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LIVE! Iraq: Insurgents seize Saddam's hometown after Mosul

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June 11, 2014

23:12  Iraq: Insurgents seize Saddam's hometown after Mosul:  

Islamist insurgents in Iraq have seized the city of Tikrit, their second major gain after capturing Mosul on Tuesday, security officials say. Tikrit, the hometown of former leader Saddam Hussein, lies just 150km north of the capital Baghdad.


Iraqi PM Nouri Maliki vowed to fight back against the jihadists and punish those in the security forces who fled, offering little or no resistance. The insurgents are from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. ISIS, which is also known as ISIL, is an offshoot of Al Qaeda.


Read more BBC

22:02  Another woman alleges rape inside police station in UP:  A Sub-Inspector and three constables allegedly raped a woman inside the police station. While the SI has been arrested, the constables are on the run, media reports have said.

Earlier in the day, another woman was found hanging from a tree in Bahraich in UP.  Read the story here
21:47  Hyderabad college may be sued over Himachal tragedy:  Even as one more body was fished out of the Beas river, the parents of the victims of the students who drowned when they had gone to the Larji dam, are contemplating to sue the authorities at the Vignana Jyothi Institute of Engineering College in Hyderabad.

More details are awaited.
21:43  Over one million travelled on Mumbai metro in first 59 hours:  Over 10 lakh commuters travelled on the city's first Mero, which covers the 11.4 km-long Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar corridor, in the 59 hours since the commencement of its services on June 8.

"Today, till 4.30 pm, metro has crossed the one million mark of ridership that it achieved within 59 hours of operation since inception of commercial operation," a release from Mumbai Metro One, an arm of Reliance Infrastructure, said.

This is the only Metro in the country that carries an average of 1,487 commuters per km per hour, it added. "Precisely, it carries almost double the number of commuters every day as compared to Delhi Metro.

This proves the overwhelming acceptance of Mumbai Metro by the people." The company has offered a promotional fare of Rs 10 for the first 30 days irrespective of the distance travelled.
21:40   Greenpeace India has challenged the allegations made by the Intelligence Bureau report to the PMO, and has stated for the record that it is an independent organisation which campaigns for development that is sustainable and growth that is inclusive.

Read the statement here
21:34  Jessica Lall murder: Manu Sharma seeks parole to give exams:  The Delhi high court today sought a response from the city police on the parole plea of Siddharth Vashisht alias Manu Sharma, who is undergoing life term for killing Jessica Lall in 1999, to appear for his exams in post-graduation in Human Rights.

The exams are likely to commence from June 19. A vacation bench of Justice Gita Mittal issued a notice to the city police, seeking its response by June 16.

The court also said Sharma should have moved the court earlier. In response to this, Sharma's counsel submitted a representation was moved before Delhi government on May 14 but its rejection was communicated to him only on June 6 after which the high court was approached with the plea. Sharma, son of former Union Minister Venod Sharma, was sentenced to life imprisonment for killing ramp model Jessica Lall in 1999.

Reversing the trial court's acquittal order, the Delhi high court awarded life sentence to him in December, 2006 in the murder case and the Supreme Court had upheld the high court order against him in April, 2010.
21:29  Chinese President Xi to visit India this year:  Seeking to cement their strategic and cooperative partnership, Chinese President Xi Jinping will pay a state visit to India later this year as the two Asian giants today vowed to adhere to Panchsheel and increase high- level exchanges to take their bilateral ties to a "new high".

During the just-concluded visit of Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi to New Delhi as Xi's Special Envoy, the top diplomat conveyed to the Indian leadership that the Chinese President will visit India later this year, Chinese Ambassador to India Wei Wei announced.

Addressing a reception here to mark the 60th anniversary of the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence or Panchsheel, Wei said that during Wang's talks here, he "conveyed important messages from the Chinese leadership to the Indian leaders, invited the Indian leader to attend the commemoration of the 60th Anniversary of the Panchsheel and made it clear that President Xi will pay a state visit to India late this year."
21:10  Man taken in custody for BJP leader's murder in Muzaffarnagar:  One person was taken into custody today in connection with the murder of a BJP leader in Muzaffarnagar, police said today. Monu was taken into custody in Muzaffarnagar in connection with the murder of Om Vir Singh in Mirapur, IG (Law and Order) Amrendra Sengar said.

Forty-seven-year-old Om Vir Singh 'Fauji', a retired army man who was the vice-president of BJP unit in Mirapur town, was out for a morning walk when two assailants fired multiple shots at him yesterday, according to police.

