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Jayalalithaa keeps poll options open, calls on cadre to ‘destroy rivals’ and counter their ‘big lies’

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Separatist leader Masarat Alam re-arrested after release

Pakistani flags were allegedly waved in the rally, following which a case was registered against him. He had been released only a month back after detention of over four years under multiple PSA orders.
Bhat ran the 2010 agitation when the other top separatist leaders were caged.

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Also ReadIndiaDMK chief slams Centre’s decision on LPG subsidyIndiaCensus 2011: Sikhs, Jains have the worst sex ratioIndiaCentre sanctions 4227 additional posts for Delhi PoliceIndiaStarting 2016, devotees can’t wear jeans, leggings, bermudas to Tamil Nadu templesIndiaWill finalise electoral strategy for Tamil Nadu assembly polls at appropriate time: JayalalithaaIndiaNepal’s KP Oli calls up PM Modi; discusses political situation in Nepal <!– /.block –>

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Census 2011: Sikhs, Jains have the worst sex ratio

Work participation rate for total population stands at 39.8 per cent and, by religious communities it is 41.0 per cent (Hindus), 32.6 per cent (Muslims), 41.9 per cent (Christians), 36.3 per cent (Sikhs), 43.1 per cent (Buddhists) and 35.5 per cent (Jains).

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Also ReadIndiaDMK chief slams Centre’s decision on LPG subsidyIndiaCensus 2011: Sikhs, Jains have the worst sex ratioIndiaCentre sanctions 4227 additional posts for Delhi PoliceIndiaStarting 2016, devotees can’t wear jeans, leggings, bermudas to Tamil Nadu templesIndiaWill finalise electoral strategy for Tamil Nadu assembly polls at appropriate time: JayalalithaaIndiaNepal’s KP Oli calls up PM Modi; discusses political situation in Nepal <!– /.block –>

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Centre sanctions 4227 additional posts for Delhi Police

He said that the augmentation of manpower in Delhi Police will improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the force. “It will in turn improve the quality of investigation, expedite filing of charge sheets in a professional manner and also accelerate the rate of disposal of the cases,” Singh said. “The newly sanctioned posts will comprise of SI/ASI — 1409, Head Constable — 1409 and Constable — 1409. The sanction of the additional posts will be operationalised in two phases — 50 per cent posts in 2016-17 and remaining 50 per cent posts in 2017-18,” a statement from the Home Ministry said. <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

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Also ReadIndiaDMK chief slams Centre’s decision on LPG subsidyIndiaCensus 2011: Sikhs, Jains have the worst sex ratioIndiaCentre sanctions 4227 additional posts for Delhi PoliceIndiaStarting 2016, devotees can’t wear jeans, leggings, bermudas to Tamil Nadu templesIndiaWill finalise electoral strategy for Tamil Nadu assembly polls at appropriate time: JayalalithaaIndiaNepal’s KP Oli calls up PM Modi; discusses political situation in Nepal <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Census 2011: Sikhs, Jains have the worst sex ratio<!– /.block –>Investment in electronics manufacturing at Rs 1.14 lakh crore: Telecom Minister<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
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President Pranab Mukherjee leaves for Delhi after southern sojourn

The Rashtrapati Nilayam is one of the Presidential Retreats in the country. Located at Bolarum, Secunderabad here, the Nilayam was built during the Nizam era and it was handed over to the Government of India after Independence. The single-storey building is located in a 90-acre estate.

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Also ReadIndiaDMK chief slams Centre’s decision on LPG subsidyIndiaCensus 2011: Sikhs, Jains have the worst sex ratioIndiaCentre sanctions 4227 additional posts for Delhi PoliceIndiaStarting 2016, devotees can’t wear jeans, leggings, bermudas to Tamil Nadu templesIndiaWill finalise electoral strategy for Tamil Nadu assembly polls at appropriate time: JayalalithaaIndiaNepal’s KP Oli calls up PM Modi; discusses political situation in Nepal <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Will India crack down on errant financial firms’ way of raising funds?<!– /.block –>IAS officer from SC community converts to Islam, takes VRS claiming ‘victimization'<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
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Lalu Prasad Yadav ‘Super CM’ of Bihar: Sushil Modi

“Prasad used to settle issues like kidnapping and extortion at his level during Rabri Devi’s rule, an intervention he wants to make during the Nitish Kumar government too,” Modi alleged. Modi said Prasad was sending a “terse” message to Kumar that there was a scope of more ministers from his party to join the Cabinet.

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DMDK Chief Vijayakanth hits back at Jayalalithaa for criticising his party workers <!– /.block –>
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Also ReadIndiaRespect for Indians grew after PM Modi’s foreign visits, says Sushma SwarajIndiaCPI(M) thinking about introducing retirement policy in partyIndiaHeroin trade strained India-UK relations in 1980s: UK filesIndiaPM Modi to visit Noida on Thursday, UP CM Akhilesh Yadav to give it a missIndiaCongress dubs Centre’s Smart City project as ‘unconstitutional’IndiaOdd-even formula: Delhi govt tells agencies to allow date-wise parking <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Gurgaon to install household solid waste treatment plants<!– /.block –>DMDK Chief Vijayakanth hits back at Jayalalithaa for criticising his party workers<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
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2 crore people in flood-affected Tamil Nadu get a call from CM Jayalalithaa

The use of social media and mobile phones to relay Jayalalithaa’s messages is seen as a strong pre-poll strategy for the Tamil Nadu Assembly elections that are coming up in a few months time.

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Odd-even scheme: Why are women and two-wheelers exempt, asks High Court <!– /.block –>
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Also ReadIndiaOdd-even scheme: Why are women and two-wheelers exempt, asks High CourtIndiaNo vehicle would be challaned during ‘dry run’: Delhi governmentIndiaGovt to introduce two years’ ‘work from home’ option for women under Maternity Benefits ActIndiaDDCA row: Now, Kirti Azad targets BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur, Scindia, Praful PatelIndiaJ&K CM Mufti Mohammad Sayeed ill, on oxygen therapy, say AIIMS doctors IndiaChennai Floods: Over 195 crore contributed to CM’s public relief fund <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Shocking! Parth Samthaan accuses producer Vikas Gupta of molestation<!– /.block –>Odd-even scheme: Why are women and two-wheelers exempt, asks High Court<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
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Odd-even scheme: Why are women and two-wheelers exempt, asks High Court

Violators of the scheme would attract a penalty of Rs. 2,000. VIPs, women drivers, CNG-certified vehicles, two-wheelers and those carrying the differently-abled are among the 25 categories which will be exempted from the scheme.

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No vehicle would be challaned during ‘dry run’: Delhi government <!– /.block –>
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Also ReadIndiaOdd-even scheme: Why are women and two-wheelers exempt, asks High CourtIndiaNo vehicle would be challaned during ‘dry run’: Delhi governmentIndiaGovt to introduce two years’ ‘work from home’ option for women under Maternity Benefits ActIndiaDDCA row: Now, Kirti Azad targets BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur, Scindia, Praful PatelIndiaJ&K CM Mufti Mohammad Sayeed ill, on oxygen therapy, say AIIMS doctors IndiaChennai Floods: Over 195 crore contributed to CM’s public relief fund <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>2 crore people in flood-affected Tamil Nadu get a call from CM Jayalalithaa<!– /.block –>No vehicle would be challaned during ‘dry run’: Delhi government<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
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Chennai Floods: Over 195 crore contributed to CM’s public relief fund

Director of Tamil eveninger ‘Malai Murasu,’ R Kannan Adithan, gave Rs one crore, the release said, adding Rs 195.43 crore has been contributed towards the CMPRF.

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Also ReadIndia2 crore people in flood-affected Tamil Nadu get a call from CM JayalalithaaIndiaOdd-even scheme: Why are women and two-wheelers exempt, asks High CourtIndiaNo vehicle would be challaned during ‘dry run’: Delhi governmentIndiaGovt to introduce two years’ ‘work from home’ option for women under Maternity Benefits ActIndiaDDCA row: Now, Kirti Azad targets BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur, Scindia, Praful PatelIndiaJ&K CM Mufti Mohammad Sayeed ill, on oxygen therapy, say AIIMS doctors <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>’The Big Bang Theory’ makers sued for ripping off ‘Soft Kitty’ song<!– /.block –>Modi wants to weed out non-performers; can’t find right replacements<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
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Puducherry government announces Rs 114.45 crore flood relief for affected families

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Puducherry government is disbursing Rs 114.45 crore towards payment of flood relief to more than 2.86 lakh families affected by the floods. Each affected family would get Rs 4,000.

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Puducherry government is disbursing Rs 114.45 crore towards payment of flood relief to more than 2.86 lakh families affected by the floods. Each affected family would get Rs 4,000.The payment was being made to all families covered under Public Distribution System through their bank accounts under ‘direct benefit transfer’ system, an official release said.Also read: Chennai floods: PM Modi announces Rs 1,000 crore relief, TN CM Jayalalithaa demands addl Rs 5000 crore<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It said those who were yet to have a bank account could open them under ‘zero balance’ scheme with the banks after submitting address proof.For details of getting the relief, cardholders could approach taluk offices or the directorate of Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs or the Collector’s office the release said.

Six Tamil Nadu fishermen arrested by Lankan navy

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On December 17, four Tamil Nadu fishermen were arrested for fishing near Neduntheevu islet off Lanka.

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Six fishermen of Pudukottai district were arrested by Sri Lankan navy while they were fishing near the Lankan coast, authorities said on Sunday.Assistant director of the fisheries department, Sekar, said the fishermen of Jegathapattinam village were fishing at Neduntheevu last night when the Lankan navy arrested them.The fishermen along with their boat were later taken to Kangesanthurai, he added. On December 17, four Tamil Nadu fishermen were arrested for fishing near Neduntheevu islet off Lanka.Chief Minister Jayalalithaa recently sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s intervention in securing the release of 41 fishermen from the state detained in Sri Lanka, besides 56 boats.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

Chennai floods: Arun Jaitley, Kalraj Mishra to visit city this weekend

Naidu suggested the ministers to study the situation and take early steps for survey and settlement of insurance claims for the damages suffered by the industry

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu has apprised the Prime Minister over the floods and relief work in Chennai and his colleagues Arun Jaitley and Kalraj Mishra have said they would visit the city this weekend to take steps to revive affected industrial units. Naidu had visited the flood affected areas of Chennai on December 12 and 13 and held discussions with Chief Minister Jayalalithaa over the floods, losses and relief work. “After his return from Chennai, Naidu met the Prime Minister and appraised him about the relief and rehabilitation measures carried out to mitigate the suffering of people. “He brought to the notice of the PM about the heavy damages suffered by the industrial sector most notably the MSME and Small Scale Industries,” a statement from the minister’s office said today.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Naidu also met Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley and Minister for Small and Medium Enterprises, Kalraj Mishra and briefed them about the losses suffered by industrial sector notably the MSME and Small Scale Industries due to unprecedented heavy rains and floods in Chennai as well as other neighbouring areas. “Both the Ministers have promised to visit Chennai over the coming weekend and take necessary steps for early revival of MSME and SSI industries,” it said. The Ambattur industrial cluster, the largest MSME and SSI cluster in Tamil Nadu, has also suffered huge damage. There has been extensive damage to machineries, raw materials, finished products, installations and also building exteriors.Naidu suggested the ministers to study the situation and take early steps for survey and settlement of insurance claims for the damages suffered by the industry.”Other relief measures such as restructuring of loans, extending soft loans with low interest rates etc should also be considered in order to come out of the situation,” it said.In view of representations during his visit that a cause for flooding was due to encroachments in riverbeds like Adyar, he told Modi that long-term measures like removal of encroachments, alternate housing for poor had to be taken up. “Naidu informed the Prime Minister that he had assured the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister of maximum support under the Housing for All programme after receiving a proposal,” the statement added.

Karuna dismisses clarification from AIADMK; seeks probe on water release issue

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‘I will be with you at any time’, CM Jayalalithaa tells flood-hit people of Tamil Nadu

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Schools, colleges reopen in Tamil Nadu

As there has been dry weather over last few days and normal life is getting restored, schools and colleges reopened on Monday.

Schools, colleges reopen in Tamil Nadu

ANI
After torrential rains and floods forced their closure for nearly a month, schools and colleges in Chennai and its neighbouring districts reopened on Monday.Soon after the onset of North East Monsoon in October, incessant rains hampered normal life with the city recording heavy rainfall last week that led to inundation of large areas. Essential commodities took a hit while educational institutions were closed particularly those in Chennai, Kancheepuram, Thiruvallur and Cuddalore districts.As there has been dry weather over last few days and normal life is getting restored, schools and colleges reopened on Monday.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>University examinations have already been postponed by the Government. Chief Minister Jayalalithaa had requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to postpone the civil services examinations scheduled from December 18 to 23 for at least for two months to enable the students from Tamil Nadu to take up the examinations with “adequate preparation”.

