Monday, May 30, 2016
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President voices concern over attacks on African nationalsPresident Pranab Mukherjee addresses the Seventh Annual Heads of Mission Conference at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi on Monday. PTI

President voices concern over attacks on African nationals

Cabbie assaulted in Delhi as Centre assures speedy trial to Congolese man’s family30 May 2016 | 9:59 PM

NEW DELHI: Amid rising tempers in wake of the recent killing of a Congolese man in a brawl, some African nationals allegedly beat up a taxi driver here on Monday even as President Pranab Mukherjee expressed concern over a string of alleged attacks on African nationals in the country.

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New Delhi, May 30

Amid rising tempers in wake of the recent killing of a Congolese man in a brawl, some African nationals allegedly beat up a taxi driver here on Monday even as President Pranab Mukherjee expressed concern over a string of alleged attacks on African nationals in the country.

The Centre, meanwhile, assured the murdered Congolese national’s family of a speedy trial and prosecution of all those responsible for the crime.

It will be most unfortunate if the people of India were to "dilute our long tradition of friendship with the people of Africa”, Mukherjee said.

Addressing the delegates of 7th Annual Heads of Mission Conference who called on him, the President said, “It would be most unfortunate if the people of India were to dilute our long tradition of friendship with the people of Africa and the welcome we have always extended to them in our country.”

African students in India should have no reason to fear for their safety and security."

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A taxi driver was allegedly beaten up for refusing to take extra passengers in the early hours of Saturday at CDR Chowk in Mehrauli. Nuruddin, a driver from cab aggregator Ola, claimed that six African nationals—among them a woman—beat him up when he refused to allow more than four passengers in the vehicle.

He suffered injuries on his face and is undergoing treatment at Jai Prakash Narayan Trauma Centre. The men fled but the driver detained the woman, police said.

The incident comes days after six African nationals were attacked in the national capital.

A Congo national was beaten to death after an argument over hiring an autorickshaw in the city earlier this month. A few days later, a Nigerian student was beaten up by locals after an argument over parking. Though police claim these are stray incidents, African students in the country have voiced their concern.

Meanwhile, several African students staged a protest at Jantar Mantar on Monday to demand swift action.

“We want the government’s support as the incidents of attacks on people from African continent are increasing in the city. The Indian government needs to ensure safety of African nationals and act swiftly on such incidents,” a protester said.

Meanwhile, a senior official of External Affairs Ministry (MEA), who met the family members of Masonda Ketada Oliver of Congo at the airport on their arrival here, assured them of the speedy trial.

He informed them that the Government would bear all expenses related to dispatch of mortal remains of Oliver, MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup said.

He said the family thanked the government for the assistance.

The 23-year-old Congolese national Oliver, who was a French teacher at a private institute, was beaten to death in Vasant Kunj area of South Delhi following a brawl over hiring of an autorickshaw.

Envoys of African countries had expressed shock and outrage over the killing, following which India assured them of safety of African nationals.

‘Need to make youngsters aware of age-old India-Africa ties’

Addressing the delegates of 7th Annual Heads of Mission Conference, President Pranab Mukherjee said, “We shall have to create appropriate awareness in the minds of our youngsters who may not know the history, age old relations (between India and Africa)...India has had trading relations with African countries for centuries and everyone of the 54 countries of Africa has a thriving Indian community doing business, industry etc.

"We cannot allow these to be jeopardised in anyway and create a bad precedent which is not the ethos, which is not part of the core values of our civilisation," a Rashtrapati Bhavan statement quoted Mukherjee as having told the delegation.

The President said he was happy that Ministry of External Affairs in consultation with Ministry of Home Affairs is proactively following up on the few isolated incidents that have occurred and working closely with authorities to ensure the safety of African students in India.

Mukherjee said the bonds between the people of India and the people of Africa have been forged since time immemorial.

"As a political activist, as a member of parliament, I have noticed how close we (India and Africa) are with each other. Almost a century ago Rabindranath Tagore wrote a beautiful poem titled Africa expressing his anguish, pathos, sense of pain on apartheid," he said.

Mukherjee said leaders like Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt and Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana stood shoulder to shoulder with Jawaharlal Nehru at the Afro-Asian Conference in Bandung in 1955 and in founding the Non-aligned Movement in 1961.

"Nelson Mandela was an embodiment of Gandhian principles.

India led the long international struggle for the end of colonialism and apartheid in Africa," the President said.

The President said in 1946 Government of India decided to stop any trade relationship with South Africa till apartheid was not lifted.

