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'Soldier beheaded' in 'terror attack' in UK

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May 22, 2013


23:01  'Soldier beheaded' in 'terror attack' in UK:  

Local MP Nick Raynsford said he had been told the man attacked in the street was a soldier serving at the Royal Artillery Barracks near the attack. Mr Raynsford said the soldier had been returning to the barracks after a day out when he was attacked.  

 

London Ambulance Service said one man, believed to be the victim of the machete attack, had died in the incident and two others were injured, one seriously.  

 

Read the full report on The Telegraph

Image: Image: Policemen guard a cordon set up around the site of crime in Woolwich   Photograph: Gerhard Mey/Reuters

22:43  UPA's report card is a non report card: BJP:  

BJP termed the UPA's report card as a "non-report card" that hid all the scams and revealed only what was convenient to the ruling dispensation.   The Opposition party also lashed out at the UPA for "blaming it for its own failures".        

 

"The UPA's report card is a non report card. It hides all the scams and reveals only the convenient. More importantly, Congress is now blaming BJP for its own failures," BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said.        

 

Reacting to the Congress' criticism of BJP stalling passage of important legislations like the Food Security Bill, he said BJP has already enacted first Food Security Act in Chhattisgarh which is more inclusive than the UPA proposal.        

 

"We want to ask why UPA did not bring this bill for the last nine years and waited for so long," he wondered on the long delay in bringing the Food Security Bill and then blaming the Opposition party for stalling it.        

 

UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today came down heavily on BJP for disrupting Parliament proceedings and preventing crucial legislations from being passed.

22:26  We have NOTHING to hide: Sonia at UPA dinner:   Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday claimed that the Congress-led UPA government had "nothing to hide, nothing to be defensive about".

At the annual dinner for the ruling coalition's allies, Gandhi expressed her "deep disappointment with the way Parliament has been functioning".

She claimed that the people of India will "appreciate what we have done".

Gandhi also refuted reports of the Centre discriminating against states ruled by BJP and its allies, stating that it had provided assistance to all states.

She also threw her weight behind Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, saying, "The PM is carrying his responsibilities with great dignity. We stand by the PM".
22:17  Odisha does not qualify for Special Category Status: Montek:  In a major setback to the Naveen Patnaik government, the Planning Commission has made it clear that Odisha does not qualify for the grant of Special Category Status, triggering a war of words between the ruling BJD and the Congress.        

"You will appreciate that under the existing criteria for approval by the National Development Council, Odisha does not qualify for grant of Special Category Status," Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia said in a letter to Patnaik
22:16  Police OC suspended on charge of raping minor :  The officer-in-charge of a police station in Dumka district was today suspended after being accused of raping a minor girl several times, who was the domestic help at his residence in neighbouring Deoghar district.        

Deogarh SP Ranjit Prasad said that an FIR had been lodged against Radhay Shyam Das, the OC of Jarmundi police station, charging him with raping a minor girl at his residence in Deogarh town.
22:14  Odisha: Havildar suspended for handcuffing oppn leader:  The commissionrate of police today placed a havildar-rank policeman under suspension for his alleged act of handcuffing an opposition party leader who had been jailed on charges of financial irregularities.        

"We have placed the havildar concerned under suspension following a departmental inquiry on the handcuffing allegation," Deputy Commissioner of Police Nitinjit Singh told reporters.
21:38  There is a lot of motivated criticism: PM:  Speaking on the BJP's consistent attack on the ruling UPA, PM Manmohan Singh said, "What else do you expect from a non-result oriented opposition"?

"There is lot of motivated criticism, sometimes there are attempts to derail us," he said.

Evading a direct reply on the likelihood of a Cabinet reshuffle, Dr Singh admitted, "There are vacancies".

He added that the government had not applied its mind on "issuing ordinances or having a special Parliament session on food security and land bills".
21:36  No differences between PM and me: Sonia:  "There are no differences between the prime minister and me; there is collective leadership," Congress President Sonia Gandhi said at the UPA's annual dinner on Wednesday. 

Speaking on the issue, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi said, "There is no difference between the party and the government".
21:34  Economy turning around; GDP to exceed 6 pc: PM:  Indicating that the worst may be over for the Indian economy, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said the economic situation is turning around, with inflation coming under control and the GDP growth likely to exceed six percent in the current fiscal.     

Speaking on the fourth anniversary celebrations of UPA-II government, Dr Singh said 8 per cent growth rate would be possible if the Congress-led coalition is voted to power again next year.
20:42  LBT won't be imposed hurriedly in Mumbai: Maha CM:  Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan today assured the Federation of Associations of Maharashtra that the state government would not impose the Local Body Tax in Mumbai hurriedly.        

In a telephonic conversation with FAM president Mohan Gurnani, Chavan said that it has been decided not to impose LBT in Mumbai in a hasty manner and the government would take its own time since the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation was not yet ready to implement LBT, a FAM statement said.
20:41  CBI files charge-sheet against Madhu Koda in DA case:  The CBI has filed a charge-sheet against former Jharkhand chief minister Madhu Koda in a disproportionate assets case in Ranchi.
20:40  Chidambaram promises more reforms:  Asserting that the government will last its full five year term, Finance Minister P Chidambaram today said people should expect more reforms in the second half of the year.     

