Custom Search Engine - Scans Selected News Sites


Sunday, 4 October 2015

From Today's Papers - 04 Oct 2015

IAF steps in, wants to shift its man’s family
UP cops arrest two key accused as political slug-fest intensifies
Tribune News Service

New Delhi/Lucknow, Oct 3
The UP police today claimed they had arrested two main suspects in the Dadri lynching case even as the Indian Air Force said it was looking at the possibility of moving the family to an Air Force area. The victim’s son, Corporal Mohammad Sartaj, is currently serving in the force.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi also visited the family in Dadri. Kejriwal later lashed out at political parties for “spreading poison” between Hindus and Muslims for vote-bank politics.

Sartaj’s father Mohammad Iqlakh (50) was beaten to death and his 22-year-old brother Danish critically injured by a mob that barged into their house on Monday night over rumours that the family had consumed beef at Dadri’s Bishada village in western Uttar Pradesh.

IAF chief Arup Raha, while replying to questions at his annual press conference ahead of Air Force Day, termed the lynching “unfortunate” and said senior officers were in touch with Corporal Sartaj and his family.

“It is unfortunate that a serving Air Force man’s family has been affected resulting in death in the family. We are already in touch.”

“We are giving whatever protection is required by him. We are trying to move (them) to some Air Force area. We are with him and our people are there to assist the family,” he said.

“Writing to the state or Central government is superfluous because everybody has understood in the government that such things cannot be accepted. Adequate actions are being taken,” he said.

Sartaj is currently posted in Chennai and efforts are on to either move his family there or transfer him to another area with his family. Earlier, Kejriwal, who was initially stopped from entering the village by residents, accused political parties of spreading hatred among communities.

After meeting the family, the Aam Aadmi Party chief targeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi by tweeting: “Many political leaders have visited Dadri. But PM is silent till now. People will be happy if PM also visited and reassured victims and villagers.”

Kejriwal, who questioned the local administration for restricting him from meeting the victim’s family at a time when other leaders, including AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi and Union Minister and Noida MP Mahesh Sharma, were permitted, came under sharp attack from several senior BJP and Congress leaders.

With two more arrests in the case, the total number of suspects behind bars has gone up to eight. While one of them has been identified as Shivam, the other, Vishal, is said to be the son of local BJP functionary Sanjay Rana. The victim’s family had alleged that Vishal forced the local temple priest to announce that a cow had been slaughtered and stored in their Bishada house.

UP’s Principal Secretary (Home) Debasish Panda said the accused would be booked under the National Security Act. Of the 10 accused in the case, the police have so far arrested eight and the location of another had been identified, he said. UP Governor Ram Naik today described the incident “heart-rending” and appealed to the people to maintain peace and cooperate with the government.
India will continue to procure foreign fighter jets: IAF Chief
Says Tejas alone cannot meet the needs, Over 100 Rafale-type jets required
Ajay Banerjee

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 3
Facing a dwindling fleet of fighter jets, the Indian Air Force (IAF) will continue to procure foreign fighter jets as banking entirely on the locally produced, LCA Tejas, may not be enough either in numbers or capability.

Though it looks as a setback to the “Make in India” initiative, it’s a pragmatic balance between being “war-ready” and waiting for still-developing indigenous technologies.

The IAF Chief, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha, while addressing a press conference here today, said, “The Tejas alone cannot meet the needs of the IAF in numbers or the roles the IAF is needed to play. We need more multi-role combat fighter jets (Rafale-type),” he said and listed out options from Russia and a long term — more than 15 years away – plan for a locally produced fighter jet with a foreign design partner.

The government in April this year announced a deal to get 36 of the twin-engine Rafale jets in a fly-away condition from French-maker Dassault aviation.

“The IAF has projected a need for six squadrons (16-18 planes in each squadron) of Rafale-type planes,” he said confirming what was first reported in The Tribune in its edition dated July 4 this year.

On being asked if the IAF wanted more Rafales, the IAF Chief said, “I may wish to have Rafale. But there are equally good aircraft. If the deal is good, the government can decide on more. There are alternatives. I cannot say I only want Rafale. I want capability of Rafale-type aircraft. So the government will have a look at it and based on urgency and the type of contract is signed with Dassault Aviation, further decisions may be taken by the government. I cannot predict.”

“At the moment cost negotiation is on. We should be able to ink the contract by the end of this calendar year. It will take two to three years for the first squadron to be raised,” he added.

On the Tejas, the IAF Chief said, he was looking at 120 of the Tejas that will include four major upgrades proposed by the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).

So far, only 40 have been ordered. On being asked if the order beyond 40 planes will be the “Tejas Mark-2” with upgraded engines, Raha said, “Let’s just call it Tejas. We are not insisting on Mark-2 for now. It will incorporate characteristics such as mid-air refueling, missiles and improved radars.”

Later sources said the engine of the upgraded version would not change from the present standard fitment of US-produced GE 404. The first lot of Tejas is likely to get final operational clearance by March next year.

