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Tripura health dept. works extra to pay homage to Dr. Kalam

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Photo Credit: oneindia.com
Photo Credit: oneindia.com

Agartala: Tripura health department officials and doctors worked on the second Saturday of the month to pay their respects to former president A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, who died in Shillong on July 27.

“Today being a second Saturday is an official holiday of Tripura government. But we have decided to do extra work today to show our respect to Dr Kalam,” Tripura health services director K.L. Bhowmik told a media outlet

He said the former president was personally involved in different ways with Tripura.

Kalam after becoming president on July 25, 2002, visited Tripura on October 4, 2002 in the first leg of his visit to north-east India.

During his two-day visit to Tripura, he inaugurated a heart care unit at the Govind Ballav Pant Hospital here, laid the foundation stone for a manufacturing unit of pineapple powder at Bodhjung Nagar industrial estate near here and interacted with the students of various schools and colleges.

Kalam, who was once member of the state planning board, also addressed the convocation of Tripura University on January 31, 2001 before becoming president.

As president, Kalam placed a Tripura artisans’ made replica of a bamboo-cane hut with a thatched roof in a corner of Rashtrapati Bhavan. Kalam gave a graphic description of the hut in his book “Turning Points: A Journey Through Challenges”.

(IANS)

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Journalist Killing Protest Creates Chaos, Leads to Shutdown in Tripura

Many activists of different political parties were injured in clashes as the BJP, Congress and other parties called a shutdown on Thursday to protest the killing of a journalist by a Tripura State Rifles (TSR) trooper

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Journalist killing
Journalist killing leads to clashes in Tripura. IANS.

Agartala, Nov 23: Many activists of different political parties were injured in clashes while normal life was hit in Left ruled Tripura as the BJP, Congress and other parties called a shutdown on Thursday to protest the killing of a journalist by a Tripura State Rifles (TSR) trooper.

“Around 25 activists of different political parties including BJP and CPI-M were injured following the clashes in various places across Tripura,” a police official said.

Police said around 600 activists of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and other parties were arrested for picketing in front of government offices in different parts of the state.

Most of the government, semi-government, private offices, educational institutions, shops and business establishments were closed due to the strike called by the BJP, the Congress, the Trinamool Congress and the Indigenous Nationalist Party of Tripura.

Banks and financial institutions were also closed in view of the shutdown, which was opposed by the ruling Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) led Left Front.

All vehicles, except those of security forces, went off the roads. The bandh did not affect flights and train services in and out of Tripura.

“The strike was successful and spontaneous,” state BJP President Biplab Kumar Deb said.

Security forces led by senior police officials have been deployed across the state to prevent any untoward incident.

According to police, TSR Second Battalion Rifleman Nandu Kumar Reang shot dead Sudip Datta Bhowmik, 50, at Radha Kishore Nagar, 25 km from Agartala, following an altercation on Tuesday. Reang was the bodyguard of Second Battalion Commandant Tapan Debbarma. The slain journalist had gone to meet Debbarma at the battalion headquarters.

Police have arrested both the trooper and the Commandant. The Chief Judicial Magistrate here sent the duo to 10 days in police custody.

The state government, which has handed over the case to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), also constituted a four-member Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the incident.

Bhowmik, who was a reporter with “Syandan Patrika” and television channel “Vanguard”, is survived by his wife, a government teacher, and two children.

Most of the local newspapers left their editorial blank on Thursday with a thick black border to register their strong protest over the killing.

Numerous theories and claims have surfaced regarding the reason behind the journalist’s killing, the second incident involving a media man in the state. Earlier, 28-year-old TV reporter Santanu Bhowmik was hacked to death while covering an event of a tribal party at Mandai in western Tripura on September 20.

“Syandan Patrikaa” editor and Tripura Newspaper Society President Subal Kumar Dey alleged that his reporter was targeted by the commandant as the former had written many stories against him in the newspaper.

“It was a pre-planned cold-blooded assassination and they tried to hide the body to destroy evidence. Bhowmik was killed as he had exposed the TSR commandant’s illegal acts,” Dey told the media.

Police, however, claim Bhowmik had stolen an envelope containing a huge amount of money or some confidential documents from Debbarma’s table while the latter was in the toilet after their meeting in the office chamber.

