23:03 Dalit group thrashed by mob in Una; victims allege police inaction:
Around eight Dalits were severely injured when a mob allegedly attacked them and 12 of their community members at Samter village near Una, while they were returning home after attending a protest rally in Una town of Gir Somnath district this evening.
The incident took place around 5 pm. Police lobbed teargas shells to disperse the crowd and resorted to mild lathi-charge, even as the victims alleged that the force did 'nothing to help' them.
The victims also claimed that the attackers were residents of Samter village, who wanted to 'avenge' the arrest of 12 persons in connection with last month's Una Dalit flogging case.
The 20 victims, who are from Bhavnagar district, had gone to Una on their motorcycles along with others. They were returning home after hoisting of a tricolour by Radhika Vemula, mother of Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula who had committed suicide in Hyderabad, and Balu Sarvaiya, father of one of the victims of Una Dalit flogging incident, in the presence of JNU student leader Kanhaiya Kumar.
The mob stopped and attacked them at Samter, which falls on Una-Bhavnagar road and not far from Mota Samadhiyala village, where seven Dalits had been brutally beaten up by cow vigilantes last month.
21:40 Amnesty International India booked for sedition:
Bengaluru police has registered a first information report against Amnesty International India in connection with alleged raising of 'independence' slogans by 'pro-freedom' Kashmiris who entered into heated arguments with a Kashmiri Pandit leader for hailing the Indian Army.
A police official involved in the investigation said that the FIR has been registered and investigations will proceed. The FIR has been registered under Indian Penal Code Sections 142 (being member of an unlawful assembly), 143 (whoever is a member of an unlawful assembly), 147 (rioting), 124A (sedition), 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony), he said.
A panel discussion on Saturday had turned chaotic as some 'pro-freedom' Kashmiris, most of whom were youngsters and students, entered into heated arguments with a Kashmiri Pandit leader for hailing the Indian Army.
The event was organised by Amnesty International India at United Theological College in Bengaluru.
Karnataka Home Minister G Parameshwara had yesterday said the intention and background of those involved will be investigated.
Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad activists, who staged a protest yesterday against the event calling it 'anti-national', had also filed a complaint with the police along with a CD containing video recording of the event.
Holding that it had organised the event as part of a campaign to seek justice for 'victims of human rights violations' in Jammu and Kashmir, Amnesty International India in a statement had said towards the end of the event, some of those who attended raised slogans, some of which referred to calls for 'azadi' (freedom).
Noting that as a matter of policy it does not take any position in favour of or against demands for self-determination, Amnesty had said it, however, considers that the right to freedom of expression under international human rights law protects the right to peacefully advocate political solutions that do not involve incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence.
Image used for representation only.
20:58 Youth killed in fresh clashes Kashmir, toll rises to 58:
One youth was killed and another critically injured today in fresh clashes between protesters and security forces in Kashmir, taking the death toll to 58, even as curfew remained in force in some parts of Kashmir.
A youth injured in clashes between protesters and security forces at Batamaloo in the city was brought to SMHS hospital with grievous injuries, a police official said.
The doctors declared him brought dead, he said adding efforts are on to ascertain the identity of the deceased.
In another incident in Bijbehara town of Anantnag district, one youth was critically injured after being hit by a tear smoke shell in the head, the official said.
Earlier, a youth injured during clashes last week succumbed at a hospital in Srinagar this morning.
Ishfaq Ahmad Bhat, who was injured during clashes between protesters and security forces in Tangmarg area of Baramulla district on August 12, succumbed at SKIMS hospital, a police official said.
Bhat had sustained injury to his head.
20:47 Suspected shooter of Imam and assistant nabbed by NYPD:
The killer who brutally shot dead a Bangladeshi-origin imam and his assistant near a mosque in New York may have been settling a score in a feud between Muslims and Hispanics, according to a media report today.
The suspect may have left behind another victim who unwittingly held the clue that solved the crime, the New York Daily News reported quoting police sources as saying.
The suspected killer was taken into custody last night but had not been charged or identified, it said. Police officials would not confirm whether a suspect was nabbed.
