Fri, 22 June 2018
Democrats narrating phony border stories: Trump

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23:41   Democrats narrating phony border stories: Trump
United States President Donald Trump, who faced massive backlash over his administration's immigration policy, has accused the Democrats of circulating "phony stories of sadness and grief."

"We must maintain a Strong Southern Border. We cannot allow our Country to be overrun by illegal immigrants as the Democrats tell their phony stories of sadness and grief, hoping it will help them in the elections. Obama and others had the same pictures, and did nothing about it!" Trump tweeted.

On a related note, the latest cover of TIME's magazine, featuring Trump and a wailing child has captured the controversial 'Zero Tolerance' policy of the US administration.

Creating a photo illustration of the now-reversed policy of separating children from parents who illegally enter the United States, the July 2 edition of the magazine captioned it, "Welcome to America."

Later, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders wrote, "It's shameful that Dems and the media exploited this photo of a little girl to push their agenda. She was not separated from her mom. The separation here is from the facts. Dems should join POTUS and fix our broken immigration system."

Recently, Trump drew flak for his 'Zero Tolerance' policy as part of which the children of immigrant families are left behind while the parents are termed as the "prisoners". The migrant children are labelled as "unaccompanied minors" and sent to the government's custody or foster care.

Trump on Wednesday signed an executive order to "keep families together" reversing the controversial policy. 

-- ANI
23:06   PCI to invite Prez Kovind as chief guest on National Press Day event
The Press Council of India will invite President Ram Nath Kovind as the chief guest at the function to mark the National Press Day on November 16, sources said.
In its meeting held today, the Council also proposed to invite Chairmen of all SAARC Press/Media Councils on the occasion, they added. 

During the celebrations, several awards including the prestigious Raja Ram Mohan Roy Award will be given away for distinguished services in journalism.
A jury committee was formed with representatives from working journalists, editors,  owners and government nominee to select the awardees.

Some members also expressed discontent over issuing of two notification by the information and broadcasting ministry for reconstituting the council, the sources said.

-- PTI
22:25   Ramdev to get wax statue at London's Madame Tussauds
Baba Ramdev will soon have a wax replica at the Madame Tussauds museum of London.

In a presser on Friday, the yoga guru shared the news with the world. He said that he received the proposal almost two months back, and after much persuasion, he decided to accept it.

He said, "Yogis' scientific, secular, and universal knowledge should be promoted. With this in mind, I have accepted the proposal to get a look-alike wax statue at the museum."

After Swami Vivekanand, Ramdev will be the second swami to be depicted at the notable wax museum.

-- ANI
22:08   Trump threatens 20 per cent tariff of European cars
US President Donald Trump today threatened to slap a 20 per cent duty on all cars imported from Europe unless the European Union removed its trade barriers and tariffs on dozens of American products which took effect.

Trump's warning comes after the European Union imposed tariffs on $3.4 billion in US products, ranging from bourbon to motorcycles, in a tit-for-tat response to US President's decision to slap hefty tariffs on European steel and aluminium exports.

"Based on the tariffs and trade barriers long placed on the US and it great companies and workers by the European Union, if these tariffs and barriers are not soon broken down and removed, we will be placing a 20 per cent tariff on all of their cars coming into the US," Trump threatened in a tweet.

"Build them here!" Trump said, indicating that he wants the cars to be build in the US and not to be imported from overseas.

Trump imposed tariffs of 25 per cent on European Unioin steel and 10 per cent on aluminum on June 1. Europeans claim that breaks global trade rules.

Earlier, Trump had said the "unfair" foreign trade practices were not merely an "economic disaster" but a "security disaster" and by imposing tarffs he was defending America's national security.

The action taken by the president had followed a nine-month investigation by the Department of Commerce, documenting a growing crisis in US steel and aluminium production, threatening the security of the country.

"It is also bad for US economically and with jobs," Trump had rued.

Transatlantic ties are at their lowest level for many years due to rows over a host of issues including the tariffs, the Paris climate agreement, the Iran nuclear deal and the new US embassy in Jerusalem.

Relations plumbed new depths at the recent G7 summit when Trump abruptly rejected the joint statement and bitterly insulted his Canadian host, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

-- PTI
21:40   Amit Shah to address rally in Jammu tomorrow
BJP president Amit Shah will address a rally in Jammu tomorrow, close on the heels of his party's decision to withdraw support from the PDP-led government in Jammu and Kashmir.
In a statement, party's national media head Anil Baluni said that Shah will be on a day-long trip to the city mark the "historic martyrdom anniversary" of its founder president Syama Prasad Mookerjee.

Shah will also hold meetings with digital media and social media volunteers, and participate in other organisational events, he said.

His public address will be significant as he is expected to touch on evolving political situation in the state following the BJP's withdrawal of support from the Mehbooba Mufti government in which his party was a partner.

The state is now under governor's rule. 

-- PTI
21:18   India hopes to open Iran's Chabahar port by 2019
India is trying to make Chabahar Port in Iran operational by 2019, the government said in a statement on Friday, despite a threat of renewed US sanctions against Tehran.

The Indian-backed Chabahar port complex in Iran is being developed as part of a new transportation corridor for land-locked Afghanistan that could potentially open the way for millions of dollars in trade and cut its dependence on Pakistan, its sometimes-hostile neighbour.

The port would offer easy accessibility to CIS countries, Transport and Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari said in the statement.

US President Donald Trumps decision to withdraw from a 2015 nuclear deal and penalise financial institutions for doing business with Tehran is clouding Chabahars viability.
20:59   Diehard Lionel Messi fan in Kerala missing, leaves suicide note behind
Argentina's 3-0 loss at the hands of Croatia let a lot of Lionel Messi fans down, but one diehard fan from Kerela has gone missing. According to the police, he was unable to bear the humiliation; even leaving behind a suicide note saying he has nothing to look forward to now. A search operation is on.

A team of police divers and locals on Friday searched the Meenachil river that flows by Arumannoor near Kottayam.

Dinu Alex, 30, who was last seen watching the FIFA World Cup match, according to his parents, has been missing from the house since 4 am, said a police officer.

