Wed, 27 June 2018
Nirav Modi created dummy companies in India and abroad: ED

Timeline  Refresh

23:35   Nirav Modi created dummy companies in India and abroad: ED
The Enforcement Directorate, in its charge sheet, mentioned that absconding jeweler Nirav Modi created dummy companies in India as well as abroad for money laundering activities, in its chargesheet filed on March 24.

In a chargesheet filed on March 24 this year, the ED said, "Nirav Modi created dummy companies abroad, and few in India too, namely Bentley Properties Pvt Ltd, Mac Business Enterprises Pvt Ltd, Firestone Trading Pvt Ltd etc with the purpose of acquiring properties & laundering ill-gotten money."

"There were few companies only created in order to facilitate layering and laundering of funds obtained fraudulently from PNB and to camouflage the real intention & identity of beneficiaries of the funds siphoned off from PNB," the chargesheet further pointed out.

According to the officials, the 12,000-page ED chargesheet, or the prosecution complaint, was filed before a special Mumbai court under various sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act 2002.

The criminal complaint was filed against Nirav, his associates and businesses and the entire gamut of issuance of fake Letters of Undertaking by Punjab National Bank to his firms in alleged connivance of bank officials.

-- ANI
22:54   US postpones 2+2 dialogue with India due to 'unavoidable reasons'
The ministry of external affairs on Wednesday said the US has postponed the 2+2 dialogue with India, scheduled to be held next week, due to "unavoidable reasons.

The change in plans comes on a day US president Donald Trump accused New Delhi of charging as high as 100 per cent tariff on import of American products.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo spoke with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and expressed regret over the dialogue postponement.

After several delays, India and US had planned to hold their first 2+2 dialogue on July 6 in Washington. 

Apart from Swaraj who was to meet Pompeo, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman was scheduled to travel to the US to hold talks with her American counterpart, defence secretary James Mattis.

The officials were to focus on strengthening strategic, security, and defense cooperation as the United States and India jointly confront global challenges, the US state department has announced.

The meeting was earlier scheduled to take place in April and preparations were well under way when President Trump unexpectedly fired the then secretary of state Rex Tillerson. 
22:37   'How sad!' says Merkel spokesman after Germany World Cup exit
Chancellor Angela Merkel's spokesman shared the shock of a nation over Germany's stunning World Cup exit today, tweeting "How sad!" after the defending champions' 2-0 defeat against South Korea.
"Not our World Cup - How sad! There will be other tournaments where we can cheer again," Steffen Seibert wrote.

Football-mad Germany was plunged into mourning after the title holders were knocked out of the group stages for the first time since 1938.
"A historic disgrace," Der Spiegel news weekly called it.
"Speechless," read a tweet on the German team's official Twitter account.
22:20   LeT chief slams report linking Bukhari killing to his outfit
The Lashkar-e-Tayiba today derided reports about its cadres' involvement in the killing of journalist Shujaat Bukhari as an attempt to defame the outfit. 
In an email statement to mediapersons, LeT chief Mahmood Shah said,  "We would like to call their (Indian Army's) bluff.  If Indian forces are truly convinced that this heinous crime was committed by mujahideen (LeT militants), then they should have no objection to an independent investigation of this murder by a neutral country such as China or Russia." 

"We would fully cooperate in the investigation and accept the findings of the investigating agency," he said.

Earlier in the day, police officials in Srinagar said three people involved in the killing of the veteran journalist have been identified by the Jammu and Kashmir Police and one of them is escaped LeT terrorist Naveed Jatt, a Pakistani national.
The LeT Chief said these reports were attempt to "demonise and defame" his outfit. 

Bukhari, the editor-in-chief of local daily Rising Kashmir, was killed on June 14 by three men outside his office at the press enclave here. Two of his PSOs were also killed in the attack.

Hours after the sensational killing, police had released CCTV grabs of the attackers, who were riding a motorcycle.
22:20   LeT chief slams report linking Bukhari killing to his outfit
The Lashkar-e-Tayiba today derided reports about its cadres' involvement in the killing of journalist Shujaat Bukhari as an attempt to defame the outfit. 
In an email statement to mediapersons, LeT chief Mahmood Shah said,  "We would like to call their (Indian Army's) bluff.  If Indian forces are truly convinced that this heinous crime was committed by mujahideen (LeT militants), then they should have no objection to an independent investigation of this murder by a neutral country such as China or Russia." 

"We would fully cooperate in the investigation and accept the findings of the investigating agency," he said.

Earlier in the day, police officials in Srinagar said three people involved in the killing of the veteran journalist have been identified by the Jammu and Kashmir Police and one of them is escaped LeT terrorist Naveed Jatt, a Pakistani national.
The LeT Chief said these reports were attempt to "demonise and defame" his outfit. 

Bukhari, the editor-in-chief of local daily Rising Kashmir, was killed on June 14 by three men outside his office at the press enclave here. Two of his PSOs were also killed in the attack.

Hours after the sensational killing, police had released CCTV grabs of the attackers, who were riding a motorcycle.
21:56   Joe Jackson, father of Michael Jackson, dies at 89
Joe Jackson, father and early manager of the Jacksons, has died at age 89 on Wednesday (June 27) morning after a battle with cancer.

The Jackson family patriarch was born in 1928 and married wife Katherine in 1949. He went on to have 11 children.

As a manager, Jackson launched the career of son Michael Jackson -- along with Jackie, Jermaine, Marlon and Tito -- out of Gary, Indiana US, as the Jackson 5 in the 1960s. 

The Jackson 5 signed with Berry Gordy's Motown Records, and in 1970, their first three singles ("I Want You Back," "ABC" and "The Love You Save") all went to No 1 on the Billboard Hot 100. 

Jackson suffered a stroke while visiting Brazil in 2015 and was again hospitalized after a car he was riding in was involved in an accident in Las Vegas in 2017.

Although Jackson was known for his iron-fisted management of his children, in 2002, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame honored him as Best Entertainment Manager of All Time.
21:34   Trudeau slammed for paying $17,000 to chef for meal during India visit
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's opponents, the Canadian Conservative Party, slammed him for taking too many days off, too often.
The Canadian Conservative Party's tweet came soon after uproar over his $1.5 million trip and blasted him for taking advantage of his office's itinerary, Sputnik reported.

"Justin Trudeau is taking yet another "personal" day today, the tweet read.

The post, which was later deleted also provided a link to a special web page:, to reveal the vacations the Canadian Prime Minister has taken since the start of his term.

After returning from India, in February, Justin Trudeau faced a backlash over the spending.

According to the opposition, Justin Trudeau spent a little over $1.5 million on the trip and they also accused him of worsening bilateral ties with India.