Video of the horrific on Saturday afternoon murders of mosque leader Maulama Akonjee, 55, and Thara Uddin, 65, at Liberty Ave. and 79th St. in Ozone Park showed the brazen crime to be a planned execution.
The killer had crept up behind the imam and his assistant and shot both men in the head from point blank range. But the killer may have got sloppy in his haste after pulling the trigger and hit a bicyclist with his car, sources said.
20:01 India, China border personnel meet on I-Day:
A ceremonial Border Personnel Meeting on the occasion of Independence Day was conducted today at Indian BPM huts at Chushul-Moldo in Eastern Ladakh. The Indian delegations were led by Brigadier R S Raman and Brigadier V Yadav respectively and Chinese delegations by senior Colonel Fan Jun and senior Colonel Guo Kexie respectively.
The ceremonial meeting was marked by saluting the Indian National flag by both the delegations. This was followed by ceremonial address by both delegation leaders which comprised of exchange of greetings, wishes and reaffirming the mutual desire of maintaining and improving relations at functional level at the border. Thereafter, a culture programme showcasing Indian culture was organised.
Both the delegations interacted in a free, congenial and cordial environment. The delegation parted amidst feeling of friendship and commitment towards enhancing the existing cordial relations and maintaining peace along the Line of Actual Control.
19:28 Modi's mention of Balochistan proves India 'fomenting terror' in region: Pak:
Responding to Prime Minister Narendra Modis reference to Balochistan in his Independence Day speech, Pakistan today claimed that this proved its contention that India has been allegedly fomenting terrorism in the province.
Pakistan also asserted that the situation in Balochistan cannot be compared with Kashmir.
Pakistan Prime Minister's Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, while responding to Modis Independence Day speech, said the Premier was only trying to divert world attention from the grim tragedy that has been unfolding in Kashmir over the past five weeks.
The reference to Balochistan, which is an integral part of Pakistan, only proves Pakistan's contention that India, through its main intelligence agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), has been fomenting terrorism in Balochistan, Aziz was quoted as saying by a Foreign Office statement.
Aziz's remarks came after Prime Minister Modi brought up Pakistani atrocities on people of Balochistan and PoK in his Independence Day speech today.
19:02 Congress, Kejriwal attack Modi over CJI's remarks:
Chief Justice of India T S Thakur's disappointment over Prime Minister Narendra Modi's silence on judicial appointments in his Independence Day speech today were seized upon by the opposition parties with the Congress saying he should heed the advice of the top judge.
The Congress also said Justice Thakur's remarks on the prime minister's speech were 'unprecedented yet starkly true' while Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal 'admired' the CJI for his 'courage'.
'(The) CJI questions PM Modi for deafening silence on judicial logjam in his I-Day speech. Unprecedented yet starkly true,' Congress' chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said on Twitter.
He said the Prime Minister needed to heed the Chief Justice's advice and not do petty politics on the issue.
Kejirwal also took to Twitter to praise the CJI. 'I really really admire CJI's courage, conviction and his concern for justice,' he tweeted.
Amid continuing standoff between the judiciary and the government, Justice Thakur expressed his disappointment that the prime minister did not make any mention about appointment of judges in his Independence Day address.
17:37 BSF offers sweets to Pak Rangers at Wagah:
The Border Security Force today gifted traditional Indian sweets to Pakistani Rangers at the Attari-Wagah border on the occasion of Independence Day.
Handing over sweets to their counterparts, BSF and Pakistani Rangers personnel looked relaxed as they hugged and shook hands with each other besides sharing pleasantries for a few minutes.
Yesterday, Pakistani Rangers had offered traditional Pakistani sweets to their Indian counterparts on the occasion of Independence Day of Pakistan.
The BSF and Pakistan Rangers also exchanged greetings and sweets at four different places along the International Border in Jammu and Samba sector of J&K on India's 70th Independence day.
The two forces greeted each other and exchanged sweets in Samba, Arnia and R S Pura sectors of the IB, a BSF officer said. Both the border guarding forces committed to maintain peace and tranquillity on the International Border in Jammu, he said.
