Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Rs 45 Crore Ashtadhatu Idol seized near Siliguri - Weighing 24 kgs was being smuggled to Nepal

Man detained with ‘Ashtadhatu’ idol weighing 24 kg worth Rs 45 crore on Indo-Nepal border

In a successful attempt by the Sashastra Seema Bal personnel, a person has been detained while trying to smuggle an 'Ashtadhatu' (metallic) idol near Siliguri in West Bengal from a place along Indo-Nepal border. (ANI)

In a successful attempt by the Sashastra Seema Bal personnel, a person has been detained while trying to smuggle an ‘Ashtadhatu’ (metallic) idol near Siliguri in West Bengal from a place along Indo-Nepal border. Security forces arrested the man and took the idol into their possession. After this, they weighed the idol of a deity and sought to calculate its cost. The idol weighed-in at 24.07 kilograms and was valued at an approximate Rs 45 crore, according to the reports of news agency ANI. SSB officials said the idol, possibly of ‘bala gopal’, was 54 cm in height, according to PTI. SSB personnel had acted on a tip-off from a person at Siliguri-Kisanganj road when he was on his way to smuggle it to Nepal, according to authorities.

Your Day Today - April 27, 2017

Daily Horoscope (April 27 2017)

Aries (March 21 – April 19)

Your goal for the day seems to be to enchant your mate. There’s no reason not to try. Indeed, today is excellent for love. But don’t exaggerate your romantic wiles, Aries. Since the day’s aspects tend to distort your perception of things, you may be betrayed by what you see in the mirror. Be careful of what you do and how you do it!

Taurus (April 20 – May 20)

You’re in splendid shape today, Taurus! Did a fairy godmother conjure away all the little difficulties of the past few weeks? Enjoy this moment of relief from your worries. As for your love life, some exciting opportunities may arise. Be on the lookout for them, and whatever you do, don’t let them escape!

Gemini (May 21 – June 20)

It’s certainly clear that you have faith in your actions, Gemini! You feel no fear or doubt as you progress toward your goals, cruising along on calm seas under clear skies. This new atmosphere is likely the product of your renewed commitment. Reward yourself for your accomplishments, by all means, but you should wait a few days before launching a full-fledged celebration..

Cancer ( June 21 – July 21)

This is a moment to start being creative in your life and stop being afraid of not having any talent. Who’s to say what talent is? And in the romance department, the love of your life might be right in front of you. Try lifting your eyes from the romance novels and look around, Cancer. The perfect mate could be any number of people in your daily life. You just have to let yourself see.

Leo (July 22 – August 23)

You may be a bit unclear about your professional direction today, Leo. Your motivation has disappeared without warning. What happened? It may be that you need to become involved in projects that have more universal resonance. Projects of a narrow scope that concern only your interests no longer hold your attention.

Virgo (August 23 – September 22)

It could be that you see mirages, Virgo, most notably in the environment around you. You may have the impression that people are lying to you or hiding something from you. Or it may be you’re the one who lies about certain things or hides what you do. Why are you making things so complicated? Don’t be afraid to express your feelings today.

Libra (September 22 – October 22)

Hold tight to your money, Libra, because you may have some strange {though noble) impulses to give it away or spend a large amount on something completely useless. You should think about spending your money in a better way or, better yet, not at all. Why not consider donating some time rather than money to those in need?

Scorpio (October 23 – November 21)

Today isn’t a good day to sign contracts or make any substantial purchases. Go to the grocery store, by all means, but buy hamburger not tenderloin. Keep your money in a safe place and save your reserves. Don’t negotiate anything today, Scorpio. No matter how good the offer sounds or how compelling the deal, just walk away.

Sagittarius (November 22 – December 21)

Are you certain that you can’t modify your current situation, Sagittarius? Are you a prisoner of a lifestyle that isn’t of your own making or that may be a throwback from the past? People have been asking you to take on too many responsibilities and this is what weighs you down. Don’t be afraid to be alone and distance yourself from these situations. Learn to say no and make your own life!