"We expect more reforms and investment in next half of the year. The government will last its full term," he said.
20:38  UPA never deviated from its policies: Sonia:  "This is an appropriate moment to celebrate and reflect on what we sought to do in the past nine years," said Gandhi.  

"The UPA's focus was never in doubt; it never deviated from its policies," said Gandhi.

She added that she was disappointed that crucial legislations had not been passed in Parliament due to the "principal opposition's obstructionist approach". 

Gandhi appealed to the BJP-led NDA and other opposition parties to collectively ensure the passage of the food security and land bills.

She also alleged that the prime minister had been subjected to unrelenting hostility and abuse by the opposition..
20:16  Govt has ensured inclusive growth: PM at UPA dinner:   Economic slowdown is temporary, economic situation turning around, says Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. 

If UPA returns to power next year it will try to achieve 8 per cent growth as projected in the 12th Plan document. GDP growth in 2013-14 will be better than 2012-13; could exceed 6 per cent, says PM Singh.

Read the PM's full speech here
20:05  Govt has ensured inclusive growth: PM at UPA dinner:  In the 'Report to the People', released by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi on the fourth anniversary of UPA-II, the government presented figures to highlight growth in employment and doubling of wages under MNREGA, three-fold increase in food subsidy, growth in social sector schemes and tele-density.

The function organised for the release of the report at the Prime Minister's residence was attended by Congress allies NCP chief Sharad Pawar, RLD chief Ajit Singh.
19:40  Kim Jong Uns special envoy visits China:  A key North Korean military official arrived in Beijing on Wednesday as a "special envoy' of leader Kim Jong Un, state-run media reported. The trip comes amid new signs of strain between the traditional allies.

Choe Ryong Hae, who holds several top Workers' Party positions and serves as vice marshal of the Korean People's Army, met with Wang Jiarui, a senior official of the Chinese Communist Party, according to China's Xinhua news agency. Neither Beijing nor Pyongyang provided details of the meeting or indicated the length Choe's stay.

Read more
19:13  Vatican says 'credible' against money laundering:  The Vatican today said it was a "credible partner" in the struggle against money laundering as it published its first-ever report on efforts to meet international rules on suspect financing. 

The Vatican "is already a credible partner," said Rene Bruelhart, director of the Vatican's Financial Intelligence Authority (FIA), who was appointed last year to help reform efforts.
19:11  Boundless destruction as US tornado rescue winds down:  As rescue efforts in Oklahoma wound down today, residents turned to the daunting task of rebuilding a US heartland community shattered by a vast tornado that killed at least 24 people. 

Officials said most bodies had been recovered from the sprawling moonscape that was once an Oklahoma City suburb, where the tornado steamrolled entire neighborhoods and two schools. Nine children were among those killed.
19:08  Friends of Syria meet as conflict escalates:  Backers of the Syrian uprising were to meet in Amman with the opposition today to discuss a US-Russian proposal for peace talks, as the two-year conflict escalated close to the border with Lebanon. 

"Today's effort ... is part of a political path aimed at ending the violence and bloodshed," Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh told a joint news conference with British Foreign Secretary William Hague before the meeting of the so-called Friends of Syria group.
18:40  IPL betting: Court rejects plea for police remand of 6 bookies:  A local court today remanded six bookies, associated with IPL betting syndicate, in judicial custody till June 5 after rejecting the plea of the Mumbai crime branch which sought their remand and reprimanding it for deficient probe in the case.

"Despite ample opportunities provided, the investigating officer has not pointed out who has been cheated and why," Additional Metropolitan Magistrate M N Saleem observed, apparently referring to cheating and forgery charges slapped on the accused, while remanding them in judicial custody.

The accused have been booked under relevant sections of Information Technology Act, Bombay Gambling Prohibition Act and IPC sections including 420, 465, and others related to cheating and forgery. The magistrate also reprimanded the police for seeking extension of their remand on grounds similar to those on which they had earlier secured their remand.
18:39  The Income Tax department begins probe in the IPL spot-fixing case.
18:36  Delhi CM indicted for misusing public funds for govt advts:  Delhi's Lokayukta Manmohan Sarin has indicted Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit for misuse of public funds in government advertisements. He held that these advertisements were put out  for political purposes in an election year.

The Lokayukta has recommended the President to advise Dikshit to reimburse Rs 11 crores as half the cost incurred by  her government for putting out these advertisements in 2008. Dikshit then held charge of the Department of Information and Publicity of the Delhi government. Read the full story on NDTV.
18:32  IPL should not be stopped, but regulation a must: Sports minister:  Sports minister Jeetendra Singh says stricter laws are necessary to stop spot-fixing and match-fixing, but IPL should not be stopped. "The time has come to create checks and balances," he tells CNN IBN. "I will do my best to ensure there is regulation and more responsibility. And I will work with the law minister to ensure regulation," says Singh.
18:09  Gujarat betting king claims 15 matches in this IPL fixed :   Betting king Dinesh Kalgi tells CNN IBN that spot-fixing happened in 15 matches in the ongoing IPL. "Not just players, sponsors, selection committees are involved. Bollywood is also involved, but they will never be caught. Only the small fish get caught. Spot-fixing happens in London and is provided back-up in Dubai," he says. The Delhi police has uncovered only a small, amateur group. They did not know how to do it and therefore got caught.

