Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Radhika’s killer still at large; DU protests

TRAGIC: Grieving family members of Radhika Tanwar, the Delhi University college student who was shot dead in Dhaula Kuan in New Delhi on Tuesday. Photo: Sushil Kumar VermaNew Delhi: Shocked over the day-light murder of a young college girl, students of the Delhi University organised a massive sit-in protest on Wednesday to highlight the police’s failure to nab her killer.

22-year-old Radhika Tanwar, a second-year student, was shot dead outside Ramlal Anand College in Dhaula Kuan's Shantiniketan area, Tuesday morning, by an unidentified man who is believed to be stalking her for some time; there are also suggestions that the murderer was her “jilted lover”.

As per reports, her family has denied both the claims and has been demanding that the police investigate the case in its entirety.
The family said she left home for college at around 9:15 am. Her father Rajender Singh, a property dealer, said, "I have no clue what's happening. I don't know who could have done this to my daughter. She had no enmity with anyone."

"She never told us that she was facing problems from somebody. We don't know anything and we don't suspect anybody as of now," Vipin, Radhika’s brother, said.

The protest today at the South Campus of the Delhi University – where Radhika’s college is also located – is being supported by various student bodies and other organisations. Students in huge numbers were seen holding placards and shouting slogans seeking justice for their college mate and security for students.

Yesterday too, a large number of students had staged a protest demonstration and blocked the Ring Road.

The police, although suspect that the murder was committed by someone who knew Radhika, said that they are investigating the case from all angles.

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India look to cement QF seat as they take on Netherlands

Armed with an awe-inspiring batting order, India are looking to steam roller the Netherlands in Wednesday's World Cup Group B match at the Feroz Shah Kotla. India remain unbeaten after three outings so far but their inconsistent bowling remains their major worry, especially the spinners who seem to have completely forgotten the art of bamboozling batsmen.
Apart from Zaheer Khan, their pacers have been wayward as well but the batsmen ensured that never cost them a match.
The team under Mahendra Singh Dhoni, however, should win comfortably on Wednesday as the Netherlands on paper simply do not possess a batting line-up strong enough to exploit India's bowling weakness.
Peter Borren and his teammates began strongly, going narrowly down to England but have not been able to replicate that effort in subsequent matches.
Their batting has relied heavily on Ryan ten Doeschate and the bowling should simply not be good enough to pose any serious threat to the Indians.
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DMK, Congress formalise poll pact

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi with TNCC president K. V. Thangkabalu after signing the agreement in Chennai on Wednesday. Union Minister M.K. Alagiri and Deputy Chief Minister M.K. Stalin are also in the picture. Photo: M. Vedhan A day after breaking the deadlock, the DMK and the Congress on Wednesday formalised their seat-sharing pact for the April 13 Assembly polls, under which the national party will contest 63 seats.
DMK chief M. Karunanidhi and Tamil Nadu Congress Committee president K. V. Thangkabalu signed the agreement, hammered out after hard bargaining by both sides for about a fortnight.
“Following discussions, it has been decided to share 63 seats with Congress,” the copy of the agreement released to the media said.
Later, Mr. Thangkabalu described the DMK-Congress combine as a “winning alliance”. The seat-sharing talks had run into rough weather with DMK refusing to allot 63 seats and Congress dead set on its demand, which had brought the seven-year-old alliance under serious strain.
The stalemate continued till Tuesday when DMK finally relented to Congress’s demand for 63 seats.
DMK and Congress had contested the 2004 and 2009 Lok Sabha polls from the same platform besides the 2006 Assembly elections.
Mr. Thangkabalu also said that the election panels of the two parties, comprising Union Ministers P. Chidambaram and G .K. Vasan and Tamil Nadu Deputy Chief Minister M. K. Stalin on either side, would meet on Thursday to finalise the constituencies they will contest from. “We will take good decisions,” he said.
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Oil Ministry consider to regulate petrol price; OMCs down

Oil Ministry consider to regulate petrol price; OMCs downThe Oil Ministry is considering to regulate petrol prices again, reports NewsWire18, quoting a source in the ministry. The ministry has also said that regular petrol price hike is 'untenable'.
However, the oil ministry said there was no plan to regulate petrol prices "as of now".
The recent crisis in West Asia has spiked oil prices which has been a major concern for countries like India. There was a growing worry that if the crisis continues, then any further hike in the crude oil prices will lead to an increase in petrol product prices.
For 2011-12, the finance ministry has estimated Rs 23,640 crore in oil subsidy, lower than Rs 38,386 crore of current fiscal. Global crude oil prices are at the highest level since 2008, touching USD 116 per barrel.
The government had in June last year decided to free petrol pricing from its control and the same on diesel was to be done eventually. The spike in crude rates has meant that even retail rates of petrol have not moved in tandem with cost while the deregulation of diesel has been kept in abeyance

At 11:48 hrs Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL) was quoting at Rs 556.50, down Rs 5.30, or 0.94% on the NSE.

At 11:48 hrs Hindustan Petroleum Corporation (HPCL) was quoting at Rs 320.30, down Rs 3.45, or 1.07% on the NSE.
At 11:48 hrs Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) was quoting at Rs 309.55, down Rs 0.35, or 0.11% on the NSE.
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Meiyang Chang wins 'Jhalak Dikhla Jaa 4'

Meiyang Chang Adding another feather to his cap, dentist-singer-actor-TV host Meiyang Chang won the fourth season of popular dance reality TV show Jhalak Dikhla Jaa on Tuesday night.
After winning a singing reality show, Indian Idol, the 28-year-old emerged as a dancer outperforming 'item girl' Yana Gupta and TV actor Sushant Singh Rajput of the Pavitra Rishta fame.
After the win, while Chang took home a whopping Rs 25 lakh of prize money, his choreographer Marisha too got an equal cash prize. Sushant won Rs 5 lakh in prize money along with the title of "most consistent performer" on the show.
Chang was improvising with every episode and the results were a visual delight, felt the judges on the show actresses Madhuri Dixit Nene and Malaika Arora Khan and choreographer Remo D'souza.
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Fans vent anger against Pakistan wicket-keeper

PALLEKELE:— Emotional cricket fans went berserk on Twitter and Facebook, venting their frustration against fumbling wicket-keeper Kamran Akmal and demanding he be dropped from the team.
Kamran gave century-maker Ross Taylor two astonishing let-offs during Pakistan's 110-run defeat against New Zealand on Tuesday, missing two regulation chances when the batsman was on nought and eight.
Taylor went on to hit an unbeaten career-best 131, lifting New Zealand to an imposing 302-7 in the World Cup Group A clash at Pallekele stadium before Pakistan were restricted to 192 all out.
The defeat sparked a furious reaction from fans, who demanded Kamran be kicked out.
"Has Kamran applied for political asylum in Sri Lanka?" tweeted Farhan Saya, referring to former wicket-keeper Zulqarnain Haider, who fled Pakistan's team hotel in Dubai last year and sought asylum in Britain.
One fan said on Twitter: "Has Shahid Afridi told Kamran that he has dropped the World Cup with two catches?".
Others listed Kamran's home address in Lahore, for fans to express their anger.
Zafar Iqbal posted a message on Facebook: "World's greatest birthday gift declared by Guinness -- Kamran Akmal for Ross Taylor." Taylor celebrated his 27th birthday on Tuesday.
Another Twitter message said: "Kamran thinks being a wicket-keeper means letting the batsman keep his wicket."
Another fan, Mohammad Parekh, asked: "What do Kamran and Michael Jackson have in common? They both wear gloves for no... reason."
Angry reactions from die-hard fans are common in the sub-continent. The most recent came when the West Indies team bus was stoned after they defeated co-hosts Bangladesh, in an apparent case of mistaken identity.
Former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram received death threats after his team lost the 1996 World Cup quarter-final against India, while angry fans attacked the houses of Indian players following their first round exit from the 2007 World Cup.
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Gas leak in Cuddalore factory: 120 fall sick

