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Live! Eight depose in Graham Staines murder case

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September 24, 2013

23:18  Militants kill 22-year-old in Srinagar:  Mukhtar Ahmad from Srinagar reports: 22-year old Mohammad Iqbal Khan was gunned down by suspected militants inside his house in Kuwal Cherhar area of north Kashmir Sopore town late this evening
22:17  Eight depose in Graham Staines murder case:  Eight persons including a pastor have deposed in the the second phase of the trial in triple murder case involving Australian Missionary Graham Stuart Staines and his two minor sons which began at the Khurda District and Sessions court.

The next hearing was today posted for last week of October. The court has posted the next hearing date to October 28, 29 and 30, CBI counsel Kalicharan Mishra told reporters.
A total of eight persons including Staines driver and pastor of Manoharpur Church have already deposed in the CBI designated court here during the two-day trial. All the witnesses informed the court that the miscreants had set fire to the vehicle where Staines and his two sons were sleeping on the January 22 night in 1999.

The defense lawyer Bana Bihari Mohanty, however, insisted upon deposition of Gladys Staines, the widow of the Australian Missionary. "We feel that Gladys Staines statement is vital in the case," Mohanty said during hearing.
20:40  US bar displays pictures of Sikh Gurus, outrages community:   A pub in the city of Hollywood near Los Angeles has displayed full size posters of Sikh Gurus in their bar area, outraging the community members and forcing the owners to issue an apology.

The Pikey Bar agreed to take down the pictures of Sikh Guru after community members lodged a protest with the pub owners.

"We have lodged a protest," Satnam Singh Chahal, executive director of the North American Punjabi Association told PTI.
20:13  SC dismisses curative petition of Swamy against Chidambaram:  The Supreme Court has dismissed BJP leader Subramanian Swamy's curative petition against its verdict declining to make Finance Minister P Chidambaram a co-accused in the 2G spectrum allocation scam. 

"We have gone through the curative petition and the relevant documents. In our opinion, no case is made out within the parameters indicated in the decision of this Court in Rupa Ashok Hurra Vs Ashok Hurra & Anr.... Hence, the curative petition is dismissed," a four-judge bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivam said.
19:55  Jaitley slams govt over leak of Army inquiry report:  BJP leader Arun Jaitley today slammed the government over the "leak" of an army inquiry report on an intelligence unit set up former Army Chief V K Singh and said such covert operations are not admitted or talked about in the larger public interest. 

Jaitley asserted that intelligence agencies and the army have the right to conduct covert operations and these are above the scrutiny of Parliament or the judiciary. 

He accused the UPA government of deliberately leaking information of covert operations for its "narrow political interest", dealing a "setback" to counter insurgency operations.
19:32  V K Singh's remark on money for J-K ministers sets off political storm:  Former Army Chief V K Singh's claim that money was paid to ministers in Jammu and Kashmir from secret funds set off a political storm today with ruling National Conference (NC) and ally Congress daring him to name the beneficiaries amid a demand for a CBI probe. 

As the NC threatened legal action against Gen(retd) Singh if he failed to name the ministers, Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said government was ready to probe if the beneficiaries were identified.
18:44  Live! Four coal blocks can be auctioned:  Just in: A new coal policy has been approved, which means coal blocks can finally be auctioned. The cabinet committee on economic affairs (CCEA) which adopted and approved the policy can now auction at least four coal blocks with nearly 2,000 million tonnes of estimates reserves before December, a senior coal ministry official said.
18:32  Part of Nairobi malls roof collapses, terrorists still holding hostages:   Part of the rooftop parking in Nairobi's Westgate mall collapsed on Tuesday, a fireman and security sources said, a day after a fierce fire during the ongoing siege by Al-Qaida linked fighters. Read
18:28  Boy freed, given Mars bar after telling armed jihadist 'youre a bad man':  A four-year-old British boy survived the Kenya shopping mall attack after telling an armed jihadist 'you're a bad man', according to the boy's uncle who has given an interview to a UK newspaper. Read
18:14  Court clears deck for BCCI to expel ex-IPL chief Lalit Modi:  The Delhi High Court on Tuesday vacated the stay order issued by a trial court barring the Board of Control for Cricket in India from holding its Special General Meeting in Chennai tomorrow (September 25).

