23:21 No reason for concern over ties with Pak: Russia:
Russia's ties with Pakistan should not be a matter of concern for India as Moscow's relationship with New Delhi is of a 'strategic, long-term' nature, the Russian ambassador in New Delhi said on Thursday.
Russian envoy to India Nikolay Kudashev said his country's relationship with Pakistan was aimed at ensuring a stable Pakistan, contributing towards regional stability and efforts to combat terrorism.
Asked if during the summit meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Narendra Modi last week, the Indian side expressed concern over the growing Russia-Pakistan ties, Kudashev answered in the negative.
"What is it to be concerned about. The relationship is very clear. We need a stable Pakistan...as far as I understand, this is also the idea of the Indian side," he told a select group of journalists.
On holding of military exercises with Pakistan, he said it was a counter-terror drill and nothing more should be read into it.
"Compared with India, our military and tactical cooperation with Pakistan is almost nil," he said.
On new developments in Russia-Pakistan relations in the last few years, he said 'something new should happen to bring Pakistan to the regional mainstream' and to convince it to invest more in fighting terrorism.
"Pakistan joining the SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organisation) is a proof that this effort is succeeding. I don't feel there is any matter of concern for India. Our relationship with India is of strategic long-term nature," he asserted.
"No sensible person in Russia will say that we develop relations with Pakistan at the cost of India. It's impossible," the Russian envoy said.
Asked whether it will be fair to say that Russia and the US have serious differences over Afghanistan, the ambassador answered in the affirmative.
"...Because the American strategy for Afghanistan failed after 10 or more years of military presence. The security situation is deteriorating and there is not even a single report to the UN Security Council (by the US)," he said.
Talking about a peace conference on Afghanistan that was scheduled to take place in Moscow recently, he said there was a request from the Afghan side to postpone the meeting.
The Taliban had indicated its willingness to attend the conference.
Asked if India conveyed anything on attending the conference, Kudashev said, "There was no denial (of attending from the Indian side)."
As far as engaging with the Taliban is concerned, it is a matter on which the Afghan government has to decide, he said.
Kudashev said that during the Modi-Putin summit, Russia also reiterated its support for India's Nuclear Suppliers Group membership bid.
He also said the MoU signed in the field of civil nuclear cooperation during President Putin's visit will pave way for new nuclear power projects of Russian design in India, and collaboration in third countries. -- PTI
23:06 Panchayat stops girls facing eve-teasing from going to school:
A village panchayat in Saharsa district of Bihar has ordered no girls would go to schools or colleges unless their safety is ensured, after three girls were allegedly harassed on their way to their coaching classes, police said on Thursday.
Two persons have been arrested in connection with the alleged misbehaviour with the girls, in a second instance of harassment of female students reported from the state within a week.
Saharsa Superintendent of Police Rakesh Kumar said the incident was reported at Ekpadha village where a group of men allegedly misbehaved with girls who were going to their coaching classes on their bicycle.
When two brothers of one of the girls tried to put up a resistance, they were also beaten up by the accused, the district police chief said.
Following the incident, which took place on October 4, the village panchayat decreed that unless and until adequate security measures were taken, girls would not be allowed to attend colleges and coaching classes, the SP said.
"So far two of the accused have been arrested while a search was on for two others," Kumar said.
He also said as many as 17 college girls from the village are said to have been affected by the panchayat decree and the police and district administration were trying to convince their guardians to allow them to resume studies.
Earlier last week, in the adjoining district of Supaul, 30 girl students of a school were thrashed by villagers when they objected to some boys scribbling obscenities on the wall.
Nine persons, including three women, were arrested in connection with the assault on the girls who had landed in a hospital and are said to be still in a state of shock and averse to resume school. -- PTI
22:29 IAF chopper makes emergency landing in Arunachal:
An MI-17 helicopter of the Indian Air Force with 16 Air Force personnel on board on Thursday made an emergency landing in West Tuting of Arunachal Pradesh near India-China border due to technical problem, officials said.
The chopper was on routine sortie from Jorhat to West Tuting, IAF PRO Wing Commander Ratnakar Singh said.
He said all the 16 Indian Air Force personnel on board were safe.
The technical snag occurred when the chopper was returning from West Tuting, he said. -- PTI
22:19 Case filed against Gujarat CM, Alpesh Thakor in hate attacks:
A case was filed against Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and Congress legislator Alpesh Thakor in a Bihar court on Thursday in connection with hate attacks on north Indians, particularly from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, in the western state.
Social activist Tamanna Hashmi filed the case at a Muzaffarpur district court.
The case was filed under Indian Penal Code sections 153 (provocation with intent to cause riot), 295 (defiling a place of religious worship) and 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of peace).
Naming Rupani and Thakor as 'accused', the petitioner has claimed that the violence against people from Bihar has cause him 'hurt'.
Judge Gaurav Kamal fixed November 2 as the date of hearing the petition.
The alleged rape of a 14-month-old girl in Sabarkantha district of Gujarat by a resident of Bihar on September 30 had triggered attacks by locals on migrants from the two northern states, forcing many of them to return home.
Thakor had publicly blamed a 'non-Gujarati' for the crime. -- PTI
22:02 Apple executive case: Wife gets job appointment letter:
Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Dinesh Sharma on Thursday handed over an appointment letter for a government job to Kalpana Tiwari, the wife of Apple executive Vivek Tiwari who was shot dead by a police constable last month.
Sharma visited the residence of Kalpana and gave her the appointment letter for a job in the Nagar Nigam, a government spokesman said.
On the occasion, Kalpana said, "I think the probe in the case is moving in the right direction. I am satisfied with it till now."
Vivek, 38, was shot dead by Constable Prashant Chaudhary in the Gomti Nagar Extension area here when he was on his way to drop an ex-colleague home in his SUV.
Chaudhary, however, claimed he pulled the trigger as Tiwari tried to run him over thrice to kill him.
A case of murder was registered against the policeman based on a complaint filed by the relatives of the deceased.
Two constables, Chaudhary and Sandeep Kumar, were subsequently arrested. -- PTI
21:05 2 more die in Farakka Express derailment, toll reaches 7:
The toll in derailment of New Delhi-bound New Farakka Express rose to seven on Thursday with two of the injured people succumbing to their injuries at hospitals in Lucknow.
