NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 

LIVE! Govt approves change to try minors above 16 as adults for grave offences

Write a comment

July 25, 2014

23:11  UPSC aspirants step up protest, try to march towards Parl:  Civil Service aspirants today tried to march towards Parliament and were taken into preventive custody by police as they stepped up their protest against the CSAT exam.

The protesters were stopped by police outside Central Secretariat metro station from where around 300 of them were taken to Parliament Street police station.

Two Metro Stations -- Central Secretariat and Udyog Bhavan -- were shut at 12:45 pm in order to prevent the protesters from reaching anywhere near Parliament House. The two stations were later opened at 3:00 pm.

"We did not lathicharge any protesters and used minimal force. We had to physically evict them as they lay down on the road. Some of them tried to flee but were caught and detained at Parliament Street police station... 300 protesters, including six girls, were detained," said Additional Commissioner of Police (New Delhi), SBS Tyagi.
21:53  India should be history-conscious: Modi:  
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today stressed on India becoming history-conscious saying only such countries have a potential to create history. 

Speaking extempore at a book release function at the Rashtrapati Bhavan here this evening, Modi lauded the attempts of President Pranab Mukherjee and his team in restoring the old heritage and historical facts about the palace. 

"We are not that history-conscious society and always believe in hearsay. The country which forgets its history also loses its ability to create history," Modi said. 

Referring to the museum in the Rashtrapati Bhavan, the Prime Minister said India very often is not a history-conscious society and this museum was "an effort to preserve a part of our unique heritage".

He referred to the President as the guiding force who gave the right advice to him like a head of the family. "Like head of the family, he has been guiding me, who is new in the family," Modi said.
21:13  Confusion after Ukraine's PM quits:  
Ukraine's political circus made an unwelcome return to centre stage as bickering lawmakers struggled today to avert a crisis of their own making after Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk resigned in a huff. 

As the country battles a bloody pro-Russian insurgency in the east amid international attention over the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 and teeters on the brink of bankruptcy, analysts said the last thing Ukraine needed was a bout of political limbo. 

But that's exactly what the politicians seem to have landed themselves in after Yatsenyuk dramatically quit yesterday in protest at the collapse of the ruling European Choice coalition, a move that paved the way for long-awaited parliamentary polls to be announced. 

"It is wrong in a situation of war to do such a thing," political analyst Volodymyr Fesenko told Interfax Ukraine news agency. "Any crack in our unity will be exploited by Russia." 

President Petro Poroshenko today asked lawmakers to pass a vote of confidence in the government. 

"I hope that the strong emotions will calm down and be trumped by cold reason and a sense of responsibility and that the entire Ukrainian cabinet will continue its work," Poroshenko said.
20:20  Law Ministry approves Juvenile Justice Act amendment draft:   The law ministry has approved to make changes to the Juvenile Justice Act. A draft bill approved by the law ministry has been forwarded for cabinet approval. It says juveniles above 16 will be considered "adults" when they have been accused of rape or equally severe crimes.
20:03  Attorney General says Congress not eligible for LoP status:  The Congress party is not entitled to the post of Leader of the Opposition, according to the government's top lawyer, Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi. The AG said that the Leader of the Opposition must belong to a party whose MPs match the quorum of the house -- 55 law-makers. Rohatgi said that policy has been followed for nearly 60 years, and meant that there was no Leader of Opposition at different times. The Congress has 44 members in the Lok Sabha.
19:33  Abhinav Bindra comes first in 10 metre air rifle event at CWG:  Abhinav Bindra bagged a gold at the Commonwealth Games being held in Glasgow with a final score of 205.3. This is Bindra's first individual gold medal at the CWG. This is Bindra's fifth and final Commonwealth Games. Fellow Indian Ravi Kumar lost out in the event. 
19:10  7 people were on board the IAF chopper that crashed in Sitapur:  An Indian Air Force helicopter today crashed in Sitapur, UP, with all seven persons on board feared killed.

The ALH Dhruv chopper had taken off from Bareilly. Sub Divisional Magistrate, Sidhauli, A K Srivastava said that the chopper was engulfed in fire as it crashed in Manipurwa in Ataria area.

"A helicopter of airforce has crashed here. It is engulfed in fire and it is feared that all on board might have died," Srivastava.

Attempts were underway to douse the fire. Senior officials of district administration and police have reached the spot. District Magistrate, Sitapur, JP Singh said that the helicopter took off from Bareilly and was going towards Allahabad.