Kalgi is one of the biggest bookies in Gujarat.
18:01  HC wants parole for 1993 Mumbai blast convict :  The Bombay High Court today asked the Maharashtra government to consider parole for a 1993 Mumbai serial bomb blast case convict who is presently serving life sentence.

Mohammad Mushtaq Moosa Tarani, whose death penalty was recently reduced to life imprisonment by the Supreme Court, approached the High Court seeking to be released on parole next month to enable him to attend his daughter's wedding.

Additional public prosecutor Anuradha Mane today opposed the petition and said Tarani has not gone through the proper channel to seek parole. A parole application has to be made before the relevant deputy commissioner of police who then calls for a report.
17:58  Murthy may lose Rs 84 cr as severance benefits from iGate:   Phaneesh Murthy, the disgraced former chief executive of iGate Corp, may lose as much as Rs 84 crore in severance benefits after being sacked by the US-based firm for professional misconduct.

Murthy, who was sacked yesterday for not disclosing a relationship with a subordinate, however, is entitled to a post termination benefit of USD 6,000 per month till he and his spouse reach the age of 65.

"Upon termination other than for cause, Murthy would receive a lump sum payment of twelve (12) months' severance at USD 1,000,000," iGate had said in a filing before the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in March this year.

iGate sacked Murthy for violating company policy on relationship with a colleague. Since his termination was for professional misconduct, he may end up losing the severance benefits.
17:54  Gupta wedding scandal: India says plane had permission to land:  After a top Indian diplomat was accused of "manipulation" by South Africa to obtain permission for landing of an aircraft chartered by a well-connected Indian family at a military air base, India has said there was proper "authorization" and that some wedding guests on board the plane had invitation for bilateral engagements.

"The senior Indian officials and their delegations were in South Africa for bilateral engagements with the Free State government," High commission said in a statement.  Read the full story here.
17:47  NIA files chargesheet in 2006 Malegaon blast case:  The National Investigation Agency (NIA) today filed its charge sheet in the Malegaon 2006 bomb blast case against four accused Lokesh Sharma, Dhan Singh, Manohar Singh and Rajendra Choudhary.

The charge sheet, running into five volumes, was filed in a Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (Mcoca) Court of Special Judge Prithviraj Chavan. Ramji Kalsangra has been shown as absconding accused in the charge sheet.

The bombings were part of a series of explosions that had taken place on September 8, 2006, in Malegaon, a communally-sensitive town in Nashik district of Maharashtra, located about 300 kms from Mumbai.

The explosions, which caused the death of 37 people and injured over 125, had taken place in a Muslim cemetery, adjacent to a mosque, at around 1315 hours after the Friday prayers on the Shab-e-Baraat, a holy day. Most of the blast victims were Muslim pilgrims.
17:29  Staff gives outgoing CAG Vinod Rai standing ovation:  Mrityunjoy Kumar Jha tweets: CAG Vinod Rai to media after demitting office- its because of you that this department could function independently.

Vikrant Yadav tweets: Staff of CAG vinod rai gave standing ovation when he left office. I think same feeling must be of every honest citizen.

Vinod Rai retired today after five years as Indias Comptroller and Auditor General, making the institution an effective weapon in the fight against corruption.
17:15  'Chandila was paid advance of Rs 15 lakh to fix May 17 match' :  The Delhi Police statement on the spot-fixing scandal. The statement says that a third set of bookies paid Rs 15 lakh to Ajit Chandila for spot-fixing in the May 17 IPL match in Hyderabad. The match, Sunrisers Hyderabad vs Rajasthan Royals could not be fixed as Chandila was arrested. The money was paid to Chandila in April. This is separate from the Rs.20 lakh recovered from his cricket kit, says the police.

Bookie Sunil Bhatia admits he fixed some ICL matches with the help of Baburao Yadav. After ICL players were banned, Bhatia took Yadav to Bangldesh. Bhatia claimed he has good contacts with a prominent Bangladeshi player. They had to return as the ICC anti-corruption team spotted the bookie. 
17:05  The logic of Chinese encroachment:  After India goes soft on the Chinese incursion and Li  Keqiang says goodbye without saying sorry, here's an assessment of the standoff at Daulat Beg Oldie. 

Legally speaking China has no business to be in areas beyond its borders. Its border ends at Xinjiang, which was incorporated into the Chinese empire when it was conquered by the Mongol leader Genghis Khan in the 13th century. Known to the Chinese as Xiyu ("Western Regions') for centuries, the area became Xinjiang ("New Borders') upon its annexation under the Qing (Manchu) dynasty in the 18th century. The then borders did not include areas of present Chinese claims.  Read more
16:48  Cops question Sreesanth's girlfriend, her dad :  CNN-IBN reports that Sreesanth's girlfriend and her father have been questioned by police with regards to the spot-fixing case. The girlfriend accompanied Sreesanth to all the IPL matches.

