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26 April 2017

Delhi MCD Elections: Clean Sweep For BJP in All 3 Corporations, AAP Decimated
New Delhi,26 April: The BJP was sailing well above the halfway mark in all the three corporations in the MCD elections with the Aam Aadmi Party ahead of the Congress in the fight for a distant second spot.Three hours into counting, the BJP was ahead in over 70 each out of the 104 seats in the North and South and close to 50 in the 64 seats in the East. AAP was coming in a distant second in the South and East while it was in a close fight with the Congress for the runner up spot in the North. Delhi BJP unit chief Manoj Tiwari thanked Delhiites for the victory. “We dedicate this win to the martyrs of Sukma. For the next few months, a clean and healthy Delhi is our mission.” The party has said it will not celebrate the win in view of the Sukma attack in which 25 CRPF jawans were killed. ALSO READ| Delhi MCD Elections: 7 Reasons Why BJP is The Winner AAP has asked questions over the election results saying the electronic voting machines were rigged - a charge it had first raised after the recent state elections which were swept by the BJP. "This is not a Modi wave, this is an EM wave," Delhi Rural Development Minister Gopal Rai said. In 2012, the BJP all the three corporations - North, South and East- were won by the BJP. Exit polls this time had predicted a win for the party in more than 200 out of the 270 wards, going by latest indications it was set to meet that target. The elections, which witnessed a fierce battle of ballots among the ruling BJP, the Congress and the AAP, were held on Sunday and the results and are likely to have political ramifications beyond the national capital's borders. It was a high-octane campaigning by the three major players and various other smaller parties and the voter turnout was 53.58 per cent, a shade higher than the 2012 MCD elections. The verdict is expected to reshape the political equations in the country's power capital. The result could be an indicator on whether the sway of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP, which had stunned all by bagging 67 seats out of 70 in the Delhi Assembly polls, still holds.

 

 

College Cut Offs to Fall Next Year as Boards Scrap Marks Moderation Policy.
New Delhi: 25 april 2017
Doing away with disparity in marking system of various education boards, Union Human Resources Development Ministry has asked the boards to scrap the marks moderation policy, under which extra marks were awarded to students in certain papers considered to be difficult.
In a meeting called by the HRD ministry, Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE), Indian School Certificate (ISC), Central Board for Secondary Education (CBSE) and state boards unanimously agreed to do away with the marks moderation policy.
This, in turn, will bring down the high cut offs for admission at prestigious colleges and universities.
As per the marks moderation policy, up to 15% extra marks were awarded to students in certain papers, which were considered difficult. CBSE will do away with this policy starting this academic session.
The move comes after CBSE, last year, had requested the HRD ministry to create consensus on phasing out of marks moderation policy, which inadvertently led to spike in marks obtained by students of certain boards.
“There were 32 representatives from the state boards, along with the representatives of ICSE and ISC. Schools affiliated to CBSE from the Union Territories and Arunachal Pradesh were also present at the meeting chaired by education secretary Anil Swarup. All stakeholders agreed to scrap the marks moderation policy,” said a source at CBSE.
The discussion revolved around removing disparity in scores “so that commonality is achieved in the declaration of results.”
The secretaries present also agreed on giving “grace marks for students falling short by a whisker”.
“Such cases will be reflected on the website, thus making the entire procedure transparent. The discussion also included the formation of a common curriculum across the country,” said the source at CBSE.

Setback for CM Pinarayi as SC Orders Him to Reinstate Sacked Police Chief Senkumar
New Delhi,24 April : The Supreme Court has ordered the Kerala government to reinstate ousted DGP TP Senkumar causing a major embarrassment to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.
This would mean present incumbent Loknath Behera would have to be removed from the post. The court held Senkumar's removal was arbitrary and not as per established law.
A bench of justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta delivered its judgment on a plea filed by Senkumar seeking his reinstatement.
Speaking to CNN-News18 after the verdict, Senkumar said: “This verdict will help other police officers who face similar problems. I want to thank the legal team that backed me.”
Senkumar was shifted out by the newly elected Vijayan government in May 2016 citing lapses in the probing the Jisha murder case and the firework tragedy at the Puttingal temple. Senkumar, who was transferred as head of the Police Housing Construction Corporation, did not take charge and challenged the decision in court.
The apex court set aside the order of the Kerala High Court which had upheld the Central Administrative Tribunal's (CAT) decision that had not found fault with the state government's decision to transfer Senkumar from the post of the state police chief.
The Kerala government had on April 11 defended in the apex court its decision to transfer Senkumar, saying he had protected "erring" police officials in the 2016 Puttingal temple fire tragedy in which 110 people were killed.
The state government had told the court that Senkumar's transfer was not a punishment for the "lapse" which had led to the April 10, 2016 incident but it was for how he had handled the fallout of the tragedy.
On April 10 last year, when Senkumar was Kerala's DGP, there was an explosion leading to a blaze after a fireworks display went awry at Puttingal Temple in Kollam district. As many as 110 people had died while over 300 were injured in the incident

 

 

North Korean Missile Explodes on Launch Day After Military Parade
Seoul,16 April : A North Korean missile exploded during launch Sunday, US and South Korean officials said, a high-profile failure that comes as a powerful US aircraft super carrier approaches the Korean Peninsula in a show of force.It wasn't immediately clear what kind of missile was test-fired from the east coast city of Sinpo. But the failure will sting in Pyongyang because it comes a day after one of the biggest North Korean propaganda events of the year— celebrations of the 105th birthday of late North Korea founder Kim Il Sung, the current leader's grandfather. The North's test firing can be seen as a message of defiance to the Trump administration in Washington, coming as it does on the day U.S. Vice President Mike Pence is set to arrive in Seoul for talks on North Korea. President Donald Trump was uncharacteristically quiet about the failed launch. In a statement, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Trump and his military team "are aware of North Korea's most recent unsuccessful missile launch. The president has no further comment."
Washington and Seoul will try hard to figure out what exactly North Korea fired. This matters because while North Korea regularly launches short-range missiles, it is also developing mid-range and long-range missiles meant to target U.S. troops in Asia and, eventually, the U.S. mainland. The ultimate goal is to have a full array of nuclear-tipped missiles in response to what Pyongyang says is hostility by Washington and Seoul meant to topple its government. North Korea is thought to have a small arsenal of atomic bombs and an impressive array of short- and medium-range missiles. Many outside analysts believe that North Korea has not yet mastered the technology to build warheads small enough to place on long-range missiles, though some civilian experts say North Korea can already build nuclear-tipped shorter range missiles that have South Korea and Japan within its striking range. The U.S. Pacific Command said in a statement that Sunday's missile exploded on launch. South Korea's Defense Ministry said it was analyzing exactly how the North Korean launch failed. Neither military knew what kind of missile was fired.In Seoul, South Korea's presidential office convened a national security council meeting to examine security postures. Always high animosity has risen on the Korean Peninsula in recent months, as the United States and South Korea conduct annual war games that North Korea claims are invasion preparation and the North prepared for Saturday's anniversary celebrations. A

 

 

 

India to Wait and Watch on Jadhav, Banks on Diplomatic Channels.
New Delhi: 12 April 2017

India will wait for Pakistan government's response to its protests over death penalty to alleged spy Kulbhushan Jadhav and not react in a hurry, sources have told CNN-News18.
That is because New Delhi is certain that Pakistan will not carry out the hanging sentence immediately as it would exhaust all options available to the neighbouring country.
In the meanwhile India will explore all diplomatic options for saving Jadhav from the death row, sources said, adding that this was also the suggestion given to the government by security agencies.
In a bid to ramp up pressure through mutual friends, India is likely to raise the issue with US National Security Advisor H R McMaster who is visiting New Delhi and Islamabad next week.
Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit has been apparently told to provide the evidence against Jadhav and give him a fair trial following the rules of diplomacy.
The government is also trying to understand the real reason behind the hurry in which a Pakistan military court sentenced Indian national Jadhav to the gallows for "espionage and subversive activities" and the urgency with which Army Chief Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa confirmed it.
Security agencies are also learnt to have suggested to the government not to deal with the issue through backchannels but to keep pressurising Islamabad through official channels. That is because they feel opening up of backchannels may undermine the Indian position.
Jadhav was arrested reportedly from Balochistan after he entered from Iran in March 2016. He was accused by Pakistan of being a "R&AW (Research and Analysis Wing) agent” and planning "subversive activities" in the country.
The Indian government, on the other hand, believed that he was picked up from Iran.
The case took a turn In December 2016, when Pakistan Foreign Affairs Advisor Sartaj Aziz told the Pakistan Senate that there was not enough evidence against Jadhav.
However, in March, Aziz retracted his statement and ruled out any possibility of extraditing Jadhav back to India.
Aziz told the Senate that Pakistan never said there was any lack of evidence against him. "We have filed an FIR and prepared a case to prosecute Indian state actor for his subversive and terrorist activities in Pakistan," he said.
Aziz said Islamabad had shared a dossier with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres on New Delhi's involvement in internal affairs of Pakistan, and in subversive and terrorist activities in the country.

Two Voices in Pak? Army Sends Jadhav to Gallows, But Sharif wants Peace With India
New Delhi, April 11, 2017, slamabad: Pakistan is a peace-loving country which wants good relations with neighbours, Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said on Tuesday amid rising tensions over the death sentence handed to Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav.
“Pakistan is a peace loving country. It has maintained good relations with its neighbours. We want cooperation, not conflicts. Pakistan will not hesitate to extend a hand of friendship,” he said, indicating that the civilian leadership was not fully on board the decision of the military courts to sentence Jadhav to death. Sharif, however, added that Pakistan’s armed forces “were fully capable of and prepared” to respond to any threat. The Pakistani military had on Tuesday announced that an army court has sentenced Jadhav to death after finding him guilty of "espionage and sabotage activities" and the army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa has approved his execution. Pakistan's Defence Minister Khawaja Asif has said the death sentence should serve as a warning to those "plotting" against the country. The defence minister further said that Jadhav's "confession" was a public document and if India raises the issue of his death sentence, Islamabad will reply to New Delhi. Reacting strongly, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar in New Delhi summoned Pakistan High Commissioner to India Abdul Basit and gave a demarche, which said the proceedings that have led to the sentence against Jadhav are "farcical in the absence of any credible evidence" against him. New Delhi has said it will regard as "premeditated murder" if Pakistan carries out the death sentence against Jadhav "without observing basic norms of law and justice".

