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November 10, 2001 - November 10, 2001

Fancy names help sell crackers Saturday, November 10, 2001

News Source : Times News Network
VADODARA: The famous 'Kingkong' has taken a backseat in firecracker stalls. The picture of a thumping giant gorilla, a celebrated brand mascot of Sivakasi's kingkong bombs, that occupied a prominent place in every fireworks store, is now making way for the new entries in cracker paraphernalia.

Stroll around the 'fireworks' shops at Gujarat Krida Mandal grounds and every row throws up a name that is sure to catch your attention. On one column hangs a rectangular box having a jazzy jacket with bold letters on it that says OOH LA LA! Jump a row beneath and another hexagonal packet full of 'double-dhadaka bombs' has a brand name of 'Tu Tu Main Main'. Skip a row or two and you come across a 'Dil Mange More' bomb series. And from a corner Shahrukh Khan greets you with a wry smile. His picture is put on a box of firecrackers that is put out in the market as 'Kuchh Kuchh Hota Hai' cracker series.

If you are out to shop crackers, forget Kingkong or sutri-bombs. Instead, expect Tollywood and Bollywood titles.

"Kingkong is an old bomb. People now are enticed to fancy names. Names of stars, television serials and movies", says wholesaler in fireworks Tushar Uttamchandani. He said fireworks products with fancy names easily catch attention of children and women.

"Most of the time a child accompanies his father of mother who come to shop firecrackers. They induce their parents in purchasing products that has a movie name. The women, on the other hand, will definitely check 'Tu tu main main' firecrackers or any other product that has a television serial name on it", Uttamchandani says.

Retailers say every year there has been some kind of innovation to attract customers. "If we don't put products that have new names like Kargil bombs or Hindustani triple dhamaka, customers feel we are selling them old, unused stocks", says firecrackers retail shop owner Dharmesh Patel.

Hanif Pathan another retailer in Nizampura admits that products with movie or television serial names sell better. "Customer asks to see the items that has a TV serial name. Once the customer has the product in his hand our job is half done. It does not take much time to convince him to buy that particular packet firecrackers", Pathan says.

Good by Kingkong, Hello ooh la la!!!

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



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BJ stir called off; GISF may be deployed Saturday, November 10, 2001

News Source : Times News Network
HMEDABAD: The 40-hour long indefinite hunger strike of B J Medical students and their parents was called off after hectic parleys that stretched late into Wednesday night. While the storm might have blown over, the authorities are not taking any chance and have proposed deployment of Gujarat Industrial Security Force (GISF) to keep a check on lumpen elements.

"The health secretary has proposed the beefing up of the security, and GISF may be deployed as the present security is not adequate," conceded B J dean K V Bhatt.

More than 100 parents along with hundreds of students of the A, C and D hostel blocks had embarked on an indefinite hunger strike to protest against alleged atrocities by students of B block, and consequently seven students were admitted to the hospital because of dehydration on Wednesday. However, they later withdrew the stir after a marathon meeting of the warring groups with health minister Ashok Bhatt and six ministers from Saurashtra.

It is learnt that peace has been retained after making a series of recommendations that include setting up separate mess at each of the four blocks of the hostels to reduce skirmishes between the two groups of students, which have brought academic activity to a standstill.

Moreover, there is also a proposal to appoint assistant professors as experts instead of junior doctors in the MBBS exams to prevent injustice against any of the students at the hands of high-handed seniors.

Authorities informed that a recommendation has also been made to form a council of three neutral professors to whom students can report any problem or issue relating to the campus.

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



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Dec. 15 set deadline for quake-damage claims Saturday, November 10, 2001

News Source : Times News Network
The state government has set December 15 as the deadline for claims of assistance for the houses destroyed or damaged in the devastating earthquake. The government had to fix the deadline as despite repeated notices, those eligible for assistance have so far not made any claims.

