Tue, 12 December 2017
Trump, you failed to protect your nation, says NYC blast suspect

Timeline  Refresh

23:39   Trump, you failed to protect your nation, says NYC blast suspect
"Trump you failed to protect your nation," the Islamic State-inspired Bangladeshi-origin man wrote on Facebook before detonating a pipe bomb in a Manhattan subway station, according to a complaint filed today in a US court.
Akayed Ullah, the 27-year-old suspected bomber, had wires and a pipe bomb strapped to his body. The device exploded prematurely yesterday between two subway platforms near Port Authority, which is America's largest bus terminal.

Ullah is reported to be in a serious condition in hospital after suffering burns in the explosion. Three other people suffered minor wounds in the blast during rush hour.
The suspect posted a statement indicating allegiance to ISIS on Facebook before the attack, the Daily Beast reported, citing the complaint.
"Trump you failed to protect your nation," accused Ullah wrote on Facebook yesterday morning.
The suspect was taken into custody after the device partially exploded.
No group has claimed responsibility for the explosion so far, though it is being treated as terror-related. -- PTI
23:03   Zaira Wasim incident: Vistara submits final report to DGCA
Vistara today submitted its final probe report to aviation regulator DGCA on the incident of a man allegedly molesting actor Zaira Wasim on board a Delhi-Mumbai flight this week, an airline source said today.
Following the incident on December 9, one Vikas Sachdev was arrested for allegedly molesting the actor.
The source said the airline has submitted its final investigation report into the incident to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).
According to the source, the detailed probe report was prepared after talking to all the people concerned in the incident, including Wasim, crew and ground handling staff. 
Earlier, the airline had submitted an initial report to the DGCA.
The source also said that no action has been taken against any staffer as no one has been found guilty of any violation.
When contacted, Vistara spokesperson was not available for comment.
"We are deeply concerned and regret the unfortunate experience Zaira Wasim had onboard our flight last night. We continue to give this case our highest attention and are extending our full support to all relevant authorities for the investigations underway," the airline had said in a statement on December 10.
The "Dangal" actor, who had narrated her ordeal on the Vistara flight from Delhi to Mumbai on Instagram, had said that a passenger sitting behind her put his feet on her armrest.
In the video, which Wasim recorded immediately after deboarding the flight, the 17-year-old actor broke down several times. -- PTI
22:05   Hardik Patel met Robert Vadra, alleges disgruntled aide
In a fresh attack on Hardik Patel on the last day of campaigning for the second phase of Gujarat assembly polls, his disgruntled aide Dinesh Bambhania claimed today that the Patidar quota agitation leader had met Robert
Vadra, Congress president-elect Rahul Gandhi's brother-in-law.
Bambhania also accused Patel of "misleading" the core members of the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti, which spearheaded the quota agitation, about his "secret meeting" with Gandhi at a five-star hotel in Ahmedabad in October.
Patel should explain what transpired at these meetings with Gandhi and Vadra, Bambhania said.
"Despite being asked by PAAS leaders several times, Hardik never revealed what transpired in that meeting with Rahul Gandhi. Hardik even met Robert Vadra in Delhi. Yet, there is no explanation about it. Was there any secret deal with Vadra?" Bambhania told reporters.
Both the Congress and Patel had denied that he had a meeting with Gandhi at a five-star hotel near the city airport in October.
On December 8, a day before the first phase of polling in Gujarat, Bambhania alleged that though the Congress's Gujarat unit had not clarified how it would give reservations to Patidars, Patel was supporting the party as a result of some "fixing".
Questioning Patel's open support to the Congress when the party's manifesto was not clear about how it would give reservations to Patidars under the OBC quota, Bambhania today asked, "Under what secret understanding Hardik is appealing to people to vote for the Congress?"
"At his poll rallies, Hardik Patel openly says he does not like the Congress, but he asks people to vote for it. So what are the reasons that compel him to say so?" he asked.
Ninety-three constituencies in 14 districts of North and Central Gujarat will go to polls on December 14 in the second phase of elections. -- PTI
21:38   Doklam standoff put severe pressure on India-China ties: Chinese FM
The Doklam standoff had put "severe pressure" on India-China ties though the issue was resolved through diplomatic means, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj during their meeting in New Delhi.
The bilateral ties went through a serious test after Indian border troops "illegally trespassed" into the Chinese territory in June, Wang told Swaraj yesterday.
The Chinese foreign minister was in New Delhi to attend the Russia-India-China Foreign Ministers' meeting.
Although the standoff ended eventually through diplomatic means more than two months later, lessons must be learned and efforts must be made to avoid such an incident in the future, said Wang, whose comments were posted on the Chinese Foreign Ministry website today.
"The standoff put the bilateral relations under severe pressure," he said.
Wang said that the Sino-Indian relations are at a crucial period and the most important thing between the two countries is to really cultivate mutual trust.
Leaders from both countries have shared the view that China and India should regard each other's development as opportunities rather than challenges, and China and India are partners rather than rivals, thus the two sides should sincerely implement the consensus reached by the leaders of the two countries, Wang noted.
While enhancing strategic communication at all levels, restoring dialogue mechanisms that have been established and deepening pragmatic cooperation in all fields, both sides should also properly manage differences so as to maintain peace and tranquillity in the border areas, he said.
Wang's visit to New Delhi is the first by a top Chinese official to India after the 73-day Doklam standoff and after the commencement of the second five-year term of President Xi Jinping.
The Doklam standoff ended on August 28 after Chinese troops stopped building a key road close to Indias 'Chicken Neck' corridor. India had objected to the construction highlighting its security concerns. The road was being built by China in an area also claimed by Bhutan. -- PTI
20:54   'Shame on you': Pawar attacks PM for remarks against Manmohan
Prime Minister Narendra Modi's allegation against his predecessor Manmohan Singh over the Gujarat polls drew more condemnation today with NCP chief Sharad Pawar telling him "shame on you" and Congress president
-elect Rahul Gandhi calling it unacceptable.
Key BJP ally Shiv Sena also launched a sharp attack on Modi, saying that dragging Pakistan into Gujarat election campaign was an "impious" way of trying to win the polls.
The prime minister at a poll rally in Gujarat on Sunday sought to link a dinner meeting hosted by suspended Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar for Pakistan dignitaries and attended by Manmohan Singh among others with the ongoing assembly polls and a conspiracy against the BJP.
