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The aircrew of the Mi-17 V5 that crashed on a mountainside during a rescue mission on Tuesday was led by Wing Commander Darryl Castelino, a resident of Barrackpore since being posted there last June. The tall, 39-year-old pilot from Mumbai was staying at an ITBP guesthouse in Gauchar, the forward operating base for the IAF in this rescue mission, and was forced out because of Rahul Gandhis visit to Gauchar and Guptkashi, sources have said at Gauchar. The Telegraph could not verify the version with local officials as most were preoccupied with relief operations. But guesthouses are usually emptied out for VIP entourages one of the reasons disaster management specialists advise against a parade

The amazing 20 guys

of visitors in affected areas. A qualified flying instructor commissioned into the helicopter stream of the IAF on June 20, 1998, Castelino was handpicked for the conversion to the V5 helicopters, 80 of which have been contracted by the air force. The 157 HU, the squadron to which he belonged, was newly raised and moved to Barrackpore as part of efforts to beef up military infrastructure in the east. (See P4) Flight Lieutenant K. Praveen has a course mate here in the hills, Squadron Leader Dushyant Rathore. He was an amazing guy, Rathore said and walked away without wanting to talk any more. The 27-year-old Praveen was commissioned into the helicopter stream on June 27, 2009. In Tamil Nadus Madurai, Praveens hometown, his mother Manjula told PTI: He was my only son. He spoke to me at 9.45am yesterday and told me he will be

The rescue personnel who were on the Mi-17 V5 chopper that crashed in Uttarakhand on Sgt Sudhakar Yadav Tuesday



calling me again in the evening. But we received the call... . Flight Lieutenant Tapan Kapoor, also aged 27, was commissioned into the aeronautical engineering (mechanical) stream on January 3, 2011. Junior Warrant Officer Akhilesh Kumar Singh and Sergeant Sudhakar Yadav, both aged 36, served in the air force from July 1996. The nine National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) personnel, on deputation from the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), had volunteered for the Kedarnath mission six days ago. When the force could not find enough experienced hands, the nine had stepped forward and cited their stint in Odisha after the supercyclone.

Constable Ajay Lal

Constable Jomon PG

Constable Vinaygan

Constable PS Ramesh

Constable AR Ganesh

Junior Warrant Officer AK Singh

Wing Commander Darryl Castelino

Constable Bibhuti Roy

Constable Nand Ram

Constable Santosh Kumar Paswan

Constable Sanjiv Kumar

Constable Bassavaraj Yaragatti

Nishit Dholabhai in Gauchar and Sujan Dutta in New Delhi

Friday hearing as clock ticks


SC takes charge of panchayat case

Excerpts of the conversation in Calcutta High Court at 12.30pm during the second round of hearing on Tuesday when information was conveyed that the state election commission had moved the Supreme Court Samaraditya Pal counsel for the state election commission: This morning, at 10.30am, the state election commission had approached the vacation bench of the Supreme Court seeking its intervention in the matter. The apex court has decided to hear the case at 2pm to conduct the polls. This is disgraceful, unconstitutional, unethical and unacceptable Kalyan Banerjee senior advocate and Trinamul Congress MP: I got the information that the commission has alleged before the Supreme Court that Calcutta High Court did not bother to hear their allegations against the state for last seven days

Flight Lieutenant Tapan Kapoor

Flight Lieutenant K Praveen

Constable Sarvesh Kumar

Sub-inspector Jayendra Prasad

Sub-inspector Satish Kumar

Inspector Bheem Singh

Second-incommand NN Gupta


Worry after walkover

will be thrown wide open for heartburn and possible litigation. Although the uncontested winners have not yet been sworn in before which they cannot be called panchayat or zilla parishad members they are already armed with winning certificates. I have already secured my winning certificate. But I dont know what will happen now as the matter has reached the Supreme Court. So I am waiting for the judgment, said Sardar, who won uncontested in the Magrahat zilla parishad seat in South 24-Parganas. Pipul Chakraborty , the Trinamul candidate from the Albandha gram panchayat seat in Birbhum, echoed Sardar. If the court orders a fresh notification, the winners certificates would cease to hold value, a government official said. The certificates to uncontested winners are given by returning officers on behalf of the state election commission as soon as the scrutiny of nomination papers is over. Block development officers act as returning officers for gram panchayats and panchayat samitis, and subdivision officers are the returning officers for zilla parishads. In case a fresh notification is issued, there is a likelihood of another round of legal battle. Some uncontested winners may decide to move court, challenging the fresh notification, said an official. Today, the Supreme Court did not suspend the election process, which means the existing notification is still in operation. In order to become members, taking oath is the key. Those elected to a rural body are considered members only when they take oath before the first governing body meeting, said an official of the panchayat department.

June 26: The Supreme Court today said it would handle the panchayat poll case, capping a dramatic day during which the state election commission moved the apex court with the plea that Calcutta High Court had failed to grant urgent relief . The apex court will take up the matter on Friday, four days before the scheduled start of the panchyat polls in Bengal on July 2.
Tonight, state election commissioner Mira Pande said in Calcutta: We think the elections will take place. There could be a rearrangement of dates, but the elections will take place. The commission moved the Supreme Court when the high court was hearing the submissions of the poll panel and the Bengal government on security forces for the polls. The poll panel sought before the Supreme Court suspension of the election for the time being until adequate forces are deployed. The state government is short of nearly 90,000 security personnel in the first leg under the current three-phase plan. The top court did not take a decision on the plea to suspend the polls but sought the response of the Bengal government and the Union home ministry on Friday . The bench of Justice A.K. Patnaik and Justice Ranjan Gogoi asked the state and the Centre to apprise the court on how the requirement of security forces would be met. When the Bengal governm-