The BCCI moved the High Court on Monday to challenge the order that restrained the BCCI from conducting the SGM where the Board is expected to ban former Indian Premier League commissioner Lalit Modi.

The trial court order was issued last Saturday after Lalit Modi challenged the validity of the SGM. On Tuesday, Justice VK Shali heard BCCI's plea.

The BCCI lawyers contended that the trial court had no jurisdiction over the matter as the SGM is scheduled to be held in Chennai. Modi's lawyers are likely to appeal to the Supreme Court on Wednesday. -- NDTV
18:09  Digvijaya is now interested in buying and selling of burqas: BJP:  BJP vice-president Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Tuesday took a jibe at Congress General Secretary Digvijaya Singh after he alleged that 10,000 burqas were purchased from Indore ahead of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi's rally in Madhya Pradesh.

He said that the saffron outfit does not require distributing burqas or caps to ensure that people turn up for its rallies and programmes.

"We knew Digvijay Singhji as a leader of the Congress Party, but for the first time we are seeing him as a leader who is interested in the buying and selling of burqas.

"He keeps a track as to how many burqas and caps are purchased where.  So, I think he will not gain from this kind of a politics,' said Naqvi.
17:41  Schedule for upcoming Assembly elections on October 3 :  On October 3, the Election Commission is expected to announce the schedule or the upcoming Assembly elections in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi and Mizoram. 
17:31  BJD, CPI only parties to oppose reversal of SC order on convicted MPs, MLAs:   Cabinet clears the ordinance reversing the Supreme Court order on disqualifying convicted MPs and MLAs.

What this means is that the ordinance will allow convicted MPs/MLAs to continue in office, if the appeal against the conviction is admitted by a higher court within 90 days.

But the MPs/MLAs will not draw salaries and vote pending the appeal. Barring the Communist Party of India (CPI) and Biju Janata Dal (BJD), all other political parties are on board of the ordinance.
17:19  Live! 7.8 quake hits Pakistan, mild tremors in Delhi, Rajasthan:  Just in: Mild tremors felt in Delhi, NCR and suburbs, apart from Rajasthan. The epicentre of the earthquake is in Balochistan, Pakistan, which has registered a 7.8 quake.
17:00  Modi's speech to Indian diaspora is 'feku' at his best: Digvijay Singh:  A day before Bharatiya Janata Partys prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi addresses a rally in Bhopal, Congress Party general secretary Digvijay Singh on Tuesday alleged that 10,000 burqas were purchased in Indore to feign the support of the Muslim minority towards the opposition party at the rally.

In the entire country, it is being built up that the Bharatiya Janata Party has the support of the Muslim minority. Now, as proof, I have with me a bill which shows that 10,000 burqas have been bought from Indore. The same number of topis could not be found here, but were ordered from Lucknow. I will put that bill before you, as well, Singh said.

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi will speak at the Karyakarta Mahakumbh in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, on September 25 as part of his partys election campaign in the lead-up to the 2014 general elections.

On Sunday, Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh, once again, hit out at Modi, and said the facts that he presented at speech to the Indian Diaspora in America indicated that it was ''feku'' at his best.
16:54  Shah Rukh to walk the ramp for Yash Chopra tribute:  Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan will join Yash Chopra's heroines Sridevi, Madhuri Dixit and Katrina Kaif on the ramp in a special tribute to the late filmmaker.

SRK is the only male actor who will walk the ramp with other actresses on Chopra's 81st birthday on September 27.

The function is being organised by Chopra's wife Pamela. Shah Rukh, who teamed up with Chopra on his last four films 'Darr', 'Dil To Pagal Hai', 'Veer-Zara' and 'Jab Tak Hai Jaan', had interviewed the director last year on his 80th birthday.

