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Ramesh Babu

Ramesh Babu is HT’s bureau chief in Kerala, with about three decades of experience in journalism.

Articles by Ramesh Babu

UAPA slapped on man who set co-passengers on fire in train: Official

The SIT’s investigation in Delhi showed that “he was mentored and radicalised” by certain terror outfits, an official said.

Accused Shahrukh Saifi is a resident of Shaheen Bagh in Delhi. (PTI)
Updated on Apr 17, 2023 12:21 AM IST
By, Thiruvananthapuram

Kerala to approach Supreme Court against move to relocate wild elephant

Several farmer outfits and local leaders have insisted the government to move the apex court for a long term solution

Many villages around Parambikulam opposed the move to relocate the animal. (Representative file image)
Updated on Apr 14, 2023 07:28 PM IST

Rahul in Wayanad: Taking away MP ‘tag’ won’t stop me

Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday said that taking away his Member of Parliament (MP) “tag” will not stop him from representing the people of Wayanad.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi says nothing can stop him from raising questions against Union government. (AICC)
Updated on Apr 12, 2023 01:12 AM IST

BJP leaders haven’t understood me, won’t back down: Rahul Gandhi in Wayanad

“My MP tag has been taken away but nobody can prevent my association with the people of Wayanad. It is home-coming for me...,” Rahul Gandhi said

Wayanad: Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi wave at supporters during a roadshow in Wayanad on Tuesday (PTI)
Updated on Apr 11, 2023 07:17 PM IST

Rahul Gandhi to visit Wayanad 1st time since disqualification from Parliament

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi won the Wayanad Lok Saba seat in Kerala by a margin of over 400000 votes in 2019

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi. (REUTERS)
Updated on Apr 11, 2023 09:48 AM IST

Kerala: Man who set co-passengers on fire charged with murder

The 27-year-old accused who, according to police, confessed to the crime, was also remanded in police custody for 11 days by a local court.

National Investigation Agency officials inspect the Alappuzha-Kannur Executive Express train, in Kozhikode district. (PTI)
Updated on Apr 08, 2023 04:52 AM IST
By, Thiruvananthapuram

Kerala train fire accused Shahrukh Saifi charged with murder

The 27-year-old accused sustained burn injuries after he allegedly sprayed petrol at the co-passengers on Sunday inside the train. According to the police, the incident happened in the D1 compartment of Alappuzha-Kannur Express, also known as Executive Express, at 9.45pm on Sunday between Elathur and Koyilandi railway stations

NIA officials inspect the Alappuzha-Kannur Executive Express train after fire incident (PTI Photo)
Updated on Apr 07, 2023 04:31 PM IST

Man who set co-passengers on fire inside Kerala train arrested

Saifi, a resident of Shaheen Bagh in south Delhi, appeared to have been injured either while trying to set his co-passengers on fire.

Police carry out checks at Central Railway Station in light of the arson attack inside a train near Kozhikode, in Thiruvananthapuram on Tuesday. (PTI)
Updated on Apr 06, 2023 05:10 AM IST
By, Manish K Pathak, Thiruvananthapuram/mumbai

14 held guilty of thrashing Kerala man to death in 2018

Madhu’s mother Malli, who faced threats and prompted the Kerala high court to supervise the trial in the case, said she was not satisfied with the verdict

Madhu’s mother, Malli, said she was not satisfied with the verdict. (Shutterstock)
Updated on Apr 04, 2023 04:12 PM IST

3 die as man sets co-passengers on fire in Kerala train: Police

According to the police, the incident happened in the D1 compartment of Alappuzha-Kannur Express, also known as Executive Express, at 9.45 pm on Sunday between Elathur and Koyilandi railway stations.