"A quick search revealed a suicide note in which he says he is leaving the world as he has nothing more to watch and see," said the officer.
20:26   Seychelles parliament blocks planned Indian naval base on remote island
Seychelles parliament will not ratify a pact allowing India to build naval facilities on one of the archipelagos islands, a top foreign affairs ministry official said on Friday.

The two countries signed an agreement in January to build military facilities on the remote island of Assumption, but the project quickly attracted criticism from opposition members of the tiny Indian Ocean nations parliament and lead to public protests.

Opposition lawmakers had argued that allowing India access to Assumption, which is near a busy shipping route, would be surrendering territory to another country and joint management of the facility with India undermined the 115-island nations sovereignty.

The government will not present the agreement to the National Assembly (parliament) for approval because opposition members (who are the majority) have already said they will not ratify it, Seychelles Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs Barry Faure said. 
19:58   EC registers Haasan's party Makkal Needhi Maiam
Makkal Needhi Maiam, floated by actor Kamal Haasan, was today registered as a political party by the Election Commission and it would receive the registration documents early next week.
Sources in the EC said that the documents filed by Haasan have been processed and the registration granted. 

"The party will get the relevant documents  early next week. The formal letter was sent today," a senior functionary said.

Haasan had in February launched his political party Makkal Needhi Maiam (people justice centre) in the presence of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and others.

The party's flag, in white background, has six hands joined together, with shades of red over three hands and the rest in white. A star can be seen in the centre, surrounded by a star-like background in black. 

-- PTI
19:41   Biometrics not used in crime probes: UIDAI
The Unique Identification Authority of India on Friday stated that the biometric data collected by it cannot be used for crime investigations.

The clarification came after a report emerged about purported use of Aadhaar biometric data for the purpose of investigating a crime.

In an official statement, the UIDAI said that as per Section 29 of the Aadhaar Act, 2016, the collected data can only be used for the purpose of generating Aadhaar and for authenticating the identity of Aadhaar holders.

The UIDAI, however, added that Section 33 of the Aadhaar Act allows a very limited exception and permits the use of or access to Aadhaar biometric data in cases involving national security after pre-authorisation by an oversight committee headed by the Cabinet Secretary.

"This is also the consistent stand taken by the Union of India in the ongoing Aadhaar case in the Supreme Court. It may be noted that based on this legal position, UIDAI has never shared any biometric data with any crime investigating agency. It may be underlined here that when Mumbai High Court gave orders to share biometric data with an investigating agency in a particular case, the matter was taken up to the Supreme Court which stayed that order," UIDAI said in the statement.

It was reported that National Crime Records Bureau, Director, Ish Kumar had said that limited access to Aadhaar data was needed to be given to police for the purpose of catching first-time offenders and for identification of unidentified bodies.

He further argued that there was a need for police to be given access to Aadhaar data for the purpose of investigation. 

-- ANI
19:27   Had to draw a line on transparency: Justice Chelameswar
After Justice J Chelameswar entered the Supreme Court Collegium owing to his seniority, at least three Chief Justices of India had difficult times resolving issues he raised over transparency and objectivity of the system of appointing judges. 

Justice Chelameswar however maintained that he never had personal problems with any of these three CJIs Justices TS Thakur, JS Khehar and Dipak Misra. 

Asked how he would define his relationships with the CJIs, Justice Chelameswar said he was only raising issues that required redressal.

At a personal level, I had no problem with any one of these judges. I had no personal problem with any of them. I was raising certain institutional issues. A line is to be drawn there. Thats all, he told CNN-News18.

During Justice Thakurs tenure as the CJI, Justice Chelameswar had declined to attend the Collegium meetings, citing its opaqueness and lack on objective process. He instead preferred that recommendations of the judges should be duly recorded and be sent to him through circulation. 
19:10   Eva Longoria voices against migrant kids crisis at US-Mexico border
Highlighting the issue of migrant families getting separated at the US-Mexico border, Eva Longoria, who recently welcomed her baby boy, said that she "can't imagine him being taken away from her."

In her Instagram post, she said that every single citizen should work towards reuniting the families.

"In light of my son's birth, I wanted to bring focus on the families that have been separated at the border. Having my son next to me, I cannot imagine him being taken from my arms. Families belong together which is why we must do what we can to reunite them," Longoria said in her Instagram post.

Longoria and her husband Jose Antonio "Pepe" Baston welcomed their first child on Tuesday.

In her post, the excited mother thanked the well-wishers for their warm wishes for her new baby.

"Hello, world! I introduce to you Santiago Enrique Baston. Thank you, everyone, for showering my baby boy with all your warm wishes!" she added.

Prior to the baby's birth, the 'Desperate Housewives' star on March had decided that her son would be raised on the basis of feminism as the world is in need of better men.

"I think it's important that he sees those types of role models in his life so he knows how to support it, how to applaud it and how to honour it," she further said.

Longoria married Baston in 2016.

-- ANI
JUST IN: Terrorists attack army petrol party in Shopian, J-K. No casualties reported. Army has cordoned off the area. The search operation is on.
18:47   Hyderabad techie missing since Oct last; father seeks Sushma's help
A 36-year-old software engineer from Saidabad has reportedly gone missing in the US according to his father.
In a video message posted online recently, P Bangaram, a retired engineer, appealed to External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to help trace his son.
He said his son P Raghavendra Rao went to California in December 2011 to work with a IT firm.
Bangaram said his son used to talk with him regularly.
"Since October 2017 he is not in touch with me... his whereabouts are not know. I think he is missing," Bangaram said, holding his son's photo.
Bangaram requested Swaraj and Telangana Minister for IT, Industries and NRI Affairs K T Rama Rao to help trace his son.
"Please help me...his whereabouts are not known... please help him," he said.  

-- PTI
18:34   Yashwant Sinha calls on Omar, discusses prevailing situation in J-K
Former Union minister Yashwant Sinha today called on National Conference vice-president Omar Abdullah and discussed the prevailing situation in Jammu and Kashmir.
The state was placed under Governor's rule on Wednesday, a day after the BJP withdrew support to its alliance partner PDP, prompting Mehbooba Mufti to resign as chief minister.

Sinha called on Abdullah at the former chief minister's residence, a National Conference spokesperson said.

He said Sinha discussed the prevailing situation in the state as well as recent political developments with Abdullah.

