Tue, 06 September 2016
Clinton, Trump nearly even two months out: polls

Timeline  Refresh

23:14   Clinton, Trump nearly even two months out: polls
The race between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump for the White House has tightened with two months to go before Election Day, as a series of new polls shows them essentially in a dead heat. 

Trump has edged ahead of Clinton in a new CNN/ORC poll, at 45 per cent to 43 per cent among likely voters, while an NBC News poll of registered voters meanwhile shows Clinton's lead holding at six percentage points -- 48 per cent to 42 per cent.

And another survey, this one by The Washington Post looking at all 50 states, shows Clinton with a solid lead in terms of electoral college votes, and even strength in some traditional Republican strongholds. 

The various polls show how close the race is looking to November 8, and makes the battle for the so-called swing states all the more important. 

Clinton was headed to Florida today to appear at a voter registration event, while the billionaire real estate mogul was due in Virginia for a town hall meeting and in North Carolina for an evening campaign rally. 

"Thank you! #AmericaFirst," Trump tweeted with the new CNN poll results. 

The candidates have less than three weeks to go before the first of three scheduled presidential debates -- expected to be the most watched moments of what so far has been a raucous campaign.
22:25   T20: Australia thrash Lanka by 85 runs
Australia thrash Sri Lanka by 85 runs to take 1-0 lead in the two-match T20I series.

Australia had scored 263/3 in 20 overs, while, batting second, Sri Lanka could score only 178/9 in 20 overs.
21:55   Ex-IAS officer Satyanarayana appointed part-time UIDAI chief
Former Indian Administrative Services officer J Satyanarayana was on Tuesday appointed as part-time chairperson of Unique Identification Authority of India, tasked with issuing Aadhaar numbers.

The post has been lying vacant following resignation of Infosys co-founder Nandan Nilekani's in 2014.

The Appointments Committee of Cabinet has approved Satyanarayana's appointment as part-time chairperson of UIDAI, an order issued by Department of Personnel and Training said.

Satyanarayana, an IAS officer of 1977 batch belonging to Andhra Pradesh cadre, retired as Secretary, Department of Electronics and Information Technology.

Besides him, technocrats Rajesh Jain and Anand Deshpande have been appointed as part-time members of the UIDAI.

Jain is founder and Managing Director of net CORE solutions, an Information Technology based firm. Deshpande is founder and chief executive officer of Persistent Systems, a global company specialising in software product development services.
21:15   Arunachal Governor likely to be sacked
Defiant Arunachal Pradesh Governor Jyoti Prasad Rajkhowa may be sacked after his refusal to heed to the Centre's advise to him to step down.

The action may come after the special session of the Arunachal Pradesh Assembly, which is meeting for two days from tomorrow to ratify the Goods and Services Tax Constitution Amendment Bill, a government functionary said.

"Nothing will happen to the governor till the assembly session is over. After that something may happen," he said.

Governor Rajkhowa, who was nudged by the Centre to put in his papers after the severe stricture from the Supreme Court over the dismissal of the then Congress government last year.

"I want the President to dismiss me. I will not resign. Let the President express his displeasure. Let the government use provisions of Article 156 of the Constitution," the governor told a Guwahati-based TV news channel yesterday.

Rajkhowa said that he had been asked to resign 'on health grounds' weeks after the Supreme Court had restored the Congress government in Arunachal Pradesh censuring him.
20:45   Australia smash highest International T-20 score
Australia scripted history on Tuesday by scoring the highest ever T20I score of 263/3 against Sri Lanka.

They surpassed Sri Lanka's 260 for 6.

Glenn Maxwell smashed 145 not out of 65 balls.
Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan offers prayers at Lalbaugcha Raja in Mumbai. Photograph: ANI
20:36   Rift between Ghani, Abdullah threatens Afghan 'unity government'
Two years after a contentious, fraud-marred presidential election pushed Afghanistan to the brink of another bloody civil war, the country is once again staring into the abyss.

The compromise power deal signed by political rivals Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah to avert that crisis expires at the end of this month, threatening to upend the beleaguered South Asian state's governing order with no clear alternative at hand, Radio Liberty said.

The so-called national unity government effectively installing President Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah in September 2014 was a temporary solution to pave the way for an overhaul of the political system within two years.