17:02 Pak invites India for talks on Kashmir:
Pakistan has invited India for talks on Kashmir, saying it is the international obligation of both the countries to resolve the issue, notwithstanding India's insistence that it would talk on contemporary and relevant issues in Indo-Pak relations.
Pakistan Foreign Office spokesman Nafees Zakaria said in a statement that Indian High Commissioner Gautam Bambawale was called to hand over a letter of invitation for talks.
The Foreign Secretary called in the Indian High Commissioner this afternoon (15 August 2016) and handed over a letter addressed to his Indian counterpart, inviting him to visit Pakistan for talks on Jammu and Kashmir dispute that has been the main bone of contention between India and Pakistan, Zakaria said.
The invitation was extended amid tension in bilateral ties due to the war of words between the two nations over the issue.
The letter highlights the international obligation of both the countries, India and Pakistan, to resolve the Jammu and Kashmir dispute, in accordance with the UN Security Council resolutions, the statement said.
Pakistan's advisor on foreign affairs said last week that a conference of envoys of Pakistan earlier this month had agreed that Pakistan seek talks with India.
The invite came days after Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh addressed Parliament on the Kashmir issue and said that India was willing to discuss only Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) with Pakistan, and that the question of discussing Jammu and Kashmir with Islamabad just does not arise.
India also virtually turned down Pakistan's proposal that it would invite India for a dialogue on J&K and made it clear that it would talk on contemporary and relevant issues in Indo-Pak relations.
16:11 British MPs offered self defence lessons:
MPs in Britain are being offered self defence training to equip them in the event of an attack, months after a 41-year-old lawmaker was killed outside her constituency.
The fighting technique Krav Maga -- Hebrew for "contact combat" -- combines elements of judo, jujitsu, street fighting and boxing.
It is taught as a defence against assailants with guns or knives and comes after the knife attack on Jo Cox was killed outside her constituency in West Yorkshire, northern England, in June.
The free lessons, which are being provided by Parli-Training, are aimed at protecting MPs against stalkers, terrorists and political extremists, 'The Daily Telegraph' reports.
Mendora Ogbogbo, Parli-Training founder, said: "We are teaching them techniques where if someone comes at them with a knife or a gun, they can disarm the weapons and then run. They are not being taught how to fight."
15:43 Probe ordered after flag fiasco at Mehbooba's I-Day function:
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti today faced a deeply embarrassing moment when the national tricolor fell off the post when she wanted to hoist it at Bakshi stadium here where the main Independence Day function of the state was held.
An inquiry was immediately ordered into the fiasco.
Mehbooba, who was hoisting the national flag as Chief Minister for the first time, pulled the string attached to the post only to see the tricolor fall from the post and land on the ground.
Amid the embarrassing situation, two personnel from the security detail of the Chief Minister held the flag in their hands till Mehbooba gave the ceremonial salute to the flag. As Mehbooba left the stage for inspecting the contingents of the police and paramilitary forces, the security staff at the Bakshi Stadium hurriedly set the flag right and hoisted it atop the post.
Later, Director General of Police K Rajendra Kumar said he has ordered an inquiry into the fiasco.
15:42 CJI not happy with PM skipping issues of judiciary in I-Day speech:
Chief Justice of India T S Thakur today expressed dissatisfaction with Prime Minister Narendra Modi not mentioning the problems faced by the judiciary in his speech on the occasion of 70th Independence Day, and said he was expecting some words about the judges' appointments.
"I think I have reached the peak of my career, so I don't hesitate in saying what I feel. So, I should speak the truth which touches your hearts... We heard speeches by the popular Prime Minister, the Law Minister and was expecting something about justice and judges' appointments.
"Cases used to get decided within 10 years under British rule but even that is not happening now. The number of cases and people's expectation have risen so substantially that it is becoming difficult to achieve the objective now. That is why I have time and again requested the Prime Minister to pay attention towards this aspect," the CJI, who had recently made an emotional appeal to the PM in this regard at a function, said.