The Canadian Prime Minister was also slammed for paying $17,044 to Vikram Vij, a chef from Vancouver to prepare a meal for a meeting in New Delhi.

-- ANI
21:02   'If ED, CBI object proposal to sell assets, it'd show agenda beyond dues recovery'
Fugitive liquor baron Vijay Mallya, who has filed an application before the Karnataka high court seeking nod to sell assets worth Rs 13,900 crore to repay debt, today said if ED and CBI object to the proposal it will show that there is an agenda against him beyond recovery of dues.

In a series of tweets a day after claiming that he has become the "poster boy" of bank default and a lightning rod for public anger, Mallya said he will continue to make every effort to settle dues with the banks.

In his statement yesterday, Mallya had said that UBHL (United Breweries Holdings Ltd) and himself have filed an application before the Karnataka High Court on June 22, 2018, setting out available assets of approximately Rs 13,900 crore.

"We have requested the court's permission to allow us to sell these assets under judicial supervision and repay creditors, including the public sector banks such amounts as may be directed and determined by the court," he tweeted.

Mallya further said, "If the criminal agencies such as ED (Enforcement Directorate) or CBI object to the sale of assets, it will clearly demonstrate that there is an agenda against me 'the Poster Boy' beyond recovery of dues".

Claiming that he will continue to "make every effort, in good faith to settle with the banks", he said, "If politically motivated factors interfere, there is nothing I can do".

Seeking to clarify on questions over the timing of the statement he made yesterday, Mallya said it was because of the filing of the application before the high court.

Yesterday, speaking over the controversy surrounding him in the over Rs 9,000-crore Kingfisher Airlines loan default case, he denied that he was a wilful defaulter.

Tired of "relentless pursuit" of him by "the government and its criminal agencies", he had said that he even wrote letters to both the prime minister and the finance minister on April 15, 2016 over the matter.

-- PTI
20:59   Shah to address public meeting in Purulia tomorrow
BJP president Amit Shah will address a public meeting tomorrow in this backward West Bengal district bordering Jharkhand, where the saffron party made significant gains in last month's rural polls over the ruling Trinamool Congress.

The party claims that three of its supporters were killed in Purulia before and after the rural polls in the state.

Shah arrived in Kolkata today on a two-day visit to the state.

The BJP has named the podium, from which Shah will address the rally, "Shahid Jagannath Tudu, Trilochan Mahato, Dulal Kumar Smaran Mancha" -- in the memory of its three "supporters", sources in the party said.

The TMC, however, claimed that the three men had died for different reasons.

"While one died in an accident, the second committed suicide and the third was a case of murder, which is being investigated by the state CID," TMC Purulia district president Shantiram Mahato said.

The rally ground has been covered with a huge steel-frame "shamiana" to ensure that those in the audience do not get drenched in the intermittent monsoon showers.

"We are expecting a gathering of three lakh people," an upbeat BJP Purulia district president Bidyasagar Chakraborty said, while supervising the preparations at the rally ground.

-- PTI
20:37   Gauri Lankesh murder accused agrees for narco analysis test, says lawyer
K T Naveen Kumar, an accused in the activist-journalist Gauri Lankesh murder case, has agreed to undergo a narco analysis test, his lawyer said today.

"My client has agreed to undergo a narco analysis test to prove his innocence in the Gauri Lankesh murder case. We have applied for it in the city civil court," counsel A Vedamurthy said.

A city civil and Sessions Court yesterday had sought to know from Kumar whether he was ready to undergo the narco analysis test after his counsel alleged that the Special Investigation Team probing the murder did not conduct any test earlier.

Making submissions before the court yesterday, Vedamurthy had alleged SIT had taken Kumar for a narco analysis test in Gujarat, but it did not inform him, as per court directions.

"It neither took us as accomplice to Kumar for narco analysis in Gujarat, nor conducted any test on him. We were not informed about it also. So by the time our advocate reached Gujarat, the SIT team was ready to leave with Kumar, saying
he refused to undergo the test," he said.

Vedamurthy alleged that no documents related to Rs 1.10 lakh payment to Forensic Science Laboratory for narco analysis was furnished.

He also alleged that the chargesheet filed by the SIT against Kumar was full of discrepancies.

-- PTI
20:17   US, Russia agree to hold summit in 'third country': Kremlin
US President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin will meet in a third country at a date to be announced, the Kremlin said today.  

"I can say that we have reached an agreement to hold a summit, we have even agreed on the time and the place of the meeting, and we will announce this obviously with our American colleagues tomorrow," said Russian presidential aide Yuri Ushakov, adding that the meeting would be in a "third country".
19:55   No danger to Kumaraswamy government: Deve Gowda
Amid strains in the ruling Congress-JD-S coalition government in Karnataka, former PrimeMinister and JD-S supremo H D Deve Gowda today said his son and Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy will present the budget on July 5 and there would be no danger to his government.

"Kumaraswamy will present the budget on July 5. Thereis no anxiety, he will do it. The budget will get passed by July 12," Gowda said.
Speaking to reporters in New Delhi, he said "There will be no danger to the government. There is anxiety among you (the media) go back with satisfaction."   

About former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah's opposition to budget presentation, Gowda said, "Let there be no discussion on this (topic), the budget will be presented, the matter ends."

Gowda is in Delhi to attend the meeting of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence, of which he is a member.

However, his visit to the national capital has fuelled speculation that he may be meeting senior Congress leaders.

Gowda on his part clarified that no such meeting has been scheduled with any Congress leaders.

-- PTI
19:32   US wants India to stop Iran oil imports by November 4
The United States will insist India and all other buyers of Iranian crude must cut imports to zero by November 4 when sanctions go into effect against Iran, a senior state department official said and warned there will be no waivers, unlike the previous round.

The official said the message has been delivered already to allies in Europe and Asia and an interagency team of state and treasury department officials will be visiting India, China and other countries in the coming weeks.

The official, who spoke to reporters on background, said India and China will be subject to the same sanctions that everybody elses is and yes, we will certainly be requesting that their oil imports go to zero, without question.

I would be hesitant to say zero waivers ever. I think the predisposition would be no, were not granting waivers, the officials said to a question about granting waivers.

Importers of Iranian crude face the risk of being hit by secondary sanctions by the United States that could take various forms, but the most significant of which would be being blocked from the American financial system, which no country, developed or underdeveloped, can afford.

India is the second largest buyer of Iranian crude after China, and Iran is the third largest supplier to India after Saudi Arabia and Iraq, and New Delhi has watched with familiar misgivings the Trump administrations decision to tear up the Iran deal past May and announcement that sanctions will be back in force in two tranches by November 4.
US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley met Prime Minister Narendra Modi, earlier today. She is on a three-day visit to India.