 

 

Schools Picked to Hold Anantnag Bypoll Torched in Valley's Violent Weekend.
Srinagar: 10 April, 2017

Two schools that were to serve as election centres in the bypoll to Anantnag Lok Sabha seat on Wednesday were torced by anti-India protesters overnight, capping a violent weekend in the Valley that saw eight deaths.
The incident was the fourth arson attack reported in the Valley where bypolls to the Srinagar Lok Sabha seat were held on Sunday. The bypoll saw dismal turnout of 6.5% as sporadic violence, clashes and attacks on polling booths kept voters away.
Eight protesters were killed when the security forces opened fire during the voting process. While two people each were killed Pakherpora in Chrar-e- Sharief and Beerwah areas of Budgam district, two more deaths were reported from Chadoora area of the same district and another in Magam town, which is known as the gateway to Gulmarg. Another person was killed in Barsoo in Ganderbal district.
Mobs attacked the polling stations, damaging the EVMs and ransacking the polling stations, at nearly 100 places in Budgam.
Separatists have called a two-day shutdown and protest against the civilian deaths.
Late on Sunday, security forces also foiled an infiltration bid along the Line of Control in Keran sector of Jammu and Kashmir and killed four terrorists. "A major infiltration bid from across the LoC was foiled by the Army troops in Keran sector yesterday (Sunday) evening," Defence Ministry spokesman Colonel Rajesh Kalia told IANS.
"A search operation is going on in the area," he said.

Indian, Chinese navies rescue hijacked merchant ship in Gulf of Aden
NEW DELHI,9 april : Notwithstanding the strain in ties, the navies of India and China carried out a well coordinated operation to rescue a merchant ship in the Gulf of Aden which was hijacked by Somali pirates last night.
After getting a distress call about the attack on the cargo vessel OS 35, Indian Navy sent warships INS Mumbai and INS Tarkash while the Chinese Navy also responded to the call for help by moving in its missile frigate Yulin.
The merchant ship, with 19 Filipino crew members, was travelling from Kelang in Malaysia to the port city of Aden in Yemen when it came under attack from Somali pirates.
While the Indian Navy deployed a helicopter that provided air cover, the Chinese side sent in a team of 18 personnel to sanitise the merchant ship registered in the Pacific island of Tuvalu. The two Indian warships were in the region as part of an overseas deployment.
"In a show of international maritime cooperation against piracy, a boarding party from the nearby Chinese Navy ship went on board the merchant ship, while the Indian Naval helicopter provided air cover for the operation. It has been established that all 19 Filipino crew members are safe," Navy spokesperson Capt D K Sharma said.
The well coordinated operation by navies of India and China comes amid strain in ties between the two Asian giants over a range of issues including the Dalai Lama's visit to Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh, China's opposition to India's NSG membership and Beijing blocking India's effort to get JeM chief Masood Azhar declared as global terrorist by the UN.
At the end of the operation, the Chinese Navy thanked the Indian navy for its role in successful operation. The Indian Navy also complimented the Chinese side.
The Indian Navy had swung into action after getting a call from UK's Maritime Trade Organisation UKMTO that keeps a vigil on movement of the ships in the region. Pakistani and Italian warships had also responded to calls for help and reached the spot.
The Indian warships established contact with the captain of the merchant vessel who along with the crew had locked themselves in a strong room on board as per standard operating procedure.
An Indian Navy helicopter undertook aerial reconnaissance of the merchant vessel at night and at sunrise to sanitise the upper decks of the merchant ship and ascertain the location of pirates, if still on board.
The pirates had fled from the ship after warships of India and China moved in.
"Indian Navy's helicopter cover, and on receiving the 'all clear signal' that no pirates were visible on the upper decks, some crew members gradually emerged from the strong room and carried out a search of the ship and ascertained that the pirates had fled the ship at night," the navy spokesperson said.
The captain of the merchant vessel profusely thanked the Indian Naval ships for their response and for providing air cover, he said.

 

 

 

Mitchell Starc Ends Up Sending Messages to 'Wrong' Virat Kohli
New Delhi,2 april Australian pacer Mitchell Starc has, inadvertently, left a message meant for Virat Kohli on a parody account of the India captain.
Starc, who was congratulating Kohli for the series win, mistook the parody account to be the real one.
He wrote on Twitter, "Hey friend :) Hopefully I don't have to look for a new ipl team?? Haha media hey!
"Didn't get a chance to have a proper catch up mate but Congrats on the series win and on your summer personally I hope that shoulder is on the mend and not too bad. Good luck for the ipl, here s hoping to an RCB win. Cheers mate."
The tweet soon went viral, leaving Starc a bit embarrassed. The Australian later deleted his tweets.
The parody account holder named @imVkohlli shared the screenshots of Starc's tweets from his Twitter handle.
View image on TwitterView image on Twitter
Starc left the recently concluded India-Australia series mid-way after sustaining a stress fracture on his foot. He played in the first two Tests and picked up five wickets.
Starc had pulled out of this year's Indian Premier League season, ending his association with his franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore to focus on his rehabilitation ahead of the ICC Champions Trophy in June.

 

 

In Massive ED Crackdown, 700 Shell Firms Found at One Mumbai Address.
New Delhi, 1 April 2017:

The Enforcement Directorate on Saturday launched a nationwide crackdown against shell companies and conducted searches at 100 locations across 16 states to check the circulation of black money.
Multiple teams, comprising 300 officers, visited these locations and raided the premises of firms in prominent places like Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata, Chandigarh, Patna, Ranchi, Ahmedabad, Bhubaneswar and Bengaluru among others.
The agency reportedly found more than 700 shell companies at one address in Mumbai.
It has also reportedly looked into shell companies allegedly linked to YSR Congress chief Jagan Mohan Reddy and former chief engineer of Noida, Yadav Singh.
The action is being carried out under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) to check money laundering and illegal foreign exchange transactions.
The action is part of the mandate given to the ED under a Special Task Force (STF) that was recently created by the government on the directions of the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
The agency had recently attached assets worth crores of such firms.
Shell companies are defined as those firms which are set up by nominal paid-up capital, high reserves and surplus on account of receipt of high share premium, investment in unlisted companies, no dividend income, high cash in hand, private companies as majority shareholders, low turnover and operating income, nominal expenses, nominal statutory payments and stock in trade and minimum fixed asset.

TIMES NOW Investigation: Watch how merit is murdered.
Mathura, March 28, 2017

Mafia has infiltrated into education system across the state of Uttar Pradesh, and is killing the future of honest, sincere and hardworking students.
Answer sheets are being supplied to students writing exams in government and private colleges in Mathura. Police, teachers, parents, students, their friends and their relatives are all involved in the cheating racket.
The Principals of these colleges are either in denial about the racket or are conspiring secretly with the mafia.
TIMES NOW has found that walls and windows of a particular college in Raya, 20 kms from Mathura, that it visited are broken by the mafia so that relatives and touts can throw pieces of paper to students writing exams.
TIMES NOW has also found that police is in connivance with the touts and money is exchanging hands at different levels so that the malpractice continues.
TIMES NOW tracked these cheats in Raya, Mathura.
Tap to watch Part 1 of the TIMES NOW investigation .
After their officers were found to be snoozing when students were openly cheating in school exams, the state police have taken note of the TIMES NOW investigation.
Open cheating in Haryana schools
Schools in Haryana have turned into a cheating den for corrupt children. Open cheating is going in government schools in the state.
During the exams, friends of students are seen climbing the wall and throwing chits into classrooms.
Opposition leaders across parties have blamed the BJP for not ensuring such incidents don't occur.
Meanwhile, Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar has assured that state governments need to ensure that this does not continue.
"We will be in coordination and meeting with them. We will assure that such actions will not continue," Javadekar told TIMES NOW.

