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LIVE! AAP opposed to use of nuclear energy

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April 03, 2014

22:18  AAP opposed to use of nuclear energy:  Spelling his stand on nuclear energy, Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal today said his party was opposed to it because of the possible destruction in case of an accident. 

"The destruction caused by nuclear power in case of an accident is enormous. This is why AAP is in-principle opposed to nuclear energy," Kejriwal said during the launch of the party's manifesto at his Tilak Road residence here.
22:13  Rahul fittest to lead the country: Omar:  Calling Rahul Gandhi a "great friend" of Jammu and Kashmir, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah today said he was the fittest to lead the country and it would be "most unfortunate" if Narendra Modi became the Prime Minister. 

"In Rahul Gandhi, Jammu and Kashmir has found its great friend who is always at beck and call of the state and renders full support to it to overcome difficulties and march towards prosperity," Omar said at a public rally in the border town of Mendhar in Poonch district today.
22:11  Israel says it is cancelling prisoner release:  Israel's chief negotiator with the Palestinians says it will not release the fourth batch of Palestinian prisoners because of the Palestinians' push for recognition at the United Nations. 

Tzipi Livni's spokeswoman said today that the Israeli government was working to finalise an agreement to free the prisoners when Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas signed letters of accessions to 15 international conventions.

Abbas said it was a response to Israel's failure to release prisoners as promised.
22:10  'Troops kill 40 gunmen near Iraqi capital':  Fighting between Iraqi government troops and al-Qaeda-inspired militants killed 40 gunmen and an army officer today near Baghdad, authorities said, as attacks continued elsewhere in the country ahead of elections this month. 

In a statement posted on the Interior Ministry's website, spokesman Saad Maan Ibrahim said that members of security forces foiled an assault by the militants on a military base in Youssifiyah, killing 40 "terrorist attackers."
22:09  Bomb misses convoy of former Pakistani military ruler:  A roadside bomb exploded on the route taken by former Pakistani military ruler Pervez Musharraf early Thursday, but he was unhurt, his aides and police said.

The attack comes as the government considers the thorny political issue of whether to allow Musharraf, who is on trial on treason charges, to travel abroad.It was a relatively small bomb that didn't cause much damage, police said.
22:07  Queen Elizabeth II meets Pope Francis in the Vatican:  Queen Elizabeth II met Pope Francis for the first time at the Vatican today, in her fifth meeting with a pontiff in the Holy See and one of the last foreign trips for the soon-to-be 88-year-old monarch.

And, in a gesture sure to be appreciated in the United Kingdom, he presented her with a gift for her baby great-grandson and heir, Prince George: a precious stone globe with a cross on it.
21:37  Death toll in US mudslide rises to 30:  As medical examiners painstakingly piece together the identities and lives of the 30 people known killed when a mudslide wiped out a small Washington community, one mystery troubles them. One set of remains does not fit with the description on the missing persons list, which, as of today included 17 people.
21:36  Fort Hood gunman sought mental health treatment:  An Iraq War veteran being treated for mental illness was the gunman who opened fire at Fort Hood, killing three people and wounding 16 others before committing suicide, in an attack on the same Texas military base where more than a dozen people were slain in 2009, authorities said. 

Within hours of the the attack, investigators started looking into whether the man's combat experience had caused lingering psychological trauma.
20:47  Turkey lifts Twitter ban after court ruling:  Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government waited a day before reportedly lifting the ban on Twitter, following a Wednesday ruling from the nation's highest court.

Turkey lifted its ban on Twitter Thursday, a day after the nation's highest court struck down a government prohibition, an official in Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's office told Reuters.

