22:24 Live! Indian envoy's car damaged in Maldives:
Indian High Commissioner Rajeev Shahare's car was damaged when unidentified persons hurled a rock at it in the Maldivian capital today though no one was injured in the incident.
Two unidentified persons riding a motorcycle threw a rock at the car while it was parked in front of the mission at Ameer Ahmed Magu, police were quoted as saying by Sun Online portal.
The incident was reported to police at 6.45 pm (local time). A photo posted on the website showed the rock had made a hole in the rear windscreen of the Mercedes-Benz but did not cause any other damage.
21:16 Live! Shinde unlikely to visit Patna tomorrow as Nitish unavailable:
Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde is unlikely to visit Patna tomorrow as announced earlier due to non-availability of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
Shinde will not visit Patna as Kumar has some prior engagement, forcing the Home Minister to cancel his trip, sources said.
The Chief Minister is expected to travel to Delhi on Wednesday when he and the Home Minister will meet and review the law and order situation in Bihar in the wake of multiple blasts in Patna yesterday that so far claimed six lives.
Instead of Shinde, Union Home Secretary Anil Goswami and other senior officials will visit Patna tomorrow and take stock of the situation there.
20:07 Priyanka makes unannounced visit to Rae Bareli:
Priyanka Gandhi today made an unannounced visit to different villages in her mother Sonia Gandhi's parliamentary constituency in Rae Bareli to get a first-hand account of their problems.
The Congress' star campaigner arrived this morning on a two-day visit. She toured Paho, Dhurai, Saguni, Hardi and Semri villages among others, participated in village meetings and heard problems of the locals.
19:57 5 days before Modi's rally, IB sent alert to Bihar police: NDTV
reports: A letter sent to the Bihar police just five days ago warned that
Narendra Modi could be
"targeted by rabid groups."
The letter, sent by the Intelligence
Bureau's branch in Patna, counters the claim by the Bihar Chief Minister
Nitish Kumar that there was no warning from central or state
intelligence agencies that Modi or his supporters could be targeted
at the massive rally he held on Sunday.
Read the full story here
19:02 'India received 26 intelligence warnings about 26/11 attacks':
Months ahead of the 26/11 attacks, India received at least 26 intelligence warnings, including from the CIA, about LeT's plans to carry out a major terrorist assault on Mumbai, according to a new book.
"The Siege: 68 hours inside the Taj Hotel", written by journalists Cathy Scott-Clark and Adrian Levy on the basis of their investigations, claims 11 of these warnings suggested the strike would involve multiple simultaneous attacks.
"Six warnings pointed to a seaborne infiltration, which would be a first in India," says the book published by Penguin USA. The staff of then US President George W Bush received a warning from the Europeans in 2007 about the Lashkar-e-Taiba planning to expand its activities beyond the region but it too was ignored by the US, the book claims.
The first alert came in 2006, around the time Pakistani- American terrorist David Headley was tasked by LeT and its ISI handlers to go to Mumbai to scout potential targets.
18:51 One suspected terrorist belongs to Ranchi Module of IM:
One of the suspected terrorists arrested in connection with the Patna blasts, identified as Imtiaz Ansari belongs to the newly formed 'Ranchi Module' of the Indian Mujahideen (IM), Jharkhand ADG (law & order) S N Pradhan said today.
Pradhan said interrogations during raids at Dhurva last night it had emerged that Imtiaz, his nephew Tophek, Tariq Ansari and Noman Ansari had gone to Patna on Saturday and two others had joined them on way.
The four had, however, told the people of their locality that they were going to Kolkata but left for Patna on Saturday.
18:49 Chance pe dance? Writer alleges copyright violation of Krrish-3:
A writer from Madhya Pradesh today moved the Bombay High Court alleging copyright violation of the script of Hrithik Roshan-starrer Krrish-3 and seeking a stay on the all India release of the film this Friday unless he was given a compensation of Rs 2 crore.
Uday Singh Rajput, a resident of Sagar district in Madhya Pradesh, filed a petition claiming he had written the script titled 'Krrish-2' which was a sequel to Krrish part 1.
However, he said he was being denied the credit for writing the story. Rakesh Roshan, producer of Krrish-3, has also filed a caveat in the High Court urging that no relief should be granted to Uday Singh Rajput unless he (Roshan) is heard in the matter.
Arun Jaitley's statement on the Patna serial blasts. Read
18:44 The deep rooted history of Chicagos deep-dish pizza:
Pizza in the United States is deeply embedded into the nation's culinary consciousness, from thin crust in New York to wood fired in San Francisco.