Five coaches and the engine of the New Farakka Express derailed near Rae Bareli, early on Wednesday killing five people and seriously injuring nine.
Divisional Railway Manager (DRM), Northern Railways, said, "Two of the injured died on Thursday... with this, the toll in yesterday's derailment incident has gone up to seven."
Rinku, 28, who was brought to the KGMU Trauma Centre in Lucknow in a very bad state, and 11-year-old Sughandh admitted at the Trauma Centre of SGPGI with multiple fractures, died early on Thursday.
The DRM said one of the tracks on which rail traffic was disrupted following the derailment was repaired and opened for train movement on Thursday morning, while work on the other track is likely to be completed by evening.
According to Railway officials in Delhi, a signal inspector and an electrical signal maintainer were suspended to facilitate a probe into the derailment of the train since the indications were that the cause of the accident was prima facie wrong signalling. -- PTI
20:46 Rahul asked me to do politics that unites country: Alpesh:
Congress MLA Alpesh Thakor, under fire over the violence against Hindi-speaking migrants in Gujarat, said on Thursday that party president Rahul Gandhi had advised him to practise the politics that united the country.
The MLA from Radhanpur in Patan district sat on a day-long 'goodwill fast' near his house Ahmedabad on Thursday to promote 'peace and harmony'.
"At this point, I remember Rahul Gandhi's words. He told me Alpesh, we should do the politics which unites the country," Thakor said, addressing the people at the venue of his fast.
"Alpesh, we have to make people understand the language of love," he further quoted the Congress president as saying.
Thakor, however, did not make it clear as to when did Gandhi give him the advice.
Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and other Bharatiya Janata Party leaders have demanded that the Congress should take action against Thakor, blaming him for the incidents of violence against migrants and their resultant exodus from Gujarat.
Since the rape of a 14-month-old girl in Sabarkantha district on September 28 and the arrest of a labourer from Bihar for the crime, six districts in Gujarat have reported incidents of violence against Hindi-speaking migrant workers.
At least 60,000 people, mostly from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, are estimated to have fled Gujarat in the last two weeks.
Rupani had asked on Tuesday whether Rahul Gandhi would take action against the members of his party 'who incited violence'.
Thakor has denied that he or his organisation instigated the attacks on the migrants.
The police have named members of his organisation in some of the first information reports related to the attacks.
A video, where Thakor is purportedly seen berating the migrants following the rape incident, had also gone viral earlier. -- PTI
19:32 In a first, rival Karmapas meet to 'know each other personally':
In a significant development, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, the so-called 'Chinese Karmapa', and his rival Trinley Thaye Dorje, the so-called 'Delhi Karmapa', met for the first time in France, a joint statement issued by the two says.
Ogyen Trinley Dorje is recognised as the legitimate Karmapa by Beijing, the 14th Dalai Lama and most adherents of the Kagyu sect.
A statement issued on Karmapa.org says that the two 'met over the last few days at a rural location in France. Their purpose was to get to know each other personally'.
'They also discussed how they might work together to preserve and strengthen the Karma Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism,' the website says.
Following is the joint statement released on the website:
"We are both very pleased to have had this opportunity to meet and get to know each other in a peaceful and relaxed environment. We both had this wish for many years, and we are gratified that this wish has now been fulfilled.
"The purpose of our meeting was primarily to spend time together so that we could establish a personal relationship. We were able to talk together freely and to learn about each other for the first time.
"We were thus able to begin what we expect will develop into a strong connection. While we were together we also talked about ways that we could work to heal the divisions that have unfortunately developed within our precious Karma Kagyu lineage in recent years.
"We view it as our duty and responsibility to do whatever we can to bring the lineage together. This undertaking is critically important for the future of the Karma Kagyu lineage as well as for the future of Tibetan Buddhism and the benefit of all sentient beings.
"We therefore ask everyone within the Karma Kagyu community to join us in our efforts to strengthen and preserve our lineage.
"We view it as our collective responsibility to restore harmony to our tradition which is a lineage of wisdom and compassion."
Photograph: Kind courtesy www.karmapa.org.
19:07 Lone BSP minister in Kumaraswamy government quits:
The lone Bahujan Samaj Party Minister in the Janata Dal (Secular)-Congress government in Karnataka N Mahesh today quit his position citing personal reasons, but said he would continue to support the ruling coalition.
Speaking to reporters after submitting his resignation to Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy, the minister for primary and secondary education said he quit to focus more on his assembly constituency Kollegal and to strengthen his party ahead of Lok Sabha elections.
"There had been a campaign against me in my constituency that I have camped in Bengaluru and was not focusing on Kollegal. Also, there was a need to strengthen the party base ahead of the Lok Sabha elections," said Mahesh.
Mahesh vowed to continue his support to the coalition government and said he would campaign for the JD-S during the bypolls for three Lok Sabha and two assembly seats on November 3.
"I do not have any grouse against anybody in the government. As a minister I did my best and toured across the state. This resignation is purely due to personal reasons," Mahesh said. -- PTI
18:28 No CAATSA pressure on Indo-Russia defence deals: Envoy:
United States sanctions will not be an impediment to Indo-Russia defence deals, and New Delhi and Moscow could soon sign agreements on frigates and Kalashnikov assault rifles, Russian Ambassador to India Nikolay Kudashev said on Thursday.
Describing the recently-inked $5.4 billion S-400 missile defence system deal as the 'largest contract' in the history of Indo-Russia ties, he said it was one of the 'speediest' agreements to be signed between the two countries and there were no protracted negotiations.
The implementation of the contract, signed during President Vladimir Putin's visit from October 4-5, would start in 2020 and would last for five years, he said.
"In the coming months, you can expect more deals. Talks are on, this is the normal process. We hope that within two-three months... We could soon have a deal on frigates, it is very much on the agenda of the two sides, and we could soon have a deal on the Kalashnikov assault rifles," the envoy told a select group of journalists in New Delhi.
"Yes," Kudashev said emphatically, when asked whether it would be right to state that Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act or CAATSA would not put pressure on India and Russia for further defence deals.
His remarks come just a day after US President Donald Trump said India would soon 'find out' if the punitive CAATSA sanctions apply to it over its USD 5 billion deal with Russia to purchase the S-400 Triumf air defence system.
