8 yr. old Saudi child bride granted divorce

Cairo, April 30: An eight-year-old girl in Saudi Arabia who was secretly married off by her father to a man several times her senior was granted a divorce after years of legal haranguing, according to local press reports Thursday.

The prince of Qassim province, where the girl’s hometown of Unaizah is located, interfered to divorce the girl after a judge refused her mother’s second appeal for a divorce ruling that the child-bride would have to wait until puberty to do so.

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CB-CID of TN Police to probe all angles behind train mishap

Chennai, April 30 : The CB-CID wing of the Tamil Nadu Police, which took over the investigation into yesterday’s mysterious train mishap here, will probe all angles including sabotage behind the incident.

“It is too early to comment on the cause of the accident. Is it mischief or sabotage, it cannot be said now, but we are probing all angles since we are keeping our options open,” CB-CID ADGP Archana Ramasundaram told PTI here today.

Death toll in Karachi violence reaches 27

Karachi, April 30 : At least four persons were killed today in fresh clashes between two ethnic groups in this southern Pakistani port city, taking the toll in two days of widespread violence to 27.

Several parts of Karachi continued to be tense as armed members of the two groups clashed with each other and burnt at least 10 shops. Four persons were killed in incidents of firing today, TV channels reported. Twenty-three people were killed in clashes yesterday.

Heavy polling in Sikkim

Gangtok, April 30: Long queues were seen outside polling booths in Sikkim, where elections were underway Thursday for the one Lok Sabha and 32 assembly constituencies.

The situation was peaceful with no reports of any untoward incidents, police said.

There were more women than men in the queues which started forming even before the polling centres opened at 7 a.m. Young voters, many of them exercising their franchise for the first time, were also seen lining up with great enthusiasm.

Frame rape charges against Goa education minister’s son: court

Panaji, April 30: A children’s court here has ordered framing of charges against Rohit Monserrate, son of Goa Education Minister Atanasio Monserrate. Rohit is accused of raping and sending vulgar messages to a minor German girl.

Setting aside the arguments put forth by Rohit’s counsel, Goa Children’s Court president Desmond D’Costa observed that there was sufficient reason to indicate the involvement of Rohit in the rape of the 14-year-old German girl.

20 percent voter turnout in first three hours in Gujarat

Ahmedabad, April 30: About 20 percent of Gujarat’s voters exercised their franchise in the first three hours of polling in all 26 Lok Sabha constituencies in the state Thursday, poll officials said.

Chief Minister Narendra Modi cast his ballot at 9 a.m. at a booth in Ranip, under the Gandhinagar Lok Sabha constituency.

Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) prime ministerial aspirant L.K. Advani is the party candidate from Gandhinagar.

Celebrities aplenty but low turnout in Mumbai, Thane

Mumbai, April 30: Film stars, industrialists and other celebrities may have turned up but the 10 parliamentary constituencies in Mumbai and Thane notched only 5.5 percent voting in the first three hours of polling for the final phase of Maharashtra’s general elections Thursday.

However, the turnout is expected to increase later in the day as people finish their morning chores before stepping out to vote, a polling official said.

Shilpa Shetty regrets not being able to vote

London, April 30: Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan has flown to India from South Africa to cast his vote in the 2009 general elections. Actress Shilpa Shetty regrets that she won’t be able to exercise her franchise this time because of the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Good turnout in Darjeeling hills, boycott in two Siliguri booths

Siliguri, April 30: There was a poll boycott in two booths of West Bengal’s hill district of Darjeeling though enthusiastic queues of people were seen elsewhere under a thick blanket of fog and intermittent rain Thursday.

Fifteen to 20 percent votes were cast in the first two hours of the polls for the only Lok Sabha constituency of the district – Darjeeling – from where Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) heavyweight Jaswant Singh is trying his luck.

Modi to record turnout at Gujarat poll booth

Ahmedabad, April 30: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has made Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi in charge of recording turnout at booth number 124 of Amraiwadi locality in Maninagar constituency during the Lok Sabha polls underway Thursday, a party source said.

As per tradition, BJP workers are put on poll duty at various booths to record the turnout of voters and report to their seniors after voting ends.

Modi has been asked to monitor booth number 124 that serves two housing societies at Amraiwadi. The area falls under his assembly constituency Maninagar.

Advani seeks fixed tenure for the House

Gandhinagar, April 30: BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate L K Advani today sought a fixed term for Lok Sabha and state Assemblies and wanted voting to be made compulsory with elections to be scheduled in the month of February.

“I suggest that political parties and the Election Commission should think over whether we can change the Constitution for a fixed tenure for Lok Sabha and Assemblies,” 81-year-old Advani said after casting his vote here.

“We are following the UK pattern which does not suit us and we should change it,” he told reporters.

New Zealander, 75, jailed for child-sex pictures

Wellington, April 30 : A 75-year-old New Zealand man has been jailed for two years on 27 charges of possessing objectionable images, mainly of young boys in sexual poses or acts, following a tip-off from police in Germany, news reports said Thursday.

The Department of Internal Affairs said that Edward Kent of Christchurch was the oldest person to be prosecuted for possessing sex pictures obtained via the Internet.

