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Thursday, November 4, 2010

Mahakavi Devkota remembered in United Kingdom and Kalimpong ... Manager assaulted by women workers ... First Indian Landslide congress held

Mahakavi Devkota remembered in United Kingdom and Kalimpong
Devkota Jayanti in United Kingdom
KalimNews : According to an input received through online the Nepalese of United Kingdom remembered the great Nepali poet Lakshmi Prasad Devkota on 31st October on the occasion of his 101st birth anniversary. The programme was organised by Sahitya Vikash Parishad, UK where the renowned writers from Nepal Dr. Devi Subedi and Bishwa Bimohan Shrestha were present as the prime guests. In his brief speech Dr. Subedi expressed his happiness over the efforts made by the UK based Nepalese who were engaged in different employment works for making arrangements to observe the birth anniversary of Nepali Great poet Devkota. He also defined the diasporic Nepali literature and encouraged the writers to indulge in such literary practice.
Another guest Shrestha also highlighted the role played by Devkota in making the Nepali language a world class literature and also thanked the literary figures of England for arranging such programmes. Other literary figures present on the occasion were Radhav Prasad Dhital, Chairman of Britain Nepal Civic Forum, young writer Gopi Prasai, Kul Acharya, Chairman, NRN, England etc. On the occasion two memorable books were also launched in the presence of the guests.
Back home, in Kalimpong the Nepali Sahiatya Adhyayan Samiti paid respect to the great poet Lakshmi Prasad Devkota on his birth anniversary today (6th November) being the Diwali when the late poet was born 101 years ago. The Samiti held a brief programme at the Kalimpong police station (Thana Dara) premises where a bust of late poet has been installed. The programme was chaired by Dr (Ms) Saroja Rai, chairperson of the Samiti and attended by local literary figures like T.B. Thakuri, Sanumati Rai, Samsher Ali, Dr. H.B. Chhetri, T.N. Subedi, Sitaram Kafley, Gyan Sutar, Jog Chamling, Arun Prakash Rai and political leaders like Bijay Sundas (Gorkha Janmukti Morcha), J.B. Rai (Communist Party of Revolutionary Marxist). When the programme was underway Superintendent of Darjeeling Police suddenly appeared in the scene to pay respect to the poet. He was accompanied by Addl. S.P, Kalimpong and I/C Kalimpong alongwith other police officials.
Later most of the literary figures assembled on the occasion were found speaking about the pity state of the organiser who either could not mobilize people's attendance or did not take care about this and observed the day as a mere formality. The young writers were of the opinion that the programme should be observed by them in due course to make it a memorable one.
It may be recalled that there was no presence of media workers and even the official photographer of the Samiti to keep record of the occasion even for the official purpose. The Nepali Sahitya Adhyayan Samiti has been facing vehement criticism since last several years for negligence in its part while organising such important functions.
Coordination Committee on Tamang murder formed
KalimNews: A coordination Committee to investigate and supervise the police and CID in the Madan Tamang murder case is formed by ABGL. This committee will also see whether the investigation and follow up of the case is being done in a proper way or not. SB Zimba is the chairman of the committee stated Pratap Khati. Khati said that Babita Ganguli was in her house for the last 2-3 days before her arrest and the information was given to the Darjeeling but no action was taken. Then they informed the CID and home ministry, only at that time she was arrested. He also alleged that ABGL had been informing the police about the informations related to the murder , but the police is either disclosing it or giving chance to the accused for giving a slip. It was also alleged that the attached properties of the accused are old and worn out belongings and the attachment of properties done by police is just eye washing. 
Meanwhile Bimal Gurung GJMM Chief will meet Governor MK Narayanan on 8 November. Since the arrival of the Governor on 27 October non of the political parties have met the Governor.
Manager assaulted by women workers
TT, Alipurduar, Nov. 5: Nearly 300 women workers pounced on a garden manager here this morning, dragging him for at least 20 metres, tearing his clothes and beating him up — the assault coming after their demand that they be allowed to work together on Diwali was rejected.
Manager P. Pal Choudhury of Torsha Tea Garden, who was rescued almost an hour later by Jaigaon police, said nobody had come to his help. “A few managerial staff members were around but they did not come to my rescue,” the 50-year-old manager said.
Garden sources said the men workers had allegedly warned the office staff to stay away when the women confronted Pal Choudhury. However, one of the employees denied the allegation. “There were only four-five of us at that time. Given the workers’ fury, we could do nothing,” he said.
The assault comes two days after Pal Choudhury issued a notice asking all 300 women to discharge their duty in different sections of the garden on Diwali. While 200 workers had been allotted duty in Section 9, the remaining 100 were told to report in 5C Young Tea, another section.
Yesterday, after 5pm, a group of 50 women entered the chamber of the manager and demanded that they be allotted duty in the same section so that they could enjoy the festivity and distribute sweets.
When the manager refused, the women said they would not report for duty in different sections. An altercation followed after which the workers departed. After 7pm, however, the manager showcaused Sabitri Chhetry, a worker, for leading the others to his chamber and abusing him. Sabitri was told to reply at the earliest why she had misbehaved with the manager and who had provoked her.
“The workers were so noisy that initially I could not understand what they were saying. Later Sabitri Chhetry started shouting at me. She said if all the women were not allowed to work together, they would skip duty today. I told them it was up to them to take the decision but if they reported for work they would have to follow my instruction,” said Pal Choudhury. “Sabitri was provoking the others. I send her a showcause notice late last evening through the chowkidar.”
Around 7 this morning, when the women workers assembled in the garden factory, Sabitri arrived waving her showcause notice. She said the management had expelled her. At that time, the manager was entering the factory. The assembled women caught him and pushed him to the floor. They dragged him for around 20 metres and tore his T-shirt. They also beat him up on the head, chest and waist. His glasses and cellphone were also smashed.