"Pamelaji requested Shah Rukh to be part of this tribute to Yashji and he happily agreed to walk with all the divas as part of the grand finale," Rafiq Gangjee, the official spokesperson of Yash Raj Films said.

Pamela plans to celebrate Chopra's birthday in grand manner every year. The veteran filmmaker died last year on October 21.
16:48  Live! Aadhaar to get legal status in winter session of Parl: Govt:  The government will push for passage of a long-pending bill to provide statutory status to the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) in the winter session of Parliament.

"We will bring the National Identification Authority of India Bill 2010 in Parliament during the forthcoming winter session for discussion and passage," Planning Minister Rajeev Shukla told PTI.

The UIDAI, which issues 12-digit Aadhaar numbers to residents, currently operates through an executive order.
16:05  The good, the bad and the political fall-out of Jagan's release:  The TDP and the Congress are nervously watching the political outcome of Jagan Mohan Reddy's release, while the TRS is probably celebrating. Vicky Nanjappa tells us why. Read
16:04  Jagan Reddy leaves for Lotus Pond in bulletproof car :'s Mohammed Siddique reporting from outside the Chanchalguda jail in Hyderabad says slogans of 'Jai Jagan' pierced the the air as YSR Congress party leader Jaganmohan Reddy walked to freedom after 16 months in jail.

Reddy left the jail for his home 'Lotus Pond' at Jubilee Hills in a bullet proof Scorpio, even as the police found it difficult to keep thousands of supporters at bay.

The police had ensured adequate security arrangements as emotions among supporters were at its peak. YSR Cong MLAs were among those who waited outside the jail for several hours.

Though the CBI court had granted him bail yesterday, completion of formalities delayed his release till this afternoon.

Jagan's cousins -- Avinash Reddy and Yeshwant Reddy -- furnished the two securities of Rs 2 lakh each in the CBI court this morning.

After the court accepted them, Jagan's lawyer Ashok Reddy and an employee of the court took the orders of Jagan's release to Chanchalguda jail after lunch.
15:55  After 16 months in jail, Jagan gets bail:   YSR Congress chief Jaganmohan Reddy walks out of the Chenchalguda Central prison in Hyderabad. Hundreds of supporters cheered at their first glimpse of their leader.

Scores of Jagan supporters and YSRC workers raised slogans and danced in front of the jail, as the 40-year-old leader walked out after nearly 16 months, on submission of necessary documents in the special CBI court.
15:51  BSP MLA Noor Salem Rana gets bail in Muzaffarnagar riots case:  The Uttar Pradesh government has set up a special investigation cell (SIC) to probe the riots in Muzaffarnagar earlier this month, which claimed 49 lives.

Meanwhile, BSP MLA Noor Salem Rana gets bail in Muzaffarnagar riots case. 
15:48  Study Love in Kolkata:  Shakespeare's Romeo had it that "Love goes toward love as schoolboys from their books, But love from love, toward school with heavy looks.'

One university is hoping to upturn this aphorism by making love a part of its curriculum for the first time.

Kolkata's highly-regarded Presidency University will offer a course on the nuances of love and its interplay with society and culture. Read
15:47  Welcome on board:  Within months of entering into a three-way joint venture with Air Asia and Telestra Tradeplace Pvt. Ltd. to start a low-cost domestic airline, the Tata group has now joined hands with Singapore Airlines to launch a full-service airline. Read

PS. A must-read for Mr Mallya
15:33  BJP MLA Sangeet Som booked under National Security Act:  BJP MLA Sangeet Som, who was arrested for alleged involvement in fake video uploading case and making provocative speeches, was today booked under the stringent National Security Act (NSA).

Som, accused of uploading a fake video that played a role in provoking communal tension in Muzaffarnagar and making inflammatory speeches, was arrested in Meerut on September 21.
15:32  Live! Mallya expects Kingfisher sale in next 90 days :   Kingfisher Airlines Ltd, which has been grounded for almost a year for want of cash, is in talks with a foreign investor for a potential stake sale, Chairman Vijay Mallya said on Tuesday, without naming any investor.

