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Telangana

Modi invites entrepreneurs from across world to be part of India's growth story

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday invited entrepreneurs from across the globe to invest in India and become a part of the country's growth story, assuring them of the government's whole-hearted support.
 
Modi, Ivanka Trump attend GES 2017 in Hyderabad
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today invited entrepreneurs from across the globe to invest in India and become a part of the country's growth story, assuring them of the government's whole-hearted support.
 
"To my young entrepreneur friends from India, I would like to say: each of you has something valuable to contribute towards creating a New India by 2022. You are vehicles of change and instruments of India’s transformation," he said in his inaugural address at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit, 2017 here, an event hosted by the Government of India in partnership with the Government of the United States of America.
 
The Summit is being held in South Asia for the first time. It brings together leading investors, entrepreneurs, academicians, think-tanks and other stakeholders to propel the global entrepreneurship ecosystem.
 
Ms. Ivanka Trump, Advisor to US President Donald Trump and also his daughter, is leading the US contingent to the three-day event.
 
"This event not only connects the Silicon Valley with Hyderabad but also showcases the close ties between the United States of America and India. It underlines our shared commitment towards encouraging entrepreneurship and innovation," Mr. Modi said.
 
He noted that the topics picked for this year’s summit include healthcare and life sciences; digital economy and financial technology; energy and infrastructure; and media and entertainment, which are important issues, relevant to the well-being and prosperity of mankind. 
 
"The theme 'Women First, Prosperity for All' makes this edition of GES stand out... We believe women empowerment is vital to our development," he said.
 
"Indian women continue to lead in different walks of life. Our space programmes, including the Mars Orbiter Mission, have had immense contribution from our women scientists. Kalpana Chawla and Sunita Williams, both of Indian origin, have been part of US space missions. Three out of four oldest High Courts in India are now headed by women judges. Our sportswomen have done the country proud. This very city of Hyderabad is home to Saina Nehwal, PV Sindhu, and Sania Mirza, who have brought laurels to India.
 
"In India, we have provided for not less than one third of women representation in rural and urban local bodies, ensuring women’s participation in grass-root level decision-making. More than sixty percent of workers in our agriculture and allied sectors are women. Our milk co-operatives in Gujarat and the Shri Mahila Griha Udyog Lijjat Papad, are examples of highly successful and globally acclaimed women-led co-operative movements.
 
"Here at the GES, more than 50 percent of the delegates are women. Over the next two days, you will meet many women who have dared to be different, in their own walks of life. They now inspire a new generation of women entrepreneurs. I hope the deliberations in the summit would focus on how women entrepreneurship can be further supported," he said.
 
"The power to think differently and ahead of the times for the betterment of mankind is what sets entrepreneurs apart. I see that power in India's young generation today. I see 800 million potential entrepreneurs who can work towards making the world a better place," Mr. Modi said.
 
He said the number of smartphone users in India is projected to grow to over 500 million by 2018. This offers immense potential for the growth of any venture, in terms of outreach and job creation, he felt.
 
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He said the Government's Start-Up India programme is a comprehensive action plan to foster entrepreneurship and promote innovation. It aims to minimize the regulatory burden and provide support to startups. Over 1200 redundant laws have been scrapped, 87 rules for FDI have been eased in 21 sectors, and several government processes have been taken online, he said.
 
He said the Government had taken several steps to improve the business environment. "The jump in India’s ranking in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Report, from 142 to 100, in three years, is a result of this. We have improved on indicators like dealing with construction permits, getting credit, protecting minority investors, paying taxes, enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency," he said.
 
"The process is not yet complete. This is an area where we are not satisfied with 100th rank. We would strive towards 50th rank.  
 
"We have launched the MUDRA scheme to provide easy finance of upto one million rupees to entrepreneurs. Since its launch in 2015, over 90 million loans worth 4.28 trillion rupees have been sanctioned.  Of these, more than 70 million loans have been sanctioned to women entrepreneurs," he said.
 
The Prime Minister also mentioned the Atal Innovation Mission and the opening of Tinkering Labs in more than 900 schools to promote a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship among children. 
 
"Our Mentor India initiative engages leaders to guide and mentor students through these tinkering labs. In addition, 19 incubation centers have been created in various universities and research institutions. These will nurture innovative start-up businesses to become scalable and sustainable," he said.
 
He also mentioned Aadhaar, the world’s largest biometric based digital database. This currently covers over 1.15 billion people and digitally authenticates over 40 million transactions daily. He said the Government now digitally provides monetary benefits of various government schemes to the beneficiaries through Direct Benefit Transfer using Aadhaar.
 
"Almost 300 million bank accounts with deposits of over 685 billion rupees, or over 10 billion dollars, have been opened through the Jan Dhan Yojana. These bring previously un-banked sections of society into the formal financial system. Of these, 53 per cent accounts are of women.
 
"We are steadily working towards a less cash economy and have launched a Unified Payment Interface App called BHIM. In less than a year, this platform is processing almost 280 thousand transactions daily.
 
"Having almost completed our programme to connect all villages with electricity, we have launched the Saubhagya scheme. This will provide electricity connections to all families by December 2018.
 
"We have launched a programme to provide high-speed broad-band internet to all rural areas by March 2019," he said.
 
The Prime Minister also mentioned initiatives in areas such as renewable energy, the national gas grid, the national gas policy, the Swachh Bharat Mission to improve sanitation and cleanliness, the rural and urban housing missions, and infrastructure and connectivity programmes like Sagarmala and Bharatmala, and said they offered entrepreneurs many business opportunities for investment.
 