But Chicago's version took the concept in a much more indulgent direction, filling a thick crust with inverted layers of cheese, meat and tomatoes, all of it creeping up the side of an oiled steel pan. Read
Mani Shankar Aiyar on turning 18: Read
18:34 Sheila Dikshit defamation case: Kejriwal to stand trial on Jan 18:
A Delhi court today framed defamation charges against Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal in a case filed by Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit's political secretary for his alleged remarks against her during power tariff hike protests in October 2012.
Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (CMM) Sanjay Bansal said prima facie defamation charges are made out against Kejriwal and put him on trial after he pleaded not guilty. The court fixed January 18, 2014, for recording of evidence in the case.
18:24 NSA surveillance: Spain demands US explain 'monitoring':
Spain has urged the US to give details of any eavesdropping amid reports it monitored 60 million Spanish phone calls in a month.The US ambassador to Spain, who had been summoned by the EU minister, vowed to clear the "doubts" that had arisen about his country's alleged espionage.The minister said such practices, if true, were "inappropriate and unacceptable". Read
Referring to media reports that the Sahara group has recently purchased immovable property in London worth Rs 256 crore, the bench said that if the report is true then the group is well capable to pay the investors money with SEBI and asked whether it can give bank guarantee for the amount.
The apex court had on August 31 last year directed the Sahara group to refund Rs 24,000 crore by November end.
The deadline was further extended and the companies were directed to deposit Rs 5,120 crore immediately and Rs 10,000 crore in first week of January and the remaining amount in first week of February.
The group, which had handed over the draft of Rs 5,120 crore on December 5, has failed to pay the rest of the amount, SEBI told the court.
The apex court had on August 31 last year directed the two companies to refund the money to their investors within three months with 15 per cent interest per annum.
It had also said SEBI can attach the properties and freeze the bank accounts of the companies if they fail to refund the amount.
18:10 We can't trust you anymore, money has to be paid: SC tells Sahara:
The Supreme Court has directed the Sahara Group to hand over title deeds of its properties worth Rs 20,000 crores to the SEBI within three weeks. If Sahara Group doesn't hand over title deeds within three weeks then Subrata Roy and other directors can't leave the country without its permission, says the SC.
"There is no escape and the money has to be paid. You indulge too much in hide and seek, we cannot trust you anymore," the SC tell Sahara while directing it to handover the valuation report of its properties.
18:04 Twitter wars: Jay Panda asks Cong, BJP to be more responsive to public mood:
Biju Janata Dal (BJD) leader Jay Panda on Monday said the war of words between Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Sushma Swaraj and Congress General Secretary Digvijay Singh on social networking site Twitter should be seen in a lighter vein, and added that it is the public which will finally decide the prime ministerial candidate.
"I think these tweets between Digvijay Singhji and Sushma Swarajji are in my mind in a lighter vein. They are really fascicle because this is not how decisions should be taken about who should lead their parties,' said Panda.
"I think the process about who should lead their party, who should be the prime ministerial candidate, this is finally something the public will decide and these parties also have to be more responsive to the public mood,' he added.
A war of words broke out again between the Sushma Swaraj and Digvijaya Singh yesterday on Twitter, which has of late become the new battlefield for rival politicians to take potshots at each other.
Digvijaya Singh described BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi as a "megalomaniac psychopath liar' and suggested that Sushma Swaraj would be a "better leader' for the post.
Swaraj, however, quickly dismissed Singh's comments with a retort on twitter, "Even I think Digvijay Singhji is a better candidate than Rahul Gandhi.'
18:01 Delhi Police special cell gets 15 days custody of Bhatkal:
The special cell of the Delhi Police has been granted 15 days custody of Indian Mujahideen co-founder Yasin Bhatkal to enable it to continue with his interrogation in connection with the Patna serial blasts.
The latest development in this regard took place after Bhatkal was produced before a Delhi Court today.
India is crowded with gods. We can make room for a few new idols, writes Nilanjana S Roy for the NYT. Read
17:42 Maha ATS arrests fugitive IM man Afzal Usmani from UP:
Meanwhile, fugitive Indian Mujahideen operative Afzal Usmani, who had escaped from a Mumbai court last month, was rearrested by Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad from a place in Uttar Pradesh yesterday when he was trying to flee to Nepal, police said today.
Usmani, an accused in the 2008 Ahmedabad bombings case, was arrested outside Rupadia railway station around 3.30 am, Maharashtra ATS chief Rakesh Maria said.
Usmani's arrest materialised after his nephew Javed Nurullah Hussain Khan, who had assisted in his escape from Mumbai, was picked up by the ATS on October 25, Maria said.
The officer said Javed, who was arrested, informed ATS that Usmani was camping at Tatera village in Bahraich district of Uttar Pradesh with his relatives since fleeing the MCOCA court in Mumbai.
