23:28 Akbaruddin Owaisi to surrender, says his brother: NDTV
reports: Andhra Pradesh politician Akbaruddin Owaisi, who has been booked in
three different cases for making alleged inflammatory speeches, will
surrender once he returns from London, his brother, Asaduddin Owaisi,
said in a rally tonight.
"My brother will not run away from the
law," Asaduddin Owaisi, a Member of Parliament, said at a rally in Old
Eidgah at Tandur, 150 km from Hyderabad.Read the full report here
23:01 4 shot dead near scene of US cinema massacre:
A gunman killed three people before police killed him in turn on Saturday in a shooting in a house in Aurora, Colorado, scene earlier this year of a massacre in a cinema, local media reported.
The police had said that one survivor escaped from the house, where an "armed and dangerous" man had earlier barricaded himself inside with hostages, reports AFP.
In July, a horrific shooting at a movie theater in Auroro left 12 people dead and 58 others wounded during the first midnight screening of the Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises
22:31 Plaint against Owaisi in Mumbai for 'hate speech':
A complaint was today filed in a local court against Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen MLA Akbaruddin Owaisi for allegedly making a "hate speech" against a particular community.
The private complaint by Venkatesh Abdeo was moved in the Borivali metropolitan magistrate's court seeking action against the Hyderabad-based legislator.
21:05 No chemical castration for rape convicts: Cong:
The Congress today said no to chemical castration for rape convicts as it sent its recommendations to the Justice Verma Committee today.
It suggested hanging in the rarest of rape cases and favoured life imprisonment in rape cases.
They also suggested that more women should be inducted in the police force. It does not defend lowering age bar to define juvenile.
18:57 Gang-rape victim's bro: Passers-by didn't save her :
The brother of the 23-year-old medical student, who was brutally grangraped by six men in a moving bus in Delhi on December 16, today said delay in providing medical assistance to his sister led to complications which perhaps led to her death.
"She told me that after the incident that she had asked passers-by for help but to no avail and it was only after the highway patrol alerted the police that she was rushed to hospital but it had taken almost two hours", her brother told PTI.
"By then a lot of blood was lost", he said, adding that "had the passers-by helped and if prompt medical assistance was provided, perhaps her life could have been saved.
18:21 Ex-army chief V K Singh's family alleges bugging atempt at house:
An official from the army reportedly attempted to remove
telephone lines from former army chief General VK Singh's house in
Delhi Cantonment today, reports NDTV.
According to reports, a major from the signals regiment of the army came to the retired general's house with his team and tried to take away the telephone lines installed.
General VK Singh was not present at the house.
The official did not have the authorisation required, say General VK
Singh's family members. He reportedly attempted to take away the
telephone lines forcibly but was not allowed to leave the residence by
General VK Singh's wife.Read the full report here
18:13 Rail Budget likely on Feb 25, Union Budget on Feb 28 :
Union Minister of Parliamentary Affairs Kamal Nath held informal consultations about the 2013 Budget dates and convening of the Parliament with his ministerial colleagues. He will be interacting with the main leaders of the Opposition soon, reports our correspondent in New Delhi.
Northeastern states are to go for polls in the first week of March. Last year, because of the Uttar Pradesh elections the Budget was postponed to mid March. But this year, the government does not want to change the dates.
Deliberations are on. There is a possibility of a joint session of the Parliament to be held on February 21. The railway budget by Pawan Kumar Bansal may be scheduled for February 25, the Economic Survey on February 27 and the Union Budget is likely to be presented by P Chidambaram on February 28.
But these dates are tentative, according to the Union Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs. But a Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs, which is meeting on January 22 will take a final call.
17:27 How Cong is preparing for the Budget session:
A power centre is fast emerging in New Delhi, which is headquartered at 15 Gurudwara Rakabganj Road, the war room of the All India Congress Committee, reports our correspondent from New Delhi.
Rahul Gandhi visits this bungalow every Saturday and discusses with the committee members plans for the Budget session and the elections.
Political strategies are drawn. One group is responsible to develop a rapport with main Opposition leaders that is headed by a senior Union minister. The basic aim is to interact with the BJP and Communist Party of India-Marxist leaders to ensure the Budget session is conducted smoothly.
17:25 Alagiri to annouce future political plans on Jan 30 :
Union Minister for Fertiliser M K Alagiri is likely to announce his future political plans on his birthday -- January 30.
"Let me be voted out but I want polling through secret ballots for the DMK party leadership," said Alagiri.
The DMK was made a scapegoat by the Congress.
Therefore, the DMK should think twice and deliberate before entering into a poll pact with the Congress, feels Alagiri. He has communicated this to his supporters informally.
