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100 units collected by Rotary Club Dehradun Central's blood donation camp

Dehradun : Rotary, an organization with a global presence is known to all for its service and efforts towards making the world a better place to live. Rotary Club Dehradun Central made a huge difference today by collecting 100 blood units from a one day blood donation camp.

The camp was organised in collaboration with the Blood Bank of Shri Mahand Indresh Hospital at the premices of Beehive College, Selaqui and was innaugrated by the Executive Director of Beehive college Mr. Atul Kapoor. Rotary Club members along with the blood bank team motivated the students and the staff of the colege.

A total of 100 units of blood was collected from the students, staff members and some other donors.

The Shri Mahant Indresh Blood Bank team was represented by Dr. Vijay Bharadwaj and Mr. Amit.

Rotary Club Team was repested by the President Dr. N.S. Virdi, DGE Col. Dilip Patnaik, PP Rtn. Kailash Gulati, Teasurer Rtn. Amit Agarwal, Director Col. P.K. Ahluwalia, Rtn. Rajesh Goyal, Rtn. Jagdish Kapoor, Rtn. Saket Ahuja and other members.

The camp and donor organisation was very well coordinated by the Behive team of Mr. Mandeep, Dr. Mayank and Dr. Reena Joshi.




Asaram's judicial custody extended

Jaipur : Spiritual guru Asaram Bapu, arrested for sexually assaulting a minor girl, will continue to languish in jail as a court in Rajasthan Monday extended his judicial custody for 14 days, police said.
The 72-year-old Asaram was Monday presented before court of district and sessions judge (Jodhpur rural).
"Asaram was presented in the court following completion of his judicial custody today (Monday). Earlier, he appeared before the same court Sep 2. The court then remanded him to judicial custody till Sep 16," a police official told IANS.
He said the court Monday extended Asaram's judicial remand till Sep 30.
A 16-year-old girl on Aug 20 lodged a police complaint, accusing Asaram of sexually assaulting her at his ashram near Jodhpur.
Asaram was arrested from his ashram in Indore, Madhya Pradesh, and brought to Jodhpur Sep 1.
Immediately after his arrest, Asaram filed an application for bail in the same court, which rejected the plea Sep 4.
Asaram also filed a bail application in the Jodhpur bench of the Rajasthan High Court. Eminent advocate Ram Jethmalani will appear for Asaram.

An Indian American becomes Miss America for the first time

 Atlantic City : To the delight of tens of thousands of Indian Americans, a growing, influential and visible community in the United States, Miss New York, 24-year-old, Nina Davuluri has become the first person of Indian descent to be crowned Miss America.

As the famous beauty pageant returned to Atlantic City, New Jersey, after a six-year stint in Las Vegas, Davuluri from Syracuse sashayed off with the tiara and the $50,000 scholarship cash as she was chosen to succeed former Miss New York, Mallory Hagan.
Davuluri, who was also the first Indian-American to serve as Miss New York, performed a Bollywood dance for the talent part, answered a question about plastic surgery and hopes to become a doctor, like her father.
Davuluri studied at St. Joseph High School and University of Michigan. Her scholastic honours include Dean's List; Michigan Merit Award; National Honour Society She competed on the platform issue of "Celebrating Diversity through Cultural Competency" showcasing her talent of "Classical Bollywood Fusion," according to Miss America organisation.
Earlier, after a night of big numbers, endless crowd cheering, swimsuit strutting, dancing, singing, the 53 Miss America contestants representing 50 states, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands were narrowed down to one winner, according to USA Today.
The 53 contestants introduced themselves in a taped segment with those quippy catchphrases, including "Listening to your phone calls from the Nation's Capital. Just kidding! I'm Miss District of Columbia, Bindhu Pamarthi."
The nearly 100-year-old pageant which debuted in 1921 was televised live by ABC, which picked up the contest again in 2011 after dropping it in 2004 because of a steep ratings decline.
The judges were 2004 Miss America winner Deidre Downs Gunn, the New York Knicks' Amar'e Stoudemire, Lance Bass from the boy band 'N Sync, comedian Mario Cantone, violinist Joshua Bell and television chef Carla Hall.