Modi had insinuated that his predecessor had colluded with Pakistan for BJP's defeat at the polls. The former premier responded by saying Modi was setting a "dangerous precedent" and asked him to apologise to the nation, a demand rejected by the union government.
Pawar criticised Modi for "deliberately" misconstruing the dinner meeting at Mani Shankar Aiyar's residence on December 6 and presenting it as a conspiracy by Pakistan to interfere in the Gujarat polls. The meeting took place a day before Aiyar's "neech aadmi"(lowly person) jibe against Modi that led to his suspension from the party.
"Shame on you, Prime Minister for making such allegations. You have made the allegations against this country's former prime minister and former Defence officials," Pawar, a former defence minister, said.
"Modi's government has not solved issues of farmers and other issues the country faces, but he is bringing the Pakistan angle as a diversionary tactic for Gujarat elections," Pawar said at a public rally -- 'Halla Bol' --
organised by the Congress and the NCP in Nagpur on issues relating to agrarian crisis.
Modi has demeaned the office of the prime minister, Pawar alleged.
Rahul Gandhi hit out at the prime minister for his remarks against Manmohan Singh while addressing a press conference in Ahmedabad on the final day of campaigning for the assembly polls.
"What Modiji has said about former PM Manmohan Singh is not acceptable," he said.
In an editorial in its mouthpiece 'Saamana', the Shiv Sena said a prime minister is supposed to take action and not level allegations.
"Prime Minister Modi has levelled a serious charge that Pakistan is interfering in Gujarat polls. We can understand the worries of Modi but a PM is supposed to take action and not level allegations.
"Gujarat has become even more important than Kashmir. Until yesterday, Pakistan was interfering in Kashmir and China was interfering in Leh, Ladakh and Arunachal Pradesh," it said.
Nowadays, in all elections, either Pakistan or fugitive underworld don Dawood Ibrahim is brought at the forefront, the Sena quipped.
"When sand below the feet starts moving, Pakistan and Dawood chanting begins. It is happening today as well. This is an impious way," it said.
The Sena further said that even in Bihar polls, BJP's national president had brought in Pakistan. Despite he saying that crackers will be burst in Pakistan if Nitish Kumar wins, the latter decimated the BJP, it said. -- PTI
20:36   New York bomber charged with terror offences
New York police today charged an Islamic State-inspired Bangladeshi-origin man, a day after he triggered a blast at a metro station that injured three other people and caused chaos in one of the busiest commuter hubs in the US metropolis.
Akayed Ullah, the 27-year-old suspected bomber, had wires and a pipe bomb strapped to his body. The device exploded prematurely yesterday between two subway platforms near Port Authority, which is America's largest bus terminal. 
The New York Police Department tweeted that Ullah was charged with criminal possession of a weapon, supporting an act of terrorism and making a "terroristic threat".
Ullah is reported to be in a serious condition in hospital after suffering burns in the explosion.
Three other people suffered minor wounds in the blast during rush hour.
The suspect was taken into custody after the device partially exploded.
Ullah acted alone, police said, adding that the explosion was recorded on surveillance video.
No group has claimed responsibility for the explosion so far, though it is being treated as terror-related. -- PTI
19:34   Sharad Yadav moves Delhi HC against disqualification from RS
Former Janata Dal-United President Sharad Yadav today moved the Delhi high court seeking immediate setting aside of his disqualification from the Rajya Sabha. 
Yadav, in his plea, said he was not given any chance by the Rajya Sabha Chairman before passing an order against him and his party colleague and MP, Ali Anwar, on December 4.
He sought interim stay of the decision of Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu.
Yadav had joined hands with the opposition after JD-U president and Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar dumped the Grand Alliance with the Rashtriya Janata Dal and the Congress in Bihar and tied up with the Bharatiya Janata Party in July this year.
While disqualifying Yadav and Anwar, the chairman had agreed to the JD-U's contention that the two senior leaders had "voluntarily given up" their membership by defying the party's directives and attending events of opposition parties.
The JD-U had sought their disqualification on the grounds that they had attended a rally of opposition parties in Patna in violation of its directives.
Yadav was elected to the House last year and his term was scheduled to end in July 2022. Anwar's term was to expire early next year.
Advocate Nizam Pasha, who filed the plea on the behalf of the leader, said the matter regarding which faction is the real Janta Dal was sub-judice and a final decision was yet to be passed by the competent court. -- PTI 
18:48   Don't pay power bills unless govt deposits loan waiver amount: Pawar to farmers
Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar today asked farmers in Maharashtra not to pay outstanding loan or dues like electricity bills to the government unless it deposits the "much-touted" loan waiver amount into their bank accounts.
Speaking at a public rally -- 'Halla Bol' -- organised by the Congress and the NCP in Nagpur on the issues of agrarian crisis, Pawar said if the government is "of no use to people", then people should not cooperate with it.
"Unless the loan waiver amount is deposited into the bank accounts of farmers, I appeal to the farming community not to pay any dues or even electricity bills to the state government," the former Union agriculture minister, who turned 77 today, said.
The Maharashtra government had announced a mega agri loan waiver of Rs 34,022 crore on June 24 after a state-wide agitation by farmers. On July 9, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said around 36 lakh farmers in the state will have their entire debt waived.
Pawar asked Fadnavis to "stay away" from "blackmail politics".
"The Maharashtra chief minister uses the language of blackmailing the opposition. We respect the mandate of the people who chose you to govern," Pawar asserted.
"But if he thinks blackmailing is a part of people's mandate to his government, then he should remember that people can oust him from power."
Speaking to reporters in Nagpur ahead of the winter session of state legislature, which began on Monday, Fadnavis had said, "I have enough evidence against the leaders of opposition and I will disclose it at the right time."
Pawar also criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for "deliberately" misconstruing a meeting at the residence of suspended Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar on December 6 and presenting it as a conspiracy by Pakistan to interfere in the Gujarat polls.
"Shame on you Prime Minister for making such allegations! You have made the allegations against this country's former prime minister (Manmohan Singh) and former defence officials," Pawar, a former defence minister himself, said. -- PTI
18:15   Aadhaar to be compulsory for AMCs' clients from Jan, says BSE
Leading bourse BSE today asked asset management companies to ensure that individual clients compulsorily submit their Aadhaar details from January onwards as part of compliance with anti-money laundering rules.

