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Pune, February 20: In the past two calendar years, over 50 fatal accidents occurred involving erstwhile Pune Municipal Transport (PMT) buses. At least three deaths were reported in January, 2008. Forty six people in 2006 and 33 in 2007 are said to have been grievously injured.

These statistics include PMT (now PMPML) drivers and privately hired ones. But strikingly, very few heads have rolled.

Pune, February 20: With only a month to go in 2007-08, the Customs and Central Excise of Pune Zone is busy calculating the loss in revenue collection from its biggest client from the region — Tata Motors.

The automobile major that yielded Rs 990 crore in 2005-06 and Rs Rs 700 crore in 2006-07, is now likely to end up paying only Rs 600 crore in 2007-08 to the Pune zone of Customs and Excise.

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Cyber fraud: Amol Palekar done in for Rs 60,000

Pune, February 20: Actor-director, Amol Palekar lost Rs 60,258 in an e-fraud. An unknown person booked two air tickets through online transactions from his credit card account in the Bank of India, Mumbai.

The actor lodged a complaint at the Deccan Gymkhana police station on Tuesday evening.

Deputy police commissioner, Sunil Phulari (Cyber Cell) said the money from Palekar’s account was transferred to the accounts of two travel companies for purchasing air tickets for Goa-Mumbai and Mumbai-Bangalore flights in November 2007.

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Woman held for stealing infant

Pune, February 20: The Bund Garden police arrested a woman for stealing a newborn from ward No 20 at Sassoon Hospital on Wednesday midnight.

The accused — Shobha Chintamani Dhokale from Shirur taluka — stole the baby boy born to Tejaswini Prafulla Ankure from Navi Sangvi, according to sub inspector S L Dubal. Ankure was reported to have gone to the washroom at around 12.05 am, when Dhokale walked out of the ward with her baby. Ankure, though, spotted her and raised an alarm.

The police said that 40-year-old Dhokale was a married woman, but without a child.

Pune, February 20: If a survey had placed Pune as the No 1 city in the country when it came to being happy sometime ago, here’s one that further inches up its reputation in the emotional sphere. Pune has been adjudged the top-notch city in the country when it comes to the overall satisfaction levels of two-career couples. With 96 per cent of married working couples in the city stating their satisfaction, Pune beat its nearest competitor Bangalore that scored 79 per cent by a fair distance.

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Wilo Mather+Platt emerge champs

Pune, February 20: Vinayak Renuse — adjudged the best all-rounder — played a stellar role in Milo Mather+Platt’s 69-run win over Ammunition Factory, Khadki (AFK) in the final of the ThyssenKrupp Industrial Sports Association Inter-Industrial cricket tournament.

The victors who won the toss and elected to bat scored 217/5 in their 45 overs, with Renuse (62) leading from the front. Renuse found a responsible partner in Manoj Shirole (42) and Manish Desai (44) to help Mather+Platt finish with a competitive total.

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Kathak as therapy for special children

Pune, February 20: To hold good the motto Fragile yet fragrant, Prajakta Team of Kathak dancers provide dance therapy to special children in a project that will kick-start on February 24. A demonstration was made by Prajakta team at Akshar Nandan School on Wednesday evening. “I met these dance teachers in a school gathering and motivated my child to start practising from then,” said 10-year-old Mallavika Tulankar’s parent.

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Aditya holds on

Pune, February 20: Aditya Gokhale scraped past Shardul Gopujkar 7-6 (7-5) to enter the boys under 12 final, while Raiyka Karachiwalla will clash with Rucha Moghe for the girls U-12 title in the XV RCBC Open Junior tennis championship.

In closely contested semifinals, Raiyka outplayed Simran Nadwani 8-6 while Rucha Moghe scored a hard fought win over Anushka Sathe before registering the same scoreline.

Pune, February 19: Lahu ka Rang ek hai, amir kya garib kya, bane hai ek khaakh se, toh dur kya karib kya, intoned the voice of Hamal panchayat leader Baba Adhav, as he addressed scores of North Indian migrant labourers at the Timber Market on the occasion of Shiv Jayanti on Tuesday morning, exhorting them to not flee the city. “You are not at fault and you have nothing to fear. Please do not leave. We are with you,” he appealed even as the workers raised a chant of ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’.

