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November 12, 2001 - November 14, 2001

Kali Puja fete in Ahmedabad Wednesday, November 14, 2001

AHMEDABAD: Amidst bursting of crackers and preparation for celebrations of Gujarati New Year, chant of 'mantras' and religious rites associated with Kali Puja remain undimmed in its religious fervour and gaiety in the city.

Among the most elaborately organised Kali Puja of Ahmedabad is the Bharat Sevashram Sangha. Drawing devotees from all walks of life, the celebration at the Sangh premises, off Ashram Road, is marked by the unique orderliness lent by the organisers.

Religious rites will kick-off at 10 pm on Wednesday, and bhog mahaprasad is scheduled to be distributed on Thursday at 11 am.

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

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Gujarat Narmada to double acetic acid capacit Monday, November 12, 2001

BHARUCH, India (Reuters) - Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertilizers Company Ltd (GNFC) said on Wednesday it planned to invest 2.5 billion rupees to double its acetic acid production capacity to 100,000 tonnes a year to tap growing demand.

GNFC signed an accord with BP Chemicals of Britain to revamp its existing manufacturing unit at Bharuch, 225 km south of Ahmedabad, GNFC managing director A.D. Desai told Reuters.

"We already have placed orders for equipment and the expansion will be completed by November 2002," he said.

Many Indian pharmaceutical, textile and food processing companies imported acetic acid as demand outstripped domestic supply, industry officials said.

GNFC, which currently produces about 60,000 tonnes of acetic acid, supplies nearly half of its output to Reliance Industries Ltd, which requires about 55,000 tonnes of acetic acid per annum, Desai said.

GNFC would fund the expansion costs through a mix of internal accruals and long-term loans from financial institutions.

"About 25 percent of the expansion cost will come from internal accruals and the remaining through loans," he said.

The demand-supply mismatch in acetic acid in India has prompted GNFC to turn to imports to establish a loyal network of clients before the company completes its capacity expansion.

GNFC imported about 6,000-7,000 tonnes of acetic acid between April-October and would continue to import until its new facility was ready, he said.

Acetic acid prices hover around $320 a tonne in the international market, while it fetched about $418 a tonne in the domestic market, leaving a handsome margin for importers, officials said.

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Mamata Shankar captivated Amdavadis Monday, November 12, 2001

News Source : Times News Network
Ahmedabad: Bright yellow light lit up the stage as leaves left their abode atop trees and got into a debate with earth on who is more powerful. The verbal duel, highlighted with giggles of leaves, a fiery squall and thundershowers, ended in nature's equilibrium holding sway and peace returning to the jungle.

That was the magical world created by Mamata Shankar Ballet Troupe at their maiden performance in Ahmedabad at the Town Hall on Saturday. The programme organised by the Ahmedabad Durga Puja Celebration Committee (a branch of Bengal Cultural Association) gave Amdavadis a chance to regale at the innovative dance form created by maestro Udai Shankar and now in the able hands of his daughter, Mamata Shankar.

Hypnotic lighting arrangements, peppy music that fused the contemporary and modern with elan, innovative choreography and lively dance performance led by Mamata Shankar captivated the audience to a two-hour session of improvised ballet.

Shankar, who has impeccable credentials as a Bangla actress on the silver screen, with films of Satyajit Ray, Rituparno Ghosh, Buddhadev Dasgupta and Gautam Ghosh to her credit, talked to TNN soon after her performance.

"Though my troupe and I have performed in front of much larger audiences at venues strewn all over the world, the Amdavadis came across as very warm people. Each ballet performance was received with such passion that presenting our creations was an absolute joy," said Shankar.

"My aim, as was my father's dream, is to reach out to as many hearts as possible through a very simple form of dance. By the grace of God, the troupe has got wide acceptance and encouraging audience-response at all our performances in India as well as abroad," she said.

"Subjects chosen for each ballet performance almost invariably has a moral attached but such is the simplicity of this dance form that the audience never feels left out. For example, the piece titled Prakriti that had our dancers depicting leaves and earth talks about the chain of sustenance in ecology, and that egotism always spells doom," explained Shankar.

The ballerina wishes to capture the young uns' imaginations through foot-tapping music and innovative dance movements.

