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While you were away: Top 10 stories that bring you up to date

Catch up on the stories you missed this Friday.

india Updated: Feb 18, 2017 08:00 IST
Hindustan Times 
Tamil Nadu

Congress party vice-president Rahul Gandhi with his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra at an election campaign rally in Rae Barelli, Uttar Pradesh, on February 16, 2017. This was the first time Priyanka campaigned for the party this poll season.(AP Photo)

Here’s a quick update of what’s in the news.

1. Numbers game wide open in Tamil Nadu floor test

There will be a trust vote in the Tamil Nadu Assembly today. Experts say that chief minister E Palaniswami’s wafer-thin majority and several unhappy legislators could upset calculations. Challenger O Panneerselvam, who has only 11 lawmakers on his side, appears confident.

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2. Rahul, Priyanka target Modi, say ‘achche din’ like Sholay’s Gabbar

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi and his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday, accusing the BJP leader of making empty promises and dubbing him an outsider to Uttar Pradesh. “Modi promised everything – a clean India, happy women and farmers’ prosperity. His achhe din promise was like DDLJ. But after 2.5 years, it has become Sholay’s Gabbar,” Rahul said, apparently likening the government’s note recall move to the iconic movie character’s looting spree.

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3. Congress demands SC-monitored CBI probe into ISI spying racket in Madhya Pradesh

The Congress on Friday demanded a Supreme Court-monitored CBI probe into the alleged ISI-BJP links in Madhya Pradesh, claiming that three out of the 11 people arrested in connection with the spying racket are associated with the ruling party. Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia also called the BJP a party certified by Pakistan’s spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).

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4. Pakistan crackdown after shrine blast leaves 100 militants dead

More than 100 militants were killed in a sweeping crackdown launched by Pakistani security forces a day after a suicide attack claimed by the Islamic State left 81 dead at a crowded Sufi shrine. The army and paramilitary forces launched operations in Karachi and other parts of Sindh, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan provinces and the tribal areas.

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5. Daddy pick me up, screams nine-year-old as his legs are blown off in Syria attack

In the aftermath of a barrel bomb attack in Syria’s Idlib, nine-year-old Abdel Basset Al-Satuf tries to sit up, his legs blown off, and screams “Daddy, pick me up”! The harrowing footage of the young boy screaming for his father as he struggles to sit up quickly spread on social media.

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6. Five new Supreme Court judges sworn in but no women among them

Eight months after the last judicial appointments were made to the Supreme Court, five new judges were sworn in on Friday, taking the strength to 28. The latest appointments did not see any woman judge sworn in. At present, there is only one sitting woman judge, justice R Bhanumathi, who was appointed in August 2014.

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7. Encounter sites in Jammu and Kashmir to have 3km no-go zones

The Jammu and Kashmir government has reiterated its advice to local youth against running towards the site of gun-battle and issued prohibitory restrictions of up to three kilometers around an encounter site in the three districts of Srinagar, Budgam and Shopian.

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8. Miffed at change in portfolios, two ministers quit J-K cabinet

Two ministers – Syed Basharat Bukhari and Imran Raza Ansari – resigned in protest following a change in their portfolios effected by chief minister Mehbooba Mufti in the reshuffle on Friday. Altaf Bukhari was inducted into the Cabinet and takes over the education portfolio, previously held by Naeem Akhtar, who moves to Public Works.

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9. Yuvraj Singh teases Sagarika Ghatge about Zaheer Khan

The cricketer’s light-hearted banter on Twitter sets rumour mills abuzz.

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10. Why the Ola-Uber cab model is not good for either drivers or customers

As violent strikes by Ola/Uber drivers entered its eighth day on Friday, it is time to question the real cost of these subsidy-led, asset-light models that dominate the on-demand economy. ‘On-demand’ is a fantastic premise but there are several flaws in these models.

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Friday’s box office

A week before the Oscars, several big contenders were released this Friday: Martin Scorsese’s period drama Silence, Barry Jenkins’ surreal Moonlight, and the inspirational true story Hidden Figures. Then, there was the return of John Wick (John Wick: Chapter 2) and Batman (The Lego Batman Movie). With Hollywood releases taking up most of the screens, only two major Bollywood films could find space: Running Shaadi and Irada. The multilingual thriller The Ghazi Attack however, garnered acclaim.

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