Chennai floods: Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa grants solatium to kin of 23 dead

She condoled the demise of the victims of rains and flood and granted the solatium from the Disaster Relief Fund

J Jayalalithaa

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa today granted a solatium of Rs four lakh each to the kin of 23 people killed in rain-related incidents in the State.All the victims were killed in the first week of this month in Kanchipuram district.She condoled the demise of the victims of rains and flood and granted the solatium from the Disaster Relief Fund, an official release here said.Drowning, wall-collapse and electrocution were the major reasons listed for the deaths of 23 people.Also, she granted a solatium of Rs four lakh to the next of kin of a Chennai Corporation sanitary worker, who died of heart attack while on work in a flood-hit area in Chennai on Friday.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

Centre declares Tamil Nadu floods as ‘calamity of severe nature’; Opposition slams govt

DMK President M Karunanidhi levelled allegations of red-tapism, citing news reports. He sought the government’s response on allegations of it not properly handling the issue of discharge of excess water from Chembarambakkam reservoir into the Adyar river.

Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said that on her plea with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Centre had declared the floods as a calamity of severe nature.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
The Centre on Thursday declared the floods in Tamil Nadu as “calamity of severe nature” even as Opposition questioned ruling AIADMK’s handling of discharge of excess water from a city lake during the heavy downpour.Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said that on her plea with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Centre had declared the floods as a calamity of severe nature. She also said that the Parliament Secretariat had issued a circular to MPs stating that they can allot Rs one crore worth renovation and rehabilitation efforts in the flood-affected districts from Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS).<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>While the state government would apprise lawmakers of the requirement in the respective districts on this matter, her party (AIADMK) MPs, totalling 49 in both Houses, had already been asked to contribute Rs one crore each from MPLADS, she said. The state government said 347 persons had died and over 3,300 heads of cattle lost so far, but rehabilitation work had been taken up in full swing.Over 17.64 lakh people were rescued and sheltered in 6,605 relief centres across the state while over 1.28 crore food packets have been distributed, it was officially stated. An amount of Rs 67.47 crore has been disbursed among over 1.11 lakh families as immediate relief.The Opposition parties, which had been critical of the Jayalalithaa government over its handling of the northeast monsoon, demanded a probe into the issue of discharge of excess water from Chembarambakkam reservoir here, which flooded Adyar river, resulting in heavy inundation of the embankments.DMK President M Karunanidhi levelled allegations of red-tapism, citing news reports. He sought the government’s response on allegations of it not properly handling the issue of discharge of excess water from Chembarambakkam reservoir into the Adyar river.”Sad-faced people of Tamil Nadu are awaiting a response from the AIADMK government, especially from Chief Minister Jayalalithaa,” he said in a statement.To ascertain facts behind this issue, a proper probe should be ordered into it, he demanded. His son and party Treasurer M K Stalin also made similar remarks, but the government shot back saying it had properly executed its responsibilities.Electricity Minister Natham R Viswanathan said it was due to government’s prompt work that people were moved in quick time before the river went in spate, which averted loss of life. However, there was damage to property, he admitted.CPI(M) state Secretary G Ramakrishnan blamed “official apathy” for the disaster and alleged that red-tapism over discharge of water had resulted in such a damage. He demanded that an inquiry commission under a sitting High Court Judge be formed with the members, including water management experts, to probe lapses and fix responsibility.PMK founder S Ramadoss said the problems arising out of the post-rains scenario cannot be solved by writing letters to the Prime Minister, saying “political pressure” must be exerted on the Centre to get results.An all-party meeting should be convened to discuss the matter after which Jayalalithaa should lead a delegation of members from all political parties to meet the Prime Minister to take up the issue, he urged. BJP state President Tamizhisai Sounderrajan said the government should come out with a detailed water management for the future.

Jayalalithaa urges PM Modi to declare Tamil Nadu floods as national calamity

Referring to the destruction caused by the four rounds of floods in most districts, she said there has been extensive damage to infrastructure as well as to the private property of thousands of families.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on Wednesday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to declare the unprecedented floods in the state as a national calamity and proposed measures, including a moratorium on home and vehicle loans, to enable affected families rebuild lives. “I request you to immediately declare this unprecedented, catastrophic and cataclysmic event a national calamity,” she said in a letter to Modi. For flood-hit households many of whom are in the low and middle income groups, she proposed a special set of measures like soft loans, speeding up insurance claims disbursal and moratorium by banks on EMIs.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Referring to the destruction caused by the four rounds of floods in most districts, she said there has been extensive damage to infrastructure as well as to the private property of thousands of families. Many households had lost valuables like personal effects and domestic durable assets, she said and added that “it cannot be adequately compensated through the existing structure of relief payments”. “The insurance companies may be directed to take up the survey and settlement of the claims on a campaign mode, and with a liberal application of norms so that such households could receive insurance payments early,” she said.”I suggest that the banks may be directed to provide a limited moratorium on repayment, as well as a rescheduling of the loans, which would lower the Equated Monthly Instalment payments and offer a measure of relief,” the CM said.Many affected families also lost their personal vehicles and almost all their durable domestic assets, including furniture, refrigerators, television sets, washing machines and kitchen equipment, she said. “I suggest that, as a special case, flood-affected families may be liberally extended soft loans by banks for purchase of vehicles, educational loans to continue to fund the education of children and personal loans of an amount upto Rs five lakh to finance essential domestic durable assets.” The government would provide special certification to all such families, based on which banks could sanction loans as per their norms, she said.The CM stressed that only with such a package of assistance would many of these families be in a position to restart their lives.

Chennai floods: Brand Amma could take a severe beating for inefficiency

The Jayalalithaa government may face a severe impact in the upcoming 2016 elections.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
When Jayalalithaa was voted into power as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, the expectations from here were high. People felt that she could undo all the wrongs done by the previous government focus on the people of the state. And she did. The Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu did everything from setting up Amma Canteens, Amma Water, Amma Cement to launching a state health scheme that provided plenty of free benefits for women and children.But what happened during the rains and ensuing floods that hit Chennai and many parts of Tamil Nadu – especially over the week – is a completely different story. The state machinery that should have kicked into action immediately on December 2 in rescuing and providing relief to people seems to have gone missing in action.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>TASMAC​ open despite the rainsWhile it was pouring incessantly with houses and buildings being submerged in three to five feet of water, the Tamil Nadu State Marketing Corporation liquor shops were fully functional. In fact, they even functioned under candlelight when power was out. Many of the inebriated men were found to be harassing women. Citizens were heard complaining about how this seemed to be the one state department that seemed to functioning extremely efficiently during this horrific time in the city. Many people have requested that the TASMAC shops be shut for a few weeks till the city returns to normalcy.Related read: Jet Airways partners with NGO to provide relief to rain-hit Tamil NaduAmma stickers on relief itemsWhile thousands of people were trying to get one meal a day and struggling to rebuild their lives, many men who were allegedly AIADMK volunteers were busy sticking Amma posters on relief supplies that were being distributed – not by the state – but by ordinary citizens. People on Twitter alleged that trucks carrying relief supplies were being allowed to pass through to areas only if the items had Amma posters on them. The efforts of good samaritans were seen to be hijacked by AIADMK denies allegations of relief materials being allowed only after carrying Jayalalithaa stickerspartymen who had nothing to do with the massive relief efforts undertaken by the public. There was outrage by people on social media as well as those who were suffering. Also read: AIADMK denies allegations of relief materials being allowed only after carrying Jayalalithaa stickersCitizens perform relief and rescue operationsCitizens of Chennai came together and mobilised relief and rescue efforts. Today, Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp are filled with groups who are diligently working 24X7 mobilising relief supplies and teams to distribute them. Volunteers have come out in thousands to help Chennai and Cuddalore. People in other states are collecting relief materials and sending them by the truckloads. The big question being asked where are the partymen to help people and where is the state machinery on the ground? A state minister and partymen who visited parts of North Chennai were heckled when they finally did turn up to see the ravaged area.Also read: Meet the men behind #ChennaiMicro- RJ Balaji talks about spearheading relief work with SiddharthIn lieu of all this, Brand Amma could take a severe beating and have an impact on the impending elections in 2016.

Chennai Rains: When ‘PIB-photoshopped’ Modi and Jayalalithaa’s posters earned ridicule

Until the floods that ravaged the city of 6 million, the lofty remoteness of Jayalalithaa added to the aura around a leader with an almost hysterical following.

For both him and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa Jayaram, the image of strong leadership created by their publicity machines was undermined.

File Photo
Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa is being heckled and abused for going missing in action after floods swept the capital of the southern state of Tamil Nadu, which she rules. It’s a salutary lesson for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who at first drew nods of approval when he rushed to Chennai last week, promising to stand by its people in their hour of need. Yet, within hours, Modi became the object of mockery on social media after his press office released a doctored photo of him inspecting flood damage. For both him and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa Jayaram, the image of strong leadership created by their publicity machines was undermined.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Until the floods that ravaged the city of 6 million, the lofty remoteness of Jayalalithaa added to the aura around a leader with an almost hysterical following. Devotees of the 1960s screen idol have immolated themselves in her defence in the past. Now, she faces a backlash from residents fed up with the sight of her image on billboards, aid packets and her own Jaya Plus TV channel. She has been since in public only twice during the crisis – once with Modi.Angry youths heckled a state minister and officials in Jayalalithaa’s north Chennai constituency, where people were sitting on the roadside amid sludge and mountains of garbage, their shanties swept away by the worst rains in a century. “Forget about Amma coming here, there was no sign of the party cadres,” said one of them, called Dorairaj. About 280 people have died across Tamil Nadu since torrential rains on Dec. 1 submerged tracts of Chennai under up to eight feet (2.5 metres) of water, trapping people on rooftops with no communication. There was further revulsion after a party legislator put up a poster of Jayalalithaa lifting a baby above the floodwaters, in a scene from a blockbuster movie. “Adding salt to the wounds,” said one Twitter post.Avadi Kumar, a spokesman of her ruling AIADMK party, said there was anger among the people but the administration was doing all it could to bring relief: “It is impossible to reach all areas immediately or be present everywhere at all times.”‘Acche din’Modi’s own promise to voters of good days to come for India is also starting to face disenchantment, 18 months into his five-year term, with key reforms stalled by bureaucratic inertia and political gridlock. Ambitious initiatives, such as a “Clean India” campaign, have made little headway – even as Modi has built up huge followings on social media and addressed enthusiastic diaspora Indians at packed stadiums on his many trips overseas. “If today he appears to have lost control over his own narrative, it is his own fault,” commentator Tavleen Singh wrote in Sunday’s Indian Express, urging Modi to hire a professional media team. Modi does not have an official spokesperson.Jayalalithaa, 67, in the past considered as a possible prime ministerial candidate backed by regional groups, faces an election in Tamil Nadu next year. BJP has little presence in Tamil Nadu, a state of 70 million. It would rather the iron-fisted Jayalalithaa stays in power, believing she is more inclined to back his reform agenda in parliament than her rivals. But there are concerns around her health and that she may have to curtail her campaign.Earlier this year a higher court acquitted her in a graft case for which was briefly jailed which had caused an outpouring of anger from her supporters. Some lay down on roads and tried to persuade bus drivers to go over them. “She is supposed to be a fantastic administrator. But this time there was no presence of government at all. Ordinary people did all the work that government and police were supposed to do,” said S. Raja, one flood-hit resident of Chennai.

Chennai rains: City picks up pieces of life

Anger spilled on to the streets when senior ministers Natham Viswanathan, Sellur Raju and Gokul Indira visited R K Nagar, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa’s constituency, where people gheraoed and heckled them forcing them to make a hasty retreat.

Heavy to very heavy rains have been forecast for south coastal and interior districts and Puducherry.

