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

india Updated: Mar 10, 2017 07:47 IST
HT Correspondent
Assembly elections

BJP workers watching the exit poll results on TV at party the office in Lucknow on March 9.(PTI Photo)

From a look at the exit polls for the assembly elections to passing of bill extending maternity leave in India, here’s a quick update of what’s in the news:

1- Exit polls 2017: BJP ahead in UP, Goa and Uttarakhand; Congress and AAP neck-and-neck in Punjab

The Bharatiya Janata Party could emerge as the single-largest party in three of five states, including Uttar Pradesh, which voted to elect new assemblies over the past month, exit polls showed on Thursday. The Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party were locked in a tight race in Punjab and the Congress was battling the BJP to retain power in Manipur and Uttarakhand. The results, officially out on Saturday, will be seen as a referendum on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s policies, including the shock recall of 500-and 1000-rupee banknotes.

Read the full story here.

2- Won’t let BJP rule by proxy in UP: CM Akhilesh hints at alliance possibilities

With exit polls pointing to a hung House, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav said on Thursday he would not allow the BJP to rule by proxy, hinting at the possibility of tying up with other parties. The Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party is the only remaining big player in the state but when asked about a possible tie-up, Yadav said “I always respected her (Mayawati), and because of this many may construe that there could be an alliance (with BSP). But it’s hard to say anything about the possibility of joining hands (with her)....”

Read the full story here.

3- Parliament passes bill to extend maternity leave from 12 to 26 weeks

The Lok Sabha on Thursday passed the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Bill, 2016 which will raise the maternity leave for working women in public and private sector from 12 weeks to 26 weeks for the first two children. The maternity leave beyond the first two children will continue to be 12 weeks.

Read the full story here.

4- India-Pakistan conflict could escalate into nuclear exchange, says US General

A conventional conflict between Pakistan and India could escalate into a nuclear exchange, a top American general warned on Thursday. Testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee, General Joseph Votel, Commander of the US Central Command or CENTCOM, spoke about ongoing tensions between Pakistan and India and said military responses to terrorist attacks and the potential reactions increase the likelihood of miscalculation by both countries. He said “India’s public policy to ‘diplomatically isolate’ Pakistan hinders any prospects for improved relations. This is especially troubling as a significant conventional conflict between Pakistan and India could escalate into a nuclear exchange, given that both are nuclear powers.”

Read the full story here.

5- India “seriously concerned” about violent clashes in Nepal: MEA

India expressed concern over the killing of four Madhesi protesters in police firing on Monday. “Peace and stability in Nepal are of paramount interest to us. We are seriously concerned at the recent violent clashes which you mentioned and in which several people lost their lives. We conveyed our condolences to the families of the deceased and urge all sides to exercise restraint and to avoid any action that may vitiate the atmosphere further,” external affairs ministry spokesperson Gopal Baglay said.

Read the full story here.

6- L-G rejects Rs 1-cr aid to family of OROP suicide victim, Delhi govt cries foul

Delhi lieutenant governor Anil Baijal has rejected the AAP government’s proposal to award Rs 1 crore as compensation to the family of Ram Kishan Grewal, an ex-serviceman who allegedly committed suicide in November over the non-implementation of the One Rank One Pension (OROP) scheme. Officials said Baijal took the decision on March 6 because the “death did not occur in the line of duty, as mandated under the existing policy”. Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal described the move as “anti-army”.

Read the full story here.

7- J&K: Three militants, teen die in gunfights between security forces and rebels

Three militants and a 15-year-old boy were killed on Thursday in two separate gunfights between security forces and rebels in Jammu and Kashmir, police said. Two Lashkar men were killed in south Kashmir’s Pulwama that again saw protesters throwing stones at troops, police said. Teenager Amir Nazir, who sneaked close to the site of the gunfight, died when was hit by a stray bullet, state police chief SP Vaid said.

Read the full story here.

8- Shiv Sena suspends members involved in Kochi moral policing incident

The Shiv Sena indefinitely suspended party workers from Kerala who harassed couples at Kochi’s Marine Drive walkway and caned them. Distancing itself from the moral policing incident, the party’s youth wing chief and Sena founder Bal Thackeray’s grandson Aaditya Thackeray, said on Twitter, “The incident in Kochi, Kerala, is shameful and unnecessary. The party will not shield or endorse such acts. The said persons involved in the act in Kochi have been immediately suspended from the party’s membership indefinitely.”

Read the full story here.

9- Mosul: Tired but happy, Iraqis finally escape Islamic State jihadists

Hundreds of civilians rushed down a hillside on the outskirts of Mosul to waiting Iraqi forces, tired but happy after finally being able to flee the clutches of the Islamic State group. Trapped for years inside the jihadist-ruled city, escaping residents say IS fighters are growing increasingly desperate as Iraqi forces advance on their last bastions in west Mosul. Civilians are being forced from their homes, they say, and rounded up by the retreating jihadists.

Read the full story here.

10- Virat Kohli hurled bottle at Australian official, Anil Kumble the puppeteer: Oz paper

The Decision Review System controversy that erupted during the Bangalore Test between India and Australia has taken an ugly with an Australian newspaper accusing Virat Kohli and Anil Kumble of indecent behaviour. On Thursday, The Daily Telegraph alleged that India skipper Virat Kohli had hurled an energy drink bottle which hurt an Australian team official. Read the full story here.

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11- Nagas and other tribes focus of Cambridge exhibit on India’s marginalised

Hundreds of objects acquired from colonial India – some never before seen – have been put on display at an exhibition at the University of Cambridge focusing on India’s indigenous people, casting a new light on the country beyond Bollywood and curry. The exhibition at the university’s Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, features objects brought to Britain by the anthropologist and Indian Civil Service officer, John Henry Hutton, who was deputy commissioner of Assam (then including the Naga Hills) in the early 20th century.

Read the full story here.

12- ‘Fearless Girl’ statue is a power figure at Wall Street

A statue of a young girl called “Fearless Girl” was placed in front of Wall Street’s famous charging bull, just in time for International Women’s Day. A big investment firm, State Street Global Advisors, put the statue there to highlight efforts to get more women on corporate boards.

See the video here.