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Deccon Chornicle



Advani not cause for defeat: Venkaiah

New Delhi, May 31: Defending Mr L.K. Advani, BJP leader, Mr Venkaiah Naidu says the party’s prime ministerial candidate alone cannot be held responsible for its defeat in the Lok Sabha polls and felt that certain issues had created a “negative impact” in the minds of people who believed in moderation.

“There are various reasons... different states behaved in different manner. It is no

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Global aviation giants invited for field trials

New Delhi

May 31: Acting with a sense of urgency at the start of the UPA government’s second term, the defence ministry has invited global aviation giants who were bidders in the Rs 42,000-crore deal for acquisition of 126 Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) for the Indian Air Force to participate in the crucial field trials of the aircraft. These invitations were sent out on Friday.

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Agatha: My dad has nothing against Sonia

Guwahati

May 31: Agatha Sangma, the youngest minister in the 79-member Union council of ministers of the Manmohan Singh government here on Sunday said that her father and NCP leader P.A. Sangma has nothing personal against AICC president, Ms Sonia Gandhi.

Ms Sangma who was addressing a press conference on her way to New Delhi told reporters, “This issue against my father has been stretched

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Jets smash averted

Mumbai/New Delhi

May 31: A potentially devastating collision was averted at Mumbai airport around 8 am on Sunday morning, when two aircraft — one belonging to Air India and the other to Jet Airways — began their take-off runs at the same time on runways that crossed paths.

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Joint action by BJP, Left looks unlikely

New Delhi

May 31: Disunity within Opposition ranks is making the Manmohan Singh government more comfortable and confident in facing Parliament, which will meet for the first time after the general election on Monday.

The election of Union minister Meira Kumar as the first woman Lok Sabha Speaker appears to be virtually assured: She resigned as Union minister for water resources late on Sunda

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Girl denied admission for plucking eyebrows

New Delhi, May 31: A court has upheld a decision by a religious body to deny a female student who plucked her eyebrows admission to a Sikh university, media reports said on Sunday. The ruling said faith-based educational institutions had the right to refuse admission to students who did not meet religious standards, as “maintaining hair unshorn is an essential component of the Sikh religion,”

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A writer of few words no more

Thiruvananthapuram

May 31: Kamala Surayya aka Madhavikutty, the most-adored writer of Malayalam, used to say candidly that she knew only a few words of her language. But juggling those few words, she created a world of her own — at once provocative and alluring.

While many other writers dipped into the literary tradition to find their words, she invoked them from the depths of her heart. I

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Speaker issue humiliated me, says Deo

New Delhi, May 31: Senior Congress member of Parliament V. Kishore Chandra Deo on Sunday said he had nothing to do with his name doing the rounds as the party’s choice for the Lok Sabha speakership but felt the turn it took after he failed to get the nomination was “quite humiliating”.

“I have always accepted whatever responsibility given by party but has never made any demands till tod

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PM sets 100-day targets

New Delhi, May 30: The first meeting of the expanded Union cabinet is understood to have approved the President’s address to the joint sitting of Parliament on June 4.
The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, chaired the meeting which was also attended by ministers of state with Independent charge. These ministers generally are invited to the cabinet meeting only when topics relating to their min

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India ready for 2010 Games: Selja

New Delhi

May 30: Dismissing the fears that India is not ready for the Commonwealth Games 2010, tourism minister Kumari Selja said that India is completely ready for the games. Taking charge as tourism minister on Saturday, Ms Selja said that the games will give a boost to tourism that has slowed down due to recession and the Mumbai terror attacks.

“Our preparations are in full swing to

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Rubina dad unhappy with home

Mumbai

May 30: Slumdog Millionaire child-actor Rubina’s father Rafiq Quereshi is not satisfied with the house offered by the state government at Malawani, Malad. He feels that it would have been better if the government had allotted his family a house at Bandra or Santa Cruz.

Denying the reports that he has refused to accept the government house, Mr Quereshi on Saturday said, “I have sou

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Oz incident fails to scare students going abroad

Hyderabad

May 30: Racial attacks on Indian students in Australia have not affected the plans of students who are aspiring to pursue their higher studies in that country. Around 25,000 students from Andhra Pradesh apply for various courses in universities in the US, Britain, Australia and other countries every year.

B. Prashanth, a house surgeon, said the incidents like the one in which three

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Woman exposes police through ‘iPod’ sting

Thiruvananthapuram

May 30: The crime branch of the Kerala police is in the dock for trying to persuade a woman accused not to name the sons of two state ministers in connection with a financial fraud.

Dr Ramani, the accused in the notorious “Total for You” scam, has embarrassed the government and the police to no end by secretly recording her interrogation through a hidden iPod and relea

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Double jackpot for AIeee toppers

Hyderabad

May 30: Mr Nitin Jain, a student of Faridabad, has achieved a rare feat by becoming topper in a week in two prestigious entrance examinations — the All India Engineering Entrance Examination whose results were declared on Saturday and IIT-Joint Entrance Exam. “I was expecting the top position in AIEEE as I had done well,” said Mr Jain, a student of Modern Vidya Niketan in Farid

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Tobacco to carry photo warnings from today

New Delhi

May 30: In a bid to discourage tobacco consumption in the country, all the tobacco products will have to carry pictorial warnings on the packs from Sunday. The pictures of a scorpion and lungs will be vividly displayed as per the directions of the health ministry.

Earlier the tobacco companies had showed their resistance to carry such pictures on their products but the health mini

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Bhajji’s kin alleges son killed in Oz

Jalandhar/Melbourne/
New Delhi, May 30: Cricketer Harbhajan Singh’s cousin on Saturday alleged that an Australian taxi driver had killed his son in Melbourne. Mr Jagjit Singh claimed that his 26-year-old son Upkar Singh Babbal, who went to Australia in 2004, was killed in a racist attack in Melbourne on May 7.

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MoS post no good for Jena

New Delhi/Bhubaneswar

May 30: Upset at not being made a Cabinet minister, Mr Srikant Jena did not assume charge as minister of state for chemicals and fertilisers even on Saturday. Sources close to him said he is waiting to hear from the Congress president, Ms Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

It is believed that Dr Singh might consult the Congress high command. Mr Jena is unde

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Meira tipped for Speaker

New Delhi

May 30: The Congress played the mahila card for the post of Lok Sabha Speaker 24 hours ahead of the first session of the 15th Lok Sabha. The Union minister for water resources, Ms Meira Kumar, has emerged as the front-runner for the post. She is the daughter of the late dalit veteran Babu Jagjivan Ram.

The name of Dr Girija Vyas, former chairperson of the National Commission for W

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Meira tipped for Speaker

New Delhi

May 30: The Congress played the mahila card for the post of Lok Sabha Speaker 24 hours ahead of the first session of the 15th Lok Sabha. The Union minister for water resources, Ms Meira Kumar, has emerged as the front-runner for the post. She is the daughter of the late dalit veteran Babu Jagjivan Ram.

The name of Dr Girija Vyas, former chairperson of the National Commission for W

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BC students to get more study circles

Hyderabad

May 30: The government is establishing seven new study circles at Adilabad, Karimnagar, Nizamabad, Khammam, Tirupati, Kadapa and Vizianagaram to help Backward Class students prepare for civil service examinations.
With this, the total number of study circles meant for Backward Class students has gone up to 15.

The government had earlier opened eight such centres in Warangal, Anan

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SHGs offer farmers a fair deal

Warangal

May 30: This season, women of self-help groups (SHG) have procured a record 3.5 lakh quintals of paddy right from the doorsteps of farmers in the district.
These enterprising women offered farmers the Minimum Support Price (MSP) for their produce and did away with the need for farmers to visit the agriculture market yards in towns where they are not typically treated fairly. In a fi

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Women transform procurement process

warangal

May 30: At a time when the Food Corporation of India, and the numerous agriculture market yards were making heavy weather of handling large arrivals of paddy, the procurement initiative by women SHGs was more than the farmers could ever have hoped for.

“We helped them set up the required infrastructure at their SHG offices,” said the joint collector, Ms Karuna Vakati. She said

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Kasab asked if Lahore blast suspect is brother

Mumbai, May 30: The special court, conducting the trial of 26/11 terror attack, witnessed lighter moments as special public prosecutor, Mr Ujjwal Nikam pointed to a photograph of a Lahore bomb blast suspect in a newspaper and asked Ajmal Kasab if it was that of his brother.

“Yeh tumhara bhai hai kya (is he your brother?),” Mr Nikam asked Kasab who was handed over a newspaper which carried

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J&K Cabinet to be expanded soon

NEW DELHI

May 30: Post-elections, the overdue Cabinet expansion of the National Conference-Congress coalition government in Jammu and Kashmir is likely to be announced in the next few days. Sources said J&K PCC chief Saifuddin Soz met party leaders in Jammu on Saturday and held lengthy discussions with them on the Cabinet expansion.

At present, the strength of the J&K Cabinet is 12, includ

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‘Rajiv LTTE’s biggest mistake’

New Delhi, May 30: Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse has said that killing former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was the biggest mistake of the Tamil tigers which cost them the sympathy of India.

“To kill Rajiv Gandhi. They antagonised the whole sympathy of India. That was the biggest mistake I think they made in 30 years,” Sri Lankan President Rajapakse told NDTV.
He said that when ethn

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Kashmir erupts over death of two women

SRINAGAR

May 30: Angry Kashmiri crowd clashed with the riot police during massive protests on Saturday after the bodies of two young women were fished out of a village stream in Shopian area, south of Srinagar.

Residents alleged that Armymen raped 22-year-old Nelofar and her sister-in-law Aasiya Jan, 17, in an apple orchard where the duo had gone early on Friday morning for some work and the

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MNC plan for J’khand in trouble

Patna

May 30: Two months after a multi-national global steel behemoth deposited Rs 12.30 crore to the Jharkhand government to acquire land for its 12 MTPA greenfield project, there is trouble from a tribal organisation and local farmers who have opposed the land transfer.

The Adivasi Moolvasi Astitva Raksha Manch (AMARM), an organisation working for the rights of tribals and farmers, said in

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Teens turn murderers after watching movie

Patna/Kanpur, May 30: A nine-year-old boy was murdered by his two teenaged neighbours who kidnapped him after taking a cue from a Hindi film, triggering protests by angry locals who blocked roads, burnt tyres and tore down a shop.
Satyam, a Class IV student of Doon Academy, was kidnapped on Thursday evening when he was playing outside his house and his body was recovered from Kankarbagh area on

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Mamata refuses government car

New Delhi, May 29: Trinamul Congre-ss chief and railway minister Mamata Banerjee, setting an example to her colleagues and senior government officials, will not avail of the privileges and facilities available to her as a member of the Union Cabinet.

She will not use an official ministerial car for to move around either in New Delhi or Kolkata, and, unlike oth-er railway ministers, won’t make

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Lankan Prez to visit India

Bengaluru/London, May 29: The Sri Lankan President, Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa, is expected to visit New Delhi next week when India hopes to carry forward the dialogue on rehabilitation of Tamils in the island nation.

Speaking to this newspaper, the external affairs minister, Mr S.M. Krishna, said India was doing everything in its capacity to help rehabilitate the uprooted Tamils and that the governm

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Row in Orissa : Minister meets rape accused kin

Bhubaneswar, May 29: Barely a week after assuming charge, a minister in the Naveen Patnaik government has landed himself in a controversy following his visit to the house of a rape accused in his Padampur constituency in western Orissa two days ago.

The minister for scheduled caste and scheduled tribe welfare department, Mr Bijoy Ranjan Singh Bariha, on Wednesday reportedly paid a visit to the

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India beats recession with 6.7% growth

New Delhi, May 29: India’s GDP grew by an impressive 6.7 per cent in 2008-09, at a time when other major econo-mies were in recession.

In January-March 2009, the last quarter of the Indian financial year, the GDP grew by 5.8 per cent, much higher than expected.

In contrast, the US economy contracted at a stunning pace of 5.7 per cent in the same period, much more than expected.

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Army expresses concern

New Delhi, May 29: India has voiced its concern over reports about Pakistan’s attempts to increase the number of nuclear warheads in its arsenal and said that it was “closely monitoring the situation”.

“We certainly are concerned about what is happening in our neighbourhood. We are closely monitoring the situation,” the external affairs minister, Mr S.M. Krishna, said last night in B

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MK picks Stalin as his deputy

Chennai, May 29: Mr M.K. Stalin was on Friday appointed deputy to his father, the Tamil Nadu Chief Minis-ter, Mr M. Karunanidhi.

Mr Stalin, 57, was credited with the organisational and campaign work during the recent Lok Sabha elections in which the DMK performed exceedingly well.

Mr Stalin was elevated as DMK treasurer in December last, after three decades of party work. The decision to ele

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Mamata to use aide’s car

New Delhi, May 29: The Trinamul Congress chief and the railway minister, Ms Mamata Banerjee, setting an example to her colleagues and senior government officials, will not avail of the privileges and facilities available to her as a member of the Union Cabinet.

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Slumdog kids finally get houses

Mumbai, May 29: The two child stars of Oscar-winner Slumdog Millionaire finally have a reason to smile as the Maharashtra Chief Minister, Ashok Chavan, on Friday announced Azharuddin Ismail Shaikh and Rubina Ali will get permanent homes.

According to an official statement from the Chief Minister’s Secretariat, the homes will be allotted from the Chief Minister’s discretionary quota.

The

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Houses torched in NC Hills

Guwahati, May 29: A woman was killed and another injured when unidentified miscreants opened fire at a village in trouble-torn North Cachar Hills district of Assam on Friday. The miscreants who were heavily armed also set several houses on fire.

Police said that the miscreants raided the Poiding village, about 40 km from Haflong, around 11 am and began indiscriminate firing. Noham Dibragede, 48

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Navy foils piracy bid

New Delhi, May 29: It was an anti-piracy operation with a twist in the tale: Instead of arresting the eight brigands who were attempting to board a merchant vessel in the Gulf of Aden, Indian Navy commandos seized their weapons, emptied their skiff of its fuel and set it adrift, leaving the tidying up to another warship.

About 225 nautical miles east of Aden on Thursday, as visibility dropped t

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Air France regrets negligence at Paris

Mumbai, May 29: Air France on Friday regretted the inconvenience caused to some Indian passengers at the Paris airport on May 24 and said it was conducting an inquiry into the cause of “this unfortunate situation” to improve transit procedures at Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport there.

The airlines on Friday issued a statement regretting the infortunate situation.

Denying that any Indi

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Dalit teens’ head shaved by force

Lucknow, May 29: A group of villagers in Uttar Pradesh shaved the heads of two Dalit teenagers and made them parade through a village, after accusing them of theft, police said on Friday.

Police has arrested and booked four residents of Kunba village in Rae Bareli district under SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. According to police, Umabaksh Singh of the village suspected that the two Dalit

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Khandamal relief camps to be closed

Bhubaneswar, May 29: The Orissa government is planning to shut down all the relief camps opened in Kandhamal district to give shelter to riot victims.

“We are helping those residing in relief camps to go back to their villages and resume normal life,” Kandhamal district collector Kishan Kumar said on Friday.

“We have not set any deadline, but are in the process of closing these relie

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Cabinet to hold first meet today

New Delhi, May 29: The Council of Ministers is in place and the new UPA government has got down to work. The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh’s brand new team on Friday took charge of portfolios and set out priorities.

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India slams Oz for attacks

New Delhi/Hyderabad, May 29: India told Australia to take stronger measures to protect Indians studying or working there as reports poured in of further attacks in Melbourne and Sydney.

On Friday, an Indian student suffered 30 per cent burns in a petrol-bomb attack, taking to seven the number of Indians, including four from AP, attacked in Australia in 10 days.

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Life returns to normal in Punjab, curfew relaxed

Chandigarh, May 29: Life was limping back to normal in trouble-torn areas of Punjab on Friday as authorities relaxed the curfew period from 12 hours to 16 with no untoward incident being reported from anywhere.

"Peace has completely been restored in the district and that is why curfew relaxation has been extended up to 16 hours — 6 am to 10 pm," said the deputy commissioner, Mr A.S. Pannu.

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Sonia’s mantra: Perform or perish

New Delhi

May 28 : The ministers in the Team Manmohan would be on watch as for as their performance is concerned. This was clearly indicated by the UPA chairperson, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, saying that expansion (and reshuffle) of the Union cabinet is possible even after the induction of 78 ministers.

Mrs Gandhi was responding to a question whether there is any scope for cabinet expansion after th

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Singh’s 79: Who gets what

Cabinet Ministers

* Dr Manmohan Singh:
Prime Minister

* P. Chidambaram:
Home minister

* Pranab Mukherjee:
Finance minister

* Mamata Banerjee:
Railways

* S.M. Krishna:
External affairs

* A.K. Antony:
Defence

* Sharad Pawar:
Agriculture, consumer affairs, food and public distribution

* Virbhadra Singh: Steel.

* Vilasrao Deshmukh: Heavy indust

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Aila, national calamity: WB

Kolkata, May 28: The death toll due to cyclone Aila on Thursday mounted to 115 as the West Bengal government appealed to Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh to declare the devastation as a national calamity and provide Rs 1,000 crore for relief and rehabilitation.

“As per the latest reports, the death toll stands at 115. Nearly 53 lakh people are affected and 5.24 lakh dwellings either partly

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Chandraswami can go abroad, says SC

New Delhi, May 28: The Supreme Court on Thursday allowed controversial godman Chandraswami, facing several criminal cases, to go abroad after he agreed to deposit Rs 10 lakh with the trial court, accepting the conditions set by the apex court.

The apex court granted permission to Chandraswami to travel abroad while dismissing the appeal filed by the Enforcement Directorate which had chal

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Ministers vow growth for all

New Delhi

May 28: The Union ministers of state, Ms D. Purandareswari, and Mr Pallam Raju retained their portfolios while Ms Panabaka Lakshmi who was the minister of state from health and family welfare, got textiles.

The Rajampet MP, Mr P. Sai Pratap, has been made minister or state for steel, and is new entrant from the state in the cabinet.

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PM team ready to get cracking

New Delhi

May 28: Mr Kapil Sibal, Ms Ambika Soni, Mr Kamal Nath and Ms Anand Sharma emerged as major gainers with the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, allocating to them the key ministries of HRD, information and broadcasting, road transport and highways and commerce and industry on Thursday.

Mr Murli Deora, Mr Sushilkumar Shinde, Mr S. Jaipal Reddy, Mr Vayalar Ravi and Mr Praful Patel ret

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Eldest, youngest divide is 50 yrs

New Delhi, May 28: When the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, presides over the full meeting of his 78-member Union Council of ministers he will see almost 50 years dividing the oldest and youngest member of his government.

And both of them are making a debut though in different capacities. 77-year-old former Karnataka chief minister, Mr S.M. Krishna, who got the external affairs portfolio,

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Air France passengers stranded in Paris again

MUMBAI

May 28: In a second incident in less than two weeks, the Indian passengers of Air France have accused the airline of leaving them stranded at the Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris without food, water and proper accommodation.
Nine Indian passengers, who flew in Air France’s Washington-Paris-Mumbai flight on May 24, on Thursday alleged that they spent 13 hours at the Paris airport on

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Amnesty criticises tough 26/11 action

New Delhi, May 28: Tough crackdown on terror in the aftermath of the Mumbai attacks, activities of anti-naxal force Salwa Judum and anti-Christian riots have been listed by Amnesty international among others as alleged human rights issues facing the country.

In its annual report for 2009, the international human rights organisation, has said, authorities responded to the November Mumbai attac

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Roemer is new US ambassador to India

Washington, May 28: US President, Mr Barack Obama, on Thursday nominated Mr Timothy R. Roemer, a veteran Democratic Congressman and a member of the 9/11 Commission, to be his envoy in India and help advance Washington’s ties “at this critical time for our nation and the world.”

Roemer, 52, is currently president of the Center for National Policy (CNP) — a Washington-based think tank. I

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PM picks 14 more for cabinet

There will be 33 Cabinet ministers, seven ministers of state with independent charge and 38 MoS in the new 78-member Council of Ministers to be headed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Dr Singh’s 78-member council of ministers has 45 ministers of state, seven with independent charge.

* Virbhadra Singh (Age: 75)
Academic qualifications: M.A. in history from Delhi University.

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Rahul influence on new Cabinet visible

New Delhi

May 27: The influence of AICC general secretary Rahul Gandhi could be clearly seen in the second round of Union Cabinet induction on Wednesday. Though he brought youth into focus through his aggressive campaigns across the country, the young AICC general secretary also ensured tickets were given to many young leaders in the general elections.

Choosing the stay out of the governmen

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4 to be replaced in new plan panel

New Delhi

May 27: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has been working to constitute the new Planning Commission with indications that his trusted lieutenant, Montek Singh Ahluwalia, is set to continue as deputy chairman. However, in the new setup, the Prime Minister is working on a list of several sectoral experts to replace at least four of the seven present members. “Except for members Kirit N.

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Ban sought on narco analysis

New Delhi, May 27: The Law Commission of India is likely to recommend a ban on narco analysis test as it violates the basic human rights. The Law Commission’s report to be tabled before the board next month for approval may suggest that revelations made under the influence of the drugs cannot be considered as reliable and violated basic human rights.

The proposed report claims that hardened

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TN leads with 8 portfolios

Hyderabad

May 27: It is a bonanza for four southern states, which together garnered exactly one third of the total 78 ministerial berths in the Manmohan Singh ministry.

Tamil Nadu leads with eight ministers — Mr Dayanidhi Maran, Mr A. Raja, Mr G.K. Vasan, Mr M.K. Azhagiri, Mr S.S. Panimanickam, Mr D. Napoleon, Mr S. Jagatharakshan and S. Gandhiselvan. While, West Bengal and Maharashra wi

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Agatha youngest in PM team

New Delhi

May 27: Agatha Sangma, daughter of former Speaker P.A. Sangma, is the youngest face of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s Cabinet 2009. Only a few weeks back, her father had been breathing fire against Congress president Sonia Gandhi and had raised the foreign origin issue. But on Wednesday, the Congress went ahead and inducted his daughter in the Union Cabinet as a minister of state

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Dabbawalas’ secrets disclosed

Mumbai, May 27: It is not only former railway minister Lalu Prasad Yadav who caught the attention of Business schools, now dabbawalas in Mumbai, known for their food-supply network across the metropolis, are being asked to impart lessons on management and business skills to the corporate world.

One such presentation by dabbawalas on time management, customer satisfaction, loyalty, error-free

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Singh picks 31 new ministers in team

New Delhi

May 27: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will expand his Cabinet on Thursday by inducting 59 members into the ministry.

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No special treatment for state

Hyderabad

May 27: The selection of five ministers of state from AP, one of them an “outsider,” is not unexpected, as the state Congress did not lobby for plum posts. The state with 33 MPs has just one Cabinet minister: Prof. Jaipal Reddy.

Mr A. Sai Pratap, a six-time MP, was named minister of state, showing how poorly the state lobbied. The other ministers of state from AP are Mr Jairam

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JD-U leader missing past 5 days in Bihar

Patna

May 27: A leader of Bihar’s ruling JD(U) has remained mysteriously traceless for the past five days even as the Patna police is clueless ever since he went missing on Saturday morning.

Satyendra Kumar Singh, 50, who quit the RJD to join the JD(U) just before the Lok Sabha polls, is feared to have been abducted. Mr Singh runs a transporting business in Patna. The police on Tuesday ra

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25 rookies 9 women in team

New Delhi, May 27: New faces galore in the Union Council of Ministers with the induction of 25 “first timers”, including two Cabinet ministers and 23 Ministers of State.
The cabinet will also have nine women ministers, one less than the previous Congress-led UPA government.
While Ms Mamata Banerjee, Ms Ambika Soni and Ms Meira Kumar took oath of office last week, on Wednesday six more names

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PM breaks good news on phone

New Delhi, May 27: For the first time, ministers to be sworn in on Thursday in the second phase of government formation, it was a bolt from the blue when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was himself on the telephone line to break the good news.

And some old-timers were also pleasantly surprised when the head of the government rang them up to convey that they have made it to his Council of Minister

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IAF Sukhois in Tezpur soon

New Delhi

May 27: The Indian Air Force will soon deploy its frontline Sukhoi-30 MKI fighters at Tezpur in Assam to bolster defence preparedness in the North-east, top IAF officers have said.

When asked about the country’s defence preparedness vis-a-vis China, IAF chief Air Chief Marshal F.H. Major said, “We (the IAF) are placed very well.” The IAF chief said that the government has pl

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Another MiG crash, pilot safe

New Delhi

May 27: A MiG-21 Bison aircraft of the Indian Air Force crashed near Jodhpur around noon on Wednesday, in what is the third IAF aircraft crash in Rajasthan in less than a month. The pilot ejected safely.

The IAF has ordered a court of inquiry into the incident. IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal Fali Homi Major said at a press conference on Wednesday that every incident of air crash is o

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Experts: Tulsi fights swine flu

Lucknow, May 27: Wonder herb tulsi can not only keep the dreaded swine flu at bay, but also help in fast recovery of an afflicted person, Ayurvedic practitioners claim. “The anti-flu property of tulsi has been discovered by medical experts across the world quite recently. Tulsi improves the body’s overall defense mechanism including its ability to fight viral diseases. It was successfully us

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Doctorate for Rahman from AMU

Aligarh, May 27: Oscar winning composer A.R. Rahman will be conferred an honorary doctorate by Aligarh Muslim University (AMU).
Rahman shot to international fame with his compositions in Danny Boyle’s underdog drama Slumdog Millionaire and won two golden statuettes for that.

Apart from Rahman, Gopichand Narang, former president of Sahitya Academy, would also be conferred an honorary doctora

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PM to pick up 59 ministers

New Delhi: Former chief ministers Vilasrao Deshmukh, Virbhadra Singh and Farooq Abdullah will be inducted into the Union Cabinet on Thursday when the Union Council of Ministers will be expanded to take in 59 more ministers including new entrants Mallikarjun Kharge and M.K. Alagiri.

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Rahul may intervene to calm UP leaders

New Delhi

May 26: All India Congress Committee general secretary Rahul Gandhi may step in to smoothen the frayed nerves among party leaders in Uttar Pradesh, who are clamouring hard for a berth in the second round of Union Cabinet expansion slated for Thursday.

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DMK likely to get 4 MoS portfolios

New Delhi

May 26: Highly-placed sources in the Congress say the DMK is likely to have its demands met as far as the four ministers of state portfolios are concerned. The DMK had demanded MoS finance for Mr S.S. Palanimanickam, information and broadcasting for Mr D. Napoleon, rural development for Mr Gandhi Selvan and railways for Mr Jagathrakshakan who defeated former minister of state for rai

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CBI gives clean chit to Ulfa for 2008 blasts

Guwahati

May 26: The CBI investigation into the serial bomb blast of October 2008 that gave a clean cheat to the outlawed United Liberation Front of Asom (Ulfa) has surprised the security circles in Assam. The CBI on Monday filed a charge sheet in the Assam serial blasts which claimed 88 lives and named the chief of the banned National Democratic Front of Boroland (NDFB) among the 19 accused.

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Punjab limps back to normalcy

Chandigarh

May 26: Though Punjab was relatively calm after the violent demonstrations through Sunday night and Monday, tension over the killing of the religious leader, Sant Ramanand, in Vienna remained palpable, prompting the authorities to allow only partial relaxation of curfew.

The deployment of thousands of paramilitary personnel, Army troops and armed constabulary appears to have sign

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Rahul Gandhi is a good boxer

New Delhi, May 26: Rahul Gandhi may be having many commandos to defend him but the young politician believes in self-defence and learnt some boxing skills from India’s first Dronacharya awardee, Om Prakash Bharadwaj.

The veteran coach told PTI that Gandhi learnt techniques of boxing from him for two months last year with the objective of keeping himself physically and psychologically fit fo

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Aila claims 81 lives, forces kept on alert

Kolkata May 26: Cyclone Aila that lashed West Bengal on Monday has claimed 81 lives, with the state-wide toll reaching 66 and 15 being killed in landslides, official sources said here on Tuesday.

The Chief Minister, Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, who visited parts of cyclone-battered South 24 Parganas district for an on-the-spot study of the situation, has instructed launching of relief and rescue

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Singh to pick 50 ministers

New Delhi

May 26: The Union Cabinet will be expanded at 11.30 am on Thursday, Rashtrapati Bhavan annou-nced on Tuesday. The Pri-me Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, decided to go in for a second round of swearing-in of ministers after several rounds of consultations with the Congress chief, Mrs Sonia Gandhi. Around 50 ministers are expected to take the oath of office.
The allocation of portfolios t

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11 Andhra MPs aspire for berths

New Delhi

May 26: At least 11 Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha members from Andhra Pradesh are aspiring to get sworn-in on Thursday. The state which gave the largest chunk of 33 MPs to the Congress had only one MP Jaipal Reddy getting sworn-in on Friday. Many Congress leaders from Andhra Pradesh who are camping in New Delhi are hoping their turn will come and that the state would get more representati

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BJP MPs eye RS after defeat

BHOPAL

May 26: Unfazed by their humiliating defeat in the recent Lok Sabha poll, a number of unseated BJP MPs are lobbying for a Rajya Sabha seat to ensure no break in their perks and creature comforts.

Among them are the three worst non-performers well past their prime: Octogenarian Lakshmi Narayan Pande, an eight-time MP who lost from Mandsaur, six-time Ujjain MP Satyanarayan Jatia and fo

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Lalu bullet train may never run

Patna

May 26: Former railway minister Lalu Prasad Yadav’s ambitious twin pet projects of a bullet train between Patna and Delhi and a rail ring service in Bihar now seem to be heading towards the cold storage after the change of guard in the railway ministry.

Even though a team of high-level officials from the Railway Board met with Bihar chief secretary R.J.M. Pillai recently to discuss

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Kerala nurses move NHRC

New Delhi, May 26: Two nurses, who were asked to resign for speaking to each other in Malayalam at the Indraprastha Apollo Hospital here, will now take up the matter with the National Human Right’s Commission (NHRC).
Hospital authorities, however, said the two are “still with the hospital”.

The nurses, Jenny Joseph and Laila Menon (names changed), were posted in the ICU of the Cardio Th

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Bush legacy haunts India

NEW DELHI

May 26: South Korea’s decision on Tuesday to join the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) will not go unnoticed in India, which is mulling full-scale participation in the United States-led, non-United Nations effort aimed at curbing the transfer of banned weapons and technologies, by air, land or sea.

The former US president, George Bush, announced the launch of PSI in May 20

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Tihar jail: Woman pregnant, officials clueless

New Delhi

May 26: A woman pregnant by more than 10 weeks is giving sleepless nights to the Tihar Jail authorities as she was lodged in the Central jail for the past one year in connection with a murder case.

The authorities of the Central prison are at a loss to explain how she got pregnant. The woman inmate was lodged in the high-security “women cell” of the Jail No. 6. According to so

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Mamata’s Rs 20 passes for poor

Kolkata, May 26: In a break from the tradition, Ms Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday took over as the railway minister here instead of in Delhi and announced special monthly passes at Rs 20 for those with monthly income below Rs 500, besides a new train for West Bengal.

“For the poor, we are announcing special monthly railway passes. The railways wants to give them the economic freedom to travel by

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Maya reigns in confused anger

Lucknow

May 26: The Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister, Ms Mayawati, has been reigning in confused anger ever since the Lok Sabha election results were announced.
With her dreams of becoming the Prime minister rudely dashed, the UP Chief Minister has been sending highly confused signals with her contradictory statements to the people of the Uttar Pradesh as well as her own party cadres.

As soon a

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DMK in Cabinet, expansion likely

New Delhi

May 25: The expansion of the Union Cabinet is being delayed due to pulls and pressures within the Congress. The party and the government are tight lipped about when the exercise will take place.

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Cyclone Aila kills 21 before weakening

Kolkata/ Bhubaneswar/ New Delhi, May 25: At least 21 persons were killed and more than one lakh people hit as a cyclone spawned by a deep depression in the Bay of Bengal — Aila —pounded large parts of West Bengal and coastal Orissa on Monday leaving a trail of devastation and crippling normal life in the two states.

Responding to the devastation, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh announced Rs

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SC raps RGV on national anthem

New Delhi, May 25: Refusing to entertain Bollywood director Ram Gopal Varma’s petition against a Censor Board’s ruling on a controversial song in his forthcoming film Rann, the Supreme Court on Monday said nobody has the right to tinker with the national anthem.

“We have read it. It gives a total negative sense. It seems every line of national anthem has been proved wrong. Nobody has go

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Tigers surrender in large numbers

Colombo

May 25: Two batches of hardcore Tamil Tigers have come forward to surrender to the military at Batticaloa in east Sri Lanka on Monday, former LTTE leader “Karuna” Vinaya-gamurthy Muralitharan said.

The one-time close associate of the slain Tiger chief Velupillai Prabhakaran is now the minister for national integration in the government and has claimed to have played a significant

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PM: Rs 2 lakh relief for victims

New Delhi

May 25: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday announced an ex-gratia relief of Rs 2 lakhs to the kin of each of those killed in the cyclone, which hit eastern part of the country, even as the Centre mobilised the disaster relief mechanism to meet the situation.

Cyclone Aila spawned from a deep depression in the Bay of Bengal to hit West Bengal leaving at least 21 people dead and

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Punjab violence spreads

Chandigarh/Vienna

May 25: Two dalit demonstrators were kil-led in police firing even as Sunday night’s angry protests in Jalandhar city, provoked by the attack on the spiritual leaders of the Dera Sachh Khand religious sect in Vienna, snowballed into violent rioting in all major cities and towns across Punjab.

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CIC questions questions Advani

New Delhi, May 25: The CIC has asked the office of the Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha to explain the reasons for denying information about correspondence among Mr L.K. Advani, the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister on the issue of “black money” stashed in Swiss banks.

“The Commission directs you to offer comments on this complaint...clearly giving justification for denial of info

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Israeli Awacs in India, induction on Thursday

New Delhi, May 25: India on Monday became the first country in South Asia to own an Airborne Early Warning and Control System (Awacs), called “an eye in the sky” with the Israeli-made Phalcon reaching Jamnagar airbase on the country’s western coast on Monday morning.

The Phalcons would now be formally inducted into the Indian Air Force (IAF) on May 28 by defence minister A.K. Antony at t

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IIT-JEE: Boys outshine girls

New Delhi, May 25: Boys outshone girls in the IIT Joint Entrance Examination (IIT-JEE) this year as over 10,000 students qualified the tough test with Nitin Jain from Faridabad topping the exam.

While 3,84,977 students, including 98,028 girls, appeared in the test, a total of 10,035 students, including 1,048 girls, qualified. Around 3.13 per cent boys qualified the test, while girls failed to

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Violence takes Badal by surprise

Chandigarh

May 25: The Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Prakash Singh Badal, on Monday admitted his government had been taken by “complete surprise” at the “widespread and spontaneous” articulation of anger over the killing of Sant Ramanand of the Dera Sachh Khand religious sect in Vienna.

All major highways in the state and both the main rail routes to Jammu and Amritsar were blocked. Eve

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SP expels founder-leader Azam Khan

New Delhi/Lucknow

May 24: The Samajwadi Party on Sunday expelled its founding member Azam Khan for six years for anti-party activities, after a no-holds-barred battle of words between Mr Khan and party general secretary Amar Singh. Before the eventual expulsion, SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav attempted though unsuccessfully to broker peace between the two general secretaries.

Announcing the e

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Third front not viable: Yechury

New Delhi

May 24: Post-poll developments have proved that the “cut-and-paste” alliance was a mistake, CPI(M) politburo member, Mr Sitaram Yechury, said while commenting on the role of parties like the BSP and the JD(S) which have switched over to the Congress-led UPA after the Third Front’s electoral debacle.

“You are right about the BSP, JD(S) and TRS and that is precisely the poin

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Lalu will focus on RJD revival

Patna, May 24: With the prospects of his return to the Union Cabinet appearing bleak, RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav on Sunday said he is going to devote full time in reviving his party in Bihar battered in the recent elections and that becoming a minister is “not an issue” to him.

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DMK to join Singh’s team

Chennai/New Delhi May 24: The DMK appears to have resolved its differences with the Congress, and is likely to join the Manmohan Singh government Tuesday. The DMK chief and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, Dr M. Karunanidhi, held deliberations with his party’s core committee members at his Chennai residence all through Sunday, following which it was learnt that the party had accepted the Con-gress off

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JD-S not desperate for Cong deal: HDK

Bengaluru

May 24: Former chief minister and state JD-S president H.D. Kumaraswamy on Sunday said he is not desperate to enter into an understanding with the Congress. “I am not as experienced and knowledgeable as newly-appointed Union minister Veerappa Moily is. But I can humbly and confidently say that I am not desperate to have an understanding with the Congress,” Mr Kumaraswamy said. Mr

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Boy files petition challenging SC

New Delhi, May 24: Supreme Court’s judgment refusing a Muslim student’s plea to sport beard in educational institutions, by observing, it would not permit “Talibanisation of the country” has been challenged by the aggrieved youth by way of a fresh petition.

In his petition, Salim, a student, had sought a review of the judgment and submitted that the observations on “Talibanisation

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Menstrual cycle linked to suicides

New Delhi, May 24: Women in depression, especially during their menstrual periods, run a greater risk of harming themselves including committing suicide, an AIIMS study has claimed.

A team of researchers at the country’s premier medical institute here have found that complexities in menstrual cycle may be a reason for heightened suicide risk. “Women with menstrual problem were more likely

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India will be free of P-1 polio strain: WHO

New Delhi, May 24: India will be able to eradicate the lethal P-1 polio virus by the end of 2009, with the disease currently confined to parts of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, a World Health Organisation (WHO) official said on Sunday.

“India is topping the charts in eradication of the P-1 virus among the four countries — India, Nigeria, Afghanistan and Pakistan — still infected with the deadl

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Badal may have to step down

CHANDIGARH

May 24: The Shiromani Akali Dal chief, Mr Sukhbir Badal could be forced to step down as Punjab’s deputy chief minister as he would face mandatory disqualification by mid-July this year.

Inducted as Dy CM with much fanfare in January, Mr Badal, who is not an elected legislator, was expected to seek election from one of the 48 Assembly seats held by the party before the end of six

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SP left with no Muslim face

New Delhi

May 24: Once carrying the tag of “Maulana” Mulayam Singh Yadav, the Samajwadi Party chief is faced with a piquant situation, as he is left with no credible Muslim face in his party after the expulsion of his close aid Azam Khan. The SP, which saw not even a single Muslim candidate winning the Lok Sabha elections on its ticket, has been witnessing exodus of all the credible minorit

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Send terrorists' bodies to Pak: Nikam

Mumbai, May 24: The bodies of nine slain terrorists lying in a city morgue since 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks should be sent to Pakistan or disposed of as per Muslim rites, special public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam said on Sunday.

The identity of these terrorists has already been established hence their bodies may be sent to Pakistan, said Mr Nikam.

"But if Pakistan government refuses to accep

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PM allots six key portfolios

New Delhi

May 23: The suspense over key ministries like HRD, power, petroleum, and infrastructure continued after the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, allocated six portfolios on Saturday.

Finance, defence, external affairs and home went to Pranab Mukherjee, A.K. Antony, S.M. Krishna and Mr P. Chidambaram. Sharad Pawar retained agriculture, food and consumer affairs, and Mamata Banerjee,

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Congress denies feud with DMK

Chennai/New Delhi

May 23: Congress leader in charge of Tamil Nadu, Mr Ghulam Nabi Azad denied reports that he was headed for Chennai to persuade the DMK chief to accept his demands.

“Where is the need? There are no differences between the Congress and DMK. The DMK is holding consultations within the party and will join the government soon,” he said, adding, nothing should be read betwee

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Obama calls PM, invites him to US

May 23: US President Barack Obama on Saturday invited Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Washington, reports our correspondent. In a congratulatory telephone call to Dr Singh, Mr Obama said the recently concluded Indian elections were “a testament to the strength of India’s democracy”.

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Headmaster steals school kids’ lunch

Patna, May 23: After he was caught stealing rice meant for schoolchildren’s lunch, the headmaster of a primary school in Bihar’s Begusarai district has been banned from the school by irate villagers, police said on Saturday.

Pitambar Pathak, headmaster of a government-run school in Puwari Tola village under Teghra block of the district, 126 km from Patna, was caught selling rice to a local

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15th LS session on June 1

New Delhi, May 23: Quickly getting down to business a day after being sworn in, Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, on Saturday presided over the first meeting of his Cabinet which decided to convene the first session of the 15th Lok Sabha from June 1 to June 9.

The Cabinet decided a time-table for the Parliament session which will have seven sittings, Union minister, Mr P. Chidambaram said.

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Monsoon in Kerala, to hit AP on May 28

Thiruvananthapuram/ Hyderabad

May 23: The southwest monsoon hit Kerala on Saturday, two days earlier than predicted. Weathermen expect the monsoon to strengthen and spread out over southern and northeast India.

In Hyderabad, Met officials predicted the onset of monsoon in Andhra Pradesh on May 28. “The monsoon may arrive in three or four days, first in Rayalaseema,” said, Mr G. Subba Rao

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Fewer civil cases worries CJI

Chandigarh, May 23: The Decrease in the number of civil cases being filed in courts was a cause of concern, Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan said on Saturday wondering whether people were preferring “extra-Constitutional methods” to seek justice.

“We are not worried about the number of cases, but we are worried about the absence of cases. Why has there been a decrease in the num

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Condom clash leaves 3 injured

Lucknow

May 23: Bizarre it may sound, but a clash over condoms at a fair price shop has left three persons seriously injured. According to reports, the nephews of Dwarika Prasad Agarwal, who owns a fair price shop at Katra Bizen Beg at Chaupatiya in Saadatganj police circle, were distributing kerosene to ration card holders on Friday evening.

The supply inspector, Govind Shukla, reached th

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Satyam to sack 8,000

Hyderabad

May 23: At least 8,000 employees of Satyam Computer will be sacked from June 1. Notices have been prepared and will be issued to staff from Monday, sources said. This comes against the assurance of Tech Mahin-dra, new owners of Satyam, that it would would go for the “least painful” ways to cut costs.

Satyam employees have been informed about the company’s decision to hack at

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Singh team sworn in amidst berth bargain

New Delhi, May 22: Dr Manmohan Singh was sworn in for a second term as Prime Minister on Friday evening along with 19 Cabinet ministers. The DMK, a UPA ally, stayed away for the time being. The portfolios of the new ministers will be officially released in two to three days.

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Maya orders power supply

Lucknow, May 22: Stung by a powercut in her journey to Delhi, the UP chief minister, Ms Mayawati has now decided to appease her traditional votebank of dalits by ensuring a 10-hour power supply in villages across Uttar Pradesh.

Villages in the state will now get a five-hour power supply in the evening from 6 pm to 11 pm and another five-hour supply in the morning from 5 am to 10 am.

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Slain cop didn’t inform seniors

Nagpur, May 22: Maharashtra home minister, Mr Jayant Patil on Friday pointed out the lapse on the part of slain police inspector Ashok Iyer, who set out for the Naxal operation without informing the senior officers.

Police inspector Iyer and 15 other police officials were killed in the Naxal attack in Gadchiroli on Thursday.

“Iyer was an enthusiastic officer, who had sought second postin

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Awacs will reach India on May 25

New Delhi, May 22: After a delay of over eight months, the first of the three Indian Air Force (IAF) Airborne Warning and Control System (Awacs) will finally arrive in India on May 25.

“The Israeli-built AWACS system is arriving in India on May 25 and will be inducted in the IAF on May 27,” an IAF officer said here.

On its maiden flight from Israel to India, the AWACS, fitted on to a I

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Gujjars, Meenas clash again

Jaipur, May 22: The Gujjar-Meena conflict reared its head again on Thursday night in Swai-Madhopur when both communities took people from the rival community hostage and engaged in clashes. The mob set two government offices on fire at Bamanvas and damaged three vehicles. Senior officials rushed to the spot from Jaipur with additional forces.

The hostages were released late on Thursday night f

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Kidney theft during operation

Bhubaneswar, May 22: A shocking case of alleged kidney theft came to light in Orissa on Friday. Parents of a 12-year-old boy here on Friday alleged that the right kidney of their son was stolen during an operation in a private hospital at Cuttack, 30 km from here, two-and-half years ago.

Babuli Nath Sharma, father of the boy, Abhinash Sharma of Tirtol in Orissa’s Jagatsinghpur district, alle

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Round II may belong to youth

New Delhi, May 22: Speculation among hopefuls of getting a ministerial berth did not end with the 19 Union Cabinet ministers taking oath on Friday.

Amidst reports that a second induction ceremony is likely to be held on May 26, the names of young probables doing the rounds in the Congress camp were that of the Guna MP, Mr Jyotiraditya Scindia; the Ajmer MP, Mr Sachin Pilot and the Dharhaura MP

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6 South ministers make it to Cabinet

New Delhi, May 22: The Congress has retained four old faces of six ministers from the four southern states who have made it to the Cabinet.

Mr A.K. Antony and Mr Vayalar Ravi from Kerala, Mr P. Chidambaram from Tamil Nadu, Mr S. Jaipal Reddy from Andhra Pradesh, Mr S.M. Krishna and Mr Veerappa Moily from Karnataka were sworn in as Cabinet ministers.

Minister of overseas affairs and parliamen

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Girls top in CBSE Class XII exams

New Delhi, May 22: Two girls from Faridabad and Mumbai shared the top honours by securing 98.4 per cent marks in the Class XII exam conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) as 81 per cent of 6.37 lakh candidates cleared the test.

Tannvi Aggrawal from Apeejay School, Faridabad, and Mritika Sen, student of Rajhans Vidyalaya, Andheri West, Mumbai, emerged toppers in the test, h

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Six ministers are ‘non believers’

New Delhi May 22: Six Cabinet Ministers of the Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh’s new team are “non-believers”.

These ministers “solemnly affirmed” that they would bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution while taking oath on Friday. The Prime Minister and 13 of his ministers took the oath in the name of God.

The “atheist” ministers are Mr A.K. Antony, Mr P. Chidamb

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Restrictions relaxed in Bengaluru

Bengaluru, May 22: Stuck at work and want to catch the last film show or grab a bite after 11 pm? You can join the party that has restarted in Bengaluru after the government eased the closing time deadline of eateries and cinema halls in the city.

The deadline for closure of eating places has now been set at midnight. In movie halls, the last show can now end at 11.30 pm instead of 10 pm. Howe

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Ragging: 2 boys leave school

Shimla, May 22: Two Class IX students of Bishop Cotton School (BCS) have left the renowned education institute after complaining of ragging by seniors, prompting the state government to seek a report from the district administration on the incident.

The Two students, Akashdeep Turna and Avtar Singh, quit school after their families lodged a complaint with the school authorities that their wards

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Singh doles out jobs to team

New Delhi, May 23: S.M. Krishna was appointed external affairs minister with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh deciding to give the key portfolio of finance to Pranab Mukherjee while retaining P. Chidambaram as home minister.

Trinamul Congress chief Mamata Banerjee will head the
Railway ministry, A.K. Antony will continue as defence minister respectively, a Rashtrapathi Bhavan spokesperson sa

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Naxals kill 16 cops in Maharashtra

Nagpur, May 21: Sixteen policemen, including an inspector, a sub-inspector and five women constables, were killed in a Naxal attack at Tawitola in Maharashtra’s Gadchiroli district, police said.

A police party was on routine patrolling between Mumumgaon and Dhanora when Naxals opened indiscriminate fire from Hatti Gota hillock, near Dhanora taluka headquarters. Inspector, Avinash Iyer, sub-i

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Manmohan wise leader: Obama

Washington, May 21: President Barack Obama considers Indian PM Manmohan Singh a “very wise leader” whom he respects and is looking forward to visiting India soon. Mr Obama conveyed these sentiments to the new Indian ambassador to the US Meera Shankar as she presented her credentials at a ceremony at the White House on Wednesday.

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Strong Rahul influence on Cabinet

New Delhi

May 21: The second UPA government, likely to be sworn in in a couple of days, is going to bear a clear stamp of AICC general secretary Rahul Gandhi’s leadership.

Congress sources said the Amethi MP, who has come of age as a mature leader during the 2009 General Elections, has of late been taking key party decisions and is actively involved in the finalising of the new Union Cabi

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Manmohan wise leader, says Obama

Washington, May 21: President Barack Obama considers Indian PM Manmohan Singh a “very wise leader” whom he respects and is looking forward to visiting India soon. Mr Obama conveyed these sentiments to the new Indian ambassador to the US Meera Shankar as she presented her credentials at a ceremony at the White House on Wednesday.

The President conveyed his felicitations on the just conclude

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Rahman songs for BSF jawans

New Delhi, May 21: Oscar winner A.R. Rahman, who enchanted the world with his Jai Ho number, has now composed the theme song for BSF, his first for any paramilitary force.
The five minute song — Hum Seema Suraksha Bal... Veeron ka hai ye dal (We are the Border Security Force... it is the force of the brave) composed by Rahman praises the strength and valour of the border force.
“The credit

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Rahman songs for BSF jawans

New Delhi, May 21: Oscar winner A.R. Rahman, who enchanted the world with his Jai Ho number, has now composed the theme song for BSF, his first for any paramilitary force.
The five minute song — Hum Seema Suraksha Bal... Veeron ka hai ye dal (We are the Border Security Force... it is the force of the brave) composed by Rahman praises the strength and valour of the border force.
“The credit

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Shilpa to perform with Akon at IPL

Johannesburg, May 21: Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty will join American R&B sensation Akon as he sings his Grammy award winning Smack That at the closing ceremony of the Indian Premier League (IPL) here on Sunday night.
Organisers also said that Katrina Kaif will join a troupe of Indian and South African dancers led by award-winning choreographer Shiamak Davar to perform the Oscar-winning A.R. Rah

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Shilpa to perform with Akon at IPL

Johannesburg, May 21: Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty will join American R&B sensation Akon as he sings his Grammy award winning Smack That at the closing ceremony of the Indian Premier League (IPL) here on Sunday night.
Organisers also said that Katrina Kaif will join a troupe of Indian and South African dancers led by award-winning choreographer Shiamak Davar to perform the Oscar-winning A.R. Rah

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PM berth control hits DMK’s plans

New Delhi

May 21: On the eve of Dr Manmohan Singh’s swearing-in as Prime Minister for the second time, government-formation hit a major roadblock on Thursday evening with the DMK, a major constituent of the UPA, refusing to be part of it after the Congress refused to succumb to its demand for seven ministerial berths and to accommodate Mr T.R. Baalu. The DMK has now said it will offer “outs

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Naveen sworn in as Orissa CM

Bhubaneswar

May 21: A 21-member council of ministers headed by Mr Naveen Patnaik was on Thursday sworn in by the Governor, Mr Muralidhar Chandrakant Bhandare, here at Raj Bhawan. This is Mr Patnaik’s third term in power in a row since 2000.

Nine of the 21 ministers are new faces while others held ministerial portfolios in earlier terms of the chief minister. Later, speaking to the reporter

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Soren’s son dies in sleep after defeat

Bokaro (Jharkhand), May 21: The JMM general secretary, Durga Soren, the eldest son of the JMM president, Mr Shibu Soren, on Thursday passed away at his Bokaro residence.
He is survived by wife and three daughters. He lost Lok Sabha polls from Godda constituency seat.
“Durga, a former MLA, complained head reeling and chest pain at home in the wee hours and was immediately rushed to hospital,

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TC demands Prez rule in Bengal

Kolkata

May 21: The Marxists, reacting to the Trinamul Congress chief, Ms Mamata Banerjee’s demand for President’s Rule and early elections in West Bengal, said the Constitution did not allow this.

The West Bengal Left Front chairman, Mr Biman Bose, said: “The Lok Sabha polls were to elect a government at the Centre. It is not supposed to topple elected state governments.”

The Tr

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Kerala to keep tab on women?

Thiruvananthapuram, May 21: A translation error in a central government order has offended women in Kerala as it appeared aimed at keeping tabs on women’s movement — though something else was intended.
The local self government (LSG) issued a directive to the corporations and municipalities in Kerala last month that a special committee be formed to keep track on apatha sancharam (a close tab

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Nasa experts bring hope for the heart

New Delhi, May 21: In what may turn out to be a major breakthrough for millions of congestive heart failure patients, a medical device made of “super plastic” invented by Nasa engineers for space applications has been used in India for the first time to deal with the chronic condition.

The device, which is said to be the thinnest lead (a special wire) in the world that helps deliver energy

read more


Kerala to keep tab on women?

Thiruvananthapuram, May 21: A translation error in a central government order has offended women in Kerala as it appeared aimed at keeping tabs on women’s movement — though something else was intended.
The local self government (LSG) issued a directive to the corporations and municipalities in Kerala last month that a special committee be formed to keep track on apatha sancharam (a close tab

read more


Nasa experts bring hope for the heart

New Delhi, May 21: In what may turn out to be a major breakthrough for millions of congestive heart failure patients, a medical device made of “super plastic” invented by Nasa engineers for space applications has been used in India for the first time to deal with the chronic condition.

The device, which is said to be the thinnest lead (a special wire) in the world that helps deliver energy

read more


Hillary Clinton likely to visit India

New Delhi, May 21: The US Secretary of State, Ms Hillary Clinton, is likely to visit India in July, marking possibly the first trip of a top-ranking Obama administration official during the second tenure of UPA government.

Exact dates for the trip are being worked out and would be firmed up after the new external affairs minister takes over, sources said.

The visit would be crucial for dis

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Court rejects Kazmi's plea to inspect attack place

Mumbai, May 21: A special court on Thursday rejected a plea of defence lawyer Abbas Kazmi seeking permission to inspect the November 26 terror attack sites and the marine vessel MV Kuber allegedly used by LeT terrorists to reach Mumbai shores from Pakistan.

Kazmi is defending prime accused Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone terrorist arrested during the attacks last year.

Judge M.L. Tahal

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Sushma next in command?

New Delhi

May 20: Senior BJP leader and former Union minister, Mrs Sushma Swaraj, who won the Vidisha parliamentary seat, is likely to be appointed as deputy leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha.
Ms Swaraj, who was the party’s deputy leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha until she contested the Lok Sabha polls, is considered one of the best orators within the party and therefore,

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Pranab in talks with Karuna

New Delhi, May 20: The Congress and the DMK on Wednesday discussed allocation of portfolios amid reports that the latter is staking claim to seven Cabinet berths.
The Congress leader, Mr Pranab Mukherjee, and the DMK chief, Mr M. Karunanidhi, held deliberations for about 45 minutes, trying to work out representation of the DMK in the new government.
The discussions remained inconclusive as Mr

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Monsoon reaches Andaman

New Delhi, May 20: Annual monsoon rains, vital for India’s farm-dependent economy, on Wednesday reached the Andaman Sea and adjoining southern Bay of Bengal, two senior officials of the state-run India Meteorological Department said.
“Monsoon has set in over the Andaman sea,” said one of the officials, who did not want to be identified as he is not authorised to speak to the media. Another

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NDA cracks in Bihar, J’khand

Patna

May 20: The NDA may be heading towards a silent split in its stronghold of Bihar and Jharkhand.
The undercurrents of friction between the two NDA partners, the BJP and JD(U), in both the states are increasingly getting more apparent since the results of the Lok Sabha polls were announced.
While the coalition has already landed on a collision course in Jharkhand, where the dominant par

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‘Godman’ gets jail for minors’ rape

Thiruvananthapuram: Co-ntroversial godman Santhosh Madhavan alias Amrita Chai-tanya was on Wednesday sentenced to 16 years imprisonment for raping two minor girls aged 15 and 13 , reports our correspondent. Santhosh Madhavan was arrested in May 2008 for cheating an NRI in a financial deal. Searches conducted by the police in his ashram, however, revealed that he had sexually abused many minor girl

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Mamata seeks 1 more than DMK

New Delhi

May 20: Bargaining for Cabinet berths has begun in the UPA with allies — the DMK and the Trinamul Congress — asking for key ministries shortly after the President, Mrs Pratibha Patil, appointed Dr Manmohan Singh Prime Minister for a second consecutive term on Wednesday. He will be sworn in on May 22.

The Congress chief, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, has constituted a team of four leaders

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SP, RJD dropped from UPA meeting

New Delhi

May 20: The RJD and the LJP were cornered further after the Congress Party’s refusal to invite them for a first meeting of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) held here on Wednesday after the Lok Sabha elections.
The issue of their absence did not come up in the meeting, sources said. The RJD, led by Lalu Prasad Yadav, and Ram Vilas Paswan’s LJP were part of the UPA while the S

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Mamata favours early polls in WB

New Delhi

May 20: Now an important constituent of the UPA with 19 Lok Sabha seats in its kitty, the Trinamul Congress would now like to push the Centre into going in for early Assembly polls in West Bengal. Ms Mamata Banerjee would like to reap the benefits of her party’s spectacular performance in the recent Lok Sabha elections.
Senior Trinamul leader Somen Mitra confirmed to this newspaper

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Amar is ‘hurt’ by Congress

NEW DELHI

May 20: After extending unconditional support to the UPA government, Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh on Wednesday said he was “heart-broken” at the attitude of certain Congress leaders who have been belittling his party.
Speaking to reporters, the SP general secretary said, “I am heart-broken at the attitude of certain Congress leaders. They said that before the c

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Mumbai neglect cost us: Uddhav

Mumbai

May 20: Ruing its defeat in the city, Shiv Sena executive chief Uddhav Thackeray on Wednesday attributed the loss to its own neglect towards bringing in Mumbai’s voters.
However, he felt that at the same time, the party’s attention to the interiors of Maharashtra resulted in the 11 seats it gained there. He added that the party is poised to rectify the mistakes during the coming As

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Top leaders eye Khanduri’s post

New Delhi

May 20: A war for succession seems to have broken within the BJP’s state unit in Uttrakhand after Chief Minister, Mr B.C. Khanduri, offered his resignation following his party losing all the five parliamentary seats in the state.
As soon as news of Mr Khanduri offering to resign from the post broke, name of his bête noire and the former chief minister, Mr B.S. Koshiyari started d

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No law to punish RGV, say lawyers

New Delhi, May 20: Director Ram Gopal Varma has irked the censor board by tampering with the national anthem for the song Jana gana mana rann hai in his upcoming film Rann. However, lawyers say there is no specific law to prevent people from doing so.
“There can’t be anything disparaging on the national anthem or flag or any such property. One can’t play around with these things. But sadl

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HP: Juniors being bullied at schools

Solan (HP), May 20: A senior student of a private homeopathic college has been suspended for a month on charges of ragging. Yogesh Singh, a fourth year student, was awarded the punishment after his junior Ashish, a first year student, complained to the college principal that he was being ragged by his senior, they said.
According to the complaint, Yogesh “harassed and even slapped” Ashish fo

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Girl dies in BJP leader's car

A seven-year-old girl died of suffocation after she accidentally got locked inside a car belonging to state BJP president Nitin Gadkari in city's Mahal area, police said on Wednesday.
The incident took place on Tuesday when Yogita Ashok Thakre, the daughter of a domestic help near Gadkari’s Wada (old house and compound) allegedly entered his car while playing, police said.
Yogita's body was re

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PM: Focus is on employment

New Delhi, May 19: Set to begin a new term in the office, the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, on Tuesday spoke of the need for reforms and reverse the slowing down of investment and employment generation caused by global economic slowdown.