Meanwhile, the police claim that Ajit Chandila was in touch with a Patiala based bookie, Deepak Kumar, and was supposed to fix a spot in the May 17 match. Police also claim that a Bangladesh player is under scanner but cannot be questioned because of jurisdiction issues.
16:44  Shiv Aroor of Headlines Today tweets: Vindoo Dara Singh tells interrogators he betted on the World Cup as well. 3 mobiles belonging to bookie Pawan Jaipur at his house.
16:41  Vindoo made Rs 17 lakh on bets in IPL: Police :   Times Now reports that Vindoo Dara Singh made Rs 17 lakh from betting in IPL 6. The police have so far maintained that Vindoo was involved in heavy betting, but have not indicted him in spot-fixing. Vindoo himself confessed that he had bet on IPL 6. While betting is illegal, he will still get off with a much lighter rap. 

This morning, Vindoo's Juhu residence had been raided, where a bookie's phone was found. Vindoo's iPad and laptop have been seized by the police.Vindoo also confessed to the police that he helped two bookies escape.
16:24  New controversy over video of Gaza boy's death 13 years ago:  As Jamal al-Durrah washes his son Mohammad's tombstone in a Gaza graveyard, he fears that the boy's spirit rests uneasy. The image of the father shielding his 12-year-old son in a hail of bullets, under the glare of a camera, became the symbol of the second Palestinian uprising, or Intifada. Read
16:17  Time has come to name Rahul as PM candidate: Kamal Nath:   Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath on Wednesday suggested it is time to project Rahul Gandhi as the prime ministerial candidate of the Congress Party for the 2014 elections.

"I don't think the election is inevitable. The election will take place when it has to take place, at the scheduled time. As things stand now, there is no possibility," Kamal Nath said when asked for responsive to rumours of mid-term polls.

Describing Rahul Gandhi as the Congress' number 2, Nath said he "now has all his 10 fingers in, he has served as vice-president and he should be projected as the prime ministerial candidate for the Congress Party." Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, he said, "has served his 10 years."
16:09  Here's looking at you, Mr Rai:  Vinod Rai, who retires Wednesday after five years as India's Comptroller and Auditor General, sharpened the 153-year-old institution to make it a more effective weapon in the fight against corruption in the highest rungs of power. Read
16:00  August 23: That's when SC decides if govt should control IPL:   The Delhi High Court today agreed to hear a plea seeking direction to the Centre for taking control over the Indian Premier League by separating it from BCCI in view of irregularities including spot-fixing cropping up in the cash-rich cricket tournament.

A bench of Chief Justice D Murugesan and Justice Jayant Nath, however, refused to ban the IPL in view of the apex court's Tuesday order refusing to pass such order.

The bench asked the petitioner, NGO Association for Social and Humanitarian Affairs, to amend its petition by deleting the prayer for ban and posted the matter for hearing on its another plea seeking government control on IPL to August 23.

"The Supreme Court has already dealt with the prayers for ban on IPL. And the probe into the alleged spot-fixing to be monitored by this court and the petitioner's counsel is also not pressing for them but for other prayers an amendment is required in the plea...," the bench said.

The apex court while dismissing a PIL yesterday had declined to ban the IPL and directed the one-man committee set up by Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to complete the enquiry and submit its report in 15 days. It had also directed BCCI to act upon the findings of the committee.
15:42  Pakistan's Imran Khan discharged from hospital after fall:   Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan was today discharged from a hospital here, over two weeks after he fractured his spine in a freak accident at an election campaign meeting.

"We are pleased to announce that this morning, Imran Khan was discharged home from Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre," the hospital said in a statement.

Yesterday, the cricketer-turned-politician was fitted with a specially designed brace or spinal support and he walked unaided for over 300 metres, said doctors.

Khan would have to wear the brace for four to six weeks, they said. Imran today walked from his room on the third floor of the Hospital to the exit on the ground floor, unaided, the statement said. "As previously explained, Imran will continue to receive regular physiotherapy."
15:33  Li in Pakistan: China talks sweet, but doesn't want to be sugar daddy. Read Praveen Swamy's definitive piece on Firstpost.com
15:11  Col Purohit, Aseemanand NOT in Malegaon blast charge sheet :  Just in: A charge sheet has been filed in the 2006 Malegaon bomb blast case. Four accused have been named, but Col Purohit and Swami Aseemanand have NOT been named in the charge sheet. 
15:05  Food for thought at the UPA dinner :   "Journalists hovered around Dr Singh's and Sonia's tables where they were being served Tomato Coriander Shorba, Delhi Chaat, Avadhi, Kurma, Kurmuri Bhindi, Goan Fish Curry, and Sambhar-Rice. Ever mindful, Sonia at one point told the journalists to eat instead of standing around her.

Jalebi was the preferred dessert at her table. In north India Jalebi connotes complexity of mind and Amar Singh's late entry to the high table was no less complex than the Jalebis of Uttar Pradesh."

That's the menu at the UPA dinner in 2008. Read the piece by Sheela Bhatt.
For what's being served up tonight, stay with us.
14:45  Jessica Lal murder: Actor Shayan Munshi charged with perjury:  The Delhi High Court today ordered a case of perjury against Bollywood actor Shayan Munshi and ballistics expert Prem Sagar Minocha. 17 other witnesses have been acquitted in the Jessica Lal murder case.

The court charged two on turning hostile during their deposition in model Jessica Lal's murder trial. The court had suo motu taken cognizance of the matter and sought to prosecute 19 witnesses for perjury who turned hostile, questioning the prosecution how did so many of its witnesses performed a somersault in trial.

Model Jessica Lal was shot dead at Tamarind Court, a restaurant owned by socialite Bina Ramani, in south Delhi's Mehrauli area on the night of April 29-30, 1999.She was shot dead by Manu Sharma, son of Haryana's Congress leader Venod Sharma after she refused to serve a drink to him in the party.

The Delhi High Court had awarded life imprisonment to Manu Sharma for killing the model. Actor Shayan Munshi had lodged the FIR in the case.
14:40  What happened at the UPA2 dinner two years ago:  Much is expected at the UPA' celebratory dinner tonight. Two years ago, Sonia Gandhi kept off the media, while Rahul Gandhi basked in his UP foray, at the UPA II's dinner.  Read
14:34  A year on, little has changed within the UPA:   As the UPA celebrates its ninth anniversary today, a flashback to the UPA's third anniversary. Rediff.com's Sheela Bhatt writes: The UPA has failed over the last three years because it is in denial mode, refusing to accept that so much is rotten inside the government and the party. Read the May 2012 report. 
14:32  Called Chennai Super Kings CEO for personal reason: Vindoo:   Vindoo Dara Singh has confessed to the Mumbai Crime Branch that he made calls to Chennai Super Kings CEO Gurunath Meiyappan for personal reasons and that it had nothing to do with the betting in the IPL.  The police will however question Meiyappan, who is the son-in-law of BCCI president N Srinivasan.

Pic: Gurunath Meiyappan with CSK skipper MS Dhoni in his Twitter profie picture
13:57  On Twitter: The likes of Sreesanth & Vindoo Dara Singh must be thinking "Dear UPA, come up with a fresh scam please.. take the attention away from us..."
13:51  End of the road for Sree?:  The music is over for the boy who loved to dance and sing. V. Kumara Swamy and Reena Martins look at the making -- and final undoing -- of cricketer Sreesanth. Read the report on the Telegraph. 
13:36  Will Mayawati break bread with the UPA tonight?:  At last year's anniversary dinner, the UPA had accorded pride of place to Mulayam Singh Yadav on the dais, along with the alliance's stars. Who will be given a similar honour tonight at the UPA's ninth anniversary dinner?

Sources say that hectic efforts are being made to convince BSP supremo Mayawati to attend. Her presence, the argument goes, will lend the embattled alliance a semblance of stability. But of course, the multi-crore question is, will Mayawati bite?
13:15  Spot-fixing: Cops to question BCCI president's son-in-law:   The Mumbai police is likely to question Guru Mayappan, the son-in-law of BCCI chief N Srinivasan. Vindoo Dara Singh confessed to the crime branch of the Mumbai police that the kin of the Chennai Super King franchise owners placed bets through him. In 2008, during the first auction for IPL teams in India,  Srinivasan's company bought the Chennai franchise for Rs. 480 crore. 
12:56  Saudi cleric says using air-conditioners by women immoral:  Bizarre news: A self-proclaimed Saudi cleric said that if women turn on air-conditioners at home in their husband's absence could lead to moral depravities.

The man claiming to be Salafist-Wahhibist cleric posted on Twitter that if any woman turns on the cooler ventilator in the absence of her husband, someone might notice her presence home and this might bring about immorality.

Salafists and Wahhibists are ultra-conservatives of Sunni Muslims hailing from Saudi Arabia and have issued frequent fatwas in the past.

According to the Washington Times, in an earlier incident another cleric claiming to be of the Salafist sect posted on YouTube a video claiming rape of non-Sunni and non-Muslim women as acceptable.
12:47  Vindoo is innocent, claims brother :  Another update on the spot-fixing scandal.
The brother of actor Vindoo Dara Singh, who has been arrested for his alleged links with bookies, today claimed that his sibling is not involved in the IPL spot-fixing scandal.

"I can never believe that he is involved in any way. Let investigations take place, Vindoo will come out clean," Amrik Singh told reporters at the airport in Chandigarh before leaving for Mumbai.

Virendra Dara Singh Randhawa alias Vindoo, son of late wrestler-actor Dara Singh, was yesterday picked up from his suburban Juhu residence in Mumbai.

He was later arrested for his alleged links with the bookies, who were already arrested by the crime branch. He said many people know Vindoo, winner of reality television show Bigg Boss season 3, as he is a known figure in Mumbai.

"Almost whole of Mumbai knows him. But that does not mean there is anything criminal... Moreover, by the grace of God, we have everything and we don't need anything from anyone," Amrik said.

Amrik, who lives in an upscale residential area of Chandigarh, said the family will extend full cooperation to the investigating agencies. "We have nothing to hide," he added.
12:41  India successfully test fires BrahMos supersonic missile :   India today successfully test-fired the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile off the Goa coast. On March 21, India carried out the maiden test firing of the over 290 km-range submarine-launched version of BrahMos supersonic cruise missile in the Bay of Bengal becoming the first country in the world to have this capability.
The submarine-launched version of BrahMos was successfully test fired from an underwater pontoon, BrahMos CEO A Sivathanu Pillai said.

India today successfully carried out the maiden test firing of the over 290 km-range submarine-launched version of BrahMos supersonic cruise missile in the Bay of Bengal becoming the first country in the world to have this capability.

