MD slams protests against Chettichira outlet

Kerala State Co-operatives Consumers’ Federation Limited (Consumerfed), the apex body of consumer co-operatives, may have to shut down 29 out of its 39 liquor outlets across the State unless they are relocated by March 31, M. Ramanunny, Consumerfed managing director, has said.

The Supreme Court had directed the relocation of all liquor outlets situated along national and State highways by that date. “If we fail to comply with the direction, all our 29 outlets, which need relocation, would lose licences,” he said while talking  after the protests over the shifting of a Consumerfed liquor outlet from Vyttila Junction to Chettichira near Ponnurunni turned violent on Thursday.

 

Consumerfed had approached the apex court for an extension of time for the relocation of outlets and the case has been posted for March 27.Mr. Ramanunny termed the protests as ‘illogical and irrational’ even as he wondered how the outlet, which didn’t attract any opposition at Vyttila Junction, suddenly triggered a protest after being shifted just 450 metres away to Ponnurunni.He said that multiple sites, including Panampilly Nagar, had been considered for the relocation but had to be dropped eventually over public protest. “This is a government organisation and will have to function somewhere legally,” he said.He said that he had discussed the matter with P.T. Thomas, MLA, within whose constituency limit the area falls, and had conveyed Consumerfed’s willingness to shift the outlet to any other place.

The Patent of a Paper Boat and The Balloon Seller to be displayed

Two paintings by Francis Kodankandath will be displayed at the London Art Biennale to be held in London from March 29.

Both the paintings have been done in acrylic. One is titled The Patent of a Paper Boat , which won a prize at the Florence Biennale in 2017. The second is named The Balloon Seller.

“I am happy to learn that I am the only artist from India to be selected for the London Biennale this year,” city-based Francis told .

 

Paintings, sculpture, applied art, and digital arts by artists from across the globe will be exhibited during the Biennale, which concludes on April 2.

A group of people, claiming to be YC activists, barge into outlet and damage shutter

Tension prevailed at Chettichira near Ponnurunni on Thursday afternoon after the protest over the shifting of a liquor outlet of Kerala State Co-operative Consumers’ Federation Limited (Consumerfed) turned violent, forcing the intervention of the police.The outlet was shifted from Vyttila Junction to Chettichira on Tuesday evening in compliance with a Supreme Court direction to relocate all liquor outlets situated along national and State highways by March 31.It was met with stiff resistance from local residents organised under a Janakeeya Samara Samiti, which had members of all political parties, from day one citing the presence of an anganwadi and a primary health centre for women within the 50-metre radius of the outlet and the traffic logjam it would create on an already busy road.

For the third consecutive day, the protests resumed when the outlet opened shutters around 9.30 a.m. Hibi Eden, MLA, also took part in the protest though the area was part of Thrikkakara Assembly constituency represented by his party colleague P.T. Thomas.

 

“I came at the instance of some of my friends living in an apartment complex opposite to the outlet. Since the local residents had approached the court seeking to stay the shifting of the outlet, I requested the staff to stop operations at least until the court considered the case later in the afternoon, which they ignored,” Mr. Eden said. The case was postponed to Friday.

KSTP completes work on approach road at Enathu

An engineering team of the Indian Army reached Enathu, near Adoor, on Wednesday to build the proposed Bailey bridge across Kallada River in the wake of the closure of the 18-year old damaged concrete bridge there on January 10 following damage to its piers.

The steel girders and other steel components of the proposed Bailey bridge transported from Jodhpur and Secunderabad reached Enathu in 20 trucks on Wednesday.The Army team from the Madras Engineering Group led by Major Anosh Koshy is expected to complete the bridge work in 10 days.

The Kerala State Transport Project has constructed two abutments on either bank of the river to erect the steel bridge.The concreting of the approach roads on either bank of the river too was completed on Thursday.The KSTP will hand over the site to the Army on Friday and the Army will start the work on the Bailey bridge in the next two days.

 

Minister for Public Works G. Sudhakaran said the Bailey bridge would be commissioned on April 10, if the Army’s plan materialised as per the schedule.The KSTP sources said only light motor traffic would be permitted on the Bailey bridge and that too on one-way basis.Heavy vehicles will have to take the diversion route from Enathu junction till the strengthening work on the damaged piers of the 18-year old concrete bridge is completed, official sources said.

Jaitley to hand over the systems to Chief of the Naval Staff

On the heels of it delivering six indigenously developed underwater systems to the Navy late last year, the Naval Physical and Oceanographic Laboratory (NPOL) is set to hand over two more systems, an upgraded version of its submarine sonar USHUS and a directing gear for ship-borne hull-mounted sonar, to the Navy.

Arun Jaitley, Union Finance Minister holding charge of Defence, will hand over the systems developed by NPOL, the only Defence Research and Developement Organisation (DRDO) lab in Kerala, to Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Sunil Lanba at an event in Delhi on Friday.

 

USHUS-2 is an integrated submarine sonar suite, which is a state-of-the-art upgrade of the existing sonar USHUS fitted on the Russian-origin Kilo class submarines operated by the Navy. USHUS-2 will replace the remaining Russian sonars on Kilo class, also called Sindhughosh class, of submarines. “The sonars are the eyes and ears of a submarine. The primary purpose of the sonar is to detect, localise and attack enemy warships and submarines. It is also essential for safe navigation. USHUS-2 is essentially a suite of multiple sensors for passive and active detection, which collates different characteristics of the same target and provides data for engaging the target. The constituent sonars in the suite include passive sonar, active sonar, intercept sonar, obstacle avoidance sonar and underwater telephony.

People’s committee will be formed: Mayor

 

A people’s committee, headed by a former judge, will be formed in the Kochi Corporation to curb corruption in the civic body, according to Mayor Soumini Jain. The move comes in the wake of reports that the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau has listed the Local Self-Government Department as the most corrupt government department in the State. The committee will have 10 members. People can report instances of corruption to the panel including complaints against officials and councillors. An all-party meeting will be convened to discuss the formation of the committee.