Live: Gopal Kanda case: Geetika Sharma's mother commits suicide

Last Updated: Fri, Feb 15, 2013 13:01 hrs

6.30 pm: 

Gopal Kanda case: Geetika Sharma's mother commits suicide

The mother of Geetika Sharma, the 23-year-old air hostess who had killed herself last year, accusing Haryana politician Gopal Kanda of harassment, too has allegedly committed suicide.  

Anuradha Sharma was the main complainant in the case against Mr Kanda, who has been in jail for some months now on charges of abeting Geetika's suicide.

Geetika Sharma had hanged herself in August at her home in Delhi's Ashok Vihar area. In her suicide note, she accused Mr Kanda and his employee Aruna Chaddha of harassing her and said that had forced her to kill herself. 

5.20 pm:

150 killed in clashes for Syria airport

Activists say some 150 rebels and government troops have been killed in fierce fighting for control of the international airport in the northern city of Aleppo and a major military air base nearby.

The director of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says that death toll is from fighting on Wednesday and Thursday and is almost evenly divided between opposition fighters and regime soldiers.

The Observatory and the Local Coordination Committees activist group say rebels and President Bashar Assad's forces are shelling each other in renewed clashes Friday in and around the airports.

Rebels launched a major attack on Aleppo's civilian airport and the nearby air base of Nairab on Wednesday. They have captured most of the "Brigade 80" force that is in charge of protecting the area.

5.10 pm:

Delhi gangrape victim's father recalls last meeting with daughter

His face has lined overnight and he looks haggard, but he keeps a brave front before his family. The facade however shatters when he recalls his last meeting with his 23-year-old daughter, who was brutally gang-raped on a cold December night here.

Tears are not far off and they fall freely.

"I clearly remember our last meeting. She was lying on the (Safdarjung) Hospital bed. She gestured me to come near and asked me whether I had eaten. When I nodded, she told me to sleep. She then held my hand and kissed it," the distraught father of the dead trainee physiotherapist told IANS.

"I can never forget that moment because it was the last time I got a chance to talk to her.

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4.45 pm:

Charged with murder Pistorius weeps in court

Paralympic star Oscar Pistorius broke down in tears after being formally charged with the murder of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp in a Pretoria court today.

Dressed in a dark suit, the 26-year-old Olympic and Paralympic superstar stood with head bowed in front of magistrate Desmond Nair to the hear the charge of one count of murder read out, the Guardian reports.

Pistorius then started sobbing, covering his face with his hands, and then Nair told him to take it easy, urging him to take a seat.

Pistorius was held on Thursday night in a Pretoria police station. On Friday morning, he was led, flanked by family members and officers, to a police station wagon to be taken to the capital's central magistrate's court, the paper reported.

The hearing was delayed for two hours as his defence lawyers objected to the number of local and international reporters packed into the courtroom.

Pistorius advocate described Pistorius as being in an 'extreme traumatized state of mind' and said he doesn't want this televised.

The Bladerunner was arrested on Thursday after Steenkamp was shot dead in his home, in Silver Woods Country Estate in Pretoria.

4.30 pm:

A Facebook girlfriend for just $5

An Internet venture is offering a Facebook girlfriend for just five dollars.

The site, Cloud Girlfriend, is promising users the ability to create their 'perfect girlfriend', who will post messages on their wall, giving the impression that they are in a long distance relationship.

Labeling itself as 'The Social Network Girlfriend', the site has described four steps to creating a virtual partner, with users asked to 'define their perfect girlfriend before the site's owners bring her into existence'.

According to the Daily Mail, it then promises the budding online Romeos they will be able to 'connect and interact' with their new girlfriend 'publicly on your favourite social network'.

However, according to the report, some have voiced concerns over the site as it contravenes Facebook's terms and conditions with regard to fake profiles.

3.50 pm:

Owaisi gets bail in hate speech case

MIM leader Akbaruddin Owaisi was granted bail Friday by a court in Nizamabad district of Andhra Pradesh in a hate speech case.