Photograph: ANI/Twitter
19:02   Survey ranking India most dangerous country for women inaccurate: WCD
The women and child development ministry today dismissed as "clearly inaccurate" a survey that ranked India the world's most dangerous country for women, saying the report is based on perception of "unknown persons".
A senior WCD official said the ministry has asked the Thomson Reuters Foundation, which conducted the survey, for details on the experts to ascertain the report's  authenticity, but no reply has been received as yet.

The Thomson Reuters Foundation, after a survey of about 550 experts on women's issues, has ranked India the world's most dangerous country for women, followed by war-torn Afghanistan and Syria, due to the high risk of sexual violence.

The WCD said the Reuters used a flawed methodology to arrive at the conclusion. 

"The ranking is based on a perception poll based on responses to simply six questions. The results are not derived from any kind of data and are solely based on inherently subjective opinions," the ministry said in a statement. 

"Further, the poll has been conducted with 548 respondents, which have been defined by Reuters as experts focused on women's issues'. However, information on their designation, credentials, country of expertise or qualifications is not available thus reliability is an issue," it said.

The methodology given by the organisation also includes policy-makers' as one of the respondents. However, no information or opinion has been sought from this ministry regarding this poll, it added.

"India is far ahead of many countries in most of these areas and has also seen significant improvement in indicators when compared with its own performance in previous years. Therefore, the ranking of India is a surprise and clearly inaccurate," it said.

An Indian woman is in a much better position than a number of women in other countries around the world. Facts clearly show that the opinion of India as the most dangerous country for women is not a reflection of the reality, the statement said.

The poll was conducted online, by phone and in person between March 26 and May 4 with an even spread across Europe, Africa, the Americas, South East Asia, South Asia and the Pacific.

-- PTI
18:51   NCW to Kerala DGP: Probe case of priests blackmailing woman
The National Commission for Women has taken suo-motu notice of a media report captioned "Five Kerala priests 'blackmail, sexually abuse' woman", published in various national dailies today.

It may be recalled that five priests of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church in Kerala were accused of blackmailing and sexually abusing a married woman.

The Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church in Kerala has since suspended the priests over the allegations after the woman's husband complained to the church.

The man has claimed that a confession made by his wife to one of the priests was used to blackmail her.

"The victim was subjected to sexual abuse by blackmailing her with her confessional secrets," ANI quoted a church spokesperson, as saying.

The incident came to light after an audio clip of the woman's husband narrating his ordeal went viral on social media.

A major English daily has quoted the man as saying that his wife was sexually abused by one of the priests before she got married and had made sexual advances towards her even after her marriage. 

-- ANI
18:26   Army Major Handa misleading investigators: Police
The army major arrested for killing a fellow officer's wife here is misleading the investigators even as he was taken to Meerut to ascertain the places he visited after the incident, a senior police officer said here today.
Vijay Kumar, Deputy Commissioner of Police said the 40-year-old Major Nikhil Handa, who was arrested  from Meerut on Sunday  for allegedly killing 35-year-old Shailza Dwivedi, was misleading investigators and furnishing incorrect information.

The officer said Handa had met his brother after the incident and they travelled from CR Park to Akshardham in the former's car. 

His brother told the police that Handa had said he was involved in a road accident and did not mention to him about killing of the woman, the officer said.

The police officer said they took Handa to a couple of places in Delhi and Meerut where he claimed to have dumped the weapon used to slit the woman's neck, but it was yet to be found.

Police are also yet to recover a towel which Handa claimed he had burnt after using it to wipe the bloodstains of  his car.

The victim's body was found with her throat slit near the Brar Square in the Delhi Cantonment area on Saturday.

Initially, the police was informed that a woman had died in an accident. but later, when they inspected the body, it was found that her throat was slit.

The accused had allegedly run his car over her face and the body in order to make the incident appear as an accident.

Earlier, the woman was dropped at the Army Base Hospital in her husband's official vehicle by a driver on Saturday.

Later, when the driver came back to pick her up, he could not find her and learnt that she did not attend her scheduled physiotherapy session. 

-- PTI
18:08   What do you have to say on Vadra's tax evasions: BJP asks Rahul
BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra on Wednesday sought Congress President Rahul Gandhi's response on alleged income tax evasions of his brother-in-law Robert Vadra.

"The Income Tax department has directed Robert Vadra to pay arrears for the year 2010-11. We want to ask Rahul Gandhi what he has to say on the Income-Tax evasions of Robert Vadra," he said at a press conference here.

Delhi-based Sky Light Hospitality LLP - a company linked to Robert Vadra - was reportedly ordered to pay over Rs 25 crore as tax liability by the Income Tax Department for the assessment year 2010-11.

As per the IT order, Sky Light Hospitality had earlier declared its income for AY 2010-11 to be Rs 36.9 lakh, a media report noted.

However, in its notice, the I-T department has re-evaluated the income and determined it to actually amount to Rs 42.98 crore, meaning that only about 0.86 percent of the income was declared.

Accordingly, tax payable on this revised income has been determined to be Rs 25.8 crore, the report stated. -- ANI

Image: A file pic of Rahul Gandhi with his brother-in-law Robert Vadra, sister Priyanka and mother Sonia Gandhi
17:50   Renowned danseuse Amala Shankar turns 99
Eminent danseuse and choreographer Amala Shankar turned 99 today and her family members have decided to make the occasion memorable with an exhibition of her photographs and paintings.

A film, starring Amala Shankar and her husband, classical dancer Uday Shankar, has also been scheduled for screening at the three-day exhibition, which begins tomorrow, her family members said.

The 1948 Hindi film 'Kalpana', directed by Uday Shankar himself, revolves around a young dancer's dream of setting up a dance academy. Shankar, who had been active even in her early 90s, was awarded Banga Vibhushan by the state government in 2011 for her contributions in the field of art. -- PTI
17:39   BJP leader Ram Madhav meets J&K Governor Vohra
BJP National General Secretary Ram Madhav today called on Jammu and Kashmir Governor N N Vohra in Srinagar and discussed issues related to the state including the Amarnath Yatra.

"Madhav discussed with the Governor issues relating to the obtaining challenges before the state government and the arrangements made for the Shri Amarnathji Yatra," a Raj Bhawan spokesman said. This was Madhav's first visit to Kashmir after the fall of PDP-BJP coalition government in the state on 19 June. -- PTI
17:37   The New Kashmiri Militant
Who are the new Kashmiri militants? The answer can be found interestingly, not in the stone pelting incidents across the Valley but in the funerals of alleged militants that have steadily grown larger over the last few years reaching a new peak yesterday where seven funerals were offered over the body of slain Lashkar-e-Tayaba militant Shakoor Dar with over 50,000 mourners attending.