"I expect this to take some form or shape in the next 90 days. That is my own estimate," Mallya told reporters after the company's annual shareholders meeting. -- Reuters.
15:24  14-year-old rape survivor allegedly made to strip by senior cop at police station in UP:  A 14-year-old girl, who wanted to file a rape complaint, was allegedly forced to strip and humiliated by a senior police officer in Kushinagar in eastern Uttar Pradesh. Read
15:18  Human trafficking continues to ravage Jharkhand:  Suman Tutti, 11, a frail, shy girl from Bhoot village, around 35 kilometers, or 21 miles from Ranchi, the capital of the eastern state of Jharkhand, is one of the 100,000 girls who are trafficked from the state every year, according to the state government statistics. Read
15:16  Can Pakistan mend religious divide?:  All Saints Church was designed to look like a mosque -- to symbolize unity amidst a community of many religions. Completed in 1883, it was built within the old walled city of Peshawar during a century of relative peace and harmony. Read
15:06  Shinde: J-K govt has not asked for CBI enquiry on VK Singh's statement:  Sushilkumar Shinde told reporters that he has not received any communication from the Jammu and Kashmir government or anyone else demanding a CBI inquiry into VK Singh's statement on Army payments.

Minister of State for Home RPN Singh said the V K Singh issue was a matter of national security and it could not be discussed in public.

"Anyone who has served in the Army and that too in such a top post should not be talking like this. There should be restraint," he said.

Asked whether any inquiry will be ordered by the Home Ministry, RPN Singh said the Army and the Ministry of Defence will look into it.
14:57  What got shipped out in FY13:  In other news: India have run a large trade deficit of $41 billion with China and of $29 billion with Switzerland. Read
14:49  General VK Singh files RTI, seeks top secret report :   Former Chief of the Army Staff General VK Singh has filed an RTI application seeking the Board of Officers Report on the activities of the 'shadowy' Technical Support Divison (TSD) of the Military Intelligence. Read
14:43  Yes, money was paid to J-K ministers, but for social work: VK Singh:  Former Army chief General VK Singh says that the allegation that he paid bribes to ministers in Jammu and Kashmir is wrong. "Yes, money was paid to the ministers not for personal use, but for social work and to take stone throwers off the streets. The Rs 1.19 crore was used to maintain peace in the state."

He says he has not made up his mind about joining politics.
14:36  Soldiers, rickshaw pullers, children, businessmen key donors to AAP:  The AAP fervour has caught on with 45,000 donors already, be they soldiers from Siachen or businessmen in America. When activist-turned-politician Arvind Kejriwal forayed into the political arena last November, he knew money would be needed to fight the political battles that lay ahead. Read more.
14:26  Death toll of Indians killed in Kenya terror attack rises to 3:  The number of Indians killed in the Westgate mall terror attack in Kenya has risen to three, with one more body identified as that of an Indian national, even as the total death toll touched 62.

The third Indian has been identified as Sudharshan B Nagaraj from Bangalore, the spokesperson in the Ministry of External Affairs said in New Delhi today.

Earlier, two Indians, including an 8-year-old boy, were declared dead in the attack on Westgate, an upmarket shopping mall in the Kenyan capital Nairobi, which started on Saturday.
14:24  Jairam steps in to stymie CVC's 'Google Order':  The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) has downloaded negative reports on 200 IAS and 150 IPS officers and directed Cabinet Secretariat and Department  of Personnel to examine the charges before they are promoted to senior level.

But insiders believe this is unwarranted and would derail the process of justice if these officers are due for promotions to
to either Additional Secretaries or as Secretaries to Government of India.

It is believed that CVC Pradeep Kumar is copying the style of his predecessor Nagarajan Vittal by using the internet to malign these service officers.

Union Minister Jairam Ramesh has protested against the directions of the CVC's 'Google order' and has taken up the issue on behalf of the All India Service Officers with the PMO and the DOPT.