According to the spokesperson, Sinha said the restoration of peace, a democratic and representative system of governance in the state was of utmost importance.

Abdullah told Sinha that restoration of normalcy in the state remained his party's foremost concern and that relief is provided to the people, the spokesperson said.

Announcing withdrawal of support to the coalition on Tuesday, the BJP said it had become "untenable" for the party to continue in the alliance government in Jammu and Kashmir.

Both Congress and National Conference said they will not join hands with any party to form government in the state.

-- PTI
18:20   Fodder Scam: Lalu's provisional bail extended till July 3
Former Bihar Chief Minister Lalu Prasad's provisional bail has been extended till July 3, in connection with multiple fodder scam cases.

In addition, the Ranchi high court will hear the plea on the extension of the bail period on June 29.

Earlier in the month, the Rashtriya Janata Dal chief returned to Patna from Mumbai, where was undergoing treatment for his heart-related problem.

However, he was brought to Asian Heart Institute in Mumbai on Tuesday, after he complained of chest pain and low hemoglobin count.

On a related note, a special Central Bureau of Investigation court in Ranchi sentenced 37 accused to jail terms between three to 14 years in April, in connection with the aforementioned case.

Among the 37 people, public servant O. P. Diwakar was awarded imprisonment of 14 years and a fine of Rs 2 crore; while 15 other public servants were given seven years imprisonment and a fine of Rs1 crore each.

The case was registered by the CBI on April 15, 1996, in compliance with the orders of the Patna high court.

It involves fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 34.91 crore from the treasury of Dumka district in undivided Bihar between 1991 and 1996.

-- ANI
18:02   Akhilesh would have stayed CM had he listened to seniors: Shivpal Yadav
Senior Samajwadi Party leader Shivpal Singh Yadav today said if party president Akhilesh Yadav had listened to his seniors, he would have stayed the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh today.

"Had he listened to his seniors, Samajwadi Party would have retained power in the state and Akhilesh Yadav would have stayed the chief minister," the estranged uncle of the party president told newspersons.

"As kids, Akhilesh Yadav and (local MP) Dharmendra Yadav have played in my lap. I looked after them and got them married but the new generation does not listen to anyone," he lamented.

Asked about the possibility of a grand alliance against the BJP in the 2019 general polls, Shivpal said, "I will not like to raise any question on the reasoning of the party chief."

"It is my appeal to the office bearers to remain united in the interest of the party... I have always been dedicated to the party," he added. Asked about the absence of office bearers and legislators from his programmes, he said he didn't know the reason but wherever he went, people came to meet him. -- PTI
17:42   Mehbooba meets JK guv, 1st visit since resignation
Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti today called on Governor N N Vohra in Srinagar and discussed important issues related to the growth and development of the state.

The People's Democratic Party president called on Vohra at the Raj Bhavan, an official spokesman said.

He added that Mehbooba referred to certain important issues, relating to the growth and development of the state, which could not be finalised during her tenure and urged the governor to consider the same for early decisions.

The governor discussed with the former chief minister the need for all political parties and social organisations to join hands to regain the trust of the youth and restore normalcy in the Valley, the spokesman said.

This was the first meeting between the two since Mehbooba resigned as chief minister on Tuesday, after the BJP decided to pull out of its alliance with the PDP. -- PTI
Former IPS officer Vijay Kumar joins as Advisor to the Jammu and Kashmir Governor NN Vohra.
17:25   Congress listening to language of separatists: BJP
The BJP on Friday criticised the Congress Party for listening to the language of separatists. The BJP's comments came in response to Congress leader Saifuddin Soz comments on Kashmiri independence.

Addressing the media, Union Minister for Law and Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad said that the Congress under the leadership of Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi was strengthening anti-India forces.

Prasad said Ghulam Nabi Azad's comments on the Army were "irresponsible, shameful and deeply regrettable."

On Thursday, Azad courted controversy when he said the operations by the army in Jammu and Kashmir killed more civilians than terrorists.

"They (forces) take action against four terrorists and kill 20 civilians. Their action is more against civilians than terrorists. For instance, they killed 13 civilians in Pulwama and just one terrorist," Azad said in a TV interview.

Prasad continued, "Ghulam Nabi Azad insults Indian Army by saying that army killed more civilians than terrorists. This observation of Ghulam Nabi Azad is irresponsible, shameful and deeply regrettable."

Prasad questioned the Congress as to why it was standing with anti-nationals who wanted to break the country. Continuing his tirade against the grand old party, Prasad said, "What can we expect from today's leadership of the Congress, when their chairperson goes to Jawaharlal Nehru University chanting, 'We will break India into pieces' and 'Insha Allah, Insha Allah'. The Union Minister also compared the number of terrorists killed during the rule of Congress and the BJP. -- ANI
16:59   Kashmir Governor chairs important all-party meet
Kashmir Governor NN Vohra is chairing an important all party meet. NC leader Omar Abdullah and former CM Mehbooba Mufti are present at the meet. 

The meeting comes at a time when the state is under Governor's rule after the BJP pulled out of its alliance with the PDP. 

The meet comes in the backdrop of four terrorists, including the head of the Islamic State Jammu and Kashmir, being killed during a gunfight with security forces in Jammu and Kashmir's Anantnag district.

A policeman and a civilian were also killed in the exchange of fire between terrorists and security forces in a village in Srigufwara, a senior police official said.
16:26   Congress demands probe into Rs 746-cr Ahmedabad co-op bank over DeMo
The Congress today demanded a probe into reports that notes worth Rs 745.58 crore were deposited in Ahmedabad District Cooperative Bank, where BJP chief Amit Shah is a director, within five days of Prime Minister Narendra Modi announcing demonetisation on November 8, 2016.
However, just before the Congress made the demand, NABARD issued a statement, saying that the average deposit amount in the Ahmedabad DCCB was Rs 46,795 per account holder, which is lower than the average per depositor in 18 DCCBs of Gujarat. NABARD, or National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development, is the country's apex financing agency for institutions that promote rural development.

"We expect the prime minister will himself come forward and give answers on the charges against Amit Shah, whom he has appointed. There should be an independent time-bound probe into this entire scam," Congress spokesman Randeep Surjewala told reporters.

