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US preparing to sign deal with Taliban on February 29, says Mike Pompeo

Building on an agreement on reducing violence across Afghanistan, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Friday

21 Feb 2020 5:09 pm
NGT directs MoEF, CPCB to submit report on plea to curb use of pesticides

The National Green Tribunal has directed the Ministry of Environment and Forests and the Central Pollution Control Board to submit a report on a plea seeking direction to restrict the use of chemical pesticides. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel asked MoEF and CPCB to furnish a report within two months on the strategies adopted to prevent the problem. The tribunal's order came on a plea filed by journalist Shailesh Singh seeking directions to restrict the use of chemica

21 Feb 2020 5:02 pm
Poonam Yadav spins India to resounding win over defending champions Australia in T20 WC opener

Leg-spinner Poonam Yadav bowled a magical spell in her comeback game to steer India to a comfortable 17-run win over defending champions Australia in the opening match of the Women's T20 World Cup here on Friday. Put in to bat, India struggled to a below par 132 before Poonam (4/19 in 4 overs) foxed the Aussies with her googlies, turning the match decisively into her team's favour. Australia, who have won the competition four times in six editions, were all out for 115 in 19.5 overs A bowler lik

21 Feb 2020 5:00 pm
US says preparing to sign deal with Taliban on February 29

The United States is preparing to sign a deal with the Taliban on February 29, building on an agreement on reducing violence across Afghanistan, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Friday. Upon a successful implementation of this understanding, signing of the US-Taliban agreement is expected to move forward, he said in a statement released after visiting Saudi Arabia.

21 Feb 2020 4:56 pm
Paytm Bank partners with Ola, Uber for FASTags to 1 lakh

: Paytm Payments Bank (PPB) on Friday announced it has entered into a strategic partnership with ride-hailing companies Ola and Uber. The tie-ups would empower over one lakh driver-partners to conveniently use Paytm FASTags and seamlessly commute across the country, the PPB said in a press statement. PPB has set up 12 camps at Uber Green zones across different cities for drivers to purchase and use FASTags. It is also working with Ola at Bengaluru airport and other local locations including Indi

21 Feb 2020 4:52 pm
Ghosn postpones suit seeking retirement pay from Renault

Lawyers for Carlos Ghosn on Friday delayed a lawsuit seeking a hefty retirement payout from his former employer Renault, saying the French carmaker had not given them enough time to prepare arguments. The court in Boulogne-Billancourt, near Renault's headquarters outside Paris, granted the request for more time, setting a new hearing date for April 17. We received Renault's arguments only on Monday, and having just four days to respond to 20 pages of arguments is clearly not enough, Ghosn's lawy

21 Feb 2020 4:52 pm
Fire destroys bag manufacturing factory

A fire on Friday destroyed a bag manufacturing factory at Ulhasnagar here in Maharashtra, but no casualty was reported, civic officials said. At least a dozen fire engines from Ulhasnagar, Ambernath, Kalyan and Bhiwandi were deployed to put out the blaze that started around noon, they said. Chief of Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation's disaster management cell Balasaheb Netke said as of now no casualty has been reported. The cause of the fire was not immediately known, he added.

21 Feb 2020 4:52 pm
Artisans Bazaar at Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath

Artisans Bazaar, an art, craft, handlooms and lifestyle exhibition, is being held from February 21 to March 1 at the Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath. On display are ethnic and contemporary arts and crafts, clothing, handloom sarees, jewellery, home dcor, furniture and handicraft products direct from artisans and craft persons from across India, a release said. There will also be Lucknow chikankari, Manipuri pottery, Jodhpuri jutis and kalamkari prints, among others. You can even get to directly i

21 Feb 2020 4:52 pm
Country''s first floating jetty inaugurated in Goa

Union Minister of State for Shipping Mansukh Mandaviya on Friday inaugurated the country's first floating jetty here and an immigration facility at a cruise terminal in Vasco. The jetty is located in the state port department's premises on the banks of Mandovi river. Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant, Union AYUSH minister Shripad Naik and Rajya Sabha MP Vinay Tendulkar were present on the occasion. This floating jetty is the first such facility in the country. It is made of cement concrete. It wi