Read the report here.

Image: Sociology professor turned militant Mohammed Rafi Bhat who was killed in an encounter in May.
16:56   Govt plans to sell Air India's iconic Mumbai building to JNPT
The government has started discussions for sale of Air India's iconic building in Mumbai to the country's biggest container port Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust as part of efforts to raise funds for the cash-strapped national carrier, sources said.
Official sources said that the proposal has received in-principle approval from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, following which an inter-ministerial panel has been constituted to work out the modalities.
Air India's 23-storey building at Nariman Point, Mumbai, which was also once the airline's headquarters, is a prime property and is likely to fetch high valuations.
The proposal to sell the building to state-owned Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust also comes after the government's efforts of Air India strategic disinvestment failed to take off.
Prime Minister has given his in-principle approval for the proposed sale of Air India's iconic building to JNPT, sources said.
"A committee comprising Secretaries from the Civil Aviation and Shipping ministries has been set up to decide on the valuation of the building," one of the sources said.
Air India and JNPT comes under the civil aviation and Shipping ministries, respectively.

-- PTI
16:46   Singapore revealed as world's safest country to visit in 2018
The 2018 Global Law and Order report by US researchers Gallup ranks locations across the world based entirely on residents' own sense of security.

It asked citizens of 142 countries about their confidence in local policing, feelings of safety while walking alone and personal experiences of crime.

So which is seen as safest?

Perhaps it's no surprise that Singapore leads the way, with several Nordic nations also scoring highly.

Some lesser known destinations also feature prominently: Fifth place goes to Uzbekistan.

Gallup interviewed more than 148,000 people aged 15 or older while compiling the report.

Joint at number two were Norway, Iceland and Finland, three Nordic countries which, thanks to their abundance of natural spaces and eco-friendly cities, make regular appearances in quality of life rankings. 
16:31   Shujaat Bukhari murder: Killers on a bike identified
The three men who killed Editor-in-chief of Rising Kashmir, Shujaat Bukhari, have been identified. Reports say that one of the killers is Pakistani and believed to be a Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist, while the other two are locals.

Bukhari was shot dead on June 14 by terrorists who came on a bike, just when he had stepped out of his office for an Iftaar party. The killers were seen on CCTV camera, their faces hidden either by masks or a helmet. The man in the middle appeared to be carrying a sack.he journalist was hit with 17 bullets and his two security guards were also killed. The killers allegedly also shouted slogans after the assassination.

A fourth man was named as a suspect after he was caught on camera taking away the gun of Bukhari's security guard, moments after the assassination. 
16:17   MHA denies issuing new guidelines for VVIP security
Advisor to the Ministry of Home Affairs, Ashok Prasad, refuted media reports claiming that fresh guidelines had been issued for the security arrangements of VVIPs.

Speaking to ANI, Prasad said only the existing guidelines were reiterated and did not contain any specific reference to Ministers or other dignitaries.

"Reports appeared in certain sections of media about VVIP security do not appear to be factually correct. The guidelines are not new and are a reiteration of existing guidelines and do not contain any specific reference to minister or any other dignitaries," he said.

Earlier in the day, Ministry of Home Affairs said that no new restriction has been added to the guidelines or standard operating procedures for the security arrangements of VVIPs and other ministers.

"The guidelines/SOPs are not new; they are a reiteration of existing guidelines and do not contain any specific reference to Ministers or other dignitaries No new restrictions have been added through these guidelines/SOPs and only the laid down protocols have been reiterated," read the statement.

This clarification from the ministry came a day after it was reported that the security arrangement of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been tightened in the wake of the upcoming General Election in 2019. -- PTI
15:38   PM to address rally in UP tomorrow, 1st since security threat
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address a public rally and lay the foundation stone of a research institute at Maghar in Uttar Pradesh tomorrow to mark the 500th death anniversary of Kabir Das, the mystic poet and saint.

This is the PM's first rally since the home ministry said the security threat against the PM was at an all time high. The home ministry has said that not even ministers and officers will be allowed to come too close to the prime minister unless cleared by the Special Protection Group.

The ministry said there has been an "all-time high" threat to the prime minister and he is the "most valuable target" in the run-up to the 2019 general elections, officials privy to the development said

According to an official statement issued in New Delhi, the prime minister will offer a 'chadar' at the 'mazaar' of Kabir. He will visit the Sant Kabir cave and unveil a plaque to mark the laying of foundation stone of the Kabir Academy, which will highlight the great saint's teachings and philosophy, the statement read.

During his monthly radio address "Mann Ki Baat" on Sunday, the prime minister had recalled the contribution of 15th-century poet and saint Kabir Das in dispelling superstitions.

Kabir Das preferred to breathe his last in Maghar, despite the common belief that whoever dies there does not reach heaven, he had said.

"Just as the prime minister gave a message from the Gorakhnath peeth in Gorakhpur in 2014, he will give a message from the nirvan sthali of Kabir Das this time," zonal vice president of the BJP, Satyendra Sinha said.

He said around two lakh people are expected to attend the rally tomorrow. Party workers had reached out to people in seven district in view of the rally, he said. Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath will receive the prime minster at the Gorakhpur airport.

The two leaders would leave for Maghar in a chopper, BJP district unit president Jarnadan Tiwari said. The chief minster had been personally reviewing preparations for the prime minister's visit.

Adityanath had also held meetings with the Sant Kabir Nagar administration officials, party leaders and office bearers in this regard. The prime minister will be taken round the mausoleum of Kabir Das. He would also lay the foundation stone of the Sant Kabir Academy, a research institute expected to come up at a cost of Rs. 24 crore, Sinha said. His visit will give a message of social harmony as Sant Kabir stood for equality, he added.
--  PTI
15:19   We were great friends: Bryan Adams on romance rumours with Princess Diana
Bryan Adams addressed rumours about his relationship with Princess Diana for the first time, saying they were "great friends" and nothing more. The 58-year-old singer's whose 1985 song "Diana" had sparked speculation that he was reportedly dating the British royal. Princess Diana's butler Paul Burrell had further claimed that he used to "sneak" Adams into Kensington Palace, the royals residence.

In an appearance on "Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen", the host asked the "Summer of '69" singer about the equation he shared with Diana.

"There are many rumours that you and Princess Diana were once romantically involved. Her butler said that he used to sneak you into Kensington Palace. How would you characterise your relationship with Princess Diana?" Cohen asked.