17:37 Delhi gang HC rejects convicts' plea for Hindi translation of documents:
The Delhi High Court today rejected a plea of two death row convicts in the December 16 gang-rape case for Hindi translation of certain documents including the trial court's conviction and sentence orders in the case, saying they are adopting delaying tactics.
A bench of justices Reva Khetrapal and Pratibha Rani rejected the arguments of M L Sharma, counsel for convicts Pawan and Mukesh, that they do not understand English as they are illiterate and they should be supplied with Hindi translated copy of the documents.
"It seems the application is only a methodology adopted to protract the hearing of the appeal.
"No efforts have been made to remove the objections raised by the Registry in their appeal (provisional) although ample time was given to them," the bench said and directed the Registry to list their appeal before it on November 1.
"If you go on like this, a feeling will come to the mind of the court that you want to delay the case. Do you want that feeling to come to the court's mind?" the bench said.
17:33 Ramdev rules out joining any political party:
Ruling out joining the BJP, yoga guru Baba Ramdev today said he has neither been associated with any political outfit nor does he intend to join one in future.
"I know that I have never been part of any political party till now and will not join such outfits any time," Ramdev said.
17:28 Just in: R K Singh former Home Secretary has enrolled as an advocate in the Supreme Court.
17:28 Two killed as storm St Jude batters Britain:
At least two people were killed today as St Jude, one of the worst storms to hit Britain in years, left around 220,000 homes without power and nearly 130 flights grounded at Heathrow, Europe's busiest airport.
A 17-year-old girl suffered fatal injuries when a tree came down as she slept in her mobile home in Kent of southeast England.
A 50-year-old man was also killed after a tree crushed his car in Watford near London.
British Met Office said winds up to 159 kmph were recorded as hurricane-force winds battered parts of England and Wales last night, forcing UK's Environment Agency to issue 152 flood alerts across the country.
17:10 Vengsarkar lying; I never met Dawood, says Kapil Dev:
Within minutes of former Indian skipper Dileep Vengsarkar's startling 'revelation' of gangster Dawood Ibrahim approaching Kapil Dev in 1986 went public, India's first World Cup winning skipper on Monday trashed Vengsarkar's claims, terming them lies. Read more
16:56 Dawood offered car to Indian team if they beat Pak in 1986: Vengsarkar:
In a big revelation, former Indian cricketer Dilip Vengsarkar has claimed that underworld don Dawood Ibrahim had offered car to each member of Indian cricket team including Kapil Dev as a reward if they defeated Pakistan in the final of Austral-Asia Cup in 1986.
Vengsarkar revealed that after the pre-match press conference, Dawood visited the Indian dressing room and was introduced as a businessman.
He said that if Indian team defeated Pakistan in the Austral-Asia Cup final, being played in Sharjah, he will gift Toyota Corolla to each member of the Indian team.
Kapil entered the dressing room and enquired about the presence Dawood, apparently unaware who he was. He promptly asked him to vacate the room.
Angered by Kapils reaction, Dawood left the dressing room and cancelled his offer.
In an interview to Zee News, Kapil Dev corroborated the incident and said he didnt know who Dawood was at the time but he denied remembering chiding him.
Pakistan went on to win the final by one wicket. -- Zee News
16:50 Red Fort gardens may get a facelift :
Culture Ministry has asked Archaeological Survey of India to prepare and develop a plan and layout for restoration of historical gardens of Red Fort. Noting that most of the gardens of the fort have been completely or partially lost, Culture Minister Chandresh Kumari Katoch today said the monument deserves "exemplary protection and conservation".
16:43 Don't know what is 2G, says Karunanidhi's wife testifying at home:
Former Chief Minister and DMK chief M Karunanidhi's home in Chennai became a makeshift courtroom today as the magistrate, CBI officers and prosecutors along with defence lawyers all landed up for the testimony of the politician's second wife, Dayalu Ammal.
Dayalu Ammal (84), who had tried to avoid the deposition citing memory loss, went back on her statement to the CBI on the 2G case, which means that the agency can declare her a hostile witness.
Sources say the matriarch, speaking in Tamil, said she did not recall anything. "I know nothing about 2G or CBI," she reportedly testified. She denied giving any statement to the CBI in the past.
Sources say Dayalu Ammal also claimed she knew nothing about Kalaignar TV, the DMK's mouthpiece of which she is part owner along with her step-daughter Kanimozhi.
The CBI says the channel received kickbacks worth Rs 214 crore for A Raja, who as Telecom Minister in 2008 gave out-of-turn licenses with free second-wave or 2G airwaves to ineligible companies. Read more
16:36 Tier II leaders of the BJP have been discussing the possibility of bringing an impeachment motion against a constitutional authority in the Winter Session of Parliament, for what they believe is a justice denied. Many complaints have apparently been lodged but no tangible action has been initiated by the constitutional authority.
16:31 Cong woos BSP with spacious bungalow:
Parliamentary Affairs minister Kamal Nath is apparently firmly focused on wooing the BSP and ensuring that the upcoming Winter Session of Parliament operates without hiccups. Kamal Nath has allotted a spacious bungalow to Satish Mishra, who is the Rajya Sabha MP of the BSP even though the two-time MP is NOT entitled.
16:23 Will Jairam Ramesh resign as rural development minister?:
The War Room of the Congress party is being revived. First comes the appointment of Jairam Ramesh as key coordinator for election-related political issues.
Speculation in 15, Gurudwara Rekabgani Road, where the War Room is located, is that Ramesh may resign as Rural Development minister to devote his time to the poll campaign.
16:07 Why Narendra Modi went ahead with Patna rally despite blasts:
The BJP has said it took a "conscious decision" not to call off the Narendra Modi 'Hunkar rally' in Patna despite a series of blasts at the venue just before the Gujarat Chief Minister was to begin speaking on Sunday.
"Imagine what would have happened if we called it off and then the crowds came to know about the bombs. Our leaders handled the situation very well," said Sushil Kumar Modi of the Bihar BJP. Six people were killed and more than 80 injured in the crude bomb explosions. Read more here
10 things India does better than anywhere else. Read
15:48 Aarushi case: Final arguments of defence to be heard tomorrow:
The final arguments on the part of defence could not be resumed today in a CBI court here in the Aarushi Hemraj double murder case, with next date of hearing fixed for tomorrow.
The defence was to resume its arguments today but the case could not be taken up as condolence was announced following the death of a lawyer.
Court has now fixed the matter for October 29," said Manoj Sisodia, counsel of Rajesh and Nupur Talwar.
15:44 Rs 5,000 cost imposed on Sheila Dikshit for non-appearance:
A cost of Rs 5,000 was today imposed by a Delhi court on Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit for her non-appearance in a defamation case lodged by her against BJP leader Vijender Gupta.
The court also directed her to be present before it on January 27 without "any excuse".
During the hearing, Dikshit's counsel sought exemption for his client, saying she could not appear as she is busy in election meetings for finalising the list of candidates for the upcoming elections.
15:28 Britain wakes up to the fury of 'St Jude':
In other news: Britain's worst storm in years, St Jude, has struck with gusto leaving around 220,000 homes without power and 130 flights cancelled at Heathrow, one of the busiest airports in the world.
British Met Office said winds up to 159 kmph were recorded as hurricane-force winds battered parts of England and Wales last night, forcing UK's Environment Agency to issue 152 flood alerts across the country.
Rail services across much of southern Britain were cancelled for the morning rush hour and traffic chaos was expected on the roads as a result of felled trees and electricity poles.
One-in-five early morning flights from Heathrow were cancelled with disruption expected at other airports across the UK as well.
"Passengers due to travel on Monday should check the status of their flight with their airline before travelling to the airport," Heathrow said in a statement.
15:25 Live! Jaitley: Our fight against terror has been weakened for votes :
Arun Jaitley, Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, addresses the press. Jaitley says the blasts are a cause for concern for every Indian. He said there were explosions at the venue, near the venue and around the venue and proves that security was lax. "We have an open democracy. We have rallies leading up to polls everywhere. But terrorists can strike at will anywhere.
"It should not appear that being soft on terror also leads to us being soft on security. There was apparently no intelligence alert. It's unfortunate that some people have weakened the fight against terror for votes," says Jaitley.
15:05 Live! Digvijaya: Modi lacks ideas, steals our 1971 garibi hatao slogan:
Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh, a known detractor of Narendra Modi, also hit out at the BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate saying he is "lacking in ideas" and "steals" the slogan of Congress.
"Modi lacking in ideas. Steals Congress slogan of Garibi Hatao 1971 Vintage! Would he explain why families under BPL have increased in Gujarat," he tweeted a day after Modi's rally in Patna in which the Gujarat Chief Minister had made a strong pitch for removal of poverty.
"I want to ask poor Muslim brothers whether they want to quarrel with poor Hindus or fight against poverty. I want to ask poor Hindus whether their concern is disputes with poor Muslims or the fight against poverty.
"A poor Hindu has to fight against poverty and a poor Muslim also has to fight against poverty. Let's defeat poverty together," Modi had said at 'Hunkar rally' in Patna yesterday.
15:02 Sushma's quick comeback: Digvijaya better candidate than Rahul:
Congress leader Digvijaya Singh, who had described Sushma Swaraj as a "better" PM candidate than Narendra Modi, today asked her to give him some lessons in history, saying he is "lacking in ideas" and "steals" Congress slogans. He also thanked Swaraj for her barb that she also thinks that Digvijaya Singh is a better candidate than Rahul Gandhi.
"Thanks Sushmaji for paying me a compliment on a day when I called Modi a Megalomaniac Psychopath Liar! Give him some lessons in History!," Singh commented on Twitter.
Launching a strong attack against Modi yesterday, Singh had wondered why BJP cannot field a "better leader" like Sushma Swaraj as its prime ministerial candidate.
Swaraj, however, was quick to dismiss Singh's comments with the retort, "Even I think Digvijay Singhji is a better candidate than Rahul Gandhi".
Last year also when Digvijaya Singh had said that it was Swaraj's "right" to be seen as a contender for the prime minister's chair, the BJP leader had dismissed his remarks, saying Singh had an old habit of creating disputes.
14:53 Land deal: SC rejects petition against Robert Vadra:
The Supreme Court on Monday rejected a petition filed by the CBI against Indian buisnessman and Congress president Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law Robert Vadra in land acquisition case in Haryana.
The court slammed the petition which had demanded CBI investigation in the case. While dismissing the PIL filed by advocate ML Sharma, the bench of Justice HL Dattu and Justice Ranjan Gogoi said that a PIL cannot be used to target and bring down the reputation of one person and for gaining cheap publicity.
Justice Dattu also told Sharma that he shouldn't destroy the good job done by him for cheap publicity. Read the full report here
14:06 MHA asks poll-bound states to beef-up security :
In the aftermath of the Patna serial bomb blasts, raids were being conducted in several areas of neighbouring Jharkhand.
Three persons detained after the blasts yesterday were released after interrogation last night, a senior police officer said in Ranchi.
Police recovered black powder, materials used to make IEDs, pressure cookers and extremist literature during the raids.
The Home Ministry also asked five poll-bound states to beef up security in election rallies, especially those being attended by top leaders.
The MHA has also asked states and Union Territories to keep strict vigil on sensitive places, markets, religious sites, railway stations, bus terminus and in other vital installations besides deploying adequate forces for their security.
13:36 Live! Patna blasts' survivor: There was blood everywhere, it was a nightmare:
"It was like a nightmare, there was blood everywhere, people were crying in pain...," recalls Jitendra Kumar, one of the 83 injured in the serial blasts in Patna.
Jitendra is undergoing treatment at the Patna Medical College and Hospital and recalled that he heard an explosion while he was watching the TV screens installed for Narendra Modi's rally in the city. He doesn't remember anything after that.
"When I regained consciousness, I was in hospital," said Jitendra, a resident of Fatuha, a small town near Patna. He had a splinter in his chest and leg.
Jitendra, who is in his early 40s, repairs torches and padlocks. The daily wage-earner is worried about how his four children, wife and mother will survive as he will have to be in hospital for a few more days for treatment. -- MI Khan
in Patna. Detailed report on Rediff.com shortly.
13:15 Patna serial blasts: Two suspects held, toll climbs to six:
Patna blasts: Two suspected terrorists have been identified as Tausim and Imtiyaz, official sources said. SSP Patna Manu Maharaj earlier said that "One of the accused, who is being considered as the mastermind, has been arrested. He has confessed how the planning took place".
Three-four suspects have been detained, he said, adding, "We are in the process of interrogation so things will be clear very soon".
Maharaj said there were six-seven persons accompanying the alleged mastermind. Patna city SP said investigation is going on "so we can't divulge a lot of details.
The accused has confessed about the crime, how it happened. He told us that six-seven teams came to Gandhi Maidan and surroundings of Patna and how they planted the bombs".
12:55 Mixed political response to NYT editorial criticism of Modi:
Leaders of some of political parties have given a mixed response to the
New York Times criticism of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJPs) prime
ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.
In an editorial, the NYT
said Modi cannot hope to lead India effectively if he inspires fear and
antipathy among many of its people.
It further stated that Modis
rise to power has troubled many Indians deeply, especially the
country''s 138 million Muslims and its many other minorities, and added
that they worry that if he becomes Indias next prime minister, he might
exacerbate sectarian tensions that have subsided in the last decade.
to the NYT article, senior BJP leader Vinay Katiyar
said he did not
believe in the report, and described it as very misleading.
dont believe in the report. I believe in Modi. He will become the prime
minister of India. These things are being planned and spread. These
will not help the world, said Katiyar.Senior Uttar Pradesh
Congress leader Rita Bahuguna Josh
i, seemed to agree with the gist of
the article, saying: Modis international image is very bad and it (NYT
editorial) is not wrong, as everyone knows what happened in the 2002
riots.Union Minister of State for Agriculture and senior
Nationalist Congress Party
leader Tariq Anwar said: Whatever the
New York Times have written is right. Everyone knows what the RSS
(Rashtriya Swayam Sewak Sangh) is upto.