Singh, who had a licensed revolver with him, too fired at the attackers but they snatched it from him. In the preliminary inquiry, Monu has said that he along with his accomplice had gone to Mirapur with the aim of killing someone else, Sengar said.
20:49  Karachi airport attack: Mock drill conducted at IGI airport:  In the wake of the recent attack on Karachi airport, a multi-agency security mock drill was today carried out at the Indira Gandhi International Airport  here.

The drill involved swift operational movement of commandos of the National Security Guard, CISF and other airport security officials in the wake of a probable attack or a hijack like situation at the highly sensitive facility, thronged by thousands passengers. The exercise went on for about an hour and it concluded swiftly and smoothly, sources involved in the drill said.

"The aim was to check the preparedness and coordination between all the security agencies deployed on the airport which includes the CISF, NSG, Delhi police and other civilian component of airport defence. The objective was to respond as one unit in the wake of a Karachi airport like attack," the sources said.
20:38  Violent protests in Delhi over power outages:  Violent protests broke out today in several areas in the national capital against power cuts which continued to make life difficult for people in the sweltering heat on a day the city recorded the highest electricity demand in the current year.

Irate protesters in Bhajanpura area of North East Delhi damaged a Delhi Transport Corporation bus while people in Khanpur in South Delhi and some other areas in East and North Delhi also resorted to violent protests against power cuts.

There has been loadshedding ranging from one to five hours in several areas of East, West and South Delhi as a number of major power transmission lines, damaged by the storm on May 10, are yet to be restored.
20:00  No info on any IB report on NGOs: Home minister:  Home Minister Rajnath Singh today said he had "no information" on Intelligence Bureau submitting any report that foreign-funded NGOs are "negatively impacting" economic development in the country by organising public protests against industrial projects.

"I have no information. IB gives us daily briefings," Singh told reporters outside Parliament House while replying to queries on media reports in this regard. Former Union Minister and senior Congress leader M Veerappa Moily said that government should "seriosuly look into" if any NGO utilises the funds they receive from foreign agencies for disrupting industrial growth and destabilising the nation.

The reports said that the allegations were part of the IB's report submitted to the Prime Minister's Office.
19:57  NIA likely to take over probe plot to hit US, Israeli missions:  The NIA is likely to take over a case from Tamil Nadu Police to probe a terror plot allegedly being hatched to target the US and Israeli consulates in South India.

The Tamil Nadu government has in principle agreed to transfer the case in view of the fact that investigations need to be carried out in other countries including Malaysia, Sri Lanka and Maldives, official sources said.

A proposal for handing over the case to the NIA was sent to the state police.

An effective coordination of Intelligence Bureau with foreign countries had led to unraveling of the case where Malaysia tipped the central agency about an alleged conspiracy being hatched from Sri Lanka about carrying an attack on US and Israeli consulates in Chennai and Bangalore.
19:03  Cases against MPs to be decided within one year through early hearing in courts, says PM. :  PM Modi: Cases against MPs to be decided within one year through early hearing in courts.
19:01  PM replies to Rajya Sabha debate on President's address to Parliament:  PM Modi: There should be no politics over incidents like rape,Maoism and killing of innocent people; we should sit and find solutions collectively.
18:58  PM replies to Rajya Sabha debate on President's address to Parliament:  PM Modi: Technology can play an important role in eradicating corruption, it can bring transparency.
18:47  PM replies to Rajya Sabha debate on President's address to Parliament:  PM Modi: Casteism and regionalism have damaged the country and that is why we are talking of 'Ek Bharat, Shreshta Bharat'.
18:46  PM replies to Rajya Sabha debate on President's address to Parliament:  PM Modi: Model of one state cannot be imposed on others;similarly Centre's views cannot be imposed on states.
18:38  PM replies to Rajya Sabha debate on President's address to Parliament:   PM Modi: If we take states into confidence our working can become much better. We believe in the concept of Team India of PM & all CMs.
18:36  PM replies to Rajya Sabha debate on President's address to Parliament:  PM Modi: The President's address talked about cooperative federalism. This big brother-small brother attitude will not work.
18:28  PM replies to Rajya Sabha debate on President's address to parliament:   PM Modi: If India has to develop, states have to develop. If India has to be strengthened, states have to be strengthened.
18:01  3rd attack in 5 days on BJP leader:  
Another Bharatiya Janata Party worker Puneet Singhal was seriously injured when he was shot at by three unknown assailants in Bulandshar, Uttar Pradesh, the third attack in five days. 

The attack came a day after BJP leader Om Veer was shot dead by two motorcycle-borne assailants, and Vijay Pandit who was shot dead in Greater Noida.

17:50  5 Russian tourists injured in Uttarakhand mishap being airlifted to Delhi:  Thirteen Russian tourists travelling in a tempo in Uttarakhand, which fell into the Bhagirathi river, are being assisted by Russian and Indian authorities.  