But as the United States-brokered deal nears its conclusion, Afghanistan's leadership has failed to live up to many of its commitments under the agreement. By now, Afghanistan was meant to hold parliamentary elections, push through sweeping electoral reforms, and amend the 2004 constitution to create the position of prime minister.

The impasse has led to an escalating feud between Ghani and Abdullah, rising tensions among the country's long-warring ethnic groups and factions, and mounting calls from a vocal opposition for the dissolution of the government.

Read more.
20:09   Hrithik Roshan's Facebook account hacked
Bollywood star Hrithik Roshan's account on social networking site, Facebook, was hacked but the issue was solved within a day and the actor is back to using it now.

The 42-year-old actor's fans were in a shock when on Monday evening they saw a young man's photo as the display picture of Hrithik's FB profile.

The account started live streaming and more than 2,500 people joined in before realising it wasn't Hrithik but some other guy.

'An enterprising individual managed to hack my page earlier in the day. However the matter has been taken care of and the page is mine once more,' Hrithik wrote on his FB page after getting back.
19:58   Chicago's 500 homicides: How we got here
500 homicides in Chicago in nine months. 2016 is now the deadliest year in two decades. A visual guide by CNN.
19:52   Fox News settles sexual harassment case against former CEO
JUST IN: Fox News has agreed to a settlement with Gretchen Carlson, the anchorwoman who sued Roger Ailes alleging harassment and retaliation in July.

Ailes will pay an unknown portion of the total.

Ailes, the powerful Fox News CEO and chairman, resigned in the wake of the allegations, which he has continuously denied.

Read more.
19:43   Karachi Chamber of Commerce cancels Indian envoy's event after remarks on Kashmir
Karachi Chamber of Commerce today cancelled an event of Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan Gautam Bambawale at the last minute, apparently over his remarks on Pakistans interference in Kashmir.

Bambawale, who is on his first visit to Karachi after assuming charge in January this year, was told about the cancellation just half an hour before the event, invite for which was received and accepted by him a couple of weeks ago, sources siad.

The organisers did not give a reason immediately for the cancellation. However, the Indian officials feel that Bambawales comments yesterday on Pakistans interference in Kashmir which was Indias internal matter rattled the Pakistani authorities, prompting a cancellation.

This is very disrespectful on the part of the organisers, officials asserted.

19:17   Yogeshwar Dutt's 2012 Olympics medal won't be upgraded to gold
Wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt's 2012 Olympics medal will not be upgraded to gold as the wrestling governing body for Olympics, United World Wrestling has cleared T Asgarov of doping violation.

Asgarov of Azerbaijan, who won the gold medal in the men's 60kg freestyle category at the 2012 London Games, had tested positive for consuming performance enhancing drugs.

Earlier, Yogeshwar's London Olympics bronze was upgraded to silver after Russias Besik Kudukhov, who had died in a car crash in 2013 in southern Russia, was found to have used a banned substance in a test conducted by the WADA.
19:01   Life paralysed for 60 days, separatists extend shutdown till Sept 16
Even as life remained paralysed in Kashmir for the 60th day, the separatists on Tuesday extended the shutdown call in the Valley till September 16. 

They also issued a protest calendar in which people have been urged to march towards the local office of the UN Military Observers' Group on Eid-ul Azha on September 12 for submitting a memorandum. 

The joint separatist camp also asked the 'Imams' and Khateebs (preachers) to read out messages for continuing the agitation and boycotting all mainstream political parties and leaders, elections, election rallies and election machinery. 

They asked the people to celebrate Eid-ul Azha with austerity and jointly offer sacrificial animals and have joint community lunch.