The court approved bail for Owaisi on health grounds on a bond of Rs.10,000 and two sureties, Owaisi's lawyer said.

The Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) legislator is lodged in a jail in Adilabad.

However, Owaisi will have to wait for bail in another case of hate speech in a court in Nirmal town of Adilabad district.

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3.00 pm:

Pak successfully tests nuclear-capable Hatf-II missile

Pakistan on Friday tested the nuclear-capable Hatf-II ballistic missile with a range of 180 kms, marking the second test of a missile system in four days as part of measures to evaluate the capabilities of its Strategic Forces.

The test of the Hatf-II or Abdali short range surface-to-surface ballistic missile was part of the "process of validation of land-based ballistic missile systems", the military said in a statement.

It described the test as successful but did not say where it was conducted.

The missile can carry nuclear or conventional warheads with "high accuracy", the statement said.

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2.36 pm:

India to return Pak soldier's body killed in cross-LoC attack

Confirming fresh incidents of ceasefire violations in Jammu and Kashmir's Rajouri Sector, the Indian Army on Friday said that a Pakistani soldier, who had crossed the Line of Control in the Nowshera sub-sector, has been killed in a firefight, and added that his dead body would be returned later in the day.

Indian Army spokesperson Colonel Jagdeep Dahiya said there have been two incidents of ceasefire violations in the Rajouri Sector yesterday, one in the Krishna Ghati sub-sector and another in the Nowshera sub-sector.

"In the Nowshera sub-sector at around 1500 hours, one individual who was dressed in combats and carrying a weapon crossed the Line of Control and fired on our troops. Our troops engaged him in a firefight, and in this firefight, two soldiers have been injured, and this individual was killed," he said.

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1.45 pm:

Curfew relaxed in Goalpara district

The indefinite curfew in Krishnai and Mornoi areas of trouble-torn Goalpara district was relaxed today with no fresh incidents reported from the district where counting of panchayat election votes was on.

Curfew was relaxed from 6 AM to 8 PM today even as the Army deployed since the panchayat poll day on February 12 was carrying out flag marches in the sensitive areas of the district, sources said.

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1.11 pm:

The lone convict in the Suryanelli case has been arrested. Dharamarajan who had been absconding has been arrested in Karnataka. A special squad is bringing him to Kerala.

He had said in an interview  that he had driven PJ Kurien to the Kumily guest house where the rape victim was kept.

12.40 pm:

Indian troops kill Pak soldier who crossed LoC

Indian troops have killed a Pakistani soldier who crossed the Line of Control in the Nowshera sector to attack the Indian post, the Army has said.

The Army has also acceded Pakistan Army DGMO's request to return the body of the Pakistani soldier.

The Pakistan Army has said that the soldier had inadvertently crossed the Line of

Control in Jammu and Kashmir. The Pakistani soldier lost his way on Thursday afternoon and inadvertently crossed the LoC in Khoi Ratta sector, military officials said yesterday.

Such incidents had happened on both sides in the past and were sorted out mutually, they said.

The incident occurred even as the two sides traded fresh charges of ceasefire violations along the 742-km LoC.

12.10 pm:

India-born fashion designer Anand Jon pleads guilty to sex charge

India-born celebrity fashion designer Anand Jon Alexander, locked up in California for raping and sexually assaulting models, has pleaded guilty to one count of forced oral sex in a similar case in New York.

Alexander pleaded guilty Thursday on the single count under a plea deal by which prosecutors dropped 48 other charges of sexually assaulting nine young models for a sentence of five years time served and five years of probation, according to New York Daily News.

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11.50 am:

Terrorist Lakhvi living the high life in jail

Terror mastermind Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, who played a central role in the 26/11 terror attack plot, is leading a lavish lifestyle inside Rawalpindi’s Adiala Jail, reports claimed today.

Even though he is officially under custody, he has all the freedom he wants.

Reports claimed that his cell is akin to a hotel suite with a steady stream of visitors, mostly terror commanders, who meet him to seek orders and advice.