17:24 Judicial Accountability Bill to be introduced in Budget session? :
Senior officials of the Union ministries of law and justice are now tapping the doors of senior Opposition leaders with the draft of National Judicial Accountability Bill to be introduced in the Budget session of Parliament, reports our correspondent in New Delhi.
Bharatiya Janata Party leaders have given some amendments to the draft bill. Interestingly, the Prime Minister's Office and Union Minister of Law have personally spoken to select political leaders about the draft bill.
The law minster conveyed to the Opposition leaders that the said officials will be meeting them and explaining the crucial clauses of the bill.
17:23 A few Rajya Sabha members of the Union Cabinet have begun to identify their Lok Sabha parliamentary constituencies, reports our correspondent from New Delhi.
Jayanthi Natarajan wants to contest Lok Sabha from the Sriperumbudur constituency in Tamil Nadu while Rajiv Sukhla is looking to get Bahujan Samaj Party support to get elected from Uttar Pradesh.
G K Vasan will also be keen to contest from Mayiladuthurai or from the south Chennai Lok Sabha seat. K Rehman Khan and Ashwini Kumar are keen to get Lok Sabha seats if they get a nod from the All India Congress Committee.
16:39 Cold wave claims 11 more lives in UP, toll 140:
Severe cold wave conditions has claimed 11 more lives across Uttar Pradesh in the past 24 hours, taking the toll this winter season to 140.
Official sources said on Saturday the chill claimed six lives in Barabanki, four in Sultanpur and one in Etah.
Maximum day temperatures in the state were below normal by 6 to 13 degree Celsius while the night temperatures fell in Gorakhpur and Varanasi divisions and were below normal in the state.
Lowest minimum temperature in the state was 0.3 degree Celsius recorded at Muzaffarnagar followed by Najibabad (Bijnore) 1.0 deg, Agra 1.1 deg, Ghazipur 1.5 deg, Lucknow 1.8 deg, Gorakhpur 2.4 deg and Kanpur 2.7 deg Celsius.
Local Met officials said that dry and foggy conditions would prevail over many parts of the state in the next 48 hours.
15:58 Major fire at IOC facility in Hazira near Surat:
A major fire broken out today at storage tanks of Indian Oil Corporation's terminal at Hajira port in Surat, fire brigade officials said.
Fire brigade personnel from Surat and nearby cities were trying to bring the fire under control.
Hazira facility of IOC has nine storage tanks, five of petrol and four of diesel.
One of the tanks caught fire this afternoon, and it spread.
There were no reports of any casualties as yet, while all the staff members have been shifted out.
The Hazira terminal includes a deep water multi-cargo port, situated 25 km from Surat.
15:48 7.7 earthquake hits off Alaska coast: USGS:
A major 7.7-magnitude earthquake shook an area in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of the US state of Alaska early today, the United States Geological Survey said.
The epicenter of the quake, which occurred at 0858 GMT, was located 102 kilometers west of Craig, Alaska at a depth of nine kilometers, according to the USGS.
There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said there was no widespread threat of a tsunami at this time, but it issued a regional warning affecting the Alaskan coast near the epicenter.
The earthquake reading was based on the open-ended Moment Magnitude scale used by US seismologists, which measures the area of the fault that ruptured and the total energy released.
15:47 Shirdi gets Rs 13 crore donation in ten days:
A record donation of Rs 13 crore has been received by Sri Sai Baba Sansthan in Shirdi during the ten-day period ended January 3, Sansthan sources said today.
Last year, during the same period, donation received was to the tune of Rs 12.5 crore, according to Yashwant Mane, Deputy Executive Officer of the Sansthan, which manages the famous Sai Baba Temple at Shirdi in Ahmednagar district.
The temple sees heavy rush of devotees during December-end and early January.
The donations received in the last ten days include gold and silver worth about Rs 35 lakh. Last year, devotees had donated gold and silver worth Rs 36 lakh. The fall in offerings of gold and silver is less this year due to rise in prices of the precious metals, Sansthan sources said.
The Sansthan received Rs 10 lakh as online donations, compared to just Rs 1.5 lakh last year, they said.
15:43 Sangma formally launches his 'National People's Party':
Former Lok Sabha speaker P A Sangma, who resigned from the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) to contest the presidential election against Pranab Mukherjee, formally launched his own political outfit 'National People's Party' (NPP) at a press conference here on Saturday.
The nine-time MP had announced to form a new political party soon after his expulsion from the NCP in July 2012, when he refused to accept party decision to quit the Presidential election.
Talking to reporters, Sangma introduced his other party colleagues and office bearers including national working president Arvind Netam, Vice Presidents R. C. Verma, R. N. Meena and Veena Nair, general secretary Arun Tripathi, and said that the his party symbol is book, the symbol of knowledge and literacy.
"It is going to be a long and difficult journey for us. But,with the kind of chaos we are witnessing all over the country due to lack of leadership, we strongly believe that the country needs a change," said Sangma.
