NIA court orders release of Ejaz Ahmed Mirza

A National Investigation Agency Court today ordered release one of a suspect, who allegedly conspired to kill prominent politicians and journalists in three states, on ‘statutory’ bail since the NIA failed to file chargesheet against him, a lawyer representing him said.

“The NIA Court (here) has ordered release of Ejaz Ahmed Mirza, working in DRDO as scientist, on statutory bail as the NIA failed to file chargesheet against him,” Akmal Razvi, advocate, representing the accused, told PTI here.

Sarabjit”s Pak lawyer to launch book explaining ”miscarriage of justice”

Lahore, Feb. 28 (ANI): The lawyer for Sarabjit Singh- the Indian prisoner lodged in a Pakistan jail- is set to launch a book on Friday explaining why he believes Singh”s conviction and imprisonment is “an extraordinary miscarriage of justice”. In his book ”Sarabjit Singh- A Case of Mistaken Identity”, advocate Awais Sheikh states that Sarabjit has been a victim of unfair conviction that has caused him to be in prison for his entire adult life, reports The Express Tribune.

Prominent Catholic blogger speculates Pope Benedict is ‘secretly gay’

Washington, Feb 28 (ANI): A prominent Catholic and gay blogger, Andrew Sullivan, has renewed speculation that the outgoing Pope Benedict may be secretly gay, a report has said.

The Dish”s Andrew Sullivan wrote a post titled ‘Two Popes, One Secretary,’ after it was announced that Benedict will not go into hidden retirement but will instead continue living in the Vatican with trusted secretary Archbishop Georg Gaenswein.

“So Benedict’s handsome male companion will continue to live with him, while working for the other Pope during the day,” Sullivan wrote.

Americans losing faith in country”s military: Poll Home

Washington, Feb. 28 (ANI): The opinion of Americans regarding their country”s military strength is at a low point, with 50 percent saying the nation”s armed forces are indisputably the strongest in the world, according to a recent poll. The poll result represents a 14 percent drop from two years ago, when 64 percent of Americans told Gallup the U.S. military was clearly the world”s strongest, reports Politico. The 50 percent mark is the lowest in Gallup”s polling on the issue, which dates back to 1993. The U.S.

Four deported over ”penis enlargement” posters in Johannesburg

Johannesburg, Feb. 28 (ANI): Seven people have been arrested in the past few months for putting up ”penis enlargement” posters in the Johannesburg Central Business District (CBD). Police spokesperson Wayne Minnaar said the accused were charged in court, and three of the suspects were deported to Zimbabwe and one was deported to the Democratic Republic of Congo, reports News24. Minnaar said four more suspects were tracked and traced since November last year and have been fined R 1000 per poster, which amounts to between R 10,000 and R 20,000 per individual.

Pak Army says it won”t interfere in upcoming polls Home

Islamabad, Feb. 28 (ANI): In a bid to quash fears about the military”s role in the coming general elections, Pakistan”s defence establishment has reiterated that it has no intention of interfering in the electoral process. Defence Secretary Lt-Gen (retd) Asif Yasin Malik insisted that the military would not be “monitoring” the election. This was the third time over the past week when the defence establishment issued statements emphasising that it would remain neutral in the election expected in May, reports The Dawn.

New Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel says US ”can”t dictate” to the world

Islamabad, Feb. 28 (ANI): America cannot “dictate to the world” and must work with allies and build relationships with other nations, US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said shortly after being sworn as the new Pentagon chief. Hagel, while addressing a Pentagon audience of civilian officials and military officers, said America was a powerful country but could not accomplish its goals without forging strong alliances, reports The Express Tribune. Hagel”s comments echoed President Barack Obama”s emphasis on extricating the country from a decade of ground wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

US Congressman declares ”Osama doc” Shakil Afridi ”American hero”

Islamabad, Feb. 28 (ANI): US Congressman Dana Rohrabacher has introduced a resolution in the House of Representatives declaring Pakistani doctor Shakil Afridi a hero. According to a press statement, the resolution expressed that Dr Afridi is an ”American hero” and should be immediately released from Pakistani custody, reports The Express Tribune.

