Wed, 10 October 2018
Rahul to address HAL employees on Rafale deal

Timeline  Refresh

23:40   3 Kashmiri students with JeM links held in Jalandhar
The police arrested three Kashmiri students and seized an assault rifle and explosives in a raid at a college hostel in Jalandhar on Wednesday.

Punjab's Director General of Police Suresh Arora described the three students as a module of Kashmiri terror outfit Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind and said they had links with Jaish-e-Mohammed.

The students were picked from the hostel of CT Institute of Engineering Management and Technology, located at Shahpur on the outskirts of Jalandhar in a joint operation by Punjab Police and the Special Operations Group of Jammu and Kashmir Police.

The team seized two weapons, including an assault rifle, and explosives from the hostel room of second semester B.Tech (Civil) student Zahid Gulzar, Arora said in a statement.

Gulzar is a resident of Rajpora in Srinagar.

He was arrested along with two Pulwama residents, Mohammed Idris Shah and Yusuf Rafiq Bhatt.

The director general of police said the arrests followed leads about the activities of certain militant organisations and individuals operating in Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab.

A case has been registered at Sadar Jalandhar police station.

He said Punjab Police is working closely with Jammu and Kashmir Police to unravel the network built by these outfits in the two states.

He said the busting of the terror module indicated efforts by Pakistan's spy agency ISI to expand the arc of militancy on India's western border.

Recently, another Shopian resident, Gazi Ahmad Malik, was picked up by Punjab Police at Banur in Patiala, where he was studying at a polytechnic.

The DGP said it was learnt that Gazi was closely related to Adil Bashir Sheikh, a J&K special police officer (SPO) who fled with seven rifles from the home of a Peoples Democratic Party MLA in Srinagar.

The SPO is suspected to have joined Hizbul Mujahideen, the officer said.

Gazi was later handed over to J&K Police.  -- PTI
23:27   Rahul to address HAL employees on Rafale deal
Seeking to step up his attack over the Rafale fighter jet deal, Congress president Rahul Gandhi is slated to meet on October 13 employees of the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, which the party has alleged was overlooked in the offsets contract with French aerospace company Dassault Aviation.

Karnataka unit Congress president Dinesh Gundu Rao said Gandhi will talk to the employees of the Bengaluru-based HAL about the controversial deal and also address a rally in the city.

'Shri Rahul Gandhi will meet employees of HAL in Bengaluru on October 13. He will be talking about the controversial #RafaleDeal, and will also address a party workers rally in the city,' Karnataka Pradesh Congress tweeted quoting Rao as saying.

The Congress, which has been accusing the government of benefiting the Reliance Defence Ltd of Anil Ambani from the deal, has also been demanding answers on why the state-run aerospace major HAL was not involved in the deal as finalised during the United Progressive Alliance.

The party had been accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of snatching jobs of people of Karnataka by taking away the contract from HAL.

Gandhi had been saying that had HAL been selected in place of Reliance Defence it could have generated employment to scores of unemployed youth in the state.

The BJP has dismissed all allegations as false.  -- PTI
22:52   HC asks websites to remove news linking Najeeb with ISIS
After allowing the Central Bureau of Investigation to file a closure report in the case of disappearance of Jawaharlal Nehru University student Najeeb Ahmed, the Delhi high court on Wednesday asked some media houses to retract from their websites and YouTube certain news reports and videos which allegedly link him with terrorist organisation ISIS.

Justice J R Midha issued the direction on a defamation suit moved by the student's mother, Fatima Nafees, contending that the news reports and videos are defamatory and seeking an apology as well as Rs 2.2 crore in damages from the media houses.

Advocate Nabila Hasan, who appeared for Nafees, said 'the court has directed all the defendants (media houses) to retract all articles and video clips from their websites and also remove YouTube links'.

She said the matter was listed for further hearing on October 29 when it will take up Nafees' plea seeking an apology from the media houses.

In the petition, Nafees has contended that even the Delhi Police during its investigation into Ahmed's disappearance, had not said that he had any links to the Islamic State.

The high court on Monday allowed the CBI to file a closure report in the case Najeeb Ahmed, who went missing from the university nearly two years ago.  -- PTI
22:52   HC asks websites to remove news linking Najeeb with ISIS
After allowing the Central Bureau of Investigation to file a closure report in the case of disappearance of Jawaharlal Nehru University student Najeeb Ahmed, the Delhi high court on Wednesday asked some media houses to retract from their websites and YouTube certain news reports and videos which allegedly link him with terrorist organisation ISIS.

Justice J R Midha issued the direction on a defamation suit moved by the student's mother, Fatima Nafees, contending that the news reports and videos are defamatory and seeking an apology as well as Rs 2.2 crore in damages from the media houses.

Advocate Nabila Hasan, who appeared for Nafees, said 'the court has directed all the defendants (media houses) to retract all articles and video clips from their websites and also remove YouTube links'.

She said the matter was listed for further hearing on October 29 when it will take up Nafees' plea seeking an apology from the media houses.

In the petition, Nafees has contended that even the Delhi Police during its investigation into Ahmed's disappearance, had not said that he had any links to the Islamic State.

The high court on Monday allowed the CBI to file a closure report in the case Najeeb Ahmed, who went missing from the university nearly two years ago.  -- PTI
22:29   EC makes it must for candidates to publicise their criminal antecedents
The Election Commission on Wednesday made it compulsory for candidates contesting polls to advertise their criminal antecedents in TV and newspapers at least three times during electioneering.

According to directions issued on Wednesday, political parties too will have to give publicity to the criminal records of candidates fielded by them.

This means that candidates and parties contesting the elections to be held in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Mizoram and Telangana in November-December will have to publicise their criminal records at least on three different dates in widely circulated newspapers and popular TV channels during campaign period.

Candidates who do not have records have to mention that. The candidates will now have to fill up an amended form (number 26).

They will have to inform parties about their antecedents such as cases in which they have been convicted and cases pending against them.

The parties, the EC said, will be 'obliged' to put the information about the candidates on their websites.

Though the EC direction is silent on whether the candidates will have to pay from their pocket for the publicity, a senior functionary said since it's a poll-related expenditure, the candidates will have to bear the cost.

Parties which fail to comply, face the prospects of getting their recognition withdrawn or suspended.