Five of the 13 who are seriously injured are being airlifted from Dehradun to Delhi shortly. Five others were airlifted to Dehradun and are in a local hospital there. 

The ministry of external affairs is providing all assistance to Russian tourists belonging largely to the ISKCON. The seriously injured are likely to be admitted to a local private hospital in Delhi for further observation and assistance. 
17:43  Goa's Mandovi river to get third bridge:  Prime Minister Narendra Modi would unveil a plaque for foundation of the third bridge across Mandovi river near Panaji on June 14. 

It will be the first flyover bypassing the main chunk of traffic entering the capital city. 

The Rs 470-crore project is likely to be completed in next 20 months and it would be the third bridge across river Mandovi, Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar told reporters today. The plaque would be unveiled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Kala Academy in Panaji.
17:42  Minister sets up two email accounts and FB page for interaction:  Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi has set up two email accounts and a Facebook account to facilitate an interactive exchange between citizens and her ministry. 

Maneka's email ID is and that of the ministry is The Facebook account of the ministry is 

These accounts have been created to facilitate an interactive exchange between citizens who need assistance from the ministry, officials said today. 

Citizens can directly seek assistance from the ministry through the Facebook page, which will be consistently monitored by the ministry officials. 

Soon after assuming charge as WCD minister, Gandhi had said that the ministry will set up an interactive complaints redressal page on Facebook for issues concerning women and children.
17:39  Your tongue can taste more, says research:  Researchers have found that in addition to recognising sweet, sour, salty, savoury, and bitter tastes, the human tongue can also pick up on carbohydrates -- the nutrients that break down into sugar and form our main source of energy. 

The finding may explain both why diet products are often viewed as not being as satisfying as their real counterparts and why carbohydrate-loaded drinks seem to immediately perk up athletes -- even before their bodies can convert the carbs to energy. 

Previous studies have shown that some rodents can distinguish between sugars of different energy densities, while others can still tell carbohydrate and protein solutions apart even when their ability to taste sweetness is lost.
17:29  First batch of Kailash Mansarovar pilgrims leave Delhi:  The first batch of Kailash Mansarovar pilgrims comprising of 56 persons, was flagged off by Delhi Lt Governor Najeeb Jung today. 

The pilgrims were presented with a kit containing a track suit, rain coat, puja material and other items by Jung. Ten pilgrims from Delhi were also handed over assistance amount of Rs 30,000. 

"I wish all the yatris, undertaking this important pilgrimage, my very best wishes. I hope this journey brings peace, happiness and prosperity to you and your family members," Jung said.
17:21  Lower House will meet next in July for the Budget session:  Just In: Lok Sabha adjourns sine die after an eight-day session.
17:09  PM Modi concludes his reply to Lok Sabha debate :  The Lok Sabha saw 45 amendments moved to the President's address to Parliament, which were put to vote together by the Speaker, and were defeated by a voice vote.
17:07  Modi in Lok Sabha: I welcome the talk when people say that Tamil Nadu is better than Gujarat. I want such competition between two states. I really want to hear that other states have left Gujarat behind. So, I think, this is the one contribution the Gujarat model has made.

I reiterate my resolve to work for the welfare of all 125 crore Indians, and with this end my reply to the debate.
17:05  PM replies to Lok Sabha debate on President's address to Parliament:   Turning Leader of Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge's jibe that the Congress, like Pandavas, maybe few in number but won't be intimidated by a numerically superior opponent, Modi says we know that like the Pandavas, we need to be humble and will need to take along everyone. "Victory teaches us humility. With the blessings our seniors from all parties we will fulfill our work and remain free from arrogance."
16:59  PM replies to Lok Sabha debate on President's address to Parliament:  PM Modi in Lok Sabha: We should ensure that everyone in this country should have the basic ameneties -- housing, electricity, running water and proper sanitation. 
16:56  Invoking Mahatma Gandhi, Modi says the need of the hour is another jan andolan, a su-raaj andolan
16:50  PM replies to Lok Sabha debate on President's address to Parliament:  PM Modi in Lok Sabha: We see people doing cycle repairing for three generations. How can we change this? If one section of the society is weak, how can society as a whole be strong? We have to empower society. 
16:49  PM replies to Lok Sabha debate on President's address to parliament:  PM Modi in Lok Sabha: It is the misfortune of our country. We ask our youth, what is your education and they say I am a graduate, an MBA -- but where is the skill? Can't we focus on skill development? 

I am not blaming any government, all I am saying is that the situation has not changed so far. 
16:46  PM replies to Lok Sabha debate on President's address to parliament:  PM Modi in the Lok Sabha: We are so fortunate that we are in the generation where India is the youngest country in the world. China is growing older day by day when it comes to skilled labour and we are younger. Hence, all the countries are looking to us.  