14:58 Army foils infiltration bid in Uri, 2 terrorists killed:
Army today foiled an infiltration bid along the Line of Control in Uri sector of Kashmir, killing two terrorists.
"Alert troops noticed some suspicious movement along the Line of Control in Uri Sector in north Kashmir's Baramulla district this morning and challenged the intruders," an army official said.
He said the intruders opened fire towards the army positions which was retaliated by the soldiers.
"Two terrorists have been killed in the operation which was going on till reports last came in," the official said.
13:39 Black kite creates a flutter at Red Fort:
A black kite caused quite a flutter at the Red Fort minutes before Prime Minister Narendra Modi reached there to hoist the tricolour and address the nation on the occasion of 70th Independence Day today.
The kite was spotted flying over the ramparts of the Red Fort which was being closely guarded by thousands of security personnel and CCTV cameras.
Within a few minutes, security personnel managed to pull down the kite.
Security personnel also kept a watch on the venue from a chopper which hovered over the Red Fort and nearby areas till the arrival of the Prime Minister.
Thousands of people who reached the Red Fort to attend the Independence Day function were screened and frisked by security personnel.
13:29 Gold medal for the 'most boring speech', AAP ridicules PM:
The Prime Minister's Red Fort speech would have struck Gold if there was a medal for the "most boring" public speech at Olympics, the Aam Aadmi Party said today even as it attacked the Centre for lack of intent and policy.
Attacking the government over varied issues ranging from Kashmir policy to assault on Dalits, AAP leader Ashutosh said Modi's speech was "uninspiring and directionless".
"If at all Olympics had a medal for the most boring public speech then Prime Minister Narendra Modi would have received gold," Delhi Culture Minister Kapil Mishra said.
Referring to a picture in which cameras caught Union Minister Arun Jaitley and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's eyes shut at Red Fort, Deputy Chief Manish Sisodia said it seems that Modi's speech was really "boring".
"It is because of the lack of intent and policy which is why Kashmir is burning, Pakistan entered our home and hit us and (the promise of bringing back) black money has been forgotten.
"Decisions are not being taken because the intent is not right. Haryana was burning and violence is being perpetrated in the name of cow worship. There is no action against attack on Dalits, farmers are committing suicide and the new education policy has become a rhetoric. "It is due to lack of intent and policy that judges are not being appointed," Sisodia charged in a series of tweets.
13:28 By raising Balochistan, PM ruining India's claim on PoK: Cong:
Congress today launched a scathing attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, accusing him of "ruining" India's case on Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir by raking up the issue of Balochistan in his Independence Day address.
"PoK is our right. Our entitlement. We will support it. But by bringing in Balochistan, you are ruining our case... We are going to ruin our own case on PoK," Congress leader and former External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid said.
This would give an "additional handle" to Pakistan to target India as "we don't speak about atrocities in neighbouring countries", he told reporters at the Congress headquarters.
Disapproving the "wild pronouncements about Balochistan", he said the government should ensure that its borders are secured and people are safe.
"I do not know who advised the Prime Minister for raising Balochistan... It will dilute our claim on PoK. It will given additional handle...to interfere in our internal affairs."
12:41 A lot needs to be done to enhance India's prestige: Advani:
On the 70th Independence day, senior BJP leader L K Advani today said that being independent is not enough as a lot needs to be done to enhance India's prestige the world over.
He also expressed confidence that India will fight and win over the menace of terrorism.
"I am very happy that India is celebrating its 70th Independence day. I was present along with the countrymen at Red Fort today at the Independence Day celebrations. But a lot still needs to be done in independent India and India has to enhance its prestige the world over.
"Mere independence is not enough for Indian patriots, but an important task before it is to transform independence into self governance. The entire country is dedicated to this task today and I am confident that India will earn a good name the world over as a self-governed and best ruled country," he said after unfurling the national flag at his residence.
11:10 Google doodle celebrates India's tryst with destiny:
As India celebrates its 70th year of Independence, Google today dedicated a doodle to the historic 'Tryst with Destiny' speech of the country's first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru.
