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IAF taking steps to be future ready: President Murmu


President Droupadi Murmu on Saturday said that the Indian Air Force is taking steps to be future ready keeping in view the overall security scenario, including challenges of fighting a high technology war in a network-centric future battle space.

The President made the remarks after reviewing the Combined Graduation Parade (CGP) of the 211th Course with full Military splendour at Air Force Academy (AFA) in Dundigal near Hyderabad.

This is the first occasion in the history of AFA when a President is the reviewing officer, according to Academy officials.

Addressing the gathering, Murmu said: “I am happy to note that our Air Force is taking steps to be ever ready, especially future ready keeping in view the overall security scenario including the challenges of fighting a high technology war in a network-centric future battle space.”

She said that the great role played by the brave warriors of the IAF in defending the country in the wars of 1948, 1965 and 1971 is written in golden letters.

“They demonstrated the same resolve and skills at the Kargil conflict and later, in destroying the terror hideout at Balakot,” the President said hailing the IAF.

She further said that the IAF also contributes to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.

“Recently the IAF sprang into action despite adverse weather conditions during the recent earthquake in Turkey and Syria to provide medical aid and disaster relief. Earlier, the successful evacuation operation to airlift more than 600 Indians and other nationals stuck in Kabul, involving flying and landing in a hostile environment is a testimony to the high capabilities of the Indian Air Force,” she added.

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Traffic curbs in parts of Hyderabad for President’s visit


Hyderabad police have announced traffic curbs in some areas of the city on Friday and Saturday in view of President Droupadi Murmu’s visit.

Vikram Singh Mann, Additional Commissioner of Police, Law and Order, who is incharge Commissioner of Police, notified the restrictions/diversions in order to facilitate proper regulation of traffic during the President’s visit.

The President will be arriving Friday evening for the two-day visit. She will review the Combined Graduation Parade at Air Force Academy Dundigal on Saturday.

After arrival at Begumpet Airport in the city, the President will proceed to Raj Bhavan for night halt. The next day she will leave for Air Force Academy Dundigal for the Combined Graduation Parade.

According to police, moderate traffic congestion and travel delay is expected in the following junction and stretches — CTO junction, PNT Flyover & PNT Junction, HPS Out Gate, Begumpet Flyover, Greenlands Junction, Monappa junction, Yashoda Hospital Road, MMTS, VV Statue Junction, Panjagutta Junction and ANFCL Junction.

The buses plying from Secunderabad towards Ameerpet and Mehdipatnam through Begumpet and Raj Bhavan have been requested to avoid these routes and use Upper Tankbund from 1600 hrs to 2000 hrs on 16-06-2023 and from 0600 hrs to 0800 hrs on 17-06-2023 to reach their destination.

Traffic will not be allowed on to Raj Bhavan Road from Monappa Junction and from VV Statue (Khairatabad) and will be closed for general traffic on both sides.

The traffic will not be allowed on Panjagutta – Raj Bhavan Quarters Road (Metro Residency) and will be closed for general traffic on both sides.

Traffic coming from CTO Junction and Minister Road will be stopped for a while at Rasulpura Junction.

Traffic coming from Panjagutta/Greenlands Junction towards Begumpet Airport will be stopped for a while at Prakashnagar T-Junction.

Traffic from Kukatpally, Balanagar via Fathe Nagar Bridge intending to proceed to Hyderabad Public School, Begumpet Road will be diverted at Balkampet Yellamma Temple towards Maitrivanam Junction via Satyam Theatre.

The police have requested commuters to take alternate routes to reach their destinations and avoid the junctions/stretches mentioned.

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Biggest Ever Drive-in Theatre Coming Up In Hyderabad


Hyderabad film lovers will have a new movie-watching experience. The city is going to get the first-ever drive-in theatre in Shamshabad and it is built by Asian Cinemas. This is a new way of entertainment in the city and the patrons will be allowed to watch movies without moving out of their cars.

There is a buzz going on at the drive-in theatre in Hyderabad for a long time ago and now the groundwork has been started. This will be the biggest-ever drive-in theatre in the country and it will be constructed in 3 acres. Many cities in the country are providing drive-in theatre experience. Hyderabadis get ready to experience the new world of movie watching very soon. More announcements about the drive-in theatre will be made soon officially.

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Hyderabad to introduce ward office system to address civic grievances


Hyderabad will become the first metro city in the country to introduce a ward office system to enable people to lodge their civic grievances, Telangana’s Minister for Municipal Administration, K. T. Rama Rao said on Saturday.

The minister said that 150 Ward Offices will be inaugurated on June 16. Each of the ward offices will have 10 staff members from various departments led by the Ward Administrative Officer (WAO).

An Assistant Municipal Commissioner rank officer will be the WAO. People can lodge their civic grievances at these offices. The pioneering initiative will take administration closer to people, he said.

Asserting that no other metro city in the country has implemented the Ward Office system, minister KTR exuded confidence about its success. He hoped that this will become a model for other cities in the country.

He held an interactive session with Ward Level Officers of Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC). The programme was organised on the occasion of Telangana Good Governance Day held as part of the decennial celebrations of Telangana State formation.

KTR detailed the main functions of ward offices and job responsibilities of each of the staff members. One of the objectives of the offices is to ensure proper maintenance of all civic infrastructure provided under all ongoing schemes, development projects in the ward.

The minister also said that a Citizens Charter will be released which will detail the time to redress a grievance. This will be displayed at the offices.

The following staff members will be assigned to each ward office: Ward Administrative Officer (WAO), Engineer, Town planner, Entomologist, Sanitary Jawan, Community Organiser, Urban Biodiversity Supervisor, Assistant, Line Inspector, Computer Operator and Receptionist.

The minister said that a WAO will coordinate with all government departments, escalate issues to additional or deputy commissioners or others. Ward engineers will look after roads, drains, repair or construction of community halls and other infrastructure in the ward. They also have to address water logging issues, filling of potholes, and repair of minor patches on roads.

Ward town planners monitor buildings construction, ensure public property is not encroached, and enforce building rules.

A Ward Entomologist has to identify water logging areas and undertake anti larval operations. Ward Sanitary Jawan will supervise overall sanitation works in the ward.

Ward Urban Biodiversity Supervisor is responsible for all the green programs of the government.

Ward Community Organiser will coordinate with Self Help Groups (SHG) and NGOs. Ward Assistant will be from HMWSSB, who will receive complaints with regard to water supply, sewerage, bills and others, and redress them. The Ward Line Inspector will attend complaints regarding power supply.

Addressing the huge gathering of the staff members, the minister exhorted them to receive grievances from all platforms: in-person, social media.

He emphasised the importance of recording every suggestion and request made by citizens. If the staff members are unable to provide a solution to an issue, they should escalate it immediately.

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Warner Bros To Develop A International Development Centre in Hyderabad


KTR has met Alexandra Carter, Senior Vice President of Finance at Warner Bros. They agreed to set up an IDC (International Development Centre ) in Hyderabad by providing employment to 1200 in the first year and will have further expansions in the coming years. This partnership will give a promising future in Hyderabad. Warner Bros. Discovery has impressive brands like HBO Max, CNN, TLC, Discovery, Discovery Plus, WB, Eurosport, Cartoon Network, Cinemax, Pogo, Toon cart, Quest and Animal Planet.

Hyderabad Centre is going to be the next strategic hub for Discovery operations. This investment also helps them to get the potential market for the company in India.

KTR took Twitter and wrote, “Thrilled to announce the grand entry of global media powerhouse “Warner Bros. Discovery” into the entertainment realm of Telangana! Hyderabad is set to witness the launch of their incredible IDC, a hub of creativity and innovation, with a whopping 1200 employees in the first year alone! This milestone marks a significant step towards their expansion plans. Warner Bros. Discovery, a premier global media and entertainment company, offers audiences the world’s most differentiated and complete portfolio of content, brands and franchises across television, film, streaming and gaming. Their impressive portfolio includes HBO, CNN, TLC, Discovery, Discovery Plus, WB, Eurosport, Animal Planet, Cartoon Network, Cinemax, HGTV, and Quest. Collaborating with such industry giants promises groundbreaking ventures that will shape the future of media and entertainment sector in Telangana. Just finished the meeting with @warnerbros leadership at New York.

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Cyberabad police bust gang involved in stealing data of 16.8cr people


The Cyberabad police on Thursday claimed to have busted a gang that was allegedly involved in stealing and selling confidential personal data of 16.8 crore citizens in the country, and sensitive data of government and important organisations.

The police arrested seven persons operating from Noida and Pune involved in theft, procuring and selling sensitive and confidential data.

The gang was also allegedly selling key data of defence and Army personnel to cyber criminals.

Cyberabad Police Commissioner Stephen Ravindra announced the arrest of the accused individuals at a news conference. He said they would write to the Home Ministry for further inquiry in the data theft case.

The accused were found selling information relating to more than 140 categories of people including defence personnel, bank customers, energy sector consumers, NEET students, government employees, gas agencies, high net worth individuals, demat account holders.

Other categories include Bengaluru women consumer data, data of people who have applied for loans and insurance, credit card and debit card holders (of AXIS, HSBC and other banks), WhatsApp users, Facebook users, employees of IT companies and frequent flyers.

“When any individual calls the toll-free numbers of JustDial and ask for any sector or category related confidential data of individuals, their query is listed and sent to that category of service provider. Then these fraudsters call those clients/ fraudsters and send them samples. If the client agrees to purchase, they make payment and provide the data. This data is further used for committing crime,” said the commissioner.

The gang allegedly operated through registered and unregistered companies Data Mart Infotech, Global Data Arts and MS Digital Grow.

Sensitive data of 2.5 lakh defence personnel containing their ranks, email ids, place of posting, etc was found available those accused.

Data of 1.1 customers of six banks, 1.2 crore WhatsApp users, 17 lakh Facebook users, and 35,000 employees of the Delhi government was accessed by the fraudsters.

The accused had also accessed data of 98 lakh people who had applied for credit cards.

“The sensitive data can be used for unauthorised access to important organisations and institutions. The data of defence and government employees can be used for espionage, impersonation and commit serious offences which may jeopardise national security. The data related to PAN cards can be used to commit serious offences. The data is being used to commit a large number of cybercrimes by gaining confidence with victims by disclosing the information,” Stephen Ravindra said.

Key accused Kumar Nitish Bhushan had established a call centre in Noida and collected credit card databases from another accused, Muskan Hassan.

Pooja Pal and Susheel Thomar were working as tele-callers at Bhushan’s call centre.

Atul Pratap Singh had collected data of credit card holders and sold it on a profit basis through his company “Inspiree Digital”.

Muskan, who previously worked as a tele-caller at Atul’s office, established her company “MS Digital Grow”. She was selling data as a mediator. She had arranged the data from Atul and sold it to Bhushan.

Sandeep Pal had established Global Data Arts and used Justdial services and social media platforms to sell customers’ confidential data to fraudsters indulging in cyber offences.

Seventh accused Zia Ur Rehman was providing bulk messaging services for promotions and also shared the database to Atul and Bhushan.

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Hyderabad home to maximum USFDA approved pharma units in world


Hyderabad, which has emerged as a key global hub in life sciences, is home to the largest number of US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) approved companies in the world.

With 214 units certified by the US drug administrator, Hyderabad is far ahead of New Jersey, which stands second with 189 USFDA approved units, Telangana Industries, Commerce and Information Technology Minister K.T. Rama Rao said on Tuesday.

He said the state government would make efforts for setting up of USFDA office in Hyderabad.

He also said the Telangana government has set the ambitious goal of doubling the size of the life sciences sector to $100 billion by 2028. It is also looking at increasing the workforce to 8 lakh from current 4 lakh employees.

KTR, as the minister is popularly known, was interacting with a select group of journalists on the eve of BioAsia 2023, the marquee life sciences event organised by the Telangana government.

The 20th edition of BioAsia, beginning on February 24, is expected to give further impetus to the state’s efforts to strengthen the life sciences sector.

The minister pointed out that currently 9 billion doses of vaccines are made in Hyderabad annually and next year, this is likely to go up to 14 billion. “At present, Hyderabad accounts for 35 per cent of the global vaccine production and next year the city’s contribution is expected to increase to 50 per cent,” he said.

KTR stated that Hyderabad also accounts for 40 per cent of the country’s pharmaceutical production.

Listing out rapid strides made by the state in the life sciences sector, he said Medical Devices Park at Sultanpur near Hyderabad has run out of space. This is the largest medical devices park in the world, he said.

KTR said Hyderabad Pharma City coming up on 14,000 acres of land will be the world’s largest pharma cluster. He hoped that some legal hurdles in the ambitious project would be cleared soon.

He said in Genome Valley, the mega cluster for life sciences R&D, 30 lakh square feet of lap space has already been taken by the companies while another 20 lakh square feet of space is being developed. He hoped that in the next 2-3 years even this space would be taken by the companies.

Genome Valley is home to more than 200 companies including marquee global names like Novartis, GlaxoSmithKline, Ferring Pharma, Chemo, DuPont, Ashland, United States Pharmacopeia, and Lonza.

The minister stated that trade and investment to an extent of $3 billion were announced at BioAsia during the last 19 years, BioAsia helped attract $3 billion investment.

More than 250 Letters of Intent, Bilateral Cooperation Agreements, and MoU were signed.

The event hosted leaders from over 100 countries, helping in showcasing the ecosystem and policies to the global leaders.

During the previous editions of BioAsia, over 20,000 partnering meetings were held, more than 30 knowledge papers and policy recommendations were submitted.

Countries like Switzerland, Norway, Thailand, Korea, Argentina, Spain, UK, Germany, South Africa etc. have participated with large ministerial and industrial delegations in BioAsia.

KTR said that the event has benefitted immensely from its participants of scientific and business excellence including Nobel Laureates, Lasker Awardees, breakthrough Prize winners and global industry leaders.

One of the highlights of BioAsia has been the conferment of the prestigious Genome Valley Excellence Award. The award was instituted in 2004 to celebrate individuals, who have made remarkable contributions to the sector. This year the award will be presented to Prof Robert Langer for his immense contribution to research on mRNA technology.

The theme for this year’s edition is ‘Advancing for ONE – Shaping the next generation of humanised healthcare’.

Participation from about 50 countries is expected in BioAsia 2023. The UK will be the partner country and Flanders will be the international partner region.

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Hyderabad Airport Metro faces engineering challenges in key stretch


Engineers of Hyderabad Airport Metro Ltd (HAML) are facing enormous technical challenges in the alignment of the Airport Metro on the critical stretch from Raidurg station to Nanakramguda junction.

With multiple flyovers, underpasses and high-rise buildings along this stretch, the engineers are studying various options to design the metro line.

Adviser (Civil Engineering), HAML and former Member Engineering, Railway Board Subodh Jain on Saturday inspected the proposed alignment along with HAML MD N.V.S. Reddy and senior engineers of HAML.

According to engineers, crossing Mindspace junction at a height of about 21 meters (69 feet), which has an underpass, rotary and flyover, is a major challenge.

Different options of laying the metro viaduct with smaller spans with pre-stressed concrete girders in situ that is at site construction, or erection of a 90 meter (295 feet) long special span with composite steel girder will be examined.

While deciding the span lengths, girder type and construction method, the construction drawings of the underpass, rotary and flyover will be obtained from Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) and analysed.

Different design options for the new integrated Raidurg station on the extended metro corridor 3 (Blue Line) and the Airport Metro station will be examined mainly from a passenger convenience point of view.

This multi level interchange station will be designed in such a way to avoid shifting of the extra high voltage 400 kV underground cables adjacent to it.

The airport metro viaduct crossing the multi level flyover at Biodiversity junction at a height of about 20 meters (66 feet) is another engineering challenge.

Airport metro pillars will be located away from the flyover pillars in a staggered way to avoid any adverse effect on the foundations of the flyover pillars.

The obligatory span crossing over the flyover can be planned as “cast in situ” pre-stressed concrete girders.

The foundation stone for the Airport Metro, which will connect the information technology district Hitec City to Rajiv Gandhi International Airport at Shamshabad, was laid on December 9, 2022.

The 31-km long project will be built by the state government at a cost of Rs 6,250 crore.

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Microsoft plans six more data centres in Hyderabad


Software giant Microsoft plans to expand their data centre investment in Hyderabad by setting up three more data centres, the Telangana government announced on Thursday.

Microsoft had last year announced its first captive data centre investment of three campuses. While the earlier investment commitment entailed three data centres in Hyderabad, each with an IT capacity of at least 100 MW, Microsoft now targets to reach 6 total data centres in Telangana with each data centre serving 100 MW of IT load on average, the government said.

These data centres form an integral part of Microsoft’s goal of strengthening its cloud infrastructure to serve Azure’s customers in India and worldwide. All 6 data centres are estimated to be deployed phase-wise in the next 10-15 years.

The upcoming projects were discussed by the officials of the state government and Microsoft at the Microsoft Cafe at Davos. State Information Technology Minister K.T. Rama Rao, and Principal Secretary, IT Jayesh Ranjan had discussions with Microsoft’s President, Asia, Ahmed Mazhar.

Telangana had earlier signed an MoU with Microsoft to enable several activities such as skilling, internship programmes, and cloud adoption. As part of Telangana’s cloud adoption, Telangana is working with Microsoft Azure and others to ensure citizen services have the best of infrastructure as part of its tech stack.

“Microsoft and Hyderabad have had a very long-term mutually beneficial relationship and I am very happy to learn that Microsoft will expand in Telangana with such huge digital infrastructure projects. I look forward to seeing Microsoft continue to grow in the state,” Rama Rao ssaid.

Mazhar noted that Hyderabad is one of their most important markets across the world and they continued to invest in the city. “The data centre projects we will deploy in Telangana are some of the fully-owned data centre projects in India by Microsoft. Apart from data centres, we will work with the government to identify special projects and support them in implementing them,” he said.

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Huge fire breaks out in multi-storied Hyderabad building


A huge fire broke out in a multi-storied commercial complex and spread to two adjoining buildings in Secunderabad here on Thursday.

Fire fighting personnel rescued four people but two others are suspected to be still trapped inside.

Six fire tenders have been battling to douse the flames for more than four hours.

A thick cloud of smoke engulfed the building, making the rescue operation difficult. Two firemen took ill due to the smoke and were rushed to a hospital.

The fire broke out in the five-storied building housing Deccan Sports Store and some other shops at Nallagutta in Ramgopalpet area of Secunderabad.

Police and fire fighting personnel rushed to the scene and launched a rescue operation. Five people were pulled out safely..

The fire spread to two adjoining buildings, sending panic among residents. Authorities were evacuating nearby houses as a precautionary measure.

Short circuit is suspected to have caused the fire, which broke out in the godown.

State Minister T. Srinivas Yadav, who rushed to the spot, was supervising rescue and relief work.

The Minister said stringent action would be taken against illegal warehouses in the midst of residential areas as they were posing a risk to people’s lives.

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Protests at Hyderabad University after professor attempts to rape foreign student


Student protests rocked the Hyderabad University on Saturday after a professor tried to sexually assault a foreign student, police said.

The police have arrested Ravi Ranjan, a professor in the Department of Hindi, School of Humanities. He will be produced in the court later in the day, a police officer said.

The professor allegedly called the student to his residence near the campus on Friday evening on the pretext of teaching her Hindi and tried to sexually assault her after offering alcohol.

Deeply traumatised by the sexual assault, the victim narrated the incident to her classmates. As she was unable to communicate properly in English, she used an online app for translation.

The victim, who is from Thailand and recently joined the Masters course, was rushed to the health centre of the university by other students. After the check-up, she lodged a complaint with Gachibowli police station under Cyberabad Police Commissionerate.

The Director of Foreign Exchange Programme of the central university also lodged a complaint.

The police registered a case against the professor under Indian Penal Code (IPC) section 354 (Assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) and took him into custody.

The police recorded the 23-year-old victim’s statement with the help of a translator.

As the word spread about the sexual assault, students gathered outside the main gate of the campus and staged a protest, demanding stringent action against the professor. They demanded that the university authorities immediately suspend him.

The students also slammed the university authorities for the delay in lodging a police complaint against the accused. They alleged that neither the Vice-Chancellor nor the Registrar met the victim.

The students belonging to various groups said they will continue the protest till the university takes action against him.

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3 caught for trying to ‘buy’ TRS MLAs in Hyderabad


In a dramatic development, the police in Hyderabad on Wednesday claimed to have caught three persons while they were trying to ‘buy’ four MLAs of Telangana’s ruling TRS party.

The four were detained during a raid at a farm house at Aziz Nagar on the city outskirts while offering money to four MLAs.

Cyberabad police conducted the raids on a tip-off by the legislators. One of those detained is from Delhi while two others were from Tirupati and Hyderabad.

The police reportedly seized Rs 15 crore so far. Cyberabad Police Commissioner Stephen Ravindra said the deal could be to the tune of Rs 100 crore.

Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) MLAs Rega Kantha Rao, Guvvala Balaraju, Beeram Harshvardhan Reddy and Pilot Rohit Reddy had alerted police that attempts were being made to lure them to switch loyalties.

The Commissioner said the MLAs alleged that some BJP leaders were trying to lure them to defect from the TRS by offering prominent posts, contracts and huge cash.

Those detained are Ramachandra Bharati a.k.a S. Satish Sharma from Delhi and Simhayajulu from Tirupati, both said to be temple priests and Nanda Kumar, a businessman from Hyderabad said to be close to a union minister.

Police officials said further investigations were on in the case.

The TRS has alleged that the BJP is trying to lure its MLAs to defect. It said those detained by the police were close to BJP leaders.

TRS leader Krishank Manne posted on his Twitter account photographs of the accused with union ministers Rajnath Singh, G. Kishan Reddy and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.

“This is a conspiracy against KCR ji’s Government by BJP’s big leaders,” he tweeted.

Another TRS leader termed the accused three agents of union home minister Amit Shah.

TRS MLA Balka Suman alleged that the BJP was resorting to cheap tactics due to fear of defeat in the Munugode Assembly by-election. He claimed that the TRS MLAs foiled the conspiracy of BJP.

“The BJP leaders should know that the TRS MLAs and Telangana people are not for sale,” he said.

However, BJP leaders denied the allegations. Party national vice-president D. K. Aruna said that those named by the police were not BJP leaders. She alleged that Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao was doing a new drama for political mileage. She said people would not believe KCR’s story.

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ED seizes assets worth Rs 150cr of Hyderabad-based jewellers


The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Thursday said it has recently conducted a search operation on the premises of MBS Jewellers Private Limited, Musaddilal Gems & Jewels India Private Limited, its director Sukesh Gupta and Anurag Gupta in Hyderabad and Vijaywada, and seized jewelleries worth Rs 149.10 crore and Rs 1.96 crore in cash.

The action was taken by the ED in course of its probe into a money laundering case.

Sukesh Gupta was arrested by the ED on October 18. He was presented at the Special PMLA Court at Nampally, Hyderabad, and sent to 14-day judicial custody.

The ED initiated investigation on the basis of the FIR registered by the CBI, ACB, Hyderabad against Gupta and his companies for defrauding MMTC Limited (a Public Sector Enterprise) in purchase of bullion under Buyer’s Credit Scheme.

Gupta in active connivance with few officials of MMTC Hyderabad, had continuously lifted gold without forex cover and without adequate security deposits, and his dues were consistently mis-reported to the MMTC Head Office and without squaring off the existing losses, his firms continued lifting more and more gold from MMTC for their personal gain and thereby, ultimately caused a loss of public money to the tune of Rs 504.34 crore to MMTC.

The CBI has already filed a chargesheet against Gupta and others.

During ED investigation, it was found that Gupta colluded with various officials of MMTC Hyderabad and painted a wrong picture of his account and kept on lifting more & more gold to carry on its business as usual and MMTC ultimately suffered a massive loss. Sukesh Gupta also entered into an OTS (one time settlement) with MMTC in 2019.

However, MMTC confirmed that Sukesh Gupta did not comply the OTS conditions and the OTS has failed.

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Toll in Hyderabad e-bike showroom fire rises to 8


The death toll in a fire that broke out in an e-bike showroom and spread to a hotel on the upper floors in Secunderabad has increased mounted to eight as a person succumbed to injuries in a hospital.

The victims included a woman and seven injured were admitted to the government-run Gandhi Hospital and a private hospital.

According to police, the incident occurred at around 9.30 p.m. on Monday in the building located near the Regional Passport Office.

The fire started from the e-bike showroom in the cellar and heavy smoke engulfed the upper floors housing Ruby Luxury Hotel.

Fire fighting personnel pulled out nine persons from the hotel. Some of those staying in the hotel jumped out from windows to save their lives.

Two fire tenders rushed to the scene and doused the flames. Most of the deaths are believed to have been caused by asphyxiation

It is estimated that 22-25 people were staying in the hotel.

“Since there was no proper ventilation, the smoke filled the lobbies of the hotel upstairs and those staying in rooms with doors closed apparently did not know anything till the smoke engulfed the entire building,” Assistant Commissioner of Police B. Ramesh said.

Three of the dead bodies were identified, while efforts were on to identify the remaining.

Police said the cause of the fire was still not known. It is suspected that a battery may have exploded while on charging, leading to the fire.

Police have booked the owner of the showroom for not following fire safety rules.

Telangana Home Minister Mohammed Mahmood Ali visited the spot past midnight. He said a probe has been ordered.

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BJP corporator in Hyderabad arrested for kidnapping


A Greater Hyderabad corporator belonging to the BJP has been arrested by police for kidnapping the son of his political rival from the same party to settle scores with him.

Baddam Prem Maheswar Reddy, a Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) corporator from Gaddiannaram division was arrested along with nine other accused. The police were on the lookout of five other accused.

The Saroornagar police and the LB Nagar special operations team of the Rachakonda Police Commissionerate cracked the kidnapping case.

The accused kidnapped Lanka Subramanyam (21) from his house in P&T Colony in Gaddiannaram and physically tortured him.

The victim told police that the accused thrashed him and tortured him with burning cigarettes butts. The accused even asked the victim to take a bath and get ready as they would be going to offer his sacrifice at a temple. According to the victim, they even put a garland around his neck.

Police investigations revealed that the corporator had differences with one Lakshmi Narayana, a local BJP leader and a former rowdy-sheeter. Shravan, a BJP worker, also had a grudge against Lakshmi Narayana as he had allegedly had extra-marital relations with one of his relatives.

Maheswar Reddy along with Shravan hatched a conspiracy to kidnap Lakshmi Narayana. Lakshmi Narayana’s brother Lanka Murali had property disputes with him and to resolve the same the latter had approached Maheswar Reddy. Murali also became a part of the conspiracy to kidnap Lakshmi Narayana and his son.

To execute the kidnapping plot, the corporator approached one Puneet Tiwari, a BJP sympathizer and outsourcing employee at the State Secretariat and promised to give him money. Puneet took the help of his friends, including students P. Manjunath, K. Pavan Kumar, R. Hemanth, software employee Balivada Praneeth and they went to the residence of Lakshmi Narayana in two cars in the early hours of September 1. Since Lakshmi Narayana was not found, they kidnapped his son Subrahmanyam who was sitting at a Ganesh mandap near his house and took him to Chintapalli in Nalgonda district.

The victim’s parents lodged a complaint with the police, which swung into action and with the help of CCTV footage traced the victim and accused near Chintapalli. The police rescued the victim and arrested the kidnappers on September 2.

Police said they collected WhatsApp chat between the corporator and Puneeth and established that the corporator was the kingpin who planned the kidnapping and executed it.

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30 women shifted to hospitals after botched-up FP surgery kills 4 in Telangana


After the death of four women after undergoing Double Puncture Laparoscopy (DPL) at a family planning surgery camp at Telangana’s Ranga Reddy district, authorities have shifted remaining 30 women to hospitals for treatment.

Health authorities said the condition of women was stable.

Thirteen women were admitted to Apollo Hospitals and remaining 17 to government-run Nizam’s Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS) in Hyderabad.

Two women were undergoing treatment at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at NIMS. Doctors said they were physically weak and hence were under treatment at the ICU.

Doctors said there was no need for any concern and all women were likely to be discharged in a couple of days.

Health minister T. Harish Rao on Wednesday visited NIMS Hospital and called on the women. He told reporters that all women were safe and would be discharged in two-day three days.

The minister said the government was providing the best treatment to the women. Every patient is being monitored by one doctor.

Four women have died due to complications after undergoing DPL at the female sterilisation camp conducted on August 25 at a Civil Hospital in Ibrahimpatnam in Ranga Reddy district.

They complained of acute gastroenteritis and died while undergoing treatment. Two deaths were each reported on Monday and Tuesday.

Harish Rao termed the incident unfortunate and said this never happened in the state’s history. He pointed out that 12 lakh women underwent family planning surgeries in the state during the last 6-7 years.

The health minister said the government has taken the incident seriously and has suspended the license of the doctors who performed the surgery. The government has also placed the superintendent of the hospital under lifetime suspension.

Harish Rao said the government has ordered an inquiry by Director of Public Health Dr G. Srinivasa Rao. He hoped that the report would be submitted in one week or 10 days.

“After receiving the report, we will take action against those found negligent. We will take necessary measures to prevent recurrence of such incidents,” he said.

The autopsy reports of four women are likely to be available on Thursday. This is likely to help officials reach a conclusion on the cause of deaths.

According to Director of Public Health Dr G Srinivasa Rao, 34 women were operated on at the camp. Four of them later complained of acute gastroenteritis and approached private hospitals for treatment. All the four women succumbed while undergoing treatment.

The director of public health said sterilisation camp is a routine exercise wherein DPL, tubectomy and vasectomy surgeries are conducted. “Experienced doctors conduct the surgeries. This incident is an aberration. We are trying to find out the reasons that led to the unfortunate incident,” he said.

According to the official, DPL is a preferred surgery for women who want permanent sterilisation with minimal complications. Women who undergo DPL can be discharged on the same day and they resume their activities immediately.

The state government has announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh and two bed-room houses each for the family of the deceased. Surviving children of the deceased will be given admission in residential schools.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

Hyderabad youth who raised ‘Sar tan se juda’ slogan detained under PD Act


Hyderabad police on Tuesday detained Syed Abdahu Quadri, alias Kashaf, under Preventive Detention (PD) Act for allegedly creating enmity between Hindus and Muslims.

On the orders of Hyderabad Police Commissioner, the 27-year-old was detained and sent to Central Prison Chanchalguda.

Kashaf, who calls himself a political strategist and a social and civil rights activist, had allegedly raised ‘sar tan se juda’ slogan during a recent protest against suspended BJP MLA Raja Singh over his derogatory comments about Prophet Mohammad.

The action against Kashaf came four days after police detained Raja Singh under PD Act and sent him to jail on the same charges.

According to police, Kashaf has been habitually posting provocative and inflammatory messages and videos in the social media through his Twitter account with an intention to promote enmity between Hindus and Muslims and cause breach of communal peace and disturb public tranquillity.

On the intervening night of August 22 and 23, he along with a number of supporters staged a ‘dharna’ in front of the Office of the Commissioner of Police, Hyderabad City at Basheerbagh in protest against posting of offensive video by Raja Singh.

Hundreds of young men from Muslim community from all over the city had descended at the office of the Commissioner of Police and joined the protest “dharna”.

“The detenu instigated the protestors to raise provocative and inflammatory slogans as ‘Naare Takbeer Allah Hu Akbar – Gustak-e-Rasool ki ek hi saza, sar tan se judaa (beheading is the only punishment for a person who disrespects the Prophet)’ and has created hatred and ill-will between the Muslim and Hindu religious communities in the limits of Hyderabad City Police Commissionerate, thereby adversely affecting the maintenance of public order,” a police statement said.

“Since this video and slogans went viral on national television channels and social media platforms, it created disturbance to public order throughout the country,” it added.

Police said the provocative and inciting slogans raised by the detenu during the protest programme has caught the attention of the gullible youth of the Muslim community which led to widespread protest programmes with violent incidents in different parts of the Hyderabad City. The details of the violent incidents were reported in the limits of Moghalpura, Shahinayathgunj, Bhavaninagar and Hussainialam Police Station in which the protestors have damaged the police vehicle, pelted stones on a police station, and attacked the hotel vendor and private cab driver.

According to police, Kashaf is involved in four offences in Hyderabad Police Commissionerate, among them 3 offences related to creating hatred between Muslims and Hindus. In 2020, he was also booked for uploading a video instigating the people to stage Million march and dharna at Indira Park, Hyderabad in protest against the CAA and NRC. He had uploaded a video on his twitter account and social media platformA instigating the people to stage dharna at Pragathi Bhavan (CM’s camp office), Hyderabad in protest against alleged demolition of Qutubshahi Masjid at Shameerpet and. In 2016, he was allegedly involved in an attack on then legislator and former minister Mohammed Ali Shabbir.

Kashaf was arrested on August 25 and was produced before a magistrate. However, he was released on personal bond.

The action against him was taken hours after suspended BJP MLA Raja Singh Lodh was sent to jail under PD Act.

According to police, Raja Singh has been habitually delivering provocative and inflammatory speeches and driving a wedge between communities leading to public disorder.

A total of 101 criminal cases have been registered against him since 2004. He was involved in 18 communal offences in the limits of different police stations in Hyderabad.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

Protest against Munawar Faruqui’s show in Hyderabad; 50 BJP, BJYM activists held


About 50 activists of BJP and Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) were arrested by the police for trying to disrupt the show of comedian Munawar Faruqui in Hyderabad on Saturday evening.

The activists tried to head towards Shilpa Kala Vedika, the venue of the show, but were stopped by policemen. Raising slogans, the protesters tried to break the police cordon and barge into the venue. However, police foiled their efforts.

The protesters were bundled into a waiting police vehicle and were whisked away to Gachibowli police station. The protest triggered mild tension on the busy traffic intersection in front of the auditorium in the information technology hub of Madhapur.

Munawar’s ‘Dongri to Nowhere’ began amid tight security. Large number of people were seen queuing up outside the auditorium much before the show time.

The police advised the organisers to start the show an hour before the scheduled time (6 p.m.). It is likely to continue till 9 p.m.

Cyberabad police made tight security arrangements for the show in view of the threats by BJP and some other right-wing groups to disrupt it.

About 500 policemen were deployed around Shilpa Kala Vedika and were thoroughly frisking the ticket-holders.

Senior officials including a Deputy Inspector General of Police and two Deputy Commissioners of Police were supervising the security.

Police were keeping a tight vigil on the venue and adjoining busy roads to prevent untoward incidents.

Police were also keeping a vigil on those who purchased the tickets online for the show as a BJP leader claimed that some of the party supporters have purchased the tickets and will be staging protests during the show.

The police have already detained BJP MLA T. Raja Singh, who had threatened to burn down the venue.

As Raja Singh along with his supporters was trying to leave for Shilpa Kala Vedika on Friday, the police took him into preventive custody.

Raja Singh, who represents Goshamahal constituency in Hyderabad, had warned that if the comedian goes ahead with the show, he would beat him up and burn down the venue. He also warned that if anything happens during the show, the TRS government would be responsible.

He alleged that Faruqui had hurt the religious sentiments of Hindus by making jokes on their gods.

The comedian had earlier planned to perform in Hyderabad in January but the show had to be cancelled due to a surge in Covid-19 cases.

Faruqui had announced his Hyderabad show on December 22, 2021, days after Telangana minister K.T. Rama Rao had extended him an open invite.

Minister KTR had extended an open invitation to the comedian to perform in Hyderabad, saying the city is truly cosmopolitan.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

Hyderabad BJP MLA detained ahead of comedian Munawar Faruqui’s show


Hyderabad police on Friday detained BJP MLA T. Raja Singh who had threatened to burn down the venue of stand-up comedian Munawar Faruqui’s show scheduled to be held here Saturday.

As Raja Singh along with his supporters was trying to leave for Shilpa Kala Vedika, the venue of the show, police detained him and shifted him to Bolaram police station.

The controversial MLA told media persons before being taken in a police vehicle that he was not being given any information by the police.

Raja Singh’s supporters raised slogans against the state government and Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao when police officials detained him from his office in Mangalhat. Some of them tried to block the police vehicle but were taken into custody.

Police had tightened the security at the MLA’s office since morning following information that he and his supporters may create disturbances at the venue.

Raja Singh, who represents Goshamahal constituency in Hyderabad, had warned that if the comedian goes ahead with the show, he would beat him up and burn down the venue.

A video of the MLA, threatening the comedian, had surfaced on social media last week. He alleged that Faruqui had hurt the religious sentiments of Hindus by making jokes on their gods.

The BJP MLA’s warning came after Munawar took to his Instagram account to announce his show “Dongri to Nowhere” in Hyderabad on August 20.

He had earlier planned to perform in Hyderabad in January but the show had to be canceled due to a surge in Covid-19 cases.

“In the past too, our idiot minister KTR had offered police protection and invited him, saying his event will be a great success. But even then, when Hindu groups across Telangana united to threaten him, he got scared and cancelled the event,” Raja Singh said, in a reference to state minster K.T. Rama Rao.

“I am seriously telling this. Everybody knows about the law and order in Telangana. I am telling KTR, if you don’t want this to deteriorate further, don’t allow the comedian in Hyderabad,” the MLA from Goshamahal said.

The BJP leader went on to issue an open threat. “See what will happen, If they invite him. Wherever the program is, we will go and beat him up. Whoever offers him a venue, we will burn it down. If something goes wrong, KTR and the government and police officers will be responsible,” Raja Singh said.

The BJP leaders had similar threats in January when Munawar had planned to perform. However, the show had to be cancelled due to restrictions imposed on public gatherings in view of a surge in Covid cases.

Faruqui had announced his Hyderabad show on December 22, 2021, days after KTR had extended him an open invite to perform in Hyderabad, saying the city is truly cosmopolitan.

The stand-up comedian had earlier tweeted that he was receiving several calls and mails from Hyderabad to perform in the city.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

No immersion of PoP idols in Hussain Sagar this year


Authorities in Hyderabad this year will allow immersion of Ganesh idols made by Plaster of Paris (PoP) only in baby/artificial ponds and not Hussain Sagar Lake this year.

The Supreme Court had last year allowed immersion of PoP idols for the last time and has asked Telangana authorities to come up with a plan for immersions at an alternate place.

The authorities have built 50 ponds in addition to the 25 already existing for immersion of idols.

Telangana High Court on September 9, 2021 directed the state government not to allow immersion of Ganesh idols made of PoP in Hussain Sagar Lake and other lakes in and around Hyderabad.

On a petition filed by the state government, the High Court refused to modify its order. The state government subsequently filed an appeal in the Supreme Court. The apex court allowed immersion of PoP idols for one last time.

The court directed the government to permit immersion of PoP Ganesh idols in baby ponds constructed by the GHMC or separate areas/ponds which do not result in the spread of pollution into the main water body.

The state government has also taken steps to promote environment-friendly Ganesh idols. It will distribute a total of six lakh idols made of clay this year.

Minister for animal husbandry T. Srinivas Yadav said Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) alone will distribute four lakh idols made of clay. Telangana State Pollution Control Board (TSPCB) and Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) will distribute one lakh idols each.

Khairatabad Ganesh committee, which installs tallest idol every year, has agreed to use clay for its idol this year.

As part of the arrangements for the ensuing Ganesh Navaratri festivities beginning on August 31, Hyderabad Police Commissioner C.V. Anand on Wednesday held a coordination meeting with all SHOs and senior officers of city police.

Anand gave a slew of instructions regarding setting up of idols, intimation forms and immersion of PoP s idols and clay idols, the procession routes and precautions.

With some of the SHOs and DCPs being fresh to the city police and doing this ‘bandobast’ for the first time, the CP and his staff officers spent a lot of time explaining the various aspects of the preparatory works for the biggest event in the calendar of Hyderabad City Police.

“Since January, all the festivals of various communities were conducted peacefully despite the huge turnout of crowds post-Covid, and so were so many other programmes and events. Those were all quarter finals and semi finals, Ganesh bandobast is the finals and I am sure u will all rise to the occasion and do equally well,” he told the officials.

The police chief said that the organisers must intimate the concerned SHOs about the setting up of the idol and obtain permission. Instructions were given to immerse PoP idols at baby/artificial ponds. The officials were given clarity about court orders.

There will be coordination meetings with the organisers of these mandapams at every level to decide about the installation so as not to inconvenience the general public. Power, water, barricading etc., will be discussed.

The peace committee members should be actively involved and precautions should be taken for watching social media and mischievous posts, the commissioner said.

The Ganesh festivities will conclude this year with immersion on September 9. Every year, thousands of idols are immersed in Hussain Sagar Lake in the heart of the city and dozens of other water bodies in and around the city.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.



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