The instruction has been issued after the government amended, in June, the Prevention of Money Laundering (Maintenance of Records) Rules with regard to collection of Aadhaar number from clients.

Various requirements related to the amended rules have been "made mandatory, with effect from January 1, 2018", according to a BSE circular issued for the mutual fund segment. In case a client is an individual who is eligible to be enrolled for Aadhaar, he or she will have to submit the Aadhaar number to the reporting entity -- asset management company (AMC), the exchange said. Further, if Aadhaar number has not been assigned to a client, the client will have to furnish proof of application for enrolment of Aadhaar and in case the PAN is not submitted, one certified copy of an officially valid document will have to be furnished. -- PTI
18:11   Jallikattu will be held in 2018: SC
Just in: The Supreme Court clears the bull-taming sport of jallikattu for 2018. It posts the case for the Constitution Bench.
17:55   Modi-ji ke gorapan ka raaz? 5 mushrooms a day, says Cong ally
Latest in the line of peculiar allegations hurled this election season is Congress ally in Gujarat Alpesh Thakor's claim that the complexion of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has turned fair because he eats mushrooms imported from Taiwan that cost Rs 80,000 per piece.

"Someone told me that you can't eat what Modi-ji eats, because it's not a food for the poor," Thakor said addressing a gathering in Gujarat's Vadgaon, and continued the anecdote, saying he was told that the Prime Minister eats mushrooms that come from Taiwan.

"One mushroom costs Rs 80,000, and he eats five mushrooms a day. That is why I wonder how he turned so fair. He was as dark as me," Thakor added.

Thakor also alleged that the same person told him that Prime Minister Modi has been eating those mushrooms since he became the chief minister of Gujarat, in 2001.

"The Prime Minister who eats mushrooms worth Rs 1.20 crore in a month, you can imagine how many crores of money his workers must be eating up," Thakor added.