The announcement about extension of the shutdown call beyond September 16 came even as the life has been paralysed in the Valley for the last 60 days.
18:41   Zakir Naik row: MHA joint secys plead Rajnath to review colleague's suspension
In an unprecedented move, 15 joint secretaries serving in the ministery of home affairs on Tuesday met Home Minister Rajnath Singh and urged him to reconsider the decision to suspend senior IAS officer G K Dwivedi for renewal of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act licence of controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik's NGO.
They conveyed to the home minister that Dwivedi, who was serving as Joint Secretary-Foreigners in the home ministry, has been "wrongly punished" for the alleged lapses of his juniors, who reportedly facilitated the renewal of FCRA licence of Naik's Islamic Research Foundation.
Sources said the senior officers, mostly belonging to IAS, told the home minister that Dwivedi is an honest officer and such action sends "wrong signal" and is "demoralising" for others.
The home minister assured the joint secretaries that he will look into the matter, the sources said.
Dwivedi also separately met the home minister to plead his case.
The move by the joint secretaries is seen as unprecedented as there has been no such happening when the bureaucrats joined hands to stand by one of their colleagues, who faced disciplinary action by the government.
Dwivedi, along with three of his junior officers, was suspended last week after the government found that the FCRA licence of an NGO run by Naik was renewed by the home ministry's foreigners division headed by him (Dwivedi) despite several probes against Naik for allegedly radicalising youths and attracting them towards extremism.
On Saturday, four joint secretaries had met Union Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi with the same demand.
18:20   Scandal-hit Keith Vaz resigns as chair of Commons panel
Britain's longest serving Indian-origin Labour MP Keith Vaz on Tuesday resigned from his post as chair of the influential House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee in the wake of being embroiled in a sex scandal.
The 59-year-old influential lawmaker has served as chair of the committee for over nine years but told its members at a meeting today he was "genuinely sorry" over recent events but added that "those who hold others to account must themselves be accountable".
"It is in the best interest of the Home Affairs Select Committee that its important work can be conducted without any distractions whatsoever. I am genuinely sorry that recent events make it impossible for this to happen if I remain chair," he said in a statement.
"Those who hold others to account must themselves be accountable... I told the committee today of my decision to stand aside immediately from committee business, and my intention to resign. This is my decision, and mine alone, and my first consideration has been the effect of recent events on my family," Vaz said.
His resignation follows allegations published by the 'Sunday Mirror' tabloid that the married, father of two, had met two male prostitutes from eastern Europe at his London flat last month.
18:13   Govt plans to act tough on separatists, may curtail funds and security
Several media reports have suggested that the government may scale down security of Kashmiri separatist leaders, who snubbed members of all-party delegation on Sunday.

According to reports, the delegation has suggested to cut down funds to the separatists and ban their foreign travels.   

The all-party delegation seeking to end the turbulence in Kashmir concluded its visit on Monday with no breakthrough.   

Unhappy at the stubborn refusal of Hurriyat leaders to meet some MPs who had literally knocked at their doors in Srinagar, Home Minister Rajnath Singh had said that their conduct was against "democracy, humanity or even 'Kashmiriyat' (Kashmiri ethos)".
17:53   India will soon be zero petroleum import country, says Nitin Gadkari

With the Centre focusing more on developing alternative fuel economy, India will soon stop importing petroleum products, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Tuesday.

"We are going to develop this country where our import of petroleum will be zero. We are promoting alternative fuel like ethanol, methanol, bio-CNG...this will boost the rural and agriculture centre and create huge employment," Road Transport and Highways Minister said.

Despite low prices globally, India at present is incurring a massive Rs 4.5 lakh crore on crude imports which was earlier Rs 7.5 lakh crore, Gadkari said addressing a conference on methanol economy organised by Niti Aayog.

The minister said ethanol is generated from biomass in Europe. One tonne of rice straw can get 400 litres of ethanol.In North East, bamboo could be used for making ethanol, he said.

He added it will eliminate pollution too as farmers in states like Haryana burnt wheat straw which caused pollution. Besides municipal waste and waste of vegetables and fruits could be used in manufacturing bio-fuel.
17:44   India's borders need larger attention, investment: J&K Guv
India's borders need much larger investment and attention, Jammu and Kashmir Governor N N Vohra said on Tuesday as he batted for "smart border management" for people living along these areas. 
Speaking at a conference on 'Homeland Security, Smart Border Management' organised by FICCI in New Delhi, he said such management was required for a state like Jammu and Kashmir which faces proxy war and infiltration attempts round the year.
"In the state where I am working, infiltration attempts are made throughout the year..across the high and snow-clad mountains, across the planes, riverbeds and nallahs," he said.
Stating that India's borders needed more attention and investment, Vohra maintained border management was no longer a general problem.
"One needs special forces to tackle highly-trained terrorists," he said.
He said owing to the nature of threats Jammu and Kashmir has faced in the last three decades particularly infiltration, proxy wars, insurgencies and militancies supported from across the borders, it was not possible to deal
with sectoral violence only through internal and external security.
Vohra said maintenance of public order in the hinterland was an extremely important component of border guarding.
17:42   Snapdeal rolls out Rs 1000 cr festive bonanza for sellers
Online marketplace Snapdeal has announced collateral-free loans worth Rs 1,000 crore for its sellers ahead of the festive season to enable them to stock up adequately. 