18:54  Subrata Roy may be allowed to meet buyers at Tihar guest house :  The Supreme Court today asked the Delhi government to explore a venue within Tihar jail complex where Subrata Roy can hold negotiations with buyers of his properties by meeting them personally or through video conferencing.

A special bench headed by Justice T S Thakur asked the government to talk to jail authority to explore the venue but made it clear that the arrangement would be done only for holding negotiations and not for giving any comfort to Roy who has been in jail for nearly five months.

The bench asked the government, which said arrangement can be made in the guest house or court room inside jail, to respond by July 30.

Roy pleaded that he is committed to follow apex court's direction and sought its permission for shifting to Tihar jail guest house for a week to enable him to hold negotiations to sell his properties in India and abroad to raise Rs 10,000 crore to get regular bail.
18:40  For West, Rajapaksa is Sri Lankas Modi:  It is a measure of Sri Lanka's return to "normal' democratic politics that conspiracy theories are once again resonating in Colombo.Compared to the situation just three years ago when "politics' continued to centre on the 30-year-long bloody civil war that mercifully came to an end in May 2009, the sub-text of political discussions today is the presidential election, due some time in early-2015. Read
18:26  BJP: Rahul sleeps in Parliament, statements while he is dreaming?:  First reactions to Rahul Gandhi's comments that BJP, Shiv Sena believes in the ideology of hatred.

Ashwini Chaubey, BJP, says, "He sleeps in Parliament, don't know if statements he gives are while dreaming or when he is fully aware."
18:18   Tata to invest in MP? CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan tweets: @CMMadhyaPradesh  Met Tata Group Chairman Shri Cyrus Mistry in Mumbai to discuss various investment opportunities in Madhya Pradesh.
18:04  Rahul: BJP, Sena ideology is politics of hatred:  Rahul Gandhi on the force-feed incident at Maharashtra Bhavan and inflation: "The BJP had promised a lot before coming to power, especially controlling inflation, but prices are increasing. Kehne aur karne mein bohot farak hai. It is the ideology of BJP and Shiv Sena, politics of hatred and bullying people, it is harmful for the country."
17:59  Two dead after IAF chopper crashes in UP:  Indian Air Force chopper crashes at Ataria in Sitapur, UP. Two people are feared dead. Details awaited.

In March this year, a US-made C-130J military transport plane, one of the most modern aircraft acquired recently by the Indian Air Force, crashednear Gwalior, killing all the five crew members, including four officers.

Representational picture. 
17:45  Why it's obvious the Congress is crumbling:  That the Congress Party is crumbling, is evident from a couple of meetings we saw that were being held in the Central Hall of Parliament today.

One particular scene that we recall was former ministers Sriprakash Jaiswal, Anand Sharma and former Varanasi MP Rajesh Kumar Mishra sitting in a  corner of Central Hall expressing their, well, dissatisfaction (and we're putting it nicely) with Madhusudan Mistry and Rahul Gandhi.

On the other end of Central Hall were Congress MPs from Kerala and Karnataka who we heard expressing dissatisfaction with Guna MP Jyotiraditya Scindia.

This kind of behaviour was unheard of earlier.
17:37  Badals team up to meet Jaitley:  A scene of marital bliss in the usually blustery Parliament. Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur received her husband Sukbir Singh Badal at the steps of Central Hall and then both walked to Finance Minister Arun Jaitely's chambers. The VVIP couple is worried over Gurudwara politics being played on them by the Congess especially Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda.

Chief minister Parkash Singh Badal announcement two days ago that he was ready to lead any movement to protest against the formation of a separate gurdwara body in Haryana, Punjab.
17:21  Rahul: Force-feed incident reflection of BJP, Sena mentality:  Two days after the force-feeding incident at Maharashtra Sadan, Rahul Gandhi makes a statement: "The incident is a reflection of the BJP, Shiv Sena mentality."
17:14  Rajesh Khanna's sea-facing bungalow Aashirwad sold for Rs 90 cr:  Bollywood superstar Rajesh Khanna's Carter Road bungalow, popularly known as 'Aashirwad', is being sold to a city industrialist.

The landmark sea-facing property, a major tourist attraction for legions of his fans, is believed to have been purchased by Shashi Kiran Shetty, executive chairman of Allcargo Logistics.