"Merely telling the younger generation to keep away from ills of westernisation and MTV culture is not enough. They have to be provided with an alternative source of entertainment. With my unique dance form, I wish to reach out to the masses and keep them hungry for more," said Shankar.

The actress added, "The same holds true for films. Today each film is directed towards a target audience and thus loses out on mass appeal. I am presently working in some television serials and continue to be choosy about my roles on the silver screen. But, for me the focus will always remain _ teaching and learning with my 1,500 pupils in Calcutta and transforming this dance form into a universal language binding the whole world together."

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

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HC cancels minority status granted to school Monday, November 12, 2001

News Source : Times News Network
A division Bench of the Gujarat High Court, comprising Chief Justice D M Dharmadhikari and Justice Ravi R Tripathi, has dismissed the appeal filed by Shri Jivan Sadhana Rajasthan Hindi Vidya Mandal and held that its Hindi medium school cannot be recognised as a minority institution.

While confirming the judgment of a single judge, the division Bench held the Trust guilty of cross acts of suppresio veri and suggestio falsi.

The court observed that the Trust had suppressed the decision of the Gujarat Secondary Education Tribunal, which held the Trust as non-minority, from the state authorities while getting recognition as a minority institution as well as from the High Court.

Appearing on behalf of the state, additional advocate general Kamal Trivedi with assistant government pleader V M Pancholi argued that Hindi language cannot be considered as a minority language, and that the above Trust had suppressed the decision of the Gujarat Secondary Education Tribunal dated April 19, 1975, declaring it to be a non-minority institution.

He further contended that even otherwise the Trust was not a minority institution, as five out of its seven trustees were found to be Gujaratis and the Trust Deed was found to be not genuine wherein no intention to start the said institution for running PTC course was even mentioned. He further argued that the Trust was doing business under the pretext of the minority shield.

The court also observed that various communications recognising the institution as linguistic minority were obtained by misrepresentation and suppression of material facts, orders and documents and therefore, such communications should not be given any importance.

Senior advocate G L Sanghi with advocate Harin Raval appeared for the institution.

Claiming to be a linguistic minority, the Trust sought protection under Article 30 of the Constitution in respect of its institution running PTC course under the name of Shri Shikshan Sadhana Stree Adhyapan Mandir in Bapunagar area.

Two petitions were filed in the High Court claiming that the said institution was being run for the benefit of Rajasthani Hindi speaking people in Gujarat and therefore it is a linguistic minority as recognised by the government in August, 1988. And so it had fundamental right to admit students of its own choice without any restriction, including the Centralised Admission System and therefore, it is not permissible to the government authorities to subsequently cancel the said minority status, the Trust submitted.

A single judge had earlier rejected the petitions with imposition of exemplary cost of Rs 20,000 against which appeals were filed.

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

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"Fire-safety" a no-concern topic Monday, November 12, 2001

News Source : Times News Network
RAJKOT: The temporary structures that have sprung up in the city selling fire crackers have posed as a severe fire hazard, especially in its congested areas. No precautions have been taken to prevent flying crackers bursting in these temporary 'shamianas' that might turn into major tragedies.According to city fire brigade chief R K Maheshwari, none of these temporary 'shamianas' have procured no objection certificates from the fire department to set up stalls.

Maheshwari said orders have been issued to make a survey of such temporary 'shamianas' and stalls selling fire crackers, and vendors have been asked to adopt fire prevention and other safety measures. The worst part is that these stalls are an extension of their homes, and they also prove to be a traffic nuisance, he added.

Moreover the stalls on the road are more prone to a fire hazard as even a cigarette butt can ignite the entire stock. And most stalls are erected at the entrance of a house making it more dangerous due to the unavailability of any escape route in case of a fire.

Maheshwari said during a check of cracker stalls at Shastri Maidan it was found that most of the vendors have made the stalls their temporary homes and were using LPG stoves to cook in the backyards, posing a serious fire hazard.Notices have been served to these vendors to install fire safety equipment within a day, failing which they would be evicted and their stock confiscated, Maheshwari said. The stall owners were also asked to procure the necessary no objection certificate from the fire department.Cotton stock holders and traders were also issued notices to adopt fire safety measures by the department.

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

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