Police personnel investigate the train fire incident, in Kerala’s Kozhikode on Monday. (ANI)
Updated on Apr 03, 2023 11:20 PM IST

3 killed as man pours petrol on passengers, sets them afire on Kerala train

The bodies of Sahramath, her aunt M Rehmat and M Noufeeq, a fish merchant, were recovered from the railway tracks

Police inside a compartment of the Kannur Express. (ANI)
Updated on Apr 03, 2023 04:59 PM IST

Kerala train fire: 3 killed, including child; terror angle not ruled out

The police did not rule out a terror angle as they recovered a bag from the tracks that had another bottle of petrol and two mobile phones

Three bodies, including that of an infant, were later recovered from the railway tracks. (HT photo)
Updated on Apr 03, 2023 09:45 AM IST

Idukki villagers intensify stir

The HC had stayed the “Operation Arikomban” after People for Animals and Walking Eye Foundation for Animal Advocacy approached the court saying the move to capture the elephant and making it kumki through rigorous training was unscientific and cruel

Villagers in Kerala’s Idukki district staged protests after the high court stayed the forest department’s plan to tranquillise and capture a wild jumbo, Arikomban, which reportedly killed eight people and destroyed many houses and shops in last two years. (HT Photo)
Updated on Apr 03, 2023 12:35 AM IST

Kerala, TN CMs to jointly inaugurate centenary celebrations of Vaikom Satyagraha

It was a nonviolent protest that took place from 30 March 1924 to 23 November 1925 in the Kingdom of Travancore, now part of Kerala. The movement got a leg up in 1924 after Mahatma Gandhi sent his disciple Vinoba Bhave to Vaikom to help the agitation and in 1925, Gandhiji himself came to Vaikom to participate.

Mahadeva temple in Vaikom (HT Photo/sourced)
Updated on Mar 26, 2023 01:55 PM IST

Classical dance form ‘Kathakali’ gets its own village in Kerala

Nearly 30 years after first raising their demand for the change, a little-known village called Ayroor (South) on the banks of Pamba river in Pathanamthitta district will finally be renamed ‘Kathakali Gramam’

The landmark of the village post office will be rechristened Kathakali Gramam (PO) soon. (HT Photo)
Updated on Mar 24, 2023 09:10 AM IST

Bishop’s remarks spark political slugfest in Kerala

Thalassery (north Kerala) Arch Bishop of Mar Joseph Pamplani had given an open offering on Sunday that if the Union government raises the natural rubber’s price to ₹300 per kilogram believers will help the Bharatiya Janata Party to elect its first MP from the state. It stirred a hornet’s nest after the Congress and CPI(M) joined hands to list out recent attacks on minority institutions and fate meted out to Stan Swamy, an 84-year-old Jesuit priest, who died in judicial custody two years ago.

Minister of state for external affairs V Muraleedharan criticised Congress and CPI(M) leaders for attacking Christian leaders (ANI)
Published on Mar 21, 2023 12:36 AM IST
By, Thiruvananthapuram

Kochi civic body plans to file appeal against NGT’s 100 crore fine

The NGT on Saturday pulled up the corporation and the state government for violating the statutory sold waste management rules and orders of the apex court repeatedly

The massive fire and billowing smoke that started at the solid waste dump yard in Kochi’s Brahmapuram on March 2 was controlled by March 14 and the city was filled with toxic fumes forcing more than 1400 people to seek medical aid. (PTI)
Updated on Mar 20, 2023 01:07 AM IST
By, Thiruvananthapuram:

Kochi Corp to file appeal against NGT’s 100 cr fine over Brahmapuram fire

The massive fire and billowing smoke which started on March 2 was finally controlled by March 14 but filled the city with toxic fumes and gas which spread across 30 km and forced over 1,400 people to seek medical aid while dozens fled

Brahmapuram dumpyard fire which began March 2 was controlled by March 14 (File Photo)
Published on Mar 19, 2023 04:36 PM IST

Fire issue rocks Kerala assembly proceedings, CM maintains silence

During the proceedings, even though the Congress-led opposition raised serious allegations against the government and the Kochi corporation, Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan did not respond.

Kochi: Fire and rescue personnel at the Brahmapuram waste treatment plant, in Kochi (PTI)
Published on Mar 14, 2023 12:26 AM IST
By, Thiruvananthapuram

With elderly population increasing, demand for care homes grows in Kerala

High migration rate, increased life expectancy and proliferating micro-family pattern leave many elders high and dry and for many, such homes are turning a boon -- those who can afford can live gracefully till the last

Going by the current demographic transition, the number of senior citizens in Kerala is expected to increase 23% by 2036, according to a study. (HT Photo)
Published on Mar 13, 2023 12:04 PM IST

Protests erupt in Kochi as toxic fumes from garbage fire shroud city for 11th straight day

On Sunday morning, the AQI was above 200 and officials in the pollution control board said it may cross 300 by evening.

