Sunday, June 30, 2013

Pakistan’s Water and Power Minister to visit India soon

Islamabad: 30 Jun 2013,

Pakistan\'s Water and Power Minister Khawaja Asif will soon visit India to explore potential areas of cooperation between the two countries, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has said.

\"We are facing acute electricity shortage and any assistance in the power sector will help us in addressing the problem,\" Sharif told the members of the Pak-India Joint Business Council on Saturday.

Sharif expressed satisfaction over the visit of Indian businessmen under the auspices of the council. \"It is reassuring that both sides are sitting together and talking to each other,\" he said.

The Prime Minister said it had always been his endeavour to bring the two countries closer to each other so that they could benefit from each other\'s experience. He said his party - the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz - had followed a policy of friendship and cooperation with India during its previous stints in power and the same policy of amity would be followed this time to promote peace and prosperity in the region.

Indian members of the council told Sharif that New Delhi could be of great help in providing support in medical science, higher education and technical and vocational training.

Federal Minister for Water and Power earlier said that the energy crisis in Pakistan will take at least two years to be resolved. Asif said that due to shortage of power the country had sustained a huge loss of Rs.1,000 billion in the last five years.

Pakistan is currently facing a power deficit of 4,000-5,000 megawatts per day.
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Abu Dhabi mosque ranked among world\'s top 25 attractions

Dubai: 30 Jun 2013

The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi has been ranked among the world\'s top 25 landmark attractions based on reviews and feedback by travelers.

The mosque in UAE\'s capital shares the spotlight with noted places including the Taj Mahal in India, Machu Picchu in Peru and Petra in Jordan, according to UAE\'s official news agency Wam.

\"TripAdvisor recently named the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque as one of the world\'s most talked about attractions,\" Yousif Al Obaidli, Director General of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Center said.

He was talking about the TripAdvisor\'s 2013 Travellers Choice Awards announced recently. \"This is particularly pleasing as the rankings are solely based on reviews and recommendations by the vast TripAdvisor travelling community, thus confirming its place as one of the most important cultural tourism destinations,\" he added.

\"The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Center offers services for worshippers, domestic and international visitors alike, all year round. In 2012, 4.7 million visitors were welcomed to the mosque from all over the world,\" Al Obaidli said.

The mosque accommodates more than 40,000 worshippers - 10,000 in the internal areas and 30,000 in the external areas.
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I can fit into decent, high class roles: Shah Rukh Khan

New Delhi: 29 Jun 2013

Shah Rukh Khan is regarded as a 'demigod of films' in India. Almost all his films are blockbusters at the box office. A cinematic leviathan, he is one man who has been showered with awards as an actor, producer, host, advertising star and what not. By making it big on the big screen, SRK has proved that a small-time TV serial actor can also have (leave) his impression on the silver screen.

In a direct face to face chat with Ajay Brahmatmaj, the 'King of Bollywood' talks about his films, future projects, controversies and a lot more.


SRK-Rohit association to boom or doom? (Part 1)

SRK cherishes his Chennai Express moments (Part 2)

My mother thought I looked like Dilip Kumar: Shah Rukh Khan (Part 3)

I dance at award shows, marriages to mend my livelihood: Shah Rukh Khan (Part 4)

I want people to remember me by my hard work: Shah Rukh Khan (Part 5)

Q. Shah Rukh Khan is one word, it is a sentence in itself as well. Your association with the entertainment industry is like an era. But don't you think you have limited your appeal to metros and overseas?

Ans. Well, it's purely a matter of choice and taste. I don't know about others but I do films that suit my personality, thinking and moreover my comfort. It's not like I have limited myself to any genre. I have done action films, negative roles in the early phase of my career. With time and experience, an actor comes at a stage where he can choose different roles. This is the time, when we often go for the roles that describe our inner self. And as far as my audience is concerned, till date, I have not been able to figure out who my audience is and where my films work.

Q. Then what sort of roles does SRK love to take up?

Ans. I go for roles where I think I can fit it. I can work for formula films which have mass appeal and can fetch good business, but I prefer myself in decent, cultured and high class roles. I still remember when Madhuri Dixit asked me to do 'Hum Tumhare Hai Sanam.' I have heard it has done good business in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. See if I would have known the formula, I would have adopted these in my future films too.

Q. If we talk about your films, you have limited yourself to a few directors. Why such limitations?

Ans. I have been working in the film industry for 22 years and we have become a family. We have special bonding with each other as happens in a family. I work with only them who I am comfortable with. I have worked with Karan Johar, Aditya Chopra and also with Farah Khan. We have a great chemistry. I take up two to three projects a year and so I don't find it necessary to go outside.

Q. What's on your mind when you take up any project for Red Chillies?

Ans. See till now I think, feel and choose projects as an actor. My inner actor never allows me to think like a producer. As I have earlier said, films are my passion and not business, I take up projects which I relate to, irrespective of the project's budget.

Q. Will we see Shah Rukh working with new age directors like Anurag Kashyap and Tigmanshu Dhulia?

Ans. Yes, why not? We have been friends from our days in Delhi. Kashyap has been pressing me to work in his films. Hopefully, we will work together if something good comes my way. And I have already worked with Tishu (Tigmanshu) in Dil Se. The film is very close to my heart. I have many offers from other directors, will probably take up some of them. You must have heard that I was working with Vishal Bharadwaj in Two States. But Vishal was looking for a younger actor for the role, so I left.
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EGoM to decide on Hindustan Copper stake sale on Tuesday

New Delhi:30 Jun 2013

The panel of ministers on disinvestment will meet on Tuesday to decide on the base price for 4.01 percent stake sale of Hindustan Copper Limited (HCL) and the issue is likely to hit the markets on July 3.

\"The meeting of the EGoM on disinvestment is scheduled to meet on July 2,\" an official said, adding that the stake sale would happen the day after.

The Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) on disinvestment is headed by Finance Minister P Chidambaram.

Currently, the government holds 94.01 percent stake in HCL. The sale would make the company complaint to the minimum 10 percent public holding norm of market regulator Sebi.

The sale of 4.01 percent stake or over 3.48 crore shares through the Offer For Sale (OFS) route could fetch around Rs 240-250 crore to the exchequer, sources said.

Shares of HCL closed at Rs 74.45, up 3.19 percent on the BSE on Friday. The government had in November last year sold 5.58 percent stake in HCL through an OFS at an average price of Rs 156.56 apiece. The stake sale fetched Rs 808 crore to the exchequer.

In September 2012, the Cabinet had approved 9.5 percent stake sale of HCL. The government had then decided to go ahead with only one tranche of the issue and get a good price from the auction.

If approved by the EGoM, HCL would be the second PSU to hit the markets in the current fiscal. Earlier this month, the government raised Rs 568 crore through divesting 9.33 percent stake in MMTC.

The government plans to raise Rs 40,000 crore through disinvestment in the current fiscal.
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Saturday, June 29, 2013

Today a meeting


Today a meeting was held with Hon'ble Mayor , Sh. Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria along with Sh. Onkar Singh Pahwa, CMD M/s. Avon Cycles Limited, Sh. Shiv Parshad Mittal Chairman of M/s. Aarti Steel Limited and Sh. Gurmeet Singh Kular, President United Cycle & Parts Manufacturers Association regarding the difficulties being faced by the people during traffic on G.T Road.

G.T road is considered two ways service lane for the speedy traffic but due to the blockage of the same by the people to show their resentment / strike and then this road becomes a single lane which creates hindrance for the proper service of the traffic.

More over it was also discussed that there are so many garbage dumps in Ludhiana i.e. Dholewal chowk , near Dugri canal bridge and adjoining Vishivkarma Park which give bad picture of the city and become injurious for the health of people etc. It was unanimously decided that the dumps should be made in such a way which may not creates hindrance for the traffic and these should be beautified . As Ludhiana is consider to the hub of industry and being known as Manchester of India which is scattered from one corner to another one but due to blockage of roads, traffic becomes poor which creates problems for people as well as industry. As where only 5 minutes required to reach the designation one has to spent at least 30 minutes to reach his destination. The main stress was given in discussion for reforming traffic.

Further it was requested that the Advisory Board of Municipal Corporation work together with the industry representative for development and beautification of the Ludhiana which should look like an example for the others. Further it was made to the Hon'ble Mayor that the cleaning of Sewerage Lines of the city has not been done, with the result they remain overflowing and creates hygienic problems for people and traffic. It was also suggested that the Municipal Corporation should start online services for Water and Sewerage Bill and Disposal Bill which will be beneficial for the corporation as well as for the people.

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Friday, June 28, 2013

GADVASU Student got selected in Texas A & M University (USA)

Ludhiana-28-June, 2013

Deepjot Singh a student of 1st batch of Bachelor of Fisheries Science (B.F.Sc) degree programme from College of Fisheries, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, Ludhiana got admission in Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi (USA) for MS in Fisheries and Mariculture Program. He is also appointed as a Teaching Assistant with a package of US $ 15000 / annum along with out-of-state tuition fee waiver. During his degree programme for MS in Fisheries he will be doing research on Super Intensive Culture of Shrimp under the guidance of Dr. Tzachi Samocha. Dr. Asha Dhawan, Dean, College of Fisheries said that Deepjot Singh is the first student from College of Fisheries to get this kind of opportunity and has brought laurel to the college. He will be joining the degree programme in USA during first week of September 2013.

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China ready to break new ground with India to resolve boundary dispute

Beijing:28 Jun 2013

China on Friday said it was ready to \"break new ground\" with India to resolve the boundary dispute as the Special Representatives of the two countries held 16th round of border talks to find a solution to the vexed issue.

\"I stand ready to work with you to build on the work of our predecessors and break new ground to strive for the settlement of the China-India boundary question and to make greater progress in the China-India strategic cooperative partnership in the new period,\" newly appointed Chinese Special Representative Yang Jiechi said.