Shortly after he was elected leader of the Congress Parliamentary Party paving way for him to become the Prime Minister for the second term, Dr Singh sai

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India offers Rs 500cr aid to Lanka

New Delhi

May 19: India was preparing a Rs 500-crore aid package for Sri Lanka, minister of external affairs Pranab Mukherjee said.
An Indian delegation was likely to visit Colombo soon to discuss how to spend the money on the rehabilitation of the Tamils displaced by the conflict.
“A package of almost Rs 500 crores which will be required for rehabilitation is under preparation,” Mr Mukhe

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10th coalition in 20 years

New Delhi

May 19: The Congress might be on a revival mode in Uttar Pradesh after 20 years but national parties in India are finding it difficult to form the government on its own since 1989. In fact, when Dr Manmmohan Singh assumes office as Prime Minister for the second consecutive term in the coming days, India will have its 10th successive coalition government in 20 years.
The spell of coa

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Nuclear capable Agni II test fired

Balasore, Orissa, May 19: India on Tuesday successfully test-fired its nuclear-capable Agni-II missile with a strike range of upto 3,000 kms from a launch pad off Orissa’s coast.
The test of the indigenously built Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile (IRBM) was carried out from a mobile launcher at about 10 am from launch pad-4 of Integrated Test Range at Wheelers Island near Dhamra, about 8

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UPA nets Maya jaal, gets the magic number

New Delhi

May 19: The Congress has won the numbers game before the trial of strength in the Lok Sabha. This became clear after its rivals — the Samajwadi Party and the BSP — on Tuesday extended “unconditional support” while the RJD fell in line shortly after the CPP elected Dr Manmohan Singh as its leader.

Within no time the Janata Dal (S), the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha and the Nagaland

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Mamata in Delhi for meet

New Delhi

May 19: Trinamul Congress leader Mamata Banerjee lands in the capital late on Tuesday night to participate in the UPA meeting scheduled for Wednesday morning. With a band of 19 MPs in the Lok Sabha and with ally SUCI (Socialist Unity Centre of India) too winning a seat, it’s clear that Ms Banerjee is now of immense value to the UPA.
While sources close to Ms Banerjee confirmed tha

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Changes likely in BJP in Gujarat

Ahmedabad

May 19: With less than expected seats in its kitty, the Gujarat BJP is contemplating to make changes in the organisational set up of the state unit.
The BJP was expecting 20 of the 26 Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat following the immense popularity of chief minister Narendra Modi and the sound organisational set-up of the party. But the BJP won 15 seats only which is just one seat more t

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Manmohan named CPP leader

New Delhi

May 19: Dr Manmohan Singh was on Tuesday nominated as the Congress Parliamentary Party (CPP) leader by party chief Sonia Gandhi and is likely to be sworn in as Prime Minister for a second term on Friday.
Mrs Gandhi, who was elected chairperson of the CPP, nominated Dr Singh, 76, as the CPP leader at a meeting of the newly-elected MPs in the Central Hall of Parliament.
“Friends,

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Karuna claims six ministries

New Delhi, May 19: The DMK, which has won 18 seats on its own and brought a total of 28 seats from Tamil Nadu and Puducherry in alliance with the Congress, is said to be staking claim to seven berths in the new government, the same number it has in the outgoing ministry.
The party chief, Mr M. Karunanidhi, who arrived here with his son, Mr M.K. Azhagiri, who is making his debut in the Lok Sabha,

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Assam: 15 killed in separate incidents

Guwahati

May 19: Six NDFB rebels and four civilians were killed in separate incidents of violence in trouble-torn Karbi Anglong and North Cachar Hilll district of Assam on Tuesday.
The rampaging Dimasa rebels also targeted goods trains besides taking away the fish plate at one place to disrupt the railways services in the district.
The security sources said that armed rebels of Dima Halem D

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Next time, total mandate: Singh

New Delhi

May 19: Acting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who is gearing up for his second term, said the challenge before the Congress is to secure a wholesome mandate entirely in its favour.
“The people of India have given us an impressive mandate but we have to work harder and better to secure a wholesome mandate entirely in our favour. That is the challenge before the party and the govern

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Rahul refuses to be slotted

New Delhi

May 19: The Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi, who led the party’s Lok Sabha election campaign from the front, has “made up his mind” on the issue of “whether or not” to join the government. “Rahulji will take a final decision after consulting Soniaji and Dr Manmohan Singh,” well-placed sources in the party indicated on Tuesday night.

“I have made up my mind.

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North reels under heat, Rajasthan bakes at 47ºC

New Delhi, May 19: Blistering heat wave continued to sweep North India on Tuesday with mercury hovering around 45-degree mark in several places in the region, affecting normal life.
Day temperatures touched unbearable level in the desert state of Rajasthan as Ganganagar baked at 47.5º Celsius, six notches above normal, Churu at 47º Celsius, Bikaner at 46.4º Celsius, Kota at 44.9º Celsius and

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Kasab ID fake, says principal

Mumbai, May 19: The principal of a Hyderabad college on Tuesday testified before the court hearing the Mumbai terror attacks case that the seven identity cards of his institution, recovered from Pakistani terrorist Ajmal Amir Kasab and his nine associates, were forged.
Principal C. Radhakrishnan of Arunodaya Degree and Post-Graduate College, told Judge M.L. Tahilyani that the identity cards were

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India-inspired guitarist influenced Carla Bruni

New Delhi, May 19: Leading French rock guitarist Louis Bertignac, who says Indian melodies have influenced his music a great deal, recalls how French First Lady Carla Bruni and he jammed together when they were in love many years back.
Carla, the rocker said, just floated “into my life when I was young”. “We were in love with each other for a year. We jammed together - played numbers by Rol

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India test-fires nuclear-capable Agni-II missile

Balasore (Orissa), May 19: India on Tuesday successfully test-fired its nuclear-capable 'Agni-II' missile with a strike range of upto 3,000 kms from a launch pad off Orissa's coast.

The test of the indigenously built Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile missile was carried out from a mobile launcher from launch pad-4 of Integrated Test Range at Wheelers Island near Dhamra, about 80 kms from he

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Karat cornered

New Delhi
May 18: The CPI(M) general secretary, Mr Prakash Karat, was cornered and virtually taken to task by most CPI(M) politburo members on Monday, sources said, and speculation is rife in Left circles that the severe criticism from within party circles might drive him to relinquish charge.
The CPI(M) politburo members, who met in New Delhi on Monday, are reported to have blamed him for a hos

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CBI may close Rajiv case

Chennai

May 18: The CBI, which investigated the assassination of the former Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi, will have to close the case if the first accused, the LTTE chief, Velupillai Prabhakaran and the second accused, his intelligence chief, Pottu Amman, have died.
“If the news about their death is true, we will have to close the case,” a senior CBI official told this newspaper on Monday.

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Lawyers getting out of control: SC

New Delhi, May 18: The Supreme Court on Monday severely censured some lawyers for their attitude and said they consider themselves “above law” and it would not allow their “hooliganism.”
A vacation bench of Justice Markandey Katju and Justice Deepak Verma made the remarks against the lawyers while hearing a lawsuit by an Allahabad-based doctor, facing charges of murdering a patient who di

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Saffron allies fail to meet

New Delhi

May 18: In another indication that all was not well within the NDA alliance, a meeting of the NDA allies called on Monday to discuss the poll debacle was cancelled.
The NDA sources stated that the cancellation of the meeting comes in the midst of indications that the coalition may see some constituents parting ways.
The suspected deserter from the alliance is Mr Ajit Singh-led Rash

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Kazmi against capital punishment for Kasab

Mumbai, May 18: Harping on reformative aspect of criminal justice, advocate Abbas Kazmi, the lawyer defending November 26 terror attack accused, Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, said on Monday that he was not in favour of awarding capital punishment to a convict.
“I am against capital punishment because if we, as human beings, do not have the power to give someone life then we do not have right to t

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Akshay arrested for obscenity, bailed out

Mumbai, May 18: Actor Akshay Kumar was on Monday arrested and later released on bail for allegedly indulging in obscene behaviour during a fashion show in March here.
“Akshay, who returned to Mumbai from abroad, surrendered before the police on Monday. He was accompanied by his lawyer,” a senior police officer said.
“He was then arrested under Section 294 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code fo

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Borge’s death not suicide, say police

Mumbai, May 18: Twenty days after his death, a senior police official on Monday said that there was no evidence to suggest that the Air Works technician, Bharat Borge, who first spotted pebbles in the helicopter of industrialist Anil Ambani, had committed suicide.
Based on the statements of witnesses in the case, Borge’s death is being treated as an accident since the possibilities of murder a

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Congress to get 60 berths

New Delhi

May 18: The Congress is expected to have about 60 ministers in a Cabinet of 80 at the Centre, leaving the remaining 20 to its allies and others. The allies and supporting parties are unable to bargain for plum ministries owing to the large mandate won by the Congress. However, lobbying for key portfolios has begun in the party.

The last Cabinet had 79 members, including the Prime M

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Prez dissolves 14th Lok Sabha

New Delhi, May 18: The President, Ms Pratibha Patil, on Monday dissolved the 14th Lok Sabha on the recommendation of the outgoing cabinet headed by the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh.
In an official communiqué released by the Rashtrapathi Bhavan, the President signed an order dissolving the Lok Sabha thus paving the way for the formation of the next government.
Earlier, Dr Singh met the Pre

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Exit polls doctored, says EC

New Delhi, May 18: After successfully conducting the Lok Sabha polls, the Election Commission says opinion and exit and opinion polls are “manipulated” and should not be permitted.
“We believe that exit polls and opinion polls are manipulated. They do influence free and fair polls and every political party is opposed it,” the election commissioner, Mr S.Y. Quraishi, said in a private TV

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High-profile docs cheating

Mumbai
May 18: Six doctors of Lilavati Hospital and Bombay Hospital have been summoned by the Bandra metropolitan magistrate court, after they have been accused under Section 420 of manipulating cardiac tests and cheating a patient in 2003.
According to the summon orders, they manipulated cardiac tests and suggested that the patient undergo an unwanted surgery. He was asked to deposit Rs one an

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14th Lok Sabha dissolved

President Pratibha Patil on Monday dissolved the 14th Lok Sabha on the recommendation of the outgoing Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
In an official communiqué released by the Rashtrapati Bhavan, the President signed an order dissolving the Lok Sabha thus paving the way for the formation of the next government.
Earlier, Dr Manmohan Singh met the President and submitted the resi

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Fight for Advani’s chair

New Delhi

May 17: The Senior BJP leader, Mr L.K. Advani, may have to continue as Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha because the party is not willing to accept his offer to resign from the post. The party feels that at this juncture the vacuum created by Mr Advani’s absence might be difficult to fill. Even though any decision is yet to be taken on this issue, the names of party leaders

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Another witness identifies Kasab

Mumbai, May 18: Another witness in Mumbai terror attack case on Monday identified Pakistani gunman Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab in court, saying an identity card bearing the photograph of the accused was recovered by police in his presence.

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Brahmins deserted Mayawati

Lucknow

May 17: Though the UP Chief Minister, Ms Mayawati, has blamed the shift in Muslim votes for her party’s non-performance in the Lok Sabha elections in UP, it is actually the Brahmins that have deserted the BSP in larger numbers than the Muslims.
Of the 20 Brahmin candidates that the BSP had fielded in the state, only five have managed to emerge victorious.
In Brahmin dominated const

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Elected MPs are worth Rs 3,000cr

New Delhi, May 17: India is home to the largest number of poor in the world, but 543 MPs who have been elected to the Lok Sabha have a combined asset of Rs 3,075 crore.
In a nation where over 28 crore people live below poverty line, the average asset of the MPs elected to the Lower House of Parliament works out to be over Rs five crore. According to UN estimates, 80 per cent of Indians live on l

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Younger MPs emerge in 15th LS polls

New Delhi, May 17: The belief that a politician is still young at 60 may no longer hold good in India, as voters have elected 226 MPs who are less than 50 years of age for the 15th Lok Sabha.
May be it is the effect of the youth appeal of Mr Rahul Gandhi or the induction of over 10 crore youth as the first time voters, the election saw as much as 40 per cent of the MPs below the age of 50 and th

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3 die, 35 hurt in Kerala clashes

Thiruvananthapuram

May 17: Three persons died in a clash between two communities in the
volatile Bheemapally-Cheriyathura beach area in the state capital on Sunday.
Authorities have not yet announced the names of the deceased to avoid
further clashes in the area, which has also seen tensions in the past.
More than 35 people have suffered injuries and most of them have been admitted in th

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No bargain for posts: Mamata

Kolkata, May 17: The Trinamul Congress chief, Ms Mamata Banerjee, on Sunday said that her party would support the new Congress-led government at the Centre, but would not indulge in political bargaining.
“Trinamul Congress will support and work with the Congress-led government at the Centre. We are not in favour of political bargaining. Even when I became the railway minister (during the NDA r

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Lata prefers Test, One Day over Twenty20

Mumbai, May 17: Legendary singer, Lata Mangeshkar, is known for her passion for cricket but the artiste prefers Test cricket and One Day International matches over the newly introduced Twenty20 format.
“I like watching cricket. I prefer to watch test cricket or one day international matches. People who have grown watching them would like to do the same. I don’t like the Twenty20 format and e

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Defending Kasab an uphill task

Mumbai, May 17: With overwhelming evidence in the chargesheet against November 26 Mumbai terror attack accused, Mohammad Ajmal Amir Kasab, his lawyer Abbas Kazmi on Sunday said it was going to be “an uphill task” for him, but he would put “his best foot forward” to save the accused.
“To me, it appears to be an open and shut case... but I have a role to play as a defence lawyer. My job

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Reds squabble after defeat

New Delhi

May 17: Apprehending possible flareups if not a full-scale revolt, the CPI(M) general secretary, Prakash Karat, has decided to cancel the party’s scheduled central committee meeting on Monday, and decided to wrap up proceedings after holding the politburo meeting.
The signal sent by the party is that “policy issues do not require consultations,” which means Mr Karat is in no mo

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Congress works out seat formula

New Delhi/Bengaluru/Chennai

May 17: The UPA leadership is expected to hold consultations on Monday and Tuesday to decide on the composition of the new ministry, and on the specifics of the outside support that it should take.

Sources said the decision on whether to retain the RJD chief, Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav, in the new government would be left to the UPA chairperson, Mrs Sonia Gandhi. Earlie

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Congress cold to SP overtures

NEW DELHI

May 17: The Samajwadi Party is not likely to get any ministerial berth in the new Union Cabinet. Though SP general secretary Amar Singh said on Sunday that his party was willing to extend support to the UPA government, the party failed to get a favourable response from the Congress in its bid to join the government. The SP chief, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, along with the party general se

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BJP looks for change of stance

New Delhi

May 17: With the possible exit of the BJP leader, Mr L.K. Advani, after the saffron party’s poll debacle, a major change in the saffron party could be expected.
A section within the Bharatiya Janata Party now intends to toe a “secular line” and dump it’s Hindutva and hardline politics.
With hawks like the Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi apparently becoming a “liabil

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Deshmukh to contest on his own

New Delhi, May 17: Buoyed by his party’s success in the general elections, the senior Congress leader, Mr Vilasrao Deshmukh on Sunday pitched for contesting the upcoming assembly polls in Maharashtra on its own.
“We want to contest assembly elections in Maharashtra without aligning with any other party,” he told reporters here.
The Congress and the NCP have been running a coalition governm

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Lalu evasive on ministry

Patna, May 17: The RJD President and Railway Minister, Mr Lalu Prasad, on Sunday refused to comment on his chances of being included in the new Cabinet, with a section of Congress leaders opposed to his inclusion.
“It is not the issue right now. I am going to Delhi to attend the meeting of the fourth front to discuss our future course of action and the electoral reverses suffered in Bihar,”

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Strict checks begin after 1st flu case

New Delhi

May 17: A day after India confirmed its first case of A/H1N1 influenza virus, government tightened the screening process of passengers from flu affected countries. Authorities had on Saturday confirmed that a 23-year-old IT student in Hyderabad had tested positive of carrying the virus.
On Sunday authorities also admitted a mother-son duo in Chennai with suspected symptoms of the di

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Kids run amidst moving vehicles

Bengaluru

May 18: Hot pink pants, tiny tops, funky shoes and sporting spirit to boot. It was an endearing sight to see seven-year-olds Rani and Pooja run hand-in-hand at the Sunfeast World Athletics Day run on Sunday. But when one looked behind them and 500 other participants, one could not help but be horror struck at the sight of buses and auto rickshaws racing towards them.
Call it ignoran

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Passport found in room, not rail track

Panaji, May 17: Fresh inconsistencies have surfaced in the police version regarding the death of Russian teenager, Elena Sukhonova, whose body was found along a railway track near here almost a fortnight ago.
Contrary to earlier statements made by the police to the media that the 19-year-old’s passport was found in her purse near her body, the agency learnt that the passport was in fact recover

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‘Zanjeer’ Mehra passes away

Mumbai, May 17: Legendary Bollywood producer-director Prakash Mehra, who gave Amitabh Bachchan his first success with Zanjeer, passed away in a hospital here on Sunday, after prolonged illness.
The 69-year-old Mehra, who was hospitalised for last several days, breathed his last at 7.50 am. He died of pneumonia and multiple organ failure, hospital sources said.
Ironically, people came to know

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BSY registers BJP its biggest poll win

Bengaluru

May 26: As the Congress stalwarts Margaret Alva, Janardhan Poojary and Jaffer Sharief fell by the wayside and former leader of the opposition Mallikarjun Kharge, former chief minister Dharam Singh and Veerappa Moily came through, the Chief Minister Mr B.S. Yeddyurappa kept his promise to the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate, Mr L.K. Advani, delivering a mammoth 19 seats, making Ka

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High fiscal deficit to be looked at

New Delhi

May 16: The new government, when it is formed, might take a re-look at its existing disinvestment policy to overcome the high fiscal deficit.
Accruals from stake sales in government-owned companies can give the government the required financial muscle to go in for high spending in the social and infrastructure sectors.
In the pensions sector, the PFRDA Bill has to be re-introduced

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It’s end of Mandal

New Delhi

May 16: The Mandal issue appears to have run full steam. Exactly two decades after V.P. Singh played the Mandal card, giving rise to leaders, who used caste po-litics to grow from strength to strength to become reg-ional bosses, have been dealt a severe blow.
Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav, Ms Mayawati and Mr Ram Vilas Paswan, all major power centres in national politics, have been left by the

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PM wants Rahul in Cabinet

NEW DELHI
May 16: Thanking the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi and the Congress general Secretary, Mr Rahul Gandhi, for the poll victory Dr Singh said that he would like to include Mr Gandhi in the cabinet.
The Prime Minister said he would try to persuade Rahul Gandhi, scion of the Gandhi family, to join the cabinet after the ruling Congress-led coalition’s win in a general election.

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CWC meet today to thank voters

New Delhi

May 16: The Congress Working Committee (CWC) will meet here on Sunday to thank the voters of the country for the resounding victory of the party in the elections.
“The CWC will meet tomorrow afternoon (Sunday) with a single point agenda of thanking the voters for reposing their faith in the Congress,” AICC general secretary Mr Janardan Dwivedi told reporters on Saturday.
Asked a

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Advani to quit LS post

New Delhi

May 16: After the devastation of the BJP in the elections, the party’s prime ministerial candidate, Mr L.K. Advani, offered to resign from the post of Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha.
Mr Advani is adamant on quitting the post and the BJP has initiated the process of finding a replacement.
The names doing the rounds are Dr Murli Manohar Joshi, Mr Jaswant Singh and Ms Sus

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Left got plan wrong

New Delhi

May 16: The Left’s hammering in West Bengal and Kerala is a major blow to the CPI(M) general secretary, Mr Prakash Karat, with other Left partners demanding a review of their entire strategy.
In Bengal, where the Left has ruled uninterrupted since 1977, alarms bells started ringing over their worst Lok Sabha performance in 32 years, particularly with the state due to hold Assembly

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King Cong

New Delhi

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PM reaction reflects modesty

NEW DELHI

May 16: There was just the trace of a smile on the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh’s face as he spoke to the media alongwith the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, at her 10, Janpath residence on Saturday. No euphoric expressions of triumph, no ecstatic words came from Doctor saab. But that was in keeping with the personality of a man known for his modest, self-effacing nature

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Rahul factor spurs up Congress tally

New Delhi: Till yesterday he was just another political scion. But Rahul Gandhi has emerged a leader in his own right, helping add precious numbers to the Congress tally in Uttar Pradesh and across the country.

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Congress comes back in UP

Lucknow: Surprising everyone but its staunch supporters, the Congress - powered by some indefatigable campaigning by Rahul Gandhi - appeared headed for its biggest comeback in Uttar Pradesh, the state that sends the maximum of 80 MPs, with trends indicating a huge leap for the country's ruling party.

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BJP admits defeat

New Delhi: Conceding that the people's mandate was in favour
of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA), archrival Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Saturday said the results were "far below expectations" of the party and it accepts the verdict "with respect".

"The UPA has come out as the biggest alliance, so the mandate is in their favour. The BJP accepts this mandate of the people with

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Nitish, Naveen open doors to UPA

New Delhi, May 15: Hours before the poll verdict, the JDU(U) leader and Bihar Chief Minister, Mr Nitish Kumar, threw the game open saying he was ready to back any party which would accord special status to Bihar, and the Orissa Chief Minister, Mr Naveen Patnaik’s Biju Janata Dal was in closed-door parleys with the Congress.

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Lawyer threatens to withdraw from case

Mumbai, May 15: On Friday, Ajmal Amir Kasab’s lawyer, Mr Abbas Kazmi almost walked out of the courtroom when the judge asked him not to waste time in trivia.

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BJP focuses on Naidu, Jaya

New Delhi, May 15: The Gujarat Chief Minister, Mr Narendra Modi, is the man of the hour for the BJP, who is working to garner support for the NDA to form the next government.

Mr Modi, who was in New Delhi till Friday morning, returned to Gujarat in the afternoon from where he is likely to leave for Che-nnai on Saturday to hold talks with the AIADMK supremo, Ms J. Jayalalithaa.

The BJP senior

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Girl nabs chain snatcher cop

Bengaluru, May 15: Chain snatchers see women as soft targets, but this gutsy woman refused to be cowed down. V. Bhavya chased a police constable, who tried to snatch her chain, for 2 kms before cornering him at a dead-end on Karekal Road.

Bhavya, 32, was riding home in Viveknagar on her two-wheeler late on Thursday night when the cop, Y. Gangaraju, who is attached to Jnanabharathi police statio

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Girl hit on head with duster, dies

Kolkata, May 15: Corporal punishment claimed the life of a Class V student of Andal Girls’ High School in Burdwan. Eleven-year-old Babli Ghosh, died after her history teacher Rekha Bhagat threw a duster at her for failing to answer a question.

The bereaved parents have lodged an FIR against the accused teacher at the Andal police station. According to sources, on Thursday, Babli failed to wr

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Gowda keeps off meet

New Delhi, May 15: The JD(S) supremo, Mr H.D. Deve Gowda, on Friday decided to skip the crucial Third Front meet on May 18 in New Delhi. He will be away in Tirupati to celebrate his birthday.

Many top Third Front lea-ders from the Orissa Chief Minister, Mr Naveen Patn-aik, to the AIADMK chief, Ms Jayalalithaa, remained “non-committal” on their participation in the May 18 meeting. The TRS ha

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Congress will hold top job: Praful

New Delhi, May 15: The NCP on Friday made it clear that the next Prime Minister would be from the Congress, it being the largest party in the UPA. It also stressed the need to unite secular parties.

Answering questions, the senior NCP leader, Mr Praful Patel, told reporters, “Congress sabse bada dal hai, swabhavik hai unhi ka Pradhan Mantri banega (The Congress is the biggest party in the UP

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HC stays Mulayam’s arrest

Allahabad, May 15: The Allahabad High Court on Friday stayed the arrest of Samajwadi Party supremo, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, in connection with an FIR lodged against his supporters for their alleged misbehaviour with election officials in Etawah district.

The order was passed by a division bench comprising Justice Ravindra Singh and Justice N.A. Moonis on a writ petition filed by Mr Yadav. The S

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Bindra Sr. hospitalised in Delhi

New Delhi, May 15: Olympic gold medallist, Mr Abhinav Bindra’s industrialist father, who was arrested in connection with fraud cases, couldn’t be brought here from Chandigarh with a court there refusing the Delhi police permission to take him as he was medically unfit to travel.

A.S. Bindra, the managing director of Chandigarh-based Punjab Meats Ltd, was arrested by the Economic Offences W

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Amar, Azam spat may split SP

Lucknow, May 15: The Azam-Amar spat that reached a crescendo in the Rampur elections now threatens to split the Samajwadi Party (SP).

The SP president, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, has been pushed into a situation where he will have to make a choice between two party general secretaries, Mr Amar Singh and Mr Azam Khan, since the co-existence of the two in the same party is now out of question.

R

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No looking Left if Sonia hits 245

New Delhi, May 15: Keeping all its post-poll options open, the Congress is actively contemplating taking support from the Left, its former allies, as a last resort in the event of government formation.

In the Congress scheme of things, if the party can manage to reach the figure of 240-245 MPs, along with its existing allies, they may actually not have to bother about taking support of the Lef

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Not averse to Nitish as PM: CPI

Indore, May 15: A day ahead of announcement of Lok Sabha election results, the Communist Party of India general secretary, Mr A.B. Bardhan, on Friday said that the Third Front was not averse to considering the Bihar Chief Minister, Mr Nitish Kumar’s name as one of its possible candidates for the prime ministership if he extends support to them.

“If he (Nitish) extends support to us, we, am

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MiG crashes, 7 injured

Jodhpur, May 15: A MiG-27 fighter aircraft crashed in a village here in this district on Friday, injuring six labourers and a child on the ground.

The MiG-27 pilot, a squadron leader, ejected out of the cockpit safely just before the aircraft crashed in Konkani village in Luni, a few kms from here, while on a routine sortie, said the defence PRO, Lt. Col N.N. Joshi.The plane crashed soon afte

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Justice has come at a price, says Prashant

New Delhi, May 15: After 16 years of fight for justice, Prashant Dhanaka who became paraplegic due to medical negligence by doctors in Nizam

Institute of Medical Sciences (Nims), is elated about the path breaking judgement of the Supreme Court. The Bengaluru-based techie who received appreciation for arguing his own case, however, says there needs to be an overhaul of the justice system.

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Congress hits 200, UPA 260; Singh wants Rahul in team

New Delhi: After winning 200+ seats for the party, and the UPA geting very close to majority, the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, made it clear that Manmohan Singh will be the Prime Minister and he said he would like to have Rahul Gandhi in his Cabinet.

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At Advani's house, silence

New Delhi: Humming with activity till this morning, BJP prime ministerial candidate L K Advani's residence wore a deserted look as news of NDA's poor showing in the Lok Sabha polls trickled in.

Since morning, a frenzied media stationed itself outside the 30, Prithviraj Road residence and a number of BJP leaders like Rajnath Singh went into a huddle at Advani's residence.

Terming results

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Trinamul, Cong trounce Left

Trinamul, Cong trounce Left

Kolkata: The Trinamul Congress-Congress combine created a sensation, leading in 24 Lok Sabha constituencies in West Bengal and delivering a body blow to the left.

Trinamul Congress alone established a lead in 18 seats while its poll partner Congress was ahead in six constituencies. Its electoral ally SUCI was ahead in one seat.

Of the 42 seats, CPI-M-led rul

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26-yr-old ‘baby’ baffles docs

Shillong, May 15: A 26-year-old youth who looks like a toddler has baffled doctors in Meghalaya.

Jerly Lyngdoh is an adult trapped, perhaps forever, in a baby’s body and mind. Born on March 29, 1983, Jerly has not grown beyond 84 cm which is the normal height of a two-year-old baby and weighs about 10 kg. He cannot communicate and needs his mother’s help for any normal activity. In fact, t

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DU adds 18% seats to fit OBCs

New Delhi, May 15: The Delhi University will also increase its seats by another 18 per cent this year to implement the OBC quota.

The leftover seats in the OBC category in the Delhi University will be thrown open to students of general categories this year in line with the directions of the Supreme Court and ministry of HRD.

The guidelines will be followed to make sure students are not left

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Left will not allow BJP PM

New Delhi

May 14: The Left parties are upset with the former Karnataka chief minister and JD(S) leader, Mr H.D. Kumaraswamy, for meeting the Congress chief, Mrs Sonia Gandhi.

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Slumdog kids’ houses razed

Mumbai, May 14: Nearly 20 children, who acted in the Oscar-winning Slumdog Millionaire have been thrown on the streets after Mumbai civic authorities on Thursday morning demolished nearly 50 huts in a slum here, terming the slum unauthorised. Azharuddin Ismail M. Sheikh, the main child star of the movie, said a team of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) came unannounced on Thursday

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Varun gets off Maya’s NSA hook

New Delhi

May 14: The Supreme Court on Thursday directed the Uttar Pradesh government to “immediately” drop proceedings under the National Security Act (NSA) against the BJP leader, Mr Varun Gandhi.
The Mayawati government had charged Mr Gandhi under the NSA for alleged hate speeches in Pilibhit. Mr Gandhi was on parole granted by the Supreme Court, due to expire Thursday evening.
The UP

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President to hold talks with legal experts

New Delhi

May 14: With uncertainty over any party or alliance touching the magic figure of 272 to form the next government at the Centre, the role of President Pratibha Patil has become important.
In such a scenario, the President is likely to hold consultations with legal and constitutional experts.
And following set precedents and conventions may invite the leader of the largest single par

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Ash campaigns for social cause

Cannes, May 14: Aishwarya Rai, a regular at the Cannes Film Festival red carpet is going beyond her glitz and glamour tag. She is beginning to reinvent herself on the global scene as an activist for social and humanitarian causes.
As a step in that direction, the Bollywood diva will, alongside Queen Noor of Jordan, address a press conference at Hotel Martinez here to announce the third edition of

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Aarushi case: CBI is clueless

New Delhi

May 14: One year after the Aarushi Talwar murder case, the CBI is still groping in the dark. The teenaged girl was found murdered, along with domestic help Hemraj, at her house in Noida on May 16, 2008 at her Jalvayu Vihar residence in Noida. It is reliably learnt that the agency is preparing to file an investigation report before the court by the end of this month or in June. Accordi

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Chemical arms destroyed

New Delhi, May 14: India has informed the United Nations that it has destroyed its stockpile of chemical weapons in compliance with the international Chemical Weapons Convention.
With this, India has become the third country after South Korea and Albania to do so.
The Centre notified the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) on March 26 of the fulfilment of its obligations

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MP: Water war begins, 3 killed

Bhopal

May 14: A trailer of the long-expected “paani wars” caused by one of the worst water shortages in Madhya Pradesh was witnessed late on Wednesday when a family of three was done to death in the Shahjahanabad area of the state capital.
The victims, Jeevan Malviya, 42, wife, Sita, 38, and son, Raju, 19, were attacked by a group of youth armed with lathis and knives, who forced their wa

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‘NCP ministers worked against Cong nominees’

Mumbai

May 14: Maharashtra Congress president Manikrao Thakre in a letter written to the National Congress Party’s (NCP) state president R.R. Patil has demanded action against two NCP ministers for working against the official Congress candidates in the Lok Sabha elections.
The Congress has alleged that labour minister Nawab Malik and tribal welfare minister Vijakumar Gavit worked against t

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India destroys its chemical weapons stockpile

India has informed the United Nations that it has destroyed its stockpile of chemical weapons in compliance with the international Chemical Weapons Convention.
With this India has become third country after South Korea and Albania to do so.
The government notified the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) of the fulfilment of its obligations to “completely destroy” its

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Varun for quashing of NSA, claims Rs 10 lakh

New Delhi, May 13: The BJP leader, Mr Varun Gandhi, on Wednesday moved the Supreme Court seeking quashing of his detention under National Security Act citing the state advisory board’s recommendation for revocation of the stringent law against him.

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Rahman unhappy with use of Jai Ho in poll campaign

Chennai, May 13: Music maestro A.R. Rahman, whose compositions in Slumdog Millionaire made him the first Indian to win twin Oscars, is critical of political parties using for a poll campaign the song Jai Ho that he composed for Danny Boyle’s rags-to-riches drama.

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Kerala ATS quizzes Madani

Thiruvananthapuram

May 13: The Kerala’s Anti-Terrorism Squad on Wednesday questioned the People’s Democratic Party chairman, Mr Abdul Nasser Madani, regarding his links with some terror operatives arrested recently.
Though terror suspects arrested in connection with the Bengaluru blasts had confessed that they had met Mr Madani, police had so far not shown keenness in interrogating him.
O

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Tortured wife gets husband’s house

Mumbai, May 13: A woman, who endured 12 years of physical torture and sexual harassment, has won a case against her husband under a law to protect women from domestic violence and is now entitled to a regular maintenance besides getting her daughter’s custody.
The recently introduced Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act changed Veena Krishnan’s (name changed) life, who is a practis

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Amarnath Yatra will commence from June 7

SRINAGAR

May 13: This year’s two-month-long Amarnath yatra will commence on June 7 and conclude on August 5, coinciding with raksha bandhan, the consortium responsible for organising the sacred event in which hundreds of thousands of Hindu devotees from across the country and abroad take part announced here on Wednesday.
A spokesperson of Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) said that its ex

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Hyderabad IIT to offer PhD, MS

Hyderabad

May 13: The Indian Institute of Technology in Hyderabad will offer Master and Ph.D programmes from July this year.
It will offer Master of Technology (M.Tech) in five subjects, the Ph.D will be offered in nine subjects.
The institute had admitted 11 students in Ph.D programmes in January 2009 in chemical engineering, chemistry, civil engineering, computer science and engineering, e

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Gowda Jr in Congress deal

New Delhi/Bengaluru

May 13: Despite the CPI(M)’s and JD(S) leader H.D. Deve Gowda’s claims to the contrary, the former Karnataka chief minister and Mr Gowda’s son, Mr H.D. Kumaraswamy, is believed to have struck a deal with the Congress.

Tuesday’s meeting in New Delhi was the second between Mr Kumaraswamy and the Congress leadership. He had met the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gan

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Jaya keeps options open

Chennai

May 13: The AIADMK leader, Ms Jayalalithaa, continues to keep people and parties guessing on her post-poll plans while asserting that many have made overtures to her but she will decide only after the results are declared on May 16.

“Many people are trying to woo our party but I am not responding to their overtures. I prefer to wait until May 16, until I have the results in my hand

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Indian priests’ monopoly ends at Pashupatinath

Kathmandu

May 13: Ending the centuries-old monopoly of South Indian brahmins, the Nepal’s government has issued a regulation enabling Nepalese citizens and others to become priests, including chief priest, of the famed Pashupatinath Temple here, one of Hinduism’s eight holiest shrines.
The regulation issued by the ministry of culture and state restructure allows any qualified person to bec

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Fire in Paswan’s house

New Delhi, May 13: A fire broke out in the residence of the LJP chief and Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan here today, completely gutting the drawing room, but no one was injured.
Mr Paswan, who returned from Bihar two days ago after hectic campaigning, and his wife were in an adjacent room when the drawing room caught fire at around 12 pm.
The minister and his family were alerted by his aides

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Panic over dummy AK-47s

Mumbai, May 13: Police intercepted a taxi here and recovered six rifles which looked like deadly AK-47s.
To their relief and amusement, the AK-47s were found to be dummy ones, meant for a film shoot.
According to the police, the main control room got a call on Tuesday afternoon. The caller said he had seen three men carrying AK-47 rifles and getting into a taxi near Dadar, central Mumbai. The

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Court acquits widow’s pet dog

Patna, May 13: A happy Raj Kumari Devi on Wednesday woke up tension free and “upbeat” after her pet dog Chhotu won a legal battle in a Bihar court.
This was one of several legal wars against Chhotu that Devi’s neighbours have been waging. Chhotu was sentenced to death six years ago, but Devi obtained clemency for her “only companion.”
This time, Chhotu was accused of breaching peace i

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Gowda’s son hides face, meets Sonia

New Delhi/ Bengaluru

May 12: The Janata Dal (S) state president, Mr H.D. Kumaraswamy, drove into 10 Janpath, the residence of the Congress chief, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, with his face covered.
Mr Kumaraswamy’s fat-her, Mr H.D. Deve Gowda, heads the JD(S), a vocal partner of the Third Front. Mr Kumaraswamy was ac-companied by the Bellary-based Congress leader, Mr K.C. Kondaiah.

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Air France in racism row

Mumbai, May 12: Indian passengers who travelled from Paris to Mumbai on an Air France flight that was delayed by 28 hours on Tuesday alleged that the airline staff ill-treated them and were racially biased.
The passengers told reporters after arriving here that Indians were treated shabbily as compared to passengers of other nationalities.

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Ultras kill 9 Hindi speaking people

Guwahati, May 12: At least 12 people, including nine Hindi-speaking migrant workers, were killed by separatists and up to 70 houses set ablaze in two separate incidents in restive northeast’s Assam and Manipur states, officials said on Tuesday.
A police spokesperson said nine Hindi-speaking people were killed late on Monday inside the Keibul Lamjao National Park in Manipur’s Bishenpur distric

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Venkaiah to await TD move

New Delhi

May 12: The BJP leader, Mr Venkaiah Naidu, on Tuesday said his party would wait for the results on May 16 before moving to woo more allies to its side.
Asked about the Telugu Desam, which the NDA was courting for support, Mr Naidu said, “The TD is an independent party. Let us wait for the results and deci-de,” Mr Naidu said on his return fr-om Hyde-rabad.
Mr Nai-du did a quick c

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Singh calls up Nitish

Patna/New Delhi

May 12: A day after raising doubts about the Bihar Chief Minister, Mr Nitish Kumar’s secular credentials and accusing him of telling “lies” about Central aid for Kosi flood victims, the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, called the JD(U) leader and promised a “relook” at the Kosi issue.

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’71 war hero Nanda dies at 94

New Delhi, May 12: Former Indian Navy chief Admiral Sardarilal Mathradas Nanda, who is best remembered for staging the daring raid on Karachi during the 1971 India-Pakistan war, died here late Monday night after a prolonged illness. He was 94. Nanda is survived by his wife and two sons.
Nanda’s body was consigned to the flames at the Brar Square crematorium with full military honours on Tuesday

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India will develop vaccine for H1N1

New Delhi

May 12: India will work on developing a vaccine for the H1N1 influenza virus. Though no case of this virus (earlier referred to as swine flu) has been reported in India so far, the Centre, during a high-level meeting on Tuesday, chalked out a scientific framework for manufacturing a vaccine for the disease.
Meanwhile, the two suspected cases from Pune have tested negative for the vir

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Kasab is identified by 1 more

Mumbai, May 12: Another witness in Mumbai terror attack case on Tuesday identified prime accused Ajmal Kasab in a special court and said he (Ajmal) had fired at him (the witness) and assistant police inspector Tukaram Omble at Girgaum Chowpatty on November 26 last year.
“While Omble fell to bullets fired from AK-47 rifle by Kasab, I sustained a bullet injury in the waist,” the witness, API S

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Concubine can’t be prosecuted

New Delhi, May 12: A woman in a live-in relationship, concubine or a girlfriend cannot be prosecuted for dowry or complaints relating to harassment of a wife by her husband or others in the matrimonial house, the Supreme Court has ruled.
“Living with another woman may be an act of cruelty on the part of the husband for the purpose of judicial separation or dissolution of marriage but the same,

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Release of Rajiv killer will fuel passion: TN

New Delhi, May 12: Stating that the current Sri Lankan conflict may only generate further passion in him, the Tamil Nadu government on Tuesday defended in the Supreme Court its decision not to permit premature release of P.R. Ravichandran, a convict in the infamous Rajiv Gandhi assassination case.
“Crime is grave and the former Prime Minister of the country was killed along with 16 others. The

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‘Left was ready for compromise’

New Delhi

May 12: The left parties were far closer to agreeing to the Indo-US nuclear deal than it was perceived, said Mr Sanjay Baru, former media advisor to the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh.
Speaking to the BBC news, Mr Baru said, “As a senior Left leader communicated a compromise formula to Dr Singh was willing to let the Left Front take credit for securing a final agreement that was

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Court convicts Runu

NEW DELHI

May 12: The former bureaucrat Ms Runu Ghosh, who was in the news along with the former Union telecommunications minister, Mr Sukh Ram in corruption cases, was convicted by a Delhi court on Tuesday in connection with a disproportionate assets case.
The court fixed Wednesday to hear the arguments on quantum of sentence after saying that the charges against Ms Runu has been proved “

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Kasab laughs in court on rifle identification

Mumbai, May 11: A key witness on Monday in a special court identified two AK-47 rifles allegedly used by Pakistani gunman Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab and his accomplice Abu Ismail to kill people in Mumbai on November 26.

When the weapons were being identified, the accused, Kasab was laughing at the witness and shaking his head indicating that the weapons did not belong to him.

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Father stabs son to death over IPL

Mumbai, May 11: A youth was allegedly stabbed to death by his father after the teenage boy insisted on watching IPL cricket match last night in suburban Andheri, police said here today.
Meghnath Kamble allegedly stabbed his son Sandesh in a fit of rage with a knife at his one room residence following an argument between them over watching the cricket match, officials said.
“Sandesh, 24, who

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Naxals gun down 12 cops

Bhopal/Raipur

May 11: Less than a week after gunning down 11 people in the Bastar region and publicly stabbing a thana in-charge to death a day later, Naxalites late on Sunday killed a dozen policemen and a civilian, and injured six, in an ambush at Risgaon, near Dhamtari, and Kanker, 130 km from the Chhattisgarh capital.
Among those who lost their lives were 10 constables, one havaldar and o

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Religious places hit by sex tourism: CBI

New Delhi

May 11: Terming human trafficking as the world’s third largest organised crime after narcotics trade and illicit arms trafficking, CBI director Ashwani Kumar on Monday said India occupies a unique position in this illicit trade as it is a “source, transit and destination” of human trafficking groups.
While talking to reporters on the sidelines of a two-day seminar on Organised

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BJD may return to BJP alliance

New Delhi

May 11: The Biju Janata Dal, which had recently severed ties with the BJP, has indicated that it may be willing to return to the NDA.
BJD sources said the party had a change of heart as it feels it is likely to fall about 15 seats short of a majority in the Orissa Assembly and the numbers cannot be made up by its current allies, the Left, NCP and JMM.
The BJD’s internal survey has

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Singh reaches out to estranged allies

Ludhiana

May 11: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, signalled a thaw ahead of the final phase of polling, and said it was possible to make peace with estranged allies, but at the same time appeared to firmly shut the door on a post-poll partnership with the JD(U), casting aspersions on the secular credentials of its leader and Bihar Chief Minister, Mr Nitish Kumar.
Insisting the UPA would

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Kerala minister acquitted

Thiruvananthapuram

May 11: The Kerala Congress (J) leader, Mr P.J. Joseph, who was cleared of sexual harassment charges by a Sri Perumbudoor court on Monday, is all set to re-enter the Kerala Cabinet with a flourish.
Mr Joseph, who was handling the public works portfolio, had to resign within 100 days of the swearing in of the V.S. Achuthanandan ministry after he was accused of misbehaving wit

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Officer clicks nude pictures

Panaji, May 11: An Army officer was arrested on Monday for allegedly clicking obscene pictures of a Mumbai-based teenager and blackmailing her, police said here.
Major Tarun Singh, 27, currently posted in Srinagar, was arrested following a complaint by the girl, Panaji police inspector Nolasco Raposo said.
Singh was in Goa with his family recently and was staying in the room next to where the

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Petrol from polythene: Court silent on claim

New Delhi, May 11: Have two Indians actually discovered a way to make petrol out of polythene waste? In an unusual ruling, the Supreme Court, while ordering trial of two Madhya Pradesh men for allegedly defrauding two Dalits of their “invention” to make petrol from polythene bags, has kept quiet on the authenticity of their claim.
A bench of Justice Tarun Chatterjee and Justice H.L. Dattu res

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Lone tells Mirwaiz: Mind your business

Kupwara, J&K

May 10: In a virtual snub to Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, People’s Conference candidate Sajjad Lone, a former separatist leader, has asked him to mind his “business” saying Kashmir issue was no one’s monopoly.
The 41-year-old Lone, son of former separatist leader Abdul Gani Lone who was shot dead by Hizbul Mujahideen militants, is engaged in hectic cam

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India, Kazakhstan to sign nuke agreement

New Delhi, May 10: India and Kazakhstan are expected to sign by next month a broad-based civil nuclear agreement under which the uranium-rich central Asian country will supply fuel and technology to New Delhi.
India has sent a draft of the inter-governmental agreement for cooperation in peaceful uses of Nuclear Energy to Kazakhstan for its perusal before the two sides ink the pact.
Kazakhstan

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Man threatens to kill Obama, held

Patna, May 10: A man has been detained in Bihar’s Aurangabad district
for allegedly calling up the US embassy in New Delhi and threatening to kill
US President Barack Obama, police said Sunday. He is being quizzed and his
mental state ascertained.

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KCR sees Advani as PM

Ludhiana

May 10: The Chief Ministers, Mr Nitish Kumar and Mr Narendra Modi, travelled all the way to Ludhiana on Sunday to clasp each other’s hand and tell the people of India that all was really well between them.

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Nitish Kosi refrain sign of staying in state politics

Patna

May 10: Not known to be an overt aspirant for the Prime Minister’s post unlike some of his political peers in Bihar, Mr Nitish Kumar’s address to the NDA rally in Ludhiana on Sunday is viewed in his home state as an indication of his rootedness to Bihar and a desire to serve the state for more time.
The Bihar CM, who has consistently said over the past two weeks that he has no ambit

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Pak Sikhs, Hindus want India visas

CHANDIGARH

May 10: Scores of Sikh and Hindu families who have been rendered homeless by the Taliban in Pakistan’s Swat territory want Indian visas to seek shelter with relatives living in Amritsar.
Essentially tradesmen, Sikh and Hindu families in Amritsar, Pakistan’s frontier provinces and further westwards in Afghanistan, have sustained mutual links despite being divided by political bo

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Buddha says he misses Somanth

Kolkata

May 10: While chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee is proposing “in his own way” for expelled party leaders Somnath Chatterjee and Saifuddin Chowdhury to be re-inducted in the party, CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat on Sunday disposed it saying that “it’s not right time to think over it”.
Significantly, Mr Bhattacharjee in an interview to a local television channel ha

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Cops look for 2 waiter friends

Panaji, May 10: Two Indian waiters working in different restaurants at Baga beach here are under police scanner in connection with the mysterious death of a Russian girl who was found dead on the railway tracks, 15 km from here.
Elena Sukhanova’s mutilated body was found on the railway track at Revora town on Friday.
Initial reports indicated that the deceased was 24-year-old, but the state

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Breast feeding can prevent epilepsy

Mumbai, May 10: Immediate breast feeding to newly born babies, especially those born with low weight, is vital in preventing childhood epilepsy and other forms of brain diseases, a recent study has said.
When new born babies are not fed within few hours of birth due to various reasons, they are exposed to low blood glucose which leads to convulsions on the second or third day.
“It was observe

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Can’t send Army to Lanka: PM

Chennai

May 9: Asserting that India had done all it could to help the Tamils in Sri Lanka, Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh said his government was in touch with Colombo “on a daily basis” to bring about a political settlement “within the framework of a united and federal Sri Lanka.”
In saying so, he distanced himself from DMK ally, Dr M. Karunanidhi, who had recently extended support

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Varun for reviving sterilisation policy

Pilibhit, UP

May 9: The BJP’s latest Hindutva icon and Lok Sabha candidate from Pilibhit, Mr Varun Gandhi, has called for reintroduction of an incentive-based sterilisation programme to check the country’s burgeoning population, and has proposed at least one year’s compulsory military service for citizens.
Speaking to this newspaper, he said that as India was a democracy it would be wr

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Nandigram hit by political violence

Kolkata

May 9: Nandigram turned into a battle zone again as two people were killed in escalating political violence and many were injured during the 12-hour bandh in the area. Another person was killed in Howrah taking the post-poll violence death toll in the state up to 12.
A local CPI(M) leader of Nandigram said that another party supporter was killed although his body has not yet been foun

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States need to speed up coastal security

Panaji, May 9: Coastal states need to accelerate the implementation of measures initiated to prevent people from illegally entering the county via sea in the wake of 26/11 terrorist attack in Mumbai, a top Navy officer on Saturday said.
“Coastal security-related steps are being taken by state agencies and governments... People are doing their best, but the pace at which things are moving is ra

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Gill irked by SMS-based IPL games

New Delhi, May 9 (IANS) Sports Minister M.S. Gill Saturday lashed out at the Indian Premier League (IPL) for introducing SMS-based ball-to-ball predictions, dubbing it “commercial use of cricket for business gains” and criticised the Indian board for allowing it.
Gill viewed predicting games as gambling and asked the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to restrain the IPL authorities

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Pak cuts troops on border

ISLAMABAD

May 9: Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari has said that Pakistan had shifted troops from its eastern border with India to fight the Taliban in the lawless tribal areas.
“The Indian border is sometimes hot and sometimes cold. But democracies are always trying to get friendly with each other. We are trying to improve our relationship with India,” Mr Zardari said, adding, Pakistan

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2 held in Delhi for fake visa racket

NEW DELHI

May 9: Two persons have been arrested by the special cell of the Delhi police for allegedly being involved in fake visa racket. The police have recovered more than 50 fake passports and other forged documents from the accused.
Acting on a tip, a special cell team carried out a raid at the West Patel Nagar office of Anil Dhawan, a resident of the same area, who was running a travel ag

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Bengal post-poll violence toll rises to 12

Kolkata

May 9: Nandigram turned into a battle zone again as two people were killed in escalating political violence and many were injured during the 12-hour bandh in the area. Another person was killed in Howrah taking the post-poll violence death toll in the state up to 12. A local CPI(M) leader of Nandigram said that another party supporter was killed although his body has not yet been found.

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LeT militants killed in J&K clashes

JAMMU

May 9: Two dreaded Lashkar-e-Tayyaba militants, including a “divisional commander” Abu Samama — a Pak national, were killed by the security forces on Saturday in Dhar Dashnan area of Doda district.
One Army jawan was also injured in the action. The militants were holed up in a house, which the forces blasted after evacuating the family. Other slain miltants has been identified as

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Stars say Singh will make way for Rahul

New Delhi

May 9: Uncertainty over the outcome of the Lok Sabha elections may force the Congress to look right, left and centre, but astrologers say that the Congress just has to look heavenwards for answers.

Astrologer Reeta Shanker Seth, who had predicted the 2004 poll outcome as early as January that year, is forecasting a Congress victory again with the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh,

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Man fined for voting in Bihar

Patna, May 9: A man has been ostracised and fined Rs15,000 for exercising his right to vote in Bihar’s Nalanda constituency.
His neighbours boycotted the poll on Thursday to protest lack of development. Mr Chinis Kumar, in his 30s, was the only voter who exercised his franchise on Thursday despite a poll boycott call in three villages of Dharhara, Daudpur and Inayatpur in Nalanda. Mr Kumar, a

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Kasab shot Omble: Eyewitness

Mumbai, May 8: The first eyewitness in the Mumbai terror attack case on Friday told the special court that he had seen prime accused Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab firing from his AK-47 rifle at assistant sub inspector (ASI) Tukaram Omble, who fell to the bullets at Girgaun Chowpaty on November 26 last year.

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SC refers seniors to psychiatric counsel

New Delhi, Bengaluru, May 8: Accepting the report of the two-member committee appointed by it to suggest ways to curb ragging, the Supreme Court on Friday directed all state governments to set up committees to look into such incidents and prevent them.

A bench headed by Justice Arijit Pasayat directed a series of measures to be undertaken by the state governments for preventing ragging.

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NSA lifted on Varun

Lucknow, May 8: In a major embarrassment to the Mayawati government, the state advisory board of the Allahabad High Court has “strongly recommended immediate revocation” of the National Security Act against the BJP leader, Mr Varun Gandhi.

The state advisory board, which reviewed the invo-king of the NSA against Mr Gan-dhi, has strongly disapproved of the Mayawati government’s decision to

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HC designates 9 judges for trial

Ahmedabad, May 8: The Gujarat High Court has designated nine judges to carry out the trial in the 2002 post-Godhra riot cases being probed by the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT). Of the nine special courts, four will be in Ahmedabad, two each in Mehsana and Anand, and one at Himmatnagar in Sabarkantha district.

The additional sessions judge, Mr P.R. Patel, will try God

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Rahul plays Tamil card, vows political solution

Sivagangai/Tiruchy, May 8: Embracing the state’s “favourite” poll plank of Eelam Tamils, Congress general secretary, Mr Rahul Gandhi, promised his election rallies in Sivagangai and Tiruchy that if elected back to power, the Congress-led government would do everything possible to get a political solution for the Tamils in Sri Lanka “within a democratic framework.”

“The Government of

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Minister in soup for threats

Panaji, May 8: The Goa health minister, Mr Vishwajeet Rane was chargesheeted for allegedly threatening a social activist in 2007.

Old Goa police which is investigating the case filed the chargesheet on Friday afternoon in a local court after the Goa bench of Bombay High Court directed investigation officer, Mr Gurudas Gawade to do the same.

The court was hearing a contempt petition against

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‘Goa, still a soft target for terror’

Panaji, May 8: Numerous illegal landing zones, no proper mechanism to check trawlers, unverified migrant workers employed on board fishing vessels and a media-sensitive tourism hub, continue to make Goa a target for terror attacks, maritime officials said.

Speaking at a seminar on homeland security, senior officials of the Indian Navy and the Coast Guard were critical of the government for bei

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Orphan from Delhi is hero in Swindon

London, May 8: In a story that has touched the hearts of many, a child adopted by British parents from an orp-hanage in Delhi has gro-wn up to raise thousands of po-unds for the institution and will be given the ‘Pride of Swindon’ award next week.

Swindon-based Ali McCallum, now 12, was adopted by Neil and Kauser McCallum when he was four-months-old. Ali was left in a basket outside the Pa

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Child’s health linked to mother’s height

New Delhi, May 8: Whatever the factors that determine the height of a girl, a new research suggests a link between the health of the offspring of mother of short stature.

Medical experts, however, do not agree to the findings saying there is no biological link between mother’s height and the child’s health.

The research at the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) has found a link betw

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Dutt can go abroad for shooting

New Delhi, May 8: Bollywood actor and Samajwadi Party general secretary, Sanjay Dutt, who is on bail in connection with the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case, was on Friday allowed by the Supreme Court to go abroad for six months for the shooting of five films.

Dutt had moved to the apex court with the details of his itinerary about his visit to South Africa, Canada, the United States, the United

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Varun backs forced sterilisation

London: Varun Gandhi, whose hate speeches landed him in jail, favours conscription and intends to follow footsteps of his late father Sanjay Gandhi by offering a strong leadership.

The BJP's candidate from Pilibhit told 'The Telegraph' daily that he would propose a bill in Parliament to introduce compulsory military service for all Indians to unite the country and overcome caste and religious

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Rahul effect: Lalu Paswan keep off

New Delhi, May 8: Signalling that all is not well within the ruling UPA ahead of the general election results, two Union ministers, Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav and Mr Ram Vilas Paswan, stayed away from the meeting of the Union Cabinet here on Friday.

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13 charred to death in Salem

Namakkal

May 7: As many as 13 workers from Bihar were charred to death and six others suffered severe burns in a major fire that broke out in a bran oil mill here on Wednesday night.
They were part of a team of 33 workers who were on the night shift at the Vaigai MPR Agro Industries Private Limited, run by Mr Mani of Tiruchy and located at Valayapatti village on the Namakkal-Tiruchy road.
Th

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Kodnani’s bail hearing adjourned

Ahmedabad

May 7: The Senior BJP leader and former Gujarat minister, Ms Maya Kodnani’s bail hearing in the 2002 riot case has been adjourned till May 14 by a local court here on Thursday.
Ms Kodnani, who is accused in Naroda Gam and Naorda Patiya cases, pertaining to the killing of 106 people during the riots, had applied for bail last month, along with the former VHP leader, Mr Jaydeep Pate

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Winner is MP, loser is MP in UP

LUCKNOW

May 7: Five Lok Sabha constituencies in Uttar Pradesh are witnessing a unique battle where sitting MPs are pitted against each other.
Changes in party loyalties and delimitation of seats have created this situation in which the winner will be a MP and the loser will also be a MP (of the 14th Lok Sabha).
Interestingly, seven of the ten MPs who are contesting against each other still b

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Realty firms hit out at Nano housing dreams

New Delhi

May 7: Real estate developers like DLF have challenged the viability of Tata’s plan to provide very low cost housing, starting from Rs 4 lakh. The builders’ lobby is abuzz over the recent move by the Tata Group.