The CAATSA is a US federal law that imposed sanctions on Iran, North Korea and Russia.
In Russia's case, the act primarily deals with sanctions on Russian interests such as its oil and gas industry, defence and security sector, and financial institutions.
Under the CAATSA sanctions, only Trump has the authority for a presidential waiver to India on weapons deal with Russia.
The S-400 deal was underplayed by New Delhi, perhaps in a bid to keep its robust ties with Washington unblemished. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Putin, who held their annual summit, did not mention the S-400 deal in their respective press statements. -- PTI
18:08 A vaccine to cure Delhi belly :
For the first time ever a vaccine has been designed to stop three common pathogens of traveller's diarrhoea.
A new study conducted by a University of Guelph chemist, Mario Monteiro has confirmed it.Monteiro says his 3-in-1 approach to developing a new vaccine could save lives in developing countries, where the three common pathogens kill over 100,000 children under the age of five every year. The study appears in the Vaccine journal.
The study found out that the conjugate vaccine binds together proteins from pathogenic E. coli with sugars from Shigella and Campylobacter jejuni. These are the three bugs which primarily contribute the global spread of the disease.
In tests with mice, the vaccine provided immunity against all three pathogens. Till date, no licensed vaccines existed against any of these pathogens. ANI
18:05 CPI(M)'s mouthpiece in Tripura resumes publication:
Opposition CPI(M)'s mouthpiece in Tripura, 'Daily Desher Katha', resumed its publication from Thursday after a gap of 10 days following an order passed by the Tripura High Court on Wednesday. The publication of the newspaper had stopped since October 1 following an order of the District Magistrate of West Tripura district Sandip N Mahatme. -- PTI
17:48 Mi-17 chopper force-lands in Arunachal, all 16 people on board safe:
An Mi-17 helicopter force-landed west of Tuting in Arunachal Pradesh Thursday with all 16 people on board safe, sources in the Indian Air Force said. The helicopter was on a routine mission from Tuting when it force-landed this afternoon, they said. All 16 people on board are safe, the sources added. -- PTI
17:47 UK Opposition Leader calls for colonial history to be taught in schools:
Britain's Opposition Labour Party on Thursday called for the legacy of the British Empire and the impact of colonialism on countries like India to be taught in schools across the UK. Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn said such a curriculum change was all the more important in the wake of the recent Windrush scandal, involving Commonwealth citizens being wrongly denied their citizenship rights in the UK.
He also unveiled plans for an Emancipation Educational Trust, which would help educate schoolchildren about the impact of slavery and the battle to end the slave trade, as part of an event in Bristol to mark October as Black History Month. -- PTI
Image: The Bengal famine of 1944 was engineered at the behest of the British PM Winston Churchill when foodgrains and rations from Bengal was repatriated to England to feed troops during WWII
17:34 Police to record witnesses' statements before summoning Nana :
Police will record statements of witnesses before summoning Nana Patekar and three others in connection with a complaint of sexual harassment filed by actor Tanushree Dutta, an official said Thursday. Dutta has accused Patekar of touching her inappropriately on the sets of a Bollywood film in 2008.
The investigation is at a preliminary stage. Since it is a 10-year-old case, police need to verify all the facts first, the official, privy to the probe, said. "As part of the probe, we will record statements of all witnesses related to the case before summoning the accused," he said.
In a complaint filed last Saturday, Dutta alleged that during the shooting of a song sequence for "Horn OK Pleassss", she was inappropriately touched by Patekar even after she had clearly mentioned that she will not perform lewd, vulgar or uncomfortable steps. Dutta had also claimed that she had complained to the song's choreographer Ganesh Acharya, but she was forced to do scenes which were intimate and included Patekar touching her inappropriately.
Based on her complaint, a case was registered Wednesday night at the suburban Oshiwara Police Station against Patekar, Acharya, the film's producer Samee Siddhiqui and director Rakesh Sarang.
Offences have been registered against them under IPC section 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) and 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman), the official said, adding that no arrest has been made so far.
Meanwhile, a group of women activists staged a protest outside the Oshiwara Police Station, demanding proper investigation into the case and arrest of Patekar, if the allegations against him were found to be correct.
After Dutta had decided to walk out of the film in 2008, her car was vandalised by goons who, she alleged, were from the Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena.
Patekar has denied he misbehaved with Dutta on the sets of the film, calling her claims a "lie". The 67-year-old actor's lawyer has sent a legal notice to Dutta. PTI
17:17 Kangana launches fresh attach on Hrithik over #MeToo:
Bollywood actress Kangana Ranaut has come out in support of the #MeToo movement sweeping across Bollywood, but added that this was no time for self-congratulation as there was still plenty to do, "we have a long way to go to make this place absolutely safe for women."
In a video interview to Zee News, the actress said, "There are still men out there who make false promises to young girls, of marriage, of being cast in a film, etc. This also comes under harassment.
"Whatever is happening with director Vikas Bahl is absolutely correct. But our industry still has a lot of people who don't behave well with women. They assault them, they harass them, they should also be punished."
She further added: "People who keep their wives as trophies and keep young girls as their mistresses should also be punished."
"Yes, I am talking of Hrithik, people should not work with him as well."
17:15 TCS Q2 results: Net profit up 22.57%, revenue up 20.7%:
Tata Consultancy Services on Thursday posted a profit of Rs 7,901 crore for the second quarter, which translates into 22.57 per cent YoY rise.
The software giant had posted a net profit of Rs 6,646 crore for September last year.
Its revenue rose 20.7 per cent, to Rs 36,854 crore, compared with Rs 30,541 crore in the corresponding quarter last year.
16:48 Tax raid on Bahl: Editors guild says motivated searches will undermine media freedom:
The Editors Guild of India on Thursday expressed concern over the Income Tax department's searches at media baron Raghav Bahl's residence and office, saying it believed that 'motivated' IT raids would seriously undermine media freedom and the government should desist from such attempts.
A team of I-T sleuths raided the premises of the founder of The Quint website in Noida early morning, looking for documents and other evidence related to a case of 'bogus long-term capital gains (LTCG) received by various beneficiaries'.
Bahl had shared his 'great concern' with the Editors Guild of India after dozens of IT officials descended on his residence and The Quint's office for a 'survey'.
The guild, in a statement, expressed concern over the search and survey conducted by the I-T department.