Cabinet Secretary  Ajit Seth has also convened a meeting of Secretaries to the Government of India to consider and reject the CVC  Google Order.

But for Jairam Ramesh's intervention, there would have been an outcry by 200 IAS officers.
14:20  Live! Modi's Tamil speech to be telecast live by 85 channels:   Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi will be in Trichy on Thursday in what is perceived as a shout-out to to Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalitha to join hands and overthrow UPA2 at the Centre.

Modi's team has been working overtime to make sure he is a hit in Chennai. What remains to be seen is whether Modi will hit out at P Chidambram for his comment -- fake encounter with facts? If he does, it will certainly please the ADMK and Jaya.

Modi has also been going over his three-minute speech in Tamil making sure the pronunciation passes muster. The speech will be telecast live in 85 Tamil TV networks registered in 18 districts of the state. 
13:26  What do you do when Usain Bolt gatecrashes your wedding:  Let's say you're getting married when you spot Usain Bolt, one of the world's coolest athletes, just strolling along and minding his own business. What do you do? Choose from the options here.
13:23  Govt may probe if V K Singh names J-K politicians: Shinde:   Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde today asked former Army chief V K Singh to name Jammu and Kashmir politicians who were allegedly paid money by the Army for "stability", saying if details are given the government was ready to probe.

"V K Singh should name politicians. He should reveal the names (of those to whom money was allegedly paid). If details are given, we can investigate," he told reporters on the sidelines of a function in New Delhi.

The Home Minister's remarks came in the wake of the retired general's statement that that "certain ministers" in the state are given money by the Army for "stability" and that this has been going on since Independence.
13:09  For India and Indonesia, Quality Growth Requires Quality Governance. Read
12:59  Perspectives: Palestinian Women Embrace Yoga for Peace. Read
12:57  Indian shot in Nairobi mall for failing to answer query on Islam:  An Indian man was shot when he failed to answer a question on Islam asked by Somalian militants who were holding hostages after killing 68 people at an upmarket mall in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi. Read
12:55  Indian strikes offer terror templates to jihadis: Obama :  While on terror attacks, US President Barack Obama reached out to the country of his paternal ancestors as Kenya battled a savage terrorist attack for which strikes on long-suffering India appears to have provided the template. Read
12:51  26/11: Deposition of Indian witnesses before Pak panel begins:     The deposition of Indian witnesses in the 26/11 terror attack case began here today before an eight-member Pakistani Judicial Commission amid tight security arrangements.

The Commission members arrived at 11 am at a magistrate court in Mumbai to cross-examine witnesses of the Mumbai attack, in connection with prosecution of seven suspects held in Pakistan for their alleged role in the crime.

Police are keeping strict vigil in and around the court. A thick security blanket is in place at the premises. Also, a dog squad has been pressed into service, police sources said.

The proceedings began with Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam, representing the Government of India, introducing the members of the Commission to the court while emphasising on the need of evidence from Indian witnesses against the attack conspirators, whose trial is pending in Pakistan.
12:44  Farooq Abdullah demands CBI probe into VK Singh's 'terrible statement':   National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah today demanded a CBI probe into the claim of former Army chief V K Singh that "certain ministers" in Jammu and Kashmir are given money by the Army for "stability" and that this has been going on since Independence.

"I think it's a very, very terrible statement that he has made. It must be investigated. The Army has nothing to do with funding of political parties.

"They should never do this. The Army should be kept apolitical," the Union Minister said. adding, "And if he has done that, he has done something extremely wrong."

Under attack over reports that attempts were made to topple the Jammu and Kashmir government during his tenure as Army chief, Gen (retd) Singh has claimed that accusations against him were false and motivated.

Read the TOI report: Paying ministers nothing new in J&K, former Army chief Gen VK Singh says
12:37  The sad story of a good vaccine:  Lax monitoring, poor public engagement and inadequate training to vaccinators have dealt a serious blow to the crucial pentavalent immunisation programme. Read
12:34  Justice cannot follow a tough act:  Equating juveniles with adult criminals is neither scientifically correct nor normatively defensible, writes the Hindu. Read
12:30  Obama is scared of his wife:  US President Barack Obama, arguably the world's most powerful man, is scared of his wife Michelle and has stopped smoking out of fear of the First Lady.