“Such types of flats can be made only on zero-cost land acquisitions. We will have to see how the Tata group can provide flats at such cheap rates on freshly acquire

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Majority of pandits stay away

SRINAGAR

May 7: While Kashmiri separatists stayed away from voting in the belief that such exercises cannot become a substitute to the promised plebiscite and that New Delhi has always used them to legitimise its rule over what they insist is “disputed territory” of Jammu and Kashmir, the Valley’s Brahmin community — the pandits — were not any curious either, but for a different reaso

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H1N1 suspects in B’luru

Bengaluru

May 7: Two men who arrived at Bengaluru International Airport (BIA) on a flight from the US early Thursday morning have been quarantined after exhibiting symptoms of the H1N1 influenza, a senior health official said.
Satyajeet Singh Chouhan and Kammam Mahendra Reddy, who flew in from Chicago on a Lufthansa Airlines flight that landed at BIA at around 12.30 am, have been admitted to t

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Oil mill fire kills 13 in TN

At least 13 people died and eight were injured when a fire broke out in an oil mill in Tamil Nadu’s Salem district, an official said.
The fire broke out around 10 pm on Wednesday in the mill that makes oil from rice bran.
“The injured have been admitted to a hospital and investigation is on,” district collector U. Sahayam said.
He said 10 fire tenders were used to douse the raging fire af

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India’s NPT entry is top goal: US

United Nations, May 6: The US wants India along with Pakistan, Israel and North Korea to join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), a top Obama administration official has said.
“Universal adherence to the NPT itself — including by India, Israel, Pakistan and North Korea — remains a fundamental objective of the US,” Ms Rose Gottemoeller, assistant secretary of state said in her ope

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And now, it’s Nano houses

Mumbai

May 6: After luring the common man with the world’s cheapest car Nano, the Tata group has come up with ultra low cost houses.
A 283-square-feet flat comprising a room and a kitchen at Boisar, 100 km from Mumbai, would be priced at Rs 3.9 lakh under the brand Shubh Griha.
Developed by Tata Hous-ing Development Co. Ltd, the first of its kind township project will come up at Boisar —

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India has best IP laws

Bengaluru, May 6: India has been ranked as the country with the world’s most consumer-friendly intellectual property (IP) laws since its copyright regulations allow citizens great freedom to access and utilise information for educational and development purposes.
This was stated in a study of 16 countries, undertaken by the Malaysia-based Consumers International, which calls itself the “world

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Club president held for sleazy SMS

Chennai

May 6: Showing your anger through SMS may land you in the police lock-up.
The president of a popular club in the city, who reacted “very strongly and vulgarly” through SMS to a comment by one of the woman directors of the same club, found himself behind bars on Wednesday.
The Chennai police cyber cell arrested Mr Luv Kumar, president of Haddows Club, Nungambakkam, on Wednesday f

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Kasab claims he is not guilty

Mumbai

May 6: A special court on Wednesday framed 86 charges against Ajmal Aamir Kasab, Fahim Arshad Mohammad Yusuf Ansari, Sabauddin Ahmed Shabbir Shaikh, the nine slain terrorists and 35 persons wanted for involvement in the November 26 terror attacks.
The charges against the accused were framed individually as well as collectively on 86 counts running into over 50 pages. The accused were

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Rahman was paid Rs 1.5 cr for show

Kozhikode, May 6: Double Oscar winner A.R. Rahman was paid a whopping Rs 1.5 crore for the Jai Ho live concert here on Sunday.
“We booked the show paying Rs 1.5 crore,” P.V. Abdul Wahab, MP and chairman of Kerala-based NGO Keraleeyam, the organiser of the show, told reporters here. Touted to be the most expensive musical extravaganza held in recent times, it had netted sizeable profit, he sa

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Pookutty owes success to Amitabh

Mumbai, May 6: Crediting Amitabh Bachchan of being a “guiding light” of sound recordists in Hindi cinema, Oscar winning sound engineer Resul Pookutty has said that he owes his international recognition to Big B.
Bachchan has always been involved in and supervised the post-production stage of his films.
“He would witness how the film is shaping up. He has gifted a library of sound effect

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3-ft rod removed from chest

Lucknow, May 6: A team of doctors performed a marathon 12-hour surgery to remove a three-foot-long rod from a 60-year-old truck driver’s chest, officials said on Wednesday.
The iron rod pierced Shivanand’s chest when his vehicle collided with a stationary truck in the Mohanlalganj locality in the wee hours of Tuesday.
“The truck carrying iron rods was on the roadside without any back ligh

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Kasab pleads not guilty

The prime accused in the November 26 Mumbai attacks, Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, pleads not guilty to charges framed against him by special court.
The special court framed charges against Kasab and two others under Sections of the Indian Penal Code, Arms Act, Explosives Act, Explosive Substances Act, Passport Act, Railways Act and Unlawful Acitivites (Prevention) Act.


Nitish, Left: Thanks, but no thanks

New Delhi/Patna

May 5: The Left parties and the JD(U) on Tuesday spurned AICC general secretary, Mr Rahul Gandhi’s overtures.
The CPI(M) general secretary, Mr Prakash Karat, said, “If the Congress thinks we’ll support them again, they are living in a fool’s paradise.” The JD(U) leader and Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar was comparatively polite. “I thank Rahul Gandhi for admiring

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Rs 1mn for poll results prediction

Mangalore

May 5: Who will win the Lok Sabha elections is now a million rupee question. A rationalist from Mangalore has offered Rs 10 lakh to anyone who is able to accurately predict the outcome of the polls, hoping to demystify astrology and win over its followers to his side.
Mr Narendra Nayak, president of the Federation of Indian Rationalists’ Association, has over the years offered var

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Aerobridge hits Air India plane

Mumbai, May 5: An Air India aircraft was hit and its door damaged after an aerobridge hit it at the airport here on Tuesday morning. The pilot, co-pilot and two ground staff were taken off duty following the incident.
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has also ordered an investigation into what is being
considered a major breach of safety, a spokesperson of the civil aviation min

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‘J&K: Obama may pressure India’

NEW DELHI

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Rahul has good word for Naidu

New Delhi, May 5: Keeping post-poll options for alliances open, Mr Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday expressed confidence that the Left parties would back Dr Manmohan Singh as the Prime Minister and appeared to reach out to key the BJP allies such as the JD-U and the TDP.

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Nepal parties make progress to form govt

New Delhi

May 5: A meeting of all 25 parliamentary parties convened by the CPN(UML) on Tuesday made further progress towards propping up an alternate government. The CPN(UML) will likely head a new coalition, supported by the Nepali Congress and others.
The Maoists, who command 238 seats in the 601-member Constituent Assembly, and the Madhesi Janadhikar Forum, which is the fourth largest part

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CBI questions George in ARV bungling case

New Delhi

May 5: The CBI on Monday questioned the former defence minister, Mr George Fernandes, in connection with the alleged bungling of Rs 51.83 crore in the purchase of armoured recovery vehicles from 1998 to 2000.
A CBI team led by DIG, Mr Tilotama Verma, reached Mr Fernandes’ house on Monday morning and questioned him in connection with the case as his name figured in the FIR filed by

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CBI files case against three CRPF officers

New Delhi

May 5: The CBI on Tuesday registered a case against four senior officials of the Central Reserve Police Force, including an inspector-general rank officer, for alleged corruption and bungling in the recruitment for ranks of the force’s special anti-Naxal force Cobra.
According to CBI sources the agency has named IG Bihar Pushkar Singh, DIG, Muzaffarpur, T.M. Bakssal and two command

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20 killed as live wire falls on bus

Patna

May 5: At least 20 people were killed and over 44 injured when an overcrowded bus caught fire after an overhanging electric wire fell on it in Bihar’s northern Sitamarhi district on Tuesday.
The incident, which sent shock waves across Bihar and stirred up resentment against Bihar’s electricity department, happened at Sharifpur village near Pupri in Stamarhi when the bus was on its wa

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Leaders fast against violence

Thiruvanananthapuram

May 5: The leaders of the Congress-led United Democratic Front on Tuesday conducted a day-long fast in the northern district of Kannur to protest against the “violent politics” of the CPI(M).
Politics in the volatile district has been in turmoil since the voting day on April 16. While the UDF alleged that the CPI(M) was plotting violence for fear of a poll setback, th

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Azam not keen on quitting

Lucknow

May 5: Scotching rumours that he is quitting the Samajwadi Party, its Muslim face, Mr Azam Khan, has said he is not able to cut off his “emotional bondings” with party chief, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, but made it clear that he will never campaign alongside the former BJP leader, Mr Kalyan Singh.
Mr Khan said his party should stop banking on Mr Kalyan Singh, whom he accused of being t

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UP leaders face tough test in fourth phase

Lucknow

May 5: For the BJP president, Mr Rajnath Singh, it is a question of establishing his identity as a leader of the masses. For the Samajwadi Party president, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, it is a matter of retaining his political base. For the Rashtriya Lok Dal president, Mr Ajit Singh, it is an opportunity to reaffirm his base in Jatland and for the former BJP leader, Mr Kalyan Singh, it is a

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PM calls plan panel

NEW DELHI

May 5: With just a fortnight left for the results of the general elections, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has surprisingly called a meeting of the Planning Commission members on Wednesday to assess his government’s performance.
The Plan panel is expected to seek Dr Singh’s approval on a dossier, which it has prepared on the achievements of the UPA government.
The move, in the

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Adnan’s wife files FIR against him

Mumbai, May 5: Singer Adnan Sami is facing possible arrest after his wife Saba lodged an FIR accusing him of torture, cheating and extortion, the police said on Tuesday.
The police said they on Tuesday served a 72-hour notice to Adnan prior to his arrest, allowing him time to seek anticipatory bail in accordance with a court directive.
This is not for the first time that Saba has filed a compla

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Costliest Nano gets the most bookings

New Delhi, May 4: Tata Motors on Monday said it has received over 2.03 lakh bookings for its Rs 1 lakh car Nano, garnering nearly Rs 2,500 crore.

The bookings were double of allotted number of cars for delivery. Fully paid bookings were nearly Rs 2,500 crore, the company said.

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Kodnani booked for destroying evidence

Ahmedabad

May 4: Former BJP minister Maya Kodnani, arrested by the Special Investigation team (SIT) for her alleged role in the Gujarat riots, has now been charged with destroying evidence.
Additional chargesheets have been filed in connection with the Naroda Gaam and Naroda Patiya riot cases in which Ms Kodnani is a prime accused. She has been charged under Section 201 of the PC for destruct

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Friendship on with Kalyan: Mulayam

Lucknow, May 4: The Samajwadi Party chief, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, on Monday said there “is no going back on the friendship” with Mr Kalyan Singh, despite receiving flak from friends and foes alike on joining hands with the former BJP leader.
“There is no going back on the friendship with the former BJP leader, Mr Kalyan Singh,” Mr Mulayam told reporters during his election tour of Etawa

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Women in Army battle for equality

New Delhi, May 4: Major Leena Grover will have to quit the Army in August. She doesn’t have a choice. As a woman, she’s entitled to just 14 years in service. But over 20 serving and retired women Army officers are fighting a battle in the Delhi High Court to change this.
“A man can be re-employed as an officer after completing his service, but a woman officer is not given this weightage; so

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IPL fever catches up with Amitabh

Mumbai, May 4: The IPL fever has not spared even megastar Amitabh Bachchan and he doesn’t miss watching matches especially when his favourite team — Mumbai Indians is playing.
However, the actor is upset over the two successive defeats of Mumbai Indians and expressed his frustration to “EF” (extended family) as he refers to his readers on his blog.
“Doing nothing and sitting in front

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Boy from small town is topper of Class X

Belgaum

May 4: SSLC toppers have this year come from Karnataka’s little known backwoods, its taluks and panchayats. SSLC in Karnataka is equivalent to Class X. Each one’s is a heartwarming tale of courage and grit, of pulling himself up by the bootstraps and not allowing his birth or immediate environment to get in the way.
Shivanand Pattanshetty, who is the son of a daily wage labourer,

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Black money case hearing on July 20

NEW DELHI

May 4: The Supreme Court on Monday posted for July 20 the matter of the alleged inaction of the government in bringing back black money stashed away in foreign banks for further hearing.
A bench, headed by Chief Justice, Mr K.G. Balakrishnan, did not issue a notice to the government but allowed the petitioners, including former law minister, Mr Ram Jethmalani, to file a comprehensiv

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SC: No escape for harassing partner

New Delhi, May 3: The Supreme Court has held that a man cannot escape criminal prosecution for harassing a woman over dowry or other issues merely on the plea that she was not his legally wedded wife.
A bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and Asok Kumar Ganguly ruled that the IPC Sections 304 B (dowry death) and 498A (harassment of woman by husband/family members) would apply even if the husband cl

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Rivals are unmasked: Sonia

Chandigarh, May 3: Asserting that the Congress was fully capable of dealing with any terror threat, Mrs Sonia Gandhi on Sunday said the party’s rivals have been “unmasked” and were resorting to levelling allegations as they were bereft of issues.
“They (rivals) have no issue to seek votes. The people have earlier given opportunities to other parties both at the Centre and the states, but

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Wife suspecting hubby of affair not cruel: HC

Mumbai, May 3: Interpreting cruelty in divorce cases, the Bombay High Court has delivered a significant ruling that if a wife, who has been asked to sleep in a separate room by her husband, suspects about him having an extramarital affair and inquires about the same, it cannot be termed as mental cruelty.
“...when a wife contends that the husband had abandoned physical relationship, it was nat

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Redefine rape for strict action: HC

New Delhi, May 3: Concerned with the lesser sentences given to culprits committing sexual assault of different forms due to absence of a stricter law, the Delhi High Court has asked the Centre to consider the Law Commission report and include “digital rape” while widening the definition of rape.
“Unfortunately, the criminal law of our country does not recognise this form (digital rape) of

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Juniors bullied at posh school

Shimla, May 3: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal on Sunday ordered a probe into an alleged case of ragging in the prestigious Lawrence School at Sanawar after seven Class 12 students were sent home for beating up juniors in the school campus last week.
Dhumal said an official team comprising a subdivisional magistrate and a superintendent of police had been sent to the school to i

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B.R. Chopra Films sued for plagiarism

Mumbai, May 3: Hollywood studio Twentieth Century Fox has moved the Bombay High Court against B.R. Chopra Films seeking Rs 7 crore in damages and an injunction against the release of the Hindi film Banda Yeh Bindaas Hai alleging it was a remake of Oscar-winning My Cousin Vinny.
The suit will come up for hearing on May 7 before the High Court, which will decide on granting interim relief prayed f

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Pro-LTTE mob attacks Army

Coimbatore, May 2: A mob of LTTE supporters, including some women, attacked a convoy of Indian Army trucks at Neelambur near Coimbatore on Saturday, believing that the vehicles were carrying weapons for the Sri Lankan military for use against the LTTE.

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Widen definition of rape: HC

New Delhi, May 3: Concerned with the lesser sentences given to culprits committing sexual assault of different forms due to absence of a stricter law, Delhi High Court has asked the Centre to consider the Law Commission report and include "digital rape" while widening the definition of rape.

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Forests fires raging in Uttarakhand

Dehradun, May 3: With mercury soaring, forest fires in the hill state of Uttarakhand have set alarm bells ringing as 2426 hectares of jungles have already destroyed.

As the heat wave grips the hill state, forest department has warned that the wildfires would rage further. Temperatures in Uttarakhand reached as high as 41 degrees Celsius on April 30, breaking the record of 39 years. Met directo

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Germany has given tax evaders’ details

New Delhi, May 2: Assuring the Supreme Court that it was trying to retrieve black money stashed in tax havens abroad, the government on Saturday said it has already received information from Germany on Indian money in a tax haven and income-tax sleuths were following up the matter.

The finance ministry revealed this in a 27-page affidavit submitted to the apex court in response to a lawsuit acc

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Kasab is above 21 years: Court

Mumbai, May 2: A special court, after hearing the arguments on whether or not Ajmal Amir Kasab was a minor at the time of the Mumbai attacks last year, ruled on Saturday that the gunman was above 21 years of age on 26/11.

Defence counsel Abbas Kazmi pointed out various contradictions in the documents produced by the prosecution to ascertain Kasab’s age. However, special Judge M.L. Tahiliyani

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Now, SMS can also secure stolen vehicle

Chennai, May 2: If one thinks that messaging from a mobile is only for fun, think again. Three students of KCG college of technology have come up with an innovative system of securing a vehicle from any kind of theft by sending a message to the theft-proof system they have developed.

The theft avert system, which has a circuit attached to Global Positioning System (GPS) and Global System for M

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Army men rough up civilians

Coimbatore, May 2: The military trucks that were attacked by pro-LTTE groups were allowed to leave for their destination, the Madukkarai camp about 40 km away, after police cleared the road.

They were returning from Hyderabad after training. Forty minutes later, a truck carrying about a dozen soldiers reached the spot. It appeared that the men had been briefed about the attack. They beat up eve

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No H1N1 cases in India

New Delhi, May 2: The health authorities on Saturday confirmed that the three persons suspected to have contracted “swine flu”, who were admitted to Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital (RML) in New Delhi, had tested negative for the H1N1 influenza virus.

Authorities said no confirmed H1N1 case has been detected in the country so far. In New Delhi, health authorities said they tested six samples —

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Girl tries to end life over less marks

New Delhi, May 1: A teenaged girl allegedly attempted suicide in her house in the national capital, apparently depressed due to her poor performance in examinations, police said on Saturday.

The girl, a Class VIII student of a government school, consumed some poisonous substances on Friday night in her house at Mongolpuri and was rushed to Sanjay Gandhi hospital where she is undergoing treatmen

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Rahman, Nilekani on Time

Washington, May 1: Oscar winning Indian music director A.R. Rahman of Slumdog Millionaire fame, his Sri Lankan co-performer M.I.A. of the hit O Saya song and Infosys co-founder Nandan Nilekani have made it to the Time 100 list of the World’s Most Influential People.
The new list to be published in the May 11 annual Time 100 issue is the pick of the magazine’s editors and may not be confused w

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6 get death for murder, rape

New Delhi, May 1: The Supreme Court has awarded death sentence to six dacoits, who murdered a five-member family after raping two of the victims and causing grievous injuries to two others in Maharashtra’s Nasik district on June 5, 2003.
“The case at hand falls in the rarest of rare category. The depraved acts of the accused call for only one sentence, that is death sentence,” a two-judge

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Kodnani faces murder charge

Ahmedabad, May 1: The former Gujarat minister, Ms Maya Kodnani, faced a murder charge in the chargesheet filed in the Naroda Gam case on Friday by the Supreme Court-constituted Special Investig-ation Team (SIT) probing certain post-Godhra riot cases in the state afresh.
Ms Kodnani, who was forced to resign and is now behind bars, is one of the prime accused in the Naroda Gam riots in which 11

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Dhoni ignores Big B’s SMS

New Delhi, May 1: The Bollywood icon, Amitabh Bachchan, complained that Chennai Super Kings captain, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, is too busy to respond to a congratulatory message on being awarded the Padma Shri from him.
Bachchan said that he sent greetings to Dhoni twice but the Indian skipper “must have been busy” with the IPL to find time to respond to his SMS.
“Knowing his closeness to Dh

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India policy mortgaged to US: CPM

New Delhi

May 1: Hitting back at Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for his attack on the Left parties, the CPI(M) on Friday said that the Manmohan Singh government had “mortgaged” India’s foreign policy for Indo-US civil nuclear deal.
“The Manmohan Singh government has mortgaged India’s foreign policy for Indo-US nuclear deal,” CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat said in Madurai.

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Centre plans special law to curb ragging

New Delhi, May 1: The government is actively considering framing a special law to effectively curb the ragging menace in educational institutions.
This was conveyed by Human Resource Development (HRD) minister, Mr Arjun Singh, when he called on the President, Mrs Pratibha Patil, who recently expressed her anxiety on the recurring incidents of ragging in the educational institutions in violation o

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Centre on flu alert, asks not to panic

New Delhi

May 1: With the H1N1 influenza virus (earlier referred to as the swine flu virus) spreading to more countries, the Indian authorities said that by Saturday all international airports in India will come under complete surveillance for screening of suspect cases.
The health authorities maintained that there is no need to panic over the raising of pandemic alert level to Phase 5 by the

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IAF checks Sukhoi-30 fleet following crash

New Delhi

May 1: The Indian Air Force (IAF) is carrying out “precautionary checks” on its entire Sukhoi-30 MKI aircraft fleet (numbering about 50) following the crash of an aircraft on Thursday, even as IAF officials on Friday denied reports in a section of the media that Wing Commander P.S. Nara, the co-pilot killed in Thursday’s crash, was not authorised to be on board the aircraft.

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AP cops open fire, 1 killed

Mangalore

May 1: One person was killed and another injured when policemen from Andhra Pradesh, posted here for the elections, opened fire at a mob in Dharmasthala, Karnataka, on Friday evening.
About 90 AP policemen posted in Naxal-affected areas for the elections were on their way back home but decided to visit the Dharmasthala temple on Saturday.
According to reports, the incident took plac

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SC to Gujarat: Set up courts for riots

New Delhi May 1: The Supreme Court on Friday directed the Gujarat government, headed by the Chief Minister, Mr Narendra Modi, to set up six special fast track courts to exclusively deal with all the 2002 communal riots cases and conduct trials on a day-to-day basis.

The Supreme Court ordered the setting up of designated courts for riot cases in Ahmedabad, Ana-nd, Sabarkanta, Mehsana and Gulbarg

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Rani can develop land

Mumbai, May 1: The Bombay High Court has allowed Bollywood actor Rani Mukherjee to develop her plot of land, embroiled in litigation, near Shirdi, her lawyer said.
In a major relief for the actor, the High Court has directed Maharashtra government to put her name on the “7/12 extract” of the land. “7/12 extract” is the basic title document for land. Rani’s purchase of 11 gunthe (around

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Priyanka’s flat noisy: Neighbours

Mumbai, May 1: A police complaint was registered on Friday against a party organiser for allegedly playing loud music till wee hours at Bollywood actor Priyanka Chopra’s flat in suburban Andheri, police said.
“Police control room received a complaint today at around 2.30 am that loud music was being played in Raj Classic building in Versova.
When police reached there, they found that a pa

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Lawyer removed from Islam Gymkhana for defending Kasab

Mumbai, May 1: Shortly after being criticised by the Shia community for defending Mumbai terror accused Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, lawyer Abbas Kazmi has been removed as a trustee from the prestigious Islam Gymkhana on the same ground.

Kazmi's appointment as a trustee of Islam Gymkhana was terminated this week on the ground that defending a terrorist was against the essence of Islam.

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SC lifts stay on trial of 2002 Gujarat riots cases

New Delhi, May 1: The Supreme Court on Friday lifted the stay on trial of 2002 Gujarat riots cases and directed the setting up of fast track courts for holding it on a day-to-day basis.

The apex court ordered the setting up of designated courts for riot cases in Ahmedabad, Anand, Sabarkanta, Mehsana and Gulbarga districts.

A bench headed by Justice Arijit Pasayat said it was necessar

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Centre: No swine flu case in country

New Delhi

April 30: Indian authorities have clarified that there is no suspected case of swine flu in the country so far. The Centre has also decided to increase the stock of anti-flu medication from one million to 10 million doses, over the next seven days. Authorities said this stockpile would be decentralised over the country.
On the reported case of a Hyderabad resident, who had come back

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Pak pulls Army off border

New Delhi

April 30: Pakistan on Thur-sday denied a New York Times report that it was relocating around 6,000 soldiers, constituting two of its strike corps brigades, from the Sindh border with India for redeployment in NWFP. Interestingly, though, Indian Army sources said the pullout was in progress.
The US newspaper, quoting a Pakistani official, said the movement of troops had already begun.

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Key to UNSC seat in Washington: Tharoor

New Delhi

April 30: Former UN diplomat Sha shi Tharoor on Thursday said the key to expansion of the United Nations Security Council was through Washington.
Addressing the 37th “Shri Ram Memorial Lecture” here on “India’s quest for a permanent seat in the United Nations Security Council”, he said, “If the new Obama administration could be persuaded that it is in the interests of Am

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AAI employees’ strike is deferred

New Delhi

April 30: The Airports Authority of India Employees Union (AAEU) has deferred its planned strike which was originally scheduled to begin from May 1 at airports across the country. AAEU general secretary M.K. Ghoshal said that the strike had been deferred in view of a Delhi high court order on Thursday. The AAEU had earlier called for the strike in protest against what it termed the

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Techie rapes girl, films incident

New Delhi

April 30: The Delhi police arrested a software engineer for allegedly raping a girl at his southeast Delhi residence. The police said the accused filmed the incident and threatened the victim that he would “air the incident” if she told anyone she had been raped.
The police arrested Dushyant Verma, a software Engineer with EDAG, a German automobile design company based in Gurgaon

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Reveal names of moles: CIC

New Delhi, April 30: The Central Information Commission (CIC) has asked the ministry of external affairs to reveal the names of alleged moles in Indira Gandhi’s Cabinet during the 1971 Indo-Pak war.
The ruling came on an RTI application filed by a freelance journalist Anuj Dhar, who wanted details regarding the “leak” of information relating to national security by an alleged CIA agent dur

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AAI defers strike due to HC ruling

New Delhi

April 30: The Airports Authority of India Employees Union (AAEU) has deferred its proposed strike, due to begin at airports nationwide on Friday. AAEU general secretary M.K. Ghoshal said that the strike had been deferred following a Delhi high court order on Thursday.
The AAEU had called the strike over the “unjust” transfer of hundreds of employees at Delhi and Mumbai airports

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IAF Sukhoi crashes, one pilot dies

New Delhi, April 30: A senior Indian Air Force pilot was killed and another injured in the first-ever IAF Sukhoi-30 MKI fighter crash on Thursday near Pokhran. The deceased has been identified as Wing Commander P.S. Nara and the injured as Wing Commander S.V. Munje, IAF officials said. A court of inquiry has been ordered into the crash, which occurred around 10.30 am. Both pilots had ejected from

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India withdrew 83 RCNs in ’08

New Delhi

April 30: The CBI on Thursday maintained that total 83 red corner notices (RCN) were withdrawn by India for various reasons in the year 2008.
The agency said the moment arrest warrant against any fugitive becomes invalid or infructuous for any reason, the requesting country has no option but to get the RCN cancelled.
Without referring any specific case, the CBI in a statement said

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Charges are framed against minister son

Panaji, April 30: The Goa Children’s court on Thursday framed charges against Rohit, son of Goa education minister Atanasio Monserrate, for allegedly raping and sending obscene messages to a 14-year-old German girl last year.
The GCC said there was enough ground hinting at the involvement of Rohit Monserrate in the crime.
The police, in its chargesheet filed in January this year, had said that

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IAF's SU-30 MKI crashes, one pilot dead

Jaisalmer (Raj), April 30: One Indian Air Force (IAF) pilot was killed and another seriously injured in the first-ever Su-30 MKI fighter jet crash on Thursday in the country near
here.

The deceased pilot has been identified as Wing Commander P S Nara and the injured as Wing Commander S.V. Munje, IAF officials said in New Delhi. A court of inquiry has been
ordered into the mishap.

Accordi

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Goa minister's son charged in German rape case

Panaji, April 30: The Goa Children's Court on Thursday framed charges against Rohit, son of Goa education minister Atanasio Monserrate, for allegedly raping and sending obscene messages to a 14-year-old German girl last year.

The GCC said there was enough ground hinting at the involvement of Rohit Monserrate in the crime.

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Man smashes stolen Chennai train, 4 dead

Chennai

April 29: In a serious security lapse, an unknown man “hijacked” a suburban electric train and drove it for three kilometres before ramming it into a stationary goods train early on Wednesday. The train was going at 90kmph when it hit the good train.

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Army on alert to stop LTTE from sneaking

New Delhi

April 29: The Indian Army said some of its troops in the Southern Command had been put on alert to ensure “hostile LTTE elements” do not sneak into the country.
Indian Army vice-chief Lt. Gen. Noble Thamburaj told reporters that while the Navy and Coast Guard formed the first tier of defence to prevent infiltration through the southern coast, the Army too
had deployed some troo

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Kasab wants perfume, jail walk

Mumbai, April 29: The lawyer representing Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone surviving terrorist of the November 2008 terror strikes in Mumbai, on Wednesday told a Special Court that is hearing his case, that his client has made four fresh
requests.

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NDA had told court, no proof on Q, Hindujas

New Delhi, April 29: Belying the NDA’s attack on the Congress on the issue of withdrawing the red corner notice against the Bofors scam accused, Mr Ottavio Quattrocchi, an Italian businessman, it has come to light that during NDA rule, the additional solicitor-general of India, Mr Mukul Rohtagi had submitted before the Delhi High Court that there was no evidence against the alleged agents, Mr Qu

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Toy plane ‘lands’ on House premises

New Delhi, April 29: A remote-controlled toy helicopter on Wednesday flew into the Parliament House complex in a major security breach, sending alarm bells ringing in the security establishment.
Security agencies launched investigations to ascertain whether it was just an accident or a deliberate experiment by some unscrupulous elements to test the security alertness of the highly protected comp

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Flu screening at IGI begins today

New Delhi

April 29: The civil aviation ministry has directed all international airports across the country to facilitate the enhanced surveillance and screening of passengers arriving from nations affected by Swine influenza. Meanwhile, no suspected case has been detected so far by the authorities.
Beginning on Thursday, passengers at the international airport in New Delhi coming from swine f

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Tihar gives Afzal Urdu newspaper

New Delhi

April 29: Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, who is on death row, is a privileged inmate in the Tihar central jail. Following his demand, the prison authority is especially providing an Urdu newspaper to Afzal Guru.
Languishing in the “high security” cell of jail number 3, Afzal Guru has no friends. He does not interact much with the other inmates, even during the evening bre

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12,515 men ready to woo Rakhi

New Delhi, April 29: From businessmen, doctors to models and NRIs , over 12,500 men from across the world have sent applications to marry controversy queen Rakhi Sawant after she announced a swayamvara as part of a reality show on NDTV Imagine.
Within 20 days of the anno-uncement of the unique reality show Rakhi Ka Swayamwar, expected to go on air next month, a huge number of men have sent their

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CPM will rework, not scrap, n-deal

New Delhi,

April 29: The CPI(M) general secretary, Mr Prakash Karat, who tried to bring down the Manmohan Singh government over the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal, is singing a different tune in an attempt to cobble together an alternative government.

In a bid to attract post-poll allies who don’t share his anti-US sentiments, Mr Karat is now talking about “reworking and reviewing” it.

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Nine airports set up screening counters

New Delhi

April 29: The civil aviation ministry has directed all international airports across the country to facilitate the enhanced surveillance and screening of passengers arriving from nations affected by the swine influenza.
Meanwhile, no suspected case has been received so far by the authorities.
Beginning from Thursday, the passengers at the international airport in New Delhi coming f

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Parallel team for Akkriti

New Delhi, April 29: The Delhi police has set up a parallel investigation team to probe into the death of a 17-year-old student due to an asthma attack in the school premises.
A Delhi Police officer said the team will examine events that led to death of 17-year-old, Akkriti Bhatia, a Class XII student of Modern School in Vasant Vihar.
The Vasant Kunj police is also investigating the case.
Th

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Chennai crank smashes train, 6 killed

Chennai: In a bizarre rail accident, an "unauthorised man" ran an electric train for about 7 km unnoticed before ramming it into a goods train, leaving six persons dead and 11 others injured near Vyasarpadi Jeeva station in city's northwestern suburbs.

As the Electric Multiple Unit (EMU) parked in the Moore Market complex was about to be moved by the unauthorised man, some passengers boarded

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Maya may ride on power of planets

New Delhi, April 28: Planets ruling Ms Sonia Gandhi are acting up and those of Mr L.K. Advani aren’t charged enough, but the celestial bodies seem to like Ms Mayawati better.
That’s the reading of stargazers on how things would look after elections in the world’s largest democracy with over 700 million registered voters.

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CBI lifts ‘Q’ off Interpol

New Delhi

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Witness in Anil case dead

Mumbai

April 28: In a mysterious turn to the case of the alleged sabotage of industrialist Anil Ambani’s helicopter, the man who spotted sand and pebbles in its fuel tank was found dead on Tuesday on the railway track near Vile Parle in Mumbai.
According to the Andh-eri railway police, Air Works employee Bharat Bhorge (42), was crossing the railway tracks around 8 am on Tuesday, when he was

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This juvenile proved an adult

Mumbai

April 28: Medical tests on lone surviving 26/11 terrorist Ajmal Amir Kasab have confirmed that he is not a minor. Judge M.L. Tahaliyani took on record the reports of the test conducted by a panel of four doctors of J.J. hospital.
The dental examination of lower jaw of Kasab showed his wisdom tooth and roots developed, indicating that he was a major, public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam said.

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Navy foils piracy bid, nine arrested

New Delhi, April 28: After successfully combating piracy in the Gulf of Aden and indicating its growing footprint in the Indian Ocean, the Indian Navy has foiled a piracy bid off the island nation of the Seychelles and arrested nine pirates, an official said.
“Our ship INS Nirdeshak, along with a French warship and Spanish frigate, intercepted and arrested nine pirates while they were trying to

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Bengaluru best Indian city: Survey

New Delhi, April 28: Bengaluru has emerged as the best Indian city among New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai in terms of better quality of living for expatriates, according to a latest worldwide survey of cities by global HR consultancy Mercer.
According to the Mercer survey, 2009 Quality of Living global city rankings for 215 cities, Bengaluru has topped the list among Indian cities, while the count

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Aamir, Shah Rukh lead IIFA lists

Mumbai: Two of Bollywood's biggest names, Shah Rukh and Aamir Khan are leading this year's International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) Awards nominations.

The 10th IIFA festival, which begins from May 11 to 13, will be held in Macau, in China.

"2009 celebrates a decade of IIFA magic and promises to be yet another enthralling experience to be held at the Venetian Macao," said Amitabh Bachchan,

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Terrorists waiting to across LoC: Army

New Delhi: After foiling two major intrusion bids in the last month, Army said more terrorists are waiting at "launch pads" across the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir for a chance to infiltrate and troops have been "redeployed" to thwart any such attempt.

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Voters may feat Scindia

BHOPAL/GUNA

April 28: Humility and the Scindias have never really gone together.
Timely realisation, however, that cloning the royal ways of his late father, Madhavrao, may no longer fetch him the votes, much less their affection, may be the single biggest reason why the Union minister, Mr Jyotiraditya Scindia, should have a smooth victory run at his traditional family borough of Guna where v

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Yeddyurappa becomes target of slipper-attack

Bengaluru

April 28: The Karnataka Chief Minister, Mr B.S. Yeddyurappa, on Tuesday became the latest target of shoe-hurling protests targeting political leaders across the country.
A self-professed supporter of Janata Dal (Secular) supremo, Chandrasekhar, hurled a sandal at Mr Yeddyurappa at an election rally in Chennarayapatna, Mr Gowda’s stronghold, while the Chief Minister was saying that

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Women power in Lucknow

Lucknow

April 28: Four women from four diverse backgrounds are making their presence felt on the Lucknow Lok Sabha seat — a seat held by the former prime minister, Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee, for five consecutive terms.
These women candidates are in their 50s and are certainly not as frivolous as many would want them to be.
Ms Rita Bahuguna Joshi, president of the UP Congress, is the daughter

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Priyanka: We Indians have a habit of complaining

Rae Bareli, April 28: “Indians have a habit of complaining instead of striving for a better future,” Ms Priyanka Gandhi, the daughter of the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, observed on Tuesday.
“Hamari aadat hai shikayat karne ki, meri bhi hai (We have a habit of complaining... it is my habit also),” she said at a public meeting while campaigning for her mother in Rae Bareli constit

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SC: Centre has no right to be in office

New Delhi, April 28: Observing that the government has no right to be in office if it can’t provide water to the people, the Supreme Court on Tuesday constituted a high-powered committee for doing scientific research on a war footing for solving the problem in the country.
The research would focus mainly on converting the saline sea water into fresh water through inexpensive methods, the apex

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Airport unions call for 48-hr stir

Kolkata, April 28: A 48-hour strike has been called from April 30 midnight at all airports in the country by the Airport Authority of India Employees Union to protest against privatisation of airports.
A spokesman of the AAEU on Tuesday said that the strike had been called as the Airport Authority of India (AAI) management was offering VRS to employees and resorting to “illegal” transfers.
H

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Sony criticised for phone placement

London

April 28: The British media regulator has criticised Sony TV Asia for product placement in its Indian Idol talent reality show.
The broadcasting code in Britain does not allow promotion of products and services in television programmes.
“No undue prominence may be given in any programme to a product or service and product placement is prohibited,” according to Ofcom. Even European

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Man gets lifer after daughter's testimony

Mumbai, April 28: Relying primarily on the testimony of a nine-year-old girl, a sessions court here has convicted her father, a naval officer, for murdering his wife.

Upendra Rai, 35, has been sentenced to life imprisonment yesterday for murdering his wife Vandana, 32, on October 24, 2005, on suspicion of having an illicit relationship.

On the day of the incident, the accused came to his res

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Sankararaman case adjourned to June 11

Puducherry, April 28: Cross-examination of nine prosecution witnesses in the Sankararaman murder case in which Kanchi Sankaracharya Jayendra Saraswathi and his junior Vijayendra are the main accused, scheduled for Tuesday, has been adjourned to June 11 and 12.

Only 11 of the 24 accused were present when the case came up for hearing before the principal district and sessions judge D. Krishnaraja

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'Kasab over 20'

Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone terrorist captured alive after the 26/11 terror attack on Mumbai, is over 20, according to a medical report submitted here on Tuesday before the special court hearing the terror attacks trial.
Special judge M.L. Tahilyani, who had ordered the medical test last Friday to determine Kasab’s age, will give his ruling on the matter on Wednesday, special public pr

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Work counts, not name: Priyanka

Rahi (Rae Bareli), April 27: Ms Priyanka Gandhi on Monday hit back at her cousin, Mr Varun Gandhi, saying people vote for her family members in Rai Bareli and Amethi not due to the Gandhi surname, but due to the work they have done.
At the same time she maintained people have a “special” relationship with her family here. “Many people ask me why do our family members keep winning from thes

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Dutt persists on jhappi

Fatehpur, April 27: Undeterred by the two FIRs lodged against him for offering “jadu ki jhappi and pappi” (magical hug and kiss) to the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister, Ms Mayawati, Samajwadi Party leader, Sanjay Dutt on Monday said even if it angers BSP supremo, he will still give her a “jhappi”.
“However much it may irk Behenji, I will give her Jadu ki jhappi. If she gets angry I will g

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Indians told to avoid flu-hit nations

New Delhi, April 27: India on Monday asked its citizens to avoid “non-essential travel” to swine flu affected New Zealand, Mexico, the US, Canada, Spain, France and Britain, and has put in place scanning system for travellers coming from these countries.
The health ministry held a high-level meeting with experts from the National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) and Indian Council of

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Modi faces riots probe

New Delhi/Ahmedabad

April 27: The Supreme Court on Monday directed the special investigation team (SIT) probing the 2002 Gujarat riots to look into the complaint alleging that the Chief Minister, Mr Narendra Modi, and others, including members of his Cabinet as well as some bureaucrats, had “aided and abetted” the violence that broke out following the Godhra attack in February that year.

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PIL on Sidhu dismissed

New Delhi, April 27: The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a PIL challenging the suspension of conviction of the BJP leader, Mr Navjot Singh Sidhu, in a road rage death case to contest Lok Sabha election.
The court also pulled up the petitioner for filing a “frivolous” PIL and said it was not maintenable.
A Bench headed by the Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan was so anguished with the condu

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Karuna ends six-hour fast

Chennai

Apr 27: Taking everyone, even his family, by surprise, chief minister Mr M. Karunanidhi launched a ‘fast-to-death’ here early Monday demanding ceasefire in Sri Lanka.
He gave up six hours later claiming news had come that the Sri Lankan government announced ceasefire and would use its troops only to help the war-affected civilians.
“I have now got the happy news that following

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‘Afzal’s hanging delayed for votes’

Ahmedabad, April 27: Raking up the Afzal Guru issue, Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate Mr L.K. Advani accused the UPA coalition of delaying his execution hoping that they will gain votes and sarcastically said if the death row convict were “Anand” he would have been hanged by now.
“They (UPA) are saying that there were terrorist attacks like the one on Parliament and Ak

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Quattrocchi out of CBI list of wanted people

New Delhi: Italian businessman Ottavio Quattrocchi, an accused in the Bofors payoffs case, has been taken off the CBI list of wanted people, sparking a protest by Opposition parties which on Tuesday demanded an immediate probe into the working of the agency in the last five years.

Following a communication from the CBI, the Interpol has taken Quattrocchi's name off the Red Corner notice list i

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Feroz Khan, actor-filmmaker, dead

Bengaluru: Bollywood actor Feroz Khan, who made a place in the hearts of film lovers with his romantic portrayals in blockbusters like 'Qurbani' and 'Janbaaz,' died after battling cancer for a year.

The 69-year-old actor-filmmaker died at 1:30 am at his farmhouse here. He was diagnosed with cancer a year ago and was being treated at a Mumbai hospital.

His son and actor Fardeen Khan besides

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CIC issues notice to SC

New Delhi, April 27: The CIC has issued a show cause notice to Supreme Court officials for not providing information to an RTI applicant in a timely manner.

"Central Public Information Officer Supreme Court of India is further directed to show cause as to why a penalty of Rs 250 per day from the date when the information fell due — 20-05-2007 — to the date when the information is actually

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BJP hits out at PM again

Mumbai, April 26: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) again targeted the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, saying he does not have “leadership quality”.
Speaking at a function organised by the ‘Friends of BJP’ here, the senior BJP leader, Mr Arun Jaitley said, “We don’t have a quality leadership. No decisions were taken by the Prime Minister in his term.”
“He did not want to take a

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Amar booked for code break

Chhatarpur (MP), April 26: The Samajwadi Party leader, Mr Amar Singh, has been booked here for violating the model code of conduct for allegedly seeking votes on caste lines. “We have booked him under Section 123(3) of the Representation of the People Act 1951 for seeking votes on caste lines,” the Chhatarpur SP, Sriniwas Verma said.

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‘Congress hopes for majority in LS’

NEW DELHI

April 26: The AICC general secretary in-charge of Uttar Pradesh, which sends 80 MPs to the Lok Sabha, Mr Digvijay Singh, who also heads the publicity committee of the party is managing a crucial battle for the Congress which wants to revive its fortunes in the politically sensitive state.
What the elections hold in store for the suave politician and former chief minister of Madhya P

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Uddhav gives Modi’s Mumbai rally a miss

Mumbai

April, 26: The show of strength of the Shiv Sena and the Bharatiya Janata Party on a day when the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, was in the city, took a slight beating when the saffron rally in Ghatkopar, scheduled to be a joint rally of Mr Narendra Modi and Shiv Sena executive president Mr Uddhav Thackeray, turned out to be a Modi solo show.
Sources said Mr Thackeray informed a

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SC: Probe Modi role in riots

New Delhi: The Supreme Court asked a special probe
panel formed by it to look into the allegations that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi along with over 50 other politicians and government officials had aided and abetted statewide communal riots in 2002.

A bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and Asok Kumar Ganguly directed the panel headed by former Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) direc

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Congress, BJP trade charges

Ahmedabad

April 26: Hitesh Chauhan, the computer student who flung a shoe at the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, was sitting in the front row and screamed abuse before throwing the shoe.
The shoe fell a few feet away from where the Prime Minister was seated. The distance between the security railing and the stage where the PM was seated on the dais was about 30 feet. Dr Singh was describing

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Youngest Congress hand fights against Left veteran

Kolkata/Malda

April 26: Perhaps it was in the fitness of things that the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, nominated 28-year old Mausam Benazir Noor as the Congress candidate and not her septuagenarian uncle, Mr Abu Naser Khan Chowdhury, for Malda North seat constituency.
This brand of new constituency perhaps deserved a fresh and energetic Congress candidate.
Ms Noor is the youngest Co

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Kiran in BJP for ‘good governance’

Mumbai, April 26: Bollywood actor Kiran Kher joined the Bharatiya Janata Party in the presence of party’s senior leader Mr Arun Jaitely here on Sunday.
“I have always been with Bharatiya Janata Party and believe our prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani and Narendra Modi are great administrators,” Ms Kher said.
Asked why the actor choose Bharatiya Janata Party over other parties to make

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Courts can rely on kids: SC

New Delhi, April 26: The Supreme Court has held that courts can rely on the deposition of even a child witness for convicting an accused.

"A child of tender age can be allowed to testify if he has intellectual capacity to understand questions and give rational answers thereto.

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Kasab not allowed newspapers

Mumbai, April 26: A special court has rejected the plea of Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone gunman arrested for the Mumbai terror attacks, to have access to newspapers in jail but allowed his lawyer to lend him some books for reading.

"I informed the court that Kasab wanted to read newspapers in jail but the plea was not considered. Instead the court suggested that I could lend some story books t

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Pak militant: No Taliban in J&K

SRINAGAR

April 25: A Pakistani militant, captured by the Army from Gurez area near the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir’s Bandipore district in March this year, has told his interrogators that there were no Taliban among militants who have sneaked into the Indian side of the de facto border recently.

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JeM man guilty of terrorism

New Delhi, April 25: A city court on Saturday convicted a man from West Bengal for providing logistic support to five Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terrorists who had attacked the makeshift Ram temple in Ayodhya in 2005.
The additional sessions judge, Pratibha Rani, held Abdul Bakai Mandal, a resident of North 24 Parganas district, guilty under various provisions of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Ac

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PM escapes shoe attack

Ahmedabad, April 26: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh became the latest target of a shoe attack during the current election campaign when a computer engineering student hurled a sneaker towards him but it fell short of the dais from where he was addressing his first poll rally in Gujarat.

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Parties may borrow Yeddyurappa model

Hyderabad April 25: Major political players are drawing up new strategies to clamber to the Chief Minister’s gaddi in the event the electorate has delivered a hung House.

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IPL breaks fair skin obsession

Johannesburg, April 25: Just as the Indian Premier League (IPL) was getting South Africans worried about Bollywood’s obsession with the fair-skinned actors, two dusky beauties were chosen at Cape Town and Durban games over the past few days to participate in the Miss Bollywood contest.
Neresha Chetty of Durban was selected to represent the Chennai Super Kings in the search for Miss Bollywood SA

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Committee to probe into death

New Delhi, April 25: A committee appointed by the Delhi government on Saturday began a probe to ascertain whether the death of Akkriti Bhatia, a student of Modern School, Vasant Vihar, occurred due to the “negligence” by school authorities.
The inquiry committee, headed by the regional director of education, Ms Sunita S. Koshik, visited the school and spoke to the teachers and authorities abo

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Techie jumps from fifth floor, ends life

Chennai

April 25: In yet another case of a techie committing suicide, the twelfth one in the city this year, a software engineer working in a private concern on the Nungambakkam High Road, jumped from his fifth floor office as he could not handle the work pressure, the Thousand Lights police said.
Ram Kumar, 30, from Poombuhar Nagar in Kolathur had been complaining about work stress for the l

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Kasab not allowed to read newspapers

Mumbai, April 26: A special court has rejected the plea of Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone gunman arrested for the Mumbai terror attacks, to have access to newspapers in jail but allowed his lawyer to lend him some books for reading.

read more


A child can depose as a witness: SC

New Delhi, April 26: The Supreme Court has held that courts can rely on the deposition of even a child witness for convicting an accused.

"A child of tender age can be allowed to testify if he has intellectual capacity to understand questions and give rational answers thereto.

read more


Court orders tests to check Kasab age

Mumbai, April 24: The special court trying lone arrested 26/11 terror raider Mohammad Ajmal Aamir Kasab has ordered tests to determine whether the accused was a minor at the time of the attack, as claimed by his lawyer.

read more


Joint security ops off Gujarat coast

New Delhi, April 24: Acting on intelligence inputs of another major terror attack through the sea route, the Indian Coast Guard launched a major operation off the coasts of Gujarat and Maharashtra — codenamed “Raha Bandh” — on Thursday but the entire operation detected no suspicious elements.

Coast Guard sources said the joint operation by several agencies was timed with the second pha

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Mirwaiz, Yasin in house arrest

Srinagar, April 24: The police late on Thursday night placed about a dozen top and second-rung Kashmiri separatist leaders under house arrest and seized some others to prevent them from attending anti election rallies planned at different places across the Valley on Friday

Those who faced fresh curbs include Kashmir’s chief Muslim cleric and chairman of the so-called moderate faction of Hurri

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Heat wave intensifies, toll is 39

New Delhi, April 24: The simmering heat wave continued to sweep northern and eastern parts of India with the mercury crossing the 45-degree mark in several places of West Bengal and Orissa, where the death toll due to suspected sun stroke mounted to 39 on Thursday.

West Bengal’s Purulia district was the hottest with 49 degree Celsius, followed by Bankura (47 degrees) and West Midnapore (46 de

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Lifetime awards for two tigers

New Delhi, April 24: Machhli and B2 are no ordinary tigers roaming in the Indian wilds. Atleast not after they have been awarded with the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ by an international organisation for attracting maximum visitors and bringing crores to government exchequer.

Though recipient of these awards will not be “personally” accepting the honour, forest officers will receive th

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Somnath for right to recall MPs

New Delhi, April 24: With the general election process currently underway, the Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee on Friday called for incorporating the right to recall in the Constitution in an effort to provide the electorate with an option to remove elected representatives not functioning to their satisfaction.

“I strongly believe that it is high time that we thought of incorporating the

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Taslima wants to return to India

Thrissur (Kerala), April 24: Claiming that she has been a victim of "politics, ban and censorship," Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen, who left India a year ago after restrictions were placed on her, is hopeful of returning to the country and live without the fear of fundamentalists.

“One day, I believe, I will be allowed to live in India, my adopted country,"”Nasreen said in a video messa

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‘PoK was terror sat-phone locale’

New Delhi, April 24: Intelligence sources have revealed that the previous location of the particular “Thuraya” satellite phone being carried by Lashkar and Hizb-ul Mujahideen militants who have sneaked into Delhi was found to be near Mirpur, Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, on March 20, 2009.

As per their information, the net is linked to the Hizb and it was earlier in contact with mobile number

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Inquiry ordered to determine Kasab's age

Mumbai, April 24: A special court on Friday ordered an inquiry to determine whether the prime accused in Mumbai terror attacks case Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab is a juvenile.

Judge M.L. Tahiliyani allowed special public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam to examine witnesses comprising doctors and jailor on April 28 to find out whether Kasab was above 18 and not juvenile at the time of commisson of offence

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I am loyal to party values: Shatru

Patna April 23: Actor-turned-politician Shatrughan Sinha, the BJP candidate from prestigious Patna Sahib Lok Sabha seat in Bihar though conceded that with the entry of fellow Bihari from the tinsel town Shekhar Suman on the Congress’ ticket, it’s now a star war, however, he claimed that Suman was actually a no match.

Why have you suddenly decided to contest for the Lok Sabha?
Ever since I

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Anil Ambani's chopper tampered

Mumbai, April 24: Anil Ambani went about his usual business on Friday, but skipped the chopper ride to office after it was found the machine's fuel tank was tampered with substance that could have caused a mid-air explosion.

The 49-year-old indutrialist instead took the road and reached his office in Dhirubhai Ambani Knowledge City in Navi Mumbai 75 minutes late, wading through peak hour traff

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Sanjay Dutt offers to hug Maya again

Kanpur: Even after apologising to the UP Chief Minis-ter, Ms Mayawati, for his remarks, actor and SP leader Sanjay Dutt, who has been booked on obscenity charge, on Thursday said he was not cowed down by the FIRs aga-inst him and was still ready to give jadu ki jhappi (magical hug) and flowers to Maya-wati. “FIRs are distributed like sweets in UP but I will not be cowed down. I will give sister

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Politics is to serve people: Suman

Patna

April 23: Conceding that he is not contesting just for a win, superstar of small screen Shekhar Suman in an exclusive interview with this newspaper said, he was fighting because the Congress is in shambles in Bihar, but was quick to add that what if he won, would not it be historic?

What made you to join politics and fight your maiden electoral battle against a heavyweight like Shatrug

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Rubina case probe still on

Mumbai, April 23: Investigations into allegations that child artiste Rubina Qureshi from Slumdog Millionaire was to be put up for adoption are still on and no case has been registered against her father, a senior police official said
“We have not registered a case against Rubina Qureshi’s father and are still continuing with investigations,” deputy commissioner of police Nisar Tamboli said

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Menon to fly to Lanka

new delhi

April 23: India is flying its national security adviser, Mr M.K. Narayanan, and the foreign secretary, Mr Shiv Shankar Menon, into Colombo on Friday amid reports that Delhi is stepping up pressure on the Sri Lankan government to ‘pause’ its military operation as it caused huge civilian suffering in the war zone of northeast Sri Lanka.
The UN, US and UK, be-sides India, asked the

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Pawar keeps options open

Baramati (Maharashtra), April 23: The NCP chief, Mr Sharad Pawar, sought to keep the doors open for the Left parties in the post-poll scenario and said the UPA will decide its Prime Minister after the elections on Thursday.
“I honestly feel that this time we require the blessings and support of the Left parties. That is why from the first day, I am consistently saying to all my colleagues in th

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SC: It’s more than ragging

New Delhi, April 23: “Shocking findings reflecting degradation of value system,” was what the Supreme Court said on Thursday after going through the report establishing a link between alcoholism and ragging in Aman Satya Kachroo’s death at a medical college in Himachal Pradesh.
“It is shocking what has come in the report. It is more than ragging,” a Bench comprising justices Arijit Pas

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Principal asked to step down

New Delhi, April 23: Anguished parents and screaming students on Thursday took on the authorities of one of Delhi’s most reputed institutions, Modern School in Vasant Vihar, blaming them for the death of 17-year-old girl Aakriti Bhatia who succumbed to an asthma attack during school hours three days ago.
Shouting slogans and holding placards, many of the protesters, including students from othe

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Rajnath: BJP not family slave

Surat, April 23: Trying to be even with Congress chief Sonia Gandhi for calling L.K. Advani a "slave of RSS," BJP president Rajnath Singh on Thursday got personal saying at least the saffron party is not a "slave of a family".

Singh said the BJP is a ideology driven party where there are no followers or slaves. "At least our party is not slave of a family," said the BJP chief.

Sonia target

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Judge grants Kasab 10 days

Mumbai, April 22: Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone terrorist caught alive during the terror attack on Mumbai last November, was on Tuesday given 10 days to study the chargesheet in the case.
Judge M.L. Tahilyani, who is trying the case, rejected Kasab’s plea to be handed over a copy of the 11,500-page chargesheet in Urdu. However, he gave 10 days to Kasab and Kasab’s lawyer S.G. Abbas Kaz

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Jai Ho trust to care for Rubina

Los Angeles, April 22: The Jai Ho trust formed by the Slumdog Millionaire filmmakers has hired a social worker to ensure the welfare of Rubina Ali Qureshi after her father allegedly tried to sell her for nearly $300,000. A British tabloid had claimed that Rubina’s father Rafiq had tried to sell the nine-year-old to their reporters, who were posing as the agents of a wealthy Arab Sheikh during a

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Yashwant: N-deal will be re-negotiated, if need be

New Delhi

April 22: While the BJP’s manifesto mentions “reversing” the “drift” of “compromising country’s strategic nuclear programme” as done by the “Congress”, its vice-president and former Union minister Yashwant Sinha indicated that such decision can only be taken only if the NDA comes to power.

What is the stand of your party on the Indo-US nuclear deal issue?
Th

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Gautam Singhania sets Limca record

Mumbai, April 22: Gautam Singhania, the CMD of Raymond Limited, is well known for his passion for speed both in India and abroad. Now, this recognition takes a new dimension with the prestigious Limca Book of Records ratifying his record for the fastest time lap at 9.855 seconds in 402.3 m in an unrestricted class of the Speed Run Drag Race held in Kharghar, on March 1 and 2 last year.
Singhania

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Maoists seize train for 4 hrs

Patna/Ranchi/Hyderabad

April 22: Maoists struck with absolute impunity across Jharkhand, West Bengal and Orissa on Wednesday, in one instance seizing a train with 700 passengers and holding them hostage for four hours before setting them free. The attacks came on the eve of Phase II of the general elections.

While the taking of the train occurred in Latehar district, about 125 km from Ranchi

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Arm-twisting to secure liquor

Bengaluru

April 22: Political parties and their candidates in Karnataka are reportedly arm-twisting excise licencees to buy liquor on their behalf for free distribution among voters. Huge quantities of duty paid liquor bought to woo voters have been seized from unlicenced premises by excise officials in Bengaluru in the past few days.
On Tuesday night, 50 litres of duty paid Indian Made Foreig

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Railways to start cab service

New Delhi, April 22: Getting to railway stations may just get easier with the railways deciding to offer taxis at the passengers’ door steps on dialling 139.
The service would be offered at competitive tariff rates, said a senior Railway ministry official.
The “book a taxi” service would be rolled out soon in about 25 cities across the country including the national capital.
“The aim of

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Sailor goes missing from ship

Mumbai, April 22: A sailor has gone missing from onboard Naval vessel INS Godavari near Karwar and a board of inquiry has been instituted into the disappearance, a defence spokesperson said on Wednesday.
Petty Officer Prem Prasad had gone missing from the ship while it was sailing from Cochin to Mumbai and had last signed the muster onboard the ship on April 12, the spokesperson said. A search w

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Maoist release train, 700 passengers safe

Jharkhand, April 22: A train with nearly 700 passengers on board seized by the Maoists was released by the ultras after over four hours of detention in Jharkhand's Latehar district on Wednesday.

