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Finally Pinarayi Vijayan visits landslide area with Guv

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Pinarayi Vijayan

 Stung by criticism from various quarters for not visiting the landslide hit Idukki district, which saw 55 dead and 15 still missing, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan arrived at the accident site on Thursday.

Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan was also present.

Taking off from here on a helicopter Vijayan was also accompanied by State Revenue Minister E. Chandrasekheran and top officials.

After landing at Munnar, the team drove to the accident spot. The spot is located about 30 kms from the popular tourist destination of Munnar.

The incident occurred on Thursday night, when four lines of estate workers attached to the Tata Tea estate were destroyed as a hill was completely razed to the ground following heavy rains in the area for over a week.

“So far 55 bodies have been recovered and 15 are still missing. The rescue operation is going on. We held a meeting with all the concerned, including the Tea company officials. New homes will be built for all those who have lost theirs and what the State government has to do in this will be done, so would be the Tea company,” said Vijayan.

“The education of all the students in the affected area will be taken care by the state government and the treatment of those under treatment (12) is also will be taken care. We are committed to this. Generally Rs four lakh is the ex-gratia payment in normal circumstances. We have already announced Rs five lakh and what has been announced will also be part of that and if anything needs to be done further, that also will be done,” added Vijayan.

Khan said he received numerous calls from the country who expressed their deepest grief on this.

“The whole country was sad by this tragedy,” said Khan.

Vijayan came under fire from the principal opposition parties — the Congress and the BJP for failing to pay a visit, while all their top leaders came and spend time with the grieving families.

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India

Akali Dal to submit memo to Punjab Governor on farm laws

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Sukhbir Singh Badal

Two lakh people will join three separate marches by farmers in 40,000 vehicles starting from all three Sikh religious ‘Takhts’ to Chandigarh on Thursday where the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) will hand over a memorandum demanding revocation of the recently-passed agricultural laws to the central government through the Governor of Punjab.

SAD Senior Vice President Daljit Cheema said while party President Sukhbir Singh Badal would lead the march from Sri Akal Takht in Amritsar, former Union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal would lead the march from Sri Damdama Sahib at Talwandi Sabo and Prem Singh Chandumajra from Sri Keshgarh Sahib at Anandpur Sahib.

Giving details, the party spokesman said the march from Amritsar would travel via Jalandhar, Phagwara, Nawanshahr, Ropar, Kurali and Mullanpur before culminating in Chandigarh.

Cheema said while the March from Amritsar would start at 8 a.m., that from Talwandi Sabo would start at 8 a.m. and from Anandpur Sahib would start at 10 a.m.

–IANS

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PIL in SC seeking CBI probe in Hathras gang-rape and murder

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Supreme Court

A PIL was filed in the Supreme Court on Wednesday seeking a CBI probe or SIT investigation under a sitting or former Supreme Court or High Court judge in the gruesome gang-rape and murder of a 19-year-old Dalit woman in Uttar Pradesh’s Hathras district.

The PIL has been filed by social activist Satyama Dubey and advocates Vishal Thakre and Rudra Pratap Yadav. The petitioners urged the apex court to pass appropriate order for a fair investigation – either by the CBI or the SIT under a sitting or retired judge of Supreme Court or High Court – and transfer the case to Delhi, as Uttar Pradesh authorities had failed to take certain actions against the accused.

The plea said the victim was first raped and then brutally assaulted, and according to a medical report, her tongue was chopped and her neck and back bones broken by the accused, who belonged to an upper caste. The victim succumbed to her injuries at Safdarjung hospital in Delhi.

The petitioner said on September 14, the accused persons raped and brutally assaulted the victim when she was in the fields to collect fodder for her cattle.

It also said that the police have said the victim’s cremation was being carried out as per the wishes of the family, which was not true, and the police personnel set fire to the body of the deceased, even as media persons were banned, as per the information received, said the plea.

The plea claimed the police did not perform their duties towards the victim, and were, instead, trying to shield the accused persons. “Because there was no arrest in this matter, the accused persons are moving freely and they have no fear at all… the family of the victim has been victimised by the upper caste persons and no action has been done by the authorities/police officials,” said the plea.

The plea has also cited the statement of the victim’s older brother, saying: “… I came to know about my sister being targeted by these men only when she recorded her statement. They told her if she didn’t submit to their ‘demands’, they would shoot her brother dead.”

The brother also added that the family was threatened when the victim was in hospital.

Source: IANS

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DJB water bill waiver extended till Dec due to Covid

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Corona-Virus

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the water bill waiver scheme of Delhi Jal Board has been extended by three months, till December 31.

“In wake of the pandemic, the water bill waiver scheme of the Delhi Jal Board has been further extended by three months and will now end
on December 31,” DJB Vice Chairman, Raghav Chadha, said in a tweet.

Director (Revenue) Paras Ram stated in a circular that the Chairperson Delhi Jal Board through an order dated September 23 has approved
extension of the scheme up to December 31.

The scheme involves waiver of 100 per cent Late Payment Surcharge (LPSC) amount and slab wise waiver on accumulated arrears depending on
categorization for House Tax in respect of all domestic (individual and bulk) and 100 per cent LPSC waiver for commercial consumers.

All revenue officers should give wide publicity to the scheme and ensure necessary action for raising bills as per scheme and wherever
possible, it added. The deadline has been extended several times before.

In August last year, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had announced a one-time water arrear waiver for over 13 lakh defaulting
consumers with functional meters in a bid to make consumers pay their pending bills.

The scheme will cover the consumers whose bills were pending till March 31, 2019. Under the scheme, 100 percent Late Payment Surcharge
(LPSC) waiver will be given to all the domestic as well as commercial consumers.

The rebate in principal amount will be on the basis of category of colonies. In Delhi, colonies are graded from categories A to H by the
municipal corporations for the purpose of imposing house tax. The E, F, G and H category areas will be completely exempted from paying the
pending bills till March 31, 2019.

A 75 percent exemption will be given to the consumers residing in D category areas. People living in C category will receive 50 percent
exemption while A and B category areas will be given exemption up to 25 percent on the water bills.

Consumers who will install the meter after the commencement of the scheme are required to submit an application intimating their Name,
Address, and document of meter installed to the respective Zonal Revenue Office. The form may be dropped in the “Meter Installation
Intimation Box” placed at the ZRO offices.

Source: IANS

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