Market sources said the 603sq m property could fetch the late superstar's family around Rs 90 crore. The sole beneficiaries are his two daughters, Twinkle and Rinke.  Read more
17:07  What Rudy was doing in Parliament today:  BJP MP Rajiv Pratap Rudy was busy in Parliament today. Holding files in his hand, he kept moving from one bench to another inside the Lok Sabha. But in the Central Hall, Rudy was busy getting signatures on a joint letter on the Membership to the Standing Committees and other financial committees. The BJP's intention is to have Congress-free Parliamentary Committees by consensus and no elections, which is what the party will try to do by leveraging its majority in the Lok Sabha. 
16:41  Behind the scenes in Putin's court: The Private Habits of a Latter-Day Dictator. Awesome read.
16:36  Revealed: Spending habits of the super rich Indian:  If you are Indian and worth more than $4 million, you probably like Chinese food. That was one of the findings of a Kotak Wealth Management report this week on the spending habits of India's rich. As the common man waited for the good times to return, India continued to mint multi-millionaires last year and its super rich were on a spending spree, the report said. Read
16:29  Uddhav's wife, son pick up stake in penny stock :  Rashmi and Aaditya Thackeray, wife and son of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray have recently picked up 25 lakh shares each in a little-known firm CNI Research, filings to the BSE reveal.

The Mumbai-based CNI Research provides stock advisory services, as per its website, though it has hardly made any profits over the past five years and has little revenues to show for as well.

According to the filing, the company allotted the shares to the duo of Re 1 each at a premium of Re 1, on a preferential basis.Rashmi and Aaditya Thackeray, wife and son of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray have recently picked up 25 lakh shares each in a little-known firm CNI Research , filings to the BSE reveal. Read
16:26  BCCI rejects ICC verdict on Ravindra Jadeja. 
16:19  A child believed dead is alive; one family's joy, another devastated:   Informed that their young son was among the 14 children who had died after a train hit their school bus, Darshan Goud's parents were handed his body in Telangana.

Swamy Goud and his wife then cremated their boy. Today, however, on their son's sixth birthday, they were informed that their son is alive and had named his father after recovering consciousness at a local hospital.

"I was told my son had died and after that I went to different hospitals searching for my son. I reached a private hospital and saw some bodies of school children. I fainted and could not recognise a body that was shown to me as the face of the body was disfigured. Assuming that it was my son's body, I took it and performed the last rites," Goud said. 

Swamy Goud could not make out his son's body and took another instead. The mistake has been rectified now," Telangana Irrigation Minister T Harish Rao told reporters.

The body that Goud claimed and cremated belonged to another family whose son and daughter were both killed in the accident that took place at an unmanned rail crossing in the Medak district of the state, 70 kms from the capital of Hyderabad.

That family thought that their daughter had died in the accident, but that their son was being treated for injuries in hospital.  It is now grappling with a new unspeakable installment of tragedy.
16:09  Behind the scenes in Putin's court: The private habits of a latter-day dictator. Read
15:55  Queen Elizabeth touches up her lipstick in public:  Queen Elizabeth's desire to look her best while attending the Commonwealth Games makes for a reassuring sight. Take a look.
15:39  Severe weather killed 50 soldiers in Siachen in last 3 years: Govt:  Fifty soldiers lost their lives in Siachen Glacier due to climatic conditions and avalanches in the last three years while 16 soldiers died while serving in UN peacekeeping operations during that period, Lok Sabha was informed today.

In written replies, Defence Minister Arun Jaitley said the government was aware of the "strategic importance" of Siachen Glacier and requisite forces have been deployed in that area on basis of the "threat perception, ground situation and other operational needs".

50 soldiers were killed in the last three years upto July 20 in Siachen Glacier owing to landslides, floods and avalanches and climatic conditions, he said.

Siachen was once the world's highest battlefield where Indian and Pakistani troops were constantly engaged in skirmishes till 2003 when ceasefire was declared.
15:28  Rashtrapati Bhavan library inaugurated:  Inauguration of a public library and unveiling a statue of Mahatma Gandhi were organised by Rashtrapati Bhavan on Thursday to mark President President Pranab Mukherjee, PM Narendra Modi, former PM Dr. Manmohan Singh and Home Minister Rajnath Singh today dedicated the Rashtrapati Bhavan museum to the nation. Today, Pranab Mukherjee marks one year in office.