To which Adams replied, "Great friends. And she didn't sneak me in, I would just roll up." Cohen pressed further asking if they were "friends with benefits". Adams instead denied the speculations, saying "she was just' we were good friends". -- PTI
15:16   Pak NSA resigns
Pakistan National Security Advisor retired Lt Gen Nasser Janjua resigned today amid reports that he had differences with caretaker Prime Minister Nasirul Mulk.

Janjua's resignation has been accepted by the Prime Minister and Cabinet Division has also issued a notification, according to media reports. Though the reason for Janjua's exit is not yet known, sources in the government said the NSA was not feeling comfortable with the caretaker government led by former chief justice Mulk.

His replacement has not been announced so far but the resignation coincided with the induction of retired Lt Gen Khalid Naeem Lodhi in the Cabinet. Janjua was appointed NSA on October 23, 2015 in place of Sartaj Aziz and was accorded the status of minister of state.--  PTI
Chairman of Shirdi Saibaba Sansthan Trust, Suresh Kashinath Haware accorded MoS status in Maharashtra Government.
15:12   Rescue operation underway for missing Jharkhand Jaguar personnel
Security forces on Wednesday started conducting rescue operations for four Jaguar personnel, who were injured in a landmine blast triggered by Naxals.

Helicopters and police dogs are being used to find the missing personnel.

Six jawans of the Jharkhand Jaguar force were killed, while four suffered injuries in a landmine blast triggered by Naxals in Jharkhand's Garwa district on Tuesday night.

DIG Palamu Range Vipul Shukla confirmed the report and said, "Six Jharkhand Jaguar personnel killed, four injured in a landmine blast triggered by Naxal in Jharkhand's Garwa district." -- ANI
14:31   MHA says PM security guidelines not new, need to be reiterated from time to time
The Home Ministry today said the guidelines it has issued for the security of Prime Minister Narendra Modi were not new, and these were required to be reiterated from time to time.

In a statement, the ministry said it had recently reiterated the guidelines or standard operating procedures regarding security arrangements of VVIPs during road shows to all states and Union territories.

"Guidelines for security of VVIPs are required to be reiterated from time to time. These guidelines/SOPs are not new; they are reiteration of existing guidelines and do not contain any specific reference to ministers or other dignitaries.

"No new restrictions have been added through these guidelines/SOPs and only the laid down protocols have been reiterated," the statement read.

On June 11, Home Minister Rajnath Singh had reviewed the prime minister's security and directed that all necessary measures be taken in consultation with other agencies to suitably strengthen security arrangements for the prime minister.

According to reports, there has been an "all-time high" threat to the prime minister and he is the "most valuable target" in the run-up to the 2019 general elections. -- PTI
14:05   Increment for hospital staff who battled Nipah
In appreciation of their exemplary service in containing the deadly Nipah virus outbreak, the Kerala government today decided to give an additional increment to about 61 government health personnel in Kozhikode and Malappuram districts.

The decision in this regard was taken at a cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. The government's gesture was in recognition of the valuable service rendered by the health personnel, who fought the virus without caring for their own personal safety. Four assistant professors, 19 staff nurses, 7 nursing assistants, 17 cleaning staff, 4 hospital attenders, two health inspectors, 3 lab technicians are among the 61 persons who will be entitled to the additional increment, a government press release said.

Besides, 12 junior residents, 3 senior residents would be given a one-sovereign gold medal. An award in memory of nurse Lini Puthussery, who contracted Nipah virus while serving her patients at the Perambra Taluk hospital and died, will be instituted for the best nurse in the government sector. Seventeen persons had died of Nipah in the northern Kerala districts of Kozhikode and Malappuram in May this year. -- PTI

Image: An award for Best Nurse in the memory of nurse Lini Puthussery, who contracted Nipah virus and died, while serving her patients will be instituted.
13:50   Haleem mubarak
Haleem is more than a bridge to reach spatial settings that have been projected as constituents of Calcutta's underbelly. The dish is also a marker of the openness fundamental to the Islamic world, a trait that is being threatened with expungement by the rising, global tide of bigotry. Haleem, food historians argue, has evolved from harees/hareesha, a preparation that was popular in the Arab world and, earlier, among Christians in the Levant region as well as among Jews in Spain.

The Telegraph on the haleem -- when a dish is a recipe for both assimilation and exclusion.  Read it here.

Its journey to India was facilitated by two groups: the first, predictably, were the Mughals; next came the Arab soldiers who served in the Nizam's army in Hyderabad. After Independence, haleem reached Calcutta with the help of migrants. These journeys and the receptive Muslim populations that embraced haleem - they added local flavours to the dish - bear evidence of the cosmopolitan underpinnings of Islamic cultural and culinary traditions."

12:58   Sukhoi jet crashes near Nashik, pilots safe
A Sukhoi aircraft crashed near Nashik this morning, police said. There were no casualties, police said, adding both the pilots ejected safely before the plane hit ground.

The under-production Sukhoi Su-30MKI twin-jet multirole air superiority fighter of HAL crashed at Wavi-Tushi village near Pimpalgaon Baswant town, around 25 km from Nashik, police said.

The aircraft crashed at 11.05 am and the Pimpalgaon police station received information about the crash at 11.15 am, a police official told PTI.

The aircraft, developed by Russia's Sukhoi and built under licence by the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, had taken off from the HAL airstrip near Nashik, police said.

The IAF personnel at Ojhar Air Force station have rushed to the site, police said.

Earlier this month, an IAF Jaguar fighter jet crashed in Mundra district of Kutch in Gujarat.Last year in May, a Sukhoi jet crashed near the China border killing both pilots on board. A technical snag is believed to have stopped them from initiating ejection. The IAF has ordered a court of inquiry to investigate the cause of the accident.

Image: The wreckage of the Sukhoi jet. Pic: ANI
12:52   Missing Kashmir police officer joins Hizb-ul-Mujahideen
The terror group Hizb-ul-Mujahideen today said that the Special Police Officer who was reported missing with his service rifle has joined them.

A local media report in Srinagar quoting a tele-statement of the Operational Spokesman of Hizb-ul-Mujahideen Burhan-u-Din said, SPO Irfan Ahmad Dar a resident of Nehama Kakapora of south Kashmirs Pulwama district who fled with the rifle has joined Hizb-ul-Mujahideen.

The spokesman added, we appeal all Jammu and Kashmir police cadres to give up their job and join Hizb-ul-Mujahideen to give a push to the resistance struggle.

The SPO has been identified as Irfan Ahmad Dar. A police official said that Dar is believed to have been carrying an AK-47 rifle along with ammunition as he was not found inside the police station since Tuesday evening.