"All passengers are safe. The Gomo-Mogulsarai BDM train has left on its onward journey," Senior Divisional Railway Manager, Dhanbad, Neeraj Ambast said. The train was seized by the Maoists at 7.30 pm i

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Sanjay sorry for jadu ki jhappi quip

Pratapgarh (UP): In the eye of a storm for his "jadu ki jhappi" remarks, Sanjay Dutt apologised for the statement, saying the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister was just like a sister to him.

In the reply sent to the District Magistrate and district election officer Pinki Jowal through fax last night, the actor and SP leader apologised for the remarks and said it was a mere dialogue from his Bollywoo

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YSR’s T-talk is okay: EC

Hyderabad

April 21: The Election Commission has given a clean chit to the Chief Minister, Dr Y.S. Raja-sekhar Reddy, and has said that there was nothing objectionable in his controversial speech in Nandyal on April 16.

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Police seize cash from Prakash Jha's office

Bettiah (Bihar), April 22: An FIR was on Wednesday registered against film-maker and LJP candidate from West Champaran Lok Sabha seat, Prakash Jha after police allegedly seized Rs 10.25 lakh at his guest house following a complaint that he was distributing money to influence voters.

West Champaran district police superintendent K.S. Anupam along with Central paramilitary forces raided Jha's gu

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Varun files his nomination

Pilibhit, April 22: BJP candidate Varun Gandhi, who is on a two week parole after being jailed for alleged hate- speeches, on Wednesday filed his nomination papers to fight the Lok Sabha elections from Pilibhit constituency.

Gandhi, the 29-year-old new Hindutva poster-boy of the BJP, was accompanied by his mother Maneka Gandhi while filing his papers at the district magistrate office here for

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PM takes Lalu’s view on Babri issue lightly

NEW DELHI

April 21: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, is not in a mood to take the RJD chief, Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav, seriously on the Babri mosque demolition issue.
“In a coalition, one colleague criticises another on the eve of elections. I won’t take Lalu Yadav’s comments on Babri demolition seriously,” the PM said in an interview to a private news channel.
Earlier, the Congre

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BJP will be able to form government: Sushma

Bellary

April 21: “The BJP will be the single largest party with 182-200 seats, and with our allies in the NDA, we will touch the magic figure,” said Sushma Swaraj, former Union minister and BJP candidate from Vidisha, Madhya Pradesh.
“In 2004, the difference between us and the Congress was just seven seats. This time it will be much more,” she said, speaking to this newspaper in Bel

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Pranab hints at Lalu exit

Patna

April 21: The rapidly increasing strain between the Congress and its major UPA partner, the RJD, dipped to a new low after two developments in Bihar on Tuesday, just two days before the second phase of the Lok Sabha polls.
While RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav said that Dr Manmohan Singh was not the final UPA choice for Prime Minister, the external affairs minister and senior Congress leader

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Two top Tiger leaders surrender

Colombo: Sections of top Tamil Tiger leadership began to surrender before rapidly advancing Sri Lankan forces, signalling an imminent collapse of the LTTE after a two-decade long relentless battle.

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Black money plea in SC

New Delhi

April 21: A group of eminent citizens, inclu-ding jurist, Mr Ram Jethmalani, has moved a petition in the Supreme Court on bringing back Indian black money stashed in foreign banks. The court has decided to examine the plea.
The petition contended that if Rs 70 lakh crore believed to be stashed in banks overseas was retrieved, it would help in removing poverty and promoting the countr

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Priyanka can forgive top Tiger, India won’t

Lucknow/Chennai/Colombo

April 21: Ms Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said on Tues-day that India could not forgive LTTE supremo Prabhakaran for the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi even though personally she and her family harboured “no anger or hatred” against those who killed her father.

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Dhoni, Bhajji earn sharp criticism


Slumdog artiste’s father held

London, April 21: Rafiq Qureshi, the father of Slumdog Millionaire starlet Rubina Ali, has been arrested over claims that he tried to sell his daughter for £2,00,000.
A complaint from the 36-year-old man’s ex-wife initiated the arrest.
The police spent several hours quizzing Rafiq Qureshi and is now on a prowl to obtain the video recordings of the meeting at which the deal was supposedly brok

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PM’s wife misses driving, shopping

New Delhi, April 21: The world may look at them with envy, but adjusting to life in a bubble as the prime minister's wife and daughters is not easy. Just ask Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s family who on Tuesday spoke out for the first time on the travails of being the first family and missing out on small pleasures like driving and neigbourhood shopping.
In what is perhaps the first media inte

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Kasab seeks time for study case

Mumbai, April 21: Sporting a clean shaven look, the Pakistani terrorist, Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab on Tuesday demanded that he be given an Urdu copy of the voluminous chargesheet against him in the 26/11 attack and wanted one month to study it.
Kasab, the lone surviving terrorist in the Mumbai terror attack, moved separate applications to this effect through his lawyer Mr S.G. Abbas Kazmi before

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Court rejects bail, accused arrested

Mumbai, April 21: A sessions court on Tuesday rejected the anticipatory bail petition of Vinamra Soni, charged with gang rape of a 23-year-old US national along with five others, on the ground that there was prima facie sufficient evidence to nail him in the case.
Soon after the court rejected his bail, Soni was arrested and taken into custody by police.
The court observed that the police had ma

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Fourth Front to rally for SP

New Delhi, April 21: In their first show of strength outside the Hindi heartland, ‘Fourth Front’ leaders Mulayam Singh Yadav, Lalu Prasad and Ram Vilas Paswan will hold a series of road shows in Mumbai on April 23 in support of Samajwadi Party candidates.
After campaigning in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, it will be for the first time that the leaders of the newly-created Fourth Front will partici

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Sanjay booked for remark

Lucknow

April 21: Yet another case has been registered against actor-turned-politician Sanjay Dutt for making “inappropriate” statements in Barabanki during a public meeting on Sunday.
A case under Section has been registered under Sections 299 and 509 of the IPC in Tikait nagar police in Barabanki.
The actor, according to sources, has reiterated that he would do “gandhigiri” and “j

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Tough task for Congress

Guwahati

April 21: With electioneering for Lok Sabha elections in Assam coming to an end on Tuesday, the ruling Congress party is bracing for an uphill task of protecting its fort in the remaining 11 Lok Sabha constituencies of Brahamaputra valley.
The alliance of regional Asom Gana Parishad and the BJP is threatening to sweep the polls with candidates of Assam United Democratic Front slicing

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Maya questions impartiality of EC

Lucknow

April 21: The Utta Pradesh Chief Minister, Mayawati, has questioned the “impartiality” of the Election Commission and said that it was working in favor of the Congress.
At a press conference here on Tuesday, the Chief Minister mounted a scorching attack on the Election Commissioners and accused them of promoting and protecting the interests of the Congress and its allies.
“All t

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Slipper hurled at Jeetendra

Mumbai, April 21: Throwing a slipper or shoe at a politician to voice anger or protest is fast becoming a trend and taking cue from recent incidents, a man hurled his footwear at actor Jeetendra who was campaigning for a Congress candidate in north Maharashtra on Tuesday.
The actor, known as “jumping jack” in Bollywood was taken aback by the incident, but it is unclear if the slipper hit him

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BJP plan for growth unveiled

Bengaluru

April 21: In a strategic move two days before the second phase of the Lok Sabha polls, the BJP prime ministerial candidate, Mr L.K. Advani, on Tuesday unveiled his party’s vision document on infrastructure development for the country.
The document spells out the party’s plans for infrastructure development including a commitment on 100 projects of national importance in various s

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FIR filed against CPI minister for poll joke

Thiruvanananthapuram

April 21: Kerala revenue minister, Mr K.P. Rajendran, has run into big trouble for a humorous quip he made outside a polling station in Thrissur on election day last week.
When the CPI minister stepped out of the Poonkunnam higher secondary school after voting, the veteran Congress leader, Mr K. Karunakaran, walked in with his aides. In the presence of TV cameras, a smilin

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Sadhvi Pragya assaulted in jail

Mumbai, April 21: Sadhvi Pragya, a prime accused in the Malegaon blasts case, was assaulted by a fellow inmate at Byculla Jail and sustained injuries to her face, nose and neck, she has said in a complaint filed in a court on Tuesday.
Pragya’s advocate Mr G. Sovani said that he had moved an application before the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court, seeking to file a priva

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Navin Chawla takes over as CEC

New Delhi, April 21: Navin Chawla on Tuesday took over as the new Chief Election Commissioner succeeding N. Gopalaswami, who not long ago had recommended his removal from Nirvachan Sadan sparking a huge political controversy.

Power secretary V.S. Sampath also took over as the third election commissioner following the elevation of Chawla.

64-year-old Chawla, who was the senior-most election

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Accused in gang rape arrested after court rejects bail

Mumbai, April 21: A sessions court on Tuesday rejected the anticipatory bail petition of Vinamra Soni, charged with gang rape of a 23-year-old US national along with five others, on the ground that there was prima facie sufficient evidence to nail him in the case.

Soon after the court rejected his bail, Soni was arrested and taken into custody by police.

The court observed that police had

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Sonia silent on MK’s LTTE remark: Jaya

April 20: AIADMK leader, Ms Jayalalithaa, on Monday demanded to know why the Congress president, Ms Sonia Gandhi, was silent on her close ally Mr M. Karunanidhi’s claim that the LTTE chief Velupillai Prabhakaran was not a terrorist and was a friend.

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Left parties lash out at Somnath

NEW DELHI

April 20: The Left parties on Monday reacted sharply to Mr Somnath Chatterjee’s statement that the Left’s withdrawal of support to the UPA government was a “mistake”.
CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat, under whose leadership the CPI(M) had asked Mr Chatterjee to quit the high office in 2008, reacted sharply by saying that Mr Chatterjee’s statement has exposed the high

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Follow SOPs in Naxal areas: Centre

NEW DELHI

April 20: The Naxal violence is rising rapidly across the Red corridor. While not a single CRPF jawan fell to Maoist bullets during the 2004 general elections in Chhattisgarh, 13 were killed in Naxal violence on April 15 and 16 as the state went to polls.
The CRPF, which had lost nine personnel in Jharkhand during the 2004 general elections, has already suffered seven casualties in

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Congress: LTTE is still a terrorist organisation

New Delhi

April 20: Even as the military conflict in Sri Lanka reaches a climax with the government there announcing a 24-hour deadline for LTTE chief Velupillai Prabhakaran to surrender, the Congress in Delhi said the Indian government had been doing “everything possible” to save the lives of thousands of Tamil civilians caught in the crossfire.
Maintaining that the LTTE was a terrorist o

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New eye in sky to keep border watch

NEW DELHI/ Sriharikota

April 20: The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) on Monday successfully launched an all-weather Israeli-built spy satellite from Sriharikota which will help the security agencies keep vigil on the country’s borders and revolutionise India’s defence surveillance capabilities.
The PSLV-C12 rocket soared into a clear sky at 6.45 am and placed its first Radar Im

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Marriage info needn’t be given to parents: HC

New Delhi, April 20: Couples wanting to marry in court but not ready to let their parents know about it can breathe easy. The Delhi High Court on Monday said the provision of sending a court marriage notice to the family was not mandatory.
The court gave relief to a couple who wanted to marry without the consent of their families and did not want the marriage notice to be sent to their families.

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Spy planes to be based in TN

New Delhi, April 20: India’s newly acquired long-range spy planes, the P8-I, purchased from the US under a $2.1 billion deal earlier this year, will be based at an Indian naval air base in Tamil Nadu for better surveillance of the country’s coastline.
The eight multi-mission maritime aircraft will replace the Russian vintage Tupolev-142 turboprop maritime patrol aircraft of the Navy.
“The

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Schools turn into madrasas for sops

New Delhi, April 20: Taking cognisance of reports that scores of private schools in Uttar Pradesh, most of them run by Muslims, have converted into madrasas to avail special benefits, the Centre has asked the state government to conduct an enquiry and submit a report on it.
The ministry of Human Resource Development has written a letter to the Uttar Pradesh government, asking it to furnish a rep

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‘Pak pro-terror policy persists’

New Delhi, April 20: India said Pakistan has not displayed “sincerity and decisiveness” in dealing with perpetrators of the Mumbai attacks despite being provided with “irrefutable evidence” and that Islamabad continues to pursue the policy of “state-sponsored terrorism”.
Addressing the Army Commanders’ conference here, the Defence Minister, Mr A.K. Antony also voiced concern over

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Kasab was to attack on Raj Bhavan

Mumbai

April 20: The prosecution for the 26/11 trial, made startling revelations that the lone surviving terrorist Ajmal Aamir Kasab and his “buddy” deceased terrorist Abu Ismail Khan had planned to strike Raj Bhavan, but could not succeed as the police at Chowpatty enroute Malabar Hill overpowered them. Ismail was killed and Kasab was arrested.
Mr Ujjwal Nikam, the special public prosecut

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‘No regrets for taking on Chawla’

New Delhi, April 20: The Chief Election Commissioner, (CEC) Mr N. Gopalaswami exited office on Monday after a five-year controversial tenure, saying he did not regret accusing colleague and successor, Mr Navin Chawla of being biased to the Congress.
Mr Gopalaswami also said in an interview that he had no plans to enter politics and that he wished the new Election Commission team all the best for

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Sen blasts Mulayam over remarks on use of English

London

April 20: Indian Nobel laureate Amartya Sen on Monday said English was the language of development and highlighted that this had been acknowledged by the nation-makers in free India after Independence.
“We wanted to get rid of the British, but not English,” he said in answer to a question on use of English in India after delivering his keynote address at the chairman’s breakfast.

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India launches spy satellite

Sriharikota (AP), April 20: Giving the much needed fillip to its defence surveillance capabilities, India on Monday successfully placed into orbit an Israeli-built all-weather spy satellite but not before some "anxious moments" prior to the launch caused by a technical glitch which had threatened to stall the mission.

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PM faults Lalu on Babri row

Guwahati/Patna

April 19: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, rejected the RJD chief, Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav’s charge that the Congress was also to blame for demolition of the Babri masjid.
Dr Singh told reporters: “Mr Kalyan Singh had given an affidavit to the Supreme Court (about protecting the mosque). The Congress can be bla-med because we believed that (Kalyan) Singh wo-uld honour his

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Lakshar issues fresh poll attack threat

SRINAGAR

April 19: Lashkar-e-Tayyaba has threatened to carry out fidayeen attacks to disrupt the Lok Sabha elections in Jammu and Kashmir.
“People should stay away from sham elections as their participation would cause harm to the freedom struggle of the Kashmiris,” a man who claimed to be the Lashkar’s spokesperson Dr Abdullah Gaznavi told local news agency CNS over the phone on Saturda

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Dad agrees to sell child star

London/Mumbai, April 19: The father of Slumdog Millionaire child star, Rubina Ali Qureshi, allegedly tried to sell her for £200,000 for adoption, a sting operation by a British tabloid has revealed.
The News of The World claimed that Mr Qureshi had tried to sell nine-year-old Rubina to their reporters, who were posing as the agents of a wealthy Arab sheikh keen on adopting the famous child durin

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Rajiv killing can't be forgotten: MK

Chennai: DMK president and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi, whose remarks that he did not see LTTE leader V Prabhakaran as a terrorist created a flutter, on Monday said the Tamil organisation started as a liberation group and later became an extremist outfit.

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Parents beat 7-yr-old girl to death

Allahabad, April 19: A seven-year-old girl was on Sunday beaten to death allegedly by her parents who suspected her of stealing Rs 1,000 from the house, police said.
The incident took place in Colonelganj police station area of the city, where Chunni, the youngest among five siblings, was beaten with sticks by her father, who is an autorickshaw driver and her mother, who works as a Class IV emplo

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Amar accuses BSP of threatening Ali

Lucknow, April 19: The Samajwadi Party on Sunday accused the BSP of threatening and offering money to party nominee from Lucknow, Ms Nafisa Ali, to withdraw her candidature and said it will take up the issue with the Election Commission.
BSP’s Lucknow candidate Mr Akhilesh Das Gupta’s men are threatening Ms Ali that if she does not withdraw from the poll fray, she will be implicated in false

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Navin open to tieup with Left

New Delhi/ Kendrapara (Orissa)

April 19: Ruling out support to a BJP-led or a Congress-led government at the Centre, the Orissa chief minister, Mr Naveen Patnaik, said he was open to an alliance led by Sharad Pawar or CPI(M).
Asked if he would support a government led by the NCP chief, Mr Sharad Pawar, with whom the party has seat adjustments in Orissa, he said “it might be considered”. At

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Poll panel clears Sonia by 2:1 vote

NEW DELHI

April 19: The rift is all too evident once again. The Election Commission (EC) is reported to have sent a divided opinion to
the President Ms Pratibha Patil, on whether Congress president and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi should be disqualified as a member of Parliament for accepting a foreign award.
While the chief election commissioner (CEC), Mr N.Gopalaswami who completes his ten

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Boy imitates stunts from TV show, dies

Lucknow, April 19: Nine-year-old Chandan Singh was an avid watcher of MTV’s reality show Roadies and never missed an episode.
But Saturday night’s episode was to be his last. The boy hanged himself accidentally while imitating a stunt on the show.
Chandan, a Class III student, had watched the episode where two female contestants, Palak and Paulami, were made to stand on a wooden stool with

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Grounds must for detention: SC

New Delhi, April 19: The Supreme Court has held that it would be unconstitutional to detain a person under preventive custody without providing him/her with the grounds for the said detention.
A bench of justices Dalveer Bhandari and Asok Kumar Ganguly said it was mandatory for the authorities to supply the detainee the material relied upon for the said detention as otherwise it would be violativ

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Stay away from polls, Let warns

SRINAGAR

April 19: Lashkar-e-Tayyaba has threatened to carry out fidayeen attacks to disrupt the Lok Sabha elections in Jammu and Kashmir.
“People should stay away from the sham elections as their participation would cause harm to the freedom struggle of the Kashmiris,” a man who claimed to be the Lashkar’s spokesperson Dr. Abdullah Gaznavi told local news agency CNS over the phone on Sa

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‘Pappi’ spells pure trouble

Lucknow

April 18: Actor-turned-politician Sanjay Dutt is getting sucked into a vortex of trouble.
After an FIR was field against him in Mau for making communal remarks, the district magistrate of Pratapgarh has sent a notice to the actor for making sexist remarks against the UP Chief Minister, Ms Maya-wati. A FIR is also likely to be registered against him.
Sanjay Dutt, while addressing a

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Ram no longer poll issue

Lucknow

Ayodhya, April 18: The waters of Saryu run placid and even the dusty winds cannot create ripples here.
The aarti in the local temples is held on schedule, but there is no political banter as the devotees quietly return home with prasad in their hands. The Ram Janambhoomi temple has a steady stream of devotees, but there are no cries of Jai Shri Ram.
For the first time since 1990, the

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Lalu blames Congress for Babri

Patna/New Delhi

April 18: The RJD chief, Mr Lalu Prasad’s unexpected U-turn in holding the Congress equally responsible for the demolition of the Babri Masjid and his unusually aggressive stance on the Congress are seen in Bihar as indications of his growing frustration over the RJD’s anticipated performance in the Lok Sabha polls.

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Kasab was to attack Malabar Hill

Mumbai

April 18: The prosecution in the November 26 terror attack case on Saturday informed the special court that prime accused Ajmal Aamir Kasab and Abu Ismail Khan had also planned to target the posh Malabar Hill area in south Mumbai.
It was reported earlier how after firing indiscriminately at commuters at CST railway station, the terrorist duo was trying to hijack a vehicle to reach Mala

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Jaya: MK’s appeal on Lanka a drama

Tirunelveli (TN), April 18: The Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, Mr Karunanidhi’s act of asking the Centre to snap diplomatic ties with Sri Lanka if it failed to honour India’s latest appeal for ceasefire in the Island nation, is being dubbed as a “drama” and an “empty threat” by the AIADMK chief, Ms Jayalalithaa.
“Friday’s telegram by Mr Karunanidhi to the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan

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It was night of the underdogs

Cape Town, April 18: Unfancied outfits trashed the Top 2 teams to give an unprecedented start to the new season of IPL here on Saturday. The biggest upset came late at night when the Bangalore Royal Challengers, with just two wins last year and the butt of ridicule as a “Test team,” trounced holders Rajasthan Royals.

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Airlines hike fuel surcharge

New Delhi, April 18: Jet Airways and Kingfisher Airlines and their low-cost subsidiaries on Saturday hiked fuel surcharge on domestic flights by up to Rs 300 per head.
This follows the increase in the price of Aviation Turbine Fuel last week. State-run oil companies had on April 15 raised prices of jet fuel for the third time in a month, by 6.7 per cent.
Jet and Kingfisher announced an identic

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‘Virulent tape not doctored’

New Delhi, April 18: Defending the action taken against Mr Varun Gandhi, the Chief Election Comm-
issioner, Mr N. Gopala-
swami, on Saturday said his controversial speeches in Pilibhit were virulent and “much more than” what was shown on TV.
Ahead of his demitting office on Monday, he said in interviews that the fact of the matter was a stronger message must go.
“We said file a case an

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‘Intelligence lapses in plenty’

New Delhi, April 19: In a rare admission, a former Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) chief has said that the counter intelligence operations in India have failed to prevent penetration by foreign intelligence agencies and once even a Prime Minister was under the cloud of suspicion.
“The shame lies in the fact that it (counter intelligence) could not prevent foreign penetration even into their

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Advani refers to Osama as Obama

Mumbai, April 17: Osama became Obama for a few minutes for Mr L.K. Advani at a press conference on Friday.

But an embarrassed BJP’s prime ministerial candidate corrected himself in no time. Reading out excerpts from the interim report of BJP’s task force on black money, he mistakenly took the name of the US President instead of that of the international terror mastermind Osama Bin Laden.

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Juvenile attempt fails, Kasab cries torture

Mumbai, April 17: The third day of the trial of terror raider Mohammed Ajmal Aamir Kasab saw his lawyer drop a bombshell: Mr S.G. Abbas Kazmi made an application in the special court stating that Kasab is a “juvenile” and should be tried in a juvenile court.

“He is still under 18. He is deemed to be a juvenile and this court has no jurisdiction to try this case,” Mr Kazmi told the trial

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MK to Sonia: End ties with Lanka if no truce

Chennai, April 17: Tamil Nadu Chief minister Mr M. Karunanidhi on Friday advocated snapping of diplomatic ties with Sri Lanka if the island government ignored the appeal for ceasefire made by the Indian foreign minister Pranab Mukherjee.

Welcoming Mr Mukherjee’s appeal made earlier in the day telling Sri Lanka that it “must extend the pause in hostilities” over the last two days, Mr Karu

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ICC drops Pak for WC

New Delhi, April 17: The International Cricket Council (ICC) has said Pakistan will not host its share of matches in the 2011 Cricket World Cup following the attack on the Sri Lankan Test team in Lahore last month.

The decision was taken at the ICC’s executive board meeting in Dubai on Friday. The ICC said it was forced to take the step keeping in mind the “uncertain political situation”

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Roemer may be US envoy

New Delhi, April 17: Mr Timothy John Roemer, a former Democratic Congre-ssman from Indiana, is likely to succeed, Mr David C. Mulford as America’s ambassador to India, a US website has reported.

The Washington-based daily online magazine, foreignpolicy.com, said Mr Roemer’s name had earlier been in the reckoning for the directorship of the Central Intellige-nce Agency, a job which went to M

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MP quits Samajwadis to join BSP

Lucknow, April 17: The Samajwadi Party suffered yet another setback on Friday when its Rajya Sabha MP, Mr Banwari Lal Kanchal, quit the party to join the Bahujan Samaj Party.

Mr Kanchal, who is a prominent trader leader, also resigned from the Rajya Sabha membership where his term ends in 2012.

Mr Kanchal, who was welcomed into the BSP fold by UP chief minister Mayawati, said that he had j

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Monsoon to be slightly lower

New Delhi, April 17: The annual monsoon is likely to be near normal, according to forecasts by the Indian Meteorologi-cal Department.

The Met department said the long-range forecast for the 2009 southwest monsoon from June to Septem-ber was that rainfall is likely to be “near normal.”

Quantitatively, monsoon rainfall is likely to be 96 per cent of the long period average with a model err

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‘LS polls in Bihar are referendum of my work’

Patna, April 17: Back from a gruelling six-rally-a-day election campaign, a visibly energetic Nitish Kumar feels confident about the wisdom of Bihar’s electorate. “It so happens always that the mike goes wrong at my last election address of the day,” jokes the Bihar Chief Minister before answering questions from this newspaper at his official residence in Patna.

How hopeful are you of you

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47 LS constituencies in UP ask for Varun

Lucknow, April 17: Young BJP leader Varun Gandhi is in great demand for campaigning by BJP candidates in Uttar Pradesh.

According to the sources in the state BJP headquarters, Mr Gandhi has emerged as a much sought after star campaigners in at least 47 Lok Sabha constituencies of the remaining 64 segments in UP.

“Ever since his release on Thursday, we have been flooded with requests for

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Sajjan’s brother gets ticket

New Delhi, April 17: The Congress on Friday declared the names of the two replacement candidates for Mr Sajjan Kumar and Mr Jagdish Tytler from South Delhi and North-East Delhi Lok Sabha constituencies. While Mr Sajjan Kumar’s brother, Mr Ramesh Kumar, will contest from South Delhi, the Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee chief, J.P. Agarwal, will contest from North-East Delhi. The party also decla

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Election means money for Bondas in Orissa

Bhubaneswar, April 17 : For the Bondas, one of the most primitive tribes of India, election means money.

The election holds little significance for this tribe- known for their violent nature — as they try to fleece money from the parties which approach them for votes.

All efforts by the officials to make them aware of importance of the polls have so far proved futile.

“We did not n

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Now, target practice for aspiring shoe throwers

New Delhi, April 17: Politicians beware! If a Madhya Pradesh businessman’s campaign succeeds, shoe missiles — typically aimed at high profile leaders — may not miss their target any more.

Indore-based youth Rajesh Bidkar, in an effort to get some free publicity, no doubt, has launched a juta feko (hurl the shoe) training campaign.

Bidkar says the campaign is aimed at helping future sh

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Mayawati warns Varun again

Lucknow, April 16: The UP Chief Minister, Ms Mayawati, on Thursday, warned that if the BJP leader Varun Gandhi, tried to disturb the law and order situation, her government would take even more stringent action this time.

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Mumbai terror trial begins

Mumbai, April 17: The trial in the Mumbai terror attack case opened on Friday with the sole surviving terrorist Mohammed Amir Ajmal Kasab seeking retraction of his confession and the prosecution saying he and the other killed terrorists were given military and intelligence training in Pakistan.

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7-year RI for Telgi

Abdul Karim Telgi, prime accused in the multi-crore fake stamp paper case, and seven others were sentenced to seven years rigorous imprisonment by the CBI special sessions court on Friday.
Former Bangalore ACP, T.G. Sangram Singh was sentenced to three years. However, as Singh had completed nearly 22 months in prison, the court granted him bail.

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Two more held in gangrape case

Mumbai, April 17: Two more persons were arrested on Friday in connection with the gangrape of an American student of Tata Institute of Social Science here, police said.

"Both persons who have been arrested are from the same group," Deputy Commissioner of Police Dilip Sawant said.

However, he refused to divulge the identity of the duo.

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11-yr-old dies after corporal punishment

New Delhi, Apr 17: A 11-year-old girl, who was battling for life for the past two days after being meted out corporal punishment allegedly by her school teacher, died in a hospital on Friday.

A class II student of MCD primary school in Bawana, Shona, who had slipped into coma after being allegedly punished by her teacher two days ago, breathed her last at Maharishi Valmiki Hospital here.

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Maoists beat EC security

New Delhi, April 16: Maoist violence marked the first phase of the 15th Lok Sabha polls, leaving 18 dead — five poll officials, 10 security personnel and three civilians — in the “red corridor” — Jharkhand, Orissa, Bihar and Chhattisgarh.

Successful Maoist strikes put a question mark on the EC’s strategy of holding elections in challenging constituencies at one go.

While BSF dire

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Good governance, our primary focus: Rajnath

Delhi, April 16: The BJP president, Mr Rajnath Singh is confident that his party will come out as the single largest political party after the Lok Sabha elections. Mr Singh maintains that good governance remains the primary focus of his party.

What do you have to say on the war of words between Prime Ministerial candidate L.K. Advani and PM Dr Manmohan Singh?

The attack is not personal, but

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Kasab on trial for 166 deaths

Mumbai, April 16: Special court judge M.L. Thahiliyani appointed Abbas Kazmi, lawyer for some of the 1993 blasts accused, as lawyer for the 26/11 terrorist Ajmal Kasab.

Mr Kazmi met Kasab soon after and pulled him for laughing and smiling during proceedings.

“I told him that he should behave properly and stop giggling,” Mr Kazmi told this newspaper.

The special public prosecutor, Mr

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Poll official attempts suicide

Guwahati, April 16: The presiding officer at Fongbinik village near Howraghat of Autonomous Lok Sabha constituency, Mr Depak Basumatary, tried to commit suicide by slitting his own throat on Thursday.

Other poll officials, however, managed to stop him in the nick of time and he was afterwards moved to Haowraghat Civil Hospital, sources in the administration said. However, reason behind his atte

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Slipper hurled at Advani

Bhopal/Katni (MP), April 16: A disaffected BJP worker threw a slipper at the party’s prime ministerial candidate, Mr L.K. Advani, at a public meeting at Katni.

The missile went unseen by most in the crowd and its intended target. It landed 20 to 30 feet ahead of the podium. The incident occurred just as Mr Advani arrived at around 1 pm.

The police arrested Pawas Agarwal, ex-district presi

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FIR against Scindia for code break

Lalitpur (UP), April 16: An FIR has been lodged against the Congress candidate from Guna constituency, Mr Jyotiraditya Scindia for allegedly violating the model code after an helicopter flying him landed at a ground here without prior official permission.

Mr Scindia had allegedly landed his helicopter at Chaandmaari ground here without prior permission from the district administration, police

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‘We will not join BJP again’

Srinagar, April 16: The ruling National Conference (NC) president and former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister, Dr Farooq Abdullah, has ruled out the possibility of his party’s aligning with the BJP if voted to power.

“We’ve learnt lessons from being with the BJP in the past. I don’t think we will join the BJP again,” he said in an interview with this newspaper here on Thursday.

E

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Rahul enjoys desi chicken

Kendrapara (Orissa), April 16: They were all visibly excited. The reason — they had got a lifetime opportunity to extend hospitality to a very very important person (VVIP).

With the scion of Nehru-Gandhi family, Mr Rahul Gandhi, spending the night amidst them on Wednesday, staff of the local Golden Palace hotel in this district headquarters town were having a hectic time.

It may be recalle

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Jaya appeals for ‘historic verdict’

Chennai, April 16: AIADMK general secretary, Ms Jayalalithaa, on Thursday evening kickstarted her election campaign here saying, “Tomorrow is ours. All 40 constituencies are ours.”

She made a fervent appeal to the voters to give a “historic verdict” in the May 13 Lok Sabha elections defeating the DMK-Congress combine which “has betrayed the interests of Tamils” after winning all the

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Kasab wants to retract

Mumbai: The trial in the Mumbai terror attack case opened with the sole surviving terrorist Mohammed Amir Ajmal Kasab seeking retraction of his confession and the prosecution saying he and the other killed terrorists were given military and intelligence training in Pakistan.

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Schoolkid dies after punishment

New Delhi: An 11-year-old school girl, who was "made to stand" in the sun with bricks on her shoulders allegedly by her teacher, died in a city hospital today after battling for life for the past two days.

A class II student of MCD primary school in Bawana, Shona, who was put on ventilator, breathed her last at Maharishi Valmiki Hospital this afternoon.

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Varun will speak against anti-nationals

New Delhi: Breaking his silence a day after stepping out of jail on a two-week parole, Varun Gandhi, who has been booked under NSA for alleged hate speeches, said he would continue to raise his voice against "anti-national forces".

Having given an undertaking to the Supreme Court that he will not make any inflammatory speeches, 29-year old Varun, who was released from Etah jail in UP last eve

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Student punished by teacher, in coma

New Delhi, April 16: An 11-year old girl student is battling for her life inside the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of a hospital after being allegedly “punished” by her teacher for failing to answer a question in Bawana area of outer Delhi.

The police said Shano, a Class II student in an MCD girls primary school in Bawana, was admitted to Maharishi Balmiki hospital by her mother and other rela

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Harassed by senior, girl ends life

Ghaziabad, April 16: A search has been launched for a former student of the Indraprastha Engineering College, who allegedly drove a fourth-year student to suicide through continuous harassment, police said on Thursday.

A case was filed against the former student, identified as Abhishek, after a note charging him with driving Sarika to commit suicide on Wednesday night was found next to the gir

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Plagiarism: DD to pay Rs 10 lakh

Mumbai, April 16: The Bombay High Court has asked Doordarshan to shell out Rs 10 lakh as compensation for plagiarising a part of well-known documentary filmmaker Anand Patwardhan’s 1975 film.

Patwardhan had dragged DD to court, alleging that the government broadcaster used a part from his film Waves of Revolution in a 2003 short film entitled 26th June, 1975.

Justice Roshan Dalvi, in the

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Peaceful polling in NE states

Guwahati, April 16: In contrast to existing fears, the polling for the 10 Lok Sabha seats was held peacefully on Thursday with an average turnout of over 60 per cent electorates in the five North Eastern states of Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Mizoram.

The three parliamentary constituencies of Assam recorded over 60 per cent polling with Silchar witnessing the high

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Leaders aim to win third time

Lucknow, April 16: Over a dozen candidates in Uttar Pradesh are trying to complete a hat trick of sorts by winning their seat for the third consecutive term, even if it means a change of party and symbol.

The Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, will complete a hat-trick of sorts when she wins her Rae Bareli seat for the third consecutive term this time.

Mrs Gandhi had won the Rae Bareli s

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Alappuzha records high votes

Thiruvananthapuram, April 16: More than 68 per cent polling was recorded in Kerala where election was held to 20 Lok Sabha constituencies on Thursday. Polling was peaceful.

The highest polling percentage of 77 per cent was recorded in Alappuzha, a Communist fortress, and lowest of 57 per cent was in Thiruvananthapuram, where the former United Nations under secretary-general,

Mr Shashi Tha

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Kavi sammelans target politicos

Lucknow, April 16: “Waqt ko badle , koi aandhi nahin hai, Ab siyasat mein dhuli khadi nahin hai, Badzuban hi manch par chhaye hue hain, ab koi Nehru, koi Gandhi nahin hai,” — Wahid Ali ‘Wahid’.

Poetry, it is said, is a reflection of society and in this season of politics and elections, ‘kavi sammelans’ are reflecting the state of society. There is humour, there is sarcasm, there i

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3rd Front hunting for PM: Pranab

Agartala, April 16: Taking a dig to the concept of an alternative government, barring the Congress and the BJP, the foreign minister, Mr Pranab Mukherjee, on Thursday sarcastically described the Third Front, the main protagonist of the idea, as an amalgamation of some political parties in search of a Prime Minister.

He said earlier also that such experiments failed and it is never going to be

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Now, slipper thrown at Advani

A former Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) office-bearer on Thursday created a sensation by throwing a wooden slipper at the senior party leader, Mr L.K. Advani, when the latter was going up on stage to address a public meeting in Madhya Pradesh.
The man, identified as Pawas Agarwal, threw a “khadaun” or slipper made of wood at Advani, saying he was “a fake iron man” and did not deserve to be

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Naxals kill 17 on poll day

Stepping up their attacks, Maoists on Thursday struck in Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Orissa, killing 17 people,including five election officials and 10 security personnel, and looted electronic voting machines in a bid to disrupt the first phase of polling for Lok Sabha.
Naxalites blew up a vehicle carrying poll officials in Chhattisgarh's Rajnandgaon district, killing five of them and inj

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Abbas Kazmi is Kasab’s new lawyer

Mumbai attacks accused Mohammad Ajmal Amir Kasab on Thursday got a new lawyer, S.G. Abbas Kazmi, who has defended several accused in the 1993 bomb blasts case.
Special sessions judge M.L. Tahilyani on Thursday appointed Kazmi, a lawyer of 20 years standing, to defend Kasab after the court was informed that there has been no response from Pakistan authorities to Kasab’s request for a Pakistani l

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‘Let India, FBI take over 26/11 probe’

Ahmedabad, April 15: The Union Home minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, on Wednesday said if Islamabad “cannot” probe the Mumbai attacks, then it should allow FBI or India to carry out investigation in Pakistan in connection with the terror strikes last November.

“If Pakistan government says that it can’t investigate why don’t they let the FBI to investigate who are willing to do it. If th

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SC orders release of Varun Gandhi

New Delhi, April 16: The Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the release of BJP leader Varun Gandhi, detained under National Security Act, on parole for two weeks to campaign for Lok Sabha polls with the condition that he would not indulge in any conduct likely to disturb communal harmony.

The 29-year-old BJP candidate, who is making his electoral debut from Pilbhit Lok Sabha seat in Uttar Prasd

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Act on Taliban: Pranab

Jangipur (WB), April 15: India said it expected Pakistan to take appropriate steps against the Taliban, which is reportedly planning to create trouble during Lok Sabha elections and to dismantle terrorist infrastructure on its soil to stop infiltration.

“Taliban is a very powerful terrorist organisation. If they try, they can create trouble. We expect that the Pakistan government will take a

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Waghmare shunted out, Kasab seeks Pak lawyer

Mumbai, April 15: On the first day of the trial, arrested 26/11-terror raider Ajmal Aamir Kasab in the special court saw drama as the court, presided by special judge M.L. Tahaliyani, revoked the appointment of his lawyer, Ms Anjali Waghmare, for concealing some facts from the court.

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Notice against Rabri

Patna, April 15: The Patna High Court on Wednesay issued a notice to former Bihar chief minister Ms Rabri Devi asking her to clarify her stand on a petition seeking initiation of contempt proceedings against her for allegedly “scandalising and lowering” the authority of judiciary through her election speech in Chapra recently.

A Division Bench comprising Justices J.B. Koshy and Ravi Ranjan

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Advani is RSS slave: Sonia

Bidar, April 15: The Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, on Wednesday tore into the BJP for denouncing Dr Manmohan Singh as a “weak Prime Minister” and launched a blistering counter attack against the saffron party’s prime ministerial candidate, Mr L.K. Advani, ridiculing him for being a “slave of the RSS” who is “incapable of taking any decision on his own”.

Addressing a mammot

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‘I’m no one to forgive Nalini’

New Delhi, April 15: Ms Priyanka Gandhi feels that Nalini Sriharan, convicted for Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination, may have committed such a crime out of her own suffering and without the intention of hurting others.

“I think when people do things like this they actually do it out of suffering. They don’t do it out of the intention of hurting other people,” she told a TV news channel.

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Special chargesheet against Peerbhoy

New Delhi, April 15: Delhi police on Wednesday filed a supplementary chargesheet against four suspected terrorists of Indian Mujahideen including its media cell head Mansoor Asghar Peerbhoy, accusing them of being involved in the serial blasts here on September 13 last year.

In the chargesheet filed in the court of Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Kaveri Baweja, the Special Cell sought prosecutio

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Khanna, most expensive MP

Chandigarh, April 15: Punjab Election Watch, a collective of civil society organisations, says the Indian people paid Rs. 1.3 crore for every question incumbent Gurdaspur MP and film actor Vinod Khanna raised during his five years in the current Lok Sabha. The Ludhiana-based group, which had exposed details of candidates’ financial status before the state Assembly election in February 2007, has

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Sene disrupts journo conference in Delhi

New Delhi, April 15: A group of Sri Ram Sene activists on Wednesday tried to disrupt a seminar being attended by journalists from India and Pakistan here protesting the alleged criticism of the Indian media by Pakistani scribes.

The trouble started when Pakistani journalist Mr Khan Yusufzai from The News referred to an article, which suggested India to attack Pakistan after the Mumbai attacks

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US national gangraped in Mumbai, 3 detained

Mumba, April 15: A 23 year-old US national who had been in Mumbai for a four month exchange programme with Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), was allegedly gang raped by six college students on late Saturday night.

While the police have detained three students in the case, they believe that the other three have escaped to Jamshedpur.

Police said that the incident had occurred on Satu

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Maoists hit with rockets

Patna/New Delhi, April 15: Maoists rebels active in the Bihar-Jharkhand belt threw an open challenge to the government on the eve of the first phase of Lok Sabha elections with a series of daring attacks on the paramilitary forces on election duty in the two states.

The Maoists used rocket launchers for the first time in their four-decade-long guerilla warfare campaign in the region, targeting

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BJP to PM: No smear campaign

Bengaluru, April 15: After running a sustained personal assault on Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, the BJP on Wednesday asked the PM not to get “personally involved in any kind of smear campaign.”

Accusing the Congress of running a slanderous campaign against his party, BJP president, Mr Rajnath Singh said, “If Opposition parties criticise the Prime Minister for his actions, the PM’s

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Kalyan is missing in SP spectrum

Lucknow, April 15: With elections now reaching a crescendo in Uttar Pradesh, the man who put the communal cauldron on the boil has suddenly receded in the background.

Mr Kalyan Singh is nowhere to be seen or heard. Mr Kalyan Singh has been missing from the political arena since the past two months.

Barring one press conference in Aligarh, he has made himself inaccessible to the media and ne

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Jaya to kick off campaign today

Chennai, April 15: AIADMK supremo Jayalalithaa would kick-start her campaign for the May 13 Lok Sabha elections on Thursday evening here at Island Grounds. She would be two days ahead of her arch-rival DMK chief M. Karunanidhi who begins his campaign from the city on April 18.

A stage in the form of Parliament building was approved by Ms Jayalalithaa for the inaugural public rally in which sh

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Mani Ratnam in hospital

Chennai, April 15: Renowned film director Mani Ratnam was admitted to a hospital late on Tuesday night after he complained of breathing problems and discomfort in chest. Ratnam is now recuperating and would be allowed to resume work after resting for a couple of days.

“Doctors said there was nothing to panic and the director is healthy,” Ratnam’s spokesman Nikhil Murugan said.

The d

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Mani Ratnam in hospital

Chennai, April 15: Renowned film director Mani Ratnam was admitted to a hospital late on Tuesday night after he complained of breathing problems and discomfort in chest. Ratnam is now recuperating and would be allowed to resume work after resting for a couple of days.

“Doctors said there was nothing to panic and the director is healthy,” Ratnam’s spokesman Nikhil Murugan said.

The d

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Born blind, man gains sight at 22

Kolkata, April 15: A 22-year-old man, who was visually impaired since birth and believed that he was doomed to live in perpetual darkness, has gained his sight.

Sanjoy Sen, who had cataract in both eyes since birth and could not see but feel strong light, gained vision after being operated twice.

The operations were performed by Dr Jyotirmoy Dutta of the National Medical College and Hospit

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Born blind, man gains sight at 22

Kolkata, April 15: A 22-year-old man, who was visually impaired since birth and believed that he was doomed to live in perpetual darkness, has gained his sight.

Sanjoy Sen, who had cataract in both eyes since birth and could not see but feel strong light, gained vision after being operated twice.

The operations were performed by Dr Jyotirmoy Dutta of the National Medical College and Hospit

read more


Mani Ratnam in hospital

Chennai, April 15: Renowned film director Mani Ratnam was admitted to a hospital late on Tuesday night after he complained of breathing problems and discomfort in chest. Ratnam is now recuperating and would be allowed to resume work after resting for a couple of days.

“Doctors said there was nothing to panic and the director is healthy,” Ratnam’s spokesman Nikhil Murugan said.

The d

read more


Born blind, man gains sight at 22

Kolkata, April 15: A 22-year-old man, who was visually impaired since birth and believed that he was doomed to live in perpetual darkness, has gained his sight.

Sanjoy Sen, who had cataract in both eyes since birth and could not see but feel strong light, gained vision after being operated twice.

The operations were performed by Dr Jyotirmoy Dutta of the National Medical College and Hospit

read more


N-capable Prithvi-II fired

Balasore (Orissa), April 15: India on Wednesday successfully test-fired an improved version of the nuclear-capable Prithvi-II ballistic missile with a range of 350 km from the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur, about 15 km from here, off the Orissa coast.

The indigenously developed surface-to-surface missile was test-fired at around 10.20 am from a Tatra transporter erector launcher from the

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Birthing chairs to give women relief

Kolkata, April 15: The problem of excruciating delivery pain experienced by women during childbirth seems to have found an answer in birthing chairs, now popular in the west.

A private hospital in Kolkata is all set to introduce birthing chairs for would-be-mothers to reduce the painful process to some extent.

“Birthing chair helps women deliver much easily in shorter time. We will soon ha

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Study: Eyes help remember

New Delhi, April 15: Eyes of the person or the photograph you are looking at play a key role in making humans remember faces, says a new research.

How many people do you see in a day and how many faces do you remember? The mystery of how and why we recognise faces has always posed a challenge for neuroscientists. A large part of the answer might lie in the brain’s reliance on a certain kind

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1st social science varsity

New Delhi, April 15: The country’s first university exclusively for students of social sciences and humanities, the Ambedkar University, Delhi will start enrolling students from this academic year for its post graduate course.

“The university will function through its various schools and centres spread across the capital. The motive behind launching a specialised varsity for social science

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Dubai ad spurs SRK call frenzy

Dubai, April 15: It has been raining phone calls and personal messages for Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan in UAE within days of an ad campaign featuring him with his local mobile number appeared on the television screens.

Besides Khan, Du, the local telecom services provider, has roped in three other Arab celebrities, which include Lebanese TV presenter George Kurdahi, Emirati jewellery des

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Qutub to get audio guides

New Delhi, April 15: From next week onwards, one wouldn’t need a tour guide to go around the Qutub Minar. The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is launching audio guides for the visitors that will have all the information about the monument.

“We are launching audio guides on the occasion of World Heritage Day for the Qutub Minar. The audio guide will provide background context and infor

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Copter fails, Rahul stranded

Kendrapara, Orissa, Apirl 15: Congress star campaigner Mr Rahul Gandhi, who was on a campaign trail to this district on Wednesday, was stranded here as the helicopter carrying him failed to take off due to poor visibility.

Mr Gandhi will spend the night at the Golden Palace Hotel here amid tight security. He would depart for Bhubaneswar, 80 km from here, early on Thursday morning, police source

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Soumya killers sent to custody

New Delhi, April 15: A Delhi court has remanded three alleged killers of TV journalist Soumya Vishwanathan to seven days’ police custody in connection with the murder of a cab driver after they reportedly confessed their complicity during the custodial interrogation.

Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Mr Kiran Bansal allowed the police to quiz Ravi Kapoor, Ajay Kumar and Ajay Sethi, wh

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Left snubs PM’s offer

New Delhi, April 15: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, on Wednesday “recognised” the valuable contribution made by the Left and regional parties in the last five years while dropping enough hints about the possibility of a post-poll alliance with them once again.

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Communal slur FIR on Dutt

Lucknow, April 14: An FIR was registered on Tuesday against Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt for allegedly violating the model code of conduct by making communal remarks in an election rally in Mau district.

The FIR was registered at Dakkhin Tola police station on Tuesday evening for comments he made during an election rally held at Azad ground in Mau town, a senior official said.

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PM willing to work with Left

Leaving the door to a rapprochement wide open, the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, said on Wednesday that an alliance with the Left after the elections was possible. The Left parties responded saying they were ready but only if the India-US nuclear deal was withdrawn.
“An alliance with Left parties is possible only after the elections,” Dr Singh said at an interaction with members of the E

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Waghmare sacked, Kasab seeks Pak lawyer

Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, the terror suspect captured during 26/11 Mumbai attacks asked the court in Mumbai on Wednesday to provide him with a Pakistani defence lawyer, a request that was denied by the trial judge. Kasab, a Pakistani national, made the request after the judge sacked Ms Anjali Waghmare, the state-appointed lawyer because of a conflict of interest.

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Patna train catches fire, all safe

Patna, April 15: A passenger train caught fire at the railway station on Wednesday but there was no immediate report of any casualty.

"Nobody has so far been reported hurt or killed in the blaze as all disembarked from the stationary train on hearing the shouts of fire," Railway sources said.

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AP, Orissa cops kill 1 Maoist, arrest 4

Bhubaneswar, April 14: In a joint operation, Orissa and Andhra Pradesh police on Tuesday successfully gunned down one of the hardcore Naxalite and arrested four rebels entrenched on the hilltop bauxite mines of the National Aluminium Company (Nalco) in Koraput district.

The police also reportedly recovered half of the arms and ammunition looted by the ultras from the local Central Industrial Se

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Telgi, Sangram and six others convicted

Bangalore, April 15: A special court on Wednesday convicted main accused in the multi-crore fake stamp paper scam Abdul Karim Telgi, former police official Sangram Singh and six others under various sections of the Indian Penal Code.

The court constituted for the trial of fake stamp paper cases in Karnataka will pronounce the quantum of sentence on Thursday.

The CBI was entrusted with the

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Ultras hit Congress neta home in Assam

Guwahati, April 14: The rampaging Karbi and Dimasa rebels continue to wreak an havoc in trouble-torn Karbi Anglong and North Cachar Hill districts on Tuesday while they lobbed a powerful grenade close to a CRPF camp at Nomjam under Mahur police station.

The militants also targted the house of a Congress leader in Karbi Anglong on Tuesday.

Though, there was no casualty, grenade attack create

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Singh avoids Advani, cold war continues

New Delhi, April 14: The bitter slanging match over the last few days resulted in the BJP leader, Mr L.K. Advani, keeping off a dinner hosted by the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, for the outgoing Lok Sabha Speaker, Somnath Chatterjee, with whom the Opposition party did not have the best of relations.

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63 receive Padma awards

New Delhi, April 14: The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) chairman, Mr G. Madhavan Nair, Olympic gold medallist, Abhinav Bindra, historian Ramachandra Guha and noted billiard player Pankaj Advani were among the 63 personalities who received the Padma awards on Tuesday.

The awards were given away by President Pratibha Devisingh Patil at Rashtrapati Bhawan. The recipients also included

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Going nowhere

IT’S a birthright proffered by science and prophesied by Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica and a thousand other space operas: We’re destined to go to the stars. The fastest rocket ever launched, Nasa’s New Horizons probe to Pluto, roared off its pad in 2006 at 10 miles per second. Combustion rockets, like New Horizons, can deliver you to the Moon in a matter of days, but a trip to Proxima Cent

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26/11 trial may not start today

Mumbai, April 14: The much awaited trial in the 26/11 terror attack case may not begin on Tuesday as the special court has to first decide a petition seeking to debar the lawyer, Ms Anjali Waghmare, from defending the lone surviving gunman, Mohammed Amir Ajmal Kasab, on grounds of “professional misconduct”.

Ms Waghmare, appointed by the court to defend Kasab, is mired in a controversy which

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Kasab mom to meet him in Mumbai

Mumbai/Jangipur (WB): The mother of Ajmal Kasab, the lone surviving gunman in the Mumbai terror attack ca-se, is coming to India to meet him, as the stage is set for the start of the trial of the Pakis-tani national in Mumbai on Wednesday. The external aff-airs minister, Mr Pranab Mu-kherjee, referred to the visit of Kasab’s mother while stre-ssing that Pakistan should not delay investigations o

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We gave Pak ample proof: PM

New Delhi, April 14: India on Tuesday slammed Pakistan for claiming that the evidence provided on Mumbai terror attack was not sufficient with the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, saying Islamabad should act as “enough” information has been given.

“We have given enough information for them to act and it is for them to act,” Mr Singh told reporters on the sidelines of the civil investi

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Seven soldiers buried alive under avalanche

Srinagar, April 14: A snow avalanche packed down an Army post along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kupwara district during the night of Monday-Tuesday, burying seven troopers alive.

Eight of their colleagues, however, managed to escape unhurt, defence and police officials here said on Tuesday.

The soldiers belonged to the Army’s counter-insurgency 20 Rashtriya Rifles and wer

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Women trained to cross LoC

New Delhi, April 14: Army Chief General Deepak Kapoor on Tuesday said that women were being “trained” on the other side of the Line of Control (LoC) to infiltrate into India.

“We have information that women are being trained on the other side to infiltrate into Jammu and Kashmir,” the Army Chief said, when asked about the possibility of involvement of women handlers in the Pulwama encou

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Students allege ragging

Panaji, April 14: First year students of the Goa University have accused their seniors of ragging and making vulgar remarks.

The second year students have rubbished the allegations, saying that a professor they had accused of sexual harassment has instigated the juniors against them.

In their complaint to the university officials, M.A. Political Science women students have accused the senior

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Stir helps single screen halls

New Delhi, April 14: The ongoing Bollywood producers strike and the economic slowdown might spell gloom for many.

However, it has come as a blessing in disguise for single screen theatres in the city, which are hoping to cash in on the situation to win back cinegoers looking for cheaper options.

The ongoing standoff between Bollywood’s producer-distributors and multiplex owners has put s

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14 Indian sailors released

Mumbai, April 14: Fourteen Indian sailors aboard a vessel which was detained in Somalia since October last year have been released.

“M V Jaikur-I, with the crew of 14 Indians, which had been detained in Mogadishu since October 2008 due to a commercial dispute between owners and other interested parties, has been released,” a statement from the Director General of Shipping said here on Tuesd

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Devotee dies in stampede

Sabarimala, April 14: A pilgrim was killed and four injured in a stampede near the sacred 18 steps of the Lord Ayyappa temple
on Tuesday.

The stampede took place when pilgrims rushed towards the steps near the sannidhanam (sanctum sanctorum) and few of them fell down in the melee, the temple sources said.

The deceased was identified as Anil, 60, from Guntur in Andhra Pradesh.

There is

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50-yr-old tusker rescued

Kochi, April 14: An elephant, which swam to the tiny island of nearby Kaka Thuruth and had been stranded there for four days, was finally rescued using a barge.

The island had never received such a visitor before. The elephant soon endeared itself to the locals, and they competed with each another in trying to get bananas, leaves, rice gruel and jaggery for the animal.

For the 50-year-old t

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Sahu arrested for hate speech

Phulbani (Orissa), April 14: BJP candidate from Kandhamal Lok Sabha seat Ashok Sahu, who has been evading arrest for past three days after a case was registered against him for allegedly making a hate speech, was taken into custody on Tuesday.
Sahu, who had twice given the slip to the police, was arrested when he was participating in a motorcycle rally with party supporters at College Square in

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26/11 trial may not begin on April 15

Mumbai, April 14: The much awaited trial in the 26/11 terror attack case may not begin on Wednesday as the special court has to first decide on a petition seeking to debar lawyer Anjali Waghmare from defending the lone surviving gunman, Mohammed Amir Ajmal Kasab, on grounds of "professional misconduct".

Waghmare, appointed by the court to defend Kasab, is mired in a controversy which seems to

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PC asks LTTE to respect truce

Chennai, April 13: Union home minister P. Chidambaram on Monday claimed that the two-day ceasefire declared by Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa was the result of an Indian appeal and called upon the LTTE to reciprocate by halting hostilities so that the ceasefire could become permanent. He said India would continue to push Colombo to extend the ceasefire beyond April 15 but for this, the Tig

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Women being trained to infilitrate across LoC

New Delhi, April 14: The Army chief General Deepak Kapoor on Tuesday said women were being "trained" on the other side of the Line of Control to infiltrate in to India.
"We have information that women are being trained on the other side to infiltrate into Jammu and Kashmir," the Army Chief said, when asked about the possibility of involvement of women handlers in the Pulwama encounter that ended

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IJP candidate found hanging

Lucknow, April 13: Lal Bahadur Sonkar, the Indian Justice Party candidate from the Jaunpur Lok Sabha constituency was found hanging from a tree on Monday morning in mysterious circumstances.

Sonkar had gone missing on Sunday evening and his family was shocked when informed that he was found hanging from a tree in the Line Bazar locality.

Police sources claimed that the IJP candidate had comm

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‘Biwi brigade’ joins campaign

Lucknnow, April 13: The “biwi brigade” is out in the field, braving the dusty winds and scorching heat. They have set aside household chores for a change and are working overtime so that their husbands reach the Lok Sabha well in time.

While most of the candidates prefer to rely on their supporters for campaigning, some have brought out their wives to assist in the campaign. Ms Alka Das, w

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Maoists flee as SOG enters

KORAPUT/BHUBANESWAR/HYDERABAD, April 13: The Maoists who attacked National Aluminium Company (Nal-co) at its Damonjodi mines in Orissa’s Koraput district began to retreat after reinforcements of the Special Operations Group, an elite anti-Maoist unit, and the CRPF were rushed to the area. The paramilitary units later started combing operations to capture the fleeing militants.

A Nalco officia

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Jaipur blast accused arrested

Bhopal, April 13: An Indian Mujahideen (IM) terrorist allegedly involved in the Jaipur and Ahmedabad blasts was arrested on Monday by the anti terrorist squad (ATS) from Jabalpur railway station, the police said.

The terrorist, identified as Saif-Ur-Rehman, 22, was arrested from a Mumbai-bound train at Jabalpur following an intelligence input, said the inspector general of the Special Task Forc

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BJP: BJD harassed candidates

Bhubaneswar, April 13: The Bharatiya Janata Party on Monday accused the Naveen Patnaik government of harassing its candidates by “framing false charges” against them.

