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MIDDAY NEWS

1400 HRS

24 June,2017

 THE HEADLINES:

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi reaching Lisbon this evening on first leg of his three-nation tour of Portugal, US and Holland.
  • More than 140 people feared buried in a landslide triggered by heavy rains in Sichuan province of China.
  • Special Investigation Team set up to probe lynching of a police officer in Srinagar; five persons arrested.
  • Election Commission disqualifies Madhya Pradesh Minister Narottam Mishra for submitting wrong expenditure accounts in Assembly polls.
  • Monsoon Session of Parliament to begin from 17th of next month.
  • Kidambi Srikanth enters final of Australian Open Super series Badminton.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi will reach Lisbon this evening on the first leg of his three-nation tour of Portugal, the US and the Netherlands. Mr Modi will meet the Portuguese Prime Minister, Antonio Costa and discuss ways to further enhance bilateral ties in multiple areas, including economy, Science and Technology, space and people to people contact. Our AIR correspondent reports, the two leaders will also review the progress of various joint initiatives and exchange ideas about new areas of partnership.

"Prime minister Narendra Modi will reach Lisbon this afternoon. After reception at the airport, he will have a meeting with Prime minister Antonio Costa in the Portuguese foreign ministry office. It will be followed by exchange of agreements and issuing of press statements. The two leaders will also launch India-Portugal International Start-Up Hub. Later, Prime minister Modi will visit Champalimaud advanced cancer research centre in Lisbon. He will also visit Radhakrishra temple and there he will interact with the Indian community before heading for the U.S. tour. Tushar Karmarkar, AIR News, Lisbon.

After Portugal, the Prime Minister will depart for the US capital, Washington DC. Mr Modi, in facebook post, said, he is looking forward to having an in-depth exchange of views on further consolidating the robust and wide ranging partnership between India and the United States.During his two day US visit, he will meet President Donald Trump. This will be the first meeting between the two leaders. Indian Ambassador to US, Navtej Sarna said that Indo-US ties are strategically important.On the last leg of his tour, Mr Modi will visit the Netherlands on Tuesday for bilateral talks with his counterpart, Mark Rutte.

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In Jammu and Kashmir, a Special Investigation Team (SIT) has been formed for a speedy probe into lynching of DSP Mohammad Ayub Pandith by a mob in Srinagar. A senior police official told AIR that police have identified 12 persons in this connection and five of them have been arrested so far. More arrests could be made in the case. In a related development, State Police Chief S P Vaid ordered the transfer of SP (North Srinagar) Sajad Khaliq Bhat. He said those behind the incident will be not be spared.

The lynching and murder of the police officer has triggered outrage and condemnation across the Valley. The Governor and the Chief Minister condemned the act and expressed deep anguish.Separatist leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq also expressed profound sadness over the incident and said that mob violence and public lynching is outside the parameters of Muslim values and religion. National Conference Working President Omar Abdullah also condemned the heinous killing and expressed shock and anguish.DSP Mohammad Ayub Pandit was allegedly beaten to death outside Jamia Masjid in downtown Srinagar during the intervening night of Thursday and Friday. Meanwhile, a complete shutdown is being observed in Kakapora area of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on the third consecutive day today following the killing of three local LeT terrorists on Thursday.Separatist leader Yasin Malik was arrested from his Maisuma residence in Srinagar today.

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The Election Commission has disqualified Madhya Pradesh Minister Narottam Mishra for submitting wrong expenditure accounts in the polls. Official sources said Mishra has also been debarred from contesting election for three years. He had allegedly published paid news in various newspapers ahead of the 2008 Assembly elections without accounting for that expense. More from our correspondent :                                            

"BJP's  Narottam Mishra had defeated Rajendra Bharti of Congress from Datia in 2008 assembly elections. Rajendra Bharti had approached the Election Commission alleging Narottam Mishra paid for news without accounting for it in his expenses. Later Mishra approached the Madhya Pradesh High Court seeking quashing the inquiry by the Election Commission in the matter. However, the High Court and subsequently the Supreme Court had rejected Narottam Mishra’s plea. State BJP president Nandkumar Singh Chouhan has backed Mr. Mishra and said the party will approach the court to get justice. On the other hand the state Congress has demanded resignation of Mr. Mishra on moral grounds. SHARIQ NOOR, air news, bhopal."

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The Election Commission will continue hearing a plea against 21 Aam Aadmi Party MLAs for allegedly holding office of profit, despite the Delhi High Court setting aside their appointment as Parliamentary Secretaries. The office of profit petition was filed against 21 MLAs. Later, proceedings were dropped against Jarnail Singh after he resigned as the Rajouri Garden MLA to contest Assembly polls in Punjab.The EC order stated that the commission was of the considered opinion that the AAP MLAs did hold de facto the office of Parliamentary Secretaries from March 2015 to September 2016.

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The monsoon session of Parliament will commence on the 17th of next month, and will continue till the 11th of August. The Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs headed by Home Minister Rajnath Singh met last evening and recommended the dates to President Pranab Mukherjee.Parliament may not function on the first day of the session on account of death of Lok Sabha member Vinod Khanna and Rajya Sabha member Pallavi Reddy. Our correspondent reports that the voting for Presidential elections will also take place on 17th July, the first day of the session.

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More than 140 people are feared buried in a landslide of China’s Sichuan Province. According to Maoxian county government's spokesman, 46 homes in the village of Xinmo were swallowed by huge boulders when the side of a mountain collapsed burrying at least 141 people. The government of the province said the landslide from a mountain fell onto the village early this morning and blocked a two-kilometer section of a river and 1.6 kilometre of road. The Local police captain, said heavy rains that hit the region in recent days had triggered the landslide. Rescue operation is underway to try to locate and rescue the missing.

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In Bangladesh, at least 16 persons, mostly factory workers and labourers, were killed today in a truck accident near the northwestern city of Rangpur. Police said the accident occurred when a truck they were traveling in while returning home for Eid overturned and fell into a ditch after the driver lost control. Passengers were buried under tonnes of weight of heavy cement bags that the vehicle was stacked with, said the police.

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Qatar is reviewing the 13-point list of demands of four Arab countries and a formal response would be made by the foreign ministry and delivered to Kuwait. Stating this, the Qatari official spokesman added that the demands were not reasonable or actionable. Kuwait is helping mediate the dispute. Qatari government's communications office, said in a statement that the illegal blockade has nothing to do with combating terrorism, but it is about limiting Qatar's sovereignty, and outsourcing the country's foreign policy. The demand by four Arab States, Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates asked Qatar to reduce tie with Iran and close a Turkish military base and shut down its broadcaster, Al Jazeera. A report:

"The closure of Al Jazeera channel, cutting diplomatic ties with Iran, severing links with terrorist organizations like Islamic State, Muslim Brotherhood, Al Qaida, ending interference in the internal affairs of other sovereign nations are amongst the 13 demands made on Qatar by the four Arab States if it wants its diplomatic and economic isolation to be ended. Closure of the Turkish military base in Qatar, besides consenting for monthly audit for the first year are some of the other demands in the list. A deadline of 10 days has been given to Qatar for the compliance of the demand. A formal response from Qatar is yet to come. KANCHAN PRASAD, AIR NEWS, DUBAI."

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Russian Opposition leader Alexei Navalny has been formally barred from contesting next year's Presidential election. The Central Electoral Commission has ruled that since Navalny was found guilty of embezzlement and given a suspended sentence, he may not contest. Navalny was sentenced to 30 days' administrative arrest this month for repeatedly violating Russia's law on staging rallies.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi will share his Mann Ki Baat on All India Radio with the people in the country and abroad tomorrow. The 33rd episode of the monthly radio programme will be broadcast on the entire network of AIR and Doordarshan at 11 AM. It will also be broadcast live on <<www.allindiaradio.gov.in>>. Besides, the programme will be streamed on the You Tube channels of the Prime Minister’s Office, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and DD News. Akashwani will broadcast the programme in regional languages immediately after the Hindi broadcast. Regional language versions of the programme will also be repeated at 8 PM.

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Union Minister for Urban Development, Housing and Poverty Alleviation Venkaiah Naidu inagurated the ‘Homes For All’ property show organized by Ahmedabad Municipal corporation today in Ahmedabad. The minister urged banks to invest more in the infrastructure sector. He launched several smart initiatives to boost housing in the city.Earlier, Mr. Naidu presented 100 volumes of the Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi to Sabarmati Ashram. These works are published by Publications Division. Speaking at the programme, Naidu said Gandhiji's teachings and preachings are immortal and they provide an answer to every problem faced by humanity.

"Gandhiji's teaching, preachings are eternal in nature, they are immortal. Any time, any situation any problem, any challenges, any section there is an answer in Gandhiji's life. Not only for us in India but for the humanity as a whole."

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RBI says gross fiscal deficits of all the States skyrocketed to more than four lakh ninety three thousand crore rupee in the last fiscal from nearly 19 thousand crore in the financial year 1991. The most populous state of Uttar Pradesh and the largest, Rajasthan lead the list with highest deficit.According to the second edition of RBI's statistical publication titled 'Handbook of Statistics on States 2016-17', released today, the gap is projected to improve in the current fiscal. It is estimated to be 4,49,520 crore rupee as per the budget estimates of the states for the financial year 2017.

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After remaining out of bounds for a fortnight, the holy trinity of Lord Jagannath temple at Puri appeared before devotees in a youthful avatar on the occasion of Nabajouban darshan this morning. Lakhs of devotees made a long queue to have first glimpse.

"The beach town Puri is all set for the nine-day Rath Yatra, which will kick off from tomorrow. Carpenters are giving finishing touches to the construction work of chariots. This will be a testing time for the district administration as the Sri Jagannath Temple Administration has banned touching of the deities by devotees during pahandi or atop chariots during the Rath Yatra this year. The Temple administration already said touching of deities by devotees or devotees in disguise will be considered as a cognizable offence. SN Pattnaik, AIR News, Bhubaneswar.

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Kidambi Srikanth today entered the final of the Australian Open Super series Badminton tournament. Continuing his dream run, he registered a resounding 21-10, 21-14 win over fourth-seeded Shi Yuqi of China. Srikanth, wound up the match in less than 37 minutes. Srikanth became only the fifth player in the world to contest three successive Super Series finals after previously reaching the final of the Singapore Open and Indonesia Open.

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In Cricket, the 11th edition of ICC Women's World Cup will begin in England today. India will take on title contenders England in the opening game at Derby. The match will begin at 3 pm Indian Time.

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