The president will also interact with governors across the country through a video conferencing facility installed at the Rashtrapati Bhavan and host a dinner for the council of ministers. The library building was a dilapidated structure which was scheduled for demolition. It was renovated into a public library for use by residents of the Rashtrapati Bhavan estate and their children.The statue of Gandhi has been made by 89-year-old Ram Sutar of Maharashtra.
15:22  5 Navy officers facing action for INS Virat fire: Jaitley:  Six Navy personnel, including five officers, are facing disciplinary action after they were found culpable by a Board of Inquiry for a fire incident onboard aircraft INS Virat in September last year, Lok Sabha was informed today.

Answering written queries in the House, Defence Minister Arun Jaitley said disciplinary action was also being taken against three officers and four sailors for a fire incident onboard fast patrol vessel INS Tarasa in July last year.

"Disciplinary action is being taken against five officers and one sailor found culpable by a BoI into the fire incident on INS Virat," he said.

The fire incident had taken place near the officers' compartment of INS Virat on September 30 last year.

The vessel is 50 years old and has undergone several refurbishments to extend its life in view of the delay in induction of INS Vikramaditya, which is now in service.

The fire incident had taken place on INS Tarasa on July 14 and is part of the 17 reported mishaps involving naval assets since August last year.
15:20  Jadeja fined 50% of match fee for spat with Anderson:  Ravindra Jadeja has been found guilty of a Level 1 breach of the ICC code of conduct and has been fined 50% of the match fee for a spat with England's James Anderson on the second day of the Trent Bridge Test, according to an ICC media release.

Jadeja was found guilty under Article 2.1.8, that relates to conduct contrary to the spirit of the game by David Boon of the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees.

A detailed judgement will be pronounced within the next 48 hours.

Boon found him not guilty of the original Level 2 charge brought against him by England team manager Phil Neale after the spat that occured when the teams were going off the field at lunch but felt his conduct was contrary to the spirit of the game

Ravindra Jadeja has been found guilty of a Level 1 breach of the ICC code of conduct and has been fined 50% of the match fee for a spat with England's James Anderson on the second day of the Trent Bridge Test, according to an ICC media release.

Jadeja was found guilty under Article 2.1.8, that relates to conduct contrary to the spirit of the game by David Boon of the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees.

A detailed judgement will be pronounced within the next 48 hours.

Boon found him not guilty of the original Level 2 charge brought against him by England team manager Phil Neale after the spat that occured when the teams were going off the field at lunch but felt his conduct was contrary to the spirit of the game.

- See more at:
14:47  NO survivors from Air Algerie flight that crashed yesterday: French Prez:  French President Hollande confirms that there are no survivors from Air Algerie AH5017 flight that crashed with 116 people on board.

Wreckage of the Air Algerie jet was found in a "disintegrated state" in northern Mali, France said Friday, making it the third major international aviation disaster in recent days.

Flight 5017 was carrying 116 people when it took off early Thursday from Burkina Faso en route to Algeria.

Less than an hour into the flight, it disappeared from radar after changing its flight path because of bad weather, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said.

The plane's wreckage was found in Mali's Gossi region, not too far from the border with Burkina Faso, the French President's office said in a statement.

14:19  Kareena to be show stopper at Lakme Fashion Week:   Eye-candy news: Actress Kareena Kapoor Khan will be the show stopper for ace designer Manish Malhotra at the grand finale of Lakme Fashion Week (LFW) Winter/Festive 2014.

Malhotra will present his bridal trousseau at the finale of the fashion extravaganza to be held here from August 20- 24. Kareena will showcase a global runway trend, which is in vogue this season - 'The Gloss Look', crafted by the Lakme bridal dream team.

"I have always loved working with Kareena. She is the perfect combination of a gorgeous face and a confident personality. Every season, LFW has a trend story to tell and the finale accentuates the trend. I am looking forward to crafting a special look for Kareena with my latest collection which is inspired by the 'Gloss look'," Malhotra said in a statement.

File pic of Kareena in a Manish Malhotra outfit.
13:56  Dear Mr D'Souza, Hindustan does not mean land of Hindus :  As an FYI for Mr Francis D'Souza, the word Hindustan is derived from the Old Persian word Hindu, which in turn is derived from Sindhu, the Sanskrit name for the Indus River. Old Persian refers to the people living beyond the Indus as Hindu. This combined with the suffix "sthan", meaning "place" gets us Hindustan, as the land on the other side (from Persia) of the Indus. The term came into common use under the rule of the Mughals who referred to their dominion, centred on Delhi, as 'Hindustan'.

