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Sonia, Rahul meet Manmohan Singh, hail award by Japan

Written By kom nampultig on Sabtu, 08 November 2014 | 07.20

NEW DELHI: Congress president Sonia Gandhi and party vice-president Rahul Gandhi visited former prime minister Manmohan Singh on Saturday to congratulate him for being conferred with one of the highest civilian honours of Japan.

Singh was awarded 'The Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers' this week for his "significant contribution to the enhancement of relations and promotion of friendship" between Japan and India for about 35 years.

The Gandhis were accompanied by Rajya Sabha leader of opposition, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Congress's leader in Lok Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge, and Congress Rajya Sabha MP Karan Singh.

Sonia had earlier said that the award rightly recognizes Singh's distinguished and significant contributions towards enhancement of relations and the promotion of friendship between Japan and India.

Singh is the first Indian recipient of this award, the Japanese government had said while announcing the prestigious award, which was conferred on the former Indian prime minister by Japanese emperor Akihito at a ceremony in Tokyo on November 5.

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TN sanctions Rs 20 lakh towards legal expenses to defend fishermen sentenced to death by Lanka court

CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu government has sanctioned Rs 20 lakh for legally defending the state fishermen facing death sentence in Sri Lanka for peddling narcotics. The money would be used for legal expenses when the five appeal against their sentence in the higher court, said an official release.

The fishermen were sentenced to death in a narcotics case by the Colombo high court on October 30 and they have appealed against the verdict. In a statement, the government said the funds would be used by the fishermen to pay the legal team which is being put together by the Indian embassy in the island nation.

This is the fifth time the government is sanctioning funds for the fishermen and their families. Earlier, when J Jayalalithaa was the chief minister, the government had sanctioned twice towards legal expenses and twice for meeting the personal expenses of the families in Rameswaram.

Soon after their arrest in 2011, the government sanctioned Rs 2 lakh towards legal expenses on December 14, 2011 and again on February 8, 2013, Rs 3 lakh was sanctioned for defending the fishermen.

In between these two dates, the govenrment also sanctioned Rs 250 per month to the five families on August 6, 2012 and Rs 2 lakh per family on December 13, 2012 for the families to meet incidental expenses, said the statement.

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Special package for drought-hit region in Maharashtra

MUMBAI: A special package would be declared for drought-affected areas in Maharashtra, Union agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh said here on Saturday.

The minister was speaking during a meeting with Maharashtra agriculture minister Eknath Khadse here.

The package would be declared after receipt of report about crop yield in these areas, Singh said.

District banks in Wardha Buldhana and Nagpur will be given banking permits again, he said.

Strengthening of agriculture is essential for development of the country, he said. There won't be shortage of funds for agriculture, he added.

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Teen wounded in Washington school shooting dies

SEATTLE: Another of the teenagers wounded in a Washington state high school shooting has died, raising to five the number of fatalities after a student opened fire in the cafeteria two weeks ago.

Andrew Fryberg, 15, died yesterday evening at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Zoe Galasso, 14, was killed during the shooting on Oct 24 by a popular freshman at Marysville-Pilchuck High School. Gia Soriano, also 14, died on Oct 26 at Providence Regional Medical Center in Everett and 14-year-old Shaylee Chuckulnaskit died on Oct 31 at the Everett hospital.

The shooter, Jaylen Fryberg, died of a self-inflicted wound.

"We express our thanks for the amazing support from the community, as well as from everyone around the world that have been praying for us all through this tragic event," Andrew Fryberg's family said in a statement released by the hospital.

The family also thanked "all the amazing staff" who cared for the boy in Harborview's pediatric intensive care unit. The relatives asked for privacy.

Andrew Fryberg was the last wounded student still hospitalized.

On Thursday, 14-year-old Nate Hatch was released from Harborview and returned home. He had been shot in the jaw.

More than 200 friends and family gathered along the road leading onto the Tulalip Indian Reservation north of Seattle to welcome Hatch home. He was driven past the crowd in a black tribal police vehicle.

Andrew Fryberg and Nate Hatch were cousins of the shooter.

In a statement yesterday, the Tulalip Tribes said they and Marysville "will be forever changed as a result of the senseless and tragic incident that took place on the morning of Oct 24 and know that healing will not happen overnight. We remain committed to taking this journey together, step by step, holding up the families most impacted and helping our communities heal."

The school 30 miles north of Seattle reopened Monday after being closed for a week. Hundreds of people lined the entrance. Well-wishers waved at returning students and many held candles. People cheered as buses and cars entered the school campus.

The school day started with an assembly. Students ate lunch in the gym because the cafeteria where the shooting took place remains closed.

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4 Armymen, civilian trapped under avalanche near LoC

SRINAGAR: Four Army personnel and a civilian were today trapped under an avalanche near the Line of Control (LoC) in Kupwara district of Jammu and Kashmir, Army said."At about 8 AM today, an army link patrol operating in areas south of Nasthachun pass were overrun by an avalanche triggered from the higher reaches of Shamsabari range (in Kupwara)," army said in a press release.

A Junior Commissioned Officer, three jawans and a civilian porter got trapped under the avalanche.

Army's avalanche rescue teams have launched a rescue and search operation which was in progress till the last reports came in, the Army said.

High reaches of Kashmir Valley received moderate to heavy snowfall over the past couple of days.

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President Pranab Mukherjee arrives in Bhutan

Written By kom nampultig on Jumat, 07 November 2014 | 07.20

THIMPHU: President Pranab Mukherjee on Friday arrived here on a two-day visit to Bhutan and was received by the King and his wife in a special gesture.

King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck along with his wife turned up unexpectedly at the airport as a special gesture to receive Mukherjee, the first Indian head of state to visit to the country in 26 years.

Hundreds of school children were lined up along the way, holding Indian and Bhutanese flag.

During the visit, Mukherjee will hold meetings with Wangchuck and Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay besides other leaders to take bilateral ties to a new level.

Some agreements in education sector are likely to be signed during the trip.

The President is accompanied by a high-level delegation comprising Minister of State for Railways Manoj Sinha, Members of Parliament Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Anil Shirole, Mahendra Nath Pandey (all BJP) and Gaurav Gogoi (Congress), besides officials and representatives of a few educational and academic institutions.

Sources said as India is keen to revive the ancient Nalanda University, an agreement will be signed for seeking cooperation from Bhutan in this regard.

Mukherjee's visit to Bhutan comes nearly five months after Prime Minister Narendra Modi's trip to the country. It was Modi's first foreign visit as Prime Minister.

The meetings of the President with the King of Bhutan and the Bhutanese Prime Minister, who will call on him, will provide an opportunity to discuss all issues of mutual interest and ways of further strengthening close bilateral relations.

India shares a unique and special relationship with Bhutan nurtured by successive Kings of Bhutan and Indian leaders.

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12 children feared drowned in boat capsize in UP

RAE BARELI : Twelve children were today feared drowned when their boat capsized in the Ganga river at Raalpurghat under Saraini police station area here, police said.

The boat was ferrying eighteen persons belonging to Kanjas village when it sank in the river. Six of the boat occupants swam to safety, Superintendent of Police N Kolanchi said.

Two of the bodies identified as that of Shipli (15) and Raunaq (10) have been recovered, while a hunt was on for the others, the SP said.

Those missing are Shewta (16), Komal (12), Shivani (14), Shagun (15), Chotey (12), Sunil (15), Deepak (13), Suraj (16), Asha (7) and Lala (11), he added.

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My childhood dream was to become a doctor: Khattar

CHANDIGARH: Haryana Chief Minister ManoharLalKhattar said that he wanted to be a doctor since childhood but destiny took another turn and he got the opportunity to serve the people through politics. Khattar was recalling his childhood at the inaugural function of four-day 22nd annual conference of Indian Academy of Neurology at Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research here.

He said that he was keen to pursue a medical degree, despite his father's opposition who wanted him to take to farming like the rest of the family. Later, he went on to pursue graduation from Delhi University before joining the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh in 1977. He later joined the BJP. Khattar also lauded PGI's contribution in providing people better healthcare facilities and suggested that such institutes should be extended at district level also so that the facilities could be made available to more people.

He said that thousands of people visit PGIMER every year for treatment of various diseases and about 70,000 patients visit its neurology department alone every year. "This shows the enormous amount of pressure on doctors and staff of this institute. Therefore, better health care facilities should be developed at state, district and divisional level," he said. Khattar said that the Haryana Government is committed to provide better health care facilities to its people. And for this purpose Kalpana Chawla Government Medical College has been opened at Karnal. PTI SUN GJS 11071430 NNNN

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Imran Khan lauds Modi for anti-black money initiatives

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan's opposition leader Imran Khan is all praise for Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his efforts to bring back black money stashed in foreign banks.

"Whatever you say about him, he is a faithful man," said the cricketer-turned politician, who has been demanding for similar initiatives in Pakistan.

He has also been protesting since August against Nawaz Sharif government over alleged rigging in the 2013 polls.

It is rare praise by a Pakistani politician for Prime Minister Modi who has is been criticised here after the recent border clashes.

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India, Bhutan sign MoU on establishment of Nalanda University

THIMPHU: India and Bhutan on Friday agreed to collaborate on the "noble objectives" of the establishment of Nalanda University in Bihar to develop the institution as an international centre of excellence.

The two sides signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in this regard in Thimphu after President Pranab Mukherjee held talks with the Bhutanese King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck.

According to the MoU, signed by foreign secretary Sujatha Singh and her Bhutanese counterpart Yeshey Dorji, the Nalanda University will be located at Rajgir in Bihar and will have the power to confer degrees, diplomas and certificates.

The MoU states that the objectives and functions of Nalanda University includes the establishment "of an international institution of learning that will bring together the brightest and the most dedicated students from all countries irrespective of gender, caste, creed, disability, ethnicity or socio-economic background."

"To build an Asian community of learning where the intellectual potential of every student can be developed to the fullest extent possible and to create an Asian community strengthening regional awareness," the MoU stated.

According to the MoU, India will provide appropriate visa to students, faculty and staff for travel to India to study or work in the university.

The funding for the establishment and operations of the University will be on a voluntary basis.

The MoU on the establishment of the Nalanda University came came into force on October 10, 2013 during the 8th East Asia Summit in Brunei.

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