Amidst the Gujarat elections, both the BJP and the Congress Party are leaving no stone unturned to claim victory.The controversial statements range from Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar's "Neech" remark at the Prime Minister to the allegations of treason against Aiyar and other senior Congress leaders by Prime Minister Modi. -- ANI
17:41   Seaplane ride: Omar says PM violated security guidelines
Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah on Tuesday slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi for breaching the security protocol by travelling in a single engine seaplane.

Earlier today, Prime Minister Modi travelled from Sabarmati River in Ahmedabad to Dharoi Dam via single-engine seaplane.

Taking to Twitter, Omar questioned that why security guidelines were relaxed for the Prime Minister.

"How is it that the security guidelines were relaxed for this flight? No Z+ protectee is allowed to fly in a single engine aircraft, much less the PM of our country," Abdullah said.

Abullah further raised brows over the decision to have a foreign pilot flying the seaplane when such tasks are usually carried out by Indian Air Force pilots.

"Single engine plane. Foreign pilots. Is there any security guideline that will not be thrown out today?," he questioned.

The BJP, however, hailed the seaplane landing by the Prime Minister and Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari called it a "big revolution" in the field of transport. -- ANI
17:36   Gujaratis feel hurt about lies spread about state by opponents: PM
Campaigning for the Gujarat Assembly Elections 2017 ends. After a seaplane spectacle on the last day on the campaign trail in Gujarat, the PM tweeted. Highlights.

"After three and a half years, I got the honour to travel across the length and breadth of Gujarat to seek the blessings of the people. During my travels across Gujarat, the level of affection I have received from the people is unparalleled in my 40 years of public life. This affection gives me strength and motivates me to devote all my time for India's development. I urge my sisters and brothers of Gujarat to vote in record numbers on the 14th.

"I call upon the people of Gujarat to not only give the BJP an overwhelming majority but also ensure that BJP wins in every polling booth across the state. The lies that our worthy opponents have spread, about Gujarat, Gujarat's growth and about me personally is something I had never imagined. It is natural for every Gujarati to feel hurt. People of Gujarat will give a fitting reply to the negativity and lies of the opposition. 

With the Government of India and Government of Gujarat working together, the strength rises manifold. This 1+1 is not 2 but 11 and together we will take Gujarat to new heights. No Gujarati will let go off a golden opportunity of development of our youth and coming generations.

Victory of BJP is a guarantee for a bright future. I am devoting my life for the betterment of crores of people of Gujarat and India. Have been fortunate to always get your blessings. I am sure you will continue to bless us in these elections too by voting for BJP."

The BJP is ruling Gujarat from last 22 years and the Congress is eyeing a comeback.The first phase of assembly elections in Gujarat were conducted on December 9 in 89 constituencies and the polling for the second phase will be held on December 14 for 93 assembly constituencies. Counting of votes and the results would be announced together on December 18.
17:26   Rahul says Dalits feel insecure in Gujarat
Congress's president-elect Rahul Gandhi today hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over alleged atrocities on Dalits in Gujarat, insisting the community feels insecure in the state despite several laws for their protection. Gandhi wanted to know who will take responsibility for the Una incident where young Dalit men were flogged for skinning a dead cow.

"Neither land, nor employment, no health and no education, Gujarat's dalits received only insecurity. "Modiji is silent on Una's tragic incident, but who will take the responsibility for it. A number of laws were made in the name of dalits, but who will execute them earnestly," he said on Twitter.

The Congress leader's posts were part of his "a question a day" series on social media launched in the run up to the Gujarat Assembly elections. Rahul Gandhi has been using the tagline "22 salon ka hisaab, Gujarat mange jawaab (Gujarat demands answers for 22 years of BJP rule)".

Gandhi had earlier targeted the prime minister on various issues as part of the series, including those related to education, health and financial management, and highlighted the plight of farmers, youth and women.
-- PTI
16:30   Meeting with Pak officials was not 'secret': former advisor to Manmohan
Former advisor to ex-prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh on Tuesday rubbished all allegations about latter conducting a clandestine meeting with Pakistani officials to fix results of Gujarat elections.

Speaking to ANI, senior journalist Prem Kumar Jha said it was a dinner hosted by suspended congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar for Ex-Pakistan External Affair Minister Khurshid Kasuri. And that there was nothing 'secret' about the event.

"Kasuri was here and Mr. Aiyar hosted a dinner..he invited people from the Congress party and friends like me. And there in all 14 to 15 people. It was a very impressive group. Former prime minister Manmohan Singh came and he came in the condition that he will not speak. He just wanted to listen to us and above all to Kasuri. Former vice-president Ansari and many former senior diplomats were also there," he said.

Continuing his stance, Jha said that Singh and Ansari both have Z+ security protection and so have to submit the full list to SPG. So there is nothing secret.

"Every invitation came on email, they didn't come on WhatsAap, viper or any encrypted email services," he averred. Singh yesterday quashed Prime Minister Modi's accusation about the former's secret meeting with Pakistani officials, and expressed 'anguish' at 'the canards being spread' by the latter.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi waves to the crowd at Ahmedabad's Sabarmati Riverfront.
15:45   Aboard seaplane PM returns to Sabarmati
PM Narendra Modi leaves from Dharoi Dam and reaches Sabarmati.