CUDDALORE: More than 120 people, including women and children, were hospitalised following a Bromine gas leakage from a chemical factory at SIPCOT Industrial Estate here late on Monday night.Residents of Kudikadu, Eechangadu and Nochikadu villages developed vomiting, irritation in eyes, skin and some even fainted as Bromine gas stored in the premises of the Shasun Chemicals and Drugs limited factory leaked after 9 pm. According to witnesses, people poured into the roads and started running in panic. Collector P Seetharaman, accompanied by officials and top police officials rushed to the area.Those affected were then rushed to the nearby Cuddalore Government Hospital. Three buses were pressed into service to shift them to the hospital.As a precautionary measure, the Collector decided to evacuate nearly 1,500 people in the villages to marriage halls and schools away from the factory. He also spoke to them using a public address system. A medical camp was also set up under Dr Kamalakannan, joint director of the health services.Meanwhile, tension prevailed in the area and local people stoned the security office of the company and resorted to a road block at midnight. The traffic on the Cuddalore-Chidambaram Road was disrupted for a brief period, but the collector and the police pacified the crowd. Nearly 56 people were still undergoing treatment at the GH on Tuesday while 70 were discharged. More than 30 persons approached the hospital for treatment on Tuesday morning also.Collector Seetharaman, who visited the factory along with the Superintendent of Police, told Express that Bromine kept in containers leaked as it was stored for a long time and it got mixed with the humid atmosphere.He said that fire brigade personnel were pressed into service and they neutralised the gas using carbonated water. The fire fighters were then asked to remain in the premises. The Collector ordered the factory officials to remove the bromine gas from the premises. However, sources said none of the factory workers were affected as they used masks inside the factory. The Collector, who said that the situation in the area is normal, directed the Divisional Engineer of the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) to inquire into the incident. The TNPCB officials visited the factory on Tuesday to assess the situation.VICTIM: I FELT GIDDINESS, ITCHING\Most of the people exposed to the Bromine gas leak on Monday, felt irritation in the eyes and all over the body.  N Mani, a native of Kudikadu, who was recuperating at the GH, said he felt severe itching all over the body and in the eyes around 9.30 pm. “I could not breath properly also. But I did not know what was happening. I rushed out,” Mani, a daily wager, recalled. Govindaraj, a driver, was admitted to the GH only onTuesday morning after feeling giddiness and nausea. Seventeen women were also admitted to the GH with similar symptoms.Meanwhile, health minister M R K Pannerselvam, who represents Kurinjipadi constituency and MLA G Iyyappan visited the GH
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Couple shot at in Noida, wife critical

Murder Noida: A couple travelling on a motorcycle was shot at here Wednesday morning following a dispute over property, police said. The wife is in a critical condition.
Manuwah Hussain, 40, and his wife Meena Hussain, 38, were attacked around 9.15 a.m. by a man identified as Ladden, who was driving a Mahindra Scorpio.

'The wife was shot in her stomach while her husband was shot in the back at the intersection of Sector 25 and 35. Both were rushed to Kailash Hospital in Sector 27,' police in this suburban town adjacent to the national capital said.

According to police, the couple had earlier registered a case against the assailant over a property dispute and this may be the reason behind the attack.

'The wife is critical with severe injuries and the husband is recuperating,' an attendant at Kailash Hospital said.
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Japan issues tsunami warning after 7.2 earthquake

7.2 magnitude ... a USGS map of where the quake occurred. Japanese metrological agency has issued a tsunami warning, after a 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck the nation today.
According to the agency reports, tsunami waves of about 50 centimeters would hit the coast.
The meteorological agency said that the epicenter of the quake was 300kilometres north of Tokyo at a depth of about 10 kilometers.
There were no immediate reports of any damage or injury and the officials are still assessing the situation, The Star reports.
There was a 6.3 magnitude aftershock shortly after the main earthquake.
Japan is one of the world's most seismically active area and earthquakes are common there. The country accounts for nearly 20 per cent of the world's earthquakes of magnitude 6 or more.
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Amid volatile trading, key Indian stock index dips

Sensex Mumbai: Indian equities opened higher Wednesday after a patch up between two key allies in the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government but fell sharply on little positive cues from the domestic and global economy.
The sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) opened higher by 83.15 points at 18,522.80 points and shot up immediately to a high of 18,583.30 points, over the previous close at 18,439.65 points. The index was up 143.65 points then.

But subsequent profit taking pulled the key index down and some two hours into trading, it was ruling at 18,342.70 points, with a loss of 96.95 points, or 0.53 percent, data available with the bourse showed.

Only five out of the 13 sector-specific indices were ruling in the positive territory. Among the 30 Sensex stocks, 11 were in the green, while 19 others ruling in the red. The mid-cap and small-cap indices, though, were ruling marginally up.

The situation was similar at the National Stock Exchange (NSE) where the broader 50-share S&P CNX Nifty was ruling at 5497.80 points, with a loss of 23.00 points, or 0.42 percent.

Analysts said the markets had already discounted the political developments, where a significant announcement was made after the closing bell Tuesday.

The Congress party and its southern ally, the DMK, said they had reached a seat-sharing pact for the Tamil Nadu assembly polls next month after a three-day drama, which had triggered a major crisis for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh government.
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Monday, March 7, 2011

Celebrate the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day

Major Problems Facing by today's Women.
Employment : 75% of all women cannot get bank loans because they have unpaid or insecure jobs and lack property ownership rights. Women are also 21% less likely than men even to own a mobile phone and therefore to have similar communication possibilities.
Economic Security : Women perform two-thirds of the world’s work and produce half the world’s food, but earn just 10% of the income and own 1% of the property.
Education: Women constitute two-thirds of the world’s ~800 million illiterate adults (aged 15 and over). Educate a girl in Africa and she’ll earn 25% more income, be 3 times less likely to contract HIV/AIDS and have a smaller, healthier family
Equality & Leadership :  Only 28 countries have achieved the 30% target set in the early 1990s for women in decision-making positions. Worldwide, women are paid 17% less, and have less employment security than men.
Health: 99% of maternal deaths are preventable, but every minute a woman dies from pregnancy-related causes. Worldwide, young women (15 - 24) are 1.6 times as likely as young men to be HIV positive. Every 14 seconds, another child becomes an orphan due to AIDS-related deaths.
Safety & Security : The abuse of women and girls is endemic around the world. One in three women will be raped, beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise violated in her lifetime.
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Egyptian Leaders to Swear in Candidates for New Cabinet