Candidates have to submit clippings of their declaration published in papers and parties have to submit details about the number of such candidates in a state.

The poll panel's directions are based on a Supreme Court order which said that candidates contesting polls should repeatedly advertise their criminal antecedents in print and electronic media after filing nomination papers so that the people can make an informed decision.  -- PTI
21:57   Gorkhas not to be sent to foreigners tribunals: MHA
Gorkhas of Nepal holding valid identity cards and members of the community who are citizens of India and living in Assam will not be sent to foreigners tribunals to determine their nationality, the Home Ministry said on Wednesday.

In a communication to the Assam government, the ministry said only those individuals, who have come to Assam from specified territories, including Bangladesh, immediately before commencement of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 1985 and are not Indian citizens, can be referred to the foreigners tribunals to identify whether they are illegal immigrants or not.

A senior home ministry official, however, made it clear that Nepalese citizens living in Assam are not eligible to be included in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) as well as in the electoral rolls.

The clarification came following a representation to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh by the All Assam Gorkha Students' Union, which cited some cases of the members of the Gorkha community living in Assam referring to the foreigners tribunals, an official statement said.

In its communication on September 24, the home ministry said the members of the Gorkha community who were Indian citizens at the time of commencement of the Constitution, or those who are Indian citizens by birth, or those who have acquired Indian citizenship by registration or naturalisation in accordance with the provisions of The Citizenship Act, 1955 are not 'foreigners' in terms of section 2 (a) of The Foreigners Act, 1946 as well as The Registration of Foreigners Act, 1939, therefore, such cases will not be referred to the foreigners tribunals.

It further emphasised that any member of the Gorkha community holding Nepalese nationality and who has arrived in India by land or air over the Nepal border even without a passport or visa and staying in India for any length of time shall not be treated as an illegal migrant if he or she is in possession of proper identity documents.

The valid identity documents are: Nepalese passport, Nepalese citizenship certificate, voter identification card issued by the Election Commission of Nepal, limited validity photo-identity certificate issued by Nepalese mission in India when deemed necessary and for children between age group of 10-18 years, photo ID issued by the principal of the school, if accompanied by parents having valid travel documents.

No such document is required for children below the age group of 10 years as per the provisions of the India-Nepal treaty signed in 1950, the statement said.

The home ministry also said the cases of members of Gorkha community falling within the parameters mentioned earlier should not be referred to the foreigner tribunals for opinion as to whether the person is a 'foreigner' within the meaning of The Foreigners Act, 1946.

Later, a senior ministry official clarified that a sizeable number cases of Nepalese citizens are pending before foreigners tribunals in Assam and the clarifications would be helpful in disposing their cases.  -- PTI
21:17   Attacks on migrants: Alpesh to sit on 'goodwill fast'
Congress MLA Alpesh Thakor, who is facing the heat over the violence against Hindi-speaking migrants in Gujarat, will be sitting on a day-long fast on Thursday to establish 'peace and harmony'.

He announced the 'Sadbhavna Upvas' (fast for goodwill) at his house a couple of days ago.

A large number of Hindi-speaking migrant workers have left Gujarat in the last few days following attacks at some places.

The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party has blamed Thakor and his outfit, Gujarat Kshatriya-Thakor Sena, for the outbreak of violence.

The outfit's name also figures in some of the FIRs filed in connection with the attacks, which started after a worker hailing from Bihar was arrested for allegedly raping a 14-month-old girl in Sabarkantha district on September 28.

The girl hails from the Thakor community. Thakor has denied any connection between his organisation and the attacks.

He has invited migrants from Hindi-speaking states and their leaders to join in the fast tomorrow, said his associate Mukesh Bharwad.

On Tuesday, the Congress leader had also invited the Chief Ministers of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar to join in the fast.

"Neither of them have confirmed their presence. He has also invited migrants and their leaders to join. Our aim is to send a message that we are not against anyone. All we want is peace and harmony in Gujarat," said Bharwad.

A video showing Thakor purportedly berating migrant workers had gone viral before the violence began.

"These people who have come from outside, they commit crime, they beat up common villagers and they go back to their states. Such people have jobs here...but our people do not have jobs here," Thakor is seen saying in a speech at Bhaucharji in Mehsana district of North Gujarat.  -- PTI
20:33   Work has begun to justify PM's decision: Rahul on RM's France visit
Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday raised questions on Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's France visit, alleging that work has begun to justify the prime minister's decision to buy Rafale fighter aircraft.

He took to Twitter to say while the Supreme Court has asked for the details of the Rafale decision-making process, the decision to buy the fighter aircraft was taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Gandhi alleged that processes to justify Modi's decision are being invented.

'The Supreme Court has asked for the RAFALE decision making process. It's quite simple really...

'The PM decided. The processes to justify his decision are yet to be invented. But work has begun.

'Ps. In this connection, Raksha Mantri is leaving for France tonight,' he said on Twitter.

Defence Minister Sitharaman leaves for France tonight on a three-day visit, which comes in the backdrop of a big controversy over the purchase of 36 Rafale jets from French aerospace major Dassault Aviation.      

Officials sources said Sitharaman will hold wide-ranging talks with her French counterpart Florence Parly on ways to deepen strategic cooperation between the two countries and deliberate on regional and global issues of mutual interests.

Sitharaman will also hold with Parly the first edition of defence dialogue, they said.

The sources said besides exploring ways to boost bilateral defence cooperation, Sitharaman will take stock of progress in the supply of 36 Rafale jets by Dassault to the Indian Air Force under a Rs 58,000-crore deal.

Prime Minister Modi had announced the procurement of a batch of 36 Rafale jets after talks with then French President Francois Hollande on April 10, 2015 in Paris.

The final deal was sealed on September 23, 2016.  -- PTI
19:59   164 swine flu deaths in Raj, highest in country
Rajasthan recorded 164 deaths due to swine flu till September this year, the highest in the country, according to official data.

According to National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), a total of 1,652 cases of swine flu surfaced in Rajasthan till September 30.

A total of 4,484 positive swine flu cases were recorded in the country and 353 deaths occurred during the period, as per the data.

After Rajasthan, 1,167 positive swine flu cases were recorded in Maharashtra, of which 101 people succumbed to the deadly virus.

Gujarat recorded 786 cases and 30 deaths were recorded till September 30 this year.