“The BJP candidates are being harassed at the instance of CM Naveen Patnaik, who is apprehensive of a good show by our party in the ensuing elections in Orissa”, BJP legislature party leader, Mr Biswa Bhusan Harichandan

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Advani asks for apology

Thiruvananthapuram, April 13: The senior BJP leader, Mr L.K. Advani, asked the Congress president, Mrs. Sonia Gandhi, to apologise for making “irresponsible remarks” about the Sangh Parivar.

Mr Advani said Mrs Gandhi’s remarks that the threat to India was not from terrorists but from forces within the country that wore a mask of patriotism were directed at his party.

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Firefighters to come on motorcycles

New Delhi, April 13: Gearing up for the Commonwealth Games in the national capital next year, the Delhi fire service on Monday introduced a new fleet of motorcycles equipped with portable fire extinguishers for rapid action.

The state-of-the-art equipment — ‘watermist backpacks’ — will be fitted on red-coloured Royal Enfield motorbikes and will be deployed in different part of the city

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Menon visits Dhaka for talks

NEW DELHI, April 13: The foreign secretary, Mr Shivshankar Menon, hopped to Dhaka over the weekend for talks that were described as a regular consultation meeting with a friendly neighbour.

It was the first visit by any Indian official to Bangladesh after the recent mutiny by the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) personnel, and it came within days of Dhaka deciding to set up a tribunal to try the 1971 wa

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CRPF: We killed 30 Naxals

New Delhi, April 13: CRPF on Monday claimed to have killed nearly 30 Naxals in Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh during the encounter in which the force lost 10 personnel including a deputy commandant.

“Our team on the ground in Dantewada informed the director-general, Mr A.S. Gill, that more than 30 Naxals were killed in the encounter that took place on Friday. Though only three bodies we

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Congress wary of shoe attacks

New Delhi, April 13: The Congress appears to be still struggling to come out of the shock it received from the shoe-throwing incident, as the party has decided to keep Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh away from reporters covering AICC affairs here at the headquarters.

This became evident on Monday, when while replying a question on why Dr Singh was not addressing a press conference at the part

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Jobs for only 60% Madras IITians

Chennai, April 13: Even though various top-notch companies had placed 700 B.Tech students from the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, about 400 Ph.D, M.S and M.Sc students are still waiting for companies to recruit them. 

Lt. Col. Jayakumar, deputy registrar (training and placement), IIT-M, said, “Of the 1,100 students who had registered for placements, about 700 B.Tech and

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India yet to send details to Interpol

New Delhi, April 13: India is yet to send details of the terrorists who died in the Mumbai terror attacks, including their DNA profiles, to the Interpol. Pakistan has already agreed to provide similar details of the arrested persons in connection with the investigation into the 26/11 attack to the global agency.

Pakistan on Monday accused India of not cooperating in the investigation into 26/11

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Designated courts for Godhra riots

New Delhi, April 13: The Supreme Court on Monday favoured setting up of designated courts for the trial of the accused in the post-godhra riot cases in Gujarat.

A bench headed by Justice Arijit Pasayat asked the state government and senior advocate Harish Salve, who is assisting the court as an amicus curiae in the matter, to place before it suggestions in this regard by Monday. The bench was t

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BSP turns 25 but awaits grand celebration

Lucknow, April 13: When the Bahujan Samaj Party turns 25 on Tuesday, there will be no major celebrations this time.

BSP president Mayawati will be busy campaigning and other party workers will, perhaps, be writing the script for another success story in India politics.

In its 25-year journey, the BSP has recorded a phenomenal growth. When the party was founded by late Kanshi Ram on April 14,

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Varun will mind his speech

New Delhi, April 13: The BJP leader Mr Varun Gandhi, who is in detention under the National Security Act for his alleged hate speeches, on Monday assured the Supreme Court that he would not make any “provocative” speeches during his Lok Sabha elections campaign if released on bail.

Mr Varun agreed to give an undertaking before the apex court in this regard after a bench headed by Chief Jus

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CSG gives security postcards

Ramanathapuram, April 13: The Coastal Security Group (CSG) has started distributing postcards to the residents of the coastal villages across Tamil Nadu, to help them pass information regarding movement of smugglers and militants if any, to the police officials, a CSG official said.

These cards would help the Coastal Security Group get vital information on the movement of smugglers and prevent

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Street food back in demand

New Delhi, April 13: With the mercury rising and the economy falling, food-lovers have renewed their love for street food against the high-end restaurants that dig deeper into their pockets.

Chandni Chowk, the hub of street food in the capital is abuzz with hoards of new customers looking to savour the delicacies offered by the different eateries in the area.

“In times of a financial cri

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NY hospital pays for shaving Sikh’s hair

Chandigarh, April 13: A New York hospital has paid $20,000 for negligently shaving the beard, eyebrows, and mustache of an elderly Sikh patient while he was in long-term care at the facility.

A worldwide news release by the US-based community coalition, United Sikhs said Westchester county healthcare has paid out the sum in an out of court settlement with the family of Pyara Singh Sahansra, an

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Conman hypnotises staff, steals jewellery

Mumbai, April 13: Police is hunting for a conman who hypnotised a Mumbai jewellery store worker before stealing Rs 64,00,000 worth of diamond necklaces and bracelets.

Katrina Sunil Purswami, who works at the Seres Store in the upmarket Bandra West suburb, was told by the man on Saturday that he wanted to give gems as a present and persuaded her to bring them to a nearby hotel.

“When the em

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‘Handwash raises count of bacteria’

Mumbai, April 13: Hand washing with soap and water has shown paradoxical increase in bacterial counts on the skin of the health workers in critical care units of a municipal-run tertiary hospital, a study said.

This could be due to soap contamination, which may lead to colonisation of hands with gram negative bacilli, according to the head, microbiology department of TN medical college and Nai

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Advani faces twin attack

Thiruvananthapuram/Mumbai, April 13: The Congress on Monday launched a coordinated attack on BJP prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at the forefront of the word war.

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It’s Anand at Satyam

Mumbai, April 13: It was basically a two-horse race for the acquisition of scam-tainted Satyam Computers with the Rs 3,766-crore Tech Mahindra becoming the winning bidder. The second highest bidder, L&T, seen as the front-runner from the start, was way behind with a bid of Rs 45.90 per share.

Cognizant bid Rs 20 per share, which indicated it was not serious.

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Pravin book hits BJP chances

Mumbai, April 12: With only 18 days to go before the 2009 Lok Sabha elections are held in Maharashtra, the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) campaign trail has been scandalised by a “tell-all” book about their slain companion Pramod Mahajan.

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SC reprieve for Varun

New Delhi, April 13: Varun Gandhi, who has been booked under the National Security Act for his alleged hate speeches, may get a reprieve with the Supreme Court on Monday suggesting that he should give an undertaking not to make any provocative speeches if granted interim bail and the BJP candidate accepting it.

The suggestion that 29-year-old Varun should furnish such an undertaking came from

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10 killed in Chhattisgarh

Raipur, April 12: In the run-up to the elections, four people, including two security personnel, were killed and another was injured in a powerful landmine explosion by the Naxals, while six left-wing extremists were gunned down in two encounters in Bastar area of Chhattisgarh on Sunday.

The blast occurred near National Highway 16 at Gorla Nala area of Bijapur district where a joint patr-olling

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Defamation case on Rabri

Patna, April 13: Former Bihar chief minister Rabri Devi has landed in trouble with JD(U) president Rajiv Ranjan Singh 'Lalan' filing a defamation case against her for allegedly making abusive remarks against him and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

The case was filed in the court of Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate A.K. Jha, who is also in-charge Chief Judicial Magistrate, by B.S. Dubey, Lalan

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Rakesh wants yoga in space

Moscow, April 12: Rakesh Sharma, India’s first cosmonaut wing commander, wants the next Indian cosmonaut to carry forward the “zero gravity yoga” exercise to fight space sickness, as was practiced by him 25 years ago in Soviet Salyut-7 orbital station.

“I had practised yoga to endure space sickness, while my two Russian colleagues had carried out their regimen for this. However, the col

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Maoists besiege mine

Koraput, Orissa, April 12: Over 200 suspected Maoists, including women cadres, on Sunday night laid siege to Asia’s largest bauxite mines in Orissa’s Damanjodi area, nearly 25 km from here.

At least 200 and possibly up to 400 mine workers who had reported for duty in the “B” shift are believed to be now held hostage by the militants. Two CISF Force personnel were feared killed while try

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Trial: Kasab to come in person

Mumbai, April 12: Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone arrested terrorist in 26/11 Mumbai attacks, will appear in person for the first time on April 15 before the special court housed at high security Arthur Road central jail.

Earlier, he had been produced before the court on television through video conferencing. The police has provided a thick security cover in and around the jail, regulated

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Lanka to hold fire for 2 days

Chennai, April 12: The Sri Lankan President, Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa, on Sunday announced a 48-hour ceasefire beginning midnight amid fears that an estimated one lakh civilians trapped in in the northeast could be in deep danger with the troops literally breathing down their refuge in a state-declared “no fire zone,” looking for the remaining Tiger cadres and their chief Velupillai Prabhakaran.

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Priyanka leaves a door open

Amethi, UP, April 12: Ms Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said she was not averse to joining politics and hoped that her brother Rahul Gandhi would become Prime Minister “one day”.

Replying to questions after a two-day tour of her brother’s constituency, she said, when asked when she would join active politics: “As I am growing older, I am realising that ‘never’ is a bad thing to say. So I’m

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26/11 terrorists still in morgue

Mumbai, April 12: The bodies of nine terrorists who were killed during the terror assault in Mumbai last November are still in the J.J. Hospital morgue here. Now, the authorities are hoping they will be told what to do with the bodies, once the trial of the sole surviving militant Ajmal Amir Kasab begins on Wednesday.

Highly placed sources said that the Mumbai police would file an application b

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Urdu catching up in China

New Delhi, April 12: His mother-tongue may be Mandarin, but this Chinese teacher of Urdu, who is also a poet, believes his adopted language is best suited for poetry.

Zhang Shixuan, teaches Urdu language at the University of Foreign Studies in Beijing, and composes under the pen name Intekhab Alam.

In the capital to attend an annual mushaira, Zhang says: “In Urdu, there is a strong tradi

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Winnable BJP seats identified

Lucknow, April 12: With the first phase of elections round the corner, the BJP in UP has decided to concentrate on 40 seats that it has identified as “winnable.”

The party, according to sources, will focus on these seats and plough all its resources here instead of “wasting time and money” on seats that are not even in the contest.

The party plans to send the maximum number of star

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Private detectives hired for spying

Mumbai, April 12: Back-stabbing has become so much a part of Indian politics that political parties now are hiring private detectives to find out which of their disgruntled members could betray them.

Private detectives in Mumbai are working overtime to find out whether any disgruntled political party worker is passing out information that could be useful to rival parties in their pre-poll camp

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Elections are a family affair in UP

Lucknow, April 12: The elections in Uttar Pradesh are quite a family affair with new generations of political families heralding a “son” rise in the state. There are several instances of two generations of one family contesting the polls and leading the show are congress president Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul Gandhi.

The mother-son duo is contesting from the neighbouring Rae Bareli-Amethi

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PM has hit new low: CPM

Thiruvananthapuram, April 12: The CPI(M) on Sunday hit out at the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, for his comments against the Left and said he had hit a new low through this.

“It is unfortunate that the PM spoke like a low-grade campaigner of the united democratic front,” said the CPI(M) state secretary, Mr Pinarayi Vijayan. “It does not befit his post.”

Dr Manmohan Singh, in his

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I respect National Anthem: Tharoor

New Delhi, April 12: Unfazed by criticism from opponents trying to project him as an outsider, Shashi Tharoor, the Congress candidate from Thiruvanathapuram, ploughs through his constituency with determination to prove that he is here to stay. In a short time, Mr Tharoor has reinvented himself from a high profile UN diplomat and a New Yorker to a “Dhoti-wearing, Malayalam-speaking politician.”

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Court to hear Varun plea today

New Delhi, April 12: The Supreme Court will decide on Monday whether BJP candidate from Pilibhit constituency Varun Gandhi will contest the Lok Sabha elections from behind the bars or from outside the jail.

The counsel for Mr Gandhi will try to persuade the top court to order his release till the final disposal of his petition challenging the imposition of the National Security Act (NSA) again

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BJP gets backing of retired soldiers

New Delhi, April 12: It’s official now. The Indian Ex-servicemen’s Movement on Sunday decided to back the BJP in the coming general election and extended “advice” to 24 lakh ex-servicemen across the country to vote for the BJP.

Announcing the decision of the “core group”, former Army deputy chief Lt. Gen. Raj Kadyan (Retd) told ex-servicemen at a protest meeting here on Sunday: “B

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11 CISF jawans, 4 Maoists killed

Bhubaneswar: At least 11 CISF jawans and four Maoists were killed in a gunfight triggered by a daring pre-poll attack by the ultras on a well-guarded armoury and bauxite mine of Nalco in Orissa's Koraput district, police said.

More than 100 workers present at the site during the attack late last night were safe.

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Army kills Pulwama militants

Srinagar: The two-day long operation in Aglar village of Pulwama district in Jammu and Kashmir ended with the killing of another militant of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad (JEM) outfit, a senior police officer said.

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4 states hold poll surprise

New Delhi, April 12: Four major states — UP, Maharashtra, Bihar and Rajasthan — could throw up surprising results in the Lok Sabha elections, reports suggest.

Incumbency and stability are two factors which are influencing the campaign.

In the 2004 general election, AP, Tamil Nadu and Bihar had changed the power game due to pre-poll alliances of the UPA.

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Pravin Mahajan pens 'revealing' book on Pramod

Mumbai, April 12: Barely three weeks before the third death anniversary of the late Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Pramod Mahajan, his brother Pravin — undergoing a life-term for killing him — has come out with a tell-all book.

The book entitled My Album — around 175 pages — will be published in Marathi and English soon.

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Priyanka not averse to joining politics

Amethi, April 12: Priyanka Gandhi on Sunday gave the first indication that she was not averse to joining politics and spoke of the possibility of her brother Rahul Gandhi becoming the prime minister "one day".

The Congress was quick to welcome Priyanka's statement but would not speculate on "when" she will join politics.

"As I am growing older, I'm realising that 'never' is a bad thing to

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Singh attacks Third front

New Delhi, April 11: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh set the tone for the Congress campaign on Saturday, exhorting his team to take on the Third and Fourth Fronts and charging these combinations with helping the BJP.

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Advani to consult seers on key national issues

New Delhi, April 11: The BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate, Mr L.K. Advani, has promised to set up a “consultative mechanism” involving religious leaders if voted to power to discuss “issues facing the nation.”

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Student ragged, may lose vision

Coimbatore, April 11: In another case of brutal ragging, a first year management student was allegedly thrashed and punched in his eyes by five senior students for his refusal to part with Rs 3,000 following which the boy’s vision was affected.

Though the incident took place a month ago, it came to light only on Friday evening when Akhil Dev, son of novelist Sunil Parameshwaran in Kerala com

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Hunt on to trace club head for bunjee jumper's death

Bengaluru, April 12: A hunt is on to arrest the head of a city-based adventure club following the death of a 25-year-old engineer while he was bungee jumping on Saturday, a police official said on Sunday.

"We are on the look-out for Sheshadri, head of Centre for Adventure and Rejuvenation of Environment (CARE), who is absconding since the fatal incident," said the Bengaluru rural superintendent

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Sonia rubbishes Advani

Jamui (Bihar), New Delhi, April 12: The war of words over Dr Manmohan Singh, escalated on Saturday with the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, saying the BJP leader, Mr L.K. Advani was “talking rubbish.”

“I want to ask Advaniji what are his achievements? I want to ask during the six-year tenure in Delhi when he was the home minister and the deputy PM, what did he do for the farmers,”

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NSA on Varun not invoked: UP

New Delhi, April 11: The Uttar Pradesh government has told the Supreme Court that it had not invoked the National Security Act (NSA) against the Bharatiya Janata Party leader, Mr Varun Gandhi, in connection with his alleged hate speech in Pilibhit due to political reasons.

The court will take up the matter on April 13. In its 35-page response to the notice sent by the top court, the UP governm

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Khanna, Sidhu may be in soup

Chandigarh, April 11: Bollywood actor Vinod Khanna and former cricket player Navjot Sidhu run the risk of losing out on the sizeable Christian vote bank in their respective constituencies amidst the community’s demand that the BJP withdraw its nominations to politicians accused in the Kandhmal killings.

Freshly inspired by the Congress’s decision to drop Jagdish Tytler and Sajjan Kumar, Chr

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2 SPOs killed in Assam

Guwahati, April 11: The militant violence continues to rock Assam on Saturday as rampaging tribal militants attacked a goods train and shot dead two special police officers besides forcing the authorities to suspend the movement of trains in trouble torn North Cachar Hill districts.

Police said that heavily armed militants of Dima Halan Daogah (Jewel )fired at the train near Warengdisa as it wa

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American held with live bullets

Mumbai, April 11: The police on Friday arrested an Ameri-can national at Chh-atrapati Shivaji International Airport for carrying seven live bullets while boarding a flight to the US. Police claimed the incident was due to a lapse in airport security on the part of the airport authorities.

He was coming from Ka-kinda, where he is employed with an oil rig.

Police said Henry H. Hahn (45), an en

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Manmohan insulted us: Mulayam

Lucknow, April 11: The Samajwadi Party president, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav. said on Saturday that though his party saved the UPA government from being voted out of power on the nuclear deal, the PM Dr Manmohan Singh had “overlooked and insulted us.” “We saved the Prime Minister from resigning and kept his government going. But we were insulted and ignored in return,” he said while releasing

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Congress prepares list again

New Delhi, April 11: Factionalism in the Congress in Tamil Nadu has forced the party high command to embargo the list of candidates.

Dozens of protesters from Tiruchirapalli and Tirunelveli from the Vasan and the Chidambaram camp protested at the All India Congress Committee headquarters in New Delhi seeking a “repreparation” of the list to give seats to their candidates.

Among the prot

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Reverse bungee jump kills man

Bengaluru, April 11: An extreme sports enthusiast from Chennai was killed in a freak mishap while attempting a reverse bungee jump at an adventure camp on Bannerghatta Road on Saturday.

The organisers of the camp, who later claimed that they give priority to safety, did not have a first aid kit on hand when G. Bhargav, 23, fell to his death from 60 feet after the bungee cord got stuck in a clam

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Girls propose poll manifesto

Lucknow, April 11: A group of young Muslim girls have prepared their own manifesto that highlights issues specific to the girl child.

The two-page document includes all those issues that seem to have been ignored by most political parties.

“It is precisely because of this that we have prepared our own manifesto. We want to draw the attention of major political parties towards our problems

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BJP used Varun as pawn: Sibal

New Delhi, April 11: Union minister for science and technology and Congress candidate from the Chandni Chowk Lok Sabha seat, Mr Kapil Sibal, says that the elections this time is a contest between secular and communal forces. Excerpts from the interview.

Do you think the Varun episode is being utilised by the BJP to re-ignite its Hindutva agenda?
Varun Gandhi has been used as a pawn by L.K. A

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Gamang may join Vajpayee league

Koraput (Orissa), April 11: The former Orissa chief minister and senior Congress leader, Mr Giridhar Gamang, if elected to Lok Sabha this time from his Koraput Lok Sabha constituency, will join the covetous league of the former Prime Minster, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, and the outgoing Lok Sabha Speaker, Mr Somanath Chatterjee.

He will be the third individual to get into the Lower House of the P

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5 CRPFmen die in encounter

Khunti (Jharkhand), April 11: Less than 24 hours after loosing 10 personnel in Chhattisgarh, the CRPF on Saturday received another deadly blow with five of its men being killed in an encounter with the naxals in the dense forests here. The encounter took place hours before Congress president Sonia Gandhi held a poll rally in the district.

According to sources, the naxals also managed to take aw

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Left never got it right, says PM

Thiruvananthapuram, April 11: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, on Saturday needled the Left parties, saying that they had always been on the wrong side of history.

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Priyanka to Modi: Do I look old?

Amethi, Uttar Pradesh: Hitting out at the Bharatiya Janata Party leader and Gujarat Chief Minister, Mr Narendra Modi, for likening the Congress to a "budhia" (old woman), Ms Priyanka Gandhi on Saturday asked voters here whether she looked old.
Campaigning for her brother and Congress MP, Mr Rahul Gandhi, in his constituency of Amethi, Ms Priyanka said the Congress is not an old party.

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Student ragged, vision blurred

In another case of brutal ragging, a first year management student was allegedly thrashed and punched in his eyes by five senior students for his refusal to part with

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Threat level high across nation: PC

New Delhi, April 10: Home minister P. Chidambaram has said that the threat level in the country is “pretty high” with four Pakistan-based terror outfits “working in consort” and mention being made of Taliban in intercepts of their conversation received by security agencies.

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PM: Left on wrong side of history

Needling the Communists in their bastion, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Saturday said the Left parties have often been on the 'wrong side' of history by refusing to participate in the Quit India movement, Green and IT revolutions and to back the nuclear deal with the US.
In a veiled attack on the coming together of parties in the Third Front led by the Left, he asked the people to choose betwe

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‘Gone are the days of one-party rule’

New Delhi, April 10: As the first phase of Lok Sabha polls coming nearer, the Maratha strongman is cool and calculating and has not lost his ambition. As the only leader who is straddling between the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) and the Third Front, the NCP chief predicts that no party or Front will be able to muster majority on its own. “Gone are the days of one party rule’ is his messag

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Jindal victim of shoe-slinging

Kurukshetra, April 10: A retired school principal, claiming to be a Congress man, on Friday hurled a shoe at party MP, Mr Navin Jindal, during a meeting here in what appears to be a fast catching trend inspired by the episodes involving George Bush and later the home minister, Mr P. Chidambaram.

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Act on 26/11, PM tells Pak

New Delhi, April 10: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, at his combative best during poll time, responded forcefully on Friday to the BJP leader, Mr L.K. Advani’s charge that he was a “weak PM.” Dr Singh said “speaking loudly” did not make one a strong Prime Minister.

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Tytler cries foul, blames party

New Delhi, April 10: Mr Jagdish Tytler, whose Lok Sabha poll nomination was withdrawn by the Congress, has said that a section of leaders in the party’s Delhi unit had exploited the “shoe incident” to keep him away from the electoral fray.

“I have a very strong gut feeling on how all this came about. It is not the work of Akalis only. Akalis took help of some people from our party who

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PM to Advani: Loud doesn’t means strong

New Delhi, April 10: Barely 24-hours after the Congress was forced to drop Jagdish Tytler and Sajjan Kumar as its Lok Sabha candidates, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said that neither he nor the minister of state in the PMO, Prithiviraj Chavan, were informed about the clean chit being given by the CBI to Mr Tytler.

However, he did point out that “the decision has been reversed” and that it

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Lanka mounts rescue effort

Chennai,April 10: Sri Lankan troops are all set for the final thrust into the tiny ‘No-Fire Zone’ (NFZ) in the northeast, where an estimated one lakh civilians are trapped and the LTTE top brass, including leader Velupillai Prabhaka-ran, are believed to have stationed themselves.

The military claimed that troops had “almost swept away” all the Tiger positions in the northern anterior o

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JD-U manifesto aims for big role

Patna, April 10: The Janta Dal (United)’s election manifesto, released here on Friday, signifies the party’s ambitions for a greater role in national politics and its calibrated distance from alliance partner BJP. Largely an extended embodiment of Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar’s vision of development with social justice, the JD(U)’s manifesto also envisages some radical changes in the

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‘Quotas for prelims not must’

New Delhi, April 10: Observing that vacancies are not filled by “charity,” the Supreme Court has said the government is not under any Constitutional obligation to provide reservation to SCs, STs etc, in preliminary tests conducted for filling up official posts.

“Judging of merit may be at several tiers. It may undergo several filtrations. Ultimately, the constitutional scheme is to

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Mallika enjoying campaigns

Mumbai, April 9: With the election temperature rising up, Independent candidate from Gandhinagar, danseuse Ms Mallika Sarabhai, prefers to enjoy her campaigns rather than fret about standing against BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Mr L.K. Advani or the discriminatory attitude being adopted by the election authorities against her.

Speaking to this newspaper, Ms Sarabhai said dance is not onl

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Kasab’s ‘mother’ turns up at jail

Mumbai, April 10: Ahead of the trial of Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone surviving 26/11 terrorist, a woman claiming to be his mother came to the Mumbai police headquarters here last week seeking a meeting with him, a police officer said on Friday.

The woman, who appeared to be in her 40’s, went to the Citizen Facilitation Centre of the police headquarters in south Mumbai and demanded to m

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Parents’ vote can get marks for their kids

Pune, April 10: Make parents vote and get two grace marks. This is the promise that authorities of a school have made in an effort to prod citizens to exercise their right to franchise.

“The grace marks will be added to the final score in the internal exam of the students in civics subject who submit a written note from their parents affirming that they had exercised their franchise,” Shiv

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Vaiko won’t be arrested for remarks

Chennai, April 10: MDMK general secretary Vaiko, against whom the city police has filed a sedition case for speaking in support of the banned LTTE and threatening that the Indian unity could be fractured due to the Lankan Tamil issue, will not be arrested.

Reliable sources said the state government had decided not to order the police to arrest Mr Vaiko notwithstanding the ‘serious’ nature o

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Girl hacks lover’s girlfriend in UP

Lucknow, April 10: A Class XII student was hacked to death by her classmate when she was caught by the latter in a compromising position with her boyfriend in Hamirpur district on Thursday.

The accused has been arrested by the police along with her two brothers after an FIR was lodged against them by the victim’s father.

According to police sources, this incident took place in Kurara poli

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Experienced lawyers to help poor

New Delhi, April 10: The Delhi High Court has suggested that the Delhi Legal Services Authority (DLSA) set up a panel of lawyers having at least 10 years experience to defend accused who are poor and are facing trial for committing grievous offences.

“DLSA should prepare a separate panel of trial court lawyers comprising senior lawyers of not less than 10 years or more experience and associa

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Nano gets its first challan

Chandigarh, April 10: Amidst the continuing celebration of its eagerly awaited launch, the Nano got its first parking ticket during a promotional event in Chandigarh.

Officials of Chandigarh’s municipal corporation impounded the little wonder on public display at the commercial complex in Sector 34 and served a challan of Rs 1,000 on Joshi Auto Zone, the local dealers for the car.

Chucklin

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25 lakh cancer patients in India

Kolkata, April 10: Cancer scenario in India is quite alarming with nearly 25 lakh patients in the country currently suffering from the deadly disease, according to the Indian Council of Medical Research.

“Cancer scenario in India is not very comfortable and every year there is an increment of 10,000 new cancer patients and the number of total victims stands at about 25 lakh all over,” Indi

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Climate change: India unhappy with progress

New Delhi, April 10: With the developed nations “failing” to commit on emission reduction targets, India has termed the “progress” achieved in tackling climate change as “disappointing” in the perspective of the developing nations.

Also there is no clarity on how much monetary and technical assistance would be assured to developing nations for mitigation and adaptation measures, Sh

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79 guns stolen from arms shop

Hoshiarpur, April 10: Unidentified men decamped with a huge quantity of revolvers and ammunition from an arms and ammunition shop here early on Friday, sending police into a tizzy.

The burglars, who gained entry in the shop after breaking the locks of sliding grill-gate and cutting the main shutter, stole 79 revolvers of various bores, recently deposited by the licence holders in the city foll

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Sonia, Pawar share dais

Manisha Rege sakoli (maharashtra), April 10: As the Third Front eyes him, the NCP leader, Mr Sharad Pawar, on Friday shared the stage with the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, and spoke of the need to get the UPA government re-elected.

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Ulfa fires on train

Guwahati, April 10: A paramilitary trooper was killed and more than 10 civilians injured on Friday when the Dimasa militants attacked a passenger train in Assam.

The police said militants of Dima Halam Daogan (Jewel Garlosa faction) attacked the Barak Valley Express, a local train, near Wadrandisa station in North Cachar Hills district.

Sources said the militants hurled grenades at the pass

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Jindal too gets the boot

A retired school teacher on Friday hurled a shoe at Congress MP Naveen Jindal here in what appears to be a fast-catching trend inspired by the episodes involving George Bush and later home minister P. Chidambaram.
Ram Kumar, however, missed his target during an election rally in Kurukshetra constituency from where Mr Jindal, an industrialist, is contesting the Lok Sabha polls.
While throwing the

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Left terms PM right

NEW DELHI

April 9: The Communist Party of India general secretary, Mr A.B. Bardhan, on Thursday tacitly defended the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, when asked to comment on Mr L.K. Advani’s repeated remarks calling Manmohan Singh a “weak Prime Minister.”
Mr Bardhan said: “ If by describing Dr Singh as a weak Prime Minister, Advani thinks that he would be a strong Prime Minister, I

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BJP will be largest party: Jaitley

New Delhi

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Lalu: Advani’s stars are bad

Lucknow

April 9: Three leaders of the Fourth Front on Thursday kicked off their campaign from Etawah with a blistering attack on the BJP and BSP. Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav of the Samajwadi Party, Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav of the Rashtriya Janata Dal and Mr Ram Vilas Paswan of the Lok Janshakti Party vowed to take their political alliance further and said they would now stick together through the thick

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Tytler, Sajjan shooed out

New Delhi

April 9: The journalist, Mr Jarnail Singh’s shoe, which was lobbed at the Union home minister, Mr P. Chidamb-aram, at an AICC briefing on Tuesday but went wide off the mark, may have finally hit home. On Thursday it led to the departure of the controversial Congress candidates, Mr Jagdish Tytler and Mr Sajjan Kumar, from the Lok Sabha contest.

The Congress, under intense pressur

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Tytler: Will apologise for 1984

Jagdish Tytler, whose Lok Sabha poll candidature has been withdrawn by the Congress in the wake of the controversy over the anti-Sikh riots issue, has said he will apologise "a thousand times" for what happened in 1984.

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Taliban dumps deal, occupies Pak town

Islamabad

April 9: Hardline cleric Maulana Sufi Mohammed on Thursday ordered the closure of a “peace camp” in Swat as some 400-500 militants from Swat took over several villages pushing back the pro-government lashkars (tribal militia) in Buner, just 100 km from Islamabad.

The development comes after Pakistani Taliban commander Mullah Nazeer Ahmed said various militant factions had unite

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PR is a poison tree: Parakala

Hyderabad

April 9: Mr Parakala Prabhakar, a founder-member of the Praja Rajyam, resigned from the party after calling it a “poisonous tree” that was polluting the political atmosphere, and making a bitter attack on the leadership on Thursday.

The PR is being run as a commercial firm and not as a political party, he alleged. He ann-ounced his resignation at the party headquarters, using

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EC notices to Lalu-Rabri duo

New Delhi

April 9: The RJD leaders — Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav and Ms Rabri Devi — as well as Shiv Sena leader, Mr Uddhav Thackeray have been slapped with notices by the Election Commission for violations of the model code of conduct.
While the husband-wife duo of Lalu-Rabri have run foul of the EC for allegedly derogatory remarks against Mr Varun Gandhi and Mr Nitish Kumar, Mr Uddhav has been

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IITians take up teaching jobs

Chennai

April 9: The ongoing global economic slowdown may have come as a blow to IT companies in the country. However, it may have helped some higher education institutions as about 50 students from the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology, Madras have been placed as lecturers and associate professors in various universities in the country and abroad.
 Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, Lt.

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Expert suggests pay for farmers

Mohonpur

April 9: Concerned over the recent spate of suicides committed by the farmers in areas like Vidarbha, eminent agriculture scientist and Rajya Sabha member M.S. Swaminathan strongly feels that the government of India should set up a Farmers’ Income Commission (FIC) similar to pay commission of government employees to provide them a basic financial security.
The chairman of the Chenn

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Parties call for immediate ceasefire to end Lanka crisis

Chennai

April 9: In an unprecedented show of solidarity with the Sri Lankan Tamils, all the political parties here set aside their mutual rivalry to gather on a single platform and call for an immediate ceasefire “to halt the genocide” in the island country.
Prominent on the dais were the DMK MP, Ms Kanimozhi, seated next to the rival AIADMK’s former minister, S. Muthuswamy. The Congress

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LTTE denies any threat to Sonia

Chennai

April 9: The LTTE on Thursday denied it had any intentions to harm Indian politicians, including Congress president Sonia Gandhi and said the media reports to that effect were baseless.
Pro-LTTE TamilNet quoted the Tigers’ political wing leader B. Nadesan saying that the media reports alleging LTTE threat to Ms Gandhi and others, including her children, were “malicious propaganda.

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Kodnani sent to judicial custody

Ahmedabad, April 9: Maya Kodnani, former minister in the Narendra Modi government and an accused in 2002 riot cases, was on Thursday sent to judicial custody after a local court rejected the application of special investigation team (SIT) for extending police remand.Kodnani, who is accused in the Naroda Gam and Naroda Patiya case in which over 106 people were killed during the post-Godhra riots, w

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Maya siphoned off Central funds: Rahul

Chandauli (UP), April 9: The Congress general secretary, Mr Rahul Gandhi, on Thursday accused Mayawati government in Uttar Pradesh of siphoning off central funds sent for development.

"The Centre has released a lot of money for various developmental projects for Uttar Pradesh but it got stuck in Lucknow and never reached the needy," Mr Gandhi alleged at an election rally here in support of the

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IM took info from matrimonial sites

Mumbai, April 9: Prospective brides and grooms who avail services of online matrimonials, will now have to be more cautious as their photographs and personal details registered on such websites might be lifted by the terrorists for making fake identities.

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Rivals unite to protest against Lanka

Chennai/ London

April 8: The political spectrum in Tamil Nadu merges into one colour on Thursday when representatives of rival camps of the DMK and the AIADMK, besides several social activists and the Students’ Collective, come onto a single platform to demand that the Centre ask Colombo to halt the war on the Tamils in northeast Lanka.

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Pawar does a balancing act

Bhubaneswar

April 8: The NCP chief and the Union agriculture minister, Mr Sharad Pawar, who skipped the “grand alliance” convention of the BJD, NCP, CPI and CPI(M) here last week, attempted a balancing act on Wednesday by attending four public rallies along with the BJD chief and Orissa Chief Minister, Mr Naveen Patnaik.
Mr Pawar, who addressed election rallies at Barchana, Basta, Bhandar

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Tytler pulls out of race

New Delhi: In the face of mounting controversy over his alleged involvement in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, Congress leader Jagdish Tytler announced his decision to pull out of the Lok Sabha elections saying he does not want to cause embarrassment.

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Court to rule today on Tytler

New Delhi

April 8: A Delhi court is set to rule on Thursday on whether to accept the CBI report seeking to close the investigation into the all-eged involvement of the Congress leader, Mr Jagdish Tytler in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. What happens in court could infl-uence the Congress’ decision on fielding him for the election.

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Maneka files complaint against Lalu

Badaun (UP): The BJP MP, Ms Maneka Gandhi, on Wed-nesday lodged a complaint with the police against the RJD supremo, Mr Lalu Pra-sad, for his alleged remarks that he would have “crushed” her son Varun Gandhi under a roller for his anti-Muslim speeches. “Mr Yadav has threatened to kill Mr Varun Gandhi by crushing him with a road roller in front of crowd of thousands of people and used derogat

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Israeli training for Taj Hotel security personnel

Mumbai

April 8: The Taj Mahal Palace and Tower Hotel has sent all its in-house security supervisors to Israel for what is considered the world’s most acclaimed anti-terror training. The team is likely to return from Israel on Thursday.
This newspaper has learnt that the hotel has sent eight persons for one-month trai-ning programme on how to conduct searches and sweeps, interrogation skills.

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India joins race to clean up oil spills

Kuwait, April 8: Eighteen years after the first Gulf War, India’s Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) has joined the race for a $3-billion contract to clean up oil spills caused by the Iraq’s invasion of the Gulf emirate in 1991.
ONGC has formed a joint venture company with the New Delhi-based The Energy and Resources Institute (Teri) to bid for this UN-backed project.
Indian vice-preside

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Facebook becomes the new ‘dumping ground’

New Delhi, April 8: Do you know the newest way to get rid of an unwanted relationship? Just update a post on your Facebook or Twitter wall, simple!
Ending relationships on cyberspace has become a sort of trend. Social networking sites, built to provide a platform to keep in touch with old friends and develop new ones, are now increasingly being used as a dumping ground. If pop diva Madonna can d

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India to launch 1st spy satellite

Bengaluru

April 8: The Indian space research organisation (Isro) will launch India’s first spy satellite on April 20 to keep an eye on “natural and man-made disasters” such as floods, earthquakes and tsunamis and terrorist infiltration and movement.
The 300-kg radar-imaging satellite. (Risat)–II, which has been built primarily with the help of the Israeli Aerospace Industry, will be la

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Big B to feature at HK wax museum

Hong Kong, April 8: Superstar Amitabh Bachchan becomes the first from Bollywood to feature at Madame Tussauds, the famous waxwork museum, at Hong Kong.
On loan for the next three months from Madame Tussauds London, Bachchan’s wax image will take his place at the “World Famous Home of the Famous” alongside Hollywood A listers such as Jackie Chan, Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie.
The actor

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Gays ask parties to spell stand

Mumbai

April 6: In the run up to the Lok Sabha elections, Queer Azaadi Mumbai (QAM), a network of groups of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people from Mumbai last week asked all major political parties their positions on queer issues.
Interestingly, majority of the political parties that the QAM members met, including the Congress, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), the Bhar

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No campaign against Sonia: Varun

Amethi April 8: They may be on the other side of the political fence but when it came to family matters the BJP’s Pilibhit candidate, Mr Varun Gandhi, made it clear that he had high regard for his aunt and the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, his and cousin Mr Rahul and would not campaign against them. The fact about Mr Varun’s affection for his aunt and nephew and that he would not campa

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Israeli training for Taj Hotel security personnel

Mumbai

April 8: The Taj Mahal Palace and Tower Hotel has sent all its in-house security supervisors to Israel for what is considered the world’s most acclaimed anti-terror training. The team is likely to return from Israel on Thursday.
This newspaper has learnt that the hotel has sent eight persons for one-month trai-ning programme on how to conduct searches and sweeps, interrogation skills.

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Maya brings back top official sacked by EC

Lucknow/New Delhi, April 8: Adopting a confrontationist position with the Election Commission, the UP Chief Minister, Ms Mayawati, on Wednesday brought back the state’s principal secretary of home, Mr Fateh Bahadur Singh, to another important post, a day after he was removed by the poll body.
Mr Bahadur’s new appointment as the principal secretary to the CM came within hours after the BSP su

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SP chief to talk to Amar, Azam

New Delhi

April 8: The Samajwadi Party has so far not shown any sign of dissociating with the senior leader, Mr Azam Khan, despite pressure mounted by the party general secretary, Mr Amar Singh.
The SP chief, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, is trying to arrange a meeting of the two warring party heavyweights so that they can settle their differences. Both he and his son, Mr Akhilesh Yadav, a party MP

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EC bars LJP leader from polls

Patna

April 8: The Sitting Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) MP, Mr Surajbhan Singh, suffered a double whammy on Wednesday when the Patna High Court debarred him from contesting and the police in Bihar’s southern Nawada district detained him for a murder committed two days back.
Surajbhan, who was convicted and sentenced to life in 2008 for the murder of a CPI leader in 1992, had moved a petition in

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Apex court chides advocates

New Delhi: The Supreme Court chided advocates for seeking adjournments on flimsy grounds like traffic jams, as such an attitude only compounded the woes of people caught in endless litigations.

"What traffic jams? Let there be rains, sunshine or even an earthquake. You are supposed to be in the court by 10.30 am. You cannot seek adjournments," a two-judge bench of Justices Markandeya Katju a

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India to launch spy satellite on April 20

Bengaluru, April 8: India will launch a spy satellite from Sriharikota spaceport on April 20 primarily to keep an eye on its borders round-the-clock and help the government in anti-infiltration and anti-terrorist operations.

The 300-kg radar-imaging satellite has been built by Israel and is set to blast-off on board India's home-grown rocket, the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV).

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Mayawati takes on EC

Lucknow, April 8: The Chief Minister, Ms Mayawati, on Wednesday accused the Election Commission of being biased towards opposition parties in Uttar Pradesh, reacting sharply to the poll panel's order to remove the state's principal home secretary.

Addressing a hurriedly convened press conference just before flying off to Maharashtra for her election campaign, Mayawati said, "Removal of the stat

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Protests over Tytler issue in Punjab

Chandigarh, April 8: Members of a conglomerate of radical Sikh organisations blocked rail traffic in several places in Punjab on Tuesday to protest against CBI's clean chit to Jagdish Tytler in a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case.

On Tuesday, Jarnail Singh, a journalist threw a shoe at the home minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, to protest against CBI's clean chit to Jagdish Tytler in the 1984 anti-Sikh riot

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Arrest me if you can: Lalu to Nitish

Patna

April 7: Even as an FIR was lodged against Mr Lalu Prasad and an arrest warrant was issued for his harsh comments on Varun Gandhi bordering on an attempt to create communal tension, the irrepressible RJD chief on Tuesday tried to explain away his use of words as metaphorical and dared the Bihar government to arrest him.

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Ulfa waging virtual war: Centre

New Delhi, April 7: In the wake of serial blasts in Assam, the Centre on Tuesday said the Ulfa has waged a virtual war against the country and it has strong reasons to believe that the banned outfit was behind the recent violence in the state.

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To hang Afzal is not proper, says PC

New Delhi, April 7: The Home Minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, on Tuesday said the clemency plea of the Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru was at the “bottom” of a list of 22 death row cases and picking it up in isolation would amount to looking at it through the “religious prism”.
“There are at least 22 cases of death row which are pending. It will be therefore completely improper to pic

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Chidambaram am‘bushed’

New Delhi

April 7: A Sikh journalist, Mr Jarnail Singh of Dainik Jagran, threw his shoe at the Union home minister, Mr P. Chidamba-ram, during a press conference to protest against the CBI’s clean chit to 1984 anti-Sikh riots accused Jagdish Tytler.
It started with the journalist asking him about the CBI clearing Mr Tytler in the riots case under pressure from the government.
“The CBI’s

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Aamir, SRK unite for ‘fair Friday nights’

Mumbai, April 7: Bollywood superstars Shah Rukh Khan and Aamir Khan came together on the same platform to raise the issue of the tiff between the film producers and multiplexes over revenue sharing. And both advocated a partnership of equality.
“It should be a partnership of equality. Fifty per cent sharing is fair. Distributors and exhibitors have to find a way to make it a viable business wit

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Assam on high alert, toll is 10

Guwahati

April 7: The day after a series of bomb blasts rocked Assam, a red alert was sounded across the state while a high-level delegation headed by the Union cabinet secretary and the Union home secretary was airdashed to Guwahati to review the prevailing law and order situation.
In the meantime, the death toll in Monday’s serial bomb blasts has gone up to 10, with two of the 61 injured

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8-yr-old kid does blind limbo-skate

Belgaum

April 7: Rohan Kokane, an eight-year-old boy from St Xavier’s School has created a world record of sorts by limbo-skating blindfold under a car.
His coach and parents claimed that Rohan has equalled the Guiness record recently set by a child in North India who also had skated under a car blindfold. Unfazed by the failure of the first two attempts, Rohan passed under the car (clearin

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EC: Astro palm violates poll code

Hubli

March 7: They didn’t predict this. Astrologers in this north Karnataka town are having their signboards taken down by the Election Commission officials who say the palm painted on the boards resembles the Congress symbol and violates the poll code.

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Amar threatens to quit

Lucknow/New Delhi

April 7: The Samajwadi Party general secretary, Mr Amar Singh, flexed his muscles once again when he threatened to quit the party over his reported tussle with a colleague and senior party leader, Mr Mohammed Azam Khan.
“It seems the Samajwadi Party can exist without me but not without Mr Khan,” Mr Singh told reporters in an informal chat with reporters at Lucknow.
Sourc

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Deewar inspires Sonia

Bhongir/ Karimnagar/ Vizianagaram

April 7: Gelling with the filmy tone of the Andhra Pradesh poll campaign, the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, used a popular dialogue from a yesteryear Hindi superhit movie Deewar to hit out at the BJP on Tuesday, much to the delight of crowds.

“Hamare paas Manmohan hain... tumhare paas kya hai? (We have Manmohan Singh.. What do you have?)”, was he

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Taliban enters Kashmir

Srinagar

April 7: There are growing indications that some Taliban fighters might have slipped into Jammu and Kashmir and joined militants there currently engaged in gunbattles with the Indian security forces in Kupwara and its neighbourhood.

The state authorities as well as the security forces have been completely silent on this subject, while some reports, quoting sources in the Union home

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Raju destroyed evidence: CBI

Hyderabad

April 7: The CBI filed its chargesheet in the Satyam scam against Mr B. Ramal-inga Raju and eight others on Tuesday accusing them of using frontal companies to siphon off funds. This would block the chances of the accused securing bail.

According to the charge-sheet, the five frontal firms made around Rs 700 crore by offloading the shares.

“The other members of the company gif

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Man fields wife against himself

Bhubaneswar

April 7: Man, very often, seeks his wife’s company for success in his missions. But a Congress candidate in Orissa believes that his wife will bring him good luck in elections, if she becomes his rival.
When Mr Sitakant Mahapatra filed his nomination papers as a Congress candidate from the Barchana Assembly constituency in coastal Orissa for the ensuing polls, he ensured that hi

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No steps against female abuse

Bengaluru

April 7: Women in the state who face domestic violence have been unable to obtain state protection from abusive husbands over the past few weeks with the Protection Officers assigned to them being deputed on election duty.
Priya (name changed), a 24-year-old IT professional in the city says, “I need to file a Domestic Incident Report (DIR) as soon as possible. I understand that the

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‘BSP treats Varun as terrorist’

Ballia, April 7: Accusing the Uttar Pradesh Government of treating Mr Varun Gandhi like a terrorist, the BJP on Tuesday ruled out any alliance with the BSP in future and threatened to tighten the noose around Mayawati government if voted to power at the centre.
“Mayawati government is treating Varun like a terrorist after fabricating different cases against him. The state government invoked th

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Candidature of Tytler in limbo

New Delhi

April 7: The Congress high command on Tuesday indicated that it was open to reviewing the candidatures of Mr Jagdish Tytler and Mr Sajjan Kumar for Lok Sabha seats. Both of them face allegations of involvement in the anti-Sikh riots.
The announcement comes after a Sikh journalist, Mr Jarnail Singh, hurled a shoe at the Union home minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, accusing the government

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Rain cancels PM rally

Dibrugarh (Assam), April 7: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh’s election rally in Assam’s Dibrugarh district was on Tuesday cancelled because of torrential rain following which he retu-rned to Delhi.
The SPG accompanying the Prime Minister did not think it was safe for Dr Singh to fly to the venue by helicopter from the airport in the heavy rain, the Assam power minister, Mr Pradyut Bord

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‘India a flawed democracy’

New Delhi, April 7: India may rank well above many other emerging economies in terms of its democratic climate, but it still remains a “flawed democracy”, according to global research organisation Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
In the latest edition of its annual Democracy Index, published on Tuesday, EIU placed India among the 50 countries found to be “flawed democracies”.
This du

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Jagjit: Jai Ho did not deserve Oscar

New Delhi, April 7: The world might be ga ga over A.R. Rahman’s Oscar winning song Jai Ho, but legendary Ghazal singer Jagjit Singh says the song is overrated.
The 68-year-old singer who is famous for his candid nature believes that getting the Academy Award was a golden moment in Indian history but the song did not deserve the honour.
“Getting an Oscar is no doubt a great achievement. But

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FIR against Lalu

An FIR was on Tuesday lodged against the RJD chief, Mr Lalu Prasad, by the district administration for his alleged remarks that he would have “crushed” the BJP candidate, Mr Varun Gandhi, under a roller for his anti-Muslim speeches if he had been the country’s home minister.
“The FIR was lodged under Section 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot) of IPC and Section 1

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Shoe hurled at PC

A Sikh journalist on Tuesday hurled a shoe at the home minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, protesting against CBI’s clean chit to senior Congress leader Mr Jagdish Tytler accused in 1984 anti-Sikh riots case.
The shoe, however, missed its target.
Mr Chidambaram, who was addressing a press conference at the AICC headquarters in New Delhi, was surprised when Jarnail Singh, a journalist from Hindi dail

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Congress willing to review Tytler candidature

New Delhi, April 7: Apparently concerned over the political fallout of hurling of shoe at the home minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, Congress on Tuesday indicated it was open to review the candidatures of Jagdish Tytler and Sajjan Kumar, who were facing allegations of involvement in the anti-Sikh riots.

"Congress is a large party and it takes considered decisions at appropriate time. Let us see wha

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HAL hands over first rear fuselage to Israel

New Delhi, April 7: India's blue chip aircraft manufacturer Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) on Tuesday strengthened its position as a leading aerospace export house when it handed over the first rear fuselage manufactured for Gulfstream aircraft to Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI).

HAL Chairman Ashok Nayak handed over the documents of the HAL-built aft (rear) fuselage for G-150 aircraft to

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BJP to face loss in Delhi, Rajasthan

New Delhi

April 6: An internal survey carried out by the BJP indicated a dip in its fortune in Rajasthan and Delhi. As per its own estimate, of the BJP’s existing 21 Lok Sabha berths, it will manage to retain only 10 seats in Rajasthan. Party strategists acknowledge that “it’s advantage Congress in Rajasthan”. Of the seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi, the party survey shows that it could p

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Bollywood warned against Benjamin Button remake

Mumbai, April 6: The US studio Warner Bros on Monday put its Bollywood counterparts on notice that they would sue for breach of copyright if the hit film The Curious Case of Benjamin Button was remade here.
Advertisements were placed in a leading publication and trade magazines stating that Warner Bros is the joint author and co-owner of the copyright of the period drama, which earned 13 nominati

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Raju set targets to fudge: Managers

Hyderabad

April 6: The Satyam Computers vice-president, finance, Mr G. Ramakrishna, and two finance managers arrested by the CBI on Sunday night alleged that the former chairman, Mr B. Ramalinga Raju, used to set the target to inflate figures every month.

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Amar alleges Rajan threat

MUMBAI

April 6: The Samajwadi Party’s national general secretary, Mr Amar Singh, on Monday alleged that he was threatened by a Chhota Rajan aide on the issue of campaigning for the Maharashtra president, Mr Abu Asim Azmi. Mr Singh announced that he got a phone call from a man from the Chhota Rajan gang who asked him and his party me-mbers to stay away Azmi’s election campaign. Mr Azmi is co

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Made in India EVMs in demand abroad

New Delhi, April 6: Bhutan got them for its elections last year and Nepal has acquired them too. Indian-made Electronic voting machines (EVM) are making waves abroad, not just in our neighbourhood but right up to the African continent.
The Namibian government has placed orders for the voting machines, while Ghana, South Africa and Nigeria have evinced interest as have neighbours Sri Lanka and Ban

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Maiden UAV flight takes off

Kolar (Karnataka), April 6: With the successful flight of Nishant, the indigenous unmanned air vehicle (UAV), a new chapter has been added in the annals of Indian aviation.
It was witnessed at Veerapura, a small village, eight kms from Kolar in Karnataka, where from the abandoned runway of World War II, the indigenous Nishant, jointly designed and developed by National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL

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Modi’s punches make BJP sit up

Hyderabad

April 6: The Gujarat Chief Minister and firebrand BJP leader, Mr Narendra Modi, said his AP counterpart, Dr Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy, had lost sleep ever since the BJP announced that it would bring back the Rs 50 lakh-crore black money deposited in Swiss banks.

Mr Modi focused his attack on the Chief Minister during his 45-minute speech at a public meeting in the city. “I don’t un

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Pawar not with Left

Bhubaneswar

April 6: Finally, Mr Sharad Pawar is coming to Orissa on Tuesday evening for poll campaign. But he will be not sharing the dais with the Left parties at any of the rally venues.
Apart from canvassing for his party candidates at three places — the Barchana and Begunia Assembly constituencies and Balasore Lok Sabha seat — Mr Pawar will seek votes for the Biju Janata Dal candidat

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CPM may join Gowda: Karat

Thiruvananthapuram

April 7: The CPI(M) will consider joining the union government if the third front was elected to power in the coming polls, said the party general secretary, Mr Prakash Karat, on Tuesday.
Talking to mediapersons here, Mr Karat said that the Third Front was presenting an alternative programme before the people unlike the Congress and the Bhartiya Janta Party. “There is not

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Picking only Afzal case improper: PC

New Delhi, April 7: The home minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, on Tuesday said the clemency plea of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru was at the “bottom” of a list of 22 death row cases and picking it up in isolation would amount to looking at it through the “religious prism”.

“There are at least 22 cases of death row which are pending. It will be therefore completely improper to pick

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8 die in Assam blasts, PM visit on

Guwahati

April 6: A day before the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh’s campaign visit, three powerful bomb blasts and a grenade attack rocked Assam in quick succession on Monday, killing eight persons and injuring over 50 others, including women and children.

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Viagra saves 9-month-old baby

CHENNAI

April 6: Viagra, the drug usually used to help impotent men ‘rise to the occasion’, is believed to have saved the life of a nine-month-old infant, born with a rare congenital heart defect, at a hospital here.
While specialists had to perform an innovative suture-less surgery on the baby to correct the defect, the child was also administered a small, but regular dose of viagra to r

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Abu Azmi under EC scanner

Mumbai, April 6: The Samajwadi Party leader, Mr Abu Asim Azmi, who is contesting the Lok Sabha election from Mumbai North-West constituency, is worth Rs 125 crore, going by the affidavit he submitted along with his nomination paper on Tuesday. An EC official said that they would probe into the reports that money was allegedly distributed among supporters of the SP candidate. Mr Azmi’s brother Sh

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Bihar: NDA is afloat yet adrift

PATNA

April 6: The BJP’s umbilical discord with its NDA allies is nowhere more apparent than in Bihar. With its partner JD(U) deliberately refusing to echo the BJP’s unrelenting espousals of its saffron shibboleths, the NDA in Bihar is a curious case of a coalition sticking together despite crucial ideological differences increasingly coming to the fore.
While the JD(U)-BJP coalition in Bi

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Growth first, climate later: India

Bonn, Germany, April 6: India and China have told the United Nations that a climate change agreement that slows down their economic growth and locks them into poverty is unacceptable to them.
The UN’s climate change chief said on Monday the two Asian giants have taken a series of “ambitious” domestic actions to combat climate change, but want to draw the line at anything that would upset th

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Pranab Mukherjee speaks to DC: Faster reforms only way for growth

New Delhi April 5: Pranab Mukherjee in an exclusive interview said that an expansionary fiscal policy must be followed to stimulate the economy, with greater spending on infrastructure, and focus on small and medium enterprises. Excerpts:

Q. The Congress has promised to present a budget within 45 days of being elected to power. What new measures do you have in mind to stimulate the economy?

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Kasab trial to begin on April 15

Mumbai, April 6: A special court here on Monday posted for April 15 the trial of Mohammed Ajmal Amir alias Kasab, the sole Pakistani terrorist captured in the November 26 Mumbai terror attacks.

The court, while announcing the beginning of the trial, extended the judicial custody of Kasab and two other accused, Faheem Ansari and Sabauddin Ahmed, till April 15.

Kasab made a plea to speak to

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Sonia owns no house or car in India

Rae Bareli, April 6: Congress president Sonia Gandhi owns neither a car nor a house in India but she has an ancestral house in Italy, according to papers she submitted on Monday while filing her Lok Sabha nomination.

She submitted an affidavit to the district magistrate, stating the Italian house was valued at Rs 1.8 million (Rs 18.02 lakh).

Sonia Gandhi's assets, according to the affidavit

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Celebrity MPs get thumbs down

New Delhi, April 6: What is common to cricketer Navjot Singh Sidhu, filmstars Govinda, Vinod Khanna, Hema Malini, Dharmendra, Jaya Bachchan and Jaya Prada, wrestler Dara Singh, industrialists Vijay Mallya and Rahul Bajaj, director Shyam Benegal and economist Bimal Jalan?

They are all celebrities, all achievers in their respective fields, but singularly unimpressive as members of India's two ho

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Isro chief faces Lashkar threat

New Delhi April 5: The Indian Space Research Organisation chairman, Dr G. Madha-van Nair, and six space scientists have been provided with increased security following a threat to their lives from the Lashkar-e-Tayyaba.
Mr Nair, 65, also secretary, department of space, has been provided with Z-category security, while the six others, associated with Isro’s satellite and rocket units, have be-en

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Nafisa gaffe stumps SP

Lucknow, April 5: In a gaffe which her new political bosses will find it hard to digest, social activist, Ms Nafisa Ali, named as Samajwadi Party’s candidate for Lucknow Lok Sabha seat on Sunday targeted the party’s new ally and the former BJP leader, Mr Kalyan Singh, over Babri demolition but quickly tried to make amends.
“Mulayam Singh is the one who saved the Babri mosque. But what did

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Bipasha: I still can’t drape sari

Kolkata, April 5: Wearing a sari is so difficult for Bollywood glamgirl Bipasha Basu that the 30-year-old actor and model still needs someone to help her out.
“Wearing a sari is difficult. I cannot wear it myself. This is only the second time this year that I am wearing a sari,” she told reporters here after putting the ramp on fire dressed in a red and white sari from the Monapali collectio

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Azhagiri, Maran figure in DMK list

Chennai, April 5: Chief minister M. Karunanidhi’s elder son M.K. Azhagiri and grand nephew Dayanidhi Maran figure in the DMK’s candidates list for 21 Lok Sabha seats in Tamil Nadu, where the party has fielded a number of new faces and denied tickets to four Union ministers.
The DMK list, released on Sunday, has the names of Union ministers T.R. Baalu, A. Raja and S.S. Palanimanickam, while th

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Now, we must, says Mallika Sarabhai

NEW DELHI April 5: The firebrand danseuse has been hotfooting it around her Gandhinagar constituency in Gujarat, meeting thousands of voters in slums, condominiums and in villages to understand their issues, find solutions in partnership and involve them in her campaign.
“If Barack Obama believed in yes we can, I say, now we must,” exclaims Mallika Sarabhai, 55, who has embarked on an enormou

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EC notice to Mulayam, PC, Jaswant

NEW DELHI
April 5: The Election Commission (EC) continues to wield the stick against those violating the model code of conduct. It issued notices to home minister P. Chidambaram, senior BJP leader Jaswant Singh and also reprimanded Samajwadi Party president Mulayam Singh Yadav for code violations.
Mr Yadav has been censured by the commission after it found his reply to the notice sent to him u

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India devises plan to woo foreign students

New Delhi, April 5: Provision for opening accounts in nationalised banks with zero-balance, on-line admission and urgent visa clearance for research scholars are among a slew of measures India will take to attract more international students to the country.
The Centre has given the go-ahead to have a host of facilities for the international students as recommended by an inter-ministerial c

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French firm to redesign Mumbai CST

New Delhi, April 5: Indian Railways has chosen a French firm to redesign the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, one of the targets of the 26/11 Mumbai terror strikes, as a world class station.
AREP, a subsidiary of the French Railway (SNCF), will conduct the architectural and feasibility study for redesign and redevelopment of the terminus as a world class station on Public-Private-Partnership mode,

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Sonia lashes out at Maya

Lucknow

April 5: The Congress president, Ms Sonia Gandhi, on Sunday, mounted a blistering attack on the Mayawati government and said that those politicians, who had promised to rid the state of criminals while seeking votes, are now courting the same criminals.
Mrs Gandhi, while addressing a rally in Basgaon in eastern UP, said, “Look at the situation today. Criminals are roaming freely and

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Z security for Isro chief

New Delhi: Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chairman G. Madhavan Nair and six other prominent space scientists have been provided with security cover following threat to their lives after a Lashkar-e-Tayyaba militant claimed that plans were being hatched to kidnap or assassinate them.

Sources in the Union Home Ministry said Nair, 65, who is also secretary, department of space, had

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Fernandes tells DC: Independent? I’m dependent on people

NEW DELHI

April 4: The doyen of Indian politics, Mr George Fernandes, who has always embodied struggle and revolt, has now revolted against his own party, the Janata Dal (United). He is contesting from Muzaffarpur Lok Sabha constituency in Bihar.

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Cops tell girls to use high heels for defence

New Delhi, April 4: The sensational murders of IT executive Jigisha Ghosh and journalist Soumya Vishwanathan has prompted the police to suggest that women wear high heels to work, carry heavy bags, and use both to hit would-be assailants below the belt.
These self-defence tips are being sent to firms, especially media houses and BPO companies where many women work till late at night. Deputy commi

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Rahul has assets worth Rs 2.35 cr

Sultanpur (UP), April 4: Rahul Gandhi, the scion of Nehru-Gandhi family and MP from Amethi Parliamentary constituency, has moveable and immovable assets worth around Rs 2.25 crore, including two farm houses and shops in New Delhi.
As per the affidavit filed by Rahul before the district electoral officer of Sultanpur on Saturday while filing his nomination papers for the Amethi Lok Sabha constitu

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Soon: 11-digit cell numbers

New Delhi, April 4: With phone operators expected to run out of 10-digit mobile numbers soon, the Department of Telecom (DoT) is now considering an 11-digit numbering system.
“With so many telecom service providers and a growing customer base, the need for new numbers and their consequent shortage will be felt soon,” a telecom official said on Saturday.
India has reportedly added 10.81 mill

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Varun detention: Maya, Maneka in verbal duel

Lucknow

April 4: UP Chief Minister Ms Mayawati, on Saturday, lashed out at BJP MP Ms Maneka Gandhi, saying that if she had instilled the right values in her son, Mr Varun Gandhi, he would not have been in jail.
Reacting sharply to Ms Maneka Gandhi’s allegation that Ms Mayawati could not understand the pain of a mother, the Chief Minister said, “She (Maneka) is the mother of one son, but I

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Congress, NCP ties broken

New Delhi
April 4: The Sharad Pawar-led NCP on Saturday announced candidates for eight Lok sabha seats in Gujarat, indicating that the tieup between the Congress and NCP in the state had broken. This is seen as a setback to the Congress ahead of the polls.
Gujarat NCP president Mr Jayant Patel blamed the Congress for the breakup and said, “I have declared eight candidates for the Lok Sabha sea

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Arjun daughter to fight as Independent

Bhopal

April 4: As his daughter turned a Congress rebel contesting the Sidhi Lok Sabha seat in Madhya Pradesh, Mr Arjun Singh on Saturday said he would campaign against her, but made it clear that he was unhappy over the denial of tickets to his kin.
Mr Singh said he cannot say he was not unhappy over the denial of tickets to his daughter Beena Singh from Sidhi and son Ajeya Singh from Satn

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KFW remembers Mumbai attacks

Kolkata, April 4: Fashion designer Narendra Kumar showcased his collections inspired by the gloomy days during last year’s Mumbai terror attacks at the ongoing Kolkata Fashion Week.
According to the designer, his black and white collection was dedicated to the victims who lost their lives in 26/11.
“The first part of the collection was white, more hopeful, sporty and fun elements. The seco

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Lalu-Mulayam front backs Congress

Lucknow, April 3: The leaders of the so-called fourth front — the Samajwadi Party president, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, the Rashtriya Janata Dal president, Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav, and the Lok Jan-shakti Party president, Mr Ram Vilas Paswan — on Friday said that they were “part and parcel” of the UPA and would remain so.

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3rd Front meet sees Pawar cut

Bhubaneswar, April 3: The Third Front show at Bhubaneswar on Friday failed to draw much of a crowd while the Nationalist Congress Party chief, Mr Sharad Pawar, skipped the meeting as the aircraft in which he was scheduled to travel “developed a technical snag.”

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Paswan to face Congress googly

New Delhi, April 3: The Congress has put up a candidate to take on the LJP chief, Mr Ramvilas Paswan, from Hajipur in Bihar, days after the party joined hands with the RJD supremo, Mr Lalu Prasad and the SP president, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, to form an alliance to contest the Lok Sabha polls in UP and Bihar.

Mr Dasai Choudhary will contest as the Congress nominee against Mr Paswan, according t

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Israel deal is clean: Antony

Thiruvananthapuram, April 3: The union defence minister, Mr A.K. Antony, said here on Friday that the missile deal with an Israeli firm was “clean” and there were no kickbacks involved in it.

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Advani rejects any other front

New Delhi, April 3: Favouring a bi-polar polity in the country, the BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate, Mr L.K. Advani, said that no government can be formed without the Congress or the BJP.

Reacting sharply to the CPI(M) general secretary, Mr Prakash Karat’s move to form an anti-Congress and anti-BJP front, Mr Advani described the concept of third front as “farcical illusion.”

Indi

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No ticket for Arjun daughter

New Delhi, April 3: The senior Congress leader, Mr Arjun Singh, on Friday put up a brave face following the denial of nomination to his daughter from Satna in Madhya Pradesh, close on the heels of a similar treatment to his son.

“I welcome the decision of the Congress President to give the nomination for Satna Parliamentary constituency to Sudhir Singh Tomar, who has been an active Congress

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No constraints for Army: President

Kibithu (Arunachal Pradesh), April 3: President Pratibha Patil on Friday assured the armed forces that no shortage would be allowed to constraint their performance.
She said the modern army must equip itself with the latest weaponry and no shortage of any kind will be allowed to constrain the armed forces.

During her visit to the last military point Kibithu in North-East near India-China bor

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George should pull out: JD(U)

New Delhi, April 3: The Janata Dal (United) is trying hard to get Mr George Fernandes to withdraw his nomination as Independent from Muzaffarpur, in what is seemingly a last-ditch effort to improve seat prospects ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.

Sources in the JD(U) stated that senior leaders are trying to reason with the veteran Socialist leader before any disciplinary proceeding is initiated ag

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Congress, NCP stuck on Ladakh

New Delhi, April 3: Stuck over the Ladakh, Anantnag and Baramulla seats, both the Congress and its ally, the National Conference hope to clinch the seat sharing talks in Jammu and Kashmir soon.

Though there is a broad understanding to contest three seats each, the alliance partners are yet to decide who gets Ladakh seat.

Claiming that it should get the constituency as it had won three out

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Maneka denied Varun access

Lucknow, April 3: The BJP MP, Mrs Maneka Gandhi, on Friday was turned back from the Etah jail after the district authorities refused her permission to meet her son, Mr Varun Gandhi, who is lodged in Etah jail.

“We have informed Ms Maneka Gandhi that as per jail rules, she can not be given permission to meet Varun Gandhi. According to jail rules, jail inmates are allowed only two meetings with

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Rama Sene not banned in Goa

Panaji, April 3: The Goa home minister’s claim of banning the Hindu rightwing outfit Sri Rama Sene from the state appears to be only half the truth.

While the North Goa administration banned the outfit earlier this week, South Goa district collector Mihir Vardhan said that the SRS was not yet banned in the southern district which borders Karnataka.

“We have not banned the SRS in South

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Priya Dutt faces BJP lawyer

Mumbai, April 3: The BJP on Friday announced that top lawyer, Mr Mahesh Jethmalani, would be its candidate against the sitting Congress MP, Ms Priya Dutt, in Mumbai North-Central constituency. This will liven up the contest there, otherwise considered a cakewalk for the Congress.

Mr Mahesh Jethmalani, explaining his decision to enter politics, said: “I thought educated people must actively pa

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Back from dead after 8 years

Jamshedpur, April 3: A boy, whose body was set afloat in the river after being declared dead eight years ago due to snake bite, has turned up alive at a hamlet in Jharkhand’s east Singhbhum district.

Lakhan Kalini of Chalakdihi village, then a 12-year-old school student, was declared dead by doctors in hospital after he was bitten by a poisonous snake at Gahmidanga village in West Bengal’s

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UDF gets Muslim backing

Thiruvananthapuram, April 3: The Popular Front, a hardline Muslim outfit, has offered support to the Congress-led United Democratic Front in 18 of the 20 Lok Sabha constituencies in Kerala. Leaders of the Popular Front said in Kozhikode on Friday that they would not support Mr Shashi Tharoor in Thiruvananthapuram and Mr K.V. Thomas in Ernakulam since they held pro-Israel views. The Popular Front i

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Coastal states to get hi-tech boats

New Delhi, April 3: In the wake of the impending threat from cross-border terrorist outfits ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, the home ministry is under pressure to hasten the dispatch of 20 interceptor boats to coastal States by the end of April.

The Centre has acquired eight interceptor boats from Greece and two PSUs — Goa Shipyard and Garden Reach — have been asked to replicate the technolo

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Gogoi on Ultras’ hit list

Guwahati, April 3: The Assam Chief Minister, Mr Tarun Gogoi, on Friday said that he was among the 14 Z-plus category politicians who are on the hit list of militants. “Yes, I am in the list of 14 politicians who are on the hit list of militants,” Mr Gogoi told reporters here.

The UPA Chairperson, Ms Sonia Gandhi, the AICC general secretary, Mr Mr Rahul Gandhi and the BJP prime ministerial

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Jaswant from Darjeeling

New Delhi/Siliguri, April 3: The BJP on Friday fielded its leader in Rajya Sabha Mr Jaswant Singh as its Lok Sabha candidate from the Darjeeling seat in West Bengal, with the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha claiming that the saffron party had agreed to include its demand for Gorkhaland in its manifesto.

The announcement of Mr Jaswant Singh’s candidature was made by the BJP president, Mr Rajnath Singh

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Rahul asks youth to cast votes

Lucknow, April 3: The Congress MP, Mr Rahul Gandhi, has said that if the youth wanted to change the way politics is done in UP and the rest of the country, they would have to exercise their franchise.

Mr Gandhi, while launching the Congress campaign in UP from Maharajganj on Friday, further said that, “If you don’t come forward and take responsibility, the state, instead of moving forward w

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Manifetso parochial, has no value: Congress

New Delhi, April 3: The Congress on Friday ridiculed the BJP manifesto and said the saffron party should chart out its role as an opposition as it has already “conceded defeat.”

“Seventy per cent of it (BJP manifesto) duplicates our schemes minus Ram Temple, Section 370 and uniform civil code, which they cannot implement as NDA allies will oppose them. This is a parochial BJP agenda whic

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Kumble won’t bat for BJP

Mumbai, April 3: Former Indian test cricket captain and leg spinner, Anil Kumble, has denied that he would be campaigning for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the upcoming elections.

Prior commitments and lack of political aspirations, Mr Kumble told this newspaper, were the reasons why he would not be available for campaigning.

Earlier this week it was reported that the BJP had managed

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LIC told to pay Rs1 lakh

New Delhi, April 3: The Delhi consumer commission has asked the Life Insurance Corporation of India to pay Rs 1 lakh to a man, whose blind son had failed to claim his LIC on maturity, on the ground that blindness is a permanent disability and the policy had subsisted when he lost his vision.

The commission headed by justice J.D. Kapoor allowed the plea of Karan Pal Singh that the insurance cla

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Himalaya may be 5m years older

Panaji, April 3: The Himalayas may be a good five million years older than earlier estimates about the formation of the world’s highest mountain range, according to a joint study by Indian and British ocean scientists.

The new findings position the era of formation of the Himalayas to around 13.9-14.4 million years ago as against the earlier theory of eight million years.

The joint study

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Teen gets parents murdered

Agra, April 3: After shedding copious tears for the past three days and pretending she did not know how her parents were killed right before her eyes, a teenaged girl finally confessed to police that she had got her parents murdered. The reason: they were objecting to her love affair with a neighbour.

The veil of mystery on the triple murder, on March 29-30 night at Semri ka Taal village here,

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32 lose vision after surgery

Purnia, April 3: As many as 32 people claimed to have almost lost their vision after undergoing a cataract operation at a free medical camp organised by an NGO here.

The 32 people, who underwent an eye operation at a camp in Kasba in January, approached district magistrate Sridhar Cheru Vellu alleging that they have almost lost their vision after the surgery, official sources said. The victims

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6 BSP MLAs join Congress, Gehlot gets majority in Rajasthan

Jaipur: All six BSP MLAs in Rajasthan joined the Congress on Friday, giving Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot majority in the Assembly.

The Congress had got 96 of the 200 seats in the Rajasthan Assembly in the recent elections.

It was dependent on outside support to survive. The incoming MLAs now take the strength of the Congress to 102, giving it simple majority in the House of 200.

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BJP plan: No I-T for defence, Rs 2 rice

April 3: All-round sops, benefits for the defence sector and a return to Hindutva issues with promises of new anti-terror laws marked the poll manifesto of the BJP on Friday.

Though the BJP did not speak of reviewing the nuclear deal, it proposed to introduce an amendment to the Constitution making Parliament approval mandatory before signing any bilateral or multilateral agreement.

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Antony denies corruption in Israeli deal

Thiruvananthapuram, April 3: Rejecting allegations of corruption in the medium range surface-to-air missile (MRSAM) deal with an Israel company, Defence Minister A.K. Antony on Friday asserted that the government would not hesitate to take stern action if there was a credible evidence of malpractice.

The government could cancel the contract, initiate criminal proceedings and debar the company

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CBI to check Raju's US accounts

New Delhi, April 3: The CBI probing the multi-crore financial scam in Satyam Computer will soon approach the US to get the details of the IT company's founder B. Ramalinga Raju's bank account.

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Pawar drops out of 3rd Front rally

Bhubaneswar: After fuelling intense speculation over his future plans, NCP supremo Sharad Pawar skipped a BJD-Left rally in Bhubaneswar he was due to attend, a day after senior UPA partner Congress voiced reservations over him sharing a platform with Third Front leaders.

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JD(S) to file complaint against BJP candidate

Bangalore, April 3: JD(S) on Friday charged BJP general secretary and Bangalore South Lok Sabha constituency candidate H.N. Anantkumar with violating the poll code by using "Ganesha masks" during campaigning and said it would lodge a complaint with the Election Commission.

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Lalu, Paswan eye PM post

Patna, April 3: Though the Rashtriya Janata Dal and Lok Janshakti Party have formed an alliance severing ties with the Congress, there is competition for the post of the prime minister.

While RJD boss Lalu Prasad has always been vocal about his desire to become the prime minister, LJP counterpart Ramvilas Paswan, too harbours the ambition for the country's top job.

"Every person in politic

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CIC: Review DRDO exemption under RTI

New Delhi, April 3: The "absolute exemption" granted to organisations like DRDO under RTI Act may be reviewed by Cabinet Secretariat after the CIC recommended such an exercise keeping in view that even the Military authorities do not enjoy such privileges.
"We recommend that the Cabinet Secretariat review the absolute exemption granted to an organisation such as DRDO, specifically keeping in vie

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UP gets SC notice on Varun

New Delhi

April 2: The Supreme Court on Thursday issued notices to the UP government and Pilibhit’s district magistrate on a petition filed by the BJP leader, Mr Varun Gandhi, challenging his detention under the National Secu-rity Act. Mr Gandhi was booked under the NSA for alleged hate speeches in Pilibhit, from where he was planning to contest the Lok Sabha elections. The court fixed April

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BJP promises National Identity Card for all

New Delhi, April 3: Aiming to equip every Indian with a National Identity Card, BJP on Friday promised to launch a programme to establish a countrywide system of such multipurpose cards so as to ensure national security.
Releasing its manifesto on the auspicious occasion of Ram Navmi on Friday, the BJP proposes to provide national identity cards to all citizens to ensure correct welfare delivery

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SC chides states for measly pay for land

New Delhi, April 3: Amidst the ongoing controversy over acquisition of farmers' land for special economic zones (SEZs), the Supreme Court has chided state governments for acquiring land belonging to general public, particularly, poor farmers by paying them meager compensation.
Such an approach was not only depriving the aggrieved land owners of their sole livelihood but also forcing them to spen

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Maneka not allowed to meet Varun

Etah (UP), April 3: Maneka Gandhi was on Friday denied permission to meet her son Varun detained under the NSA at the Etah jail prompting the BJP MP to ask that had Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati been a mother she would have understood her agony.
District Magistrate Gaurav Dayal said that Maneka had sought permission to meet 29-year-old Varun but citing rules he had told her that she can

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Pawar maths may go wrong

Bhubaneswar

April 2: The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief, Mr Sharad Pawar’s calculation in Orissa is most likely to go wrong.
The NCP — which is contesting in only one out of the total 21 Lok Sabha seats and eight Assembly constituencies — is unlikely to open its accountant in the state since the ground realities are quite different and interesting. Until 2006, the NCP had absolut

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PM sets terms for Pak talks

London, April 2: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, addressing a press conference at the end of the G-20 summit here and immediately after his first substantive meeting with the US President, Mr Barack Obama, on the sidelines of the summit, made it clear to Pakistan in extremely tough language that the onus for resumption of the composite dialogue with that country lay entirely with Islamabad,

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AP handling of ragging case angers SC

New Delhi, April 2: The Supreme Court on Thursday expressed displeasure over Andhra Pradesh government’s handling of a case relating to the ragging of a girl student who allegedly attempted suicide and sought a status report on the probe into the incident.
The apex court expressed its displeasure over the handling of the case by the state government and the Government Bapatla Agriculture and

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BJP falls back on Ram

New Delhi, April 3: The BJP has revived its pet Hindutva themes of rebuilding Ram temple at Ayodhya and abrogation of Article 370 giving special status to Jammu and Kashmir as it released its manifesto for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

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Third Front not good for democracy: Sonia

Bhubaneswar, April 2: As the Congress has expressed its displeasure over the NCP chief, Mr Sharad Pawar’s plan to attend an election rally of the Third Front here on Friday, the party president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, on Thursday warned that creation of new groups and fronts is “not good for democracy”.
At a meeting held at Berh-ampur in Orissa, Mrs Gandhi said, “Creation of new groups like t

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PC, Advani discuss security

New Delhi, April 2: In the backdrop of renewed threat perception to VVIPs, the home minister, Mr P. Chidamabaram, on Thursday held a meeting with the leader of the Opposition, Mr L.K. Advani, and discussed the security scenario in the country.
The home minister had written to all the states to ensure tight security for nearly 35 VVIPs and asked these leaders not to go on any surprise visit durin

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Tytler gets clean chit, SAD furious

New Delhi/Jalandhar, April 2: Senior Congress leader Jagdish Tytler on Thursday got a clean chit from the CBI in a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case after the investigating agency found no “sufficient evidence” of the involvement of the former Union minister who is contesting the coming Lok Sabha elections.
The CBI sought closure of the 25-year-old case against Mr Tytler, who is contesting from Delh

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Akki ‘unbutton’ act draws ire

Mumbai, April 2: Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar may land himself in the soup as the city police have started inquiry into his alleged obscene “unbutton” act during the Lakme Fashion Week.
“We are conducting an inquiry into Akshay Kumar’s alleged obscene acts during Lakme Fashion Week held here recently after we received a complaint from a person called Anil Nair,”said a police officer.

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DMK demands constitutional amendments

Chennai, April 2: DMK, a key Congress ally, on Thursday demanded appropriate amendments to Constitution for a "wholesome and genuine" federalism in the country with autonomy at the state level and federal governance at the Centre.

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Dutt is SP General Secy

New Delhi, April 2: Sanjay Dutt, one of Bollywood's best-known stars, got a firm foothold in the world of politics on Thursday when the Samajwadi Party anointed him general secretary even though he cannot contest elections.

"I am very happy that party leader Mulayam Singhji and other seniors chose me to become the party's national general secretary," Dutt, 49, who has starred in over 120
film

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NDA promises to review Tytler role

Jalandhar, April 2: The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Thursday alleged that the CBI was "misused" by the Congress in giving a clean chit to Jagdish Tytler in a 1984 anti-Sikh riot case and said the party-backed NDA would reinvestigate the case, if voted to power.
"Influence of Centre on CBI could be gauged from the fact that although the investigating agency submitted a sealed report in the court

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SC notice to HC on reducing term of rape convict

New Delhi, April 2: The Supreme Court on Thursday sought a response from the Delhi government on the petition challenging the verdict of the Delhi High Court reducing the life term of rape convict to five and half years to pave the way for him to join civil services which he cleared during his imprisonment.
A Bench comprising Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan and P. Sathasivam issued notice to

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G20: PM demands $500bn for developing world

London, April 2: Drawing lessons from history, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh warned rich nations against protectionism and called for $500 billion fresh funds from the Internmational Monetary Fund (IMF) to help developing countries cope with the worst financial crisis in six decades.

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Mumbai matermind on J&K terror radar

New Delhi, April 2: The recent infiltration bids in Jammu and Kashmir came in for some surprise for security agencies when they found Muzamil, one of the main Lashker-e-Tayyabba mastermind of the Mumbai terror attack, as the brain behind large-scale intrusion from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
Security agencies monitoring wireless intercepts along the Line of Control (LoC) tracked a conversation wh

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Disabled get quota in IIT prep courses

New Delhi: The preparatory courses offered by IITs for Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe students to enhance their level of competence will be extended to physically challenged persons from the next academic session onwards.

A decision to this effect was taken at the meeting of the IIT Council, the highest decision making body for the IITs, recently.

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Sushma shocks BJP with low tally

April 1: The BJP leader, Ms Sushma Swaraj, in-charge of the crucial states of MP, Chhattisgarh and Jhark-hand, caught the BJP unawares when she said she was “not sure” that the NDA would win a majority.

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24 fishermen held

Twenty four Indian fishermen were arrested and six mechanised boats seized allegedly by the Sri Lankan Navy from Rameswaram near Kachatheevu on Thursday, a fisheries inspector said.
According to Inspector Mohanan, fishermen in 600 boats were fishing in the area. Barring the 24, the others returned to shore.
Katchatheevu, in the Palk Straits, is an uninhabited islet which was ceded to Sri Lanka

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G20 meet may end in failure

London

April 1: Protests on the streets of central London and the veiled threats of a walkout by a couple of countries on Wednesday conveyed an impression that G-20 summit on Thursday could end in failure.

But finance ministers, meeting ahead of the meeting of their heads of government, were said to have made “smooth progress” in their preparatory work.

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PM enjoys Sonia’s confidence: Pranab

New Delhi, April 1: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, is a “superior intellectual person” and a “highly-rated economist” who “enjoys” the confidence of the Congress chief, Ms Sonia Gandhi, for the top post, says the external affairs minister, Mr Pranab Mukherjee.

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Lalu relives PM dream

Patna

April 1: The RJD supremo, Mr Lalu Prasad’s pent-up desire to become India’s Prime Minister has trickled out a few times in recent months, mostly in his media interviews, but his party’s election campaign in Bihar has now started emphasising this dream.

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Waghmare will defend Kasab under security

Mumbai, April 1: Armed with a strong police cover, advocate Anjali Waghmare on Wednesday informed a sessions court here that she would represent Mumbai terror attack accused Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, even as the Shiv Sena remained non-committal on its earlier stand to oppose her appearance in the case.
Following protests by Shiv Sena activists outside her Worli residence on Monday on her appoin

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VVIPs to get more security

New Delhi, April 1: Amid intelligence inputs suggesting that politicians on the poll campaign may be targeted by terrorists, the Centre has written to state governments to ensure tight security for nearly 40 VIPs. The Centre asked these leaders not to spring any surprise visits on security forces during electioneering.
In a letter to chief ministers and important political leaders, the Union hom

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VVIPs to get more security

New Delhi, April 1: Amid intelligence inputs suggesting that politicians on the poll campaign may be targeted by terrorists, the Centre has written to state governments to ensure tight security for nearly 40 VIPs. The Centre asked these leaders not to spring any surprise visits on security forces during electioneering.

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EC bars minister press meets

New Delhi: The Election Commission advised Union ministers to avoid press conferences, as far as possible, in view of the polls to the Lok Sabha and certain assemblies and follow the practice of issuing press releases.

It was the normal practice of Union ministers to address press conferences after meetings of the Union Cabinet or as and when any issue of public importance is needed to be broug

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CBI clears Tytler in riots case

New Delhi: In a reprieve for former Union minister Jagdish Tytler, CBI gave him a clean chit in a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case and informed a Delhi court that it wanted to close the matter.

CBI counsel Sanjay Kumar told additional chief metropolitan magistrate Rakesh Pandit that "We have filed the cancellation report in the matter and we want to close the investigation."

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IPL is back in India

New Delhi/Hyderabad/Chennai

March 31: The IPL has moved back to India for keeps, according to sources in the Deccan Chargers, the team owned by the promoters of Deccan Chronicle. The decision will be made public in the next 36 hours after tying up the loose ends, sources said.

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Venkaiah’s Telugu speech irks Kannada hardliners

Bengaluru

April 1: The BJP senior leader, Mr M. Venkaiah Naidu, got a taste of the ire of hardliners when activists of the Karnataka Rakshana Vedike tried to disrupt an election-related meeting that he was addressed on Wednesday.
BJP sources told this newspaper that the activists of the Vedike shouted slogans when Mr Naidu started his speech at a programme for Telugu people residing in the cit

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Pawar to attend 3rd front rally

New Delhi, April 1: Keeping open his post-poll alliance option, the NCP supremo, Mr Sharad Pawar, whose party is a key constituent of the Congress-led UPA will attend a Third Front rally in Orissa on Friday and share the platform with CPI-M chief Prakash Karat among others.
The Congress shrugged off Mr Pawar’s decision to attend the rally in Bhuban-eshwar observing that its alliance with his N

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Cop shoots stray dogs with AK-47

CHANDIGARH

April 1: A senior Punjab police officer has been booked for “cruelty” to animals after he opened fire with an AK-47 rifle and killed two street dogs outside his home in Amritsar’s posh Green Avenue area.
Superintendent of police T.P. Singh was apparently trying to save his own pet dog from being mauled by the mongrels when he grabbed his security guard’s loaded Klashnikov an

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Fiza to play lawyer in Desh Drohi-II

Chandigarh, April 1: Lovelorn Anuradha Bali alias Fiza, whose short-lived marriage with former Haryana deputy chief minister Chander Mohan alias Chand Mohammed, hogged the headlines before a tragic climax, will be acting in Bollywood movie Desh Drohi-II.
“We have signed Fiza for Desh Drohi-II. The story of the movie will be based on terror attack on the Hotel Taj in Mumbai last year,” produce

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Nithari case: Court to re-examine key witness

Ghaziabad, April 1: A special CBI court here on Wednesday postponed its verdict in the alleged rape and murder of a minor in the sensational Nithari killings case after it decided to re-examine a Uttar Pradesh police officer who led the initial probe in the incident.
Special CBI judge Rama Jain asked Dinesh Kumar Yadav, a UP police officer, who led the initial probe in the Nithari case, to appea

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Ex-babus get into politics

Lucknow,

April 1: With the line dividing politics and bureaucracy blurring beyond recognition, more and more IAS and IPS are taking to politics after retirement. The high failure percentage of bureaucrats in politics is obviously not a deterrent for ones who are making a bee line for political parties this time.
The Congress has already fielded two high profile former IAS officers.
While, Mr

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Indian buses banned beyond Wagah

Amritsar, April 1: In the wake of the terror attack on the police training academy in Lahore, Pakistan has stopped the movement of Indian buses beyond the Wagah border for security reasons, an Indian official said on Wednesday.
Lahore-bound Indian buses are being evacuated at the Wagah border and their passengers shifted to Pakistani tourist buses for their onward journey due to rising security

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Techie used two guns to kill family

Silicon Valley, April 1: The “soft-spoken” 42-year- old Indian software engineer killed five of his family members before shooting himself using two recently purchased pistols, police said on Wednesday, indicating that the crime was likely related to “family dynamics and personal relationships”.
The lone survivor of the “unimaginable violence,” the wife of the engineer who escaped wi

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Waghmare to defend Kasab

Mumbai, April 1: A day after seeking time to consider appearing in the 26/11 attacks trial, advocate Ms Anjali Waghmare on Wednesday informed a special court that she was willing to represent arrested terrorist Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab.

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Fernandes files nomination as independent

Muzaffarpur, April 1: A defiant George Fernandes on Wednesday filed his nomination for the Muzaffarpur seat as an independent after Bihar's ruling JD(U), the party he belongs to, refused him the ticket.
Mr Fernandes, the NDA convenor, filed his papers before the Muzaffarpur district magistrate and returning officer Bipin Kumar.

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SRK likely to campaign for Congress

New Delhi, April 1: Congress is planning to add a glamour quotient in the capital's electoral scene by roping in actor and party "sympathiser" Shah Rukh Khan to campaign for its candidates.
This will be besides its star campaigners party chief Sonia Gandhi, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and AICC General Secretary Rahul Gandhi.
"Obviously, we will request Shah Rukh to campaign for our cand

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Varun moved to high-security jail

Pilibhit, April 1: BJP candidate Varun Gandhi, booked under National Security Act for his hate speeches, has been shifted to a high-security Etah jail following intelligence inputs that underworld don Chota Shakeel was hatching a conspiracy to kill him.
Gandhi was shifted last night under heavy security from the district prison here, official sources said.
Intelligence agencies had informed th

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Fiza files new complaint against Chand

Mohali, April 1: Fiza, the estranged wife of former Haryana Deputy Chief Minister Chander Mohan alias Chand Mohammad has moved a fresh complaint against him.
The 37-year-old former assistant advocate general of Haryana formerly known as Anuradha Bali on Tuesday lodged a criminal complaint before Punjab director-general of police (DGP) accusing the 43-year-old Kalka Congress MLA of rape, cheating

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SC: Dutt cannot contest

New Delhi/Lucknow

March 31: “Munnabhai” cannot become an MP, at least not now. In a major setback to both Sanjay Dutt and the Samajwadi Party, the Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed his plea to suspend his conviction in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case, holding that he had been held guilty for serious offences.
Dutt had been chosen by the SP as its candidate for the Lucknow Lok Sabha se

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Sonia, Tata are Time finalists

New York, March 31: The Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, and industrialists, Ratan Tata and Mukesh Ambani, are among the finalists for Time magazine’s 100 most influential people of 2009 that also includes US President Barack Obama.

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Relief operations stepped up in Orissa

Kendrapara (Orissa), April 1: Rescue and relief operations were stepped up on Wednesday in tornado-ravaged areas of Orissa's Kendrapara district where the devastating calamity claimed at least 10 lives and left over 150 injured.
The Chief Minister, Mr Naveen Patnaik, and the BJP leader, Mr L.K. Advani, visited the affected villages under Rajkanika block, about 15 km from the sea coast.
After v

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Left faces stiff challenge in Kasargode

Kasargode (Kerala), April 1: The BJP and the Congress are posing a tough challenge to the ruling LDF in Kasargode, a traditional CPI-M pocket borough, making it one of the very few Lok Sabha constituencies in Kerala witnessing a three-way race.
CPI-M's deputy leader in the Lok Sabha P. Karunakaran is back in the fray facing stiff challenge not only from the Congress's Shahida Kamal but also from

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TN man shoots kin in US

Ooty

March 31: The little village of Iyyankolli in Ooty is in a state of shock following the massacre of members of two families from the village in Santa Clara, California. On Sunday night, Devaraj, a software engineer from Erumad village living in Santa Clara with his young family, shot dead his brother-in-law, his wife and little daughter before turning the gun on his own wife and two littl

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BJP open on Varun prospects

New Delhi

March 31: The BJP is keeping all options open for its candidate, Mr Varun Gandhi, who has been booked under the National Security Act, including fielding his mother, Ms Maneka Gandhi, from both Pilibhit and Aaonla parliamentary constituencies. While Maneka Gandhi will be contesting from Aaonla, Varun Gandhi is the BJP candidate from Pilibhit.
The BJP central leadership has asked its

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Lucknow is Brisbane's sister city

Lucknow, April 1: The City of Nawabs has been chosen by Brisbane, the capital of Queensland, as its sister city.
Lucknow is the only city in the country shortlisted by Brisbane for the honour. Brisbane's sister city programme provides for developing commercial, cultural, sporting and other mutually beneficial exchanges for Brisbane-based businesses and its sister cities.
In a letter to the May

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PM to Pak: Show visible results

New Delhi

March 31: Putting conditions on Pakistan for resuming “composite dialogue” between the two nations, the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh on Tuesday said the parlays under the ambit with the neighbouring country could only begin if Islamabad shows “visible results” with regard to investigation in the Mumbai terror attacks.
“They have to show visible results with regard to

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Moily, Alva get seats

New Delhi

March 31: The Congress party, which plans to contest about 68 Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh, on Tuesday fielded senior leaders, Mr Sushilkumar Shinde, Ms Margaret Alva and Mr M. Veerappa Moily, in Maharashtra and Karnataka. Its nominee against the NDA’s prime ministerial candidate, Mr L.K. Advani, is sitting legislator, Mr Suresh Patel.

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Jaswant has bribed voters, says tehsildar

Jaipur: The senior BJP leader, Mr Jaswant Singh, was on Tuesday accused of distributing currency notes in violation of the model code of conduct during an election meeting at Gagaria village in Rajasthan’s Barmer district where he had gone to campaign for his son, Mr Manvendra Singh, on Tuesday.
The complaint charging the former union minister with ditributing money among people at a poll meeti

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Sanjay, Anil make peace

Mumbai, March 31: Anil Kapoor and Sanjay Dutt were not on talking terms for a long time but the two have finally buried the hatchet. The two are planning to team up for an international project.
“Anil Kapoor wanted to meet Sanjay Dutt for a long time. But both of them seemed to be too tied up. Finally on Thursday, Anil said he wanted to come over to discuss a very serious matter. Sanjay insiste

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Nithari verdict postponed

Ghaziabad, April 1: A special CBI court on Wednesday postponed its verdict in a Nithari serial killings case after it decided to re-examine one of the witnesses in the rape and murder of eight-year-old girl Aarti.

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Kakodkar, Ash among Padma award receivers

New Delhi

March 31: A key architect of the Indo-US nuclear deal and Atomic Energy Commission chairman Anil Kakodkar, actors Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Akshay Kumar were among the 62 personalities who received the Padma awards on Tuesday.
Famous playback singer Shamshad Begum and Central Board of the Reserve Bank of India director Ashok Shekhar Ganguly are among the prominent persons to get the

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JD-U Maya move in Bihar backfires

New Delhi

March 31: The Janata Dal (United)’s move to do a Mayawati, by way of social engineering in Bihar, is on the verge of failing with several senior leaders quitting the party and planning to oppose the outfit. The party’s plan to engineer a caste-based social engineering experiment to garner the maximum out of the 40 Lok Sabha seats in the state have been hit badly after desertion by

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PoK camps continue training more recruits

New Delhi

March 31: Even after frequent militant attacks in Lahore, Pakistan is least bothered about taking action against terror camps operating from Pakistan. The intelligence inputs reveal that a large number of terror camps operating from PoK are providing training to new recruits for anti-India activities.
Senior officials of Central intelligence agencies also say that fresh inputs conf

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Nithari verdict today

Ghaziabad, March 31: The Special CBI court here will deliver its judgement on Wednesday on the rape and murder of eight-year-old Aarti, one of the 19 victims of the gruesome Nithari killings, in which Surinder Koli, servant of businessman Moninder Singh Pandher, is an accused.
Wednesday’s verdict will be the second in the sensational killings which had rocked the country in 2006 as a CBI Speci

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Omble kin attack Kasab’s lawyer

Mumbai

March 31: A relative of slain police officer Tukaram Omble, killed in the November 26 attacks, was among nine Shiv Sainiks arrested on Tuesday for attacking the home of Ms Anjali Waghmare, a court-appointed lawyer for Ajmal Aamir Kasab, the only terrorist captured alive during the attack on Mumbai.
Eknath Omble, a cousin of Omble, was arrested and booked for attacking Ms Waghmare’s ho

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Jaswant bribes voters

Jaipur, March 31: The Senior BJP leader, Mr Jaswant Singh, was on Tuesday accused of distributing currency notes in violation of the model code of conduct during an election meeting at Gagaria village in Rajasthan’s Barmer district where he had gone to campaign for his son, Mr Manvendra Singh, this afternoon.
The complaint charging the former union minister with distributing money among people

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Drama on AI flight

New Delhi, March 31: A Kolkata-bound Air India plane was forced to return from the take off point on Tuesday after a passenger raised suspicion over the behaviour of her three co-passengers, who later turned out to be members of a security agency.
Air India’s flight IC-401, with 104 passengers and cabin crew, was scheduled to take off for Kolkata at around 7 am.
“The plane had reached the ta

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Patients must not be hurt: HC

New Delhi, March 31: Taking exception to patients being neglected at AIIMS due to ego clashes among doctors, the Delhi High Court on Tuesday said internal disputes at the hospital will not to be tolerated at the cost of those suffering.
A Bench headed by the Chief Justice A.P. Shah expressed concern over patients not being treated properly due to ego clashes among different groups of doctors in t

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President set for maiden flight on desi Air Force 1

New Delhi, March 31: The President Pratibha Patil, the supreme commander of the armed forces, will on Wednesday undertake her maiden flight in the Indian version of Air Force One, journeying to Assam in a newly-acquired Business Boeing Jet (BBJ) of the Indian Air Force (IAF).
Patterned on the US president’s office-in-the-sky, the jet is one amongst the three which the IAF has purchased. It is

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SC bars Dutt from polls

The Supreme Court has rejected Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt's plea to contest this year's Lok Sabha polls. Dutt was to be the Samajwadi Party candidate from Lucknow.
Supreme Court refused to stay his conviction in connection with the 1993 Mumbai blasts case. Dutt was convicted under the Arms Act and sentenced to six years in jail by a Tada court. He is out on bail at present.

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Dogs to track natural calamity victims

New Delhi, March 31: The country will soon have a batch of "handler-free" trained dogs which would be able to rescue victims from under the debris at disaster sites.

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Terror bid by Dawood foiled

Mangalore/Bengaluru

March 30: The state police and intelligence agencies have unearthed a conspiracy by the Dawood Ibrahim gang to assassinate prominent national politicians and disrupt the Lok Sabha elections in the state.
The police has arrested five gangsters owing allegiance to Dawood’s right hand man Chhota Shakeel including Rashid Malbari in connection with the plot.

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Anti-dumping duties on China, Iran

New Delhi, March 31: The government has imposed anti- dumping duties on the imports of Vitamin E from China and hexamine (a heating agent) from Iran to guard the domestic players from cheap imports.
The duty on Vitamin E and hexamine, imposed by the Central board of excise and customs was $ 25 per kilogram and $ 107 per tonne respectively, CBEC said in a notification on Tuesday.
The decision t

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India to get foreign nuke fuel in 2 days

Mumbai: India will receive the first consignment of natural uranium from French and Russian companies for its reactors. This is the first consignment after India secured the NSG waiver in September. Sixty tonnes of natural uranium from the French firm Areva is expected to arrive at the Nuclear Fuel Complex in Hyderabad in a day or two and the same quantity from Russian TVEL in a week.


Fishing boat on coast creates panic

Thiruvananthapuram

March 30: Reports of a team of LTTE men landing in the Kerala coast triggered alarm on Monday afternoon, but police discovered late in the evening that it was a fishing boat which created the ruckus.
Police went on high alert in the state after fisherfolk reported that they saw some strangers alighting from an unknown craft on the Cherthala coast near Kochi.
Earlier, nav

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Varun gets bail, but to stay in jail

Lucknow

March 30: The BJP leader, Mr Varun Gandhi, was granted bail on Monday evening in the two cases registered against him for giving inflammatory speeches in Pilibhit.
However, Mr Gandhi will remain behind the bars as National Security Act (NSA) has been invoked against him by the state government.
The bail application of Mr Varun Gandhi was heard by a judge inside the district jail here

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Shahabuddin’s wife to contest on his behalf

Patna, March 30: Hina Sahab, wife of jailed Siwan MP, Mohammad Shahabuddin, on Monday filed her nomination papers as the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) candidate from the Siwan constituency.
She was accompanied by the railways minister and the RJD chief, Mr Lalu Prasad, and hundreds of party workers and supporters, who shouted slogans in support of her husband Shahabuddin, currently lodged in Siwan

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Congress to secure 18 winnable seats

Lucknow

March 30: The Congress in Uttar Pradesh has identified about 18 Lok Sabha seats where it feels it is in a winning position.
The party will focus its attention on these seats and give the candidates the much-needed “push” to help them emerge victorious in these constituencies.
According to a senior party leader, “We are contesting 60-65 seats in UP but the seats rate high on th

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Is Ms Mystery a real queen?

New Delhi

March 30: The long-awaited DNA report of the supposed remains of the Georgian Queen Ketevan of Kakheti has arrived. The report says the remains do belong to the 17th century but a DNA test of the queen’s descendants is required to confirm without doubt that the remains are hers.
Queen Ketevan of Kakheti was imprisoned by Shah Abbas I of Persia for 10 years after he conquered Georg

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PSU staff get further pay hike

New Delhi, March 30: Nearly three months after executives of oil PSUs went on strike demanding higher wages, the Government on Monday bettered the previously announced hike in emoluments for officers of all public sector companies, giving up to 20 per cent additional increase in emoluments.
The Cabinet, headed by the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, approved a proposal to merge 78.2 per c

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26/11 trial: Kasab gets a lawyer

Mumbai, March 30: Mohammad Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone terrorist caught alive in the 26/11 Mumbai terror strikes, was on Monday provided with a lawyer from the state legal aid cell.
The special court on Monday appointed Anjali Waghmare, a lawyer with the Maharashtra Service Legal Authority, to defend Kasab in the November 26 terror strike, which is likely to begin on April 6 in the high security

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Panel: More autonomy to varsities

New Delhi, March 30: In an effort to do away with government’s interference in higher educational institutions, a high-level committee has suggested that universities should be made self-regulatory bodies and recommended a new governing structure to help them preserve their autonomy.
The committee, headed by former UGC chairman Yash Pal, has said professional bodies like AICTE, NCTE, MCI,

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SC reserves order on Dutt’s plea

New Delhi, March 30: The Supreme Court on Monday reserved its order on Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt’s plea seeking suspension of his conviction in the 1993 Mumbai blasts case to contest the LS elections.
A Bench headed by the Chief Justice, K.G. Balakrishnan, reserved the order after hearing contentions of Dutt’s counsel and the CBI, which opposed his plea.
The senior advocate, Mr Harish Sal

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Varun gets bail, to stay in jail

Pilibhit: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader, Mr Varun Gandhi got bail on Monday in criminal cases against him, but will remain behind bars as he also faces charges under the stringent National Security Act (NSA).

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SC reserves order on Dutt plea

New Delhi, March 30: The Supreme Court on Monday reserved its order on Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt's plea seeking suspension of his conviction in the 1993 Mumbai blasts case to contest the Lok Sabha elections.
A Bench headed by Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan reserved the order after hearing contentions of Dutt's counsel and the CBI, which opposed his plea.

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Kachru ragging: Suspend principal, says SC

New Delhi: Terming the deaths of students due to ragging a “national tragedy,” the Supreme Court on Monday ordered the suspension of the principal of a medical college in Himachal Pradesh for not averting the death of a first year student following harassment by seniors.
A bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and Asok Kumar Ganguly said the principal of the Rajendra Prasad Medical College in Tan

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Kasab gets 2 lawyers

Mumbai: Two lawyers, including senior advocate Anjali Waghmare, were on Monday appointed to defend the lone terrorist caught in the Mumbai terror strikes, Mohammad Ajmal Kasab, by the special sessions court which set 6 April as the date for commencing the trial in the case.
Judge M.L. Tahilyani appointed Ms Waghmare, a lawyer from the Maharashtra Service Legal Authority, to defend Kasab once the

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Further pay hike for PSUs

New Delhi: Around four lakh officers of Central public sector enterprises will benefit from a government decision on Monday giving them a further increase in salary and allowances, over and above the hikes announced last year.
The decision to improve the salary structure of officers at board level and below, along with supervisory staff, was taken at the Cabinet meeting presided over by the Prim

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Venkaiah Naidu talks to DC: NDA will win power on its own

Hyderabad

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Rebellion in NCP and Congress

Mumbai, March 29: Trouble is brewing within ruling Congress-NCP with both parties facing infighting and rebellion in about six to seven constituencies in Maharashtra.
Both parties face a gigantic task of pacifying disgruntled elements within their own ranks as many of their leaders have become rebellion.

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India Inc slows down political funds

Mumbai/New Delhi

March 29: Indian elections have an opaque side to them. Nobody really knows how much the political parties spend or where the money comes from. The open secret, though, is that companies of all sizes fund elections in some way or the other. Money is given voluntarily, extorted or obtained through blackmail.

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Advani: Congress main rival

New Delhi

March 29: Claiming Congress is the main political adversary of the BJP and the Left parties, the saffron party’s prime ministerial candidate, Mr L.K. Advani, has ruled out any truck with the Communists for supporting a V.P. Singh-like candidate for leading the government in case of a hung Parliament.

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Varun faces NSA charge

Lucknow, March 29: The Mayawati government in Uttar Pradesh invoked the National Security Act against BJP candidate, Mr Varun Gandhi, on Sunday night.

Sections 2 and 3 of the National Security Act had been invoked and a notice had been served to Mr Gandhi in jail.

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Minister dies in Punjab road smash

Chandigarh: Capt. Kanwaljit Singh, 66, the seniormost Cabinet minister in Punjab’s SAD-BJP coalition, was killed in a freak road accident near Chandigarh. Singh’s car was hit by a truck and thrown on the other side of the road, where another truck rammed into it. Singh sustained major injuries on the head and upper body and died in hospital. The car driver also died in the crash. The Punjab go

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No campaign with Madani: Kerala CM

Thiruvananthapuram

March 29: The Chief Minister, Mr V.S. Achuthanandan, said here on Sunday that he would not campaign jointly with Mr Abdul Nasser Madani’s People’s Democratic Party in this election.
Mr Achuthanandan’s statement is significant since his rival, the CPI(M) state secretary, Mr Pinarayi Vijayan, had shared a dais with Mr Madani in Ponnani last week, inviting much criticism.

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Salman loves politics, Rahul

LUCKNOW

March 29: Another film star is ready to plunge into politics. It is now film star, Salman Khan, who has said that he would love to work under Congress MP Rahul Gandhi, whom he described as the future of the nation.
Salman Khan, who campaigned for Ms Annu Tandon, the Congress candidate for the Unnao Lok Sabha seat, on Sunday, said that Mr Gandhi’s style of working and his non-controve

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Varun row: Advani wants restraint

New Delhi, March 29: Doing a balancing act on the Varun Gandhi speech episode, senior BJP leader L.K. Advani asserted that the party took the "correct stand" in rejecting Election Commission's advice not to field him for the polls but said every BJP candidate must exercise restraint in their utterances.

Breaking his silence on the Varun issue since his hate speeches triggered a political sto

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Otis to ‘negotiate’ rare Bapu items

Dharamsala, March 29: US-based collector James Otis, who was in the news recently for auctioning a set of Mahatama Gandhi’s personal belongings, has claimed he has rarer items of the father of the nation including his blood drops which he was ready to “negotiate” with the Indian government to return.

These articles include the original of ‘Harijan’, a journal edited by Bapu, cotton c

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Boy dies in dog chase

Chennai, March 29: The eyes of an 11-year-old boy who died when he fell from the terrace after he was chased by a dog were donated by his parents here Sunday, members of the family said.

S. Aashish Aravind fell from the terrace of his uncle’s house here on Saturday.

“My son was visiting his uncle and went to the terrace after dinner along with his cousin Prashant. A doberman owned by two

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LS polls not a referendum: BSY

Shimoga: The results of the Lok Sabha polls would not be a referendum on the BJP-led government in Karnataka and the party would highlight the 'failures' of the UPA government at the Centre, Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa said.

"The results of the Lok Sabha polls will not be a referendum against the BJP government. The party is concentrating only on the failures of the Centre and not on perso

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Interest rates can be lowered: PM

March 28: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Saturday told industry leaders that there is scope for further lowering of interest rates. He requested the RBI governor, Mr D. Subbarao, to look into this aspect.
“With ample liquidity and low inflation, there is scope perhaps for a further moderation in interest rates. Domestic credit flow for productive needs has to definitely be maintained at reaso

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‘AIADMK-PMK deal a winning combo’

Chennai

March 28: The Opposition AIADMK took the lead in the seat-sharing exercise with its allies with its general secretary J. Jayalalithaa announcing that her new ally, the PMK, has been allotted seven seats for the May 13 Lok Sabha elections and a Rajya Sabha seat for 2010. 
Announcing the pact in a packed hall, Ms Jayalalithaa told reporters at her Poes Garden residence on Saturday that

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Varun in custody, 50 hurt

Lucknow/New Delhi

March 28: The BJP candidate, Mr Varun Gandhi, surrendered before a Pilibhit court for allegedly making hate speeches. His supporters battled with the police in clashes that left nearly 50 people injured.
Mr Gandhi, 29, who is making his electoral de-but, was arrested and remanded to judicial custody till Monday. His mother, Ms Maneka Gan-dhi, meanwhile started a fresh row wit

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Anti-Sikh riots: Final report out

New Delhi

March 28: The CBI on Saturday filed the final investigation report in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots case in connection with former Union minister Jagdish Tytler.
Submitted in a sealed cover, the report was filed before duty magistrate R.L. Meena. The duty magistrate did not open the seal and referred the matter to the court concerned. The report is likely to be opened on April 2.
The l

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Varun charged with attempt to murder, Maneka sees plot

Pilibhit: Varun Gandhi, a BJP Lok Sabha candidate, was slapped with fresh charges by the police including attempt to murder, a non-bailable offence, in connection with yesterday' violence involving his supporters around the district jail following his arrest.

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Brahmos test-fire successful

New Delhi, March 29: The latest land attack version of the supersonic BrahMos cruise missile with a range of 290 km was successfully test-fired for the second time in a month in the Rajasthan desert and is ready for induction in the Army.

"The missile was successfully launched at 1115 hours in the morning and in the next two-and-a-half minutes, it hit the bull's eye in the Pokhran firing ran

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Dhoni may be EC’s poll ambassador

Ranchi, March 28: The election commission is keen to rope in film stars and popular sportspersons like cricketer M.S. Dhoni with “non-political background” as poll ambassadors to motivate young voters to exercise their right to franchise.
“People should know that exercising their franchise is not only their right but also their duty so the Election Commission has mooted the idea to seek the

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BJP’s Bhay Ho to counter Jai Ho

New Delhi, March 28: Seeking to counter the Jai Ho ad campaign of the Congress, BJP on Saturday unveiled a parody of the famous Slumdog Millionaire song saying Bhay Ho (let fear prevail).
“The video is not an official one. It is sent to us by a party sympathiser. This song depicts the real situation of the country. It says.... Bhay (fear) ho.... bhook (hunger) ho.... Atank (terror) ho.... Maha

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Accused refuse ID parade

New Delhi, March 28: Three persons arrested in connection with the murder case of TV journalist Soumya Vishwanathan on Saturday refused to appear in Test Identification Parade (TIP), giving a jolt to the Delhi police.
“The TIP is meaningless as the police has not only taken our photographs, but also video-graphed us in custody,” the three arrested men Ravi Kapoor, Amit Kumar Shukla and Balji

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Producers will not bow to multiplexes

Mumbai, March 28: Bollywood producers on Saturday said that their proposed boycott of multiplexes over revenue sharing from April 4 was a fight for equality and justice.
Addressing a press conference, Mukesh Bhatt, who heads the core group of film producers, said their demand for equal share in ticket sales was not unjustified.
“Our fight is on principles and we are seeking justice. It will

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Lucknow, Brisbane to be sister cities

Uttar Pradesh's capital Lucknow and Brisbane, one of the most populous cities in Australia, are all set to become sister cities for their mutual benefit and development, an official said.
"Our Lucknow has become the first city of India to get an offer from Brisbane for building sister city relationships," Lucknow mayor Dinesh Sharma said on Saturday.
He said both cities would work together in

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Gujarat minister gives up: Riot case

New Delhi, March 27: Gujarat child welfare minister Mayaben Kodnani, accused of leading rioters in the post-Godhra carnage, resigned from her post and surrendered before the Supreme Court-appointed special investigative team (SIT) on Friday after the Gujarat high court rejected her plea for anticipatory bail.

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Sources: CBI's clean chit to Tytler

New Delhi: The CBI on Saturday filed its final investigation report before a Delhi Court into a 1984 anti-Sikh riot case allegedly involving former Union minister Jagdish Tytler.
The investigating agency submitted the report in a sealed envelope before Metropolitan magistrate Ram Lal Meena.
The court will consider the report on April 2.
Meanwhile, television channels quoted sources as saying

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PMK gets 7 LS seats

The AIADMK and the PMK on Saturday entered into an alliance for the Lok Sabha elections in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, under which the latter would contest seven seats, including the lone seat from the Union territory.
AIADMK supremo Jayalalithaa made the announcement to the media after PMK founder Dr S. Ramadoss called on her at her Poes Garden residence in Chennai this morning.
The PMK would al

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Varun surrenders, sent to jail

Pilibhit: BJP leader Varun Gandhi was arrested on Saturday and sent to jail for two days. His bail plea would be heard on Monday.

29-year-old Varun, who had earlier got anticipatory bail which ended on Friday, changed his tactic and did not apply for extension of bail or go to the Supreme Court against the Allahabad High Court dismissing his petition seeking quashing of the FIR.

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PM sees interest rate cut

New Delhi: With inflation touching near zero levels, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said there is scope for further cuts in interest rates and assured the industry that credit needs would be met to enable the economy tackle the global financial crisis.

"With ample liquidity and low inflation, there is scope perhaps for a further moderation in interest rates. Domestic credit flow for produc

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Otis says sorry for auction

New Delhi, March 27: US collector James Otis, who sparked a row by putting up for auction Mahatma Gandhi’s belongings earlier this month, apologised here on Friday for unintentionally hurting Indian sentiments.

He said the money generated from the auction would go to organisations promoting Gandhian values. “He (Gandhi) is the world’s great hero. I have been studying him for the last 20

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Soldiers can vote at place of posting

New Delhi, March 27: Serving soldiers will now be able to cast their votes at the place of their posting.

“Now military personnel can be enrolled as general voters at the place of their posting across the country if they fulfill the eligibility criteria for voting,” defence ministry sources said.

The Election Commission has already issued a directive in this regard. With over 1.5 mill

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Home Secy term gets extension

New Delhi, March 27: The Centre on Friday extended the tenure of the Union home secretary, Mr Madhukar Gupta, by three months, barely four days before he was to retire.

The extension was appro-ved by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC), headed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The Election Commission had sought extension for Mr Gupta till June 30, by when the process of Lok Sabha

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Fourth front puts Congress in fix

New Delhi/Chennai

March 26: The United Progressive Alliance appeared to be disintegrating on Thursday with three allies forming a “fourth front” in UP-Bihar and a fourth one walking out in Tamil Nadu.

The Samajwadi Party, RJD and LJP have floated an unnamed group which will contest 120 Lok Sabha seats in UP and Bihar. They will not set up candidates against each other.

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Advani seeks PM face-off

Seppa (Arunachal Pradesh), March 26: The BJP’s PM hopeful, Mr L.K. Advani, challenged the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, to a live TV debate similar to the ones in the US where rival leaders take on each other.
Mr Advani threw the challenge at a poll rally here after again dubbing Dr Singh as the “weakest PM the country has ever had.”
The Congress spoke-sperson, Ms Jayanti Natarajan

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JD(U) with NDA: Nitish

New Delhi, March 26: Ruling out any truck with either the Congress or the Third Front, key NDA constituent JD(U) on Thursday made it clear that the party is with the BJP-led NDA.
“There is no question of any tie-up with the Congress. As far as the JD(U) is concerned, we do not think of either the Third Front or any other option. We have only one option... we are with the NDA,” the senior par

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Rahul didn’t want to be minister: PM

New Delhi

March 26: Disclosing that he wanted Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi to join his government as minister, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday said, the young party leader always refused the offer.
“I have been wanting for him to become a minister for a long time but he has been refusing,” the Prime Minister told reporters when asked about the role of the youth leader

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Stars favour Maya in UP

Hyderabad

March 26: Favourable star positions will help Mayawati, J. Jayalalithaa and Nitish Kumar emerge “stronger” in this general election. Stars, however, do not seem to favour politicians like Lalu Prasad Yadav, M. Karunanidhi and Mamata Banerjee. The Samajwadi Party general secretary, Mr Amar Singh, will “continue to play an important role” in Uttar Pradesh politics.
Astrological

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HC refuses bail, Gujarat minister quits

Ahmedabad: In a huge embarrassment to the BJP ahead of the elections, the Gujarat High Court rejected the anticipatory bail plea of absconding minister Maya Kodnani, observing that "religious fanatics are no better than terrorists".

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Varun likely to move top court over FIR

NEW DELHI

March 26: BJP’s Pilibhit candidate Varun Gandhi is likely to move the Supreme Court for quashing of the FIR logged against him for his alleged hate speech, if his petition filed in the Delhi high court seeking extension of his anticipatory bail, is rejected. The case is coming before the Delhi high court on Friday.
However, speculation is also rife that Mr Gandhi, who is embroiled

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Asin’s aide traced to Puttaparti, arrested

Chennai, March 26: An aide of actor Asin, who had been missing for the past 10 days, has been traced to Puttaparti in Andhra Pradesh. He has reportedly admitted to blackmailing the actor, the police said Thursday.
N. Muthu Kumar, Asin’s assistant for the past four years, went missing last week.
His mother S. Vadivu told police that he had been kidnapped at the movie star’s behest.
Asin, w

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Voters in UP prepare manifestos for leaders

Lucknow

March 26: While it is normal for political parties to release their manifestos during elections, ever heard of the voters preparing their own manifestos and then asking the politicians to toe the line? In Mahoba district of Uttar Pradesh, the voters have done just that.
The voters of this quintessential backward district of Bundelkhand region that is a part of the Hamirpur Lok Sabha c

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CPM admits mistakes in Nandi, Kerala

New Delhi

March 26: Sensing the tide could possibly turn against the outfit, the CPI(M), for the first time, went on a defensive mode. On Thursday, the reds admitted that the Left-ruled governments in both states had “committed mistakes”. The police firing in Nandigram is one of them.
The CPI(M)’s rural bastions had already taken a hit in Bengal following Nandigram.
The rift between t

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Aam aadmi wins in 5 years of UPA

New Delhi

March 25: As the UPA’s rule at the Centre comes to an end, its report card could read as follows:

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80 Ghaziabad kids missing in 5 months

Ghaziabad, March 26 (IANS) Tied with a rope, four-year-old Rohit was being carried in a gunny bag on a cycle-rickshaw by his kidnapper. The child regained consciousness and the abductor panicked and fled the scene. Rohit was rescued. But over 80 other children missing from Ghaziabad district of Uttar Pradesh since October have not been so lucky.

In a grim reminder of the Nithari case in Noida

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Army sees Pak hand in terror

Srinagar

March 25: The Lashkar-e-Tayyaba has threatened more deadly attacks against the security forces in Jammu and Kashmir. “The coming days are going to be worse,” it said, referring to the firefights underway in the frontier district of Kupwara.
Eight Indian soldiers, including a major, and 17 militants have so far been killed in the gun battles, Army officials said.
According to PTI

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Rahul justifies deal with Tiger outfit

Puducherry

March 25: The Congress general secretary, Mr Rahul Gandhi, on Wednesday struggled to balance his anger against the LTTE, which assassinated his father Rajiv Gandhi, and the compulsions of politics which has forced the Congress to tie up with a pro-LTTE party.
Speaking to mediapersons, Mr Gandhi, who had come here to interact with Youth Congress leaders, said, “The LTTE is a terror

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BSP slogans change with ideology shift

Lucknow

March 25: Slogans in elections reflect the ideology and the focus of a political party and nothing could be more true of the Bahujan Samaj Party that had changed its slogan, along with its ideology over the years.
The BSP first created ripples in political circles when it gave the slogan “Tilak (Brahmin), tarazu (Vaishya) aur talwar (Thakurs), inko maro joote char.”
This slogan,

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HC refuses to quash FIR in UP

New Delhi/Lucknow

March 25: In a major setback to the BJP and its Pilibhit candidate, Mr Varun Gandhi, the Allahabad high court on Wednesday dismissed Mr Gandhi’s petition seeking quashing of an FIR registered against him in Uttar Pradesh Over his alleged hate speech in election rallies.
A hearing on the extension of Mr Gandhi’s anticipatory bail, which lapses on Friday, will come up in th

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Tharoor article creates ruckus

Thiruvananthapuram,

March 25: The CPI(M) is deftly using an article written in support of Israel by writer and the Congress candidate, Mr Shashi Tharoor, as a campaign weapon.
Mr Tharoor is contesting from Thiruvananthapuram Lok Sabha constituency and is taking on a low profile CPI leader, Mr Ramachandran Nair.
Israel is a vilified entity in Kerala, thanks mostly to the CPI(M), and Mr Tharoo

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Shotgun Sinha likely to face BJP’s rebel Sinha

Patna

March 25: The Bollywood actor-turned-politician, Mr Shatrughna Sinha, of the BJP passed the big test in realpolitik when he managed to get the party ticket for Patna Sahib constituency, but the famous Bihari Babu is going to face a tough challenge from a senior BJP leader who is likely to be fielded by the RJD against him.
Mr Shatrughan was one of four Bihar BJP leaders from the Kayasth

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CBI may oppose Dutt plea in SC

New Delhi, March 25: The CBI is likely to oppose in the Supreme Court the petition of Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt, who is seeking suspension of his conviction in connection with 1993 Mumbai serial blasts to contest coming Lok Sabha polls.
The petition will come up for hearing in the apex court on March 30 as a Bench headed by the Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan issued notice to the CBI and soug

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Work for half pay, Infosys staff told

New York, March 25: Left without as much work for all its employees, Infosys is offering some of them an option to work with a non-profit organisation for a year and get paid half their salary by the IT major, its co-founder Nandan Nilekani has said.
“We’ve also launched a programme where an employee can go and work with a non-profit organisation for a year and we’ll pay him half the salar

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Teachers jailed for stealing kids’ food funds

CHANDIGARH

March 25: In a judgment that is certain to discourage future offenders, the headmaster and four teachers of a government school in Haryana have been sentenced to seven years in prison for siphoning funds meant to pay for students’ mid-day meals.
The additional district and sessions judge at Jind, Mr. S.K. Goel has pronounced headmaster Rampal and four junior teachers – Japan Sin

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Brain still ahead of computers

Kolkata, March 25: Language and vision are among the areas in which the human brain is ahead of most advanced computers, a neurologist said here on Wednesday.
“These (areas) pertain to the means by which we derive meaning from the world, and are perhaps best exemplified by two phenomenal capacities of the human mind,” said Mriganka Sur, HOD of brain and cognitive sciences, Newton Professor o

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SRK, Preity bat for Congress

Kanpur, March 24: Congress on Tuesday said that the Bollywood actors Shah Rukh Khan and Preity Zinta will canvass for the party in the run-up to the Lok Sabha polls.

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Mayawati set to repeat UP formula

PATNA

March 24: Mayawati’s plans to replicate her successful UP-style social engineering in Bihar, to ensure that the BSP gains a few MPs from this crucial neighbouring state, had become apparent soon after the Kosi floods ravaged much of north Bihar. The party’s list of candidates for the Lok Sabha polls now makes it clear.
After working for over a year to forge a UP-like Dalit-Brahmin ax

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Congress signals single party rule

New Delhi

March 24: The Congress is giving conflicting signals on its approach towards coalition after running a government for a full-term at the Centre. Today, India needs a party with an all-India perspective and presence, and the Congress is the only such party, it says but clarified that it does not mean the end of UPA.

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Soumya, Jigisha killers held

New Delhi, March 24: The Delhi police on Tuesday said it has arrested four men who were behind the murders of two young working wo-men whose killings — one six months ago and one last week — had rocked the capital.

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Singh, Advani slug it out

New Delhi

March 24: A bitter war of words ensued between the Prime Minister, Dr Man-mohan Singh, and the BJP leader, Mr L.K. Advani, with Dr Singh accusing Mr Advani of playing a “pro-minent role” in the demolition of the Babri Masjid and the saffron party leader hitting back by calling Dr Singh “the weakest Prime Minister”.

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Congress will overcome, Antony likely to be PM

CHENNAI

March 24: Stars favour the Congress while the BJP is in for tough times, according to a popular Kerala astrologer.
Aattukal Radhakrishnan, one of the most favourites for politicians and movie stars, told this corresponde-nt that though the Congress was undergoing the ill-effects of Saturn (seven-and-a-half Saturn), it would fare better in the coming Lok Sabha elections.
“For the la

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Singh is king, says Sonia

New Delhi

March 24: The Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gan-dhi, on Tuesday formally declared Dr Manmohan Singh as the party’s prime ministerial candidate for a full term in the presence of top party leaders and Union ministers and also indicated that her son, Rahul Gandhi, may soon take the reins of power.
Asked whether her son, Mr Rahul Gandhi, had any chance of leading the party, if not the

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TD gives 48 seats to TRS

Hyderabad

March 24: The Mahakutami of the Telugu Des-am, the TRS and the Left parties finally reached an accord on seat sharing on Tuesday, but not before the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) left everyone on tenterhooks by threatening to walk out of the coalition.
After some hurried dipl-omacy by the TD chief, Mr N. Chandrababu Nai-du, the TRS agreed to a share of 48 Assembly seats out of 119 s

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IPL to be held in SA

New Delhi

March 24: Suspense over the second edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) ended on Tuesday with the announcement in Johannesburg that six South African cities will play host to the event, which will now start one week later than scheduled — April 18 — and culminate in the final on May 24.

With the government keen to show the nation off as a safe destination for internationa

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Third Front opportunistic: Congress

New Delhi

March 24: The Congress manifesto for the Lok Sabha elections called the Third Front a grouping of “opportunistic parties” which have “neither competence nor commitment”. “It is a recipe for instability lacking a natural national anchor, it is a recipe for chaos, not cohesion,” it says. The Congress also rejects the BJP’s stance that it is the main political rival of the

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Royals’ going gets tough

Lucknow

March 24: Former rajas and ranis have stepped out in the heat and dust of the elections, putting aside their chiffons, diamonds and brocades. However, this time, the going does not seem easy for the “royal” candidates whose influence over the people seems to be on the wane.
The royal battle that takes place in every election in Pratapgarh district between Rajkumari Ratna Singh of t

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Soldier flees with fellow jawans’ salaries, held

Raipur, March 24: A Rashtriya Rifles soldier, who had decamped from Jammu and Kashmir with over Rs 59.5 lakh meant for his colleagues’ salaries earlier this month, has been arrested in his home state of Chhattisgarh, the police said.
Sudhir Kindo, 30, was picked up by the Chhattisgarh police at a bus stand from the state’s industrial town of Korba.
“The Rashtriya Rifles unit in J&K had so

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Boy moves SC over beard

New Delhi, March 23: A Muslim student has moved the Supreme Court seeking quashing of a school regulation that required students to take off the beard.
A bench headed by Justice R.V. Raveendran has asked the student to ascertain whether the school was government-aided or not.
Mohammad Salim, a 10th class student of Nirmala Convent Higher Secondary School has challenged the Madhya Pradesh High

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Tarun Gogoi under EC scan

GUWAHATI

March 24: The Election Commissioner, Mr Navin Chawla, said here on Tuesday that a full commission would be looking into the charges against Assam Chief Minister, Tarun Gogoi, of violating the model code of conduct by collecting donation from the tea companies on Thursday in New Delhi.
Mr Chawla told reporters, “The Opposition political parties of Assam have lodged a written complain

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NCP to fight Sena for 13 LS seats

Mumbai, March 24: There has been consternation within BJP over ally Shiv Sena’s “tacit” support to NCP chief, Mr Sharad Pawar’s prime ministerial ambitions, but as the dust over seat-sharing settles, it is now clear that the Sena and NCP are pitted against each other in 13 of the 22 Lok Sabha seats each is contesting.
At least now, those dishing out stories about Sena’s covert underst

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Soumya, Jigisha murders solved

After suffering the tragic deaths of their daughters, parents of TV journalist Soumya Vishwanathan and call centre executive Jigisha Ghosh on Tuesday got some solace with police claiming to have arrested the perpetrators of the crime.
“I am very happy with the investigation. Police has done a wonderful job. They are doing a proper investigation,” Soumya’s father M.K. Vishwanathan said.
M

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Congress-NCP strike Maha deal

New Delhi

March 23: The Congress party on Monday finally clinched a seat-sharing deal with the NCP in Maharashtra against the backdrop of its failure to cobble up such a pact with the Samajwadi Party, RJD and the LJP in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.

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Rajasthan ruled out for Azharuddin

New Delhi

March 23: The Congress party is planning to field former cricket captain Mohammad Azharuddin either from Moradabad or from Meerut instead of Rajasthan.

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Bengal: CPM to use Nano as poll plank

New Delhi

March 23: On a day when the Nano rolled out from Gujarat, the CPI(M) on Monday was seen licking its wounds confessing that the CPI(M) ruled state of West Bengal had missed out an opportunity to reap the benefits of a successful project. The CPI(M) is all set to use Nano as a major poll plank in the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections to target the “unholy alliance” of the Congress wit

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SA to host IPL-2

Johannesburg: South Africa was on Tuesday chosen to host the second edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) which has been shifted out of India because of security apprehensions.
The decision to hold the lucrative Twenty20 tournament was taken after a meeting between IPL commissioner Lalit Modi and Cricket South Africa CEO Gerald Majola at an undisclosed venue.

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PC battles Modi slur on security

New Delhi, March 23: Hitting back at the Gujarat Chief Minister, Mr Nare-ndra Modi, for calling the shifting of IPL venue abr-oad as a “national shame”, the Union home minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, on Monday said most people in the country think the 2002 Gujarat riots were a national shame.
“What is a national shame? Most people in India think that the Gujarat communal riots in 2002 were a

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Kasab smiles, speaks English

Mumbai March 23: Looking straight into the camera and showing no signs of remorse, the lone surviving 26/11 terrorist, Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, on Monday admitted to the special judge that he was from Faridkot in Pakistan.

Notably, he responded in English when Judge M.L. Thahiliyani asked him certain questions, scotching earlier speculation that he did not understand any language other than

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Vote against atheists: Bishops

thiruvanthapuram

March 23: The Kerala Catholic Bishops Council has asked the laity to use their votes to keep away atheists and those who pursue violent politics for power.
This exhortation has been made in a pastoral letter issued by the KCBC.
It will be read out in churches across the state on Sunday.
Though the KCBC does not mention the CPI(M) in its pastoral letter, it is evident that M

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CBSE to come up with school ratings

New Delhi, March 23: Setting benchmarks for schools, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) will for the first time give accreditation to institutions affiliated to it on the basis of quality of education.
The country’s premier school examination board has decided to launch the initiative, the first by any board in the country, before commencement of the next academic session.
“The

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3 more militants shot down

Srinagar

March 23: Three more militants have been killed as the encounter with Army troops in Kupwara woods entered the fourth day on Monday, raising the toll to five. Four more militants were slain in two separate encounters in the hilly region earlier.
Army officials here also confirmed the death of a fifth soldier in the gun battle raging since Friday. Among the slain soldiers was Maj. Mohi

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Lawyer confirms LeT threat to Kasab

Mumbai

March 23: The prosecution informed the court on Monday that it has specific inputs regarding the threat to the life of the lone surviving terrorist of Ajmal Amir Kasab.
Special public prosecutor, Ujjwal Nikam told that court that the prosecution has specific inputs that Lakshar-e-Tayyaba (LeT), the banned militant organisation is planning to eliminate Kasab.
The Asian Age first broke

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Man attempts suicide outside Congress HQ

New Delhi

March 23: A man tried committing suicide in front of Congress Party headquarters at Akbar road in Parliament area of New Delhi district on Monday after being denied compensation for the shop that was closed down in central Delhi in 2008. The police said that the man had attempted suicide outside Prime Minister’s residence in 2008 after he was denied compensation by the Delhi governm

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DMK confirms PMK crossover

Chennai
March 23: Ending weeks of suspense over the PMK’s status in his camp, DMK president and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Mr M. Karunanidhi on Monday said the DMK-led alliance included the Congress, IUML, MMK and the VCK.
He said the seat-sharing arrangements among these parties would be announced in a few days. Asked if any other parties figured in his list, he quipped, “We will let you

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Congress, BJP on mission UP

Lucknow

March 23: The Congress and the BJP that lead the two major political formations at the national level, seem to have finally realised the need for regaining their lost ground and glory in Uttar Pradesh.
Both these national parties that have been pushed to the periphery in UP by two regional forces — the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party — will now be making a conscious eff

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Congress hits out at Madani

Thiruvananthapuram

March 23: Congress leaders have hit out at the People’s Democratic Party led by Mr Abdul Nasser Madani saying that it was trying to create communal divide in Kerala.
They also castigated the CPI(M) for undermining the secular fabric of the state by allying with the PDP for a few votes. “I would have welcomed it if Madani had regretted his past mistakes and had changed h

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EC tells BJP to bar Varun

New Delhi, March 22: In an unprecedented order, the Election Commission has asked the BJP to not nominate Mr Varun Gandhi as a candidate for the upcoming elections. The commission held him guilty of violating the code of conduct by making hate speeches against Muslims while campaigning in Pilibit, UP.

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Priyanka to Varun: Read Gita

Rae Bareli: Priyanka Gandhi on Monday ticked off her cousin Varun for his anti-Muslim speeches and asked him to read the Gita and try to understand it properly.
"Well, it may be very sad to see him saying those things on television and what can I say?... I would advise him to read the Gita properly and to try to understand it properly," she said here during her campaign for brother Rahul in the

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It’s Olympics in reach

New Delhi/Hyderabad/Chennai/Bengaluru,
March 22: Given its high profile and how top players from around the world have been lining up to sign up with the IPL despite security concerns about playing in the subcontinent, moving IPL-2 out of the country could well be a blessing in disguise for the beleaguered tournament.

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IPL matches go abroad

New Delhi, March 22: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the Indian Premier League’s administrators on Sunday dropped a bombshell, saying they had no choice but to take the second edition of the tournament to an overseas venue as they were not in a position to either trim the schedule or to find alternate dates for IPL-2.

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IITians riot after student’s death

Kharagpur (WB), March 22: The death of a third-year student sparked off violence in the IIT Kharagpur campus on Sunday as angry students attacked the residence of Director, Mr Damodar Acharya, who later said he was “resigning” owning moral responsibility after Institute doctors were accused of medical negligence.

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Gully wear and frills on Day 5

New Delhi, March 22: After a long time, there came a show with dollops of fun and fervour. The quirky designer Nida Mahmood set the mood of the afternoon on Day 5 at the WIFW with her paan shop, bangle seller, balloonwala, men with roses and paani puri and chai stalls on the ramp.

The waif thin Nida with a sexy nose ring managed to entertain the audience with her opening song Jai ho from Slumd

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Major, 4 jawans killed

Srinagar, March 22: An Army major and four other soldiers, as well as two militants, were killed in a fierce encounter raging from woods close to the LoC in Kupwara district on Sunday.

Earlier, clashes between the troops and militants at two separate places deep inside the frontier district left four militants dead, officials said.

The slain officer has been identified as Major Mohit Sharma

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Adhesive for faster healing

New Delhi, March 22: US-based researchers have claimed to have discovered a method to create medical adhesives out of natural glue derived from marine mussels to heal wounds which would help in less scarring and faster recovery from surgery and fractures.

“This is an improved way of joining tissues because the use of the inkjet technology gives you greater control over the placement of the a

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It’s RJD vs Congress in Bihar

New Delhi, March 22: Taking the differences among the UPA partners in Bihar to a flashpoint, the RJD chief, Mr Lalu Prasad on Sunday declared that he, along with the LJP supremo, Mr Ram Vilas Paswan, would now field candidates in the three Lok Sabha constituencies, which are currently held by Congress MPs.

He also claimed that the UPA does not mean “only Congress”.

In a sharp reaction

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Congress to go alone in UP

New Delhi, March 22: After Bihar, the Congress is all set to trek a lonely path in Uttar Pradesh. And with a four-cornered fight in the crucial state with 80 Lok Sabha berths, it just could be advantage Bahujan Samaj Party.

The failure to strike a pre-poll alliance would certainly hit SP the most, which had bagged 39 Lok Sabha berths during the last general elections.

The Congress with eigh

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Sack top official: AGP

Guwahati, March 22: A day before the election commissioner, Mr Navin Chawla, is scheduled to start his three-day stock-taking visit to three north-eastern states, leading Opposition political parties of Assam have sought the removal of the chief electoral officer, expressing doubt over his impartiality.

In a memorandum to the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC), the AGP has demanded that the ch

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16 Indian hostages released

Mumbai, March 22: All 16 Indians held hostage on a dhow (sailing vessel) in Somali waters were released by pirates on Saturday morning. The pirates had beaten up the sailors before taking away their fuel and mobile phones. Indian dhow MSV Al Rafiquei, with 16 Indians on board, was hijacked 145 nautical miles east of the Somali coast between 9 am and 10.30 am on Saturday.

The pirates, however, r

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Parties fight over IPL shift

New Delhi, March 22: IPL’s sudden decision to shift the lucrative T-20 cricket tournament overseas saw the BJP attack the UPA government holding it responsible for sending a “wrong signal abroad” while the Congress said the move was only guided by security issues and there was no politics.

The BJP asked is the country so unsecured that it cannot hold a cricket tournament and whether

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Fresh charges against Varun

New Delhi, March 22: Varun Gandhi faced yet another charge of making a hate-speech in Pilibhit on Sunday.

Mr V.M. Singh, the Congress candidate from Pilibhit, has stated in his complaint to the EC that Mr Gandhi made another inflammatory speech at Avas Nagar area of the constituency on March 6, where he was heard “making fun of the Sikh community” and Muslims as well.

Mr Singh has subm

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Raj booked for hate speech

Nashik, March 22: After Varun Gandhi, MNS chief Raj Thackeray was in trouble on Sunday for his hate speech with the police booking him on charges of violating the model code of conduct and promoting enmity between groups, a day after he revived his anti-north Indian campaign at a poll rally here.

A case was registered against Raj at the Sarkarwada police station after the district collector as

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Rift in JD(U) over tickets

New Delhi, March 22: Infighting in the Janata Dal (United) came out into the open on

Sunday as the party formally denied tickets to former NDA convenor and

senior socialist, Mr George Fernandes and the former Union minister, Mr Digvijay Singh, for the coming Lok Sabha elections.

The decision was made public by the JD(U) president and acting NDA convenor Mr Sharad Yadav, who declared the n

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Dera chief help sought for rallies

New Delhi, March 22: Eyeing to maximise its reach among the electorate ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, Punjab Congress will approach Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh to rally support of millions of his followers.

“We will seek support of the Dera Sacha Sauda and appeal to other religious and social groups to support us in the coming elections,” said Punjab PCC chief Mohinder Sin

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Raja Bhaiyya injured in crash

Pratapgarh, March 22: Three persons including an independent MLA from Kunda Assembly seat, Mr Raghuraj Pratap Singh aka Raja Bhaiyya were injured when a helicopter with them on board crashed into Chausa river here on Sunday.

The helicoptor crash occurred about 15 kms away from Beti when the chopper crashed due to technical snag developed while landing on the national highway, the sources sai

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Vijayakanth slaps partyman

Chennai, March 22: The DMDK leader Vijayakanth’s speech during the election campaign at Kancheepruam on Sunday was as striking as his cinema dialogues. While that is usual in Tamil Nadu, his actions too bordered on the cinema, when he slapped his party’s Kancheepuram district secretary, Mr Anakai Murugesan, as three microphones given to him did not work.

“I will beat you, if you take mone

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It is destination Congress in Bihar

Patna, March 21: With the Congress having decided to contest in 37 of Bihar’s total 40 Lok Sabha seats, the party has turned into the most attractive destination for the state’s ticket-seeking politicians who have been left disgruntled by their parent parties.

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New RSS chief will corner BJP

New Delhi, March 21: The change of guard in the Rashtriya Swayamse-vak Sangh is expected to push the BJP towards a “course correction” as the Sangh Parivar has been upset with the party for deviating from its core ideological issues.

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CPM defends ties with Madani

Thiruvananthapuram

March 21: The CPI(M) on Saturday defended its understanding with the People’s Democratic Party chairman, Mr Abdul Nasser Madani, saying that he was now taking a firm stance against religious fundamentalism.
It was the CPI(M) state secretary, Mr Pinarayi Vijayan, who stoutly defended Mr Madani in various election conventions across the state. In Ponnani, he also shared the

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Honeymoon with PMK over, says Karunanidhi

Chennai, March 21: The DMK president and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, Mr M. Karunanidhi, on Saturday indicated that his honeymoon with the PMK was over and ally Dr S. Ramadoss is all set to cross over to Jayalalithaa’s camp.

“I am too small to fulfill their tall expectations,” he told this newspaper when asked to comment on his difficult relationship with the PMK.

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Naveen gets pre-poll jolt as MP joins BJP

Bhubaneswar

March 21: In a pre-poll jolt to the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) supremo and Orissa Chief Minister, Mr Naveen Patnaik, firebrand BJD Lok Sabha member Ms Archana Nayak on Saturday quit the party to join the BJP.
Ms Nayak’s entry into the saffron party is seen here as a prelude to a host of anti-Naveen Patnaik leaders joining the BJP in a couple of days. The leaders who are anticipated t

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Lalu to contest Congress seats

New Delhi, March 22: RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav on Sunday fired another salvo at the Congress, saying it cannot form government at the Centre on its own.

"The UPA can change its name at the Centre," Mr Prasad said. "UPA is a combination of several parties not just the Congress."

Mr Prasad's RJD and the Congress have fallen apart over the seat sharing in Bihar. The RJD and the Lok Janshakt

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Congress releases full AP list

Hyderabad, March 21: The Congress in a surprise move released its entire list of candidates for the Lok Sabha and Assembly polls for both the phases of elections on Saturday. The Congress hand was forced by pressure from various lobbies to include their candidates.

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Why 37? Contest 40: Lalu to Congress

New Delhi/ Patna: March 21: RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav, responding to the Congress’ decision to contest 37 of the 40 parliamentary seats in Bihar, said, “Why are they leaving three seats? Let them contest all 40 seats.”

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TD, Congress united in graft, says Chiru

Hyderabad

March 21: Praja Rajyam chief Chiranjeevi on Saturday said the Chief Minister, Mr Y.S. Raja-
sekhar Reddy, and the Telugu Desam chief, Mr N. Chandrababu Naidu, had a “tacit understanding” in corruption.
Addressing a huge gathering at the Praja Vijayabheri to kick off the Praja Rajyam campaign here, Chiranjeevi said the party would order a probe into the “ill-gotten wealth” of

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Warmer summer good for monsoon

New Delhi, March 21: India’s summer is likely to be warmer this year and conducive to a favourable monsoon, crucial for the country’s rain-dependent farm sector, a senior official at a government weather bureau said.
D. Sivananda Pai, director of long-range forecast at the National Climate Centre, said its dynamic models indicated the mean temperature during March to May would likely be above

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Dark forces rule Day 4

NEW DELHI

WILLS LIFESTYLE India Fashion Week got off to a theatrical start on Saturday when model Neha Kapur walked out of a coffin in a glittering pencil skirt and voluminous pleated top with bell sleeves for Siddharth Tytler’s show.
On the timeless foot tapping number by Annie Lennox’ Sweet Dreams Are made of these, Siddharth sent out models in shoulder dresses with shiny necks and bunc

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Mohan Bhagwat is new RSS chief

Nagpur, March 21: Mohan Bhagwat was elected the new chief of RSS and is expected to redefine relations with BJP at a time when the saffron party is trying hard to come back to power at the Centre.

He replaces K.S. Sudarshan who steps down after being at the helm of the Sangh Parivar founthead for nearly nine years when there were ups and downs in its ties with BJP during Atal Behari Vajpayee's

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Varun is still BJP nominee

New Delhi

March 20: The BJP, which distanced itself from Mr Varun Gandhi’s alleged hate speeches, however, is backing his candidature from Pilibhit Lok Sabha constituency.
“Varun Gandhi is our candidate from Pilibhit. He is the declared candidate of the party,” said BJP spokesperson Prak-ash Javad-ekar.
Howe-ver, at the same time, the BJP on Friday infor-med the Election Commis-sion tha

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Maya list shuts out poll allies

Lucknow

March 20: The UP Chief Minister and BSP chief, Ms Mayawati, will not contest the Lok Sabha elections this time, though she remains a strong contender for the Prime Minister’s post.
Ms Mayawati, who on Friday released her party’s full list of 80 candidates for the Lok Sabha elections in UP, said that as the national president of her party she would campaign throughout the country to

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Pondy inspires Dior perfume

Chennai

March 20: A new perfume from the house of Christian Dior is to make its world debut at Puducherry. The reason the Union Territory has been picked for this launch is because the former French colony inspired the fragrance.
Called “Escale A Pondi-chery”, the perfume will be unveiled to journalists from 40 publications from around the world at an exclusive event on March 21 at the Dun

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Pak not probing official agencies: PC

New Delhi, March 21: Contending that "overwhelming" evidence suggests involvement of Pakistan's official agencies in the Mumbai attacks, India has said Islamabad is neither pursuing this angle nor allowing the FBI to do so.

Home minister P. Chidambaram pointed out that Pakistan has not shared any information it may have got from interrogation of people detained in that country in connectio

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‘Third Front a worry for UPA’

New Delhi, March 20: Emergence of the non-Congress, non-BJP alternative has caused consternation in the UPA and the NDA as their “fragility” has come to the fore with some of their partners signalling pre-or post-poll alliances with the third force, the CPI(M) leader, Mr Prakash Karat, has claimed.
“Both the Congress and the BJP are on a shaky ground when they termed the Third Front as an

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Centre turns down EC demand

New Delhi, March 20: With less than 10 days to go for retirement of the Union home secretary, Mr Madhukar Gupta, the Union government is understood to have turned down a suggestion of the the Election Commission for allowing the incumbent to continue till the general elections were over.
The official sources said the EC had written to the government asking them to allow Gupta, a 1971 batch IAS o

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Gandhi items’ auction illegal: India

New Delhi, March 20: Dispelling doubts over the ownership rights of Mahatma Gandhi’s memorabilia, which went under the hammer in New York, India has told the US government that these articles belong to the Navjivan Trust and their auction was illegal.
Responding to the US justice department’s queries, a senior cultural affairs ministry official said, “There has been no change in ou

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Army indicts three soldiers

New Delhi

March 20: An Army court of inquiry held a junior commissioned officer and two soldiers of 22 Rashtriya Rifles “accountable for various lapses” in the killing of two civilians in Bumai in Jammu and Kashmir’s Sopore area last month.
The incident led to widespread outrage in the state, prompting Chief Minister Omar Abdullah to take the matter up personally with defence minister A.

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Day 3: Young blood takes ramp by storm

New Delhi

March 20: With the Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week entering the third day, the killer heels have been replaced by flip flops and the divas have decided to give blood red nail polish a break and get down and dirty.
It was a day dedicated to GenY and it is always great to see young blood taking the ramp by storm and this is exactly what happened when five talented designers got a c

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Varun gets anticipatory bail

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court has granted anticipatory bail to BJP MP Varun Gandhi in an alleged case of making inflammatory and communal speeches during his campaign in Pilibhit constituency.
The bail will stop police from arresting Varun Gandhi till March 27. Varun has got bail on a personal bond of Rs 50,000.
Earlier on Friday morning, Gandhi's lawyers visited the Election Commission's offi

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Pranab: Could be my last poll

Jangipur, West Bengal: Striking an emotional cord with his electorate, external affairs minister Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday hinted that these Lok Sabha elections could be the last hurrah of his long political career.
"I have been in the government for a long time. I have been a Parliament member for 37-38 years. I have come to seek your support for one more time," the Congress heavyweight said

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Varun remarks help 3rd Front: Raja

New Delhi

March 19: BJP candidate from Pilibhit Varun Gandhi’s remarks could go on to help the Third Front. This is what CPI national secretary D. Raja feels.
Mr Raja also went on to indicate that the JD(U) might support the Third Front government in a post-poll scenario.

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Sadhu shift puts Lalu in a fix

New Delhi

March 19: The RJD supremo and the railway minister, Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav on Thursday received a major jolt when the Congress admitted into the party his controversial brother-in-law, Mr Sadhu Yadav, and two others.

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Cyberworld goes to war over Varun

New Delhi, March 19: Some say “it’s a shame”, others hail him as a “one man army”. The cyberworld is flooded with extreme reactions to Varun Gandhi’s allegedly communal speeches in Pilibhit, Uttar Pradesh, with people expressing anger as well as support for the young BJP candidate.
Barely hours after TV channels aired parts of the inflammatory and anti-Muslim hate speeches that were a

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Varun attempt to gather Hindu votes?

New Delhi

March 19: The so called “hate speech” allegedly made by Varun Gandhi during a public rally in Pilibhit was an attempt to consolidate the Hindu vote bank. Sources disclosed that the delimitation exercise completely changed the demography of this particularly constituency, nursed by his mother Maneka Gandhi, and had made the going somewhat tough in this so called “safe seat” for

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Maoists kill RSS leader in Kandhamal

Bhubaneswar

March 19: Suspected Maoists shot dead a local Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) leader at Rudhiguma village in riot-hit Kandhamal district of Orissa early on Thursday.
Prabhat Panigrahi was shot from close range by around 20 ultras when he was sleeping in a RSS activist’s house in the village. Panigrahi died on the spot. The assailants fled the area soon after the killing, the

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Varun seeks bail, quashing of FIR

New Delhi/Lucknow

March 19: In a tight corner following his hate speeches in Pilibhit in Uttar Pradesh, the BJP leader, Mr Varun Gandhi, moved the High Courts in Delhi and Allahabad on Thursday — in Delhi to seek anticipatory bail and in Allahabad seeking quashing of an FIR registered against him.
Mr Gandhi claims he has been falsely implicated in the matter of allegedly making communal spee

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Sena hits out at Pawar

Mumbai

March 19: The Shiv Sena executive president, Mr Uddhav Thackeray, on Thursday said that his party would not back the Nationalist Congress Party chief, Mr Sharad Pawar, as a prime ministerial candidate, as the country needs a prime minister who will give more priority to security rather than the Indian Premier League (IPL).
Denying reports that the Sena may support Mr Pawar’s candidatu

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Saravana Bhavan boss gets lifer for murder

Chennai
March. 19: The Madras High Court on Thursday enhanced the sentence awarded to Saravana Bhavan hotelier P. Rajagopal from 10 years to life imprisonment in the case relating to the abduction and murder of Prince Santhakumar.
A division bench, comprising justice P.K. Misra and justice R. Banumathi, while allowing the appeal filed by the government, also enhanced the sentence awarded to Y.

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Job loss fear led to airhostess suicide

Mumbai

March 19: The police has now confirmed that the airhostess who killed herself in Powai on Wednesday did so after she overslept and missed her flight and was afraid that the company would sack her.
Depressed about the possible loss of her job during the recession, she finally committed suicide after all the attempts of her boyfriend, a co-pilot and her family to calm her failed.
Anupam

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Mallika to take on Advani

Noted danseuse Mallika Sarabhai announced here on Thursday that she will contest the Lok Sabha polls as an independent candidate from Gujarat's Gandhinagar parliamentary seat and take on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani.
“I will contest the Lok Sabha elections as an independent candidate from Gandhinagar,” Sarabhai said adding that she will represent th

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‘Gandhi okayed killing stray dogs’

Thiruvananthapuram, March 18: A freedom fighter and Gandhian has moved the state human rights commission seeking elimination of stray dogs and claimed that even the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, was not against their killing if they became a menace to society.

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School for politicians

Want to be a politician but don’t know how to go about it. Join Netagiri Vidyalaya. Run by former Congressman Raj Ranjan, who believes "political thinking should be inculcated deep into human mind to curb corruption," the Netagiri Vidyalaya in Ranchi has imparted training to 200 aspiring politicians since its inception in 2001.
"It is important for a politician — both beginners and veterans t

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Guilty Army men shall be punished

March 18: The Chief of Army Staff, Gen. Deepak Kapoor, on Wednesday made it clear that the Army would take strict action against any of its personnel in case they were found guilty on conclusion of an ongoing probe into the killing of two civilians in Sopore in Jammu and Kashmir last month.
The General said the report of the Army’s inquiry on the matter would be complete within a week. He also

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Madras HC suspends two top cops

Chennai, March18: A month after violent clashes between police and lawyers inside the Madras High Court premises, a three-judge bench of the court on Wednesday ordered suspension of two top city police officers and asked the striking advocates to call off their agitation and return to courts.
The bench, comprising justice S.J. Mukhopadhaya, justice V. Dhanapalan and justice K. Chandru, held tha

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Airhostess jumps to death over tiff

Mumbai, March 18: A Jet Airways airhostess jumped to her death from the fifth floor of a building here on early Wednesday following an argument with her pilot boyfriend, the police said.
The victim, 22-year-old Anupama Acharya, had gone for a party at the residence of her boyfriend Samir Chaturvedi in the upmarket Powai suburb, an official from Powai police station said.
Following a minor tiff w

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Varun says not sorry

New Delhi/Lucknow

March 18: The Election Commission on Wednes-day not only turned on the heat further on the BJP’s Varun Gandhi for his controversial remarks but also cracked the whip on four officials in the Pilibhit district administration.
It ordered the transfer of Pilibhit district magistrate M.P. Agarwal and superintendent of police R.K. Chaturvedi. Two other officials, ADM S.S. Kamal

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Sikh college sends home girls in jeans

CHANDIGARH

March 18: In a rather disturbing reminder of the dress codes forced on women by Khalistani terrorists in the 1980’s, authorities in educational institutions run by the Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee are similarly advising girl students wearing jeans or sleeveless shirts to “go home and change.”
Though the gurudwara body does not have any written rule on the matter bu

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Liquor brand ads can be telecast

New Delhi, March 18: The government has allowed tobacco and alcohol brands to advertise their other products on television but banned display of their “prohibited product” during telecast.
The information and broadcasting (I&B) ministry had brought the recent changes while amending the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act.
A long pending demand of the advertisement industry, the mini

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1st civilian woman on Navy warship

New Delhi, March 18: Chaitanya Datla, a 28-year old executive from Bengaluru, is all set to create history by becoming the first civilian woman to sail on an Indian Navy warship.
Datla was chosen the winner of National Geographic Channel’s “Mission Navy: Lehron Ke Sartaj” from over 50,000 civilians who participated in the landmark docu-reality series, it was announced on Wednesday.
Spea

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From Bhagalpur silk to Chennai shimmers

NEW DELHI

March 18: Beefy men, bulging biceps, waif thin waists, rising hemlines, blonde streaks, neck breaking stilettos and of course, blow-dried hair. Yes, India Fashion Week got off to a sparkling start at the Intercontinental Eros Hotel in the capital on Wednesday.
It was nice to see the maverick designer Manish Arora announce on his shirt “will you marry me” in his usual cartoon sty

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Mahashweta Devi in Man Booker list

London

March 18: India’s Mahashweta Devi has been shortlisted along with Nobel laureate Sir Vidia Naipaul and 12 other heavyweight writers for the Man Booker International Prize.
The list includes Peter Carey (Australia), Evan S. Connell (USA), E.L. Doctorow (USA), James Kelman (UK), Mario Vargas Llosa (Peru), Arnošt Lustig (Czechoslovakia), Alice Munro (Canada), Joyce Carol Oates (USA), A

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BJP split wide open at Centre

New Delhi, March 17: BJP prime ministerial candidate Lal Krishna Advani is a worried man. At a time when the party, fighting as an underdog, should have come up as a cohesive unit, cracks and differences have hit it hard. The Arun Jaitley-Rajnath Singh rift, the B.S.

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Lalu, Paswan squeeze Congress

New Delhi, March 17: Cracks appeared in the Bihar unit of the UPA as the Congress on Tuesday rejected the seat-sharing accord struck by its allies, with the RJD and LJP deciding to contest between them 37 of the 40 seats in the state.

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Shatru meets Amar, gets BJP ticket

New Delhi, March 17: The BJP on Tuesday denied tickets to the two former Union ministers, who are known opponents of the Gujarat Chief Minister, Mr Narendra Modi, but gave the nod to Shatrughan Sinha, about whom there were frequent reports that he could switch loyalties to SP, to contest from Patna Sahib.

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US okays 8 spy jets for India

Washington, March 17: President Barack Obama’s administration has cleared a $2.1 billion sale to India of eight Boeing Co P-8I maritime patrol aircraft, the largest US arms transfer to India to date.

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Sadhu jolts Lalu, eyes Congress

New Delhi, March 17: Controversial brother-in-law of RJD chief, Mr Lalu Prasad, Mr Sadhu Yadav on Tuesday met the Union minister, Mr Sushil Kumar Shinde, and expressed his desire to join the Congress.
“I have put up certain conditions for joining Congress,” Mr Ya-dav told reporters after meeting Mr Shinde but dec-lined to reveal the details.
Mr Yadav, an MP from Gopalganj seat in Bihar, wa

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CPI to exchange Ponnani for Wayanad

Thiruvananthapuram,

March 17: After threatening to quit the left democratic front over the Ponnani Lok Sabha seat, the CPI has reportedly agreed to give it up for the Wayanad seat.
This was the drift of the discussions held between the CPI and the CPI(M) leaders here on Tuesday.
Though the CPI had insisted on Monday that it would not accept the CPI(M) nominee for Po-nnani, Mr Hussain Randath

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MPA govt survives trust vote in Meghalaya

Shillong

March 17: The Donkupar Roy-led Meghalaya Progressive Alliance (MPA) government on Tuesday survived a trust vote with Speaker B.M. Lanong voting in favour of the government after a tie in the 60 member House during the division of votes.
After the Speaker ordered voting to decide the fate of the government, 27 legislators each voted for and against the government after which the Speake

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‘Masala Dosa’ rocks French band

Chandigarh, March 17: While most of us enjoy South Indian delicacies for their special flavour, a group of three French nationals have liked it so much that they even named their musical band Masala Dosa.
Pierre Jean Duffour, the founder of Masala Dosa band, says that it was in 2002 that he felt inspired by Indian food that is cooked with an assortment of spices.
And, he decided to bring same

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Things you didn’t know about EVMs

New Delhi, March 17: Did you know that the use of electronic voting machines, or EVMs, results in the saving of nearly 10,000 tonnes of paper that in turn preserves forests where trees are cut down to produce paper?

About 7,700 tonnes of paper was used for printing of ballot papers in the 1999 general elections, whereas 8,800 tonnes of paper was used for the purpose in the 1996 general election

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SC to decide on criminal candidates

New Delhi, March 17: With elections round the corner, the Supreme Court will examine whether those convicted for criminal offence, including the likes of actor Sanjay Dutt and cricketer-turned BJP MP Navjot Singh Siddu, should be allowed to contest Lok Sabha and Assembly elections.
This follows a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Hanuman Tripathi, a Lucknow-based voter questioning the ri

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IIT teachers demand hike

New Delhi, March 17: The faculty members of Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) have threatened agitation from March 20 if the government does not soon announce a revised payscale for them, but have also assured that they will not disrupt the academic session.
According to members of the faculty of these premium institutions, a general fear is looming large that their pay scales may be downgra

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SC judges ready to declare assets

New Delhi, March 17: Judges of the Supreme Court are not opposed to declaring their assets but the information should not be misused and should be kept out of the ambit of the Right to Information Act (RTI) act, additional Solicitor General G.E. Vahanvati told the Delhi High Court on Tuesday.
The High Court was hearing a petition filed by the apex court challenging a Central Information Commissi

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Jaya opts out of PM race

CHENNAI, March 16: The AIADMK supremo, Ms J. Jayalali-thaa, downplayed her party skipping the dinner hosted by the BSP leader, Ms Mayawati, saying it “is not a big issue”. On Monday, she told reporters “there has been a communication gap.”

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RSS steps in to end Rajnath, Arun row

March 16: With differences persisting between the BJP general secretary, Mr Arun Jaitley and the party chief, Mr Rajnath Singh, the RSS has intervened to resolve the issue even as the senior BJP leader, Mr L.K. Adv-ani, insisted there was no rift in the party.
“This issue may make a good story for you, but there are no differences within the party,” Mr Advani told rep-orters here on the sid

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Mangalore bars Muttalik

Mangalore March 16: Pramod Muttalik, chief of the Sri Rama Sene, which has invited widespread public outrage for its moral policing and the attack on women in a Mangalore pub in January, has been banned from Dakshina Kannada for a year. An enraged Muttalik has decided to appeal Monday’s order by deputy commissioner and district magistrate V. Ponnuraj, banishing him from the district under provis

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RS MPs dropped from poll

Hyderabad March 16: The Congress has reportedly cleared candidates for all the 42 Lok Sabha segments from the state late on Monday night.

In an interesting development, the candidatures of the Rajya Sabha members, Mr T. Subbirami Reddy (Visakhapatnam), Mr V. Hanumantha Rao (Malkaj-giri) and Mr J.D. Seelam (Bapatla), were rejected by the party president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi.

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Stars predict hung Parliament

Hyderabad, March 16: Astrologers predict that the coming general elections will throw up a hung Parliament. But the coalition government formed after the election will not stand long and will collapse due to infighting among the allies, they warn.

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CPM promises end to sops for corporates

March 16: The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M), in its manifesto for the Lok Sabha polls, termed the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as pro-rich and in a strong stand against corporates proposed stopping further tax concessions to them.
The CPI(M), the country’s largest Left party, also slammed the main Opposition BJP for pursuing communal policies. It promised alternati

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Third Front to be renamed

March 16: While it is yet to come out with its political agenda, discussions have already begun among the constituents of the newly floated Third Front to decide on a “proper name” for the alliance. CPI(M) general secretary, Mr Prakash Karat, on Monday held a meeting with JD(S) chief, Mr H.D. Deve Gowda, at the latter’s residence here to discuss an appropriate name for the Front.
Mr Gowda t

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India welcomes end of Pak crisis

March 16: India was hoping the end of political crisis in Pakistan would render the government in Islamabad stable so that it can devote attention to fighting terrorism.
India hoped that “internal confrontation of Pakistan will come to an end so that it could devote attention to fight against terrorism,” external affairs minister Pranab Mukherjee said hours after the Asif Ali Zardari governme

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LeT men being trained by 26/11 plotters: CIA

March 16: Latest inputs with the Central intelligence agencies confirm that a large number of LeT’s new recruits are still being trained by commanders who have been accused by India of training the terrorists involved in 26/11 attacks.
Inputs confirm that LeT commanders — namely Abu Abdurrehman, Abu Maavia, Abu Anis, Abu Fahadullah, Abu Mufti Saeed, Abu Saif-ur-Rehman, Abu Imran, Hakim Saheb

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Dutt: A wife’s place is home

March 16: Bollywood star and Samajwadi Party nominee from the state capital Sanjay Dutt on Monday said he will continue to work for the party even if he does not get apex court nod to contest the elections.
“I hope I will get the permission from the court...I will continue to work for the party even if I don’t get the permission,” Dutt told reporters here.
Asked if he had visited Lucknow

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No plans to send troops to Afghanistan: India

March 16: India had no plans to send troops to Afghanistan, a minister in the ruling Congress-led UPA government said, putting to rest speculation about New Delhi’s future course of action as the US and its Nato allies reviewed their strategy on the war in Afghanistan. “No. We have always ruled it out,” minister of state of external affairs Anand Sharma said in an interview to this newspaper

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No movies in multiplexes from April 14: Producers

March 16: Unwilling to compromise on their demands, producers and distributors have decided not to release their movies from April 4 until multiplexes agree to an equal share in revenue.
“Until the multiplexes agree to the demands proposed by the producers and distributors, the marketing and distribution of all new films set for release from April 4 has been suspended,” film maker Muke

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Home ministry: Can't spare forces for IPL

The fate of the second edition of the Indian Premier League hung in balance with the home ministry on Monday bluntly telling the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) that it would not be able to spare central forces for the Twenty20 tournament. Asking the organisers of the high-profile tournament to hold serious consultations with concerned state governments, the home ministry expressed it

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Naidu rules out Third Front

March 15: Each of the Southern allies had a different take on the Third Front as they met at the CPM office here ahead of the dinner meeting hosted by the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister, Ms Mayawati.

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Front caught in Maya jaal

March 15: The move to give shape to the so-called third front virtually collapsed on Sunday with the Bahujan Samaj Party supremo, Ms Mayawati, ruling out seat adjustments with any party ahead of the Lok Sabha elections and the Left parties and their newfound allies acknowledging that there would thus be “no third front”.

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RSP rules out a Third Front

New Delhi, March 15: Differences seem to have emerged in the Third Front on Sunday with the RSP voicing resentment over inclusion of parties in the grouping without getting a commitment on policy and programme.

The party was of the view that at present, there is no Third Front as such and discussions were on to form a coalition which can act as an alternative to Congress and BJP at the nationa

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Sena asks BJP to come

March 15: Two days after reaching a seat sharing pact with the BJP, the Shiv Sena on Sunday once again came out in strong support for a Marathi prime minister and asked its saffron ally to clarify its stand on the issue.

In an article published on Sunday in the Sena mouthpiece Saamna, the party’s spokesperson Sanjay Raut has come out in strong support of having a Maharashtrian as the PM and

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Gandhi items await Centre nod

March 15: The five personal belongings of Mahatma Gandhi, which were auctioned in New York, may take some more time to reach India as the government is still discussing the legalities involved with the US justice department.

“The government is still pursuing with its earlier stand that the auction is illegal as per the will of Gandhi and the injunction of Delhi High Court with US justice dep

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Pataudi: Ask Kareena, Saif about their marriage plans

March 15: Evading a reply on the relationship between his son Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor, the scion of erstwhile ruling family of Bhopal, Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi, advised the media to better field the question to the duo.

“You better ask Saif and Kareena about their marriage plans, instead of me. They would tell about it in a better way. They are mature. Now-a-days children don’t li

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Kareena will not enter IPL

March 15: Bollywood beauties Preity Zinta, Juhi Chawla and Shilpa Shetty are trying their luck in the business of cricket through the Indian Premier League (IPL), but Kareena Kapoor says she has no such plan as she doesn’t have a business sense.

Asked if she planned to enter IPL like other actors, Kareena said: “I have no idea about business. I only know how to act. As for business, I will

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Slumdog kids to walk ramp

March 15: The dream run continues for Slumdog Millionaire stars Rubina and Azharrudin who are set to sashay down the ramp for designer duo Ashima-Leena at the Fashion Week beginning here next week.

“As we watched these two beautiful children Rubina and Azhar, bringing the rare honour to our country, our hearts melted with emotions with the thought of their getting back to the slums after al

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CBSE to compensate for question goof-up

New Delhi, March 15: The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has admitted to a printing error in a mathematics question set by it for the Class X board examination and said students who attempted it would not unnecessarily lose marks.

“There was a problem in this particular question. Consideration will be given to the students in the marking scheme,” M.C. Sharma, controller of exam

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Leukamia student gets extra time

March 15: The Gujarat secondary and higher secondary education board (GSHSEB) set a new example by granting 30 minutes extra exam time to a class 12 leukaemia patient.

Raina M Joshi, a Class XII student of city based Bright school, will get three hours and 30 minutes instead of a scheduled time of three hours to write her papers for the higher secondary examination beginning from March 16th ac

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PMO email was virus-hit

March 15: E-mail system of the Prime Minister’s Office was under the grip of a computer virus for three months last year forcing officials to replace the software.

The technical glitch plagued the e-mail communication system of the PMO, which was based on the Microsoft Outlook Express, from February to April in 2008. Although the extent of damage was unce-rtain, the PMO said that most of the

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Dust storm hits Assam, delays flights

March 15: At least three flights, one from New Delhi and two from Kolkata, were diverted on Sunday as they could not land at the Lokapriya Gopinath Bordoloi Airport here due to poor visibility.

“At least three flights had to be diverted back to Kolkata due to poor visibility caused by the dust storm since this morning,” the airport’s regional executive director S.C. Sharma said.

Earl

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Say of rape victim can nail accused

March 15: The statement of a rape victim is sufficient evidence to nail the accused, a city court has said in its order.

Additional sessions judge Ravinder Dudeja said a rape victim’s statement would be accepted while he sentenced a 19-year-old youth to seven years imprisonment for raping a woman after entering her house on the pretext of being an electrician.

“If the victim of rape sta

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UP: Another engineer killed

March 15: A telecom engineer was shot dead and another seriously injured when unknown assailants opened fire at them in Mainpuri district, late on Saturday night.

The incident took place in the Dhanakpur locality of Mainpuri, when Vijendra and Dhirendra, both working as engineers for Reliance Communications, were returning to Etawah on a motorcycle.

“Unknown assailants opened fire at the

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Congress holds talk with PMK

March 15: The Congress said on Sunday that it was holding talks with PMK in order to retain the party as UPA constituent in the LS polls.

“We want to bring all secular parties to our alliance. Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is in-charge of party’s Tamil Nadu affairs, is holding talks with PMK,” the TNCC president, Mr K.V. Thangkabalu said.

Asked whether Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi, which i

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CPM-supported Ponnani man refuses to back out

March 15: Mr Hussain Randathany, a 50-year-old college principal selected by the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) to contest as an independent from Ponnani, has said he will not withdraw even if a new candidate is named by Kerala’s ruling Left Democratic Front.

Mr Randathany, who has begun his campaign in the Lok Sabha constituency in Mallapuram district, said: “The present fiasco o

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Sanjay counters ‘outsider’ tag

March 15: Actor-turned-politician Sanjay Dutt on Sunday hit back to the charge that he was an “outsider” in Lucknow, from where he is contesting the Lok Sabha elections on a Samajwadi ticket.

“I have my roots in this city and my father spent his early years here. He used to get emotional while talking about Lucknow. I respect BJP candidate Lalji Tandon who levelled this allegation agains

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Yechury tries to woo JD-U

March 15: The CPI(M) politburo member, Mr Sitaram Yechury, on Sunday met the JD(U) president and NDA convenor, Mr Sharad Yadav, at the latter’s residence in a bid to weaken the BJP-led front. But the JD(U) needs the BJP support for Mr Nitish Kumar’s survival in Bihar, so Mr Yadav said after the hour-long meeting that the party remained part of the NDA.

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Mulayam warns Left against Maya

March 14: The Samajwadi Party president, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, has said he is not in the race for the post of Prime Minister. “I am not a claimant to the Prime Minister’s post. In any case, it is Maharani (read Mayawati) who is now a claimant to the post,” he quipped.

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Rajnath, Jaitley tiff continues

March 14: The stalemate in the BJP continued with the camps of the BJP chief, Mr Rajnath Singh, and the party general secretary, Mr Arun Jaitley, refusing to blink.

While Jaitley loyalists maintained that he was not likely to budge from his stand against the inclusion of Mr Suddhanshu Mittal as co-in-charge of the Northeast, the Rajnath Singh camp indicated that Mr Mittal was here to stay.

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PMK to join hands with Jaya

March 14: The AIADMK front is getting stronger with the PMK all set to cross over from the DMK camp, a source close to the AIADMK leadership said here.

“The PMK is with us now. A formal announcement can be expected in a few days. We have agreed on the number of seats to be given to them (PMK) and a lot of work on identifying the constituencies has
been completed,” said the senior AIADMK fu

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LDF confused over Ponnani

March 14: Confusion still reigns in the ruling left democratic front over the Ponnani Lok Sabha seat, which brought the CPI(M) and the CPI to the verge of a split.

Though the CPI(M) reluctantly agreed that the seat belongs to the CPI, it still has not openly withdrawn its independent candidate, Dr Hussain Randathani.

The candidate hurriedly picked by the CPI, trade union leader Mr A.P. Kunha

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RSS takes on history textbooks

March 14: The RSS Chief, Mr K.S. Sudarshan, on Saturday criticised the NCERT for giving wide space to the Mughal rulers and confining Chhatrapati Shivaji’s to few lines in a history book.

“A NCERT 80-page history book of Class VII, has given wide space to the Mughal rulers and has confined Shivaji to just eight lines,” he said in a function here.

“This has happened as the HRD Minis

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Nine ragging deaths every year: Survey

March 14: A Supreme Court ruling bounds colleges to curb ragging, but the scourge that most recently caused the death of a medical student and led another to attempt suicide, continues to terrorise hundreds across the country.

Society Against Violence in Education (SAVE), the country’s only registered anti-ragging NGO, calculated that nine teenagers are killed every year due to ragging while

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Chaplin statue sparks row in Karnataka

March 14: A Kannada film director on Saturday claimed his attempts to install a statue of legendary comedian Charlie Chaplin for the shoot of a movie has met with resistance from an unidentified Hindu group on the ground that the actor (Chaplin) was a Christian.

The attempt to install the 67-foot statue at the Ottinene beach in Kundapur taluk of Karnataka ran into rough weather as activists c

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Killer dad claims he is insane

March 14: Accused of killing his four-day-old daughter, IT engineer S. Niranjan Kumar, 29, has said he is insane, but the authorities here were examining the claim on Saturday.

“The accused has claimed to be insane and we are verifying this through a series of tests. If true, we will recommend altering the Section under which he is charged for murder. Otherwise, police will be free to try hi

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Chand says ‘talaq’ to Fiza over phone

March 14: The tumultuous Chand and Fiza love marriage may have just ended in a brusque three-word SMS from London: “Talaq, talaq, talaq.”

Fiza, the distraught second wife of Haryana’s former deputy chief minister Chander Mohan, also known as Chand Mohammed, claims the man who gave up his top job and converted to Islam only to marry her, has pronounced talaq (divorce).

“Last night, h

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Ambani joins IPL date war

March 14: The Reliance chief and Mumbai Indians owner, Mr Mukesh Am-bani, met the Union home minister, Mr P. Chidam-baram and discussed the schedule of the league’s second edition, lending a new dimension to the battle over IPL dates.

He apprised Mr Chidam-baram about the massive losses teams would have to suffer if the tournament was postponed.

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Home says still no date with IPL

March 13: The Union home ministry on Friday urged the Indian Premier League organisers to rework their revised schedule for the tournament as some state governments were finding it difficult to provide security even on the new match dates.

Soon afterwards, the IPL commissioner, Mr Lalit Modi, and the chief executive, Mr Sunder Raman, who flew into New Delhi after an emergency meeting in Mumbai,

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Maya wants 3rd Front to project her as PM

March 13: The Dalit queen, Ms Mayawati, who has ruled out any pre-poll alliance with the Third Front, however, wants them to project her as a PM candidate in a post-poll scenario.

The BSP supremo is expected to make her demand categorically clear during the Sunday dinner being hosted by her for the leaders of the Third Front.

Those expected to attend include the CPI(M) general secretary, Mr

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CPM won’t field independent candidate

March 13: The CPI(M) backed out on its decision to field an independent candidate of its choice in the Ponnani Lok Sabha constituency on Friday night after CPI threatened to quit the Left Democratic Front and go its separate way.

Sources said that the CPI(M) had agreed not to push the candidacy of historian Dr Hussain Randathani and the CPI had also more or less agreed to drop its hurried choic

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Jaitley miffed at Mittal’s selection

March 13: Tremors ran through the saffron camp on Friday when top BJP leader and master strategist Arun Jaitley stayed away from the central election committee meeting at the party headquarters.

Mr Jaitley is understood to be annoyed over the appointment of Mr Suddhanshu Mittal, who was close to late BJP leader Mr Pramod Mahajan, as the party’s co-in-charge for the Northeast.

The decisio

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CEC: Close all belt shops in 48 hours

March 13: The Election Commission on Friday directed district collectors and superintendents of police to close belt shops in 48 hours.

The Chief Election Commissioner, Mr N. Gopalaswami, ordered the closure in view of fears that political activists could get easy access to liquor through belt shops, which are illegal outlets of licenced liquor shops.

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Spycams haunt Akali candidates

March 13: Punjab’s ruling Shiromani Akali Dal may have more than the Election Commission’s eagle eye to worry about during this general election.

The Khalsa Action Committee, an umbrella organisation of hardline Sikh groups, has said that it will run a series of spycam stings to expose Akali nominees and other leaders indulging in “anti-Sikh” acts during their campaign for the Lok Sabha

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Statement on deathbed valid: SC

March 13: The dying declaration of a person should normally be relied upon by courts as rarely does a person on his deathbed speak falsehood, the Supreme Court has held.

“The situation in which a person is on the deathbed is so solemn and serene, when he is dying that the grave position in which he is placed, is the reason in law to accept the veracity of his statement.”

“It is for t

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Chennai engineer throws infant daughter into well

March 13: A software engineer working for a multi-national company in Bengaluru threw his four-day-old infant daughter into a well and killed her as his wife, also a software engineer, quit her job against his wishes to have the baby, police said.

The police arrested him on Friday. Niranjan Kumar from Choolaimedu, a masters’ degree holder in engineering who worked in Cisco Systems, was separ

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India answers 30/30

March 13: India on Friday handed over to Pakistan further details relating to the terrorist attacks in Mumbai, but not before reminding the Pakistani government to keep its end of the bargain by bringing the 26/11 perpetrators to justice and taking credible action against the infrastructure of terrorism operating on its soil.

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Indian scores 30/30 on Pak

New Delhi, March 13: India on Friday handed over to Pakistan further details relating to the terrorist attacks in Mumbai, but not before reminding the Pakistani government to keep its end of the bargain by bringing the 26/11 perpetrators to justice and taking credible action against the infrastructure of terrorism operating on its soil.

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Congress, BJP taunt Third Front

March 12: The launch of a Third Front comprising the Left and the regional parties on Thursday saw the Congress and the BJP poke fun at the grouping calling it “biggest mirage” and all “drama” but Mr Sharad Pawar’s NCP said it cannot be written off.
Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav’s Samajwadi Party described the eight-party Front launched in Karnataka as an “opportunistic allia-nce” and c

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Naveen may face fresh trust vote

March 12: The Orissa Governor, Mr M.C. Bhandare might direct the Chief Minister, Mr Naveen Patnaik, to prove his majority on the floor of the Assembly once again on March 16, sources at Raj Bhavan said late on Thursday. There was, however, no official announcement or confirmation in this regard by Raj Bhavan.

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CPI may fight CPM in Kerala

March 12: The crisis in the ruling left democratic front deepened on Thursday with a crucial meeting of the LDF committee failing to resolve the row between the CPI(M) and the CPI over the Ponnani Lok Sabha seat.
The Janata Dal (Secular), another constituent of the LDF, also left the LDF meet in an angry mood with the CPI(M) refusing to give it back the Kozhikode seat.
There was literally a war

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Sonia sends NJR to RS for a year

March 12: The Congress president, Ms Sonia Gandhi, has approved the candidature of Mr N. Janardhan Reddy, for the byelection to the Rajya Sabha from Andhra Pradesh. The decision was apparently taken to spare him from the gruelling election campaign.
The seat fell vacant when Mr C. Ramachandraiah resigned from the Telugu Desam and joined the Praja Rajyam. Mr Janardhan Reddy will complete the remai

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Mulayam, Govinda feel poll panel heat

March 12: The Election Commission has served notice to the SP president, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, for distributing of Rs 100 notes at a Holi function at Sefai, his native village, on Holi.
The EC has asked Mr Yadav to submit his explanation by 11 am on March 14.
Mr Yadav was seated on the dais at a traditional Holi function in his village when his supporters gave money to the audience.
Mr Yada

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Maya, Jaya stay off Third Front meet

March 12: Powerwomen Ms Mayawati and Ms Jayalalithaa stayed off the launch of the eight-party Third Front on Thursday raising the question of whether the alliance is a marriage of convenience.

The BSP and the AIADMK chiefs sent representatives to the rally, keeping a line to the front open and hedging against other options ahead of the Lok Sabha elections. But the former prime minister, Mr H.D.

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BJP opts for middle path on JD(U) tieup

March 12: As the acrimonious seat-sharing talks between NDA allies, the BJP and the JD(U) in Bihar were nearing a decisive stage in Delhi on Thursday after weeks of squabbling, Bihar’s BJP leaders were wary of a repetition of the Orissa disaster to an otherwise stable alliance in the state.
The BJP, after initially insisting on getting “at least 18” of Bihar’s 40 Lok Sabha seats to conte

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Killing for self-defence is okay: SC

March 12: The Supreme Court, in a historic judgment, on Thursday said a person can kill another when there exists a reasonable and logical apprehension that his adversary is going to cause him or her grievous injury even though he might not have actually inflicted any.
The Supreme Court let off two accused after saying that they were entitled to acquittal as the act was committed in exercise of s

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Kerala teacher has Gandhi’s charkha

March 12: Close on the heels of the auction of Mahatma Gandhi’s memorabilia, a 68-year-old teacher here has claimed that he has a charkha (spinning wheel) used by the Father of the Nation during his historic Dandi March.
Gandhiji started his marathon 386-km march from Sabarmati ashram in Ahmedabad on March 12, 1930 and reached here on April 6 with his supporters. After his 25-day march, the Fa

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Rapist identified during IP

March 12: A British woman, who was allegedly raped in Goa a year back, on Thursday identified the accused during the identification parade held here, the Panaji police department said.
Panaji police had arrested 26-year-old Lourenco Dias, a government employee, for allegedly assaulting and raping a 32-year-old British woman, last month.
The British woman, who was holidaying in Goa, had complai

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BSP to take part in Third Front rally

March. 11: In a shot in the arm to the Third Front, BSP will participate in its rally in Bengaluru on Thursday.

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CPI defies CPM over seat sharing

March 11: The ruling left democratic front hurtled to a major crisis on Wednesday with an angry CPI deciding to field trade union leader, Mr A.P. Kunhamu, from the Ponnani LS seat defying the CPI(M) decision to back an independent, Mr Hussain Randathani.

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Don’t ape our rulings: SC to HC

March 11: The Supreme Court has ticked off the Andhra Pradesh High Court for “blindly” relying on an apex court ruling and acquitting a corrupt government official — caught red-handed while accepting bribe —. on a reasoning that his offence was not proven.
While chastising the High Court, the Supreme Court also cautioned lower courts and High Courts against blindly aping its rulings.

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Naveen wins trust vote, Governor wants proof

March 11: The Naveen Patnaik government on Wednesday won the trust motion in the Orissa Legi-slative Assembly by a voice vote even as the Congress and the BJP cried foul.
Based on their complaints, the Governor, Mr M.C. Bhandare, summoned the Speaker, Mr Kishore Mohanty, and sought the video recording of the proceedings of the session.

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Obama supports nuke deal

March 11: The Obama administration on Wednesday assured India that it will proceed with the landmark Indo-US nuclear deal, signed during Mr George W. Bush’s tenure.
Senior US state department officials gave the assurance to the foreign secretary, Mr Shiv-shankar Menon, who is on a four-day official visit.

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Madras HC rejects advocates’ plea

March 11: The Madras High Court on Wednesday rejected pleas by advocates to immediately hear the matter pertaining to the February 19 alleged excesses by police on the High Court premises and asked the lawyers to return to work.

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95% Bengaluru homes keep power on all day

March 11: Despite an energy crisis in Karnataka, 95 per cent of households in Bengaluru had their television sets or the main supply on throughout the day, even when no one is watching it.
A survey by Biodiversity Conservation India Limited, an alternate technology enterprise, found that 45 per cent of the respondents have their televisions switched on most of the day, even when no one was watc

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I will not spare Chand: Fiza

March 11: Lashing out at her husband Chand Mohammad for “cheating her”, Fiza said here on Wednesday that she would “not spare him” and would seek justice with the help of law.
In the city on Tuesday night to attend a function of the Ghaziabad Bar Association, Fiza said Chand Mohammad had greatly wronged her.
“I am not going to spare him. He has cheated me. Chand married me for esta

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Four face murder charge

March 11: Four students of a medical college in Himachal Pradesh arrested for allegedly beating to death a junior in the name of ragging have been slapped with murder charges, police said on Wednesday.
Aman Kachru, 19, died on Sunday after being ragged by four second year students of the Rajendra Prasad medical college at Tanda town, 20 km from Kangra. All the four students have been sent to poli

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3 NRIs among top US scientists’ list

March 11: Three Indian-Americans have figured among the top 10 high school US scientists selected by semiconductor giant Intel through a rigorous nationwide competition involving hundreds of students.
Called the next generation of American innovators, results of the Intel Science Talent Search 2009 were announced on Tuesday and the awards were presented by the Intel chairman Craig Barrett. The

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Infant dies before aircraft takes off

March 11: A four-month-old baby died in an aircraft while being breastfed by his mother shortly before its take off at the international airport here on Wednesday.
Though the baby was rushed to a hospital it was already dead, the cause believed to be “asphyxiation” while being breastfed, airport sources said.
The baby, Prithvin, was going to Salalah with his mother Seetha Shibu, to join he

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Congress accepts TMC quota

March 11: The Congress and the Trinamul Congress on Wednesday reached a seat-sharing accord for Lok Sabha polls in West Bengal to put up a joint fight against the state’s ruling Left Front, a day after the Mamata Banerjee-led party had served a 48-hour ultimatum for the agreement to be clinched.
Capping weeks of hard bargaining, the Congress finally accepted the Trinamul Congress’ seat-shari

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Confusion after poll crisis in Meghalaya

March 11: Utter confusion prevailed in Meghalaya on Wednesday with the NCP led-Meghalaya Progressive Alliance (MPA) losing majority and no side apparently having the edge in the numbers game.
The Opposition leader, Mr D.D. Lapang, claimed that his party was being contacted from all sides and that the NCP leader, Mr P.A. Sangma, was holding parleys with the Congress leaders in New Delhi to forge

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Meghalaya CM seeks trust vote amid crisis

Asked why Paul Lyngdoh left the MPA, Roy claimed the former resigned from his ministry because he heard about the NCP and Congress were trying to form an alternative government in Meghalaya.

However, NCP leader and state Finance minister Conrad Sangma denied the reports of talks between the NCP and Congress in New Delhi.

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Alliance with Congress on: Pawar

March 10: Political players are repositioning themselves before striking a seat-sharing deal with the allies, hinting that the coming electoral battle could be more dicey.

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UP police beat 10-yr-old to death

March 10: A 10-year-old boy died after he was allegedly tortured by policemen who, his family claimed, picked him up while looking for his brother in connection with a rape case in Sitapur district.
The boy, Altaf, died on Monday and his family members alleged that it was due to police torture, home department officials said on Tuesday.
As the cause of death could not be ascertained in the post-

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Naveen wins trust vote, Governor asks for video proof

Bhubaneswar: Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik won a trust motion by voice vote but Opposition leaders rejected the victory as "manipulation," prompting Governor M.C. Bhandare to seek video recording of the proceedings of the special session of the Assembly.

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Who will lead Third Front?

March 10: The formidable lineup of Third Front leaders is making it difficult to select its leader. While former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda of the Janata Dal (S) is trying to project himself as the emerging face of the front, CPI(M) leaders have made it clear there is no decision yet.
With heavyweights like Mr N. Chandrababu Naidu, Ms Jayalalithaa, Mr Naveen Patanaik, Mr Deve Gowda, Mr Prakas

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No details provided to Interpol

March 10: Mumbai police is yet to furnish to Interpol details about the nine terrorists killed during the 26/11 strikes for issuance of a “Black Notice” which can help get more information about the dead.
Though Mumbai police’s commissioner, Mr Hasan Gafoor and the joint commissioner, Mr Rakesh Maria have claimed that papers for securing an Interpol Black notice had been sent to CBI, the

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No one has license to criticise other religions, says Singh

March 10: In his first public appearance after recovering from the cardiac surgery, the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, on Tuesday hosted a group of Muslim girls to mark the occasion of Milad-un-Nabi. Finding this an opportune time, the Prime Minister asserted that no one had the license to “criticise or run down” other religions.
Though Dr Singh’s first official engagement was his meeti

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Police arrests four in Kachru ragging case

March 10: Four medical students accused of ragging a junior, leading to his death, were arrested and charged with culpable homicide as the Himachal Pradesh government on Tuesday ordered a magisterial probe into the shocking incident.
The four were remanded to police custody for varying periods by a local court in connection with the death of 19-year-old Aman Kachru, a student of Dr Rajendra Pras

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IAF fires officer for tax default

March 10: The Supreme Court has upheld the dismissal of an Indian Air Force (IAF) officer who failed to pay his property tax on time and was stripped of his uniform and pension after his father-in-law informed on him.
A bench of Justice Arijit Pasayat and Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly upheld the ouster of IAF officer, Mr Praveen Bhatia, dismissing his contention that “the failure to submit the pro

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NSG commandos to guard Tirumala

March 10: The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) executive officer, Dr K.V. Ramanachari, said on Tuesday that National Security Guards (NSG) commandos would be arriving in Tirumala and all other arterial locations of the TTD very soon, in view of the alert from intelligence about possible terrorist strikes.
Participating at a “Meet the Press” programme at the Tirupati Press Club, Dr Ramana

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Lalu, Nitish pichkari a hit

March 10: Water sprayers splashed with the images of the RJD supremo, Mr Lalu Prasad, and his bete noire the Bihar Chief Minister, Mr Nitish Kumar, are selling like hot cakes in the state with Holi revellers wanting to add a dash of political colour to their celebrations.
Pichkaris (spra-yers) carrying photos of Mr Lalu Prasad, Mr Nitish Kumar are in heavy demand among the Holi revellers. Pichk

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SMS spam an offence under IT Act

March 10: Senders of unsolicited SMSes via Web-based applications that mask the identity of the mobile phone numbers that the messages are sent from can now be booked under the amended IT Act.
The use of proxy numbers to send such messages will also be liable to punishment under the Act.
The recently amended legislation says section 66A (subsection c) of the IT Act 2000 may be invoked in case o

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I want to be in Bollywood: Idol

March 10: The country’s first female Indian Idol, Sourabhee Debbarma, aspires to become a Bollywood star. Winning the title is just a “stepping stone” to her dreams, she says.
“This is not the end but a stepping stone to my dream. I am not just a singer but an artist, and I would love to see myself become a Bollywood star one day,” Sourabhee said.
It has been just a week since Sourab

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Multiplexes to telecast IPL

March 10: Indian Premier League (IPL) matches will be telecast live at multiplexes in the country.
Announcing this here on Tuesday, IPL chairman and commissioner Lalit Modi said tendering for the telecast rights at multiplexes is in the process. “It is an ongoing process and we have invited bids from the multiplexes. However, the multiplexes in the city in which the match is played will not sh

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Karnataka ranks low in RTI compliance: Study

March 10: IT-savvy Karnataka ranks 15th among India’s 28 states in complying with the Right to Information (RTI) Act with a below average performance. Nagaland and Delhi score high in providing information, an assessment report by the city-based Public Affairs Centre (PAC) says.
“Though Karnataka is one of the leading states in IT industry, its compliance with the RTI Act is below average, wh

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BSP to contest all 543 seats

March 9: The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has decided to contest all 543 Lok Sabha seats in the country. This will be the first time that the party will be asserting its pan-Indian presence in politics.

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CPI, CPM tiff worsens in Kerala over Ponnani seat

March 9: The bitter row between the CPI(M) and the CPI over the Ponnani Lok Sabha seat worsened on Monday.
While the CPI(M) state committee, which met here this evening, reportedly decided to field Islamic historian and academic, Mr Hussain Randathani, as an independent from Ponnani, the CPI continued to reiterate that the seat was its and it will decide the candidate.
The row has vitiated the r

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Congress, SP may patch up

March 9: Both the Cong-ress and the Samajwadi Party, amid mutual pressure tactics during seat-sharing negotiations for Uttar Pradesh, raised hopes for a last-minute patch-up and heaped praise on each other.
“Secular politics is not possible without Mrs Sonia Gandhi. Whoever wants to indulge in secular politics in this countrywill have to take the support of the Congress. This is a fact,” the

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BJD completes split, leaves NDA

March 9: Two days after snapping ties with the BJP, Orissa’s ruling BJD on Monday pulled out of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) ahead of Wedne-sday’s confidence vote in the Assembly terming the saffron party’s withdrawal of support to Naveen Patnaik government as an “act of betrayal”.
“The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) is no more with the NDA,” party’s secretary-general, Mr Damodar

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Singh to meet Obama

March 9: The Prime Mini-ster, Dr Manmohan Singh, is likely to meet the US President, Mr Barack Oba-ma, on the sidelines of the Group of Twenty (G-20) su-mmit in London on April 2.
Dr Singh’s meeting with the new US President will be his first since Mr Obama’s inauguration on January 20.
The foreign secretary, Mr Shivshan-kar Men-on began talks in Washing-ton on Monday to lay the ground for

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CPM goes all out for Third Front

March 9: Buoyed by Orissa’s ruling BJD walking out of the NDA, CPI(M) on Monday appealed to all “secular” parties, sans Congress, to join hands and work for giving the country an alternative policy direction through a Third Front in Lok Sabha polls.
Welcoming BJD’s severing of ties with the BJP and NDA, CPI(M) leader, Mr Sitaram Yechury, told reporters here that “we have appealed

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Stalemate in Bihar continues

March 9: The stalemate over seat-sharing between the Janata Dal (United) and Bharatiya Janata Party is continuing.
The top two NDA allies have been unable to reach on an agreement over seat-sharing as no decision has yet been made on the JD(U)’s demand for seats in Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand.
JD(U) sources stated that the BJP is yet to respond to its demands seeking two additional seats in

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Advani masks sell like hot cakes at BJP bazaar

March 9: The BJP, it appears, wants to replicate the “mask hysteria” that led to the Gujarat Chief Minister, Mr Narendra Modi’s decisive victory in the Assembly elections.
The party has prepared masks of Mr Advani, its prime ministerial candidate, now being sold to the faithful for just Rs 2 each. These will also be part of its election campaign.
A party office-bearer said: “Advaniji de

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Kasab gets taste of trial

March 9: In keeping with the security demand, Kasab attended a case hearing for the first time, through video conferencing. All his previous hearings had taken place at the crime branch’s headquarters after the police requested the magistrate to make the trip from his court to the crime branch due to the threat to Kasab’s life.
During the video-conference, Kasab told the magistrate that he di

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Urdu translation demand refused

March 9: Terrorists involved in the November 26 Mumbai attacks will not be getting a translated copy of their voluminous chargesheet and neither Mohammad Ajmal Amir Kasab, nor his accomplices Sabahuddin and Faheem Ansari were entitled to translated copies of any police documents, confirmed the additional chief metropolitan magistrate (ACMM) N. Srimangale on Monday.
There were no legal provisions

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26/11 info to Interpol soon: CBI

March 9: India will soon send details of the terrorists who died in the Mumbai terror attacks, including their DNA profiles, to the Interpol. Pakistan has also agreed to provide similar details of the arrested persons in connection with the investigation into the 26/11 attack to the global agency.
CBI director Ashwani Kumar met Union home secretary Madhukar Gupta on Monday and discussed the issu

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LeT offers jawan Rs 1.5 lakh for ‘runaway act’

March 9: Indian Army units and the state police have launched a massive manhunt across Jammu and Kashmir to apprehend a deserter, Zaffarullah Parray, a resident of Doda’s Behlulia village, who fled his military post with two AK assault rifles and one
Insas rifle and some ammunition. The police and the Army are also trying to verify reports that he might have joined the Lashkar-e-Tayyaba. The Le

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Ramadoss eyes hookah bars

March 9: After targeting smokers and tipplers, Union health minister Anbumani Ramadoss has the hookah bars on his radar and has asked the Maharashtra government to close them down as they were violating the law.
“Shops having hookah bars have to comply with the law of the land,” he said at the “Corporate leaders meet on worksite wellnesss initiative,” a part of the World Congress on Taba

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Farmhouse party revellers get bail

March 9: The 101 party revellers who were arrested on Sunday night were granted bail by court on Monday evening, but since the orders came late they will be let off from Central Prison at Parappana Agrahara, where they are lodged with undertrials, only on Tuesday morning.
Tavarekere police had arrested the revellers from a farmhouse near Big Banyan tree on the city outskirts and seized liquor an

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Polls, IPL: Security agencies in demand

March 9: The upcoming general elections coinciding with the high profile IPL tournament, has provided a great opportunity for private security agencies in the country who are gearing up for a bigger role in the coming months.
Private security agencies are being looked at to meet the growing demand for security to venues and teams during the high-profile sport event, say security experts.

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‘Deficient’ evidence is valid too, says SC

March 9: The Supreme Court has held that an accused can be convicted even on “deficient evidence” as long as the same was credible and cogent.
“It is the duty of court to separate grain from chaff. Where chaff can be separated from grain, it would be open to the court to convict an accused notwithstanding, the fact that evidence has been found to be deficient, or to be not wholly cre

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Ramadoss targets hookah bars

Mumbai: After targeting smokers and tipplers, health minister Anbumani Ramadoss has hookah bars on his radar and said they must go.

Turning the heat on hookah bars where tobacco and nicotine based products are generally served, Ramadoss said "instructions" have been given to state governments to ensure that these premises are shut down.

"The states have to comply with these(instructions),"

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LeT has new wing in NE

March 8: The Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) has opened a new wing to create unrest in the Northeast and districts of West Bengal bordering Bangladesh.
This was known after interrogation of the LeT operative, Abu Taher, arrested from the crowded Sealdah station on Saturday evening, by the Special Task Force, a senior STF officer said.
“The Lashkar-e-Tayyaba had opened a new wing named Tanzeen-e-Moh

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26/11 accused want chargesheet in Urdu

March 8: The trial in the 26/11 terror attack case could be delayed after two arrested accused, Faheem Ansari and Sabauddin, have requested a local court to direct the city police to translate the 11,000-page chargesheet filed into Urdu.

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Gowda asks Patnaik to join Third Front

March 8: The former Prime Minister, Mr H.D. Deve Gowda on Sunday hailed Mr Naveen Patnaik’s “bold” decision to walk out of the alliance with the “communal and fascist BJP” and asked him to be part of the third Front.

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JD(U) plays hardball with BJP

March 8: A day after Mr Naveen Patnaik broke his alliance with the BJP in Orissa, the saffron party got another shock as another ally, the Janata Dal (United), demanded six seats each in Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand, in addition to the 26 seats it is demanding in Bihar.
This development is a major setback to the BJP, which claimed on Saturday that its seat-sharing talks with the JD(U) were over an

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BJP left Red-faced over BJD break-up

March 8: An angry BJP on Sunday blamed “day-dreaming” Left parties for the collapse of its 11-year-long alliance with BJD in Orissa and said Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik would regret parting ways with the NDA partner ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.
“It appears that the Left parties and others day-dreaming about their post-election prospects in Delhi have misled Patnaik,” party spokesperso

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Naveen parades 76 MLAs

March 8: The Orissa Chief Minister, Mr Naveen Patnaik, whose government was reduced to a minority following withdrawal of support by the BJP on Saturday, on Sunday claimed a majority in the Assembly by parading 76 MLAs (two above the halfway mark), including 61 of his own BJD, before the state governor, Mr M.C. Bhandare. The governor has asked Mr Patnaik to prove his majority on the floor of the A

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Fraud mail makes use of Satyam scam

March 8: The notorious Nigerian email scam is now trying to milk the Satyam affair. In a new email being spammed to unwary Internet users, the sender claims to be the wife of former Satyam chief Ramalinga Raju’s brother and asks for help to transfer funds to India from Holland. It promises to “compensate” anyone who can assist.
Senior police officers say the email is similar to those sent i

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India will have its Air Force One

March 8: The Indian Prime Minister’s brand new office in the air — akin to the US President’s Air Force One — is all set to be inducted into the Indian Air Force (IAF) later this month, an official said.
Three Boeing business jets, fitted with the state-of-the-art security gadgets and latest communication systems, will be part of the communications squadron of the IAF. President Pratibha

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Back Singh as PM, Congress tells NCP

March 7: NCP leader Sharad Pawar has become a hot point of dispute cutting across party lines.

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CPM expels MP for Modi praise

March 7: The Communist Party of India (Marxist) on Saturday expelled young Kannur MP A.P. Abdullakutty, who had courted controversy by praising Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s development model.
Ironically, the MP had first embarrassed the party by professing to be a religious Muslim and had further created red faces by going to meet a Nadi astrologer.
However, his advice to the party

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SP, Cong clamour for pact hits a high

March 7: Deadlock over seat-sharing between the Congress and the Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh continued even as the SP general secretary Amar Singh threatened to field candidates against the Congress in some Lok Sabha constituencies.
“If they are putting up candidates in our sitting seats simply because they have candidates for some seats, then we can also think about doing so,” said SP g

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Curfew, fresh clashes in Srinagar

March 7: An undeclared curfew was in place in most parts of Srinagar on Saturday, a day after a local youth was killed in CRPF firing on a stone-throwing mob and another critically wounded when hit by a vehicle of the force.
As tensions heightened, thousands of police and CRPF men in riot gear were fanned out overnight to enforce the stringent security restrictions on the movement of residents un

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Sex ratio: 100-yr steady fall

March 7: India has a dubious record in respect of women. We have had powerful women political leaders, and there are more women in the public sphere than before, but the record of roughly the past one hundred years suggests a “a steadily deteriorating ratio” of females to males in the Indian population.
Simply put, this means that the population of females for every thousand males has been go

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Deoband snubs Kalyan

March 7: The Darul Uloom Deoband has turned its back on former BJP leader Kalyan Singh.
The Darul Uloom pro-vice-chancellor, Maulana Abdul Khaliq Madrasi, told reporters in Deoband that the institution’s head, Maulana Maghrubur Rehman, had never given his blessings to the Samajwadi president, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav’s, friendship with Mr Kalyan Singh, as was being stated in a section of the me

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Knocking on court’s doors for poll entry

March. 7: Sanjay Dutt, Pappu Yadav, Mohammed Shahabuddin, Suraj Singh, Anand Mohan... all aspiring MPs, all convicted felons and all getting ready to approach the courts to suspend their guilty verdicts so they can contest the general elections.
The hurdle in their way to the Lok Sabha is Section 8 (3) of the Representation of the People Act of 1951 that stipulates that any person convicted for a

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Pawar, Amar armtwist Congress for more seats

March 6: Even as the election gets nearer, the Cong-ress is trying to save its alliance with the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the Nati-onalist Congress Party (NCP), which have demanded more number of seats.

In Maharashtra, the seat sharing between the NCP and the Congress remained unresolved.

Sources said the earlier formula of 21 seats for the NCP and 27 for the Congress might be changed.

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Saras crash kills 3 IAF test pilots

March 6: The National Aerospace Laboratory’s dream of designing and flying a passenger jet suffered a severe setback when a Saras prototype aircraft crashlanded on the outskirts of Bengaluru, killing all three Indian Air Force pilots on board on Friday.

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Missile test okay

March 6: India on Friday successfully carried out a ballistic missile defence test when its Prithvi (interceptor) ballistic missile, fired from a mobile pad launcher from Wheeler Island off the Orissa coast, knocked out a Dhanush missile fired from a ship located 100 km from the coast in the Bay of Bengal. This was its third successful test. “It is a hat trick,” said Drdo chief controller R&D,

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Congress plans stir on Maya govt

March 6: The UP Congress will hold a protest march on Saturday to highlight the lapses on the part of the Mayawati government which have left Rs 1,400 crores sent by the Centre for minority welfare unused.

Digvijay Singh, Parvez Hashmi, state party president Rita Bahuguna Joshi and Congress minority cell president Imran Kidwai will lead the march and submit a memorandum to the governor. UPCC c

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Sonia has 3 options to launch campaign

March 6: The Maharashtra Congress wants party chief Sonia Gandhi to launch the election campaign for the Lok Sabha in the state either from Pandharpur, Mumbai or Aurangabad.

“We have suggested these three places. Now it is for the high command to decide,” a state Congress official said. Union minister Sushilkumar Shinde, who is expected to fight from Solapur, has been keen on Mrs Gandhi to

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V.P. son merges party with Paswan’s LJP

March 6: UPA partners LJP, RJD and Congress in Bihar are likely to hold seat-sharing talks for Lok Sabha poll in the state over the next few days.

LJP Bihar unit chief Pashupati Kumar Paras, who is the younger brother of party chief Ram Vilas Paswan, is in town to hold parleys with RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav. “The central leadership of the LJP has so far not intervened into the matter. Se

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All eyes on Muslim vote

March 6: Which horse will the country’s substantial chunk of Muslim voters back? With the poll countdown having begun, political pundits and politicians themselves say that even the so-called secular political parties may not find it easy to woo the Muslim voter. Neither are they willing to bet on some new Muslim political outfits that have come up in recent months in an attempt to grab their co

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Court seeks CBI, Maha stand on Dutt conviction

March 6: The Supreme Court on Friday sought the stand of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Maharashtra government on a lawsuit filed by Bollywood Star Sanjay Dutt seeking suspension of his conviction in a criminal case to enable him to contest elections.

A bench of Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan, Justice Markandey Katju and Justice P. Sathasivam issued notices to the CBI and th

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JDU-BJP to finalise seats today

March 6: The final round of the Janata Dal (United)-BJP seat-sharing talks are likely to be held on Saturday. While the JD(U) is likely to demand more seats from Bihar and UP, the BJP is unwilling to change the seat-sharing arrangement followed in the last Lok Sabha polls. The decision on the final seat-sharing deal is likely to be announced soon.

The JD(U) leadership, including Mr Sharad Yada

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SC panel indicts lawyers for Chennai clash

March 6: The Supreme Court on Friday referred the police-advocate clashes in Tamil Nadu to the Madras High Court to decide on further probe into the incident.

Meanwhile, the Srikrishna report faulted the acting chief justice of Madras high court for “soft peddling” on agitating lawyers that led to the clashes.

The report indicted both — advocates for behaving like “hooligans and mi

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NCP, Cong impasse as leaders meet

March 6: Top Maharashtra Congress leaders on Friday briefed Congress president Sonia Gandhi about the ground situation in the state and later met NCP chief Sharad Pawar along with defence minister A.K. Antony and the Congress president’s political secretary Ahmed Patel but the issue of seat-sharing remained unresolved.

Though they are tightlipped about the final outcome of the seat-sharing f

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Ex-Cong corporator kills son

March 6: An ex-corporator from the Congress known for his volatile temper shot his own sons on Friday afternoon, killing one and critically injuring the other.

According to the Malabar Hill police, around 2:45 pm on Friday, Mr Keshav Bhosale (65), who stays on the first floor of the Parshwa building in Walkeshwar, got into an argument with his sons, Rajesh (38) and Ganesh (35) when the family

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Chawla: No ill-will for CEC

March 6: Chief Election Commissioner-designate Navin Chawla says that he bears “no rancour” towards present incumbent CEC, Mr N. Gopalaswami. Mr Gopalaswami had written to President Pratibha Patil seeking Mr Chawla’s removal as election commissioner, accusing him of partisanship.

On Friday, Mr Chawla told agencies that he bore no ill-will towards Mr Gopalaswami who retires on April 20. H

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Sena talks stuck on four seats

March 6: The Shiv Sena-BJP alliance which has been facing rough weather over Mumbai South, Kalyan, Jalgaon, and Yavatmal-Washim Lok Sabha seats as Shiv Sena had claimed all four may be resolved soon.

Sources stated that though both the parties have agreed to seat-sharing formula followed in the last Lok Sabha polls, which gives the BJP 26 seats and the Sena 22 seats across the state. However,

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BJP will hold seat talks only with Uddhav

March 6: Miffed at Shiv Sena spokesperson Sanjay Raut’s comment that his party could back Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar as Prime Minister, the Maharashtra unit of Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday decided not to hold seat-sharing discussions with any other Shiv Sena leader, except the party’s executive president Uddhav Thackeray.

A BJP source said that the party’

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Advani: CPM has agreed to Cong B-team

March 6: Launching a scathing attack against both the Congress and the CPI(M), BJP’s prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani on Friday said that they provided sustenance to each other.

“Communism has disappeared from rest of the world. It survives only in Cuba, Kerala and Kolkata. In India, the Communism is still alive because of a covert agreement with the Congress.

The CPI(M) has agr

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BJP, BJD deadlocked on seats

March 6: The BJD and the BJP continue to pull in different directions. The seat sharing talks between the allies have not yet taken any concrete shape.

Of the 21 Lok Sabha seats in Orissa, the BJP has been demanding 10 berths, one more than what they contested in the last elections. With the Assembly elections being held simultaneously, the BJP was willing to contest seven seats less than what

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Patnaik: Rs 2 per kg rice

March 6: Orissa chief minister Naveen Patnaik is heavily banking on his pet Rs 2-per-kg rice scheme to win over the voters in the forthcoming Lok Sabha and Assembly elections in the state, scheduled to be held on April 16 and 23. Mr Patnaik has asked election managers of his party, the Biju Janata Dal,-to focus on the scheme in the list of achievements of his government, to be placed before the el

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BJP-RLD to form panel for LS poll

March 6: The BJP and its new-found ally, the RLD, will form a committee for better coordination in the Lok Sabha poll campaign. A joint meeting of workers from both parties, addressed by BJP chief Rajnath Singh and RLD chief Ajit Singh, was held on Friday which was attended by representatives of almost all the Lok Sabha constituencies of western Uttar Pradesh. The two parties also declared that ap

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Mallya wins Gandhi items for $1.8m, India rejoices

March 6: Days of high drama over the auction of Gandhi’s memorabilia in New York ended on a triumphant note for India as business tycoon Vijay Mallya put in a bid of $1.8 million, winning not only the five heritage items but also gushing praise from Indians young and old.

Gandhi’s steel-rimmed spectacles, a pair of sandals, a Zenith pocket watch, an eating bowl and a plate were put under t

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CPM banks on Third Alternative for polls

March 6: The CPI(M) on Thursday claimed it was hopeful about emergence of a “third alternative” after the coming general elections which would play a crucial role in formation of the next government.

Speaking to reporters here, CPI(M) politburo member Sitaram Yechury said his party was negotiating with non-Congress and non-BJP parties in different states for a pre-poll seat-adjustments and

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The Flogger takes flight one last time

March 6: The Indian Air Force has phased out the MiG-23 BN, the definitive fighter-bomber variant of the Soviet Mikoyan Gurevich built MiG-23, after nearly three decades of operational service.

Code named “Flogger” by Nato because of its formidable striking power, but re-christened “Vijay” in India, the familiar, swing-wing fighter flew its final mission at the Halwara airbase as the me

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AAI awaits Cabinet decision on user fee

March 6: The Airports Authority of India (AAI) is awaiting Cabinet approval before levying development fees on airports run by it such as at Kolkata and Chennai. On the sidelines of a seminar organised by the Foundation for Aviation and Sustainable Tourism (FAST), a non-governmental body, in the capital on Friday, AAI Chairman V.P. Agarwal told reporters that the levy was needed due to the large-s

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Omar pitches for more autonomy

March 6: Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah on Friday said that states need to be given more autonomy in order to meet the growing challenges posed to them.

Speaking at the Indian Today Conclave on Friday, Mr Omar Abdullah said that the Centre sometimes discriminates against states and that needs to be removed.

The Jammu and Kashmir chief minister said that the state has been a

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Pinki to campaign for NDF

March 6: Nine-year-old Pinki, the protagonist of the Oscar-winning documentary Smile Pinki, will soon slip into a new role.

The girl who has won hearts with his winsome smile, will now campaign for the National Dalit Front (NDF) in the coming elections. Announcing this, Dr Udit Raj, a senior office bearer of the National Dalit Front and president of the Indian Justice Party, said that Pinki bel

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Kids witness to parents’ wedding

March 6: Papa, 55, finally got married to Mummy, 53, two days ago, and all their five children clapped and danced with joy. This unique marriage took place in Salon in Rae Bareli district and has become the talk of this tiny town.

Ram Asrey, a small time businessman, and Gayatri met each other more than 25 years ago. Ram Asrey’s first wife had passed away and he fell in love with Gayatri.

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Sessions court to try Godhra case

March 6: A special Pota court here on Friday transferred Godhra train burning case, in which 59 people were killed resulting in widespread communal riots in Gujarat in 2002, to Panchmahals district sessions court.

The decision follows the Gujarat high court’s recent order rejecting the plea of one Sardarji Maganji Vaghela who had challenged recommendations of Pota Review Committee to not char

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26/11: Mumbai cops knew little

March 6: The elite National Security Guards force, which led the commando operation during the Mumbai terror siege, on Friday claimed that the Mumbai police had “little knowledge” about the number of terrorists involved in the 26/11 attacks. NSG chief J.K. Dutt who himself led the NSG operation to flush out the Lashkar-e-Tayyaba terrorists, said he had some information about the actual number

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Terror strike alert sounded

March 6: Following the terrorist attack on Sri Lankan team in Lahore, the Central intelligence agencies have sounded high alert in Jammu and Kashmir, Rajasthan, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh. Latest intelligence inputs confirm that Lashkar-e-Tayyaba militants may target sensitive installations in these states.

Talking to this newspaper, a high ranking official of the Central intelligence agency said,

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Dhaka seeks trade hike with N-E

March 6: The trade relationship among the South East Asian countries with focus on Northeastern states of India is emerging as one of the most viable economic options for the neigbouring countries of the region.

This came to focus once again on Friday when Bangladesh expressed its desire to increase cooperation with India, through the bilateral trade with the N-E states. This was stated by Sye

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CPM to meet for manifesto

March 6: The CPI(M) will finalise its manifesto for the Lok Sabha elections in the two-day crucial Central Committee meeting beginning on Saturday. Sources in the CPI(M) said that the 2009 election manifesto will be different from the party’s 2004 election manifesto where the Left party’s aim was to “defeat the BJP and its allies”; form a ‘’secular government at the Centre’’; and

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Missile defence test successful

March 6: India on Friday successfully carried out a ballistic missile defence test when its Prithvi (interceptor) ballistic missile, fired from a mobile pad launcher from Wheeler Island off the Orissa coast, knocked out a Dhanush missile fired from a ship 100 km from the coast in the Bay of Bengal. This was its third successful test.

The defence ministry said the Dhanush missile (a naval varian

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6 teachers get life terms for student’s rape

March 6: Six teachers of a college in Patan were on Friday sentenced to life imprisonment by a special court for repeatedly raping a 19-year-old student.

Manish Parmar, Mahendra Prajapati, Ashwin Parmar, Kiran Patel, Suresh Patel and Atul Patel were pronounced guilty by Additional Sessions Judge S.C. Srivastva, who also slapped a fine of Rs 4,000 on each of them.

The court also directed them

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6 teachers get lifer for rape

Six teachers of a college in Patan were sentenced to life imprisonment by a special court for repeatedly raping a 19-year-old student.
Manish Parmar, Mahendra Prajapati, Ashwin Parmar, Kiran Patel, Suresh Patel and Atul Patel were pronounced guilty by Additional Sessions Judge S.C. Srivastva, who also slapped a fine of Rs 4,000 on each of them.
The court also directed them to pay Rs 10,000 eac

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'SP-Congress tie-up broken'

Angry with the Congress for unilaterally announcing 24 candidates in Uttar Pradesh for the Lok Sabha polls, the Samajwadi Party has declared that its alliance with that party was “broken.”

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IPL on; new schedule soon

The Indian Premier League (IPL) will soon have a new schedule, IPL chief Lalit Modi said here Friday and stressed that the tournament was on.
“We will shortly have a new schedule out,” Mr Modi told reporters, adding that there would be no matches on the day of the counting (May 16).
“We want to assure our fans that the IPL is on. There is no question of the IPL moving to another country,

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Job crisis about to get worse: ILO

March 5: Deepening recession is expected to increase the number of unemployed women by up to 22 million as global job crisis could “worsen sharply” this year, the International Labour Organisation has warned.
Ahead of the International Women’s Day on March 8, the ILO said the labour market projections for 2009 showed deterioration in global labour markets for both women and men.

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Fights are not friendly in UP

March 5: The “friendly fight” that the Congress and the Samajwadi Party (SP) now hope to have on about half a dozen seats where both are putting up candidates, may not turn out to be even remotely friendly considering the hostility between the candidates of the two parties.
Candidates in these constituencies have been on the warpath since the past several years and a “friendly alliance”

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BJP gears up for polls

March 5: Gearing up for the Lok Sabha election, the BJP on Thursday announced names of four new spokespersons. They will be in addition to the existing spokesperons that the party already have.

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Parties bank on hawala funds

March 5: Money power is set to cross all limits this Lok Sabha elections with the State Intelligence estimating that political parties are preparing to splurge over Rs 200 crore on winning over voters in the 28 constituencies.
While traditionally industrial houses have funded elections, this time round the parties are banking on hawala money, according to official sources. As other avenues of fun

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Sanjay Dutt seeks stay of conviction

March 5: Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt, who has joined Samajwadi Party, on Thursday approached the Supreme Court seeking suspension of his conviction in connection with 1993 Mumbai serial blasts to contest coming Lok Sabha polls.
Dutt, who has been tipped to contest the polls from Lucknow, was held guilty under the Arms Act by a Mumbai TADA Court which has sentenced him to six years of imprisonmen

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Miscreant behind Dhoni letters held

March. 5: A man who allegedly sent two threat letters to Indian cricket team captain M.S. Dhoni demanding Rs 50 lakh Tasleem, a resident of Ranchi and known as Sohail Ansari in Orissa, was picked up from his hideout at Sikharchandi slum, in the outskirts of the state capital on Wednesday night, the police said.
Though Tasleem was staying in the slum for the past five years, the police had no kn

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IPL fate undecided

A decision on whether the Indian Premier League can go ahead with a revised schedule would be taken after the Central government discusses the matter with the host states and the Election Commission.
The IPL organisers have conveyed to the home ministry that they do not require any central forces for the security.
“The ministry of home affairs passed on the new schedule to the states on Wedn

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Chawla is next CEC

March 4: In what was a foregone conclusion, the government on Wednesday announced the appointment of election commissioner Navin Chawla as the next Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) of the country. Mr Chawla will take over as the CEC when the present incumbent, N.Gopalaswami demits office on April 20.

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Congress may get CPI support after elections

March 4: The CPI is not ruling out post poll support to the Congress. CPI national secretary, Mr D. Raja said that the formation of the Third Front to fight general elections is a new situation and political parties should not take people for granted. “Political parties will have to act accordingly when the mandate of the people comes,” he said.
On whether the Left parties will give outside

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Jaya may skip Gowda launch

March 4: AIADMK supremo, Ms J. Jayalalithaa, is likely give a slip to the launch of the Third Front in Bengaluru announced by former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda in Karnataka.
While confirming the participation of all other leaders from the CPI(M), the Forward Bloc, the TDP chief, Mr Chandrababu Naidu, and the TRS chief, Mr K. Chandrasekhara Rao, Mr Gowda said Ms Jayalalithaa had not confirmed

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Nagma wants Congress seat

March 4: Actor Nagma who had campaigned for the Congress during the last Lok Sabha elections is seeking a ticket from the Mumbai northwest seat now held by Ms Priya Dutt.
The actor who has been successful in the South Indian film industry and has also acted in Bhojpuri films joined the Congress campaigned for the party in Andhra Pradesh during the last elections in 2004.
She was also recommended

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BJP, SP turncoats flock to Maya

March 4: Seven legislators belonging to the Samajwadi Party, Bharatiya Janata Party and the Rashtriya Lok Dal have resigned from the membership of the state legislature to join the Bahujan Samaj Party.
The legislators who have resigned from their seats in the UP Assembly are Mr Gauri Shankar and Mr Dhani Ram Varma (both Samajwadi Party), Mr Qadir Rana (RLD) and Mr Rajiv Channa (BJP). The members

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Last ditch efforts on to stall auction

March 4: India was on Wednesday making last ditch attempts to stop Thursday’s auction of Mahatma Gandhi’s personal items and is even seeking the US state department’s intervention, as it prepared to negotiate with the US-based owner of the memorabilia to settle the issue.
Personal belongings of Gandhi is expected to come under the hammer at the auction house Antiquorum Auctioneers in New Y

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SC tightens divorce law

March 4: Irretrievable breakdown of marriage is no ground for divorce for those married under the Hindu Marriage Act because the law does not recognise it, the Supreme Court has ruled.
Dismissing a Hindu husband’s plea for divorce, a bench of Justices Markandey Katju and V.S. Sirpurkar stated that the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, did not recognise “irretrievable breakdown” as ground for the di

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BrahMos test-fire successful: DRDO

March 4: India test-fired the land attack version of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile at the Pokharan range in Rajasthan on Wednesday, six weeks after its failed test on January 20, an official here said.
“The analysis of the parameters of the missile flight will take some time,” a Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) official said while confirming the test firing of the

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Chawla to take over as next CEC

Election Commissioner Navin Chawla will take over as the next Chief Election Commissioner on April 20, succeeding N. Gopalaswami who will retire on that day.
Mr Chawla, an IAS officer of the 1969 batch, will hold charge till July 29, 2010 when he will attain the age of 65 years.
“The President has approved the appointment of Navin Chawla as the Chief Election Commissioner with effect from Ap

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PM back on job

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday had his first official engagement since his bypass surgery five weeks ago and appeared fine as he held about 90-minute talks with Boni Yayi, President of African country Benin.
Dressed in grey bandgala suit, the 76-year-old Dr Singh walked up to the meeting room at his residence here for talks with Mr Yayi and shook hands with the visiting leader.
In

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Gandhi auction: Otis to meet Indian officials

The US-based owner of Mahatma Gandhi memorabilia, up for auction here on Thursday, has said that he will meet with Indian government officials on Wednesday to try to settle the issue.
James Otis said he hopes the Indian government is “willing to offer something very generous to India’s poorest in exchange for the donation of the items to the government.”
If the Indian government does not

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Priyanka wants more time

March 3: Ms Priyanka Gandhi Vadra told the Congressmen in Amethi on Monday that they would have to wait for “some more time” for her entry into active politics.
“I am not going to contest the election this time. I am here to take care of my mother’s and brother’s constituencies — Rae Bareli and Amethi — so that

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‘Lahore attacks show enormity of threat’

March 3: The Minister of state for external affairs, Mr Anand Sharma said the attack “underscores the enormity of the threat” that emerges from terrorism centred in Pakistan.
He noted that India had been insisting on dismantling the terror infrastructure in Pakistan and this attack has once again highlighted the need to do so.
An external affairs ministry spokesman said, “It is in Pakista

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Centre initiates probe to trace secret funds

March 3: The Central government has begun processes on a war footing to trace the source of at least Rs 2,000 crore detected in over 200 bank accounts during the current fiscal as the amount was believed to have been used for financing terror networks in India.
Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), which has marked more than 200 transactions in the country as “terror financed”, was trying ascer

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India may have role: Pakistan

Lahore, March 3: Indian involvement in the terror attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team cannot be ruled out, the Lahore Commissioner, Mr Khushro Pervaiz, was quoted as saying on Tuesday.
Mr Pervaiz also said that security officials had successfully protected the Sri Lankan team, Geo TV reported.
Meanwhile, a former chief of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Gen (Retd) Hameed Gul, said Ind

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BJP wants state lists by March 5

March 3: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has asked all its state units to submit names of candidates from most of the remaining Lok Sabha constituencies by March 5, when the party will have its central election committee meeting. The saffron party is also likely to announce its seat-sharing formula with AGP on March 4. The BJP, it is learnt, will fight six of the 14 Parliamentary constituencies i

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Montek gives tips to Congress media cell

March 3: In a bid to conceptualise the Congress’ campaign theme around “aam aadmi”, the party on Tuesday roped in the Planning Commission to educate its leaders and media managers about the growth story during UPA’s rule and its inclusiveness.
The deputy chairman of the Planning Commission, Dr Montek Singh Ahluwalia, had a session with the Congress leaders from across the country on Tuesd

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BSP first off the blocks

March 3: At a time when all other political parties are still struggling with alliances and political realignments and are yet to finalise their list of candidates, the ruling Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) in Uttar Pradesh has already surged ahead of others in poll preparedness.
The BSP is the only political party in Uttar Pradesh that is fully geared up to face the Lok Sabha elections in the state.

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Lone voter deep in Gir forest

March 3: It may be described as the wonder of the great Indian electoral exercise. One which will see a polling station being set up even for a lone voter in Gujarat’s Junagadh district. Polling station number no. 3 — Banez under the Una Assembly segment in Gujarat’s Junagadh district will be set up for just one voter. The polling station will be set up in the Gir forest area.
There will a

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Rahul meets Sharad Pawar

March 3: Political temperature rose in the state when the Congress leader, Mr Rahul Gandhi, on Tuesday met the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief, Mr Sharad Pawar, at a private meeting in Pune. It was later termed as “a private affair.”
But speculation ran haywire as political circles attributed all kinds of reasons to the meeting in the backdrop of the deadlock between the two parties

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Temple for Lalu and Rabri

Admirers of Union railway minister Lalu Prasad and his wife Rabri Devi are building a temple dedicated to the couple in Bihar. It will come up in a village in Kaimur district, about 150 km from Patna.
“Hundreds of villagers attended the bhumi puja (ground breaking ceremony)on Sunday,” Rajeshwar Yadav, the brain behind the Lalu-Rabri templesaid on Tuesday.
He said that life-sized idols of Mr

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Third front launch on March 12

March 2: The Former Prime Minister and Janata Dal(S) supremo, Mr H.D. Deve Gowda, on Monday announced the formation of the Third Front, a grouping of eight political parties, including the Left parties. The Third Front will be formally launched at a rally in Tumkur, 60 km from here, on March 12. The announcement came shortly before the Election Commission announced the schedule for the polls.

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Friendly fight on cards in UP

March 2: In a desperate attempt to minimise chances of votebank polarisation, the Samajwadi Party (SP) has started talking about a “friendly fight” with the Congress in Uttar Prad-esh. While the SP has agr-eed to concede 20 seats to the Congress, the latter continues to insist on 25 seats.
Sources in the SP said if the party failed to reach a formal alliance with the Congress, they could go i

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Vaiko, LTTE chief in a snap

March 2: Sri Lanka on Monday released photographs of Tamil Nadu politicians, Mr Vaiko and Mr P. Nedumaran with LTTE chief Prabhakaran, exposing what it called a “shameless relationship” between the politicos and “the convicted murderer of former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi”.

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‘Man can’t be forced to pay estranged wife’

March 2: The Supreme Court has said courts cannot force a man, accused of torturing his wife for dowry, to pay maintenance to her as a condition for granting anticipatory bail in the case.
Holding that such conditions are “onerous and excessive”, a bench comprising Justices R.V. Raveendran and J.M. Panchal set aside a Delhi high court order which had directed a man to pay maintenance of Rs 12

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BJP-JD(U) in seat tussle

March 2: If the BJP sealed its alliance with Mr Ajit Singh-led Rashtriya Lok Dal, hiccups between the saffron camp and its ally Janata Dal(U) remain in Bihar.
The JD(U) is demanding 28 out of 40 Lok Sabha seats in the state. The BJP, which had contested in 16 seats in the last Lok Sabha polls is not willing to concede to the demand at this juncture.
Meanwhile, a senior party leader, Mr George Fe

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Reds wary of Mamata-Congress combo

March 2: The CPI(M), which was banking on the rift between Mr Pranab Mukherjee and Ms Mamata Banerjee, could now be hit hard following the Congress-Trinamul alliance in West Bengal. Resentment is brewing in the state CPI(M) against its national leadership in Delhi for snapping ties with the UPA before the polls.
The CPI(M) leaders felt that in the absence of any polarisation of votes betw-een th

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Infy worker murdered in robbery attempt

March 2: An Infosys employee was murdered and his wife sustained injuries during a robbery attempt at their house in Banaswadi on Monday. The incident occurred between 5 and 6.30 am when four men gained entry into the house on the first floor of a three-storeyed building at Ramaswamypalya off Kammanahalli Main Road.
Umesh Krishnan, 27, died of asphyxia after being bound and gagged and Annie Mary,

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Sacked NCW member backs pub attack report

March 2: Sacked NCW member Nirmala Venkatesh on Monday defended her controversial report on the Mangalore pub attack, saying she had the power to take suo motu action being a member of the commission.
“So many cases were investigated by one-member committee. I can take suo motu action. I have the quasi-judicial power and can take suo motu action as per the NCW Act,” Ms Venkatesh told a press

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Centre plans legal block

March 2: With the US auction house not heeding to India’s request for stalling the auction of Mahatma Gandhi’s personal belongings on March 5, the Union government is all set to take a legal recourse to prevent these five articles from going under the hammer.
“Though negotiations with the auction house in New York are still on, we are seriously examining other means including legal action

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India eases ban on China toys

March 2: India on Monday relaxed the ban on the import of toys from China to allow shipments certified by global safety agencies, weeks after the Union government had imposed wide-ranging curbs for six months citing public safety. In February, India’s trade minister said the move complied with World Trade Organisation rules, but it drew strong criticism from China and sparked further worries abo

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Post-Godhra case: SIT submits report

March 2: A Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the post-Godhra riots cases in Gujarat on Monday submitted its report before the apex court.
The SIT, headed by former CBI director R.K. Raghavan, also submitted a confidential report in a sealed cover before a bench headed by Justice Arijit Pasayat. The bench said the main report will be given only to the Gujarat govern

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Centre plans legal block

March 2: With the US auction house not heeding to India’s request for stalling the auction of Mahatma Gandhi’s personal belongings on March 5, the Union government is all set to take a legal recourse to prevent these five articles from going under the hammer.
“Though negotiations with the auction house in New York are still on, we are seriously examining other means including legal action

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Gowda announces Third Front

Former Prime Minister and JDS supremo Deve Gowda on Monday announced the formation of the Third Front, an amalgamation of eight parties including the Left, and touted as a political alternative to the Congress and BJP.
The much talked about Front would be launched in Karnataka on March 12 with a rally in Tumkur, 50 km from Bengaluru, Mr Gowda said. The announcement came shortly before the schedul

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Poll dates announced

New Delhi: The Election Commission announced the dates for the 2009 Lok Sabha election on Monday. The polls would be held in five phases between April 16 and May 13 (April 16, April 23, April 30, May 7 and May 13).
The counting of the votes would be held on May 16.
The polls will be held in five phases in Jammu and Kashmir and Uttar Pradesh, while Bihar will have a four-phased poll.
Andhra Pra

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SP leaders meet Sonia

March 1: The Samajwadi supremo, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, met the Congress chief Ms Sonia Gandhi, in a bid to break the deadlock over seat-sharing in Uttar Pradesh in the General elections, even as the former chief minister said he was confident of striking a deal with the UPA’s lead party “very soon”.
There was no word from either parties on the outcome of the meeting at Gandhi’s 10 Janp

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NCP wants national alliance

March 1: Nationalist Congress Party supremo Mr Sharad Pawar on Sunday laid down some conditions for power-sharing with the Congress after the coming elections, and called on the Congress to rethink