SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI



THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
W O R L D

India, Pak to identify new visa categories
Islamabad, July 29
India and Pakistan will identify new categories of visa applicants, including journalists and intellectuals, which will be granted visas on a priority and have other concessions and are likely to set up a tourist category, during talks in New Delhi next week.

Pakistan's Aftab Ahmed Sherpao, Minister for Water and Power, greets Mr V. K. Dhuggal, India's Secretary for Water Resources, in Islamabad Pakistan's Aftab Ahmed Sherpao (left), Minister for Water and Power, greets Mr V. K. Dhuggal, India's Secretary for Water Resources, in Islamabad on Thursday. Pakistan and India began talks on Thursday to settle a 20-year-old row over plans to dam the waters of a lake in Kashmir.
— Reuters photo

Indo-Pak talks on Wullar Barrage begin
Islamabad, July 29
Officials of India and Pakistan today began two-day talks here to resolve differences over the construction of the Wullar Barrage by India in Jammu and Kashmir.

Aziz rules out rollback of Pak N-programme
Islamabad, July 29
Pakistan’s Prime Minister-in-waiting Shaukat Aziz has firmly ruled out any rollback in the country’s nuclear programme, which he termed a deterrent against foreign aggression.

5 charged with beating up Sikh in USA
New York, July 29
The police has charged five persons with harassing and beating up a Sikh in a suburb of New York after hurling insults on him and his companion. They could get up to 15 years of imprisonment if convicted.

Taiwan's two combat-ready submarines, the Sea Tiger and the Sea Dragon, take part in naval exercises in the Taiwan Strait

Taiwan's two combat-ready submarines, the Sea Tiger and the Sea Dragon, take part in naval exercises in the Taiwan Strait in southern Taiwan on Thursday. The exercises, following China's war games off the island, were intended to boost public support for a huge arms purchase deal with the United States that includes eight diesel-engine submarines. — Reuters





Bosnian Croat Army General Tihomir Blaskic, acquitted of ethnic cleansing charges
Bosnian Croat Army General Tihomir Blaskic, indicted for war crimes by the international criminal tribunal for former Yugoslavia, is seen at the Zagreb airport in this 1996 file photo. The UN war crimes tribunal cut former Bosnian Croat General's 45-year jail sentence to nine years on appeal on Thursday, acquitting him of more than a dozen ethnic cleansing charges from the Bosnian war. — Reuters




EARLIER STORIES

 

China opens first research station on Arctic
Beijing, July 29
China has established its first scientific research station in the Arctic area, a move hailed by the top Chinese leadership as one that would benefit generations. The research station, christened as the “Yellow River Station,” is located on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen, and was officially opened yesterday.

Democrats back Kerry
Boston, July 29
The Democratic Party nominated John Kerry to challenge President George W. Bush for the White House yesterday after running mate John Edwards took centrestage to introduce himself to the Americans.
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India, Pak to identify new visa categories

Islamabad, July 29
India and Pakistan will identify new categories of visa applicants, including journalists and intellectuals, which will be granted visas on a priority and have other concessions and are likely to set up a tourist category, during talks in New Delhi next week.

“Both sides will identify new visa categories during their two-day talks in New Delhi, starting from Tuesday. The categories will get visa on priority along with other concessions including quick issuance and exemption from police reporting,’’ the News reported today, quoting sources.

The changes in the visa rules will greatly benefit poets, intellectuals, and journalists, they said, adding that a ‘’tourist category’’ is also likely to be created under this arrangement and a strategy evolved to provide facilities to pilgrims visiting shrines and holy places in Pakistan and India.

The Pakistani delegation to the talks, which is part of the composite dialogue, will include Federal Secretary for Culture, Sports and Tourism Jaleel Abbas, Director-General in the Foreign Ministry Syed Jaleel Abbas Jilani, Joint Secretary in the Interior Ministry Akhtar Muneer Marwat, Information Ministry Additional Secretary Fazal-ur-Rehman Malik and Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Religious Affairs Muhammad Ilyas Dar.

The talks will also cover the welfare of prisoners in the jails of the two countries. There are about 700 to 800 prisoners of Indian origin in Pakistani jails, but a lesser number of Pakistani prisoners in Indian jails, the sources said, adding counsellor access to prisoners, meeting with their relatives and provision of communication with their relations in each other countries will be discussed. — UNI
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Indo-Pak talks on Wullar Barrage begin
KJM Varma

Islamabad, July 29
Officials of India and Pakistan today began two-day talks here to resolve differences over the construction of the Wullar Barrage by India in Jammu and Kashmir.