As per the latest data of the Rajasthan Health and Family Welfare Department, a total of 1,818 positive cases of swine flu were detected in the state till October 9 this year and 182 deaths have occurred so far.

In Jaipur, 822 people tested positive for the virus and 36 deaths were recorded.

It was followed by 291 cases and 23 deaths in Kota, 105 cases and 18 deaths in Jodhpur district and 62 cases and 15 deaths in Baran district, the department said.  -- PTI
19:06   Now get 'vrat ka khana' in trains during Navratri
Railways will offer 'vrat ka khana' (food during fasting) as a part of its e-catering menu during the Navratri festival which started on Wednesday, Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation said.

The Railways' catering arm said that keeping in mind the ritualistic fast observed by many during the festival, it has been decided to introduce them in its menu from October 10 to 18.

It consists of satvik diet like sabudana, sendha namak, kuttu ka atta, and certain vegetables.

'This year IRCTC, in a bid to make train travel during this time of the year less of a hassle, is offering 'vrat ka khana' as a part of its e-catering menu,' the IRCTC statement said.

These special meals will be available through select restaurants and at hand-picked stations on the Indian Railways network.

As on date, it will be available at Nagpur, Ambala, Jaipur, Itarsi, Jhansi, Nasik, Ratlam, Daund, Mathura, Nizamuddin and Lucknow, it said.

Items like Navratri thali, sabudana khichdi, lassi, fruit chats can be pre-ordered on IRCTC's e-Catering website or 'Food-on-track' app.

Orders can be placed at least two hours before scheduled journey time with a valid PNR, it said, adding passengers may opt to pre-pay or on delivery, based on convenience.  -- PTI
18:26   UP train mishap: Confusion over toll, number of coaches derailed
Confusion prevailed for hours among senior police and railway officials over the death toll after the derailment on Wednesday of the New Farakka Express near Rae Bareli.

While the railways maintained that five people were killed in the accident, a senior Uttar Pradesh police official initially said seven died.

Additional Director General (Law and Order) Anand Kumar told media in the morning that seven people were killed and between 30 and 35 injured in the derailment.

However, Northern Railway Divisional Regional Manager Satish Kumar said five persons died.

"There was some confusion initially," the railway official said, adding that the condition of two of the patients was very serious.

When contacted again later, ADG Anand Kumar admitted, "Till now, the death toll is only five."

There was similar confusion over the number of coaches derailed in the accident.

The railways said five coaches went off the tracks after earlier putting their number at nine.

10 women and six minors were among the injured, railway officials said.

Many of the injured were discharged after treatment, Rae Bareli Superintendent of Police Sujata Singh told PTI while confirming that the death toll was five.

She said there was confusion over a very seriously injured patient who was initially thought to have died.

Four of the seriously injured are being treated at the trauma centre of Lucknow's King George Medical University and two at the city's Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences, government spokesperson Shrikant Sharma told reporters.

The other injured were taken to Rae Bareli, about 80 km from the state capital Lucknow, officials said.  --  PTI
17:55   BJP unites, Cong divides society: Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi Wednesday accused the Congress of dividing the society for the benefit of one family while asserting that the BJP believes in spreading happiness and uniting people.

His remarks attacking the Congress at an interaction with BJP workers of five Lok Sabha constituencies came against the backdrop of exodus of migrants from Gujarat for which the saffron party has blamed its rival.

With assembly elections in five states ahead, Modi claimed that it was not a matter of ego for his party to defeat others but an opportunity to serve people.

"When you try and connect everything to elections, like unveiling the statue of Sir Chhotu Ram or Swachh Bharat Mission, it reduces the importance of the event," he said, adding that the BJP is doing social service and will continue doing it. -- PTI
17:47   Maharaja Ranjit Singh's golden quiver to be auctioned in UK
A gold-thread-embroidered, velvet-clad leather bow and arrow holder made for Maharaja Ranjit Singh leads a set of Indian treasures to go under the hammer in London later this month. The exquisite quiver, believed to have been made for ceremonial purposes rather than to be used in battle by the Sikh emperor -- known as the Lion of Punjab -- is estimated to fetch between 80,000 pounds and 120,000 pounds when it comes up for auction at the Bonhams Islamic and Indian Art sale on October 23.

"This is a wonderful piece from the fabled Treasury of Lahore, and all the circumstantial evidence points to it being the one made in 1838 for Ranjit Singh, Lion of the Punjab -- the state's greatest and most famous leader," said Oliver White, Bonhams Head of Indian and Islamic Art.

"The quiver was made purely for ceremonial purposes, and appears to have been rarely worn. As a result, it is in excellent condition," he notes.

According to Bonhams historians, archery played an important role in Sikh military culture. Long after bows and arrows were superseded by more modern weaponry, they retained a ceremonial and symbolic significance, especially among the nobility who would appear in public wearing an embroidered quiver at their side.

It is believed that the Maharaja commissioned a quiver in 1838 to wear at the wedding of his eldest son and heir, Kharak, and he appears to be wearing the one in the sale -- or one extremely similar to it -- in a painting of the same year by the French artist Alfred de Dreaux, now in the Louvre Museum in Paris, the auction house said. -- PTI
17:28   Tharoor announces his new book with a new word
Congress MP Shashi Tharoor Wednesday once again introduced Twitterati and the literati to a difficult, near unpronounceable word, describing his new book on Prime Minister Narendra Modi as "more than just a 400-page exercise in floccinaucinihilipilification".

According to the Oxford dictionary, the word is a noun and means "the action or habit of estimating something as worthless". Discussing the usage of the word, the dictionary adds, "Floccinaucinihilipilification is one of a number of very long words that occur very rarely in genuine use."

"My new book, THE PARADOXICAL PRIME MINISTER, is more than just a 400-page exercise in floccinaucinihilipilification. Pre-order it to find out why!" Tharoor said in a Twitter post that had everybody reaching for the dictionary.

The book itself was relegated to the background as the word got Twitterati talking. "I get a feeling of floccinaucinihilipilification when I don't know the meaning of floccinaucinihilipilification," tweeted one of Tharoor's followers. "What my English teachers taught was a lie. Won't order it as I cannot take out the dictionary everytime," said another person in reply to Tharoor's tweet.

