swaraj on September 19.

A branch of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) was opened at Kisanganj on January 30 by Congress chief Sonia Gandhi.

Courtesy: PTI

BJP claims shortage of medicines in Bihar govt hospitals

Patna: Claiming that there was shortage of medicine in state government hospitals, the BJP today alleged that health department officials have developed cold feet to float tender to procure required medicines to avoid being caught in any wrongdoing.

The stock of medicine in government hospitals has run short much to the woes of patients and their families who have to purchase prescribed drugs from outside, senior BJP leader and former deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi said.

Courtesy: PTI