This is the first meeting of the border talks after the new leadership took over in China in March.

India asserts that the dispute covered about 4,000 km, while China claims that it confined to about 2,000 km to the area of Arunachal Pradesh, which it refers as Southern Tibet.

\"First of all let me warmly welcome you (India's Special Representative Shivshankar Menon) to come to China for the 16th round of the Special Representatives meeting on the China-India boundary question,\" he said, stating that \"over the years you have made important contribution to the growth of China-India relations in various capacities.\"

\"You and I have known each other for a long time. We are very familiar with each other and established a good working relationship and personal friendship,\" Yang said.

\"The China-India relationship has developed good momentum of development. The Special Representatives meeting is an important exchange and cooperation mechanism between our two countries,\" he said.

On his part, Shivshankar Menon expressed his pleasure to hold talks with Yang. \"You are an old friend and in India you are known for your various contributions you have made to the positive development of our bilateral relations,\" Menon said.

\"As you have said we are meeting at a moment when India- China relations have achieved a momentum and are moving in the right direction. It is our conviction that we are at a moment of strategic opportunity for this relationship,\" Menon said.

During his two-day stay in Beijing, Menon is due to meet Premier Li and Foreign Minister Wang Yi. The border talks are currently in second stage of the three stage process.
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Nawaz Sharif to visit China next week

Islamabad:28 Jun 2013

Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will go to China next week where he is likely to seek Beijing\'s assistance to overcome the country\'s energy crisis.

This would be the first foreign trip of the Prime Minister since the new government has taken over earlier this month, Pakistan Foreign Ministry Spokesman Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry said on Thursday.

He said the dates for the visit would be determined through diplomatic channels. Various MoUs to increase cooperation in different fields, including energy, would be signed during the visit.

During his stay in Beijing, Sharif will discuss with the Chinese leadership plans for reinforcing bilateral strategic partnership, enhancing economic cooperation and development of Pakistan-China trade and economic corridor.

A high-level delegation comprising members of the federal cabinet, parliamentarians and other senior officials will accompany Sharif. Sharif was invited by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang during a meeting with the PML-N (Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz) chief on the sidelines of his visit to Islamabad last month.
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Kareena Kapoor is a director’s actor

Mumbai: 28 Jun 2013

After giving many power-packed performances in her decade-long career, Bollywood superstar Kareena Kapoor admits she follows her director\'s advice religiously on the sets.

Kareena on the launch of the worldwide trailer of Prakash Jha\'s Satyagraha, in which she plays a headstrong journalist, said, \"We are familiar with popular women journalists on TV like Barkha Dutt and Christiane Amanpour. Their personalities influence everyone and I am lucky that I have also got the chance to essay the role of a journalist on screen."

\"But ultimately I am a director\'s actor and don\'t really believe in preparing much. I followed whatever Prakashji wanted from my character. I have always wanted to work in a Prakash Jha film,\" Kareena added.

The film also stars Ajay Devgan, Amitabh Bachchan and Manoj Bajpai.

Satyagraha centers on the recent phenomenon of mass movements around the world, challenging the establishment and thereby making a change
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Consumers open to sharing data with banks, retailers for better services

London:28 Jun 2013

Consumers across the world are willing to share personal information to receive better services from doctors, banks and retailers, according to a new study.

A poll commissioned by Infosys, which covered a total of 5,000 respondents, brought out key findings that suggested consumers expected banks to mine personal data for protection against fraud.

In the healthcare domain, 88 percent of consumers said that they could share electronic health information with physicians while only 56% could share personal medical history. Even in the retail sector, 78 percent agreed that if they shared information, it would be possible to get offers targeted to their interests, wants or needs. However, only 16 percent were willing to share social media profile information, which could hamper strategies developed by retailers for tailored offers.

Terming it as an opportunity for companies, managing partner for worldwide consulting and systems integration at Infosys, Stephen Pratt said that this study was a wake-up call to companies to gain greater access to data by clearly communicating \'what\'s in it for me\' to the customer.

He also said that the research showed people would certainly share even though they are very savvy about how they give up their personal information.

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Thursday, June 27, 2013



The monthly training camp for the ladies wing of the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) Kisan Club including will be held on July 4 at Kairon Kisan Ghar. Meanwhile, the state level training-cum-workshop for the members of the Progressive Beekeepers Association (PBKA) will be held on July 10 at Kairon Kisan Ghar of PAU.

Giving details, Dr (Mrs) Rupinder Kaur, Programme Coordinator, Ladies Wing of the Club, said that the experts will deliver lectures and give demonstrations in the preparation of chilli potato, nutritious omelet and vegetable babino. Besides, the farm women will be educated about skin care in rainy season, she told, adding that the planning of activities for the next month will also be held.

Dr T.S. Riar, Programme Coordinator, PBKA, said that the beekeeping experts will dwell upon the methods to collect bee venom and give demonstrations on the preparation of value added products with honey. The workshop will also witness review of last meeting, he added.
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The Directorate of Extension Education of the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) has invited applications from the Punjab farmers and farm women for the "Innovative Farmer Awards 2013," to be bestowed during PAU Kisan Mela, scheduled to be held in September 2013 on the main campus. Five awards, carrying cash prizes, plaques and citations will be conferred upon the innovative farmers for their excellence in agriculture and allied fields.

Giving details, Dr M.S. Gill, Director of Extension Education, informed that S. Dalip Singh Dhaliwal Memorial Award, carrying a cash prize of Rs 5000/-, will be given to self-cultivating farmer of field crops in the state of Punjab. The Parwasi Bharti Award, carrying a cash prize of Rs 8000/-, will be presented to self-cultivating farmer engaged in diversified farming system, he told.

Further, Dr Gill said that S. Ujagar Singh Dhaliwal Memorial Award, carrying a cash prize of Rs 3100/-, will be awarded to self-cultivating vegetable grower, who puts at least 60 per cent area of operational holding under vegetable crops in winter as well as summer seasons.

Dr Gill informed that S. Surjit Singh Dhillon Award, carrying a cash prize of Rs 5000/-, will be bestowed upon the self-cultivating small farmer (having land upto five acres) while Sardarni Jagbir Kaur Grewal Memorial Innovative Woman Farmer Award, carrying a cash prize of Rs 3100/-, will be conferred on the farm woman involved in agriculture and allied enterprises in the state of Punjab.

The application forms for the awards can be obtained from the Deputy Directors (Training) of Krishi Vigyan Kendras, Directors of Regional Stations, District Extension Specialists (Senior Most) of Farm Advisory Service Scheme, Chief Agriculture Officers, Deputy Directors of Horticulture in the different districts of the state and PAU Directorate of Extension Education, said Dr Gill. Informing that for each award, a separate application will be accepted, he told that the last date for the receipt of the applications in the office of PAU Director of Extension Education is July 30, 2013. The interested farmers of the state should apply for the "Innovative Farmer Awards 2013" in time, he urged.

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Congress, TDP MPs fight over ferrying AP pilgrims at Dehradun airport

Dehradun: 27 Jun 2013,

In a brazen show of competitive politics, Andhra Pradesh MPs belonging to Congress and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) were on Wednesday locked in a scuffle in public view at the Jolly Grant airport over ferrying pilgrims back to the state.

The embarrassing altercation between Congress MP Hanumantha Rao and TDP MPs Ramesh Rathod and K Narayana, who nearly exchanged blows, came in the presence of TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu over taking the flood victims back home by air.

Sloganeering by supporters of TDP and Congress only added to the ugly drama of political one-upmanship that unfolded in the airport which for more than a week has been a scene of hectic activities in mobilizing succour to the distraught pilgrims.

The argument between the two sides was over who will ferry the victims to Andhra Pradesh as both of them had arranged flights.

Hanumantha Rao claimed that TDP leaders were preventing the flood victims from boarding a flight arranged by the Andhra Pradesh government to Hyderabad.

\"There is already a flight arranged by the government which is waiting for the pilgrims. TDP leaders stopped them from boarding the flight saying that they have already arranged another flight to take them to Delhi,\" he told media persons.

State Minister for Civil Supplies D Sridhar Babu, who was deputed by Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy to Dehradun to supervise the relief operations, alleged that the TDP is trying to obstruct government's duty.

Dismissing the Congress MP\'s claim, Ramesh Rathod, TDP Lok Sabha member from Adilabad, said the ruling party leaders tried to delay the bus carrying flood victims from reaching the airport and boarding the flight arranged by his party.

Naidu, who was present at the scene, termed the incident unfortunate and said it should not have happened and there should not be any competition over such a tragedy.

However, he said they would not stop their 'service' until the last pilgrim is sent back safely to his native place.

\"The Congress government (in Andhra Pradesh) totally failed to help the pilgrims. They did nothing. They woke up only after we took initiatives like bringing pilgrims out of the flood area and sending them by flight to Hyderabad. They are only sabotaging our efforts. We are doing this on humanitarian grounds. We have also arranged medical aid for victims. This is no time for politics,\" Naidu said. He also alleged that victims from Andhra Pradesh were being discriminated against in the relief operations.

Alleging that the state government has failed in the rescue and relief operations, Naidu had held a sit-in at the AP Bhavan in Delhi on Sunday night. Accompanied by several party MPs, he went to Dehradun and has also arranged a special flight to bring the victims to Hyderabad.

The ruling Congress has hit back at Naidu saying that the TDP Chief was only politicizing the issue.

\"Naidu did not attend the recent Assembly session. He was in America. He is doing all this to escape the blame,\" Andhra Pradesh Revenue Minister N Raghuveera Reddy had alleged two days ago.
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Uttarakhand: Cremation of bodies begins, 3,500 yet to be evacuated

Gauchar/Guptkashi: 27 Jun 2013

With the weather clearing a bit and a threat of epidemic looming large, mass cremation of bodies of people killed in the rain fury in Uttarakhand finally began in Kedarnath on Wednesday, while 3,500 people are still waiting to be rescued 11 days after the disaster.