The book is currently available for pre-order on Amazon. According to the description of the book on Amazon, "Shashi Tharoor has stitched together a compelling portrait of this paradoxical figure (Narendra Modi)," "Never before has there been such a superbly written and devastatingly accurate account of the most controversial prime minister India has ever had," it said.

Tharoor's love for the language and propensity for little heard and little used words is well known. In May 2017, the MP from Thiruvananthapuram and author of 17 books got netizens talking when he described the coverage of the death of his wife Sunanda Pushkar by a news channel as an "Exasperating farrago of distortions, misrepresentations and outright lies being broadcast by an unprincipled showman masquerading as a journalist". In December last year, he used the word 'rodomontade', meaning boastful or inflated talk or behaviour. "I choose my words because they are the best ones for the idea I want to convey, not the most obscure or rodomontade ones!" he tweeted.

And in February this year, he introduced 'troglodytes' to the Twitter world in a response to Vinay Katiyar's comment on the Taj Mahal. "We can't let these troglodytes destroy our country & everything beautiful in it,' he tweeted. -- PTI
17:12   Shame on you, MJ Akbar: Owaisi demands resignation
AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi on Wednesday demanded removal of M J Akbar from the Union Council of Ministers following allegations of sexual harassment against him. As the #MeToo campaign gathered momentum in India, at least six women journalists have come out and accused Akbar, a former editor and now the minister of state for external affairs, of sexually harassing them during his stint as a journalist.

"@mjakbar shame on you and you stood in parliament during T Talaaq Bill & spoke about Muslim women empowerment & to stop their exploitation..," the AIMIM chief tweeted. "@PMOIndia sack this Minister of yours if you truly believe in Beti Bachao," the Hyderabad Lok Sabha MP said in another tweet. -- PTI
17:09   HC quashes Preity Zinta's rmolestation case against Ness Wadia
Bombay High Court quashes molestation case against Ness Wadia filed by actor Preity Zinta against him in 2014.

On May 30, 2014, during a Kings XI Punjab vs Chennai Super Kings match at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai, Ness allegedly abusing the team staff over ticket distribution when Preity was seated in the Garware Pavilion.

When she asked him to calm down, he abused and manhandled her by grabbing her arm, she claimed. To support this claim, she submitted four photographs to the police, showing 'bruise-like' marks on her right arm.

Preity then changed her seat, but she was allegedly verbally abused again by Ness, she claimed.  He also abused her on the ground in front of their team members, she claimed.

In her complaint, Preity said that they had been having work-related disagreements for a while, and "during that time he tried to abuse me and used extremely derogatory language and tried to behave in a manner where I was put to shame in front of my colleagues, friends and family." She had verbally warned him, but he refused to mend his ways.

On the evening of May 30, 2014, Preity alleged, "Mr Ness Wadia had intimidated me by saying that he could make me disappear as I was a nobody and only an actress and he's a powerful person... I have tried to be very normal and nice to him as I wanted peace in my life, but the recent afore-stated incident in Mumbai at the Wankhede stadium has left me shattered and fear for my life."

Ness, in a statement, expressed shock at the complaint and denied the allegations, calling them "totally false and baseless."
16:29   #MeToo hits National Award winning lyricist
The #MeToo movement has hit the Tamil cinema industry with a number of women including noted singer Chinmayi Sripaada Wednesday levelling allegations against veteran lyricist Vairamuthu. Sripaada, who has crooned a number of songs including for Oscar winner AR Rahman, alleged inappropriate conduct by the poet against her during a foreign tour sometime in 2005 or 2006.

Vairamuthu, who had recently courted controversy for his reported remarks against Vaishnavite saint Andal, said he was being "repeatedly insulted" in the recent past and the #MeToo allegations were one among them.

"The indecency of defaming known persons is becoming a fashion across the country. Of late, I have been repeatedly insulted and this is one of those. I ignore anything that is far from truth. Time will tell the truth," he wrote on Twitter.

The allegations against Vairamuthu, a celebrated National award-winning lyricist, have surfaced following Sripaada and a journalist sharing allegations of inappropriate conduct by him on Twitter. Most of the women who had made the accusations have either remained anonymous or their identities have been withheld by the two. Sripaada herself claimed inappropriate conduct towards her by Vairamuthu, even as she shared experiences of other women, some of whom narrated incidents that allegedly happened when they were in their late teens. Sripaada, in a reply to Vairamuthu's statement, simply wrote: "Liar."  -- PTI

Image: Singer Chinmayi Sripada has accused lyricist Vairamuthu of inappropriate conduct.
16:14   Three more arrested for stabbing man after tempo brushes pet dog
Three more people were arrested for allegedly stabbing a tempo driver to death after the victim's vehicle brushed past a pet dog in Dwarka's Mohan Garden area, a police officer said Wednesday.

On Sunday, 19-year-old Karan Arora was arrested in connection with the case and this week, three more people were nabbed.

The three other accused persons were identified as Ankit (24) and Paras (20) and their tenant Dev Chopra (28), the officer said. The dog belonged to Ankit and Paras.

The police also seized the knife which was used in the crime. The incident, in which the deceased's elder brother was also injured, took place on the intervening night of Friday and Saturday.

The three accused persons were absconding since then, the officer said, adding that raids were conducted at various places of their hideouts. Arora is currently on two-day police remand, he said. Based on a statement of the wife of the deceased Vijender Rana, a case was registered at the Uttam Nagar police station, he said.

Ankit had taken his dog out on a walk when Rana's tempo brushed past the canine following which it sustained minor injury. Enraged over this, Ankit picked up a fight with him. His brother Paras and the other accused also joined in and they allegedly attacked Rana with a knife. When Rana's brother Rajesh intervened in the matter, the accused persons also attacked him with the knife, they added. -- PTI
16:02   My phones being tapped: Mukul Roy
BJP leader Mukul Roy Wednesday accused the Trinamool Congress government in West Bengal of "illegally tapping" his phones after two audio clips of his purported telephonic conversation with his party's general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya were circulated on social media.

BJP state president Dilip Ghosh also blamed the West Bengal police for illegally tapping telephones of BJP leaders in the state. "I have already moved the court against tapping of my phones. The matter is now sub judice. But I would say one thing that if you are tapping someone's telephone, it is totally illegal and immoral," Roy told PTI.