Besides freely making calls and also meeting his friends and family, reports suggested that Lakhvi had fathered a child while in jail in 2010 after prison authorities allowed his wife to visit him to perform conjugal rights. 

The newspaper report also went on to say that prison authorities had even gone to the extent of arranging a birthday celebration for their most-coveted prisoner sometime last year.

11.18 am:

7th day of curfew in Kashmir

Authorities have imposed curfew in Kashmir Valley to foil any plans of separatist groups to stage a march to Eidgah graveyard in memory of Parliament attack convict Mohammad Afzal Guru.

Authorities last night re-imposed the restrictions across Kashmir as a precautionary measure, a police spokesman said.

Police vehicles fitted with public address systems announced the imposition of curfew late last night and asked people not to venture out of their homes.

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10.25 am:

150-foot asteroid to come very close to Earth tonight

A newly discovered asteroid about half the size of a football field will pass nearer to Earth than any other known object of its size tonight,

A 150-foot (45-meter)-wide asteroid will come remarkably close to Earth on Friday night, even closer than high-flying communication and weather satellites. The asteroid would give scientists a rare opportunity to observe it close up.  It will be the nearest known flyby for an object of this size.

But don't worry. Scientists promise the mega rock will be at least 17,100 miles (27,518 kilometers) away when it zips past tonight.

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9.40 am:

Obama tackles drones, pennies, guns in Google chat

President Barack Obama reached out to an online audience Thursday, taking questions on deadly subjects like drones and gun violence while also musing about the anachronism of pennies and the "chill" factor in Hawaii.

Participating in a Google+ Hangout chat, Obama offered assurances that drones, the unmanned aircraft used to hunt down terrorists, have never been used against a U.S. citizen on U.S. soil.

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9.11 am:

A fire at the Maha Kumbh Mela left one dead and injured five others, hours before pilgrims gathered for the last Shahi Snan on Basant Panchami on Friday, just five days after the Allahabad railway station stampede. The holy city of Allahabad is gearing up for another major Shahi Snan - the third and last of the Maha Kumbh saw this second tragedy in less than a week.

8.51 am:

State-owned oil marketing companies are likely to announce an increase in petrol prices on Friday, though a decision on an increase in diesel price could be delayed for a few days, a top oil company official said. Petrol price may be hiked by about Re 1 a litre and diesel by 50 paise a litre by as oil firms begin to exercise the recently accorded freedom to adjust rates in step with cost.

State-owned oil firms are losing Rs 1.32 a litre on petrol as international oil rates have firmed up during the last two weeks. Officials of the three OMCs -- Indian Oil, HPCL and BPCL -- will be meeting on Friday to take a call a revision.

8.24 am:

Olympic amputee sprint star Oscar Pistorius is expected to appear in court today, charged with the Valentine's Day murder of his model girlfriend who was shot four times with a gun registered in his name.

8.00 am: 

The level of existing and potential military threats for Russia may increase significantly by 2030, and wars for natural resources should be expected, according to Russian General Staff chief Col. Gen. Valery Gerasimov.

The level of military threats will be linked to the struggle among the world's leading powers for fuel and energy resources, markets and "living space", he said.

He said military capability will be actively used to ensure access to those resources.

Gerasimov, who presented his report to a conference titled "Russia's Military Security in the 21st Century", also said that all missile brigades will be equipped with Iskander theater ballistic missile systems by 2020 and that the Aerospace Defense Forces will receive advanced S-400 and S-500 missile systems by 2020.

Military experts, however, were unimpressed by Gerasimov's presentation, with some dismissing his remarks as repetitive and his ideas as banal.

"Everything that we heard at this event has been said a million times before to different audiences. All the participants were shrugging their shoulders, as if to ask: Where have these reports been copied from?" Mikhail Nenashev, chairman of the All-Russia Movement to Promote the Navy, told RIA Novosti.

"There is neither substance nor clarity of thought, only lecturing. It was a purely pro forma conference," Nenashev said.

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