UN alarmed as Nepal Maoists keep up army feud

Kathmandu, April 29: As Nepal’s ruling Maoist party continued its war with the army, pushing for the ouster of the controversial army chief, the UN has expressed concern, saying strained ties between the major political parties could block the long-awaited unification of the Maoists’ guerrilla fighters with the state troops.

Preity on a high; beats Mallya & Shilpa Shetty!

Mumbai, April 28: Preity Zinta’s Kings XI Punjab won the match against Vijay Mallya’s Royal Challengers in Durban as also against Shilpa Shetty’s Rajasthan Royals yesterday. Preity is apparently very happy with her team’s tremendous performance as they beat out Royal Challengers Bangalore and Rajasthan Royals in yesterdays match. A close friend of Preity reveals, ”Preity always feels that winning against any team is an entire teams effort and she is very proud of her team for having put on winning efforts.

IPL and the search for a new Bollywood starlet

Border tourism opens between China and Pakistan across Khunjerab Pass

Beijeng, April 28: The Khunjerab Pass connecting China and Pakistan has so far been used for joint security drills and a small amount of trade between the

two countries. For the first time, the historical pass is being opened up for tourism as the two nations intensify their people to people contacts.

Cell phone furore again in Charlapally

Hyderabad, April 28: Charlapally jail officials on Friday found a prisoner possessing a cell phone. According to prison officials, one of the jail wardens

found a cell phone in the trouser pocket of Mohammed Shamin Gali, 29, during a search.

C K Babu arrested

Tirupati, April 28: Congress candidate for Chittoor assembly constituency C K Jayachandra Reddy alias C K Babu was arrested on Monday following a complaint

lodged by TDP leaders at Yadamarri police station in Chittoor.

The TDP leaders complained that CK was involved in the attack on the house of a TDP MPTC member Chitti, which was destroyed by a mob in Dasaravaripalle village on the night of April 24. The MPTC member alleged that CK along with 40 other Congressmen was involved in the attack on his house.

Based on his complaint, police arrested CK. He was later released on bail.

DS casts doubts over Suresh, Shabbir’s win

Nizamabad, April 28: The names of power minister Mohammed Shabbir Ali and Assembly speaker K R Suresh Reddy were missing in the list of winning candidates

prepared by the Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) that would be submitted to AICC president Sonia Gandhi, it is learnt.

Chiru calls for PAC meet today to discuss post-poll strategy

Hyderabad, April 28: The political affairs committee (PAC) of the Prajarajyam would meet at the party office on Tuesday, following a directive from the

party president K Chiranjeevi.

The 14-member PAC would be meeting for the first time since the completion of general elections, and would take stock of the post-poll situation in the state and at the Centre. Party sources said that the PAC would elicit views of the members on a variety of possibilities, including the game plan to be adopted in case of a hung assembly.

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Shah Rukh Khan’s Cell Number Out In Public

Mumbai, April 22: How will fans react when a superstar makes his mobile number public? Obviously, they will spin into a dialing frenzy! Something similar happened recently, when UAE telecommunication provider du released an advertisement that listed Indian superstar Shah Rukh Khan’s mobile number alongside endorsement of a product brand.
Three other celebrities from the Arab world are also endorsing the campaign.

More than 8,000 calls with over 1,000 personal voice messages were recorded for the four celebrities, including Khan, du said in a statement.

A love letter for Roxana from her film director partner

Tehran, April 22: Convicted by Iran of spying for the US and given an eight-year jail sentence, Roxana Saberi is at the centre of a tense new stand-off between Tehran and the West.
Barack Obama has demanded the release of the 31-year-old journalist, who has dual Iranian and American nationality. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has intervened in the case. And yesterday, an acclaimed Iranian film director stepped forward to proclaim her innocence, denounce her imprisonment as an act which has brought shame on all Iranians and publicly to declare his love for Ms Saberi.

Election Commission gives clean chit to YSR

Hyderabad, April 22: The Election Commission has given clean chit to Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy for his remarks on separate state of Telanagana.
The poll panel found nothing objectionable in the chief minister’s speech at Nandyal in Kurnool district, state’s chief electoral officer I.V. Subba Rao told reporters here Tuesday.

The four-party Grand Alliance led by the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) had complained to the Election Commission that the chief minister was trying to create animosities among people by inciting one region against the other.

Human trafficking law to be redrawn

Abu Dhabi, April 22: The Government will strengthen the law on human trafficking to make it easier to prosecute the gangs behind it, a senior Ministry of Interior official said yesterday.

Officials will redraw the classifications for human trafficking offences, Col Ahmed al Muharami, the manager of the human rights department at the ministry, said at a symposium in the capital.

The Government also plans to compile a database of offenders and victims to help keep tabs on the illegal trade and improve the sharing of information among UAE authorities.

Acid Attack On judge

HYDERABAD, April 22: Expressing serious concern over the lack of security for the lower-level judicial officials, several judges of the AP High Court on Tuesday conveyed their apprehensions to the Chief Justice Anil Ramesh Dave after the Tuesday’s acid attack on one of the district judges in East Godavari district.

The chief justice has called for a report on the alleged incident from the district and sessions judge of East Godavari.