On Tuesday, he filed a case in Delhi High Court alleging his phone was being tapped. In one audio clip, Roy purportedly asked Vijayvargiya to speak to BJP president Amit Shah and ensure that CBI keeps a watch on four IPS officers to "scare them".

In the second audio clip, which has also gone viral on social media, Roy, a former TMC leader, purportedly told Vijayvargiya that a journalist who has done the Narada sting operation told him about a documentary that will "finish" the Trinamool Congress. The contents of the audio clips could not be immediately verified. Incidentally, a few IPS officers -- both present and former -- were summoned by CBI for questioning in connection with the Saradha scam. -- PTI
15:41   Tushar Mehta appointed Solicitor General of India
Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta has been appointed Solicitor General of India by Central Government. The post was vacant since October 20, 2017 after the resignation of Ranjit Kumar.
15:35   Many victims do not want to go beyond naming, shaming offenders: NCW
The National Commission for Women said Wednesday many victims of sexual abuse do not want to "go beyond naming and shaming" the alleged offenders and lodge a formal complaint. The NCW said it has urged victims of sexual abuse to register their written complaints with authorities concerned, including with the National Commission for Women.

"The commission has accordingly noticed that in many such cases, the victims do not want to go beyond naming and shaming the alleged offenders and lodge a formal complaint," the NCW said in a statement.

Noting that the commission condemns any act of invasion of private space of women, it said it has taken a serious note of the instances of sexual harassment of women that have figured in the media recently.

"The commission is committed to ensure safety and dignity of women including at workplaces. The commission is of the considered view that such violation infringes the constitutional rights of women and the perpetrators of such violence need to be penalised as per law," the NCW said.

The movement, on the lines of Hollywood's #MeToo, started after actor Tanushree Dutta alleged that Nana Patekar sexually harassed her on the sets of a movie in 2008. Patekar has rejected Dutta's allegations. The movement has gained momentum as more women share on social media their experiences of sexual harassment in the entertainment and media industry. -- PTI

Image: NCW chairperson Rekha Sharma
14:56   Explain allegations or resign: Congress on MJ Akbar
Congress reacts to the #MeToo allegations against Union Minister MJ Akbar saying he should either give a satisfactory answer to the allegations or he should resign. "We demand an inquiry into the matter," Jaipal Reddy, of the Congress said.

Akbar's boss, External Affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and the party, the BJP,  have maintained a studied silence on the matter. The Congress has said that, 'silence is not an option'.

Swaraj was asked by a reporter yesterday what she would do as a woman minister about allegations of harassment levelled against Akbar. The minister walked away.

Several women have taken to Twitter to post harrowing accounts of sexual harassment at the hands of Akbar, then a journalist.

Akbar has not responded to the charges. "It is an extremely serious matter and the minister concerned needs to speak up. Silence cannot be a way out. This matter should be investigated. We would like to hear from both the minister in question and the Prime Minister on this issue," Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari said. 
14:39   Cyclone Titli intensifies, Odisha govt starts evacuation
With cyclone 'Titli' over the Bay of Bengal Wednesday intensifying into a very severe cyclonic storm and moving towards the coast, the Odisha government began evacuation of people in five coastal districts.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, who took stock of the situation, asked the collectors of Ganjam, Puri, Khurda, Kendrapara and Jagtsinghpur districts to go for an immediate evacuation of people in the low-laying areas in the coastal belt.

Chief Secretary AP Padhi said the district administration of Ganjam has already started evacuating people in Gopalpur area, where very severe cyclone 'Titli' is likely to make a landfall at about 5.30 am Thursday. So far, about 1,000 people have been shifted to safer place, he said. Padhi said immediate evacuation was being launched in view of the IMD forecast of a tidal surge of about 1 m during landfall of cyclone 'Titli'.

The chief secretary said the National Disaster Response Force and Orissa Disaster Rapid Action Force personnel have already been positioned in vulnerable districts. -- PTI
14:03   Life sentence for Bangladesh ex-PM's son
A special court in Dhaka Wednesday handed a life sentence to the son of former prime minister and opposition leader Khaleda Zia in the 2004 Awami League rally attack that killed 24 people and injured 500 others, including the then opposition leader and current PM Sheikh Hasina,

Tarique Rahman, the fugitive son of Zia and presumed political heir, was the prime accused in the decade-old grenade attack case. While Hasina had sustained injuries, Bangladesh Awami Leagues women front chief and former president Zillur Rahmans wife Ivy Rahman was among the dead.

As per the investigations, an influential quarter of the then BNP-led government, including Rahman, had pioneered and sponsored the attackers, the operatives of militant Harkatul Jihad al Islami.

Rahman was declared a fugitive and was tried in absentia with the court. At present, Rahman resides in London and is believed to have sought asylum. His immigration status has not been revealed by the British authorities.

Image: Tarique Rahman was tried and sentenced in absentia.
13:57   Bhilai Steel Plant blast: CEO removed, two other officials suspended
The Chief Executive Officer of the Bilai Steel Plant was removed and two other senior officials were suspended on Wednesday, a day after a blast at the plant which claimed the lives of 11 employees. This was stated by Union Steel Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh after visiting the injured employees of the plant at the Jawahar Lal Nehru Hospital in Bhilai town, located around 30 km from here. On Tuesday, nine people had died and 14 others were injured in the gas pipeline blast at the plant of the state-owned Steel Authority of India Limited in Durg district. -- PTI
13:42   Sitharaman blames UPA for bad loans, defaulters fleeing country
Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has blamed the Congress-led UPA regime for public and private sector banks facing huge corporate bad loans. The loans were provided without following due diligence and as a result, defaulters fled the country and the banks had no money to lend, Sitharaman said while referring to fugitive business barons like Vijay Mallya and Nirav Modi. Sitharaman had also held the portfolios of corporate affairs and finance (Minister of State) and was the Minister of State (Independent Charge), Commerce and Industry. Huge loans were provided by banks at the drop of a hat "when a phone call was made," by the powers that be, the minister said, addressing a BJP traders wing meet Tuesday. Since such loans were not paid back till date, the banks faced a crunch and could not lend for new businesses, she claimed. "Public and private sector banks are all facing difficulty due to this. Though policy allowed banks to provide loans, banks are not prepared to lend as they do not have money. Why this happened," she asked. -- PTI
13:01   No policeman should enter Puri temple with weapons, shoes: SC
The Supreme Court Wednesday took note of the October 3 violence at Puri's Jagannath temple during a protest against the introduction of a queue system for devotees and said no policeman should enter the temple with weapons and shoes.

