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December 03, 2012

22:50  Media and its freedom of expression :  Vanita Kolhi-Khandekar looks at the recent upheavals in the Indian media in Business Standard:
22:42  Through Eastern Eyes:  Deborah Baker reviews Pankaj Mishra's latest book in Caravan magazine: Hubby Amitav Ghosh tweeted about the review...
22:40  Kate in hospital for morning sickness:  The Duchess of Cambridge is at the King Edward VII hospital to be treated for severe morning sickness. She will be there for several days. The duchess will be 31 in January.
22:37  Discussion on FDI in LS tomorrow: Swaraj:  Leader of Opoosition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj has tweeted: I will be initiating discussion on FDI in multibrand retail in Lok Sabha tomorrow at 2 PM.
22:30  Indian-origin executive among top News Corp appointees:  

News Corp today announced a major restructuring of its top management in line with its decision to split into two publicly traded firms, naming a new head for its troubled British newspaper arm and appointing an Indian-origin executive to head the publishing business' finances.        


The company said Dow Jones Editor-in-Chief and Managing Editor of The Wall Street Journal Robert Thomson will become the CEO of the new proposed publishing entity, following the company's intended separation into two independent, publicly traded companies.        


In the new role, Thomson will have to confront a lingering scandal in the UK News Corp that closed its News of the World newspaper in July 2011 after a phone hacking scandal.        


The publishing entity would retain the name of News Corporation and the media and entertainment company would be named Fox Group.        


News Corp Chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch would serve as Chairman of the new News Corporation and Chairman and CEO of Fox Group.          


Murdoch announced that Bedi Ajay Singh, who had most recently served as President, Finance and Administration and Chief Financial Officer for MGM Studios, would assume the role of Chief Financial Officer of the newly formed publishing company.  

22:14  Jose Mourinho to leave Real Madrid:  Jose Mourinho will leave Real Madrid at the end of the season. Real Madrid trails arch-rivals Barcelona by 11 points in the Spanish football league.
21:59  Will, Kate expecting child:  Prince William and his wife, the Duchess of Cambridge, the former Kate Middleton, are expecting their first child, St James' Palace announced on Monday. The child will be third in line to the throne after grandfather Prince Charles and dad Will.
21:27  2002 hit-and-run case: Court summons Salman Khan:  
A Mumbai court has issued summons to Salman Khan and a police officer to appear on December 27 to answer charges of giving false information and producing wrong witnesses as a result of which the trial in a hit-and-run case involving the actor was delayed by around five years.

The summons was issued by the Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate of the ninth court at suburban Bandra who heard a complaint filed by social worker Santosh Daundkar.

The complaint alleged that on the basis of false information given by the police, a wrong set of doctors were examined in court during the trial. As these doctors were not concerned with the case, they were either discharged or were not examined, and as a result, the trial was delayed.

The complaint also urged the court to order an inquiry into the charges of deliberately giving false information as a result of which the trial was unnecessary delayed. It also said that giving false information to the court was an offence and this was done by the police at the behest of the actor.

On September 28, 2002, Salman Khan's Toyota Land Cruiser had rammed into a bakery in suburban Bandra, killing one and injuring four others who were sleeping on a pavement. 

The actor was booked on a charge of culpable homicide, not amounting to murder. However, he said that it was merely an accident and he did not have any intention to kill anyone.
20:46  Air India introduces Delhi-Dhaka flight:  
Fulfilling a long-standing demand of the people of India and Bangladesh, Air India on Monday launched its direct flight services between Delhi and Dhaka. 

Air India would be operating the state-of-the-art Airbus 320 aircraft on Delhi-Dhaka sector.

"The flight AI 0231 left from Delhi at 0545 hours and reached Dhaka at 0845 hours. On the return leg the flight AI 0232 left Dhaka at 0945 hours and reached Delhi at 1145 hours (all times local)," an Air India spokesperson said. 

The airline has promised a convenient flight schedule for direct onward connections from Delhi to London, Paris and Frankfurt besides direct flights to the USA and the Persian Gulf, he said.
20:03  Pak's AQ Khan wants missile as his party's election symbol:  Disgraced nuclear scientist A Q Khan's Tehrik-e-Tahaffuz Pakistan party has asked the Election Commission to allot a missile as its election symbol. The party sent the request to the Election Commission a week ago, Geo News channel quoted its sources as saying.

The poll panel is expected to decide on allotting symbols to various parties during its next meeting. The Tehrik-e-Tahaffuz Pakistan is one of 19 new parties that were recently registered by the Election Commission ahead of next year's general election.

It is not yet clear if Khan himself will contest the polls. Khan, 76, was placed under house arrest in 2004 after he confessed on state-run television to running a clandestine nuclear proliferation ring that provided technology and know-how to countries like Libya and North Korea.

