1. India fast-tracks hydro projects in Kashmir : India has fast-tracked hydropower projects worth $15 billion in Kashmir in recent months, three central and state officials said, ignoring warnings from Islamabad that power stations on rivers flowing into Pakistan will disrupt water supplies.
2. What an overwhelmed Navjot Singh Sidhu did after being sworn in as Punjab minister : An overwhelmed Navjot Singh Sidhu on Thursday touched chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh's feet after he took the oath as minister in Punjab's Congress government.
3. 11-year-old, three LeT men killed in J&K encounter : Three Lashkare-Taiba (LeT) terrorists and a minor girl were killed in a gunfight between security forces and militants in north Kashmir's Kupwara district on Wednesday.
4. Mehbooba Mufti hopeful PM Narendra Modi will toe Vajpayee to renew Pakistan trade ties : With India suspending cross-border trade with Pakistan along the Line of Control (LoC), Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti on Wednesday expressed hope that Prime Minister Narendra Modi follows the footsteps of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and resolves the present situation in the state and take forward ties with Islamabad.
5. Temporary relief as US relooks H-1B visa rules : The United States may take longer than expected earlier to tighten laws for overseas professionals in the country, White House press secretary Sean Spicer has indicated, offering hope to Indian companies that they may be able to benefit from the existing H-1B visa policy for their workers this year.
6. Post-UP landslide, BJP’s 2019 work cut out — performance will be key : With the Lok Sabha polls just two years away, the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh will have to get its priorities right and achieve tangible results so that it can seek a fresh mandate with confidence, and hope to repeat its impressive performance in the 2014 general elections and the assembly polls.
7. Former UP minister Gayatri Prajapati arrested after two weeks on the run : A fugitive from justice for more than two weeks, former UP minister Gayatri Prasad Prajapati was arrested on Wednesday for the alleged gangrape of a woman and sexual assault of her minor daughter. A court sent him to 14-day judicial custody.
8. I-T department selective while taking on shell cos: CAG : A report by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) on direct taxes, tabled in Parliament last week, has criticised the I-T department for being selective in picking up cases, while ignoring thousands of shell companies engaged in money laundering in the commercial hub of Mumbai which were detected by other enforcement agencies.
9. Sushma Swaraj makes fiery return to Lok Sabha, blasts Kharge : Making an impactful comeback on her first day in Parliament since undergoing kidney transplant in December, external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday dismissed Congressman Mallikarjun Kharge's charge that the Centre was silent on hate attacks against Indians in the US and said the issue had been taken up with the US government at "very high levels".
10. Not afraid of fatwa, will sing till last breath: Nahid Afrin : Young singer Nahid Afrin, against whom a few Islamic clerics in Assam have issued a "fatwa", says she is not afraid and will not stop singing or performing till her death.
11. 'China-Pakistan economic corridor challenge to India's sovereignty' : India has expressed strong opposition to the $46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project, which is the key to Beijing's ambitious 'One-Belt, One-Road' initiative, even as it slammed Islamabad for not taking concrete steps to stop crossborder terrorism.
12. Six Chinese flyers try to smuggle in Rs 1.85 crore gold : In a first, six Chinese nationals, including a pregnant woman who was later identified as the ringleader, were arrested by the customs officials at the international airport for trying to smuggle into the country 6.1kg gold worth Rs 1.85 crore on Wednesday . They were later released on bail.
13. Pakistan becoming world's terrorism factory: India at UNHRC : India on Wednesday slammed Pakistan for abetting cross-border terrorism at the United NationsHuman Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva, saying that the neighbouring country is becoming world's terrorism factory.
1. Saudi king's visit highlights China's Middle East engagement : Saudi Arabia's King Salman began a visit to Beijing Thursday that highlights growing ties underpinned by China's thirst for Saudi oil and the kingdom's status as a key link in Beijing's bid to connect China to Europe through infrastructure development.
2. Egyptian-American named deputy US national security adviser : National Security Adviser HR McMaster has tapped Dina Powellto become his deputy, promoting the Cairo-born banker and policymaker to a key White House role.
3. Trade war will hurt US firms first, China says : Chinese premier Li Keqiang warned the US on Wednesday that American companies would be the first to be hit in the case of a trade war between the two nations.
4. Pope says cutting jobs can be 'very serious sin' : Closing factories and cutting jobs can constitute a "very serious sin", Pope Francis said Wednesday in his latest broadside in defence of labour rights.
5. Security high as Pakistan launches first census in 19 years : Pakistan on Wednesday launched its first census in nearly two decades, with security high as thousands of enumerators backed by the military began the enormous, politically-charged count.
6. Bangladesh militants in suicide blast as police move in : CHITTAGONG, Bangladesh: At least two Bangladeshi militants blew themselves up Thursday after throwing grenades at police who surrounded a suspected extremist hideout outside the port city of Chittagong, police said.
7. Trump slams Snoop Dogg's latest music video : US President Donald Trumpslammed rapper Snoop Dogg over the use of a gun against a Trump look-alike in his new music video, media reports said.
8. Federal judge in Hawaii puts Trump travel ban on hold : Hours before it was to take effect, President Donald Trump's revised travel ban was put on hold Wednesday by a federal judge in Hawaii who questioned whether the administration was motivated by national security concerns.
9. Pakistan set to declare Gilgit-Baltistan as fifth province : In a move that may raise concerns in India, reports suggest that Pakistan is planning to declare the strategic Gilgit-Baltistan region also known as Northern Areas as its fifth province.
10. Kim's identity confirmed using child's DNA: Malaysia : Malaysia used a DNA sample from one of Kim Jong-nam’s children to confirm the identity of the assassinated half-brother of North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un, Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said Wednesday.
When will Polavaram project deadlock come to an end? According to sources Polavaram project was initiated by the then Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, the late Dr. YS Rajashekhar Reddy, who envisaged the project as a prestigious one for the state. Dr. YSR also held all party consultations on the dam and reached out to all the stake-holders on the same.
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