20:38 Bihar: Train passenger gang-raped, hung from tree:
In a grim reminder of the horrific Delhi rape case, a woman who got down from a Delhi-bound train in Bhagalpur district, was gang-raped, killed and her body hung from a tree in a mango orchard.
Police said the 32-year-old victim, who was a passenger of the Brahmaputra Mail that was travelling to the national capital, was dragged to the mango orchard and gang-raped by unidentified persons after she alighted from the train between Vikramshila and Kahalgaon stations.Click HERE to read this horrific story
20:24 Lined-up, sun and moon give rise to 'King tides':
High tides are extra high around the world because the sun and the moon have aligned and are very near to Earth, giving rise to the phenomenon, experts say.
Meteorologist Dan Satterfield reported on his blog hosted by the American Geophysical Union that 'King tides' are produced when the gravitational forces of the Sun, Earth and Moon are aligned.
Tides are caused by the pull of the Moon and the Sun on masses of water,'OurAmazingPlanet' reported.
Combined with the peculiarities of different coastlines, they result in differing local sea levels around the world.
According to Satterfield, This combined force is asserted when the Earth is at perihelion, the point in its orbit at which it is closest to the Sun and when the Moon reaches its perigee, the point during the month when it is closet to our planet.
20:22 RSS supports strong laws against rape: Bhagwat:
RSS supports strong laws against rape, its chief Mohan Bhagwat said while calling for a "change in mindset" of the society.
"There is need for strong laws and steps to deal with the incidents of rapes and the perpetrators of rape," Bhagwat, whose comment that rapes took place in India but not in Bharat had created a controversy, said at a function here in Nadia district in connection with the 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda.
There is also a need to change the mindset of the society because the people who will make the laws (against rape) are also from the same society. "If there is no change in the mindset of the society, then nothing will change," he said.
19:24 Nationwide polio immunization campaign from Jan 20:
More than 170 million children below the age of five years will be given polio drops in the nationwide immunization campaign for Polio Eradication beginning January 20, Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said in New Delhi on Sunday.
He was speaking on the occassion of National Immunization Day, which was launched with President Pranab Mukherjee administering polio drops to children at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
18:38 Cold claims 3 more lives in UP, toll rises to 265:
Despite slight respite from the intense cold as temperatures rose by a few notches, the number of deaths due to the harsh weather rose to 265 in Uttar Pradesh as three more deaths were reported in last 24 hours.
One person each were reported to have died due to intense cold in Gonda, Hamirpur and Ghaziabad. Though nights have been warmer in the last few days, the weather has become drier due to fall in humidity.
Lowest minimum temperature in the state was 4.6 degree celsius recorded at Gorakhpur. According to the meteorological office the weather would remain dry over the state in the next 24 hours, with the presence of mist in few areas.
18:37 BJP denies reports on I-T summons to Nitin Gadkari:
The Bharatiya Janata Party on Sunday denied reports of Income Tax summons to party president Nitin Gadkari and alleged that it was a plot to malign his image. The report was also denied by Gadkari who said he hasn't received any notice from the I-T department.
"There is no such official notice. These are all source based information. Somebody is behind this propaganda and trying to malign Gadkari's image. Gadkari himself has offered for the inquiry," said BJP vice-president Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi.
However, top sources in the I-T department said on Saturday that Gadkari was asked to be personally present in connection with the department's investigation against him and some associated companies for alleged tax evasion. The I-T officials want to meet him personally so that he could be confronted with the probe documents prepared by the department in this regard in the last few months.
18:32 Sheila Dikshit slams insensitive Delhi Police:
Admitting that the protests after the gangrape incident were a 'wake up' call, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit has taken on the Delhi Police for lack of faith the people have in it due to its 'insensitive' approach.
She also suggested that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's address to the nation on the December 16 incident could have come a little earlier instead of a week after the 'horrendous' crime.
Dikshit acknowledged that people 'shy away' from helping others who are in distress because they feel that they will be 'harassed' by the police, and asked the force to change its attitude and style of functioning. She felt that the force personnel should behave as gentleman police at the need of hour.
"It worries me. Yes. It worries me that police force is not as sensitive or responsive as it ought to be or well behaved as it ought to be... The systems need to be changed and judicial system needs to be changed and bureaucratic system needs to be changed but it has to be thought out. But please remember it is not going to happen tomorrow," she told Karan Thapar on Devil's Advocate programme on CNN-IBN.
18:29 Maha Kumbh likely to generate Rs 12,000 cr revenues:
The forthcoming Maha Kumbh Mela in Allahabad is projected to generate about Rs 12,000 crore of revenues and create over 6 lakh job opportunities.