However, he is regarded as a hero in Pakistan for his role in the programme to develop nuclear weapons.
19:57  Cong demands Modi's response on gas project allegations:  With election campaign reaching a crescendo in Gujarat, Congress today demanded an answer from Chief Minister Narendra Modi over a report alleging that his government gave a foreign company stake worth Rs 20,000 crore in a gas exploration project virtually for nothing. Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari at the same time made it clear that he was not demanding any probe into the matter and does not believe in 'putting the cart before the horse'.

He posed a number of questions to Modi regarding the deal but caveated his response by frequently adding, "If what the report has said is true."
19:51  Right wing outfit Sri Ram Sene today opposed the Pakistan cricket team's tour to India and said it would disrupt the T20 match between the two countries in this city on December 25.

"We oppose Pakistan cricket team's tour to India. We will not allow Pakistan-India T20 match on Dec 25," SRS Chief Pramod Mutalik told reporters at Chinnswamy stadium.

He alleged that both the Centre and State governments, instead of taking up the responsbility of providing security to people of the country, affected by terror attacks, are conducting such matches.

Muthalik said he had met Karnataka State Cricket Association officials and requested them not to conduct the match in Bengaluru.
18:59  Vatican unveils Pope's Twitter account @pontifex:  The Pope is to begin sending Twitter messages using the handle @pontifex as his personal account, the Vatican said.A spokesman said Pope Benedict XVI wanted to "reach out to everyone" with tweets translated into eight languages.The first tweet from his account, whose name means both pontiff and builder of bridges, is expected on 12 December. Read more
18:54  China plays down row over disputed map in new e-passport:  China today sought to allay the concerns of India and some South East Asian countries over disputed maps in its new e-passport, saying it is not a "big issue" and should not be over played. Asked about problems relating to disputed maps in the e-passports, Director-General of Chinese Foreign Ministry Qin Gang who briefed the Indian media about the talks between National Security Advisor, Shivshankar Menon and Chinese State Councilor Dai Bingguo, said it is not an issue to be over played.
18:30  Wanted: intellectual leaders, not CEOs:  In their eagerness to push through reforms, Vice Chancellors resort to emergency powers, creating an atmosphere in which dissent is a no-no and education the casualty. Read
18:19  FDI: Debate at 2 pm tomorrow, voting on Wednesday :  Big day in Parliament tomorrow. The debate and discussion on FDI in retail will be held at 2pm in the Lok Sabha. Sushma Swaraj, the Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha will initiate the discussion. The Congress is fielding Kapil Sibal to air its views. The BJP will get 48 minutes while the Congress gets 95 minutes. The business advisory committee has agreed to have a 14-hour discussion. The voting will take place on Wednesday at 6 pm.  
18:13  The Sikh soldier who will be the first to guard Buckingham Palace without a bearskin --  he'll be wearing a turban instead. Read more here
18:09  Salman unveils new look:  Salman Khan has once again surprised fans with a new hairdo, giving a razor-cut crop to his sideburns. The superstar made his first public appearance with the new look on the Bigg Boss sets in Lonavala while shooting the special episodes for this weekend. Remember his other hair styles?
18:06  India freezes aid to Maldives :  Bilateral relations between the Maldives and India have hit an all-time low in the aftermath of some controversial decisions taken by the island nation. Now an upset Indian government has upped the ante, freezing major aid promised to the neighbouring country in the recent past. Read more here
18:03  Why the Chinese love building fake cities:  Chinese tourists may be flocking to Europe in record numbers, but now they can see some of the continent's top historical attractions without ever leaving the People's Republic. Read
17:57  Mamata's hunger games: Centre wants Bengal to die:  West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today alleged that the UPA government was bent on depriving central assistance to the state, which would assert its rights.

"The Centre wants that we die of hunger. But as long we are in power in the state, we will not let that happen. We may be poor, but not beggars," Banerjee told a rally here in Purulia district.