The loans would be disbursed through its ongoing programme -- Capital Assist -- which is now managed by FreeCharge and is available to all sellers and merchants on Snapdeal, Shopo and FreeCharge, Snapdeal said in a statement. 

"The festive season provides an opportunity to our sellers to grow their businesses many times over, with the sharp increase in demand. Through Capital Assist, we have made the funding process frictionless and expect more than Rs 1,000 crore disbursal to Snapdeal sellers ahead of this Diwali season," Vishal Chadha, the senior vice president (market development) of Snapdeal, said.
17:03   Indian envoy says Modi keen to visit Pak for SAARC

Indian High Commissioner to Islamabad Gautam Bambawale has said that Modi is looking forward to visiting Islamabad for the SAARC summit.

In a speech to Karachi Council on Foreign Relations, Bambawale said, " I can't say about the future but as of today, Prime Minister Modi is looking forward to visiting Islamabad for the SAARC summit in November this year."

While the high commissioner is reaching out to the neighbouring country, PM Narendra Modi was targeting Pakistan as a sponsor of terror in his remarks during the G 20 summit.
16:32   Amit Shah wants to tomtom Modi Sarkar's achievements for UP polls
BJP president Amit Shah has asked for details of all central government schemes and how they are implemented, for a media workshop to be conducted by Union minister Nirmala Sitharaman for party spokespersons in Lucknow.  

Following this workshop, Amit Shah will direct six Union ministers to visit six different places in Uttar Pradesh to inform BJP workers about the Modi government's achievements, as part of Shah's strategy to boost their morale which is having a tremendous impact at the ground level.   

Video and audio presentations will also be made from these briefings, just before elections are held to the state assembly in 2017.
16:25   Onam celebrated at Rashtrapati Bhavan, but BJP, Congress stay away
Both the Congress and BJP did not attend the Onam celebrations held at Rashtrapati Bhavan on September 3, for which most of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan's cabinet members had flown down. 

The Onam celebrations, jointly organised by Indradhanush, a cultural outfit of Rashtrapati Bhavan, and the Kerala government, saw a Kathakali performance, Kerala-style thayambaka band, and a Kalaripayattu display.   

The celebrations saw most of the CPM politburo members attending, and interestingly, more than President Pranab Mukherjee it was Vijayan who was the centre of attraction, with most participants wanting selfies with him.

Image used for representational purposes only.
16:13   Jairam Ramesh turns Indira's official biographer
Former Union minister Jairam Ramesh is the official biographer of former prime minister Indira Gandhi. 

The biography will feature a lifetime of details about Indira Gandhi as told to Jairam Ramesh by various personalities, including daughter-in-law Sonia Gandhi, ranging from her personal details to the excess day of Emergency.   

Jairam has so far collected around 300 letters written by Indira Gandhi to many senior Congress leaders, party workers and other political personalities, which would find mention in the book.   

Some of the details which will be revealed for the first time include why Indira Gandhi was not allowed into Guruvayurappan temple in Thrissur, why she opted out of an elephant ride, and the backroom confabulations with Choudhary Charan Singh to bring down the Janata Party government headed by Moraji Desai.   

Watch this space!
15:57   Swamy attacks Mehbooba Mufti, equates her with 'tail of a dog'
Subramanian Swamy is in the news again. 

Senior BJP leader and nominated Rajya Sabha MP Subramaniam Swamy on Tuesday equated Mufti with the "tail of a dog, which can't be straightened'. 

In a TV interview he said, "There should be President's rule in her place' she is like tail of a dog, which can't be straightened," said Swamy, in clear defiance of the party which is a partner in the Peoples Democratic Party-led coalition government.

"Mehbooba kabhi sudhregi nahi (Mehbooba will never change,)" said Swamy and added, "She has old links with terrorists." He said the BJP formed a coalition government with Mehbooba on the hope she will 'reform' herself.
15:42   Why the CPI-M is unhappy with Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan
It is heard that Communist Party of India-Marxist members are unhappy with Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. According to reports, Vijayan has asked a private company to release advertisements on the first 100 days of the Vijayan government. However, the ads which have been released have no mention of the party and only feature a photograph of the CM along with the photographs of poor people.
15:14   Paris to open first refugee camp mid-October
Paris will open its first refugee camp in mid-October, Mayor Anne Hidalgo said Tuesday, announcing a centre solely for men with an initial capacity of 400.