The Prime Minister flew from the Sabarmati riverfront in Ahmedabad to Dharoi Dam via a seaplane, which is the first-ever flight by such a craft in the country, today.

Prime Minister Modi in a rally on Monday had said, "Tomorrow for the first time in the history of the country a sea-plane will land on the Sabarmati River. I will go to Ambaji in the sea-plane after landing in Dharoi dam and come back."

Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani had said that this is for the first time in the history of the country that a sea-plane will land on a water body.

Yesterday, the Ahmedabad Police had turned down the request of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress from conducting roadshows by Prime Minister Modi and grand old party vice-president Rahul Gandhi.

The permission was denied by the Ahmedabad administration citing security, law and order reasons and to avoid public inconvenience.

Remaining parts of Gujarat, including Ahmedabad, are slated to go for polls on December 14.

The first phase of polling took place on December 9 and recorded a voter turnout of 68 percent.

Counting of votes will take place on December 18.

The Congress is eyeing to dethrone the BJP government in the state.

The last Congress government in Gujarat was led by Chhabildas Mehta from February 17, 1994 to March 13, 1995.  -- ANI
15:29   Paresh Mesta murder case: BJP launches 'Raj Bhavan Chalo' march
BJP leaders on Tuesday took out a 'Raj Bhavan Chalo' march from Gandhi Statue to submit a memorandum to Governor Vajubhai Vala seeking direction to the Karnataka Government for the National Investigation Agency probe in youth activist Paresh Mesta murder case.

The march was led by MP Shobha Karandlaje.

Meanwhile, the VHP and other Hindu groups also protested in Karnataka's Sirsi, which led to a clash with police.

The BJP has geared up for a massive protest against the killing of other RSS and Hindu activists in the state.

The body of the missing activist Paresh Mesta, a resident of Thulisinagar in the town, was found in a lake behind Shani temple on Friday. -- ANI
15:18   Can China, India rebuild trust as border tensions linger?
Foreign Minister Wang Yi travels to India for first visit by a senior Chinese official since military stand-off on disputed border. Read more
15:12   Work on three China-Pakistan projects halted till Chinas approval
China has halted the release of funds for three projects under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) till the revision of its 'financial mechanism' by Beijing, Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal confirmed on Monday. Read more
15:08   Heavy snowfall cuts off Kashmir from rest of India
The Kashmir Valley was cut off from the rest of the country today as flight operations at the Srinagar airport were suspended and the Srinagar-Jammu National Highway and Mughal road were closed for traffic due to snowfall and rain.

The present weather conditions in Jammu and Kashmir are likely to continue till Thursday due to a western disturbance over the state, the meteorological (MeT) office said.

The 300-km long highway, the only all-weather road linking Kashmir with the rest of the country, was closed following heavy rains and snowfall at several places, including the Jawahar Tunnel, and incidents of shooting stones near Panthal.

In Jammu, the Mughal road, connecting Poonch and Rajouri with south Kashmir's Shopian district, was also closed after heavy snowfall in Pir Ki Gali. -- PTI

Image: A soldier tries to remove snows from his truck.  The MeT has forecast more snow and rain in the valley over the next few days. Photo: Umar Ganie
14:58   Father-in-law among 6 to get noose for TN Dalit youth's killing
The Principal District and Sessions court on Tuesday handed the death sentence to the six persons including the father-in-law of the victim Shankar, a dalit youth, whose murder is believed to be a honour killing.

The victim's mother-in-law has been acquitted.

Of the 11 accused, six received capital punishment, one person was awarded a life sentence, one person got a five year sentence and three were acquitted.

Shankar and his wife Kausalya were brutally attacked by three persons in full public view near a bus stand in Udumalpet on March 13, 2016 allegedly at the behest of her father, a upper caste Hindu who was opposed to their inter-caste marriage.  Read the report here.

14:20   'My life is over'
To control crowds in Kashmir, police fired pellets. Now this 16-year-old will never see fully again. Read the report here
14:18   Is it wrong to go to a temple? I pray for Gujarat: Rahul in A'bad
Congress President-elect Rahul Gandhi addresses a press conference in Ahmedabad, Gujarat.

"In the last 22 years Modi-Ji and Rupani-ji (Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani) have initiated only one-sided development in Ahmedabad,  the one only for 5-10 people. Not everyone has been given their rights. Whenever I went to a temple I just prayed for a 'Sunehra Bhavishya' for the people of Gujarat, a better development here. Is it wrong to go to a temple?

"Jahan mauka milta hai vahan mandir jaata hoon, Kedarnath bhi gaya tha, Vo kya Gujarat mein hai? Whenever I get an opportunity I go to a temple. I had visited Kedarnath too. Is that in Gujarat?" asks Rahul Gandhi on people linking his temple visits to the elections.