"We know how to get back our rights," she said, but did not elaborate. Whether central help was available or not, her government would assist farmers with tractors and agriculture inputs and also electricity for irrigation since diesel was hardly affordable after the hike in its price, the chief minister said. "We will build our own resources to sustain our agriculture," she said.
17:46  Pak's nuke man AQ Khan wants missile as party symbol:  Nuclear scientist AQ Khan's political party Tehreek-e-Tahafuzz Pakistan has requested the Election Commission of Pakistan to assign a missile as the party's election symbol. Read
17:37  Prabhu Chawla tweets: NaMo told me and others that he would inflict worst ever defeat to the Congress. Only time will tell!
17:36  The secret behind Nigella Lawson's oomph:   Cookery writer and presenter Nigella Lawson has revealed that she burns calories in the privacy of her home by running on a treadmill in just her bra. "Exercise is the only thing that means I can still eat. It's about keeping the status quo,' the Telegraph quoted her as saying. "I've got a treadmill upstairs. I lock the door so no-one can come in. I just wear a bra and a pair of trainers and I play very loud music - disco and 1980s - and sing. "I've got a terrible voice. It clears my head because I'm such a frantic worrier. But if you sing really loud, even for just 15 minutes, those worries can't take hold,' she added.
17:22  Forefathers did not give their lives for intolerant Pak: Bilawal:  Bilawal Bhutto Zardari today said the attacks on temples, graveyards, properties and lives of the minorities are an attack on the Jinnah's vision of Pakistan and pose an existential threat to the country' "something Shaheed Benazir Bhutto gave her life fighting against." Read more
17:17  Cong: Gujarat growth has declined under Modi:  The Congress Party on Monday hit back at Gujarat Chief Minster Narendra Modi ahead of the assembly elections and alleged that the state's growth has declined under his ill governance.

Talking to reporters here, Arjun Modhwadia, Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee president said that the law and order situation is in shambles in the state with over 14,000 children going missing.

"Under the governance of Narendra Modi, crime against children has increased and almost 14,000 children have been reportedly missing. Nothing has been done in this regard. The police are busy promoting Modi's political ambitions and have sidelined the safety of the people of the state," said Modhwadia.
17:14  Norway child abuse case: Sentencing tomorrow:  The sentencing in the Norway 'child abuse' case is now scheduled for tomorrow. The Indian couple arrested in Oslo, Norway, in an alleged child abuse case have been charged with "gross repeated maltreatment" of their child for which the prosecution has proposed a minimum sentence of one year and three months for the parents. Read
17:11  'Gujarat's Muslims have no option but to talk to Modi':  Zafar Sareshwala, who speaks in Narendra Modi's favour and has initiated the dialogue between Modi and Gujarati Muslims, explains to's Sheela Bhatt his motivations for doing so. Read
16:48  Darkness over India:  The re-election of President Barack Obama was widely described as a bitterly fought battle of lowlights. The American rightwing voters for Mitt Romney have described the elections of the United States of America as fraudulent and are now waiting to fight the next battle to push the US over the 'fiscal cliff'. Read
16:35  The making of the rope used to hang Kasab:  Shashikant Kumar has spent years in Buxar Central Jail as a spinner jobber, an archaic sort of title that he is sure nobody would want after he retires in a couple of years. This is not just another jail. This is where the hangman's noose is made for hangings across India. It is made with the help of two grim-looking machines in a long corridor on the side closest to the Ganga. The river keeps the air humid and heavy, ideal for the 'perfect rope'.  Read more here
16:28  Why 66A is a cut & paste job:  The controversial Section 66A of the Information Technology Act has borrowed words out of context from British and American laws, according to lawyers here who are calling it a "poor cut-and-paste job". Read the report on the Telegraph.
16:25  NO MNS apology yet, but Raj 'upset' over assault:  The MNS corporator Nitin Nikam had been arrested for wrongful restraint. While Raj Thackeray is believed to be upset about the assault of a senior citizen, the party has not aplogised. The party's stand is that corporators do not do their job despite taking public money. The contractor is around 65-years-old.
16:18  Slap-happy MNS corporator arrested, given bail:  The Maharashtra Navnirman Sena corporator who repeatedly slapped a 65-year-old private contractor over the alleged 'delay' in repairing a damaged water pipeline, has finally been arrested, but released on bail.

The footage of the assault, which was telecast by news channels in Mumbai on Saturday, showed MNS corporator Nitin Nikam repeatedly hitting D G Patil over water shortage in Ganeshwadi locality in Mumbai, in full public view.
16:06  Zardari demands report on demolition of Hindu temple:  Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari believes in locking the stable door after the horses have bolted. Zardari has directed authorities to submit a report on the demolition of a century-old Hindu temple in Karachi. According to presidential spokesperson Senator Farhatullah Babar, Zardari expressed concern over the incident and directed the authorities to ensure no community was discriminated against in any manner, reports The Express Tribune. Zardari reiterated the government's commitment to safeguard the rights of minorities in the country.

16:02  Stage set for direct contest between Modi and Shweta Bhatt:  The Gujarat Parivartan Party today withdraws its candidate from Maninagar constituency, paving way for a direct contest between Chief Minister Narendra Modi and Congress candidate Shweta Bhatt, wife of suspended IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt.

"We are withdrawing our candidate, Pravin Patel, from Maninagar Assembly constituency in favour of Congress candidate Shweta Bhatt so that there is a direct fight between Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and Shweta Bhatt," (GPP) general secretary Gordhan Zadaphia said.

The move comes following Shweta Bhatt's appeal to Keshubhai Patel-led Gujarat Parivartan Party to withdraw its candidate in fray from Maninagar. "I appeal to all the political parties which oppose BJP to support me in my political battle against the Gujarat Chief Minister... I appeal especially to GPP Chief Keshubhai Patel to withdraw his candidate," Shweta had said yesterday.

"I am confident that Keshubhai will accept my appeal," she had said. Maninagar, a BJP-dominated constituency, has seen Modi winning for the last two times.
15:48  28 years on, no justice for Bhopal gas victims:  Bhopal observed the 28th anniversary of the gas disaster today, with various organisations working for the cause of the people affected by it holding rallies while criticising the government for not doing anything for the victims.
Even after 28 years the disaster, no one has been punished for it and the victims given only inadequate compensation, Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Udyog Sanghthan convenor Abdul Jabbar said.
On the intervening night of December 2-3, 1984, deadly methyl isocyanate gas leaked from the Union Carbide plant in Bhopal, killing over 3,000 people and injuring lakhs of others in the world's worst industrial disaster.
15:41  Pakistani Hindus protest after temple demolition:  Around 2,000 people took to the streets in Karachi on Sunday to protest after a Hindu temple in the city's Soldier Bazaar area was allegedly knocked down, just hours after a court order was issued protecting it from immediate demolition. Read
15:40  An emotional end to Ponting's storied career:  There was one tiny consolation for Ricky Ponting as he walked off a Test field for the last time. He knew he'd made the right decision to retire. Read
15:37  Happy new year for Bolly stars: Rs 3 crore for 30 minutes :  It's that time of the year when event organisers are chasing Bollywood stars - especially the heroines - for New Year's Eve performances in India and abroad. Read more
15:32  'Free' nosering with a McDonald's burrito :  Frances Rosario got more than she bargained for when she bought a breakfast burrito at an Atlanta area McDonald's on Wednesday morning.A few bites into her 4-year-old daughter's breakfast burrito, Rosario made a shocking discovery: a piece of jewelry that appeared to be someone's nose ring was tucked between the eggs.The discovery would have irked anyone, but for Rosario, it was more than a mere mealbreaker. Read
15:07  Indias supermarkets start embracing non-veg:  At Nepean Sea Road, one of the toniest parts of Mumbai, it's impossible to find eggs at any of the local grocery stores. As for any meat products, forget about it. The local cafs too don't have dishes with any egg or meat, this includes salads, sandwiches and desserts.Reason: They do not want to offend the many vegetarian residents of this wealthy neighborhood. Read
15:03  Mumbai: One dead as slab of unoccupied building falls. Details awaited. 
15:03  Congress is set to issue a three-line whip on FDI for the Lok Sabha debate tomorrow and for Rajya Sabha later in the week. 
15:00  Congress reacts to BJP's manifesto for the Gujarat polls. As expected, the Congress rubbished it saying, it was politically opportunistic.
14:48  Modernisation of Chinese Navy cause of concern: Navy Chief:  Viewing the rapid modernisation of Chinese Navy as a "major concern", Navy Chief Admiral D K Joshi today made it clear that India will protect its interests in the disputed South China Sea, even if it means sending forces there.

"Yes you are right. The modernisation (of Chinese Navy) is truly impressive... It is a actually a major major cause of concern for us, which we continuously evaluate and work out our options and our strategies," he told a press conference.

The Navy Chief was replying to a question on contingencies in South China sea to protect Indian interests there and impression about the Chinese Navy's modernisation.
14:41  Hope Tendulkar gets a ton at Eden: Ganguly:  Facing criticism for his prolonged form slump, Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar got some words of encouragement from his former captain and opening partner Sourav Ganguly ahead of the third cricket Test against England starting here on December 5.

Addressing a gathering which had all members of the Indian team, Ganguly said, "Many stories are being written about the match. I wish all the luck to Sachin. I hope he scores a ton at Eden Gardens."
14:28  Dimple: No other woman can claim Khanna's wealth:  The Bombay High Court today stayed till December 17 the proceedings in a case of domestic violence against family members of Rajesh Khanna by a woman claiming to have been in a live-in relationship with the late superstar.

The proceedings in a Metropolitan Magistrate's Court at suburban Bandra were stayed by Justice K U Chandiwal, who issued notice to Anita Advani, the lady who claimed to have looked after the actor in the last few years of his life as a wife would do.

The court was hearing a petition filed by Khanna's actress wife Dimple and actor son-in-law Akshay Kumar challenging the processes started by the magistrate against them and other family members. Twinkle and Rinki, Khanna's daughters, are also in the process of filing similar petitions.

Advani, in her complaint against Dimple and others, has claimed she was driven out of Khanna's Bandra bungalow 'Ashirwad' after his death and sought maintenance from the actor's estate.

On the other hand, Dimple contended that she was the legally wedded wife of Khanna and as such no other woman can claim share in the wealth left behind by her husband.

The Magistrate, Dimple argued, should not have entertained the complaint which has made "baseless" charges. She contended that it was "unreasonable" for the Magistrate to even suggest that she and her family go in for a compromise with the complainant in which case he would refer the matter for mediation.
14:22  South Africa stay top ranked cricket team with its win against Australia. This is SA's second win against Australia, beating it by 309 runs.
14:20  Murali saves his spin for on the field:  Sri Lankan import Muttiah Muralitharan has welcomed the hype as he and Shane Warne go head-to-head one last time to headline Friday's Big Bash League opener. Cricket's two greatest slow bowlers will clash when Muralitharan's Melbourne Renegades host Warne's tournament favourites the Melbourne Stars at Etihad Stadium. Read
14:16  Russians stuck in traffic jam for two days:  Thousands of lorries and cars have been stuck, some for more than two days, in a traffic jam dozens of miles long caused by heavy snow north-west of Moscow, Russian media have reported. Read
14:13  Ponting gets poignant guard of honour from Oz:  Ricky Ponting departed the international cricket scene in style, despite a cheap dismissal in his final innings for eight, but left as Australia's all-time leading Test batsman. Read
14:10  Nepalese woman named CNN Hero of the Year:  Pushpa Basnet, a Nepalese woman who supports children so they don't have to live behind bars with their incarcerated parents, was named the 2012 CNN Hero of the Year on Sunday night. Read
14:05  Former Army chief V K Singh to join Parliament gherao tomorrow:  Former Army chief V K Singh, who has assumed an activist's role after retirement, will join a Parliament gherao agitation by sugarcane farmers tomorrow, its organisers said.

The protest has been organised by Rashtriya Kisan Mazdoor Sangathan (RKMS) and is expected to be joined by farmers' leaders and civil society members.

The former Army chief had on November 2 attended a press conference held by RKMS and announced that the outfit will gherao Parliament on December 4 if government did not reject Rangarajan Committee report on freeing the sugar sector.

"The former Army chief will be part of the gherao. We had written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh giving him time till November 30. We are going ahead with our protest as announced," RKMS Convenor V M Singh said.

The Rangarajan committee has recommended phased decontrol of the highly regulated Rs 80,000-crore sugar industry by suggesting removal of the levy obligation, release mechanism and having a uniform, revenue-linked sugarcane price.
13:58  Getting all runny about dal :  "It is not that I've never cooked dal, the family of Indian legume dishes that is a staple for the hundreds of millions of vegetarians of India, as well as who knows how many millions of omnivores; it's just that I've never cooked it especially well."
A New Yorker on the quintessential Indian favourite -- dal.
13:47  Ponting's last stand was short of runs but full of emotion:  Ricky Ponting raised both arms to all parts of the WACA Ground and said farewell to cricket. His last Test innings of eight was all too brief, and came to a sad end three minutes before lunch. He lingered a few moments on the ground, arms raised, as the crowd stood and acknowledged his greatness and South Africa's players, led by captain Graeme Smith ran to him and applauded him from the field.
Read more
13:44  No let up in harassment of Kashmiri students :  There seems to be no let up in the "harassment' of Kashmiri students studying outside Jammu and Kashmir. In a fresh instance, the Kashmiri students undergoing studies at the Panchkula Engineering College in Haryana have allegedly been beaten to pulp by fellow colleagues for 'being Kashmiris'. Read more here
13:41  How to make friends in Mumbai and beat loneliness. Read
13:34  Cancellation of GMR's USD 500 mn Maldives airport proj stayed:   In a reprieve to Indian infrastructure major GMR, the Singapore High Court today stayed the Maldives Government's decision to terminate the USD 500 million contract awarded to a consortium led by it for modernising the Male international airport.

The move is likely to pave way for the GMR to continue operations at Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (INIA) in Maldives. "GMR Male International Airport Pvt Ltd (GMIAL) is pleased to advise that the High Court of Singapore has today granted injunctive relief against the applicability and operations of Letter dated November, 27 issued by the Ministry of Finance & Treasury (MoFT), Government of Male," GMR Infrastructure said in a statement.

As per the contract in the project, in case of differences between various parties, the law of either Singapore or UK would apply.
13:31  Maya: Test FDI in Cong-ruled states first :   Much like Mulayam Singh Yadav, Mayawati also she is against FDI in retail and promises to reveal her decision on voting in Parliament tomorrow. Addressing a press meet at the Constitution Club in Lucknow, the BSP chief says that retail FDI should be tested in Congress ruled states first. "The government's claim that retail FDI will reduce prices is bogus. We also don't want to be on the same side with BJP in the issue," she says.  
13:23  CPM: Govt will lose FDI vote; Maya, Mulayam opposed:   CPI(M)'s Prakash Karat tells CNN IBN that the government will lose the vote against FDI in retail sector. Karat says that BSP chief Mayawati and the Samajwadi as well, have taken positions against FDI. Mulayam had said he was against FDI and would clear his stand in Parliament.
Debate on FDI will take place from December 4-5 (Lok Sabha) and December 6-7 (Rajya Sabha).

Mayawati says that FDI is the only option to bring in foreign money, but it would affect small retailers, farmers and enslave India. 
12:56  MNS corporator slaps elderly man over water shortage:  A Maharashtra Navnirman Sena corporator repeatedly slapped a 65-year-old private contractor over the alleged 'delay' in repairing a damaged water pipeline. Read more
12:49  SC raps Sahara group for not paying Rs 27,000 crore:  Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has rapped the Sahara Group for not complying with its order for refunding Rs 27,000 crore to its investors. The SC told  Sahara, "You are justifying your conduct which is unjustifiable, your intention is very shaky. Every step taken by you is shaky."

The company led by Subroto Roy Sahara had approached the Supreme Court after it challenged the Securities Appellate Tribunals (SAT) rejection of their plea to direct its registrar accepting a pay order of Rs.5,120 crore that it had to deposit to SEBI towards the payment of investors' deposits.

The Sahara India Real Estate Corporation and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation Ltd had moved the SAT seeking direction to its registrar to accept their pay order of Rs.5,120 crore towards payment of investors' money which these two companies had mopped up through Optionary Fully Convertible Debentures.SAT had rejected Sahara's plea on Thursday.
12:44  Earlier in the day, LK Advani hailed Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi for his administrative skills, and said that the latter is ''a role model for chief ministers of other states on how to rule, govern and take care of even the poorest''.

Addressing a rally in poll-bound Gujarat, Advani cited that Modi''s administrative skills had lent a prominent spot for the state on the global map.

"Modi is undertaking great development work in Gujarat. He is a role model for chief ministers of other states on how to rule, govern and take care of even the poorest," Advani said.

12:41  We made a new middle class from the poor : Modi:  Top BJP leaders LK Advani and Arun Jaitley share the state with Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi as he releases his poll manifesto from Ahmedabad. Addressing his supporters, Modi says, "The manfiesto is my commitment to Gujarat. I am proud to be in charge of a a youth-led development. This government has made a new middle class from those who were poor. We have created a new middle class. We will make Gujarat the textile capital of India."
12:32  BJP poll manifesto highlights bijli, sadak, paani:   And more on that Gujarat poll manifesto.
- 30 lakh women to be given employment and assistance
- Gujarat power generation will double in the next three years
-- Gujarat will be the frontrunner in harnessing-- g non-traditional power.
-- The government promises more connectivity -- road networks will double in the next five years.
-- The government plans the construction of 28 lakh homes in rural areas, 22 lakh homes in urban areas
-- Eligibility for government jobs to be hiked to 28 or 30 on a case to case basis.
-- Every individual will be eligible for group insurance.
-- Surat, Rajkot, Vadodara to get multi-speciality hospitals
12:17  Key points in the BJP's poll manifesto:  Here are some of the key points in the BJP's Gujarat elections manifesto...

  • 16 lakh hectares of land to be irrigated over the next five years
  • Agro processing units, cold storages in all districts
  • All farm electricity connections to be cleared immediately.
  • All Saurashtra dams to have Narmada water in the next three years.
  • Farmers to be given loans at lower interest rates.
  • Affordable housing for the poor.
  • Pure drinking water for everyone.
12:13  In the manifesto, the BJP is likely to focus on affordable housing for urban areas and irrigation facilities for agriculture in rural areas. Farmers will also be given loans at lower interest rates. Read more 
12:11  The Supreme Court asks the SIT on Gujarat riots to apprise it on whether documents of the closure report in the Gulberg society riots case can be given to Zakia Jafri.
12:07  BJP releases manifesto for Guj polls, Cong tomorrow:  The BJP has just released the manifesto for the Gujarat elections. The Congress will release its manifesto tomorrow. 
12:02  Khar seems to be eager to help India: Hafeez Saeed :  "It has been four years since the attacks in Mumbai. In these 4 years, India has been unable to provide any evidence against me in connection with the case. The documents provided by India as evidence could not stand in court and were dismissed by Lahore High Court as propaganda. A similar case was also made by the Supreme Court. A judicial commission was sent from Pakistan to India on the issue of the Mumbai attacks, and no proof of my involvement was presented to them.