Following a Civil Society Roundtable at the opening day of the UN General Assembly meeting yesterday, an open mic caught the President questioning UN Special Rapporteur Maina Kiai about his smoking habit, NBC News reported. "I hope you quit smoking," Obama said as the two greeted each other after the event.

Kiai said he still enjoyed a smoke from time-to-time, and asked Obama if he had been able to kick the habit. "I haven't had a cigarette in six years... that's because I'm scared of my wife," Obama told him with a grin.
12:28  What Delhi cops know about new laws:  Almost six months after India strengthened its law against sex-crimes -- a reaction to the gang rape of a young woman in New Delhi last year -- many police officers remain ignorant about the changes, according to an India Real Time survey.

The informal poll, of 100 male and female police officers in Delhi, wasn't scientific.

But its findings raise questions about the level of awareness of new laws aimed at protecting women among those who are charged with enforcing them. Read
12:25  The man who shut down Hauz Khas village:  In other news: Pankaj Sharma has the air of a hunted man. In Hauz Khas Village, one of Delhi's trendiest night spots, the 38-year-old businessman-turned-environmental activist is persona non grata after his actions led to the closure of dozens of restaurants here at the weekend. Read
12:21  YSR Congress chief Jaganmohan Reddy is about to walk out of the Chenchalguda Central prison in Hyderabad.
12:20  'People thought Rajan didnt understand modern finance' :   For all Raghuram Rajan fans... The economist who predicted the financial crisis just sounded another alarm -- it would be wise to listen this time. Read 
12:15  Man shot at for not putting onions in omelette:  A man was shot at in Uttar Pradesh's Etah town for not putting onions in an omelette, police said on Tuesday.

The incident took place in the Aliganj area in Etah, 265 kilometres from Lucknow.

Pujari, who the police described as a criminal, ordered an omelette for four of his friends.

When they found there were no onions in it, the group became furious.

Egg vendor Deepu Kashyap told them he could not afford to buy onions, which have become expensive over the past few weeks.

Pujari then whipped out a pistol and shot at the vendor. The victim was rushed to a medical facility. -- NDTV
12:07  Troops fighting 'one or two' gunmen in Nairobi mall: security sources:  Kenyan special forces are still battling "one or two" Islamist militants holed up inside Nairobi's Westgate shopping mall, security sources involved in the operation said today.

The sources said the militants were located and isolated in or around a casino located on one of the upper floors of the complex.

Sporadic gunfire and the sound of blasts could be heard coming from inside the mall at dawn, witnesses said.

The fresh fighting came some hours after the Kenyan government had declared it was in "full control" of the sprawling mall and as the siege went into its fourth day.
12:04  Muzaffarnagar riot toll 49; police outposts set up in 14 areas:  Gearing up security arrangements in the wake of the riots in Muzaffarnagar, district authorities have set up 14 police outposts in the worst affected areas, even as they said the toll in the violence has climbed to 49.

Additional District Magistrate Inder Mani Tripathi said 49 persons lost their lives, 12 persons were reported missing and more than eight religious places were damaged in the communal violence in the district.

The district authorities have decided to set up at least 33 more police outposts in areas of the district affected by the communal violence.
12:01  Record foodgrain production likely this year, says Sharad Pawar :  Sharad Pawar, Union minister for Food and Agriculture, hopes for a record foodgrain production in 2013-14 on good monsoon; pitches for GM crops.

Agriculture Commissioner J S Sandhu says, rice production projected to drop to 92.32 million tonnes this year.
11:55  SC to hear plea to restrain Srinivasan from contesting:  The Supreme Court today said it would hear on Friday the plea of Cricket Association of Bihar (CAB) seeking to restrain N Srinivasan from contesting for the post of BCCI President in the Annual General Meeting of the Board scheduled on September 29 in Chennai.