Iran tells Pak gasline must advance despite US hostility

Islamabad, Feb. 28 (ANI): Iran”s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has told visiting Pakistani president Asif Ali Zardari that a much-delayed 7.5 billion-dollar gas pipeline project must go ahead despite US opposition. The Nation quoted Khamenei, as telling Zardari that the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline is an important example of Tehran-Islamabad cooperation, and despite hostilities towards the expansion of ties the two countries must overcome this opposition decisively.

One in ten people have had sex in office

Washington, Feb. 28 (ANI): 10 percent of people have confessed that they have actually made love at their work place, a survey has revealed.

The survey, conducted by Glassdoor, has shed light into love and romance in the workplace.

More than 1,000 anonymous Glassdoor users shared their secrets about love while on the job.

51 percent of employees and unemployed job seekers said that it’s ok to be romantically involved with a co-worker, the Houston Chronicle reported.

More than 37 percent said they have been involved with a co-worker romantically.

Russian meteor blast resonated from Greenland to Antarctica

Washington, Feb 28 (ANI): The meteor strike over the steppes of southwestern Russia sent a low-frequency rumble bouncing through the Earth, giving scientists new clues about the biggest cosmic intruder in 100 years.

The big boom over Chelyabinsk on February 15 also produced a wave of sound thousands of times lower than a piano’s middle C — far below the range of human hearing, according to the international agency that watches for nuclear bomb tests.

PM confident of returning to eight percent growth within three years

New Delhi, Feb 28 (ANI): A confident Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh on Thursday said India could return to eight percent growth within three years provided all the ministers work together to convert the challenges identified by Finance Minister P. Chidambaram into opportunities.

Grandparents being replaced by Google for simple answers

London, Feb 28 (ANI): Grandparents are being replaced by the internet, as rising numbers of kids look up for answers online rather than seeking help from family, a new survey has found.Researchers found that older generations are being replaced by Google, Wikipedia and YouTube, with their grandchildren not asking them basic questions that they can look up themselves, the Telegraph reported.

Bipasha Basu unveils `Promart Retail` logo in Mumbai

New Delhi, Feb 28 (ANI): Bipasha Basu walked the ramp for Promart Retail outlet and also unveiled its new logo in Mumbai on Wednesday.

The dusky beauty looked extremely gorgeous in her pink top and off-white skirt.

Speaking at the occasion, the 34-year-old Bollywood actor said that today the fashion industry has mixed with the acting world and like film reaches out to enormous masses, fashion also trends all over.

Being the favourite face in an advertisement industry, the star also revealed the criteria on which she selects the brand for endorsing.

Watson itching to bowl to avoid Dhoni-type mauling of Oz attack in future

Sydney, Feb 28 (ANI): Shane Watson has revealed he was itching to bowl at Mahendra Singh Dhoni while the Indian captain was smashing Australian bowlers all over the ground during his swaggering double ton in the Chennai Test. The Australian all rounder will now tell Cricket Australia (CA) hierarchy he is unequivocal in his desire to resume bowling after helplessly watching Dhoni bludgeon the Australian attack in the first Test, the Herald Sun reports.

Tiny moons lurk in Saturn’s rings

Washington, February 28 (ANI): Tiny moons that can barely be seen hide inside Saturn”s majestic rings, according to researchers.

Like Jupiter, Saturn is orbited by a large number of moons — 62, at last count — ranging in size from the gigantic 3,200-mile-wide Titan, wrapped in thick clouds, to the barely 2-mile-wide Methone, smooth as a river rock.

But now scientists say there are even more moons in the ringed planet’s retinue – tiny worlds embedded inside the icy rings themselves – according to Discovery News.

Muslim hater ”subway shove” NY girl found fit for trial again

Washington, Feb. 28 (ANI): The self-proclaimed Muslim hater who pushed an innocent man of Indian origin to his death in front of a subway train has been found fit for trial for a second time. Erika Menendez, 31, also fired her family-retained attorneys because she distrusts them and chose court-appointed attorney Joseph DeFelice to represent her, booting private attorney Thomas A. Kenniff, reports New York Post. Kenniff claimed that though Menendez was found fit to stand trial, she does suffer from severe psychiatric issues.

