• 14/12/2006

yes, radio: On November 17, 2006 the government approved an expansion of community radio stations by non-profit organisations. Applicants need to have a standing of at least three years. Individuals, political parties or their affiliates and trade unions will not be allowed to operate stations. Stations should serve a well-defined local community and have management structure reflective of the community they seek to serve. This radio will not include newscasting and current affairs programmes.

nuclear bengal: A central committee headed by S K Jain, head of Nuclear Power Corporation India Ltd (NPCIL), has proposed Haripur in East Midnapore district, about 200 km from Kolkata, as a site for eastern India's first nuclear power plant. The proposal has elicited protests from local people, who fear displacement. The thriving fish-drying industry in Haripur is also threatened. Buddhadev Bhattacharya, state chief minister, however, emphasises the necessity for the plant. NPCIL assures that a study will be carried out to ensure the plant does not disturb marine fauna.

twice rapped: A Russian, Natalia Koshuba, has won a case against Coca-Cola on health grounds, and will recoup the US $200 she spent on treatment of gastro esophageal reflux disease, which, doctors attribute to soft drinks. Elsewhere, in Egypt, Al-Azhar university has issued a fatwa stating that drinking Pepsi and Coca-Cola was forbidden by Islam. They have said that there are doubts their being halal since they keep their ingredients secret.

rejected: The Supreme Court has dismissed two separate petitions about special economic zones (SEZs). Rejecting Asutosh Srivastava's petition, challenging the centre's policy on setting up SEZs, the court said that the government and parliament's legislative powers could not be challenged through public interest litigation petitions. On November 13, the same bench dismissed another plea against acquisition of 10,000 acres of land for Reliance Infrastructure Ltd for the Jamnagar SEZ.

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