CAB, in its application, has sought "interim injunction retraining respondent number 2 (Srinivasan) from contesting for the post of President of respondent number 1 (BCCI) in the Annual General Meeting to be held on September 29 at Chennai."
11:54  Jagan set to walk out of jail;supporters gather to welcome him:  Supporters of YSR Congress chief Jaganmohan Reddy, along with scores of party workers, today assembled outside the Chenchalguda Central prison in Hyderabad, waiting for their leader's release after he was granted bail in the alleged quid pro quo investments case.

Scores of Jagan supporters and YSRC workers raised slogans and danced in front of the jail, from where the 40-year-old leader is likely to walk out after nearly 16 months, on submission of necessary documents in the special CBI court.
11:41  Name politicians who took bribe, Shinde challenges VK Singh:  V K Singh should name politicians. If details are given, we can probe, says Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde on the former Army chief's claim that money was paid to certain J-K ministers.
11:34  Live! Will HC confirm death penalty on Dec 16 rapists? Hearing tomorrow:  Just in: The Delhi High Court will hear on a day-to-day basis from tomorrow, the death penalty reference in the December 16 gang rape and murder case.

The confirmation of the death penalty awarded by it to four men convicted in the December 16 gang-rape case is expected soon. The single-member bench of the High Court led by Justice Reva Khetrapa had on Monday issued production warrants against the four convicts and directed the authorities to produce them before it today.

On September 13, while awarding capital punishment to Mukesh (26), Akshay Thakur (28), Pawan Gupta (19) and Vinay Sharma (20), Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna had referred the case to the high court for confirmation of the sentence. The trial court has to refer each death penalty case to the high court for confirmation of the punishment. -- Zee News
09:54  Kenyan police vow to 'finish and punish' Westgate Mall terrorists:  

Several gunmen remain inside a besieged mall in Nairobi, Kenya, two senior officials said, as a deadly standoff between Kenyan forces and terrorists stretches into a fourth day.


Kenya's Interior Ministry tweeted late Monday that authorities were in control of the Westgate Shopping Mall -- the latest in a series of social media posts from officials reassuring a nervous public that there was little chance of escape for any surviving Al-Shabaab gunmen who had terrorized the mall, killing at least 62 people.


"Taken control of all the floors. We're not here to feed the attackers with pastries but to finish and punish them," Kenyan police Inspector General David Kimaiyo said on Twitter. But even as police stressed on Twitter that they were in charge of the situation, two senior Kenyan officials told CNN that gunmen -- including snipers -- were still inside the four-story mall.


Read the full report on CNN

09:28  Uttarakhand floods: Compensation cheques given to victims bounce:  

It has been three months since floods ravaged Uttarakhand and CNN-IBN has now learned that compensation cheques have been dishonoured. More than a dozen compensation cheques given to victims of the Uttarakhand tragedy have bounced.


While the state government claims it has enough funds, the bank account from which cheques have been issued reportedly has zero balance. "After the incident, the government gave me some relief through this money. But when I went to deposit the cheque they said the bank has no money and returned it," said a flood victim Radha Niwasi.


Read the CNN IBN exclusive

09:04  Fairfax consortium bids $4.7 billion to take BlackBerry private:  

Smartphone maker BlackBerry(BB.TO) has agreed to go private in a $4.7 billion deal led by its biggest shareholder, allowing the on-the-go email pioneer to regroup away from public scrutiny after years of falling fortunes and slumping market share.


The $9 a share tentative offer, from a consortium led by property and casualty insurer Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd(FFH.TO), will set a floor for any counteroffers that might emerge for Blackberry, which has been on the block since August.


As an investor, Fairfax Chief Executive Prem Watsa is often described as the Canadian Warren Buffett because he also takes the long view. Blackberry shares peaked above $148 in June 2008 when the company's devices were still the top choice for bankers, politicians and lawyers.


Read the full report on Reuters

08:43  Kenya says besieged mall under control; all hostages freed:  

Kenya's interior ministry has announced that troops are "in control" of the Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi, with all the hostages believed to have been freed after a deadly siege that killed at least 62 people.