"Though this is a all-India party, open for all, but it is going to be tribal centric. We have hundred million tribal populations in India, 47 reserved seats in Lok Sabha, 57 MPs, 529 reserved assembly seats, and yet the tribals are the most exploited most exploited, neglected people of this country," he added.
15:15 Pakistan violates ceasefire again:
Violating the ceasefire again, Pakistani troops fired mortar rounds at Indian posts along the Indo-Pak border in Poonch district.
Pakistani troops fired 3-4 mortar shells on Indian forward posts in Nangitakri area along Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch late last night, a Defence spokesman said in Jammu today.
Firing continued for a brief period between 2245 hours to 2330 hours last night, he said, adding there was no loss of life or injury to anyone in the firing.
Army troops guarding the borderline exercised calm and did not retaliate, the spokesman said.
14:23 Japan scrambles jets to head off Chinese plane:
Japan scrambled fighter jets today to head off a Chinese state-owned plane that flew near islands at the centre of a dispute between Tokyo and Beijing, a Japanese Defense Ministry spokesman said.
The Japanese jets were mobilised after a Chinese maritime aircraft ventured some 120 kilometres north of the Senkaku islands, which China calls the Diaoyus, at around 12:00 pm (0830 IST), the spokesman said.
The Chinese Y-12 twin-turboprop later left the zone without entering Japanese airspace over the islands, he added.
Japan had dispatched fighter jets last month after a Chinese state-owned plane breached airspace over the islands, while Chinese government ships have moved in and out of waters there for the past few months.
The confrontations have become commonplace since Japan nationalised the East China Sea islands in September, a move it insisted amounted to nothing more than a change of ownership of what was already Japanese territory.
14:18 'Over-speeding' Warne risks losing driving license:
Shane Warne is at risk of losing his driving license after the Australian spin king was charged with driving 53km/h over the speed limit, only a month after launching a road safety campaign.
Warne was reportedly clocked at 165km/h while driving in Scotland last September, and he faces losing his licence for the offence, which he committed in his Jaguar XFR V8 and near the town of Dumfries, the Herald Sun reports.
The 43-year old Warne is now set to face the Dumfries Sheriff Court.
The champion cricketer last month launched the TAC's homesafely initiative, representing Big Bash League outfit Melbourne Stars.
Warne was also involved in a road-rage incident last year with a cyclist.
14:02 Ram Vilas Paswan hits the road to save Bihar:
Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) chief Ram Vilas Paswan, who kicked off his 'Bihar Bachao' (Save Bihar) yatra from Patna on Saturday, lashed out at the Nitish Kumar-led state government accusing it of large-scale corruption, embezzlement of fund and rising crime graph.
"Lok Janshakti Party spent the year 2012 in Jan Sampark Yatra. We worked on all issues, be it Rs. 82,000 crores large-scale corruption or 6,000 MNREGA scandal or people dying after consuming illicit liquor. We conducted the Jan Sampark Yatra on all these issues in 2012 and we announced that we would take out a yatra in 2013. It is after intense thinking that we named this yatra as Bihar Bachao yatra," Paswan told mediapersons here.
"Around 11 people died in Patna city yesterday after consuming illicit liquor, 43 people died in Ara, 12 people died in Gaya, 11 people died in Samastipur, 12 people died in Muzaffarpur. So, the people are dying in Bihar after consuming illicit liquor. There have been 7,700 cases of rape in the last six years. As per the Bihar police records, over ten thousand cognisable offences were registered. As a result of which there is chaos in Bihar. People are angry and out on the streets," he added.
12:26 Sangma to launch his own political party today:
Former Lok Sabha speaker P A Sangma, who resigned from the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) to contest the presidential election against Pranab Mukherjee, will launch his National People's Party (NPP) at a function here on Saturday.
According to reports, Sangma's daughter Agatha, who is an NCP lawmaker, will not join her father's party as of now. Agatha, who was a Minister of State in the Congress-led UPA Government at the Centre, lost her job after she campaigned for her father in the presidential polls. NCP is a constituent of the ruling UPA Government and Pranab Mukherjee was its candidate.
Sangma, who lost the Raisina Hill race to Pranab Mukherjee, was backed by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance.
NCP chief Sharad Pawar was upset with Sangma's decision to contest the presidential election held in July last year
11:59 Heavy snowfall forces closure of Mughal Road in J&K:
Heavy snowfall in Jammu and Kashmir has blocked the historical Mughal Road, an arterial road connecting several districts with the rest of the state, leaving tourists stranded.
The road is a lifeline for the border villages of the Kashmir Valley. It is of great importance as it connects Bafliaz, a town in the Poonch district, to Shopian in Pulwama district in the Kashmir Valley.