The submarine-launched version of BrahMos was successfully test fired from an underwater pontoon near here, BrahMos CEO A Sivathanu Pillai said.

- See more at: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/in-a-worlds-first-india-test-fires-brahmos-missile-from-underwater-platform/1090896/#sthash.WVByXMXM.dpuf

India today successfully carried out the maiden test firing of the over 290 km-range submarine-launched version of BrahMos supersonic cruise missile in the Bay of Bengal becoming the first country in the world to have this capability.

The submarine-launched version of BrahMos was successfully test fired from an underwater pontoon near here, BrahMos CEO A Sivathanu Pillai said.

- See more at: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/in-a-worlds-first-india-test-fires-brahmos-missile-from-underwater-platform/1090896/#sthash.WVByXMXM.dpuf
12:35  IPL just cant avoid a scandal:  For a long while, it really looked like the Indian Premier League season might come and go without any major setbacks. With no fallings-out between the league and its franchise owners this year, the only black eye had been the league's decision to bar Sri Lankan players from appearing in Chennai, India, as a result of tensions surrounding the treatment of Tamils in Sri Lanka. Read
12:08  BJP: Govt has ruled by leaning on CBI, targeting SP, BSP:  Arun Jaitley sings the same tune as Sushma Swaraj. Jaitley, the leader of the opposition in the Rajya Sabha, says never has the country had such a diminutive PM. "Manmohan Singh is not a leader, he has never had any political role," says Jaitley.
The government has ruled for four years by leaning on the CBI and misusing it and by targeting Mulayam Singh and Mayawati. (The BJP begins shoring up it's alliance prospects with the SP and the BSP).   
11:51  Manmohan Singh may be PM, but leader of party or country: BJP:   Sushma Swaraj, the Leader of the opposition in the Lok Sabha addressing a press meet in New Delhi on the UPA's report card. Taking on the prime minister, she says Manmohan Singh is PM, but he is not the leader of his party or the country. She says coalitions need special leadership skills and Dr Singh is no leader. "The UPA has set mind-boggling records in corruption, the economic environment is worrying and there are my infrastructure projects pending," says Swaraj.  
Nothing that we've not heard before.
11:41  Mobile services shut in Pak ahead of Chinese Premier's visit:  In other news: Pakistani authorities today shut mobile services in Islamabad and Rawalpindi over security concerns on the arrival of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang here. Li will arrive in Pakistan today on a two-day visit after his official visit to India. Pakistani officials say that militants routinely use mobile phone for planning and implementing attacks. The authorities have taken security measures for the Chinese premier along the main road from the Nur Khan military airbase near Islamabad and the Presidency, where the guest will have a meeting with President Asif Ali Zardari shortly after his arrival. 
11:34  Mumbai police: Vindoo linked to betting, not spot-fixing as yet :  The Mumbai police say that Vindoo's role is linked to heavy betting, and there is no evidence of spot-fixing as yet. The police are probing Vindoo's role in a match between the Mumbai Indians and the Chennai Super Kings in April in Chennai, where he was photographed sitting next to MS Dhoni's wife Sakshi.

The Telegraph, Calcutta, writes that Vindoo is known for posing for pictures near well-known people at parties, a skill he perfected after becoming a fixture on the reality show circuit. It need not mean that he was friends with everyone in the photo frame. 
11:23  Vindoo Dara Singh was in touch with BCCI president's son-in-law:   Mumbai Police also claims that Vindoo Dara Singh was in touch with the son-in- law of N Srinivasan, who is the franchise owner of Chennai Super Kings. Srinivasan is the president of BCCI. 
11:08  Mumbai cops raid Vindoo Dara Singh's Juhu home :   CNN IBN reports that the Mumbai police are conducting raids on Vindoo Dara Singh's house in Juhu, Mumbai. It is believed that some cash had also been recovered. Dara Singh's son was arrested yesterday and sent to five days in police custody for links with the betting mafia. The channel also reports that Vindoo Dara Singh admits to being in touch with the owners of Chennai Super Kings. 
10:42  Vinod Rai retires after redefining CAG's role:  
Comptroller and Auditor General Vinod Rai, who demits office Wednesday, will be remembered for turning the statutory body into a pugnacious watchdog of good governance and administrative integrity at a time when India is experiencing the need for greater transparency and a rebalancing of power that has tilted over the years towards the executive. 

Rai's five-year tenure (2008-2013) has been a tad controversial because of the unprecedented public profile the CAG's office -- which the average Indian knew little about previously -- acquired and the political storms it generated, with many of the audit reports proving troublesome for the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government. 

The CAG's reports on the 2010 Commonwealth Games and allocation of licenses for 2G telecom spectrum and coal mining blocks have severely dented the UPA government's image and provided ammunition to the opposition. There have been also suggestions of the CAG has exceeded its brief. 
09:47  Sensex up 91 points in early trade:  
The BSE benchmark Sensex today rose by nearly 91 points in early trade on selective buying by funds in IT, banking and metal stocks amid positive global cues.

The 30-share barometer gained 90.93 points, or 0.45 per cent, to 20,202.54 points. The index had lost over 174 points in the previous two sessions. 

