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THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

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W O R L D

Musharraf for talks on all bilateral issues
Islamabad, September 19
Hoping to achieve “positive indications” for progress in his coming talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New York, Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf said today that he looked forward to a “wholesome meeting” with him dealing with all issues, including Kashmir.

Pak welcomes India’s new visa regulations
Islamabad, September 19
Pakistan today termed as positive India’s decision to relax the visa regime for various categories of Pakistani nationals and said it would respond to the measures after consultations among the departments concerned.

Jiang Zemin resigns, Hu takes over
Beijing, September 19
Chinese military helmsman Jiang Zemin has resigned, handing reins of the world’s largest standing army to President Hu Jintao in an orderly way, completing the Communist giant’s leadership transition which began in 2002.

Over 100 students and teachers kidnapped
Kathmandu, September 19
Suspected Maoist rebels have abducted more than 100 students and teachers from three schools in western and eastern districts of Nepal over the weekend, media reports said today.

A diver swims along side a green sea turtle

A diver swims along side a green sea turtle off the coast of the Pulau Perhentian Islands in north-east Malaysia in this picture taken on Saturday. Named for the colour of its cartilage and fat deposits around its internal organs, the endangered herbivorous green turtles are found throughout the tropics. — Reuters


Miss Alabama Deidre Downs reacts as confetti falls around her after she won the 2004 Miss America competition
Miss Alabama Deidre Downs reacts as confetti falls around her after she won the 2004 Miss America competition in Atlantic City, N.J., on Saturday. — AP/PTI

EARLIER STORIES

 

Thousands in suburbs of Bangladeshi capital flee after incessant rains. 
(28k, 56k)

17 killed in Pak mishap
Islamabad, September 19
At least seventeen Muslim pilgrims died and 38 were injured when a bus they were travelling in, plummeted into a deep ravine in eastern Pakistan, the police said today.

Chadha in big league with new film: report
London, September 19
NRI film director Gurinder Chadha’s much-awaited “Bride and Prejudice”, a Bollywood-style screen adaptation of Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice”, has elevated her to the level of an international filmmaker, a media report said here today.
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Musharraf for talks on all bilateral issues
K.J.M. Varma

Islamabad, September 19
Hoping to achieve “positive indications” for progress in his coming talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New York, Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf said today that he looked forward to a “wholesome meeting” with him dealing with all issues, including Kashmir.

“I look forward to a ... wholesome meeting, dealing with all issues, very much, including Kashmir. And I look forward to positive indications for progress,” Musharraf told reporters here before departing for New York.

The Musharraf-Manmohan meeting, which was earlier planned for September 22, has now been rescheduled for September 24 on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly. This meant that Mr Musharraf would extend his stay in the USA as he was earlier scheduled to return on September 23.

The two leaders would be assisted by their Foreign Ministers and National Security Advisers.

The meeting came within 20 days of talks between External Affairs Minister K. Natwar Singh and his Pakistani counterpart Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri in New Delhi earlier this month to review the first round of composite dialogue process.

Mr Musharraf said during his stay in the US he would meet President George W. Bush and several other world leaders and make effort to correct “misperceptions” about Pakistan.

“First I am going to address the UN General Assembly, basically it is that but combined with that, we would like to project Pakistan in the USA, correct misperceptions and also encourage investment in Pakistan.”

At his meeting with Mr Bush, he would discuss the regional situation, particularly the Pakistan-India dialogue process and the coming elections in Afghanistan, Pakistani officials said.

The two leaders would also review the progress in the war against terrorism and the cooperation between Pakistan and the US in this context, the officials said. — PTI

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Pak welcomes India’s new visa regulations

Islamabad, September 19
Pakistan today termed as positive India’s decision to relax the visa regime for various categories of Pakistani nationals and said it would respond to the measures after consultations among the departments concerned.

Reacting to the move, Foreign Office spokesman Masood Khan said the latest Indian measures were positive.

“We appreciate the spirit behind these steps which is for the promotion of people-to-people contact of both the countries,” Khan told the state-run PTV.

Islamabad would respond to the Indian measures after consultations among the departments concerned. “We will thoroughly examine these steps while consulting the departments concerned and then give response on this,” he said.

India yesterday announced further liberalisation of visas for Pakistani nationals, including doctors, academicians and accredited journalists, setting a positive tone for the meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf in New York next week. — PTI

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Jiang Zemin resigns, Hu takes over

Beijing, September 19
Chinese military helmsman Jiang Zemin has resigned, handing reins of the world’s largest standing army to President Hu Jintao in an orderly way, completing the Communist giant’s leadership transition which began in 2002.

The four-day plenum of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC), which concluded here today, approved Mr Hu to take over the chairmanship of the Central Military Commission (CMC) after accepting Mr Jiang’s resignation, a terse announcement carried by the official Xinhua news agency said.