21 Feb 2020 4:52 pm
AgustaWestland case: ED, CBI opposes Christian Michel's bail pleas

The CBI and the ED have told the Delhi High Court that Christian Michel, an alleged middleman arrested in connection with the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper scam cases, should not be granted bail as he has a nexus with influential people and can influence witnesses. The investigating agencies, in their written submissions opposing the bail pleas of Michel, have contended that he was extradited to India with unprecedented difficulty and there is all likelihood of him fleeing from justice, if enlarge

21 Feb 2020 4:50 pm
Bomb blast in Pak, earthquake in Nepal as grounds for lawyers' strikes irk SC

Strikes by advocates for flimsy reasons, like bomb blast in a Pakistan school and earthquake in Nepal, on all working Saturdays for more than the past 35 years in three districts of Uttarakhand has caught the attention of the Supreme Court which rapped them for resorting to such a joke. The issue came to the notice of the apex court while it was hearing an appeal against the verdict of the Uttarakhand High Court which had held as illegal the strikes or boycotts of court work on all Saturdays by

21 Feb 2020 4:50 pm
Sri Lankan parliamentary committee proposes immediate burqa ban

A Sri Lankan parliamentary committee on national security has proposed an immediate ban on the burqa and suspending the registration of political parties on ethnic and religious basis, following the Easter Sunday terror attack that killed over 250 people. The proposals featured in a special report presented in Parliament on Thursday to resolve 14 controversial issues following the April 21 Easter attack last year. The report was tabled by MP Malith Jayatilaka, Chairman Sectoral Oversight Committ

21 Feb 2020 4:50 pm
ICC Women's T20 World Cup: India beat Australia by 17 runs in opening match

Wrist spinner Poonam Yadav returned with a four-wicket haul as India outwitted Australia by 17 runs in the opening match to make a resounding start to the Women's T20 World Cup here on Friday. Put into bat, India posted a below-par 132 for four in their stipulated 20 overs, riding on Shafali Verma's 15-ball 29 and an unbeaten 46-ball 49 from Deepti Sharma. However, the visitors then returned to bowl out the hosts for 115 in 19.5 overs. Australia were off to a good start to their chase with opene

21 Feb 2020 4:48 pm
Greek coroner probed over Syrian baby sex-abuse claim

A Greek coroner is under investigation after falsely claiming that a Syrian baby had been sexually abused before she died, leading to her parents' detention and a two-day media frenzy. The autopsy showed signs of abuse, sexual abuse, coroner Sotiris Bouzianis told reporters earlier this week. In our experience, this is unheard of. The 11-month-old, who had microcephaly, a condition where the head is abnormally small, was already dead when her parents brought her to a hospital on Sunday. Her caus

21 Feb 2020 4:44 pm
Communal parties leading divisive agenda against India:BJP

The BJP on Friday condemned an AIMIM leader's purported controversial remarks and pro-Pakistan slogans by a woman during anti-CAA events and alleged that the Congress, AIMIM, TRS, TMC and the Left were leading a divisive agenda against India. BJP's Telangana chief spokesperson K KrishnaSagarRao demanded that the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi make its stand clear on pro-Pakistan slogans being raised at an AIMIM meeting. A woman shouting 'Pakistan Zindabad' and (AIMIM leader) Waris Pathan's sta

21 Feb 2020 4:44 pm
59 Hong Kong police quarantined after meal with virus colleague

Dozens of Hong Kong police officers have been placed in quarantine after attending a banquet with a colleague who later tested positive for the new coronavirus, officials said Friday. The news prompted celebrations among some pro-democracy protesters, a vivid illustration of how deeply polarised the city has become after months of rallies and thousands of arrests last year. The 48-year-old officer found to be carrying the virus had dinner on Tuesday with 59 colleagues, police said. All have been

