Live: All-party meeting on Lanka resolution tonight

Last Updated: Wed, Mar 20, 2013 11:49 hrs

5.19 pm:

All-party meeting on Sri Lanka resolution tonight

Speaker Meira Kumar has called an all-party meeting at 7:30 pm today on the Sri Lanka issue.

Sources told NDTV that the draft is likely to call for an independent inquiry into alleged war crimes against Sri Lanka's ethnic Tamils.

Earlier, the government announced that it will also move amendments to the UN resolution against Lanka at Geneva. The UNHRC vote is likely to take place as early as Thursday in Geneva, according to sources.

4.25 pm:

Pak General Elections scheduled for May 11

General Elections in Pakistan will be held on May 11, the country’s Election Commission announced.

The 11 May date for nationwide parliamentary elections was approved by President Asif Ali Zardari, said presidential spokesperson Farhatullah Babar, Zee News reported.

The polls are significant as they mark the first time that one civilian government has handed over power to another.

4.00 pm:

K'taka to go to polls on May 5; counting on May 8

Karnataka will go for a single-phase assembly poll on May 5, the Election Commission announced today.

Chief Election Commissioner V.S. Sampath said that the counting of votes will take place om May 8.

The tenure of the current 224-member Karnataka Assembly will expire on June 3.

3.50 pm:

5 Maharashtra MLAs who beat up cop suspended

The five Maharashtra MLAs, who beat up Assistant Police Inspector Sachin Suryavanshi outside the Maharashtra State Assembly on Tuesday, have been suspended till December 31, CNN-IBN reported.

2. 30 pm:

Teen shot dead in Kashmir mosque, allegedly by Lashkar militants

An 18-year-old boy in North Kashmir's Sopore town was shot dead in a mosque on Tuesday night. 

Sopore Superintendent of Police Syed Imtiyaz Hussain said: "Suhail Ahmad Sofi, resident of Doabgah area of Sopore, was sitting with another boy in the grounds near the local mosque when unidentified militants fired at him.

"However, Suhail escaped the bullets and ran into the mosque. One militant chased him and fired five shots at the boy inside the mosque. Suhail died on the spot. We have registered a case in this regard and investigations have started."

1.42 pm:

I regret remarks on Mulayam, says minister Beni Prasad Verma

NDTV: After meeting with the Prime Minister this afternoon, Union Steel Minister Beni Prasad Verma said that he regrets his remarks on Mulayam Singh Yadav, who is the chief ally of the government and head of the Samajwadi Party.  

Mr Verma said over the weekend that Mr Yadav has "links to terrorists." 

Furious Samajwadi Party members disrupted Parliament yesterday and today, demanding an apology from Mr Verma, and his removal from the cabinet. 

1.39 pm:

525 colleges shut in Tamil Nadu over Sri Lankan Tamils issue

TOI: The Tamil Nadu government's decision to shut down 525 engineering colleges affiliated to Anna University indefinitely, post massive protests by students across the state, is seen as a boon by some students while others are fully supporting the cause.

While the DMK leader and the CM, Dr Jayalalithaa, are talking to New Delhi on this issue (with DMK pulling out of the UPA), the film industry has also united for the cause in a one-day fast. 

1.20 pm:

Alagiri miffed at being left out

MK Alagiri is upset with TR Balu for going directly to President Pranab Mukherjee today.

According to media reports, after submitting his resignation, senior DMK leader TR Balu said, "The Prime Minister accepted our resignation."

On being asked as why all five ministers had not put in their papers together, he categorically said that there was not division within the party.

However, media reports indicated that MK Alagiri met the PM separately with D Napolean to hand over their resignations. The fertilizers minister is miffed at not being consulted about his father's decision to split with the UPA.

12.30 pm:

DMK member Vasanthi Stanley faints in Rajya Sabha while protesting on Sri Lankan Tamil issue; rushed to hospital.

12. 20 pm:

3 DMK ministers submit resignations to PM

3 DMK ministers have submitted their resignations to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Alagiri and Napolean will submit their resignations seperately.

Media reports indicate that Alagiri is upset over not being intimated about DMK's withdrawal from UPA.

11.40 am:

Students continue to protest against Lanka war crimes

Protesting against continuing war crimes against Tamils in Sri Lanka, around 500 students today staged a protest at Chennai's Marina Beach.

The students formed a human chain and carried placards, CNN-IBN reported.

11.24 am:

The Lok Sabha has been adjourned till noon after uproar over the Sri Lankan Tamil issue

10.36 am:

India will ask for amendments in UNHRC resolution: Chidambaram

Finance Minister P Chidambaram told a press conference today that the government will move amendments to the US draft resolution to be presented to the UNHRC.

He said a strong message will be sent to Sri Lanka to conduct an independent probe, and added that India wants a strong and credible probe into human rights violations against Tamils in Lanka.

He claimed that the amendments had been finalised on Tuesday itself, and he was not sure why the DMK changed its stance despite being aware of the government's position.

