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Seemingly unfazed at being ousted from the Asian Athletics Association, scam-tainted Suresh Kalmadi on Monday said losing the presidential re-election bid to Qatar’s Dahlan Jumaan Al-Hamad has actually given him a chance to work at the “grassroots” level.
“I have no issues today and I congratulate Mr Al-Hamad for being elected as President. I am rather relieved that I will be able to work at the grassroots level in athletics,” Mr. Kalmadi said after losing the vote during the ongoing AAA Congress in Pune.

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Life in Assam hit by shutdowns, blockade

Tuesday - May 08, 2012, 11:34am (GMT+5.5)
[+] Text [-]

Guwahati - Normal life was disrupted across Assam Monday due to separate shutdowns called by two community-based groups in support of their demands and blockade of the national highways by a third.

While the Peoples' Joint Action Committee for Bodoland Movement (PJACBM) called a 36-hour stir asking the central government spell out its stand on a separate state for the Bodo community, the All Koch Rajbongshi Students Union (AKRSU) called a 12-hour dawn-to-dusk shutdown demanding a separate Kamatapur state and Scheduled Tribe status for the community.

Interestingly, a large part of the proposed Kamatapur state demanded by the Koch Rajbongshis falls in areas sought by PJACBM, a conglomeration of 45 Bodo and other communities.

AKRSU president Biswajit Rai said they do not have any opposition to a separate state demanded by any community.

"However, while creating a separate state for Bodos, areas of the proposed Kamatapur state should be kept intact," he said.

The PJACBM shutdown will continue till Tuesday.

On the other hand, a large number of protesters, mainly non-Bodos under the banner of Non-Tribal Protection Forum, blocked national highways in the state in protest against the statehood demand of the Bodos.

Vehicular transport was affected for several hours in lower Assam and most commercial vehicles remained off the road.

"We are opposed to the creation of a separate state for the Bodos as non-tribals feel their existence is threatened," said Non-Tribal Protection Forum president Nagen Deka.





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