As 1,000 more stranded people were evacuated from Badrinath and Harshil sectors through air and road routes despite rain and fog. Air Chief Marshal NAK Browne on a morale boosting mission to Uttarakhand after the IAF chopper crash pledged to continue with rescue efforts and hoped to wrap it up in the next few days.


\"The cremation of bodies in Kedarnath which was being put off again and again for the past two days due to bad weather was finally taken up this afternoon,\" IAS officer Ravinath Raman said from Guptkashi. The temple town of Kedarnath was the epicentre of destruction. However, the number of bodies cremated was not immediately known.

Toll in Uttarakhand calamity rises to 822

Around 3,500 people are still waiting to be evacuated from Harsil and Badrinath areas, an Army release said. Around one lakh stranded people have been rescued so far since the disaster struck the hill state on June 15.

Air rescue continues despite low visibility

Browne said if the IAF, which is part of the multi-agency operations that also included the Army, ITBP and NDMA, got three to four days of good weather. It will be able to complete its mission, added the IAF Chief.

\"If the weather starts improving by Friday or so, then by Monday, Tuesday we should have all this (task) finished,\" he said. \"We are over the hill\", he told reporters in Gauchar, the forward base for the rescue choppers.

\"The operations are going to continue. In fact, most of the work has already been done. It is now a question of getting the people out from Badrinath and the Harsil sector,\" he said, adding, \"Our rotors will not stop churning. That means, we will continue with the job till get the people out.\"

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna said people stranded in Harsil and Badrinath areas would be rescued in the next two days if the weather remains conducive to flights and all steps were being taken to prevent epidemic outbreak in the flood-affected regions.

2000 evacuated from Badrinath

A bridge constructed by Border Roads Organization at Pandukeshwar in rain-hit Uttarakhand on Wednesday helped the Army evacuate 2000 stranded people from Badrinath where 2750 people are still awaiting to be rescued.

Another 540 people are awaiting evacuation from Harsil where 600 people were pulled out by Army using various means.

Bad weather hampered the rescue efforts through air, but evacuation of those stranded continued by roads, a statement issued by the Group of Ministers on Media said.

Ration and edible oil supplies have reached Badrinath for those stranded as well as the local residents. No fresh survivors were found in the Jungle Chatti area where the Army carried out reconnaissance missions.

Death toll may rise

Vice Chairman of NDMA M Sashidhar Reddy said there is high possibility of the death toll climbing up. \"There is 10 feet high debris in Kedarnath and we fear that several bodies are trapped,\" he said.

Reddy also said that nearly 350 people continue to remain untraceable, raising fears that all of them are dead. According to official figures, so far 822 people lost their lives following the natural disaster in Uttarakhand.

DGP Satyavrat Bansal said disposal of all the bodies at Kedarnath was an onerous task with a large number of bodies lying underneath tonnes of debris and extricating them would not be easy as heavy equipment like JCBs will be need to be transported to the high altitude shrine for the purpose.

State minister Harak Singh Rawat also said clearing the shrine area of the debris and the bodies would not be easy. Till now, Matli, Bhatwari, Maneri have been fully evacuated. In Badrinath, one MI-17 and three Civil Helicopters are in operation for evacuations. More choppers are being kept on standby but due to inclement weather conditions, rescue operations are being hampered.

U'khand govt to restore Kedarnath shrine

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna on Wednesday announced that the state government will reconstruct Kedarnath shrine, with which people of the country have an emotional association.

Bahuguna said the state government will reconstruct the shrine and restore its lost glory.

When told by reporters that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi had also offered to reconstruct the temple, he said anyone was welcome to join in the noble mission.
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BJP trying to mislead people of J&K in the name of Article 370: Omar

Banihal: 27 Jun 2013

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Wednesday slammed the BJP for raking up the issue of special status for the state saying Article 370 was only a political issue for it to 'befool' the people.

Speaking in the presence of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Omar did not name BJP leaders but said \"there are some opportunistic leaders who are parroting 370 as they feel elections are near and want to befool the people."

Referring to the 11-km tunnel through the Pir Panjal ranges, which the Prime Minister inaugurated on Wednesday, with Article 370, he said it can be compared with Article 370 which connected our state with the rest of the country.

\"I want to take this opportunity to make a few things clear. They (BJP leaders) come to our land and talk about abrogating our 370. I want to remind them that you were in power for six and a half years, but tell me did you talk about the abrogation in these years. Did you even try?"

\"You (BJP) remember these things only when you are out of power. If you get the reins of power again, which I do not think will happen in next 10-15 years, I don't think you will touch 370, because you know that weakening 370 will be like weakening the relation between Jammu and Kashmir and the country,\" the chief minister said.

BJP has been pressing for the abolition of Article 370 and senior party leader LK Advani had on Sunday, made a renewed pitch for scrapping it.

He warned the BJP that any dilution of the constitutional guarantee would be possible 'only over our dead bodies because we would not allow you to weaken this relationship. This relation has been confirmed by Sheikh Abdullah and the first Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru.\"

He went on to say that National Conference (NC) and Congress are parties with a different political thinking on some issues, but are firm on strengthening this relationship between the state and the Centre.

Omar said the nationalist forces in the state will not be allowed to weaken and they will keep the relation of the state with the country alive.

Omar said as long as NC and Congress are in the state, nationalist forces will not be weakened. \"We would not remain quiet and will try to guard the people of this state and keep alive the relation of this state with the country,\" he said.

Speaking on the importance of the rail link, the chief minister said it will boost tourism, connectivity, trade and commerce in the state.

\"This day is so important for the state and its people, that we cannot perhaps imagine it. There was a day when we used to come here from above these mountains. Then we got the road tunnel and got a little respite."

\"Today, with this rail, the way our life will be changed, we cannot imagine that yet. The rail will help in glorifying this area and this state and its tourism, connectivity, trade and commerce,\" he said.

Showing his excitement, Omar said that he cannot forget the train journey he undertook along with the Prime Minister and UPA chairperson.

\"I have had many rail rides in my life, but perhaps would never forget the journey that I undertook today. I had not thought that I would travel via rail from Kashmir to Jammu or vice versa through Pir Panjal mountains and that too along

with the Prime Minister and the UPA Chairperson.

\"I will never forget this day all my life. Perhaps like those students of Banihal Girls Higher Secondary School who were very happy and excited to ride this train. I cannot express my happiness in words,\" he said.

He said the train will not only connect the areas but also the hearts of the people.

\"We are not only connecting the areas and not just Jammu with Kashmir, rather the hearts of people are being joined. The hearts of people of Kashmir with those of Jammu and the hearts of the people of the state with the rest of the country, with this rail tunnel,\" he said.

He expressed hope that the remaining link of the Kashmir Rail will be completed soon and dedicated to people by the 'new UPA government.'

\"I now wait for that day when God willing, UPA 3 will be in power and Banihal will be connected with Katra through rail and in reality, this dream which (former Prime Minister) Indira Gandhi saw when she approved this rail project. That dream will be fulfilled by UPA 3. I don't know where I would be then, what I would be doing. I cannot say that. But I would wait for that day when you people will come back here, connect Kashmir rail with the rest of the country," he said.
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Massive cyber-attacks from China threaten US-China relations: Lawmakers

Washington: 27 Jun 2013

Top American lawmakers and experts have warned that the massive cyber-hacking emanating from China seriously threatens the bilateral relationship and urged the Obama administration to take all necessary measures to counter the threat.

\"We\'ve seen in the last few years it\'s not only American companies that are the targets, it's media and it's human rights organisations , something particularly important to Congressman Smith and me. Journalist writing about corruption in China find their computer systems hacked and their passwords stolen,\" Senator Sherrod Brown said during a Congressional hearing on yesterday.

\"For human rights organisations and activists dealing with hacking attacks from China is almost a daily fact of life. We can\'t sit idly by. That\'s why I support a comprehensive common sense bipartisan approach to hold China accountable,\" he said.

\"With the growing prevalence of computer networks in America\'s heavily wired economy, cyber-attacks represent an increasingly growing threat alongside more traditional forms of intellectual property theft. China simply doesn\'t play by the same rules as we do. Chinese governments deny these attacks even though there is evidence of Chinese involvement,\" he added.

\"Cyber-attacks on Congress are only a small, but not insignificant part of a much larger pattern of attacks that have targeted the executive branch, the Pentagon and American businesses,\" Congressman Christopher Smith said in his remarks, alleging that his own computers have been hacked by sources originating in China.

Senator Carl Levin said reports submitted to the US government indicates China to be the worst offender by far.

\"As far back as 2011, the National Counterintelligence Executive said in its annual report to Congress to, quote, Chinese actors, are the world\'s most active and persistent perpetrators of economic espionage,\" he said.

Levin along with other Senators had recently introduced legislation, Senate Bill 884, the Deter Tech Cyber Theft Act which requires the director of National Intelligence to produce a report that includes a watch list and a priority watch list of foreign countries that engage in economical or industrial espionage against the United States in cyberspace.
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Paris Jackson has made up with her mother post suicide attempt

Los Angeles: 27 Jun 2013

Paris Jackson and her mother Debbie Rowe have reportedly made up after falling out following Paris\' alleged suicide attempt. The 15-year-old daughter of Michael Jackson was reported to have fought with Debbie after an alleged suicide attempt earlier this month. But now they have patched up their differences, reported a website.

\"They have made up for now,\" a source said. Meanwhile, the troubled teen\'s godfather, British actor Mark Lester - who has claimed he could be Paris and her elder brother Prince\'s biological father, as he donated sperm to the late \'Thriller\' star - has said he wants Paris to come over to the UK and stay with him.

