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Hyderabad: South Central Railway has announced that it will run special trains for Hazrath Khaja Banda Nawaj Urs at Gulbarga.  The Urs is a famous celebration and people from all walks of life come to participate in it irrespective of caste and creed.  It is a three day celebration and people from all over India assemble to seek the blessings of Hazrath Khaja Banda Nawaz.  The special trains introduced by South Central Railway are as follows –

  • Train no. 7178: This train will leave for Gulbarga from Hyderabad on 1st October at 10.00 pm and reach Gulbarga the next morning at 4.15 am.  It again starts from Gulbarga at 5.25 am on the same day and reach Hyderabad at 11.30 am.
  • No. 7180: This service begins at 5.30 am from Hyderabad and reaches Gulbarga at 11.20 am. It begins its return journey to Hyderabad at 12.55 noon from Gulbarga and reaches Hyderabad at 6.35 pm.  This train travels via Begumpet, Sanath Nagar, Hafizpet, Lingampally, Nagaulapalli, Shankarpalli, Ravulapalli kalan, Gollaguda, Chittigidda, Vikarabad, Godamguda, Mylaram, Rukmapur, Tandur, Mantati, Kurgunta, Seram, Malked Road, Chittapur, Sulehalli and Wadi stations.
Railway is also running special trains between Nanded and Jammu-tawi between 1stOctober, 2012 and 28th November, 2012.  Train no. 02422 will begin from Jammu-Tawi on 1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd October and 5th, 12th, 19th and 26th of November, 2012 at 9.45 and reaches Nanded on the next day at 11.45 pm.  From Nanded it will start it journey on 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th, 31st of October and 7th , 14th, 21st and 28th of November, 2012 at 11.00 am and reach Jammu-tawi the next day.


Karnataka’s Spurti Shivalingaiah clinched the women’s singles title in the AITA Pro Circuit championship on Friday without playing the final and semifinal after walkovers from her opponents — who opted out to play the ITF Gulbarga Open Futures championship qualifying rounds — turned it into a farcical finish.    

Spurti’s semifinal opponent Riya Bhatia and the other finalist Eetee Mehta decided not to play their matches, giving priority to the ITF tournament starting on Monday. The women’s doubles semifinalists also desisted from entering the court and chose to play the tournament in Gulbarga. 

Kiran Nandakumar, CEO of Stalwart Sports, organisers of the tournament said they will take up the matter with the AITA. “It is just not proper, we have taken a serious view of these mass walkovers and will be reporting to AITA,’’ he added. 

Meanwhile, veteran Nitin Kirtane of Railways registered a hard-fought 6-0, 1-6, 6-4 victory over Rohan Gide to enter the men’s singles final at the KSLTA stadium.  
Kirtane will take on Vinod Sridhar, who progressed to the summit clash after opponent Vijay Kannan did not take field citing toe injury and blisters.

Results (all semifinals): Men’s singles: Nitin Kirtane bt Rohan Gide 6-0, 1-6, 6-4; Vinod Sridhar w/o Vijay Kannan. Doubles: Tariq Jacob/ Elvin Antony bt Tejas Chaukulkar/ Yogesh Phogat 6-1, 6-2; Nitin Kirtane/ Saurav Sukul bt Vaidikh Munshaw/ Lakshith Sood 7-6 (7-5), 6-2. 

Women’s singles: Eetee Mehta bt Niku Amin 6-1, 6-1; Spurti Shivalingaiah w/o Riya Bhatia. 


After a gap of four years, international tennis returns to the historic city of Gulbarga as the Karnataka State Lawn Tennis Association, in association with Zygosports Unlimited, is set to conduct the USD 10,000 ITF Gulbarga Open Women's Futures from September 24 to 29.

Gulbarga twice hosted ITF Men's tournament in the past, but it is the first time that an ITF Women's Futures is being held in the city, some 589 kms away from here, KSLTA secretary C S Sunder Rajum told reporters.

The championship offers a great chance for Indian girls to earn ITF points at home and enhance their ability to step into the big league of WTA, he said.Wang Yu Vanise Chan of Hong Kong, who is ranked 366, heads the main draw list followed by Emily Webley of Great Britain, who is ranked 388. Another notable contender is Zi Yang of China (610).