A decision to this effect was taken on Thursday at a meeting of the Gujarat State Disaster Management Authority, chaired by the Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

The meeting approved tenders for construction of 200 kms long roads, 57 major bridges, 114 small bridges and 186 C.D. works at an estimated cost of Rs 127 crore with the assistance of the World Bank.

The work includes construction of Malia-Navsari road, reconstruction of Mehsana-Radhanpur, Rapar-Bhachau, Bhuj-Bhachau, Malia-Navlakhi and Malia-Amarna bridges, Mehsana-Radhanpur bridge No. 3 and reconstruction of bridges in Ahmedabad, Surendranagar and Mehsana districts.

The meeting also decided to undertake repair and reconstruction of 166 earthquake-affected water supply schemes at an estimated cost of Rs 20 crore. The meeting approved the proposal for assistance made to the chief minister by the Gold and Silver Traders and other traders during his recent visit to Kutch.

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



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Sonia opens Rajiv Gandhi under-bridge in city Saturday, November 10, 2001

News Source : Times News Network
AHMEDABAD: Little Lord Siva, not beyond 12 years of age, with a dishevelled large wig and elaborate make-up was the most impatient amongst the troupe of young folk dancers who waited on the Rajiv Gandhi underbridge on Friday for the Congress president Sonia Gandhi to arrive.

While the little Siva was fidgeting as were many of his co-dancers, the SPG officials were busy frisking media photographers and even ensuring that each camera and flash was exactly what it appeared to be.

Almost an hour after the scheduled time, Sonia Gandhi arrived at the venue near Income Tax square at 6.25 p.m. and the folk dancers, as did the impatient audience, got to their feet, while traffic on Ashram Road was thrown out of gear.

Holy chants sprng forth as rituals got underway. Formalities were over almost as soon as they began and Gandhi, flanked by mayor Himmatsinh Patel and standing committee chairman Badruddin Sheikh, unveiled a plaque that declared the railway underpass as Rajiv Gandhi underbridge.

Talking to the spectators who had gathered at the spot, Sonia Gandhi quipped, "The new underbridge will be of much help as it does away with traffic congestion. I thank Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation for naming it after Rajivji and Gujarat for such a warm welcome."

With those few words, Gandhi went down the underbridge in an unmarked
Ambassador car having the SPG personnel sweat it out trying to leave no part of the car uncovered. Drums resounded throughout the area and the dancers went through the motions as the AICC president went round the underpass waving out to the Congressmen and masses lined-up on either side of the subway.

Friday was the underpass' tryst with destiny, having had its inauguration postponed thrice (May 31, June 15 and June 30). The subway eases congestion caused by the Ahmedabad-Bhavnagar rail track. With a project cost of Rs 5.5 crore the underpass had got stuck at the final stage as its sponsor, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation, could not clear dues to the contractor.

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



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Sonia dedicates rebuilt village to the quake-hit Saturday, November 10, 2001

News Source : Times News Network
BHUJ: All-India Congress Committee president Sonia Gandhi on Friday dedicated the Jawaharnagar village in Bhuj taluka to quake-affected people of the region. The Delhi state government had adopted the village and rebuilt it after the devastating quake.

Congress spokesman for Saurashtra and Kutch Valji Bagda told TNN that the Delhi government had adopted the village which was completely destroyed, and rebuilt around 330 houses which are now quake-resistant. The houses have also been provided electricity and water connection, he said.

According to Bagda, the Congress government in Delhi had spent Rs 9 crore for the rebuilding of the village, which has also been provided with 4 km of concrete internal roads. The village now has a primary school, a public health centre, a community hall, panchayat office complete with an artistic gate to the village.

To give the village a touch of national integration a mosque, temple and a Derasar have also been constructed, Bagda said, adding that the names of all those who perished in the quake have been inscribed on a marble plaque put up near the village entrance.

Sonia, accompanied by AICC leader Ahmed Patel, Kamal Nath and Sheila Dixit, arrived at the village to present the houses to the people. State and local Congress leaders were also present at the function.

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




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