In Western UP, Yogi's Hindu Yuva Vahini Cadre Base Swells Overnight
Meerut, March 26, : Almost 15 years ago, in April 2002, right after the devastating Godhra riots in Gujarat, the current Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Adityanath Yogi created a right-wing Hindu force with a handful of youth, which he named Hindu Yuva Vahini.
His private army, with its own constitution, gradually grew into several thousand, even edged out the Sangh from East UP, and established its primacy, and the supremacy of Adityanath, over every other Hindu outfit and leader.
Over last 15 years, with successive electoral victories, the attraction for Adityanath and his ‘fringe’ outfit kept increasing.
So it is only natural that with its chief patron now having taken oath as the chief minister of the state, the ‘fringe’ outfit, which may possibly be the biggest non-Sangh Hindu group in the state, has now been mainstreamed.
In Meerut alone, as News18 found out after spending time with HUV’s district president and his new recruits, the cadre has grown from a few hundred to thousands in just one week. “At this rate, we would have enlisted at least 4000 members by the end of this month from just Meerut alone,” says Sachin Mittal.
Sachin Mittal’s house in Meerut’s Mangal Pandey Nagar doubles up as the official district headquarters of the Hindu Yuva Vahini. Mittal has been holding the flag of the Vahini in Western UP for a while now.
At the “office”, a huge poster of a smiling Yogi Adityanath greets you. Inside the office sits Mittal surrounded by a large group of 20-somethings. Over him hangs the poster of Bharat Mata. They have come from far-off districts to join Yogi’s outfit.
Mittal explains to them, “We have to be very careful. With Yogi Ji in power, we are being watched very carefully by the opposition and the media. We must not give them cause to attack us. Please, don’t do anything to embarrass the chief minister,” a 25-year-old from Shamli nods attentively.
A 17-year-old interjects him and says, “Bhaiya, Hapur se 50 ladke judna chahte hain. Yahan bula loon unko? (50 boys from Hapur want to join the outfit. Should I call them here?)” Yogi Adityanath’s appointment has brought a massive change in Mittal’s life too. Earlier, he would spend hours on his farm in Abdullahpur village.
But lately, he has had to spend most of his day flooded with phone calls and drop-in requests from those who want to join. Based on the enthusiasm he’s witnessed in just his district, and the information he’s obtained from his colleagues spread across the state, Mittal claims that lakhs of youth would have joined their organisation from across the state by the end of the month.
Though Mittal says the RSS is their “parent outfit”, the growth of the Hindu Yuva Vahini will have even some Sangh Parivar outfits worried.
Yogi’s personal popularity, says Mittal, has driven membership up. “I have been with Yogi Ji for seven years. In the old days, whenever I used to take people to meet him in Delhi, only a few people would come. Now, people come to me every day and ask me if I can set up a meeting. People have recognized that he is a man of action. That is why they want to join him,” he says.
Adityanath’s ascent to the top was on the back of his hardline Hindutva stances. From the “purification drive” to “re-convert” Christians to Hinduism to the ‘Love Jihad’ bogey in 2014 to the polarising statements after the lynching of Mohammed Akhlaq in Dadri in 2015 – where Adityanath went, Hindu Yuva Vahini followed.
In 2007, during the Gorakhpur riots, the outfit was accused of setting fire to a local mazaar and inciting communal hatred. But what role will they play now that their leader is the CM? The newly-made anti-Romeo Squads in UP have officials worried about the rise of vigilante groups. Ashish Kapoor, a Hindu Yuva Vahini worker, assures us that it will not be the case.
“Sachin Bhaiyya has given us strict instructions that we are not to take the law into our own hands. We had to go out on the streets earlier because the government did nothing. Now, we have a hardworking CM. There is no need for us to interfere with the administration’s work,” he says.
“However,” says Mittal, “our job will be to become watchdogs. The police have been doing a stellar job for the last few days but sometimes, they may miss something. It will be our job to tell them if something wrong is going on.
Apart from the anti-Romeo drive and cow protection, we will also use our network to find out about illegal activities taking place anywhere. For example, we all know that Sotiganj in Meerut is infamous for stolen bikes and cars being cut into pieces and sold for scrap. We will ensure that any such activity is brought to the notice of the police.”
Sotiganj, incidentally, is a predominantly Muslim area. Mittal himself has met Adityanath on several occasions. “Yogi Ji has come to Meerut several times. In 2011, 2013 and 2015, during his visit here, he made it a point to stop at my house for lunch. He met me, an ordinary worker, before he even met the local MP,” he says proudly.
During lunch, Mittal boasts about how the Gorakhnath Math in Gorakhpur has a Dalit head cook and Muslim servants. He then sets out in his car to take a round of the city. He stops at a local shop and is greeted with a cheery “Jai Yogi!” (Hail Yogi!) by the shopkeeper. Mittal smiles and says, “People have been saying this to me for the last seven years. But now the enthusiasm is different.”
As he heads back into his office, another group of young boys await him, ready to be absorbed into the outfit. “Ab sangathan badhega (now the outfit will grow),” he says.

 

 

Fire in factory in Narela, one worker injured; several feared trapped
New Delhi, March 25, 2017

A fire broke out in a plastic factory in Delhi's Narela on Saturday morning.
One factory worker has been injured and several others are feared to be trapped inside.
As many as 25 fire tenders have been rushed to the spot.

Yogi Adityanath makes surprise visit to Hazratganj station, says police should be people friendly.
Lucknow, March 23, 2017

Yogi Adityanath, the new Uttar Pradesh chief minister, made a surprise visit to the Hazratganj police station in Lucknow.
Following an inspection of the police station, Yogi Adityanath said police should be people-friendly and steps will be taken to maintain law and order in the state.
The BJP fought the election in Uttar Pradesh on the development plank and promised to improve the law and order situation in the state.
Hours after taking charge, Yogi Adityanath directed the state police to adopt a zero tolerance towards crime and take immediate steps towards improving law and order in the state.
Yogi Adityanath, in less than a week since assuming office, has taken several big decisions in line with the promises made by the party in its election manifesto.
The chief minister ordered the state police to form anti-Romeo squads to check eve-teasing. These squads, to be deputed near schools and colleges, are carrying out awareness drives across cities. In Lucknow zone, the IG will monitor these squads.
Yogi Adityanath also ordered a blanket ban on cow smuggling and said zero tolerance would be exercised against offenders. This in in addition to the government's crackdown on illegal slaughterhouses--the BJP had promised to close illegal slaughterhouses in the state in its election manifesto.
Since Yogi Adityanath took oath as the chief minister on March 19, several illegal slaughterhouses have been sealed in Meerut, Ghaziabad, Allahabad among other places.
On Wednesday, the Uttar Pradesh chief minister banned consumption of gutkha, pan masala in state government offices. While visiting the old CM's office in Lucknow, Yogi Adityanath was furious to see paan stains all over the office.
On Tuesday, Yogi Adityanath met Union Tourism Minister Mahesh Sharma and is learnt to have discussed the construction of a huge Ramayana museum in Ayodhya. The Centre has already allocated a fund of Rs 154 crore for the ambitious project.

Waitlist Passengers to Get Confirmed Seats in Premier Trains From April 1.
New Delhi, March 22, 2017

New Delhi: Come April and a passenger can avail the opportunity of travelling in Rajdhani or Shatabdi trains even if he or she has booked tickets in other mail/express trains for the same destinations.
Railways is launching a new scheme from April 1 under which waitlisted passengers can get confirmed accommodation in the next alternative train if they opt for the option while booking their tickets.
As per the scheme, there would be no extra charges taken from the passenger or any refund provided for the difference of fare.
Known as 'Vikalp', the alternative train accommodation scheme aims to utilise vacant berths in many premier trains including Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Duronto and other special services such as Suvidha trains in all major routes.
Railways has to forgo about Rs 7,500 crore in a year in a refund to customers for cancellation of tickets for various reasons.
Describing the scheme as a "passenger friendly" move to provide confirmed accommodation to waitlisted passengers in alternative trains, a senior Railway Ministry official said, "We aim to achieve the twin objectives of providing confirmed accommodation to waitlisted passengers and ensure optimal utilisation of available accommodation by this scheme."
After the introduction of the flexi-fare system in premier trains, some berths are going vacant while at the same time many passengers could not be accommodated in other Mail/Express trains due to huge demand.
"In any case, these berths are running vacant. So whatever we can save in refund is going to be a neat save for us. No additional cost is involved to railways so anything we save will be earnings for railways," the official added.
Currently, railways are running the scheme in six routes including Delhi-Lucknow, Delhi-Jammu and Delhi-Mumbai sectors since November 1, on a pilot basis.
The system is available for online ticketing now but it will be extended to over the counter sale also as the required software is being readied for the purpose.
As per the scheme, waitlisted passengers of a train would be given an option of getting confirmed accommodation in the next train running on the route.
While there is a huge demand for train berths in certain sector round the year, some routes witness increased rush during the festive season.
The passenger, if opts for the 'Vikalp' scheme while booking tickets, will get SMS alert on his/her mobile phone about getting confirmed accommodation in the alternative train.
The name of the passenger who has been provided accommodation in the alternative train will not figure in the waitlisted charts of their original train, the official said, adding that a separate list of passengers transferred in alternative train will be pasted along with the confirmed and waitlist charts.

Ram temple a 'sensitive issue', solve it outside court, says Supreme Court
New Delhi, 21st March 2017.
 After BJP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy sought urgent hearing of Ayodhya Ram temple dispute in the Supreme Court, the court has asked the parties concerned to sit together and arrive at a consensus. The apex court has said that it is a sensitive and sentimental issue and it should be settled amicably. The court also asked Swamy to consult the parties and inform them about the decision on March 31. "Sort out the issue through negotiations and come to a conclusion which could be agreed upon by all petitioners and repsondents," Supreme Court told Swamy. The Supreme Court ensured that if the negotiation break down then it will intervene and ppoint a mediator for resolution.  Subramanian Swamy said, "Ram temple should be made where Lord Ram was born. The Saudi Arabian clerics have told me very clearly that mosques can be made anywhere," Swamy said. The case has been pending for the past six years as the court froze the judgment by the Allahabad High Court that said that lord Ram was born under the dome of the mosque and Hindus have a right to worship there.The mosque that is believed to be built during the reign of Mughal Emperor Babar was pulled down by Kar Sevaks and a makeshift temple was made in its place.  Asaduddin Owaisi tweeted a few minutes later and said, "I hope Supreme Court decides the Contempt petition which is pending since demolition of Babri Masjid 1992." 

 

 

Idea and Vodafone India Merge to Form Country's Largest Telecom Company.
New Delhi, 20 March 2017

Idea Cellular Ltd and Vodafone India announced a merger on Monday to form the largest telecommunication company in India.
Apart from the two, AB Group will have the right to buy 9.5 percent stake at Rs 130 per share, according to the filing.
According to an earlier report by brokerage firm CLSA, the merged entity will have revenues of over Rs 80,000 crore. The combined entity will have 43 percent revenue market share and a 40
percent active subscriber base. The behemoth will account for over 25 percent of allocated spectrum and will have to sell about 1 percent to comply with spectrum cap norms.
It will be an all-share merger of Vodafone India (excluding Vodafone's 42 percent stake in Indus Towers) and Idea. The merger will be effected through the issue of new shares in Idea to Vodafone and would result in Vodafone deconsolidating Vodafone India.
This comes as the latest entrant in the telecom sector, Reliance Jio, is fast acquiring subscribers on the back of free voice and data services under its Happy New Year offer.
Last week, India’s largest telecom operator Bharti Airtel informed the bourses on Thursday that it will acquire Norwegian telecom company Telenor India’s assets.
Rumours of consolidation have been doing the rounds following a poor response to the spectrum sale last year which earned the government only a fraction of Rs 5.63 lakh crore it had envisaged. Reliance Jio’s aggressive push to gain market share is also seen as a major trigger for consolidation in the sector.