A bench comprising Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta was informed by the Odisha government that 47 persons were arrested in connection with the violence in the temple and the situation was under control now.

The state government also told the bench that no violence had taken place inside the temple premises and the office of the Jagannath temple administration, which is situated around 500 meters from the main temple, was attacked and ransacked during the violence.

The counsel appearing for an organisation, which sought to intervene in the matter, claimed before the bench that policemen had entered the temple with guns and boots during the violence.

Nine policemen were injured as violence broke out on October 3 during a 12-hour bandh called by a socio-cultural organisation protesting the introduction of a queue system for devotees visiting the Jagannath Temple, police had said.

The dawn-to-dusk shutdown in the seaside town called by Sri Jagannath Sena turned violent as a mob barged into the 12th-century shrine, uprooted barricades erected on Baisi Pahacha and near Singhadwara and ransacked the office of Shree Jagannath Temple Administration.  -- PTI
12:47   Now, Sandhya Mridul's #MeToo moment with Alok Nath
Actress Sandhya Mridul tweets her own #MeToo moment with disgraced actor Alok Nath. Vinta Nanda, the woman who's searing account of rape by the actor 19 years ago has shocked social media, told the press that she is meeting advisors and will decide on a plan of action by today. Nanda had outed Alok Nath in a Facebook post detailing not just the harrowing rape but also the years of isolation, depression, trauma and suffering that she endured after.

This is Sandhya Mridul's account of her experience with Alok Nath.

"At the very start of my career I was shooting a telefilm for zee in Kodaikanal. I was the lead. And very excited. Alok Nath was my on screen father and Reema lagoo my mother.

"Alok Nath was very impressed with me and called me "god's own child" and openly praised me everyday. I was over the moon. I was a huge fan of this wonderful Babuji.. I felt so fortunate happy and confident.

"Till one night after an early pack up. The cast went out for dinner. At dinner he got progressively drunk and started insisting I sit with him and that I belonged to him and other stuff that I don't clearly remember but it made me very nervous and uncomfortable. My co-star realised what was happening and got me out of there.

"We went back to the hotel without dinner. It was late and I was back in my room and the costume dada came to my room to give me my clothes for the next day as I had a very early call time. Few minutes after he left there was a knock on my door.

"I opened the door thinking it was him again was an inebriated Alok Nath I instinctively tried to shut the door but he pushed it and lunged at me, I stepped aside he went flying past me into the room ..

"I fell backwards towards the bathroom door he lunged at me again screaming I want you you're mine .. I dodged again he went into the bathroom and I think I latched the loo door and ran out of my room down the corridor into the lobby. Fortunately my dop was there making a call from the reception ..

"He came back to my room what ensued was traumatic because a belligerent Alok Nath refused to leave.. kept screaming shouting threatening abusing trying to grab me.. but at some point we managed to make him leave.

"The hairdresser was called and made to sleep in my room I was so shaken up.

"In a few hours Ihad scenes with Bauji, in one I had to sit on his lap and cry. I still feel nauseous when i think of it.

"It didn't stop there ... every evening he would drink and every night calls were made to my room. I dreaded the ring.. I had to keep it off the hook most of the times.   

"But then he would come calling. It was a catch 22 situation. I had the hairdresser moved in to my room permanently. I was a nervous wreck.

"Few days later I got very sick & was laid up and couldn't shoot. The stress had broken me. He continued to traumatise me with calls.

"And knocks.

"The hairdresser would answer. One day when he landed up at the door and cried and begged to be allowed in to sodas to me to apologise.. I couldn't take it anymore I told her to accompany him in..he pulled a chair next to my bed and howled. Said he was an alcoholic and that he had destroyed everything his family his marriage everything's and I was like his daughter and he respected me and that he was very sorry. He says he had learnt his lesson and that he would go to therapy and change it all..

"I finally broke my silence. I screamed shouted cried and it was done. I believed him. I had to. He left. He got away. I don't know how I shot with him for the remaining days and weeks.

"I'm grateful to my co-actors, my DOP & especially the late Reema lagoo for finally taking him on & protecting me like a mother from then on.

"But it was too late. The damage was done. A very disillusioned, disgraced & unsure me returned home. He went on to return to Bombay and tell people I was difficult and arrogant. Apologies forgotten. He was a popular man. I was a newbie. He laid the foundation others like him built on. All those who heard 'No'. Attitude my biggest crime. The deal breaker.

"Mr. Alok Nath. You know this to be true. As do few others. I had to forgive you for myself then and for my sanity but I will never forgive you for what you did with Vinta. Whom I have always respected and loved.

"I stand by you Vinta. What I went through is nothing compared to you. I'm so sorry. More power to you. To us all. I'm certain there are others. I urge you to come forward. "Your time is up Sir". #Me too
Kerala: Lord Ayyappa devotees take out a march in Trivandrum in protest against Supreme Court verdict over women's entry in Sabarimala temple.
11:56   Dilip Kumar responding to treatment, might be discharged Thursday
Screen legend Dilip Kumar, who has been admitted to hospital, is responding to the treatment and will be soon discharged. The 95-year-old actor is being treated for recurrent pneumonia at Lilavati Hospital. Kumar's family friend Faisal Farooqui shared the news on the actor's official Twitter handle, saying Kumar might be discharged on Thursday.

"Lord be praised. @TheDilipKumar saab is responding to treatment and doing much better. If all goes well, as per doctors, he may be discharged from the hospital tomorrow. (Thursday afternoon). Insha'Allah. -FF" read the tweet.

Last month, the actor was admitted to hospital for the treatment of mild pneumonia. Known as the 'Tragedy King of Bollywood', Dilip Kumar has given memorable performances in films such as "Andaz", 'Aan', 'Madhumati', 'Devdas' and 'Mughal-e-Azam'. PTI
11:43   SC asks Centre to provide details of Rafale decision making in sealed cover
The Supreme Court Wednesday asked the Centre to provide details of the decision making process in the Rafale fighter jet deal in a sealed cover. The apex court bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices SK Kaul and KM Joseph, however, made it clear it does not want information on pricing and technical details of the deal with France. "The Rafale deal pertains to national security and such issues cannot be reviewed judicially," the Attorney General told the SC.