Image: SPO Irfan Ahmad Dar went missing with an AK-47 rifle on Tuesday evening. Pic: Facebook. 
12:33   My style was 'too western' for Indians, 'not Indian enough' for westerners: Astad Deboo
Contemporary Indian dancer Astad Deboo, renowned for marrying Kathak and Kathakali into a unique form, says there was a time when most Indians saw his style as "too western" while westerners found that it was "not Indian enough".

The dancer says his innovative style of Indian dance may have raised some eyebrows in the 1970s and 80s, but the 1990s saw people embrace this new idiom.

Deboo will be honoured with the lifetime achievement award from the Chennai-based Krishna Gana Sabha on July 1.

The dancer, who studied Kathak with Guru Prahlad Das from a young age, and later Kathakali with Guru EK Pannicker, describes his style as "contemporary in vocabulary and traditional in restraint".

With a dance career spanning over 48 years, he has performed in over 72 countries, including solo, group and collaborative choreography with artistes, both at home and abroad.

Deboo describes his evolution as going "from energetic or entertaining to minimalist and introspective, from the narrative to the abstract". He says his signature style is characterised by intense focus, concentration and technical virtuosity along with a distinctively Indian aesthetic of evoking rasa (emotion).

Deboo is back in India after an extended tour of Europe and Scandinavia where he collaborated with leading dancers and musicians at various performances spread over last few months.

Known for his charitable endeavours, Deboo has worked with deaf children, both in India and abroad for close to two decades. In 2002, he founded the Astad Deboo Dance Foundation which has mentored over 100 students, providing creative training to marginalised sections, including the differently-abled. He has also worked closely with the Salaam Balak Trust and Manipur-based artistes-- the Pungcholom drummers of Shree Shree Govindajee Nat Sankirtan and the martial art Thangta practitioners.

Deboo has forayed into other art disciplines, like films, choreographing for Indian directors such as Mani Ratnam, Vishal Bhardwaj and legendary painter MF Hussain's "Meenaxi: A Tale of Three Cities". -- PTI

File pic.
11:57   UN report on Kashmir motivated: Army chief
Chief of Army Staff General Bipin Rawat on Wednesday said not much attention must be given to the recent United Nations report on Kashmir, claiming that some of the reports are "motivated."

"I don't think it is necessary for us to speak on this (UN report). The Indian Army's human rights record is above board, and people of India, Army personnel and countries worldwide know the truth. We must not pay much heed to this, some of these reports are motivated," he said.

Earlier this month, the United Nations Human Rights Office in its 49-page report called for a probe into alleged human rights violations in Kashmir by both India and Pakistan.

This report has been met with criticism from politicos and defence experts alike.

Following the release of the report, the Ministry of External Affairs said it was misleading and mischievous. "The report violates India's sovereignty and territorial integrity. The entire state of Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India. Pakistan is in the illegal and forcible occupation of a part of the Indian state through aggression. We have repeatedly called upon Pakistan to vacate the occupied territories. The incorrect description of Indian territory in the report is mischievous, misleading and unacceptable. There are no entities such as "Azad Jammu and Kashmir" and "Gilgit-Baltistan," the MEA said in a statement.

"It is disturbing that those behind this report have chosen to describe internationally designated and UN-proscribed terrorist entities as "armed groups" and terrorists as "leaders". This undermines the UN-led consensus on zero tolerance to terrorism," it further noted. -- ANI
11:51   NDTV shares surge 20% as Sebi orders open offer
Shares of NDTV today surged 20 per cent to hit its upper circuit limit at Rs 39 after Sebi ordered Vishvapradhan Commercial to make an open offer. Regulator Sebi yesterday ordered a little-known entity, Vishvapradhan Commercial, to make an open offer for NDTV for indirectly acquiring control of up to 52 per cent stake through a convertible loan of Rs 350 crore in 2009 'sourced' from a subsidiary of Reliance Industries.

The stock of the company opened on a positive note at Rs 36, then soared further to Rs 39, up 20 per cent from its previous closing price on BSE.

Similar movement was seen on NSE, where the stock opened at Rs 36.10, then gained further ground to touch Rs 38.80, up 19.94 per cent over its last close.

Market analysts said the Bombay High Court order also acted as a trigger for the stock. The Bombay High Court yesterday directed the Reserve Bank of India to consider the compounding applications filed by NDTV in a case of alleged violation of Foreign Exchange Management Act . -- PTI
11:14   J-K: Special Police Officer goes missing
J-K: A Special Police Officer goes missing after reportedly leaving from Pampore police station with an AK-47 rifle. Details awaited.
11:11   What this year's 'largest-ever security cover' for Amarnath Yatra means
Vehicles tagged with electromagnetic chips, bike and bullet-proof SUV police convoys and scores of bullet-proof bunkers have been deployed as part of the "biggest-ever" security blanket thrown to secure pilgrims undertaking the Amarnath Yatra that begins in Jammu and Kashmir from tomorrow.

Over two lakh pilgrims have registered for the annual pilgrimage to the 3,880 metre high cave shrine of Amarnath in south Kashmir Himalayas till now.

A posse of over 40,000 armed CRPF and state police personnel have virtually dotted the yatra routes from Jammu -- via Pahalgam and Baltal -- with their overwhelming presence in armoured vehicles.

Forces have deployed a huge assortment of CCTV cameras and drones, assisted by mounted Army columns, to ensure that the yatra route is not breached by terrorists and in case of a possible attack reinforcements reach as fast as possible.

"Each vehicle that has pilgrims and is part of the yatra is being tagged using RFID (radio frequency identification) tags and they will be monitored at a control room made operational here.

"Security forces have been given specific responsibility to sanitise routes and secure a select number of pilgrim vehicles by sandwiching them between bullet proof troop carriers," a senior security official told PTI.

The CRPF road clearing parties will keep sweeping yatra roads against possible improvised explosive device threats to yatra convoys from early morning till late evening, he said.

The top official added that these arrangements are the "biggest-ever deployment of the security paraphernalia to ensure protection to the annual yatra that comes in the backdrop of a long and turbulent time of violence in the Kashmir Valley."

The RFID tagging of vehicles concept has been introduced for the first time after taking a lesson from last year's militant attack on a civil vehicle in Anantnag district that left eight pilgrims dead and several injured.

"Thousands of such tags have been purchased and are being stuck on vehicles. They cost about Rs 72 a piece and they will help give a clear picture to security forces in case a yatra vehicle is lost in the way or takes a wrong route. QRTs will immediately be scarmbled to track such a four-wheeler," a CRPF officer said. P P Pauly, Commandant of the 73rd battalion of the force, said a control room has been created at his camp in Bemina to track all the RFID-bearing vehicles even as a 100 personnel strong squad has been kept on standby to respond to any untoward incident. 