Unfazed by the criticism of the BJP over his temple visits in Gujarat, Gandhi on Tuesday visited the Jagannath Temple in Ahmedabad and offered prayers.

According to the temple's priest Dilip Das, Rahul performed pooja (obeisance) as per the traditional rituals of the temple and sought Lord Jagannath's blessings.

Former Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot also accompanied Rahul.

While campaigning for the Congress party in the Gujarat assembly elections, Rahul has been visiting various temples. The BJP has been targeting Rahul over his temple visits and terms it as political move to woo Hindu votes.

The high-decibel campaigning for the second and final phase of the Gujarat assembly elections will be concluded this evening.

During the last day of the campaigning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi travelled from Sabarmati riverfront in Ahmedabad to Dharoi Dam via a seaplane. Prime Minister Modi tweeted that his government is making efforts for harnessing waterways.
PM Narendra Modi is offering prayers at the Ambaji Temple in Gujarat's Banaskantha.
13:29   Not much headway made in Rajiv murder conspiracy probe: SC
The Supreme Court today said the CBI-led investigation in the larger conspiracy behind the assassination of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi does not appear to have achieved "much headway".

The apex court referred to the reports filed before it by the CBI and observed that the investigation by the Multi Disciplinary Monitoring Agency (MDMA) could be "endless".

The MDMA is headed by a CBI official and comprises officers from IB, RAW and Revenue Intelligence and other agencies. "The MDMA is investigating the larger conspiracy. From CBI reports, it doesn't seem that there is much headway. So this enquiry could be endless," a bench comprising Justices Ranjan Gogoi and R Banumathi said.

The top court also arrayed the Centre as a party in the plea filed by one of the convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. The bench fixed the matter for hearing on January 24. -- PTI
Amul's take on the Virushka wedding. 
12:13   Heavy snowfall suspends chopper services in Vaishnodevi
Due to bad weather conditions and fog around Trikuta Hills, the helicopter services to Mata Vaishno Devi in Jammu and Kashmir remained suspended for the second consecutive day on Tuesday. The pilgrims, especially the elderly and handicapped, arriving at the base camp of Vaishno Devi shrine are facing difficulties due to the suspension.

Hundreds of pilgrims ares stuck at Katra and are waiting for the chopper service to resume.The night temperature at most places in Kashmir division, including Ladakh, slashed last night.
12:09   Three soldiers missing in avalanche in Kashmir
Three soldiers are missing after an avalanche, triggered by fresh snowfall, struck a forward post in Gurez sector in Bandipora district of Jammu and Kashmir, police said today.

The avalanche hit an Army post at Baktoor near the Line of Control in Gurez sector during the intervening night, a police official said.  He said at least three soldiers were reported missing after the avalanche.

"Efforts are on to trace the missing soldiers but continuous snowfall was hampering the rescue and search efforts," he added. An Army porter is missing since yesterday after he came under an avalanche in Tulail in Gurez sector. -- PTI

Image: Doda in Kashmir received fresh snowfall last night. Pic: ANI
11:43   PM's sea-plane reaches Dharoi, next stop Ambaji temple
Gujarat: PM Modi reaches Dharoi Dam via sea-plane, will now visit Ambaji temple.  The Prime Minister travelled from Sabarmati River in Ahmedabad to Dharoi Dam via the plane.

His return journey would also be by the same sea-plane.

Prime Minister Modi in a rally on Monday had said, "Tomorrow for the first time in the history of the country a sea-plane will land on the Sabarmati River. I will go to Ambaji in the sea-plane after landing in Dharoi dam and come back."

Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani had said that this is for the first time in the history of the country that a sea-plane will land on a water body. -- ANI
Three soldiers missing in avalanche in Gurez sector of Jammu and Kashmir: police
Gujarat: Congress President Rahul Gandhi visits the Jagannath Temple in Ahmedabad.
11:24   39 lakh voters to decide 16 seats in Ahmedabad
As the clock ticks for the second phase of Assembly polls in central and north Gujarat on December 14, all eyes are on 39 lakh voters of 16 seats in the mega city, considered a stronghold of the BJP since the 90s.

During the 2012 Assembly polls, the BJP won 14 seats in Ahmedabad. Like other cities of Gujarat, the voters of this bustling urban centre have been standing firmly behind the BJP since the early 90s.

At least five seats  have a sizable population of Patidars. These areas witnessed violence and arson during the quota agitation led by Hardik Patel two years back.

Four seats have a considerable number of Muslim voters. The Maninagar constituency, represented by Prime Minister Narendra Modi thrice from 2002 till 2014 as then MLA and Gujarat chief minister, can easily be termed as the city's most high profile seat and a bastion of the BJP. In 2012, Modi won by a margin of over 86,000 votes. -- PTI
Umar Khalid @UmarKhalidJNU Hearing Modi's Pakistan remark, Abraham Lincoln has issued the following statement in public interest - "You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time"

Umar Khalid, a JNU PhD student had been charged with sedition after he and a few other students organised a protest against the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru at JNU on February 9.
10:53   Modi takes historic sea-plane flight on last day of campaigning
PM Narendra Modi takes a sea-plane from the banks of the Sabarmati River in Ahmedabad to the Dharoi Dam in Gujarat. This is the first-ever sea-plane flight in the country and the PM is the first passenger. His return journey will also be by the same sea-plane.