Raha said the targeted 42 fighter squadrons — needed for a simultaneous war with China and Pakistan — would be in place by 2027.

As of now, the IAF has 35 fighter jet squadrons. A mixed ancestry and level of technology marks the fleet, largely imported from Russia over the past 30 years. British and French companies have supplied around 150 planes.

The IAF needs 400 jets over the next 10-12 years. There are some 260 obsolete MiG-21s and MiG-27s (Soviet Union-era single-engine fighter jets) in the fleet and these have to be replaced on priority.

The IAF Chief, on being asked about the Russian plan to supply attack helicopters to Pakistan, said, “Let’s not make a mountain of a molehill. The French have supplied Mirage (fighter jet) to Pakistan and also to us. The US supplied F-16 (fighter jet) we use. Let’s not look at it narrowly.”

On having a Chief of Defence Staff, Raha said, “The Chief of Staff Committee has given its recommendations. Having a CDS is the priority of the government.”
Army mulls separate hospitals for ex-servicemen
Vijay Mohan

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 3
The Army is exploring the feasibility of setting up hospitals in various parts of the country to cater exclusively to the ex-servicemen, besides revamping the existing administrative set up at Army Headquarters to deal with veterans’ issues.

Stating this today during the inauguration of Ashray, a home for aged ex-servicemen set up at Panchkula by the Western Command, Chief of the Army Staff General Dalbir Singh said as a pilot project, a veterans’ section was being set up at the Base Hospital in New Delhi.

“This would be followed by setting up similar sections for catering to the ex-servicemen in other military hospitals and there are plans to establish separate hospitals for them,” he said.

At present, medical care to the ex-servicemen and their dependants is being provided through the Ex-servicemen Contributory Health Scheme (ECHS), a network of in house polyclinics and empanelled private hospitals.

Some private medi-care centres opted out of the ECHS after facing issues such as budgetary support, non-availability of certain medicines and delay in clearing hospital bills. Parliament’s Standing Committee on Defence had repeatedly highlighted issues concerning the ECHS.

General Dalbir said the Adjutant General’s Branch at Army Headquarters had been asked to conduct a study to identify problems and suggest measures to streamline the functioning of the ECHS.

He said as part of the Army’s endeavour to ensure welfare of the retired fraternity, the ex-servicemen’s cell at Army Headquarters was being expanded to a full- fledged directorate. “The existing cell was small and had difficulty in coping with the vast numbers of ex-servicemen. The Adjutant General’s Branch would control the new directorate,” he said.
Khattar wants more youth from state in armed forces
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 3
CM Manohal Lal Khattar today asked the Chief of the Army Staff, Gen Dalbir Singh to suggest ways that would enable greater _participation by the state in the armed forces.

Addressing army officers, ex-servicemen and their family members after inaugurating Ashray, a home for aged veterans set up by the Western Command at Panchkula, he said that while Haryana accounted for just about two per cent of the national population, its contribution was about 10 per cent of the military’s manpower.

Ensuring all possible assistance to the armed forces by the government, Khattar also highlighted recent measures undertaken by the state towards the welfare of ex-servicemen and their dependants, including the hike in ex-gratia and financial assistance, administrative and financial support to sainik schools and other associated projects.

General Singh said that welfare of ex-servicemen was among his key result areas and several steps are being taken to ensure that facilities like medical care and canteen facilities were conveniently available. Similar old age homes would also be set up in other parts of the country. The multi-storey Ashray complex is the Army’s endeavour to provide comfortable, secure and dignified housing facilities to senior veterans in the twilight of their life. It has 60 fully furnished dwelling units.

General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Command, Lt Gen KJ Singh, Haryana Chief Secretary, DS Dhesi, Ambala MP Rattan Lal Kataria, senior serving and retired officers were present on the occasion.
Pak apprehends 65 fishermen, 12 boats off Gujarat coast
Ahmedabad, October 3
The Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (PMSA) today apprehended 65 fishermen along with their 12 boats off the Gujarat coast, officials of the National Fishworkers Forum (NFF) said.

This is the biggest and the fourth major incident of apprehending Indian fishermen by the PMSA since January this year.

“PMSA personnel have apprehended 65 fishermen and their 12 boats off the Gujarat coast,” said Manish Lodhari, secretary, NFF.

“The fishermen from Okha and Porbandar sailed off the coast of Gujarat 4-5 days ago and today they were held captive,” Lodhari said. He said 11 boats were from Porbandar and one was from Okha.

The NFF official said he got to know about the incident from the fishermen who were in contact with him through a wireless phone set.

“All those 65 fishermen are still in the middle of the Arabian Sea and surrounded by PMSA personnel when one of the sailors informed me about the incident,” Lodhari said.

In April this year, the PMSA had apprehended 47 fishermen along with their eight boats from Gujarat. — PTI

No comments:

Post a Comment


Mail your comments, suggestions and ideas to me

Template created by Rohit Agarwal