Capricorn (December 22 – January 19)

The forecast for you is excellent, Capricorn. You can rely on today’s aspects to restore your confidence, which has been sorely tried in the past few days. The warrior of seduction within you can swagger forth, certain of conquest. However, don’t go too far. Wait a few days for reality to dispel the cloud of ecstasy and you will be able to see the future more clearly.

Aquarius (January 20 – February 18)

You may have some trouble communicating today, Aquarius. It’s as though something is distorting your perception. Don’t be surprised if, once evening comes, you feel like forgetting about all of your responsibilities and traveling to the other end of the world. Tomorrow you will see clearly again, but doubtless there are adventures in store for you!

Pisces (February 19 – March 20)

You’re radiant and glowing with happiness today. This is a refreshing change after the gloom and doom of the past few weeks. Apparently the decisions you made worked out for the best. Or, even better, perhaps you’re in love? In any case, Pisces, it will be even easier than usual for you to communicate with others and share your joy. Let the good times roll!

If teesta water is gone people in Siliguri, Jalpaiguri wont get drinking water - Bengal CM

Mamata Banerjee asserted her inability to agree to the sharing of Teesta waters, a populist stand likely to win her points in north Bengal and place hurdles in the way of the BJP-led Centre that is apparently keen on the water-sharing agreement with Bangladesh.

While attending a rally of the Kamtapuri Progressive Party at the Rashmela ground, the chief minister ruled out the water-sharing while underscoring her love for the neighbouring country.

"I want to make one thing very clear about the Teesta.... We love Bangladesh a lot. Bangladesh wants water, to which we have no objection. But what I have said is we cannot give water where there isn't water. The Teesta does not have water," said the Trinamul chief to loud cheers from an audience of around 15,000 people.

"If Teesta waters are gone, the people of Siliguri won't get water, people in Jalpaiguri won't get drinking water, farmers across north Bengal will not be able to source any water for agriculture.... I have seen the reality with my own eyes, which is why I am able to say these things," she said.

"We have said clearly that you need to look for an alternative source, make an alternative arrangement. Look for a source that can give water without causing problems," she added.

Suggesting alternatives herself, the chief minister said water could instead be sourced from the Sankosh river, which she said causes a lot of floods in the region. She also mentioned the Torsa and Mansai rivers as alternative sources of water for sharing with Bangladesh.

She had tossed up the same proposal before the Centre. But foreign ministry officials of both the countries said they did not want to consider the proposal.

"Why do you (the Centre) not plan properly? Take it from these places. I have no objection.... I love Bengal. I love Bangladesh. I want the best relations between our countries.... But I cannot give what we do not have," she added.

Sources in Trinamul said Mamata's move had twin objectives. On the one hand, she wanted to consolidate her support base in the region by championing north Bengal's interests on the water sharing issue. On the other hand, she wanted to deny the BJP-led Centre any help by way of facilitating the agreement with Bangladesh.


Bengal Government begins work to restore dried up natural springs in Darjeeling Hills