PM, Sonia in Muzaffarnagar

Muzaffarnagar : Prime Minister Manmohan Singh along with Congress president Sonia Gandhi reached Uttar Pradesh's violence-hit Muzaffarnagar district Monday.
As many as 48 people were killed in the riots in the western town of Muzaffarnagar that began Sep 7. More than 43,000 people have been displaced and are currently taking shelter in 38 relief camps.

Pakistan again violates ceasefire

Jammu : Pakistani troops fired at Indian positions in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir, violating the bilateral ceasefire twice since Sunday, an army spokesman said Monday.
"Pakistani troops fired at our positions in Mandi and Garhi areas of the Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch district late yesterday (Sunday), army spokesman Col. R.K. Kalia told IANS.
The exchange of fire continued till early Monday, he said.
"Pakistan used small arms, automatics and mortars, firing at our positions at 11.30 p.m. yesterday (Sunday). Our troops retaliated with equal calibre weapons. Exchange of fire ended at 3.45 a.m. today (Monday)," he said.
This was the second violation of the bilateral ceasefire by Pakistan since Sunday in Poonch district.
The ceasefire agreement was signed by the two neighbours in November 2003. It had brought normalcy in the lives of thousands of people living close to the border.
India has been accusing Pakistan of unprovoked violation of the ceasefire agreement since the beginning of the year.
On Friday, India's External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid and Pakistani prime minister's adviser on foreign affairs and national security, Sartaj Aziz, met in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, and agreed to respect the LoC ceasefire agreement.
Just two days after the meet, Pakistan violated the ceasefire.

Uttarakhand havoc impacts Himachal pilgrimage

Shimla : The impact of the floods in Uttarakhand mid-June this year, that left hundreds dead, is now seen in Himachal Pradesh with a massive decline in the numbers of pilgrims undertaking the annual Manimahesh Yatra, officials said Sunday.
Friday last, the 16-day pilgrimage to the Manimahesh Lake in the Bharmour Valley in Chamba district, sacred to Lord Shiva, concluded. The pilgrimage is considered just as arduous as Uttarakhand's Char Dham Yatra.
There was a six-fold decline in the number of pilgrims, as compared to previous years, officials said. 
The yatra, which concluded Friday, was undertaken by 76,222 pilgrims, who included 10,534 women. Last year, over 500,000 people undertook the pilgrimage. 
Sub-divisional magistrate and pilgrimage in-charge Jitender Kanwar said there was decline in the arrival not only of pilgrims but also tourists.
"This may be due to intense rains in the Kedarnath-Badrinath sector that unleashed death and destruction," he said.
Kanwar also attributed the decline in arrival of the pilgrims to the shorter duration of the yatra this year.
"Last year, the pilgrimage was of 45 days; this time, it was just for 16 days. This might be the reason for the low arrival," he said. 
Officially, the pilgrimage was from Aug 28 to Sep 13, but devotees started trekking on the route even before this, Kanwar said. 
"According to our estimates, around 50,000 devotees visited the lake before the onset of the official yatra," he said.
Every year, the Manimahesh pilgrimage begins on the eve of Janmashtami festival dedicated to Lord Krishna's birth and concludes with Radhashtami (the birth of Lord Krishna's consort Radha).
Officials said even during the annual "Chhari Yatra" or the procession of Lord Shiva's mace, which started from the 1,000-year-old Lakshmi Narayan temple in Chamba town to the Manimahesh Lake a week before the culmination of the pilgrimage, there was notable decline in the participation of sadhus or ascetics.
Taking a lesson from Uttarakhand's disaster, the state government this time made it mandatory for devotees to get themselves registered for the yatra.
Every year, devotees undertake the arduous 14-km trek from the Hadsar base camp, 65 km from Chamba town, some 450 km from here, to the oval-shaped, glacial-fed Manimahesh Lake, located at an altitude of 13,500 feet, from where they can see Mount Kailash, believed to be the abode of Lord Shiva, and offer prayers.
During the pilgrimage this year, three people died. There were six deaths last year.  

