Senior DMK leader D Napoleon joins BJP

Chennai, Dec 21 (ANI): Former Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Senior DMK leader D Napoleon on Sunday joined BJP in the presence of party President Amit Shah. Napoleon's induction into the BJP is seen as a major gain for the BJP in the run-up to the assembly election scheduled in 2016. Shah said that BJP will announce its NDA candidate before going to polls in 2016. The BJP will lead the NDA alliance in Tamil Nadu to face the 2016 Assembly polls in the State. Dec 21, 2014

BJP govt aimed at controlling inflation, promoting Make in India policy: Amit Shah

Chennai, Dec 21 (ANI): BJP President Amit Shah on Sunday said that the year 2014 is important in the history of India as BJP came into power with full majority. He said that the government came into power with an aim to control inflation which had gone high during UPA tenure. Shah also praised the 'Make in India' policy promoted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi which has enhanced the industrial set up of many foreign companies. Dec 21, 2014

Amit Shah praises PM Modi's foreign policy, says BJP against forceful religion conversion

Chennai, Dec 21 (ANI): BJP President Amit Shah on Sunday praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his advanced foreign policy which led to improved relations between India and other foreign nations. He also said that under the government's 'Jan Dhan Yojana', many families have been able to open their bank accounts for easy financial transactions. He also said that BJP government was successful in bringing back the 5 Indian fishermen from Sri Lanka who were given death punishment. Shah then said that the government is against forceful conversion of religion and is ready to pass an anti-conversion bill in Parliament, but it is now up to the other secular parties to take a stand. Dec 21, 2014

Attacks increase since handover to Afghan forces

The number of attacks on Afghan security forces has dramatically increased since the transfer of combat duties from international troops and many fear this will only get worse with the full withdrawal fast approaching. Dec 21, 2014

Venkaiah Naidu appeals opposition to let RS function, says voluntary conversion not wrong

Hyderabad, Dec 21 (ANI): Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu on Sunday appealed the opposition parties to let the Rajya Sabha function efficiently. He said that the opposition can debate, discuss, decide and oppose the bills proposed but the obstructions tactics needs to be stopped as it is not in interest of people. Further, talking about the conversion or re-conversion issue, Naidu said that people are getting converted voluntarily and that there is nothing wrong if that is happening. If also said that if in any case, force is being used then the state government will take action and if it fails to do the same, the central government will make a law over the same and this needs cooperation by opposition. Dec 21, 2014

UN Chief Ban Ki- Moon pledges to stand with Ebola-hit countries

Guinea/ Mali, Dec 21 (ANI): United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon visited Guinea and cautioned that much remained to be done to wipe out Ebola in the West African country. During his visit to the Guinean capital, Ban said that joint national, regional and global efforts have significantly slowed the spread of the deadly virus and pledged to support Guinea in its fight against the disease. World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Margaret Chan reminded representatives from donor nations that back in May the Guinean government had reported no Ebola cases, and emphasized the importance of community engagement. During a press conference alongside Guinean President Alpha Conde, Ban offered the help of the UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER). Ban and Conde, accompanied by Chan, as well as his Special Envoy for Ebola, David Nabarro, and the head of UNMEER, Anthony Banbury, later visited an Ebola facility run by the French military. Flying on to Mali later, Ban met with President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta in Bamako. Dec 21, 2014

RSS Chief calls India a 'Hindu Rashtra', Politicos condemn

New Delhi, Dec 21 (ANI): Politicos on Sunday condemned RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat after he described India as a 'Hindu rashtra' and made a strong pitch for Hindu awakening. Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said that he agreed with Bhagwat's statement. However, Congress leader Rashid Alvi slamming Bhagwat said that RSS leaders are harming the nation's peace. JD (U) leader Ali Anwar and CPI leader D Raja also expressed similar sentiments. Dec 21, 2014

Politicos react as Jaitley firm on pushing coal and insurance bill despite political obstructionism

New Delhi, Dec 21 (ANI): Politicos reacted on Sunday after Finance Minister Arun Jaitley asserted that the government is "determined" to push through the Insurance Bill and the Coal Bill, despite political obstructionism. BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain said that the government is trying to pass many bills which are beneficial for the country but the opposition is obstructing by creating a ruckus in the parliament. Congress leader Rashid Alvi said that it is on the parliament to decide which bill has to be passed. JD (U) Ali Anwar said that his party will make the best efforts to not to let the bills pass. Dec 21, 2014

Politicos react after exit polls predict BJP sweep in Jharkhand; hung assembly in JandK