The NABARD statement also said that during the period 1.60 lakh customers of the bank deposited/exchanged demonetised notes worth Rs 746 crore which was only 15 per cent of the total deposits of the bank.

The BJP cited the NABARD statement to say that the Ahmedabad DCCB was one of the biggest in the country and that it was not out of the ordinary for it to collect such an amount.

The Congress accused Modi of having "choreographed" demonetisation to benefit scamsters to convert their black money and dubbed the decision as independent India's "biggest scam" that allowed scamsters convert their black money into white.

In a tongue-in-cheek tweet, Congress chief Rahul Gandhi congratulated Shah for being the director of a bank  that won the 1st prize in conversion of old notes to new.

"Congratulations Amit Shah ji, Director, Ahmedabad District Cooperative Bank, on your bank winning 1st prize in the conversion of old notes to new race. Rs 750 crore in 5 days!

"Millions of Indians whose lives were destroyed by demonetisation, salute your achievement," he said on Twitter.

He also used the hashtag "ShahZyadaKhaGaya" along with a picture of Shah, which was also used by the Congress on its social media handles to hit out at him.

-- PTI
16:10   Farmers' suicides have doubled, not their income: Sena to BJP
The Shiv Sena today hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi's farmers' outreach programme and said that only farmers' suicides, and not their income, have doubled.

Modi had spoken on Wednesday, via video-conferencing, to farmers in 600 districts nationwide, as part of a farm outreach programme, in which he highlighted how his government had doubled the agriculture budget to Rs 2.12 lakh crore and how it was working towards doubling farm incomes.

In a scathing attack in its mouthpiece "Saamana", the Sena said that country was "tired" of the never-ending announcements and "jumlas" of the present dispensation.

"The country is tired of never-ending announcements and jumlas of the present dispensation. The recent announcement of PM Modi of doubling farmers' income by 2022 is not a new one. The BJP's 2014 election manifesto too had promised the same thing and this had helped it come to power," the Saamana editorial said.

"He played the same old cassette," the Saamana editorial added.

It added that the farmers who brought the BJP to power had now gone into "coma". "Instead of doubling farmers' income, their condition has, on the contrary, deteriorated," it said.

The daily added that Modi, in his interaction, should have disclosed what steps had been taken to double the income of farmers in the last 4 years, and if "achche din" had arrived for them.

The party questioned that if Modi's government had taken policy decisions, why was it not reflecting on the ground. The editorial said that increase in cost of production and lack of takers for farm produce was distressing farmers. It added that banks were not giving them agricultural credit either.

"Banks roll out a red carpet for industrialists who then dupe banks. But farmers do not get money. This is discrimination. Instead of their income, suicides of farmers have doubled in the present regime. Forty thousand farmers have committed suicide between 2014 and now," the Sena claimed. -- PTI

Image: Farmers at the six-day-long march of 30,000 farmers and adivasis from Nashik to Mumbai in March.
16:06   Kolkata Police summons IAS officer for comments against WB govt
The city police has summoned a Rajasthan-based IAS officer for allegedly making derogatory remarks against the West Bengal government on a fake Eid holiday notification that circulated on social media recently.

Sanjay Dixit, who is posted as a commissioner, was summoned by the Kolkata Police earlier this week for an enquiry for the remarks on the fake notification that falsely claimed that the government had announced a five-day holiday for the festival, Kolkata Police Joint CP (crime) Praveen Tripathi said.

"Dixit has been asked to appear before them on June 29. We have issued notice well in advance," he said. -- PTI
Jammu & Kashmir: Four terrorists killed during an encounter today in Anantnag's Srigufwara have been identified as Dawood Ahmad Sofi, Majid Manzoor Dar, Aadil Rehman Bhat and Mohammad Ashraf Itoo. Incriminating material and huge quantity of ammunition was seized from the site of encounter, the Army said. 
15:27   London's Charing Cross station evacuated after bomb threats
London's Charing Cross railway station was today evacuated during the rush hour after a man climbed onto the rail tracks and claimed he had a bomb, media reports said.

Armed police have been called to deal with the man on the tracks, the BBC reported. Witnesses described several police vehicles descending upon Charing Cross station, through which both overground and underground trains run, where passengers were told to "move away" as the station was evacuated, the Telegraph reported.

"We are currently dealing with an incident at Charing Cross station following reports of a man on the tracks claiming to have a bomb," the British Transport Police said.

Officers detained the man, but there is still a heavy policy presence at the scene, the report said. Scotland Yard said they were called to assist the British Transport Police at Charing Cross train station following a report of a man "acting suspiciously".

There is disruption to services, with no trains and reduced underground services, and passengers are asked to check before travelling. -- PTI
15:21   Mamata's China visit cancelled, no confirmation of political meetings
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee's nine-day China visit cancelled. Mamata was supposed to leave for China late this evening and fly to Beijing via Singapore. She was also supposed to travel to Shanghai and return to Kolkata on June 30.

The tour was to be a mix of economic-cum-political meetings.

This is what the West Bengal CM tweeted:

"In March this year, the Union Minister of External Affairs had recommended to me to kindly consider leading a delegation to China in the coming months under the Exchange Programme of the Government of India with the International Department of the Communist Party of China.

"In response, on April 2, 2018, I appreciated her recommendation for me to lead the delegation to China under the Exchange Programme. I mentioned to her that since the interest of my country is involved, I wish to visit China sometime during last week of June, 2018.

"Thereafter, in pursuance of the letters from Chief Secretary and the Ambassador of India in China, a programme was chalked out, based on which we planned our visit in the coming week.

"Till yesterday, everything was going on well, but unfortunately, the Chinese side could not confirm the political meetings at the appropriate level as informed by our Ambassador in China.

"It has now been intimated by our Ambassador in China that the political meetings at the appropriate level under the Exchange Programme could not be confirmed. Therefore, the purpose of my visit with a delegation to China under the Exchange Programme is of no use.

"Although our Ambassador in China had tried his best to make the programme a success, non-confirmation of the political meetings at the appropriate level as proposed by the Indian Ambassador to China, at the last moment, has unfortunately compelled us to cancel the visit.

"However, I wish the continuation of the friendship of India and China in the days to come and it should strengthen further in the interest of both the countries."
15:12   Boy found murdered in washroom at Vadodara school
In an incident similar to the murder of the 2017 murder of Pradhyumn Thakur at Ryan International School, Gurgaon, in 2017, a Class 9 student was today found murdered in the washroom of a school in Vadodara.

