No Swine flu deaths in Telangana: PHFW

Director of Health and Family Welfare Dr P Sambasiva Rao on Wednesday denied reports of deaths due to swine flu in Telangana State although he admitted that as many as 81 people were tested positive for the disease.

PDP hints at Kashmir government, BJP to react Thursday

The PDP Wednesday gave enough hints that it was ready to form a coalition government in Jammu and Kashmir, while the BJP, the PDP’s likely ally, said it will react formally Thursday.

Peoples Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti told Governor N.N. Vohra that her party had the support of 55 legislators in the 87-seat hung assembly.

Though she did not specify if the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), with 25 legislators, was supporting her, she made a pointed laudatory reference to former prime minister and ailing BJP leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

Hyderabad Metro Rail Project creates technology record

The Hyderabad Metro Rail project created a new technology record by successfully running a train in Automatic Train Operation (ATO) mode last night (Tuesday night) for the first time on Indian soil.

In this ATO mode train operates on its own and self controls its movement, speed, performance etc., with automatic application of brakes without intervention of the train driver. The function of the driver is only to press a button to close the doors at stations and it is a prelude to completely driverless mode which Hyderabad Metro can upgrade any time it wants.

2014 was India’s year of ‘breakthrough diplomacy’: Sushma

The government has placed special significance on India’s foreign policy and diplomatic outreach, making 2014 a year of “breakthrough diplomacy”. But 2015 promises to take foreign policy to a higher level with ‘diplomacy for development’ as the theme of India’s global engagements, according to External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.

Governor wishes people A Happy New Year

On the occasion of New Year 2015, Governor ESL Narasimhan, in a communiqué, extended his heartfelt New Year greetings to the people of both the States of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.

The Governor wished that the New Year would bring cheer to every citizen in the State with health, success and prosperity on all fronts.

On the occasion of New Year day, the Governor, as a customary practice, will be available to exchange greetings with the public and leaders of the civil society at Darbar Hall, Raj Bhavan between 11 AM to 12 PM on January 1st, Thursday. (INN)

Excise duty withdrawal detrimental to demand: Assocham

A day after the central government did not extend the excise duty concessions provided to the automobile and consumer durables sector in 2015, India Inc. Wednesday said the move will hit demand.

According to Associated Chambers of Commerce of India (Assocham), the withdrawal of excise duty concessions comes at a time when manufacturing output has declined by over four percent in October.

SET-TS & AP candidates asked to check status onlin

The candidates who have applied for SET-TS & AP -2014 have been asked to check their status and details pertaining to Name of the Candidate, Father’s and Mother’s Name, Gender, Social Category, PH/VH status, Date of Birth, Mobile Number, Photograph and Signature in SET website “”.

Congress slams ‘anti-farmer’ ordinance

Describing the ordinance as “anti-farmer”, the Congress Wednesday strongly condemned the temporary legislation approved by the Cabinet to amend the Land Acquisition Act.

“It (the ordinance) has neither the soul, nor the essence or the substance. This is very serious. We condemn it; unequivocally criticise it,” Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi told the media here.

Hyderabad-New Delhi AP Express rescheduled on Thursday

The Train No.12723 Hyderabad-New Delhi AP Express, scheduled to depart Hyderabad Station at 06:25 hrs on 1st January (Thursday) is re-scheduled to depart at 03:25 pm.

According to the South Central Railway, the train has been re-scheduled due to late running of its pairing train. (INN)

CM reviews power projects, releases Rs 346 Cr

The Telangana Government on Wednesday released Rs 346 crore to BHEL towards the equity contribution out of Rs 1,000 crores for establishment of Kothagudem TPS-VII (1×800 MW) power project.

The total cost of the project is estimated at Rs.5548.44 Crores. The State Government had issued the Letter of Intent (LOI) to BHEL to take up the work for Rs.3810 crores and as such the BHEL has to be paid 10 per cent of contract value as advance of Rs.346 Crores.

Greek parliament formally dissolved, elections Jan 25

The presidential decree dissolving the Greek parliament and the declaration of early general elections Jan 25 was posted Wednesday on the doors of the parliament building’s main entrance in central Athens.

The move marks the formal inauguration of the election campaign which was expected to be tense, Xinhua reported citing analysts.

Two arrested in Bihar in fake note racket

Two people were arrested Wednesday with fake currency notes of face value Rs.7 lakh in Bihar’s Patna district, police said.

They were arrested by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) at Bihta railway station, about 30 km from Patna. They were on their way to deliver the counterfeit notes to the neighbouring state of Uttar Pradesh.

The fake notes had come from Bangladesh, police said.

DRI officials interrogated the two people, who happened to be residents of West Bengal, to uncover more information about the racket.

SCG to honour late Phillip Hughes with bronze plaque

As Australian cricketers return to the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) for the first time since the death of Phillip Hughes – the life of their fallen teammate will be commemorated with a bronze plaque to be unveiled at the ground at which he burst onto the scene and then met his tragic fate.

