Politicos condemn attack on CPI leader Govind Pansare, wife

New Delhi, Feb 17 (ANI): Political leaders cutting across party lines on Tuesday condemned the attack on senior Communist leader Govind Pansare and his wife Uma. Leaders of various political asked Maharashtra government to ensure that the culprits are arrested and an in-depth probe is held. The couple was seriously injured after unknown men opened fire at them in Kolhapur on Monday. According reports, the assailants fired gunshots at the couple at around 8 a.m. when they were out for a morning walk. The assailants, who fired at least four rounds from close range at the couple, fled the scene after the incident. The Maharashtra Police have launched a massive manhunt to nab the assailants Meanwhile, Govind Pansare is said to be recovering well to medical care but his condition is still critical. His wife is out of danger. Feb 17, 2015

Organiser's article on AAP not BJP, media bringing up story on BJP and RSS relations for more sales:

New Delhi, Feb 17 (ANI): Organiser, the RSS mouthpiece seems now increasingly emerging as a critical mirror for BJP and the party-led government at the Centre. In its latest issue, the magazine has looked into the reasons for BJP's defeat in Delhi at the hands of Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party. In a cover story titled 'Landslide Victory, Uphill Task', the magazine stated that AAP won because it cornered all Congress and BSP votes, but it also castigated BJP for making strategic mistakes. Talking about the same, Editor of the Organiser, Prafulla Ketkar said that picking upon word and showing that the whole story revolves around the same is not correct and clarified that the article is on AAP and not BJP. He said that the Organiser has just reviewed Delhi polls. Slamming the mainstream media, Ketkar also said that it is not right for the mainstream media and unethical to bring up stories on relations between RSS and BJP over every issue and topic just because it sells more. Feb 17, 2015

Will work with Bloomberg to advance 'Smart Cities' initiative: Modi after meeting Michael Bloomberg

New Delhi, Feb 17 (ANI): United Nations Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change, Michael Bloomberg met Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi. Bloomberg, also the founder of financial software, data and media company Bloomberg LP, had earlier met Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Urban Development Minister Venkaiah Naidu, with bids to help India develop smart cities. PM Modi termed his meeting with former New York City mayor as very productive, adding that the two leaders would work together to take forward the 'Smart Cities' initiative. The Prime Minister took to twitter to share news of the meeting. "My friend @MikeBloomberg and I had a great meeting! We will work together to advance the Smart Cities Initiative," he posted. Modi also retweeted a post by Bloomberg. "Prime Minister @NarendraModi and I share the belief that #Cities are key to driving innovation and progress," Bloomberg had written. Feb 17, 2015

Bus plunges into gorge in Madhya Pradesh, 10 killed

Dhar, Feb 17 (ANI): A private bus carrying around 60 passengers on board plunged into a gorge near Machaliya Ghat in Dhar district of Madhya Pradesh, killing over 10 passengers including a minor and a woman. Other than that, over 20 were left injured when the incident took place late Monday evening. The bus was on its way to Galiakot in Rajasthan from Indore and the mishap occurred at the Indore-Ahmedabad national highway. According to reports, the injured are currently undergoing treatment in different hospitals of Jhabua district. State Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has reportedly announced a compensation of one lakh rupees to the deceased's family. Feb 17, 2015

Devotees across India throng temples to mark 'Mahashivaratri'

New Delhi/ Haridwar/ Allahabad, Feb 17 (ANI): Thousands of devout Hindus thronged temples and congregated at the banks of holy rivers across India to celebrate festival of 'Mahashivaratri', better known as Lord Shiva's wedding anniversary, with religious fervour on Tuesday. The Hindu festival of Mahashivaratri is celebrated every year, as devotees offer golden apple, fruits, milk and observe fast in reverence of Lord Shiva. The magnificently decorated 'Gauri Shankar temple' in New Delhi witnessed crowd of devotees, as they flocked in large numbers to offer prayers to Lord Shiva. The temples in Uttar Pradesh immersed into devotional spirit with devotees offering prayer and lighting 'diyas' or earthen lamps to mark the festivity of Mahashivaratri. The pilgrims and devotees chant holy words--"Bol Bum" and "Har Har Mahadev"-- in praise of Lord Shiva, as they took holy dip at the river bank. Devotees also thronged temples in Allahabad city of Uttar Pradesh with assortment of religious offerings like 'belpatra' (aegle marmelos leaf) flowers, honey and milk on the 'Shiva Lingam' (a representation of Hindu deity Shiva) while others made sculpture of lingam with sand at the river bank. Feb 17, 2015