The student was found with stab wounds. The knife with which he was allegedly attacked was also found in the washroom.

In the preliminary investigation, police suspect that a class 10 student, who entered an altercation with the deceased on Thursday, could be the suspect. The student is absconding. 
14:52   The New Yorker on Trump's immigration policy
The New Yorker cover on US President Donald Trump's controversial 'Zero Tolerance' policy on illegal immigrants shows children cowering behind the Lady Liberty. 

TIME magazine also featured Trump and a wailing child.Creating a photo illustration of the now-reversed policy of separating children from parents who illegally enter the United States, the July 2 edition of the magazine captioned it, "Welcome to America".The picture of the child, featured in the magazine, was clicked by Pulitzer prize-winning photographer John Moore.
14:38   Rahul 'congratulates' Amit Shah
Rahul Gandhi @RahulGandhi Congratulations Amit Shahji , Director, Ahmedabad Dist. Cooperative Bank, on your bank winning 1st prize in the conversion of old notes to new race. 750 Cr in 5 days! Millions of Indians whose lives were destroyed by Demonetisation, salute your achievement. #ShahZyadaKhaGaya

The image was tweeted by @RahulGandhi.

Read this for context.
14:13   Malegaon blast: HC admits Purohit's plea seeking discharge from case
The Bombay High Court today admitted a plea filed by Lt Col Prasad Shrikant Purohit, an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, challenging previous judgements of the HC and a special trial court that had rejected his discharge from the case.

On December 18, 2017, the high court had refused to quash a government sanction that permitted Purohit's prosecution in the blast case. Earlier on December 27, a special NIA court had dismissed his plea to discharge him from the case.

Purohit then approached the Supreme Court, and based on the apex court's directions, approached the HC again earlier this year arguing that the sanction granted by the government to prosecute him in the case, was wrong in law.

A prior sanction for Purohit's prosecution was required since he was a serving Army officer at the time. On January 17, 2009, this sanction was issued by the Additional Chief Secretary of the Maharashtra Home Department.

Purohit's lawyer Shrikant Shivde, however, has maintained that under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), the state law and judiciary department, which is the sanctioning authority, has to constitute an appropriate authority and seek its report first.

In his case, the sanction was given in January 2009 but the authority was appointed only in October 2010, he has argued. The sanction in Purohit's case thus, was not valid under the provisions of the UAPA and hence, courts couldn't have taken cognisance of the charges against him, Shivde has maintained.

In the hearing conducted today, a bench of Justices Ranjit More and Anuja Prabhudessai, admitted the plea and said arguments over sanction will be heard from July 16.

The National Investigating, the prosecution in the case, had earlier opposed Purohit's plea. NIA counsel, advocate Sandesh Patil, had argued that as per procedure, Purohit must file a fresh plea before the special court seeking discharge on the point of sanction.

The bench also suggested that the NIA refrain from proceeding with the trial in the special court until the issue of sanction vide Purohit's plea was decided by the high court. Patil, however, told the bench today that while the special NIA court had scheduled the framing of charges in the case for today, it was unlikely that the same would happen since the NIA court wasn't "ready yet".

Six persons were killed and over a 100 were injured when an explosive device strapped on a motorcycle went off near a mosque in Malegaon in Maharashtra, on September 29, 2008.

On December 27 last year, a special NIA court had dismissed pleas filed by Purohit, his co-accused Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, and six others seeking that they be discharge from the case. It had however, given them partial relief by dropping all charges against them under the stringent MCOCA. Purohit and his co-accused are still facing charges under the UAPA and some provisions of the Indian Penal Code.-- PTI
13:41   BJP offers Saifuddin Soz 'one-way ticket' to Pakistan
The Bharatiya Janata Party on Friday criticised Congress leader and former Union Minister Saifuddin Soz for his statement on Kashmiris' independence and advised him to move Pakistan.

Soz had backed former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf's statement on Kashmiri independence and said if given a chance Kashmiris would want to stay independent.

Speaking to ANI, BJP leader Subramanian Swamy said whoever wants to stay in India should abide by the Constitution, and if they like Musharraf, then, they should move to Pakistan.

"As a central minister, he (Saifuddin Soz) benefited from Centre's power when his daughter was kidnapped by JKLF. There's no use helping these people. Whoever wants to stay here can stay abiding by the Constitution, if they like Musharraf we'll give them a one-way ticket (to Pakistan)," Swamy said.

Meanwhile, BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi condemned the "irresponsible" statement by Soz and said that one should not give any such remarks that boost the morale of separatists and terrorists in the Valley.

"Kashmir is itself a critical issue. The Separatists and the terrorists have hijacked the growth, development, and peace of Kashmir. We all must come together forward to defeat such powers. One should not give any such statements that will boost the morale of separatists and terrorists in the Valley," Naqvi said.

Echoing similar sentiments, BJP's estranged ally Shiv Sena also cornered Soz over the statement and demanded clarification from Congress president Rahul Gandhi.

Soz had also said, "Musharraf said Kashmiris don't want to merge with Pakistan, their first choice is independence. The statement was true then and remains true now also. I say the same but I know that it is not possible."
13:29   Lynch mob victim dragged as no ambulance available: UP Police
Days after the lynching of a man in Hapur allegedly over cow slaughter, a picture of the victim being dragged by a crowd in the presence of policemen has appeared on social media forcing the Uttar Pradesh police to apologise.

Kasim (45) was lynched following a minor tiff with a man on a motorcycle in Bacheda village in Pilkhuwa area on Monday. The motorcyclist called his friends who beat up Kasim and his friend Samayuddin.

In a tweet, the UP police last night apologised for the incident and said that the three policemen seen in the picture have been transferred to the Police Lines and an inquiry has been ordered. DGP Headquarters Uttar Pradesh police said "this picture seems to have been taken when the police had reached the spot to shift the injured to the police vehicle and because of the non availability of an ambulance at that moment, the victim was unfortunately carried this way. Admittedly, the policemen should have been more sensitive in their conduct . The humane concerns got ignored in the urgency of saving a life and maintaining law and order. As is clear from the picture the victim was rushed to the hospital by policemen in a UP100 PRV," it added.

