ANDHRA PRADESH

Briefly

BSNL staff stage protest

CUDDAPAH: The National Federation of Telecom Employees members undertook a day-long hunger strike in front of the BSNL General Manager's office here on Saturday in pursuance of their long-pending demands.

The union's State organising secretary, K. Sudhakar and district secretary, P. Balasundaram, said the protest was aimed at safeguarding BSNL and other demands.

Gutted

NELLORE: Haystacks to an extent of 5 acres were gutted in Chelikala village of Vidavalur mandal on Saturday. Fire tenders from Nellore rushed to the spot and put out the fire, which was said to be due to short circuit.

Police meet concludes

CHITTOOR: The valedictory function of Anantapur range police duty meet was held here on Saturday. Police officers belonging to Anantapur and Chittoor districts comprising 100 personnel participated in the meet.

The Ananthapur Range Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Jayarama Reddy, was also present on the occasion.

Camp for visually challenged

CUDDAPAH: A free medical camp for visually challenged students will be held at the Government School for the Blind at Sankarapuram here from 10 a.m. on August 22, said the president of Vijayadurga Andhra Pradesh Association for the Blind, S. Rajendra Kumar, on Saturday.

Eminent doctors of L.V. Prasad Eye Hospital, Hyderabad, would examine the blind students and give medicines free of charge, he said.

Ambedkar portrait

NELLORE: A portrait of well-known social reformer and constitutional expert, Babasaheb Ambedkar, is to be unveiled at Dr. Ambedkar Bhavan, Nellore, on Sunday, according to A. Poornaprakash, district president, Dalit Vidyarthi Sen.

Mobile exhibition

HYDERABAD: The project officers of the Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board's (APCC) mobile exhibitions would leave for five districts of Mahbubnagar, Nalgonda, Kurnool, Krishna and Guntur for environmental awareness campaign during Pushkaram, according to a press release.

Kurnool Dotnet launched

KURNOOL: The Microsoft Student Community sponsored Kurnool dotnet user group was launched here on Saturday.

The Principal of G.P.R. Engineering College, P. Jayarami Reddy presided over the function.

Dental health week

TIRUPATI: The free dental health week conducted by the Lions Club of Tirupati, as part of the national call, began at Nehru municipal high school here on Friday.

YSR takes Collectors to task

Hyderabad: The Chief Minister, Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy, has hauled up the district Collectors for their failure to disburse salaries of Anganwadi workers and helpers and old age pensions despite clear instructions in this regard. Taking a serious note of the violation of his orders on Saturday, he sought explanation from the officials over the delay in compliance of the directive. Reminding the officials that regular old age pensions and Anganwadi salaries were the promises made by the party in the election manifesto, he warned them against negligence. Henceforth, he would not brook any delay, he added in a communication to them.

`Pavithrotsavam' at Tirumala from August 28

TIRUMALA: The three-day annual `Pavithrotsavam' festival will be observed at the famous Hill temple of Lord Venkateswara at Tirumala from August 26. The festival, which is also termed `festival of purity' is being organised seeking pardon for all the sins being committed knowingly or unknowingly during the performance of various religious rituals everyday inside the temple. The festival will commence with the performance of Ankurarpanam on August 25 and will conclude on August 28 with `Purnahuti' in the temple. In connection with the festival, the TTD has cancelled some of the Arjitha sevas like -- Kalyanothsavams, Brahmotsavam, Unjal Seva, Vasanthotsavam and S.D. Seva -- on all the days during the festival period. However, desired devotees can take part in the grand festival on payment of Rs. 5,000.

International Ramayana

meet begins today

TIRUMALA: The inaugural session of the 20th international Ramayana conference will be organised at the Asthana mandapam in Tirumala, on Sunday. More than 200 pundits and research scholars from 17 States including Acharyas from 10 countries are expected to take part in the three-day conference, being jointly organised by the Dharma Prachara Parishad, TTD, Oriental Research Institute, S.V. University, R. S. Vidyapeetham, Viswa Sahitya Sanskriti Sansthan, New Delhi and Ramdoot Sangh, Bangalore. As part of the conference, Sri Rama Gayathri Kunda Trayatmaka Yagam is being organised at Tirupati for four days from Saturday. The two sacred books -- Sri Valmiki Tulasi Ramayana and the Tulasi Ranganatha Bhaskar Ramayana - will be carried in a palanquin from the TTD administrative buildings to the TTD S. V. Central Library where the rest of the sessions will be held. The film and TV producer, Ramananda Sagar, the TTD Chairman, T. Subbirami Reddy, are likely to participate.

Political murders: Ministers challenge to Naidu

Hyderabad: The Agriculture Minister, N. Raghuveera Reddy, and four of his Cabinet colleagues challenged the TDP president, N. Chandrababu Naidu, to participate in a public debate on the "so called" political murders in Anantapur district. The Ministers alleged the TDP followers had "slit hundreds of throats" previously in the district and the reign of terror by them was such that the families of victims simply could not lodge a complaint with the police. And if they did approach the police, the FIR was not registered, the said.

World Peace Day

on September 1

HYDERABAD: The State committee of the All-India Peace and Solidarity Organisation will observe World Peace Day on September 1 by organising peace meetings, demonstrations, human chain, signature campaign, peace runs and rangoli at all the important towns and centres in the State.

Panel releases draft regulation

Hyderabad: The State Electricity Regulatory Commission has issued draft regulation specifying dos and don'ts for the future companies, which may take up power supply business as per the Electricity Act of 2003. Public have been asked to make suggestions on the draft regulations up to September 17 paving way for its finalisation later. As per the regulation, a trader desiring to take up supply business will have to pay licence fee prescribed by the Government, maintain skilled staff and experts with necessary qualifications in power systems operations. He should have a minimum financial balance of Rs 1.crores at any point of time if the supply to be tackled by him is below 5 million units, Rs 10 crores if it is up to 50 mu etc. The annual licence fee will be Rs. 50,000 for business up to 5 MU, Rs. 5 lakhs if it is up to 50 MU etc.

AIDWA urges women to continue `struggle'

VIJAYAWADA: The All India Democratic Women's Association (AIDWA) State leader, S. Punyavati, has underscored the need for women to continue their struggle to ensure that the Chief Minister, Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy, implements all the promises made to women before the elections. Participating in the ongoing AIDWA convention here on Saturday, she recalled how women played a prominent role in dethroning the `anti-women' TDP Government in the recent elections. "But the task is not complete and women should continue their struggle for ensuring that the promises made by Dr. Reddy like 25 paise interest on loans to women, rebates in the houses registered in the name of women and houses and house site pattas to women are fulfilled," she said. Ms. Punyavati also expressed concern over the increase in atrocities on women and wanted the Government to take steps to curb incidents.

Agricultural varsity plea to farmers on rice variety

TIRUPATI: The director of extension at Acharya N. G. Ranga Agricultural University (ANGRAU), A. Satyanarayana, has urged farmers to embrace `System for Rice Intensification'' (SRI) technology in cultivating paddy. After inspecting a field grown under SRI in Madibaka village of Yerpedu mandal in the district, he gave technical tips to farmers for better yield. He appreciated the Agricultural Technology Management Agency (ATMA) director, S. Rajasekhar Naidu, and the Krishi Vignan Kendra (KVK) coordinator, Manohar Raju, for promoting the technology among the farmers. The RASS secretary, S. Venkataratnam, was present.