Goods movement and suburban travel for commuters will cost more as a result of increases announced by Railway Minister Madhu Dandavate. Presenting the railway budget for 1979-80, Dandavate announced additional levies of Rs 178 crore to enable the railways to end the year with a surplus of Rs 88.49 crore. No increase has been proposed in fares for long distance passenger, mail, express or superfast trains. A supplementary charge of 5 per cent has been imposed on rail goods transported up to 500 kilometres, and 10 per cent for distances beyond 500 kilometres. Exemptions from supplementary charges to certain commodities have been withdrawn.
China In Vietnam
After a day of conflicting reports about what is happening on the Sino-Vietnamese border, the Chinese Foreign Ministry announced that its troops were still inside Vietnam, and were not withdrawing to the border. In the first announcement about the situation after almost 48 hours, the Chinese government officially denied earlier reports that the vice foreign minister, Ho Ying, had told the Lebanese ambassador in London that the operation in Vietnam was over, BBC reports. However, the foreign ministry statement did not go into any detail on the state of the fighting or indicate when China is likely to pull out. Later, the official Hsinhua news agency reported that fighting was still going on in the Kwangsi and Yunnan border areas.
The Uttar Pradesh Janata Legislature Party will meet on February 27 to elect a new leader. Madhu Dandavate will conduct the meeting at Lucknow as central observer. The party’s central parliamentary board at its meeting reviewed the developments in UP in the wake of the chief minister, Ram Naresh Yadav, losing the confidence of the party on February 15. There was general agreement among the board members belonging to different Janata constituents that the successor to Yadav should be selected by consensus.