The country's constitutional court ruled Wednesday that the ban violated free expression, but Erdogan's government, which imposed the ban two weeks earlier ahead of last Sunday's municipal elections,did not immediately act.
20:17  Hooked on jihadism:  From meddling in the Middle East at the behest of its Arab patrons to continuing to stoke the fire in Afghanistan, the Pakistani military-intelligence-jihadi complex is not inclined to correct its course in the near to midterm

Read more
19:55  IM men behind bomb planting at Hyderabad's Dilsukhnagar: NIA:  NIA has told a court here that top arrested Indian Mujahideen (IM) operatives Tehsin Akhtar and Zia-ur-Rehman alias Waqas were actively associated in the "planning" and "planting" of two IEDs which exploded at Dilsukhnagar in Hyderabad last year, claiming 16 lives. 

National Investigation Agency's Hyderabad unit, which had come to the court to seek its permission to arrest and take Tehsin and Waqas in its custody in connection with the case, said both the accused had "personally participated" in various blast cases in India, including the February 21, last year Dilsukhnagar blasts.
19:51  BJP to release manifesto on April 7, Modi to be present :  BJP will release its manifesto on April 7 in Delhi where a number of its senior party leaders including Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi will be present. 

"The party manifesto will be released on April 7," BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman said today. The manifesto, which will highlight the party's promises to lure the voters for bringing it to power, has been much delayed and will be coming out on a day when polling in six Lok Sabha seats in Assam and Tripura will be held.
18:50  Modi, the team player:  BJP's PM candidate Narendra Modi, in his first interview of this election season, to a TV channel, denied that he was a control freak or an authoritarian and said he was a team player who likes to build consensus and then use his authority to implement decisions.

Here's our take on it...
18:47  Manmohan's portrait will be removed from PMO on May 16:  Jubilation at the Prime Minister's Office in South Block at the prospect of welcoming in a new chief. At the main reception of the PMO, the portrait of Dr Manmohan Singh will be removed on counting day -- May 16. The portraits of President Pranab Mukherjee and Mahatma Gandhi will remain.

The new PM can expect a grand welcome, which is most likely to take place in the third week of May. Enthusiasm is visible from the
whispers heard not only at the senior most echeleons of bureaucracy, but also at the ground zero level, so to speak -- gardeners.

An internal discussion with the guards have also taken place. In an earlier drill in 2004, at least 1198 guards had been reviewed. PM Dr Manmohan Singh in 2004 was received by Dr S Narain the then secretary to the outgoing Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee at the main gate of South Block.
18:40  CCTV in police interrogation rooms, promises AAP manifesto:   Here's more on the AAP manifesto:
Kejriwal announces that ...

Police reforms suggested by the SC will be implemented.
The Delhi University's four-year courses will be made into three years.
The number of courts, judges to be doubled in five years.
CCTV to be introduced in police interrogation rooms.
Appointment of judges to be done by judicial commission.
Not lodging an FIR becomes a cognizable offense.
Implementation of police reforms to ensure safety.
Cameras to be installed in court rooms and courtroom visuals to be made available through RTI.
18:19  LIVE! AAP manifesto promises decriminalisation of homosexuality:  Arvind Kejriwal announces the AAP manifesto for the Lok Sabha polls. Some of the points in the manifesto are:

AAP is working for corruption free India and has zero tolerance for corruption.
AAP promises to pass the Jan Lokpal bill
AAP promises to decriminalise homosexuality
Eligibility to fight polls to be reduced from 25 to 21
Gram sabhas, mohalla sabhas to meet every month
No payment to contractors till gram sabhas, mohalla sabhas pass bills.

18:13  AAP releases poll manifesto.
17:38  'Is there any comparison between Modi and Rahul Gandhi?':   Read Madhusudan Mistry's interview with in 2013, when he was the Congress general secretary in charge of Karnataka: "You need, in a national leader, some broad qualities like tolerance, like humanism. You need a neutral attitude to religion. No way can Modi match these qualities. His mind is communal."

Follow the latest election updates on Twitter: @RediffElections
17:34  LIVE! Cong's Madhusudan Mistry arrested for vandalising Modi posters:  Congress's Madhusudan Mistry has been arrested for vandalising Narendra Modi's posters in Vadodara. Mistry, who is Modi's opponent in Vadodara, had been detained earlier today with more than 100 supporters after a row over pasting of posters in the city. 

