Three more die

ALAPPUZHA: Three more persons died of suspected chikungunya in the district on Monday. While two deaths were reported from Cherthala taluk, one death occurred in Ambalappuzha taluk. Rajasekharan Nair, 55, Kalathilparambu House, Bhajana Madhom ward, Thakazhi panchayat in Ambalappuzha taluk died on Monday morning. Mr. Nair who was working as a security officer at a private company in Cherthala was undergoing treatment for suspected chikungunya at Alappuzha Medical College Hospital. The two other deceased were identified as Sankara Kurup, 85, Kalippanparambu House, Kanjikkuzhy panchayat; and Karthiyayani, 71, Kunjinipparambu, Mararikkulam North panchayat. Staff Reporter

Vayalar award for Sethu

Thiruvananthapuram: Noted Malayalam novelist Sethu has been selected for the Vayalar literary award 2006. The judging committee chaired by Prof. M.K. Sanu told a press conference here on Monday that Mr. Sethu's novel `Adayalangal' was selected from three short-listed works. The award comprises a purse of Rs.25,000, a citation and a statuette designed by Kanayi Kunhiraman.

Special Correspondent

KPCC plea to Sonia

NEW DELHI: Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president Ramesh Chennithala, on Monday, sought UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi's intervention in securing a special health package for Kerala. Mr. Chennithala met Ms. Gandhi and submitted a memorandum to her in this regard.

Staff Reporter

Protest against Government decision

KOLLAM: The Kerala Dalit Federation (KDF) has voiced its protest against the decision of the State Government to entrust the task of selecting munisiffs and magistrates to the High Court. In a statement here, the State president of the KDF P. Ramabhadran, said the decision would upset the reservation for the posts and hence the decision had to be revoked. He wanted the Public Service Commission to be entrusted the task. He pointed out that the PSC had been carrying out the selection of munisiffs and magistrates by strictly adhering to the reservation norms. Staff Reporter

Kurinji flowers in Attappady

PALAKKAD: The mystical plant Neelakurinji (Strobilanthes kunthiana) has flowered in large areas in the Sholayur forest tract of the Attappady hills. A team of officials of the Attappady Hill Area Development Society (AHADS) visited the spot three km from the Moolagangal grasslands in Perumal Mudi and Ramar Mudi, where the flowers were found in more than 200 acres on Monday.

Moolagangal is 4,000 ft above mean sea level (msl) in the Attappady Forest Range of the Mannarkkad Forest Division bordering the Nilgiri forests in Tamil Nadu.

CPI(M)-RSS clash in Kozhikode

KOZHIKODE: The police are on their toes following clashes between the workers of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and the Rashtriya Sweyamsevak Sangh (RSS) in the rural areas of Kozhikode district. At least 19 persons were injured in clashes between CPI (M) and RSS workers at Muchukunnu, near Koilandy, on Sunday night.

Six of them were admitted to the Koyilandy taluk hospital and the rest to the Kozhikode Medical College Hospital. A large group of policemen has been posted in the area. Cases have been registered against the activists of both the parties at the Koyilandy police station in connection with the incident.

Plea to provide mosquito nets

Thrissur: Revenue Minister K.P. Rajendran has urged individuals and voluntary agencies to provide mosquito nets free of cost to those from poor sections of society. In an official press release here on Monday, the Minister said that those willing to take part in the drive against diseases such as chikungunya should contact District Collector M. Beena. Staff Reporter

Ward-level meetings on cleanliness drive

Thrissur: Ward-level meetings will be held on Tuesday as part of the cleanliness drive initiated by the district administration to check the spread of diseases such as chikungunya. According to an official press release here on Monday, people's representatives, representatives of political parties, officials, students and Kudumbasree members will be among those who take part in the meetings. Special squads would visit houses, institutions, shops and business establishments to create awareness about the diseases. District Collector M. Beena has said that people from all walks of life should take part in the meetings. Staff Reporter