The Indian challenger will be spearheaded by Kyra Shroff, ranked 535 and other Indian girls, who are in the main draw, include Rishika Sunkara, Ankita Raina, Nidhi Chilmula, Rutuja Bhosle, Shivika Buran, Natasha Palha, Prerna Bhambri and Shwetha Rana.

Bharati Cements, ACC Ultra Tech Cements and Chettinad Cements are the associate sponsors for the championship, he said adding that the venue will be Dr Chandrashekar Patil Stadium, which has three synthetic courts and is being spruced up for the event in a big way.

Zygosports CEO and tournament director Sunil Yejaman said, "We have seen high quality entries into the tournament which goes a long way to prove that Karnataka has become the tennis destination in India."

Principal secretary to chief minister and KSLTA vice president, Laxminarayana said it has been a constant endeavour of KSLTA to promote tennis in rural and moffusil areas in the state and holding the ITF women's championship in Gulbarga reflects that philosophy.

"I hope more and more children in Gulbarga take up the game after witnessing the event," he added.

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Union Labour Minister Mallikarjun Kharge urged Minister of State for Railways K H Muniyappa to make the tri-weekly Solapur- Yeshwantpur Superfast Express which was flagged off on Sunday more frequent.

 The train was flagged off by Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Sindhe at Solapur at 4 pm and as Solapur and Gulbarga come under the Central Railway Zone there was no formal flag off function at Gulbarga Railway Station.

 Kharge told reporters that the newly inaugurated train would see a lot of rush and people of the district are demanding a regular train.  He also demanded that Muniyappa, who was present at the function, to complete Bidar-Gulbarga railway line as per schedule as Gulbarga DC has handed over the land needed in the district.

 He requested him to complete the work of widening of railway bridge near Mother Theresa School in Gulbarga, railway bridge on Afzalpur Road and on Jewargi Road in the district.

 Muniyappa agreed to consider the requests of Kharge to run an express train between Gulbarga and Pune and to establish a railway terminal at Gulbarga.

 The minister said that he would place the demand before Railway Board for getting approval.  Muniyappa rejected the demand of stopping Mumbai Nagarkoil train at Yalahanka for few minutes

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A Cabinet meeting scheduled in Gulbarga on October 4 will discuss issues related to Hyderabad Karnataka, Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar said here on Sunday. “We were unable to hold a Cabinet meeting in Gulbarga last year owing to unavoidable reasons. But we have decided to organise the meeting this year on October 4. Senior officials have been instructed to begin preparations,” he told presspersons. Mr. Shettar thanked the Union government for tabling the Bill to amend Article 371 of the Constitution to provide special status to the Hyderabad Karnataka region. This will ensure better human resource development in this region and improve infrastructure in the six districts. The State government was implementing all central-sponsored schemes effectively and transparently. Our progress in health, education, drinking water and other central schemes is good, Mr. Shettar said. Later, during a drought review meeting the Chief Minister instructed officials to employ a larger number of people under the MNREGA. Officials should not only focus on ensuring the quality of works, but should also make sure that the wages are paid within a week. He sought periodic progress reports from officials about this. He asked officials to take up drinking water projects and set up of fodder banks in all affected areas. Mr. Shettar received grievances from the public at a Janata Darshan. He distributed taxis to beneficiaries of various social welfare schemes. The Chief Minister visited the Khaja Bande Nawaz Dargah and the Sharana Basaveshwar temple. District in-charge Minister Revu Naik Belamagi, Infrastructure Development Minister Sunil Valyapure, Minister for Water Resources Basavaraj Bommai, Gulbarga Urban Development Authority Chairman Vidyasagar Kulkarni, MSIL chairman Vikram Patil, legislators Doddappagouda Patil, Valmiki Naik, Shashil Namoshi, K. B Shanappa and others were present.

BANGALORE: The special status for six backward districts of Hyderabad-Karnatak region by the Centre under Article 371(J) will focus on industries and human development index besides education and employment.

The regional tag coming to the six districts Gulbarga, Yadgir, Bidar, Bijapur, Koppal and Bellary after a long wait of 40 years is expected to incorporate the Telangana, Maratwada, Saurashtra and Vidarbha models who are already under Article 371, Union Labour minister Mallikarjun M Kharge, hailing from Gulbarga told Stoi on Saturday.

Yadgir is being marketed by the state government for setting up industries. In the Global Investors' Meet held in June this year, the government had come up with several concessions for those wanting to set up industries in Yadgir, which incidentally is the youngest district in Karnataka carved out in 2009.

The pathetic state of these districts was mentioned in the D M Nanjundappa committee which went into the regional imbalances in north Karnataka region a decade ago. In his report , Nanjundappa had suggested removal of discriminations and amendment to the Article 371. The report, was prepared after an exhaustive and scientific study over a two-year period and submitted to chief minister S M Krishna.

The report had identified 114 taluks and classified them as most backward, more backward, and backward for determining the priorities. Of them, 59 taluks were in north and 55 in south Karnataka.

In the Human Development Index report released in 2008 for Bijapur and Gulbarga, the highlight was all taluks of Bijapur were backward in terms of income and human development. Regarding Gulbarga it was at the bottom of the human development index ranking 26 thamong the then 29 districts.

There was celebration in the six districts on Saturday. Former CM N Dharam Singh's son Ajay Singh, who has been running an NGO for the uplift of the people in Gulbarga said: When AICC general secretary Rahul Gandhi visited Gulbarga during the 2009 Lok Sabha elections, he had promised the people and it has been done now.''


BANGALORE: The special status for six backward districts of Hyderabad-Karnatak region by the Centre under Article 371D will focus on industries and the human development index, besides education and employment.

The regional tag for the six districts of Gulbarga, Yadgir, Bidar, Bijapur, Koppal and Bellary after a long wait of 40 years, is expected to incorporate the Telangana, Marathwada, Saurashtra and Vidarbha models. These are already under Article 371, Union labour minister Mallikarjun M Kharge, hailing from Gulbarga, told STOI on Saturday.

The pathetic state of these districts was mentioned by the DM Nanjundappa Committee, which went into the regional imbalances in North Karnataka region a decade ago. In his report, Nanjundappa had suggested removal of discrimination and amendment to Article 371. The report was prepared after an exhaustive and scientific study over a two-year period and submitted to chief minister SM Krishna.

The report had identified 114 taluks and classified them as most backward, more backward and backward for determining their priorities. Of them, 59 taluks were in North and 55 in South Karnataka.

In the Human Development Index report released in 2008 for Bijapur and Gulbarga, the highlight was that all taluks of Bijapur were backward in terms of income and human development. Gulbarga was at the bottom of the human development index ranking 26{+t}{+h} among the then 29 districts.

There was celebration in the six districts on Saturday. Former CM N Dharam Singh's son Ajay Singh, who has been running an NGO for the uplift of people in Gulbarga said: "When AICC general secretary Rahul Gandhi visited Gulbarga during the 2009 Lok Sabha elections, he had made a promise which has been fulfilled now."

The joint venture cement plant of Sagar Cements Ltd and Vicat Group of France will commence production in October. “The clinkerisation is expected to be completed by September end,’’ Mr Srikanth Reddy, Executive Director, Sagar Cements, told Business Line here. The plant, coming up at Chatrasal in Gulbarga district of Karnataka, would be fully operational with cement production beginning in October, he added. The Rs 2,500-crore joint venture comprises two phases. The first phase, which is almost ready now, had a Rs 1,650-crore investment with a cement production capacity of 2.5 million tonnes. The total capacity, including second phase, would be at 5.5 million tonnes by 2014, Mr Reddy added.

BANGALORE: A grievance redressal platform would be set up the next six months by Central Administrative Tribunal's Regional office to help speedy redressal of problems faced by central government, PSU and bank staff, a CAT Regional head K B Suresh said today. 

CAT was also planning to start three circuit benches in Gulbarga, Dharwad and Mangalore in Karnataka, Suresh said. "We already have a circuit bench in Bangalore," he said. 

CAT had already sent a proposal in this regard to the Central Government and hope it would materialise in next six months, Suresh said. 