He thinks a break from Los Angeles could be just what she needs.
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\'Satyagrah\' will influence the youth, says Kareena Kapoor

Mumbai:27 Jun 2013

Prakash Jha-directed \'Satyagrah\' depicts the common man\'s reaction to the sorry state of affairs and shows their angst and disappointment with the system, said the actors featuring in the upcoming film.

The film, which will hit the theatres in August, stars Amitabh Bachchan, Ajay Devgn, Manoj Bajpayee, Kareena Kapoor, Arjun Rampal and Amrita Rao. \"We are living in an India where I think we deserve a better standard of living.

I think Satyagrah is the ideal way for common man to show their angst and disappointment,\" Amrita told reporters here at the first trailer launch of the film.

Amrita plays daughter-in-law of Big B. \"A revolution...a movement happens in every part of the world when people are disappointed with the state of affair in their country,\" Manoj said. \"It (satyagrah - a Gandhian method of agitation) is a peaceful way of revolution,\" Ajay said. Bachchan plays a man who is a firm believer in truth. He is like a new age Gandhi. \"It (satyagrah) was started in Ireland several years ago.

I believe truth always prevails,\" Big B said. Manoj plays a young politician who uses every means to break the system. He is the real threat to democracy. Ajay, a successful entrepreneur, represents shining India, while Kareena dons the role of a firebrand TV reporter.

\"I am sure the film will influence the youth. I had great time doing the film,\" Kareena said. The film\'s promo gave the feel that \'Satyagrah\' is inspired by the 2011 Anna Hazare movement. But Jha said film had nothing to do with Hazare and its about father-son relation. The trailer was launched globally. Ajay and Kareena were in London, while the rest of the team was present in Mumbai.
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Samsung rolls out OLED TV with same hefty price tag as LG

Seoul: 27 Jun 2013,

Samsung Electronics Co Ltd slapped a USD 13,000 price tag on its first curved, super-thin OLED television to go on sale, the same price as rival LG Electronics Inc and one that underscores the high costs of the technology.

Samsung is hoping that its success with OLED screens in smartphones such as its Galaxy S4 will also pay off in TVs, but consumers interested its 55-inch screen television must be willing to pay some five times more than popular flat-screen equivalents.

At the moment, OLED televisions are still very much a niche market and Samsung warned that industry forecasts for sales growth were a bit too optimistic. \"We have just introduced our first OLED TV and have to see consumer response to gauge overall market demand,\" Kim Hyunsuk, a Samsung executive vice president, told reporters.

Research firm DisplaySearch has forecast global industry-wide sales of OLED televisions at 50,000 this year, at 600,000 next year and rapid growth thereafter to reach 7 million in 2016.

LG, which currently offers both curved and non-curved 55-inch screens, is estimated to have only sold a few hundred screens so far after starting sales earlier this year. Samsung said it will begin selling its curved OLED television outside South Korea from July but did not specify which countries. It has no plans to offer a non-curved one this year.

Organic light-emitting diode technology has long been touted as the future of consumer electronics displays, offering crisper picture resolution, a faster response time and high contrast images. It also allows for curved televisions, which manufacturers say offer a more immersive TV experience.

Both Samsung and rival LG Display, a unit of LG Electronics, have invested heavily in OLED, seeking to emulate the success they had with LCDs, which helped them squash Japanese rivals such as Sony Corp and allowed them to capture coveted roles as suppliers for Apple Inc.

Samsung is now the world\'s biggest TV manufacturer, and the South Korean duo now sell almost half of all TVs worldwide. Not one to put all its eggs in one basket, Samsung also unveiled on Thursday 55-inch and 65-inch ultra-high definition (UHD) TV sets, which offer crisper LCD picture resolution.

Ultra HD TV sales are likely to grow 930,100 this year from 9,600 last year and may jump to 3.9 million sets next year, according to DisplaySearch.
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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Jolie not inviting beau Brad Pitt’s heavy-drinking friends to wedding

Los Angeles:26 Jun 2013

Actress Angelina Jolie reportedly wants a civilized wedding. So, she is said to have struck the names of her beau Brad Pitt\'s heavy-drinking friends off their wedding ceremony list.

Jolie has given instructions for actors Jonah Hill, Quentin Tarantino and Philip Seymour Hoffman to be left off the list of invitations and has also warned Pitt that his best friend, actor George Clooney, will have to control his wine intake at the ceremony, reported a website.

\"Angelina wants the whole affair to be much civilized and is concerned about the habits of some of Brad\'s more raucous friends,\" said a source.

\"She thinks that if Jonah and Quentin come, they\'ll hit the bar early on and cause a commotion,\" the source added.
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Acer launches world’s smallest tab with Windows OS, Iconia W3

New Delhi: 26 Jun 2013

Acer, on Tuesday, became the first PC company to launch the world's smallest 8.1 inch tab which runs on Windows 8 operating system. Acer has offered the tab at a launch price of 27,999 till end of July.

The tablet offers a 1280 x 800 pixels LED resolution that provides the user with a sharp and bright viewer experience. Iconia W3 is powered by 1.8 GHz duel-core Intel Atom processor Z2760 backed by 2 GB RAM and 32 GB memory.

The tablet also has a front and a rear view camera each of 2 megapixel.

In an attempt to revolutionize its entire computing system to match contemporary needs and demands, Acer has also come out with two more tablets- Aspire P3 and Aspire R7.
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Ford launches much-awaited SUV EcoSport; price starts at Rs 5.59 lakh

New Delhi: 26 Jun 2013,

US auto major Ford on Wednesday launched its much-awaited compact sports utility vehicle EcoSport in India with price starting at Rs 5.59 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). The model will be available with three engine options of 1 litre petrol with Ecoboost technology, 1.5 litre petrol and 1.5 litre diesel engine.

While the price of 1 litre Ecoboost petrol version starts at Rs 7.90 lakh, the 1.5 litre petrol variant will be tagged at Rs 5.59 lakh. The EcoSport with 1.5 litre diesel will have price starting at Rs 6.69 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).

The company said the automatic transmission version in 1.5 litre petrol will start at Rs 8.45 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). The company\'s wholly-owned subsidiary, Ford India is betting big on the new compact sports utility vehicle, which is the second generation version of the model that was developed in Brazil and first launched in South America in 2003.

\"We expect EcoSport to be a game changer for Ford in India and also set a benchmark in the Indian auto industry,\" company\'s President and Managing Director Joginder Singh told reporters here.

The EcoSport will take on Renault\'s best selling SUV Duster which is priced at a range of Rs 7.99 lakh to Rs 12.18 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). It will also be in the same segment as Mahindra Quanto, which is available at a price of Rs 5.99 lakh to Rs 7.75 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).

The company has already started taking bookings of the vehicle and deliveries will start from today, Singh said. Ford India has invested USD 142 million at its Chennai plant to manufacture the EcoSport.

The model was showcased at the 2012 Auto Expo here in the Capital and the company had then said that it would sell the new SUV in around 100 markets worldwide and it would be produced at plants in India and Brazil initially.

The company had stated that the EcoSport would play a significant role in its aggressive global plan to achieve a 50 per cent increase in worldwide sales by mid decade to eight million vehicles a year. The Asia—Pacific and Africa regions were expected to contribute 60—70 per cent to that target.

Already Ford India has put in plans to export the EcoSport to about 40 countries, which will start within few months of its launch in the domestic market. Ford India is investing USD 1 billion to set up its second production facility at Sanand that will be operational by 2014. The plant will have an installed output capacity of 2.4 lakh vehicles and 2.7 lakh engines annually.

With completion of the Sanand plant in Gujarat, Ford India will have a total installed capacity of rolling out 4.4 lakh vehicles and 6.1 lakh engines every year.
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Tuesday, June 25, 2013



The Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) conducted a MET (Masters Entrance Test) - Agriculture 2013 today for admission to postgraduate programmes in the disciplines of Agronomy, Agro-meteorology, Entomology, Extension Education, Food Technology, Forestry, Nematology, Plant Breeding and Genetics, Plant Pathology, Soil Science, and Horticulture (Fruit Science, Floriculture and Landscaping, and Vegetable Science). The entrance test evoked an excellent response from the students, coming from across the Punjab state.

Immediately after his return from Australia today, the PAU Vice-Chancellor, Dr Baldev Singh Dhillon alongwith the University Registrar, Dr P.K. Khanna visited the examination centre for the inspection and to oversee the arrangements for the smooth conduct of the entrance test.

Dr Khanna said that a total of 300 candidates including 192 boys and 108 girls appeared in the test conducted for admission to various postgraduate programmes of the University.

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The farm experts of the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) have informed the farmers of the Punjab state that the month of July is the right time for planning and procurement of plant material for planting evergreen fruit orchards of citrus, mango, litchi, guava, loquat, ber, amla and papaya. It is also suitable time for the transplanting of papaya seedlings in the fields, they advised.

Giving useful tips for horticultural operations in July, the experts said that the vacant land may be put under Kharifpulses like moong, mash, moth or jantar, etc. for green manuring. To improve fruit size and increase yield in Kinnow mandarin, give foliar sprays of potassium nitrate @ 1 per cent, they advised, while emphasizing that the pear fruit should be picked carefully so that the spurs are not broken/damaged. The experts stressed that the fully developed hard ripe mangoes should be picked for artificial ripening. "The full grown ber plants should be given 500 g urea per tree in July. The second coat of white wash should be given as this will help to check the adverse effect of heat on the exposed tree trunk," they said.

Elaborating, the experts suggested that for the control of mealy bugs in citrus and grapes, monitor the infestation of trees regularly by observing the underside of leaves, young shoots, fruits and branches. Impressing on the farmers to keep the orchards neat and clean, they advised that not to allow the branches of trees to touch the ground and that prune or remove the infested branches and destroy the same. Destroy the ant nests in orchards, they stressed, while asking to drench spraying of insecticides like 1875 ml Durmet/Dursban/Corobon 20 EC (chlorpyriphos) in 500 litres of water first on the appearance of pest, and repeat the spray if required.