Chennai city and suburbs on Friday started picking up crumbs of life with flood waters receding in several areas but lakhs of people continued to suffer from lack of supply of essentials including water, power, milk and food items. Tragedy stuck a noted private hospital when 18 patients were said to have lost their lives when a sudden black out on Wednesday caused snapping of oxygen supply in the ICU.However, Tamil Nadu Health Secretary Radhakrishnan had a word of caution saying all the deaths could be due to ventilator failure or lack of oxygen supply as deaths have occurred over a period of three days. The cause of deaths was being probed. Anger spilled on to the streets when senior ministers Natham Viswanathan, Sellur Raju and Gokul Indira visited R K Nagar, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa’s constituency, where people gheraoed and heckled them forcing them to make a hasty retreat.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Similar scenes were witnessed in several areas where ventilated their anger at officials complaining lack of any help from authorities in their hour of distress.Intermittent rains in the city in areas like Kodambakkam, T. Nagar, Adyar and Kotturpuram and suburban Tambaram today threatened to revive the ghost of flooding again but the weatherman has forecast only light rains for Chennai in the next 24 hours. Heavy to very heavy rains have been forecast for south coastal and interior districts and Puducherry.Arterial Mount Road and several other important roads were opened for traffic today after three days of disruption bringing a slight sense of normalcy as water levels in Adyar and Cooum rivers and other channels came down following reduced discharge of water from Chembarambakkam, Puzhal and Poondi rivers dotting the city’s outskirts. Mobile phone services, which had taken a severe beating following the heavy downpour on Tuesday, were partially restored even as other services such as ATMs continued to remain shut.

Tamil Nadu government on war footing to rescue survivors: Jayalalithaa

Jayalalithaa said despite her government’s preventive efforts, the state had suffered severe damage on account of the heavy rainfall during the Northeast monsoon.

Tamil Nadu government is providing massive relief and coordinating rescue operations with central forces in the flood-hit areas of Chennai, Tiruvallur, Cuddalore and Kanchipuram districts, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said on Wednesday after conducting an aerial survey of the affected areas. State government authorities from various departments have been directed to take stock of the situation in the flood-affected districts of the state and provide immediate and necessary assistance to the affected people, she said in a statement. Jayalalithaa said despite her government’s preventive efforts, the state had suffered severe damage on account of the heavy rainfall during the Northeast monsoon. Thousands of stranded residents were rescued from various locations in the state, especially Chennai, by the Indian Air Force, NDRF and Navy using boats and helicopters. The people were shifted to relief camps, where they were provided food packets, baby food, water, mattresses and medicines, her statement said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Steps are being taken to prevent outbreak of water-borne diseases. Officials of the state-run Aavin have been instructed to provide milk powder to people at relief camps, she said. Jayalalithaa had yesterday also detailed the various steps taken by the government to tackle the situation in Chennai and other flood-hit districts. Various ministers, including O Paneerselvam, have been deputed to take charge of the relief works in different districts. Senior IAS officials have also been tasked to ensure that relief reaches the people in the worst-affected Chennai and other districts.

Chennai rains: PM Narendra Modi reaches Tamil Nadu to take stock of flood situation

The Centre has described the situation in Chennai as “worrisome” and promised all possible support to the state government in the hour of crisis.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Tamil Nadu on Thursday to take stock of the situation arising out of the floods in the state. He landed at Arrakonam Naval Air Station and will undertake an aerial survey of the flood-affected areas, official sources said. Earlier, before emplaning for Tamil Nadu, Modi tweeted, “Leaving for Chennai to take stock of the situation arising due to the devastating floods.”The Centre has described the situation in Chennai as “worrisome” and promised all possible support to the state government in the hour of crisis. Modi had earlier spoken to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa to promise all possible support. For the first time in over 40 years, the water has risen rapidly on the river breaching the road and the Maraimalai Adigal bridge in Saidapet cutting the arterial Anna Salai (Mount Road), rendering it out of bounds for motorists.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Rains abated in Chennai today giving relief to people tormented by the heavy downpour of the last three days but excessive discharge of water last night from Chembarambakkam lake on the outskirts flooded new areas of the city threatening to uproot people from their homes. The fresh flooding of the streets in the heart of the city in areas like Kodambakkam and T.Nagar and Ashok Nagar has been caused by the release of an estimated 30,000 cusecs of water from the Chembarambakkam lake, one of city’s source of drinking water.

President Pranab Mukherjee hopes Tamil Nadu people will overcome flood tragedy with dignity

“Saddened by loss of human lives & serious damage to infrastructure in Chennai due to heavy rains,” President Mukherjee said in his tweet.

Chennai floods

PTI
President Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday condoled the loss of lives and damage to infrastructure in Chennai and several others parts of Tamil Nadu due to heavy rains.”Saddened by loss of human lives & serious damage to infrastructure in Chennai due to heavy rains,” President Mukherjee said in his tweet.”My prayers and good wishes are with the people of Tamil Nadu during this difficult time,” he added.He expressed confidence that the people of Tamil Nadu will overcome the tragedy with “fortitude and dignity”.Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa also conducted an aerial survey of flood affected areas of Chennai, Kanchipuram and Tiruvallu.Home Minister Rajnath Singh will also make a statement in the Parliament on the current flood situation in Chennai.Meanwhile, the death toll in rain related incidents in the state has crossed 200. The rescue operation by the NDRF teams is in full swing.

Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa to conduct aerial survey of flood affected areas

Earlier, Jayalalithaa had sought Rs. 2,000 crore for flood relief work. The Centre released a financial aid of Rs. 939.63 crore. Meanwhile, Rajya Sabha members offered to donate a part of their MPLADS fund for rehabilitation and rescue work.

Chennai floods
File Photo
PTI
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa will conduct an aerial survey of flood affected areas of Chennai, Kanchipuram and Tiruvallu on Thursday.There is water logging in many parts of Chennai due to heavy rains and normal lives remains disrupted. More than 500 people have so far been evacuated in flood-hit Tamil Nadu by several National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) teams, claimed OP Singh, NDRF Director General (DG), on Wednesday. “The teams have evacuated more than 500 people so far. Also, we are getting calls, messages from affected people and our teams are responding accordingly,” he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Earlier, the Indian Air Force (IAF) lifted three NDRF teams from the Palam airport for flood-hit Tamil Nadu on Wednesday evening with relief materials. Earlier, Jayalalithaa had sought Rs. 2,000 crore for flood relief work. The Centre released a financial aid of Rs. 939.63 crore. Meanwhile, Rajya Sabha members offered to donate a part of their MPLADS fund for rehabilitation and rescue work.Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday took stock of the flood situation in Tamil Nadu and discussed it with his cabinet colleagues, including the Home and Finance Ministers. “I want to inform the House that today morning the Prime Minister met the Home Minister, Finance Minister and myself and discussed the flood conditions in Tamil Nadu. We exchanged information on the situation,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu said in the Lok Sabha.The Indian Air Force has already deployed two MI-17 choppers at Tambaram and two MI-17s are being moved from Tirupati to Chennai for relief and rescue operations. Five Chetak helicopters are also operating from Tambaram. In addition, four MI-17 – two each at Bangalore and Nagpur – are on standby.The National Disaster Management Authority will coordinate the relief activities on behalf of the Centre. The authority has a round-the-clock Toll Free helpline number 1078 for this purpose.Heavy rains and water overflowing above the danger level at Railway Bridges in Chennai-Gudur section has impacted the functioning of trains following which the South Central Railway (SCR) has cancelled 12 trains and assured full refunds of fare for the same.Meanwhile, Tambaram railway station in Chennai has been turned into a makeshift shelter for the stranded passengers there. Chennai Airport will remain closed till Friday. From Thursday, Chennai bound flights will be landing at INS Rajali Airbase of Indian Navy at Arakonam which is about 60 kilometers from Chennai.

Centre pulls out all stops, Narendra Modi speaks to Jayalalithaa

Prime Minister Narendra Modi took stock of the situation along with his senior cabinet colleagues and spoke to Tami Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa offering all possible help.

Agencies
Worsening human tragedy due to unprecedented floods in Tamil Nadu found strong resonance in the national capital on Wednesday with Centre reviewing it at several levels and both the houses of parliament showing rare camaraderie to speak in unison to provide all possible help to the affected.Prime Minister Narendra Modi took stock of the situation along with his senior cabinet colleagues and spoke to Tami Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa offering all possible help.In the Rajya Sabha, warring Congress and BJP decided to stop their squabble on a controversy related to Kumari Selja’s visit to a temple in Dwarka till Thursday and discuss ways to help Tamil Nadu when parliamentary affairs minister Venkaiah Naidu sought house to focus on floods.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Leader of the opposition, Ghulam Nabi Azad of Congress associated himself with CPM leader Sitaram Yechury suggestion to provide assistance to Tamil Nadu government from MPLAD funds.The National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) met early in the day under the chairmanship of cabinet secretary P K Sinha to review the situation in detail that according to Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) forecast can deteriorate further as rains are expected to lash Chennai and surrounding areas for the next four days.The floods have also affected several parts of Andhra Pradesh and Puducherry and can be a bigger disaster than expected earlier, said an official of the national disaster management authority (NDMA) .

Chennai rains: Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa to undertake aerial survey of flood-hit areas tomorrow

She also disclosed that various ministers, including O Paneerselvam, have been deputed to take charge of the relief works in different districts.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa will undertake an aerial survey of the flood-affected areas of Chennai city and its suburbs in Kanchipuram and Tiruvallur districts tomorrow.A late-night statement issued here by the state government said she wanted to undertake the exercise today but could not do so because of the bad weather and the inability expressed by the pilots. In the statement, she detailed the various steps taken by the government to tackle the situation in Chennai and other two districts and the relief and rescue operations being conducted.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>She also disclosed that various ministers, including O Paneerselvam, have been deputed to take charge of the relief works in different districts. Senior IAS officials have also been tasked to ensure that relief reaches the people in the worst-affected Chennai and other districts.

Chennai floods: Arvind Kejriwal offers assistance to Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa

Kejriwal pledged his “fullest support” to people in misery following unprecedented downpur in the southern state that has already claimed several lives.

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday offered all resources at the disposal of the Delhi government to Tamil Nadu in providing relief to the flood-affected people of Chennai and its suburbs. In a letter to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa,Kejriwal pledged his “fullest support” to people in misery following unprecedented downpur in the southern state that has already claimed several lives. The Delhi Chief Minister conveyed his deepest sympathies for the loss of life and property saying that his heart goes out to the people of Tamil Nadu in this hour of crisis. “I am deeply saddened to learn about the havoc wrecked by incessant rains in Chennai and other parts of Tamil Nadu…I also pledge my fullest support and all resources at my disposal towards any cooperation required by you in your efforts to bring relief to the affected people of your state,” he said. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Chennai today turned a virtual island and several coastal areas of Tamil Nadu were marooned by flood waters after non-stop torrential rains pounded the city, its suburbs and neighbouring districts destroying crucial road and rail links, shutting the airport and rendering thousands homeless.

Chennai rains: Here are the important helpline numbers issued amid flood alert

According to reports, the flood alert has been issued to the people living on the banks of river Adyar in Chennai, as the area remains to be battered by the un-relenting rains affecting daily life.

In the wake of the flood alert that has been issued in parts of Tamil Nadu, the Chennai Corporation on Tuesday announced emergency contact numbers for all the regional zones in the city for the people to contact in case of any emergency due to the floods. With the MET predicting heavy rains over the already rain-hit Chennai and northern Tamil Nadu for the next three to four days, the state government issued a flood alert today. The Chennai Airport has also been temporarily closed amidst heavy rainfall in the city. The Army has been re-called and so have additional forces to carry out rescue operations in the flood-hit areas. NTL India, a conventional call taxi provider, has introduced 15 boats with trained rescue emergency team in several parts of the city.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>According to reports, the flood alert has been issued to the people living on the banks of river Adyar in Chennai, as the area remains to be battered by the un-relenting rains affecting daily life. The met office has forecasted scattered to heavy rainfall on Tuesday in Chennai and other parts of Tamil Nadu following a trough of low pressure in the Bay of Bengal, closer to Sri Lanka. Twelve trains leaving Chennai Egmore were cancelled due to water overflowing on railway tracks between Villupuram – Tambaram section.Related read: Chennai rains- List of trains cancelled/divertedThe trains that have been cancelled are-12605 Chennai Egmore-Karaikkudi Pallavan Express, 16105 Chennai Egmore-Tiruchendur Chendur Express, 16713 Chennai Egmore -Rameswaram Express, 16115 Chennai Egmore-Puducherry Express, 12693Chennai Egmore-Tuticorin Pearl City Express, 12661 Chennai Egmore-Sengottai Pothigai Express, 16101Chennai Egmore-Rameswaram Express, 16179 Chennai Egmore-Mannargudi Mannai Express, 16177 Chennai Egmore-Tiruchchirappalli Rockfort Express, 11063 Chennai Egmore-Salem Express, 16175 Chennai Egmore-Karaikal Express and 16183 Chennai Egmore- Thanjavur Uzhavan Express.Prime Minister Narendra Modi also spoke to Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and assured full support from the government to the state. “Spoke to Jayalalithaa ji on the flood situation in parts of Tamil Nadu. Assured all possible support & cooperation in this unfortunate hour,” the Prime Minister tweeted.He had earlier instructed the immediate release of financial assistance of nearly Rs. 940 crore to deal with the flood situation in rain- battered Tamil Nadu, hours after Jayalalithaa wrote to him for funds to sustain relief work.Helpline numbers-Tree fall, Water logging – 1913Sewage overflow – 45674567, 22200335State Emergency – 1070District Emergency – 1077Electricity – 1912Fire & Rescue -1011st Regional Office (Tiruvottiyur) – 94451900012nd Regional Office (Manali) – 94451900023rd Regional Office (Madhavaram) – 94451900034th Regional Office (Tondiarpet) – 94451900045th Regional Office (Royapuram)- 94451900056th Regional Office (Thiru. Vi. Ka. Nagar) – 94451900067th Regional Office (Ambattur) – 94451900078th Regional Office (Annanagar) – 94451900089th Regional Office (Teynampet) ? 944519000910th Regional Office (Kodambakkam) – 944519001011th Regional Office (Valasaravakkam) – 944519001112th Regional Office (Alandur) – 944519001213th Regional Office (Adyar) – 944519001314th Regional Office (Perungudi) – 944519001415th Regional Office (Sholinganallur) ? 9445190015 (ANI)According to social media certain schools and colleges are opened to accomodate people stuck in the heavy rainsSRM Univeristy , MCC , MGR University, Sathyam Cinemas (Royapettah), AGS Villivakkam, Phoenix Mall and many other public…
Posted by Pradeep Kumar on Tuesday, December 1, 2015

PM Narendra Modi assures aid to flood-hit Tamil Nadu in Mann Ki Baat

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday assured aid to Tamil Nadu for the widespread damage due to torrential rains and floods.