Bloomberg: Egyptian leaders agreed on candidates for a new Cabinet that is due to be sworn in today to help manage a transition to democracy after an uprising ousted President Hosni Mubarak last month.
Finance Minist
er Samir Radwan will retain his position, the state-run Middle East News Agency said today, without saying how it got the information.
The new government is scheduled to be sworn in before the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, which on March 3 asked the prime minister-designate, Essam Sharaf, to form a new Cabinet.
Former Prime Minister Ahmed Shafik resigned following calls by protesters that he leave along with other ministers appointed by Mubarak. The former president was forced from office on Feb. 11 after three decades in power by an uprising inspired by the ouster of Tunisia’s President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali a month earlier.
The new cabinet will also reappoint Hassan Younes to head the ministry of electricity and energy, Fayza Aboulnaga for international cooperation, Fathi El-Baradei for housing, Ibrahim Manaa for civil aviation, Nabil Arabi as foreign minister and Sayed Mashaal for the ministry of military production, the news agency said.
Additional Candidates
Majed George will remain state minister for environment affairs, Jawda Abdul Khaliq as minister of social solidarity and internal trade, Munir Fakhri Abdelnoor for tourism, Abdallah al- Husseini for religious endowments, Mohsen Al-Nomani for local development, Samir Ali El-Sayyad for industry and foreign trade, Atef Abdelhamid for transport, Majid Othman for communications and information technology, and Hussein Mustapha for irrigation and water resources, it said.
The other appointments, according to the news agency, are Mohamad Abdul Aziz al-Jundi, justice; Imad Abu Ghazi, culture; Ahmad al-Burhi, labor; Mohammed Abdullah Ghorab, petroleum; and Ayman Farid Abu Hadid, agriculture.
The designation of Sharaf, a former transportation minister, has been welcomed by many protesters and opposition figures. Shafik, a former air force official, was named prime minister by Mubarak in January.
“This is the first Cabinet that reflects the choice of the people. It includes ministers who participated in the revolution and who supported it,” said Ziad Elelaimy, a member of the Alliance of the Youths’ Revolution, a coalition of protesting groups. “They can implement the demands of the revolution.”
Protesters’ Choice
Sharaf and Arabi were among those who joined protesters during the uprising in Tahrir Square, the hub of mass demonstrations, Elelaimy said, which endeared them to many activists.
Arabi’s name was among those suggested by the coalition to Sharaf for inclusion in the Cabinet, he said.
Egypt’s stock market will open after a new cabinet is formed, Khaled Seyam, head of the bourse, told Al Jazeera television two days ago. The bourse has been closed since Jan. 27 after the benchmark EGX 30 Index fell 16 percent amid the uprising.
Egypt may post economic growth of 1.5 percent “at best” this year following the unrest that led to the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak, Kai Stuckenbrock, director of the regional sovereign ratings group at Standard & Poor’s, said today in a conference call. Growth may fall to zero, Stuckenbrock said.
Protesters and security forces clashed this weekend. Tanks were sent to guard the state security building in the southern city of Assiut after demonstrators tried to storm it March 5, saying its main purpose is to spy on dissidents, Al Arabiya TV reported.
Security forces also fought demonstrators near a state security building in Alexandria on March 4, killing one person and injuring four, Al Arabiya said, citing a witness.
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Japan's PM hangs on but outlook grim

Japan's Prime Minister Naoto Kan attends a budget committee meeting in the upper house of parliament in Tokyo March 7, 2011. REUTERS/Toru HanaiJapan's unpopular Prime Minister Naoto Kan refused on Monday to step down after the resignation of his foreign minister over a political funding scandal that has added to pressure on him to quit or call a snap election.
But it is far from clear how Kan, if he does manage to cling to office, will be able to resolve the political stalemate that has left the government struggling to implement policies to cut into a huge public debt and win approval from a divided parliament to enact a new budget from April.
"Carrying out the administration's duty for the four-year term and then letting the people decide at the ballot box is best for the people themselves," he told a parliamentary session.
"I intend to firmly fulfill my duty until that time comes."
But some analysts warned that Kan's government may well collapse sooner rather than later. He is Japan's fifth leader since 2006 and has no clear successor in sight.
The resignation of Seiji Maehara, a security hawk and critic of China's military buildup, removes a strong contender to replace Kan and has deepened the impression of a government in disarray, unable to resolve fundamental problems facing the world's third largest economy.
The stalemate is blocking passage of bills to implement a $1 trillion budget for the year from April and keeping the government from tackling tax reforms to curb massive public debt, already twice the size of the $5 trillion economy.
Kan has made fiscal reforms including a rise in the 5 percent sales tax a priority as a way to fund the social costs of a fast aging society. But he has failed to get opposition parties to join in talks on the topic.
Japan's Rating and Investment Information (R&I) agency told Reuters on Monday it may cut the country's sovereign rating before local elections in April as deepening political turmoil could delay efforts to fix the country's tattered public finances.
Standard & Poor's cut Japan's rating by one notch in January and Moody's warned last month that lack of success on fiscal reform would have a negative impact on its rating.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano will serve temporarily as foreign minister while Kan picks a successor, who will have their hands full managing strained ties with China and Russia and keeping relations with ally Washington on an even keel.
Kan's health minister, Ritsuo Hosokawa, is also under fire for messy handling of measures to help housewives who had mistakenly failed to pay their pension premiums.
Media warned more cabinet ministers could quit in a "domino effect," although Kan told parliament that he wanted to keep the health minister in his post.
Kan faces pressure from within his own fractious Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) to step down, while opposition parties are pushing him to call a snap election in the lower house.
"This has revealed the Kan administration's lack of governing ability, and the only ways to break through this situation are for the cabinet to resign as soon as possible or for a snap election to be called," Kenji Kosaka, a lawmaker in the main opposition Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), told reporters.
Jiji news agency quoted an LDP executive as saying the party could submit a censure motion against the prime minister this month.
A Yomiuri newspaper poll released on Monday showed that 51 percent of voters wanted Kan to resign, with 56 percent saying they'd blame the government and DPJ if bills needed to enact the budget for the year from April are not passed on time.
The 2011/12 budget itself can be enacted by parliament's lower house alone. But related bills to implement it require approval of the upper chamber, where the opposition have threatened to use their majority to block legislation.
Some analysts said Kan may hang on to office in the hope that public opinion will eventually force opposition parties to compromise.
"In order to quit, he would need to accomplish something by doing so. But there is no prospect that the budget bills would pass if he resigned," said Keio University professor Yasunori Sone. "So even if his administration is falling apart, he must hang on ... He cannot even call an election."
Others said Kan might step down in return for opposition help passing the budget and a promise to call an early election.
The DPJ could fall from power if an election were held soon but the problem of the divided parliament would likely remain since no single party would have a majority in both chambers no matter who wins.
Maehara admitted accepting 250,000 yen ($3,000) in political donations between 2005 and 2010 from a Korean resident in Japan. Taking political donations from foreign nationals is illegal if done intentionally.
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Uppalapadu bird sanctuary set to take wings

GUNTUR: At a time when the protected bird sanctuaries like Kolleru in Krishna and Telineelapuram in Srikakulam districts are facing rough weather from powerful industrial lobbies, the forest wing has made the irrigation department cough up funds to protect a similar sanctuary located in Uppalapadu village in Guntur district.

Owing to pressure from the forest officials, the irrigation authorities recently released Rs 2 crore for the Uppalapadu project under environment protection funds of Krishna delta modernisation works.

The irrigation department has recently taken up Krishna delta modernisation works at a cost of Rs 2,000 crore. Taking a clause on reserving funds for environmental protection on all project spendings, the forest department withheld NOC for the Krishna delta works, demanding release of its due. As per the norms, 0.1 per cent of the total cost of the project should be spared towards safeguarding environment.

Sources said the forest department would spend the amount for upgradation of Uppalapadu bird sanctuary near here. In addition to providing more shelters for the migrating winged wonders, the department is also planning to attract more number of tourists to the sanctuary.

Uppalapadu shelters painted storks, spot-billed pelicans and other rare birds that migrate from countries like Siberia and Australia. The forest department has been struggling to manage the sanctuary ever since it was brought under its control from the local panchayat a few years ago due to paucity of funds.

Sources said the bird population at the sanctuary has been witnessing a steady growth particularly after the nearby Kolleru sanctuary size shrunk. According to unofficial estimates, over 20,000 birds take shelter in the seven-acre water tank in Uppalapadu. "We have decided to develop another tank spreading over around six acres keeping in view of the growing bird population," DFO Srinivasa Sastry told TOI.

In addition, the forest department would also takeover a primary school located adjacent to the sanctuary to develop a bird museum. Sastry said that another 6-7 acres of land would be available once the school premises is taken over. "We will also lay circular roads around the lake and provide clean environment to attract more birds," Sastry said.