Bahl is also a member of the Executive Committee of the guild and a founder of the Network18 media group.
The guild said it was perturbed over Bahl's statement that he had to strongly advise the tax officials that they should not try and pick up or see any other mail or document which is likely to contain very serious and sensitive journalistic material.
"If they do that, then we shall seek extremely strong recourse," Bahl has stated.
"While the tax administration is within its rights to make inquiries in compliance with the relevant laws, it should not exercise those powers in a way that could be seen as an intimidation of the government's critics," the guild said.
"The guild believes that motivated income-tax searches and surveys will seriously undermine media freedom and the government should desist from such attempts," it added. -- PTI
16:33 Stephen Hawking's final scientific paper on blackholes released:
Stephen Hawking's final scientific paper -- which was completed days before the British physicist's death -- has been written and posted online by his colleagues at Cambridge and Harvard universities.
The paper named Black Hole Entropy and Soft Hair, tackles with what happens to information when it falls into a blackhole, a problem that theoretical physicists refer to as 'the information paradox', said researchers from Cambridge University in the United Kingdom.
It was completed in the days before Hawking's death in March, and has now been written up by his colleagues at and posted online, The Guardian reported.
According to co-author Malcolm Perry, a professor at Cambridge University, the information paradox was 'at the centre of Hawking's life' for over 40 years.
In 1915, Albert Einstein published his theory of general relativity, which described how gravity arises from the spacetime-bending effects of matter.
However, Einstein made important predictions about black holes too, notably that a black hole can be completely defined by only three features: its mass, charge, and spin.
Nearly 60 years later, Hawking argued that black holes also have a temperature.
Since hot objects lose heat into space, the ultimate fate of a black hole is to evaporate out of existence.
However, the rules of the quantum world dictate that information is never lost. So what happens to all the information contained in an object when it tumbles into a black hole.
In the latest paper, Hawking and his colleagues showed how some of the information may be preserved.
Days before Hawking died, Perry was at Harvard working on the paper with colleagues.
He was not aware how ill Hawking was and called to give the physicist an update. It may have been the last scientific exchange Hawking had.
"It was very difficult for Stephen to communicate and I was put on a loudspeaker to explain where we had got to. When I explained it, he simply produced an enormous smile. I told him we'd got somewhere. He knew the final result," he said. -- PTI
16:27 Ganga activist on fast for 3 months dies :
Ganga activist GD Agarwal, on fast since June 22 to urge the government to clean the river, dies in Rishikesh. Prof Agrawal has been observing a hunger strike since June 22 for pollution free and uninterrupted flow in the Ganga all along its course.
Unhappy over the government's "apathy" to his stir and the demands, the 87-year-old IIT professor-turned -saint has hardened his stance since Tuesday afternoon by giving up water intake.
Due to a continuous fast since June, the Ganga warrior has lost more than 20 kilos in weight and is facing some health complications.
The activist wants the Centre to issue notifications for a complete halt on the construction of dams along the Ganga and its tributaries and ban on mining on the riverbed.
16:09 India remains polio free, all vaccines used in govt immunisation prog safe: UNICEF, WHO:
In the backdrop of some oral polio vaccine vials being found contaminated with the type-2 polio virus, the UNICEF and the WHO Thursday reiterated India's status as a polio-free country. In a joint statement issued Thursday, the UNICEF and the WHO said the risk of children getting vaccine derived poliovirus was "minimal" in India because of a high routine immunisation coverage in the country.
15:52 Nidhi Razdan @Nidhi Deeply disappointing to see that @RahulGandhi refused to answer a question on MJ Akbar and #metoo today, the Congress party says it won't send anyone to TV shows on this tonight. What a cop out.
15:48 Who is next to fall in Indias #MeToo wave?:
"The rage of Indian women -- submerged thus far in the recesses of memory, wrapped away in swathes of fear and self-doubt, and suppressed for years by entrenched social stigma -- has finally come pouring out to set in motion India's long-overdue #MeToo moment. Caught in the swirl of these floodwaters: an official in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government, journalists, actors, directors and writers -- all accused of varying degrees of sexual harassment, misconduct or assault. Finally, India's women are pushing back against the corrosive abuse of male power. It is nothing short of a revolution."
Barkha Dutt on #MeToo India for the Washington Post. Do read
15:29 Schwarzenegger admits stepping over the line several times with women:
Arnold Schwarzenegger has admitted mistreating women in the past and apologised for his deeds. The 71-year-old actor said when he assumed the office as Governor of California in 2003, he assured no one, including him, repeated the mistake.
"Looking back, I stepped over the line several times, and I was the first one to say sorry. I feel bad about it, and I apologise. When I became Governor [of California], I wanted to make sure that no one, including me, ever makes this mistake.
"That's why we took sexual harassment courses, to have a clear understanding, from a legal point of view and also from a regular-behaviour point of view, of what is accepted and what is not," Schwarzenegger told Men's Health magazine.
The Hollywood action icon, however, added he would not change his perspective of what it means to be a man. "I'm a guy. I would not change my view of who I am. The woman I was originally most in love with was my mother. I respected her, and she was a fantastic woman. I always had respect for women," he said. -- PTI
15:17 Slain Apple exec's wife gets appointment letter for govt job :
Vivek Tiwari death case: UP Deputy CM Dinesh Sharma gives an appointment letter for a government job to Kalpana Tiwari, wife of the deceased Vivek Tiwari. She says, "I think investigation is going in the right direction, so I am satisfied with the investigation till now."
Vivek Tiwari, an Apple executive, was shot dead early on September 29 when he allegedly refused to stop his car for checking in Lucknow's posh Gomti Nagar neighbourhood.
Two constables, Prashant Chowdhury and Sandeep Kumar, were arrested after an FIR was lodged on basis of a complaint by Tiwari's colleague Sana Khan, who was travelling with him.
14:44 Misread the situation: Singer Raghu Dixit apologises :
Singer Raghu Dixit, who is the latest to be accused of misconduct in the #MeToo movement, said on Wednesday that the account of the person levelling allegations against him was mostly accurate but he is not a predator.
The singer said he "completely misread" the situation and had immediately apologised to the person concerned and will do so again in private. Dixit, the frontman for the Raghu Dixit Project, a multilingual folk music band, was accused of sexual harassment by an anonymous woman, whose account was shared by a fellow singer, Chinmayi Sripaada on Twitter.