Pune, February 19: The Supreme Court has passed a ruling directing the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) to acquire 1.50 acres of land from plot no 438 in Salisbury Park, which had been reserved in the 1966 as well as the 1987 Development Plan (DP) for the purpose of developing a garden and playground.

However, the civic administration had preferred to stay away from the acquisition citing “paucity of funds” as reason. The landowners had served the PMC a purchase notice for failing to acquire the land within the designated time.

Pune, February 19: Even as chairman of Videocon group Venugopal Dhoot has proposed shifting of the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) from the present site at Wagholi-Kesnand to Saswad in Purandar in the district, state industries secretary VK Jairath and district collector Prabhakar Deshmukh plead ignorance of this development.

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2 killed in road mishaps

Pune, February 19: Forty-year-old Rajendra Sidram Samdade of Chakrapani Vasahat in Bhosari was killed in a head-on collision between two motorcycles near Phugewadi Kendriya Vidyalaya on Pune-Mumbai road in the wee hours of Monday.

Rajendra was sitting pillion on a motorcycle driven by his relative Rupesh Samdade (18), who was also injured in the mishap. Rupesh has lodged a complaint with the Bhosari police station against a speeding unknown motorcycle that hit them from the front at around 1.45 am. Police Sub-Inspector S S Dhumal is investigating the case.

Pune, February 19: Former State Health Minister Digvijay Khanvilkar, who is selling Kolhapur as an investment destination for global investors, has succeeded in getting Italian aviation manufacturer, Oma Sud Sky Technologies, to zero in on Kolhapur for setting up its aircraft manufacturing and maintenance repair and overhaul (MRO) facility for small aircraft.

Interacting with the media in Pune, Khanvilkar confirmed this initiative and said that the manufacturer is keen on locating their operations in Kolhapur and are looking for land near the airport.

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Rising coil and oil thefts put MSEDCL on alert

Pune, February 19: In an incident which could match an action sequence from a Bollywood film, villagers, staff of the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL) and the police together chased two thieves, who had stolen not ‘valuables,’ but were found running away with the copper wires and oil from electricity transformers.

Pune, February 19: A One-day state-level workshop on ‘Issues and Prospects In Retail Management’ was on Friday organised by the post graduate departments of communication and journalism, banking and finance, foreign trade and commerce of the Marathwada Mitra Mandal’s College of Commerce, Pune.

Pune, February 19: DaimlerChrysler India from now on will be Mercedes-Benz India Private Limited. On Tuesday, the company announced that it has received formal approval from the Registrar of Companies to change its name.

When the company is dealing directly with customers, and in areas where the focus is primarily on products of a single brand, the corresponding brand name will be used. Since Mercedes-Benz brand is the key product brand offered in the country.

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Streetlighting in Pune not up to mark: Experts

Pune, February 19: Pune is a beautiful city with a lot of potential but its street lighting leaves much to be desired,” said Professor Warren Julian, Director of Lighting Studies, Professor of Architectural and Design Science and Dean at the University of Sydney, Australia.

Julian was in the city to attend a conference organised by the city-based Maharashtra Institute of Technology’s Lighting Research Academy.

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New species of gecko found near Satara

Pune, February 19: A Scientist of Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) along with his team have discovered a new species of gecko, which falls under the category of ground-dwelling lizards, in the plateaus near Satara district in Maharashtra.

Varad Giri, scientist B from Herpetology section in BNHS, together with his colleague Dr Aaron Bauer from Villanova University in USA, has published a research paper on this finding in an international journal ‘Zootaxa’ in the first week of February.

Students appearing for their board exams may identify with this. As they attempt one model question paper after another for the most likely questions to appear in the final exam paper, the Pune Division of the Central Railways too has prepared a model question paper titled ‘Most likely questions to be asked in the Press Conference’ for the benefit of the now almost-year-old Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) before he faces the media.

Pune, February 19: Destiny has taken away their eyesight but that hasn’t prevented them from having a vision. And now with the launch of Sparshdnyan, the first and the only fortnightly news magazine in Braille, the blind will now be able to have an opinion about all the current happenings in the world. Launched on February 15, this 40-page magazine will expose the visually impaired to various aspects of life such as politics, literature, films and much more that they were earlier deprived of.