Further, in grapes, the experts asked to spray the vines with Score @ 500 ml/500 litres of water to control anthracnose. This spray should be given in mid-July followed by another spray of Bordeaux mixture (2:2:250) at the end of July, they added. In citrus, to control insect-pests like citrus psylla, whitefly, and leaf miner, spray 1250 ml Rogor 30 EC or 200 ml Crocodile 17.8 SL (imidacloprid) in 500 litres of water. This solution will be sufficient for one acre of full grown orchard, they said.
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Monday, June 24, 2013

Russian film wins top prize at Shanghai film festival

Shanghai: 24 Jun 2013

Russian film 'The Major' won top prize at the 16th Shanghai International Film Festival. The film, which won the Golden Goblet for best feature film, talks about how things go out of control when corrupt police officers try to cover up a hit-and-run case for their colleague.

The jury headed by Oscar-winning director Tom Hooper said the film revealed a complicated Russian society, as well as great Russian art and storytelling tradition. Its director, Yuri Bykov won awards for best director and outstanding artistic achievement. The Jury Grand Prix went to Sweden film 'Reliance' directed by William Olsson. The film also won awards for best screenplay and best cinematography.

Hong Kong actor Nick Cheung won the Golden Goblet for best actor for the film 'Unbeatable'. Ten-year-old Malaysian child star Crystal Lee became the youngest actress to win the award for best actress in the festival\'s history. Some 1,665 films produced in 112 countries were screened during the nine-day festival that ran from June 15 to 23.
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Gold futures dip below level of 27,000, down Rs 335 on global cues

24 Jun 2013,

Gold futures dip below level of 27,000

The rupee is closing in on record low on the back of month-end importer dollar demand, weak equities. Pair at 59.71/72 versus 59.27/28 close on Friday, 59.9850 life high.

Dealers say the pair in demand largely on month-end oil demand; local stocks down 0.9 percent. Foreign banks also seen buying USD largely on portfolio outflows.

INR may find some support if some inflows related to Unilever open offer for India unit materialize.

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EPFO to keep interest rate on PF unchanged at 8.5 percent

New Delhi:24 Jun 2013

Retirement fund body EPFO is likely to pay an interest rate of 8.5 percent on provident fund deposits for 2013-14 to its over five crore subscribers, the same as provided in 2012-13.

\"The rate of interest on PF deposits is unlikely to be changed for the current fiscal at 8.5 percent,\" a source privy to the development said. Employees\' Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) paid 8.5 percent interest rate to its subscribers in 2012-13 which was higher than 8.25 provided in the 2011-12 fiscal.

The source further revealed that the EPFO office has already worked out the income projections and the feasible rate of return to be provided on PF deposit in the current fiscal.

As per the practice, the EPFO would have to place the proposal before its advisory body Finance and Investment Committee (FIC) after which it is considered by the apex decision making body Central Board of Trustees (CBT)headed by the Labour Minister for taking final call on the matter.

Once approved, the proposal is put before the Finance Ministry for its concurrence. EPFO has recently reconstituted the CBT and thus the FIC would be constituted again in the next meet of trustees.

According to the source, the CBT meeting is likely to be convened next month as the new Central Provident Fund Commissioner, K K Jalan, who is executive head of EPFO has taken charge.

The source said that one of reason for proposing to keep the rate of interest unchanged for this fiscal is slight drop in government securities yield.

As per the 2008-Investment Pattern adopted by the EPFO, the body can invest up to 55 percent of its huge corpus of over Rs 5 lakh crore in the state and central securities.
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Sunday, June 23, 2013

8th invitational Punjab State Open (Boys & Girls) Wushu Championship 2013

Ludhiana- 23.06.2013

8th invitational Punjab State Open (Boys & Girls) Wushu Championship 2013 was held at United Cycle & Parts Manufacturers Association from 20th June to 22nd June 2013. The event was inaugurated by S. Surinder Singh Sodhi, IPS, PUNJAB POLICE. He visited the Association also and was very much impressed from the work being done by the Association under the Presidentship of S. Gurmeet Singh Kular, President. He was welcomed by the Association and also it was stressed the organizer of this event has played an important role for the uplift of the Sports and to restrict the young generation from any time of drug.

On the occasion Sh. Inderjit Singh Navyug President , Sh. Pardeep Wadhawan, Sh. Ajit Kumar, Sh. Baljit Singh Lotey & Sh. Rajesh Bansal were present.

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15 killed, 30 other injured in Iraq mosque bombing

Baghdad: 23 Jun 2013

At least 15 worshipers were killed and 30 others wounded in a suicide bombing at a Shia mosque near the Iraqi capital, police said.

The suicide bomber blew himself up on Saturday evening in the mosque in Taj area, 20 km north of Baghdad, police said.

Earlier in the day, nine people were killed in shootings and bombings. A suicide bomber drove his explosives-laden car into a police patrol in a village south of the city of Mosul, some 400 km north of Baghdad. One policeman and three bystanders were killed.
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38 Taliban militants killed in Afghanistan

Kabul:23 Jun 2013

Thirty-eight Taliban militants were killed in separate military operations launched in Afghanistan since Saturday, the Afghanistan government said on Sunday.

The joint security operations were carried out by Afghan National Police (ANP), army and the NATO-led coalition forces in the provinces of Nangarhar, Parwan, Kandahar, Zabul, Uruzgan, Wardak, Logar, Ghazni and Helmand.

\"As a result, 38 armed Taliban were killed, four wounded and six others were arrested,\" the interior ministry said in a statement. The Taliban did not comment over the deaths immediately.
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Experts see rupee stabilizing at 57-58 level within a month

Mumbai:23 Jun 2013

Notwithstanding the rupee trading near its life-time lows, the local currency is likely to stabilize around 57-58 level against the dollar in the next one month, say experts.

\"After the knee-jerk reaction to the US Fed\'s statement on reducing its bond buying programme, the rupee is likely to stabilize in the near future. I think, the rupee should be around 57-58 level to a dollar in the next one month as the current account gap improves and foreign fund inflows come,\" Corporation Bank General Manager P Paramasivam, who looks after treasury operations, told.

He said the money from the USD 5.5-billion Unilever offer open to raise its stake in Hindustan Unilever is likely to come in July, which will support the currency. Since April 30, the rupee has fallen by over 10 percent.

On the high CAD, which had touched a historic high of 6.7 percent of the GDP in the December 2012 quarter, Paramasivam said it will be significantly lower in the first quarter due to lower gold imports, which should also help the rupee appreciate.

After the US Fed chairman\'s last week said the central bank is likely to reduce the USD 85 billion monthly bond buying programme by the end of the year, the rupee on Thursday touched life time low of 59.98 intra-day and closed a bit higher at 59.58 after the RBI intervened.

However, it has since then pulled itself back to 59.27 on the back of selling of dollars by banks and exporters as well as RBI intervention. \"The rupee is showing an appreciation bias. We have seen stabilization in the European and other global markets after the reaction to US Fed\'s statement. This will support the rupee,\" Geojit Comtrade chief currency strategist Hemal Doshi said.

He also said the market is expecting some measures from the government and RBI, which could also contain further fall. IDBI Bank treasury head N S Venkatesh has also said the foreign fund inflows will come back to the country once the initial panic over US Fed\'s statements is over.
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Dhanush happy with his Hindi accent in Raanjhanaa

Mumbai: 23 Jun 2013

Southern star Dhanush\'s Bollywood debut \"Raanjhanaa\" opened to rave reviews when it hit the screens Friday. His performance is being lauded, but he says he felt happiest when he didn\'t come across even a line of complaint about his Hindi dialogue delivery.

Dhanush had worked hard to improve his Hindi accent for the movie.

\"For me, in all the reviews, there was one line that was not written and that not written line, was the best compliment (for me). No one complained about my Hindi,\" the 29-year-old said here Friday at the launch of the cover of Star Week magazine, featuring him and Sonam Kapoor.

\"Nobody said anything about my Hindi and for me, it\'s really big. I really suffered saying the lines and while dubbing (for the movie). So that\'s the biggest compliment (I have received),\" he added.

Asked about his Bollywood plans post \"Raanjhanaa\", he said: \"I don\'t think like that, I don\'t plan my future. I am sitting here because god wanted that. He made all my decisions for me.\"

\"Even now I am not planning anything. Whatever comes my way, that\'s enough,\" he added.

Directed by Anand L Rai, \"Raanjhanaa\" tells the love story of Kundan and Zoya who reside in Benaras. Sonam Kapoor plays his love interest in the film.
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Saturday, June 22, 2013

A delegation of United Cycle & Parts Manufacturers Association

Ludhiana -22.06.2013

A delegation of United Cycle & Parts Manufacturers Association had a meeting with SH. RAKESH VERMA, IAS, Commissioner of Municipal Corporation Ludhiana under the leadership of S. GURMEET SINGH KULAR PRSIDENT, UCPMA along with S. Jagatvir Singh regarding the infrastructure in Focal Point and property tax being imposed on each and every plot irrespective of the commercial, residential and even vacant one as it was known that the same has been finalized.

The delegation brought to the notice of the worthy commissioner about poor infrastructure i.e. Roads, Sewerage etc. which are in a very precarious conditions and even the rainy session is in hand and it is hoped that the condition of roads will further deteriorate which gives bad impression to the outsiders who come for their dealing in that area. This is the area from which the state government as well as the centre government earns money in shape of crores. The Commissioner was requested that the infrastructure should be up to date.