Similarly, the wide-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty moved up by 19.30 points, or 0.32 per cent, to 6,133.40.
Brokers said buying by funds in select stocks amid a better trend in the Asian region following overnight gains on the US market, mainly influenced the trading sentiment.

Among major gainers, ICICI Bank and Infosys rose up to 1 per cent. Coal India was up by 1.55 per cent, State Bank of India by 1.27 per cent and Tata Motors by 1.31 per cent. 

Meanwhile, Japan's Nikkei was up by 0.39 per cent, while trading on the Hong Kong stock exchange had been delayed due to a black rainstorm warning.
09:33  Jessica case: HC to decide fate of hostile witnesses:  
More than two years after reserving its verdict, the Delhi High Court will on Wednesday decide whether to prosecute 19 witnesses, including Bollywood actor Shyan Munshi on the charge of perjury for turning hostile during the trial of Jessica Lal murder case.

A bench of justices S Ravindra Bhat and G P Mittal would pronounce its decision in the afternoon in the case in which the high court had taken suo motu cognisance and questioned the prosecution as to how all the witnesses took somersault during the trial. 

It had reserved its order on May 4, 2011, after hearing arguments on behalf of police and the witnessess who had turned hostile. 

Lall was shot dead in April 1999 by Manu Sharma, son of Haryana Congress leader Venod Sharma after she refused to serve a drink to him at a late night party at socialite Bina Ramani's restaurant Tamarind Court here in South Delhi. The High Court, which reversed trial court's verdict on December 18, 2006, awarded life imprisonment to Manu Sharma. 
09:27  PM to table UPA II govt's last report card today:  
Under attack from the Opposition over corruption and lack of governance and with its own allies calling for course correction, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will on Wednesday present the fourth and last report card of the UPA-II government highlighting its achievements so far. 

According to sources, after presenting the report card of the UPA government's performance on its fourth anniversary, the Prime Minister will host dinner for the allies and supporting parties. 

The report is the last one for the second edition of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government as there would be a new Lok Sabha by May next year. 

According to sources, the report is expected to highlight the rollout of the Direct Benefit Transfer scheme, and foreign equity in multi-brand retail and insurance as the Congress-led UPA government's major policy initiatives. 

It will also list the Food Security Bill and the Land Acquisition Bill as pro-poor and pro-reform legislations. 
09:23  Imran Khan to leave hospital today:  
Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan is recovering speedily after fracturing his spine in a freak accident at an election campaign meeting and is expected to leave hospital on Wednesday. 

Doctors at Shaukat Khanam Hospital in Lahore said the cricketer-turned-politician was fitted with a specially designed brace or spinal support on Tuesday and he walked unaided for over 300 metres.

The brace allowed Khan to stand upright and unsupported for the first time since his accident two weeks ago. 

He was pain-free while walking with the aid of the brace, the doctors said.

The hospital's administration said Khan is expected to be discharged on Wednesday afternoon though he would continue to receive regular physiotherapy. 

Khan would have to wear the brace for four to six weeks, doctors said.
09:19  Sanjay Dutt shifted to Yerwada jail in Pune:  
Actor Sanjay Dutt was shifted to Yerwada Jail in Pune from Mumbai's Arthur Road jail early on Wednesday. 

The 53-year-old Bollywood superstar is serving three-and-a-half-year sentence after being convicted in the 1993 Mumbai blasts case. He has been allowed home-cooked meals and medicines from home for a month. 

There was suspense over where Dutt will be kept as the Arthur Road jail is usually used to keep undertrials, while convicted criminals are shifted to the a central prison in Maharashtra. 

Incidentally, Dutt had earlier appealed to surrender at Pune's Yerawada jail citing threat to his life. But later withdrew his plea and accepted the court order. 

Dutt had surrendered before TADA Court in keeping with the Supreme Court's deadline to complete his remaining 42-month sentence. He has already spent 18 months in jail. 
09:18  Delhi HC to hear plea for banning IPL:  
The Delhi High Court will on Wednesday hear a petition seeking banning of the Indian Premier League till foolproof corrective measures are taken to stop alleged corrupt practices in it. 

The PIL, filed by NGO Association for Social and Humanitarian Affairs, has also sought a direction that Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) be taken over by the Sports Ministry.

The NGO, which moved the court through its President Kuldeep Singh Bhogal, has also sought judicial supervision of the investigation into the IPL spot-fixing scandal case in which 18 people -- three IPL players, four former players, 11 bookies and their assistants -- have been arrested so far. 

"The IPL's model seems to be designed specifically to suit the requirements of the mafia to quickly and efficiently churn huge sum of money using the routes of hawala," the petition, filed through advocate Rahul Raj Malik, alleged. 
03:26  Iran election: Rafsanjani blocked from running for president:  

Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, the leading opposition-backed candidate in Iran's presidential election, was disqualified on Tuesday from standing in a blow to those hoping for significant change when Mahmoud Ahmadinejad leaves office. Iranian state-run television broadcast a statement by the interior ministry on Tuesday night announcing the final list of candidates.

 

It did not include Rafsanjani or President Ahmadinejad's close ally, Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei. Eight men were allowed to enter the race for the election on 14 June, including Iran's chief nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili; the mayor of Tehran, Mohammad-Bagher Ghalibaf; and former foreign minister Ali Akbar Velayati.