21 Feb 2020 4:42 pm
Goa has not lost Mahadayi river case in Supreme Court: BJP

The ruling BJP on Friday rejected suggestions that Goa has lost its case in the Supreme Court in the Mahadayi Water Dispute after an interim order. Opposition parties in Goa on Thursday had slammed the BJP governmentfor failing to protect interests of the state after the SC, in an interim order, allowed the Karnataka governments plea for implementation of the final award by a tribunal for sharing water from the Mahadayi river. Goa BJP General Secretary Narendra Sawaikar said Opposition parties w

21 Feb 2020 4:40 pm
Some NGOs unnecessarily oppose NDA govt projects: Goa CM

Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Friday accused some NGOs of unwanted opposition to projects envisaged by the Narendra Modi government at the Centre. He was addressing a gathering after inaugurating India's first-ever floating jetty in Panaji in the presence of Union Minister of State for Shipping Mansukh Mandaviya. Whenever we try to do something, some NGOs start opposing them. First, they should understand the project, know how it will benefit the people and the state, whether it will reall

21 Feb 2020 4:40 pm
Terrorist associate arrested by police in J-K's Budgam

Acting on credible inputs, police in Budgam arrested a terrorist associate linked with proscribed terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammed.The terrorist associate has been identified as a Saqib Ahmad Lone, resident of Wager Khansahib.Based on credible input, a checkpoint was established at Khansahib. Officers at the checkpoint intercepted an individual Saqib Ahmad Lone resident of Wager Khansahib and incriminating material was recovered from his possession, a press release by the police on Friday read.As

21 Feb 2020 4:40 pm
Rajnath lays foundation stone of new Army HQ building; says India among powerful nations

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday laid the foundation stone for construction of the Army headquarter's new building in Delhi Cantonment and asserted the world now recognises that India stands among the powerful nations. Christened 'Thal Sena Bhawan', the seven-storeyed complex designed like a rising sun, will be spread over nearly 39 acres, officials said. We have laid the first stone of the new Sena Bhawan. This (stone) will not reach the top, but it is the first stone. And, it will repr

21 Feb 2020 4:38 pm
ITBP initiates 100-km speed march in Bikaner

Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) on Friday initiated a 100-km speed march in Bikaner, Rajasthan, as a part of Fit India Movement.This speed march was spearheaded by SS Deswal, DG senior officers and other officers.Raised in 1962, the ITBP is deployed on border guarding duties from Karakoram Pass in Ladakh to Jachep La in Arunachal Pradesh covering 3,488 km of Indo-China Border and manning border outposts on altitudes ranging from 9000 feet to 18700 feet in the Western, Middle and Eastern sector

21 Feb 2020 4:36 pm
Another virus hotspot surfaces in China: prisons

More than 500 cases of the new coronavirus have been detected in prisons across China, authorities said Friday, prompting the sacking of a slew of officials. Hubei, the hard-hit central province where the virus emerged late last year, said Friday that 271 cases were reported by its prisons on Thursday, including 220 that had previously not been known to provincial authorities. Most of those cases were at the Wuhan Women's Prison in Hubei's capital, He Ping, director for prison administration at

21 Feb 2020 4:36 pm
90 pc ration cards cancelled in J''kand genuine: Study

A limited study conducted in 10 of the 24 districts of Jharkhand has found that almost 90 per cent of ration cards cancelled by the state government three years ago belonged to genuine households. The study was carried out by the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL), co-founded by Abhijit Banerjee and his wife Esther Duflo, both of whom won the Nobel Economics Prize in 2019. A random sample of nearly 4,000 ration cards that were verified revealed that just over 10 per cent belonged to '

21 Feb 2020 4:34 pm
Ukraine minister joins China evacuees in quarantine after clashes

Ukraine's health minister said she will spend two weeks in quarantine with evacuees from coronavirus-hit China after protesters clashed with police and threw stones at returnees over infection fears. Kiev's efforts to treat 45 nationals and 37 foreigners, mostly from Latin America, in the central Poltava region sparked unrest Thursday as residents blocked roads and hurled stones at buses carrying the evacuees. I will spend the next 14 days with them, in the same premises, under the same conditio

