Special trains to Nagercoil

CHENNAI: The following special trains will be operated by Southern Railway for Pongal festival to clear rush of passengers.

Train no. 0613 will leave Chennai Egmore at 7 p.m. on January 4 and 10 and reach Nagercoil at 8.15 a.m. the next day.

In the return direction, train no. 0614 will leave Nagercoil at 7.30 p.m. on January 5 and 11 and arrive here at 9 a.m. the next day.

Train no. 0615 will leave Chennai Egmore at 8 p.m. on January 6 and 8 and reach Nagercoil at 12 noon the next day.

In the return direction, no. 0616 will leave Nagercoil at 7.30 p.m. on January 7 and 9 and arrive here at 9 a.m. the next day.

Reservation will commence from January 1, says a railway release. - Special Correspondent

New SP

CHENNAI: A.G. Pon Manickavel is the new Superintendent of Police, Enforcement, Madurai.

He succeeds K. Natarajan, who retired from service on Saturday. - Special Correspondent

Airtel offer

CHENNAI: Airtel on Friday announced that calls made by its subscribers to telecom operators under the Bridge Mobile Alliance in seven countries would be charged at Rs. 7.99 a minute between January 1 and 7.

"During this promotion period, all Airtel post-paid and regular pre-paid customers will get to enjoy ISD calls at the reduced rate of Rs. 7.99 a minute to any of the other member countries," a release said.

It, however, did not give details about the existing tariff for such calls.

The promotion is for calls made by Airtel subscribers to the Alliance members - SingTel Mobile in Singapore, SingTel Optus in Australia, CSL in Hong Kong, Globe Telecom in Philippines, Maxis in Malaysia, Telkomsel in Indonesia and Taiwan Mobile.

According to Hemant Sachdev, director, Bharti Tele-Ventures Limited, "the first few days of the New Year is a time when all of us connect with our friends, associates and families around the world.

As a member of the Bridge Alliance we are pleased to present this exclusive benefit to our customers for calls to the seven countries during this period." - Staff Reporter


CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu Educational Trust has said it has selected 249 fresh students studying in professional, postgraduate and graduate courses for awarding scholarships to the tune of Rs. 9.20 lakh for the academic year 2005-06. The scholarship amounts are being sent to them. Renewal scholarships have been awarded to 316 students involving an expenditure of Rs. 11.35 lakh. The award of scholarships for 2005-06 is over.

The trust awards scholarships to meritorious and economically backward students studying in the first-year degree and postgraduate courses in arts, science and in professional courses in Tamil Nadu, according to a press release. - Special Correspondent

Held for bid to stage demonstration

TIRUCHI: A section of members of the Makkal Tamizhagam, led by its leader 'Puratchi' Kavidasan, were arrested here on Friday after they attempted to stage a demonstration to oppose the visit of Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse to the country.

The police said that around 73 members of the Makkal Tamizhagam assembled to stage a demonstration in front of the All India Radio office here when they were arrested. They were later released in the evening.

Medical camp

TIRUCHI: Over 2,600 persons including 1,800 women were screened at a special medical camp conducted by the Tiruchi Corporation at Woraiyur here on Friday. The free camp was conducted under the Swarna Jayanthi Urban Employment Programme. The people were screened for various ailments by a team of doctors and Siddha specialists. Special screening was done for children. While 28 were subjected to ECG tests, scanning was done for 80 persons.

Mettur level

TIRUCHI: The water level in the Mettur dam stood at 118.56 feet today. The inflow was 4,051 cusecs and the outflow, 12,013 cusecs. - Staff Reporter

Watchman attacked

Tuticorin: Two unidentified persons trespassed into a garden at Periyanayagipuram on Friday and assaulted the watchman.

According to a complaint lodged by Kalai (75), he was attacked by two strangers with stick, after showering abuses at him.

The Pudukottai police have registered a case and are investigating. - Staff Reporter.

Two injured in accidents

Tuticorin: The police are looking out for a lorry driver, who allegedly drove the vehicle rashly and hit a motorbike at Muthiapuram near here on Friday.

According to the police, Kottalam (28), bike rider, suffered injuries and was admitted to a private hospital.

In another accident, an unidentified van hit Samy (16) while he was crossing a road at Tiruchendur on Friday. The boy suffered fractures and was admitted to Tirunelveli Medical College and Hospital.

The Tiruchendur police are investigating. - Staff Reporter.

Lottery tickets seized

Tuticorin: The police have seized lottery tickets from various parts of the town and arrested three persons during day-long raids on Friday.

The police said that Babu (24) was arrested with 666 lotteries in his possession at Doveepuram, while Mathiyalagan (35) was taken into the custody with 820 lottery tickets when he was moving near V.V.D Junction under suspicious circumstances.

Saravanan (25) was arrested near BSNL office here with 698 tickets.

All accused were later remanded to the custody under Sections 5,7 of Lottery Regulation Act. - Staff Reporter.


ERODE: An old man died due to shock after seeing the huts of his neighbours go up in flames on Friday midnight. According to police, a sudden fire broke out at Gnanapuram in Periya Agraharam panchayat area. In the fire accident, two thatched huts of Kuppusamy and his daughter, Thilagavathy, were reduced to ashes.

While the huts were burning, the people of the area told Chinnan (75), who was residing near-by, to vacate the hut. After seeing the burning huts, Chinnan swooned and died. The police said that he had died of massive heart attack.

- Staff Reporter

Fire accident

ERODE: Fire destroyed huge quantities of cotton stocked in a spinning mill on Friday evening. According to police, a sudden fire broke out in a private spinning mill located between Sivanathapuram and Sengalipalayam in Vellakoil area. About 165 bags of cotton were gutted in the mishap. Fire and Rescue Service personnel doused the fire from spreading to other areas. - Staff Reporter