Biju Janata Dal party
leader and Member of Parliament Jay Panda
said: I would like to say to
the New York Times, that they should mind their own business. They have
no right to say who will be the leader, it is the matter of India, and
India will decide.Read:
The NYT on Narendra Modi
12:50 Can the burqa be stylish?:
To some it's an object of oppression, to others a graceful and modest form of expression. Elizabeth Day meets the women determined to make Islamic dress both a statement of choice -- and fashion. Read
12:44 NSA 'monitored 60m Spanish calls in a month':
In a related story: The US National Security Agency secretly monitored 60 million phone calls in Spain in one month, Spanish media say.The reports say the latest allegations came from documents provided by the fugitive US analyst Edward Snowden. Read
12:43 US denies Obama knew of Merkel surveillance:
In other stories: The US has dismissed reports that President Barack Obama was informed about the tapping of Angela Merkel's mobile phone, even as an American daily today said that spying of as many as 35 world leaders, including the German Chancellor, ended when it was brought to his notice. The National Security Agency has refuted that it ever discussed such spying programmes, in particular those of Merkel, with Obama.
12:35 Rahul's ISI remarks regrettable and irresponsible:
The manner in which leaders of the principal political parties have traded allegations in the last few days over the tragedy of the Muzaffarnagar communal clashes reflects an increasing trend of competitive irresponsibility.
This latest round started with the Congress vice-president, Rahul Gandhi's reckless comments that some of the Muzaffarnagar riot victims were being cultivated by Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate. Read more
12:29 Ashok Malik tweets: If Patna reflects the national mood, my estimate of the BJP winning 190-200 seats may appear too conservative
12:22 Leaders cut across party lines to condemn Patna serial blasts:
Leaders of various political outfits cut across party lines on Monday to condemn Sunday's serial bomb blasts in Bihar capital Patna.
Six of the bombs went off inside or near Patna's Gandhi Maidan, the venue for the BJP rally that was addressed by its prime ministerial candidate.
The remaining two blasts took place inside a public convenience complex at the Patna Railway Station.
In all, six persons lost their lives and over 83 others were injured by the blasts.
Commenting on the tragic incident, Communist Party of India
leader S. Ramachandran Pillai said: "We condemn this incident. We do not believe in politics of violence. It is the responsibility of the ruling government to find out and bring out the culprits. None of the our workers are involved in this."BJP
president Rajnath Singh said: "There is no doubt that it is very unfortunate. I believe this incident happened because of terrorist activities. I would like to appreciate the people of Bihar for their patience. There is no doubt that this is a major security lapse. The Bihar Chief Minister called and expressed grief. He said that investigations are on, and assured that he will gather all the facts and details related to the incident in a day or two."
Senior Uttar Pradesh Congress
leader Rita Bahuguna Joshi said: "I totally condemn these (blasts). Strict action should be taken as soon as possible. It is a very serious matter."
Minister of State for Agriculture and senior Nationalist Congress Party
leader Tariq Anwar said: "First of all, I totally condemn this. To say that the government is involved in this will be totally wrong. The good thing is that the culprits have been caught."Biju Janata Dal
leader and Member of Parliament Jay Panda said: I strongly condemn this. It is an attack on democracy. I hope that action will be taken.'
12:17 Accused held in Patna serial bomb blasts case:
Making headway in the Patna bomb blasts probe, police have arrested the prime accused involved in the serial blasts that left six persons dead.
"One of the accused, who is being considered as the mastermind, has been arrested till now. He has confessed how the planning took place," SSP, Patna, Manu Maharaj said.
Three-four suspects have been detained, he said, adding, "We are in the process of interrogation so things will be clear very soon".
Maharaj said there were six-seven persons accompanying the alleged mastermind.
"Based on that information, we conducted raids. Information was given to Ranchi and subsequently our teams have gone there," he said. Patna city SP said investigation is going on "so we can't divulge a lot of details.
The accused has confessed about the crime, how it happened. He told us that six-seven teams came to Gandhi Maidan and surroundings of Patna and how they planted the bombs". Tens of thousands of people had gathered at Gandhi Maidan to hear Modi.
11:54 Sushil Modi: Nitish took Narendra Modi's security lightly due to personal enmity:
BJP senior leader and former Bihar deputy chief minister Sushil Modi says Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar did not take the security arrangements seriously.
He said the arrangements made to ensure Narendra Modi's security at the Hunkar rally yesterday were lax as Nitish has a personal enmity against Narendra Modi. Sushil Modi questions why there was no bullet-proof SUV and telephone jammers at the venue.
"Criminal negligence on the part of the CM and it seems deliberate," says Sushil Modi.