After nearly 50 minutes, a force from Jaigaon police station arrived and rescued the manager from the mob.
Nandalal Mahali, the garden unit secretary of the National Union of Plantation Workers’ affiliated to the Congress’s Intuc, denied there was any incident of assault. “The women had only surrounded the manager,” he said.
Pal Choudhury has filed a complaint with Jaigaon police station but has not named anyone. The workers put in an hour extra to compensate for the loss of time in the morning. Pal Choudhury was back in the garden from the Jaigaon police station by afternoon.
"Sabitri Chhetry said: “We have been working in the same section on festival days for decades because we distribute sweets and enjoy ourselves. Today too we ended up working in the same section but only after some confusion. For no reason, the manager issued me a notice.”Vasist Pachetia, a director of the garden, said an inquiry would be conducted.
Rafts back on Teesta
TT, Kalimpong, Nov. 5:Rafting on the Teesta resumed yesterday after five months with over 60 tourists taking the adventure sail down the green waters of the river.
The water sport on the Teesta had been suspended since May when four persons, all local people, had drowned after a raft on a search mission capsized near Reang, about 7km downstream from Teesta Bazar. Following the incident, the family members of the victims had refused to allow rafting in the river till those responsible for the mishap were brought to book and strict rules put in place for operating rafting units.
Yesterday, only 12 rafts operated after an understanding was reached between the tourism department of the DGHC and owners of the 24 rafting units of Melli and Teesta Bazar. Only rafts in excellent condition under experienced river guides will be allowed to operate to avoid any mishap.
“Keeping in view that a number of local youths were employed as river guides and helpers in rafting units and to attract tourists to the area, the aggrieved families relented. Consequently, the tourism department has allowed the resumption of rafting under its supervision. Only rafts in good condition and with experienced guides will be allowed to operate,” said Sukbir Lama, the vice-president of the Teesta-Rangit Raft Owners’ Association.
Lama said the tourism department and the raft owners had also agreed to provide expert training to river guides in January. “Experts from the National Institute of Water Sports will conduct the training and give licences to the river guides.”