The Hapur police had claimed Kasim and his friend were assaulted after a scuffle with some men from the neighbouring village. Police had registered a murder case and arrested two people. "There are some rumours of a cow slaughter angle but they have not been found to be true in the investigations so far," the SP Sankalp had stated. -- PTI
13:19   Ahmedabad bank collected highest amount of banned notes among DCCBs
A district cooperative bank, Ahmedabad District Cooperative Bank (ADCB), netted the highest deposits among such banks of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes that were abruptly demonetised on November 8, 2016, according to RTI replies received by a Mumbai activist.  Read the report here.
13:12   Justice Chelameshwar retires today
Rajdeep Sardesai @sardesairajdeep tweets: Justice Chelameshwar retires from SC today; he and wife packed their bags, left their Govt bungalow at 5 am for his village. Bungalow handed over exactly as he got it 6 years go! How many netas would do this? Inspiring! Salute you sir! Not everyone is trapped in VVIP culture!
13:09   Kharge to head Maharashtra Congress
Congress today appointed Mallikarjun Kharge as the Maharashtra Congress in-charge. Congress President Rahul Gandhi also appoints JD Seelam and Mahendra Joshi as the Secretary and Shashi Kant Sharma as the Joint Secretary, of the All India Congress Committee.
12:56   KPs, Sikhs banished, who is threatening human rights, asks Jaitley
Arun Jaitley @arunjaitley on the escalating terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir.

"In the State of J&K, who is threatening the human rights of the citizens? The entire Kashmiri Pandit community has been banished from the State. Initially spared but after the Chittissinghpura Massacre in the year 2000, most of the Sikh community has moved out," Jaitley tweeted.

The BJP government has maintained that a tough stance or as former J-K CM Mehbooba Mufti said, a muscular approach, was necessary to fight terrorism.

The elite National Security Guards, popularly known as 'Black Cats', are likely to be deployed soon in counter-militancy operations in Jammu and Kashmir which was placed under governor's rule on Wednesday, officials said.

Today, Congress leader Saifuddin Soz said that former Pakistani dictator Pervez Musharraf was right when he said Kashmiris prefer independence to joining Pakistan, reported ANI news agency.

"Musharraf said Kashmiris don't want to merge with Pakistan, their first choice is independence. The statement was true then and remains true now also. I say the same, but I know that it is not possible," said Soz to ANI.
12:39   Joy ride
In Karnataka, JCB operator Chetan and his wife Mamata rode home sitting in the bucket of Chetan's JCB vehicle after getting married on 18 June in Puttur's Parpunja. Pic: ANI
12:36   Four terrorists gunned down in Anantnag encounter
A total of 4 terrorists were gunned down by security forces in Anantnag's Srigufwara area, says DGP SP Vaid.  Security forces launched a cordon and search operation in Khiram in Srigufwara area of the south Kashmir district this morning after receiving specific intelligence input about the presence of militants in the area, a police official said. He said the search operation turned into a gunfight after the militants fired upon the forces, who retaliated. He said clashes broke out near the encounter site as a group of youth started pelting stones on the forces who are engaged in the operation. Security forces used force on the protestors and several civilians have suffered injuries, the official said.
London station evacuated after reports of man on track with bomb, say police: Reports
12:18   2 men thrashed in Gujarat on suspicion of being kidnappers
Two people were allegedly thrashed on suspicion of being kidnappers in Gujarat's Dwarka district.

Police said that an audio clip which claimed that 300 men running a child-lifting racket were on the loose went viral on WhatsApp few days ago. The gang is alleged to have abducted children belonging to the age group of five to six years.

"An investigation in the matter is underway," said Assistant Superintendent of Police, Prashant Sumbe while talking to the media.

Earlier, in a similar incident, two men were lynched on suspicion of being child lifter in Assam's Karbi Anglong on June 11. -- ANI
The Enforcement Directorate moves the special court to declare Vijay Mallya  a fugitive offender and confiscate assets worth Rs 12,500 crore under the new legislation: Officials.
12:07   Mobile Internet services blocked in three Kashmir districts
Mobile Internet services were today snapped in three districts of Kashmir Valley, including the summer capital, as a precautionary measure to maintain law and order. The services have been barred in Srinagar, Anantnag and Pulwama districts of the valley, a police official said.

He said the decision to suspend the services has been taken as a precautionary measure to maintain law and order. An encounter is going on in Anantnag district in south Kashmir in which two militants, reportedly affiliated to Islamic State Jammu and Kashmir, have been killed. One of the militants is believed to be from Srinagar. -- PTI
2008 Malegaon blast case: Bombay High Court admits discharge application of Lt. Colonel Purohit; final hearing in the case to be held on July 16.
12:00   Anantnag encounter: Terrorists affiliated to IS killed
Two militants reportedly affiliated to the Islamic State Jammu and Kashmir (ISJK) and a policeman were killed today while several civilians injured during an encounter between ultras and security forces in Anantnag district of Jammu and Kashmir, police said.

"Encounter at Khiram Srigufara on, two terrorists down, firing still continues. Unfortunate we lost one colleague of J&K Police,' Director General of Police (DGP) S P Vaid Tweeted.

In another tweet, the DGP said the militants were reportedly from the ISJK. "Terrorists reportedly affiliated to ISJK,' Vaid said.

Security forces launched a cordon and search operation in Khiram in Srigufwara area of the south Kashmir district this morning after receiving specific intelligence input about the presence of militants in the area, a police official said.

He said the search operation turned into a gunfight after the militants fired upon the forces, who retaliated. The gunfight was going on when last reports came in, the official said.

He said clashes broke out near the encounter site as a group of youth started pelting stones on the forces who are engaged in the operation. Security forces used force on the protestors and several civilians have suffered injuries, the official said. Further details were awaited. -- PTI

Image: Director General of Police S P Vaid.
11:47   Hero or War Criminal? Churchill in Retrospect
"History," Winston Churchill said, "will judge me kindly, because I intend to write it myself.' He needn't have bothered. Of the great mass murderers of the 20th century, he is the only one to have completely escaped the odium deservingly bestowed on his rivals Hitler and Stalin, to have been crowned with a Nobel Prize (for Literature, no less), and now even with an Oscar."