 

Hassan Rouhani, a reformist who is seen as having little chance of victory, was also allowed to run. Jalili is widely seen as the favourite candidate of the supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

 

Read the full report on The Guardian

03:22  India offers more aid for Afghanistan:  

India has offered to provide more training and reconstruction aid for Afghanistan as most international troops prepare to withdraw next year.President Pranab Mukherjee told visiting Afghan President Hamid Karzai that India was proud to help, a statement from Mukherjee's office said on Tuesday.

 

"India is prepared to increase bilateral contribution to institution-building, training and equipment to the extent India can," Mukherjee said. The statement did not say whether it would include military aid.Aimal Faizi, Karzai's spokesperson, earlier said that Afghanistan would ask for Indian help in the strengthening of its security forces ahead of the withdrawal of international forces.

 

Read the full report on Al Jazeera

03:21  Gay marriage: Commons passes Cameron's plan:  

BBC: The House of Commons has voted to allow gay marriage in England and Wales, despite 161 MPs opposing the government's plans. Several Tory MPs spoke against the proposals, which have caused tensions in the party, but the Labour and Lib Dem leaderships backed them.

 

The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill now goes before the House of Lords. David Cameron hopes it will become law soon, with the first ceremonies taking place by next summer. The bill, if passed, will allow same-sex couples, who can currently hold civil ceremonies, to marry.

 

Religious organisations would have to "opt in" to offering weddings, with the Church of England and Church in Wales being banned in law from doing so.

03:20  Vatican denies Pope Francis performed 'exorcism':  

The Vatican has denied claims that Pope Francis performed an exorcism, after TV images showed a man apparently reacting to him putting his hands on his head. The encounter - during Sunday Mass - was shown on a TV channel owned by the Italian bishops' conference.

 

The station quoted exorcists as saying there was "no doubt" the Pope had either performed an exorcism or a prayer to free the man from the devil. Its director later apologised for "having altered the truth".

 

Read the full report on BBC

01:14  FBI names Benghazi suspects, but no arrests yet:  

AP: US officials say they have identified five men they believe might be behind the attack on the diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, last year. The officials say they have enough evidence to justify seizing them by military force as suspected terrorists, but not enough proof to try them in a US civilian court as the Obama administration prefers.

 

So the officials say the men remain at large while the FBI gathers more evidence. The decision not to seize the men militarily underscores the White House's aim to move away from hunting terrorists as enemy combatants and toward trying them as criminals in a civilian justice system.

01:13  Power of Oklahoma tornado dwarfs Hiroshima bomb:  

Wind, humidity and rainfall combined precisely to create the massive killer tornado in Moore, Okla. And when they did, the awesome amount of energy released over that city dwarfed the power of the atomic bomb that leveled Hiroshima.

 

Meteorologists contacted by The Associated Press used real time measurements to calculate the energy released during the storm's life span of almost an hour. Their estimates ranged from 8 times to more than 600 times the power of the Hiroshima bomb. Scientists know the key ingredients that go into a devastating tornado. But they are struggling to figure out why they develop in some big storms and not others. They also are still trying to determine what effects, if any, global warming has on tornadoes.

 

Read the full story on Yahoo!

00:26  Apple's Tim Cook defends tax strategy in Senate:  

The technology giant Apple has been defending itself against accusations that it's avoided paying tax on tens of billions of dollars in profits. Chief executive Tim Cook told a US Senate committee Apple paid all the taxes it owed, complying with both the law, and the spirit of the law.

 

He said last year it paid $6bn to the US Treasury, a tax rate of about 30%. The head of a Senate committee panel had earlier accused Apple of exploiting an absurdity in its tax payments. Apple's grilling comes as leading global brands are under growing scrutiny over their tax methods.

 

Read the full report on BBC

00:25  Akshay Kumar injured during film shoot:  

Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar was today briefly admitted to a private hospital after he met with an accident while shooting for his upcoming movie. Kumar was admitted to Kokilaben Ambani Hospital in suburban Andheri at around 4 pm and was discharged soon after, sources close to the actor said tonight.        

 

They did not disclose the nature of the injury suffered by the 45-year-old actor, but said he was given "primary treatment" and allowed to go home. The actor apparently hurt his leg while shooting for the untitled film produced by Vipul Shah.

00:14  US Senators reach deal on H-1B visa expansion plan:  

In a "major breakthrough", two influential American Senators today reached an agreement on the contentious H-1B visa expansion plan, which Congressional aides said is a compromise between the demand of the tech-industry and the concerns of the labour unions.        

The deal reached between Democratic Senator Charles Schumer and Republican Senator Orrin Hatch, covers eight amendments sponsored by the latter to make the process for granting H-1B visas more palatable to high-tech companies.        

 

As a result of this agreement, the Republicans are now expected to vote in favour of the Senate immigration bill, in particular those provisions related to the H-1B visas.

00:09  Top headlines at this hour:  

UPA does not deserve another term: Opinion poll

EXPLAINED: The real gains for India from Premier Li's visit

Govt needs huge course correction, says NCP

Li hails Pakistan as China's 'iron brother'

Obama assures all federal support to tornado-hit Oklahoma

Passport issue resolved with Saudi Arabia: Indian mission

Defence Secy Shashi Kant Sharma is the new CAG

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