Mistry's supporters tried to paste his poster over Modi's on electricity poles across the city. Congress supporters also tore off many Modi posters.
17:28  Maoists are regrouping in tribal Jangalmahal area of Bankura ahead of the Lok Sabha polls to disrupt elections, Bankura superintendent of police Mukesh Kumar said today.
17:13  Huffington Post on Mumbai Mirror's April fool take. Read
17:05  Deepa Dasmunsi declares family asset of about Rs 2 crore:  Union Minister of State and Congress candidate Deepa Dasmunsi has declared having movable property of Rs 41.39 lakh in her own name, besides Rs 1.11 crore in the name of her husband Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi.
17:01  LIVE! Modi targets Rahul over Robert Vadra: Will jijaji be a chowkidar?:  Narendra Modi today targeted Rahul Gandhi in Haryana by referring to controversial land deals allegedly involving his brother-in-law Robert Vadra.

Using the term "Shehzada" (prince), his pet descriptor for Rahul Gandhi, Modi said, "I had said the country needs a chowkidaar (guard) and I will serve you like a chowkidaar. Shehzada said the country needs 1.25 crore countrymen as chowkidaars. I ask him, will his jijaji (brother-in-law) be a chowkidaar too? Will he guard land?"

Read more
16:52  Yesterday, Narendra Modi addressed a rally at Jhumri Tilaiya his third poll campaign in Jharkhand since December 2013. The place should strike a bell for listeners of Vividh Bharti in the early eighties, we think.
16:46  Here's another reason why the BJP manifesto has been postponed to April 7: @jhunjhunwala I think the BJP manifesto is delayed because Nitin Gadkari ate the original one by mistake.
16:22  In a first, Buddhist monks issue vote diktat:   It is often said Muslims follow a 'fatwa' issued by their religious heads on matters like which party to vote for. This time, two Buddhist spiritual heads are in the news for having issued diktats to the community. Read

Follow the latest election updates on Twitter: @RediffElections
16:16  The Narendra Modi interview on News X:  A few thoughts on Narendra Modi's epic interview on NewsX, being telecast over many episodes. Aakar Patel rules in this one. Do read
16:11  Mahabharata's Bheem defects to BJP from AAP:  Former AAP member and actor in the famous television series, Mahabharata has decided to join the BJP. Popular for playing the role of Bheem in the TV series, telecast on Doordarshan channel in the 1990s, Kumar had contested elections on a AAP ticket from the Delhi assembly in December last year and lost.   

Few days ago, Kumar stirred another controversy when he announced his support for Congress Party's candidate from Chandni Chowk constituency, Law Minister Kapil Sibal. He said Sibal was nice and an honest politician and said that he would campaign for him.  

But Kumar quickly changed his mind and defected to the BJP.
16:03  LIVE! BJP postpones manifesto release to April 7 after Modi wants changes:   So, it's confirmed. BJP will release its poll manifesto on April 7, the first day of the Lok Sabha polls. This was announced by the party's spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman.

The BJP, which was expected to release its poll manifesto today, has delayed its decision due to last minute changes demanded by the Narendra Modi camp.

Media reports have said that Narendra Modi-led team is not completely satisfied with the final draft of the party's manifesto, which has been prepared by senior BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi.

The AAP, meanwhile, is set to release its manifesto today.
15:26  LIVE! Cong asks EC to check all EVMs after Assam machine votes for BJP:  Just in: The Congress party has asked the Election Commission to check all EVMs across the country in the wake of tampering of the machines in Jorhat in Assam.

An EVM raised many eyebrows across the state during a mandatory mock poll in Jorhat on Tuesday.  Every time a button was pressed, the vote went in favour of the BJP.

