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October 17, 2001 - October 17, 2001

BSNL's mobile service may be delayed Wednesday, October 17, 2001

BY AMIT MUKHERJEE, TIMES NEWS NETWORK
AHMEDABAD: The ambitious Rs 400-crore plan of the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited to launch its cellular services by December this year will be delayed. The project will not be operational before March 2002, officials confirmed.

According to Gujarat Telecom (transmission), BSNL general manager Mohan Lal the sites have been identified but some requirements are still under survey. He said, "While most of the tower-erection work will be over shortly, the equipment is expected to arrive by December."

The area under the network is still being surveyed by a foreign firm, Aircom, which is suggesting few more places for tower installation to facilitate a undisrupted coverage. The procedure for getting clearance from defence establishments and Airport Authority of India is still on.

While he maintained that not much time will be required once the equipment arrives, senior officials in the department maintained that the commissioning of cellular phone service in Gujarat will not take place before March or even April.

The time overrun may even affect the target of new phone connections for Gujarat in the current fiscal which was pegged at over 6.5 lakh. Out of the total target, the mobile phones, as anticipated by the department, were expected to generate at least one lakh new connections in the current fiscal year.

The global tender for the project, which was to connect 74 urban centres covering 70 per cent of the state, was bagged by Indian Telecom Industries which had bid jointly with a US firm Luscent, earlier this year. While the company is setting up towers on the roof-tops hired by BSNL, the corporation is busy hiring land, mostly at municipal schools, on lease to erect the tower for the base terminal station.

"The project could have been completed within the proposed period, if the equipment procurement process was expedited. But the tender has been allotted to a firm which would get things moving as per the convenience of the bidder," says a senior official.

The first phase of the project had a capacity of about 1.75 lakh connections. The first two phases will provide for a capacity to handle 4.84 lakh lines. "All the highways are being covered with towers being installed at every 40 kilometres to enable connectivity at every possible corner," says Lal. The backbone of the service would be nearly 300 towers which would be supporting the network.

Even at Ahmedabad, there would be more than 50 towers which would support the network. The Mobile Switch Centre would be installed at Vastrapur, which will cater to five of the 17 telecom districts of state. The other two MSCs will be set up in Surat and Rajkot to serve the remaining areas.

"It is a big project, and it would take its own time," says BSNL general manager (development) A K Bhargava. He says the infrastructure involving towers, civil and electrical work will almost be ready by December, once the equipment is in place.

Once the project is operational, the project will not only provide better coverage in the state, but would also facilitate cheaper and more effective roaming facility in wake of the BSNL set-up available across the country, says Bhargava.

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


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Community clash claims one Wednesday, October 17, 2001

TIMES NEWS NETWORK
AHMEDABAD: A young boy died of injuries on Tuesday morning following clashes between two groups of different communities at Naroda on Monday night. The cause of this riot appeared to be cable business which had reportedly been monopolised by the Bharvads. Several complaints and counter complaints had been lodged earlier at the Naroda police station between the two parties.

Kaushik Dhirubhai Desai (25) succumbed to injuries at the civil hospital on Tuesday morning after being fatally hit with pipes, hockey sticks and swords when a riot broke out around midnight in the Thakkarbapanagar area after one group lodged a complaint with the police against the other.

After this, another complaint was lodged by Arjan Virji Patel at the Naroda police station charging about nine persons of having attacked them for lodging a case against them at the police station on the grounds that they had been threatened by the rival group.

Offences of murder and rioting have been registered against Manjuben Bharvad, Haklo Bharvad, Manu Jeram Patel, Raviraj Praful Thaker and five others after Kaushik died of injuries around 10 am on Tuesday. The immediate provocation was that Arjan's son Vinod had lodged a complaint against Baldev Bharvad around 9 pm the same day, of having threatened him. Vinod and his friends were attacked with swords, pipes and hockey sticks outside the Raghubharvad ni chaali in Thakkarbapanagar around midnight by Bharvad's men.

Around the same time Kokila Ravjibhai Bharvad also lodged a complaint against Vinod and his friends of having ransacked her place. Police sources said that the tension between the groups goes back to over a week when a case was lodged against Baldev Bharvad who runs a cable business. "Vinod was the witness in this case which annoyed Bharvad to no end and he had allegedly threatened him", said police station sources.
Country-made revolver seized
The Kalupur police on Tuesday arrested one Akbarali Usmanali Saiyed, who stays in Babubhai ni chaali in Kalupur, with a country-made revolver.