The court was hearing various petitions seeking directions, including asking the Centre to reveal details of the Rafale deal and the comparative prices during the UPA and NDA rule in a sealed cover to the apex court.

The court sought information from the Centre by October 29 and fixed PILs for hearing on October 31.

Congress leader and RTI activist Tehseen Poonawala has withdrawn his PIL against the Rafale fighter jet deal. The Centre opposed the Rafale PILs and sought their dismissal on grounds that they have been filed to gain political mileage. The SC clarifies it is not taking into account allegations made in petitions.
11:21   Bahl wants 'unconditional apology' from Kashyap, Motwane
Update: Director Vikas Bahl sends a notice to Anurag Kashyap and  Vikramaditya Motwane, asking them to withdraw their tweet against him and tender an unconditional apology on a social media platform and desist from making further statements likely to harm his reputation, failing which legal action will be taken. The notice also states that the tweet made by Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwane is a result of professional jealousy and with the sole intent to defame him and malign his image and  destroy his career.
10:54   Singer Nitin Bali passes away
Bollywood singer Nitin Bali passed away on Tuesday in a Mumbai hospital. The 47-year-old was injured in a road accident on Mumbai's SV road on Monday and was undergoing treatment at the hospital.

The singer was traveling back home from Borivali to Malad, when his car crashed into a divider. He was immediately rushed to a nearby hospital by a few people.

However, his condition worsened and he eventually died on Tuesday morning.The singer lent his voice for some of the most famous remixed songs including 'Neele Neele Ambar Par', 'Chukar Mere Man Ko', 'Ek Ajanbee Haseena Se', 'Na Jaane Kahan Kho Gaya' and 'Pal Pal Dil Ke Paas', among many others. -- ANI
10:42   Bahl lashes out at '#MeToo opportunists' Kashyap, Motwane
Film director Vikas Bahl, who was accused of sexual assault by a former employee of Phantom Films amidst the raging #MeToo campaign, has labelled his two partners at the film production company -- Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwane -- "opportunists" for using the allegations to defame him, reports Mumbai Mirror.

In two separate, but similarly worded legal notices, sent to Kashyap and Motwane on Tuesday via email, Bahl accused them of not only orchestrating the whole campaign against him, but also using the opportunity to disband Phantom Films, making him look like the person responsible for the production house's fall.

The notice, issued through Advocate Shamsher Garud of Jayakar and Partners, alleges that Kashyap bribed another employee of the production house to make similar allegations against Bahl.

"This makes us wonder whether the alleged incident [of sexual assault] also has any authenticity, given that the alleged victim was, in fact, working as your own employee."

Kashyap and Motwane dissolved Phantom Films on Monday after an unidentified employee of the production company outed Bahl, alleging he sexually assaulted her in Goa during a promotional tour for Bombay Velvet in 2015.

Phantom Films was established in 2011 by Kashyap, Motwane, Bahl and producer Madhu Mantena. The company's productions include Lootera, Hasee Toh Phasee and blockbuster Queen starring Kangana Ranaut.

The notice alleges that Kashyap and Motwane acted on hearsay to paint Bahl as the villain of the piece.

"You are neither a witness nor the alleged victim, but instead an opportunist seeking to derive benefit based on unsubstantiated information. The alleged incident has not been established in any court of law and that you have exploited the media to propagate your own personal vendetta," the notice says.

Image: In happier times: The founders of Phantom Films -- Anurag Kashyap, Vikas Bahl, Madhu Mantena and Vikramaditya Motwane.
10:35   Singer Sona Mohapatra accuses Kailash Kher of sexual harassment
The #MeToo movement continue to rock Bollywood. Now, singer Sona Mohapatra has accused fellow singer Kailash Kher of sexual misconduct. In a series of tweets, Sona narrated incidents in which Kher's behavior towards her was improper.

She tweeted that she first met him at a cafe in Mumbai to discuss a concert.

However, Kher placed his hand on her thigh and complimented her and said that he feels so good that a 'musician got you and not an actor', referring to her husband Ram Sampath.

"I met Kailash for coffee in Prithvi Caf to discuss a forthcoming concert where both our bands were playing & after the usual, a hand on my thigh with lines likes, you're so beautiful, feel so good that a 'musician got you' (Ram) not an actor. I left not soon after," Sona said.

Mohapatra said that Kher continued to make advances when they landed in Dhaka. Her leaving the meeting promptly did not deter Kailash Kher.

"That did not deter Kailash Kher though. On landing in Dhaka & on my way to the venue with the organisers, keeps calling me & when I don't pick up, calls the organisers phone to get through to me & asks me to 'skip' the soundcheck & join him in his room instead to 'catch up', she tweeted. 

"The fact that Kailash had sung in my studios & for many projects in which I was the producer & knew me to be as strong as i am or that he had only recently taken a favour from my partner @RamSampathLive to create a personal track for him didn't stop him. #TheHubris of such #men," she added.

The #MeToo movement started in India after actor Tanushree Dutta alleged that well-known actor Nana Patekar sexually harassed her on the sets of a movie in 2008.  
10:34   Trump says his daughter Ivanka would be dynamite at UN
US President Donald Trump said he is certain that his daughter Ivanka would be "dynamite" as the US ambassador to the UN, but conceded that he would be "accused of nepotism" if he selected her to replace Indian-American Nikki Haley.

Haley, 46, announced Tuesday she would resign from her post as the US ambassador to the UN effective at the end of 2018. As President Trump heaped praise on Haley's performance during her tenure as the the envoy to the world body, he said many people would like to replace her.

Trump said that he expects to name a replacement for Haley in the next "two to three weeks," and said that he would be talking about candidates with the former South Carolina governor and others.

Trump told reporters at the White House that his daughter Ivanka would make an "incredible" ambassador to the UN. "The people that know -- it's nothing to do with nepotism. But I want tell you: The people that know, know that Ivanka would be dynamite. But, you know, I'd then be accused of nepotism, if you can believe it," he said.

