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           _ m m m  (Guaranteed 100% Pure Local News from Assam) 
                       Vol.1, No.1 * August 25, 1998
                   Jaboloi diok kokaitee Borhulla bus.
                  (Let the Borhulla bus go, O brother)
   -- Popular Jorhat (Joohotia) saying, describing a overcrowded, and
   a  rickety bus service with unending bus stops that take ages, but
   never fails to take you home!
   TITABAR:   With  just  a  single  worn  out bus, which is also not
   regular, touching the once busy Titabar station of the Assam State
   Transport Corporation (ASTC),  now  wears  a  deserted  look,  and
   remains locked  most of the time.  The bus plys between Nagabat to
   Jorhat via Titabar, and back, reports  at  the  station  generally
   twice a day.
   Passengers  prefer  to  board  the bus at the busy Titabar Tiniali
   (crossroad) since the station is situated away from the main road,
   and also because the bus-conductor is satisfied with only part  of
   the  actual  fare,  which  goes to his pocket instead of the ASTC.
   Only income at the ASTC counter comes from another battered  night
   service  bus  plying  between Titabar and Guwahati every alternate
   night  since  some  passengers  prefer  to  travel  by  the  Assam
   Government owned  corporation  buses.    But  the service has been
   withdrawn about a fortnight ago.
   The station office is running without electricity  for  about  two
   years, because  of  nonpayment  of  electricity  bills.   As such,
   candlelight is used for the office work for the night service bus.
   There are eight employees including three  fourth-grades  and  two
   mechanics.   As there is no work, the employees hardly come to the
   station.  One fourth-grade employee is sufficient  to  handle  the
   Nagabat-Jorhat bus service.
   Local  people  have  demanded that daily night service to Guwahati
   should be reintroduced with a new bus for the  long  journey,  and
   said  that at least four tip-top buses should be introduced in the
   Borhulla-Jorhat route, which is a very profitable  route  for  bus
   owners.   They  also demanded that the ASTC must keep vigil on the
   conductors so that fares collected from wayside passengers  go  to
   the  ASTC  fund, and suggested that the ASTC should open a counter
   at the Titabar Tiniali for the convenience of the passengers.
   GUWAHATI:   Assam  Chief  Minister  P.K.Mahanta  has  refuted  the
   allegation  made  by  a  certain  section  of  the  press  that he
   possesses 31 bighas of land at Guwahati itself.  Reacting  sharply
   to  the  reports, he maintained that mention of some `dag' numbers
   and `patta' numbers against his name does not make him  an  owner.
   The  reports  must  establish  the  fact  by  thorough examination
   themselves.  This is all done aiming at personality killing.
   The Chief Minister also denied reports of owning land and house by
   him at Nagaon.  Naming the  reporter  in  particular,  Mr  Mahanta
   clarified  that  the  reports  are aimed to malign him in personal
   vengeance against him following  the  said  reporter  having  been
   arrested by  police sometime back.  The official release has asked
   the newspaper concerned to stay back from such motivated concocted
   and vindictive falsification of facts in future.

   NALBARI:  Alert and brave villagers  of  Sonkoriha  under  Nalbari
   police station removed the wires connected to a bomb planted under
   a   road   on  August  17,  averting  an  explosion  and  probable
   destruction of army vehicles and loss of life of  army  personnel,
   and  another  house-to-house  search  by  the Army that is usually
   resorted to by the Army  after  such  an  incident  causing  great
   inconvenience to  innocent  villagers.   The bomb was suspected to
   have been planted by the ULFA.  The Army rushed to the spot  after
   receiving information about the incident.
4  JOURNALIST THREATENED AT BOKAKHAT	                [S:21-Aug-98]
   BOKAKHAT:  Mr Bhobesh Saikia, president of  Bokakhat  Press  Club,
   and also the president of Assam Press Correspondents Union (APCU),
   was  threatened with dirty words over telephone on August 16 by Mr
   Prasanta Bora, the Project Officer of Lumbajan development  block,
   Karbi Anglong,  from  his  temporary  residence  at  Bokakhat.  Mr
   Saikia lodged a complaint at Bokakhat police  station  immediately
   and sought  protection.