The centre, which will be housed in an old railway site in the north of Paris, aims to replace the makeshift camps that keep springing up around the city.

Making the announcement, the mayor said, "Paris will not stand by and do nothing as the Mediterranean becomes a graveyard of refugees." 
14:39   Daniel Craig offered $150 million to return as James Bond
Sources are saying that Sony are throwing millions at Daniel Craig to keep him on board as the series main character.

According to Radar, executives have offered the actor $150 million (Rs 997 crore) to play Bond in two more feature film, the two of which would be shot back-to-back.

Whether Craig accepts the offer is anyones guess at the moment: before the release of Spectre, the 48-year-old told one interviewer Id rather slash my wrists than play Bond again despite being paid a rumoured $65m (Rs 432 crore) for the film.

However, a source told Radar this may have actually played to Craigs advantage: [He] has played a genius hand. Everyone knows how much executives adore him, and the idea of losing him at such a crucial time in the franchise isnt an option as far as all the studio honchos are concerned.
14:28   Pakistan should focus on resolving its own problems: Indian envoy
People living in glass houses should not be throwing stones at others, the Indian envoy in Pakistan has said as he described Kashmir as an internal matter of India.

Answering questions on the Kashmir issue and the recent statement by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Balochistan, the Indian high commissioner in Pakistan Gautam Bambawale said there are problems in both India and Pakistan.

He said people living in glass houses should not be throwing stones at others.
Calling Kashmir an internal matter of India, he said, "There are problems in both India and Pakistan and you [Pakistan] should focus on resolving your problems before looking into the problems of other countries."

About the statement made by Modi, the envoy said, "The PM, in his August 15 independence day speech, only referred to the letters he had received."
14:16   Farmers fight overs cots at Rahul's 'khaat' sabha
Villagers were seen fighting and running away with 'khaats' during Rahul's campaign in Deoria. Today, Rahul Gandhi began his 2,500 km-long yatra during which he was supposed to address farmers and villagers at Deoria on cots. 

However, all chaos broke out when farmers were caught on camera running away with the cots. When asked about the situation, the Congress justified it by saying that the taking away of cots was symbolic of the farmers' plight in Uttar Pradesh. 
13:36   Wrestler Sushil Kumar nominated for Padma Bhushan
The Wrestling Federation of India has recommended two-time Olympics medallist Sushil Kumar for the prestigious Padma Bhushan this year. 

WFI has also forwarded the names of Sushil's longtime coach and Dronacharya awardee Yashvir Singh and female wrestler Alka Tomar to the Sports Ministry for the Padma Shri.

Apart from the Baprola wrestler, 15-time world billiards and snooker champion Pankaj Advani is also in the fray for the Padma Bhushan. Ace pistol shooter Jitu Rai and table tennis player Achanta Sharath Kamal have also been recommended for the Padma Shri.
13:19   US, China make nice in Hangzhou
The G20 summit meeting in Hangzhou inevitably had a political dimension to it, although its primary focus was on evolving multiple policy tools to stimulate medium- and long-term growth potential of the world economy. China, of course, showcased its role as the single largest contributor to world growth, and met with much success in the G20 forming a consensus and designing a roadmap for structural reform.

Read full column HERE
13:09   British Airways passengers delayed by computer glitch
British Airways passengers are facing delays after an IT glitch affected check-in desks.

The airline apologised to customers, saying its IT teams are "working to resolve this issue".

British Airways told customers that some flights were cancelled on Monday "due to operational reasons". It said in a statement: "We are checking in customers at Heathrow and Gatwick Airports this morning, although it is taking longer than usual."

"We are sorry for the delay to their journeys," the airline added. 

Customers were encouraged to check in online before they reach the airport.
12:25   The Rajan legacy
U lundu kozhukattai is a savoury rice flour dumpling stuffed with a spicy mixture of urad dal. Most bankers, except possibly those hailing from Madhya Pradesh, are unlikely to know of its existence. That may soon change, however, because a food company in Bangalore has decided to introduce this dish from Madhya Pradesh, the state where Raghuram Rajan was born, on its menu as a tribute to the Reserve Bank of India governor whose term has come to an end on September 4. 

"He has touched the lives of commoners and entrepreneurs like us in a positive way," remarked one of the founders of the company. 

