Ukraine calls for peacekeepers after rebels take key town

Ukrainian President Poroshenko calls for European peacekeepers to enforce a shattered ceasefire deal in east Ukraine after a flashpoint strategic town fell to a fierce assault by pro-Russian rebels. Duration: 01:18 Feb 19, 2015

PM Narendra Modi launches the 'Soil Health Card' scheme

Suratgarh, Feb 19 (ANI): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday launched the "Soil Health Card" (SHC) scheme for analyzing the soil in Suratgarh, Rajasthan. Speaking at the launch, Modi said transforming agriculture through scientific methods is very important. The step to issue soil health cards to farmers will ensure that they are aware of the quality of soil and use right fertilizers. Also, the scheme will help in keeping a check on overuse of fertilisers on farm land and will be provided to over 14 crore farmers. Feb 19, 2015

Exiled Tibetans in Dharamsala mark New Year with prayers

Dharamsala, Feb 19 (ANI): Tibetans living in-exile in India's Dharamsala began celebrations for three-day New Year, Losar, with prayers on Thursday. Exiled Tibetans and monks gathered at the Buddhist temple, Tsuglagkhang and prayed in front of statues of their deities. Year 2015 is regarded as the Female Wood Sheep year as per the lunar calendar. Traditionally, celebrations begin with Tsedor or Losar Prayers focusing on worship to the official protecting deity Palden Lhamo. Hymns are chanted and fire torches passed through the crowds as monks play traditional drums and blow horns. The celebrations will conclude on Saturday. Prime Minister of the Tibetan government-in-exile, Lobsang Sangay wished everyone on the occasion. Feb 19, 2015

Rajiv Pratap Rudy flies first BrahMos-integrated Sukhoi-30 MKI

Bengaluru, Feb 19 (ANI): Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Rajiv Pratap Rudy on Thursday flew first BrahMos-integrated Sukhoi-30 MKI in Bengaluru city of Kolkata. Rudy said that this is the finest aircrafts that is there with Indian Airforce and that it reflects total strength of the Airforce. Meanwhile, his wife Neelam Pratap Rudy said that it's after ten years that Rudy is flying such an aircraft. She said that it is exciting for her to witness the same. Feb 19, 2015

Aircraft avert disaster as maneuver goes awry at Aero India Show

Bengaluru, Feb 19 (ANI): Two Red Bull aircraft averted a major disaster at Aero India Show on Thursday after they glided into each other, causing one's wing to clip. The incident happened when three aircraft were attempting to loop in midair and the central one went into the one below it. Though no injury was visibly caused to either pilot, the planes were forced to land and fire tenders were rushed to the spot. The Aero Show is being organized by Defence Exhibition Organization under the aegis of Ministry of Defence and 54 ministerial and other high-level delegations from several countries are scheduled to attend it. The exhibition has 'Make in India' as its major theme. Feb 19, 2015

Mahadalit 'Samman Sammelan': Manjhi asks people to question JD (U) MLAs, why they were opposing him

Patna, Feb 19 (ANI): Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi on Thursday while addressing a Mahadalit 'Samman Sammelan' in Patna asked people to question JD (U) MLAs, as to why they were opposing him when he always worked for the downtrodden. Both Manjhi and senior JDU leader Nitish Kumar are in talks with MLAs to secure their support. Claiming support of majority of MLAs, Manjhi plans to organize a show of strength of those supporting him on Thursday evening. Just ahead of the floor test on Friday, Manjhi will also be holding a Cabinet meeting today. Feb 19, 2015

Thailand's Attorney General files charges against former PM Yingluck over rice subsidy scheme

Bangkok, Feb 19 (ANI): Thailand's attorney general filed charges against Former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra on Thursday over a bungled rice subsidy scheme. The former Premier in indicted in the case that could see her jailed for up to a decade if found guilty. However, Shinawatra denies charges. The Supreme Court will decide whether or not to accept the case on March 19. The ex-premier has defended the rice scheme as a necessary subsidy to help poor farmers who historically receive a disproportionately small slice of government cash. Feb 19, 2015

Paramilitary force organises skill development programme in Jharkhand

Latehar, Feb 19 (ANI): India’s paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) is organizing a skill development programme for the youth in Maoist affected state of Jharkhand. The programme, Seventh Tribal Youth Summit, spans three phases and the participants for the first phase have been selected. The selected participants will be taken to Guwahati for seven days where they will interact with the tribal youths from other regions. The programme, which has been organized in collaboration with sports ministry of government of India, will help youngsters take development initiatives in their home state. Meanwhile, a participant, Chinta Kumari, expressed her happiness about the tour. The programme is also being organized in other naxal affected areas of Jharkhand. The Maoists, also known as Naxals in India, have operated for decades across a wide swath of central and eastern India, and grew in strength during recent times. Feb 19, 2015

India, Bangladesh sign agreements on security and border issues

New Delhi, Feb 19 (ANI): Home Ministry officials of India and Bangladesh signed agreements on security and border management related issues in New Delhi on Thursday. During the secretary-level talks between the two nations, Bangladesh's senior secretary in Home Ministry, Mozammel Haque Khan, and India's Home Secretary, LC Goyal, held discussions on cross-border issues concerning the two neighbouring nations. Both the countries agreed to enhance cooperation in border management, increase joint patrolling to reduce crimes and smuggling and also tight vigil on the border in unguarded areas, particularly borders facing northeastern states of Tripura and Mizoram. They also agreed to act against the criminals engaged in human trafficking from Bangladesh to India and other countries. Feb 19, 2015

Obama calls for strengthened non-military measures to combat extremism

Washington DC, Feb 19 (ANI): US President Barack Obama called for strengthened non-military measures to combat terrorism at the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism in Washington DC. Obama called on Muslims around the world to fight the misconception that groups like the Islamic State speak for them. The US president also appealed directly to Muslims to do more to distance themselves from brutal ideologies. During the half-hour speech, Obama noted challenges in countering violent extremism, including addressing the economic and political grievances that terrorists exploited. He stressed that fight against terrorism is not only a matter of military affairs. The president also added that extremist cyberspace propaganda targeting young people is a worldwide problem. Obama also called on local communities to play an important role in the fight against radicalization. Feb 19, 2015

BJP terms Congress support for Anna as 'pure hypocrisy'

New Delhi, Feb 19 (ANI): The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday hit out at the Congress party for supporting social activist Anna Hazare's agitation on the Land Acquisiton Bill, terming it pure hypocrisy on the part of the party. BJP leader Sambit Patra added that his party respected Anna Hazare and would take view of the suggestions made by him. The Congress party had earlier welcomed Hazare's move against the ordinance passed by the Centre. Hazare will stage a protest in the national capital on February 24 against the Land Acquisition Bill and request the government to withdraw the ordinance. The protest would be organized by the farmer unions and as per reports, social activist Medha Patkar, along with 70 other organizations across the country, will participate in it. Feb 19, 2015