Prabhakaran's extradition demanded By pondy assembly

Pondicherry

April 15 2002

The Pondy Assembly today appealed to the Centre to initiate steps to contact the Sri Lankan govt to get the extradition of LTTE leader V Prabhakaran, with the main Opposition DMK, adopting a neutral stand on the issue.

In a resolution adopted by the House, it also asked the Centre not to give permission to any of the members of the LTTE to enter the country.

The resolution pointed out that Prabakaran was the prime accused in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case.

The leader of the Opposition R V Janakiraman read out a prepared statement, explaining the reasons for his party's stand.

He said thousands of Tamils had lost their lives in Sri Lanka during the last two decades in the ethnic strife in Sri Lanka. He expressed the fear that the resolution might hinder the peace process in the island republic.

He said that the DMK always stood for punishment to those who committed crimes.

Monal’s body flown to Mumbai

Chennai

April 15 2002

The body of actress Monal, which was found hanging in her house at Vadapalani yesterday, was flown to her native place Mumbai after post-mortem today.

Police said the body of Monal, younger sister of popular south Indian film actress Simran, was received by her family members after post-mortem at the govt Royapettah hospital.

The contents of the post-mortem report were not known immediately.

A police official said a case of unnatural death was registered. Apparently no foul play was suspected in her death. ''We are awaiting the report of the post-mortem,'' he added.

Leading stars from the Tamil cinema world, including Nadigar Sangam president Vijayakanth and general secretary Sarath Kumar, MP, Thyagu and other actresses paid homage to the body of Monal, at the hospital.

Simran, who had gone to Canada for a film shooting, was airdashing to Mumbai, where she was expected to receive the body. The last rites were likely to be performed tomorrow.

Monal, who had shot to fame with her performance in debut film ‘Paarvai Ondre Podhume’, had acted in five or six Tamil films including the box office hit ‘Samuthiram’ and two Malayalam films. Her last film was ‘Charlie Chaplin’.

Hike in cinema ticket rates, a boost to industry'

Chennai

April 14 2002

The Tamil Nadu Film Exhibitors Association has lauded the govt decision to allow cinema owners to increase ticket rates by up to 75 per cent of the existing fare.

``The announcement by the Chief Minister will surely give a fillip to the industry,'' the additional president, Abirami Ramanathan, said in a statement here yesterday.

For the first time in several years, the cinema owners were given the freedom to fix the rates.

Allaying fears that the rates would skyrocket following the announcement, Mr. Ramanathan said tickets would be sold only at rates affordable to the public and according to the location of the cinema hall.

Even in 1994, when the same freedom was granted, were sold for not more than Rs.30 or Rs.35, except in one or two cinemas.``We are not prepared to destroy ourselves by fixing unaffordable rates,'' he said.

The move would also help to eliminate `black market'.

TDP not to withdraw support

NEW DELHI

APRIL 14 2002

The Vajpayee Govt, which faced a crisis following the strong stand of its key ally, Telugu Desam Party, over the Gujarat developments, breathed easy tonight with the TDP reiterating its support to the National Democratic Alliance Government at the Centre.

The TDP's announcement came shortly after a 90-minute meeting of the NDA here this evening, in which the latter issued an appeal to its ``valued friend'' to continue supporting the Government as it had been doing for the last four years.