A special desk has been set up at the Srinagar International Airport by the CRPF to register pilgrims and to tag their vehicles from there, in an extension to the exercise that is taking place at the land borders that leads to Jammu and Kashmir. S K Todkar, a devotee from Maharashtra who arrived in the state yesterday, said he and his 10 other family members are "undettered by the fact that a pilgrims' bus was attacked last year."

"We are here for the yatra for the third time and we are sure we will finish it successfully. Risk to life by possible terror threats is just one part of the entire Amarnath journey," Todkar's father Rambhau said.  -- PTI

Image: Image: The first batch for the Amarnath Yatra was flagged off from Jammu base camp by BVR Subramanyam, Chief secretary J&K, BB Vyas Advisor to J&K Governor & Vijay Kumar, Advisor to J&K Governor.
Pic: ANI
10:38   MEA writes to 3 countries to help trace Nirav Modi
The Ministry of External Affairs has sought assistance from select European countries to trace and restrict absconding diamantaire Nirav Modi's movements.

As per sources, the MEA, last week, had written letters regarding the same to France, United Kingdom, and Belgium.

Indian missions in these countries had also shared a 'note verbale' on Nirav Modi with the three governments, earlier too.

A special Prevention of Money Laundering Act court in Mumbai on Tuesday had given its nod to begin Nirav Modi's extradition from the United Kingdom.

The ED had earlier filed the application in the court seeking permission to begin the extradition of the absconding diamantaire in connection with a multi-crore Punjab National Bank scam.

According to the ED, Nirav Modi is in the UK and needs to be extradited as non-bailable warrants has already issued against him, and he is not appearing before the court even after the prosecution complaint.

The ED had also sent a request for a Red Corner Notice against the billionaire businessman, but the Interpol is yet to issue the same.

Nirav, who is allegedly at the center of the multi-crore bank fraud, has reportedly fled to the UK, where he is claiming political asylum.

For those unversed, the PNB detected the multi-crore scam this year, wherein Nirav and his uncle-cum-business-partner Mehul Choksi had allegedly cheated the bank to the tune of USD 2 billion, with the purported involvement of a few employees of the bank.
10:27   Happy to be back in India: Nikki Haley
"It makes me happy to be back in India. It's as beautiful as I remember it to be. We started out at Humayun's tomb which is a reminder of how much we value culture and how much India values culture and to see the preservation that has happened here. We're the two oldest democracies and we see those opportunities between US and India in multiple level of ways whether it's countering terrorism or we want to continue our democratic opportunities or we are going to start to work together more strongly on the military aspect.

"I'm here to once again solidify our love for India, our belief in friendship that India and US have together and our willingness to want to make that relationship even stronger. In this day and time we see more and more reasons for India and US to come together," said Nikki Haley

The US Ambassador to the UN. is on a two-day visit to India. 
10:18   Who's travelling to Amarnath?
This is the mix of Amarnath pilgrims:

A total of 2,995 pilgrims -- 2,334 men, 520 women, 21 children and 120 'sadhus' -- left for the base camps of Nunwan-Pahalgam in Anantnag and Baltal in Ganderbal districts in 107 vehicles and four motorcycles, officials said. 

They will reach the twin base camps later in the day and would start their onward journey to the 3,880 metre high cave shrine by foot on Thursday, marking the commencement of the pilgrimage.

While 1,904 pilgrims have opted for the traditional 36-km route from Pahalgam, 1,091 others are registered for the shortest 12-km route from Baltal.

Image: In Udhampur, Jammu, pilgrims in first batch of the Amarnath Yatra are being welcomed by locals and officers of the district administration including Dy Commissioner Udhampur Ravinder Kumar and SP Udhampur Faisal Qureshi, at Tikri. Pilgrims say they are happy with the arrangements and the security.
US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley visits Humayun's Tomb. She is on a visit to India from June 26-28.
10:00   Sohrabuddin case: Witness says husband wants to testify, but fears for life
The Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case took a new turn on Monday in the special Central Bureau of Investigation court; in the midst of the saga of witnesses turning hostile, three witnesses deposed in the special Central Bureau of Investigation Court were not declared hostile. In fact, one of the witnesses gave an application to the court which said, her husband wanted to depose despite receiving death threat calls every day from politicians to change his statements given to the Central agency.

The three witnesses, Shailesh Jayanthlal Trivedi, Ghanshyam Meena and Rizwana Khan did not retract their earlier statements given to the Central bureau of Investigation.  Read the full report here.
09:55   CRPF meet to secure Amarnath Yatra
Ahead of the Amarnath Yatra being flagged off today, Abhay Vir Chauhan IG CRPF Jammu sector held a meeting of senior CRPF officers of units deployed in Jammu region at Sector HQ Bantalab earlier today. Security of Base Camp Bhagwati Nagar and the yatra route were discussed. Radio frequency based ID tags have been installed on vehicles so that the CRPF control room will know whenever the vehicles pass by the four reception centres on the two routes. "If we don't receive a signal from a vehicle we'll inform IG Control room and naka points," said Commandant PP Pauly, 73 Battalion CRPF at Bemina.
09:40   First batch of pilgrims for Amarnath Yatra flagged off
Amid tight security, the first batch of the Amarnath Yatra was flagged off from Jammu's base camp in Bhagwant Nagar on Tuesday morning.

The Yatra was flagged off by BVR Subramanyam, Chief Secretary, Jammu and Kashmir and BB Vyas and Vijay Kumar, advisors to Jammu and Kashmir Governor Narinder Nath Vohra.

"Amarnath Yatra is a very significant annual event. With cooperation of public, all security agencies and development agencies, we have put a scheme in place and are trying our best to address concerns of the pilgrims. We will ensure smooth flow of traffic," Vijay Kumar said.

The pilgrims from different parts of the country have come to the twin base camps of Baltal and Pahalgam in Kashmir, guarded by the security forces in a fleet of vehicles.

From there onwards, the pilgrims will start their journey to the 3,880 metre high cave shrine by foot on Thursday.

The central government along with the armed forces has beefed up the security for the Amarnath Yatra.

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Chief of Army Staff, General Bipin Rawat also visited Baltal Base Camp to review security arrangements for the Yatra on Monday.

More than two lakh pilgrims have registered for the annual pilgrimage to the Amarnath cave shrine in south Kashmir Himalayas, which begins on Thursday.

The 40-day pilgrimage will conclude on August 26. 
09:02   Ahead of 2+2 dialogue, Trump accuses India of charging 100% tariff on import of US products
Ahead of next week's maiden 2+2 dialogue with India, United States President Donald Trump accused New Delhi of charging as high as 100 per cent tariff on import of American products.
"We have countries where, as an example, India, they charge up as much as 100 per cent tariff. We want the tariffs removed," Trump said.
He was responding to a question in his recent decisions to impose tariffs on import of foreign products. Trump has defended it by arguing that this is in retaliation to the imbalance of trade that the US has with major trading partners including China, the European Union and India.
India and the US will hold their first 2+2 dialogue next week. 

