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May 5, 2001 - May 5, 2001

Petrol becomes cheaper, diesel dearer Saturday, May 5, 2001

RAJKOT: The new rates of petrol and diesel were implemented in Rajkot city from Thursday evening. In Rajkot city, the price of petrol came down by 59 paise, while diesel became dearer by 21 paise.

Saurashtra Kutch Petrol diesel dealer association representative Shivlal Bhanderi said octroi on petrol was 3 per cent and the prices were Rs 32.03 paise in Rajkot city, which have now been reduced to Rs 31.44 per litre.

As for diesel, as the cess was more than the rate of octroi, the price rose by 21 per cent. According to Bhanderi, the prices of both petrol and diesel were less in Surendranagar as they were nearer to the Sabarmati supply point.

Bhanderi said Rajkot was being supplied petrol products from Madhapar, Moti Khavdi, Sabarmati, Koyali, Kandla and Siddhpur supply points. As prices have become uniform, the difference was due to transportation cost, Bhanderi said. Prices of petrol and diesel respectively at other centres in Saurashtra are as under: Junagadh Rs 31.59 and Rs 19.64, Bhuj Rs 31.36 and Rs 19.39, Morbi Rs 31.42 and Rs 19.46, Bhavnagar Rs 31.58 and Rs 19.63, Amreli Rs 31.66, and 19.66, Porbandar Rs 31.37 and Rs 19.42.

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7-day Jaipur foot camp organised at Rajkot Saturday, May 5, 2001

RAJKOT: The Akhil Bharatiya Marwadi Yuva Manch (Delhi) and the Sargam Club Rajkot have jointly organised a Jaipur foot camp at Rajkot between May 20 and 27. Patients will be supplied the Jaipur foot and polio callipers free of cost.

Talking to reporters here on Thursday, club president Gunwant Delawala said more than 1,000 patients were likely to attend the camp. He said even those who had lost their limbs during the quake or otherwise would be given treatment free of cost.

Delawala said an experts team from West Bengal will conduct operations at the camp. The team would bring with it all necessary equipment, Delawala said adding that before the Bengal team starts operations, local orthopaedic surgeons will check the patients and screen them before sending them to the team. The camp has been organised at the Lohana Boarding.

According to the club president, patients accompanied by one relative would be provided free food and other facilities during their stay at the camp. He said the entire project would cost around Rs 10 lakh. Delawala said once the patient was provided Jaipur foot, he could live a normal life.

Patients who were earlier fitted the Jaipur foot and now needed replacement were also invited to attend the camp. The club has opened 18 counters all over Saurashtra from where registration forms could be availed. The Marwadi Yuvamanch has been organising such camps all over the country, Delawala said.

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Probe ordered into death of sparrows Saturday, May 5, 2001

RAJKOT: The Rajkot Municipal corporation on Friday decided to initiate a high-level inquiry into the death of 70 Australian sparrows at the city zoo.

Municipal commissioner J P Gupta said the aviary was being managed by a private party and if it is found that adequate care is not being taken, it would be closed down.

IMFL seized

The Gondal police have seized foreign liquor worth Rs 1.76 lakh from a house at Bhagwatipara. The police, acting on a tip-off, reached the spot and found five people loading liquor onto a car. On seeing the police they fled the scene.

Illegal slaughterhouse

The Dhoraji police sealed an illegal slaughterhouse during a raid in the Baharpura area recently. It also set free 18 animals waiting to be slaughtered. One person has been arrested.

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VMC told to clean up Sindhusagar lake Saturday, May 5, 2001

VADODARA: The Vadodara civil judge M R Dodia has issued a notice to the Vadodara Municipal Corporation to undertake measures to clean up the Sindhusagar (old Dhobi talav) in Warasia. The order follows a public interest litigation filed in the court by Pradeep Lekhrajani and Rajesh Chandwani, both residents of Warasia.

The litigants have said in their petition that the VMC has neglected its duty and had not maintained and cleaned up the lake as per the norms. "For two years now the lake has turned into a garbage bin. There is an urgent need to remove the excess sludge and soil accumulated on its surface. The lake itself needs to be dug up so that it can be deepened and more water can be stored in it during the next monsoon.

"The VMC needs to clear up the garbage and the storm water drains on the periphery of the lake. At present, these drains are clogged due to garbage. If these are not cleaned up urgently next monsoons will see this place flooded and waterlogged after a single bout of rains," says Lekhrajani.

The court has asked for a 'panchnama' of the lake today (May 5). The city court commissioner, officials of the VMC and the litigants would inspect the condition of the lake and then an interim order would follow. The litigants have also requested the court to ask the VMC to recruit permanent safai workers who would ensure that the lake remains clean throughout the year.

According to advocates Harishkumar Gandhi, Chandrakant Grigalani and Mahesh Grigalani there have been several litigants filed in the High Court as well as district court here to draw attention of the VMC to the state of city lakes. It may be recalled that a few days ago a similar order was issued to the VMC to clean up the Gorwa village lake.

"The VMC has committed an offence, as it has not followed the norms as per the Municipal Act which makes it mandatory for them to keep public areas clean," said Gandhi one of the advocates. He said the notice has been sent to the VMC so that its officials remain present during the panchnama and during the subsequent court hearings.

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Study trips for women corporators draws flak Saturday, May 5, 2001

VADODARA: The Praja Jagruti Manch (PJM) plans to file a litigation against the VMC if trips to Bangalore, Mysore, Mangalore, Pune, Mumbai and other cities planned for the 25 women corporators of the Vadodara Municipal Corporators are not cancelled.

PJM convenor RO Shah said the VMC standing committee has decided in one of its meetings on Thursday that they would sanction a special trip for the VMC women corporators to these cities so that they are able to study the working of the municipal corporations of there.

"But this decision is ridiculous. Just a few months ago the mayor and the corporators of these very cities visited Surat to see the progress made there. They have studied the Surat model and are using it to improve their cities. But here in Vadodara corporators are interested in going to the cities that are learning from Surat, which is much more closer home to us," says Shah.

According to him the tour that is being planned in an air conditioned coach is less of a 'study trip' and more of a picnic. "The women corporators are going on a picnic to escape the heat of Gujarat. Not much can be gained by this trip which would misuse the public money. It is a wasteful expenditure for a futile cause. We have written to the VMC commissioner and asked her not to sanction this trip. If this is not done we plan to file a PIL and obtain a stay against such wasteful expenditure of public money," he says.

According to him a letter has already been dispatched to the VMC commissioner to apprise her of the move and to lodge their protest. "This proposal was not made by the commissioner it was made by the sabha secretary which is not as per the norms. We have therefore written to the commissioner. If nothing happens we shall go ahead and file the PIL. We have already consulted our legal advisors for the same," he said.

He said the VMC is merely misusing money to favour a few corporators who would enjoy a free holiday to the various cities in an air conditioner coach with free lodging and boarding.

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