Three months later, Kedarnath still in shambles

Dehradun : Three months after tragedy struck the pilgrim town of Kedarnath, it still remains cut off with no approach roads, bodies still trapped under mounds of debris and scared villagers migrating to the cities - with some even planning to never return to the hill region exalted as the 'Land of Gods'.
Though the doors of the Kedarnath shrine opened Wednesday and puja was performed for the first time after heavy rains and floods during June 15-17 devastated the region and killed hundreds of people in Uttarakhand, the big challenge before the state government continues to be to provide relief and rehabilitation to the many rendered homeless in Kedarnath and surrounding areas.
"The inclement weather conditions continue to prevail in the Kedar valley and the only possible connectivity to the region is through helicopters, which gets affected in rain. It will get worse with winters approaching," local legislator Shaila Rani Rawat told IANS.
She said the Kedarnath temple was cleaned and prepared for puja, but the rest of the area is still covered under rubble.
"There are big boulders and smashed structures of building. They are still lying untouched. To remove those one needs heavy machines and other equipment. As there is no road connectivity till now, it is difficult to clear off the rubble," Rawat added.
Many NGOs working in the area say hundreds of bodies are still buried in the debris around the temple.
According to Durga Prasad, an Action Aid network coordinator working in area, the real picture about the number of people dead and affected in the flash floods will only be known after September when the rains would stop.
He says as of now, some semi-permanent roads are being built manually so that mules and porters can carry the relief material to the region.
All roads leading to Guptkashi, Uttarkashi, Joshimath, Alaknanda and Gangotri - the worst affected in the flash floods - continue to remain closed for traffic.
"There is a lot of relief material coming, but not everything is reaching the affected people due to logistic reasons. Many trucks carrying relief material are dumping the stuff midway as there is no way they can reach the villages," Prasad told IANS.
"Many people have even stopped coming to collect the relief material as they had to travel 10-30 km in difficult terrain and inclement weather. So we are trying to reach to them by taking the relief material on mules and porters," Prasad added.
Distress migration is emerging out to be another major problem for the Uttarakhand government as people from hills are moving to Dehradun, Rishikesh, Nainital and other cities in search of livelihood and out of fear.
"For the first time in my memory, hills are scaring people and post-tragedy they are migrating from hills to plains in large numbers," union Water Resource Minister Harish Rawat told IANS.      
Rawat, who hails from Almora, feels migration from hills is the biggest problem after rehabilitation and reconstruction.  
"We have to instil confidence among people that they are not alone in this moment of trouble and ensure the whole country is with them," said Rawat.
Chandan Kumar, national coordinator, Bonded Labour Eradication Programme, says people in hills are worried about the future and signs of distress migration are already showing. 
"Most of the people, who lost their lives, are between the age group of 18-35. Those youths who survived the floods are now gearing up to migrate to the cities, leaving behind their frail old folks - leaving behind a sustainable life they were leading till a month ago," said Chandan Kumar, who had worked in the area initially.
It is not that poor but many rich people have also moved to plains after losing everything to the devastating floods.
"I will never go back to hills as I have lost everything, property and family in flash floods this year. I have decided to settle in Dehradun now," Leeladhar Jagudi, a Padmashri awardee and poet, told IANS.
Jagudi had lost seven family members, including eldest son, in the 1974 floods in the state and his hotel was washed away in the  2012 floods. He had suffered huge losses in this year's tragedy too. 
There are also reports of people selling their land to big realtors and migrating to plains.
"We have been told that many big real estate companies are buying land from local people at throwaway prices," said a member of an NGO on condition of anonymity.

Four to be hanged for Dec 16 gang rape

 New Delhi : As a nation waited for the judgement with bated breath, a judge Friday just took only a few minutes to sentence four men to death for the merciless gang rape of a young woman in Delhi last December resulting in her death.

Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna, who presided over a fast-track court, said their "hair rising beastly and unparalleled behaviour" definitely qualified it as one of the "rarest of rare cases.
"Hence, I award the following punishment to each of the convict," the judge said, symbolically breaking the nib of the pen. 
"Accordingly, the convicts be hanged by neck till they are dead."
The four men - Mukesh (26), Pawan Gupta (19), Vinay Sharma (20) and Akshay Thakur (28)- were convicted Tuesday in the case that shook the nation and got global attention.
The judge sentenced the four to death for murdering the 23-year-old trainee physiotherapist. On Tuesday he had found the four guilty on 11 counts, including murder, gang rape and dacoity.
"The subjecting of the prosecutrix (victim) to inhuman acts of torture before her death had not only shocked the collective conscience but calls for the withdrawal of the protective arm of the community around the convicts," the judgement said. 
"These are the times when gruesome crimes against women have become rampant and courts cannot turn a blind eye to the need to send a strong deterrent message to the perpetrators of such crimes," the court said.
"The increasing trend of crimes against women can be arrested only once the society realize that there will be no tolerance from any form of deviance against women and more so in extreme cases of brutality such as the present one and hence the criminal justice system must instill confidence in the minds of people especially the women.
"The crime of such nature against a helpless women, per se, require exemplary punishment," he added.
As soon as the judge read out the sentence, Vinay Sharma fell down and started crying "Sir ji, Sir ji (please sir, please sir)" addressing the judge.
But soon the police took all the accused away.
Additional Public Prosecutor Dayan Krishnan said after the judgement was delivered: "All I can say is that I have done my job. I have never seen brutality like this."
He added that now the judgment will go to the Delhi High Court for the confirmation and the process take a maximum of 30 days.
Mukesh's lawyer V.K. Anand said: "We will appeal in the high court. This did not deserve death sentence."
After the judgment was announced, there was loud cheering outside the District Court, Saket, where hundreds of people had gathered since noon.
The 23-year-old woman was brutally gang raped on a moving bus by six people, including a juvenile. The accused then threw her and her male companion out of the vehicle -- without clothes -- on the cold December night.
The woman died of her grave intestinal injuries Dec 29 at Singapore's Mount Elizabeth Hospital.
One of the six accused was found dead in a cell in Delhi's Tihar Jail while a juvenile involved in the crime was Aug 31 sent by the Juvenile Justice Board to a reform home for three years, the maximum under the juvenile law.

Muzaffarnagar peaceful, death toll climbs to 43

Muzaffarnagar : The riot-ravaged Muzaffarnagar district in Uttar Pradesh was calm for a third day Thursday, with the authorities relaxing curfew for seven hours, even as the death toll went up to 43.
Out of the deaths, 38 people have died in Muzaffarnagar alone, three in Baghpat and one each in Saharanpur and Meerut, a state home department official said. 
Curfew will be relaxed for 12 hours Friday as the situation is fast improving, the official said.
The government sent in additional food supplies, gas cylinders and foodgrain to the city as markets had been shut for more than five days.
Meanwhile, the district administration cracked down on political leaders headed towards Muzaffarnagar, the state's sugar capital and home to four million people, and arrested a dozen legislators and 151 of their supporters. 
Prominent among those who were arrested included senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Kalraj Mishra and Civil Aviation Minister and Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) chief Ajit Singh. Both were released after some hours.
The district administration also initiated the process of meetings with "shanti samitis (peace committees) and warned people to be careful of rumours and crosscheck with the authorities before reacting. 
A government spokesman also announced that Rs.1 lakh has been announced as a reward for anybody giving information on the person who uploaded the inflammatory and fake video clip on YouTube after which people resorted to violence.
The government clarified that the video clip said to be of Kawal village was in fact two years old and of an incident in northwest Pakistan. Though the video was blocked Aug 30, police officials said the clip was distributed through CDs, pen drives, and shared on social media  websites.
With the Samajwadi Party government cracking the whip after coming widespread criticism, senior police officials, including two additional generals, are among those deployed in Muzaffarnagar.
The Akhilesh Yadav government has also cracked down on local police, suspending the station house officials of Fugana, Bhaurakala, Shahpur and Meerpur in Muzaffarnagar and attaching them to the state police chief's office.
The station house officials of Bamnauli, Badaut and Wazidpur in Baghpat have also been suspended for failing in control the situation, while circle officer and station house official of Mawana in Meerut were removed.
Meanwhile, the number of people placed under preventive detention rose to 12,000 by evening and the number of arm licenses that were cancelled stood at 2,300.  
"The first half of the week has gone in controlling the violence and we are now focused on bringing life back to normal and the process of identifying people affected by the riots - deaths, injuries, loss of property be it home or commercial establishments," an official said.
Home Secretary Kamal Saxena said that 10 shelter camps for the displaced have been set up in which roughly 10,000 people have taken refuge. The relaxation in curfew has also taken place at the hours will be increased further, he added.
Police officials meanwhile have been a door to door checking operations to identify "any remnants of mobs" and have since confiscated a large amount of ammunition, including 41 cartridges of AK-47 assault rifles. 
Communal clashes erupted in Muzaffarnagar Saturday after simmering discontent over a case of harassment Aug 27 in which three people were killed.