Follow the latest election updates on Twitter: @RediffElections

15:21  Congress to raise EVM tampering by BJP at national level:Gogoi:  Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today alleged that an EVM had been tampered by the BJP and said the Congress would take it up with the Election Commission.

"It's a very serious issue. We have already filed a written complaint to the state EC about the EVM tampering. We will now take up the issue at the national level," Gogoi told reporters.

Yesterday, the Election Commission had conducted trial polling in Jorhat where the light on the EVM against the BJP symbol was blinking irrespective of other buttons being pressed.

Follow the latest election updates on Twitter: @RediffElections
15:12   Analyse AAP's vote share percentage in Delhi:  Could AAP end up losing in the constituency that crated Arvind Kejriwal? Read

Follow the latest election updates on Twitter: @RediffElections
14:58  No serious voter will vote for Rakhi Sawant: Mayank Gandhi:  The election season has launched a war of words between candidates. AAP's Mayank Gandhi, who is the party's candidate from the Mumbai North West constituency, criticised the candidature of Rakhi Sawant, who threw her hat into the ring in the same constituency with the launch of her own party, the Rashtriya Aam Party (RAP).

"Rakhi Sawant ko maja maarne wali janta vote degi," said Gandhi.He commented further, "It's (her contesting elections) for entertainment. She has nothing to offer. What I mean is that no serious voter would vote for Rakhi. Look at the funny costume she wears. One day, she says Narendra Modi is my hero. Next day, she floats her own party."

But, Sawant gave back in equal measure, saying that Gandhi was scared. She replied, "A man who doesn't respect women has no authority to contest elections."  Read
14:52  Kerala candidates use Whatsapp and Skype to woo voters:   Candidates on the campaign trail in Kerala have turned to 'Whatsapp' and 'Skype' to get connected with their voters, especially the non-resident Keralite community which comprises a strong vote bank in many parts of the state.

Those who use internet chat applications like 'Beyluxe messenger', a popular online voice and video chat programme, to seek votes from outside voters are also many.
14:48  Other candidates' poll expense much beyond Rs 70 lakh: Mayank Gandhi:  AAP leader Mayank Gandhi, who is contesting polls from the North West Mumbai Lok Sabha seat, has alleged that the poll spending of the candidates from his rival parties was much beyond the Rs 70 lakh limit as set by the Election Commission.

"Candidates fighting polls from other parties are using money power, which is dangerous for the democracy. They are spending beyond Rs 70 lakh specified limit. This over spending is affecting other parties like ours," Gandhi said during a press conference yesterday.

However, he said he had no proof. "A large amount of money is being given to party workers in cash and it is a common practice. We do not need to give any evidence," he said.

Gandhi said that the manifesto of the AAM party will be out by next week. "Our national manifesto is being shared with the stakeholders. We will unveil our national manifesto next week. We will also bring out a Mumbai-centric manifesto soon," the 55-year-old social activist said.
14:29  Is Narendra Modi peaking too early? Read
14:28  I'd question Modi on Gujarat -- why doesn't Congress? Read the interview with Martha-Nussbaum.
14:26  With the 2014 Lok Sabha polls set to begin on April 7, here's all the information you need to know. Read
13:54   Milind Deora clambers on to the high moral ground and tweets: "MNS-Shivsena workers clash outside Old Customs House, lathi charged by Police. Some things never change!"

In Vadodara, meanwhile, Congress workers vandalise Narendra Modi posters.
13:42  What is 376 (E):   This is the first conviction under IPC section 376 (E).

This is what 376 (E) states. Read
13:39  LIVE! Shakti Mills gang rape: Three convicts guilty under 376 E, can face death:   Just in: The Bombay High Court has found three convicts guilty under the amended section 376 (E) of the Indian Penal Code, which came into force after the Nirbhaya case in New Delhi in December 2012. Under 365 (E) repeat offenders can get the death penalty. The court said it has established that three of the convicts were repeat offenders. They have already been sentenced to life in jail.