The two highway hamlets of Teesta and Melli have 24 private rafting units with 45 to 50 rafts. According to Lama, rafting units provide direct employment to about 150 people and more than 200 people from the two villages benefit indirectly. The rafting season lasts for about nine months from September to May.

The rafting begins at Labarbote, near Melli, and culminates at two different points. The shorter trip of about seven kilometres is till Ravi Jhora and the longer trip ends a further three kilometres downstream at Baluakhani in 29 Mile. “We charge Rs 350 per head for the shorter trip and Rs 450 per head for the longer one,” Lama said.
Shillong Choir for Obama
TT, Shillong, Nov. 5: The members of the Shillong Chamber Choir left for New Delhi today to perform for US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama at the state dinner in Rashtrapati Bhavan on Monday.
The 16-member team, led by pianist Neil Nongkynrih, is all prepared to enthral Obama with English, Hindi and even Khasi numbers.
To God be the Glory will feature from among the English numbers, while Yeh dosti hum nahin todenge… from Sholay — perhaps as a tribute to the Indo-American friendship — will be the Hindi number. Sohlyngem will be the Khasi song to be performed on the occasion.Choir member Damon Lyndem, said: “We have prepared the four songs for Obama and our performance would be just before the US President speaks to the audience.”
Assembly polls: Mamata anxious, Congress patient
soma mookherjee, SNS, KOLKATA, 5 NOV: Trinamul Congress chief and railway minister, Miss Mamata Banerjee, may be keen on advancing the Assembly election, but the Congress believes that it would be held as per schedule in May. 
The Congress will begin discussion on seat adjustment sometime in November, Mr K Keshava Rao, AICC general secretary in charge of West Bengal, told The Statesman today. 
“The Assembly election will he held as per schedule in May and we'll have enough time to negotiate with the Trinamul Congress for sharing seats,'' he said.  Miss Banerjee has in almost every public meeting been saying that the Assembly poll is only two or three months away as West Bengal will come under the purview of the  Election Commission on 11 December. Then it is the prerogative of the Commission whether it would advance the poll. “I think the Congress High Command  dosn't want to topple the elected government in West Bengal in a hurry for the election,'' said a senior PCC leader. 
Highly placed sources in the Congress said that the party  is waiting for the Bihar Assembly poll results. If the Congress fairs well in the Bihar, then it will be in a position to bargain for more seats from the Trinamul for the poll in West Bengal. A senior Trinamul Congress leader said : “We will go by the results of the last Lok Sabha poll and this year's civic poll. We will field our candidates in those Assembly segments where the Trinamul candidates have won in the LS election.” Miss Banerjee, however, said: “For five years we went into alliance with the  Congress and we will  remain with them in the UPA. We will not break the alliance.'' But she remained silent on seat sharing with the Congress. 
The Congress leadership at the national level is eager to know whether Miss Banerjee is really willing to leave the post of chief minister to Mr Pranab Mukherjee, Union finance minister. Mr Rao  inquired whether Miss Banerjee had made any such statement in Kolkata. Miss Banerjee in a recent interview to a private television channel, said: "I've even requested Pranabda to become the chief minister but we should fight jointly to oust the CPI-M from power."

First Indian Landslide congress held
KalimNews:4 members of Save the Hills of Kalimpong attended the 1st Indian Landslide Congress held at  Birbal Sahni Institute of Paleobotany, Lucknow on 1st and 2nd Nov 2010. Around 45 eminent scientists, geologists, geographers and engineers from around the country (in addition to 20 odd students) attended the Congress where Shri PP Shrivastav (IAS), Member North Eastern Council was the Chief Guest. 
Wing Commander (Retired) Praful Rao , President of Save the Hills says, 'besides the tremendous learning experience, it was great opportunity to talk about the "Landslide Scenario in Kalimpong" to a national audience'. He was accompanied by Aachal Tamang and Shrada Pradhan.
A report from the Pioneer and photos : Source- save the hills (

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