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will be in the US for talks with their American counterparts Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defence Secretary James Mattis.
"What I would like to do and what I offered at the G7, you remember, I said let's drop all tariffs and all barriers," he said.

"Is everybody OK with that? And nobody said yes. I said wait a minute folks, you're complaining. No tariffs and no barriers, you're on your own, let's do it. And it was like they couldn't leave the room fast enough," he said recollecting his conversation with G-7 leaders in Canada recently.
"Other countries are negotiating (with US). Without tariffs, you could never do that. If they don't want to negotiate, then we'll do the tariffs," Trump told reporters at the White House. 
"Just remember, we're the bank. We're the bank that everybody wants to steal from and plunder and can't be that way anymore. We lost USD 500 billion last year with China. We lost USD 151 billion with the European Union, which puts up great barriers so that our farmers can't trade," he said.
"We can't send farm products in for the most part. It's very hard to send cars in," he said. -- PTI
08:45   Always had honest intentions to settle bank loans: Mallya
Liquor baron Vijay Mallya on Wednesday said he is not a fugitive and "always had honest intentions" to repay his loans.

This comes after Mallya on Tuesday broke his silence over the controversy surrounding him of defaulting on bank loans to the tune of Rs 9000 crores, and said he had been falsely framed as the "poster boy of bank default and a lightning rod of public anger".

Later, Minister of State for External Affairs MJ Akbar said: "If Vijay Mallya wanted to pay the banks he had many many years to do so."

In reply to Akbar, Mallya in a series posts on Twitter said: "My old friend MJ Akbar (now Hon'ble MOS) states that I had years to repay. My settlement initiatives date back to 2016. Most importantly the value of assets today in 2018 is far higher than in 2016."

Mallya later cried foul and said he is being falsely accused in chargesheets by the Central Bureau of Investigation and the Enforcement Directorate.

He wrote: "CBI and ED chargesheets specifically allege criminality with no intention to repay banks. Since 2016, I have been making efforts to settle. Now I have placed everything before the honourable Karnataka High Court. So where is the malafide? Are banks interested in repayment?"

Mallya added: "Government, courts and banks are rightfully concerned about public money loaned by public sector banks. I have made an application to the Karnataka HC showing assets far in excess of the banks claims and requesting sale under judicial supervision. What more? Government wants to recover money loaned by PSU banks. They used CBI and ED to attach and recover."

Mallya questioned CBI and ED's chargesheet and said he has placed all his assets before the high court.

"It is incorrect that my settlement offer before the Karnataka HC was motivated by the latest chargesheet under the media reported Fugitive Ordinance. I always had honest intentions to settle and there is ample proof. I hope the sale of assets is approved for banks," Mallya said.

"I have honestly pursued settlement efforts since 2016. It is sad that the narrative seems to question my honest intentions. There are no delaying tactics or any agenda to gain brownie points. Let justice play its part," he added.

Mallya concluded his series of tweets saying that he is not a fugitive.

"I am asked for comment on being labelled a Fugitive Economic Offender. When I have placed assets on the table before the Karnataka High Court in excess of the PSU Bank claims, how can I be an Economic Offender? The Fugitive part falls away," he wrote. -- ANI
08:33   Those eating Rs 30,000 pizzas can't see Rs 12,000 jobs: BJP MP's dig at Rahul
Stating that his ministry had created four crore jobs, Union minister of state for micro, small and medium enterprises Giriraj Singh on Tuesday took a swipe at the Congress, saying "those who eat pizzas worth Rs 30,000 cannot see a Rs 12,000 job".
"I want to show how a job is created to those who cannot see one. Those who have not seen poverty and go to learn about it at Kalavati's house in the darkness of night, say there are no jobs," he said, apparently referring to Congress chief Rahul Gandhi.
"We have given jobs to four crore people. It is another thing that 70 per cent of those jobs are of under Rs 12,000 (monthly salary). The world developed on the strength of skills. We were only under five per cent skilled. It was (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi, who, for the first time, talked about skill-training," Singh said.
"Those who eat pizzas worth Rs 30,000 will not be able to see a job worth Rs 12,000. They can only see pakora and shoe-makers but cannot see employment," he added.
Together with loans given under the MUDRA scheme, his ministry had provided jobs to 10 crore people, the BJP leader claimed.
"I am not counting the textiles ministry and handicraft...if they (UPA) made 11 lakh people entrepreneurs between 2010 and 2014, then we have made 16 lakh people entrepreneurs," he said.
Singh was speaking at an event organised by the Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC), where BJP president Amit Shah unveiled a "monumental steel charkha" at the Sabarmati Riverfront Park.
The Union minister also attacked the Congress over Mahatma Gandhi and said, "Those who came to power after Independence exploited Gandhi politically, but buried his policies."
"After Modi came to power, he created an environment to promote Khadi and the charkha," he said, adding that the NDA government was working to bring the charkha and solar power together under the Solar Charkha Mission, which will provide jobs to five crore women. -- PTI
00:02   Kafeel Khan's brother writes to President, PM; alleges laxity in probing attack
A brother of Dr Kafeel Khan, an accused in the Gorakhpur medical negligence case, has alleged police laxity in probing a recent attack on another member of their family.
In a letter to the president and the prime minister, Adeel Khan said, "My brother (Kashif Khan) was shot at on June 10 and since then, the police have not been able to get any clue about the miscreants."

He alleged that the case was related to BJP MP Kamlesh Paswan and the police were not able to take action against him and his accomplices.

At a press conference in Lucknow on June 17, Dr Kafeel Khan had expressed suspicion that Paswan was behind the attack on his brother, which was termed "baseless" by the Bansgaon MP.

In his letter dated June 21, a copy of which was also sent to the Union home minister, the Uttar Pradesh governor, the Uttar Pradesh chief minister, the National Human Rights Commission, the United Nations and its India office in New Delhi, Adeel Khan also alleged that Superintendent of Police (city) Vinay Kumar Singh and Circle Officer, Gorakhpur Pravin Kumar Singh were "colluding" with Paswan.

He demanded that an "honest" police officer be asked to look into the case.

When contacted, Senior Superintendent of Police, Gorakhpur, Shalabh Mathur said, "The Kotwali inspector is investigating the case under the Kotwali circle officer. We are moving in the right direction and probing the case on the basis of facts and evidence, not merely on allegations. The investigation might take some time, but the culprits will be arrested."