UK and US asking Pak to hand over Lakhvi to India correct step but later will not abide by the same:

Bhopal, Jan 20 (ANI): Defence Expert SR Sinho on Tuesday said that US and UK asking Pakistan to hand over Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi to India is a correct measure on the part of the two nations. Sinho said that Lakhvi is the most wanted and master mind of Mumbai attack and he should be given to India for detailed probe. However, he maintained that Pakistan will not abide by the same and will refrain from handing over Lakhvi to India. The defence expert said that Pakistan fears that if Lakhvi is handed over, then India might ask for custody of terrorists as well. Secondly, he said that the neighbouring nation also fears that many things will come out of Pakistan after handing over the 26/11 mastermind. He further said that US and UK also knows that Pak will not hand over Lakhvi as asked by them. Jan 20, 2015

Devotees take holy dip in sacred River Ganges on 'Mauni Amavasya'

Allahabad/ Varanasi, Jan 20 (ANI): Thousands of devout Hindus on Tuesday gathered at the confluence of sacred River Ganges in Uttar Pradesh and took silent holy dip on the occasion of No Moon Day, or 'Mauni Amavasya'. The auspicious day is celebrated every year as a spiritual ritual in the month of January or February on No Moon day as per the traditional Hindu calendar. Devotees thronged the banks of River Ganges early morning for ritual bath to wash away their sins and sought salvation. This day marks the end of a month - long period of silence, a priest Hiranand Pandey said. Meanwhile, braving the biting cold, Hindus converged at temple town of Varanasi and made religious offerings as well. It is believed that the water of the Ganges turns into nectar on Mauni Amavasya. It is derived from the word 'Muni' that literally means an ascetic who practices silence. Jan 20, 2015

Students in Varanasi create sand sculptures on sensitive issues

Varanasi, Jan 20 (ANI): Students in temple town of Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh created sand sculptures on sensitive and burning issues on bank of holy River Ganges. Schoolchildren from around the town converged at the banks and created their artwork with coloured sand to give their work a different look. One of the sculptures commemorated the ill-fated AirAsia flight that crashed in December last year, killing all passengers and crew on board. Indonesia AirAsia Flight QZ8501 lost contact with air traffic control in bad weather on December 28. Meanwhile, another student created a sculpture on Clean India mission with an aim to create awareness among young generation to keep surroundings clean. Jan 20, 2015

BJP announces Kiran Bedi's name as chief ministerial candidate for Delhi polls

New Delhi, Jan 20 (ANI): Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) announced former IPS Officer and anti-graft activist Kiran Bedi as its chief ministerial candidate for Delhi assembly polls. The announcement was made by BJP Chief Amit Shah at party's headquarters. She will contest from the Krishna Nagar seat. The BJP also released the names of 61 other candidates who will contest the elections. Former student leader Nupur Sharma will contest against AAP Chief Arvind Kejriwal from the New Delhi seat. Senior leader Jagdish Mukhi will contest from the Janakpuri seat, while former Delhi BJP Chief Vijendra Gupta will contest from Rohini. However, BJP Delhi unit Chief Satish Upadhyay will not contest the elections. Jan 20, 2015

Police arrest 14 people suspected of communal violence in Muzaffarpur

Muzaffarpur, Jan 20 (ANI): Police arrested 14 people suspected of communal violence in Bihar that claimed three lives and charred several houses after body of a missing boy was discovered, said a senior officer. Angry mob rushed and set houses on fire in a village of Muzaffarpur district after the body of a Hindu boy, who was friendly with a Muslim girl, was discovered from an agricultural field. Additional Director General of Police Gupteshwar Pandey said a large number of police personnel had been deployed in the area to prevent any untoward incident and situation was peaceful. The state government has announced rebuilding of torched houses in the arson and compensation for the damage to properties. Jan 20, 2015

Indian Army arrests 11 tribal guerillas in Assam

Chirang, Jan 20 (ANI): Indian Army arrested 11 militants of banned National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) in Assam and recovered huge cache of arms and ammunition from their possession. Militants were apprehended on specific intelligence inputs from the Panbari forest area of Chirang district. Two pistols, two improvised explosive devices (IED) and nine detonators among other arms and ammunition were recovered from the rebels. NDFB is fighting for a separate homeland for indigenous Bodo tribesmen claiming that the tea-growing state has been flooded with outsiders. India has intensified army operations to hunt down tribal militants in Assam after rebels killed at least 80 people last December, the deadliest in the remote area in years. Jan 20, 2015

