12 May 2018

Voter bribes claimed as key Indian state holds election

An Indian election official (R) puts indeliable ink on the finger of a voter before she casts her ballot in the Karnataka Legislative Assembly Elections at a polling station in Bangalore on May 12, 2018. - Voting in a key Indian state opened May 12 amid dirty tricks claims by the two leading parties after nearly 10,000 voting cards were seized by election authorities. The opposition Congress party, which has dominated India's politics in the seven decades since independence, is fighting to retain control of its last major state, Karnataka, amid a fierce onslaught by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ruling Hindu nationalist party.
Claims of dirty tricks made by India's two main parties cast a cloud over voting in a key Indian state Saturday after nearly 10,000 voting cards were seized by election authorities.

The opposition Congress party, which has dominated Indian politics in the seven decades since independence, is fighting to retain its last major state, Karnataka, amid a fierce battle with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ruling Hindu nationalist party.

Voting was postponed in one constituency after the discovery of the voting cards, which authorities suspect were obtained through bribes. Police have launched an investigation.

25 February 2018

Sridevi, Bollywood leading lady of ’80s and ’90s, dies at 54

In this Dec. 1, 2012 file photo, Indian actress Sridevi arrives at the Marrakech International Film Festival in Marrakech, at the Marrakech Congress Palace. Sridevi, Bollywood’s leading lady of the 1980s and ’90s who redefined stardom for actresses in India, has died at age 54. The actress, known by one name, was described as the first female superstar in India’s male-dominated film industry. Her brother-in-law Sanjay Kapoor speaking to the Indian Express online confirmed she died Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018, in Dubai due to cardiac arrest.
Sridevi, Bollywood’s leading lady of the 1980s and ’90s who redefined stardom for actresses in India, has died at age 54.

The actress was described as the first female superstar in India’s male-dominated film industry. She used one name onscreen, like many leading ladies of her generation, and was known for her comic timing and her dancing skills, a great asset in the song-and-dance melodramas that are a staple of mainstream Indian cinema.

Bollywood superstar Sridevi dies aged 54

Sridevi
Bollywood superstar Sridevi Kapoor, one of the biggest names in Hindi cinema, has died at age 54 after suffering a heart attack in Dubai, her former manager said Sunday.

The death of Sridevi, reportedly while attending her nephew's wedding in the emirate late Saturday, prompted an outpouring of grief from fans and fellow actors and condolences from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

"I have no words. Condolences to everyone who loved Sridevi. A dark day. RIP", tweeted actress Priyanka Chopra.

22 January 2018

India, Pakistan continue trading fire and blame in Kashmir

Son of Indian civilian Gopal Dass who was killed in Pakistani firing and shelling, wails at Jhiri village in Kanachack district of Jammu and Kashmir, India, Monday, Jan.22,2018. Officials say Indian and Pakistani soldiers have again targeted each other’s posts and villages along their volatile frontier in disputed Kashmir after a day’s lull, killing at least one civilian.
Indian and Pakistani soldiers again targeted each other’s posts and villages along their volatile frontier in disputed Kashmir after a day’s lull, killing at least one civilian and wounding three others, officials said Monday.

Fighting erupted overnight as the rivals traded gunfire and shelling until dawn Monday, leaving a civilian dead and three others injured on the Indian side. The two sides resumed intermittent fighting at several places later Monday, officials said.

The recent flare-up has left 13 civilians and nine soldiers dead and dozens injured on the two sides. The fighting also has caused extensive damage and sent tens of thousands of residents fleeing from their border homes.

20 January 2018

Tensions soar along Indian, Pakistan frontier in Kashmir

Indian policemen rescue villagers civilians following shelling from the Pakistan side of the border, in Ranbir Singh Pura district of Jammu and Kashmir, India, Friday, Jan.19, 2018. Tensions soared along the volatile frontier between India and Pakistan in the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir as soldiers of the rivals continued shelling villages and border posts for third day Friday.
Tensions have soared along the volatile frontier between India and Pakistan in the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir, as rival troops shelled villages and border posts for a third day Friday.

Three civilians and two soldiers were killed on both sides in the latest clash, officials in the two countries said, as each blamed the other for initiating the violence.

Indian officials said two civilians, an army soldier and a paramilitary soldier died and at least 24 civilians and two soldiers were injured in Indian-controlled Kashmir. According to Pakistani officials, Indian fire on Friday killed a civilian and wounded nine others in Sialkot in Pakistan’s eastern Punjab province.

24 December 2017

World's largest amphibious aircraft takes off in China

The AG600's flight capabilities put all of China's island building projects in the South China Sea well within range
China's home-grown AG600, the world's largest amphibious aircraft in production, took to the skies on Sunday for its maiden flight.

The plane codenamed "Kunlong" according to state news agency Xinhua, took off from the southern city of Zhuhai and landed after roughly an hour long flight.

With a wingspan of 38.8 metres (127 feet) and powered by four turbo-prop engines, the aircraft is capable of carrying 50 people and can stay airborne for 12 hours.

22 December 2017

Modern-day Mowgli: Indian toddler forges bond with monkeys

Samarth Bangari, 2, feeds langur monkeys in a field near his home in Allapur village in Karnataka. He is still too young to talk, but the boy has become a subject of local intrigue after befriending a gang of langur monkeys.
He is still too young to talk, but a two-year-old Indian boy has become a modern-day Mowgli and a subject of local intrigue after befriending a gang of langur monkeys.

Samarth Bangari's unusual friendship was discovered when the youngster was spotted alone in his village in southern India playing with nearly two dozen grey langurs.

The infant's uncle Barama Reddy said it was "strange" for the monkeys to behave like that, and villagers feared the boy would be attacked while his parents worked in a nearby field.

In India, some fear lawmakers are stoking anti-Muslim fervor

In this April 10, 2016, file photo, members of Hindu nationalist Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), or National Volunteer Organization, stand during Varsh Pratipada festival, the Hindu New Year in Ahmadabad, India. A series of incidents this fall have reinforced fears that anti-Muslim sentiment has hardened in India in the three years since a right-wing Hindu nationalist party led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi swept to power.
A lawmaker from India’s ruling party called the Taj Mahal a blot on Indian culture, saying in October that the famous tourist site had been built by Muslim traitors. In November, another party member offered a bounty for the heads of two people involved in a movie featuring a Muslim sultan. Then, this month, a laborer was hacked to death and set afire while his alleged attacker ranted against Muslims.

The series of incidents this fall has reinforced fears that anti-Muslim sentiment has hardened in India in the three years since a Hindu nationalist party led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi swept to power. Some say it has reached a point where Hindu extremists believe they can get away with murder. Others worry that hard-line Hindu leaders want to rewrite the country’s rich Muslim history.