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November 1, 2001 - November 2, 2001

44,000 houses for quake-hit by Jan. Friday, November 2, 2001

News Source : Asian Age Online

Chief minister Narendra Modi on Thursday assured Union rural development minister Venkaiah Naidu that 44,000 houses, belonging to below poverty line families, destroyed during the earthquake on January 26, will be reconstructed by January 26, 2002. Mr Modi’s gave this assurance against Mr Naidu’s deadline of March 2002.

Mr Naidu and the chief minister reviewed the progress of various rural development schemes of the state government on Thursday. Water supply minister Narottam Patel, minister of state for rural housing development Rajnikant Rajwadi, rural development minister Mohan Kundaria and other concerned officials attended the meeting.

In the meeting, Mr Modi said construction had started on 22,320 houses, which are in various stages of completion and assured that all the houses will be constructed before January 26, 2002.

Meanwhile, Mr Venkaiah Naidu on Thursday also reviewed various rural development programmes to be implemented in the state by the rural development, water supplies and land protection department.

The official statement said Gujarat is the only state that has received the second installment of financial assistance for accelerated water supply programme for the current financial year. Mr Naidu handed over a copy of a release order of Rs 36.60 crores to chief minister
Narendra Modi for the implementation of the programme.

The rural development minister also stressed for an immediate implementation of the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna. Mr Naidu said it was the first ever scheme to be implemented on such a large scale. The state government assured Mr Naidu that all the financial assistance given by the Centre and the recently released Rs 106 crores will be utilised in the most effective manner.

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44,000 houses for quake-hit by Jan. Friday, November 2, 2001

News Source : Asian Age Online

Chief minister Narendra Modi on Thursday assured Union rural development minister Venkaiah Naidu that 44,000 houses, belonging to below poverty line families, destroyed during the earthquake on January 26, will be reconstructed by January 26, 2002. Mr Modi’s gave this assurance against Mr Naidu’s deadline of March 2002.

Mr Naidu and the chief minister reviewed the progress of various rural development schemes of the state government on Thursday. Water supply minister Narottam Patel, minister of state for rural housing development Rajnikant Rajwadi, rural development minister Mohan Kundaria and other concerned officials attended the meeting.

In the meeting, Mr Modi said construction had started on 22,320 houses, which are in various stages of completion and assured that all the houses will be constructed before January 26, 2002.

Meanwhile, Mr Venkaiah Naidu on Thursday also reviewed various rural development programmes to be implemented in the state by the rural development, water supplies and land protection department.

The official statement said Gujarat is the only state that has received the second installment of financial assistance for accelerated water supply programme for the current financial year. Mr Naidu handed over a copy of a release order of Rs 36.60 crores to chief minister
Narendra Modi for the implementation of the programme.

The rural development minister also stressed for an immediate implementation of the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna. Mr Naidu said it was the first ever scheme to be implemented on such a large scale. The state government assured Mr Naidu that all the financial assistance given by the Centre and the recently released Rs 106 crores will be utilised in the most effective manner.

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VHP men go berserk, burnt buses Thursday, November 1, 2001

News Source : Asian Age Online
Ahmedabad, Oct. 31
In a rampant act of vandalism, the VHP went beserk at Khedbrahma and Ahmedabad city on Wednesday, setting six public buses on fire in Ahmedabad as an act of protest against the Congress, which controls the city’s municipal corporation.

At Khedbrahma, a tribal constituency which is represented by state Congress chief Amarsinh Chaudhry, the VHP burnt four shops owned by Muslims. Police complaints have been registered against the VHP but the state’s BJP government has made no arrests till the time of going to press.

The violence coincided with the Sardar Patel birth anniversary celebrations organised by the VHP, when it suddenly changed its programme and went on a violent spree to protest against what it described as the “undemocratic detention” of VHP leader Pravin Togadiya in Maharashtra, which is ruled by the Congress. Mr Togadiya, a popular Hindu leader in Gujarat, is currently the VHP’s international secretary.

In Ahmedabad, buses were damaged and burnt at Navrangpura, Meghaninagar, ST workshop, Naranpura and Sola Road areas. In Khedbrahma, four Muslim-owned shops were set on fire by VHP activists who took out a rally earlier in the day to protest against Mr Togadiya’s arrest.

A police complaint has been registered against VHP workers, and newly-inducted minister of state for home Gordhan Jhadaphiya has pledged that the police will be acting in an unbiased manner. Ironically, Mr Jhadaphiya too has strong VHP connections.

Ahmedabad mayor Himmatsingh Patel said he was shocked by the “fascist tendencies” demonstrated by the VHP. State Congress chief Amarsinh Chaudhry said: “The detention was in Maharashtra.

Just to damage public property in Congress-run areas shows a fascist and sick mind.” The mayor said three buses had been completely torched while three others were badly damaged, adding that the total damage would come to over Rs 10 lakhs.

A crowd of more than 300 persons gathered before the statue of Mahatma Gandhi at Income-Tax in Ahmedabad and staged a protest against Mr Togadiya’s detention. Mr Togadiya was detained by the Maharashtra police on Wednesday morning at Bhusawal railway station in Jalgaon. He was going to address a Hindu “mahasammelan.”

Mr Togadiya confirmed that he had been detained and later released. “The Congress government does not want me to be here and wants me to go to Delhi. This is anti-democratic,” he asserted.

However Maharashtra minister of state for home Kripashankar Singh told The Asian Age that Mr Togadiya’s detention was purely a preventive measure and had no political colour. “Considering the volatile situation in Malegaon area in Nashik, we simply have requested him to leave the place and return to New Delhi or Gujarat,” he said.

Mr Togadiya was to address a Hindu “mahasammelan” organised by the Bajrang Dal, an offshoot of the VHP, in Malegaon. The Bajrang Dal sammelan has been banned by the Maharashtra police in view of the riots in the area. State DGP Subhash Malhotra said, “We have restrained him from going to Jalgaon and requested him to go back.”

News Source : The AsianAge [ The coolest newspaper for city ]


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PM dedicates water project for pilgrims Thursday, November 1, 2001

News Source : Times News Network
SOMNATH: Prime Minister Vajpayee on Wednesday dedicated the drinking water pipeline based on Hiran -2 dam to the pilgrims visiting the Somnath temple.

With this, the people visiting Somnath would now get sweet water instead of the salty water they used to get so far. The project has been taken up jointly by the Somnath Trust and the Gujarat Heavy Chemicals, and the state government would chip in 50 per cent of the cost. The pilgrims would be provide .05 million gallons of water per day through the scheme.

The prime minister also unveiled the stone plaque of the Triveni ghat which has been renamed as Morarji ghat in remembrance of the former prime minister.

Vajpayee also attended the concluding function of the Shree Somnath Jyotirling Pran Pratisthan golden jubilee celebration. The celebrations were launched a year ago on May 13, 2000 by Union home minister L K Advani. He had released a book 'Shree Somnath: Yugvart Punarnirman'. During the concluding session, the prime minister released a book 'Shree Somnath: Sanskriti Tirthnirman'. The two volumes contain information on history Somnath temple.

The prime minister also released the Gujarati version of the original Marathi book 'Shree Somnath Tirth' which gives an account of the Jyotirling Pran Pratisthan done by the first president of India Rajendra Prasad on May 11, 1951.

During the year long celebrations of the Pran Pratisthan, idols of Lord Ganesh and Lord Hanuman were installed at the extended portion of the Ahalyabai temple.

News Source : The Times of India [India's best Newspaper]


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Strict security shadowed response Thursday, November 1, 2001

News Source: Times News Network
SOMNATH: This pilgrim town wore a festive and saffron look during the day-long Somnath Jyotirling Pran Pratisthan celebration here on Wednesday. Almost the entire state cabinet was present.

The Yuva BJP took out an impressive rally by 4,400 volunteers on 2200 motorcycles, some of whom had come from as far as tribal Dangs in South Gujarat and Banaskantha in north Gujarat.

The function was however subdued as just 10,000 people had come to see and listen to the prime minister. They withstood the humid climate as the temperature soared to 38.3 degree C.

Unprecedented security cover was given to the prime minister's entourage. However, authorities had dual standards for ministers and other dignitaries. While ministers were allowed to carry mobile phones at the venue, journalists and others were told to leave them elsewhere. The Somnath temple was out of bounds for the devotees and no one was allowed on Wednesday after the special protection group jawans took position in the temple a day earlier.

All roads leading to the temple were closed to traffic and guests in the guest houses near the bus stand were told to stay indoors till the PM's entourage left the spot. Even the ST stand at Somnath had been cleared and no buses were allowed to enter or leave the city till late evening. Instead of ST buses, police vans were parked at the bus stand.

Even shops and hotels near the temple were asked to down their shutters during the VIP visit. There was obvious lack of enthusiasm on part of the commonman for the visit as they were kept away at a distance from the road to have a glance of their prime minister. The security personnel were perched atop all houses surrounding the temple. The tight security had a dampening impact on the people to have a look at Atal Behari Vajpayee.

Almost 1500 police personnel were pressed into service besides the SPG personnel.

News Source : The Times of India [India's best Newspaper]



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