Interfaith harmony unites people in West Bengal

West Bengal, Jan 20 (ANI): Purulia city, located in eastern India's state of West Bengal, is known for communal harmony that exists between people of various faiths. The people of the district, without any religious bias, work together to earn livelihood for themselves and to improve their standard of living by providing helping hand to each other. A similar example is witnessed in a group of electricians of the village, comprising both Hindus and Muslims, who work together to electrify their city. Although sharing different beliefs, workers here do not discriminate each other on religious lines. Apart from their work, the group also participates in each others religious festivals and special occasions. The brotherhood and amity seen among the group reflects the age-old ethos of the country for which it is known in the world. Jan 20, 2015

Communal harmony flourishes as a Muslim builds Hindu temples for devotees

Kerala, Jan 20 (ANI): Tolerance and acceptance of differences, especially religious differences, is a characteristic of the Indian society. And over centuries individuals and institutions have contributed in their own special way to keep this legacy alive. One such example comes from India's southern state of Kerala. Here in Kozhikode region, a Muslim, Ibrahim, has built many temples for Hindus, reflecting respect for there religion. The initiative by Ibrahim has not only maintained amity and prosperity between two religions of the region but has also assisted in developing respect for him. Instances like these bring to the forefront the enduring spirit of communal harmony prevalent between different communities in India. Jan 20, 2015

Guinea reopens schools as Ebola fears settle

Guinea becomes the first of the worst-hit countries to reopen schools in the wake of the Ebola crisis, but many students and teachers stay away. Duration: 01:21 Jan 19, 2015

Egypt's Sisi urges Muslim fight on terrorism

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Monday said the fight against "terrorism" needs a new Muslim religious discourse in addition to security and military measures. Duration: 00:51 Jan 19, 2015

R K Laxman continues to be critical, suffers urinal infection

Pune, Jan 19 (ANI): Legendary cartoonist R K Laxman continued to be in a critical state after his health deteriorated on Saturday evening. He is currently on a life support system. Laxman, who is suffering from urinal infection, is admitted under the intensive care unit of 'Deenanath Mangeshkar' hospital in Pune. His daughter Usha Laxman said she hoped her father would recuperate soon. The cartoonist has suffered from several paralytic attacks in the past. The legend, 94, became known for his 'Common Man' cartoons which used to appear in the nation's best selling newspaper "The Times of India". Jan 19, 2015

Sunanda Murder Case: Shashi Tharoor might be questioned soon, says Bassi

New Delhi, Jan 19 (ANI): Delhi Police Commissioner BS Bassi said on Monday that the SIT investigating Sunanda Pushkar's murder case is working hard to come to a conclusion soon. Bassi said that all relevant people are being questioned in the matter and Shashi Tharoor will also be questioned soon in a day or two. He added that the team is carrying out investigation in full swing in the case. Jan 19, 2015

Government to boost public spending on infrastructure

Chennai, Jan 19 (ANI): Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday (January 19) said that the government will increase public spending on infrastructure in months to come. The government estimates the country needs to spend $800 billion on infrastructure to grow seven percent per annum, sharply higher than around 5.5 percent projected by the Reserve Bank of India for the current fiscal year that ends in March. Addressing Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) summit in India's southern Chennai city, Jaitley said that the public spending on infrastructure would have to increase because the old Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) model was under stress and needed to be revived. Jaitley had promised imminent changes pushing ahead key reforms such as the introduction of a nationwide sales tax. Jan 19, 2015

Supporter of A S Lovely attempts self-immolation

New Delhi, Jan 19 (ANI): Disappointed over Delhi Congress Chief Arvinder Singh Lovely not fighting the assembly elections in the national capital, one of his supporters, a male, attempted to self-immolate himself in the Gandhi Nagar area. The supporter doused himself with kerosene and threatened to self-immolate himself but was stopped from going ahead with his plan. Lovely's candidature was withdrawn from the upcoming assembly elections yesterday. He said he was honoured by the new role given to him by the party high command. Jan 19, 2015