The tribunal also planned to start e-filing facility for airing grievances, he said.  
A harrowing scream greeted us as we walked into the Advantage Elder Care home in Kothanur. It came from an old woman completely bent over with arthritis, whose closest companion is utter agony. She can barely turn her head to face us as we say hello. On the one other bed in the room is another old woman, who smiles cheerfully as we enter, extending her hand in greeting. She introduces herself very politely and then says, “Nobody wants me, I know that,” before breaking into sobs. This lady has dementia. Her speech might sound grown up, but in most other ways, she knows less than a child of four.

With Shaji Philip leading the way through Advantage Elder Care, a home for rehabilitation and palliative care, the lives of the 30 other patients at the centre slowly come to light. Many of the people here are affected by dementia, crippling arthritis, cancer, paraplegia, Parkinson’s disease and even muscular dystrophy, a rare group of muscle diseases that weakens the musculoskeletal system and can bring all locomotion to a complete halt. Some patients are still left with the presence of mind to recognise a newcomer and sit up to say hello, others continue sleeping, unaware that anything has happened at all, while others just stare blankly ahead, as if there is nothing left to be said any more.

Though they lead a pitiful existence, they are still fortunate in having someone take care of them. Most are incapable of performing even the simplest activities on their own, need adult diapers, catheters and nasogastric incubation (for long-term feeding through the nose, the throat and into the stomach).

“All the patients here require constant monitoring, feeding happens every two hours. The catheter has to be changed every 15 days, and physiotherapy is given every day,” says Philip, who, having worked in the hospital industry for nine years, realised the urgent need for good geriatric and palliative care.

“Bed sores need to be treated, they can take up to seven months to heal, and nursing care is of the utmost importance,” he says. At the AEC, each patient has an attendant who never leaves his or her side, along with full time physiotherapy to help rehabilitate patients with arthritis and Parkinson’s disease. Young girls from the rural parts of Karnataka such as Raichur, Gulbarga and Hubli, most of them between 18 and 25, are given a year’s free training in nursing before they begin work at the centre. Their job can be traumatic, both because of the kinds of chores they perform and because of the psychological ordeal of staring death in the face.

“We have about two deaths a week on an average,” says Philip. In a bid to keep his employees in good spirits and help them remain optimistic through the suffering they are witness to, Philip takes them on excursions and short holidays to cheer them up. In one room lies a woman who doesn’t speak at all. There is much anger in her eyes, even though she refuses to look our way. Six months into her marriage, she suffered a severe brain haemorrhage and has been at the centre since. “Her husband comes in once in a way to make a payment. He came this morning, but he didn’t bother to go up and see his wife,” says Philip. “He argues that they were only married six months, not long enough to warrant a commitment.”

The young woman’s parents won’t have anything to do with her either because she is a married woman and no longer their responsibility. So she lies there, alone, with no hope of recovery and no real prospect of death. She is just skin and bones and furious at the raw deal life has dealt her. A young paraplegic has occupied his bed at the AEC for four years, from the age of 26, when he met with a serious accident. “Watching his parents come and go is the hardest part; they take it in turns each day,” says Philip. The young boy cannot even swallow his food, feeding him takes a good three hours each time, Philip explains.

As far as care-giving goes, AEC makes sure that no holds are barred. The patients have the best diet, including milk and fruit on a daily basis. “I want biscuits,” said one very old lady, completely beaten down by dementia. The biscuit is produced at once and she pushes it into her mouth eagerly. At that moment, all was well with the world. Despite the countless complications, life can become as simple as that.

The most frightening part is that many of these people — doctors, engineers, nurses, journalists, an author and even a bureaucrat who was defeated by drugs and suffers from dementia now — once led an active, normal life. Today they lie on those beds, completely helpless. There is not an inkling of the success they once knew. “Philanthropy is what this field needs,” says Philip. “People need to reach out and help because there are many, many people out there who cannot afford care like this, but deserve it all the same.”

Geriatric care should be a growing area of health care as the population greys at a faster rate. Yet, in India, there are very few places like AEC that give people unable to look after themselves, the level of care they need. If these people could speak, they would all be storytellers, telling the same sad story in a hundred different ways. Life is a terribly lonely experience once the illusion is gone. Nothing remains now, not success, not power, not relationships. They have only themselves to live with. 

    Basavaraj Harsur


    October 2012
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