Nehru had delivered the historic speech in Parliament House before the Indian Constituent Assembly.
"Long years ago we made a tryst with destiny, and now that time comes when we shall redeem our pledge, not wholly or in full measure, but very substantially. At the stroke of midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will awake to life and freedom," he had said in the speech.
The doodle has 1947 written at the bottom of Parliament House to mark the year of India's Independence.
India shares its Independence Day with South Korea, marking the end of Japanese colonial rule in 1945 -- for which Google has dedicated yet another doodle. Last year on Independence day, Google had portrayed Gandhi's Dandi March on its doodle.
11:06 US greets India on 70th Independence Day:
Greeting India on its 70th Independence Day, the US today reaffirmed its pledge to working towards ensuring freedom and justice for "all within our great democracies".
"On behalf of President (Barack) Obama and the American people, I send our best wishes to the people of the Republic of India as you celebrate your Independence Day on August 15," Secretary of State John Kerry said.
"As India celebrates Independence Day, we recommit to working to ensure freedom and justice for all within our great democracies," he said in a statement.
"When Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to the United States Congress this past June, he remarked that "the traits of freedom and liberty form a strong bond between our two democracies." It is worth remembering this today as India celebrates its independence," he said.
Celebrations were held across the US a day prior (according to their local time) in order to coincide with revelry in India, with the largest gathering reported from Fremont in California and Edison in New Jersey attended by thousands of people, with marching bands and colourful cultural extravaganza.
10:14 Militants detonate 4 bombs in Assam's Tinsukia:
Suspected ULFA-Independent militants exploded four bombs in various parts of Assam's Tinsukia district today as the state celebrated the 70th Independence Day.
There was no casualty or injury in any of the explosions.
An improvised explosive devise exploded near Indira Gandhi School at Laipuli on the outskirts of district headquarters of Tinsukia town at 7.15 am, the police said.
This was followed by another explosion in line no 6 of Badlabhata tea estate in Doomdooma area where the third IED was also set off at Masuwa locality, they said.
The fourth one exploded at Gamtumati in Philobari area where ULFA-I militants on August 12 night had shot dead two persons and injured six others in indiscriminate firing at Bahbon village.
10:06 5 securitymen hurt in terror attack near Jama Masjid in Srinagar:
Terrorists on Monday attacked security forces at Nowhatta in downtown Srinagar, injuring five personnel, and triggering a gunfight.
The unspecified number of terrorists fired at the security forces in the area which is close to the historic Jama Masjid.
Five security personnel were injured in the attack, a police official said.
The exchange of fire was going on at the time of filing of this report.
The attack came as the country is celebrating the 70th Independence Day.
09:37 Modi@Red Fort: India will never bend before terrorism:
* We did not get an opportunity to die for the country but we have the opportunity to live for the country.
* There can't be a bigger freedom than freedom from poverty. Invite all SAARC countries to work together to fight this.
* To the youth who have taken up the gun, I urge them to return to their parents, shun violence.
* Many innocents were killed in Peshawar terrorist attack (Pak), but there were tears in everyone's eyes in Parliament here. People of Balochistan, Gilgit and PoK have thanked me a lot in the past few days, I am grateful to them. This is the example of our humanitarian approach, but there are some countries who glorify terrorists.
* This country will never bend before terrorism.
* 'Unity in Diversity' is the whole essence of Indian culture. There is no place for violence and atrocities, here.
09:35 Two CRPF jawans and one J&K policeman injured after 3 terrorists attack security forces in Srinagar,exchange of fire continues
08:56 Militants open fire on security forces in Nowhatta area of Srinagar, reports PTI
08:55 Modi@Red Fort: We have to rise above social evils:
* Great leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Ambedkar ji have always stressed on the need for social unity.
* Yes there are problems, but we have to rise above and fight such anti-social elements. Only then we'll be able to progress in real sense.
* My sisters and brothers, we have to fight against social evils. We have to rise above social evils. All citizens have to do this, else India can't progress. A strong society can only be built on social justice.
