QKolkata: Calcutta HC Has Highest Judge Vacancies & More

1. Calcutta HC Shares Top Slot In Judge Vacancies

Calcutta High Court, the country’s oldest high court, set up in 1861, shares top spot with Karnataka High Court when it comes to judge vacancies vis-a-vis its approved strength, amongst all 24 high courts in the country. The Calcutta High Court Bar Association, incidentally, is going on a five-day cease-work from Monday to protest against the “Centre’s apathy” in appointing fresh judges, as TOI had reported on Saturday.

According to data published by the Union law and justice ministry on 1 February, the high courts of Karnataka (61% vacancies) and Manipur (60%) fare worse than that of Kolkata (54%). A little more than two weeks from then, however, the figure has changed for the worse. Three Calcutta HC judges — Justices Mir Dara Sheko, Siddhartha Chattopadhyay and Debi Prosad Dey — have retired, taking the vacancies to 58%. In addition, two judges are always deputed to the Port Blair circuit bench. If this is factored in, the vacancies stand at 61%.

Three more judges — including Acting Chief Justice Jyotirmay Bhattacharya — are set to retire between September and December.

(Source: The Times Of India)

Also Read: Ex-Calcutta HC Judge Karnan Released from Jail After 6-Month Term

2. Dozing Cabby Smashes Into Divider, Killing Student

A student on his way to a PhD entrance examination was killed, and three of his friends were injured, early on Sunday when the app cab they were travelling in dashed into a median divider near the Metropolitan crossing on the EM Bypass after the driver dozed off at the wheel. The accident has brought into sharp focus the punishing schedule that most app-cab drivers subject themselves to, in order to make the profession financially rewarding.

Sayantan Biswas, 22, a first-year MSc student of applied physics at IIEST Shibpur, was sitting behind driver Sujay Gharami, 21. Like most people sitting in the back seat, he didn’t have a seatbelt on, and his head dashed against the back of the driver’s seat, causing grievous injuries. He was apparently alive when he was rushed to a government hospital. He was taken to a private hospital at his friends’ insistence, but he had died by then.

One of the students said the car, while descending the Maa flyover at 60kmph-plus speed at 6:50am, suddenly veered right and hit the concrete median railings of a small culvert before the Metropolitan crossing.

(Source: The Times Of India)

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3. Residents Still Confused Over Safe Water Source

The residents of south-east Kolkata who had been reeling under a severe outbreak of enteric disease are now faced with another dilemma. Water from which source is fit for consumption?

While Kolkata Municipal Corporation officials have said that leaks in the sewer pipes could have triggered the water contamination, mayor Sovan Chatterjee has held packaged drinking water selling briskly in the infected areas as the source of infection. The passing the buck has left more than 2 lakh people in over 10 wards in Baghajatin, Jadavpur, Patuli, Ganguly Bagan, Santoshpur and Nonadanga confused about which water to consume.

“We are confused. Such confusion is not desirable in a crisis situation like this. The corporation is saying that the packaged water could have been the source of the infection, but we have been reading and seeing on television that multiple leaks have been found in the sewer lines which could have contaminated the drinking water,” said Shila Das, a homemaker in Baghajatin’s J Block, which is considered to be the epicentre of the outbreak.

(Source: The Times Of India)

Also Read: Diarrhoea outbreak spreads in Kolkata, over 1,100 affected

4. Historic Blue Plaques Set To Make A Comeback

By the end of March, the historic blue plaque is going to make an official comeback in Bengal after a gap of five years. Since the British period, Bengal has had a tradition of installing blue enamel plaques in lanes and buildings of historic importance. Thanks to the West Bengal Heritage Commission, the return of the plaques will re-establish Bengal’s ties with France and England.

But before that happens, there will be another renovation work that will keep the heritage commission busy. The governor’s house in Serampore has been renovated. “The Danish government and our experts have collaborated for this. We are also coming up with a gallery that will serve as a museum to showcase the history of our relationship with Denmark. The official inauguration of this museum will be held on 28 February in the presence of ambassadors of four different countries,” said artist Shuvaprasanna, chairman of the commission.

(Source: The Times Of India)

5. Clogged Pipes a 'Rising' Peeve

Sewage pipes are often clogged by plastic bags and garbage thrown into drains, causing the waste water level to rise and seep into the water pipeline where there is a leak, an engineer of the Calcutta Municipal Corporation (CMC) has said.

Tests conducted by the School of Tropical Medicine have confirmed the presence of coliform bacteria in municipal water, indicating faecal contamination in at least one sample collected from Baghajatin, the epicentre of the diarrhoea outbreak in several wards of south Calcutta since last week.

"The water and sewage pipelines run parallel to each other. But the waste water level is usually lower than that of drinking water except for times when the water pressure is high," the engineer of the CMC's water supply department explained.

(Source: The Telegraph)

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6. Factory Gutted In Blaze

A cardboard carton-manufacturing unit next to Subhas Sarovar in Beleghata was gutted in a fire on Sunday afternoon. There were no casualties as the factory was closed.

The factory is a tin shed flanked by tenements and houses. Several rolls of cardboard, glue and machine oil - all highly inflammable - were stored inside, a fire officer said.

Six fire engines were pressed into service after the control room received an alert about the fire around 12.30 pm. The fire tenders managed to bring the flames under control within 45 minutes, the firefighter said.

"We managed to douse the flames quickly as we connected several fire hoses together and pumped in water from the nearby Subhas Sarovar. We sprayed water on the tenements around the factory as well to ensure that the flames did not spread," the fire officer said.

(Source: The Telegraph)

7. Smooth Run: Treat For Feet and Eyes

Professional sprinters, fitness enthusiasts, weekend revellers, students and senior citizens were all on the starting line of the IEM-UEM Kolkata Marathon, in association with The Telegraph, at City Centre Salt Lake on Sunday morning.

More than 1,500 men and women converged on the ground next to the Salt Lake mall before first light. At 5:30am, the place was abuzz with activity as people limbered up to take part in three different categories, including the 21km half marathon, the 10km run and 5km fun run.

The turnout, which organisers said had tripled since last year, proved yet again that road races have caught on in Calcutta – a city where weekends are generally laid back.

Smooth roads and a scenic route set the marathon apart.

(Source: The Telegraph)

Also Read: How Safe Was Running At The Kolkata Full Marathon? We Find Out

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