"At that time decision was a bold decision because South Africa accounted for five per cent of total international trade with India," he said.

Mukherjee said it was only in 1994, after the end of apartheid, that he as Commerce Minister restored normal trade relations with that country.

"Whole of India stood in support of African leaders like Jomo Kenyatta, Julius Nyerere and Kenneth Kaunda during this freedom struggle," he said. — Agencies

Rain, high wind hit North India; 12 dead in UP

Rain, high wind hit North India; 12 dead in UP

30 May 2016 | 10:10 PM

NEW DELHI: At least 12 people were killed across Uttar Pradesh due to storm, lightning and heavy rain, an official said on Monday. Meanwhile, heavy rain accompanied by strong winds lashed parts of Punjab and Haryana, bringing down the temperature. And in Pink City Jaipur, a high-speed squall hit the city and adjoining areas, bringing respite from the hot weather.

It’s about celebrating tech that India creates: Microsoft CEO Nadella

It’s about celebrating tech that India creates: Microsoft CEO Nadella

30 May 2016 | 6:15 PM

NEW DELHI: India-born CEO of Microsoft Satya Nadella on Monday said developers and entrepreneurs from India are playing a key role in driving innovation-both in the country and outside-and the company wants to be the platform for creators here.

Mumbai cops want ‘roast’ video of Sachin, Lata pulled out

Mumbai cops want ‘roast’ video of Sachin, Lata pulled out

30 May 2016 | 5:42 PM

MUMBAI: The Mumbai police have asked online video hosting sites like Google and YouTube to pull out a video ‘roasting’ cricketer Sachin Tendulkar and singer Lata Mangeshkar after the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena filed a police complaint.

PMET rescheduled, June 11 is new date

PMET rescheduled, June 11 is new date

30 May 2016 | 7:59 PM

FARIDKOT: Baba Farid University of Health Sciences (BFUHS) on Monday evening changed the date of Punjab Medical Entrance Test (PMET). The PMET will be held on June 11 instead of June 12 as announced earlier.

Ban on large diesel vehicles a ‘transient phase’, says Jaitley

Ban on large diesel vehicles a ‘transient phase’, says Jaitley

30 May 2016 | 3:38 PM

TOKYO: Playing down the ban on registration of large diesel vehicles in the National Capital Region, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said it is a “transient phase” and Japanese auto giant Suzuki is unlikely to be impacted given the overall large market it has got in India.

Drowned baby picture captures Mediterranean tragedy

Drowned baby picture captures Mediterranean tragedy

30 May 2016 | 10:10 PM

ROME: A photograph of a drowned migrant baby in the arms of a German rescuer was distributed on Monday by a humanitarian organisation aiming to persuade European authorities to ensure safe passage to migrants, after hundreds are feared to have drowned in the Mediterranean last week.

Narayanasamy calls on Puducherry LG, stakes claim to form govt

Narayanasamy calls on Puducherry LG, stakes claim to form govt

30 May 2016 | 12:35 PM

PUDUCHERRY: Congress leader V. Narayanasamy on Monday called on Puducherry Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi and formally staked claim to form government in the Union Territory.

AAP MP Khalsa denies backing Swaraj Party

AAP MP Khalsa denies backing Swaraj Party

30 May 2016 | 1:55 PM

CHANDIGARH: A day after the Punjab unit of Yogendra Yadav’s Swaraj Abhiyan announced a regional political party here on Sunday, Fatehgarh Sahib MP Harinder Singh Khalsa clarified that he did not back the newly formed party.

Sandhu becomes first Indian to play in European top league

Sandhu becomes first Indian to play in European top league

30 May 2016 | 6:33 PM

NEW DELHI: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, the 24-year-old goalkeeper from Chandigarh, has achieved a historic feat as he became the first Indian to feature in a top-tier league match in Europe by turning out for his Norwegian side Stabaek FC.

Hacker seeks CBI probe into alleged Dawood-Khadse calls

Hacker seeks CBI probe into alleged Dawood-Khadse calls

30 May 2016 | 9:07 PM

MUMBAI: A Gujarat-based person, who claims to have hacked the call records of Dawood Ibrahim, today filed a petition in Bombay High Court seeking protection for himself and CBI probe against Maharashtra minister Eknath Khadse for alleged calls between him and the underworld don.