Officials said more saplings and shrubs would be planted to give shelter to more number of migratory birds. Sources said efforts are on to attract bill, and grey pelicans and pintail ducks, which once used to flock the village tank.
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Kerala Congress demands 22 seats

Kochi: Kerala Congress (M), a constituent of the United Democratic Front today staked claim for 22 seats in the April 13 state Assembly elections.
The Congress today began talks with four of its front partners – Kerala Congress (Mani), Kerala Congress (Jacob), Socialist Janata (Democratic) of M P Veerandra Kumar and Communist Marxist Party (CMP) led by M V Raghavan.
Kerala Congress (M) leader K M Mani told reporters that his party had demanded 22 seats after holding talks with
Opposition leader Oommen Chandy, Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee President Ramesh Chennithala and UDF Convenor P P Thankachan.
Mani said his party's demand was not 'unjust' besides the 18 seats that the party had contested during the previous election, it had demanded only four additional seats.
Thankachan told reporters that further talks would be held with KC(M) at Thiruvananthapuram on March 9.
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Ken vs Can: Rao gets rid of Kamande

NEW DELHI: Balaji Rao had captain Jimmy Kamande caught behind by Ashish Bagai to reduce Kenya to 109/6 in 29.2 overs in their World Cup clash at the Ferozeshah Kotla in New Delhi.

Kamande added 52 runs with Tanmay Mishra for the sixth wicket before Rao gave Canada the breakthrough.

Rizwan Cheema trapped Steve Tikolo plumb in front of the wicket to reduce Kenya to 57/5 in 15 overs.

This was after Harvir Baidwan clean bowled Collins Obuya to reduce Kenya to 41/4 in 11.3 overs.

Canada produced a dominant bowling performance against Kenya as Henry Osinde struck thrice with the ball.

Earlier, Kenyan captain Jimmy Kamande won the toss and elected to bat first against Canada.

For Kenya, Thomas Odoyo is in for Peter Ongondo and James Ngoche has been pencilled in place of his brother Shem.

Canada have brought in left-arm spinner Parth Desai in their line-up.

The whipping boys, who have each lost all three of their matches so far, will also hope that they will be able to breach the 150-run mark for the first time in this tournament.

While Kenya have been bundled out for scores of 69, 112 and 142 -- amassing just 323 runs in their three outings -- Canada have fared little better.

The North Americans have managed 122, 123 and 138 in their matches against Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe and Pakistan respectively.
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Lara Dutta shares her fitness secret!

Actress Lara Dutta has come out with her second fitness DVD, Heal With Lara. At the DVD’s launch she shared a few of her fitness secrets.

Lara revealed that after s
he entered Bollywood, she realized that just doing regular workouts or following a strict diet regimen wasn’t enough to stay in fit shape. More was needed.

“The constant pressure of work and the pressure of keeping the body in perfect shape made me realise that I needed something more than burning out calories. I needed something to restore fitness, rejuvenation of body and mind, which I found in yoga,” she is quoted as saying by a news agency.

Talking about her DVD, Lara said her aim is to make workouts fun rather than drag they often become for many fitness freaks.

“My aim was to make it a little bit uptempo and fun. A uniquely evolved blend of strength and cardio intervals makes this a fun yet powerful workout for the entire body,” Lara said.

However, she admitted that she also eats junk food.

“Being a Punjabi, I love street food, especially chats, pani-puri, dahi-papdi, you name it and I love it,” said the actress who recently got married to tennis star Mahesh Bhupathi.
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Ashima-Leena to help 'Slumdog Millionaire' star Rubina

RubinaNewDelhi : Designer duo Ashima and Leena Singh have come forward to help Slumdog Millionaire's child star Rubina Ali, who lost her home in the big blaze in Bandra, Mumbai.
The designers have decided to give specially-designed outfits, pair of shoes and other accessories to support Rubina, who shot to global fame after her role as young Latika in Danny Boyle's multiple Oscar-winning movie in 2009. "Besides wardrobes, we will be giving her an album showcasing the star's talent in ramp shows for us. We will try to help her in rebuilding her house and career," said Leena.
"We have also asked our friends and other artists in Mumbai to tender help to affected people," the designer said.
At least 21 people were injured and over 2,000 people were homeless in the fire broke out in Garib Nagar slums near Bandra (East) on March 4.
The family of Rubina watched helplessly as their shanty in the crowded slum went up in flames. "We all were at home watching TV, when a neighbour came to alert us about the fire. We all rushed out. We spent the entire night at the railway station. I have lost everything including books and precious belongings like photographs, newspaper clippings and memorabilia of the film," the 12-year-old child artiste said.
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Indian PM accepts 'error' for anti-graft appointment

NEW DELHI — India's Prime Minister on Monday accepted responsibility after the Supreme Court struck down his choice of a tainted civil servant to serve as the country's chief anti-corruption officer.
Manmohan Singh's statement to lawmakers marked another setback for the 78-year-old leader, whose Congress-led government is reeling over a series of graft scandals, including a multi-billion-dollar telecoms licensing scam.
Addressing the lower house of parliament, Singh admitted his "error of judgment" and said he respected the Supreme Court's decision to cancel the appointment of Central Vigilance Commissioner P.J. Thomas.
Singh appointed Thomas in September, although the official had been charged in 2000 over his role in allegedly fraudulent imports of palm oil from Malaysia while he worked as a civil servant in the Kerala state government in the 1990s.
The 60-year-old civil servant has never been prosecuted in the palm oil case and has always maintained his innocence, blaming the accusations on political rivalry in Kerala.
But with lawmakers clamouring for an explanation, Singh said: "Obviously there has been an error of judgement and I accept full responsibility."
The Central Vigilance Commission is India's leading anti-corruption watchdog.
The latest development comes as the government has been battling corruption scandals for the past six months that have caused concern among voters and troubled foreign investors.
The Hindu-nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, India's main opposition group, has called the Supreme Court ruling "the biggest blow to Manmohan Singh and Sonia Gandhi", who is president of the ruling Congress party.
Media and opposition criticism of Singh, once seen as the "Mr Clean" of India's notoriously dirty politics, has been so intense that he was forced to deny rumours that he might resign last month.
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Pranab speaks to Karuna, crisis may be over soon

New Delhi: The Congress and the Dravida Munnettra Kazhagam (DMK) are involved in hectic consultations to resolve the impasse over seat sharing in the Tamil Nadu Assembly elections on April 13. Congress sources have told CNN-IBN that final modalities are being worked out to resolve the crisis between the two parties. They add that the crisis expected to be resolved by Monday evening.
Congress troubleshooter and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee had a telephonic conversation with DMK chief and Tamil Nadu M Karunanidhi and requested him to reconsider his party's decision to withdraw its ministers from the Union Cabinet and extend only issue based support to the United Progressive Alliance Government.Earlier, Mukherjee also met DMK leader and Textile Minister Dayanidhi Maran, who is in New Delhi to reportedly submit his resignation along with five other DMK minister. Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad and Sonia's political secretary Ahmed Patel were also present during the meeting.
Mukherjee also held consultations with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Home Minister P Chidambaram.
However, the DMK has maintained that its ministers would meet the Prime Minister on Monday evening and hand over their resignation letters.
Sources say that the handing over of resignation letters by the DMK minister has been delayed to 6.30 PM because there are last minute efforts to try and resolve the differences.
The DMK on Saturday decided to pull out of UPA Government at the Centre and withdrew its ministers from the Cabinet following breakdown in talks over seat sharing for Tamil Nadu Assembly elections.
A DMK resolution, passed during the party's high-level meeting in Chennai on Saturday, said, "the Congress does not want us to continue in the alliance".
The Congress wanted to contest 63 in seats but the DMK was not willing to spare more than 60. The DMK has been reluctant to spare more seats because after allocating 60 seats to the Congress, the DMK would be left with just 122 for itself. And if it conceded 63, i
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India joins nations that legalise euthanasia in some form