* Only financial growth is not important, social unity is also important; 125 cr people of India are part of one family.
* We have worked to achieve "One nation, one grid and one price".
* 99.5% of past dues of sugarcane farmers have been cleared; 95% of sugarcane sold this season has been paid for to farmers
08:46 Modi@Red Fort: Nation's image more important than govt's image:
* Amidst global economic slow-down, Indian economy is growing.
* For us, image of the nation is more important than the image of the government.
* We all know about coal scam. However, we auctioned coal online, without any corruption charges levelled against us due to transparency.
* We have connected Aadhar card to government schemes to curb corruption.
* Financial independence of Women and her participation is important to fight poverty.
* GST will give strength to the economy and all parties are to be thanked for it being passed. GST will give strength to our economy & all parties are to be thanked for its passage.
* GST is one such tax reform which will help us bring in financial stability
* We have worked to achieve "One nation, one grid and one price"
08:33 Modi@Red Fort: My mantra is 'Reform, Perform and Transform':
* I have tried to adopt the strategy of 'Reform, Perform and Transform'; tried to avoid populism.
* Food godowns with 15 lakh ton capacity built; emphasis on food processing: Aim is to help double farmers' income by 2022.
* 90 shut irrigation schemes will be revived; 77,000 solar pumps distributed to bring down input cost of farmers.
* If farmers in my country get adequate water, they can turn 'soil' into 'gold'
* That's why my government has given importance to save water. We have given impetus to 'per drop, more crop' initiative
* I will continue to strive hard to ensure that the this inflation doesn't affect the food plate of poor.
* We have been blessed with monsoon, this year. Sowing has therefore increased, this will help us meet demand shortfall.
* We are giving importance to Integrated development against Isolated development, empowerment against entitlement.
* When new government is elected, many-a-times, good initiatives taken by the previous government are forgotten. But we did not let this happen, we have taken forward the good initiatives taken by the previous government.
* Out government is giving importance to 'last man delivery' by taking decisions decisively as our policies and intentions are clear.
* We are trying to revive 'post-offices' in the country which is becoming irrelevant increasingly due to advent of technology.
08:23 Modi@Red Fort: We curbed inflation, electrified 10,000 villages:
* The LED bulb that was priced at Rs 350 each, is now being sold at Rs 50 each.
* Electricity has reached 10,000 villages out of 18,000 unelectricified villages.
* In my first speech I had asked how we can tackle the huge problem of sanitation in our country. In such little time, we have built 2 crore toilets, more than 70,000 villages are open defecation free.
* In my first speech I had asked how we can tackle the huge problem of sanitation in our country. In such little time, we have built 2 crore toilets, more than 70,000 villages are open defecation free.
* Due to drought situation in the last 2 years, Govt has faced challenges in terms of price rise.
* Under the previous government, inflation had crossed 10%. We did not let it rise above 6%
* From Delhi it takes 3 hours to reach Nagla Fatela village in Hathras, it took 70 years for electricity to reach there.
08:07 Modi@Red Fort: Want to change lives of common people:
* There was a time when the central government was surrounded by allegations but now the government is surrounded by expectations. We have connected 70 crore Indians to Aadhaar and social security schemes.
* I want to change the lives of common people, I am committed to it.
* In last 60 years,14 crore were given gas connections,while my Govt provided gas connections to over 4 crore people in just 60 weeks.
* We have found 9,000 lower ranks in which there will not be any interviews, there will not be any need of references and middlemen. These appointments are being done on merit. Today the citizen is not happy with just the announcement of projects, the unveiling of plans. She / He wants to see the actual work being done on the ground
* The work of village roads started under Atal Behari Vajpayee ji, we have taken that forward. Earlier, we used to make 70-75 km of roads in a day. Today we make over 100 kms in a day.
* We take renewable and clean energy very seriously. Before our government, we used to lay 30,000-35,000 km in transmission lines in a year. Today our government lays 50,000 km in transmission lines per year.