Ever since 2011, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has been constantly working to get Bengal back to its earlier glory and has been undertaking several projects to ensure the same. It should also be mentioned that the officers engaged in the same are also taking their work seriously and in yet another such instance, the Panchayat and Rural Development Department has taken up a unique scheme to restore the springs in the Hills which have dried up. This is for the first time when such a project has been taken up. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had always been giving emphasis on the development of tourism in North Bengal especially in Darjeeling. She visited the area several times in the past six years and urged the state government officials to come up with schemes to develop the area. The restoration of the springs is one such project taken up as a part of the beautification programme. Work to restore 30 odd springs in Darjeeling under the Spring Shed Development project have started and 300 springs which have dried up have been identified and will be restored in phases. The estimated time to complete the projects is three years. A survey conducted by the Panchayat and Rural Development department revealed that over 300 springs in the Hills have dried up over the years. During the Left Front regime of three decades, the state government did not pay any attention to the natural springs.  One after the other they dried up and the Hill, particularly Darjeeling, lost much of its charm.  The mountains, springs and tall trees are the chief attraction of Darjeeling. In the writings of Rabindranath Tagore, who had visited the Hills several times, there are reference to the springs, their beauty and continuous murmuring sounds of the water. To restore the natural springs, conserve water along with aforestation, under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) scheme, the Panchayat and Rural Development department has carried out massive water shed conservation schemes successfully throughout the state. The work to restore 30 springs as a pilot project in the Hills is being carried out in full swing. Massive afforestation work has been taken up and water conservation will be done at the source of the spring.  Once the process is complete, the springs will get back their natural flow and will start functioning again. Once the springs start flowing, the Hills will get back its original beauty. This will attract tourists all over the world. "If we read the books written by the district magistrates who had been posted in the Hills between the 1930s to 1960s or by travelers who had visited the area during this period, we can have an idea of the beauty of the Hills in North Bengal and why the name Queen of the Himalayas was given to Darjeeling by the British."

By Tarun Goswami, Millennium Post

Mirik Municipality Election Update - 2 Morcha Candidates Poll Paper Rejected by Election Officer

The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha today suffered a major setback in Mirik civic election following the rejection of nomination of Dhurba Bomjon, who was projected to be the chairman if the party won the poll.

Bomjon had filed his nomination from ward 7 in Mirik.

Joyoshi Dasgupta, the Darjeeling district magistrate and district election officer, today said: "Papers of two candidates were rejected in Mirik. In Kurseong, one candidate's nomination has been rejected and another one is under consideration in Darjeeling. The candidates have been disqualified as per sections 29 and 30 of West Bengal Municipal Elections Act (1994)."

Jyoti Kumar Rai, the assistant general secretary of the Morcha, said: "The nomination of Bomjon, who was the projected candidate for the chairman's post in Mirik municipality, has been rejected on the grounds that he has a pending bill in Mirik municipality."

"We, however, think that the judgment has not been impartial and we will approach the district election officer for a review," said Rai.

Binod Khati had filed papers as Morcha's dummy candidate from the ward 7 in Mirik.

If the appeal is not upheld, Khati will be the Morcha's candidate in the ward. But this would still be a setback for the hill party in Mirik where Mamata Banerjee's decision to promise land rights has put the Morcha on the backfoot.


80 metre long tunnel found in North Bengal tea garden dug to smuggle cattle to Bangladesh

The Border Security Force (BSF) has found an 80-metre-long tunnel being dug through a tea garden by suspected cattle smugglers near the Chopra- Fatehpur border outpost.

The tunnel was found in north Bengal adjacent to Kisanganj.

The Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of BSF, Devi Sharan Singh told reporters at the BSF’s sectoral headquarters in Kisanganj on Wednesday that the smugglers were digging the tunnel under the fence in order to overcome the problem of smuggling cattle to Bangladesh due to fencing of the border.

The tunnel was being constructed through a tea garden allegedly by cattle smugglers for a long time in the darkness of night, the DIG said.

Singh said the BSF has enhanced patrolling along the border after the tunnel was discovered.

Bangladesh and India share a 4,096-km-long border.

Fuel tanker runs over an old man at Medical in Matigara killing him on spot today morning

An old man riding a cycle came under the wheels of a tanker today morning at Medical in Matigara near Siliguri.

Sources informed the old man died on spot. The tanker has been seized by police after the incident which took place at around 11.30am today morning.

