700 migrants feared dead in Mediterranean shipwreckA boat transporting migrants arrives in the port of Messina after a rescue operation at sea, in Sicily on April 18, 2015. — AFP

700 migrants feared dead in Mediterranean shipwreck

19 Apr 2015 | 3:45 PM

ROME: Seven hundred people are feared to have drowned when a fishing boat smuggling migrants to Europe capsized off Libya, the UN’s refugee agency said today, in what could be the deadliest Mediterranean migrant disaster yet.

[ + read story ]

Rome, April 19

Seven hundred people are feared to have drowned when a fishing boat smuggling migrants to Europe capsized off Libya, the UN’s refugee agency said today, in what could be the deadliest Mediterranean migrant disaster yet.

Only 28 persons survived the capsize, UNHCR spokeswoman Carlotta Sami told the Skytg24 news channel in Italy. The survivors indicated there had been more than 700 on board, she said.

The Maltese Navy put the numbers on board at around 650 and said an alert had come in around midnight local time yesterday.

“We have deployed our assets along with others from Italy and we are assisting in the rescue operation,” a Maltese navy spokesman told AFP today without giving any other details.

If confirmed, the tragedy would be by far the biggest in a growing catalogue of mass drownings of migrants attempting to reach the European Union on overcrowded, unseaworthy boats run by people smugglers.

The boat went down about 96 km off the Libyan coast and 193 km south of the Italian island of Lampedusa.

The disaster comes after a week in which two other shipwrecks left an estimated 450 people dead. More than 11,000 other would-be immigrants to Europe have been rescued by Italy’s coastguard and other boats.

Some 1,500 migrants have now drowned in the waters between Libya and Italy since the start of the year.

Aid organisations have called for a concerted international effort to put better search-and-rescue systems in place and for action to stem the unprecedented numbers of asylum seekers and migrants from Asia, the Middle East and Africa seeking to reach Europe. — AFP

PM brought land Bill to 'pay back' industrialists, says Rahul

PM brought land Bill to 'pay back' industrialists, says Rahul

19 Apr 2015 | 6:49 PM

NEW DELHI: Projecting the NDA government as “anti-farmer” and “pro-industrialist”, the Congress today declared full-scale war against it over the Land Acquisition Bill, with Rahul Gandhi accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of bringing ordinance on it to pay back ‘loan’ of industrialists.

BJP hits back; says Rahul telling white lies, should apologise to people

BJP hits back; says Rahul telling white lies, should apologise to people

19 Apr 2015 | 7:28 PM

NEW DELHI: Launching a scathing counter-attack against Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, the BJP termed as “white lies” his today’s offensive against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government.

Modi projects his govt as pro-poor; tells BJP MPs to reach out to people

Modi projects his govt as pro-poor; tells BJP MPs to reach out to people

19 Apr 2015 | 6:50 PM

NEW DELHI: On a day the rival Congress launched a massive offensive against his government’s proposed amendments to the Land Acquisition Bill, Prime Minister Narendra Modi asserted that all the efforts by the BJP-run dispensation at the Centre were aimed at the uplift of poor and weaker sections of society.

Yechury elected new General Secretary of CPI(M)

Yechury elected new General Secretary of CPI(M)

19 Apr 2015 | 6:52 PM

VISAKHAPATNAM : Senior CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury was today unanimously elected the new General Secretary of the party. The party also elected 91 members of its Central Committee and also the 16-member Politburo on the concluding day of its 21st congress here today.

Resume Foreign Secretary-level talks: Pak to India

Resume Foreign Secretary-level talks: Pak to India

19 Apr 2015 | 3:35 PM

LAHORE: Pakistan has called on India to resume Foreign Secretary-level talks to resolve all outstanding issues, saying with peace the menace of poverty, illiteracy and injustice in the region can be eradicated.

Net neutrality: TRAI says ‘shrill voices’ won’t win debate

Net neutrality: TRAI says ‘shrill voices’ won’t win debate

19 Apr 2015 | 4:50 PM

NEW DELHI: As the uproar continues in favour of Net neutrality, telecom watchdog TRAI Chairman Rahul Khullar today said “shrill voices” will not win the debate and the concept is not “practiced strictly” even in countries like the US and the UK.

2 J-K cops arrested as teenager killed in firing, probe ordered

2 J-K cops arrested as teenager killed in firing, probe ordered

19 Apr 2015 | 2:20 AM

SRINAGAR: Two policemen, including an officer, were arrested today after a 17-year-old boy was killed in police firing in Budgam district of central Kashmir, triggering violent clashes and prompting the state government to order a magisterial probe.

Travel pangs: Delhi-Dharamsala air fare more than trip to Singapore!

19 Apr 2015 | 2:16 AM

DHARAMSALA: With tourist season setting in, the air fare to Dharamsala has inexplicably shot up with a ticket costing as much as Rs 21,000 from Delhi.