This is what Dixit said:
"Firstly, this is no defence. I am acutely aware of the allegations that have been made against me and Iwould like to put forth my side of the story and apologise.
"For everyone that is attacking Chinmayee Sripada, please stop it. Chinmayee is a good person and is doing the right thing in standing up for others. She had also been extremely nice to me when I interacted with her in the past, I remember she attended my concert in Hyderabad once and even invited me to her home for lunch.I remember the incident that Chinmayee's post refers to. I know who the person in question is and I have apologized to her in the past and apart from this public apology, will do so again privately.
"The incident did happen, but not entirely like it was described. It was a completely silly misjudgement on my part. I gave the person a hug and that led to me trying to kiss her before she stopped me and left from my studio. She then texted me and told me that she did not like my behaviour and I apologized profusely for what I did.
"It was not an ad-hoc recording, it was a scratch for a movie and her voice was one of the options I was presenting to the director of the movie. We had just finished recording what I thought was a beautiful song with this person, after which, we were talking and the discussion veered towards my personal life.
"My wife and I were in a bad place in our relationship and I definitely sought comfort. This person was incredibly sweet and sympathetic to what I said and I completely misread the situation.But I have to disagree with the following points that Chinmayee's post mentioned -
"Am I predator? Definitely not.
"Did I lure this singer or any other with a 'chance' to sing for my movie? Not at all. This singer had already finished singing the song.
"Did I speak ill of my wife? No. But I did vent out that we were in a bad place. I have not been the best husband to my wife and as much as we tried to make our marriage work, we were not able to. I have been separated from her for the past 3 years now and we are in the process of finalizing our divorce. I have also been seeking help from a few professional counsellors to deal with things at my end.
"Having said that, once again, I publicly apologise to this person and will do so privately as well. I apologized to her immediately after she brought her discomfort to my notice, and do so here again.
"I apologise to my estranged wife. She is indeed an awesome person and beautiful at heart.
"I also apologise to my fans and everyone who likes me and my music. I know this is hard for you to read, and I hope I will make it up to you someday.
"The #MeToo movement is important and has my complete support. Again, I will co operate with any legal or committee investigation into this matter, and I will still ask you all, even though I am the subject of this particular statement, to continue to believe the survivors. That is the need of the hour. We MUST empower women, learn from all that is going on and from our own missteps and mistakes.
"I have complete faith in my integrity and will be happy to face any inquiry and present my case, if the person in question decides to go ahead with it.
"I have been as true to myself as I can be with this response.
"Apologies to let all of you down."
13:57 Handwara encounter ends :
Two of three militants have been killed in an encounter at Handwara in the frontier district of north Kashmir, officials said Thursday. One of the men is scholar-turned-terrorist Manan Wani. There have been reports of stone pelting at the site to aid the terrorists escape.
Police and other security forces cordoned off a village following intelligence inputs about presence of Wani along with two others, they said. Police was making repeated announcements on public address system appealing to the militants to surrender, they said. There was a lull in firing at around 9 am, prompting the police to initiate search operation at the encounter site, but the same had to be suspended after firing resumed after 15 minutes, the officials said.
Wani, who was enrolled as a PhD scholar with the Aligarh Muslim University joined militant ranks in January this year. -- PTI
13:26 Nirmala's trip to France is huge cover-up on Rafale: Rahul:
Congress president Rahul Gandhi holds a press conference in the immediate aftermath of Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman's visit to France questioning the need for the sudden visit.
"Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman rushed to France to Rafale's plant? What is the emergency?" Rahul asked. He said the defence minister's Nirmala trip to France is part of a huge government "cover-up" on Rafale. Sitharaman is in France for a three-day visit during which she will visit the Dassault unit where Rafale fighter jets are being manufactured for India.
He said that former French President Francois Hollande had revealed that the Indian PM had told them that Reliance should get the deal. "Now a senior official of Rafale has said the same. It is a clear cut case of corruption. I would like to clearly tell the youth of the country that the Prime Minister of India is a corrupt man.
"Narendra Modi is the chowkidar for Anil Ambani. PM Modi benefited Anil Ambani. The PM has forgotten his promises. He must resign if he can't answer the allegations. French investigative journal Mediapart has reported that they have accessed a document that says picking Anil Ambani's firm was mandatory for the Rafale deal.
Last month, former French president Francois Hollande, who negotiated the Rafale deal with PM Modi, also said that they weren't given any choice. "...it was the Indian government that proposed Reliance" he said.
12:39 Akbar will take a call on resigning when he returns, says govt :
The government has denied media reports that its Minister of State for Home, MJ Akbar has been asked to quit over several allegations of sexual harassment by journalists.
Government sources told several media houses that the government will hear Akbar's version after he returns from his trip to Nigeria. The government has passed on the onus of whether Akbar should stay or resign on the minister that Akbar should himself take a call on resigning, but the government has not asked him to resign. The government has also not asked him to cut short his official trip to Nigeria.
Rita Bahuguna Joshi when asked on Akbar's future in the BJP told ANI, "The question is not about resignation. Question is when I accuse someone it should be proved. Every woman has a right to accuse and investigation should also be done. Women have presented their versions, men also have right to present their version."
The Congress yesterday supported the #MeToo campaign on the social media and demanded the resignation of Akbar.
The Congress also questioned the silence of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on the matter.
12:24 Prashant Bhushan @pbhushan1 on tax raids on Quint founder Raghav Bahl's home. "No doubt that Quint & Raghav Bahl are being raided by the IT Dept only because they have been critical of the govt & in order to intimidate the media. IT, ED & CBI are being misused by this govt like never before."
12:22 Divya Spandana/Ramya @divyaspandana So Sensex is crashing. The Rupee is falling. Investors are shivering. I am expecting a big step from the finance minister @arunjaitley Something like a 900 words blog.
12:16 Raids look like intimidation: Shekhar Gupta :
Senior journalist Shekhar Gupta on income tax raids on Quint founder Raghav Bahl's home: "IT raids on @TheQuint offices and its founder @Raghav_Bahl home are cause for serious concern. Taxman has the right to ask all questions, but raids look like intimidation. If there is justification, govt must explain quickly. Or it will be seen as targeting critical media."
