PM Modi and Rajnath Singh express condolences to families of Sukma incident victims

Raipur/ Lucknow, Dec 02 (ANI): Home Affairs Minister Rajnath Singh expressed his condolences to the families of those killed in Maoist ambush in Chhattisgarh. Maoist guerrillas ambushed a paramilitary patrol in Sukma district of Chhattisgarh killing 13 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) men in the biggest rebel attack this year. The attack took place in the jungle of Chhattisgarh, where members of the CRPF had been sent to flush the rebels out of their base. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also condemned the Naxal attack. He tweeted, "Words are not enough to condemn the brutal and inhuman attack by anti-national elements in Sukma, Chhattisgarh. I salute the courageous CRPF personnel who have been martyred today. Our thoughts are with the families of those who lost their loved ones. Have spoken to Home Minister @BJPRajnathSingh and Chhattisgarh CM @drramansingh. We are monitoring the situation closely,"he added. Dec 2, 2014

Voting begins amidst tight security for second phase of J and K Assembly polls

Jammu and Kashmir, Dec 02 (ANI): People queued up at the polling stations as voting for the second phase of elections in 18 seats in Jammu and Kashmir began on Tuesday morning, amid tight security. Voters braved the cold weather to come out and cast their votes. One of them also urged people to come out and exercise their franchise and elect a good representative. The polling will seal the fate of several high-profile candidates including two former chief ministers, seven state ministers and a former separatist. Security has been stepped up to foil any attempts by militants to disrupt the democratic process in Jammu and Kashmir, which has witnessed the killing of a sarpanch in Shopian district the previous day. As many as 18 Assembly segments, spread over five districts -- two in the Valley and three in Jammu region are polling to decide the fate of 175 candidates. Dec 2, 2014

Second Phase of Jharkhand assembly polls commences today

Jharkhand, Dec 02 (ANI): Voting has begun for the second phase of Jharkhand polls as voters lined up outside the polling stations to exercise their franchise. Tight Security measures are undertaken for polls at 20 seats spread across seven Maoist-hit tribal districts of Jharkhand. Voters casted their ballot as they expected better governance for the state. Meanwhile, Managing Director of Tata Steel, TV Narendran also casted his vote for a stable government in the state. Former Chief Ministers Arjun Munda and Madhu Koda and three ministers are among 223 candidates, including 35 women, contesting from 20 seats- 16 of them reserved for tribals. Jharkhand has an 81-member Assembly. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted, "As Phase 2 of Assembly Polls in Jand K and Jharkhand commence, I strongly urge people voting in those areas to vote in large numbers." Dec 2, 2014

Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti justifies using abusive language during poll rally, says was meant for separat

New Delhi, Dec 02 (ANI): Narendra Modi cabinet's newly inducted minister of state for Food Processing Industries Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti courted controversy by using abusive language while campaigning in Delhi. The union minister on Monday refused to budge from her words and justified the same saying that the statement was meant for the separatist people who disgrace the nation and disrupt the Parliament. Jyoti used an expletive as she questioned a crowd in west Delhi saying, "You have to decide. Do you want a government of Ramzaadon (followers of Ram) or (those who are illegitimate)?" She said that she never took names of any individual or political party or community and that is why people who are offended are the ones who deserve the remark. Dec 2, 2014

Social activists urge central govt to remove incentives for sterilization process

New Delhi, Dec 02 (ANI): A group of non-government organisations (NGO) urged central government to remove incentives for sterilization process after more than a dozen women died at a camp in Chhattisgarh last month. They visited government-run family planning camp in Bilaspur, where 83 women were sterilized, and made their recommendations to health minister JP Nadda. Chief of NGO, Population Foundation of India, Poonam Muttreja asked government not to set up camps but to provide the services on regular basis to women. Muttreja also asked the government to provide more choices to women as it was done in the neighbouring countries. An investigation is now underway into why the drugs were bought locally when there was enough stock of the medicine with the state's central procurement agency. Dec 2, 2014

Two women Maoists surrender in red corridor of Jharkhand

Ranchi, Dec 02 (ANI): Two women Maoists surrendered before the police in Ranchi city of Jharkhand. The duo was serving as the armed commanders and took part in several fierce battles against police. Speaking to mediapersons, Inspector General of Police (IG) (Ranchi zone) MS Bhatia said the two will be compensated as per the Maoist surrender and rehabilitation policy. Meanwhile, the 19-year-old Maoist, Pramilla who had taken up arms seven years ago in her school going days, urged other Maoists also to surrender. The rebels have operated for decades across a wide swath of central and eastern India, and grew in strength during recent times in areas where poor, tribal villagers came into conflict with mining companies seeking resources for industrialisation. Dec 2, 2014

Urs of Sai Akbar draws Hindu and Muslim devotees, promotes interfaith harmony

Rajouri, Dec 02 (ANI): Sufism in India has served to promote a common way of understanding the world. People from different faiths and all walks of life congregate at Sufi shrines to pay their respects. One such place is the Mausoleum of Sufi Saint Sai Akbar in Rajouri district of India’s northern state of Jammu and Kashmir that attracts Hindu and Muslim devotees. Every year large number of people visit the shrine to pray for the well-being of their loved ones. Though devotees throng the shrine throughout the year, the Urs or the death anniversary of the saint attracts a large number of people. During the Urs people from different faiths sit together, eat, drink and pray with equal devotion. Mass prayers are held on the occasion, which present a perfect picture of religious amity. Dec 2, 2014

Hindu children study in Islamic institute in Surat, present perfect example of communal harmony

Surat, Dec 02 (ANI): Surat, situated in India's western state of Gujarat, houses the culture of harmony between different faiths - that is upheld by the people of different faiths residing here. The Madarassa Islamic High School of Motavarachha area of the city is a perfect example of this ethos. Being a Islamic institute it has place for Hindu children who have been studying here since its inception. Established in the year 1905, the students here are taught about different subjects. The school believes that in order to achieve holistic development a comparative study of all religious text is important. And the youth must be aware of the commonality of different religious to give a better understanding of other faiths. Dec 2, 2014

Pakistani refugees living in India's Kashmir face unemployment issue

Kathua, Dec 2 (ANI): Pakistani refugees living in Jammu and Kashmir, on Monday (December 01), say that they are facing the problem of unemployment, adding they would vote for an honest and people-friendly candidate in the ongoing assembly elections in the valley. Around 70,000 families are living in a refugee colony in Kathua district and complain of no jobs. A resident of the colony, Joginder Sharma, said that there must be special educational policy for refugee colonies and a coaching centre too. He also said that there should be reservation for refugees in schools and colleges as well. Another resident, Yash Pal, said that the Refugee colony needs to develop and they want a leader who is honest and would work for their cause. Assembly elections began in the state on November 25 and are being held in stages, with results due in December. Dec 2, 2014

'Contact tracers' hunt down Ebola in Sierra Leone

Faced with an Ebola outbreak which has killed almost 1,500 people, Sierra Leone is relying heavily on so-called 'contact tracers' to ensure those who have been in contact with victims are monitored. Duration: 02:19 Dec 2, 2014

ICC rejects Congolese warlord Lubanga's appeal

The International Criminal Court on Monday upheld Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga's conviction for using child soldiers in his rebel army, handing down its first-ever appeals verdict. Duration: 00:34 Dec 2, 2014