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Twitter to Joint Radio Address, PM and Obama's Growing Ties
New Delhi: Barack Obama arrives in India this weekend for an unprecedented second visit by a serving US president, the honoured guest of his Prime Minister Narendra Modi who was a Washington outcast only a year ago.

As well as holding bilateral talks, the leaders of the world's two largest democracies will address CEOs and watch the spectacular Republic Day parade together. On January 27, the US President will feature in a special edition of the PM's radio show, 'Mann Ki Baat'.

The US president and wife Michelle will also travel to the Taj Mahal.

President Obama's courtship of Prime Minister ... Read More

New Censor Board certifies itself saffron
The new Censor Board chief called Prime Minister Narendra Modi his �action hero� in a television interview on Tuesday as a colleague defended him for praising the BJP amid criticism the government has daubed the censorship panel in saffron.

Board chairperson Pahlaj Nihalani trashed criticism that the government hand-picked him for the job as a reward for making a BJP campaign video � Har Har Modi, Ghar Ghar Modi � for the May 2014 general election.

�I am proud to say I am a BJP person. I believe in the BJP. Narendra Modi is the voice of the nation ... He is ... Read More

Delhi polls: Kiran Bedi accepts Arvind Kejriwal�s challenge for public debate
New Delhi: Kiran Bedi, BJP�s chief ministerial candidate in Delhi Assembly elections, has accepted the challenge thrown by AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal for a public debate.

She said, �I accept the challenge, will do it in the assembly. Arvind believes only in debates whereas I believe in delivery of services. I will debate with him on the floor of the House," she added.

A day after the BJP named the former top cop as party�s chief ministerial candidate in Delhi, former CM Kejriwal today morning challenged her for a public debate.

The AAP leader said, "It will be a good initiative for democracy ... Read More

Union Budget to be presented on Feb 28, rail budget on 26
The Budget session of Parliament, in which government seeks to convert six recent ordinances into legislations, is set to commence from February 23 and will conclude on May 8 with a month-long recess.

The General Budget will be presented on Saturday, February 28 by Arun Jaitley. Before that the Railway Budget will be presented by Suresh Prabhu on February 26 followed by the Economic Survey on February 27.

The Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs which met here today recommended to the President the schedule of the Budget session.

The first part of the session will continue till March 20. The second ... Read More

The Red Sari,� on Sonia Gandhi, Is Released in India

(Pic: Sonia Gandhi with her son, Rahul Gandhi, as Mr. Gandhi arrived to file his candidacy for an election in 2014. Last week in India, a book about Mrs. Gandhi was released, five years after its author declined to have it published because of a political uproar.)

NEW DELHI � Five years ago, the release in India of �The Red Sari,� about the president of the then-governing Indian National Congress Party, Sonia Gandhi, was unthinkable. Mrs. Gandhi was considered by some the de facto prime minister of the country, and her loyalists were incensed by the book�s contents, ... Read More


Sharply dropping oil prices and a weakened Canadian energy sector are revealing the limited, ineffectual nature of Stephen Harper's economic policies. Those policies, focused almost exclusively on that one sector, are too narrow. They have rendered Canadians more vulnerable and less resilient. And his government seems out of gas.

Unable to cope with adverse economic developments, Mr. Harper is now retreating to a bunker. Instead of reaching out to Canadians to show leadership and build confidence, he has punted the federal budget, normally delivered in February or March, into April or later. That ... Read More

Carlo Allegri / Reuters
Preet Bharara stood out first not for his early prosecutions of bankers and local pols � aggressive, but not unusual for an office with an aggressive tradition � but for his rather edgy sense of humor. It was the summer of 2013, and Preet was the guest of honor at Delivering Alpha, a tony gathering of hedge fund managers.

�You told me there were going to be a lot of people here from the hedge fund industry,� Bharara told the room full of suits. �I just want to apologize in advance that I don�t have enough subpoenas for ... Read More
Karunanidhi wants no Hindi imposition
Chennai: DMK chief M Karuanidhi on Friday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to honour the promise made by his predecessors that Hindi won't be imposed on non-Hindi speaking people.

In a message to his partymen ahead of the Language Martyrs Day on 25 January, Karunanidhi recalled the anti-Hindi agitations in 1938 and 1965 in Tamil Nadu and said late Prime Ministers Jawaharlal Nehru, Lal Bahadur Shastri and Indira Gandhi had assured that Hindi will not be imposed on non-speakers of the language.

Language Martyrs Day is observed to honour those who had sacrificed their lives in fighting against the alleged imposition of ... Read More
Congress Delegation Headed by Sonia Gandhi to Call on Barack Obama
New Delhi: Sonia and Rahul Gandhi will be part of a Congress delegation which will call on US President Barack Obama on January 26.

Briefing reporters, senior Congress leader Anand Sharma,however, did not give the names of rest of the members of the delegation, to be headed by Sonia Gandhi.

The Congress president had called on Mr Obama in 2010 also during his first visit.

Mr Obama will be arriving in Delhi on January 25 on a three-day visit and will attend the Republic Day celebrations as the Chief Guest.

... Read More
Obama Will End India Trip Early to Visit Saudi Arabia
By Peter Baker

NEW DELHI ó President Obama has decided to cut short his planned three-day trip to India and visit Saudi Arabia, where he will pay his respects upon the death of King Abdullah and meet with the kingís successor, White House officials said Saturday. Mr. Obama, who left Washington for India on Saturday morning, had planned to visit the Taj Mahal, the countryís most iconic site, on Tuesday at the end of his trip. Instead,

-- Read more at: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/25/us/politics/obama-will-end-india-trip-early-to-visit-saudi-arabia.html

... Read More
Manmohan Singh examined by CBI in coal block allocation scam
New Delhi: Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has been examined by CBI in the coal block allocation case relating to Hindalco but neither he nor the agency was willing to confirm it. He is the first former prime minister to have been interrogated in any case.

Sources said Singh was questioned on January 18 at his Motilal Nehru Marg residence. A team of top CBI officials, including a DIG, questioned the former prime minister. Questions related to his knowledge about allocation and reasons for making deviations for a specific case were asked, the sources added.
... Read More
Kejriwal repeats 'bribe' remark despite EC notice
New Delhi: Despite being issued notice by the Election Commission, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday repeated the controversial remarks about bribes.

At a rally in Krishnanagar, Kejriwal said he stood by his remarks in which he had asked the voters to accept money from the BJP and the Congress but vote only for AAP.

Kejriwal said, "Opposition would not have been upset with me if I had said that you should vote for those who give you money. Instead, I said take money from them (BJP and Cong) and vote for AAP. So, these parties are upset."
Kejriwal repeats ... Read More
Ban on Indian mango imports to EU to be lifted
A ban on Indian mango imports into the European Union is to be lifted, clearing the way for them to return to the UK and other member states.

However, other foodstuffs such as Indian aubergines, two types of squash, and a type of leaf used in cooking will remain restricted.

Indian mango shipments to the EU were suspended in May after fruit flies were found in consignments.

A European Commission committee voted to lift the ban on Tuesday.

There had been "significant improvements" in India's mango export system, the European Commission said after the unanimous vote.
Mango stall in India

The UK government previously said it ... Read More
Indian media: 'Delhi lockdown' as Obama visits
Papers say unprecedented security measures have been taken ahead of US President Barack Obama's second visit to India.

Mr Obama will be the chief guest at the Republic Day parade in Delhi on 26 January and subsequently hold bilateral talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Papers say the national capital will be under tight security and surveillance to prevent any untoward incident.

"The capital is set to witness a lockdown of sorts in the run-up to 26 January, with offices, arterial roads and metro stations closed for security," the Hindustan Times reports.

A seven-layer security ring will be in place around the area from ... Read More
China protests over Japan's comments on border dispute with India
BEIJING (Reuters) - China on Monday lodged a protest with Tokyo after Japanese media quoted Japan's foreign minister as saying that a disputed border region between China and India belonged to India, in the latest source of friction between the two Asian rivals.

Japan's foreign ministry played down the issue, saying it could not confirm Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida's reported remarks. It added that it hoped India and China could resolve their dispute peacefully.

Tensions between China and Japan have risen in recent years, fuelled by a row over a chain of uninhabited islets in the East China Sea. Their relations ... Read More
Barack Obama may depart for US from Agra
New Delhi: US President Barack Obama, who arrives in India on January 25 to attend Republic Day Parade, will now be travelling to Agra on Air Force One instead of taking the land route through the Delhi-Agra highway.

The authorities here have looked into the feasibility of Obama's plane landing in Agra and have earmarked the Indian Air Force base for the purpose.

As per reports, a feasibility report has favoured landing of the Boeing 747-200B series aircraft at the airfield, which had served as a major airbase for allied forces during the World War-II.

Air Force One is a Boeing 747-200B plane ... Read More
Obama's security cover for Agra involves 100 US & 4000 Indian security personnel
About 100 American security personnel along with their 4000 Indian counterparts will ensure a protective cover to President Barack Obama and his family when they visit the world famous Taj Mahal here on January 27. The security cover will involve an intense ground-to-air paraphernalia to ensure that there is no untoward incident during the visit of the world's most guarded leader.

An advance team of US visiting the Taj Mahal in Agra on Tuesday to review the security arrangements for President Barack Obama`s forthcoming visit. PTI

About 100 American security personnel along with their 4000 Indian counterparts will ensure a protective cover ... Read More
Looking forward to Russia visit: PM Modi
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said he looked forward to visit Russia later this year, an official release said here Wednesday.

During a meeting with Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu, Modi recalled a very successful visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to India in December 2014.

The prime minister said the time-tested special and privileged strategic partnership between India and Russia acquired a new momentum with Putin's visit to New Delhi.

Modi conveyed that he looked forward to visit Russia later this year for the 7th BRICS summit and for the bilateral annual summit.

... Read More
Arrangements to make Delhi a fortress for Obama's Visit
New Delhi: The capital will turn into a virtual fortress for US President Barack Obama's visit this weekend with heightened security measures including an extended no-fly zone to protect the world's most powerful leader.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President Obama and other dignitaries from the world's two largest democracies will attend the Republic Day celebrations on Monday, January 26, which include a massive military parade.

Security agencies previously enforced a no-fly zone with a radius of 300 km, but it will be extended to 400 km this year, covering cities such as Jaipur in the west, and Agra, and extending to ... Read More
India Withdraws PIO Facility, Long-Winded Process of OCI Card Steps in
By Tejinder Singh
Washington, DC - The Indian Embassy here announced this weekend nullification of all PIO (Person of Indian Origin) applications and the office is returning them, adding to already chaotic visa application process in the field. The lengthy cumbersome process of applying for Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) replaces the easier PIO application process. India doesn't allow dual citizenship so the very name "Overseas Citizen of India" is misleading.

"All PIO applications, pending with the Mission for processing, are being returned to the applicants with a request to apply for OCI card on the same fee prescribed for the ... Read More
Lost a Lot in 10 Years, Have to Take Right Turns Now: Arun Jaitley
Davos: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in an exclusive interview with NDTV's Vikram Chandra at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Among other panelists are Nouriel Roubini, Professor of Economics, Stern School of Business, New York University; Chanda Kochhar, Managing Director, ICICI Bank; Hari Bhartia, Co-Chairman and Founder Jubilant Life Sciences, India.

Here are the highlights from the discussion:

Arun Jaitley on the growth of Indian economy, county's corruption and the new government in power.

The economies which are competing with us are not doing very well. If India will keep taking the right turns, we can go back to a high ... Read More
Pranab, Obama to watch 25 tableau at Republic Day parade
New Delhi: Along with Indian President Pranab Mukherjee, chief guest for Republic Day US President Barack Obama will watch 25 tableau from 16 states and Central ministries and departments on January 26.

The tableaux depict the diverse and vibrant nature of India and will be rolled down on Rajpath. India will showcase its military might, varied cultural diversity, development in Science and Technology and economic strength.
... Read More

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