Indias IT hub runs in midnight marathon

Bengaluru, Dec 21 (ANI): More than 10,000 people participated in a midnight marathon, presently in its eighth edition, in India’s IT hub Bengaluru in Karnataka. The marathon saw runners of all age groups, professional athletes and enthusiastic runners, taking part in full enthusiasm. President of IT Rotary Club Bengaluru, Rajeev Unnikrishnan, said the purpose behind organizing the marathon is to raise funds for building toilets, infrastructure development of schools across the city and ‘Swachh Bengaluru’, which is in the backdrop of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Clean India Mission. Dec 21, 2014

Time has come to restore Hindu values in the country: VHP

New Delhi, Dec 21 (ANI): Claiming that the right time has come to restore the Hindu values in the country, VHP patron Ashok Singhal today said that they have never wanted to convert the world but only to "win over its heart". Speaking at a book launch, Singhal said it was due to their "struggle" in the last 50 years that Hindus have "regained" the lost "empire" of Delhi after 800 years. 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

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

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

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

Differentiating reaction come in as VHP claims it re-converted at least 300 Christians in Gujarat

New Delhi, Dec 21 (ANI): Differentiating reaction come in as VHP continues its ‘Ghar Wapsi’ programme and claimed that it re-converted at least 300 tribal Christians back to Hinduism in Gujarat. While BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain & Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said that the re-conversion was voluntary and were not carried out by force, the opposition leaders had a different view. Congress leader Rashid Alvi said that such acts will give a wrong image of India to the world. JD (U) leader Ali Anwar said that all the secular and democratic forces of the country should and together against such forces. Meanwhile, CPI leader D Raja also said that there is nothing new and such acts are being carried out by these leaders since long. 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

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

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

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

Four workers die in petrochemical factory premises of Assam

Dibrugarh, Dec 21 (ANI): Four workers of a petrochemical factory, Brahmaputra Cracker and Polymer Limited (BCPL), in Assam died due to suffocation after they went inside a tank filled with nitrogen gas. The incident took place when the workers shouted due to shortage of oxygen while working in the tank. The workers were taken to a nearby hospital where they were declared brought dead. The incident angered thousands of co-workers who vandalised the company’s premises and tried to set it on fire. Police tried to control the situation and resorted to baton charge. Meanwhile, Central Industry Security Force personnel also pushed mediapersons, who were present during the incident, out of the factory’s premises. Dec 21, 2014