Traffic was halted for some time and regained soon later. The unidentified body has been sent for post mortem.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

American tourist dies while trekking on the famous Sandakphu-Phalut in Darjeeling Hills

An American tourist died while trekking to the famous Sandakphu-Phalut in the Darjeeling district. 69-year-old Glen Conway of USA died at Moley in between Sandakphu and Phalut. Divisional Forest Officer, Darjeeling Wildlife Division stated that Glen had started trekking in a group of 19 from Maneybhanjyang. They were accompanied by Dipesh Tamang, a guide. " The dead body is being brought down by the police from the Lhodhama police station for post mortem. As this is a remote area with no cell network, details of the death are awaited," stated Amit P Javalgi, Superintendent of Police, Darjeeling. Sandakphu at an altitude of 11,929 ft is the highest point of the state of West Bengal. 21 km away from Sandakphu is the second highest point on the Singhalila ridge–Phalut, at an altitude of  11,811 ft. Both Sandakphu and Phalut are world famous trekking destinations. The spots are located in the Singhalila National Park, one of the highest National Parks in the world. This National Park is a bio-diverse hotspot with a total area of 78.9 sq kms.

By Amitava Banerjee, Millennium Post

TMC-GNLF coalition back on track in Hills

The Trinamool Congress–Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) alliance is back on track with Aroop Biswas, TMC Observer for Darjeeling and Kalimpong clarifying that the violation of the seat-sharing formulae by both the parties was done deliberately as a part of the strategy. Though in Mirik and Kalimpong Municipal areas, the seat sharing equations have worked out well between the TMC and the GNLF, in Darjeeling and Kurseong there is some hitch. It was agreed upon that out of the 32 wards in Darjeeling, the TMC would field candidates in 20 wards and the GNLF in 12.  However, the TMC has fielded candidates in 21 wards and the GNLF in 12. In ward number 26 there are both TMC and GNLF candidates. The agreement also dictated that out of the 20 wards of Kurseong Municipality, the TMC would field candidates in 12 wards and the GNLF in 8. However, the TMC has fielded candidates in all 20 wards with the GNLF fielding candidates in 14. "This was part of the strategy. Darjeeling has a history of candidate intimidation, especially of the opposition parties. Both the GNLF and the TMC had fielded "dummy" candidates. They will be withdrawn with both the parties adhering to the seat sharing formulae," stated Biswas. He further added that in Darjeeling there would be 20 TMC and 12 GNLF; in Kurseong 13 TMC and 7 GNLF; in Kalimpong 19 TMC and 4 GNLF and in Mirik 7 TMC and 2 GNLF candidates. "The seat sharing alliance is intact and we will defeat the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha together. We will also campaign together," added Biswas. The TMC Observer held meetings with party supporters and candidates. "We discussed our campaign strategies. TMC youth president Abhishek  Banerjee will also be camping in the Hills. He is slated to arrive at the Hills on May 3," stated Biswas.  He also stated that the TMC-GNLF will lay stress on good governance, democracy and eradication of corruption along with civic issue. "Mamata Banerjee has done a lot of development in the Hills. The municipalities under the GJM have failed miserably. They have done nothing for the people," alleged Biswas. "We welcome the statements of minister Aroop Biswas regarding the coalition. We will also withdraw our dummy candidates," stated Neeraj Zimba, GNLF spokesperson Meanwhile, the candidature of Dhurba Bomzan who the GJM had projected as Chairman candidate of Mirik was rejected during scrutiny on Wednesday.  Along with this, the candidature of Sudha Lama Thapa, GJM candidate of ward 15; Laxmi Sunwar, JAP candidate of ward 19; and Balika Dorjee, Independent candidate of Ward 6 of Kalimpong municipality area were also rejected. 

By Amitava Banerjee, Millennium Post

24 Arms, 50 Round Ammunition Seized From Bengals Murshidabad Area - 5 People Arrested

West Bengal: Police arrested 5 people & seized 24 arms, 50 rounds of ammunition in two different raids, in Murshidabad.

The police has seized a haul of arms and ammunition in Murshidabad district and arrested five persons in this connection, a senior police officer said on Wednesday.

The police arrested a man from Sagardighi area of the district yesterday and seized some firearms from his possession, Superintendent of Police, Mukesh said.

On the basis of the information provided by the arrested man, the police raided some places in Khargram, Kandi and Lalbagh area of the district yesterday and seized 50 rounds of ammunition, 24 firearms including rifles and revolvers, the SP said.

The police also arrested four more persons, the SP added.