Shashi Tharoor's essay on the former British PM. Do read
11:09   Two new balls in ODIs is recipe for disaster: Tendulkar
Concerned by a spate of run fests recently, Indian cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar has criticised the use of two new balls in ODIs, saying it is "a perfect recipe for disaster".

Mostly a reticent commentator, Tendulkar shared his point of view after watching England batsmen go on a rampage against Australia in the last two ODIs.

"Having 2 new balls in one day cricket is a perfect recipe for disaster as each ball is not given the time to get old enough to reverse. We haven't seen reverse swing, an integral part of the death overs, for a long time," Tendulkar tweeted from his official handle.

England posted a world record 481 for 6 against Australia in the third ODI, bettering their own record of 444 vs Pakistan.

In the next ODI, England chased down a target of 312 inside 45 overs. Tendulkar's view was endorsed by Pakistan's legendary master of reverse swing Waqar Younis.

"Reason why we don't produce many attacking fast bowlers..They all very defensive in their approach...always looking for change ups..totally agree with you @sachin_rt reverse swing is almost vanished," Younis tweeted in response Tendulkar.

The ICC had introduced two new balls from two ends after amending it's playing rules back in October 2011.

Interestingly, BCCI was one board that protested the move questioning the diminishing role of spinners due to this new rule tweak. However, ICC has stuck to it in its efforts to make the game batsman-friendly.

The logic given was the discolouration of the white ball during the end of the innings and batsmen not being able to sight it properly especially in the dusty sub-continental conditions under lights.

The current rule means that the white kookaburra is bowled for only 25 overs from one end. Therefore when the spinners, who are introduced in the middle overs, are handed the ball, they effectively bowl with a ball that is hardly 8 to 9 overs old. Even by the time, a spinner finishes his spell, the ball is still only 20 overs old. Therefore, unlike earlier era, the ball doesn't get soft, which would make it difficult for the batsmen to hit through the line like they do nowadays at the back-end of the innings. The chance of reverse swing has decreased even further with the use of two new balls.
-- PTI
10:47   'I was just ashamed to continue any longer in the BJD'
Baijayant Panda, former Biju Janata Dal MP from Kendrapara, was openly critical of his party leadership in the past one year. So, the news that he had finally quit the party caused little surprise. Panda says the party has changed in the recent years as a new coterie has taken hold of its president Naveen Patnaik, the chief minister of Odisha. Read the interview here.
10:40   Kate Spade's heartbroken father dies ahead of her funeral
The family of fashion designer Kate Spade says her father died on the eve of her funeral. The family released a statement saying he'd been unwell and was heartbroken over her suicide.

Spade will be laid to rest yesterday in her hometown Kansas City, Missouri.

The 55-year-old was found dead in her apartment in New York on June 5.

Her death was later ruled a suicide by hanging.
10:37   Boy jailed for refusing free vegetables to cops
The Bihar government has ordered a high-level inquiry into the matter of a minor boy being jailed for three months for allegedly refusing to give free vegetables to policemen in Patna.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has directed a higher official to conduct an inquiry and submit a report within two days.

Meanwhile, the Bihar Police have also took note of the incident and assured an investigation into it.

Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Manu Maharaj told ANI, "It's a matter of investigation. We have no information of any such incident. So we will have to talk to his family. If anyone is found to be at fault, they won't be spared."

The 14-year-old was apprehended by policemen on March 19. While apprehending the boy, policemen refused to reply to the queries raised by his family.

The father of the boy, Sukhpal Singh said, "After looking for him at various police stations, we were told by the Patrakar Nagar police station that he has been arrested in connection with a motorcycle theft case. On the Aadhaar card the age of our son is 14 years but police have mentioned 18 years in FIR to register a case against him. It's been three months and three days that he is in jail."

According to the father, when they met the boy in jail, he alleged that the policemen were miffed with him as he had refused to give them vegetables for free. -- ANI
10:29   Kashmir: Policeman injured in terrorist attack succumbs
Policeman HC Habibullah, who got injured during an attack on a police party by terrorists in Srinagar's Karan Nagar last week, succumbed to his injuries on Friday.

The Jammu and Kashmir Police confirmed the demise of Habibullah, who was undergoing treatment at SKIMS hospital in the state. Since a few days, the state has been witnessing a huge spurt in terror activity.

Recently, veteran journalist and editor of Rising Kashmir newspaper Shujaat Bukhari was shot dead by terrorists in Press Colony in Srinagar.

The same day, the bullet-ridden body of Rifleman Aurangzeb, who was abducted by terrorists from Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama, was recovered from Gusoo area.

On a related note, the Central Government earlier this week announced that there would be no extension of the ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir.In this regard, the Ministry of Home Affairs directed the security forces to take all necessary actions as earlier to prevent terrorists from launching attacks and indulging in violence and killings.

Security operations were earlier suspended in the wake of the holy month of Ramzan. -- ANI
09:50   Trump directs officials to keep illegal immigrant families together during the immigration process
US President Donald Trump today said he has directed his administration to keep illegal immigrant families together during the immigration process, after he backed down on the controversial migrant family separations policy.

Trump also blamed Opposition Democrats for the current crisis on the US southern border, which he said is causing tremendous damage and destruction.

"I'm directing the Health and Human Services, the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice to work together to keep illegal immigrant families together during the immigration process and to reunite these previously separated groups," he told his Cabinet members during a White House Cabinet meeting.

He said the only real solution is for the Congress to close the "catch-and-release loopholes" that have fuelled the child smuggling industry, and advocated for an immigration bill.

"They don't care about the children. They don't care about the injury. They don't care about the problems. All they do is they obstruct. We should be able to make an immigration bill that can really solve the problem, not just this. This is one aspect of it. This is one very important, but small, aspect of it," he said.

President Trump urged Democratic lawmakers to come out with a legislative solution to the immigration process, which, he said, needs to be merit-based.

"My administration is also acting swiftly to address the illegal immigration crisis on the southern border. Loopholes in our immigration laws, all supported by extremist open-border Democrats and that's what they are. They're extremist, open-border Democrats," he alleged.