The Brahmapuram garbage dump in Kochi. (ANI)
Published on Mar 13, 2023 05:17 AM IST

Kochi fire: People deserting city as toxic smoke, fumes wear them down

Stating that the government’s main objective is to avert a pandemic, health minister Veena George on Saturday said 800 people have sought medical aid so far, and the state will begin a door-to-door health survey from Tuesday

Firefighters engage in dousing fire at solid waste dumping yard in Brahmapuram in Kochi (Twitter/@IN_HQSNC)
Published on Mar 12, 2023 04:00 PM IST

Kochi fire: A week on, smoke yet to settle

The fire that broke out at the solid waste dump yard last Thursday was controlled by Sunday but there was no let up in smoke emanating from it that had spread over 30km radius.

Fire and rescue personnel at the Brahmapuram waste treatment plant, in Kochi. (PTI)
Updated on Mar 10, 2023 12:52 AM IST
By, Thiruvananthapuram

Brahmapuram fire: Residents gasp for air as Kochi reels amid inferno aftermath

The fire that broke out at the solid waste dump yard in Brahmapuram last Thursday was controlled by Sunday but there was no let up in smoke emanating from it that had spread over 30km radius

The air quality index (AQI) in the city ever since the fire broke out stood at over 300. (Twitter | Southern Naval Command)
Updated on Mar 09, 2023 05:17 PM IST

Kerala drops move to tax vacant houses

Many NRIs said the proposal to impose additional tax on vacant houses was a rude jolt and welcomed government’s rollback decision. But people who supported the move said it was necessary to check the fragile environment and people who build big houses as status symbols should be penalised

Kerala finance minister K N Balagopal denied reports that the decision to impose additional tax on vacant houses was taken on the pressure of the real estate lobby. (Vivek Nair/HT Photo )
Published on Mar 02, 2023 01:16 AM IST
By, Thiruvananthapuram

State will not impose tax on vacant houses: Kerala finance minister

In its 2023-24 state budget, the state had said that it would revise the tax rates on properties and also levy additional tax on its huge number of vacant houses. The proposed tax on vacant houses had invited widespread criticism, especially from the non-residents

Kerala finance minister K N Balagopal (ANI Photo)
Published on Mar 01, 2023 06:55 PM IST

As number of vacant houses mounts in Kerala

With high migration rate and ageing population, the repercussion is quite visible in the state.

A vacant house in state capital Thiruvananthapuram (Picture taken by Vivek Nair)
Published on Feb 26, 2023 12:17 AM IST

Kerala CM’s relief fund misuse case: Probe agency seeks action against officials

As the VACB intensified its investigation more irregularities came to light. In Kollam district ₹4 lakh was given to an applicant whose house was “severely damaged” in a natural disaster but officials found his house was in good condition, another senior official said

After examining details of disbursal from the Kerala Chief Minister’s disaster relief fund, the vigilance and anti-corruption bureau director said cheating and fund diversion were found. (PTI)
Published on Feb 25, 2023 01:16 AM IST
By, Thiruvananthapuram

ED backs up claim of larger nexus in Kerala case with WhatsApp chats

The chats, allegedly retrieved by investigators from Swapna Suresh’s phone, were reproduced by ED in its remand application to a Kochi court

Kochi: Kerala chief mnister Pinarayi Vijayan's former principal secretary M Sivasankar who was remanded to five-day ED custody by a PMLA Court, in Kochi, on Wednesday. (PTI)
Published on Feb 16, 2023 07:11 PM IST

Kerala CM’s former secretary M Sivasankar in ED custody for 5 days

M Sivasankar, former principal secretary to Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan, was arrested on Tuesday in a case related to the alleged kickbacks in the state government’s Life Mission project

M Sivasankar (middle) was retired from the service last month. (ANI)
Published on Feb 15, 2023 06:16 PM IST
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