In order to know about the procedure or formula being adopted for the calculation of property tax. This meeting was held with the respective Commissioner. He was also requested to arrange a seminar in our association for the awareness of the members as well as the industry who likely to be hit hard financially. He was kind enough to give a patient hearing in this respect and assured to have a get to gather with the Association to know their views. In the meeting S. Jagatvir Singh Director Ludhiana Effluent Treatment Society, Sh. Vipan Mittal MD of Kudu Knit Processing Pvt Ltd President Focal Point Dyeing Association and Sh. Vijay Mehtani Finance Secretary of Focal Point Association Phase-VIII.

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Need to isolate syndicate of terrorism in Afghanistan, says India

United Nations: 22 Jun 2013

India has called for intensive actions to root out syndicates of terrorism, including al-Qaeda, Taliban and LeT from Afghanistan, noting that security situation remains fragile in the war-torn country.

During a special briefing on Afghanistan, Deputy Ambassador to the UN Manjeev Puri said, the security situation in Afghanistan remains fragile as demonstrated by a number of high-profile terrorist attacks over the last two months.

\"We condemn these attacks in the strongest possible terms and convey our condolences to the Government and people of Afghanistan,\" he said.

\"Concerted action is needed to isolate and root out the syndicate of terrorism, which includes elements of the Taliban, AI-Qaida, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other terrorist and extremist groups,\" he said.

It is, therefore, important that the transition plan in Afghanistan is based on the ground situation rather than a \"pre-determined timeframe\", Puri told members of the UN Security Council during the briefing.

\"It is also important that the ongoing transition must remain Afghan-led and Afghan-owned, must be multi-faceted and should ensure the protection and promotion of the human rights of all Afghans, and lead to the strengthening of the Afghan state and its institutions,\" the top Indian diplomat


The efforts of the international community in Afghanistan should remain focused on security, development, governance, and regional and international cooperation which is aligned with the overall objective of the Afghan

government, the Indian official said.

\"This alone will enable the Afghan government to eventually assume full responsibility and take charge of Afghanistan\'s destiny without outside interference,\" he said.

Stressing that Afghanistan\'s stability and economic development depend a lot on its neighbours and the region as a whole, Puri said: \"We must expand, rather than hinder, trade, transit and transport ties, including overland transit and trade.\"

That is the best way of bringing the regional dimension into play in a positive manner, he added.

\"Growing economic inter-dependence will also help in weaning disaffected youth away from insurgency and militancy and in creating a zone of co-prosperity in the region. We support the wishes of the Government of Afghanistan to take the lead in this direction,\" he said.
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Four killed as another building collapses in Mumbai

Mumbai: 22 Jun 2013

At least five people were killed and six others injured when a four-storeyed abandoned building, which was occupied by some unauthorized dwellers, collapsed in Mumbai early on Saturday, officials said.

This is the third incident of building collapse in the area within a time period of two months and second in the past 36 hours.

The incident occurred around 6.30 am when the dilapidated Piyush Building suddenly came crashing down, catching the unauthorized dwellers unaware, said an official of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) disaster control cell.

On Saturday, firefighters and other rescuers extricated dead bodies, while five people were brought out alive from the rubble of the building located in the city\'s Dahisar east suburb.

Of the injured, two succumbed later at the BMC\'s Bhagwati Hospital while the condition of the remaining three is stated to be serious. There is no information whether more people are trapped under the debris. Relief and rescue operations are in full swing.

Dahisar Shiv Sena legislator Vinod Ghosalkar said the building had been evacuated two years ago after it was declared dangerous by the civic authorities.

\"It was due to be redeveloped. But owing to a dispute between the owner and tenants, the matter is under litigation. In the meantime, local vegetable vendors were taking shelter there,\" Ghosalkar told reporters.

On June 10, a four-storey building collapsed at Mahim in central Mumbai, killing 10 and injuring another six.

On Friday, 10 people, including six children, were killed when a 35-year-old three-storey Shakuntala building crashed in Mumbra town in Thane district.

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Suspected militant groups clash in Karachi, four killed

Islamabad:22 Jun 2013,

Four people were killed and four were injured on Friday night when unidentified militants fired at one another and hurled hand grenades at police who arrived at the scene in Pakistan\'s port city of Karachi, police said.

Imran Shaukat, senior superintendent of police said, that two groups of people armed with automatic weapons opened indiscriminate fire at each other in Bilal Colony area.

One man was killed at the spot and seven including one policeman were wounded. The injured were taken to a hospital, where three succumbed to their wounds. Friday night\'s attack brought the death toll in separate incidents of violence in Karachi to 15 during the day.
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‘Supermoon’ to brighten sky on Sunday

New Delhi: 22 Jun 2013

The world will get a rare chance to see the year's largest full moon this weekend, also known as the 'Supermoon'. This 'full moon' is not only the closest and largest of the year, but it also presents Moon's closest encounter with Earth, for all of 2013. The Moon will not be so close again until August, 2014.

Supermoon is the condition when the moon approaches closest towards the earth on its elliptical orbit, resulting in the largest apparent size of the Moon's disk as seen from Earth. Astronomers call the Supermoon as 'perigee full moon'. The word perigee describes the moon's closest point to Earth.

During the phenomenon on Sunday, the moon will appear about 12.2 percent larger than its appearance on January 16, 2014, when it will be at its farthest from the Earth. People will have to wait till 7 pm on Sunday to witness it, according to planetary Society of India. The last Supermoon had occurred on March 19, 2011 when its position was 380 kilometers closer to Earth than its usual position.
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Friday, June 21, 2013

Iraq assures India of fulfilling present and future oil demand

Baghdad:21 Jun 2013,

Iraq has assured India of fulfilling the demand for oil supplies and vowed to enhance economic relations.

\"The Iraqi government has reassured the Indian side that Iraq will meet its oil demands, as well as its future needs,\" Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari said during a joint press conference with his Indian counterpart Salman Khurshid.

Indian external affairs minister is on a two-day official visit to Baghdad. The visit is part of efforts by India to engage with Iraq at the highest level and deepen ties with the oil-rich country.

Iraq is currently exporting more than $20 billion worth of oil to India. However, Indian exports are only a little more than $1 billion.

Khurshid met Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and Parliament Speaker Osama al-Nujaifi and discussed with the Iraqi officials bilateral relations and about participation of Indian companies in Iraq\'s reconstruction, the Iraqi minister said.

Khurshid said that India \"does not just want to be in a relationship of trade and business with Iraq, we want to be partners and we will look at all possibilities in every field to work together as partners\".

He also said that he extended a letter of invitation to al-Maliki to visit India, saying that he hoped to see him in India \"after Ramadan (in mid-August) and that would give us enormous opportunity to welcome the first democratically elected prime minister of Iraq who would then become a part of a very important history between India and Iraq\".

Khurshid\'s visit to Iraq is the first for a senior Indian official in more than two decades. In 1990, then Indian external affairs minister I.K. Gujral had visited Iraq to help evacuate the Indian nationals due to the outbreak of the Gulf War.
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Jiah Khan\'s suicide very unfortunate: Vidya Balan

Kolkata: 21 Jun 2013

Terming Bollywood actress Jiah Khan\'s suicide as unfortunate actor Vidya Balan said she could never understand why people resort to taking their own lives.

\"It is very unfortunate. I hope no one ever has reason enough to end their life. I really can\'t imagine whether that requires courage or the opposite of that, because I have never been able to fathom why people commit suicide. I think it is very sad,\" Vidya said on the sidelines of a promotional event for the forthcoming film \"Ghanchakkar\" at the Park Hotel here.

The 25-year-old Britain-born Jiah was found hanging at her flat in Sagar Sangeet building in the posh Juhu area of northwest Mumbai on June 3 when her family was out.

Jiah shot into the limelight with her 2007 debut movie Nishabd, in which she starred opposite Amitabh Bachchan. She was also seen in films like Ghajini and Housefull.

Vidya was dressed up as her character Neetu for the promotional activities of the film in a polka dotted matching ensemble.

\"People will see me and think this is the girl from \'Ghanchakkar\', with loud makeup and matching clothes,\" said Vidya.

Directed by Rajkumar Gupta, \"Ghanchakkar\" hits theatres on June 28 and stars Emraan Hashmi as the male lead.
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Gold at three-year low, could see worst week in 30 years

Singapore:21 Jun 2013

Gold fell to a three-year low on Friday and was in danger of recording its biggest weekly drop in 30 years after the US Federal Reserve said it would wind down its bullion-friendly stimulus later this year.

Spot gold - down nearly 9 percent this week - dropped for the fifth straight session, while Comex gold futures also declined over 1 percent to their lowest in three years.

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said on Wednesday the central bank would taper its USD 85 billion monthly bond buying programme as the US economy was recovering strongly, ending purchases around mid-2014 if economic growth held up.

\"What the market is undergoing now is a state of normalization, going back to pre-stimulus times,\" said Joyce Liu, investment analyst at Phillip Futures in Singapore. \"Since the first stimulus programme in 2009, markets have jumped despite fundamentals not justifying such a spike.\"

Gold was also hurt by CME Group Inc\'s move to raise initial margins for Comex gold after prices plunged over 6 percent on Thursday. The exchange operator raised Comex 100 Gold Futures initial margins for speculators by 25 percent to USD 8,800 per contract from USD 7,040.

\"That is definitely affecting gold too. For those who cannot put out margin calls on time, they will be squeezed out even when they don\'t want to get out,\" said Liu. Until recently, gold - seen as a hedge against inflation - had gained as the global economy took a hit and central banks acted to boost their economies. Gold touched an all-time high of USD 1,920.30 in 2011.

Spot gold was down 0.5 percent at USD 1,271.16 an ounce by 0121 GMT on Friday. The metal fell to USD 1,269.04 earlier – its lowest since September 2010 and a level which would mark the worst weekly decline in 30 years.

It has lost 24 percent of its value this year, after recording 12 years of gains. Gold is on weak technical ground and will fall below USD 1,200 an ounce before finding support, technical analysts said.