Airlines, hotels and tour operators are likely to witness a boom period in their economic activities due to the Maha Kumbh and contribute Rs 12,000 crore revenues to the state coffers in Uttar Pradesh.
This has been forecast by Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham) in its report Maha Kumbh Mela 2013 Possible Revenue Generation Resources for UP.
The report has projected that new employment opportunities would be created in airlines, airports, hotels, tour operators, flyovers, medical & eco-tourism. The unorganised sectors would also gain.
Tourist arrival to the extent of 250 million, compared to 30 million in 2001, is expected to congregate for the holy dip. Besides, about a million foreign tourists are expected to visit India for site seeing, religious and eco-tourism.
18:28 MP govt gives Rs 15 lakh aid to martyr's family:
Madhya Pradesh Public Works Department (PWD) Minister Nagendra Singh today handed over a cheque of Rs 15 lakh to the widow of martyred Lance Naik Sudhakar Singh at his ancestral village Dadhia. Lance Naik Sudhakar Singh was killed in a brutal manner by Pakistan Army at the LoC in Mendhar sector of Jammu region on January 8.
The Minister handed over the cheque of Rs 15 lakh to the slain soldier's wife, Durga, as announced by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan. Later, when asked about the action India should take to deal with the situation, Nagendra Singh told mediapersons here that the Centre would take appropriate action at the right time.
After taking part in the funeral of Lance Naik Sudhakar at his ancestral village last week, Chouhan had announced an ex-gratia of Rs 15 lakh to the kin of the martyred armyman, a government job to his wife at the place of her choice and constructing a memorial in the village in his honour. MLAs Kedarnath Shukla and Vihwamitra Pathak (both BJP), Sidhi Collector Masood Akhtar and other senior officials were present on the occasion.
18:27 Only UN can find the truth, say Pakistani dailies:
Only the UN can find the truth behind the India-Pakistan clashes on the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir if the two countries cannot establish the facts themselves through cooperation, say two leading Pakistani dailies.
There was "no better forum" than a UN observer group for this task, the Karachi-based Dawn said in an editorial.
The News International, also from Karachi, said that considering the gravity of the dispute, it would support the Pakistani government's plan to have an independent enquiry through the UNMOGIP
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11:28 PM greets nation on Lohri, Makar Sankranti:
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, has greeted the nation on the occasion of Lohri, Makar Sankranti and Pongal.
In his message, Dr Singh said that these festivals mark the joy and hope that a new harvest brings.
"Farming is closely linked to our ethos and culture and the festivals remind us of the importance of agriculture to our country and economy. May these festivals bring prosperity and happiness for all," he added.
11:27 Only 0.4 percent of GDP is spent on judiciary: Justice Lokur:
Supreme Court Judge Justice Madan B Lokur has said that the judiciary was allocated only 0.4 percent of the budgetary outlay, which was quite insufficient.
Asserting that increasing the number of judges alone would not help in speedy disposal of cases, Justice Lokur said 'these initiatives should be followed up by toning up the infrastructure at the command of the courts in the country'.
"The total number of courts in the country is going to be increased from 14000 as of now to 18,847. Apart from more judges, we require, land, new courts, modernization of the existing courts, staff to help judges, resources etc, which will be hard to come by in this situation, when there are many other challenging agenda before the government," he said, while addressing the seminar on "Technology to Enable Accessible and Speedy Justice" organized by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) with the support of Thomson Reuters in New Delhi on Saturday.
11:26 Govt plans PSU stake sale every fortnight:
Working against time to achieve Rs 30,000 crore disinvestment target, the government has decided to come out every fortnight with one PSU public issue, beginning with Oil India.
"We are planning Oil India stake sale this month. From February onwards there will be one one issue every fortnight and in March it could be every week," a senior finance ministry official said.
As per the roadmap worked out by the disinvestment department, disinvestment in OIL will happen in January, followed by NTPC, NALCO in February and MMTC, SAIL, EIL and Rashtriya Chemical and Fertilisers in March.
On the possibility of government achieving the Rs 30,000 crore target, the official said that in case the government is able to sale its equity in SAIL the target would be met.
However, he added, Rs 25,000 crore will still come if the government fails to offload its minority stake in steel major SAIL.
Although the government has so far raised just over Rs 6,900 crore, plans are afoot to expedite the process of stake sale in the next two-and-a-half months to meet the target.
The Cabinet has already approved disinvestment in host of state-owned companies including SAIL, MMTC, NALCO, RINL, BHEL and Engineers India.