With the Supreme Court allowing "passive" euthanasia under "exceptional circumstances", India today joined a handful of countries which have legalised mercy killing in some form or other. "Passive euthanasia" is usually defined as withdrawing medical treatment with the deliberate intention of causing the patient's death.
Nusring staff of the KEM hospital Mumbai celebrate by distrubuting sweets after the Supreme Court's verdict on Aruna Shanbaug in Mumbai on Monday.For example, if a patient requires kidney dialysis to survive, the doctors disconnect the dialysis machine, allowing the patient to die soon. This form of euthanasia is different from "active" euthanasia, or simply euthansia, where the death is caused by the use of lethal substances.
It is widely considered to be criminal homicide, but voluntary passive euthanasia is considered non-criminal in several countries.
Euthanasia conducted with the consent of the patient is termed "voluntary euthanasia", which is legal in Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and the US states of Oregon and Washington. When the patient brings about his or her own death with the assistance of a physician, the term "assisted suicide" is often used.
If euthanasia is carried out on a patient, who is not in a condition to express his or her desire to die, it is called non-voluntary euthanasia. Examples include child euthanasia, which is illegal worldwide but decriminalised under certain specific circumstances in the Netherlands under the Groningen Protocol.
It's also legal in Albania if three or more family members consent to the decision. Although both forms of euthanasia are illegal in Switzerland, assisted suicide is penalised only if it is carried out "from selfish motives".
In 1995, Australia's Northern Territory had approved a euthanasia bill. It went into effect in 1996, but Australian Parliament overturned the bill the next year.
In Colombia, the Supreme Court ruled in favour of mercy killing in 1997 and recommended removing penalties over it. But, the ruling has not gone into effect as the Colombian Congress is yet to approve guidelines for it. It is illegal for anyone to actively contribute to someone's death in Ireland.
However, it is not illegal to remove life support and other treatment if a person requests for it -- in other words, passive euthanasia is legal.
In Mexico, active euthanasia is illegal but since 2008 the law allows the terminally ill to refuse medication or further medical treatment to extend life.
Although active euthanasia still remains illegal in Norway, but the country has softened its penalties if a caregiver takes the life of someone who is "hopelessly sick" and consents to the act. While the Supreme Court of India has allowed passive euthanasia under "exceptional circumstances", it has made clear that active euthanasia is illegal.
The court also clarified that until Parliament enacts a law, its judgement on active and passive euthanasia will be in force. The apext court was hearing a plea for mercy killing on behalf of a 60-year-old nurse, living in a vegetative state for the last 37 years in a Mumbai hospital after a brutal sexual assault.
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Markets end weak; Sensex slips 264pts

A despondent stock broker reacts in a brokerage firm in Mumbai. File PhotoThe markets today opened (Sensex down 122 points) on a weak note on the back of geo-political concerns, rising oil prices and domectic political turmoil. The marekts exhibited weakness for a major part of the trading day as selling was witnessed across-the-board. The BSE benchmark index plunged to a low of 18,059 in noon deals with capital goods and rate sensitives dragging the index. However, renewed buying interest in the last session of trades saw the markets recoup some of their losses.
The Sensex recovered 164 points from the day's low,  but still ended with a loss of 264 points at 18,223. The NSE Nifty recovered from a low of 5408, to settle at 5,463, down 1.4%, or 76 points.
With an imminent civil war in Africa's largest oil-producing nation threatening to cut off oil supply to a significant degree, crude prices touched 2.5 year highs, thus prompting negative market sentiment due to a spike in commodity prices, which will subsequently stoke inflation.
The crisis in Libya has assumed such serios proportions that the US is contemplating tapping its own oil reserves in the face of scorching crude prices, which spiked above $106 a barrel, prompting US crude oil futures to jump 1.6%, their highest ever since 2008.

Jim Rogers, an investment expert, averred crude prices were rising due to supply constraints. He added, "Crude will continue to go higher, though there can be intermittent corrections. However, the price of oil is going to continue to rise for years to come."

At home, the pull-out of the DMK, the Congress ruling party's primary ally, from the UPA 2 coaliton, saw investor sentiment weaken on fears the propsals put forth for the infratstructure sector in the recently announced Union Budget may not see fruition.

Also, the Banking Regulation Amendment Bill, approved by the Centre on March 3, which would see the issue of new banking licences, is also in jeopardy because of the DMK's withdrawal.

At the end of the day, gainers on the Sensex were Wipro at Rs 446 and Tata Power at Rs 1,230, both up by a per cent each, and Cipla at Rs 305 up marginally by 0.4%. Losers on the index were led by auto stocks Maruti Suzuki and Tata Motors at Rs 1,265 and Rs 1,127 down 4% each, and Reliance Communications at Rs 90 down 3%.
The broader markets under-performed the benchmark, as the BSE Mid-cap index at 6,499 and the Small-cap at 7,885 both declined 1.4% each.

All the sectoral indices on the BSE were in negative territory, with the Auto index at 8,692 down nearly 3%, Capital Goods losing 2.4% at 12,645, and Realty at 2,043 down 1.7%.

Amongst the auto stocks, Ashok Leyland was the major laggard at Rs 51 and Bharat Forge at Rs 319 both down 5%,while Maruti Suzuki at Rs 1,265 closed down 4%.

Capital Goods stocks fell on the uncertainty regarding the implementation of the proposals chalked out for the infrastructure sector, which included the creation of infra debt funds to finance large-scale infra projects. Top losers on the Capital Goods index were Punj Lloyd at Rs 62 down 4.5%, Gammon India at Rs 117 and Areva T&D at Rs 256, both down 4%.

Sobha Developers at Rs 263, Orbit corp at Rs 49 and DB Realty at Rs 113, all down 34%, were the top losers in the realty space.

FMCG stocks were flat, albeit with a negative bias, at 3,502, followed by the Healthcare index at 5,833 and the PSU index at 8,506, both down nearly a per cent.

Commenting on the current market scenario, technical analyst Devangshu Datta said, "The market is obviously quite bearish, with support (for the Nifty) at 5,400, and resistance at 5,460."

The market breadth was quite negative, with 1,972 stocks declining as against 908 advancing stocks.
Other markets in Asia shut shop on a mixed note. The Nikkei shed nearly 2% at 10,505, while the Hang Seng at 23,313 declined 0.4%, and the Seoul Composite at 1,980 and Taiwan Weighted at 8,714 both shed 1%. Amongst the other major Asian indices, the Shanghai Composite ended robustly at 2,997 up 2%, and Singapore's Straits Times closed marginally in the green at 3,067.

In Europe, the CAC40 was down marginally at 4,011, while the DAX at 7,191 and FTSE 100 at 6,015 were both trading flat, with  a positive bias.
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'We wanted Dum Maaro Dum remix to look more exotic'

Deepika Padukone in Dum Maaro Dum SongDeepika Padukone will take over from Zeenat Aman, and swing her hips to the remixed version of Dum Maaro Dum in Rohan Sippy's new film.
The item number has been choreographed by Bosco-Ceasar, and the music has been composed by Pritam.
Bosco tells Patcy N how the song was made, and how good a dancer Deepika really is.
Do you think Deepika will do justice to what Zeenat Aman did?
The dance in both the songs is different. Deepika will be doing hardcore dancing whereas Zeenat Aman was just chilling out and swaying. Zeenat had a completely different style. Deepika's dancing is aggressive.
Where does the song appear in the movie?
It's a jungle party.
We have used hip-hop, and Bollywood dance. It's a total masala song.
Is Deepika a good dancer?
Deepika has performed very well. We had worked together in Love Aaj Kal and she had done a good job in the song Aahun Aahun.
She was very excited about the Dum Maaro Dum dance. After her shoot would get over around 10:30pm, we would start our rehearsals. We would finish by 1am everyday, for three days.
We shot the song at Mehboob studios, in Bandra (a western suburb of Mumbai). It took three days to shoot it.
Deepika is a fantastic dancer, and extremely professional.

Some portions of the song have water shots. Deepika was not well when we had to shoot the part but she shot for it anyway. She was very sporting.