The sessions court had convicted five men in the Shakti Mills photojournalist gang-rape case and the Shakti Mills telephone operator gang-rape case. Three of the five convicted were involved in both cases and the prosecution had moved the court to allow charges to be framed under section 376(E) against them, which the court allowed.
13:28  Poor Varun Gandhi has been rapped twice -- once by his party bosses yesterday -- and by his mother, today, for doing the unthinkable -- praising none other than Rahul Gandhi. He would agree with this cartoon from the Hindu.  
13:22  LIVE! Battleground Vadodara: Modi's opponent detained for vandalising posters:  Just in: Congress candidate Madhusudan Mistry, or the man who will be taking on Narendra Modi in Vadodara, has been detained with vandalism. Along with Mistry, 100 Congress workers were also detained for removing Modi posters in the city.

Mistry has charged the Vadodara Municipal Corporation of working for the "Chief Minister of Gujarat' as they had not conceded the Congress party's request to put up their kiosks on alternate poles, where Modi's posters have been put up since March 24.

Mistry says he has no regrets about the action and said his voice will not be crushed.
12:53  Why? wonders Sonia, asked if this will be her last contest :   Sonia Gandhi had just stepped off a bed of roses and into the arena when the question rang out. "Will this be your last contest?' a journalist asked from behind the barricade outside the collector's office in Rae Bareli.

Sonia, who was coming out after filing her nomination, appeared to have been somewhat surprised.

She paused for a moment before replying: "Why?' It was more an exclamation than a question.  Read
12:40  Congress Gautam Buddha Nagar candidate Ramesh Chand Tomar joins BJP.

Follow the latest election updates on Twitter: @RediffElections
12:38  An EVM that 'votes' only for BJP stuns poll staff in Assam:  An electronic voting machine (EVM) raised many eyebrows across the state during a mandatory mock poll in Jorhat on Tuesday.

Every time a button was pressed, the vote went in favour of the BJP.

The Jorhat parliamentary constituency returning officer and deputy commissioner Vishal Vasant Solanki said that all EVMs in his custody are being put through a second level of test by engineers of the Electronics Corporation of India Ltd (ECIL), one of the two companies from Hyderabad, which manufactures EVMs.  Read more
12:34  LIVE! Union textiles minister quits over Seemandhra, may join BJP:   KS Rao, the Union Minister of Textiles, has submitted his resignation to the Prime Minister, protesting over the Centre not releasing adequate funds for the Seemandhra region, after the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh. Rao is likely to join the BJP on Saturday, but the decision will depend on whether he gets a Lok Sabha ticket. He has also been hobnobbing with the Telugu Desam.

Last year, HRD Minister MM Pallam Raju, Kotla Surya Prakash Reddy, MoS Railways and son of late Rayalaseema stalwart K Vijayabhaskar Reddy, resigned over Seemandhra. Other Ministers K Sambasiva Rao (Textiles), K Chiranjeevi (Tourism), D Purandeswari (MoS Commerce) and Killi Kruparani (MoS IT and Communications) also resigned.
12:24  Gay sex: SC agrees to consider curative petition in open court:  The Supreme Court today agreed to consider the plea for an open court hearing on curative petitions filed by gay rights activists against its verdict criminalising homosexuality.

A bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivam, before whom the matter was mentioned by senior lawyers appearing for different parties, said that it will go through the documents and consider their plea.

A curative petition is the last judicial resort available for redressal of grievances in court and it is normally considered by judges in-chamber without granting opportunity to parties to argue the case.

The petitioners, including NGO Naz Foundation which has been spearheading the legal battle on behalf of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) community, contended that there was an error in the judgement delivered on December 11 last year as it was based on old law.
12:08  How Bal Thackeray survived on soup sent by Raj :  And another story of an estranged family. How Bal Thackeray survived on soup served by Raj.

Slamming his estranged cousin and Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray on Wednesday said it was Uddhav who had felt the need to forge an alliance with him.