UBS lowered its 2013 gold price outlook by 10 percent to USD 1,440 an ounce, and its 2014 forecast to USD 1,325 an ounce from USD 1,625. SPDR Gold Trust, the world\'s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, said its holdings fell 0.42 percent to 995.35 tonnes on Thursday - the lowest in more than four years.

But the drop in prices could see a spurt in physical demand in top consumers India and China, which have been quiet recently. However, Liu said the demand would not be as strong as April when gold prices fell the most in 30 years over just two days.

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Thursday, June 20, 2013



The Directorate of Extension Education of the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) will organize a three-month training course on "Integrated Crop Production" for the rural youth from August 1 to October 31 at the Kairon Kisan Ghar (KKG) of the University.

Giving details, Dr M.S. Gill, Director of Extension Education, said that the rural youth from across the Punjab state (except Gurdaspur and Amritsar districts), in the age group of 20 to 40, with matriculation qualification, will be eligible for this course. The PAU subject-matter specialists will shed light on different aspects of agriculture. Besides, they will educate the trainees about the innovative farm technologies and the subsidiary occupations for income enhancement, he added.

Dr T.S. Riar, Incharge, Young Farmer's Training Course, informed that the aspiring candidates can collect the application form from the office of Directorate of Extension Education of PAU. The last date for the submission of form is July 29 and the interview will be held on July 30 at KKG at 10.00 a.m., he told. The candidates should bring their matriculation as well as age proof certificates during walk-in-interview. The selected candidate will have to deposit Rs 500/- as security, which will be refunded after the completion of the course, he said, adding that the course fee is Rs 300/- whereas the accommodation charges are Rs 100/- per month.
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An orientation course on "Planning, Conducting and Implementing Research and Demonstrations" was organized at the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) today. The scientists from Krishi Vigyan Kendras, Farm Advisory Service Scheme, and Regional Research Stations participated in the course.

In his remarks, the Chief Guest Dr M.S. Gill, Director of Extension Education, observed, "With the advancements in agriculture, it is vital to sensitize the farm scientists to address the shortcomings in the farm demonstrations." He underlined the need for highlighting the impact of the crop varieties and agri-technologies through effective and need-based field demonstrations. There are two types of demonstrations including method demonstration and result demonstration, he informed. Besides, there are disciplinary, inter-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary types of demonstrations also, he said, while emphasising on identification of farm problem, proper selection of the site, and display of signboards and data about the particular issue, for the successful demonstration.

In his inaugural address, Dr J.S. Dhiman, Additional Director of Research (Natural Resource and Plant Health Management), and Coordinator of the course, said that the extension functionaries have been playing an important role in carrying the farm technologies forward to the grassroot level. To address the future agrarian issues, it is essential to have knowledgeable scientists, he stressed, adding that this orientation course aims at educating the scientists about planning and conducting agri-demonstrations for the benefit of farmers.

During the course, the PAU experts delivered lectures on various aspects of effective field demonstrations. Those present on the occasion included Dr P.S. Aulakh, Additional Director of Research (Horticulture), Dr (Mrs) J.K. Sangha, Additional Director of Research (Food Science, Nutrition and Engineering), Dr J.S. Mahal, Additional Director of Research (Farm Mechanization and Bio-energy), Dr P.S. Chahal, Associate Director of Research and Co-Coordinator of the course, and faculty members of various departments of the PAU.
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The Result of B.A III Examination was declared by Punjab University Chandigarh.


The Result of B.A III Examination was declared by Punjab University Chandigarh. Principal Gurminder Kaur Congratulated to Parents, Staff and Students.


S.No Student Name Percentage Position

1 Jasminder Kaur 81.05% 9th Position in PU Merit List, First Position in Ludhiana & College

2 Chetna 80.04% Second in College

3 Nitika Rani 78.75% Third in College

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Obama to unveil plans of nuclear war heads reduction in Berlin speech

Berlin: 20 Jun 2013

President Barack Obama will unveil plans for a sharp reduction in nuclear warheads in a landmark speech at the Brandenburg Gate that comes 50 years after John F. Kennedy declared \"Ich bin ein Berliner\" in a defiant Cold War address.

A senior U.S. administration official said Obama, on his first visit to the German capital as president, would signal his desire to cut deployed atomic weapons by up to one third below the level achieved in the last \"New START\" treaty with Russia.

\"The U.S. intent is to seek negotiated cuts with Russia so that we can continue to move beyond Cold War nuclear postures,\" the official said.

Fresh from a two day summit with Group of Eight leaders in Northern Ireland, Obama is due to speak at the Gate that once stood alongside slabs of the Berlin Wall that divided the communist East and capitalist West sections of the city.

It has been nearly five years since he last came to Berlin as a presidential candidate, attracting a crowd of 200,000 adoring fans at a speech in the Tiergarten park.

A lot has changed since then. After more than four years in office, Obama has disappointed some Europeans who saw him as a more progressive face of America compared to his predecessor, Republican George W. Bush.

But the Democrat leader remains popular in Germany, and he has forged a pragmatic - if not warm - relationship with conservative Chancellor Angela Merkel, one of his closest European allies. Obama\'s trip gives her a boost just months before a German election.

The president will spend his day in meetings with Merkel, German President Joachim Gauck, and Peer Steinbrueck, the Social Democrat running against her this fall. Obama and Merkel are scheduled to give a press conference around midday, followed by the speech three hours later.
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Taliban’s move to set up office in Qatar a positive progress: China

Beijing: 20 Jun 2013

China on Wednesday termed as \"positive progress\" the Taliaban\'s move to set up a political office in Qatar and hold reconciliation talks with the US and Afghan officials to bring a peaceful end to the 12-year-long war.

\"China always supports Afghanistan\'s national reconciliation process which is Afghan-led and Afghan-owned,\" Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said.

\"China welcomes the positive progress made recently in the process and appreciates the positive efforts made by relevant parties,\" Hua added.

Her comments were significant as China in the recent months held talks with India for the first time, besides Pakistan and Russia, over the future strategy in Afghanistan when US and NATO troops leave the country next year.
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visit to India

Washington: 20 Jun 2013

Economic issues like intellectual property protection, local content restrictions and a continued cap on FDI are likely to be on top of the agenda when US Secretary of State John Kerry travels to India next week for strategic dialogue between the two countries.

\"Intellectual property protection, local content restrictions, continued restrictions on FDI in different sectors. This is certainly going to be our focus,\" Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, Robert Blake, said.

He also added that one of the goals is to reinvigorate the bilateral investment treaty talks and conclude them as soon as possible.

Both Kerry and President Barack Obama have been receiving letters from the US business community, advocacy groups, Senators and Congressmen on the trade policies of India, which they claim is harming American businesses.

Responding to questions, Blake said the US is not looking at any deliverables during the strategic dialogue, except to making sure that they understand each other on these issues. \"India has its own concerns on comprehensive immigration reform. Obviously we need to hear from that. The purpose of the dialogue is to hear each other out in a very open and friendly manner and then figure out who is going to take charge of fixing these,\" he said.

Referring to the various bilateral and trilateral dialogues between the two countries, Blake said, \"All of these collectively really enabled us to have an extremely good dialogue on issues that were previously very difficult.\"

Responding to questions, Blake said India is one of the highest strategic priorities for the US.
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Hrithik Roshan\'s jacket gets highest bid for fund raising

Mumbai: 20 Jun 2013

Hrithik Roshan\'s jacket beats Salman, Ranbir among other Bollywood biggies for the highest bid and a chairty event in Dubai. At an auction to raise funds to help special children in Dubai recently, Deepika Padukone's red Race 2 cocktail dress went for Dh 8,000; a salwar kameez designed by Manish Malhotra and worn by Kareena Kapoor in Heroine went for Dh 10,000; a leather jacket worn by Ranbir Kapoor in Rockstar fetched Dh 10,000; a blue shirt and a pair of trousers worn by Salman Khan managed to get Dh 10,000.

A black leather jacket from Hrithik Roshan's personal collection got Dh 11,000 which was the highest bid for the Bollywood lot.

Looks like Duggu's jacket was the most sought after.
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Securities and Exchange Board of India sets up office in Chandigarh

Mumbai:20 Jun 2013,

Capital market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has established a local office in Chandigarh, as part of a move to decentralize its work to regional offices.

The Chandigarh office has been established under the administrative control of the regulator\'s Northern Regional Office at New Delhi, a SEBI notification dated June 19 said.

The new local office would look after the regulatory aspects of investor protection, facilitate redressal of investor complaints, financial and investor education, among other functions, across Chandigarh, Punjab and Haryana.

\"SEBI's role and responsibility shall extend to the areas falling under the territorial jurisdiction of Union Territory of Chandigarh, State of Punjab and State of Haryana,\" SEBI said.

So far this year, Mumbai-headquartered SEBI has opened its local offices in Patna, Hyderabad and Lucknow.

In 2012, the regulator had set up offices in cities such as Jaipur, Bengaluru and Guwahati.

The regulator, at its board meeting in July 2011, had cleared a proposal to decentralize its functions by opening regional offices.

The regulator is looking to strengthen its regional offices since physical proximity of its office to investors and intermediaries would promote deepening and broadening of the securities market.
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Government is ready to take steps to curb rupee volatility: Rajan

New Delhi:20 Jun 2013

With the rupee dipping to an unprecedented low level, the government is ready to take step to curb volatility, Chief Economic Advisor to the Finance Ministry Raghuram Rajan said on Thursday.

The government is not short of options to tackle the fall of the rupee and will take actions as necessary, he told reporters shortly after the rupee fell to a record low. The rupee on Thursday weakened to an unprecedented 59.9275 per dollar, past the previous all-time low of 58.9850 touched on June 11.