Narendra Modi. PTINarendra Modi. PTI

Narendra Modi. PTI

“Our government assures full help to Tamil Nadu,” Modi said in his Mann Ki Baat radio address to the nation.

Rains lashed four districts in Tamil Nadu – Cuddalore, Chennai, Thiruvallur and Kanchipuram – during the last couple of weeks, killing about 180 people.

On November 23, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa sought central funding of Rs.8,481 crore for flood relief and immediate relief of Rs.2,000 crore.

Modi had instructed that aid of Rs.939.63 crore be released to the state.

During his radio address, Modi said: “I have full faith in Tamil Nadu. It will rise… Central government teams are already deployed there.”

IANS

Rain-hit Chennai back to normalcy, school and colleges reopen today

A Rs 940-crore package has been released by the National Disaster Relief Fund (NDRF) for the rehabilitation work. A nine-member central team will on Thursday begin its on-the-spot assessment of the damages caused in the state due to recent rain and floods in the state.

Chennai Floods

PTI
After an extended break imposed because of heavy rains in the state, all schools and colleges have reopened in the city.Apart from 24 government schools that are temporarily being used as relief camps for affected people, all other schools have reopened. Meanwhile, the heavy rains continued to batter parts of Tamil Nadu, as the death toll in the rain-related incidents mounted to over 176 on Wednesday.A Rs 940-crore package has been released by the National Disaster Relief Fund (NDRF) for the rehabilitation work. A nine-member central team will on Thursday begin its on-the-spot assessment of the damages caused in the state due to recent rain and floods in the state.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The inter-ministerial team, headed by Union Home Ministry Joint Secretary TVSN Prasad, has been deputed on the directions of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi following a request by Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa. The team will conduct inspections for two days in Chennai, Kanchipuram, Tiruvallur and Cuddalore districts and submit their report to the Union Home Ministry.In the wake of the heavy rain-induced floods that have left around the city reeling from extensive damage, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Monday sought the Centre’s aid by seeking funds for immediate relief and restoration works. Keeping in view the urgency of the situation, Jayalalithaa has also requested the Centre to dispatch a team immediately to make its on-the-spot assessment of damages and to release central financial assistance without any delay.Prime Minister Narendra Modi had ordered immediate release of Rs. 940 crores central assistance for rain-hit Chennai. He also agreed to the Tamil Nadu chief minister’s demand for a central team to be dispatched to the state to assess the damage and release funds for relief.

176 dead in Tamil Nadu, more rains expected

The meteorological department said rains or thundershowers would occur at a few places over Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, coastal Karnataka, Kerala and Lakshadweep in the next 24-48 hours.

Five persons died yesterday while two deaths were reported from the state today.

Reuters
Death toll in rain-related incidents in Tamil Nadu mounted to 176 today, even as the weatherman has forecast more rains in the next 24 to 48 hours. Seven more deaths were reported from across the state since yesterday, while there was a let up in rainfall in most areas of the state since last evening, including Chennai. Five persons died yesterday while two deaths were reported from the state today.The meteorological department said rains or thundershowers would occur at a few places over Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, coastal Karnataka, Kerala and Lakshadweep in the next 24-48 hours. For Chennai and its neighbourhood, skies would be cloudy and there may be rain or thundershowers in some areas, it said. Papanasam in Tiruneveli district received heavy rainfall of 10 CM, while Rameswaram, Cheranmahadevi and Coonoor received least rainfall of one cm each, the Met office said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa condoled the death of seven persons and announced a compensation of Rs four lakh each to their next of kin from the disaster relief fund. The chief minister had written to the Prime Minister on November 23, pegging the flood damage at Rs 8,481 crore, and urged him to immediately release Rs 2,000 crore to sustain relief work.

Tamil Nadu government pegs flood damage at Rs 8,481 crore, CM Jayalalithaa writes to PM Modi

Detailing the extent of the damage, Jayalalithaa told the PM that despite her government’s preventive efforts, the state had suffered severe damage on account of the “extremely heavy and sustained” rainfall which, she said, had left a trail of destruction and that her government had allocated Rs 500 crore for relief work.

Vendors push a cart on the waterlogged Marina Beach in Chennai on Saturday.

PTI
With the North East monsoon leaving a trail of destruction in Tamil Nadu, the state government on Monday pegged the damage at Rs 8,481 crore, with Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa urging Prime Minister Narendra Modi to immediately release Rs 2,000 crore to sustain relief work.In a letter to the Prime Minister, she said that 169 lives have been lost in various rain-related incidents since October 1, 2015.Detailing the extent of the damage, Jayalalithaa told the PM that despite her government’s preventive efforts, the state had suffered severe damage on account of the “extremely heavy and sustained” rainfall which, she said, had left a trail of destruction and that her government had allocated Rs 500 crore for relief work.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The assessment of damages and requirement of funds for immediate relief and restoration of infrastructure which she said had been speedily carried out indicated a much higher financial requirement.”The requirement of funds for immediate rescue and relief and the temporary and permanent restoration of infrastructure has been worked out at Rs.8,481 crore in all….” “This assessment has been made as an immediate measure since the Government of Tamil Nadu requires assistance from Government of India to meet the very high expenditure requirements that such a severe calamity has caused. The funds required are well beyond the resources available with the state, including the State Disaster Response Fund,” she said.She requested Modi to depute a central team immediately to make its on-the-spot assessment of damage and to release central financial aid without any delay keeping in view the urgency of restoring many of the infrastructure facilities and services to the flood affected people.”In the meanwhile, I request that an on account release of Rs 2,000 crore may be sanctioned immediately to enable the state government to sustain the relief and restoration operations with the same vigour,” Jayalalithaa said.Jayalalithaa recalled that a deep depression of ‘high intensity’ in the Bay of Bengal had hit the Tamil Nadu coast near Marakkanam on November 10, 2015, causing extremely heavy rains, particularly in the four northern coastal districts of Cuddalore, Kancheepuram, Chennai and Tiruvallur.”Based on the forecast received from Indian Meteorological Department and the alerts received from the National Disaster Management Agency, adequate precautionary measures were taken which minimised loss to life and property,” she said, adding state-level agencies and the local administration in the affected districts were put on high alert.High level teams of ministers and senior IAS officers were deputed to various districts to monitor the preventive, rescue and relief operations while personnel of different departments, including Revenue, Police, Fire Service and Public Works Department were fully mobilised, the CM said.”In addition, the services of the National Disaster Response Force, Army, Air Force, Navy and the Coast Guard were requisitioned wherever the need was felt. I thank you for the promptness in the dispatch of these forces,” she told Modi.However, despite all efforts taken by the state Government, “as the rainfall was extremely heavy and sustained for several days, it has left a trail of damage and destruction,” she said.Citing an example, she said at Neyveli (Cuddalore dt.), it rained 437 MM on Nov 9. Similarly, Chennai received the second heaviest monthly rainfall recorded in the past more than 100 years in just the first 20 days of November. The rainfall continued for several days as the deep depression was followed by another low pressure system, she said.The CM said many parts of the state had been severely affected due to flooding. One hundred and sixty nine lives were lost during this North East monsoon since October 1 and there was widespread damage to property, including dwelling units and crops, she said.Infrastructure, including roads and bridges, storm water drainage systems, water supply and sewerage systems and electricity supply systems have been ‘battered’ in many areas, Jayalalithaa said, adding more than four lakh people have been shifted to relief camps even as relief work was being undertaken on a war-footing.”The tireless immediate rescue and relief operations conducted against heavy odds were widely appreciated,” she said.

Tamil Nadu rains: Death toll increases to 120; more rains forecast for Saturday

The Regional Weather office forecast rain in coastal and interior districts for the next 24 hours

AFP
The toll from rain-related incidents in Tamil Nadu increased to 120 today, as overnight rains lashed many parts of the city, raising fears of more inundation. However, a bright morning brought relief to the residents of the rain-drenched city, even as the weather office has forecast rains for November 21.In a statement, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said nine persons had been killed in the last four days, with the victims mainly hailing from Chennai and Kancheepuram districts, and expressed sympathies with their families. She announced a relief of Rs four lakh each to the families of the victims.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Meanwhile, the Regional Weather office forecast rain in coastal and interior districts for the next 24 hours.Rains were particularly expected in the districts along Western Ghats, such as Theni and Nilgiris, S R Ramanan, Director, Regional Meterological Department, told reporters.In the 24 hours ending at 8.30 AM today, various places in Nilgiris registered good spells of rain with Ketti and Coonoor in the district registering 12 cm and 11 cm respectively.Heavy vehicles factory in Avadi (Tiruvallore) received 12 cm while Poondi and Ponnamanalle in the same district registered 10 cm each.

Tamil Nadu rains: CM Jayalalithaa seeks central assistance, Rajnath Singh assures help

In a telephonic talk with Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, she apprised him of the situation and sought a central team to make assessment after which the Minister assured her that it will be deputed once the Centre receives the memorandum, the state government said.

With Tamil Nadu reeling from monsoon fury, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on Thursday apprised the Centre of the flood situation in the state and said her government would submit a detailed memorandum seeking central assistance by next week.In a telephonic talk with Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, she apprised him of the situation and sought a central team to make assessment after which the Minister assured her that it will be deputed once the Centre receives the memorandum, the state government said.Singh, who is in China, said on Twitter that he had spoken to the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and assured of all possible help.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”The Centre is assisting the state agencies of Tamil Nadu in rescue and relief ops. Assured TN CM of all possible help,” Singh said in his tweets.The state government said that the “Chief Minister apprised the Union Home Minister of the current situation in Tamil Nadu due to the unprecedented rains and floods, particularly in the districts of Chennai, Tiruvallur, Kancheepuram and Cuddalore.”Assessment of damage caused by the northeast monsoon was underway in the state, Jayalalithaa informed Singh, according to a government release which quoting the interaction between the two.She “also indicated” to him that the state government will submit its detailed memorandum seeking assistance from the National Disaster Response Fund and other Central government funding by November 23, it said.She also requested him to ‘speedily’ depute a central team to Tamil Nadu to make on the spot assessment, and recommend release of central assistance without delay, it said.”The Union Home Minister assured the Chief Minister that the central team would be sent to Tamil Nadu immediately on receipt of the Memorandum from the state government,” it said.Jayalalithaa informed Singh about precautionary measures taken by her government, its “extensive, immediate relief and rescue efforts” and ‘effective’ coordination with central agencies like National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), besides Army, Air Force, Navy and the Coast Guard.

Chennai rains: Govt working day and night to ensure welfare, says Jayalalithaa

Chennai: With her government facing opposition flak over the handling of the monsoon fury, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Monday said normalcy will return soon as the government machinery is working day and night to ensure welfare of people.

Making a visit to her Dr Radhakrishnan Nagar constituency in Chennai to review the situation following the rains, Jayalalithaa told people that while the north-east monsoon stretches for a three-month period from October to December, a significant part of it had been realised in “a few days.”

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa. PTI

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa. PTI

Jayalalithaa said the government had put in all adequate preventive measures.

“When rains that should have been realised in three months lash within a few days, any number of preventive measures will not suffice as stagnation and resulting damage are unavoidable,” she said.