12:14 What Odisha is doing to clip Cyclone Titli's wings :
The 'very severe cyclonic storm', Titli, which made landfall near Gopalpur district in Odisha this morning will weaken gradually and is expected to turn into a "deep depression" by Friday morning, India Meteorological Department said on Thursday.
"It (cyclone Titli) is very likely to move northwestwards for next 12 hours and then re-curve northeastwards towards Gangetic West Bengal across Odisha. It is very likely to weaken gradually becoming severe cyclonic storm around noon, cyclonic storm around evening of today and a deep depression by morning of tomorrow, October 12, 2018," IMD stated.
Earlier on Thursday, Odisha's Gopalpur and Andhra Pradesh's Kalingapatnam reported surface wind speed of 126 kmph at 04:30 am and 59 kmph at 03:30 am respectively.
The cyclonic storm caused 'heavy to very heavy rainfall' in Ganjam, Gajapati and Puri districts of Odisha. Damage of thatched and asbestos house, street lights, roads blockage due to falling of trees, has been reported in Ganjam district. Further, minor damage to power and communication has also been reported in the district.
Meanwhile, 13 NDRF teams have been deployed in several districts of Odisha, including Ganjam, Gajapati, Puri, Kendrapada, Nayagarh, Bhadrak, Jagatsingjpur, Balasore, Jajpur, Khurdha and Sambalpur.
Orissa Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF) has also deployed its teams in nine districts--Ganjam, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Khordha, Cuttack, Balasore, Mayurbhanj, Boudh and Kalahandi.
Fire services team are also on alert to respond at short notice of the district administration. Several preparedness measures have also been taken to ward off any untoward situations.
A total of 30 District Emergency Operation Centres have been activated to track and respond to the cyclonic storm effectively. 300 Powerboats of Special Relief Organisation have been kept ready for relief operation while 879 multi-purpose cyclone or flood shelters have been kept in readiness for sheltering people to be evacuated.
Meanwhile, all government officials have been directed to stay in headquarters and not to avail leave. All schools, colleges and Anganwadi centres will also remain closed till October 12.
As of now, around 3,00,000 people have been evacuated and 1112 relief camps have been opened for the evacuees in the shelters. The situation is being closely monitored at different levels. -- ANI
Image: A fishing boat with five fishermen on board capsized in Gopalpur owing to severe cyclonic storm. However, one of the three disaster and rescue teams operating in Gopalpur Paradip area rescued all five fishermen and brought them to safety, the Indian Coastguard said. Pic: ANI
11:56 Mr Akbar must go:
"For now, however, India's MeToo moment is crystallising around an urgent and immediate call for accountability: M J Akbar, the minister in the NDA government who has been called out by several women for predatory behaviour as an influential editor, must go. If he doesn't step down on his own, the government he serves must persuade him of the untenability of his continuance in office."Read
the editorial in the Indian Express.
11:43 Govt may ask MJ Akbar to step down :
India Today journalist Geeta Mohan @Geeta_Mohan: "Govt Sources after serious deliberations at the top, decision has been arrived at that @mjakbar would be asked to resign (on personal grounds) once he returns from Nigeria. May return to party till his name is cleared. Reports @Rahulshrivstv.
11:40 That's Karti's house :
Another property owned by Karti Chidambaram, likely the house in Somerset, UK, which was attached by the ED.
11:37 ED attaches Karti's properties worth Rs 54 cr in India, UK, Spain:
The Enforcement Directorate attaches around Rs 54 crore worth properties and bank deposits of Karti Chidambaram in connection with the INX Media case. Properties include, Jor Bagh in New Delhi, bungalows in Ooty and Kodaikanal bungalows, a house in UK and property in Barcelona, Spain.
An FIR by CBI, filed on May 15 last year, had alleged irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board clearance to INX Media for receiving Rs 305 crore in overseas funds in 2007 when Karti's father, P Chidambaram was union finance minister.
The central probe agency issued a provisional order under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act for attachment of Indian assets in Kodaikanal and Ooty in Tamil Nadu and a flat in Delhi's Jorbagh. A cottage and house in Somerset in UK and a tennis club located in Barcelona, Spain have also been attached as part of the same order, the agency said.
Fixed Deposits worth Rs 90 lakh, kept in a bank in Chennai, in the name of Advantage Strategic Consulting Private Limited have also been attached, it said. The assets are in the name of Karti and ASCPL, the firm allegedly linked to him, it said.
"The attached assets collectively amount to Rs 54 crore," it said. The ED had registered a PMLA case in this deal case on the basis of a CBI FIR and had alleged that irregularities took place in the FIPB clearance to INX Media for receiving overseas funds to the tune of Rs 305 crore in 2007 when his father P Chidambaram was the Union finance minister. The ED had grilled Karti in this case in the past.
11:10 The importance of listening :
"The recent explosion of "Me Too' and "Time's Up' in India bares this pervasive nature of sexual harassment. As the movement forges ahead, there will be conversations that the traditional discourse on gender rights in India is yet to keep pace with -- affirmative consent, casual sexism, and most importantly the need to believe the survivor irrespective of the route she chooses to tell her story."
Read the column here.
11:09 IT dept searches premises of media baron Raghav Bahl:
The Income Tax Department Thursday searched the premises of media baron Raghav Bahl in connection with a case of alleged tax evasion, officials said. They said a team of sleuths raided the residence of Bahl in neighbouring Noida early morning and are looking for documents and other evidence related to the case under probe. It is understood that the searches are being conducted at the premises of a few other people as part of the ITD action to probe tax evasion by a set of business professionals. Bahl is the founder of the Quint news portal and the Network18 group and is a known media entrepreneur. -- PTI
11:07 #MeToo dam breaks on Akbar:
Pressure piled on the Narendra Modi government to act against junior external affairs minister and former editor MJ Akbar as more women journalists alleged sexual predatory behaviour and wrote traumatic accounts.
Such was the wave of revulsion and outrage on social media that the Opposition Congress was forced to press, albeit reluctantly, for the minister's resignation. But the Modi government stuck to its silence for the second day running.
Sources said Akbar was expected to return from abroad on Friday amid indications that the government would prefer that he step down quietly. Read more
10:56 Prateik Babbar refuses blood test after car mishap in Goa:
Bollywood actor Prateik Babbar has refused to give his blood sample for analysis after he was booked by the Goa Police for rash driving, a police official said Thursday.