5  EROSION THREAT TO WIPE AWAY JOKAI	               [AT:19-Aug-98]
   DIBRUGARH:   Severe  erosion  by  the  Buri Dehing river is posing
   threat to wipe out Bhur Bhuri village No.3 in the  Jokai  area  in
   Dibrugarh.   The  river has been constantly eroding its banks near
   Saraighat.  People from  Bhur  Bhuri  and  Saraighat  submitted  a
   memorandum  to  the Deputy Commissioner to take necessary steps to
   prevent the villages from being eroded by the river.
   The entire Jokai area is responsible for steady  supply  of  fresh
   vegetables and  riverine  fish  to the markets here.  However, the
   local cultivators hardly gained anything from  their  produce,  as
   they  sell  off their products at throw away prices to Bengali and
   Bihari traders of the town  who,  in  turn  make  big  profits  by
   selling them in the town at very high prices.
   JAMUGURIHAT:   At  a  time  when the people in the rural areas are
   worst affected by the flood, poor villagers in different parts  of
   Sonitpur  district,  particularly  in  Jamugurihat  have failed to
   collect low-priced  rice  supplied  under  the  Government  Public
   Distribution  System  (PDS),  thanks to the utter mismanagement of
   the authorities. 
   Most of the cooperative societies which distributes rice and other
   essential commodities to the public returned the rice supplied  by
   the  Food Corporation of India (FCI) because the rice were rotten.
   The FCI on the other hand could not replace the rotten  rice  with
   better quality rice putting the poor villages with great hardships
   at  a  time  when the villagers should have been given relief from
   the flood.
7  TRAGIC DEATH OF CHILD			        [S:17-AUG-98]
   PATACHARKUCI:  In a tragic incident, Bani Roy, a class IV student,
   died at Kharadhara  village  near  Patacharkuci.    A  neighboring
   housewife  spotted  a  bottle  containing  some liquid kept by her
   husband without her knowledge.  She took it for  wine  and  called
   Bani Roy  to  taste the same.  No sooner did the boy took a sip of
   the liquid then he began to wail and jump.  At  first,  the  woman
   thought it  was  the  effect  of  the  wine.    After she drew the
   attention of other neighbours, it was discovered that  the  liquid
   was acid.  The child breathed his last on way to the GMC Hospital.
8  STRANGE WAY OF ABDUCTION			        [S:12-AUG-98]
   TINSUKIA:    An  18-year-old  girl,  Keshanti  Neog  was  abducted
   recently in a strange way by a young man.   While  Keshanti  along
   with her father Rameswar Neog, was waiting at a shop near the ASTC
   bus  station  around  11  am  on  their  way home to Bordumasa, an
   unknown young man approached them  and  introduced  himself  as  a
   forest guard going to Bordumasa.
   Later,  when  the  father  of  the  girl went to the market to buy
   something, leaving his daughter in the shop in the wait, the young
   man followed him, saying he too needed to make some purchases.  In
   the market, the youth bought some items and  borrowed  Rs.30  from
   Rameswar  Neog,  promising  him to return within an hour and asked
   him to wait for him in the market.
   When the young man did not return for more than an hour,  Rameswar
   came  back  to the shop where he left his daughter, but found that
   she too was gone.  The shopkeeper informed that the young man came
   and took the girl with him, saying that he was sent by her  father
   to fetch  her.    No clue to the girl's whereabouts was known till
   filing of this report.
   PANDU:  The residents of Rest Camp Kalibari at Pandu  in  Guwahati
   will  be celebrating the golden jubilee of not only their locality
   but also of Durga Puja, an important Hindu festival.    Rest  Camp
   Kalibari,  a residential locality in the Pandu railway colony came
   into existence in 1948 following the settlement of a large numbers
   of railway workers there.  It also saw  the  beginning  of  yearly
   Durga Puja  celebrations  in  that  area.    Brisk preparation are
   underway to celebrate the double bonanza from September 20.

   DIBRUGARH:  Jadu Samrat (Emperor of  Magic)  M.Hussain,  the  star
   magic  performer  of  Assam with a nationwide reputation, has been
   under  treatment  at  the  Assam  Medical  College   Hospital   at
   Dibrugarh.  Doctors  attending  on  him  expressed  that more than
   Rs.100,000 would be necessary for the  treatment  of  the  veteran
   magician,  out  of  which  only  a meagre sum of Rs.5,000 has been
   extended to him by the State Industries Minister Gunin Hazarika as
   a gesture of benevolence.
   While none of the charitable  organizations  or  individuals  have
   responded  to the need of the magician so far, the patients in the
   hospital have set an example of true humanism by  collecting  fund
   for  his  treatment  ignoring  their  own  sufferings  and thereby
   setting a noble example.

Compiled from newspaper and agency reports for private circulation only.
      [S=Sentinel, AT=Assam Tribune, Agencies = UNI, PTI, PIB]
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