11:52 Subramanian Swamy tweets: I have demanded in a letter to PM that Namo be given SPG cover in view of the fact that he is PM in waiting
11:39 Patna blasts: Detained persons released in Ranchi:
Three persons detained in Ranchi in connection with the Patna serial bomb blasts have been released after interrogation even as raids today continued in several areas of Jharkhand in connection with the blasts.
All the three detained after the blasts yesterday were released after interrogation last night, a senior police officer said today.
Soon after Bihar Police tipped off their counterparts here that some accused in Patna blasts hailed from the state, he said raids are being carried out.
Police recovered black powder, materials used to make IEDs, pressure cooker and extremist literature during the raids, he said.
Six persons were killed and over 83 injured in eight low intensity serial blasts in Patna of which six bombs went off in and around the venue of Narendra Modi's mega rally at Gandhi Maidan shortly before his address to a huge gathering yesterday.
11:36 Patna blasts pre-planned, no security lapses, says Nitish:
So, what has been Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's reaction to the Sunday serial blasts? Kumar said yesterday that the timing of the Patna serial blasts on the day of Narendra Modi's rally was "very worrying", adding it appeared to be a "deliberate attempt" to vitiate the atmosphere in the state.
Ruling out any security lapses in the arrangements for BJP prime ministerial candidate's mammoth 'Hunkar' (battle cry) rally, Nitish also said there were no intelligence inputs about the explosions either from the Centre or from the state.
The serial blasts cannot be a coincidence that they occurred on the day of the rally, he asserted. Read more
11:31 Pak troops kill Indian Army officer at LoC:
reports from Srinagar: Prakash Chandar, a junior commissioned officer (JCO), was killed when Pakistani troops violated the ceasefire on the Line of Control in Uri sector of north Kashmir's Baramulla district this morning.
Pakistani troops opened heavy fire at an army post near the Kaman bridge in the early hours today, said a defence spokesperson. "The Indian Army has lodged a protest with the Pakistan Army on the hotline," said the defence spokesperson.
11:28 Live! IM boss and Bihar blasts mastermind Yasin Bhatkal in Patiala court:
The National Investigavitve Agency is seeking the custody of Yasin Bhatkal for his involvement in the Bihar serial blasts. The NIA believes the Indian Mujahideen headed by Bhatkal is responsible for the serial blasts. Bhatkal has been produced in the Patiala court.
The National Investigation Agency, meanwhile, has taken over the blasts probe. The Bihar police also believe that the serial blasts were the handiwork of the Indian Mujahideen.
We are trying to find out if there are any similarities with the
Bodh Gaya blasts. The Patna blasts do seem to bear the signature of the
Indian Mujahideen, but it is too early to tell, said a NIA official.
11:19 Brahma Chellaney tweets: "PM condemns Patna blasts." Can anyone sane welcome bombings? Yet only in India will such an inane statement be made -- and reported by press.
11:17 Karuna's wife begins recording statement in 2G case :
In other news: The Chief Metropolitan Magistrate today began the process of recording the statement of Dayalu Ammal, wife of DMK supremo M Karunanidhi, in the 2G Spectrum case.
CMM Gopalan has been appointed as Commissioner by the Special Court in the multi-crore scam to record the statement by 85-year-old Dayalu Ammal, who is named as one of the prosecution witness in the case.
Gopalan arrived at Dayalu Ammal's residence at about 9.40 am, where police have posted a tight security cover.
Dayalu Ammal's daughter Kanimozhi, Rajya Sabha MP, Sharad Kumar, Managing Director of Kalaignar TV, who are also among the accused in the case involving former Telecom Minister and DMK leader A Raja were present.
11:14 IM operative Tahseen Akhtar mastermind of Bihar blasts?:
The Bihar and Jharkhand police believe the mastermind is a man named
Tahseen Akhtar, an alleged Indian Mujahideen operative in Bihar.
The name of the Indian Mujahideen has cropped up in the Patna serial blasts and if the same is ascertained then it is the first attack by the outfit since the arrest of its leader, Yasin Bhatkal, reports Vicky Nanjappa.
After the arrest of Bhatkla, the agencies had said that the organisation would be run by Tehsin Akthar who was also one of the players in the 13/7 attacks in Mumbai.
Tehsin according to the Bihar police is the mastermind of the Patna attacks and he is said to have carried out these blasts for two reasons - avenge the Muzaffarnagar riots and show that the Indian Mujahideen is still active after the arrest of Bhatkal and his aide Assadullah Akthar.
Tehsin is a resident of Samastipur in Bihar, but was tasked with setting up a module in Ranchi.
The National Investigation Agency has been on his trail ever since he gave the slip following the 13/7 attack along with another player, Waqas.
According to the Intelligence Bureau, Tehsin did not leave the country and stayed in Bihar for a considerable period of time after the 13/7 attack.