Why was her mini skirt changed to hot pants?
We asked her to change her clothes because of the heavy dancing. We wanted her to be comfortable. Plus, we wanted the song to look more exotic.
Did you like the original Dum Maro Dum song?
I loved it as a child. But it was too hi-tech for me to understand. I loved the colours and the people. It had a hippie vibe but was too bold for me to react to it. I liked the groove of the song. It is a cult song, as we had never seen such visuals before.
What was your first reaction when you heard the remixed version?
I was at Pritam's studio. I was working on another song when Rohan came in and played this track. He asked me to react to it. When I realised it was Dum Maro Dum, I realised it sounded different, and was given a different treatment. It had hip-hop but the vibe was different. It seemed like a new song.
How would you compare the two songs, which is better?
I cannot compare the two songs. Black Eyed Peas had remixed the song I've had The Time Of My Life (composed by Franke Previte). Some people love the old version and some like the remixed version. Both have their own charm.
Likewise, with Dum Maro Dum. What has helped the new version is we have all heard the old Dum Maro Dum song. Plus, it was a hit.
What are your expectations from the song?
I have done another remix before -- It's Rocking -- which was picturised on Kareena Kapoor. It was a hit. I want Dum Maaro Dum to be a bigger hit.

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After Attacks, Google Vows to Fortify Android Market

Google takes additional steps after Android security incident. Image: Google.Google will build new safeguards into Android Market, its application store for the Android mobile OS, following an attack that infected thousands of phones and forced the company to wipe the malware remotely from phones, it said late Saturday.
More than 50 applications in the Android Market were found to contain a program called DroidDream, which is capable of stealing information about a mobile device and, more dangerously, downloading other malicious applications to the phone.
Google was fairly silent about the problem until Saturday, when it confirmed in a blog post that it decided to use a command that remotely erases malicious applications.
Android users that have downloaded a malicious application will get an e-mail within three days from the address android-market-support@google.com explaining the situation, wrote Rich Cannings , Android's Security Lead. In addition to wiping malware, Google is also forcing an update on users called "Android Market Security Tool March 2011" which fixes the security issues that DroidDream exploits.
Some users may get a notification on their device that a malicious application has been removed, Cannings wrote. About a day after the vulnerabilities have been fixed, users will receive a second e-mail.
Phones running Android versions below 2.2.2 are vulnerable. The issues are fixed in the latest 2.3 version of Android, known as "Gingerbread."
DroidDream uses two exploits called "exploid" and "rageagainstthecage" to get installed on the phone, according to Lookout Mobile Security, a company that has analyzed DroidDream. The company was tipped off to the situation last week by a Reddit user going by the name of Lompolo.
Lookout posted a deeper analysis of DroidDream on its blog on Sunday, revealing more alarming details of the application. DroidDream is coded to only operate from 11 p.m. to 8 a.m., "a time when the owner of an infected device would most likely be sleeping and not notice any strange behaviors on the phone."
DroidDream gains root access to Android's Linux operating system. Google wrote that it appeared to gather a device's International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number and the SIM card's International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) number.
That information was sent to a remote service located in Fremont, California, according to Lookout.
After sending the information, DroidDream downloads a system application called "DownloadProviderManager.apk," which prevents someone from either seeing it or uninstalling it without other special permissions, according to Lookout.
That second stage application then collects additional information, including product identification, phone model, language used on the phone, country information and userIDs, Lookout wrote. It can also silently download other applications.
"The first phase of the malware served to gain root access on the device while the second phase predominantly serves to maintain a connection to the command-and-control server to download and install other files," Lookout wrote. "Because we have not seen the command-and-control server issue commands to download additional applications we cannot divine their exact purpose. However the possibilities are limitless."
"DroidDream could be considered a powerful zombie agent that can install any applications silently and execute code with root privileges at will," Lookout wrote.
Google has taken the affected applications, many of which were legitimate applications that had been modified with DroidDream, out of the Android market. It banned the publishers of the tainted applications and contacted law enforcement, it said.
The DroidDream incident marks the first wide-scale infestation of Google's official Android Market with malware, although there have been prior instances of tampered applications.
Google does little vetting of the Android Market, saying it wants developers to be able to quickly get applications in the hands of users. Nonetheless, "security is a priority for the Android team, and we're committed to building new safeguards to help prevent these kinds of attacks from happening in the future," Cannings wrote.
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Andy Flower: England can cope without Kevin Pietersen at World Cup

Andy Flower and Kevin PietersenAndy Flower believes England can cope with the absence of Kevin Pietersen after the batsman was ruled out of the remainder of the World Cup. Pietersen will fly home for surgery on a hernia problem but Flower said the potential return of Eoin Morgan would help England move on.
Flower, the England team director, acknowledged the team was losing a major player in Pietersen, who was promoted to an unfamiliar opening position just before the start of the tournament.
"He's a world-class player," Flower told Sky Sports News. "I thought he was forming an interesting opening partnership with Andrew Strauss. In three of the four games they've played together they have looked good up front and they put on significant partnerships that have kicked off good batting performances."
Morgan is awaiting ICC approval to play in the competition after being announced as Pietersen's proposed replacement. He was included in the original World Cup squad but missed out after breaking a finger in the build-up to the tournament and Flower insisted that the ability to call on a player of Morgan's quality means the team can move forward.
"We're moving on now and Eoin Morgan is an exciting cricketer. It's going to be good to have him back."
Flower said that Pietersen had been struggling with the injury for some time but remains hopeful that he will return in time for a busy summer.
"He's got a problem and I've seen the scan myself. It's a problem that he has been dealing with for a number of weeks now so he has got to go and get that sorted out and hopefully he will be ready for the first Test against Sri Lanka in the English summer."
Pietersen had earlier revealed he was "absolutely devastated" to be returning home from the World Cup and missing the subsequent Indian Premier League due to an injury that was sustained on England's tour of Australia.
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Black money case: Action will be taken against Hasan Ali Khan, says Pranab

New Delhi:  Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee today said the government has taken note of the Supreme Court's observations and action will be taken against Pune-based stud farm owner Hasan Ali Khan who is facing charges of stashing huge amounts of money in tax havens.

"That is being taken care of. We have noted the observations of the Supreme Court. All appropriate action will be taken," he said on the sidelines of a CII meet when asked if the government was contemplating any action against Khan.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had yesterday issued a 'Look out Circular' at all airports against Khan to ensure that he did not flee the country.
Khan is facing charges of stashing away over US $ 8 billion in Swiss banks. In 2009, he was served a notice for a tax demand for about Rs. 40,000 crore.
Lambasting the Centre for not having the "will power" to act against black money hoarders, the apex court on March 3 asked why Khan and others were not subjected to custodial interrogation despite the probe agencies possessing sufficient materials.

"What the hell is going on in this country," an anguished court had asked.

In connection with the black money case involving Khan, the Supreme Court had in February also asked the Centre to ensure that Khan did not leave the country. 
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Short Film Patnam Potugallu Trailer1 Released

A Short Film By Hyderabad Boys Named "Patnam Potugallu" Under Ideal Movies Production Banner 1st Trailer Has Released Few Days ago.
It was the first Short Movie Which was released without completing its Total Shooting.
Patnam Potugallu is Going to release in Year 2011 as Month and Date Not confirmed Yet.

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BHEL bags contract for 600 MW thermal power plant


Valued at Rs. 14,450mn, the contract envisages setting up a 1x600 MW thermal power generating unit for APGenco’s upcoming coal-based thermal power project, located at Rayalaseema in Kadapa district of Andhra Pradesh. 