Yogi Adityanath to be next chief minister of Uttar Pradesh

NEW DELHI, 18th March 2017.
 The BJP today named Yogi Adityanath as the next chief minister ofUttar Pradesh. State unit chief Keshav Prasad Maurya and Lucknow mayor Dinesh Sharma were nominated as deputy chief ministers. At a meeting in the state capital Lucknow, BJP legislators elected Adityanath after a close race among several chief ministerial candidates. He will take oath as UP chief minister tomorrow. Over the last few days, reports suggested that the BJP top brass may pick Minister of State for Telecom Manoj Sinha for the coveted post, owing to his large experience in the party operations.
Keshav Prasad Maurya, union ministers Kalraj Mishra and Lucknow mayor Dinesh Sharma were also said to be in the running for the top post. Yogi Adityanath, 44, is a five-time member of Parliament and has represented Gorakhpur in the Lok Sabha since 1998. The firebrand leader held a meeting with UP BJP chief Keshav Prasad Maurya, Bhupendra Yadav, Om Mathur and Sunil Bansal ahead of the legislators meeting in Lucknow, ANI reported.The BJP, which won three-fourths majority in the 403-member Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly, is returning to power after 14 years.

 

MS Dhoni, Jharkhand teammates rescued from fire at Delhi 5-star hotel.
New Delhi, March 17, 2017

A fire broke out at Welcome Hotel in Delhi's Dwarka on Friday early morning. Cricketer M S Dhoni along with his Jharkhand teammates too were present at the hotel when the fire broke out.
Dhoni along with others were rescued from the hotel moments later. A call was made to the Delhi Fire Service at around 6.30 am following which fire tenders were rushed to the spot.
Nearly 30 fire tenders were sent to the spot. No casualties have been reported so far.
The fire was brought under control by around 7.30 am.
The cricketer was in Delhi to play in the Vijay Hazare Trophy semi-final.
Sources said that the team's kit was charred in the incident. The match has been reportedly postponed to Saturday.
The Jharkhand team had entered the semi-final after defeating Vidarbha by six wickets at the Palam Ground in Delhi.
Dhoni is an active member of the Vijay Hazare sqaud and has captained all six matches so far.
Dhoni's participation in Jharkhand team has been drawing huge crowds to the matches.

Amarinder Singh takes oath as Punjab CM, no deputy CM post for Navjot Sidhu
New Delhi, March 16, 2017

After a thumping victory in Punjab, Captain Amarinder Singh takes oath as Punjab chief minister at Chandigarh's Raj Bhavan. Nine other ministers including Navjot Singh Sidhu and Akali rebel Manpreet Badal are also expected to be sworn in. WATCH LIVE
It's a day of consolation for the Congress, which is forming government in Punjab amid the decimation in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand and the debacles in Goa and Manipur.
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi and PM Manmohan Singh attended the swearing-in ceremony. Former Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has also been invited. Manpreet Singh Badal sworn in as Cabinet minister of Punjab government.
No deputy chief minister post for Navjot Singh Sidhu.
Despite speculation, the Congress hasn't confirmed whether Sidhu will be made the Deputy chief minister.
According to sources, Manpreet Badal will be given the Finance Ministry.
The ceremony is expected to be low-key as the new administration wishes to project its commitment to austerity in view of the financial troubles plaguing the state. The oath-taking ceremony, scheduled to take place at the Punjab Raj Bhavan at 10 am.
Brahm Mohindra, Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa, Rana Gurjit Singh, Sadhu Singh Dharmant, Charanjit Singh Channi, Aruna Chaudhary and Razia Sultana are also in the proposed Cabinet. Chaudhary and Sultana have been recommended for Minister of State positions.
This will be Amarinder Singh's second stint as chief minister.
Amarinder Singh led the Grand Old Party to a thumping win in Punjab, where it bagged as many as 77 seats. The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) - Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) combine won 18 seats, the AAP won 20, and two seats went to the newly-floated outfit and AAP ally, the Lok Insaaf Party.

Narendra Modi Ends BJP's 15-Year Exile In Uttar Pradesh.
New Delhi, March 11, 2017

The Narendra Modi wave seems to have swept the crucial state of Uttar Pradesh with the BJP and its allies past the 290-mark. In the three-cornered contest in the state, Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance and Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party have failed. The BJP is also set to win Uttarakhand with a comfortable majority. In Punjab, the Congress leads against debutant AAP. Scroll down for latest updates.
Click and slide the changing colours in Uttar Pradesh, thanks to the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Now let us bring something interactive for you all.
Good news for Goa's MGP! Deepak Pauaskar of Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party has won in Savordem.
Bharatiya Janata Party takes lead over Congress in Manipur.
Sanjay Jha of Congress tells India Today that Congress is disappointed with the outcome of Assembly Elections 2017 in Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh.
Congress ahead in third round of counting with 3,008 votes, BJP at 2,838 and BSP 868 in Uttarakhand's Bhagwanpur.
Former Jammu and Kashmir CM Omar Abdullah has been tweeting about the saffron wave in Uttar Pradesh.
Saffron wave in Uttar Pradesh | Leads available for 402 seats, BJP ahead on 285 | Samajwadi Party-Congress on 76 seats | BSP 24 seats
Uttarakhand too has voted for a change opting for BJP | BJP ahead on 53 seats of 70 Assembly seats | Congress 13
It is a tectonic shift in country's politics, Ravishankar Prasad of BJP tells India Today.
BJP man Michael Lobo wins by 4460 votes, keeping his seat in the Calangute constituency.
Modi fans in Delhi clearly can't control their happiness.
Goa Forward Party's Vinoda Paliencar leads ahead of BJP leader Dayanand Mandrekar in Goa by 1200 votes in Siolim.
Manipur Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh leading in Thoubal with 10419 votes.
In Manipur, Irom Sharmila gets only only 51 votes which is even less than the NOTA figure at Thoubal seat so far.
Saffron holi this time, BJP celebrations galore. It's BJP everywhere in UP. Rahul Kanwal shares the latest numbers from UP assembly polls.The BJP lead has dropped by two figures in Uttarakhand. Bharatiya Janata Party now has 53 seats, Congress has 12.
Despite Congress leading in Punjab, jokes on Rahul Gandhi do not end. Who will be the chief minister of Uttarakhand?
And this Twitter user has a legit question to ask. This! Here is a photo of Bharatiya Janata Party workers in Delhi celebrating the success. BJP's Dr Sapam Ranjan Singh wins Konthoujam seat in Manipur.
Bharatiya Janata Party leader Francis D'Souza leads with 9971 votes in Mapusa after Round 3 of Goa Assembly election 2017 vote-counting.
Independent candidate Govind Gawde wins in Priol, beating Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party's Deepak Dhavalikar.
We came across this cartoon on Twitter. True? In Uttarakhand, the BJP has secured 55 seats out of 70, and the Congress has got 9.
In Goa, Congress is in the lead, followed by the Bharatiya Janata Party.
The Election results show we have got the Exit Polls bang on when it comes to Congress. Firstpost tweets saying the BJP emerges a clear winner. Their figures are a bit different from the figures India Today Television. With just one more constituency to be counted in Uttarakhand, it is clear that the BJP has the majority.
In UP, the Bharatiya Janata Party is leading with 270 seats, the SP-Congress alliance won 75 seats and the BSP won 28 seats.
The BJP has won 7 seats in Goa, Congress has won 6 seats.
Congress' Okram Ibobi Singh defeated 'Iron Lady' Irom Sharmila in Manipur's Thoubal.
In Uttarakhand, the BJP has a strong lead. BJP has secured 57 seats until now and the Congress could manage only 09 as of yet. The SAD-BJP alliance has won 27 seats in Punjab. Congress leads with 54 seats and the Aam Aadmi Party has got only 21 seats.
If the trends in Punjab and Goa continues, there would be nothing for the Aam Aadmi Party to celebrate.
Twitter users are sharing images to show how Aam Aadmi Party is ready with victory posters. BSP has got 32 seats in Uttar Pradesh, the SP-Congress alliance has won 69 seats until now.
The Bharatiya Janata Party is leading in Uttarakhand with 55 seats. The Congess has won only 10 seats in Uttarakhand till now.
Kejriwal's residence is all decked up before results. Congress has an early lead in Manipur.
The Bharatiya Janata Party has won 243 seats in Uttar Pradesh until now.
Goa CM Laxmikant Parsekar loses from Mandrem constituency.
Congress is leading in Punjab with 46 seats but the chief ministerial candidate of the Aam Aadmi Party Bhagwant Mann is trailing.
The SP-Congress alliance has gotten 59 seats in Uttar Pradesh. The BJP has won 232 seats until now.
Congress is leading in Goa with 6 seats.
BJP candidate from Lucknow Cantt, Rita Bahuguna Joshi, was spotted offering prayers at Hazratganj's Hanuman Temple before counting of votes for Uttar Pradesh got underway. In Punjab, the Congress is leading with 25 seats. Aam Aadmi Party
How excited are you? We are, very. Goa is not, though. Counting seems to be too slow.
The BJP has won 164 seats in Uttar Pradesh.
Bharatiya Janata Party has a clear lead in Uttarakhand with 44 seats.
The BJP has a strong lead in Uttar Pradesh with 134 seats as of now. The SP-Congress alliance stands at 32 seats and the BSP at 20.
Deputy CM of Manipur Gaikhangam Gangmei from the Congress Party is leading in Nungba.
Congress ahead in 3 seats in Manipur.
Uttarakhand CM Harish Rawat is trailing from both the seats he contested from.
The BJP is slaying it in Uttar Pradesh. The Bharatiya Janata Party has won 114 seats till now.
In Uttar Pradesh's Lucknow Cantt constituency, Mulayam Singh Yadav's daughter-in-law Aparna Yadav is trailing.
The Aam Aadmi Party is giving tough competition to the Congress in Punjab.
In Punjab's Jalalabad, the Aam Aadmi Party chief ministerial candidate Bhagwant Mann is leading.
The Bharatiya Janata Party has now gotten a clear lead in Uttar Pradesh with 56 seats. The SP-Congress alliance has gotten only 17 seats in comparison, and the BSP stands at 11.
Congress' Okram Ibobi Singh is leading from Manipur's Thoubal. Irom Sharmila trailing.
Azam Khan's son Abdullah is trailing from Uttar Pradesh's Swar in Rampur, reported ANI.
In Punjab, both the Aam Aadmi Party and the Congress won 3 seats each.
The BJP has won 36 seats in Uttar Pradesh. The Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance comes second with 17.
SP's Rafeeq Ansari leading at Meerut City constituency reports the Hindustan Times. He is contesting against BJP's former state president Dr Laxmikant Bajpai.
ANI reports Parkash Singh Badal is leading from Lambi. Capt Amarinder Singh second and AAP's Jarnail Singh third.
LIVE UPDATES FROM GOA HERE. Except there are no significant updates as of now.
All India Radio News reports that vote-counting of Goa Assembly election 2017 has kick-started in Panaji.
Goa? Goa?
23 of 690 seats (all five states combined) were reserved for Scheduled Tribe candidates
In Uttar Pradesh, the Bharatiya Janata Party has secured 21 seats until now, the BSP has secured 9 seats, and the SP-Congress alliance has 12 seats.
No inputs yet from Goa. The entire state is too chill.
Samajwadi Party's Shivpal Yadav has said, "Counting shuru ho gayi hai, humari badi jeet hogi".The BJP is leading with 13 seat win now.
Mayawati could be worried, the BSP stays at 2 seats.
The SP-Congress alliance is neck-to-neck with the BJP. Former has won 10 seats, and the latter 11.
Will Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party beat the Congress in Punjab?
In Punjab, Congress has won 2 seas, the Aam Aadmi Party has won 2, and the SAD-BJP alliance secured 1 seat until now.
The Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance has won 7 seats now, the BJP leads with 8 but Mayawati's BSP stays at 2.
But Akhilesh Yadav and Rahul Gandhi are giving a tough competition.
Narendra Modi-wave still is a thing, it seems.
Uttar Pradesh Assembly Election results are coming in. The BJP has won 7 seats till now, SP-Congress stands at 3 and the BSP still at 2.
The Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance won 3 seats until now, the BJP leads with 5, and the BSP has won 2.
India Today Television says the BJP is leading with 3 seats in Uttar Pradesh. SP-Congress has won 2 seats till now.
SP-Congress has won 1 seat, the Bharatiya Janata Party has won 1, and the BSP has won 1 in Uttar Pradesh.
AND IT BEGINS...
An NDTV reporter tweeted saying drones are being used at a Lucknow counting centre. Assembly Election results 2017 is nothing short of a festival, eh?The coastal state of Goa went to polls on February 4. Election results 2017 will be announced by 10 or 11 AM.
Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Goa and Manipur combined, 690 assembly constituencies went to polls.
Postal ballot counting begins.
If you wish to read all what she said to ANI, here is their tweet.
View image on Twitter
She said if she loses this time, she will try again in the 2019 General Election.
'Iron Lady' of Manipur and PRAJA (Peoples' Resurgence and Justice Alliance) chief, Irom Chanu Sharmila said the Exit Poll result did not affect her much.
Manipur Assembly election results will be out today. Manipur Assembly saw a tough fight between the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party.
All India Radio News tweets there is a sharp decline of temperature in Uttarakhand, thanks to the rain. Will the Assembly Election results warm the state?
ABP News tweets Samajwadi Party accused the Election Commission of being biased.There are 403 constituencies in Uttar Pradesh. Are you looking forwards to the Assembly Election results?
Security arrangements are in place outside counting centres in Moradabad. That's quite some men out there!
India Today-Axis My India Exit Poll has predicted that the Modi magic has worked wonders for the Bharatiya Janata Party which is expected to win a whopping 251-279 seats, while the Samajwadi Party-Congress combine has failed to stop the BJP juggernaut managing only 88-112 seats and Mayawati's BSP beign decimated with 28-42 seats.
India Today-Axis My India Exit Poll predicted 62-71 seats for the Congress in the 117-member Punjab assembly, and 42-51 to Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP. The Shiromani Akali Dal-BJP combine is projected to be voted out as the alliance's tally may be reduced to single digits.
The BJP is set to return to power in Uttarakhand by winning 46-53 seats in the 70-member state Assembly, reducing the incumbent Congress to an embarrassing 12-21 seats, the India Today-Axis My India exit poll has predicted. The Congress is expected to get 30-36 seats in the 60-seat.
The India Today-Axis My India Exit Poll said BJP is likely to win 16-22 Assembly seats in the Manipur Assembly. Even though BJP's tally has improved since the last Assembly election, it's not coming to power can be attributed to Centre's so-perceived non-cooperation to Manipur in lifting the blockade.
The India Today-Axis My India Exit Poll for Goa had predicted BJP to be the winner with 18-22 seats in its kitty. Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party may just manage to open its account with 0-2 seats in the state. Congress will have to continue to be in Opposition, as it is likely to win between 9-13 seats.