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


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CM to hold talks on state annual plan Wednesday, October 17, 2001

TIMES NEWS NETWORK
GANDHINAGAR: Chief Minister Narendra Modi will hold discussions with the Planning Commission on October 22 in New Delhi to finalise the state annual plan.

For this, the chief minister held a detailed discussion at a high-level meeting on Monday, attended by finance minister Nitin Patel, planning minister Kaushik Patel, advisor to the chief minister S K Shelat, chief secretary G Subba Rao and others.

For evolving new strategies for the planned development of Gujarat, the chief minister mooted the idea to develop villages as units, keeping in view a decentralised planning process.

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


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DRI detects fraud of diverting quake relief material Wednesday, October 17, 2001

TIMES NEWS NETWORK
AHMEDABAD: The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) has exposed a fraud involving four trusts which had imported duty-free material in the name of relief for earthquake victims, and diverting the material for sale to Delhi and Mumbai effecting a duty evasion of Rs 70 lakh.

Acting on information received at the DRI unit of Gujarat, the Mumbai-based Shri Nopaji Lakhamaji Charitable Trust and Shivam Development Trust in Bhuj had misused the benefit of duty-free imports for relief material meant for earthquake victims. Seventeen consignments were seized by the DRI. These had come from Australia and three other European countries, and contained used winter wear.

The goods cleared from Kandla Customs house had been diverted to Delhi instead of being distributed to quake victims. The DRI Delhi then intercepted the consignments cleared from Kandla and despatched to Delhi in four trucks. The DRI officers then intercepted the truck (HR 47-2816) on October 2 in Delhi.

On the basis of the Delhi telephone number of the recipient, the officers of DRI located the goods brought from Kandla in two other trucks in a godown in Delhi which were located and detained in Delhi. DRI sources said that the whole fraud was masterminded by two persons in Mumbai.

Investigations carried out till date have revealed that 17 consignments were cleared through Kandla Customs in the name of four trusts besides these two. These trusts are Shree Deendayal Gramin Vikas Trust, in Mandvi, Kutch district and Ayurvedic Sevashram Trust in Rajkot.

Most of the goods imported by these four trusts as earthquake relief material were diverted to the markets of Delhi and Mumbai, thus cheating the earthquake victims of Gujarat and also evading Customs duty.

In all the 17 bills of entry, old and used garments have been imported and the total fair value of goods has been approximated by the Customs at the time of importation at Rs 1.80 crore and the Customs duty evaded comes to around Rs 70 lakh. The DRI has intimated the state government about the matter.

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


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DRI detects fraud of diverting quake relief material Wednesday, October 17, 2001

TIMES NEWS NETWORK
AHMEDABAD: The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) has exposed a fraud involving four trusts which had imported duty-free material in the name of relief for earthquake victims, and diverting the material for sale to Delhi and Mumbai effecting a duty evasion of Rs 70 lakh.

Acting on information received at the DRI unit of Gujarat, the Mumbai-based Shri Nopaji Lakhamaji Charitable Trust and Shivam Development Trust in Bhuj had misused the benefit of duty-free imports for relief material meant for earthquake victims. Seventeen consignments were seized by the DRI. These had come from Australia and three other European countries, and contained used winter wear.

The goods cleared from Kandla Customs house had been diverted to Delhi instead of being distributed to quake victims. The DRI Delhi then intercepted the consignments cleared from Kandla and despatched to Delhi in four trucks. The DRI officers then intercepted the truck (HR 47-2816) on October 2 in Delhi.

On the basis of the Delhi telephone number of the recipient, the officers of DRI located the goods brought from Kandla in two other trucks in a godown in Delhi which were located and detained in Delhi. DRI sources said that the whole fraud was masterminded by two persons in Mumbai.

Investigations carried out till date have revealed that 17 consignments were cleared through Kandla Customs in the name of four trusts besides these two. These trusts are Shree Deendayal Gramin Vikas Trust, in Mandvi, Kutch district and Ayurvedic Sevashram Trust in Rajkot.

Most of the goods imported by these four trusts as earthquake relief material were diverted to the markets of Delhi and Mumbai, thus cheating the earthquake victims of Gujarat and also evading Customs duty.

In all the 17 bills of entry, old and used garments have been imported and the total fair value of goods has been approximated by the Customs at the time of importation at Rs 1.80 crore and the Customs duty evaded comes to around Rs 70 lakh. The DRI has intimated the state government about the matter.

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


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