New Delhi, Dec 21 (ANI): Politicos reacted on Sunday after exit polls of the assembly elections held in Jammu and Kashmir and Jharkhand predicted a clean sweep for BJP in Jharkhand and hung assembly in Jammu and Kashmir. Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said that Modi wave is clearly being seen all over the world and that he is sure BJP will make its government in JandK and Jharkhand. However, Congress leader Rashid Alvi and JD (U) leader Ali Anwar refuted the exit polls. Dec 21, 2014

Pakistan to challenge bail to Lakhvi: Abdul Basit

New Delhi, Dec 21 (ANI): Pakistan High Commissioner to India, Abdul Basit said that mastermind of 2008 Mumbai attacks was put under house arrest immediately after a court granted him bail. Pakistani prosecutors are to appeal against a court decision to grant bail to a man accused of plotting a militant assault that killed 166 people and seriously strained ties between the nuclear-armed neighbours. The decision on Thursday to grant bail to Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi came two days after Pakistan's worst ever militant attack in a school in Peshawar city. Basit said that the Pakistani government will challenge court’s order. The Pakistani government appeared to have been taken by surprise by the court decision and state prosecutor Chaudhry Azhar said it would be challenged. Dec 21, 2014

India exports first warship to Mauritius

Kolkata, Dec 21 (ANI): India for the first time exported an indigenous warship, ‘Barracuda’, to Mauritius. The 1,300-tonnes ship was made by Garden Reach Shipyard & Engineers Limited. The offshore patrol vessel (OPV) is the first order ever received by India from another country. Minister of State for Defence Rao Inderjit Singh handed over Barracuda to Mauritius at Kolkata dock and congratulated the shipyard for delivering the ship on time. He further said that they have received two orders from Sri Lanka for OPV, which are being developed in Goa shipyard. The vessel is capable of delivering a top speed of 22.5 knots (42 kilometres an hour). Dec 21, 2014

Bengaluru boys live heart travels for 45 minutes to save Russian childs life in Chennai

Bengaluru/ Chennai, Dec 21 (ANI): Heart of a two-year-old brain dead boy was airlifted from Karnataka and transplanted in another boy in Tamil Nadu. The boy, who was declared brain dead in Bengaluru’s Manipal hospital could not see the light of the world for many days, donated his heart to a Russian boy at a tender age of two. In spite of being distraught after losing his only child, father of the donor, Amit Upadhyay said he wanted to donate organ of his kid. Meanwhile, the Russian kid needed a healthy heart in Chennai city. The authorities of Manipal Hospital then came into action and informed the zonal coordination committee of Karnataka. The committee then came in contact with Fortis Malar hospital in Chennai and the heart was airlifted through a chartered flight. The surgery lasted for nearly eight hours and was successful. Dec 21, 2014

Amitabh Bachchan meets PM Modi in Delhi

New Delhi, Dec 21 (ANI): Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi. Bachchan has been the brand ambassador of Modi’s home state of Gujarat. Both were dressed in white Indian ethnic clothes ‘Kurta-Pyjamas’ and wrapped themselves in stole to beat the winter chill that engulfed the capital. “Shri Amitabh Bachchan met the Prime Minister,” read a post on the Twitter handle @PMOIndia, along with a photograph of the two of them. Soon after the meeting, Modi put up a photo of the meeting on his Facebook page. On October 29, Bachchan swept streets in Mumbai as part of the ‘Clean India’ (Swachh Bharat Abhiyan) drive launched by Modi. Dec 21, 2014

Three killed, four injured in IED blast in Imphal

Imphal, Dec 21 (ANI): Three persons were killed and four were injured near bus depot in Khuyathong area of Imphal on Sunday morning after an IED blast. Four people are injured and one person's condition is critical. Immediately after the blast, police officials and forensic experts rushed at the spot to investigate the incident. Police said the IED planted by the roadside near Imphal market exploded killing three labourers and injuring four others. The injured have been rushed to the nearby RIMS hospital. All the dead and injured are all non-local migrant labors, including one from Nagaland. Further details are awaited. Dec 21, 2014

Politicos react after another BJP leader caught on video tape using threatening words

Jaipur, Dec 21 (ANI): Politicos reacted on Sunday after another BJP leader was caught on a video tape using threatening words. The video showed BJP MLA from Ladpura in Kota, Bhawani Singh Rajawat, wooing and threatening voters during the recent local bodies’ elections. State BJP President Ashok Parnami, reacting over the incident, said that he has no knowledge of any such video and incase any such surfaces then investigation will be carried out in the matter and appropriate action will be taken. Congress leader Archana Sharma, however, accused BJP of accepting unprecedented mandate with arrogance. Earlier on Friday, BJP MLA Prahlad Gunjal was suspended from the party after being caught allegedly threatening the Kota district CMHO over phone. Dec 21, 2014