Uttar Pradesh Assembly Election Results 2017: BJP eyes two-third majority; SP-Congress, BSP decimated.
New Delhi, March 11, 2017

The counting of votes for all the 403 Uttar Pradesh Assembly seats is underway. A saffron holi likely in Uttar Pradesh as trends put BJP in power with a massive lead. Samajwadi Party-Congress experiment fails to deliver the political punch in the heartland state.
With this election, not only Prime Minister Modi's prestige is at stake, a victory in Uttar Pradesh elections will also give a much needed boost to the government in the Rajya Sabha.
The Uttar Pradesh election results will also decide the fate of Samajwadi Party party chief Akhilesh Yadav and Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Mayawati. The Bharatiya Janata Party is also waiting for the lotus to bloom in the politically crucial state of Uttar Pradesh after nearly 15 years. ASSEMBLY ELECTIONS 2017: FULL COVERAGE
HERE ARE THE LIVE UPDATES:
BJP leading on all five seats of Ghaziabad.
Holi celebrations kick off at BJP headquarters in Lucknow, reports India Today's Gaurav Sawant.
No decision yet on CM face, now is the time to celebrate, says BJP UP chief Keshav Prasad Maurya.
UP is a bad loss, it hurts, Congress's Abhishek Singhvi tells India Today.
BJP takes massive lead in Uttar Pradesh, ahead on 250 seats | Samajwadi-Congress on 66 seats | BSP 30
Uttar Pradesh: Trends/Leads of 301 seats - BJP ahead on 216 | Samajwadi Party, Congress on 55 seats | BSP 23.
Samajwadi Party's Azam Khan leading by 1800 votes from Rampur seat in Uttar Pradesh.
Mayawati's BSP leading on 21 seats.
BJP surges ahead in Uttar Pradesh, leading on 170 seats | Samajwadi Party,Congress combine ahead on 41 seat.
BJP leading on 200 seats in Uttar Pradesh, headed for landslide victory in the crucial state.
Uttar Pradesh: Samajwadi Party's Shivpal Yadav leading from Yashwant Nagar seat.
53 out of the 133 leads for BJP coming from eastern Uttar Pradesh.
Uttar Pradesh leads: BJP 133 | SP, Congress 30 | BSP 18 | Others 8
Mulayam Singh Yadav's daughter-in-law Aparna Yadav trailing from Lucknow Cantt seat.
Congress's Srikant Sharma leading from Mathura.
Uttar Pradesh: BJP's Lakshmikant Vajpayee leading from Meerut .

Uttar Pradesh trends: SP, Congress 17 | BJP 36 | BSP 9
Azam Khan's son Abdullah trailing from Swar, Rampur.
Rajnath Singh's son Pankaj Singh leading from Noida seat.
Congress's Rita Bahuguna Joshi leading from Lucknow Cantt, SP's Aparna Yadav trailing.
Early leads favour BJP in Uttar Pradesh, ahead on 24 seats | SP, Congress on 13.
BJP leading in Lucknow - East, West and North.
Uttar Pradesh trends: SP, Congress 12 | BJP 16 | BSP 6.
Wait for some time, Samajwadi Party will form the govt again in UP, says Shivpal Yadav .
Uttar Pradesh: Samajwadi Party's Azam Khan trailing in Rampur, BJP's Sangeet Som leading in Sardhana.
Mukhtar Ansari of BSP leads in Mau, Uttar Pradesh.
Uttar Pradesh early trends: SP, Cong 04 | BJP 5 | BSP 2
Uttar Pradesh: BSP leading from Bulandshahr
First trends - Uttar Pradesh: SP, Congress 2 | BJP 3 | BSP 2
First trends in for Uttar Pradesh: BJP-1, BSP-1.
Akhileshji will become new CM with full majority, says Samajwadi Party's Ravidas Mehrotra.
Counting of ballots begins in Uttar Pradesh.
Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance will win today, and we will expose the people who were conspiring against CM Akhilesh, says Samajwadi Party's Rajendra Chaudhary.
First trends on Uttar Pradesh elections to start pouring in by 8am.
The Samajwadi Party-Congress combine could get something between 88 to 112 seats in Uttar Pradesh.
Uttar Pradesh wants the BJP to lead the state as they are fed up of 'exploitative politics', says Rita Bahuguna Joshi.
While Samajwadi Party supremo Akhilesh Yadav will be looking to retain power in the state. For the Congress, it's a matter of survival and relevance in the national politics.
In Uttar Pradesh, a lot is also at stake for newly united Uttar Pradesh leaders Akhilesh Yadav and Rahul Gandhi.
The Election Commission has issued strict guidelines on security arrangements for counting of votes.
A total of 78 counting centres have been set up in the state. In three districts of Amethi, Azamgarh and Kushinagar two counting centres each have been set up and in remaining all 72 district counting will be held at one place.
Three-tier security arrangements have been made to ensure full proof security in and around the counting centres.
"Counting of votes for 403 Assembly seats will start at 8 in the morning. Counting of ballots will take place in all the 75 districts," state election office said.
Uttar Pradesh elections are being seen as a virtual referendum on PM Narendra Modi's demonetisation decision.
Of the total contestants in Uttar Pradesh polls, 4,370 were men and 482 women.
A total of 4,853 contestants tried their luck at the hustings in the 2017 state assembly elections.
Counting of the ballots for the 403 Uttar Pradesh Assembly seats will begin at 8 a.m today.