"I think Ivanka would be incredible. That doesn't mean I'd pick her, because you'd be accused of nepotism, even though I'm not sure there's anybody more competent in the world. But that's okay," Trump said in response to a question. -- PTI
10:31   Seven killed in New Farakka Express derailment
At least seven people were killed as eight coaches and the engine of the New Farakka Express (14003) derailed near Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh Wednesday, Additional Director General, Law and order, Anand Kumar said.

The accident took place in Harchandpur area of Rae Bareli district at 6.10 am. Around 30-35 people are injured and two passengers, who are still trapped inside the coaches, are feared dead, he said.

The injured are being taken to the Harchandpur PHC and district hospital. The passengers are going to Lucknow and from there they will be sent to Delhi by a special train, officials said. Senior officers, including the district magistrate, superintendent of police, CO, sub-divisional magistrate are at the spot and relief operations are in full swing, the ADG said.

The National Disaster Response Force team and rescue train have reached the accident site. The ADG said that the reason for derailment will be known after an Anti-Terrorism Squad is sent for an on-the-spot probe. Emergency helpline numbers have been set up at the Deen Dayal Upadhyaya junction, Mughalsarai, officials said.

All up and down lines on the route have been blocked and officials suspect that the number of casualties may rise. Previously, the railways had said that six coaches have derailed. -- PTI
10:10   Sensex rises over 200 pts, Nifty above 10,300
BSE benchmark Sensex rose over 200 points in early trade Wednesday following gains in auto, metals and banking stocks amid unabated buying by domestic institutional investors and rupee recovery.

The 30-share index spurted 220.38 points, or 0.64 per cent, to 34,519.85. The barometer had lost 175 points on Tuesday. Sectoral indices, led by capital goods, auto, oil and gas, metal and healthcare, rose up to 1.50 per cent.

The NSE Nifty too was up by 45.55 points, or 0,43 per cent, at 10,346.60. The rupee was trading higher by 23 paise at 74.16 against the American currency in early deals. There was continued buying by domestic institutional investors as well as select purchases by retail investors, traders said. -- PTI
09:24   'Real progress' made with North Korea toward denuclearisation: Pompeo
The United States has made a "real progress" with North Korea toward the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula but still there is a long way to go, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Tuesday.
Pompeo, who met North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Monday in Pyongyang to discuss a future summit, told reporters that the two countries are back on a path toward denuclearisation.
"While there's still a long way to go and much work to do, we can now see a path to where we'll achieve the ultimate goal, which is the full and final verified denuclearisation of North Korea," Pompeo told reporters at the White House after a lunch with President Donald Trump.
Pompeo returned from a Asia trip Monday night, during which travelled to Japan, South Korea, North Korea and China.
Pompeo's trip was intended to set the table for a second summit between Trump and Kim, who held an historic summit in Singapore on June 12.
On Indian-American Nikki Haley resigning as the US Ambassador to the UN, Pompeo said she was his "great partner."
"I want to thank Amb Haley for the good work that she has done. She has been a great partner of mine for the five months that she and I have been working together, Pompeo said.
"I want to wish her very well whatever comes next for her, Pompeo said.
In a surprise move, Haley on Tuesday resigned as the US Ambassador to the United Nations, becoming the latest casualty in the dysfunctional Trump administration just weeks before the crucial mid-term elections. -- PTI
09:01   Voting underway for 2nd phase of J-K municipal polls
Polling began for the second phase of the four-phased municipal elections in Jammu and Kashmir today to seal the fate of 1,029 candidates in fray across the state.
Voting began at 6 am on Wednesday morning amid stringent security arrangements, officials said.
They said the voting would take place at 544 polling stations across the state and would end at 4 pm.
The officials said 1,029 candidates -- 881 in Jammu division and 148 in Kashmir division -- are in the fray for 263 municipal wards, including 49 in Kashmir and 214 in Jammu.
A total of 65 candidates, 61 of them from Kashmir valley,  have already won the polls uncontested, while in 56 wards, all in the valley,  no nomination was received, so no polling is taking place in those places, they said.
As many as 270 polling stations have been designated for voting in Kashmir Division and 274 in Jammu Division, they added.
The officials said the total electorate in these wards is 346,980 - 128,104 in Jammu Division belonging to 18 Municipal bodies and 218,876 in Kashmir Division of five Municipal bodies.
They said massive security arrangements have been put in place to ensure smooth conduct of the polls.
The elections, covering 79 municipal bodies with an electorate of about 17 lakh, are being held in four phases.
A total of 3,372 nominations have been filed for 1,145 wards. The next phases will take place on October 13 and 16.
The National Conference, the People's Democratic Party and the Commuist Party of India-Marxist have boycotted the polls to protest the the legal challenge to Article 35A of the Constitution in the Supreme Court.
The government has declared holiday on the day of poll in the municipal areas concerned to enable voters cast their vote. -- PTI 
08:29   4 killed after New Farakka Express derails in UP
At least four people were killed as five coaches and the engine of the New Farakka Express derailed near Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday morning, Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) of Northern Railway Satish Kumar said.
The accident took place near Harchandpur at around 6.05 am, he said.
A team of doctors in an accident relief medical van has been rushed to the site in Lucknow and emergency helpline numbers have been set up at the Deen Dayal Upadhyaya junction, Mughalsarai, officials said. 
All up and down lines on the route have been blocked and officials suspect that the number of casualty may rise.
Meanwhile, sources said Chairman Railway Board Ashwani Lohani was on his way to the accident site. -- PTI
00:07   Wife of ex-Interpol chief who vanished in China describes threats
The wife of the former Interpol president who disappeared in China says she received a threatening phone call warning of agents coming for her while she fights for information about her husband's fate.

Grace Meng said her last contact with her husband Meng Hongwei was by text message, on September 25, when he wrote 'wait for my call' and sent her a knife emoji after travelling back to China.

After a week with no news, on an evening when she was at home in Lyon having put their two young boys to bed, she had a threatening call on her mobile phone from a man speaking Chinese.

He said, "You listen but you don't speak. We've come in two work teams, two work teams just for you",' Meng said.

She said the man also said: 'We know where you are,' and that when she tried to ask a question, he repeated: 'You don't speak, you just listen to me.'

As a result, Meng is under French police protection. 

In her first one-on-one interview since Meng went missing, Meng denied bribery allegations against her high-profile husband, and said that speaking out about his disappearance was placing her 'in great danger'.