No reason was cited for Mr Jiang’s resignation as the CMC Chairman, the powerful post which allowed the 78-year-old technocrat-turned politician control of the 2.5 million-strong People’s Liberation Army (PLA), a leading player in China’s closed political system.

Mr Jiang, a former Shanghai Mayor, was selected by then-supreme leader Deng Xiaoping to lead the party in 1989 after Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests and an internal power struggle threatened to wreck it apart.

After holding two consecutive terms as President, Mr Jiang stepped down in favour of Mr Hu (61). Prior to that, Mr Jiang had quit as secretary-general of the Communist Party in 2002 to make way for a new generation of leaders led by Mr Hu.

However, Mr Jiang held on to the chairmanship of the Central Military Commission, the most powerful body which gave him big clout in areas such as security and foreign policy.

“The plenum unanimously agreed that this (Hu’s becoming CMC Chairman) is conducive to upholding the fundamental principle and system of the party’s absolute leadership over the military, and is also conducive to the strengthening of the military’s revolutionisation, modernisation and regularisation process,” said a communique released after the closing of the plenum.

The communique also noted that the plenum had “highly evaluated Mr Jiang’s outstanding contributions to the party, the state and the people.”

Mr Jiang could have continued in his post till 2007, however, that could have impaired the working of the Chinese government as well as the military with a new younger generation of the Communist Party leadership under Mr Hu, who took control of the party and government in 2002 and 2003, respectively, analysts noted.

Mr Jiang, after serving as the CPC Central Committee general-secretary for 13 years, bowed out of the party central committee at the 16th CPC national congress held in 2002.

Sources said there was a lot of pressure within the central committee on Mr Jiang to retire, following in the footsteps of Deng Xiaoping, who resigned as chairman of the CMC in 1989 in favour of Mr Jiang.

The plenum also approved Xu Caihou (61), as the CMC Vice-Chairman and inducted four new members — Chen Bingde, Qiao Qingchen, Zhang Dingfa and Jing Zhiyuan — as members of the CMC of the party. — PTI

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Over 100 students and teachers kidnapped

Kathmandu, September 19
Suspected Maoist rebels have abducted more than 100 students and teachers from three schools in western and eastern districts of Nepal over the weekend, media reports said today.

The rebels kidnapped 49 students from Panchakanya Secondary School and Navadurga Secondary School in Bhojpur district of eastern Nepal today, state-run Radio Nepal reported.

Three locals have also been abducted in the district.

In another incident, 45 students and 7 teachers have been abducted from a secondary school in the far-western district of Baitadi on Friday, The Rising Nepal reported. — PTI

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17 killed in Pak mishap

Islamabad, September 19
At least seventeen Muslim pilgrims died and 38 were injured when a bus they were travelling in, plummeted into a deep ravine in eastern Pakistan, the police said today.

The accident happened yesterday, about 50 km northeast of Islamabad.

The bus was carrying 55 pilgrims, who were going to Pakistan occupied Kashmir from the neighbouring Punjab province to participate in an annual religious festival. — AP

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Chadha in big league with new film: report

London, September 19
NRI film director Gurinder Chadha’s much-awaited “Bride and Prejudice”, a Bollywood-style screen adaptation of Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice”, has elevated her to the level of an international filmmaker, a media report said here today.

The 12 million pound musical “Bride and Prejudice”, is to be released next month, The Observer reported today.

The Newsweek puts Chadha, of “Bend It Like Beckham”, fame at the head of a new breed of talented women directors who are increasingly being trusted with star names and hefty studio projects.

The film revolves around one Bakshi family from Amritsar, with four daughters, Lalita, Maya, Lucky and Jaya. In this interpretation of Austen’s best-known work, race has to some extent taken the thematic place of class.

In the new musical, which is set in India, Los Angeles and Britain, the lead role of Lalita (Elizabeth Bennett) is taken by the glamorous star of Devdas, Aishwarya Rai, in her first English speaking part.

The part of Darcy — here American hotelier Will Darcy — is played by Martin Henderson, a US actor previously seen in “The Ring”. — PTI

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BRIEFLY

NRI doctor in controversy
LONDON:
An NRI doctor who fitted the porn actress Cathy Barry with record-breaking breast implants, is facing investigation into his conduct on the ground that he is not a qualified specialist plastic surgeon, media reported here on Sunday. Shiva Singh carried out the operation for live television on Channel Five. — PTI

Hurricane Ivan leaves 35 dead
MIAMI:
The US authorities combed through the rubble of shattered homes and toppled trees as remnants of what was deadly Hurricane Ivan - which killed at least 35 persons in the USA and 70 in the Caribbean - on Saturday. The storm hit the US Gulf Coast early Thursday, at the rate of 215 km per hour, with a fury that wrecked houses and buildings and caused widespread flooding. — AP

Observatory on Mt. Everest
BEIJING:
China will set up its first scientific research station on Mt. Everest, the highest peak in the world, next year to observe and research atmospheric and environmental changes on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, the state media reported on Sunday. — PTI
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