Tripura Governor Tathagata Roy, who is now in Delhi, has said that he will submit a report to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Bhowmik’s killing.

With the state Assembly polls due in February, the journalist’s murder has heated up the political atmosphere in the Left ruled state.

The ruling CPI-M criticised the BJP for politicising the killing of the journalist.

“The ‘bandh’ called by BJP is totally undemocratic. It would hamper normal lives and especially the annual examinations started in schools and ongoing revision of electoral rolls for the next Assembly elections,” CPI-M Central Committee member Gautam Das said.

The Congress has demanded a high-level inquiry into the murder. The BJP has demanded the resignation of Chief Minister Manik Sarkar.

Various journalists organisations in the northeast including the Tripura Working Journalists Association, Tripura Journalists Union (TJU) and the Agartala Press Club have also denounced the killing and demanded a probe.

The TJU has also demanded the resignation of the state Home Minister, a portfolio held by Sarkar. (IANS)

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Indian and Bangladeshi Officials Discuss Cross-Border Crimes and other irritants in a one-day meet

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Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi shakes hand with his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina, VOA

Agartala, May 24, 2017: Administrative and police officials of border districts in India’s Tripura have finalized strategies to deal with cross-border crimes and deal with other irritants in a one-day meet with their counterparts of contiguous Bangladeshi districts, an official said here on Wednesday.

The District Magistrates and Superintendents of Police of Tripura’s Sepahijala, West Tripura, and Khowai districts held a day-long meeting in Comilla in eastern Bangladesh on Monday with their counterparts from Comilla, Brahmanbaria, Habiganj, and Moulvibazar, Sepahijala District Magistrate Pradip Chakraborty told IANS.

“During the joint border conference, discussions about cross-border smuggling, drug trafficking, terrorism, management of anti-sabotage activities, drainage water treatment, problems relating to border residents have been discussed and some strategies were finalized to deal with these issues,” he said.

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Chakraborty, who was the team leader of the Indian delegation, said that sports and cultural festivals in the border districts were also discussed.

“The joint border conferences between India and Bangladesh are being held in a regular interval for positive solutions of different issues between the two countries. There were also discussions on the aim of establishing border peace through the cooperation of the district administrations of the two neighbouring countries,” he added.

Strategies to deal with border crimes, border fencing and better border management, besides issues relating to terrorism are also some times discussed in the joint conference.

Chakraborty said that in response to the demand of the Bangladesh, West Tripura district administration has initiated a process to set up a sewerage treatment plant to treat the dirty water of Howrah canal, which flows into Bangladesh.

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He also said that as part of their steps against the drug menace, Sepahijala district administration along destroyed 17 lakh ganja (cannabis) trees last year. “We have told the Bangladeshi officials to make social awareness against the use of drugs by the youth,” he said.

The Comilla meeting also discussed about land acquisition for the proposed Agartala-Akhaura 15-km rail link.

He said that the district level border conferences involving other districts of Tripura and the adjoining districts of Bangladesh were already held earlier this year and last year.

A Tripura Home Department official said that to resolve border-related problems, district-level officials from both India and Bangladesh have resumed meetings since 2015 after a gap of many years. (IANS)

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Police recover 127 Grenades buried underground in Northern Tripura

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In Tripura (Representational Image), Wikimedia

Agartala, May 8, 2017: Police recovered 127 grenades buried underground in northern Tripura, an official said here on Monday.

Students while playing near a central school at Gaurnagar late on Sunday found the grenades. They informed their elders, who immediately alerted the police, the official added.

“So far 127 old grenades have been recovered buried in the soil. Digging works are still on. Bomb squad and forensic team are also at the spot,” he said.

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Local villagers said that the grenades might have been buried during the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971.

Historian Bikach Chowdhury said Tripura had six to seven camps in four sectors from where the Bangladeshi ‘Mukti Joddhas’ (freedom fighters) fought Pakistani forces after taking arms training in Tripura.

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“Over 1,600,000 Bangladeshis — a number larger than the state’s then total population of 1,500,000 — had taken shelter in Tripura alone,” he said.

The nine-month-long “Mukti Juddho” (Liberation War) later turned into a full-scale India-Pakistan War, leading to the surrender of nearly 93,000 Pakistani soldiers in Dhaka on December 16, 1971.

Tripura shares 856 km borders with Bangladesh. (IANS)