He also dismissed allegations that India had sought dilution of the strongly-worded resolution by the US, saying it was an absolute "canard".

Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath, who was also present at the press meet, said the government had to sort out the "final wordings" on the amendments.

He added that the DMK seemed to be in a "hurry to quit".

10.26 am:

DMK ministers to resign today

According to media reports, five DMK ministers will meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to hand over their resignations.

Of the five DMK ministers, M K Alagiri is of Cabinet rank.

Last night, TR Baalu and four other members of the DMK, which earlier in the day announced that it was pulling out of the Cabinet and the coalition, met President Pranab Mukherjee at 10.30 pm and handed over the letter withdrawing support of its 18 MPs to the UPA government, media reports said.

The senior DMK leader had also ruled out any reconsideration of the withdrawal of support, a move that makes the government vulnerable despite its assertions of having a Parliamentary majority.

On the other hand, Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said that the government has ruled out snap polls, and that the UPA govt has the numbers with the SP and BSP backing it.

10.02 am:

NDTV reports that the government may not go for a parliament resolution on Sri Lanka. According to the channel's sources a majority of parties are against the resolution.

9.55 am:

Rajinikanth watches 'Maranthen Mannithen'

Lakshmi Manchu had a special screening of her Maranthen Mannithen for Superstar Rajinikanth. 

Maranthen Mannithen is a bilingual (Gundello Godari in Telugu) directed by Kumar Nagendra and produced by Lakshmi Manchu.

The film features Lakshmi Manchu, Aadhi, Sandeep and Taapsee in the lead with music by Ilayaraja. The Telugu version Gundello Godari which released on March 8 has been getting critical acclaim and is a hit.

Read more

9.20 am:

Malala Yousafzai  returns to school

Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teenager shot in the head by the Taliban, has returned to school for the first time since she was targeted.

The 15-year-old joined other girls at Edgbaston High School for Girls in Birmingham for her first day back at school on Tuesday, said Edelman, the public relations agency handling her media relations.

Malala was airlifted to Britain for treatment after Taliban gunman shot her on Oct. 9, while on her way home from school in northwestern Pakistan. The militant group said it targeted her because she promoted "Western thinking" and criticized the group's behavior when it took over the scenic Swat Valley where she lived.

The shooting sparked outrage in Pakistan and many other countries, and her story has captured global attention for the struggle for women's rights in her homeland.

Read more

8.50 am:

Obama sends private letter to new pope

The White House says President Barack Obama has sent a letter to the new pope.

Obama sent the letter with the U.S. delegation that traveled to Rome for Pope Francis' installation Tuesday, led by Vice President Joe Biden, the first Roman Catholic to be elected vice president. A senior official with the U.S. Embassy passed the letter on to an official at the Vatican.

A White House spokesman says the letter is private and wouldn't disclose any details about its contents.

Former Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina was elected pope last week. Obama said he hopes to work with the pontiff to promote peace, security and dignity for people of all faiths. He said the selection of the first pope from the Americas speaks to the region's strength and vitality.

8.16 am:

NDTV reports that 6 people have been killed as a Patna Saharsa train collides with a bus. 8 people have been injured.

8.00 am:

Aarushi murder case: CBI sub-inspector cross-examined

A CBI sub-inspector was yesterday cross examined in the Aarushi-Hemraj murder case in the court of Special CBI Judge L Lal.

 M S Fanyal told the court that Dataram Nanoria -- the first investigating officer in the case -- in a statement had said that Rajesh and Nupur Talwar had been in shock but composed on the day Aarushi's body was found on May 16, 2008.

He denied that Nanoria had said that the Talwars were tense and defencive on the said day.

The questioning will continue on March 20.

Teenager Aarushi and domestic help Hemraj were murdered in 2008 and her parents, dentists Rajesh and Nupur Talwar, are being tried for the killings

7.30 am: 

Narendra Modi is the only Chief Minister from India to be invited to address the Google Big Tent Activate Summit 2013 on March 21 through Google+ hangout on the theme 'Technology in Politics'.

Before delivering the address, Modi will be interacting with Eric Schmidt, Chairman of Google Inc. through Google+ Hangout, a state government release said today.

Besides Schmidt, Alan Rusbridger, the Editor-in-Chief of British newspaper 'The Guardian' and Stephanie Cutter, who served as the Deputy Director in US President Barrack Obama's 2008 and 2012 campaigns, will also be participating in the summit.

"Modi is the only CM from India to be invited to speak at the summit which focuses on the influence of web in shaping India's future, in areas of business and economics, politics and governance, culture and media, and education", according to the release.

Big Tent summits are hosted by Google and they bring together the finest minds, political leaders, thinkers to talk about a variety of issues, the release said.

Such summits have been held across the world including in New York City, London, Berlin, Madrid, Nairobi, Moscow and Seoul.

Tech-savvy Modi, who has been active on social media, has around 13 lakh followers on the Twitter.

Earlier, for the first time in August 2012, the Gujarat chief minister had interacted with the people via Google Hangout.

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