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Nurse recruitment scam accused nabbed in Abu Dhabi

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Thiruvananthapuram: A Keralite was arrested in Abu Dhabi on Thursday for his alleged involvement in the Rs.200 crore nurse recruitment scam in Kerala, a CBI officer said.

A Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officer told a media outlet that M. Varghese Uthup, 48, was arrested by Interpol officers with the help of UAE officials. His name was included in the Interpol’s list of wanted people in July.

“Even though the arrests have been made, there are lots of procedures to be followed before he is actually brought to Kerala. It could even take more than a week for all the formalities to be conducted and only after that will he brought to Kochi, where the case has been registered,” said the CBI official on condition of anonymity.

Uthup’s anticipatory bail was rejected by the Kerala High Court in June, following which the CBI was working with the authorities to seek Interpol’s help.

Uthup runs a travel agency in UAE and ever since he was on the run after failing to appear before the CBI, he was moving between UAE and Kuwait.

After his anticipatory bail was rejected by the Kerala High Court, he is reported to have approached the Supreme Court but the CBI sources here said that they have no idea of such a thing as no notice was served to them.

Uthup has been charged with cheating, criminal conspiracy with a public servant to commit criminal misconduct under the Prevention of Corruption Act, and collection of excess service charge from emigrants.

Uthup’s Kochi-based recruiting firm is alleged to have been recruiting nurses to Kuwait and instead of collecting a service charge of Rs.19,500, it was collecting Rs.19.5 lakh.

Reports indicate that they have recruited close to 1,000 nurses in the past one year.

Uthup came under scanner two months ago when a raid by the Income Tax department found huge sums of unaccounted money at his recruitment agency in Kochi.

The CBI stepped in after a nurse who had paid fees to the agency but later decided not to take up the job, alleged that she did not get her money back.

She said she approached the Protector of Emigrants (PoE) L. Adolfus for help to get her money back from the recruitment agency but got a cold response.

Adolfus, an accused in the same case, who was arrested by the CBI in June, got bail last month.

(IANS)

 

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First Hindu Temple Lays Foundation Stone in Abu Dhabi

The temple will be built in phases with all the pink stones and marble being transported from Rajasthan to the UAE capital, the Khaleej Times said

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The temple is being built on 13.5 acres (55,000 square metres) of land gifted by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan to the Indian community. Wikimedia

The historic foundation stone-laying ceremony of the first traditional Hindu temple in Abu Dhabi was performed on Saturday in the presence of officials from India and the United Arab Emirates as well as thousands of members of the community.

The ceremony was presided over by Mahant Swami Maharaj — the spiritual leader of BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha — the organisation building the temple, along with other priests. Indian Ambassador Navdeep Suri attended the event in the presence of over 2,500 Indians from the UAE and across the world, according to Gulf News.

Suri and BAPS Hindu Mandir committee head and community leader B.R. Shetty were among those who laid foundation stones. Some 50 priests from India were part of the ceremony, the Khaleej Times reported.

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Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. Wikimedia

UAE’s Minister of Climate Change Thani Al Zoyoudi and Ahmad Bilhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education and Advanced Sciences, were among the attendees.  The temple will be built in phases with all the pink stones and marble being transported from Rajasthan to the UAE capital, the Khaleej Times said.

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The stones of the temple will be hand-carved by artisans in India and then transported to Abu Dhabi. Once completed, this will be the first traditional Hindu stone temple in the Middle East.

The temple is being built on 13.5 acres (55,000 square metres) of land gifted by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan to the Indian community. (IANS)