It is safe to place quite a large bet that this is the most unique tribute ever received by a central bank governor. Having said that, perhaps it is not completely unexpected because no central banker has become quite as famous amongst the lay public as Raghuram Rajan.

Read more HERE
12:14   Accused found guilty of murder in Preethi Rathi acid attack case
A session court in Mumbai found accused Ankur Pawar guilty of murder as he threw acid on Preeti Rathi, who later died from her injuries. 

In 2013, Rathi, a Delhi resident, had come to the city to join the Colaba Naval Hospital `INS Ashwini' as a staff nurse. 

As she got off Garib Rath Express at Bandra terminus, Pawar threw acid on her and ran away. Doctors tried their best to heal the burn injuries but the wounds continued to bleed and her kidneys also developed complications. 

The quantum of sentence for convict Ankur Panwar to be pronounced tomorrow by Mumbai sessions court.
11:34   Police case against me an infringement on my fundamental right: Ashutosh
Ashutosh, a senior leader of the Aam Aadmi Party has defended himself and questioned the National Women Commission's action againts him for a column he wrote on the removal of Delhi minister Sandeep Kumar over a sex scandal. 

On Monday, the NCW filed a case against the AAP leader for his 'objectionable column'. 

Ashutosh, a former editor, has said a police case against him violates his right to freedom of expression and an order to appear before the country's top women's rights body suggests a dangerous skew towards "a fascist state."

In a series of tweets, he wrote, "Atmosphere is created where  critical analysis of history not allowed, freedom of expression will be crushed, voice of dissent suppressed."
11:22   Not majority vs minority
The offensive and reactionary position taken by the All India Muslim Personal Law Board against reform of triple talaq is a reminder of the institutional cul de sac we have driven ourselves into on issues of personal law reform and common civil code. 

The All India Muslim Personal Law Board's authority is itself dubious, and antithetical to the values and modes of reasoning of a progressive democracy. 

It represents the worst combination of a patriarchal, non-representative institution, shored up by the contingencies of electoral politics that often caves in to the most reactionary elements within communities.

Read full column HERE
11:05   Veiled Muslim mothers prevented from entering French school
Two Muslim mothers wearing headscarves were accosted and prevented from entering a nursery school on the French island of Corsica by two other parents, officials said. The incident happened on Monday as parents were dropping off their children at the start of the school day in Bonifacio, on the island's southern tip.

While religious symbols are banned for pupils and teachers in French schools, there is no such constraint on parents.

The incident is the latest example of intercommunal tensions in France.

A burkini ban by local authorities in a string of resorts in southern France divided opinion and ended up in the courts.

A Nice court finally suspended its ban on the Islamic swimsuit on Thursday after authorities there had defied a ruling by the country's highest administrative court.
10:43   2,000 'khaats' for Rahul's farmer meet in UP
About 2,000 khaats or cots have been laid out in Rudrapur town of Uttar Pradesh to seat participants of Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi's meeting with farmers.

The "khaat sabha" is part of an extensive tour of Uttar Pradesh that Gandhi begins today, aimed at energising party cadre and informing voters that the Congress is making a real bid at winning the state after 27 years. UP will vote for a new assembly early next year.

The 46-year-old Congress leader starts his 2,500-km "yatra" or journey from Deoria in eastern UP.

"My yatra from Deoria to Delhi starting September 6 is a campaign to secure the rights of the poor, farmers and labourers in government resources," Gandhi said.

He aims to cover 223 of Uttar Pradesh's 403 assembly constituencies over almost a month.

The massive public outreach will see Gandhi stopping in villages for close interactions with farmers, women and youth and for roadside meetings.

A chunk of the yatra will be conducted on foot as Gandhi goes door-to-door in villages collecting a charter of farmers' demands. As he drives through UP, local Congress leaders will join him for his interaction with people and roadshows.
10:38   2,234 get HIV via blood transfusion. We didnt know: Government to Lok Sabha
As many as 2,234 people contracted HIV after receiving blood transfusions in hospitals between October 2014 and March 2016, according to data released by the National AIDS Control Organisation, but the government told Parliament it did not know of these infections. The information was made available by NACO when it replied to a right-to-information request filed by activist Chetan Kothari in 2016.