Raebareli Couple to leave property worth millions to their pampered monkey 'Chunmun'

Raebareli, Feb 17 (ANI): Presenting yet another example of human-animal loving and affectionate relations, a couple from Raebareli district of Uttar Pradesh has decided to leave their property worth millions to their adopted monkey, Chunmun. It happened like this that one day, Savista Brajesh saw a female monkey falling off from a height and she had a baby monkey attached to her. That was the day the couple decided to adopt the baby when the mother died. The couple does not have a child of their own and looks after Chunmun like their own baby. The duo has decided to leave their house worth rupees seven million, a 200 yard plot, and bank balance worth millions to Chunmun after they are gone. People might call it superstition, added Brajesh, but ever since Chunmun became part of the family, they have seen prosperity. Feb 17, 2015

Pakistan releases 173 Indian prisoners

Amritsar, Feb 17 (ANI): Pakistan released 173 Indian prisoners, mostly fishermen. As the released men repatriated to the Indian Territory through Wagah border in Punjab, many touched their country's soil with forehead. The fishermen were arrested for illegal fishing in Pakistani waters. India shares an expansive oceanic border with Pakistan without any perceptible demarcation and fishermen on both sides ignore rules while netting their catch. Tensions between the nuclear-armed neighbors have recently escalated over cross-border firing in the region, giving rise to serious concerns about the security of the region. India in the meantime is planning to send new foreign secretary, S Jaishankar, to Islamabad in what is being viewed as an effort to revive the stalled dialogue. Feb 17, 2015

Nobel Laureate Kailash Satyarthi seeks new law to check child labour in India

New Delhi, Feb 17 (ANI): Nobel laureate and child rights activist, Kailash Satyarthi sought a new law to keep a check on child labour in India. Satyarthi estimated that 60 million children, or 6 percent of the country's population, are forced into work. This, he believes, has nothing to do with parental poverty, illiteracy or ignorance. Satyarthi, 61, rooted for amendment to the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act in the upcoming session of Parliament which could ensure rehabilitation. Feb 17, 2015

CPI demands arrest of attackers who shot Govind Pansare

Mumbai/ Nagpur, Feb 17 (ANI): Workers of the Communist Party of India (CPI) staged a protest in Maharashtra, demanding immediate arrest of the gunmen who shot at their leader. Unidentified gunmen shot at senior communist leader Govind Pansare and his wife Uma in Kolhapur city while the couple was on a morning walk early on Monday. In Mumbai, the protesting and slogan-shouting CPI members tried to climb the gate of state Secretariat but the police managed to stop them. They also tried to block the traffic in the city. The protesters threatened to intensify their stir if the shooters were not arrested in a day. Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has promised to nab the culprit and said that an inquiry at the highest level would be undertaken into this attack. Feb 17, 2015

Reactions come in over India's nuclear deal with Sri Lanka

New Delhi/ Chennai, Feb 17 (ANI): Congress party took a dig at the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party after the Narendra Modi-led government signed a nuclear energy agreement with Sri Lanka. This deal is India's first breakthrough with the new government of the tiny Indian Ocean island where China has been building ports and highways in a diplomatic push in recent years. Under the deal, India will help Sri Lanka build its nuclear energy infrastructure, including training of personnel, the Indian foreign ministry said. Later, India could also sell light small-scale nuclear reactors to Sri Lanka which wants to establish 600 MW of nuclear capacity by 2030, a Sri Lankan official and an Indian analyst said earlier. Meanwhile, Tamil Activist Thirumurugan Gandhi also the founder of May 17 Movement for the cause of Eelam Tamil society's struggle for a separate Eelam Nation, criticised the growing ties between the two nations. Feb 17, 2015

President Mukherjee hosts banquet for his Sri Lankan counterpart

New Delhi, Feb 17 (ANI): President Pranab Mukherjee hosted a banquet for his Sri Lankan counterpart, Maithripala Sirisena in New Delhi. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, his predecessor Manmohan Singh and other senior leaders attended the event in the presidential palace, Rashtrapati Bhawan. The two neighbours had signed a nuclear energy agreement earlier. This deal is India's first breakthrough with the new government of the tiny Indian Ocean island where China has been building ports and highways in a diplomatic push in recent years. Under the deal, India will help Sri Lanka build its nuclear energy infrastructure, including training of personnel, the Indian foreign ministry said. Earlier in the day, Health Minister JP Nadda met his Sri Lankan counterpart, Rajitha Senaratne, and discussed health related issues. Feb 17, 2015