However, as soon as it was known that people were suffering due to the monsoon fury, the government machinery was in full swing, with Ministers and officials including those from police and Fire and Rescue Services working “relentlessly day and night” to restore normalcy while relief measures had been taken up on “war-footing,” she said.

“People need not worry. I am there in support of you; so is the government. Normalcy will return soon and the government machinery is working day and night to ensure that,” she said.

Further, in her constituency, 48 very big motor pumps and six ‘super-sucker’ machines were being pressed into service to remove stagnant water, she said, adding 162 families had been evacuated to safer zones.

As many as 20,000 food packets had been distributed on Monday alone and food was prepared and given to people as and when required, she added.

Earlier, she held a review meeting with her senior cabinet Ministers and officials at the Secretariat to take stock of the rain situation and the relief and rehabilitation measures being undertaken.

PTI

Tamil Nadu Rains: CM Jayalalithaa announces Rs 500 crore for relief, rehabilitation

Jayalalithaa said that besides spending for relief and rehabilitation, the allocation would also be used for disbursement of solatium to affected people As many as 71 deaths have been reported in various rain- related incidents, including electrocution and drowning.

File photo: Heavy rains inundated many areas in Chennai.

PTI
With Tamil Nadu hit by monsoon fury causing flood and inundation, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on Monday announced allocation of Rs 500 crore towards relief and rehabilitation.The Army’s help has been sought to rescue stranded people at nearby Tambaram, she said.”I have allocated Rs 500 crore towards relief and rehabilitation with immediate effect,” she said.Jayalalithaa said that besides spending for relief and rehabilitation, the allocation would also be used for disbursement of solatium to affected people As many as 71 deaths have been reported in various rain- related incidents, including electrocution and drowning.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Jayalalithaa had last week announced enhanching compensation to families of those killed in rain-related incidents from Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs four lakh, besides relief for injured and death of cattle and poultry.In a statement, the CM said she had directed officials to further expedite relief and rehabilitaion measures in the wake of the government announcing the Rs 500 crore relief package.Detailing the government’s initiatives in the affected districts, especially the worst-affected Cuddalore, she said power supply had been restored in 671 of 683 affected rural body areas. Besides 40 medical camps were functioning.As many as 121 camps had been held to cater to cattle while fodder for animals was being given free of cost.In 70 relief camps, 58,000 food packets were being distributed, she said.At Chennai, of the 587 areas, water has been removed in 207 locations and Corporation of Chennai workers were involved in clearing water in the rest of the places.Most subways, except for six, had been cleared of water and vehicular movement restored, she said, adding uprooted trees were being removed on a war footing.The government was implementing relief and rehabilitation measures on a war-footing in neighbouring Tiruvallur and Kancheepuram areas, she said.As regards Kancheepuram district, also severely affected,a 160-member NDRF team, three from the State Disaster Response Force, were assisting the district administration.

Court grants bail to singer Kovan facing sedition charge

Chennai: A court in Chennai on Monday granted bail to ultra-Left propadandist folk singer Kovan who was arrested on 30 October for alleged sedition.

Granting him bail, Principal Sessions Judge N Audinathan observed during the hearing that the case was not one of defamation.

Tamil folk singer Kovan. TwitterTamil folk singer Kovan. Twitter

Tamil folk singer Kovan. Twitter

The judge directed Kovan to appear before the Investigation Officer as and when required and also to furnish a personal bond of Rs 5,000 with two sureties of like sum.

54-year-old Kovan, propagandist singer of ultra-Left arts and literary outfit ‘Makkal Kalai Ilakkiya Kazhagam’, was arrested in Tiruchirapalli on 30 October for alleged sedition, uploading “defamatory” electronic content against Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa and “disturbing” public peace.

On 7 November, the Madras High Court had stayed a local court order remanding Kovan to two days police custody, saying it was ‘erroneous.’

Justice C T Selvam had passed the interim direction at a special hearing at his residence on a petition by the singer, challenging Chief Judicial Magistrate Court’s 6 November order.

The allegedly defamatory content in the form of videos were uploaded on some Tamil websites and had also gone viral in messaging mediums like Whatsapp.

The content, though centred over the liquor vending policy of Tamil Nadu government, allegedly had direct references to Jayalalithaa in a bad light.

The HC had said a perusal of the papers revealed that in permitting two-day custody to Kovan, the primary concern of the lower court had been the need to probe any link with Naxals.

PTI

Jayalalithaa announces Rs 500 crore for flood relief, rehabilitation

Chennai: With Tamil Nadu hit by monsoon fury causing flood and inundation, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on Monday announced allocation of Rs 500 crore towards relief and rehabilitation.

The Army’s help has been sought to rescue stranded people at nearby Tambaram, she said.

J Jayalalithaa. AFPJ Jayalalithaa. AFP

J Jayalalithaa. AFP

“I have allocated Rs 500 crore towards relief and rehabilitation with immediate effect,” she said.

Jayalalithaa said that besides spending for relief and rehabilitation, the allocation would also be used for disbursement of solatium to affected people.

As many as 71 deaths have been reported in various rain-related incidents, including electrocution and drowning.

Jayalalithaa had last week announced enhanching compensation to families of those killed in rain-related incidents from Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs four lakh, besides relief for injured and death of cattle and poultry.

In a statement, the CM said she had directed officials to further expedite relief and rehabilitaion measures in the wake of the government announcing the Rs 500 crore relief package.

Detailing the government’s initiatives in the affected districts, especially the worst-affected Cuddalore, she said power supply had been restored in 671 of 683 affected rural body areas. Besides 40 medical camps were functioning.

As many as 121 camps had been held to cater to cattle while fodder for animals was being given free of cost.

In 70 relief camps, 58,000 food packets were being distributed, she said.

At Chennai, of the 587 areas, water has been removed in 207 locations and Corporation of Chennai workers were involved in clearing water in the rest of the places.

Most subways, except for six, had been cleared of water and vehicular movement restored, she said, adding uprooted trees were being removed on a war footing.

The government was implementing relief and rehabilitation measures on a war-footing in neighbouring Tiruvallur and Kancheepuram areas, she said.

As regards Kancheepuram district, also severely affected, a 160-member NDRF team, three from the State Disaster Response Force, were assisting the district administration.

PTI

Heavy rains throws life out of gear in Tamil Nadu as death toll rises to 71

Chennai: The North-East monsoon continued to wreak havoc in Tamil Nadu with rains pounding the northern coastal districts and more being forecast for the coming days in the state, where the death toll as climbed to 71.

12 more persons have been killed in incidents of drowning and wall-collapse between 11 November and 15 November, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said as she also took stock of the situation at a review meeting with her cabinet colleagues and officials.

Condoling the death of the victims, she announced a relief of Rs four lakh each to their families. 71 people have died in rail related incidents so far.

Normal life has been hit in Tamil Nadu as incessant rains led to inundation of large areas and authorities have shut down educational institutions. The weather office forecast heavy downpour in the next three days in the state, Puducherry and coastal Andhra Pradesh

Overnight rains pounded Chennai and its suburbs, giving citizens a harrowing time. Subways at T Nagar and Saidapet in the city were inundated, resulting in their closure.

The District Administration had declared a holiday for schools and colleges in the wake of the heavy downpour that had severely affected roads.

The well-marked low pressure over Southwest Bay of Bengal off Tamil Nadu, which had brought incessant rains, is likely to move north-westwards towards north Tamil Nadu coast and could concentrate into a depression during next 24 hours, the weather office said.

A motorbike wades through water in Chennai after death toll in Tamil Nadu due to heavy rains rises to 71. PTIA motorbike wades through water in Chennai after death toll in Tamil Nadu due to heavy rains rises to 71. PTI

A motorbike wades through water in Chennai after death toll in Tamil Nadu due to heavy rains rises to 71. PTI

Heavy to very heavy rainfall with isolated extremely heavy falls had occurred at a few places over north Tamil Nadu and Puducherry and at isolated places over Rayalaseema and Coastal Andhra Pradesh between 8.30 AM yesterday and 8.30 AM today.

The magnitude of the north East monsoon could be gauged by rainfall statistics available till 8.30 AM today, with Ponneri in Tiruvallur recording 37 cm.

Tambaram and Mahabalipuram (both Kancheepuram) recorded 33 cm each even as Chengalpattu in the district and Thamaraipakkam and Puzhal (Tiruvalur) registered in excess of 30 cm.

Meanwhile, the levels in reservoirs addressing the drinking water needs of the city were increasing, bringing relief to water managers.

The water level at Chembarambakkam stood at 81.80 feet against the full capacity of 85.40 feet, prompting authorities to discharge excess water into the Adyar river.

Water gushed through Adyar as the swollen river presented a rare sight for residents of Chennai do not generally witness it in such spate.

With surging water levels in Adyar, Chennai Collector A Sundaravalli urged residents living on the banks of the river to move to safer zones.

The combined water storage in the main reservoirs feeding Chennai–Poondi, Cholavaram, Redhills and Porur, was at 7,023 mcft, as against the total capacity of 11,057 mc ft.

Last year on this day, it was just 2,973 mcft,data released by Chennai Metro Water and Sewerage Supply Board (CMWSB) said.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa reviewed the flood situation in her R K Nagar constituency and assured people that all relief measures, including setting up of relief and and medical camps, were in place.

In Nagapattinam district, incessant rains continued for the third consecutive day today, throwing normal life out of gear. Paddy crops on hundreds of acres of land remain submerged in the region.

More than 10,000 fishermen did not venture out to sea for the fourth consecutive day.

Senior IAS officer Shivdas Meena, appointed as the flood monitoring officer for Nagapattinam district, toured various parts of the district along with Collector S Pazhanisamy. Kollidam, Thalaignayiru and Ananthamangalam areas, which have been identified as flood prone areas, are under round-the-clock vigil.

Speaking to reporters, Meena said 12 cyclone shelters have been kept ready to offer emergency services.

Three teams from National Disaster Response Force are camping at Poompuhar, Kollidam and Sirkazhi to help people.

A report from Coimbatore said the first floor of an over 60-year-old building on Big Bazaar area in the city, which was lashed by heavy rains last week, collapsed today. The first floor functioned as a godown of a textile merchant and the ground floor housed a fancy store.

The first floor came down around 5.30 am and under the impact, the shop on the ground floor was partially damaged, police said. However, there were no casualties, they said, adding the loss is yet to be estimated.

Meanwhile, educational institutions in neighbouring Puducherry and Karaikal remained closed today in the wake of heavy downpour.

The Union Territory recorded 11.09 cm rain in the last 24 hours ending 8.30 am on Monday, official sources said.

Though there was a respite in the rains since 9 am, the sky remained overcast.

Chief Minister N Rangasamy has directed the Directorate of Agriculture to make a speedy assessment of the impact of the rains on horticulture crops.

The heavy rains forced Southern Railway to cancel and divert a slew of services scheduled for today.

The cancelled services, include Chennai Egmore–Kakinada Port Circar Express, Chennai Central–Chhapra Ganga Kaveri Express, Chennai Central–Puri weekly Express, Chennai Central–Vijayawada Jan Shatabdi Express and Vijayawada–Chennai Central Jan Shatabdi Express.

Many trains were being diverted without halting at Chennai Central due to rain, a Southern Railway release said.

Meanwhile, with flood water showing no signs of receding, boats were pressed into service at severely-affected areas in Chennai like Velacheri and some parts of Rajiv Gandhi Salai, mainly to move people to safer areas.

PTI

Chennai rains: City comes to standstill, 12000 people attend medical camps on Sunday

Chennai Corporation was able to set right the issues in 186 of the 490 localities reeling under water stagnation on Sunday

Heavy rains inundated many areas in Chennai

PTI
With heavy rains lashing Chennai on Sunday, a number of people had to be rescued because of rising water levels. Chennai Corporation rescued about 1900 people on Sunday, taking them to shelters, according to a report in The Hindu. More than 12,000 people also attended the medical camps that were held at 98 locations in the city. The report states that Chennai Corporation was able to set right the issues in 186 of the 490 localities reeling under water stagnation on Sunday. More than 23500 workers cleared out water in Vysarpadi, Madipakkam, Velachery, Adyar, Korattur, Villivakkam, Arumbakkam, Sholinganallur, Perungudi, Manali, Kodungaiyur, Porur, Chintadripet, Valasaravakkam, Pazhavanthangal and Alandur. The corporation staff were working across 300 localities in Chennai, trying to clear the water on Sunday. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Meanwhile, the state government has increased its relief efforts. CM Jayalalithaa has deputed senior officials to 16 districts to ensure that relief work and rehabilitation is being carried out. In the city, Amma Canteens were supplying food packets for residents of the city affected by rains and housed in shelters. Boats have also been kept ready to rescue affected residents. The National Disaster Response Force personnel have been brought in to Adyar And Basin Bridge in case of any emergency evacuations.

Heavy rains wreak havoc in Tamil Nadu as death toll climbs to 48

Chennai: The toll in rain-related incidents in Tamil Nadu increased to 48 on Thursday even as MeT office forecast another spell of heavy showers next week following formation of a new trough of low pressure.

The toll in rain-related incidents rose to 48 on Thursday with the state government reporting another 17 deaths in the last two days, most of them from Cuddalore.

Representational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa condoled the death of the victims, a majority of whom died due to drowning in flood waters and announced Rs four lakh each to their families as assistance from the Disaster Relief Fund.

“A new trough of low pressure has formed in South Andaman Sea. It is expected to develop into a low pressure in South Eastern Bay of Bengal on November 14,” Regional Meteorological Centre (RMC) Chennai Director SR Ramanan told reporters.

This formation was expected to bring in heavy rains to the state next week, RMC officials said.

Several parts of the state, including Chennai, are just limping back to normalcy after being battered by heavy rains under the influence of a low pressure that intensified into a deep depression and crossed the state coast on 9 November with Cuddalore District being the worst hit.

The government had yesterday said there were 31 deaths, including 27 from Cuddalore District, in rain-related incidents including drowning, wall collapse and electrocution in the past two days.

Jayalalithaa had on Wednesday held a review meeting in Chennai with officials to assess the situation in Cuddalore where relief and rehabilitation measures were being taken up in full swing.

Senior state Ministers, including O Panneerselvam, deputed by Jayalalithaa, visited the rain-affected district today and held consultations with Collector S Sureshkumar and other officials.

They directed the officials to carry relief measures including restoring supply of power and drinking water on ‘war-footing’, officials said.

A report from Cuddalore said incessant rains had severely damaged standing crops in Chidambaram and Panruti.

Tamizhaga Vazhvurimai Katchi founder T Velmurugan said Cuddalore had been repeatedly affected by natural calamities and urged the Centre to declare it as a ‘disaster-affected district’ and award a relief package of Rs 1,000 crore.

Meanwhile, several parts of Chennai and the suburbs, including commercial hub of Velachery, received rains overnight inundating low-lying areas further damaging roads.

The weather office forecast rains in many places in southern districts with heavy rains in some areas and over a few places in northern Tamil Nadu for the next 24 hours.

PTI

Heavy rain pound Tamil Nadu, death toll touches 55

According to an official release , the toll stood at 55, as seven more persons lost their lives in rain-related incidents in various parts of the state since last night.

File Pic: A waterlogged subway after heavy rains in Chennai .

PTI
Seven more persons lost their lives in rain-related incidents in Tamil Nadu, taking the death toll to 55 as the North East Monsoon continued to pound several parts of the state disrupting rail and road traffic.The government had yesterday put the toll in rain-related incidents at 48, including 27 from Cuddalore district.According to an official release , the toll stood at 55, as seven more persons lost their lives in rain-related incidents in various parts of the state since last night.Parts of South Chennai including St Thomas Mount and Velacherry witnessed heaving water logging which even resulted in railway under-bridges being flooded.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Schools and colleges in northern districts including Chennai, Vellore, Thiruvallur and Kanchipuram remained closed.Office goers in the capital city had a harrowing time as they had to wade through knee-deep and in some places waist-deep waters.Trains leaving Chennai were also affected due to water logging in the tracks. Arterial roads including in Anna Salai, Poonamallee High Road and GST Road in the city came under sheets of water hitting vehicular movement, according to authorities.Rubber road barricades were seen floating and some buses stopped midway due to rising of water levels on the roads. Power supply was disrupted in some areas.Several lakes in Tiruvallur and Kanchipuram like the sprawling Madurantakam Eri received copious water. Also, water level in reservoirs that supply drinking water to Chennai –Red Hills, Cholavaram, Chembarambakkam and Poondi have shown an increase with water supply now available for three months, according to officials.Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has condoled the death of the victims, a majority of whom drowned in flood waters, and announced Rs four lakh each to their families of those killed from the Disaster Relief Fund.Several parts of the state, including Chennai, Cuddalore and Kancheepuram districts were witnessing heavy rains for the last few days.Thought the deep depression had already crossed the Chennai coast on November 9, the Met office said a new trough of low presure formed over South Andaman Sea was expected to bring heavy rains in the next few days.

Hail Amma! Tamil folk singer Kovan arrested for criticising Jayalalithaa’s ‘liquor-on-tap’ policy in govt bars

At 02:30 am, Chennai Cyber Crime Cell sleuths swooped down upon the home of Kovan, folk singer in Oraiyur, Trichy district of Tamil Nadu. He was woken up and arrested under Sections 124-A (Sedition), 153 (Provoking riots), 505 (1) (b and c) (intent to cause fear and alarm to public against state and incitement). His crime – to have written, performed and released on the internet, songs criticising the state government of Tamil Nadu and its Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on the burning issue of Prohibition.

“Raids were conducted on the home of the person who had uploaded the songs onto the internet too,” said Jim Raj Milton, advocate for Kovan. “One Kannaiyan Ramadoss aka Kaliappan’s house was raided but he was out of town at the time. He runs a small group called Makkal Adhigaram (People’s Authority),” he said.

Tamil folk singer KovanTamil folk singer Kovan

Tamil folk singer Kovan

The songs offending the authorities criticise the state government’s alleged callousness in running TASMAC (Tamil Nadu State Marketing Corporation) bars when the people were floundering in alcoholism and homes were being wrecked due to the habit.

Kovan takes a number of digs at Jayalalithaa in the songs as well as at her pet welfare schemes like Amma Canteen and Amma Mineral Water. In one song titled “Oorukkooru Sarayam” (Liquor in every village), he sings –

“Idli costs Re 1 while toilets cost Rs 5 to use,
Meals cost Rs 5 but Dal costs Rs 100,
Bottled water costs Rs 10 while education fees cost Rs 1 lakh,
If you don’t call her a Goddess who gave life, she will kill you.”

With his arrest, Kovan has now won the wide support of anti-liquor campaigners in the state. “This kind of an action is an indirect serious threatening message from government to anti-liquor activists,” said Senthil Arumugam of NGO Satta Panchayat Iyakkam, who is one of the most vocal voices demanding Prohibition in the state. “Since elections are coming up, this TASMAC issue is going to blow up. The government wants to ensure that there are no protests. Kovan’s song has become too popular and that is why they have arrested him,” he said.

Neither the police, nor AIADMK spokespersons were available to comment on this issue.

Who is Kovan?

52-year-old Kovan, a native of Trichy, was originally born in Kumbakonam where he completed his schooling. He then studied to be a fitter in the Industrial Training Institute in the neighbouring district of Nagapattinam. Upon completing his diploma, he found a job with Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited in Trichy.

It was in Trichy that Kovan was influenced by extreme Left wing ideology. Although not a Naxal in the true sense of the word, Kovan, say his friends and colleagues, was a sympathiser and a poet, who put his songwriting and singing skills to good use. In 1996, Kovan resigned from his job in BHEL and founded a small group called the Makkal Kalai Ilakkiya Kazhagam (People’s Art and Literary Association) in Trichy. This group would meet regularly, write songs on social issues, decrying caste divisions and travel across villages singing their songs in rusty folk tunes.

“We have sung about Koodankulam, illegal sand mining and various other social evils,” said M Sathya, a member of the group and a close associate of Kovan for the past 25 years. “Yesterday too we sat as a team and started writing songs in support of the 14 lawyers suspended by the Madras High Court. Kovan went home only at 10pm last night. I got a call at 02.30am saying the police had woken him up and arrested him,” he said.

Kovan is married, with a son who is a lawyer and a daughter who is studying to be a homeopathic doctor. Members of his loose troupe who number around 1000 across ten districts of the state are livid at his arrest.

“He has been deliberately targeted and sedition charges have been slapped on him,” said Sathya. “It has been 2 months since this song has come out. These charges have come about now because the song has become very popular – there are over 4 lakh views in YouTube,” he said. His teammates plan to sing their protests against his arrest across the state and organise protests.

Draconian Crackdown

Political hawks are not surprised at this extreme move by the Tamil Nadu police. Jayalalithaa is notorious for slapping criminal defamation charges against politicians and publications who speak out in criticism of her actions.

Opposition leaders like the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam’s (DMK) Karunanidhi, Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK) chief Vijaykanth, Congress state president EVKS Elangovan and others are all battling cases of defamation slapped by the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister. Many publications which write in criticism of state government, or specifically the Chief Minister, are dragged to court. In the past four years of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) regime alone, over 110 cases of defamation have been filed by government. In her last regime, between 2001-2006, the Jayalalithaa-led government filed close to 120 defamation suits.

“The police will clamp down on anything that is against Jayalalithaa,” said GC Shekhar, senior journalist and political analyst. “She has slapped defamation cases on all sorts of people. This is not about anti-liquor activists, their activities will go on uninterrupted. This is about Jayalalithaa – Amma’s reputation must be protected at all costs,” he said.

During Jayalalithaa’s regime, the state police is believed to frequently invoke draconian laws such as the TADA (Terrorists and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act of 1985), POTA (Prevention of Terrorism Act of 2002) and the Goondas Act (Tamil Nadu Prevention of Dangerous Activities of Bootleggers, Drug Offenders, Goondas, Immoral Traffic Offenders and Slum-Grabbers Act of 1982) regularly. In August 2014, the much criticised Goondas Act was amended, allowing police to detain suspects in prison for upto a year even when only a single offence has been committed. This stringent amendment to the 1982 preventive detention law came under severe criticism from human rights watchers in the state.

In 2002, Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) chief Vaiko, an open sympathiser of the banned Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) armed group in Sri Lanka, was arrested under POTA and jailed for 19 months.

Opposition gets new arsenal

Opposition parties have got a new weapon in their arsenal to target the ruling government.

DMK Treasurer and heir apparent MK Stalin issued a statement on his official Facebook page condemning the arrest of Kovan. “Seeing the manner in which human rights are being crushed by this government, I fear that there is a dangerous situation prevailing in the state,” he said. “I am anguished that rule of law stands with bowed head in front of the abuse of power and destruction of freedom of speech by the AIADMK government,” he added.

Calling the arrest draconian, DMK spokesperson TKS Elangovan said that sedition charges are unwarranted in this case. “Kovan belongs to the Leftist movement and he is a good singer,” said Elangovan. “This song is about liquor and he has attacked Jayalalithaa directly because she is the Chief Minister and she introduced TASMAC. This arrest is aimed curtailing freedom of expression. He sings songs for the people against the government and against the Chief Minister for not implementing prohibition. There is no element of sedition in these two songs,” he argued.

Kovan’s lawyer Milton too says that these charges will not stick. “The sedition charge cannot stand,” argued Milton. “There is nothing seditious in this song. There is an anger in Kovan’s songs, but there is also a logic behind that anger. This is an art form. It can only be seen as art. Even defamation cannot stand,” he said.

The BJP meanwhile is playing it safe. “Kovan’s organisation is known for its anti-national and separatist propaganda in general,” said H Raja, National Secretary of the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP). “Without knowing the reasons against the individual I cannot comment. In any case that organisation is known for such anti-national activities. Every issue must be considered on its merit. In case any violation of democracy is there, we will not hesitate to fight,” he said.

As Kovan heads to confinement, what is clear is that the state government has many questions to answer with this particular arrest.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa’s election challenged in Madras High Court

Petitions challenging the election of AIADMK supremo and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa to the assembly in a byelection have been filed in the Madras High Court by two independent candidates.