Pension delay: 83-yr-old sets himself afire

Pension delay: 83-yr-old sets himself afire

19 Apr 2015 | 2:16 AM

JALANDHAR: The delay in getting old age pension of Rs 250 per month and the callous attitude of the administration today drove an 83-year-old man from Dhilwan to burn himself.

Centre to revisit new I-T return form

19 Apr 2015 | 7:33 PM

New Delhi: The government today said it would reconsider the new provisions — Aadhaar number, details of foreign travel and bank accounts — in the Income Tax Return (ITR) form and come out with a simplified form.

Pingalwara stall row resolved, protest ends

Pingalwara stall row resolved, protest ends

19 Apr 2015 | 2:33 AM

AMRITSAR: After evoking sharp criticism from various quarters, the SGPC today allocated an alternative site to the All India Pingalwara Charitable Society for setting up their stall near the main entrance of the Golden Temple here.

CITY FOCUS

Cong factions ‘unite’ to target govt

19 Apr 2015 | 1:25 AM

CHANDIGARH: The Punjab Congress is finally united … in hitting out at the Akali-BJP government, if not otherwise! Though both warring camps in the state unit of the party seem to be exercising restraint, at least for now, in trading barbs with each other, the two camps — one led by Punjab Congress chief Partap Bajwa and the other owing allegiance to former Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh — have hit out at the state government for the worsening law and order situation and jails being used as breeding grounds for anti-social elements.

Judicial remand of Raju extended

19 Apr 2015 | 1:25 AM

AMRITSAR: A local court today extended the judicial remand of three suspects in the cable operator’s suicide case by 14-days.

No

Non-procurement of wheat sparks protests

19 Apr 2015 | 1:25 AM

SANGRUR: Hundreds of farmers, including a large number of women, staged a dharna outside the district administrative complex (DC office) here today.

collapse stories
No value cut on broken wheat grains: Khattar

No value cut on broken wheat grains: Khattar

19 Apr 2015 | 12:34 AM

CHANDIGARH: To provide further relief to farmers whose crops were damaged in rain and hail, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar today announced that shrivelled and broken grains of wheat would be procured without any value cut.

Sharad Yadav meets ‘old friend’ Mufti

19 Apr 2015 | 12:32 AM

JAMMU: Three days after six parties of the erstwhile Janata Parivar merged with the sole aim to stop Narendra Modi’s juggernaut, veteran socialist leader Sharad Yadav today had a lunch meeting with Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed.

Indian economy clearly on recovery path: Jaitley

Indian economy clearly on recovery path: Jaitley

19 Apr 2015 | 4:13 PM

WASHINGTON: Indian economy is now clearly on a recovery path with a 7.4 per cent growth in the first three quarters and the new government is committed to maintain overall macroeconomic conditions on a sustained basis, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said.

NoYuvraj Singh and JP Duminy during the match against Sunrisers Hyderabad on Saturday. PTI

DD goes live with Duminy show

19 Apr 2015 | 1:00 AM

VISAKHAPATNAM: Skipper Jean-Paul Duminy led from the front with a brilliant all-round display as Delhi Daredevils pipped Sunrisers Hyderabad by four runs in a thrilling IPL match.

Russell powers KKR to four wicket win

19 Apr 2015 | 1:00 AM

PUNE: Andre Russell’s spectacular all-round performance helped defending champions Kolkata Knight Riders beat Kings XI Punjab by 4 wickets in their IPL match.

PCI prez comes out with a letter alleging financial irregularities

19 Apr 2015 | 1:00 AM

NEW DELHI: Yet another skeleton has tumbled out of the closet to suggest that corruption was rampant in the suspended Paralympic Committee of India (PCI).

collapse stories
LIFE+STYLE
  • Bear(d) hug

    Bear(d) hug

    Doodled on Punjabi singer Vattan Sandhu’s tee is—‘You can always trust a man with beard and glasses’.

  • Star Track
  • Twinkle’s daughter learns yoga

    Twinkle’s daughter learns yoga

    Bollywood actress-turned-columnist and interior designer Twinkle Khanna shared an adorable picture of her two-and-a-half-year-old daughter Nitara practicing yoga.

  • TrendsDiscovering a new galaxy

    Discovering a new galaxy

    The seemingly unstoppable behemoth was shaken. The disapprovals that it had arrogantly disregarded were finally catching up with it and causing a dent where it hurt the most – the sales figures. The Galaxy S5 hadn’t been dubbed a complete flop but the sales numbers were not encouraging.

  • Out of the closet

  • more Trends...
  • SpectrumWomen on Board

    Women on Board

    Gender diversity has eluded Parliament as politicians from the OBC and Dalit streams have stymied efforts to reserve 30 per cent of the seats for women.

more Spectrum...

YOUR WORLD AND YOU