21 Feb 2020 4:34 pm
First-ever Wequity Event celebrates the women in technology community

The first-ever Wequity Conference - WITFLUENCE by Wequity with a theme of 'Role Models for Women in Tech' - was held in the city today with a stellar list of speakers, a whopping 86 per cent of them women, and included 28 inspiring role models who spoke across 16 carefully curated sessions in technology and leadership.The daylong event which had 84 organizations participate with delegates, is designed to be a catalyst in the path to equality in technology and provided an inspiring and emboldenin

21 Feb 2020 4:33 pm
Iran votes in general election marred by disqualifications

Iran went to the polls Friday for a general election that conservatives are expected to dominate amid voter apathy after an economic slump, multiple crises and the disqualification of thousands of candidates. The 11th parliamentary election since the 1979 Islamic Revolution comes after steeply escalating tensions between Iran and the United States and the accidental downing of a Ukrainian airliner by Iranian air defences that sparked anti-government protests. As he cast the first ballot in the e

21 Feb 2020 4:32 pm
NCW seeks report after female trainees in Surat forced to stand naked for medical test

The National Commission for Women (NCW) on Friday took cognizance of a media report that female trainee clerks of Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC) were allegedly made to stand naked in a state-run hospital while doctors subject them to a gynaecological finger test.The NCW has condemned the incident, saying that it is disturbed by the report of this incident.The commission has written to Anil Mukim, Chief Secretary, and Dr Jayanti S Ravi, Principle Secretary, to look into the matter thoroughly,

21 Feb 2020 4:31 pm
Workers of closed Bengal jute mill ransack office, set fire

Workers of a closed jute mill in West Bengal's North 24 Parganas district allegedly ransacked the office of the unit and torched two vehicles after the management put up a notice to continue the suspension of work on Friday, police said. The incident happened at Weaverly Jute Mills at Shyamnagar, which was scheduled to reopen on Friday, they said. The work at the mill has been suspended since January 29 as the promoters of the company witnessed a slowdown in business and were struggling with fun

21 Feb 2020 4:30 pm
Pak remains on FATF 'Grey List'; no breather till it checks terror funding

The decision has been taken at the Financial Action Task Force's plenary in Paris

21 Feb 2020 4:30 pm
4 EU nations refuse to budge on budget; new summit likely

Major contributors to the European Union's budget blocked progress at an emergency summit on Friday, insisting that they would not stump up more funds for the bloc's next long-term spending package, worth around one trillion euros (USD 1.1 trillion). The so-called Frugal Four of Austria, Denmark, the Netherlands and Sweden believe the EU's 2021-2027 budget, which is meant to fund ambitious climate change and digital economy policies, should amount to 1 per cent of the 27-nation trading bloc's gr

21 Feb 2020 4:28 pm
''Namaste Trump'' won''t mark inauguration of Motera stadium: GCA

The Gujarat Cricket Association (GCA) on Friday clarified the 'Namaste Trump' event is being organised at the newly-built cricket stadium here on February 24 only for hosting US President Donald Trump and it will not mark the inauguration of the complex. The cricket stadium at Motera is the world's largest with a capacity to accommodate 1.10 lakh spectators. Even since Trump's visit to the city was announced around two weeks back, local police as well as authorities had been claiming the mega ga

21 Feb 2020 4:28 pm
Rattled over Yadav, Tirki joining Cong, J'khand's executive VP threatens to resign

Internal rift within the Jharkhand unit of Congress party seems to be widening as its executive president Irfan Ansari has threatened to resign from his current post, objecting the inclusion of Jharkhand Vikas Morcha's (JVM) expelled MLA Pradeep Yadav in the party.The state Congress is facing strong non-cooperation within the party after it included two expelled MLAs of JVM -- Pradeep Yadav and Bandhu Tirki. Yadav was expelled from the JVM for his anti-party activities.In New Delhi, Irfan on Fri

21 Feb 2020 4:27 pm
Gehlot govt has no control over crime: Union min Meghwal on Nagaur incident

Union minister Arjun Ram Meghwal on Friday said the Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government is unable to rein in crime in Rajasthan and held it responsible for the Nagaur incident where two Dalit men were beaten up and tortured for allegedly stealing money. Meghwal, along with party legislators Madan Diwalar and Mohan Ram, reached Nagaur on Friday and met with the victims. He also visited the spot where the incident took place on Sunday. The Chief minister is holding the portfolio of home minister

21 Feb 2020 4:24 pm
20 passengers injured as Pb roadways bus collides with truck in Ambala

As many as 20 passengers were injured when a Punjab Roadways bus collided with a stationary truck on national highway near Ambala city on Friday morning, police said here. The bus was on its way to Chandigarh from Delhi, they added. Bus driver identified as Gursewak was referred to PGIMER in Chandigarh while other injured were admitted to the local civil hospital, police said. A case was registered against the truck driver, police said.

21 Feb 2020 4:24 pm
India's organic food mkt growing at 17 pc annually: Harsimrat Kaur Badal

India's organic food market is growing at 17 per cent annually and has the potential to grow at a faster pace on rising demand for health and wellness food products across the world, Union Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal said on Friday. Badal and Minister for Women and Child Development (WCD) Smriti Irani jointly inaugurated an organic food festival for women entrepreneurs at Jawahar Lal Nehru Stadium here. The festival with a theme ''Unleasing India''s Organic Market Potential'' h

21 Feb 2020 4:22 pm
Goa''s first multiplex that hosts IFFI to be upgraded

Goa's first-ever multiplex, built in 2004 to host the International Film Festival of India, will be upgraded to world standards by the Entertainment Society of India, the work of which is expected to begin next month, ESG Vice Chairman Subhash Faldesai said on Friday. The four-screen facility is leased out to INOX Leisure Limited, and as per the Build-Own-Transfer (BOT) agreement, the firm will upgrade the facility and operate it for 12 years, Faldesai said, adding that INOX had deposited Rs 4 c

21 Feb 2020 4:22 pm
Board of ACC approves change in director and CEO

At meeting held on 20 February 2020

21 Feb 2020 4:22 pm
Russia to host new edition of AIBA World Cup 2020

Russia will be the first country to host the new format of AIBA Team World Cup in 2020.AIBA Executive committee members voted in favour to approve the Russian bid at its meeting in Budapest.The tournament will be coinciding with the 75th anniversary of the victory in World War II under the motto Boxing for peace.'The final is scheduled for October in the city of Nizhny Novgorod. The best national teams all over the world will take part in the edition. This format will make boxing more attractive

21 Feb 2020 4:20 pm
Plane lands with Canadians evacuated from Japan virus ship

A chartered plane carrying more than 200 Canadians evacuated from the coronavirus-quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship landed at a military base in Ontario province early Friday. All the passengers who arrived at Canadian Forces Base Trenton, 200 kilometers (120 miles) southwest of Ottawa, had tested negative for COVID-19, CBC reported. They will however be quarantined for a further 14 days at the Nav Centre in Cornwall, Ontario, a hotel and conference center which has previously been used b

21 Feb 2020 4:20 pm
You made my last Test special: Tendulkar to Ojha on retirement

Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar on Friday wished Pragyan Ojha on retirement and said 'You made my last Test special by picking 10 wickets'.Earlier today, Pragyan Ojha announced his retirement from international cricket.Tendulkar took to Twitter and shared a picture of his with Ojha. He captioned the photo as, @pragyanojha, it was always great to see your big heart & skill at work. You made my last Test special by picking 10 wickets. Welcome to the second innings club, my friend!Thirty-three-year

21 Feb 2020 4:19 pm
Bandhan Bank allots 92,301 equity shares under ESOP

Post allotment, the issued and paid up capital of the Bank stands increased to Rs. 16,10,21,82,410/- comprising of 1,61,02,18,241 equity shares of Rs. 10/- each fully paid-up from Rs. 1610,12,62,100/- comprising of 161,01,26,210 equity shares of Rs. 10/- each fully paid-up.

21 Feb 2020 4:19 pm
Happy that govt functionaries holding constructive dialogue

West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar on Friday said he was happy that talks with the state government over issues of concern have begun, and expressed hope that he would be able to perform his constitutional duties without hindrance. The governor, on the sidelines of a programme in Jalpaiguri, also said that several key functionaries of the government have met him over the past few days to brief him on the initiatives being taken for the state. The honourable chief minister (recently) met me fo

21 Feb 2020 4:18 pm
PM urges Ram Temple Trust officials to exercise caution while speaking about Ayodhya

Vishva Hindu Parishad vice-president Champat Rai on Friday said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged them to speak with caution on matters related to Ayodhya.The Prime Minister told us that he wants peace in the country. He told us to be careful while speaking on issues pertaining to Ram Janmabhoomi. We gifted him clothes, he presented us the same too, Rai said while speaking to media here.The officials of Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust led by its president Mahant Nritya Gopal Das

21 Feb 2020 4:16 pm
Muthoot Finance raises USD 550 million via bonds

Gold loan financier Muthoot Finance on Friday said it has raised USD 550 million (around Rs 3,900 crore) through dollar bond, offering a coupon of 4.4 per cent. The proceeds of the issue will be used for towards lending, the company said in a release. Last year in October, it had raised USD 450 million through its maiden three-year bond. The response from international bond investors in our second issue is quite overwhelming. This fund raise will enable us in further diversifying and strengtheni

21 Feb 2020 4:16 pm
Sunteck Realty Sells 1800 Apartments at Sunteck MaxXWorld, Naigaon

/ -- Sunteck Realty Ltd has received an overwhelming response for the recently launched 2000 apartments at Sunteck MaxXWorld, Naigaon. The Company has already sold 1800 apartments. Sprawling over 15 acres, Sunteck MaxXWorld is the second phase of a 150-acre township project that offers Mumbai's finest 1, 2 and 3 BHK residences to redefine the standards of elegant living. The approx. 10 acres of open landscape at Sunteck MaxXWorld will be providing an experience of natural ambiance to its residen

21 Feb 2020 4:16 pm
New India Assurance Company receives positive ratings action from AM Best

The ratings reflect the Company's balance sheet strength, which AM Best categorizes as very strong, as well as its adequate operating performance, favourable business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.

21 Feb 2020 4:16 pm
Germany to raise police presence after racist shooting

Germany's top security official said Friday that authorities will step up the police presence throughout the country and keep a closer watch on mosques and other sites after the racially motivated shootings that killed nine people. A 43-year-old German man fatally shot the victims of immigrant backgrounds in the Frankfurt suburb of Hanau on Wednesday night before killing his mother and himself. The man, identified as Tobias Rathjen, left a number of rambling texts and videos espousing racist vie

21 Feb 2020 4:14 pm
US communication equipment worth over USD 40 mn to be at Trump's disposal during India visit

US President Donald Trump will have at his disposal a robust communication system that will enable him to work in all situations including an emergency during his visit to India next week.According to sources, the US Security Department had earlier this month requested clearances for about Rs 300 crore communication equipment from Indian government agencies.Sources also said that the Customs Department, which comes under the Ministry of Finance along with the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (B

21 Feb 2020 4:14 pm
Russia meddling in US election to boost Trump, lawmakers told

Russia is interfering in the 2020 campaign to try to get Donald Trump re-elected, US intelligence officials have warned lawmakers in a briefing that infuriated the president, who then replaced his intelligence chief, US media reported. Trump erupted in anger at acting director of national intelligence (DNI) Joseph Maguire when he learned of the February 13 session with the House Intelligence Committee, The Washington Post and New York Times said Thursday. Maguire aide Shelby Pierson reportedly t

21 Feb 2020 4:14 pm
Won't accept interlocutors suggestion of meeting in groups, asserts protestors at Shaheen Bagh

New Delhi [India], Feb 21 (ANI): The Supreme Court-appointed interlocutors, Sanjay Hegde and Sadhana Ramachandran, on Thursday told the Shaheen Bagh protestors that terms and conditions of the talks will be decided by them. This was their one condition to initiate the dialogue with the protestors.However, on Friday, ahead of the interlocutors' meeting, the women sitting on dharna made it clear that their condition for talks is not acceptable to them.One of the protestors, Mehrunisa, when asked a

21 Feb 2020 4:12 pm