These loopholes, he said, have led to massive child smuggling industry. "It's exactly what it's become. Human traffickers are making a fortune. It's a disgrace," he added. -- PTI
09:27   Yoga has no religion, hope it can become a binding force for world: Modi
As millions around the world celebrated the fourth International Yoga Day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi hoped that yoga can become a "binding force" for the world, asserting it has no religion and contributes to physical and mental well-being of individuals.
Modi made these remarks while inaugurating the 'YO1 Luxury Nature Cure Centre' in the Catskills area of New York state yesterday via video-link.
"The word yoga means to unite. Therefore, this surge of interest in yoga fills me with hope. I hope that yoga can become a binding force for the world," he said in his video address to inaugurate the centre, the brainchild of Rajya Sabha MP and Essel Group Chairman Subhash Chandra.
The telecast was viewed by Chandra and several members of the Indian-American community at the centre, including Indian-American hotelier Sant Singh Chatwal.
"I always believe that yoga has no religion. It contains practical steps which can benefit everyone, even those who do not consider themselves religious," Modi said.
The Prime Minister said in just three years the International Yoga Day has grown into a worldwide public movement and become an integral part of public life in many countries.
"Its impact has expanded far beyond its day of observance," he said, adding that across nations, the day has become an occasion for initiations of millions of people inspired by the spirit of yoga, who commit themselves to its pursuit.
He added that several people, who already practice yoga, re-dedicate themselves to its pursuit on this day.
Lauding the opening of the centre, Modi appreciated that it will create about 2,000 direct and indirect jobs in the area.
"It will thus be a responsible member of the community," he said, adding that the facility will also work to bring the benefit of yoga to all those who come there and contribute significantly to the wellness movement in the US.
Underscoring the global impact of yoga, Modi said interest in the exercise form is growing rapidly in western countries.
"It would be no exaggeration to say that yoga has been appreciated a lot by the western world. In the US alone, more than 20 million people are practicing yoga and this number is increasing at an average of five per cent every year," he said. -- PTI

Image: Prime Minister Narendra Modi performs yoga during a mass yoga event on 4th International Yoga Day at  Forest Research Institute ground in Dehradun on Thursday, June 21, 2018. Photograph: Manvender Vashist/PTI Photo
09:22   Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Charles Krauthammer dies at 68
Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Charles Krauthammer, whose weekly column was syndicated to more than 400 publications worldwide, has died at the age of 68.

Krauthammer had announced on June 8 that doctors had given him just weeks time to live, reported the Variety.

In a statement he had written, "This is the final verdict. My fight is over."

Krauthammer said he had been recovering from the surgery since last year to remove a cancerous tumor in his abdomen, and while he has been gradually making his way back to health, recent tests showed that cancer has returned and was spreading rapidly.

"I wish to thank my doctors and caregivers, whose efforts have been magnificent. My dear friends, who have given me a lifetime of memories and whose support has sustained me through these difficult months. And all of my partners at The Washington Post, Fox News, and Crown Publishing," he further wrote.

Born on March 13, 1950, in New York City, Krauthammer's family moved to Montreal when he was young, and he later attended McGill University before pursuing a medical degree at Harvard.

While in his first year studying at Harvard Medical School, Krauthammer became permanently paralyzed from the waist down after a diving board accident that severed his spinal cord at C5.

In the 1980s, Krauthammer embarked on a career as a columnist and political commentator.

In August 2017, due to his battle with cancer, Krauthammer stopped writing his column and serving as Fox News contributor. -- ANI
09:08   Melania wears 'I don't care' jacket on trip to migrant children
United States First Lady Melania Trump has surprised the world by visiting child migrants on the United States-Mexico border -- but it was her choice of clothing for the trip that stunned the Internet.

As she was boarding a plane to Texas border, she appeared to be wearing a Zara jacket with the caption: "I really dont care. Do U?"

Photos taken as she boarded the plane at Andrews airbase didnt capture the jackets full text, but it seems to be the same as the one is available from the Zara website.

According to a pool report, Trumps communications director Stephanie Grisham told a reporter via email: "Its a jacket. There was no hidden message. After todays important visit to Texas, I hope the media isnt going to choose to focus on her wardrobe. 
However, President Donald Trump later suggested in a tweet that his wife was trolling the 'fake news media' rather than traumatised children.

Trump tweeted: "I REALLY DONT CARE, DO U?" written on the back of Melania's jacket, refers to the Fake News Media. Melania has learned how dishonest they are, and she truly no longer cares!

This is not the first time that Melania's fashion choices raised eyebrows. 

Last year the First Lady wore needle-thin high stiletto heels when she went to visit Hurricane Harvey disaster site.

Photograph: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters 
08:47   Trump says he is looking into possibility of meeting Putin
United States President Donald Trump said that he is looking into the possibility of meeting his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.
"We are looking at the possibility (of meeting Putin)," he told reporters, responding to a query on the speculation of their meeting.
Trump, who recently held a historic summit with North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore, said he is also planning to meet other world leaders as well.
Earlier in the day, the White House said US National Security Advisor John Bolton will be travelling to Moscow next week to discuss a possible meeting between Trump and Putin. -- PTI
08:30   Encounter breaks out between security forces and terrorists in J&K
An encounter broke out between terrorists and security forces in Anantnag district of Jammu and Kashmir this morning, police said.
Security forces launched a cordon and search operation in Srigufwara area of the district in south Kashmir after receiving specific intelligence input about the presence of terrorists, a police official said.
He said the search operation turned into a gunfight after the terrorists fired upon the forces, who retaliated.
The gunfight was going on when last reports came in, the official said, adding further details were awaited. -- PTI  
00:24   Urban moms avoid breastfeeding to maintain figure: Anandiben
Madhya Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel said women in urban areas do not like to breastfeed their children as they fear it will spoil their figure.

"Women in cities these days don't breastfeed babies as they fear their figure will be affected, the baby is fed milk through bottles since birth. As bottles break, one day their 'naseeb' (destiny) will also break," Patel said on Wednesday while attending an event at an Anganwadi centre in Mayakhedi, Indore.

Before the start of the event, Patel asked her security personals to not stand in front of the women in the audience and go at the back.

The governor advised pregnant women to register themselves with the Anganwadi centres to avail the benefits of government schemes.

She also urged women to take advantage of the various schemes by the central government.   -- ANI