Rajan also said the Reserve Bank of India would take action to support the rupee as appropriate. \"We are not short of actions or instruments as and when need arises,\" he said. \"We will be alert to development, we do not like volatility and will take actions when necessary.\"

The rupee, he said, was not in shambles and \"we should not be overly pessimistic\". Rajan said the Current Account Deficit (CAD) was \"large, but we are on way to tampering it. Gold imports are coming off its peak.\"

CAD in June will be better than in May, he added. Earlier, Finance Minister P Chidambaram held a meeting with his ministry officials about the rupee fall, which came a day after US Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke confirmed the Fed would begin winding down its stimulus spending later this year.
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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

SRK in pre-natal sex determination row

Mumbai: 18 Jun 2013

Amid the buzz about Shah Rukh Khan and Gauri Khan having another baby boy through surrogacy, innumerable objections have been raised by the state's Indian Radiological and Imaging Association and a Mumbai based NGO on reported pre-birth sex determination of the baby.

The state's radiologists' association has asked immediate probe into the matter by the state health department. According to the association, pre-birth sex determination is illegal in India, and if the news is true, then King Khan should be definitely booked for prenatal sex determination. However, it is also said that if baby's sex determination was done outside India, then the Indian laws won't be applicable to him.

Read more- SRK-Gauri\'s 3rd kid through surrogacy

SRK-Gauri's 3rd kid through surrogacy?SRK-Gauri's 3rd kid through surrogacy?

Shah Rukh Khan and Gauri Khan have reportedly maintained silence over the media reports of pregnancy of Gauri Khan through surrogacy. Rumors are that the couple has apparently consulted the same doctor that Aamir Khan and Kiran Rao went to for their baby Azad - who was also born to a surrogate mother.
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Nitish Kumar thanks PM for calling him secular

Patna: 18 Jun 2013

A day after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh described him as secular, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Tuesday thanked him for the praise, saying the words give him comfort.

\"He (Singh) has spoken the truth and one should always speak the truth and coming from the Prime Minister of the country, certainly gives me comfort and I offer my heartiest thanks to him for saying so,\" Kumar said.

Prime Minister had on Monday described the Bihar Chief Minister as secular and said that 'in politics there are no permanent enemies or permanent friends'. \"In politics, there are no permanent enemies or permanent friends. We will decide as the situation evolves,\" Singh had said to a question whether Congress looks at JD-U as a future ally.

\"I cannot speculate on that or what happens in the future. We need support of all right-minded parties. In Parliament, we look for their support,\" Singh had said.
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Only Hindutva can transform country: Mohan Bhagwat

Meerut: 18 Jun 2013

Backing Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi\'s elevation in the BJP, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat on Tuesday said that Hindutva was the only way to bring about change in the country.

In a veiled reference to senior BJP leader LK Advani and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar\'s opposition to Modi, Bhagwat said, \"Whether somebody likes it or not, Hindutva is the only way to bring about change in the country. It is where the country\'s respect lies.\"

\"We have changed leaders and agendas, nothing has worked. Politics is not the way to make India a superpower, it is only Hindutva that can do it,\" the RSS chief said.

Accusing the Centre of failing on the diplomatic front, Bhagwat said, \"The Country\'s borders are not safe. China entered into our territory and left on its own conditions, but we could not teach them a lesson.\"
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Salman Khan breaks his silence on Jiah-Sooraj relationship

New Delhi:18 Jun 2013

Bollywood heart-throb Salman Khan is upset over the allegations made by Jiah Khan's mother Rabiya Khan, who claimed that it was the actor who intervened in Jiah- Sooraj's relationship and persuaded Sooraj to break up with Jiah. The Dabbang star has rejected all such allegations and termed them as baseless.

Salman Khan said that he had nothing to do with the love affair and that he wasn't even aware of Jiah and Sooraj's relationship. He also said that he sympathizes with Jiah's bereaved family, but the charges framed by Jiah's mother against him were absurd.

\"I was not even aware of Suraj and Jiah's relationship. I got to know of it through a news magazine,\" Salman Khan said. He also said that he found the debate ridiculous and has no clue why his name was dragged in this.

Salman's name was first mentioned by Rabia Khan, mother of the deceased actress, in her statement to the police. She has reportedly told the police that Aditya Pancholi was not happy with his son Sooraj's relationship with Jiah. Aditya allegedly discussed the matter with Salman and in turn the latter tried to persuade Sooraj to break up with the deceased actress. Salman rubbished the statement, saying his name is unnecessarily being drawn in the matter.

Salman Khans's sister Arpita Khan has also come out in his defence and has vent her anger over the comments made on social networking site Twitter. "People need to get their facts right first. Let the law take its course, and I am sure the truth will prevail. It\'s wrong to frame any opinion. We have known the Pancholis & Shettys since long, they wouldn't use Bhai's name for publicity," Arpita said on Twitter.

Salman Khan was to launch Suraj Pancholi in the remake of Subhash Ghai's Hero. Suraj was to make his Bollywood debut opposite Sunil Shetty's daughter Athiya Shetty.
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Govt allows gold exports from SEZs after value addition

New Delhi: 18 Jun 2013

Concerned over decline in gold exports from SEZs following ban on its trading, the government has allowed units in these zones to export gold items after a minimum value addition of 3 percent.

\"Commerce Ministry in a notification on April 26 has put a stop to gold trading in SEZs with effect from May 1. We have now made it mandatory that even in SEZ, gold units shall comply with the...minimum value addition of 3 percent in gold jewellery and 5 percent in gold and precious stone studded jewellery,\" Commerce Secretary S R Rao said.

Earlier, this provision was there for gold units outside the zones. Rao said that the step would help in boosting jewellery exports from India. Gold exports from SEZs in May declined by about USD 0.8 billion.

\"Anybody who is exporting gold jewellery has to abide by this value addition norms. Prior to May 1, this norm was not applicable for SEZ exporters. So this has now been made applicable. Now its is mandated,\" he said.

The government had banned trading of gold by units in the SEZs to check misuse of tax benefits by them. SEZs are allowed duty-free imports. Reacting on the move, Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council Chairman Vipul Shah said the step would benefit genuine jewellery exporters.

Rao said: \"Gold exports itself have taken a hit of USD 0.8 billion which essentially contributed to the gold trading that used to take place through SEZ.\" Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) Anup Pujari said that prior to May 1, the value addition norm were not applicable for SEZ exports so this has been now made applicable.

\"...earlier if somebody exported gold items from SEZ, he was not mandated to follow a minimum value addition norm,\" Pujari said. An official said that the Commerce Ministry has taken this step of its own to help genuine jewellery exporters.

\"The Commerce Ministry had received lot of complaints about diversion of gold from few zones to the domestic markets. The decision would now help in checking the misuse,\" the official said.

According to sources, SEZ units were earning arbitrage profits of as high as 7.5 percent by diverting imported gold to the domestic market. This was a very profitable venture for SEZ units as it did not involve much capital, infrastructure or labour.

India is the largest consumer of gold. High gold imports are one of main reasons behind high Current Account Deficit, which touched a record high of 6.7 percent of GDP in December quarter of last fiscal.

The monthly gold imports have averaged 152 tonnes in the first two months of this fiscal, as compared to an average of 70 tonnes seen in the 2012-13 financial year.
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Google offers new format for Indian retailers to advertise products

Bangalore: 18 Jun 2013

Global search engine Google is offering a new format in India to advertise products and brands for users, the company\'s Indian subsidiary said on Monday.

\"The new format on under \'product listing ads\' menu will help users to find and compare products and prices with their images and links,\" the company said in a statement.

The facility will appear on the right side of the search results page above text ads under product listing.

\"As millions of shoppers across the country use our search facility to research and find products to buy online or offline, the format will enable merchants to showcase their products with price to shoppers for taking informed decision,\" the statement noted.

The new format will also help shoppers turn their intentions into actions.

\"The changes are a first step toward providing technology, tools and traffic to help power the Indian retail ecosystem,\" the company added.

Google\'s targeted advertising programme provides businesses with measurable results, while enhancing web experience for users.
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Monday, June 17, 2013

Jail can only make son stronger as he has done no wrong, says Aditya Pancholi

Mumbai: 17 Jun 2013,

A Mumbai court deferred the hearing of Sooraj Pancholi\'s bail plea till June 21. He was held on the charge of abetting suicide of actress Jiah Khan and his actor father Aditya Pancholi says his son is not guilty and that the jail experience will make him stronger.

\"Let my son stay in jail a little longer. It will make him tougher and wiser. He has done no wrong. So, this experience can only make him strong,\" said Aditya while remaining calm.

Actress Nafisa alias Jiah Khan, 25, who debuted in Bollywood with Ram Gopal Varma\'s \"Nishabd\", committed suicide at her residence in Mumbai\'s Juhu area on June 3. On June 8 police recovered a note purportedly written by the actress talking about her disturbed relationship with her boyfriend and claiming that he abused her mentally and physically.

Two days later Mumbai police arrested Sooraj in connection with Jiah\'s suicide. Aditya and his wife Zarina Wahab were confident that their son Sooraj would be granted bail. This however did not happen.

A friend of the couple said that it seems Sooraj is unlikely to be released in the immediate future. \"Sooraj is unlikely to get any special privileges like a separate cell or home-made food. The prospect of seeing their son suffer in jail has hit the Pancholi's hard. Aditya specially has taken it very badly,\" added the friend.

The friend says the image of the raging troubled star-son in the press is not quite what Sooraj is. \"The story about Sooraj suffering from fits of rage is highly exaggerated. When Sooraj gets angry, he goes completely quiet. Sooraj is completely his mama\'s boy. He has grown up with his grandmother, far away from his father. So Sooraj has never been a witness to his father\'s wayward ways. This whole run-in with the law is totally unexpected...But he\'s also a strong chap. When he sees his parents, he comforts them and assures them all would be well, rather than the parents comforting him,\" said the friend.
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