No, was the reply the ministry of healthNACOs parent organisationgave on August 16, 2016, to a question from Congress member of parliament and former minister Jyotiraditya Scindia asking if the government was aware that a large number of people nationwide had been infected with HIV while getting blood transfusion.
10:26   Hazare 'saddened' that Kejriwal's colleagues have gone to jail
Anna Hazare has said he is "very saddened to see" that some of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's colleagues have gone to jail, while some others are "indulging in fraud".

"I am very hurt...When he (Kejriwal) was with me, he wrote a book on gram swaraj...Will we call this gram swaraj? That's why I am very sad. The hope with which I was looking at him (Kejriwal) is over," he said.

His remarks come against the backdrop of the arrest of AAP MLA Sandeep Kumar who has been accused by a woman of having raped her.

Hazare said he had earlier told Kejriwal, "You are going to roam the world after launching your party. You will hold rallies in the country for the same, but how will you find out that the people who join your party have a good character or not?

"He (Kejriwal) did not have an answer for that. I can experience it today. I had said this earlier also, be it any party or leader, it is necessary to check if the people who join a party have a clean character or not."
JUST IN: Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte expresses regret that his profane remark came across as personal attack on Obama.
09:50   Car bomb targets NGO in Kabul, terrorists break into building
According to media reports, two militants attacked a NGO -- CARE -- in Kabul and have now holed up in the building. According to the CID chief, Three people were in the building at the time of the attack. One has been rescued, while the other two are still in the building. 

The attack started off with a heavy explosion, thought to have been a car bomb, followed by sporadic gun fire. 

THe CID chief was quoted as saying that one of the militants had been killed while the second remained engaged in gun fire with security forces. 

Earlier on Monday, at least 24 people were killed when two Taliban suicide bombers on foot struck close to the defence ministry in Kabul. 
09:35   Karntaka erupts with anger after state releases Cauvery water to TN
A bandh has been called in Mandya district of southern Karnataka by farmer and pro-Kannada groups today to protest against the direction by the Supreme Court asking the state to release Cauvery river water to neighbouring Tamil Nadu.

Processions are planned too and the busy Bengaluru-Mysuru highway is likely to be blocked intermittently through the day.

Schools and colleges in the district have been closed for the day and state transport buses have been stopped on the highway.

Around 700 KSRTC government buses have been taken off the roads today by authorities as a safety measure.

Protesters have been demonstrating on the highway but so far the agitation has been peaceful.

On Monday, the apex court had directed Karnataka to release 15,000 cusecs of Cauvery water per day to Tamil Nadu for the next 10 days to ameliorate plight of the farmers there.
08:42   Home Minister Rajnath Singh to brief PM on Kashmir at 11 am
Home Minister Rajnath Singh will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi at 11 am and brief the PM about the all-party delegation to Kashmir. 

Earlier, the home minister repelled the notion that the all-party delegation visit to Jammu and Kashmir was a "failure", saying that the delegation will now meet in Delhi to chalk out an action plan for the government on measures that it needed to take in future in Jammu and Kashmir.

"Now, this all-party delegation will meet in Delhi, where we will derive a result from the talks that we held with various stakeholders, and will chalk out an action plan for the government on measures that it should take in future in Jammu and Kashmir," said Singh.
08:20   Pakistani troops violate ceasefire in Poonch
Pakistani troops have violated the ceasefire in Kashmir's Poonch area and have resorted to mortar shelling and firing on Indian posts. 

According to army sources, firing was still going on intermittently till the last reports came.

"We have responded immediately and gave appropriate reply in a measured manner," said a defence spokesperson, confirming the incident.

So far no one has been injured or killed in the incident.
07:53   Obama cancels meeting with Philippine president over obscene insult
After being called an obscenity by the president of the Philippines, President Barack Obama canceled a meeting with the leader, Rodrigo Duterte, scheduled for Tuesday.

Duterte had threatened to curse out the U.S. commander in chief if Obama raised the issue of extrajudicial killings by Philippine authorities in a sweeping crackdown on drug trafficking. 

Duterte said: "I do not have any master except the Filipino people, nobody but nobody. You must be respectful. Do not just throw questions. 'Putang ina' I will swear at you in that forum." 

That is the Tagalog phrase for 'son of a b***h' or 'son of a w***e."

Asked to respond during a news conference after the Group of 20 Summit in China, Obama said earlier Monday that he had been told of Duterte's comments, but the US president shrugged it off as another in a line of "colorful statements" from Duterte.

"Clearly, he's a colourful guy," Obama said.