A government spokesman told AFP news agency that the three-day-long siege was close to being declared over. He said special forces combing the building were no longer encountering any resistance.

"Our special forces are inside the building checking the rooms. We think that everyone, the hostages, have been evacuated, but we don't want to take any chances," Manoah Esipisu, a government spokesman, said. "We're in control of Westgate," the interior ministry said in a message on Twitter.  


Read more on Al Jazeera

02:32  Nairobi attack: Kenya forces 'clearing' Westgate centre:  
Kenyan security forces say they are in the final stages of clearing the Westgate shopping complex in Nairobi, and ending the deadly three-day siege.

Explosions and heavy gunfire were reported earlier as soldiers stormed the mall, where suspected al-Shabab militants are thought to be holed up.

The Kenya Defence Forces said three "terrorists" had been killed and all escape routes sealed off.

Flames and thick smoke continued to rise from the complex as darkness fell.
01:59  Mayhem in Maldives after SC suspends elections:  
The Supreme Court of the Maldives has suspended presidential elections due this weekend following a legal challenge, sparking protests and fears of fresh instability in the troubled Indian Ocean archipelago. 

The directive came in response to a case filed by a political party demanding that the results of the first round on September 7 be annulled because of alleged discrepancies. 

"We order the Elections Commission and other relevant state institutions to delay the second round of the presidential election scheduled for 28 September 2013 until the Supreme Court issues a verdict in this case," read the ruling from the Supreme Court. 

The final round of voting on Saturday was seen as a test for the young democracy a year and a half after the violent ousting of the country's first democratically elected president, Mohamed Nasheed.

The court decision sparked protests by his supporters during which police pepper-sprayed Nasheed and beat and detained two MPs from his Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), a member of Nasheed's security staff told AFP, asking not to be named.
01:54  Court summons Karunanidhi in defamation case:  
A Chennai court has issued summons to former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and DMK president M Karunanidhi for his personal appearance in connection with a defamation case.

On behalf of Tamil Nadu government, City Public Prosecutor M L Jegan filed a defamation case in connection with an article by Karunanidhi, published in DMK mouthpiece 'Murosoli' and contended it was per se was defamatory.

Principal Sessions Judge M Chokkalingam issued summons for the personal appearance of Karunanidhi on October 24. 
01:53  Nairobi mall attack: Obama says US stands with Kenya:  
US President Barack Obama has offered his condolences to Kenya's president and its people, after suspected al-Shabab militants stormed a Nairobi mall killing at least 62 people.

Obama said: "We stand with them against this terrible outrage that has occurred. We will provide them with whatever law enforcement support is necessary."

Kenyan security forces have said that they are in the final stages of clearing the Westgate shopping complex as they attempt to bring an end to a three-day siege.
01:51  Singh, Sharif meeting 'a work in progress': India:  
India has said that a possible meeting between the Prime Ministers of India and Pakistan on the margins of UN General Assembly was still "a work in progress". 

"Any meeting between the Prime Ministers of India and Pakistan is still a work in progress," Indian Ambassador to the UN Asoke Mukerji said. 

"We are waiting for clarity on whether or where this meeting will take place," he said. 

Pakistani media reports have said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is expected to meet his Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh on September 29 in the New York hotel where Singh will stay during his US visit.

Both Singh and Sharif are travelling to the New York to attend the 68th session of the UN General Assembly.
01:50  Egyptian court bans Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood:  
An Egyptian court has banned the Muslim Brotherhood and ordered its funds seized, a crippling strike in the campaign to crush the Islamist movement along with support for deposed president Mohamed Morsi.

The case against the Brotherhood was brought by a lawyer from the leftist Tagammu party on the grounds of protecting Egyptians from violence.

It was not stated if he was acting at the instigation of the military-backed government, which has launched one of the fiercest crackdowns against the group in decades.
01:46  Top headlines at this hour:  Jagan is out on bail and itching for revenge! 

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