Petitions challenging the election of AIADMK supremo and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa to the assembly in a byelection have been filed in the Madras High Court by two independent candidates.Justice Pushpa Sathyanarayana today ordered notice to Jayalalithaa, the Election Commission, state Chief Electoral Officer and the Returning Officer on one of the petitions filed by advocate T Suresh whose nomination papers for the June 27 last bypoll to R K Nagar constituency were rejected.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The hearing on another petition filed by social activist “Traffic” Ramaswamy could not be taken up and was adjourned for three weeks after the counsel for him submitted that the petitioner was hospitalised and sought time.Suresh Kumar submitted that even though he had fulfilled the norms and the procedures of the elections as per the rules of Representation of People Act, the Returning Officer had returned his nomination papers stating that he had not filed the nomination with 10 proposers.He further submitted that the nomination was rejected on the ground that one of the proposer’s address was wrongly mentioned in the voter identity card.The proposer’s address was mentioned as Ilaya Mudal Street instead of Ilaya Mudali Street. Though the mistake was clerical in nature and the proposer had submitted a correction form about a year ago, the officials rejected the nomination on that ground.He was, however, able to vote and it was recorded in the closed circuit television (CCTV) installed at polling station on June 27, the petitioner claimed adding it meant the proposer was an eligible voter.Hence, he wanted the court to declare as illegal the rejection of his nomination papers as improper and invalid and consequently set aside the election of Jayalalithaa.Jayalalithaa, who returned as Chief Minister in May last after being acquitted by the Karnataka High Court in a graft case, had won the byelection with a margin of over 1.5 lakh votes against her nearest CPI rival C Mahendran.She had contested the poll to fulfil the constitutional requirement of getting elected as MLA within six months of becoming Chief Minister.PAL10262000NNNN
PTI

Tamil Nadu: 17,095 get job offers at recruitment camp in CM Jayalalithaa’s constituency RK Nagar

As a token of giving letters of appointment to aspirants, Jayalalithaa handed over them to five of the job-seekers in a function in Nilgiris district, where she is staying now.
File Photo
PTI
As many as 17,095 job seekers on Saturday got appointment letters during a recruitment camp held in Dr Radhakrishnan Nagar, the constituency of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa. A total of 58,835 job aspirants and 358 companies participated in the recruitment camp, held on the directions of the Chief Minister, an official release said on Saturday.”A total of 17,095 letters of appointment have been given in an employment camp held today in Dr Radhakrishnan Nagar,” Director, Department of Employment and Training, C Samayamoorthy said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Out of the participants, as many as 6,453 persons got appointment letters and 10,642 provisional letters of appointment, totalling 17,095, the release added. Also, 14,392 persons have enrolled in skill development programmes of Tamil Nadu Skill Development Corporation. As many as 1,057 aspirants have registered with the state-run Overseas Manpower Corporation expressing their interest to take up employment abroad, the release said.As a token of giving letters of appointment to aspirants, Jayalalithaa handed over them to five of the job-seekers in a function in Nilgiris district, where she is staying now.Although such job camps have been held across Tamil Nadu periodically, the camp in RK Nagar has attracted attention as the constituency is represented in the Assembly by Jayalalithaa. She won the seat by a huge margin and became Chief Minister for the fifth time in May this year after she was acquitted in an assets case by the Karnataka High Court.

Himachal CM Virbhadra Singh calls disproportionate assets case against him a ‘witch-hunt’

Rohru: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh on Tuesday said the registration of a disproportionate assets case against him and his wife by the CBI was a political witch-hunt.

Virbhadra Singh. PTI

Virbhadra Singh. PTI

“Accusing me of possessing unaccounted wealth and income is like a witch-hunt. Since I am a scion of an erstwhile royal family, I have inherited property from my ancestors,” the chief minister said at a public rally near Rohru town, some 120 km from state capital Shimla.

“False cases were framed against me twice by the then BJP government in Himachal Pradesh and both times I came out clean,” he said.

Referring to his acquittal in a corruption case in December 2012, the chief minister said: “My acquittal was challenged but it was turned down by the Supreme Court, sending shock waves in the opposition camp.”

Praising senior BJP leader and parliamentarian Shanta Kumar, Virbhadra Singh said though he could have difference of opinion with Shanta Kumar, a former chief minister of Himachal, he (Shanta) was a man of principles.

Virbhadra Singh’s residences in Shimla and Delhi were raided on 26 September by the CBI in a disproportionate assets case.

However, the Himachal high court on 1 October asked the CBI not to arrest the chief minister and his wife in the case but directed it to go ahead with the investigation.

“…by way of abundant precaution, it’s made clear that the petitioners shall not be arrested,” a division bench of Justice Rajiv Sharma and Justice Sureshwar Singh Thakur said while hearing a writ petition filed by Virbhadra Singh.

IANS

Sri Lankan Navy arrests 24 Tamil Nadu fishermen

On October 10, the navy personnel had arrested 19 fishermen from Nagapattinam district on charges of violating the International Maritime Boundary Line prompting Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa to write to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him to take up the continued arrests of state’s fishermen at a high political level with Sri Lanka.

The Sri Lankan navy on Tuesday arrested 24 fishermen from here and also chased away at gun point several others for allegedly fishing in Lankan waters near Katchatheevu in the Palk Straits.More then 3,000 fishermen in 600 boats had put out to sea from here last night. The Lankan navy personnel came in 10 patrol boats and sea bikes, threatened the fishermen and arrested 24 of them besides chasing away others at gun point, fishermen organisation leaders S Emerite and Sagayaraj said.The fishermen were fishing near Katchatheevu in Palk Straits, they said claiming the fishermen were fishing in traditional waters.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>On October 10, the navy personnel had arrested 19 fishermen from Nagapattinam district on charges of violating the International Maritime Boundary Line prompting Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa to write to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him to take up the continued arrests of state’s fishermen at a high political level with Sri Lanka.In another instance on October 2, seven fishermen from Rameswaram had been arrested by Sri Lankan naval personnel off Katchatheevu islet for allegedly crossing the IMBL and fishing in their waters.Emirite said the livelihood of fishermen would be hit hard if the Sri Lankan navy continued the arrests besides threatening them while fishing in traditional waters. He also wanted the Centre and state governments to take necessary steps to prevent such incidents.

Tamil Nadu CM, Rajinikanth condole death of film actress Manorama

Chennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, leaders of political parties and the film fraternity on Sunday condoled the death of film actress Manorama and hailed her illustrious career and contribution.

As condolences kept pouring in, the who’s who of the Tamil film industry, including actor Rajinikanth descended at the residence of Manorama in T Nagar to pay their last respects.

Manorama passed away here late last night after a heart attack at the age of 78.

Image courtesy: ibnliveImage courtesy: ibnlive

Image courtesy: ibnlive

“The passing away of Manorama is a huge loss for the Tamil film industry and her place cannot be filled by anybody, I am deeply anguished by her death” Jayalalithaa said in her condolence message.

Reminiscing her experience of acting alongside her,she said, “The experience of acting with her is forever etched in my memory in movies like Kandan Karunai and Galatta Kalyanam.” Hailing her versatility, Jayalalithaa recalled that Manorama had sung over 300 songs, including the hugely popular “Va Vathyaraey” (in movie Bommalattam in which Jayalalithaa and Manorama had acted) and “Theriyatho Nokku.”

“She made a huge achievement in the annals of Indian film industry by acting in over 1,300 films and has acted with heroes of past and present generations, including Puratchi Thalaivar MGR and Sivaji Ganesan and ruled Tamil cinema for over four decades,” she said.

Praising Manorama’s acting skills, she named movies including Bommalattam, Suriyagandhi, Pattikada Pattanama and Thillana Mohanambal which demonstrated her scintillating talent.

“She was pleasant in disposition and had acted in many films alongwith Puratchi Thalaivar MGR and me,” she said.

Noting that Manorama’s name featured in Guinness Book of World Records for acting in over 1000 movies, she said the actress was honoured for her matchless contribution by way of several awards, including Padma Shri, and Kalaimamani of the Tamil Nadu government.

“I express my condolences to the family of Manorama, her fans and the film industry and I pray to the Almighty that her soul rest in peace,” she said.

PTI

Eminent flautist N Ramani passes away

Expressing grief over his death, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa said in a statement she was “deeply anguished to learn the death of N Ramani today due to illness.” “Ramani brought specialty and uniqueness to flute and elevated it (flute) which was once an accompaniment and he was a genius of flute music,” she said.

Screen grab.

Acclaimed flute maestro N Ramani credited with taking instrumental Carnatic music several notches high, died on Friday in Chennai.Ramani (82) is survived by his wife, two sons and two daughters.Expressing grief over his death, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa said in a statement she was “deeply anguished to learn the death of N Ramani today due to illness.” “Ramani brought specialty and uniqueness to flute and elevated it (flute) which was once an accompaniment and he was a genius of flute music,” she said.He carved a niche for himself in flute music and got a host of recognitions like Sangeetha Kalanidhi, Padma Shri, and Padma Bhushan. His name was synonymous with Carnatic flute music and such was his fame, she said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Ramani’s passing away is a big loss for the world of Tamil music. I convey my condolences to his family, and Carnatic music fans…,” she said.

Tamil Nadu: 96-year-old film lyricist accuses DMK leader M Karunanidhi of stealing his film script

This was then made into a film without his knowledge.

DMK President M Karunanidhi

This is apparently a story that happened 65 years which the 96-year-old has not forgotten. Tamil lyricist PK Muthusamy, 96, from Namakkal, has now accused DMK leader M Karunanidhi, of allegedly stealing his film script and storyline. A report in Deccan Chronicle states that the Muthusamy who is in penury had given the storyline of the movie Marudhanaattu Illavarasi to Karunanidhi in 1949. This was then made into a film without his knowledge.Muthusamy has penned over 60 songs for Tamil films in his career. The report adds that he lost his money when he produced a film Thai Pirandhal Vazhi Pirakkum. He has written many odes praising chief minister Jayalalithaa and the former Chief Ministers CN Annadurai and MG Ramachandran adds the report.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He is said to be living on Rs 1500 a month now which he receives from Tamil Nadu government as a pension. He also apparently receives some money from publishing rights.

The story behind MK Stalin’s image reboot ahead of 2016 Tamil Nadu Assembly election

By Sandhya Ravishankar

A pink shirt, grey trousers, grey sneakers with neon green laces and shades to boot — MK Stalin, treasurer of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) and possible chief ministerial candidate for Tamil Nadu in 2016, painted an incongruous picture for a Tamil politician as he kicked off his election yatra in Kanyakumari on Monday. Later in the day, he exchanged the pink shirt for a blue t-shirt, an even more astounding choice.

On Tuesday, Stalin went a step further — clad in a blue shirt and dark trousers, he rode a scooter in Ambasamudram, Tirunelveli district, leaving the locals in raptures.

Stalin has rarely been seen in trousers — his chosen attire usually is a crisply ironed white shirt and white ‘veshti’ (dhoti) with the DMK black and red colours on the border. Sometimes, during election campaigns, he sports a black and red scarf around his neck.

MK Stalin in an image released by the DMK

MK Stalin in an image released by the DMK

The last time Stalin was seen wearing trousers was in 2012 when he traveled with a contingent of DMK MPs to New York and Geneva to hand over petitions regarding the Sri Lankan war crimes issue to the United Nations Secretary-General and the United Nations Human Rights Council. On the day of his return to Chennai, huge posters had been plastered all along airport road in Chennai with a photograph of Stalin clad in a suit with the caption “Yes, we can!” plastered on the banner.

So why the sudden change in look?

Sources within Stalin’s camp tell Firstpost that this is a deliberate move to woo the young voters in the state. “Well, the idea is to break the ice first with the people,” said the source close to Stalin, adding, “He doesn’t want to be seen as a politician, he is going there to hear their issues and get inputs for the DMK’s manifesto. For that, he has to be seen as one among them, a common man.”

A video released by Stalin’s team shows him exhorting the people of Tamil Nadu to outrage. “Kobappadungal (Get angry),” roars Stalin in the video where he is shown walking along the sea. The video showcases the key election issues through letters written to Stalin by the people — unemployment, power cuts, water shortage, alcoholism and rising prices among others. This video will be shown on vans bearing LED screens as he continues on his yatra.

There is a growing understanding within the DMK that the electorate of Tamil Nadu has changed along with the demographics of age and aspirations. 60 lakh first-time voters will ink their fingers in 2016. A large proportion of the electorate next year will be millennials. “The current electorate seeks answers and is much more proactive,” said the source and added, “They want to know how their leader will change things for them.”

This realisation dawned on Stalin’s team following the upheaval created by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s campaign in 2013-14. And it is probably with this in mind that Stalin has shifted gears in his electoral campaign that kicked off early in September on his ‘Mudiyattum Vidiyattum’ (Let it end, let it dawn) public rallies. In a public meeting at Tirupur last month, Stalin spoke of change and solutions, getting rid of the usual J Jayalalithaa-bashing rhetoric that has thus far dominated Dravidian politics. Exhorting youngsters to join politics, Stalin outlined specifically how he would change things if the DMK was brought back to power in 2016.

“There are 85 lakh youngsters in the waiting list at the state Employment Exchange,” said Stalin at the rally in Tirupur earlier this month. “I give an assurance to all youngsters of Tamil Nadu that we will create incubation centres to bring in new industries in the state. We will revamp the Employment Exchange itself and bring in private companies, conduct group discussions to ensure employment opportunities for our youth,” he said.

Specifics of this nature are a first for the Karunanidhi-led DMK, a party widely seen as being steeped in corruption and dynastic politics. Stalin’s father M Karunanidhi preferred to issue statements against his political rivals, whether MG Ramachandran or Jayalalithaa of the All-India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam. If all else failed, Karuna would take the freebie route, promising free colour TVs and playing the caste card. His rival and current Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa too prefers to issue statements decrying Karunanidhi’s moves and motives. Many years have passed since either of these two prominent Tamil politicians walked the dusty roads of the state or mingled with the common man or woman.