In the coming days, manpower would be needed. We should  prioritise this. China is growing old, we are getting younger. Hence, all the countries are looking at us. 

We have an image of Scam India. We need to change that to Skilled India.
16:43  PM replies to Lok Sabha debate on President's address to parliament:  Turning emotional while talking about crimes against women in the country, PM Modi says incidents such as the HP tragedy, the rapes in UP, they make us introspect. The government has to act strong. I plead to the state governments, we should stop analysing these rape incidents. We have to stop belittling the dignity of our sisters and mothers.
16:41  Modi mentions the "Pune atrocity, Uttar Pradesh atrocity, Himachal Pradesh accident" for the first time, in his speech in the Lok Sabha.
16:40  If we have real-time data for agro products, the government would know where the agro product is needed most, and hence, act accordingly, says Modi.

The technology must move from the laboratory to land. We also have to increase the productivity of the land. We have not been able to increase the protein content in pulses yet. 
16:39  We have succeeded in increasing the sugar content in sugarcane, but not in increasing protein content in our pulses, says Modi. This is a challenge before us.
16:38  The sooner we introduce technology in agriculture, the better, says Modi.
16:37  Real-time data is the need of the hour using India's strength as an IT power, says Modi.
16:37  Our dream is that the poor man's chulha must be lit every evening, says Modi.
16:35  Why don't we convert the laboratories in schools in India during summer holidays into a soil testing laboratories where agricultural university students can work during their vacations, asks Modi.
16:34  We tried Soil Health Card in Gujarat, it can be replicated elsewhere, too, says Modi. Can't we give this card to every farmer in India?
16:33  PM Modi says the dream is to make the entire North-East into an organic region.
16:28  Prime minister replies in Lok Sabha to debate on President's address:  Will leave no stone unturned in implementing roadmap outlined by the President in his address, says Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the Lok Sabha in his reply to the debate on the President's address to Parliament.
15:57  India, China to hold military exercise in November:  Indian and Chinese armies will hold their fourth joint military exercise in India in November. This was stated by Joint Secretary in-charge of China in the External Affairs Ministry Gautam Bambawale. 

"The next round of joint training exercises between the two armies will be held in India in November," Bhambawale said at a conference, where his speech was read out.
15:17  Lokpal likely to be in place by Independence Day:   The BJP government has initiated the process of forming the Lokpal by deciding on a search committee, and in all probability the Lokpal will be in place by August 15, 2014. 

The PMO has begun the drill by asking three judges for their consent.   

There is a clause in the Lokpal Act passed in Parliament that there was no requirement to have the Leader of Opposition in the selection committee, and the government is likely to take this cue and proceed with the appointment of the Lokpal.  
15:00  Prime Minister Narendra Modi plans to visit the Red Fort some time this month to get an idea of the space availability there.


Because he wants to make his maiden Independence Day speech this year a technological treat.
14:56  Rudy's original speech would have riled the Congress:  Leader of the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley on Tuesday made a very brief speech in the Upper House. The reason? The BJP does not want to antagonise the Congress which has a larger presence there. And the finance minister made his speech without any interruption and "toka toki". 

But in the Lok Sabha Rajiv Pratap Rudy had a free run against the Congress which had been decimated in the election, winning just 44 seats. 

But while Rudy was willing to strike he was afraid to wound, it seems. 

Those in the know say that his prepared script packed a punch: that the Lok Sabha should pass a condolence resolution over the sad demise of the 129-year-old Congress party, but party seniors advised caution as it was only the first day of the BJP government in Parliament and they didn't want it to end in commotion.
14:37  Tiwary, Uthappa named India A captains for Australia tour:   Manoj Tiwary and Robin Uthappa have been named captains of India A's four-day and one-day squads, which will leave for a month-long tour of Australia to compete in first-class as well as limited overs matches. 

While Tiwary will skipper the side in the four-day matches, Uthappa has been entrusted with the job of leading the side in the one-day version. 

India will play two four-day matches against the James Faulkner-led Australia A in Queensland from July 6-9 and 13-16 respectively. They will then play a quadrangular one day series involving Australia A, Australian High Performance Centre and South Africa A. 

The team has all the players who have performed during the last domestic season as well as IPL-7.
14:35  Karachi police files FIR against Taliban leaders:   The Karachi police today registered a criminal case against outlawed Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan leaders under the Anti-Terrorism Act for carrying out the deadly assault on Karachi's international airport this week. 

The FIR was registered in Karachi's airport police station under the Anti-Terrorism Act, nominating the top brass of the militant outfit including its chief Mullah Fazlullah, spokesman Shahidullah Shahid and other militants. 