Prime Minister Modi at a rally on Monday had said, "Tomorrow for the first time in the history of the country a sea-plane will land on the Sabarmati River. I will go to Ambaji in the sea-plane after landing in Dharoi dam and come back."

Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani had said that this is for the first time in the history of the country that a sea-plane will land on a water body.
10:38   Rahul Gandhi elevated not on performance: BJP
The Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday said Rahul Gandhi's elevation to Congress' top post did not take place on the basis of performance, hinting that it was mere a coronation exercise.

"I congratulate Rahul Gandhi on his promotion as the Congress president which happened without taking his performance into consideration," BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi told ANI.

"When the Congress party was in power, he used to frequently get out due to hit-wicket, and in the Opposition, he had been throwing 'no-balls'. It is hoped that since he is a Congress president now, he will watch the pitch carefully and play accordingly," Naqvi added.

Another BJP leader Subramanian Swamy said the Congress could have had the elevation as a consensus decision or the working committee could have unanimously proposed his name as there was no challenger.

"Why so much drama? If they would have wanted to go through a process then they should have gone through a proper system, but they did not do that," Swamy added.

The 47-year-old Gandhi scion was formally declared as the Congress president on Monday night.Confirming the elevation, Congress' Central Election Authority Chairman Mullapally Ramchandran said the committee had received 89 nomination papers, all proposing the name of Rahul for the coveted post.

Rahul filed his nomination papers for the post of the party chief at the All India Congress Committee (AICC) headquarters on December 4.

Rahul has succeeded his mother Sonia Gandhi, who held the post for nearly two decades. He will take over the reins of the party on December 16.
-- ANI
10:35   NYC blast: Suspect learnt to build bomb on internet
The Bangladeshi suspect in Monday's pipe bomb explosion beneath New York's Times Square is an angry former limousine driver who learned to build a bomb on the internet at his Brooklyn apartment, officials said.

Akayed Ullah, 27, was in police custody after he was injured by a pipe bomb he fastened to his torso with Velcro and zip ties. Three other people were also hurt in the blast in a pedestrian tunnel linking two subway stops beneath West 42nd Street, officials said.

Ullah came from the southeastern Bangladeshi district of Chittagong and last visited the country on September 8, Inspector General of Police AKM Shahidul Hoque said. 

He had no criminal record in Bangladesh, Hoque said.

Ullah arrived in the United States seven years ago on a family visa, one authoritative US source said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

US investigators believe he was self-radicalised after entering the United States, most likely by watching militant propaganda on the internet, the officials said, adding that they were unaware of any specific militant video that might have led him to produce his faulty explosive device.

From March 2012 through March 2015, he held a license to drive a limousine or black cab as an independent contractor, the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission said in a statement.
10:31   Snowfall, rains shut Jammu-Srinagar highway
The Jammu-Srinagar National Highway and the Mughal road were closed for traffic for the second consecutive day today due to continuous snowfall and rains. The nearly 300-km highway, the only all weather road linking Kashmir with the rest of the country, was closed as a precautionary measure in view of heavy rainfall at Banihal, Ramban and Patnitop and snowfall on both sides of the Jawahar Tunnel.

"The highway is closed for the second day today. The highway was closed following heavy snowfall at Jawahar tunnel, Patnitop and Ramban area bedsides landslides triggered at Pathiyal early today", he said.

As per the advisory of traffic police department passengers planning to travel on the highway in coming days should contact traffic control room before leaving for their destinations. Mughal road, connecting the twin districts of Poonch and Rajouri in Jammu region with south Kashmir's Shopian district, has also been closed for the second day today.

"There has been heavy snowfall in Pir Ki Gali and other areas en route Mughal road resulting in closure", he said. The traffic was suspended on Mughal road last evening as a precautionary measure in view of the weather forecast predicting moderate to heavy snowfall in the high altitude areas under the influence of a Western disturbance from December 11 to 14.

There was very heavy snowfall in hills of Doda, Kishtwar, Ramban, Kathua, Rajouri, Reasi and Poonch districts of Jammu region. As result of which some inter-district and inter-state roads have been closed due to snowfall for traffic.

Jammu yesterday recorded the lowest day temperature as the mercury nosedived by almost nine notches amid incessant rains to settle nine degrees below normal during this part of the season. -- PTI
10:24   Kiss and tell
Jharkhand: Kissing contest organised for married couples at a Mela in Dumaria village on December 10.. Jharkhand Mukti Morcha legislator Simon Marandi was also present at the event.
10:22   Weighed down
Jammu & Kashmir: Srinagar receives season's first snowfall
09:42   No condom ad on TV from 6 am-10 pm, rules government
The information and broadcasting ministry has issued an advisory directing television channels against telecasting condom advertisements between 6 am and 10 pm, attributing the decision to complaints that some channels aired the ads repeatedly and that they were unsuitable for viewing.

The ministry said it had received complaints that condom ads were indecent, especially for children. It cited clauses of the Cable Television Network Rules of 1994 to urge television channels to refrain from regularly airing ads of various contraceptive brands. The ministry order, though merely an "advisory", warned failure to comply would lead to "actions as per provisions of the rules".
09:13   Nirbhaya case: SC to hear convict's review petition
The Supreme Court will today hear the review petitions filed by one of the four convicts in the Nirbhaya gang-rape and murder case.

Mukesh, who has been sentenced to death along with three other convicts in the case, had filed the petition.

The apex court, in May, upheld the order of Delhi high court, which had sentenced the four convicts - Akshay, Pawan, Vinay Sharma and Mukesh - to death.

On December 16, 2012, six people gang-raped a 23-year-old physiotherapy intern in a moving bus in Delhi.

The woman succumbed to her injuries in a Singapore hospital on December 29, 2012.

One of the accused, Ram Singh, had hanged himself in the prison, while another person, who was a juvenile at the time of the crime, was convicted in August last year and is serving the maximum sentence of three years in a reform home.

-- ANI
Congress President Rahul Gandhi to hold a press conference in Ahmedabad at 1 pm today.
08:46   Denied permission for roadshow in Ahmedabad, Modi to take seaplane
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Ahmedabad on Tuesday and undertake a sea-plane journey from the Sabarmati river on the last day of campaigning for the Gujarat assembly elections. Modi will travel to Dharoi Dam in Mehsana district by the seaplane, the first-ever flight by such a craft in the country. His return journey would also be by the same seaplane.

He will land at the Sabarmati river at 9.30 am, and will then go to the Dharoi dam and offer prayers at the Ambaji temple.

Modi's plans of using a seaplane in Ahmedabad came a day after the city police denied him permission to hold a mega roadshow in the city.

The police cited congested roads and communally sensitive areas that fall enroute as the reason. The move comes in the backdrop of inputs gathered by central intelligence agencies that a "lone wolf" may try to target roadshows of "big political leaders" during the campaigning for the upcoming elections.
08:03   Trump blames 'lax immigration system' for NYC terror attack
US President Donald Trump has asked Congress to enact immigration reforms to protect the American people, a day after a blast triggered by an Islamic State-inspired Bangladeshi-origin man near a metro station in New
York City left four persons injured.

Akayed Ullah, the 27-year-old suspected bomber, had wires and a pipe bomb strapped to his body. The device yesterday prematurely exploded between two subway platforms near Port Authority, which is America's largest bus terminal, police said.
"(The) attempted mass murder attack in New York City -- the second terror attack in New York in the last two months -- once again highlights the urgent need for Congress to enact legislative reforms to protect the American people," Trump said.

The suspect reportedly came to the US from Bangladesh some seven years ago on a family visa.

"First and foremost... America must fix its lax immigration system, which allows far too many dangerous, inadequately vetted people to access our country. The terror suspect entered our country through extended-family chain migration, which is incompatible with national security,"
Trump said. 

He added that the suspect had entered the country through "extended-family chain migration," a system the president is seeking to end that allows families to sponsor relatives to come to the United States.

-- PTI
01:02   IB flags concerns of 'lone wolf' attacks during Gujarat poll campaign
Intelligence agencies have gathered information that a "lone wolf" may try to target roadshows of "big political leaders" during the campaigning for the assembly elections in Gujarat, officials said.
Based on intelligence inputs and interrogation reports of two arrested suspected terrorists, the agencies have alerted the Gujarat Police that a "lone wolf" may try to carry out attacks on roadshows of top political leaders and there is a need to take maximum precaution, a senior government official said
However, it is not immediately known if the Ahmedabad Police's decision to deny permission to the roadshows of Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi and the BJP, to be held on Tuesday, was related to the intelligence inputs.
Ahmedabad Police Commissioner A K Singh cited traffic congestion and some main markets and old city areas, which are communally sensitive and have narrow roads, falling on the routes of the roadshows, as the reasons for denying the permission to the roadshows.
A "lone wolf" is a terrorist who carry out attacks alone without having any direct contact with any organisation.
One Uroz Khan, arrested in Madhya Pradesh on November 6, had reportedly told police that he promised to supply arms and explosives to two suspected ISIS operatives for allegedly carrying out "lone wolf" attacks on a Jewish synagogue and during election rallies in Gujarat, the official said.
ISIS suspect Ubaid Mirza, who was in the custody of the National Investigation Agency, also reportedly told the agency that ISIS style "loan wolf" attack was planned on roadshow and rallies in Gujarat. -- PTI