Stalin on the other hand, is walking his talk so far. He has been riding autorickshaws, walking in market areas and his team says he will also ride a bicycle as he continues on his ‘Namakku Naame’ yatra across the state. He is kissing babies, shaking hands with bus drivers and students, posing for photographs with elderly vegetable vendors and sipping tea at local chai shops with the locals.

For Stalin, this routine could well be the only option to take on Jayalalithaa in 2016. A discredited and weakened DMK with a nonagenarian leader faces a tough challenge from the rival Dravidian behemoth, the AIADMK, which has been rolling out freebies and welfare schemes with abandon. A personality battle with Jaya would severely backfire on Stalin. Speaking of development, change, aspirations and a connect with young voters is likely to work better for 2016. Stalin’s team has decided that Jayalalithaa’s larger-than-life image can only be countered by a politician who is seen as accessible, approachable and likeable by the masses.

Can Stalin be that? He is certainly trying.

Tamil Nadu government to offer internet services; to implement BharatNet

Making a suo motu statement in the Assembly, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said the Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV Corporation (TACTV) has received Internet Service Provider Licence (ISP) from the Union IT Ministry and signed a pact with Indian RailTel for providing high-speed broadband internet services.

Tamil Nadu government on Monday said it will provide internet services, including IPTV, through the state-run cable TV operator TACTV and implement the Centre’s broadband project “BharatNet” linking more than 12,500 rural local bodies in the state at an investment of Rs 3,000 crore.Making a suo motu statement in the Assembly, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said the Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV Corporation (TACTV) has received Internet Service Provider Licence (ISP) from the Union IT Ministry and signed a pact with Indian RailTel for providing high-speed broadband internet services.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Already, 552 cable operators had been roped in and services were being provided to the people and the ISP Licence will be used to take internet across every household in the state, she added.”Further, I am happy to announce that Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) services will also be provided along with high-speed broadband and other internet services,” she said.As regards Bharatnet, the Chief Minister said she had been insisting that it should be implement through the state government and this had been accepted by the Centre.Accordingly, 12,524 rural local bodies will be connected through Optical Fibre at an investment of Rs 3,000 crore with Central Assistance and a Tamil Nadu FibreNet Corporation will be created for this purpose, she added.In another statement, Jayalalithaa said specially designed wheelchairs would be provided to 960 differently-a bled persons with spine problems at an estimated cost of Rs 1.92 crore.She said the foldable wheelchairs supplied already were not comfortable to those with spine problems.

DMDK Chief Vijayakanth protests against Tamil Nadu’s Global Investors’ Meet

Investment of over Rs. 1 lakh crore was committed for Tamil Nadu at the maiden Global Investors Meet that began in Chennai on Wednesday.

dna Research & Archives
While Chief Minister Jayalalithaa was wooing investors in Chennai at the Global Investors’ Meet, DMDK Chief Vijayakanth addressed a public meeting in Madurai to protest the meet. Vijayakanth stated that drinking water and power shortage in the state were more important issues that needed to be addressed.The DMDK leader also accused the state government of violating Supreme Court guidelines in the Global Investors’ Meet ads. Premalatha Vijakayanth also spoke at the meeting and criticised DMK and AIADMK. She alleged that both were responsible for corruption in Tamil Nadu. She added that people in the state were not looking for freebies but wanted health care and free education.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Investment of over Rs. 1 lakh crore was committed for Tamil Nadu at the maiden Global Investors Meet that began in Chennai on Wednesday. The two-day meet is being attended by 5,000 delegates, including 1,000 from abroad.Also read: Tamil Nadu Global Investors’ Meet Day 1: Who pledged how much investment?

Infographic: How Jayalalithaa’s ‘Amma Baby Care Kit’ fares against the original Finland’s Maternity Box

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has launched the ‘Amma Baby Care Kit’ scheme, wherein the government will provide accessories meant for the newborn and its mother.

The kit will contain a towel, bed, dress, mosquito net, napkin, 100 ml oil, 60 ml shampoo, a soap with a box, a nail-clipper and doll for the child besides hand sanitiser.

The kit will also contain a locally made medicine for the mother besides a box to store essentials meant for the newborn, the release said, adding, the kit will have 16 materials whose value was Rs 1,000.

In the current year, a sum of Rs 67 crore has been allotted for this purpose, wherein the baby care kit will be provided to newborns in government hospitals, the release said.

The ‘Amma Kit’ seems to have been inspired by the Finnish maternity package which has been in circulation since 1949.

According to a BBC report, for decades, Finland’s expectant mothers have been given a box by the state. It’s a starter kit of clothes, sheets and toys that can even be used as a bed. It is also been speculated that it has helped Finland achieve one of the world’s lowest infant mortality rates over the years.

Perhaps, over time, similar results could be achieved in the state too.

Here’s an infographic of things on offer in Amma’s kit, compared to that of Finland’s Maternity Box.

Infographic_Infographic_

With inputs from PTI.

Supreme Court to hear FTII, coal scam issues tomorrow

Several important cases are scheduled to be heard in the Supreme Court on Monday including the coal scam and the FTII issue.

Supreme Court of India

PTI photo
Several important cases are scheduled to be heard in the Supreme Court on Monday including the coal scam and the FTII issue. The SC will resume hearing on a plea seeking probe against former CBI Director Ranjit Sinha, who was accused of scuttling investigations in the coal block allocation scam. The CVC has to inform the court about the assistance it could provide in the probe against former CBI Director. The Supreme Court will also hear PIL seeking its intervention to end the FTII crisis, triggered by the appointment of Gajendra Chauhan as the chairman of the premier institute.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> The Supreme court will hear a plea of BJP leader Subramaniam Swamy, who is seeking quashing of six criminal defamation complaints lodged against him for allegedly making some comments against Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa in his tweets.

Say tata to other salts, ‘Amma salt’ is coming to a shop near you!

As of August 2015 around 6,760 metric tonnes of Amma Salt were sold in the state, an ‘overwhelming response’ in the state, it said.

Claiming overwhelming response in Tamil Nadu to the launch of low cost ‘Amma salt’, the Jayalalithaa government today said it soon planned to expand sales pan India.”Sale of Amma Salt will be launched in New Delhi,Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Punjab, Karnataka, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh soon by the Tamil Nadu Salt Corporation”, the policy note tabled in the assembly said.As of August 2015 around 6,760 metric tonnes of Amma Salt were sold in the state, an ‘overwhelming response’ in the state, it said.Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, addressed as “Amma” (mother) by her supporters, had launched Amma Double Fortified Salt, low sodium salt and refined free flow iodised salt on June 11 last year, priced at Rs 25, Rs 21 and Rs 14.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The AIADMK government has been launching various initiatives under the “Amma” brand, including Amma Unavagam (Hotels), Amma Water (drinking water) and Amma Cement The policy note also said that the state government planned to distribute Amma Salt in five kg and 25 kg packs to hotels, hospitals and hostels in the State.

Shortfall in TN’s Cauvery water share: Jaya writes to Modi

In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, she said that as against the stipulated quantum of 94 tmc to be released by Karnataka in the last three months, “only a meagre” 66.443 tmc ft had been realised.

Narendra Modi
File Photo

Charging Karnataka with wilful default in releasing Tamil Nadu’s share of Cauvery water, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has sought the Centre’s intervention to ensure that the upper riparian state complied with the final order of the tribunal in this regard. “Instead of releasing our legitimate share as per the Final Order of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal, Karnataka continues to utilise all the water in its reservoirs as if it owns the Cauvery river, with scant regard to the plight of the farmers in Tamil Nadu,” she said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, she said that as against the stipulated quantum of 94 tmc to be released by Karnataka in the last three months, “only a meagre” 66.443 tmc ft had been realised by Tamil Nadu as on August 31 last, leaving “a huge shortfall of 27.557 TMC ft.” There was “wilful default” on part of Karnataka by “not adhering to the schedule of release of Cauvery water” as stipulated by the tribunal, she said in the Sept 4 dated letter, a copy of which was released to media here today. Noting that Mettur dam could not be opened on the scheduled date of June 12 for raising Kurvai crop due to this, she said water was being released only from August 9 with the available quantity of 60.411 tmc to enable farmers in Cauvery delta raise at least the long-term samba paddy crop. Agricultural operations were in full swing and water had to be continuously supplied to the delta districts till January, 2016, for the sustenance of the Samba crop, she said. Noting that the storage in Mettur Dam as of yesterday was only 50.552 TMC, she said the inflow continued to dwindle. However, Karnataka has enough storage in its four major reservoirs and had been releasing water from July, 2015, for its irrigation, she said. Seeking Modi’s ‘personal intervention’ in the matter, Jayalalithaa also reiterated her demand for the formation of the Cauvery Management Board and the Cauvery Water Regulation Committee for giving effect to the tribunal’s order.

Hardselling ‘mann ki baat’, Yoga Day: RTI queries reveal Modi govt spent Rs 24 cr on ads

In a counter to the BJP’s barbs over the Delhi government’s spending on posters, a RTT filed by an Aam Aadmi Party activist has revealed that Rs 8.5 crore was spent just to advertise the Prime Minister’s ‘mann ki baat‘ radio address.

A RTI filed by AAP activist Mulk Raj Anand has revealed that the government has spent over Rs 8.5 crore from January to 29 July on newspaper advertisements to promote the Prime Minister’s radio address, reports the Indian Express.

Narendra Modi during a mann ki baat address. PIB imageNarendra Modi during a mann ki baat address. PIB image

Narendra Modi during a mann ki baat address. PIB image

Anand questioned how this amount had been spent on newspaper ads to promote the Prime Minister’s radio address, which he claimed was “for the publicity of the Prime Minister”. He argued that the central government’s expenditure on advertisements would be “much, much higher” than the Delhi government’s Rs 500 crore expenditure on advertisements.

Another RTI query has revealed that the government spent Rs 15.87 crore on SMS messages to promote Yoga Day ahead of 21 June. Ahmedabad resident, Parag Patel, had filed an RTI application seeking information on the amount spent on sending out the messages that touted the benefits of yoga and telling people to take it up, reports DNA.

However, the government didn’t reply on how many such messages had been sent out and which organisation had been recruited to send them out.

Patel sad he had become curious about the spending on the messages after receiving one himself. The Ahmedabad resident wasn’t however very happy about the government spending money on the SMS messages after spending on other mediums of advertisement as well.

The two incidents again raise questions on just how much the government should spend on advertisements.

While the Supreme Court has restricted the kind of advertisements that can be issued, various state governments ranging from the one headed by Jayalalithaa in Tamil Nadu to the Aam Aadmi Party’s slogan-based ad campaign in Delhi have exploited loopholes in the order.

The central government has also faced accusations of splurging more than needed on advertisements, sometimes for schemes and initiatives that do little beyond furthering personalities.

World Breast Feeding Week: Jayalalithaa launches 352 lactating mothers’ rooms, milk banks in Tamil Nadu

Travelling mothers sometimes have to wait at bus terminals where they face difficulties in feeding babies.

With an aim to help lactating mothers who are travelling, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa today inaugurated, through video conferencing, 352 rooms at bus terminals across the state where women can feed their newborns.Timing the launch to sync with World Breast Feeding Week (August 1-7), she also inaugurated Mother’s Milk Banks in seven government hospitals, including Tiruchirappalli and Madurai.”The Chief Minister has advised that a small table and bench should be placed in rooms for lactating mothers,” an official release said here.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Mothers’ Milk Banks were inaugurated in seven state-run hospitals in Tiruchirappalli, Madurai, Coimbatore, Theni, Salem and Thanjavur, besides the over 160-year old Government Institute of Obstetrics and Gynaecology and Hospital at Egmore here.Each bank has been provided with equipment worth Rs 10 lakh to preserve the milk donated by mothers. Such milk can be stored for three months and will be given to babies who cannot get milk from their mothers.”Through this initiative the health of babies will be safeguarded and avoid child mortality,” the release said.The number of such state-run banks in Tamil Nadu now stands at eight. Last year, Mother’s Milk Bank was launched in the Institute of Child Health and Hospital for Children, known as Children’s Hospital in short.Travelling mothers sometimes have to wait at bus terminals where they face difficulties in feeding babies. These facilities were set up to address the problems of such lactating mothers, it said.Last month, Jayalalithaa had announced setting up of exclusive rooms for mothers, considering the difficulties faced by them while commuting for work or for other travel purposes.’Breastfeeding and Work-Let’s Make it Work’ is this year’s theme for the seven-day breastfeeding week. The week highlights the difficulties faced by working women in lactating their babies, and also aims to remove such obstacles by prioritising feeding newborns, the release added.

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