08:03 New York aiport being evacuated as gunshots are heard:
Multiple reports of shots fired at Terminal 8 John F Kennedy airport, New York.
Witnesses reported hearing two shots fired in the terminal. No police officers heard the shots.
Police are evacuating the area while they search for a suspect.
No injuries have been reported.
More details are awaited.
07:57 Modi@Red Fort: Want to talk about my govt's 'Karya Sanskriti':
* It is easy to keep account of the work done by the government, but it is difficult to have in-depth knowledge of those initiatives. Today, more than 'Karya', I want to talk about 'Karya Sanskriti' of the government.
* Today our government is enlivened with expectations. Today, as I speak to you from the ramparts of the Red Fort, it is only natural I give you an account of what the government has been doing. And I can give you a long list of what we have done. But if I tell you everything, I will have to speak from here for a week.
* March from self-governance to good-governance is a resolve of entire nation, it will need sacrifices.
* Today, in all the major government hospitals, online registration is available and medical records are also available online.
* People are scared of income tax authorities, particularly middle class families. We have to change this situation & I will change it. Earlier, getting a passport used to take months, today it takes just a couple of weeks. Transparency is very important to 'Surajya'.
07:46 Modi @ Red Fort: Let's convert this 'Swaraj' into 'Surajya':
Highlights of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's speech
* Today on the 70th Independence Day, I convey my greetings to 125 crore Indians & the Indian community living overseas.
* The onus is on 125 cr people of India to convert this 'Swaraj' into 'Surajya'. From Parliament to panchayats, gram pradhans to the prime minister, everyone has to fulfill their responsibility. Only then will the dream of surajya come true.
* India's age is not 70 years, but the journey post colonial rule for a better India is 70 year old.
* India faces a lot of challenges,today but I believe that 125 cr people of India have the ability to face and overcome these challenges.
07:23 Kashmir turn into a virtual fortress for I-Day:
Strict security measures are in force in curfew-bound Srinagar ahead of the Independence Day celebrations with large contingents of paramilitary and police personnnel being deployed across the city.
Bakhshi Stadium -- the main venue of the Independence Day function in Jammu and Kashmir -- has been turned into a virtual fortress.
There were no inputs about the possibility of militant attacks to disrupt the celebrations but the security grid is not taking any chances.
Due to the ongoing unrest -- that began on July 9 following killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani, mobile telephony and internet services have already been snapped in the Valley.
In the past, the mobile phone and mobile internet services used to be disabled for few hours during Independence Day and Republic Day celebrations as a precautionary measure to prevent militants from using these devices to trigger explosions.
Curfew has been extended to several places in Kashmir in view of the separatists' call for a march to the heart of Srinagar
even as restrictions on the movement of people remained in rest of the Valley.
Despite curfew, separatists elements managed to hoist Pakistan flags in many localities across Kashmir to mark the Independence Day of the neighbouring country, the official said, adding security forces pulled down the flags as soon as they were noticed.
56 people, including two policemen, have been killed and several thousand others have been injured in the clashes in the Valley that began on July 9.
07:21 India celebrates 70th Independence Day today:
A hawk-eye vigil is being kept across Delhi as Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses the nation from 17th century Red Fort on the 70th Independence Day.
Thousands of security personnel have been deployed in and around the historic Mughal fort which will see the presence of senior ministers, top bureaucrats and foreign dignitaries, besides a large audience to hear the Prime Minister.
A multi-layer security has also been thrown around Rajpath where a seven-day-long cultural festival 'Bharat Parv' is underway. The step has been taken as people have been flocking to the area to witness the illumination of North Block, South Block and other government buildings after sunset in the run up to August 15.
Army and NSG officials have set up a special communication and command centre to keep a close watch on the proceedings at Red Fort.
Special measures are being taken to meet "on-the-spot situations" such as the Prime Minister choosing to meet people at the venue as he has done earlier, officials said.
CCTV cameras have been installed along the route to be taken by the PM's cavalcade from 7 RCR to Red Fort, besides 200 CCTVs and two high-mast, high-resolution cameras at the fort premises.