11:04 BJP president Rajnath Singh says the Bihar blasts look like a terrorist attack and the lack of security is clear.
11:00 BJP to meet EC shortly:
The BJP is to meet the Election Commission shortly over Rahul Gandhi's ISI comment at the Indore rally and over the lax security at Narendra Modi's rally in Bihar yesterday.
10:56 Bihar police now suspect more IEDs may be found. So far, there are believed to be five bomb planters.
10:55 Live! Bihar blasts: Suspect who planted bomb dies of injuries :
CNN IBN reports that one of the four men detained in the Bihar serial blasts yesterday has died as a result of his injuries. The man was critically injured while planting a bomb at one of the venues yesterday. He died in the ICU in hospital.
10:42 MHA alert for all states:
The Ministry of Home Affairs has sent an advisory to all states to be alert and step up security ahead of Diwali.
10:24 Minister compares Lalu's jail term with Nelson Mandela's!:
Drawing a parallel between Lalu Prasad and anti-apartheid activist Nelson Mandela, Jharkhand minister Annapurna Devi today said the jailed leader would be a "future challenger" for the post of prime minister.
"Nelson Mandela had been jailed for 27 years following his protest against the apartheid regime. When he came out he became the president of South Africa. Our leader, Lalu Prasad,will also come out from jail and become a challenger to the post of the prime minister," said Devi, a RJD leader.
10:22 Kerala CM in hospital after stoning, LDF workers held :
Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, who sustained minor injuries during a protest by LDF members in Kannur, has been admitted to a Medical College Hospital for detailed check-up and observation.
Police has rounded up 22 LDF workers, most of them from the CPI-M and its youth outfit DYFI, in overnight searches in different parts of Kannur district in connection with the incident.
Cases have also been registered against 1,000 identifiable LDF workers, including a couple of MLAs and CPI-M district leaders, in connection with the incident.
09:55 Patna blasts toll 6; 4 suspects held:
Vicky Nanjappa reports:
The death toll in Patna serial blasts has gone up to six after one of the accused succumbed to his injuries. The police had apprehended four suspects, one of whom is in an extremely critical condition.
The second suspect, who was picked up from near Gandhi Maidan, was found in a critical condition. Some transcripts on him led the police to believe that he was connected with the blasts.
The police now have three suspects in their custody and are jointly questioning them with the National Investigation Agency.
A 8-member team of the NIA reached Patna on Sunday night and it will take over the probe today.
09:29 Delhi bureaucrat killed before wife: Police:
Police are hunting for a suicide note in the murder of a senior bureaucrat and his wife, who were found dead in their house in Hazrat Nizamuddin area of south-east Delhi, after the post-mortem report revealed that the wife was killed first.
"We are searching for a suicide note, either in a soft copy or hard copy, as investigations so far have revealed that there were high chances that the wife first killed her husband and then committed suicide," a senior police official said.
09:28 BJP announces candidates for second phase of Chhattisgarh polls:
Deputy Speaker of Chhattisgarh assembly Narayan Chandel figured in the list of 21 candidates announced by BJP for the second phase of polling to be held on November 19.
Chhattisgarh has a 90-member House.
The BJP had announced the names of candidates for 67 seats on October 20 for the two-phased poll scheduled on November 11 and November 19.
09:24 No country has ended terrorism in 3 years: Rajapaksa :
Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa today said his government ended a 30-year campaign of terrorism in just three years which "no country has been able to achieve".
Inaugurating the China-aided express highway to the Colombo international airport, Rajapaksa said that he was able to end a 30-year campaign of terrorism in just three years.
"No country has been able to achieve this," he said.
09:23 Israel to release second batch of Palestinian prisoners:
Israel has approved the release of 26 Palestinian prisoners under agreed confidence building measures that helped kick-start peace talks following a fiery debate that saw the cracks in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's coalition coming out in the open.
A ministerial committee headed by Netanyahu, who had earlier on Sunday emphasised that "promises must be kept", approved the list of Palestinian prisoners to be released in the second of a four-stage process by which 104 Palestinian prisoners will be released.
09:22 BJP blames Bihar govt over blasts:
Hours after the serial blasts in Patna, the BJP blamed the Bihar government led by its former NDA ally JD-U for "failing to provide" proper security cover for Narendra Modi's rally.
"The Bihar government has failed in proper bandobast cover and law and order for a rally of this kind. The BJP strongly condemns this," said BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman.
09:21 Nitish calls up Rajnath Singh over serial blasts:
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today telephoned BJP President Rajnath Singh and said the state government would investigate the serial bomb blasts that rocked Patna before Narendra Modi's rally in the city.
"Nitish Kumar telephoned Rajnath Singh and assured him that the state government will take the investigations to a logical conclusion," sources close to the chief minister said.