Budget session from today, Rajnath to speak in Parliament on Lucknow terror operation, Bhopal train blast.
New Delhi, March 9, 2017

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh is likely to make a statement in Parliament today on Bhopal-Ujjain passenger train explosion, and the operation in Lucknow in which suspected terrorist Saifullah was killed.
The resumption of Budget session is likely to witness stormy scenes in Parliament with the Opposition all set to take on the government over the counter-terror operation in Lucknow, and over the recent hate crimes against Indians in the United States.
Yesterday evening, Uttar Pradesh Police clarified that there was no evidence linking the slain Mohammed Saifullah to the global terror outfit ISIS, implying that it was premature to suggest that the group was behind it.
NO PROOF OF ISIS LINK WITH LUCKNOW OPERATION: TOP COP
"We have no such evidence yet of any ISIS link", Additional Director General of Police (law and order) Daljit Chaudhary had told journalists. Authorities are yet to find clinching evidence linking Saifullah directly to ISIS.
The police had earlier said that Saifullah and two others arrested in this connection were allegedly affiliated to ISIS. The cops had found substantial literature in Urdu and English related to ISIS.
Mallikarjun Kharge, leader of Congress in the Lok Sabha, said, "Till now, the central government said ISIS isn't an issue. Now what we saw in UP, MP raises questions. It shows government's negligence in this matter. PM should make a statement."
Kharge was referring to the over 10-hour-long siege at a house in Lucknow's Thakurganj locality where a suspected terrorist was holed up inside and to the IED blast on the Ujjain Express in Madhya Pradesh. The suspected militant, identified as Saifullah, was killed in the Lucknow siege.
He, along with six other people arrested in Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh, are believed to be linked to the train blast.

Lucknow encounter ends, ISIS terror suspect killed: What we know so far.
New Delhi, March 8, 2017

After 11 hours, the Lucknow siege has finally come to an end with the suspected terrorist Saiful killed in the encounter.
The target of the operation was a house in Haji Ali Colony in Thakurganj, on the outskirts of Lucknow. Early on, the operation seemed limited in its scope, with the police using chilli bombs and stun grenades to flush out the militants.
The standoff began early Tuesday evening, hours after at least ten people were injured in a blast on the Ujjain Express. Suspected ISIS terrorist Saiful from the Lucknow siege is believed to be linked to the blast.

The operation and the blast both came a day before today's seventh phase of polling in Uttar Pradesh, but there have been no indications that the developments are linked to the five-state Assembly elections, the results for which will be announced March 11.
A TIMELINE OF EVENTS
At around 9 am on Tuesday, March 7, a blast takes place in a compartment of the Bhopal-Ujjain Express. The explosion occurs near Jabri, 60 kilometres west of Bhopal.
At 1.30 pm, a bus is intercepted near Pipariya in Madhya Pradesh's Hoshangabad district, 145 kilometres east of Bhopal. Three people are detained in connection with the morning's train blast.
The three are brought to Hoshangabad city and are interrogated. One of the arrested suspects is identified as Atif Muzaafffar and Centre is alerted with the information revealed by the three during questioning.
Early Tuesday evening, Uttar Pradesh Police carries out raids, arresting two men in Kanpur and one from Etawah. The third raid targets the Thakurganj, Lucknow home.
At around 4 pm, the Uttar Pradesh Police says in a since-deleted tweet that one suspected militant is involved in a standoff with the state's Anti-Terrorism Squad.
The siege drags on and the militant is identified as Mohammed Saiful. Officials speaking to media reiterate that their efforts are to nab Saiful alive.
A few hours into the Lucknow siege, the Madhya Pradesh Inspector General of Police confirms that the Bhopal-Ujjain train blast was an IED explosion and that it was an act of terrorism.
Meanwhile, intermittent firing is heard through the day from the site of the Lucknow siege. The UP Additional Director General of Police reveals they have made Saiful speak to his brother in order to convince him to surrender.
Firing intensifies towards the end of Tuesday, with officials saying at around midnight that the operation is in its final stages.
Siege ends around 3 am on Wednesday after 11 hours. ATS IG Asim Arun confirms that Saiful has been killed.
Investigation is going on to trace the links of terrorists after the siege in Lucknow, UP DGP Javeed Ahmed has said.
Shivraj Singh Chouhan said, "The three accused arresteed by Madhya Pradesh ATS (Anti-Terrorism Squad) had come to Bhopal by train and executed the pipe bomb blast in Bhopal-Ujjain passenger train. All three had come from Lucknow."
ISIS MODULE AT WORK?
Saiful lived at the Thakurganj home with two other youngsters. The trio moved into the home, which belongs to a Saudi Arabia-based person called Badshah, around three months ago.
They were known to keep to themselves and seldom stepped out of the house except for early morning jogs and to buy essentials.
Saiful is believed to be part of a larger ISIS-inspired module that is suspected to be behind the Tuesday morning train blast.
The module is believed to include Saiful, the two men arrested in Kanpur, the one nabbed in Eatawah and the three detained in Madhya Pradesh.
Atif Muzaafffar, one of the three men arrested in Madhya Pradesh, is believed to be the leader of the module.
A forensic team will be visiting Lucknow soon to compare the explosives used in the Ujjain train blast and those recovered from Haji Colony house where the ISIS terror suspect was killed.
Police have also launched a massive manhunt to nab the other roommates of the killed terror suspect Saiful.

INS Viraat, Indian Navy's Grand Old Lady, to retire today after 30-year service.
New Delhi, March 6, 2017
INS Viraat, Indian Navy's flagship aircraft carrier, will retire from service today. The aircraft carrier which holds the Guinness Record for the oldest carrier in service was inducted into the Indian Navy on May 12, 1987.
The ship, famously known as the 'Grand Old Lady', was with the British Royal Navy since 1959 before the Indian government bought it for Rs 6.5 crore in 1987.
It was known as HMS Hermes before being rechristened as INS Viraat. The motto of INS Viraat was 'Jalamev Yasya, Balmev Tasya' (meaning - One Who Controls the Sea is All Powerful), which was first adopted by the great warrior king, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj in the 17th century as the guiding principle of his naval-military strategy.
It housed the fighters 'White Tigers' - the Sea Harriers of INAS 300, which were decomissioned in Goa in May 2016, anti-submarine aircraft Sea King MK42B, Sea King MK42C or Harpoons, SAR helicopter Chetan, besides ALH Dhruv and Russian twin rotor Kamov-31.
INS Viraat played a major role in the Operation Jupiter in 1989 in Sri Lankan Peace Keeping operations, Operation Parakram in 2001-2002 when India and Pakistan were in a stand-off post-terror strikes on Indian Parliament, among others.
With a full load displacement of 28,700 tonnes, the 226.5 metres long and 48.78 metres wide ship was manned by 150 officers and 1,500 sailors.
While the final fate of the warship is yet to be decided, the Andhra Pradesh government had announced that it will turn the warship into a museum.
As per the earlier reports, talks were underway with the Andhra Pradesh government to convert INS Viraat, into a luxury hotel-cum-museum after its decommissioning. The carrier is expected to berth on the coast of Visakhapatnam by mid-2017.
At present, INS Vikramaditya is the only serving aircraft carrier of the Indian Navy and the second one, named Vikrant, is under construction at Cochin Shipyard Ltd.

Kerala priest arrested for raping 17-year-old, survivor delivered a child last week

New Delhi, March 1, 2017

A 17-year-old teenager in Kannur has given birth to a baby after being allegedly raped by a priest in a church. The accussed father has been arrested.
The incident came to light after the police was informed by childline activists on Monday following an anonymous complaint that a girl gave birth last week. Childline is a telephone helpline for children in distress.
On enquiry, the teenager, who is in standard eleventh, stated that she was raped by the priest at a church.
Father Robin Vaddakumchiryil (48), the bishop of St Sebastian church has confessed to the crime. He is the manager of the school where the girl studies.
The Father has been charged under stringent provisions of the Prevention of Children from Sexual Offences Act (Pocso) and IPC.

ABVP suspends 2 members for violence against AISA supporters, says is committed to peace.
New Delhi, March 1, 2017

The Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) suspended its 2 students from the organisation's primary membership for violating the outfit's discipline and indulging in violence.
The two have been identified as Prashant and Vinayak.
This after the duo (both Delhi University students) and a JNU student, identified as Aman Sinha of the All India Students' Association (AISA) got into a scuffle on Tuesday evening following a heated argument on social media. Earlier in the evening, Left parties had held protest march against the violence on Ramjas College campus by ABVP workers.
ABVP has said it condemns violence and is committed to ensuring a peaceful atmosphere in the campus. The ABVP has also promised that it will conduct an internal inquiry into the matter and based on its report, further action will be taken.
In a statement, ABVP said, "We demand that the police thoroughly investigate the matter and take appropriate action against those found guilty from both the factions."
This comes amid a heated week for Delhi college campuses. Last week's violence on the Ramjas campus has been followed by several protests and counter protests. The ABVP has rejected allegations that it was responsible for the Ramjas fracas, saying the violence was perpetrated by "outsiders". The RSS-affiliated group has called for a massive rally on March 2 to protest the presence of "outsiders" on DU campuses.
Meanwhile, another DU student, Gurmehar Kaur, has attracted controversy after she started a social media campaign against the ABVP. She also suggested that India should not wage war against Pakistan. Kaur, who is the daughter of a Kargil war martyr, received rape threats following her social media post and has left Delhi for now.

