Modi lands in Hercules plane on new motorway

Modi lands in Hercules plane on new motorway

Prime Minister Narendra Modi landed in a Hercules transport aircraft on India's newest motorway - the 341km Purvanchal Expressway - on Tuesday in a spectacular stunt highlighting the country's dual-use roads that double up as emergency military airstrips.

The giant plane carrying Mr Modi landed on a dead-straight stretch of the new expressway at Karwal Kheri in Uttar Pradesh's Sultanpur district before a brief air show by the Indian Air Force with French-made Mirage jets and Russian Su-30MKIs using the road as a runway.

Seven suspected militants killed in Kashmir

Indian security have killed seven suspected militants in Kashmir this week, including a district commander, in an offensive following recent killings of civilans by militants.

The troops also killed two men suspected of helping the militants, but relatives said they were innocent and held a candlelit protest in Kashmir's main city Srinagar on Wednesday.

DCW chief urges President to withdraw Kangana's Padma Shri

Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) chief Swati Maliwal wrote to President Ram Nath Kovind on Sunday urging him to withdraw Bollywood actress Kangana Ranaut's Padma Shri, India's fourth highest civilian award.

The DCW chief also sought registration of a case against Kangana on sedition charges after she described India's independence in 1947 (from the British) as "bheekh" or alms.

Kangana controversially said the country attained actual independence in 2014 - when the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government came to power.

Reddy's open to manufacturing new Covid-19 pill

Dr Reddy's Laboratories, one of a handful of Indian drug companies licensed to make a new Covid-19 pill developed by Merck, said on Monday it was open to making a similar pill from Pfizer, thought to be even more effective.

The new drugs, which unlike vaccines can be used to treat patients once they contract the Covid virus, are expected to have a huge market.

Press Council seeks report from Tripura over journalists' arrest

The Press Council of India has expressed concern and sought an explanation from the Tripura government after two journalists were arrested by the police last Sunday for spreading hatred in the state.

HW News Network's Swarna Jha and Samriddhi Sakunia were granted bail by a Chief Judicial Magistrate's court after they were arrested for reporting on communal incidents in Tripura.

American Airlines starts New York-Delhi flight

American Airlines launched its maiden flight into India last Saturday after a gap of 10 years.

The airline now offers a daily service between New Delhi and New York.

This flight was supposed to start at the end of October but was deferred by a couple of weeks for the Nov 8 United States reopening for international travellers.

26 Maoist militants killed in police ambush in Maharashtra

Police in Maharashtra killed at least 26 Maoist militants, including a top leader, in an ambush in a dense forest, on Sunday.

The Maoists, also known as Naxals, have waged an armed struggle against government forces for decades.

They say they are fighting for the poor who have been left behind in India's economic boom.

Sonu Sood's sister to contest Punjab elections

Bollywood actor Sonu Sood, who is known for his philanthropic work during the Covid-19 pandemic, has announced that his younger sister Malvika is ready to serve the people of Punjab and will contest the state assembly elections next year.

However, he said that they are yet to decide which political party she will join and it will be "revealed at the right time".

200 birds die due to avian flu in Rajasthan

Around 200 birds have died due to avian influenza in Rajasthan over the past week, a senior forest department official has revealed.

The disease has mainly been detected in Kuranja birds or Demoiselle cranes, which are found in several parts of Rajasthan.

"It is now feared that the avian influenza may spread to cattle," said District Forest Officer Ramesh Kumar Malpani.

Akasa Air places order for 72 Boeing 737 MAX jets

India's Akasa Air on Tuesday placed an order for 72 Boeing 737 MAX jets, valued at nearly US$9 billion ($12.2 billion) - a deal that could help the United States planemaker regain lost ground in one of the world's most promising markets.

The order by the billionaire investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala-backed airline comes months after India's air safety regulator allowed the country's airlines to fly the MAX jet, ending its nearly 21/2 years of regulatory grounding after two fatal crashes in five months killed 346 people.

Girl allegedly raped by 400 men over six months in Maharashtra

A 16-year-old girl was allegedly raped by 400 men over the last six months in Maharashtra's Beed district, ANI reported.

She was allegedly sexually exploited even by a policeman when she tried to file a complaint. She is now two months pregnant.

After she lodged a complaint with the police last week, a case was registered.

Beed Superintendent of Police Raja Ramasamy said last Sunday that three people have been arrested.

Pandya clarifies on 'Rs5 crore watch' seized' by airport customs

Cricketer Hardik Pandya on Tuesday refuted reports that two wrist watches worth Rs5 crore ($910,000) were seized from him at the Mumbai airport on his return from Dubai last Sunday.

He said that only one watch worth Rs1.5 crore had been taken for "proper valuation".

ANI had said that two watches were seized by the customs department because Pandya did not have a receipt for them.

Schools and colleges shut in Delhi as pollution worsens

Authorities in Delhi have shut all schools and colleges indefinitely amid the worsening levels of air pollution.

Construction work has also been banned until Sunday but an exception has been made for transport and defence-related projects.

A toxic haze has smothered Delhi since Deepavali.


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