Despite this, Ms Khar wants to ask India to provide more evidence against me. She appears to be very eager to help India resolve the Mumbai case, but what has she done with regard to the Samjhauta Express attacks, where many Pakistanis were killed?"  -- 26/11 mastermind Hafeez Saeed in an interview to a Pakistani newspaper.  Read
11:56  India: Crunch time for economic reforms:  With 13 days left in the parliamentary session and squabbling continuing over FDI in retail, India's prime minister is hoping to push through 6 more important economic reforms. Read
11:40  Prakash Amte 'forced' vasectomies on Maoists :  Magsaysay award winner Dr Prakash Amte, son of legendary social activist Baba Amte, has conducted vasectomy surgery on Maoists at his community centre in Maharashtra's Gadchiroli district. But he has said that he only did his duty as a doctor and never helped or intended to help the extremists through the procedure that has become controversial. Read
11:37  Zardari-baiter Fatima Bhutto to contest Pak polls, says mother:  Fatima Bhutto, the writer-activist niece of slain former Premier Benazir Bhutto, will contest Pakistan's upcoming general election from a constituency in Punjab province, her mother has said. Thirty-year-old Fatima, the daughter of Benazir's brother Murtaza Bhutto, has for long said that she has no plans to enter politics. Read
11:36  Chinese princelings dominate; no minority representation:  That Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the Communist Party of China, began his term with a call for unity underscores the leadership's need to close ranks as it grapples with a range of challenges, from tackling corruption and bringing about more balanced growth. In recent months, the Party has been preoccupied with intense bargaining among competing groups pushing for their allies to secure top posts. Read
11:30  In the world of foreign policy, a rare idealist:  In his short tenure as Prime Minister, IK Gujral went out of the way to accommodate neighbouring countries. Kuldip Nayar pays tribute. Read
11:27  What China's transition means for India:  The new leadership in Beijing is likely to look for stability in relations with New Delhi as it addresses more urgent issues with its neighbours in the Asia Pacific and the US. Read
11:25  AIADMK MPs to meet PM today:  Fourteen AIADMK MPs are meeting Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh today to protest the government's delay in permitting the Tamil Nadu government's initiative in the Arasu Cables.  The AIADMK suspects the hidden hands of DMK and Congress ministers from Tamil Nadu to stop the programmes of the ADMK government.
11:15  Parliament adjourned for the day:  It took 15 minutes for MPs to wrap their work in Parliament today. Both houses were adjourned for the day after the obituary reference to former Prime Minister I K Gujral.
11:13  Day I of IIT-Bombay placements: Rs 80 lakh top offer:  Day 1 of placements at the premier IIT-Bombay on Saturday ended on a high note for many. It was evident from the status on Sriram Bhargav's Facebook page that read "placed at Samsung US/Korea". The firm is believed to have made the highest offer this year of around US $1,50,000 (Rs 80 lakh) per annum. Read
11:11  Ayodhya: The Battle for Indias Soul:  Our story begins in 1949, two years after India became an independent nation following centuries of rule by Mughal emperors and then the British.What happened back then in the dead of night in a mosque in a northern Indian town came to define the new nation, and continues to shape the world's largest democracy today. The story of Ayodhya on the Wall Street Journal. Read
11:03  Gujarat polls: BJP, Congress to release manifestos today:  In Gujarat, the ruling BJP and the main opposition Congress will today release their respective election manifestos for the upcoming Assembly elections in Gujarat. According to reports, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley and other senior leaders will release the BJP''s manifesto in Ahmedabad.

In the manifesto, BJP is likely to focus on affordable housing for urban areas and irrigation facilities for agriculture in rural areas. Meanwhile, senior BJP leader LK Advani termed Modi as a "role model" of development.
11:01  Parliament schedule today:   LOK SABHA

1. Obituary reference to the passing away of former Prime Minister I K Gujral 2. Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2012
3. Prevention of Bribery of Foreign Public Officials and Officials of Public International Organisation Bill
4. National Accreditation Regulatory Authority for Higher Educational Institutions Bill, 2010
5. Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Order (Amendment) Bill, 2012

1. Obituary reference to the passing away of former Prime Minister I K Gujral 2. Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2012
3. Constitution (117th Amendment) Bill, 2012
4. North-Eastern Areas (Reorganisation) Amendment Bill, 2012
5. Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2011
10:57  Even Std VI students are being made to prepare for IIT! :  Students in the race for competitive exams, such as the IIT entrance test, are starting a little too young. In a bid to get an edge over ever-increasing competition, children are joining coaching institutes as early as in Class 6. Read the report on the Hindustan Times. 
10:47  Now, army to get its own mini air force :   Having recently won a hard-fought turf war with the IAF to get heavy-duty "attack" helicopters of its own, the Army is now pressing the throttle to get its "mini" air force up and flying as soon as possible. Army chief General Bikram Singh has approved the creation of a permanent cadre for the Army Aviation Corps (AAC) by the end of this month, which will operate light observation and attack helicopters in the short-term and medium-lift choppers and even fixed-wing aircraft in the long-term, sources said. Read
09:37  Modi is a role model for development, says Advani:   Gujarat Chief Minister received praise from senior leader L K Advani who was addressing election rallies at Kalol and Mansa in Gandhinagar district, ahead of the upcoming polls.