The police wanted his blood sample to check whether the actor, who is in his early 30s, was driving under the influence of alcohol, the official said.
Babbar's car allegedly dashed a scooter on the Panaji- Mapusa highway Wednesday evening following which a case of rash driving was registered against him.
"When Babbar was taken for medical examination at the state-run Asilo Hospital in Mapusa town, he refused to give his blood sample," Porvorim police station inspector Paresh Naik told PTI.
10:41 Global stocks tumble after Trump 'crazy' Fed comment:
The other reason why the Asian markets plunged Thursday morning.
US President Donald Trump, Wednesday, said the Federal Reserve had "gone crazy" with plans for higher interest rates.
This morning, the benchmark Nikkei 225, the Hang Seng in Hong Kong and the Shanghai Composite all plummeted more than three per cent in early morning trade, as investors fretted about surging interest rates and an ongoing trade war.
In India, the benchmark BSE Sensex crashed today over 1,030 points to slip below the key 34,000-mark in early trade, tracking a global sell-off as the rupee hit yet another record low of 74.45 against the US dollar.
Traders attributed the carnage in domestic bourses to the sell-off in international bourses after US stocks tumbled on heavy correction in tech stocks, fresh concerns over Fed rate hike and looming impact of the US' trade war with the China.
The steep drop in Asia followed a decline on Wall Street of nearly 830 points, the biggest fall since February, amid Trump's latest criticism of the Federal Reserve, the US central bank.
The rout in US shares followed substantial losses on European bourses, due in part to tensions between Brussels and Rome over Italian budget plans that have revived fears about the eurozone.
The Business Insider reported that President Trump signaled his anxiety about the Federal Reserve's plan to keep raising interest rates into 2019 after stocks plunged on Wednesday. "I think the Fed is making a mistake," Trump said to reporters after landing in Erie, Pennsylvania, for a campaign rally on Wednesday. "They are so tight. I think the Fed has gone crazy."
10:19 In MP, village bans girls from wearing jeans to end male gaze:
In the wake of a garba event, the Mali community in Madhya Pradesh's Alirajpur has asked girls above the age of 10 to not wear jeans and a top.
"We are holding a Garba programme. We have decided that girls above the age of 10 will not wear jeans and top. They will not wear it in houses too and not in any of other events," Manjula Mali, president, women committee of the Alirajpur community."
The reason is that men don't look at women in a decent way. So, we need to make our girls understand," she added.
The men of the community have also given go-ahead to the decision. "We have taken this decision because boys don't see women properly. We want to run this event properly as per our religion and customs," said Himmat Mali, president of the community. -- ANI
10:10 Prateik Babbar booked for rash driving in Goa :
Bollywood actor Prateik Babbar was on Wednesday booked under the Motor Vehicles Act for dangerous driving. The incident took place when Prateik's vehicle knocked down a motorcycle driver before entering a one-way street at Porvorim in Goa.
The 'Dhobi Ghat' actor was immediately taken for medical examination, which he refused to take. Prateik's police interrogation is scheduled for tomorrow.
When asked to comment on the same, the actor steered away from giving an answer. Prateik was last seen in the Rishi Kapoor and Taapsee Pannu starrer Mulk. His past credits also include, 'Issaq', 'Ekk Deewana Tha', 'Dhobi Ghat' and 'Jaane Tu... Ya Jaane Na'. -- ANI
09:55 Bloodbath at the bourses, Sensex crashes 1000 points :
Sensex crashes over 1,000 points, Nifty below 10,200 on global sell-off.
In opening trade, the Sensex plunged 1,037 points to 33,723.53 and the Nifty 50 slumped 321 points to 10,138.60. Asian share markets sank in a sea of red after US stocks suffered its worst drubbing in eight months.
Around 175 stocks have hit fresh 52-week lows at this point on the BSE. Some of the names include Bank of Baroda, Bharti Airtel, Bombay Dyeing, Central Bank of India, Deepak Fertilisers, Finolex Industries, HAL, HUDCO, Indostar and Nilkamal, among others.
09:51 It's winds@126kmph as Cyclone Titli makes landfall in Odisha:
Visuals from Ganjam's Gopalpur after the Titli Cyclone made landfall in the region at 5:30 am today. At least 10,000 people from low lying areas have been evacuated to government shelters till last night.
The process of landfall of the very severe cyclone Titli started early Thursday with surface wind reaching speeds of 126 kmph at Gopalpur in Odisha's Ganjam district, the India Meteorological Department said.
"The process of landfall has started and it will completely cross the Odisha coast in one or two hours. The system will pass close to Gopalpur," HR Biswas, Director of Metereological Centre, Bhubaneswar, told PTI.
The IMD said, "The forward sector of the eye of the storm has been entering into the land mass." While Gopalpur in Odisha reported surface winds at 126 kmph, Kalingapatanam in Andhra Pradesh recorded wind speed of 56 kmph. As the landfall process started, at least five districts like Ganjam, Gajapati, Puri, Khurda and Jagatsinghpur are receiving good amount of rainfall coupled with high speed winds under the impact of Titli. -- PTI
09:40 Rupee hits new low, falls 24 paise against US dollar:
Rupee making it to the news every day for all the wrong reasons.
The rupee Thursday weakened by 24 paise to hit another low of 74.45 against the US dollar on strong demand for the American currency from importers amid unabated foreign fund outflows and a sharp losses in the domestic equity market.
At the Interbank Foreign Exchange (forex) market, the domestic currency opened weak at 74.37 and slipped further to quote at an all-time low of 74.45, depreciating 24 paise against the US dollar in the early trade.
Forex dealers said besides strong demand for the American currency from importers, concerns of fears of rising fiscal deficit and capital outflows weighed on the domestic currency.
On Wednesday, the rupee snapped its six-session losing streak to end 18 paise higher at 74.21 against the US dollar after the American currency weakened overseas.
Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) sold shares net worth a net of Rs 1,096 crore Wednesday, provisional data showed. Investors remained concerned over sustained foreign capital outflows. Meanwhile, the BSE benchmark Sensex crashed 1,030.40 points, or 2.95 per cent, to hit 33,730.49 in opening trade. -- PTI
09:22 JUST IN: Sensex opens with a fall of more than 980 points, currently at 33,774.89
09:20 "India will find out": Trump on Sanctions for S-400 deal with Russia:
US President Donald Trump said that India "will soon find out" about his decision on the punitive CAATSA sanctions after India signed a $5 billion deal to purchase the much-vaunted S-400 air defence system from Russia.
Under the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act or CAATSA sanctions, which was amended early this year, only Trump has the authority for the presidential waiver to India on weapons deal with sanctions-hit Russia.
India last week inked a $5 billion deal to purchase S-400 Triumf air defence system from Moscow. The mega deal was sealed in New Delhi during the visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin for the annual summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Asked about the agreement between India and Russia, Trump while interacting with reporters in the Oval Office of the White House, said, "India will find out. Aren't they?"
"India is going to find out, he reiterated in response to India specific question.
Asked when, he said, "You will see. Sooner than you think."
Last week, the White House had said that the US presidential waiver on weapons deal with sanctions-hit Russia is intended to "wean" countries like India off the Russian equipment.
"The (CAATSA presidential) waiver is narrow, intended to wean countries off Russian equipment and allow for things such as spare parts for previously-purchased equipment," a White House National Security Council Spokesperson had said after the conclusion of the S-400 contract.
The US embassy spokesperson in New Delhi had said that the CAATSA was aimed at Moscow and not intended to damage the military capabilities of its "allies and partners."
08:58 45% rise in sexual harassment cases at workplace over 3 years:
As many as 1,971 cases of sexual harassment of women at workplace were registered in four years till December 12, 2017, or one case every day, according to this reply to the Lok Sabha on December 15, 2017.
Cases reported increased by 45 per cent from 371 in 2014 to 539 in 2017 (till December 12, 2017).
Read the full report HERE
08:30 Aamir Khan pulls out of film citing #MeToo, issues detailed statement:
In the wake of #MeToo movement, Aamir Khan and his wife Kiran Rao have decided to "step away" from a film - what appears to be their next production venture.
On Wednesday, Aamir issued a statement on Twitter, in which he stated that his production company Aamir Khan Productions has a "zero tolerance policy towards sexual misconduct and predatory behaviour of any kind.
Aamir Khan, who is busy with promotional duties of Thugs Of Hindostan, had earlier confirmed he was producing the Gulshan Kumar biopic.
The untitled film was to be directed by Subhash Kapoor, who was accused of molestation by actress Geetika Tyagi back in 2014, according to an IANS report.
Since Aamir hasn't taken any name, it is unsure if he was hinting at him or somebody else.
Aamir wrote: "Two weeks ago, when traumatic #MeToo stories began emerging, it was brought to our attention that someone we were about to begin work with has been accused of sexual misconduct. Upon enquiry we found that this particular case is subjudice, and that the legal process is in motion."
"We are not an investigative agency, nor are we in any position to pass judgement on anyone - that is for the police and judiciary to do. So, without casting any aspersions on anyone involved in this case, and without coming to any conclusions about these specific allegations, we have decided to step away from this film," read an excerpt from Aamir Khan's tweet.
Khan notes in his statement that the film industry must start working towards creating a "happy and safe" work environment for women and added, "We believe that this is an opportunity for the film industry to introspect and take concrete steps towards change. For far too long women have faced the brunt of sexual exploitation. It has to stop. In this regard we are committed to doing any and everything to make our film industry a safe and happy one to work in."
Read his full statement HERE
08:16 Trump mocks #MeToo movement:
US President Donald Trump has mocked the "#MeToo" movement, saying that he needs to censor himself due to the rules of this movement, which is being enforced by the press.
"There's an expression, but under the rules of #MeToo, I am not allowed to use that expression anymore. I can't do it," Trump said at a mid-term election rally in Pennsylvania, and then he pointed at the phrase "the girl that got away".
07:54 Cyclone Titli hits Odisha's Gopalpur, over 3 lakh moved to safety:
The process of landfall of the very severe cyclone Titli started early Thursday with surface wind reaching speeds of 126 kmph at Gopalpur in Odisha's Ganjam district, the India Meteorological Department said.
"The process of landfall has started and it will completely cross the Odisha coast in one or two hours. The system will pass close to Gopalpur," said H R Biswas, Director of Metereological Centre, Bhubaneswar.
The IMD said, "The forward sector of the eye of the storm has been entering into the land mass."
While Gopalpur in Odisha reported surface winds at 126 kmph, Kalingapatanam in Andhra Pradesh recorded wind speed of 56 kmph.
As the landfall process started, at least five districts like Ganjam, Gajapati, Puri, Khurda and Jagatsinghpur are receiving good amount of rainfall coupled with high speed winds under the impact of Titli.
Reports of trees, electric poles getting uprooted and damages to kuchha houses were reported, officials said, adding that road communication in some places, including Gopalpur and Berhampur, was snapped.
Meanwhile, the Odisha government has geared up its machinery to tackle the situation. The state government has already evacuated over 3 lakh people living in low lying areas and kuchha houses ahead of the landfall in five coastal districts.
00:26 Colleges have to return original documents, fees on no admission:
The University Grants Commission has warned varsities and colleges against retention of original documents of admitted students and non-refund of fees in case an admission is withdrawn within one month.
The higher educational institutions will be penalised with withdrawal of affiliation, deemed status and barred from receiving any assistance from the UGC if they fail to follow the directive.
"No student will be required to submit any original academic and personal certificate like marksheet and school leaving certificate at the time of submission of admission form.
"No institution can take any original certificate into their custody. They can only ask for self attested copies of the documents," HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar told reporters.
"In case a student withdraws the admission 15 days before the notified last date of admission, he or she shall be entitled for a 100 percent refund. Some colleges which deduct a processing fee can not deduct more than 5 per cent paid by the student, subject to a maximum of Rs 5000," he added.
In case a student decides to withdraw within 15 days before the last date of admission, he will be entitled for a 90 per cent refund of the fees and if the withdrawal happens 15 days after the last date, the amount supposed to be refunded will be 80 per cent.
While the refund amount will be 50 per cent if the admission is withdrawn between 16 to 30 days after the last date of the admission, no refund will be given for admissions withdrawn after the prescribed timeline. -- PTI