Live: Foreign money seeks to revive terror in Punjab

Last Updated: Tue, Dec 11, 2012 13:01 hrs

6.30 pm:

Foreign money seeks to revive terror in Punjab: Government

 Some people abroad are sending money to "certain intermediaries" in Punjab to revive terrorism in the state, parliament was informed Tuesday.

Minister of State for Home R.P.N. Singh told the Lok Sabha that this money was also meant to be paid to jailed terrorists and their families in Punjab.

"The matter is under investigation," he said in a written statement.

According to the minister, intelligence inputs suggested that Babbar Khalsa International (BKI) operatives were getting funds from abroad to commit terrorist activities in India.

He said the National Investigation Agency had registered cases against BKI activists under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

4.20 pm:

Top Google searches in 2012 revealed

Google has brought out the list of the most searched topics in its search engine this year.

According to the search engine, Euro 2012 beat Olympics tickets as the top internet search of the year in the UK, the Sun reported.

The company's stats also show that pop diva Whitney Houston's death in February attracted more interest than Kate.

'Gangnam Style' beat 'Call Me Maybe' as the most trending pop song and 'Skyfall' topped 'Prometheus' as the most inquired about film.

Read more

3.50 pm:

Nelson Mandela has lung infection, say officials

South Africa's former President Nelson Mandela is suffering from a recurring lung infection and is responding to medical treatments, the nation's presidency said Tuesday.

The ailing Mandela, 94, has been hospitalized since Saturday for medical tests at 1 Military Hospital near South Africa's capital, Pretoria.

The announcement ended speculation about what was troubling the ailing anti-apartheid icon. Government officials had declined repeatedly to say what caused the nation's military, responsible for Mandela's care, to hospitalize the leader over the last few days. That caused growing concern in South Africa, a nation of 50 million people that largely reveres Mandela for being the nation's first democratically elected president who sought to bring the country together after centuries of racial division.

Read more

3.20 pm:

The father of slain army Captain Saurabh Kalia has filed a petition with the United Nations Human Rights Council. He is asking for an independent probe into the death of his son.

Captain Kalia was captured during the Kargil War and his body was returned bearing signs of torture.

3.15 pm:

Meanwhile the upper house was also adjourned over the quota bill.

3.06 pm:

The Lok Sabha reconvened and immediately the opposition MPs stormed into the well of the house. The lower house has been adjourned for the day.

2.36 pm:

The Lok Sabha has been adjourned till 3pm over the Walmart issue. The MPs were demanding that the government reveal the nature of the probe into the matter.

Lalu Prasad Yadav had said that the Joint Parliamentary Committee should probe into the allegations.  This should be carried out in a time bound manner according to him.

Meanwhile senior leader from the Left Gurudas Dasgupta has accused the government of being corrupt. He said corruption was part and parcel of the UPA government.

2.30 pm:

Pope to join Twitter tomorrow!

Pope Benedict XVI will send the first message from his new Twitter account on Wednesday.

Benedict XVI has gained over 6,00,000 followers since launching his @pontifex account on December 3.

He will send his first tweet as part of a question and answer session with devotees, reports.

Read more

2.00 pm:

Guru should be hanged on 11th anniversary of Parliament attack: BJP

Two days ahead of the eleventh anniversary of Parliament terror attack, BJP today demanded that convict Afzal Guru be hanged on December 13 itself to pay the best homage to martyrs of the 2001 strike.

"If the government hangs Afzal Guru on December 13 itself, there cannot be anything better to pay homage to the martyrs of the December 13 attack on Parliament... It should hang the attacker of Parliament during the session of the House," BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain told reporters here.

He was replying to a question on Guru whose mercy petition is pending with the government.

"BJP demands that the government should not consider vote or election politics and it should not even think that someone will raise the issue in Parliament if he is hanged," Hussain said.

Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde had yesterday said that files pertaining to mercy pleas of Parliament attack case convict Afzal Guru and six others will be looked into after the ongoing Winter Session of Parliament.

Guru was sentenced to death for the 2001 Parliament attack in which nine people, including security force personnel, were killed and 16 were injured.

1.00 pm:

Manisha Koirala undergoes successful surgery

Actress Manisha Koirala, who was recently diagnosed with ovarian cancer, underwent a successful surgery in New York on Monday.

"Manisha underwent a surgery on Monday at around 9 a.m. I got a message from her family members and they said it was a successful surgery," Subroto Ghosh, Manisha's manager, told IANS.

"Manisha's mother, father and her brother are by her side. One of her close friends is also there with her," he added.

Several speculations regarding her health were made following her hospitalisation in Mumbai.

Manisha was admitted to the Jaslok Hospital Nov 28 after she reportedly fell unconscious. However, the reason behind her illness was not made clear. Later it was reported that she is flying to the US for treatment for cancer.

The actress, who has worked in critically acclaimed films like "Dil Se" and "1942: A Love Story", made her debut with "Saudagar" in 1991. She recently made a comeback with Ram Gopal Varma's "Bhoot Returns".

12.15 pm:

Meanwhile chaos reigned at both houses of the Parliament as the deadlock over the Walmart issue continues. Angry MPs in the Lok Sabha raised slogans demanding an answer from the government. The Lok Sabha was adjourned till 2pm.