So, no, it does not refer to the Hindu religion.
13:51  Goa dy CM Francis D'Souza: India already Hindu nation, I'm Christian Hindu:  Goa's deputy chief minister  Francis D'Souza stokes yet another controversy. Backing cooperation minister Deepak Dhavalikar's statement that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will develop India into a Hindu nation, D'Souza said, "India is already a Hindu nation, that is why it's called Hindustan."

He said, "India is a Hindu country. All Indians are Hindu. I'm a Christian Hindu."

Dhavalikar on Thursday had said, "I am confident that under the leadership of Modi, India will develop into a Hindu nation. Prime Minister will work in this regard is what I feel," he said while speaking in state assembly on a motion congratulating Modi on BJP's electoral victory.

Both Dhavalikar brothers -- Sudin and Dipak -- belonging to Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, an ally of BJP, are ministers in the Manohar Parrikar government.

Sudin Dhavalikar, the state's transport minister, had said earlier this month, "Wearing bikinis should be banned on Goa's beaches."
13:42  Review: Kick is Salman's best film in a decade:  In the world of harebrained Bhai films, Kick is the best made and the most fun, says Raja Sen. Read
13:41  Kargil's first hero:  The Kargil War gave India many young heroes who died fighting for a country they loved and swore to protect. To mark the 15th anniversary of the end of the Kargil war, we republish this 2004 feature, saluting Lieutenant Saurabh Kalia, the first martyr.  Read
13:36   Ramesh Srivats @rameshsrivats Congrats Khumukcham Sanjita Chanu for #CommonwealthGames gold medal. Please marry Indian ok. Else, I believe medal goes to husband's country.
13:27  Amelia Earhart would have been 117:  July 24 would have been the 117th birthday of Amelia Earhart, who disappeared over the Pacific Ocean on July 2, 1937 as she attempted to become the first woman to fly around the world. When the search was called off on July 18, it was, at the time, the greatest mass rescue effort ever undertaken for a lost plane.
13:16  MoS PMO Jitendra Singh on UPSC row in Rajya Sabha says, "There won't be injustice with students, govt will act on the report."
13:07  High drama in Delhi, police detain UPSC protestors :   The vehement protests by Union Public Service Commission aspirants demanding the scrapping of Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT) continues today with the police detaining several protestors.

MoS PMO Jitendra Singh speaking on the UPSC language issue in Parliament asks why were there no protests when the changes were made in 2010. 

Yesterday, after an evening of high drama in the national capital where over 20 students were arrested during their protests, the demonstrators said that they will march to Parliament on Friday.

There has been a demand to scrap the CSAT calling it discriminatory against students from the Hindi medium.

A three-member committee is looking into the demands of civil services aspirants who have been demanding that the pattern for the Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT) be changed to give level-playing field to those coming from rural areas. Read more
12:49  India summons Pakistani diplomat over 26/11 trial :  India on Friday summoned Pakistan's deputy high commissioner and lodged a strong protest against the adjournment of the ongoing Mumbai terror attack case trial in Pakistan.

While the Pakistan deputy high commissioner was summoned to the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi, the Indian deputy high commissioner went to the Pakistan foreign office in Islamabad and lodged a similar protest.

According to informed sources, Indian officials in their meetings with Pakistani officials both in New Delhi and Islamabad have sought regular briefing on the progress of the trial and the investigation being conducted by Pakistani authorities

12:36  Salman Khan hit-and-run case adjourned to August 21:   The Salman Khan hit-and-run case hearing adjourned till 21st August. Salman Khan's lawyer has filed exemption to court stating Salman was not required in court as there were no witnesses today.

A witness in the 2002 hit-and-run case involving Salman Khan last month  retracted his police statement in a court, saying he had not said that the actor had got down from the driver's seat of his vehicle and ran away after the accident occurred in suburban Bandra.
12:31  Ruckus in Parliament over UPSC issue:  The Opposition today created a ruckus in Parliament over the issue of regional language aspirants having disadvantage in Civil Services examination conducted by the Union Public Service Commission.

Rajya Sabha was adjourned twice during Question Hour following the Opposition's demand for a clarification by no other than the Prime Minister or the Leader of the House on the issue.

The matter figured in Lok Sabha too though it did not lead to any adjournment.

As soon as the Upper House assembled, Congress, SP, DMK and others raised the issue, but Chairman Hamid Ansari asked them to maintain silence for making a reference to the tragic incident in Telengana yesterday in which 14 students were killed.