Reposing confidence in Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL)’s proven technological excellence, Andhra Pradesh Power Generation Corporation Limited (APGenco) has placed a major order on the company for supply and installation of the main plant package for a power project in Andhra Pradesh, involving one new rating thermal power generating unit of 600 MW.
Valued at Rs. 14,450mn, the contract envisages setting up a 1x600 MW thermal power generating unit for APGenco’s upcoming coal-based thermal power project, located at Rayalaseema in Kadapa district of Andhra Pradesh.
Notably, Rayalaseema thermal power project is already equipped with five BHEL-built units of 210 MW each and with this order APGenco has once again reposed confidence in BHEL’s proven technological excellence. The order also reinforces BHEL’s leadership status in the execution of thermal power projects involving supply of state-of-the-art equipment, suited to Indian coal and Indian conditions.
Significantly, all the 19 Thermal Units with a cumulative capacity of 4,250 MW, presently operating at APGenco’s power stations, have been supplied by BHEL and are performing to the satisfaction of the customer. In Andhra Pradesh, BHEL is also currently executing orders for another 3 thermal units, which will generate 1,700 MW of power, on commissioning.
BHEL’s scope of work in the contract envisages design, engineering, manufacture, supply, erection, testing and commissioning of Steam Turbines, Generators and Boilers, along with state-of-the-art Controls and Instrumentation (C&I) and other associated auxiliaries including Switch-Yard.
BHEL has fully established state-of-the-art technology for the manufacture of thermal sets up to 1,000 MW rating. The company has also equipped itself to produce thermal sets with supercritical parameters of 660/700/800 MW unit rating. To meet customer demand, the company has introduced new rating thermal sets of 270 MW, 525 MW and 600 MW, in addition to 250 MW and 500 MW thermal sets. Notably, BHEL has so far secured orders for Twenty (20) numbers of 600 MW thermal sets.
BHEL has been committed to the nation’s power development programme and has reaffirmed its commitment to the Indian Power Sector by equipping itself for the future, by way of contemporary technology, state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities and skilled technical manpower to meet the country’s power forecast in the future. The company has established the capability to deliver 15,000 MW per annum and further augmentation to 20,000 MW per annum is underway.
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DMK puts 'self respect' before alliance, will not reconsider decision

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi with Deputy CM M.K. Stalin during a meeting in Chennai. The Parliamentary Party leader T.R. Baalu said “As of now, there is no reconsideration by the DMK.” File PhotoNew Delhi/Chennai The seven-year-old alliance between DMK and Congress appeared headed for a break with the regional party today ruling out reconsidering its decision to pull out of the Union Cabinet, notwithstanding Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee's appeal.
DMK's Parliamentary Party leader T R Baalu said Mukherjee called him last night and requested the DMK chief should reconsider the decision to pull out his six ministers from the UPA government .
"As of now, there is no reconsideration by the DMK," Baalu told reporters here at the party headquarters Anna Arivalayam.
Peeved over the Congress' demand for 63 seats as against the 60 agreed for the April 13 Assembly polls in the state, DMK had announced on Saturday its decision to walk out of the Cabinet, saying it would extend only 'issue-based' support.
Meanwhile, the six DMK Ministers, including M K Alagiri and Dayanidhi Maran, reached Delhi and are scheduled to hand over their resignation to Prime Minister this evening.
"The Prime Minister has given them (DMK ministers) time at 6.30 pm)," a PMO source said.
Earlier in the day, one of the DMK ministers, S S Palanimanickam met Mukherjee in Parliament House. "All DMK ministers will assemble at Alagiri's residence and then meet the Prime Minister," he said after meeting Mukherjee.
Before leaving for Delhi, Alagiri said, "We will meet the Prime Minister and submit our resignation. Nobody from the Congress met our chief Karunanidhi."
"We will not accept anything that hurts our self respect, our pride," Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment D Napolean said.
He said the DMK ministers will give their resignation "in accordance with the decision taken by the party and on advise of Karunanidhi".
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SC rejects petition for mercy killing of Aruna Shanbaug

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court has rejected Pinki Virani's plea for mercy killing of Aruna Shanbaug.

The court rejected the case and laid guidelines for mercy killing in extreme cases of terminally ill patients.

Aruna Shanbaug, is lyin
g in a "persistent vegetative state" in Mumbai's KEM Hospital for over 37 years after a brutal sexual assault.

Active euthanasia (mercy killing) is illegal, yet "passive euthanasia" can be permissible in exceptional circumstances, a bench of justices Markandey Katju and Gyan Sudha Mishra said dismissing the plea filed on behalf of KEM hospital nurse Aruna Ramachandra Shanbaug.

The apex court said that as per the facts and circumstances of the case, medical evidence and other material suggest that Aruna need not be subjected to euthanasia.

The bench, however, said since there is no law presently in the country on euthanasia, mercy killing of terminally-ill patient "under passive euthanasia doctrine can be resorted to in exceptional cases."

It said such a plea made by patients or relatives must be examined by expert doctors and placed before the concerned high court, which will take the final decision.

This SC guideline would hold till Parliament enacts a law on euthanasia.

On last Wednesday, the Supreme Court had reserved its judgment on her euthanasia plea.

The apex court heard the plea of activist Pinki Virani that feeding of the nurse should be stopped immediately.

The petition said that Aruna cannot see or speak properly and as such keeping her alive violates her right to live with dignity.

Aruna Shanbhag, a nurse from Haldipur, Shimoga, Karnataka, was assaulted by a Sohanlal Bhartha Walmiki, a ward boy at Mumbai's King Edward Memorial Hospital in 1973.

Walmiki was motivated partly by resentment for being ordered about and castigated by Shanbaug. On the night of November 27, 1973 he attacked her, while she was changing clothes in the hospital basement for leaving her shift.

The plea for Aruna's mercy killing had been made by writer Pinky Virani who had told the court in her petition that the nurse slipped into coma after she was attacked by a sweeper who wrapped a dog chain around her neck and yanked the victim with it.

According to the petition, he had tried to rape the victim but finding that she was menstruating, indulged in anal sex. To immobilise her during this act, he twisted the chain around her neck and fled the scene after the committing the heinous offence, it had said.

Virani had said that due to strangulation by the chain, the supply of oxygen to the brain stopped and the cortex got damaged. She also had brain stem contusion injury associated with cervical cord injury.

According to the petitioner, in the last 37 years after the incident, Aruna has become "featherweight" and her bones are brittle. She is prone to bed sores.
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DB Realty slips after MD Shahid Balwa quits over telecom probe


Shahid Balwa, MD of DB Realty after being produced at Patiala House court in New Delhi. File PhotoMUMBAI: Shares in developer DB Realty hit a record low on Monday after its Managing Director Shahid Balwa , embroiled in a widening telecom corruption investigation, resigned from his position.

The Mumbai-based company's shares opened 15 percent lower at 100 rupees, after DB said its board had accepted Balwa's resignation with effect from Feb. 9, in view of his preoccupations relating to certain investigations.

The stock recovered partially, but was still trading 3 percent lower at 1:30 pm. Shares in the company, which went public in February 2010, are down 42 percent so far this year, and are less than a fourth of their listing price of 468 rupees.

"The management is preoccupied with getting Balwa released. Day-to-day decision-making seems to have gone for a toss," said a sector analyst at a Mumbai brokerage, who declined to be named as he no longer had the company under active coverage.

"One can't say at what level the stock will settle, because there's no real buying interest," he added.

Balwa was the first company executive arrested in a multi-billion dollar telecoms corruption scandal that has rocked the Congress party-led government and undermined Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

The investigation into telecoms licence awards that may have cost the government as much as $39 billion in lost revenue has led to other arrests, seen members of India's corporate elite questioned by authorities, and battered telecom stocks.

Balwa, also vice chairman of Etisalat's Indian joint venture, was arrested in February after his firm was accused of being among two firms that were given undue preference in licence grants in 2008.

DB Realty, which is focused on building high-end apartments in India's financial capital, had said earlier Balwa has been "wrongly implicated" and will be strongly contesting the proceedings.

