India in 2 mins

Gyms and yoga centres to open next month

India will reopen gyms and end a night-time curfew - currently from 10pm to 5am - from Aug 5, but cinemas, bars and schools will remain closed.

The world's third-most Covid-19 infected nation has gradually eased its virus restrictions, imposed since late March, to boost the flagging economy.

Foreign universities allowed to open campuses

The Indian government on Wednesday approved a plan to allow foreign universities to open campuses in the country as part of efforts to boost education to strengthen the economy.

More than 750,000 Indian students study abroad, spending billions of dollars outside the country every year.

The government will allow "entry of top world-ranked universities to open campuses".

Hetero gets approval to sell Covid-19 drug

Hetero Labs has received regulatory approval to sell its version of the anti-viral drug favipiravir to treat Covid-19 patients in India.

The drug, priced at Rs59 ($1.08) a tablet, is approved to treat mild to moderate Covid-19 conditions and has been available at drug stores since Wednesday. Girls discover Earth-bound asteroid Two teenage girls - Vaidehi Vekariya and Radhika Lakhani - from Surat have discovered an earth-bound asteroid by poring over images from a University of Hawaii telescope.

The asteroid is currently near Mars and its orbit is expected to cross the Earth's in about one million years' time, said SPACE India, a private institute where the two 14-year-old girls received training.

Gold and 8,300 books in Jayalalithaa's house

Gold weighing nearly 4kg, over 600kg of silver, more than 8,300 books and 10,438 dress materials are among the numerous things on the list of properties in the late Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalitha's Poes Garden residence in Chennai.

She had lived at Veda Nilayam, a three-storeyed building, before she died in December 2016.

The state government will now transfer these properties to the Puratchi Thalaivi Dr J. Jayalalithaa Memorial Foundation, which will be making arrangements to convert Veda Nilayam into a memorial.

Police hunt woman who hired nine hitmen

Police in Bengaluru are hunting for a 50-year-old former woman corporator from Hegganahalli ward who hired nine assassins to eliminate her husband's killers.

"We are yet to arrest Varamahalakshmi. Three teams led by inspectors are looking for her," a police officer told IANS.

Ms Varamahalakshmi's husband, Govide Gowda, was hacked to death in December 2017.

She wanted to avenge his murder.

Help pours in for stranded Russian woman

A 32-year-old Russian woman, who is stranded in the temple town of Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh and separated from her mother in Uttar Pradesh, has started receiving help from various sources.

Ester and her 70-year-old mother, Olivia, had landed in India on Feb 6 with a plan to visit temples across the country.

They eventually wanted to settle down in India by offering physiotherapy services to people.

However, the Covid-19 induced lockdown left them with no job or money.

105-year-old Covid-19 patient cured in Kerala

Asma Beevi, was cured of Covid-19 and discharged from the Kerala government-run ESI Medical College in Kollam on Wednesday

She became the oldest patient in the state to be cured of the disease.

The previous oldest were a 93-year-old man and an 88-year-old woman.

Moved by farmer's plight, actor sends tractor Bollywood actor Sonu Sood has provided a tractor to a farmer in Andhra Pradesh after learning that he was using his daughters for ploughing since he couldn't afford to rent bulls.

The video of the farmer and his daughters ploughing the field went viral on social media and Sonu ensured that the tractor reached the family in Mahalrajuvari Palle village in Chittoor district.

Assam flood situation improves

The overall flood situation in Assam is continuing to improve, despite three more people dying on Wednesday taking the death toll to 107, officials said.

The heavy monsoon rains abated this week.

Yet, 1.7 million people in 1,536 villages across 21 of the state's 33 districts are still affected by floods.

Hippo gives birth in Bengaluru zoo

An 11-year-old hippopotamus named Dashya has given birth to a calf at the Bannerghatta Zoo in Bengaluru, raising the hippo count in the zoo to eight.

"Both mother and the young one are doing well," said Bengaluru Bannerghatta Biological Park executive director Vanashree Vipin Singh.

"With a surplus of hippos now, we are up for an animal exchange programme with other zoos."