The House observed a minute's silence as a mark of repect for the deaprted.

Soon after, the Oppostion raised the issue with some even proceeding to the well.

Ansari asked them not to come to the well and they abided by his advice, but vociferous protests went on.

The Chairman's repeated requests to maintain order went in vain and he adjourned the House for 15 minutes.

The scene did not change much when the House reassembled. Some members from treasury benches tried to pacify the Opposition with the assurance that the concerned minister would come to the House and give a statement post noon. Telecom and Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the government was serious about the issue.
12:13  PM walks China-Japan tightrope:  Prime Minister Narendra Modi has lined up back-to-back summit meetings with his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe and Chinese President Xi Jinping in a tightrope walk between two crucial allies that are both trying to wean India away from the other.  Read
12:04  India summons Pakistan Deputy High Commissioner, lodges strong protest against reported adjournment of Mumbai terror attacks trial in Pakistan. Indian Deputy High Commissioner conveys India's protest to Pakistan Foreign Office.
12:02  Sonia arrives at Cong Parl meet, not a single other leader present :  Congress president Sonia Gandhi arrived today for a Parliamentary Panel meeting at 9:30 am in New Delh, but found not a single other Congress leader there. The meeting had apparently been scheduled for 10 am. The meeting has since been cancelled after Sonia left.

A couple of days ago, Congress MP Shashi Tharoor had said that it won't be "business as usual" in the Congress after the severe drubbing in the elections and party president Sonia Gandhi would soon fix accountability and take decisions on revamping the party. 
11:50  SC notice to Centre on Rajiv Gandhi assassination convict:   JUST IN: The Supreme Court issues a notice to the Centre on Rajiv Gandhi assassination case convict S Nalini's plea for release from jail. The SC sends a notice to the Home Ministry on a petition filed by Nalini, convicted in the  Rajiv Gandhi assassination case) challenging Sec 435(1)A of the CrPc.

Nalini, who has been undergoing life imprisonment in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, has approached the Supreme Court seeking to declare as "null and void" a provision in law mandating Tamil Nadu government to consult the Centre before releasing seven life term convicts in the case.

In her petition, Nalini challenged Section 435(1) of the Criminal Procedure Code which mandates the state government to consult the Centre before pre-mature release of a convict if the case was investigated by the CBI.

11:39  I write about an India that the west is not interested in: Chetan Bhagat :   "Indian society discriminates between the good English speakers and the not-so-good ones. English is the new caste system, complete with levels of proficiency translating to various levels to elitism."

"However, because I write in simple English, my books have managed to be a bridge between Indians who speak English well and Indians who speak little English."

Read Chetan Bhagat's interview for the Huffington Post.
11:28  The coming war on dynasty:  In his victory speech at Vadodara, Narendra Modi asked the voters for 10 years. Many think that given the magnitude of the BJP's victory and the Congress's defeat, this is likely. However, whether the BJP can be successful in replacing the Congress as the party synonymous with governing India in the 21st century is up for debate.  Read
11:26  Time for hard decisions:  For the Congress, things came to a head this week: on a single day, two senior Ministers in Assam and Maharashtra, States where it is in power, resigned; three of its MLAs in West Bengal defected to the Trinamool Congress, and an ex-MP in Jammu & Kashmir quit the party 24 hours after the Congress and the National Conference decided to contest elections separately even though they still rule J&K jointly. Read
11:21  Man who got Wendy Doniger pulped is made must reading in Gujarat schools:  -- Don't blow out candles on your birthday. It's "western culture' and needs to be shunned. Instead, wear "swadeshi clothes' this day, do a havan, pray to the ishtadev, feed cows.

-- Drawing a map of India? Make sure you include Pakistan, Afghanistan, Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Myanmar. These are part of undivided India or "Akhand Bharat".

-- Include August 14, Pakistan's Independence Day, in the list of national holidays. This day should be celebrated as "Akhand Bharat Smriti Divas'.

These are moral prescriptions from books authored by Dina Nath Batra, convenor of Shiksha Bachao Andolan Samiti, that have now become compulsory reading in government schools in Gujarat. On June 30, the state government issued a circular directing more than 42,000 primary and secondary government schools across the state to make a set of nine books by Batra, translated from Hindi to Gujarati, part of the curriculum's "supplementary literature'.  Read

Unfamiliar with Doniger? Read this: 'Move to pulp my book foretells worsening free speech in India'
11:12  Deepak Aggarwal, DM Moradabad: Section 144 has been imposed in Kanth and all arrangements have been made. Under no circumstances will peace be disrupted.