The case has been registered at the Airport Police Station on the complaint of assistant director of Airport Security Force against the Taliban chief, spokesman and others, SSP Malir Rao Anwaar was quoted as saying by the local media.
14:30  PM to call on Chief Justice of India:  Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who paid a courtesy call on Vice President Hamid Ansari soon after assuming office, also plans to pay a courtesy call on the Chief Justice of India, either at the Supreme Court or at his official residence, most likely this week.
14:21  PM's speech expected to be a major departure from the past:  Prime Minister Narendra Modi's first Independence Day speech on August 15 this year, from the Red Fort ramparts, is expected to be aggressive on development. 

Those in the know say that it will be of a tenor exhibited by none of his predecessors so far. 

Modi's I-Day speech will be a combination of his mindset that was revealed in his 500 public rallies, contents of the BJP's manifesto, and the high points of his first ever budget that would have effectively been tabled by then by Arun Jaitley.
14:16  Himachal tragedy: Sixth body recovered, 18 students still missing:  On day four of the rescue operations in the Manali dam tragedy, a sixth body, that of a boy, was recovered on Wednesday. But 18 students and one tour guide are still missing. 

All 25 of them were washed away in a river surge on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the Himachal Pradesh police have registered a case against Larji Dam authorities for culpable homicide not amounting to murder and causing death due to negligence.

Chances of finding any survivors are dim, say officials.
13:54  Hunt for missing students: Telangana govt seeks Army's help:  The Telangana government today sought the help of the Army for speeding up the search operations to recover the bodies of students washed away in the Beas River.        

Telangana Home Minister Nayani Narasimha Reddy, who is camping in Mandi along with parents of missing children, said, "Our leader Jitendra Reddy met Home Minister Rajnath Singhtoday and urged that at least 500 armymen be put on the job to speed up the search operations."
13:27  Cong lost badly in LS polls due to non-performance: Govt:  Government today said Congress lost badly in the Lok Sabha election due to non-performance and because its "product" was not marketable, while BJP succeeded as its product was good and became a hit with the people. 

"Let us be clear that the product should be good. If it is not, then marketing will make no impact. Our product was liked by the people because of its quality," External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said in the Lok Sabha.
13:16  Cong demands dismissal of V K Singh from ministry:  Congress today sought immediate dismissal of Gen (Retd) V K Singh from the Council of Ministers over his tweets against next Army Chief Dalbir Singh Suhag, alleging that he had made "highly derogatory" remarks against the armed forces. 

"Even after his own government has indicted him (V K Singh), the language used by him in a tweet this morning is highly derogatory. To call a next Chief of Army Staff a criminal and those working under him in the forces as dacoits is not acceptable.
13:11  Half my class is wiped out: Himachal tragedy survivor:  'We were on our way to Manali. We were 48 students, three faculty members and a child of one of the faculty members. We decided to stop by at this spot for a short break. 

There was a river with just about a foot of water. There were no boards or notices etc warning us of any potential danger in the area or advising us not to enter the river.  

We were sitting on rocks in the river,  taking photos, having a good time. After a few minutes, I returned to the shore. Just then I heard a loud noise and saw water gushing. It was 6:30 pm.'

Read more
12:47  Rushdie Explains (you must follow this parody account) tweets: At Indo-US summit. Obama: I collect jokes that people make about me on Twitter. Modi: I collect people that make jokes about me on Twitter.
12:15  'Lt General Suhag's appointment as Army Chief is final':  General VK Singh - tweeting against the Army Chief-designate, linking him of supporting "dacoity" by an army unit that once worked under him. 

General Singh's tweets were raised in Parliament today by other parties with the Congress demanding his removal.  "The appointment is final," stressed Defence Minister Arun Jaitley, adding that the post of the army chief "must be kept out of controversy."
11:40  The most powerful sports administrator in the world is also the most unpopular:  'Is there a technocrat in the world more universally reviled than Sepp Blatter? The president of FIFA, the global body that governs soccer, the world's most popular sport, is routinely lambasted for his high-handedness, his sexism and the reported venality of his institution. Through its corporate cynicism and gaudy excesses, FIFA under Blatter seems to embody what's ugly in the beautiful game,' writes Ishan Tharoor (yes, you read the surname right) in the Washington Posthere.
11:36  Defence Minister Jaitley embarrassed by affidavit in VK Singh case:  'Union Defence Minister Arun Jaitley has sought an explanation from senior officials in his ministry on how passages imputing motives to former Army Chief -- and now MoS for the north east, external affairs and overseas affairs -- V K Singh were part of an affidavit filed in the Supreme Court on June 4, shortly after the BJP-led NDA government assumed office.