It also passes through the 'Pir Panjal' Mountain range, which is at an altitude of 3505 meters.
Tourists were left stranded in Rajouri district for hours, with traffic being diverted to lesser-crowded areas.
Habib, a tourist form Uttar Pradesh, said that the government must make arrangements for swift removal of the snow.
"When we came here, we came to know that the road ahead is closed due to snow. We want that the government here must put up a system to remove the snow immediately and more and more people should be employed to clear the snow. This will also facilitate the tourists who are on their way to Srinagar," he said.
Although the authorities launched the snow clearance operations
11:30 Gang rape case: Court to take up chargesheet today:
A fast track court in Delhi will on Saturday take cognizance of the chargesheet filed against five accused of the murder and rape of a 23-year-old medical student in the national capital.
The case will then be referred to a Sessions court.
Delhi Police earlier on Thursday filed its chargesheet in the Saket metropolitan magistrate court against five men arrested in the case, slapping on them murder, rape, kidnapping and other charges.
The five accused, Ram Singh, his brother Mukesh and their accomplices Pawan Gupta, Vinay Sharma and Akshay Thakur have been chargesheeted for the offences of murder, gang rape, attempt to murder, kidnapping, unnatural offences, dacoity, hurting in committing robbery, destruction of evidence, criminal conspiracy and common intention under the Indian Penal Code.
The sixth accused is a juvenile and proceedings against him will be conducted by the Juvenile Justice Board.
11:00 Fire in Mumbai slum destroys hundreds of houses:
Fire broke in the suburbs of Mumbai on Saturday, destroying more than hundred one-room shacks, rendering the families homeless.
No causalities are reported and no one was injured in the fire.
The fire broke out in the early hours in one of the houses of Sewri suburb, which later swept through other houses early morning on Saturday.
Shakeel, a local blamed the fire station for failing to reach the spot on time, which caused more damage.
"We were sleeping when we suddenly saw fire in one of the houses. We tried to douse it but it was in vain and it spread in the neighbouring houses as well. When I called the fire station the fire engines took long to reach the spot, which is why the fire spread even more," he said
03:47 Wikipedia losing editors, study says :
Wikipedia, one of the world's biggest websites, is losing many of its English-language editors, crippling its ability to keep pace with its mission as a source of knowledge online, a study says.
The study led by Aaron Halfaker of the University of Minnesota found that the number of "collaborators" or volunteer editors has been on the decline from around 56,000 in 2007 to some 35,000 at the end of 2012. The researchers said there are a number of reasons, including the rise of automated programs or 'bots', but also noted that some potential contributors are being discouraged by Wikipedia's structure.
"Several changes the Wikipedia community made to manage quality and consistency in the face of a massive growth in participation have ironically crippled the very growth they were designed to manage," the researchers wrote in last week's American Behavioral Scientist.
02:11 Obama officially wins presidency:
US President Barack Obama was officially declared winner of November presidential elections as votes of the electoral college were tallied and certified by a joint session of the Congress today.
While Obama and Vice President Joe Biden received 332 Electoral College votes, the Republican candidate, Mitt Romney, and his running mate, Paul Ryan received 206 votes.
This was the formal culmination of the presidential election process. After the November 6 presidential elections, member of the electoral colleges met in their respective States in December and voted for their candidates and sent the results to the US Congress.
02:01 Pak resumes polio campaign under tight security: AFP
reports: Pakistan government officials today said that they were providing paramilitary and police support to polio vaccinations which are being resumed discreetly in the northwest after a series of attacks on medical workers.
UN agencies suspended work on a nationwide campaign to inoculate children against the highly-infectious disease after nine health workers were murdered in a string of attacks in the northwest and Karachi in December.
Pakistan is one of only three countries in the world where polio is endemic, but efforts to stamp out the disease have been hampered by resistance from the Taliban, who have banned vaccination teams from some areas.
Another factor foiling the efforts is distrust rumours about the vaccine being a plot to sterilise Muslims have long dogged efforts to tackle the disease in Pakistan.
01:49 Pak PM talks to allies and foes on Qadri threat:
Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf today reached out to Pakistan's top political leadership, including PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif, to thwart a cleric's plans to pressure the government on the formation of a caretaker administration to oversee the upcoming general election.
Ashraf contacted several political allies and foes, including Awami National Party chief Asfandyar Wali Khan and Sharif, and held a meeting with senior PML-Q leaders during the day to discuss the threat posed by Tehrik Minhaj-ul-Quran chief Tahir-ul-Qadri.
Qadri recently returned to Pakistan after living in Canada for seven years and shook up political circles by threatening to lead a 'long march' from Lahore to Islamabad on January 14 if the Pakistan People's Party-led government does not consult the army and judiciary on the formation of the caretaker government.