Oscars 2017 LIVE: 5 Oscars for La La Land including Best Direction!
New Delhi, February 27, 2017

The 89th Academy Awards are underway. As Hollywood soaks in its biggest night of the year, we bring to you all the action from the star-studded ceremony, live.
We Indians obviously have three reasons to look forward to the Oscars 2017, desi girls Priyanka Chopra and Deepika Padukone (who is probably not attending the awards), and Dev Patel. Patel, who shot to fame with his 2009 film Slumdog Millionaire, was nominated for Best Actor In A Supporting Role for his work in Lion.
The ceremony is being hosted by Jimmy Kimmel this year, his first stint on the Academy Awards' stage. The Oscars favourite of this year is the film La La Land, which swept the Golden Globes 2017 with all seven awards in the categories it was nominated in. The film created history with 14 Academy Awards nominations this year, and it remains to be seen how many of the 14 categories Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone-starrer La La Land is able to pick up Oscars in.
10.11am: The Best Directing Oscar is for Damien Chazelle for La La Land. With that, La La Land has now picked up five Oscars!
10.03am:Best Adapted Screenplay goes to Moonlight.
9.59am:Best Original Screenplay Oscar goes to Manchester By The Sea.
9.53am: A tribute to the stars we lost this year. Om Puri gets a mention alongside Carrie Fisher, Abbas Kiarostami and others.
9.47am: The Best Original Song goes to City Of Stars, La La Land.
9.43am: Samuel L Jackson presents the Best Original Score Oscar to La La Land.
9.28am:Best Cinematography Oscar goes to La La Land.
9.16am: The Best Live Action Short Film Oscar goes to Sing.
9.14am: Best Documentary (Short) Oscar goes to The White Helmets.
9.05am: The Best Film Editing Oscar goes to Hacksaw Ridge.
9.00am: The award for Best Visual Effects goes to The Jungle Book!
8.43am: The Best Production Design Oscar goes to La La Land. This is the first Oscar for La La Land!
8.40am: The Best Animated Feature Film Oscar goes to Zootopia.
8.37am: The next award is for the Best Animated Short Film. The Oscar goes to Piper.
8.24am: The award for the Best Foreign Language Film goes to The Salesman by Asghar Farhadi.
8.10am: Up next is the Best Supporting Actress Oscar. The award goes to Viola Davis for Fences.
7.54am: The next awards are for Sound Mixing and Sound Editing. Sound Editing Oscar is for Arrival, Sound Mixing Oscar is for Hacksaw Ridge.
7.44am: Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson on the Academy Awards' stage!
7.38am: The Best Documentary Feature award goes to OJ: Made In America.
7.30am: Up next, is best Costume Design. The award goes to Colleen Atwood for Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them.
7.27am: The next award is for Makeup and Hairstyling. The award goes to Suicide Squad.
7.16am: The first award of the night is here! Best Actor in A Supporting Role Oscar goes to Mahershala Ali for Moonlight. Dev Patel doesn't make it this year.
7.11am: "We don't discriminate people on the basis of their country, here in Hollywood. We discriminate on the basis of age and weight.": Jimmy Kimmel.
7.07am: Jimmy Kimmel is on a roll! So is his hatred for Matt Damon.
7.05am: Jimmy Kimmel takes the stage. "Oh, good, I got a sitting ovation!"
7.00am: Justin Timberlake kicks off the 89th Academy Awards with a performance.
6.47am: We're about 12 minutes away from the 89th Academy Awards. Bollywood beauty Priyanka Chopra made her second Oscars appearance. She was a presenter last year.

US President Donald Trump's revised travel ban: Millions targeted for possible deportation
Washington, February 22, 2017

Millions of people living in the United States illegally could be targeted for deportation - including people simply arrested for traffic violations - under a sweeping rewrite of immigration enforcement policies announced Tuesday by the Trump administration.
Any immigrant who is in the country illegally and is charged or convicted of any offense, or even suspected of a crime, will now be an enforcement priority, according to Homeland Security Department memos signed by Secretary John Kelly. That could include people arrested for shoplifting or minor offenses - or simply having crossed the border illegally.
The Trump administration memos replace more narrow guidance focusing on immigrants who have been convicted of serious crimes, are considered threats to national security or are recent border crossers.
Under the Obama administration guidance, immigrants whose only violation was being in the country illegally were generally left alone. Those immigrants fall into two categories: those who crossed the border without permission and those who overstayed their visas.
CRIMINAL OFFENCE
Crossing the border illegally is a criminal offence, and the new memos make clear that those who have done so are included in the broad list of enforcement priorities.
Overstaying a visa is a civil, not criminal, offense. Those who do so are not specifically included in the priority list but, under the memos, they are still more likely to face deportation than they had been before.
The new enforcement documents are the latest efforts by President Donald Trump to follow through on campaign promises to strictly enforce immigration laws. He's also promised to build a wall at the Mexican border - he insists Mexico will eventually foot the bill - and Kelly's memos reiterate calls for Homeland Security to start planning for the costs and construction.
Trump's earlier immigration orders, which banned all refugees as well as foreigners from seven Muslim-majority countries, have faced widespread criticism and legal action. A federal appeals court has upheld a temporary halt.
Kelly's enforcement plans call for enforcing a longstanding but obscure provision of immigration law that allows the government to send some people caught illegally crossing the Mexican border back to Mexico, regardless of where they are from. Those foreigners would wait in that country for US deportation proceedings to be complete. This would be used for people who aren't considered a threat to cross the border illegally again, the memo says.
That provision is almost certain to face opposition from civil libertarians and Mexican officials, and it's unclear whether the United States has the authority to force Mexico to accept third-country nationals. But the memo also calls for Homeland Security to provide an account of US aid to Mexico, a possible signal that Trump plans to use that funding to get Mexico to accept the foreigners.
Historically, the US has quickly repatriated Mexican nationals caught at the border but has detained immigrants from other countries pending deportation proceedings that could take years.
Mexico's new ambassador to the US, Geronimo Gutierrez, called the policy changes "something very serious." In a hearing Tuesday with Mexican senators, he said, "Obviously, they are a cause for concern for the foreign relations department, for the Mexican government, and for all Mexicans."
The memos do not change US immigration laws, but take a far harder line toward enforcement.
One example involves broader use of a program that fast-tracks deportations. It will now be applied to immigrants who cannot prove they have been in the United States longer than two years. It's unclear how many immigrants that could include.
Since at least 2002 that fast deportation effort - which does not require a judge's order - has been used only for immigrants caught within 100 miles of the border, within two weeks of crossing illegally.
The administration also plans to expand immigration jail capacity. Currently Homeland Security has money and space to jail 34,000 immigrants at a time. It's unclear how much an increase would cost, but Congress would have to approve any new spending.
FRESH OPPOSITION
The American Civil Liberties Union said it would challenge the directives.
"These memos confirm that the Trump administration is willing to trample on due process, human decency, the well-being of our communities, and even protections for vulnerable children, in pursuit of a hyper-aggressive mass deportation policy," said Omar Jadwat, director of the ACLU's Immigrants' Rights Project.
However, Rep. Lamar Smith, a Texas Republican who sits on the House Homeland Security Committee, applauded the Trump effort, saying the memos "overturn dangerous" policies from the Obama administration.
The directives do not affect President Barack Obama's program that has protected more than 750,000 young immigrants from deportation. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals remains in place, though participants could be deported if they commit crimes or otherwise are deemed to be threats to public safety or national security, according to the department.
During the campaign Trump vowed to immediately end that program, which he described as illegal amnesty.
The directives indicate that some young people caught crossing the border illegally by themselves may not be eligible for special legal protections if they are reunited with parents in the United States. And those parents or other relatives that the government believes helped the children would face criminal and immigration investigations.
Under the Obama administration, more than 100,000 children, mostly from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, were caught at the border. Most were reunited with parents or relatives living in the United States, regardless of the adults' immigration status.
NEW STAFF TO BE HIRED
The enforcement memos also call for the hiring of 5,000 new Border Patrol agents and 10,000 Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents, but it's unclear how quickly that could take place. Currently, two of every three applicants for Customs and Border Protection jobs fail polygraph exams and there are about 2,000 vacancies.
The government also plans to review a program that allows local police and jailers to act as immigration agents and a program that used fingerprint records from local jails to identify immigrants who had been arrested.

Malayalam actor Bhavana abducted and molested. Driver arrested, others absconding
New Delhi, February 18, 2017

Bhavana, best-known for her appearances in Malayalam films, was abducted by a group of unidentified men and molested last night in Kochi.
As of now, one man has been arrested and police has begun search for the remaining culprits.
Kochi, Kerala: Malayalam actor Bhavana?? allegedly molested after being abducted last night in Ernakulam. One held, search on for others
The gang stopped and forced themselves into Bhavana's car near Athani and Angamaly. Then they molested her till the car reached Palarivattom. The police have taken Bhavana's driver into custody. The actor reported that her former driver was a part of the gang that entered her car.
The culprits reportedly took videos and photos of the young actor as well. After getting off at Palarivattom, the gang escaped in another car. According to Manorama News, Sunil Kumar AKA Pulsar Suni is the main culprit in this case.
Bhavana then took shelter in a film director's house in Kakkannad. The director informed the police after which the cops arrived at the place and took down the actor's statements. The police reportedly have got a lead on those absconding.

Governor Vidyasagar Rao meets teams Palanisamy, Panneerselvam. Decision on CM likely today
New Delhi, February 16, 2017

All eyes are on Tamil Nadu Governor C Vidyasagar Rao who met both the camps, AIADMK's legislature party leader Edapadi K. Palanisamy and caretaker Chief Minister O Panneerselvam, at his residence on Wednesday. Both the factions met the governor to stake claim to form the government.
However, if sources are to be believed, the governor may invite Palanisamy to form the government before noon.
Palanisamy, who was named as AIADMK legislative party leader by Sasikala, met Rao claiming support of 124 of the party's 134 MLAs.

Addressing reporters after the Governor met Palanisamy and others, Fisheries Minister Jayakumar said: "We have submitted to the Governor the list of legislators supporting Palanisamy. We also requested Rao to call Palanisamy to form the government."
The Governor later met the rival party faction of caretaker chief minister O Panneerselvam.
Panneerselvam gave a representation to the Governor claiming "majority" support and seeking an opportunity to demonstrate it. The Panneerselvam camp has alleged AIADMK MLAs were held at a resort on Chennai's outskirts against their wish.
While O Panneerselvam has managed to win over 10 odd MPs and some MLAs, Sasikala has been able to rally the support of an overwhelming majority of AIADMK MLAs.
Though Panneerselvam does not have the explicit support of a very large number of MLAs, he has been insisting he would prove majority on the floor of the House if asked to do so.
The Governor had earlier kept his decision pending as the verdict in the disproportionate assets case against AIADMK general secretary V K Sasikala, a claimant for chief ministership, was due to be announced by the Supreme Court restoring her conviction and sentence, which shattered her hopes of occupying the top seat.
It remains to be seen whether the Governor goes by the AG's advice for a floor test by the two competing claimants for chief ministership or invites Palaniswami to form the government.