'Indeed, the fact that the affidavit filed by the defence ministry has indicted General Singh for violating the principles of natural justice and resorting to "unjust' means to clamp a disciplinary and vigilance ban on General Suhag has come as a major embarrassment for the Modi government,' write Praveen Swami, Smita Gupta and Krishnadas Rajagopal in The Hinduhere.
11:29  How Kejriwal warded off Yogendra Yadavs challenge:  In accepting Mr Kejriwal's supremacy for the Delhi elections, Mr Yadav saw the validation of his own authority in the Haryana elections, slated for later this year. He intends to lead the party in the Haryana polls, and hopes the powers vested in Arvind Kejriwal for Delhi will be vested in him for Haryana,' writes Arunoday Prakash in the Political Indianhere.
10:57  Congress has no moral authority to question govt: V K Singh:   Congress demanded the sacking of Union minister and former Army chief V K Singh, saying the BJP government's affidavit in the Supreme Court on the issue of Army vice-chief Dalbir Singh Suhag's promotion was an expression of "no confidence" in him. 

Defending his stand, Singh tweeted that the Congress had no moral authority to question the government over the affidavit. 

The opposition party raised the pitch for removal of Singh as minister after the government told the apex court that the alleged lapses which were made as grounds to impose disciplinary ban on Suhag by Singh between April and May 2012 were "premeditated", "vague" and "illegal". 
10:38  BSE resumes trading after technical snag; :  The Nifty traded higher after dropping as much as 20 points, while Sensex values started updating after the Bombay Stock Exchange sorted out the technical glitch that prevented prices from being updated in early trade on Wednesday.

Due to a technical snag in the index calculation system in the first few minutes, index calculation did not take place, a BSE spokesman told Reuters
10:20  AirAsia India set to begin operations from tomorrow:  The domestic aviation space is all set to witness severe competition with the entry of AirAsia India, which starts operation from tomorrow. AirAsia India, the Indian arm of the Malaysian no-frills airline headed by Tony Fernandes, will become the fourth budget carrier in the country -- after IndiGo, SpiceJet and GoAir -- once its maiden flight takes off from Bangalore to Goa at 1510 hours on Thursday.
10:19  Rajasthan Ambulance Scam: FIR names Sachin Pilot, Ashok Gehlot:  Former Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot and senior Congress leader Sachin Pilot have been named in an FIR filed in connection to an alleged ambulance scam under the National Rural Health Mission, which is currently being investigated by the Crime Branch - Criminal Investigation Department or CB-CID of the state police.
10:09  Congress slams Goyal for blaming Sheila govt for power outages:  Coming down heavily on Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal after he blamed the 15-year Sheila Dikshit rule for the long power outages being witnessed in Delhi, the Congress party said it was the responsibility of the Narendra Modi Government at the Centre to resolve the power crisis as the city which was under Central rule.

The party also targeted the 49-day Aam Aadmi Party Government for the hours-long load shedding in different parts of the city "as it did not prepare a Summer Action Plan' to meet the summer needs.
10:03  Kejriwal seeks appointment with PM to discuss Delhi power crisis:  
Arvind Kejriwal of the Aam Aadmi Party or AAP, which led the Delhi government for a 49-day period early this year, will seek an appointment to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi today to discuss the capital's acute power crisis.

In east Delhi, angry residents vandalised a bus and set it on fire on Tuesday night. There is also heated politics on the issue as parties blame each other. 
09:46  Looking forward to working with Modi: Sharif:  Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has written to his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi expressing satisfaction over his meeting with him recently and said he was looking forward to working with him in "harmony on all unsettled matters". 

In a letter which was delivered to the Prime Minister's Office over the weekend, Sharif, who was among the leaders from the neighbouring countries to attend Modi's swearing in on May 26, said the future of the poor was integrated with "our common economic destiny".
09:45  Terror attacks could negatively effect air traffic in Karachi:  Pakistan airline authorities fear that the terrorist attacks on Karachi airport terminal building could negatively effect the flow of international air traffic at the Jinnah international airport here. 

Some unnamed officials in the Civil Aviation Authority and Pakistan International Airlines admitted that initial reaction to the terrorist attacks had not been very good.
09:03  Obama calls new Egyptian president to congratulate him:  US President Barack Obama has congratulated new Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi and conveyed his commitment to working together to advance the shared interests of both countries, the White House said.  

During his telephonic call, Obama reiterated America's continuing support for the political, economic, and social aspirations of the Egyptian people, and respect for their universal rights, it said.
08:47  Obama congratulates Israel's new president-elect:  US President Barack Obama has congratulated Reuven Rivlin on his election as the next President of Israel. "Over more than six decades, the United States and Israel have developed a unique relationship based on shared democratic values, our unshakable commitment to Israel's security, and our partnership in scientific research and innovative technology," Obama said in a statement yesterday.
08:34  The World Cup is about to start, but this man is ruining everything:  Is there a technocrat in the world more universally reviled than Sepp Blatter? The president of FIFA, the global body that governs soccer, the world's most popular sport, is routinely lambasted for his high-handedness, his sexism and the reported venality of his institution. Through its corporate cynicism and gaudy excesses, FIFA under Blatter seems to embody what's ugly in the beautiful game.