A.K. Mishra chief justice of the high court: I am very happy that the state election commission has gone to the Supreme Court. At least we will have a verdict. We are fed up of this case. It is better both of you (the state and the commission) move to Delhi. It is an unholy battle Bimal Chatterjee advocategeneral representing the state government: What the commission has been doing is drama. They do not actually want to hold the elections. This is disgraceful. The way the commission has gone about moving the apex court is illegal. The court should condemn the act. The commission should have taken leave of the chief justice before going to the Supreme Court. The commission has
ents counsel, Amarendra Saran, pointed out that Calcutta High Court was already hearing the matter, Justice Patnaik asked: Do you want the elections or not? If you really want the elections, then allow us to handle the issue and not the high court. The apex court bench, Justice Patnaik said, was well aware of the situation in Bengal. You claim to know so many things but you do not know how many things we additionally know. You should now better leave it to our judgement. We will require your response on Friday, Justice Patnaik said. Saran said the Bengal government wanted the elections

A.K. MISHRA SAMARADITYA chief justice PAL counsel for of the high the state election court commission

ASHOK BANERJEE government pleader

spoilt the honourable courts time. Contempt proceedings should be initiated against it Ashok Banerjee government pleader: The commission has suppressed facts. Sternest measures should be taken against it. By doing this, the commission has toyed with the dignity of Calcutta High Court Pal The court should, in fact, take action against the states counsel for making such comments Ashok Banerjee This court has gone out of its way to ensure that the polls take place. The commission has once again made it clear that it is unwilling

Chief Justice Mishra The entire country is looking at us. So be patient. Ashok Banerjee We are shocked, My Lord Chief Justice Mishra We are shocked, too, with the behaviour of the counsels in this case. Enough is enough Justice Joymalya Bagchi Whatever it may be, since the issue is now lying before the Supreme Court, this court cannot hear the case at present Chief Justice Mishra (to Pal): Please let us know about the outcome of the hearing at the Supreme Court
phase, which now requires the largest number, while the July 9 phase needs the lowest number of forces. The matter was adjourned till afternoon by the high court when the commission said it had moved the top court. The states legal team, according to government sources, would challenge the maintainability of the case in the apex court. But a senior advocate not associated with the case said it was not mandatory to take the permission of a judge for moving the Supreme Court while the hearing is still on in a high court. It is a courtesy but not mandatory, said advocate Supradip Roy .

Calcutta, June 26: Abu Taher Sardar won the battle without a ballot being cast but he is fighting butterflies in his stomach now. So should be 6,273 others. Sardar, a Trinamul Congress candidate, and the others had already been declared uncontested winners in the three-tier panchayat polls. The fate of their status as peoples representatives will depend on which way the Supreme Court rules on the state election commissions petition on Friday . The uncontested winners, accounting for 10.9 per cent of the total candidates this time, are expected to emerge unaffected if the court limits its action to rescheduling the dates. However, in the event of the cancellation of the existing notification to facilitate a fresh announcement, the field

at any cost but it was the state election commission which does not seem interested. Meenakshi Arora, senior counsel for the poll panel, said the commission only wanted adequate forces. We want adequate forces to hold free and fair elections. First give us forces, only then we can sort out the matter, she said. The matter, which was mentioned as urgent in the morning, came up for hearing after lunch at 2pm. Arora said the state government had failed to keep its assurance on providing adequate security forces. In its petition, the commission said: Despite the urgency of the situation and breach

of constitutional provisions, the high court has adjourned the proceedings and failed to grant urgent relief. In the circumstances, at this stage, the suspension of the elections will be the only option till the requisition and supply of adequate security is complied with by the state. Earlier in the day, the high court had offered a fresh proposal to resolve the shortage of forces. The court suggested that polls in North 24-Parganas or Burdwan, two of the largest south Bengal districts, be shifted from July 4 to July 6, and polls in Malda shifted from July 6 to July 9. The logic was that fewer forces can then police the July 4


Jawan wife
The wife of an army jawan who was killed in Mondays militant attack in Srinagar committed suicide by setting herself ablaze in her Bankura home. BENGAL P7

Filibuster queen on feet for 10 hours and 45 minutes

Wendy stands em down

June 26: She could not lean on her desk, she could not take any breaks even for meals or to use the toilet and she had to stay on topic. So Wendy Davis slipped into her pink tennis shoes and stood her ground from 11.18am to 10.03pm, all the while speaking on why Texas should not approve a bill that will close down all abortion clinics. The 50-year-old Democratic senator was on her feet for 10 hours and 45 minutes in the Texas state senate on Monday . Or the time it takes to reach Kanpur from Calcutta by train but of course without having to deliver a speech. Wendy launched into the one-woman filibuster the use of long speeches to obstruct the passage of legislation in a bid to run out the voting window and block the Republi-

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ARUN MISHRA Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court on the panchayat poll case

We are fed up of this case

Wendy Davis after the filibuster. (AFP)

can-led anti-abortion effort in Americas second-most populous state. Long-winded speeches have always found the Indian soil fertile but the world record apparently is held by a Scottish politician, Stewart Stevenson, who spoke for 23 hours and 51 minutes in 2004. It could not be confirmed if Texan rules, especially no toilet breaks, were at play . Communists, too, have remarkable lungpower the flag was kept flying for hours by Josef Stalin, Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez. But Castros seven-hour-plus feat was beaten by Indias V .K. Krishna Menon at the UN Security Council in 1957 when he spoke for nearly eight hours.