Veteran BJP leader Yashwant Sinha lashed out against the government and said that Walmart had bribed its way to get FDI into the country.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath said, 'It is not just a matter of concern for the Opposition, it is a matter of concern for all of us.' The government says it is ready for a probe.

12.05 pm:

Gandhi further added that Gujarat has a massive unemployment figure. The Gujarat assembly functions only for 25 days in a year, accused Gandhi.

He said that many RTI petitions were pending in the state with no action being taken.

12.00 pm:

Going after Gujarat's CM, Rahul said that only one voice is heard from Gujarat. He accused Modi of pursuing his dreams and not what is good for the state.  "A true leader listens to the voice of the aam admi, not just his own,' said Gandhi.

He promised that if his party came into power food security will be ensured.

11.55 am:

Rahul Gandhi has begun campaigning in poll bound Gujarat. In  his first rally at Jamnagar, Gandhi said that Mahatama Gandhi was his political guru.

Gandhi is set to address 2 more rallies today. The first phase of assembly elections is set to take place on December 13th.

11.45 am:

The Rajya Sabha has been adjourned till 12 pm as the uproar over the Walmart report refuses to die down even as the government says its ready for a probe into the matter.

11.33 am:

The Prime Minister and Sonia Gandhi are currently in a meeting to discuss the parliamentary logjam.

11.20 am:

Water released from Mettur dam has been increased from 10,000 cusecs to 11,500 cusecs for irrigation in delta areas today.

The water level in the dam was 48.82 feet against its full level of 120 feet. The inflow was 10,458 cusecs and outflow 11,500 cusecs.

11.08 am:

Proceedings have begun in both the houses of the parliament. Immediately there was uproar over the Walmart issue in the lower house with the speaker asking the MPs to return to their places. The house was adjourned till 12 pm.

The question hour in the upper house fared no better. The chair of the house said that since the MPs seem to attach no importance to answers given during the question hour he was forced to adjourn the house for 30 minutes.

10.50 am:

Meanwhile the Congress Core Group is currently in a meeting. According to reports the government wants bills to be passed and is worried that its big bang reforms will be derailed.

10.30 am:

The BJP is set to raise the Walmart issue in the parliament today. The party is demanding an independent enquiry into the Walmart 'bribe'.

MPs had created an uproar in the Rajya Sabha yesterday over reports of the retail giant spending Rs 125 crores to gain entry into the Indian market.

Commerce Minister Anand Sharma is set to make a speech on the Walmart lobbying issue.

10.04 am:

Officials from Mumbai's service tax department have impouned one aircraft from Kingfisher Airlines. The authorities made the seizure as KFA had defaulted on Rs 200 crores in service tax dues.

9.50 am:

Rahul Gandhi to hit poll-bound Gujarat today

After Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi hitting the campaign trail in Gujarat, Rahul Gandhi will be addressing rallies in the Narendra Modi-run state for the first time from Tuesday, the last day of canvassing for the first phase of polls.

The Congress leader will address meetings at Sanand in Ahmedabad in central Gujarat and at Jamnagar and Amreli in Saurashtra regions.

Sonia and the prime minister have already campaigned in the state where the party is out of power for two decades.

Read more

9.00 am:

Meet Bollywood's Gentleman hero

On the eve of his 90th birthday on December 11 Malavika Sangghvi recalls the life and career of Dilip Kumar, a great actor and nationalist icon.

In the early '80s, mother and I were holidaying in Goa when we happened to run into Dilip Kumar and Saira Banu who were staying at an adjacent hotel.

Read more

8.30 am:

Egypt's military takes over security ahead of vote

Egypt's military assumed responsibility Monday for protecting state institutions and maintaining security ahead of a Dec. 15 constitutional referendum, as the country braced for another round of mass demonstrations by the supporters of the country's Islamist president and the liberal opposition over the disputed charter.

The referendum on a contentious new constitution lies at the heart of a bitter political battle that has deeply polarized Egypt and triggered some of the worst street violence between backers and opponents of President Mohammed Morsi since he took power in June as the country's first democratically elected leader.

Read more

8.00 am:

No violation of American laws in lobbying by Walmart, says US

Amid controversy over reports that Walmart spent nearly Rs 125 crore for lobbying with lawmakers to get access to Indian market, the US has said the global retail giant did not violate any American law as far as the matter is concerned.

"On the US side, I don't have any reason to believe that we have a violation of US law here. With regard to the Indian side, I'll refer you to them," State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland said yesterday, categorically dismissing allegations by Indian opposition parties in this regard.

Nuland was responding to questions on charges by opposition parties in India that Walmart spent huge sums in four years in lobbying before the US Congress, including on those related to enhanced market access for investment in India.

Read more

7.30 am

The Rajya Sabha is due for some more action today as the Wal-Mart lobbying issue continues to heat up.

Wal-Mart itself has denied that it lobbied to enter India per se. In any case, lobbying is legal in America so even if Wal-Mart did spend the money, it has the right to do so.

Lobbying may be illegal in India, but there is no proof that Wal-Mart paid any one any money here.

The Lok Sabha meanwhile is also expected to stutter along, with more disruptions, delays and adjournments.

The campaigning for the 2012 Gujarat lections also ends today, so we can look forward to several big wrap up moments from the colorful campaign.

More from Sify: