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Mamata Banerjee Meets Protesting Doctors, Accepts Proposal to Set up Grievance Redressal Cell in Govt Hospitals June 17, 2019 17:56

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday held a meeting with representatives of protesting doctors at Nabanna. According to reports, Banerjee has accepted the proposal of doctors to set up Grievance Redressal Cell in Government Hospitals. She also directed Kolkata Police commissioner Anuj Sharma to deploy a nodal police officer in every hospital. The meeting was held at an auditorium adjacent to the state secretariat in Howrah. The meeting was held as doctors' strike enters the seventh day in the state. The Trinamool Congress (TMC) government had earlier promised for the live telecast of the meeting, but later it backtracked. Banerjee on Saturday had extended an olive branch to the agitating doctors. Several doctors across the country have been protesting against the violence. The Indian Medical Association (IMA)-called protest intensified on Monday as junior doctors of the All India Institute of Medical Studies (AIIMS) in Delhi also joined the strike. By Sowmya Sangam

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AN32 Aircraft Crash: All 13 People on Board Dead, Confirms IAF June 13, 2019 16:03

All 13 people on board the AN-32 aircraft which crashed in Arunachal Pradesh are dead, the Indian Air Force (IAF) said after a team of rescuers searched the wreckage of the plane in a heavily forested mountainous terrain on Thursday. An IAF official said there were no survivors from the crash of the AN-32 aircraft. "IAF Pays tribute to the brave Air-warriors who lost their lives during the #An32 crash on 03 Jun 2019 and stands by with the families of the victims. May their soul rest in peace," an Indian Air Force (IAF) spokesperson said. Those who died in the crash are Wing Commander G M Charles, Squadron Leader H Vinod, Flight Lieutenants L R Thapa, MK Garg, Ashish Tanwar and Sumit Mohanty, Warrant officer K K Mishra, Sergeant Anoop Kumar, Corporal Sherin, LAC (leading aircraftman) S K Singh, LAC Pankaj, and non combatants Rajesh Kumar and Putali. AN-32, the Russian-originaircraft was on its way to Menchuka advanced landing ground near the border with China from Jorhat in Assam to Menchuka on June 3 when it lost contact around half-an-hour after taking off. The wreckage of the plane was spotted by an IAF chopper on Tuesday at a height of 12,000 ft near Gatte village on the border of Siang and Shi-Yomi districts, after eight days of a massive search operation involving a fleet of aircraft and choppers as well as ground forces.   A 15-member team of rescuers was sent look for survivors in the accident Wednesday and eight of them reached the crash site on Thursday morning, an IAF official said. By Sowmya Sangam

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Wreckage of IAF's Missing AN-32 Plane Found June 11, 2019 18:18

After nine days of the around-the-clock search operation for the missing AN-32 aircraft, the security forces have finally succeeded in locating the military plane. According to the statement issued by the Indian Air Force (IAF), parts of the ill-fated military plane has been recovered from north of Lipo region in Arunachal Pradesh. The IAF, which had deployed MI-17 chopper for aerial surveillance on Tuesday, spotted the wreckage of AN-32 aircraft nearly 16 kilometers to the north of Lipo region. "The wreckage of the missing AN-32 was spotted today 16 Kms North of Lipo, North East of Tato at an approximate elevation of 12,000 feet by the IAF Mi-17 Helicopter undertaking search in the expanded search zone," the IAF said in its statement. The wreckage of the missing #An32 was spotted today 16 Kms North of Lipo, North East of Tato at an approximate elevation of 12000 ft by the #IAF Mi-17 Helicopter undertaking search in the expanded search zone.. — Indian Air Force (@IAF_MCC) June 11, 2019 The AN-32 aircraft had gone missing on June 3, shortly after taking off from Jorhat at around 12:27 p.m., and was scheduled to reach Mechuka at 1:30 p.m. However, it went off radar nearly 33 minutes after the take-off. A total of 13 people were on board the plane, which is used by the IAF for transportation purpose. All of them are feared to be killed in the accident. By Sowmya Sangam

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Red Alert Issued in Parts of Kerala as Monsoon Hits Kerala Coast June 08, 2019 15:49

India Meteorological Department issued a red alert in different parts of Kerala as the Southwest Monsoon winds struck the coast of Kerala on Saturday morning. The IMD has also issued a red alert in the four districts of Thrissur, Ernakulam, Malappuram, and Kozhikode.The IMD station in Thiruvananthapuram issued the red alert for Ernakulam, Malappuram, and Kozhikode on June 11, claiming that the three districts will receive heavy-to-heavy rainfall on Tuesday. A similar alert has been issued for Thrissur on June 10. An advisory has been issued for fishermen, warning them against venturing into the sea on the above dates."Monsoon has made an onset over Kerala today (June 8)," said India Meteorological Department's Director General-designate Mrutyunjay Mohapatra.Last year in August, Kerala witnessed one of its worst floods in which more than 350 people lost their lives.A red alert, which means ‘very heavy’ to ‘extremely heavy’ rainfall, has been issued in Thrissur district on June 10 and in Ernakulam, Malappuram, and Kozhikode districts on June 11.An orange alert, which means ‘heavy’ to ‘very heavy’ rainfall, has been issued in state capital Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alappuzha, Ernakulam, and Thrissur on June 9-10.The state disaster management authority has released a monsoon preparedness and disaster relief handbook. The document contains instructions for 30 departments on what needs to be done as part of the monsoon preparedness and disaster response. The incident response system, which was earlier only till the district level, has now been elevated up to the taluk level.The IMD has also predicted squally weather with winds reaching 35-45 kmph and likely to prevail over the southwest Arabian sea off the coast of Somalia, Lakshwadeep, Maldives area and Gulf of Mannar. Fishermen have been advised not to venture out to sea from June 7-11 in these areas. By Sowmya Sangam

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YS Jaganmohan Reddy Takes Oath as Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister May 30, 2019 14:08

YS Jaganmohan Reddy on Thursday took the oath of office and secrecy at a grand public function at the Indira Gandhi Municipal International Stadium in nearby Vijayawada, becoming the second chief minister of Andhra Pradesh after its bifurcation. Reddy was administered the oath by Governor ESL Narasimhan at 12:23 p.m.The 46-year-old Jagan led his party to a resounding victory in the recent Assembly and Lok Sabha elections. The YSR Congress Party won 151 of the 175 seats in the state Assembly, eliminating the Telugu Desam Party headed by N Chandrababu Naidu, who became the first chief minister of the state after it was bifurcated to form out Telangana five years ago. YSRC won 22 of the 25 Lok Sabha seats.TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu has turned down an invitation to attend Jagan Mohan Reddy's swearing-in ceremony, news agency ANI has reported.Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhara Rao and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam president MK Stalin were among the dignitaries who attended the swearing-in ceremony.By Sowmya Sangam

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Arun Jaitley Writes to PM Modi Requesting Not to Induct Him in New Cabinet May 29, 2019 14:54

Arun Jaitley Writes To Narendra Modi, Says 'Request You Not to Induct Me In New Cabinet, Need to Concentrate On Health'A day ahead of the swearing-in ceremony of the Narendra Modi government, Arun Jaitley on Wednesday wrote a letter to the Prime Minister requesting him not to induct him in the new cabinet. In his letter to PM Narendra Modi, Arun Jaitley opted out of the new cabinet citing prolonged illness and said he needs time for treatment."I am writing to you formally request you that I should be allowed a reasonable time for myself, my treatment and my health and, therefore, not be a part of any responsibility, for the present, in the new Government," Jaitley wrote. Railways Minister Piyush Goyal may succeed Jaitley. Goyal served as the interim finance minister when Jaitley was undergoing treatment."During the last 18 months, I have had some serious health challenges. My doctors have enabled me to emerge out of most of them. After the campaign had concluded and you were leaving for Kedarnath, I had orally informed you that even though I was able to discharge the responsibilities assigned to me during the campaign, I would in future, for some time, like to keep away from any responsibility," Jaitley further wrote.Jaitley (66) is a key strategist of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and has not been attending office for the past three weeks. He did not attend the last cabinet meeting of the outgoing government. However, he went to the Finance Ministry for a customary meeting with top officials. This was his last engagement, a thanksgiving one, as Finance Minister.Jaitley was recently admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) but was later discharged. He had undergone a renal transplant surgery in May last year.By Sowmya Sangam

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Amethi Congress President Yogendra Misra Resigns May 24, 2019 18:01

Yogendra Misra, the district President of the Indian National Congress in Amethi in Uttar Pradesh, has sent his resignation to party President Rahul Gandhi, owning moral responsibility for Gandhi's defeat. Misra, in a letter, said that it was his responsibility to ensure the Congress victory in Amethi and he had failed to accomplish the task. Hence he felt that he should take moral responsibility for the same. Earlier in the day, Uttar Pradesh Congress President Raj Babbar also offered to resign, claiming moral responsibility for the poor performance of the Congress in Uttar Pradesh where the party won just one of the 80 seats.  According to the sources, any decision on the resignations would be taken after the Congress Working Committee meets. The Congress suffered a major embarrassment with Rahul Gandhi losing from the party’s stronghold to Bharatiya Janata Party’s Smriti Irani by 55,120 votes.Talking to PTI over the phone, the Amethi Congress leader said he would nevertheless continue working for the party.Gandhi got 4,13,394 votes against Irani’s 4,68,514 votes, according to Election Commission statistics.The Congress president had contested the 2019 Lok Sabha elections from two seats. He won from Wayanad in Kerala by a margin of 4,31,770 votes.By Sowmya Sangam

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Lok Sabha Election Results: Counting of Votes Begins May 23, 2019 09:33

After perpetual campaigning for a month followed by Lok Sabha elections for two months, the fate of as many as 8,040 candidates will be decided today when the counting of votes polled for the 17th Lok Sabha elections is done. Amid row of EVM-VVPAT tempering and hacking, the counting for the final outcome that will seal the fate of the country for the next five years has begun. According to the exit polls released on the last phase of polling, Bharatiya Janata Party is expected to return to power. The Lok Sabha Elections 2019 that started on April 11 and wrapped up on May 19, saw around 900 million voters exercising their right to vote and deciding the fate of 7,928 candidates across 543 seats in the country. Out of those candidates, 724 were women and four were transgender.Results of Lok Sabha elections 2019 shall be out by the end of the day.By Sowmya Sangam

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India Extends Ban on Sri Lanka-Based Militant and Political Organization LTTE for 5 More Years May 14, 2019 17:02

The Indian government has extended the ban on the Sri Lanka-based militant and political organization Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) for another five years, a notification on Tuesday said."The LTTE's continued violent and disruptive activities are prejudicial to the integrity and sovereignty of India, and it continues to adopt a strong anti-India posture as also continues to pose a grave threat to the security of Indian nationals," the notification said.The step was taken under sub-sections (1) and (3) of section 3 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 (37 of 1967) with immediate effect.By Sowmya Sangam

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Cyclone Fani: Three Killed as Severe Storm Hits Odisha May 03, 2019 15:26

As cyclone Fani battered the Odisha coast on Friday, three people were killed in separate incidents. A teenager was killed when a tree came crashing down on him at a place within Sakhigopal police station area limits in Puri district. Flying debris from a concrete structure hit a woman in Nayagarh district when she had gone to fetch water, killing her. In Debendranarayanpur village in Kendrapara district, a 65-year-old woman died after a suspected heart attack at a cyclone shelter, officials said. Fani, an extremely severe cyclonic storm lashed the Odisha coast Friday morning, uprooting trees, blowing away thatched huts, and disrupting communication links. By Sowmya Sangam

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Cyclone Fani to Make Landfall in Odisha, IMD Issues 'Yellow Warning' May 01, 2019 16:54

A yellow alert has been issued in Odisha after the strongest cyclone is predicted to make landfall on Friday evening. Cyclone Fani is intensified into extremely severe cyclonic storm late on Tuesday night. Along with West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh, Odisha is likely to bear the maximum impact of cyclone Fani. To alleviate the rescue and relief activities, the model code of conduct has already been lifted in several Odisha districts - Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak, Balasore, Mayurbhanj, Gajapati, Ganjam, Khordha, Cuttack and Jajpur. In West Bengal, East and West Medinipur, South and North 24 Parganas, Howrah, Hoogli and Kolkata are the districts that are likely to be affected. Srikakulam,Visakhapatnam, and Vijayanagaram in Andhra Pradesh will also feel the impact. The National Disaster Response Forces said it has deployed 41 teams in the vulnerable areas. Cyclone Fani is also said to be the longest staying storm in the Bay of Bengal. A cyclone usually makes landfall in less than a week. The alert for Cyclone Fani was sounded last week but Cyclone Fani will make landfall in South of Puri around 5:30 pm on Friday. The impact of the storm will be felt until Saturday. However, it will not be the worst storm in recent years. The wind speed of a cyclonic storm is 80-90 kmph with winds gusting up to 100 kmph. In case of an "extremely severe cyclonic storm", the wind speed goes up to 170-180 kmph and could reach up to 195-200 kmph. The center on Tuesday ordered the release of Rs. 1,086 crore to four states as advance financial assistance for undertaking preventive and relief measures. The name ''Fani", which is pronounced as "Foni", was suggested by Bangladesh. Roughly translated, "Fani" means the hood of a snake, according to reports. By Sowmya Sangam

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Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi Accused of Sexual Harassment April 20, 2019 15:08

India's Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi has been accused of sexual harassment by a former employee.The 35-year-old woman has filed an affidavit alleging two instances of misconduct in October last year, shortly after Gogoi was appointed. She said her family was victimized once she refused the advances.The allegations were filed in a sworn affidavit that has been sent to Supreme Court judges. In the affidavit the married woman alleged that the misconduct occurred on 10 and 11 October at the offices in Gogoi's residence.She alleged Gogoi "hugged me around the waist, and touched me all over my body with his arms" and pressed his body against her. When he did not stop, she says she "was forced to push him away from me with my hands".The woman says Gogoi then told her not to mention what had happened or her family "would be greatly disturbed".She further alleged that she was transferred three times, then fired in December while her husband and brother were both suspended from their jobs.In March a resident of the city of Jhajjar filed a complaint alleging she had kept the money she had taken as a bribe to get him a job at the court.She denies the accusation and says she attended a police station with family members in March where they were subjected to abusive treatment."It now seems like the harassment, victimization, and torture will not stop unless I speak out about the origin and motive for the harassment," she alleges in the affidavit.A statement said Gogoi "totally denied" the "false and scurrilous" accusations. He has labeled them an attempt to "destabilize the judiciary". He said the woman "had no occasion to interact directly with the chief justice".The statement refers to the criminal case of bribery lodged against the woman, saying: "It appears that these false allegations are being made as a pressure tactic to somehow come out of the various proceedings which have been initiated in law."It says the employee was dismissed "as per procedure" after an incident of "inappropriate conduct".Gogoi himself addressed the issue in front of a special bench of the Supreme Court on Saturday. "I don't want to stoop so low as to answer these charges," he said. "All employees of the Supreme Court are treated respectfully by me."He added: "There are forces that are trying to destabilize the judiciary. There are bigger forces behind these allegations hurled at me."By Sowmya Sangam

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