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08:23  Jaitley seeks explanation on affidavit, Cong asks for Gen Singh's resignation:  Union Defence Minister Arun Jaitley has sought an explanation from senior officials in his ministry on how passages imputing motives to former Army Chief '" and now MoS for the north east, external affairs and overseas affairs '" V K Singh were part of an affidavit filed in the Supreme Court on June 4, shortly after the BJP-led NDA government assumed office.

The Congress, meanwhile, seized on the embarrassing contents of the affidavit and demanded General V K Singh's resignation from the union council of ministers, saying the NDA government's affidavit on the issue of Lt Gen Dalbir Singh Suhag's promotion to the post of Army Chief was an expression of "no confidence" in him.
08:22  No ransom paid for release of Sgt Bergdahl: US:  No ransom was paid for the release of Sgt Bowe Bergdahl, who was held under Taliban captivity for five years, the US has said, refuting all such reports in this regard. 

"I've seen these reports that suggest that a ransom was somehow paid, and those reports are inaccurate," White House Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest said yesterday. "Not from the United States government, not from a third party, none?" he was asked.
08:17  Google announces to buy satellite maker Skybox for USD 500 mn:  Internet search provider Google has entered into an agreement to buy satellite maker Skybox for USD 500 million in cash. The deal is expected to make the search engine giant to serve as a launching pad to send its own satellite to take aerial pictures and provide online access to remote areas of the world.
08:14  Soul searching needed on gun control: Obama:  US President Barack Obama has called for national "soul searching" over gun violence and expressed his "frustration" over gun lobby not letting him push through a legislation to put a stop to rampant shooting sprees. 

"The country has to do some soul-searching about this. This is becoming the norm. And we take it for granted in ways that, as a parent, are terrifying to me. "I am prepared to work with anybody, including responsible sportsmen and gun owners, to craft some solutions.
03:52  UK MP to investigate claims of Tamil rape victims being deported:  

William Hague has said the government will investigate claims that Tamil asylum seekers are being deported from the UK to Sri Lanka despite evidence they have been subjected to rape and sexual abuse by the country's security forces.


Refugees, their lawyers and advocacy groups made the allegations on Tuesday on the opening day of the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict, hosted by the UK, which has faced accusations of hypocrisy over the issue.


Lawyers even reported an acceleration of deportations of Tamils in recent weeks, which they believed has been triggered by anticipation of new Sri Lankan guidelines expected to bolster the cases of Tamil asylum seekers fleeing torture.


The foreign secretary pointed out that asylum decisions are handled by the home secretary, Theresa May, but that the Foreign Office contributes to country by country assessments of human rights.


He promised an investigation and training for immigration officers to make them more sensitive to the plight of rape victims. "We are a country that is open to asylum seekers. We uphold our standards very strictly, and whenever anyone thinks we are not doing that, we are always happy to investigate," Hague told the Guardian.


Read the full story on The Guardian

03:47  Egyptian women's rights activist Hania Moheeb: 'Sisi owes a lot to women':  

Today, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi ordered his interior minister to fight sexual harassment after several women were attacked during his inauguration celebrations. But will el-Sisi's sentiment make a difference?


"Definitely", says Hania Moheeb a prominent activist for Women's rights in Egypt and who is herself a victim of sexual harassment. "President Sisi owes a lot to Egyptian women who lined up to vote for him."


"I was happy that he spoke about the issue...I think that if he has the will and declared that he has the will then something will happen." According to the U.N. Entity for Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women, over 99% of women in Egypt will suffer some form of sexual harassment at some point and it's an experience Hania Moheeb knows all too well. She was just one of the thousands of Egyptians who took to Tahrir Square in Cairo last year, to commemorate the second anniversary of the January 25th revolution. But something happened that catapulted her into activism; she was sexually assaulted.


Read more on CNN

03:44  HP CM asks officials to 'learn lesson' from Beas tragedy:  

Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh today held a review meeting with senior state officials and asked them to "learn" from the Beas tragedy even as he directed power department staff to strictly adhere to "safety norms" at dam sites.        


Singh directed multi-purpose projects and the power department to take extra precautions to avert any mishap in the future while discharging water from dams.        


He ordered that announcements should be made before releasing the water downstream through loudspeakers fitted on vehicles along with warning by hooters.        