"I was not waiting for his call. I never expressed need. You (Uddhav) showed the necessity. When BJP leaders come to meet me, you criticise them through your newspaper. Why should we tolerate this?" Raj said, addressing a campaign rally for his party's candidate from Kalyan-Dombivli Lok Sabha constituency, Raju Patil, this evening.

"Why didn't he (Uddhav) call me (if he wanted an alliance)?" he said.Countering the Shiv Sena president's remark that he would not talk to someone (for alliance) who had stabbed his uncle Bal Thackeray in the back (by leaving Shiv Sena), Raj pointed out that when Uddhav was hospitalised for cardiac surgery last year, Bal Thackeray sent none other than but him.

"I was asked by the late Balasaheb Thackeray to rush to the hospital... When I drove Uddhav home from the hospital, then Uddhav did not think that I had stabbed Balasaheb in his back," he added.

"Once when I met Balasaheb at his house towards his last stage, I saw him eating a greasy batata vada. I asked why he was eating such stuff. He said, 'I eat only this. This is what I am served'.

"Afterwards, till the time he passed into coma, I sent him some soup everyday and he ate only that...Would he have eaten the soup had he considered me be a back-stabber?" Raj said. Read more
11:57  'Ghar ghar Modi nahin, ghar ghar jhaadu chahiye...':   Meanwhile, AAP's Shazia Ilmi fires from all cylinders in Ghaziabad, one of the most watched constituencies in this election. Here's a close look.

Follow the latest election updates on Twitter: @RediffElections
11:39  LIVE! Maneka chooses party over family: Varun's comments on Amethi not right :  Party loyalty prevails over family ties for Maneka Gandhi. A day after BJP's Sultanpur candidate Varun Gandhi's statement praising Rahul Gandhi's work at the ground level in Amethi, his mother, Maneka Gandhi, a senior party leader has issued a statement today saying, what Varun said on Amethi was not right. "There is no ground work in Amethi. I asked Varun not to comment on anything he has not seen himself," she said. 

Yesterday, moments after Sonia Gandhi filed her nomination papers from Rae Bareilli, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi  said he was happy to receive the appreciation. He said "Varun sahi kah rahe hain" (What Varun is saying is right).

However, later Varun clarified that his comment should not be seen as an endorsement of any party or candidate.

Follow the latest election updates on Twitter: @RediffElections
11:27  LIVE! BJP manifesto on April 7, Cong sniggers at delay:  The Congress, yesterday, questioned the BJP's delay in releasing its manifesto and said it reflected the deep personality clashes within the saffron party, "which is seeking a mandate for one individual'.

The BJP, which was scheduled to unveil its manifesto on April 3, has delayed it further by almost a week.

Party sources said the manifesto would be released on April 7, the day when the first phase of polling would have begun.

Read more

Follow the latest election updates on Twitter: @RediffElections
11:11  Just in: Sahara has told the Supreme Court today, that it can't pay Rs 10000 crore to get Subrata Roy released.
11:10  Tehelka case: Journalist defends story on 'discrepancies':   A filmmaker's controversial Facebook post and a news article have sparked a huge row over Tehelka founder Tarun Tejpal, who has been in a Goa jail since December over charges of raping a colleague.

Journalist Manu Joseph has defended his cover story in the news magazine Outlook, which highlighted an alleged mismatch between CCTV footage from a five-star hotel and the young woman's version of what happened inside one of its elevators on two nights in November last.

The footage is from a camera outside the elevator where Tejpal allegedly assaulted the woman. There were no cameras inside.

Asked whether he had seen the footage, Mr Joseph told NDTV, "It is irrelevant whether I saw the footage or not. When I was doing the story I spoke to someone on the prosecution."

He insisted that his article makes no judgement on the case.The story observes, for example, that the woman said that after the alleged incident she hurried out of the lift.

The CCTV footage, Mr Joseph comments, "shows her following at a leisurely pace."

Mr Joseph also writes that while the woman says Tejpal "pulled her by the wrist", the CCTV footage doesn't show that.

Filmmaker Anurag Kashyap referenced the story when he controversially posted on Facebook, "I have seen the CCTV footage too and none of what the girl says about Tarun Tejpal is true." Read more
11:05  The Supreme Court has discharged Gujarat minister Babu Bokharia in the 2005 murder of Congress leader.
10:59  Update on assassination attempt on Mush: The bomb was planted on the road, on the route from an army hospital where he has been staying since January to his home on the outskirts of Islamabad.

"Four kilograms of explosive device planted in a pipeline under a bridge exploded around 20 minutes before the former president was supposed to cross the spot," senior police official Liaqat Niazi said.
10:54  Just in: The Supreme Court agrees to consider the plea for giving open court hearing on curative petitions filed by LGBT rights activists challenging criminalisation of gay sex.
10:51  LIVE! Former Pak Prez Musharraf survives assassination attempt :  Pakistan's former president Pervez Musharraf survives an assassination attempt, the police has said.

On Monday, a Pakistani court had indicted Musharraf for treason - a milestone for civilian authority in a country long dominated by the army.

The charge carries the maximum penalty of death. But observers are uncertain whether authorities will allow the trial to be completed and risk angering the powerful military, which has ruled Pakistan for half its history.

Musharraf had missed most of the trial's hearings due to ill-health and security threats.

But he appeared fit and confident after arriving Monday in a long convoy of SUVs, with more than 2,000 security officials deployed on the route from an army-run hospital to the special court.

The ex-general, who seized power in 1999 and resigned in 2008, pleaded "not guilty" as Tahira Safdar, one of three judges hearing the case since December, read the charges relating to his 2007 imposition of emergency rule."I honour this court and prosecution, I strongly believe in law and don't have ego problems, and I have appeared in court 16 times in this year in Karachi, Islamabad and Rawalpindi," the 70-year-old said, referring to a slew of other legal troubles.
10:00  Rahul not Amethi resident, says SDM:   CNN-IBN reports: In a major embarrassment for Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, his application for proof of residence in Amethi has been turned down by the sub-divisional magistrate.

The SDM has said that there is no proof that Rahul resides in Amethi or even occasionally stays there.

Rahul has been the incumbent Amethi MP for the past 10 years and is contesting this year again from the constituency. He needs a proof of residence to apply for a bank account, CNN-IBN reports.

Follow latest election updates on Twitter: @RediffElections

08:45  4 dead as gunman opens fire at US army's Fort Hood base:   Four people have been killed in a shooting at United States army base Fort Hood, including the shooter, an official said. Sixteen people were wounded at the installation in central Texas, reports CNN

-- There is no known motive. "There is no indication that this incident is related to terrorism although we are not ruling anything out," said the army post's commander Lt Gen Mark A Milley.

The sprawling army base was the site of a deadly rampage in 2009 that left 13 dead.
03:33  Microsoft takes on Apple's Siri, launches 'Cortana':  
Microsoft today took on the challenge posed by Apple's Siri and Google Now by announcing its own voice assistant called Cortana for Windows phones. 

Announcing the launch of Cortana, Joe Belfiore, corporate vice president and manager for Windows Phone Programme Management at Microsoft, described the voice assistance as "world's first truly personal digital assistant".

"We were inspired by the popular character from Halo who served as a brilliant AI and a deeply personal digital assistant to Master we called her Cortana," Belfiore said at a Microsoft developer's conference 'Build2014'.

Powered by Bing, Cortana is the only digital assistant that gets to know the user, he said. 

Cortana builds on the relationship that one can trust and gets better over time by asking questions based on the user's behaviour, he said. 

