1. Kalaimamani Awards Presented

Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami presented the Kalaimamani awards to artistes for the years 2011 to 2018 on Tuesday. As many as 201 recipients were selected from 72 different art forms and 8 senior artistes were selected for a special cash award.

Speaking at the event, the Chief Minister said that based on an appeal from several artistes, the State government was increasing the weight of the medal from 3 sovereigns to 5 sovereigns. He also announced that the financial assistance given to elderly artistes every month would be increased from Rs 2,000 to Rs 3,000.

(Source: The Hindu)

2. Evening Rain Likely on Most Days in August

Rainy days are back. Chennai will receive daily quota of evening rains on most days of this month, weathermen said. As strong moist westerly winds — which triggered cloudbursts in Kerala and Kodagu region causing floods subsided — chances of convective rains in North TN, which has largely remained dry, have increased. On Wednesday, many places in the city received sharp spells of rainfall. Areas in North Chennai got good rains. Met officials said this would be norm this week.

Local forecast for Chennai city and neighbourhood till Saturday says, “The sky condition is likely to be partly cloudy, Maximum and minimum temperatures are likely to be around 37 and 28 degree Celsius respectively.” Weather blogger Pradeep John said weakening of westerly winds would allow sea breeze to set in and convergence to take place. “Conditions will be favourable for convective rainfall on most days of this month.”

(Source: The New Indian Express)

3. Arrest of French Woman Exposes Antique Idols Smuggling Racket

With the arrest of an Indian origin French woman, the Tamil Nadu Idol Wing CID claimed to have busted a gang that had been illegally exporting stolen antique idols and artefacts for several years from Puducherry to France through the Colombo port.

They sourced the antiques from small-time thieves, who stole them from ancient temples in Tamil Nadu, special officer and former Inspector General of Police A G Ponn Manickavel said on Tuesday. A special team nabbed Marie Therese Anandi Vanina, 37, at the Chennai airport when she arrived from France where she lived with her husband Prabakaran.

(Source: The Hindu)

4. VCK Man Booked for Rs 1-Cr Theft Found Dead

The dead body of a 37-year-old VCK functionary, with his head smashed in, was found near the Chunambedu-Kadapakkam road junction in Kancheepuram district Wednesday morning. Police suspect he could have been killed over previous enmity. The deceased, B Velu, was a resident of Chunambedu colony near Cheyyur. He left his house Tuesday night to meet his friends, but did not return.

“Meanwhile the public reported that a man was found dead at the intersection. There were liquor bottles at the spot, and a big stone with which his head was smashed,” police said. Velu, a district functionary in VCK, is survived by wife and two daughters. He was arrested in January for allegedly robbing Rs 1 crore from a house at Kancheepuram. He came out on bail last week. Police suspect he was murdered over disputes on sharing the loot.

(Source: The New Indian Express)

5. HC Shocked Over Alarming Rate of Crime Against Women, Children

Observing that crimes against women and children in the State have been hovering at an alarming rate since 2016, the Madras High Court has directed the Health Secretary to fill up at the earliest all vacancies in the posts of clinical pyschologists and counsellors in the 24 government medical college hospitals situated across the State.

Justices S Manikumar and Subramonium Prasad also directed the Commissioner of Social Defence to fill up the vacant posts of counsellors in District Child Protection Units and observation homes. The interim orders were passed on a public interest litigation petition seeking establishment of counselling centres in all police stations.

(Source: The Hindu)