US Congressman demands referendum in Balochistan

Islamabad, Feb. 28 (ANI): US Congressman Dana Rohrabacher has requested a referendum to be held in Balochistan on the question of independence, which would challenge the claims by Islamabad that the Baloch want to be part of Pakistan. Rohrabacher said this while addressing a gathering at a conference entitled “Global and Regional Security Challenges in South Asia: What Future for Balochistan”, reports The Dawn. Rohrabacher, who was a key speaker at the conference, gave a poignant speech urging the right to self-determination for the Baloch people.

Union Budget 2013-14 meets CII’s expectations: Adi Godrej

New Delhi, Feb. 28 (ANI): The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) on Thursday welcomed the Union Budget 2013-14, saying it a growth-oriented budget, which would kick-start the next cycle of investment in the country.

Expressing happiness that many of their suggestions have been found mentioned in it, CII president Adi Godrej said the budget makes laudable efforts to optimise growth drivers while addressing inclusive and sustained development.

Left Front wins in Tripura for fifth straight term, Congress retains power in Meghalaya

gartala, Feb. 28 (ANI): The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M)-led Left Front has stormed to power in Tripura for a record fifth straight term by winning 50 out of 60 seats, while the Congress has emerged as the single largest party in Meghalaya by winning 29 out of 60 seats of the state assembly.

In the 2008 assembly election, the Congress had bagged 25 seats in Meghalaya and has formed government with United Democratic Party, which has won eight seats this time.

Prince Charles adds Saudi Arabia to Mideast tour

Britain’s Prince Charles and his wife Camilla have added Saudi Arabia to their tour of the Middle East next month, palace officials said today.

The visit will be part of their Royal Highnesses’ nine-day tour between 11 -19 March, which will also include
Jordan, Qatar and Oman,” Charles’ Clarence House residence said.

The heir to the British throne will meet with the royal families of each country on the tour, which he is conducting at his government’s request in a bid to boost Britain’s political and economic ties in the region.

Five killed on the way to Shirdi temple

Five persons including an infant were killed and 23 others were injured, some of them seriously, in a head-on collision between two vehicles near Wavi on the busy Sinnar-Shirdi road this morning, police said.

A car from Bhayandar (Thane) was proceeding to Shirdi temple, when it ran into a bus coming from the opposite

The deceased were identified as Baby Virendra Chourasia (25), Tanishka Virendra (3 months), Phulmati Ganesh Chourasia (47), Rukhaminidevi Chourasia (55) and Prashant Karanje (32) (driver).

Constable arrested on rape charges

A constable was arrested for allegedly raping a woman in northwest Delhi, police said today.

Constable Mithun was apprehended following the complaint of a widow who claimed that he went back on his promise of marrying her though they were in a relationship.

She approached the police yesterday with her complaint after which a case of rape was registered.

The constable, who hails from Bihar, joined the force in 2010.


Trader shot dead

A trader was today shot dead in Dhanbad town of Jharkhand and his brother suffered bullet injury by an unidentified assailant, the police said here.

The gunman fired four bullets at Saroj Singh (35) and the doctors at the central hospital declared him brought dead, sources said.

His brother, Manoj, who suffered a bullet injury, is out of danger, the police said quoting the doctors.

Saroj was into medicine business, the sources said adding many druggists in the coal township downed the shutters
of their shops in protest against the killing.


Pak’s political parties want peace talks with Taliban

Pakistan’s main political parties, including the ruling PPP and opposition PML-N, today called for talks with Taliban to usher in peace and stability in the restive tribal belt and other parts of the country.

A joint communique, which was issued at the end of a conference of political parties convened by the Jamiat
Ulema-e-Islam to forge a roadmap for restoring peace, stressed the need for all parties to cooperate for a dialogue with the banned Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan.