Naidu’s advice to students: Make reading a habit
The Chandmari field in Guwahati has become the meeting point for book lovers, thanks to the 21st North East Book Fair, which started on November 1. Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, who inaugurated the fair, advised students to view reading as a fun activity. “Children, now-a-days, prefer watching videos online to relying on books,” Naidu said. CM Sarbananda Sonowal said: “To generate the culture of reading among children, it is essential to make the libraries well-equipped. I urge all school and college authorities to maintain a library and create a reading movement across the state”.
AASU to have three-month cooling-off period
Leaders of All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) will not be able to join a political party immediately after completion of their tenure. The students’ body has come up with a three-month cooling-off period between its members leaving the union and taking the plunge into politics. The AASU’s image has taken a beating as there have been growing incidents of its office bearers joining politics soon after retiring from student politics. Three-time former Chief Minister Prafulla Kumar Mahanta, incumbent CM Sarbananda Sonowal and several sitting MLAs are former leaders of the students’ union. In fact, Mahanta and a lot of former AASU leaders had together floated the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) at the end of Assam Agitation in 1985.
Politics is not my cup of tea: Bhanu
Assam’s retired mandarin MGVK Bhanu has quit the Congress in less than a year since joining it. He had contested the last Lok Sabha polls from Tezpur seat but lost to BJP’s Pallab Lochan Das. “Politics is not my cup of tea. I had joined the Congress (last February) to be an MP,” he told journalists ahead of his resignation. The 1985 batch IAS officer from Andhra Pradesh had retired as additional chief secretary in July last year. He was close to three-time former CM Tarun Gogoi. During deputation in 2004, he had served as secretary of former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YSR Reddy.
Saving lives of elephants
Incidents of wild elephants coming under the wheels of moving trains in Assam have dropped significantly, thanks to some preventive measures taken by the Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR). According to NFR, the lives of over 140 elephants were saved during the current year. There are 67 elephant corridors which fall under the NFR. However, the railway authorities noticed that the jumbos often tend to cross railway tracks through areas that are not notified as corridors. Accordingly, some measures were taken. Concerned over the growing incidents of elephants being run over by trains in Assam, the then Assam forest minister Pramila Rani Brahma had written to the railways.