Advani called Modi as a "role model" of development while appealing to states to imitate him. "Modi is undertaking great development work in Gujarat. He is a role model for chief ministers of other states on how to rule, govern and take care of even the poorest," Advani said.
09:15  Egypt's top court joins strike :  Egypts highest court joined a judicial rebellion against President Mohammed Morsi on Sunday by declaring an open-ended strike on the day it was supposed to rule on the legitimacy of two key assemblies controlled by allies of the Islamist leader, reports AP.

The strike by the Supreme Constitutional Court and opposition plans to march on the presidential palace on Tuesday take the countrys latest political crisis to a level not seen in the nearly two years of turmoil since Hosni Mubaraks ouster in a popular uprising.
09:10  Beed blast: No terror link, says police :  The police ruled out any terror link to the radio set explosion at Kalegaon village in Beed district even as one person was arrested for planting the parcel on the Maharashtra transport bus.   

Four persons were injured in the radio set explosion at Kalegaon village on Friday.   

"There in no terror angle to the radio set explosion, which occurred on Friday. It happened due to personal enmity," Inspector General (IG) Ritesh Kumar told reporters in Beed on Sunday night.   

Om Nimbalkar (35), a bus conductor, had taken home a parcel, containing a radio set, which he had found on the Mumbai-Ambejogai state transport bus on Friday. When he tried to replace the battery pack, it exploded, seriously injuring his wife Usha, 30, mother Kusum, 53, and two-year-old son Kunal, besides himself.
08:42  Indian couple arrested in Norway: Verdict today:   A court in Norway will give its verdict today on the case of the Indian couple arrested in Norway for alleged abuse of their seven-year-old son.

Chandrashekar Vallabhaneni and his wife Anupama were arrested on November 28 on charges of "gross repeated maltreatment" of their child by "threats, violence or other wrong".

The prosecution has proposed a jail term of 15 and 18 months for the mother and father respectively.
08:35  Menon may meet Li Keqiang, China's next premier:  National Security Adviser Shiv Shankar Menon, who arrived in Beijing on Sunday for border talks, is likely to meet Li Keqiang, who will replace Wen Jiabao as China's next premier. The Hindu report: If Li meets Menon, that would indicate that the next Chinese leadership would stay on course improving the India-China relationship, especially the business part, which is expected to touch the $100 billion mark soon. Li will steer the Chinese economy through the next decade. He is reckoned to be the most highly educated Chinese leader since the Revolution. Also read another Hindu report here:
08:23  Senior Congress leader will not campaign for party:  After being denied a ticket for the assembly election, former Gujarat deputy chief minister Narhari Amin and other senior leaders like Naresh Raval have declared they will not campaign for the party. The Hindu report:
08:17  Andhra Pradesh assembly creates history:  It enacts first legislation to implement sub-plans for scheduled castes and scheduled tribes:
08:13  Payment delays affect cash transfers in Rajasthan:  A cautionary tale from The Times of India:
08:09  David Cameron forbids ministers from meeting the Dalai Lama:  David Cameron banned all contact with the Dalai Lama during crunch talks with the Chinese government over the Euro bailout package earlier this year. The ministers -- Tim Loughton (who was sacked in September) and Norman Lamb -- were barred from attending a lunch with the Dalai Lama in the offices of the House of Commons Speaker John Bercow, minutes before it was due to begin. The pair then wrote to Cameron to protest after the "deeply embarrassing" incident in June this year, according to a copy of the letter obtained by the Channel FourDispatches programme. Loughton told the programme that he and Baker had originally been cleared to meet the Dalai Lama on his visit to the UK. The pair had been given the green light to attend the lunch on June 20 -- Mr Baker is honorarypresident of the Tibet Society and Mr Loughton is a member of the Tibet Society Council. But the then-foreign minister Jeremy Browne intervened, telling moments that they could not attend moments before it was due to begin. The pair wrote a private letter to Mr Cameron in July which they strongly protested about the way they had been muzzled, and complained about the "tremendous pressure put upon each of us at the 11th hour not to attend.
07:55  Modi needs more than warmth to melt the Muslim mood:  M J Akbar on Narendra Modi and India's Muslims:

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