From 3 satellites in one launch to 104: All you need to know about ISRO's historic PSLV rocket
New Delhi, February 15, 2017
The Indian Space Research Organisation's most bankable rocket, the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) has created history today by carrying 104 satellites to space in a single launch.
The launch vehicle, lovingly known as 'the Workhorse of ISRO', has put some of India's most celebrated missions like Chandrayaan-1, Mars Orbiter Mission and Space Capsule Recovery Experiment to space.
So, here's all you need to about ISRO's very special PSLV rocket:
1. The PSLV -- 44m in height and 2.8m in diameter -- made its first flight on September 20, 1993, and has since put 122 satellites successfully in orbit, apart from the 104 it carried to space today.
2. It's not just India that has employed PSLV's masterful capabilities -- 19 other countries have used it to launch more than 40 satellites. Even in today's mission, the PSLV carried 101 foreign satellites -- which in turn helped with the total cost of the project.
3. This is also not the first time that the PSLV has carried multiple satellites -- it has achieved this feat 18 times. Before today, PSLV's personal payload record was in June 2016 when it carried 20 satellites to space at once. The first time it carried a multiple satellite payload was in 1999, when a satellite each of South Korea and Germany along with an Indian satellite.
4. The PSLV is responsible for putting a whole range of Indian satellites in orbit -- like the advanced weather satellite SCATSAT-1. Of the 3 Indian satellites it carried today, one was Cartosat-2 -- ISRO's own earth imaging spacecraft -- which is capable of advanced remote sensing and "providing scene-specific spot imageries for cartographic applications."
5. It is interesting to note here that the PSLV's first launch wasn't successful as a result of a software error. But ISRO learnt quickly from its mistakes and the next launch -- that came just the next year in 1994 -- was a successful "textbook launch".

6. In fact, the PSLV has had to face more than one failures in its course. In 1997, it carried the Indian Remote Sensing Satellite (IRS 1-D) to space and what seemed like an initial success turned out to be a subsequent failure. Due to an anomaly, the IRS 1-D got placed in a lower orbit which turned its powerful stereoscopic cameras, almost myopic. The failure also led to problems with the South Koreans, who needed some convincing before they let their satellite piggybank India's IRS-P4 in a subsequent launch in 1994.
7. The PSLV's payload capacity didn't always support multiple launches, but steady enhances over time have made it steadfast enough to carry 104 satellites like today.
8. All of PSLV's successes are a result of ISRO scientists carefully coding certain manoeuvres into the rocket's flight software pre lift-off. These manoeuvres require careful and accurate calculations and a deep understanding of all things that can possibly go wrong. Once PSLV lifts off, these manoeuvres, and their
outcomes, are beyond any scientist's control.

Sasikala breaks down at Jayalalithaa memorial, leaves for Bengaluru to surrender before trial court

New Delhi, February 15, 2017

The Supreme Court today rejected a plea by AIADMK General Secretary VK Sasikala seeking more time to surrender after it upheld her conviction in a disproportionate assets case by a trial court.
A bench headed by Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghose declined the plea as senior counsel KTS Tulsi mentioned it before the court.
The apex court on Tuesday while holding Sasikala and two others guilty of amassing disproportionate assets had directed her to surrender to the trial court forthwith to undergo her remaining sentence.
HERE ARE THE LATEST DEVELOPMENTS
Sasikala slaps Amma Memorial, a gesture denoting that she swears an oath on Jayalalitha's name.
Sasikala leaves Poes Garden, to visit Jayalalithaa memorial at Marina Beach.
Sasikala lawyer to India Today: She will surrender today before end of the day and will request for 2 weeks time on health grounds.
Supreme Court has refused to grant any relief to Sasikala asking her to surrender immediately.
DMK MLAs likely to boycott Assembly floor test if Governor orders one, say party sources.
DMK summons all MLAs to Chennai.
Sasikala appoints her nephew TTV Dinakaran as deputy general secretary of AIADMK.
Thambidurai has left for Bengaluru. He took the early morning flight from Chennai.
Sasikala is expected to travel to Bengaluru by air today to surrender and then go jail.
In a late nght press conference, Sasikala said her thoughts will continue to remain with the party even from inside the jail. "Only I can be jailed, not the care or concern I have for this party. Wherever I will be, my thoughts will be here," said an emotional Sasikala.
AIADMK leaders V Maitreyan and PH Pandian also met Rao on behalf of Panneerselvam.
By Tuesday evening, Public Works, Highways and Minor Ports Minister E. Palanisamy - elected the new AIADMK legislature party leader in place of Sasikala - met Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao and staked claim to form a new government.
TN GOVERNOR LIKELY TO TAKE CALL ON BASIS OF LEGAL OPINIONS
Tamil Nadu Governor C Vidyasagar Rao is expected to take a decision on formation of a new government in the state on the basis of recommendations by three legal luminaries, including Soli Sorabjee.
In his only report sent on Sunday to the central government, ever since O Panneerselvam resigned as chief minister on February 5, the governor conveyed that he had taken legal opinions from Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, former Solicitor General Mohan Parasaran and constitutional expert Sorabjee.
Two of the three experts suggested that composite floor test like the one conducted in Uttar Pradesh in 1998 could be done in Tamil Nadu, a Home Ministry official said quoting the governor's report.

Sasikala convicted in DA case, she must serve remaining jail term, rules Supreme Court

New Delhi, February 14, 2017 

AIADMK General Secretary VK Sasikala

AIADMK general secretary VK Sasikala suffered a major jolt with the Supreme Court upholding the trial court’s judgment convicting her in the 21-year-old disproportionate case against her. With this, Sasikala stands disqualified to take over as Tamil Nadu chief minister.

The apex court set aside the Karnataka High Court judgment of May 11, 2015 which had acquitted Sasikala and former chief minister late J Jayalalithaa in the Rs 66.65 crore disproportionate assets case. Besides being disqualified to contest elections for 10 years. Sasikala will have to surrender after the top court's verdict serve the jail term awarded by the trial court.

The two-judge bench comprising Justices P C Ghose and Amitava Roy directed Sasikala and the two relatives - VN Sudhakaran and Elavarasi - to surrender forthwith to the trial court in Bengaluru and serve the remaining part of four year jail term. The AIADMK General secretary had served close to 6 months in jail earlier. 

"According to the materials and evidence place on record, we set aside the judgement and the order of the high court and affirm in toto the judgement and order the trial court convicting the accused persons," the Supreme Court bench said reading out from the 2000-page judgment.

"Nevertheless, we reiterate that having regard to the facts, the charge framed against them by the trial court is restored," the bench said. The bench said since Jayalalithaa is no more, the proceeding against her is abated.

AIADMK REACTS

"Traitors have insulted Amma's soul. Amma will win" the AIADMK tweeted soon after the Supreme Court's verdict which came after a week-long bitter battle between Sasikala and O Panneerselvam over CM's chair.

As a consequence, decks are now clear for Tamil Nadu caretaker Chief Minister O Panneerselvam, who has been locked in a bitter battle with Sasikala since last week over the CM's chair, to take over on the post.

The Bengaluru trial court had sentenced Jayalalithaa to four years in jail and imposed a Rs 100 crore fine in the disproportionate assets case. The trial lasted for 18 years.

WHAT IS THE DA CASE AGAINST SASIKALA

Sasikala and her relatives V N Sudhakaran and Elavarasi are accused of allegedly amassing disproportionate asserts to the tune of Rs 66.65 crore during Jayalalithaa's first term as Chief Minister from 1991 to 1996. Jayalalithaa was also an accused in the case.

In May 2015, Sasikala was acquitted by the Karnataka High Court in the disproportionate case. Jayalalithaa and two other accused were also acquitted in the case.

The Karnataka government then moved the Supreme Court against the high court's ruling.

The Supreme Court had reserved the verdict in the 19-year-old illegal wealth case after 20 days of arguments in the case last year.

The apex court had sought replies from all the accused including Sasikala before the it took a break to study the records pertaining to the disproportionate assets case.


Gwalior Hulchal is one of the leading newspaper in Madhya Pradesh. Latest news updates can be viewed/read via it's 24x7 online portal www.gwaliorhulchal.com. The News Paper covers the material for all age groups likeYoungesters, Aged people, Children etc. It also covers news from all areas likePolitics, Health, Education, Science & Technology, Film etc. Breaking News are displayed on it's website immediately after getting & verifying. Common public may also call us at our contact no's for news & updates.
Gwalior Hulchal is one of the leading newspaper in Madhya Pradesh. Latest news updates can be viewed/read via it's 24x7 online portal www.gwaliorhulchal.com. The News Paper covers the material for all age groups likeYoungesters, Aged people, Children etc. It also covers news from all areas likePolitics, Health, Education, Science & Technology, Film etc. Breaking News are displayed on it's website immediately after getting & verifying. Common public may also call us at our contact no's for news & updates.
Gwalior Hulchal is one of the leading newspaper in Madhya Pradesh. Latest news updates can be viewed/read via it's 24x7 online portal www.gwaliorhulchal.com. The News Paper covers the material for all age groups likeYoungesters, Aged people, Children etc. It also covers news from all areas likePolitics, Health, Education, Science & Technology, Film etc. Breaking News are displayed on it's website immediately after getting & verifying. Common public may also call us at our contact no's for news & updates.
Gwalior Hulchal is one of the leading newspaper in Madhya Pradesh. Latest news updates can be viewed/read via it's 24x7 online portal www.gwaliorhulchal.com. The News Paper covers the material for all age groups likeYoungesters, Aged people, Children etc. It also covers news from all areas likePolitics, Health, Education, Science & Technology, Film etc. Breaking News are displayed on it's website immediately after getting & verifying. Common public may also call us at our contact no's for news & updates.
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