"She detects and monitors the stuff you care about, looks out for you throughout the day and helps filter out the noise so you can focus on what matters to you," Belfiore told the annual conference being attended by some 5,000 developer's from across the globe.
03:25  Amazon launches new device for streaming video:  
Amazon today unveiled a new media streaming device, ramping up its challenge for the living room against rivals such as Netflix. 

The Amazon Fire TV device, which fits in one's hand and connects to television sets, aims to boost the US online giant's efforts to capture viewers for its Prime Video service. 

"It's a tiny box with huge specs," said Amazon Kindle vice president Peter Larsen at a New York event unveiling the device.

The box along with a remote control device also allows users to listen to music or to play games with a separate controller device. 

Larsen said that existing devices "make streaming today too frustrating" and that Fire TV would simplify the experience.

One of the features highlighted by Amazon is voice search, allowing consumers to avoid the tedious task of searching for films or videos by punching letters into a remote control device.
01:34  Japan's biggest organized crime syndicate now has its own website and theme song:  
Japans largest organized crime group, the Yamaguchi-gumi, recently launched its own website. 

But if you're hoping to see guys with crazy tattoos, dramatic gun battles, bloody sword fights, and fingers being chopped off -- and who isn't? -- it may disappoint.

Click HERE to read
01:31  Yanukovych admits mistakes on Crimea:  
In his first interview since fleeing to Russia, Ukraine's ousted president said today that he was "wrong" to have invited Russian troops into Crimea and vowed to try to persuade Russia to return the coveted Black Sea peninsula.

Defensive and at times teary-eyed, Viktor Yanukovych told The Associated Press and Russia's state NTV television that he still hopes to negotiate with Russian President Vladimir Putin to get the annexed region back. 

"Crimea is a tragedy, a major tragedy," the 63-year-old Yanukovych said, insisting that Russia's takeover of Crimea wouldn't have happened if he had stayed in power. 

He fled Ukraine in February after three months of protests focused on corruption and on his decision to seek closer ties to Russia instead of the European Union. 

Yanukovych denied the allegations of corruption, saying he built his palatial residence outside of Kiev, the Ukrainian capital, with his own money. He also denied responsibility for the sniper deaths of about 80 protesters in Kiev in February, for which he has been charged by Ukraine's interim government.
01:30  Scientists date Moon at 4.470 billion years:  
The Moon was formed about 95 million years after the birth of our Solar System, in a collision that also settled the structure of Earth as we know it, according to the latest attempt at dating that impact. 

A study in the journal Nature said the crash between an early, proto-Earth and a Mars-sized object that dislodged what would become the Moon, happened some 4.470 billion years ago -- give or take 32 million years. 

Apart from creating our satellite, the event is also believed to have marked the final phase of Earth's core formation from molten metals sinking to the centre from a superhot surface. 

Previous estimates had ranged from an "early" impact about 30 million years after the start of the Solar System, to a later one as much as 200 million years after. 

The Solar System itself is known to be 4.567 billion years old thanks to accurate dating of some components of meteorites -- the oldest materials to be found on our planet. 

Earth is believed to have formed at some time during the first 150 million years.
01:30  Iraq attacks kill 14 as UN warns of 'divisive' polls:  
Attacks against security forces killed 14 people today as the UN's envoy to Iraq warned that the country's election campaign would be "highly divisive" amid a year-long surge in bloodshed. 

The attacks came on the second day of campaigning for April 30 parliamentary polls, Iraq's first since March 2010. 

Violence is at its highest since 2008 and the country is still struggling to rebuild its battered economy and infrastructure after decades of conflict. 

UN special envoy Nickolay Mladenov, in an interview with AFP, underscored fears the polls could worsen a long-standing political deadlock in which Iraq's fractious national unity government has passed little in the way of significant legislation. 

Today morning, a suicide bomber blew himself up at the entrance to an army recruitment centre in northern Iraq, killing six would-be soldiers and wounding 14 others, a general and a doctor said. 

The attack struck in Riyadh, a mostly-Sunni town in ethnically mixed Kirkuk province. 

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