It is five weeks since the cricket world was rocked by the passing of the 25-year-old batsman who was struck on the helmet by a short-pitched delivery while batting for South Australia against his former team New South Wales in a Sheffield Shield match in Sydney, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.

Goa hikes VAT on petrol to 10 percent

The Goa government Wednesday hiked the value added tax (VAT) on petrol to ten percent, which would push petrol prices by Rs.5 and more. The hike will come into effect Jan 1.

Priced at Rs.52.10 per litre, Goa sells the cheapest petrol in the country. Petrol prices in Goa fell drastically after the BJP-led coalition government slashed VAT on petrol as part of a promise made in the party’s 2012 election manifesto.

Pakistan to move SC against Lakhvi’s conditional release

The Pakistan government has decided to challenge in the Supreme Court 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks mastermind Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi’s conditional bail granted by the Islamabad High Court while he challenged his two-day judicial remand in another case.

The government’s petition, prepared by the attorney general, will be filed by the Islamabad district administration. It will present the stance that the Islamabad High Court did not hear the government’s version while granting bail to Lakhvi, Dawn online reported.

Odisha teachers oppose guidelines on dropout counselling

A day after the Odisha government directed teachers to counsel children to curb the state’s dropout rate, the teachers Wednesday said the government should first focus on providing quality education to the students.

The government has asked the teachers to visit the students’ houses in order to bring down the dropout rate in high schools. The teachers said that the government should also fill up the vacant posts in schools.

Another Sri Lankan minister joins opposition

Sri Lanka’s Investment Promotion Deputy Minister Faizer Mustapha quit the government Wednesday and pledged to support the opposition candidate in the presidential election.

The deputy minister announced his support for opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena. He also resigned from the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) headed by incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa.

“I have made this decision for the sake of a united country,” Mustapha told cheering crowds here as he joined the opposition.

Raffaele Marciello named Sauber’s test and reserve driver

Italian Raffaele Marciello was Wednesday named Formula One team Sauber’s test and reserve driver for the next season.

The 20-year-old won the European F3 championship last year and is a member of F1 team Ferrari’s driver academy.

“We will give Raffaele the opportunity to become familiar with Formula One, which also includes him taking part in some free practice sessions. It’s great for our team to be part of his way to Formula One,” said team boss Monisha Kaltenborn in a statement.

Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Nasr will be Sauber’s race drivers in 2014.

Jung reviews restoration of Tibbia college

Delhi Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung Wednesday reviewed the renovation and restoration project currently underway at the Tibbia College and Hospital here.

In a meeting held at Raj Niwas with the hospital representatives, and the health and public works department secretaries, Jung asked the senior officials to “put in their best efforts to re-energize” the prominent ayurvedic and unani college and hospital.

“By 2016 the college and hospital must be restored to its erstwhile glory, not only in terms of its infrastructure but more so in terms of its academic and research output,” Jung said.

Khaleda asks for more security to attend court hearing

Former Bangladesh prime minister Khaleda Zia has asked for more security to attend the next hearing of her corruption case in the wake of violence over her previous court appearance.

Her lawyer Zakir Hossain Bhuiyan filed a general diary (GD) seeking safety of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) chairperson at Chawkbazar police station in Dhaka, reported.

Modi government to reach out to minorities: Naqvi

The government won’t allow anyone to derail its development agenda by creating chasm among different communities, Minister of State for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said Wednesday.

The government has told Naqvi to start a massive campaign to aggressively implement schemes for the socio-economic and educational betterment of the minorities.

Naqvi plans to visit various states to instil confidence among the minorities and hold talks with state governments to implement welfare and educational schemes for minorities.

Five Indian coaches get AFC pro-licence batch

Indian football coaches – Khalid Jamil, Mariano Dias, Santosh Kashyap, Hilal Parray and Thangboi Singto – has received the AFC pro-licence diploma, taking the elite list count to nine in the country, according to an AIFF release Wednesday.

Earlier Savio Medeira, Derrick Pereira, V. Soundarajan and Hering Shangpliang were the only Indian coaches holding the Asian Football Confederation’s (AFC) professional diploma.

The course was conducted by former national team coach Wim Koevermans, a UEFA pro licence instructor.

Break silence on conversions, Agnivesh tells Modi

Arya Samaj leader Swami Agnivesh Tuesday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to break his silence on the issue of religious conversions and reassert his agenda of development and said Hindu chauvinists “should fix their own backyard” before inviting people back home as part of their ‘ghar wapasi’ movement.

Swami Agnivesh said that Hindu rightwing groups’ determination to make Muslims and Christians embrace Hindu religion was costing the government its credibility.

Odisha plans inclusive growth in mineral rich areas

The Odisha government has outlined a Rs.818 crore action plan for inclusive growth of mineral bearing areas in the state, said an official Wednesday.

For this, a special purpose vehicle (SPV), Odisha Mineral Bearing Area Development Corporation (OMBADC), will be created.