A 10-member Indian delegation led by Mr V K Duggal, Secretary of the Ministry of Water Resources, which arrived here last night, started talks with the Pakistan delegation headed by the Secretary, Water and Power, Ashfaq Mehmood.

On his arrival last night, Mr Duggal said the two countries could resolve the differences with sincere efforts.

Ahead of the talks, Pakistan Foreign Office spokesman Masood Khan said both sides would make an effort to resolve the issue.

He said the talks were aimed at sorting out differences on India’s plans to construct a dam over the Jehlum in Jammu and Kashmir, which Pakistan objected to stating that it violated the Indus Water Treaty of 1960.

Under the Treaty, India had been given the rights over the Ravi, Sutlej and Beas while Pakistan had the riparian rights over the Indus, Jhelum and Chenab. — PTI
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Aziz rules out rollback of Pak N-programme

Islamabad, July 29
Pakistan’s Prime Minister-in-waiting Shaukat Aziz has firmly ruled out any rollback in the country’s nuclear programme, which he termed a deterrent against foreign aggression.

“There will be no freezing, capping or reducing the capability of our nuclear programme. In fact, allocations for the nuclear programme have been enhanced in recent years,’’ he told a delegation from Attock led by local MNA Malik Amin Aslam, media reports said.

Asserting that the government would never compromise on the country’s national security, he termed the continuation of the nuclear programme as essential.

Mr Aziz, currently a member of the Senate from the technocrats’ quota, will take over as Prime Minister from Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain after securing his election to the National Assembly. — UNI
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5 charged with beating up Sikh in USA

New York, July 29
The police has charged five persons with harassing and beating up a Sikh in a suburb of New York after hurling insults on him and his companion.

They could get up to 15 years of imprisonment if convicted.

In the July 12 incident, Mr Rajinder Singh Khalsa (54), suffered multiple cuts, bruises and broken nose in the Richmond section of Queens, a suburb of New York.

Mr Khalsa, along with his cousin Mr Gurcharan Singh, was walking towards a restaurant, Tandoori Express, owned by Singh after parking their car, when they were confronted by drunken men who ridiculed their turbans calling them dirty curtain and asking them to take them off.

When Mr Khalsa tried to explain that they were Sikhs and their turbans were their religious symbol, the accused started beating up, kicking and hitting him till he fell unconscious.

Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said the arrested men had been charged with multiple counts, including second-degree assault. — PTI
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China opens first research station on Arctic

Beijing, July 29
China has established its first scientific research station in the Arctic area, a move hailed by the top Chinese leadership as one that would benefit generations.

The research station, christened as the “Yellow River Station,” is located on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen, and was officially opened yesterday.

In a letter, the Chinese President, Mr Hu Jintao, congratulated the scientists on their feat.

A team of 11 Chinese scientists had left for the “Yellow River Station” on July 20 to do research for over a month.

Over the past 20 years, China has successfully organised 20 Antarctic expeditions and two Arctic expeditions. — PTI
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Democrats back Kerry

Boston, July 29
The Democratic Party nominated John Kerry to challenge President George W. Bush for the White House yesterday after running mate John Edwards took centrestage to introduce himself to the Americans.

The nomination of Kerry sets up a three-month election battle with Bush that polls show is essentially a dead heat. — Reuters
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BRIEFLY

Zeta-Jones stalked
LOS ANGELES:
Oscar-winning actress Catherine Zeta-Jones was driven to the brink of a nervous breakdown by death threats in letters and phone calls apparently sent by an obsessed fan, her husband, Michael Douglas, told a court. The stalker, Dawnette Knight (32), an aspiring child psychologist, is charged with 25 counts of stalking and making criminal threats against Zeta-Jones. — Reuters

Fahrenheit 9/11 a ‘propaganda’
CANBERRA: Australian Prime Minister John Howard has called ''Fahrenheit 9/11'' a factually incorrect propaganda movie as the scathing documentary about his key ally, US President George W. Bush, opened in Australia on Thursday. Howard, who sent troops to the US-led invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan in support of Bush's war on terror, said he had not yet seen Michael Moore's film but wanted people to understand it was a biased, anti-Bush work. — Reuters

Nepal gastro toll 300
KATHMANDU:
The outbreak of a gastroenteritis epidemic in various parts of Nepal has killed more than 300 persons in the past six weeks, a newspaper report said on Thursday. Nepal's largest circulated daily Kantipur reported that the disease had not been brought under control in areas that were most affected. — DPA
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