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Parties file nominations for RS polls

Parties file nominations for RS polls

30 May 2016 | 7:23 PM

PATNA/ JAIPUR: Janata Dal (United) leader Sharad Yadav, noted lawyer and former BJP MP Ram Jethmalani, Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad's daughter Misa Bharti, and BJP leaders M Venkiah Naidu and party vice-president Om Prakash Mathur were among those who filed their nominations on Monday for Rajya Sabha elections.

CITY FOCUS

Pollution on mind, UT plans electric buses

Pollution on mind, UT plans electric buses

30 May 2016 | 1:37 AM

CHANDIGARH: To reduce pollution being caused by the ever-increasing number of vehicles, the Administration is contemplating starting electric buses in the city. A company made a presentation on electric buses before senior officers of the Administration on Friday.

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Bhagat Singh’s grandnephew dies in Himachal road accident

30 May 2016 | 2:02 AM

SHIMLA: Shaheed Bhagat Singh’s grandnephew Abhitej Sandhu, who was injured in a motorbike accident at Maglad near Rampur in Shimla district late last evening, succumbed to his injuries in a Rampur hospital today.

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Beant Singh’s grandson dies of bullet injury

30 May 2016 | 10:13 PM

CHANDIGARH: Assassinated Punjab Chief Minister Beant Singh’s grandson Harkirat Singh (40) died at his house in strange circumstances here today.

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Badal all praise for Modi, says Centre helps state

30 May 2016 | 1:26 AM

LAMBI: Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal here today lavished praise on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, while countering PPCC chief Capt Amarinder Singh’s recent statement that it was the Congress government led by Dr Manmohan Singh which had cared for Punjab.

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Haryana submits reports on Jat protests, Murthal gangrape to high court

Haryana submits reports on Jat protests, Murthal gangrape to high court

30 May 2016 | 5:30 PM

CHANDIGARH: The Haryana Government submitted former top policeman Prakash Singh committee’s report on February’s violent Jat protests for reservation to the Punjab and Haryana High Court in sealed covers on Monday.

Rs1,143-cr horticulture project gets WB nod

Rs1,143-cr horticulture project gets WB nod

30 May 2016 | 1:15 AM

SHIMLA: If all goes as targeted, farmers will get the root-stock based certified plant material and controlled atmospheric stores (CAS) to double their productivity under the ambitious Rs 1,143 crore horticulture modernization project.

Ghansali cloudburst toll mounts to four, 3 missing

Ghansali cloudburst toll mounts to four, 3 missing

30 May 2016 | 12:41 AM

MUSSOORIE: Four persons died in Chinyali Saud and Dunda tehsil of Uttarkashi district in the cloudburst that wreaked havoc in Ghansali yesterday. Besides, three persons, who were in forest with their cattle, are reportedly missing.

Bleaching kills 35% of corals in northern and central parts of Great Barrier Reef

Bleaching kills 35% of corals in northern and central parts of Great Barrier Reef

30 May 2016 | 1:55 PM

MELBOURNE: Mass bleaching has killed 35 per cent of corals on northern and central sections of Australia’s iconic Great Barrier Reef, scientists said on Monday, with the current event at the World Heritage Site much more extreme than measured before. After months of intensive aerial and underwater surveys, researchers from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies have released an initial estimate of the death toll from coral bleaching.

Indian missiles, copters, subs: Anil Ambani's ambitious defence plan

Indian missiles, copters, subs: Anil Ambani's ambitious defence plan

30 May 2016 | 4:00 PM

NEW DELHI/MUMBAI: Anil Ambani's Reliance Group has never made a military helicopter, missile system or submarine in its history but that isn't stopping the Indian tycoon from seeking to win contracts to manufacture all of that military hardware and more.

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Cook becomes youngest to score 10,000 Test runs, breaks Sachin’s record

30 May 2016 | 9:41 PM

CHESTER-LE-STREET (UK): England captain Alastair Cook became the youngest batsman to score 10,000 Test runs, breaking Sachin Tendulkar’s record, on the fourth day of the second Test against Sri Lanka here on Monday.

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Sushil, Narsingh shouldn't be used as pawns in WFI politics: HC

30 May 2016 | 10:22 PM

NEW DELHI: Terming it as "unfortunate" that two world class wrestlers were at loggerheads with each other, over who will represent India at the Rio Olympics, the Delhi High Court on Monday remarked they should not be used as "pawns" in the politics of the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI).

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Shiva Thapa hopeful of more Indian boxers in Rio

30 May 2016 | 10:29 PM

MUMBAI: The lone Indian boxer to have qualified for Olympics so far, Shiva Thapa said he was hopeful that more boxers would make the cut for Rio even though only one qualifying event was left on the calender.

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