"We should learn a lesson from the Larji dam mishap and every precaution should be taken in future by all departments concerned," he said.         Required fencing would be done at all dams and other dangerous zones and proper signboards would be installed in such areas.        


Singh said that a high-level inquiry has been ordered and stern action will be taken against those found to have been negligent.        

01:41  Pride comes before fall, Congress tells BJP:  

Congress today reacted strongly to a jibe by BJP that it had been reduced to the status of a "regional party" and asked the ruling party to wear victory with humility while warning that "pride comes before the fall".        


"The biggest thing which political history teaches us is that pride comes before the fall. The notion of the infallibility of the victorious party has to be tempered by humility," Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi told reporters here.        


Earlier, in an attack on Congress, BJP MP Rajiv Pratap Rudy had said, "We never imagined that we will have to welcome a national party as a regional party in this House... What prompted this to happen? Why this mandate? People have punished you (Congress) for your misrule of 65 years."        


Rudy's remarks in Lok Sabha triggered protests as he also said that since there was no Leader of Opposition, Congress would not be able to participate in the decision-making process on major matters like appointment of Chief Vigilance Commissioner, CBI Director and the Lokpal.        


Hitting back at Rudy, Singhvi reminded the BJP leader that Congress had won 414 seats in 1984, much more than the 282 seats which BJP has secured this time. BJP had got only two seats in 1984 and there was also a time when it had not won even a single seat, Singhvi said.

00:57  TIME's Bobby Ghosh joins Quartz:  

Time magazine's Bobby Ghosh is joining Atlantic Media's Quartz site as managing editor, editor-in-chief Kevin Delaney announced to staff on Tuesday. Ghosh spent the past year as international editor of Time, overseeing all of its editions and correspondents outside the U.S.


He has lived and reported from all over the world, including five years as Time's Baghdad bureau chief. "Bobby's mandate is to engage deeply with Quartz's journalism and increase the breadth, creativity, and impact of our coverage, guiding our reporters to their greatest work,' Delaney wrote in a memo to staff.


"His arrival comes as we're expanding the editorial team to produce even more high-quality journalism that finds a broad readership online. And it will allow us to further our ambitions outside the US, as marked by this week's launch of Quartz India.'


"Bobby brings a sophisticated curiosity about the world, an obsessive news focus, and a strong identification with Quartz's mission to cover the new global economy's most important and interesting facets,' Delaney wrote. 


Read more on Politico

00:22  Thousads flee as militants seize Iraq's second city:  

Iraq's prime minister has asked parliament to declare a state of emergency after Islamist militants effectively took control of Mosul and much of its province of Nineveh.


Nouri Maliki said "vital areas" of the city had been seized; some 150,000 people are believed to have fled. Troops fled Mosul as hundreds of jihadists from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) overran it. The US has said ISIS threatens not just Iraq, but the entire region.


Read more on BBC

00:21  Pakistan: 'Time to make hard choice':  

With Pakistan under attack by the Pakistani Taliban, Islamabad needs to look at mending relations with Kabul and viewing terrorism as a shared problem, writes Raza Rumi.


Read more on CNN

00:20  Girl overpowers man who tried to molest her in Delhi:  

Gathering courage, a 20-year-old girl overpowered a man who allegedly tried to molest her in a park in high-security Chanakyapuri area Monday evening and handed him over to police.          


The incident took place at around 7 pm when the girl, a class 12 student, was taking a walk with her mother in Nehru Park in Chanakyapuri when the accused, 22-year-old Manjeet, who is known to her and is a neighbour, reached the spot and began passing lewd comments at her, said a senior police official.        


"The girl at first ignored him but when he continued to misbehave, she called up the police and her relatives," said a police official.        


]On learning that police were on their way, Manjeet tried to flee but the girl chased him and caught him.          By that time, her cousin and maternal uncle, who live nearby, also reached the spot, the official said.          


When the police reached the spot, they handed over Manjeet to them. He was taken to Chankyapuri police station and based on the victim's complaint booked on the charge of molestation.

00:17  Top headlines at this hour:  

Cyber crime probe cells soon in Maha

Pune techie murder: HRS chief arrested

V K Singh justifies decision on Suhag promotion ban

Akhilesh govt transfers another 36 IAS officers

Battered Congress to meet next month to discuss the road ahead

Kerala: 7 booked for placing Modi's photo in same list as Hitler, Osama

LK Advani gets back room in Parliament

Prime Minister Modi scraps 4 Cabinet Committees

Raj Thackeray comes out in support of Campa Cola residents

UP govt hands over Badaun rape case to CBI

Uttarakhand: Two Russians dead, 1 missing as car plunges into river

All ministers to submit property details to Modi by July end

Sonia cheers as Kharge compares Congress to Pandavas

PHOTOS: India becomes too hot to handle!


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