11:04  Uttarakhand CM Harish Rawat wins Assembly by-polls from Dharchula constituency by over 20604 votes.
11:03  What the Shiv Sena tells us about the BJP :  The political responses to Rajan Vichare, a Shiv Sena MP, stuffing a chapati into a fasting Muslim's mouth at the Maharashtra Sadan in Delhi last week tell us something about the texture of Indian politics after the general election.

Arshad Zubair, a catering supervisor for the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation, was accosted in the kitchen of the Maharashtra Sadan by 11 Shiv Sena MPs enraged about the quality of the Sadan's catering.  Read Mukul Kesavan's column for the Telegraph.
10:59  Sec 144 imposed in Moradabad after VHP plans to reinstall loudspeaker at temple:  Section 144 has been imposed in Moradabad, UP, ahead of the Jal Abhishek at a temple . The VHP plans to reinstall a loudspeaker at a temple.

Tensions have been escalating between the BJP and the Samajwadi Party-led government after BJP workers were detained by the police for the communal clashes in Kanth.

Tensions escalated between the BJP and SP government after a Mahapanchayat called by the BJP in Moradabad to take up the issue of the removal of a loud speaker from a temple was banned by the state government.

The 'mahapanchayat' or gathering was called by the state BJP in defiance of the state order, after a recent dispute in Kanth, over removal of a loudspeaker from a temple, which led to communal tension in the area.
Over 60 BJP workers were arrested after they protested against the local administration on July 15. 
10:47   Obama, Abbott, Rutte, demand full access to MH17 crash site:  US President Barack Obama has joined with the leaders of Australia and the Netherlands to demand full access to the crash site of the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17, which was shot down over eastern Ukraine killing all 298 people on board. In a telephonic conversation, Obama thanked Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott for his leadership on this issue, including his willingness to send investigators to the crash site as well as federal police if necessary, the White House said in a statement.

"The two leaders agree that a prompt, full, unimpeded and transparent international investigation is an imperative, and they expressed their resolve to push for full, immediate, and secure access for international investigators to the crash site," the statement said.
09:33  Army chief to meet families of Kargil martyrs:  Indian Army Chief Vikram Singh visits the Kargil memorial in Drass to pay tribute the martyrs, 15 years after the conflict. He laid wreath at the memorial.

He will also visit the families of the war heroes.

Tomorrow India marks the 15th anniversary of the war.

Image: Army Chief Bikram Singh visits the Kargil War memorial, a day ahead of Vijay Diwas. Photograph: ANI/Twitter
08:53  'Obama Administration making a strategic bet on India':   Ahead of an important India visit of US Secretary of State John Kerry, a top Obama Administration official today said that the Asian nation has an increasingly vital role to play at the global stage.

As the US moves towards implementing its "rebalance to Asia" strategy, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Nisha Desai Biswal told lawmakers that "India has vital role to play in South Asia, in the Asia Pacific, and, increasingly at the global stage."

Testifying before the House Foreign Affairs Committee's subcommittee on the Asia and the Pacific, she said India's rise as a regional and global leader, and its economic and strategic growth, are deeply in the US interest.

Highly appreciative of India's 'Look East' Policy and its engagement with Southeast Asia and East Asia, at a time of opening in Myanmar, Biswal insisted this is the reason why the United States is making the "strategic bet" on India.
08:43  15 years after Kargil War, India remembers its martyrs:  India will pay homage to the martyrs of the Kargil War, as the army celebrates 'Vijay Diwas' at the war memorial in Drass.

Army Chief General Bikram Singh will be in Drass today, a day ahead of the Vijay Divas to pay tribute to the martyrs of the Kargil War, 15 years after the conflict. 
00:00  Top headlines of the last 24 hours:  UPSC aspirants clash with police, burn vehicles in North Delhi
US Secretary of State John Kerry to arrive on July 30
Eight Naxals arrested in Chhattisgarh
Congress fails to shine even as opposition party in LS
'Sena MP force-feeding staffer is a black spot on Maharashtra's traditions'
Model accuses senior Mumbai cop of rape

Stars spotted!  What's this?

What was Lalettan doing in New Jersey?
Reader Bhargav Govind sends us a picture from...

More stars spotted

Met a celebrity?
Email us photos & videos