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Libya must stop indiscriminate attacks on civilians, says UN chief

Libyan rebel fighters on the road in Bin Jawad, where there has been fierce fightingThe UN secretary general has called for an end to indiscriminate attacks on civilians in Libya and warned of "carnage" in the days ahead. Ban Ki-moon has also dispatched a team to Tripoli to assess the humanitarian situation in the wake of the Libyan regime's "disproportionate use of force".
Ban's intervention on Sunday came as rebel forces continued to battle Gaddafi's troops for control of key towns and cities, and Britain assessed the embarrassing fallout from the botched SAS mission to establish contacts with rebel leaders.
Seven people are reported to have died and 50 injured in the battle for Bin Jawad, 100 miles away from Gaddafi's home town of Sirte, but after fierce fighting on Sunday rebel leaders claimed to have fought off government forces in the towns of Zawiyah, to the west of Tripoli, and Misrata to the east.
The dictator's counterattack in recent days has raised fears of a protracted civil war, rather than the swift revolutions seen in Egypt and Tunisia.
A UN statement said Ban was "deeply concerned about the fighting in western Libya, which is claiming large numbers of lives and threatens even more carnage in the days ahead. He notes that civilians are bearing the brunt of the violence, and calls for an immediate halt to the government's disproportionate use of force and indiscriminate attacks on civilian targets".
Ban also called on the Libyan government to give "urgent and unimpeded access" to parts of the country affected by the violence and to lift restrictions on the media.
Ban discussed the "increasingly troubling humanitarian situation" with the Libyan foreign minister, Musa Kusa, in a telephone conversation and appointed a former foreign minister of Jordan, Abdelilah Al-Khatib, as his special envoy to Libya to undertake urgent consultations with the authorities in Tripoli and in the region.
The UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) called for access to the western city of Misrata, which has been under attack by government forces. "Humanitarian organisations need urgent access now. People are injured and dying and need help immediately," said under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief co-ordinator Valerie Amos.
A doctor in Misrata told the BBC that 21 dead and more than 100 wounded had arrived at his hospital, which he said was also targeted by government troops. "They bombed all the houses with heavy weapons. They intentionally gunned and exploded our drug store. They bombed even around our hospital but fortunately nobody was injured. More than five mosques which I know are bombed."
Misrata, with a population of 300,000, is the largest rebel-held town outside the opposition strongholds in the east of the country.
The UN also said numbers of people using the border crossing to Tunisia had dropped dramatically since Libyan authorities had taken control of it. About 100,000 people, many migrant workers, are thought to have used it since the unrest began, but numbers had dropped from around 20,000 a day at the peak to "several hundred", amid claims of intimidation by government forces.
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Nudged by Sushma, PM accepts responsibility

New Delhi:  In parliament today, the Prime Minister said that his decision to go with PJ Thomas as India's Chief Vigilance Commissioner (CVC) was "an error of judgement" and that he accepts "full responsibility."

Dr Manmohan Singh's statement was nudged by the BJP's Sushma Swaraj, who urged him to take the same tone as he did in Jammu last week, after the Supreme Court declared Mr Thomas' appointment was illegal.

The PM's first statement at 12 pm recounted the events that led to a committee headed by him picking Mr Thomas as the country's most senior officer in charge of fighting corruption among bureaucrats and government officials.  The other two members on the selection committee were Home Minister P Chidambaram and Ms Swaraj, who had lodged her strong dissent over Mr Thomas' candidacy but was over-ruled.

The "arbitrariness" of that decision was questioned by the Supreme Court, which, like Ms Swaraj, found it odd that Mr Thomas was seen as a viable contender even though he has been accused of corruption in a criminal case.
In Jammu on Friday, the PM said, "I respect the judgement of the Supreme Court... it is necessary to ensure that such things don't happen again.... this is not a question that relates to coalition compulsions."  Minutes later, Ms Swaraj tweeted with grace, "I appreciate the statement of the PM owning responsibility... I think this is enough, let matters rest at this and we move forward."

Her party, the BJP, was in a less conciliatory mood. It said the PM would have to explain his decision in Parliament. Ms Swaraj was forced to clarify that her tweet was not at odds with her party's aggressive stand on the matter.

So she was quick to respond today after the PM's first statement which did not see him owning up to his role in Mr Thomas' appointment. Recalling his candid remarks in Jammu, she said, "I am shocked that you have not expressed that sort of regret."

Dr Manmohan Singh immediately stood up and said, "I have no hesitation in repeating what I said in Jammu. Obviously, there was an error of judgement. I accept full responsibility for it."

Mr Thomas was a senior bureaucrat in Kerala in the early 90s, when he allegedly pushed the government to allow the import of edible oil or palmolein. The deal ended up costing the government crores. Mr Thomas was charged with corruption in a criminal case, but because of the political sensitivities of those named with him, the case progressed in fits and starts, depending on which government was in power in Kerala. Mr Thomas enjoyed a series of promotions which saw him being deputed to the Centre. 

The court said that the PM's selection committee had not considered the relevant documents for his case, and that it had ignored earlier recommendations for action against him listed by the Department of Personnel and Training.
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SC clears common medical entrance test for govt, pvt colleges

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday ordered that single entrance test would be held for MBBS and post graduate medical seats of government and private medical colleges.

Earlier, a panel set up by the health ministry to run the Medical Council of India ( MCI) had suggested that a common entrance exam would lessen the stress of the student.

Member of the panel Dr Devi Shetty had said that at present, a student wanting to study medicine has to appear for 10-15 examinations, which can be highly stressful to both the student and his family. A common entrance exam will allow a student to give his best shot at one go.

President of the panel Dr S K Sarin had said that a common entrance will reduce hassles for students appearing for multiple medical exams.
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Kevin Pietersen 'devastated' by World Cup departure for hernia surgery

The England batsman Kevin Pietersen said he was "absolutely devastated" to be returning home from the World Cup, after finally succumbing to a hernia problem that was first discovered during the recent one-day series in Australia.
News that Pietersen's World Cup was over emerged while the England squad were en route from India to Bangladesh for their next match on Friday. It had already been confirmed that Pietersen would undergo hernia surgery after the World Cup but he appeared laboured in the field during the six-run win against South Africa.
England's management have now acted to avoid further aggravation of the problem that has also ruled Pietersen out of the Indian Premier League, in which he was due to play with the Deccan Chargers.
Pietersen, who will be out for around six weeks after he undergoes the surgery, said on his Twitter page: "Confirming the BREAKING NEWS ... I fly home tonight. Out of the WC & IPL.. Absolutely devastated! Sad to leave India.. Love the people & the hospitality!"
It had been hoped England's medical staff would be able to nurse the 30-year-old through the remainder of the World Cup, with Pietersen suggesting that "careful management should see me still play a significant role in the team's campaign". But he complained of soreness after bowling eight overs in the victory against South Africa, having scored just two runs opening the batting.
The ECB have applied to the ICC to call up Eoin Morgan as Pietersen's replacement. Morgan was originally named in England's World Cup squad but missed out after suffering a broken finger in the build-up to the tournament.
Morgan has responded well to treatment, however, and even if he is not deemed fit enough to face Bangladesh later this week, he would be a key addition to the squad for the knockout stage should England qualify.
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BJD not to support Congress-led UPA: Naveen

Orissa: BJD to consider support to UPA if Congress approach says PyariIn the wake of the DMK's decision of pulling out of the UPA government, Biju Janata Dal (BJD) supremo Naveen Patnaik today ruled out his party's support to the Congress led UPA government at the Centre.
"The BJD will not certainly support Congress," Patnaik told reporters while replying to a question on his party's stand after DMK's decision of pulling out of the UPA government.
The BJD supremo, who after severing a decade-long ties with the BJP led NDA, had been maintaining equi-distance from both the parties.
"BJD being a regional party is working for the interest of Orissa and will not support either NDA or UPA at the Centre," Patnaik had told reporters immediately after the 2009 general election.
The BJD, a regional outfit with 14 MPs, is considered as a potential group which can come to the rescue of UPA after DMK's pull out.
The speculation regarding BJD's possible support was rife after party's senior MP and chief strategist Pyari Mohan Mohapatra yesterday indicated that the regional party could discuss on the issue.
"No one has approached us so far. If any proposal (for support) comes, we will discuss amongst ourselves and consider," Mohapatra had said.
Of the 21 Lok Sabha seats from Orissa, six are held by Congress and one by CPI.
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