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April 13, 2001 - April 13, 2001

Quake relief material diverted Friday, April 13, 2001

PALANPUR: A truckload of relief material had been unloaded before it reached Bhuj, according to Harishankar Yadav of Kiritnagar Delhi. He has lodged a complaint of forgery with the Radhanpur police.

The material which included 150 bales of rugs (dhabalas) was unloaded by some unidentified people at Radhanpur with an assurance that they would see to it that 'it reached the proper place and needy persons'.

The truck loaded with relief material for the quake victims of Bhuj was flagged off from Delhi in February. In the midst of a calamity, such greed and malicious act has shocked the people of Radhanpur and Banaskantha districts.

The police, however, do not rule out the possibility that the material was offloaded at Congress camp that was set up there those days. But the complainant apprehended that the consignment had not reached the needy people hit by quake.

Local Congress leaders, including DCC president PC Chodhry, have refuted the charge as the base camp at Radhanpur was under the direct GPCC supervision and there was no question of forgery or any irregular act on the part of the Congress. The complainant has produced a receipt, but a question has arisen over the authenticity of the acknowledgement receipt.

The police investigation might reveal startling facts and even unearth bigger rackets in the quake relief work, said RSS functionary Dadasahib Khilare.

Rape case: A young married woman was kidnapped and raped by three men at Lavara village under Kakoshi police station on Monday. The culprits took her away in a jeep to Sidhpur and confined her to a room and raped her repeatedly.

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Quake relief material diverted Friday, April 13, 2001

PALANPUR: A truckload of relief material had been unloaded before it reached Bhuj, according to Harishankar Yadav of Kiritnagar Delhi. He has lodged a complaint of forgery with the Radhanpur police.

The material which included 150 bales of rugs (dhabalas) was unloaded by some unidentified people at Radhanpur with an assurance that they would see to it that 'it reached the proper place and needy persons'.

The truck loaded with relief material for the quake victims of Bhuj was flagged off from Delhi in February. In the midst of a calamity, such greed and malicious act has shocked the people of Radhanpur and Banaskantha districts.

The police, however, do not rule out the possibility that the material was offloaded at Congress camp that was set up there those days. But the complainant apprehended that the consignment had not reached the needy people hit by quake.

Local Congress leaders, including DCC president PC Chodhry, have refuted the charge as the base camp at Radhanpur was under the direct GPCC supervision and there was no question of forgery or any irregular act on the part of the Congress. The complainant has produced a receipt, but a question has arisen over the authenticity of the acknowledgement receipt.

The police investigation might reveal startling facts and even unearth bigger rackets in the quake relief work, said RSS functionary Dadasahib Khilare.

Rape case: A young married woman was kidnapped and raped by three men at Lavara village under Kakoshi police station on Monday. The culprits took her away in a jeep to Sidhpur and confined her to a room and raped her repeatedly.

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Jagjit singh will perform to raise funds for earthquake relief. Friday, April 13, 2001

VADODARA: Ghazal maestro Jagjit Singh will sing at a charity show here to raise funds for the earthquake-affected people of Gujarat. The show, to be organised by the Vadodara district collectorate, will be held on April 15 at Gandhi Nagargruh from 9.30 pm. District collector Bhagyesh Jha informed that about 1,000 tickets will be sold.

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Postal stamp design competition on Mahatma organised Friday, April 13, 2001

VADODARA: The Philately Advisory Committee has proposed to issue a stamp on the theme 'Mahatma Gandhi - Apostle of Peace and Man of the Millennium' on October 2 2001 for which a special stamp design competition is being organised.

The postmaster general's office here is approaching schools and the college of fine arts in Vadodara for the purpose. A cash prize of Rs 9,300 would be awarded to the winner.

Students who belong to a registered school can participate in the competition. Those who wish to participate in the competition can collect entry forms from the office of the postmaster general Vadodara region Pratapgunj before 1 pm, April 12.

The design should be in 21x15 cms size and should be on the theme 'Mahatma Gandhi - Man of the Millennium'.

As per instructions of the department of posts, entrants are encouraged to fully reflect on the subject and combine it with the characteristics of a postage stamp. Participants are free to decide on the paper and colours.

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World Bank assures Gujarat of another quake relief package Friday, April 13, 2001

Anand (Gujarat), Apr 12 - The World Bank is working on a long-term finance package to aid rehabilitation and reconstruction work in Gujarat, which was hit by a devastating earthquake in January.

Mieko Nishimizu, the bank's vice president for the South Asian region, told IANS, "My colleagues at the bank have to put together an immediate assistance package of $400 million for Gujarat. They are now working on a second, longer-term financing package."

"They and many in other agencies at home and abroad who are working around the clock with the conviction that there will surely come a day when the people of Gujarat will overcome this tragedy and go on to realize full potential of their lives," Nishimizu, who is here to deliver the convocation address to the passing out graduates of the Institute of Rural Management-Anand (IRMA), said.

The World Bank has issued a statement saying that its officials were also sharing with Indian experts knowhow on disaster mitigation. "Together with India's development partners around the world, my colleagues are also sharing all that they know with the government of India, to help hasten the day when every Indian citizen is much better protected against such disasters," she said.

Nishimizu said her native country Japan is exposed to violent earthquakes and she has herself experienced a similar loss in her life. Expressing her personal grief at the loss of lives in Gujarat, she said, "I know that no words of condolences can give comfort. Even so, I offer my sympathy, from the bottom of my heart." The quake killed about 25,000 people and left tens of thousands injured and homeless.

Nishimizu was all praise for the resilience and courage that the people of Gujarat displayed in the wake of the quake. "My colleagues at the World Bank have been impressed, and I personally have been inspired by the indomitable will and positive approach with which the affected families have begun rebuilding not just their homes and businesses, but their entire lives and communities," she said.

Goodwill, kindness and kinship of the community are what impressed her the most, she said. "This is why I wish to congratulate all those ordinary men and women, NGOs (non-government organizations), community organizations, international agencies, corporate bodies and local administrations for their selfless and speedy response to the emergency, their wonderful display of leadership and their continuing involvement in and support for the reconstruction effort. Together, they have set an example to the world of how governments, civil society and ordinary citizens can forge partnerships to confront the most adverse circumstances," Nishimizu said.

She noted the sense of frustration among the affected people but said that it takes time for normalcy to return after such a catastrophic event.

Anand, often described as the milk city of India for being the headquarters of the National Dairy Development Board, is about 75 km south of the state's principal city of Ahmedabad. Verghese Kurien, the doyen of cooperative movement in India is the chairman of IRMA. The institute trains students for rural management, though corporate houses hotly pursue its graduates.

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