"Our recent World Food India initiative helped us engage with entrepreneurs in the food processing industry and agricultural waste sectors.
 
"My government understands that an environment of transparent policies and a rule of law providing a level-playing field are necessary for entrepreneurship to flourish. A historic overhaul of the taxation system has been recently undertaken, bringing in the Goods and Services Tax across the country. Our Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code introduced in 2016 is a step towards ensuring timely resolution for stressed ventures. We have recently improved this further, preventing wilful defaulters from bidding for stressed assets.
 
"Tough measures have been adopted to tackle the parallel economy, check tax evasion and control black money. Our efforts have been recognized by Moody’s recent upgrade of India’s government bond ratings. This upgrade comes after a gap of almost 14 years.
 
"India has improved its rank from 54 in 2014 to 35 in 2016 on the World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index. This signifies the relative ease and efficiency with which products can be moved into and from a country," he said.
 
Stating that an investment-friendly environment needs to be stable from the macro-economic perspective, he said the Government had succeeded in containing the fiscal and current account deficits, and curbing inflation. 
 
"Our foreign exchange reserves have crossed 400 billion dollars, and we continue to attract large foreign capital flows," he said.
 
"I am informed that President Trump has declared November 2017 as National Entrepreneurship Month. America has also observed National Entrepreneurs’ Day on November 21st. This summit will certainly resonate with those themes. Let me conclude by wishing you fruitful, engaging and rewarding deliberations at this summit," he added.
 
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BHEL commissions two more units of Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Scheme in Telangana

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Public sector Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) today said it had successfully commissioned two more pumping units (Units 3&4), of 116 MW each, of the 7x116 MW Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Scheme (LIS) Package-6 in Telangana. 
 
BHEL had earlier commissioned Units 1 and 2 of the same project in April, 2019. The pump for each unit is designed to lift 89.16 cumecs (cubic metres per second) of water by 105.5 metres, a press release from BHEL said.
 
Being developed by the Irrigation & CAD (I&CAD) department of the Government of Telangana, the greenfield lift irrigation project (formerly known as Pranhita Chevella) is located in Peddapalli district of Telangana. In the project, water shall be lifted from Sripada Yellampalli reservoir to Medaram reservoir and will be used for irrigation and water supply in nearby areas, thereby contributing to the overall development of the area and the state of Telangana.
 
BHEL’s scope in the project comprises complete Electrical & Mechanical (E&M) works including design, manufacture, supply and supervision of erection and commissioning of 7 sets of Vertical Pump-Motor sets along with associated auxiliaries. The equipment has been manufactured and supplied from BHEL’s manufacturing units at Bhopal, Rudrapur and Bengaluru, while the supervision of erection and commissioning at the site was carried out by the company’s Power Sector Southern Region division, Chennai.
 
In Telangana, BHEL has so far commissioned 29 Pump-Motor sets of various ratings cumulatively aggregating to 985 MW. In addition, BHEL is presently executing another 36 Pump-Motor sets totalling to 4,893 MW for various Lift Irrigation Schemes in Telangana -- Kaleshwaram (Pranhita Chevella) LIS Packages and Palamuru Rangareddy LIS Packages.
 
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Stalin in role to rope in KCR, Jagan

Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekar Rao meets DMK President M. K. Stalin at his residence in Chennai on May 13, 2019. (Photo: IANS)
Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekar Rao meets DMK President M. K. Stalin at his residence in Chennai on May 13, 2019. (Photo: IANS)
UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi is said to be in close touch with DMK leader M. K. Stalin on building the numbers for the UPA, if push comes to shove following the counting of votes on May 23.
 
Stalin, whose party is an ally of the Congress, is reportedly working the channels to get the support of the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) and YSR Congress Party (YSRCP), who are likely to be crucial for government formation in the event the Lok Sabha elections throw up a fractured verdict.
 
This assumes significance in the backdrop of the TRS chief's May 13 meeting with Stalin in Chennai. Though K Chandrashekhar Rao reportedly discussed his idea of a Federal Front and urged Stalin to support the proposed alliance of regional parties, the DMK leader requested him to back the Congress for the formation of a non-BJP government.
 
Since Stalin has taken an initiative, the Congress leadership is believed to have felt it appropriate to entrust him with the task of holding further talks with both KCR and  Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy.
 
Telangana has 17 Lok Sabha seats and TRS is confident of making a clean sweep with its ally All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) expected to retain Hyderabad.
 
Banking on her experience of the 2004 and 2009 elections when she successfully cobbled together the Congress-led alliance, Sonia Gandhi has stepped up her efforts to once again prepare the ground for the coalition.
 
As part of this, she has invited political heavyweights for a meeting on May 23.
 
Andhra Pradesh has 25 Lok Sabha seats. KCR is counting on the support of YSRCP to have joint bargaining power for the Telugu states.
 
Since KCR considers Telugu Desam Party (TDP) as anti-Telangana, he has thrown his weight behind YSRCP and invited it to join hte federal front.
 
The TDP, which pulled out of BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) last year, is working for a non-BJP alliance led by the Congress.
 
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TDP chief N. Chandrababu Naidu is already believed to have communicated to the Congress leadership that he will have no problem to the TRS being part of the UPA. However, he may have reservations about the Congress efforts to seek support of the YSRCP.
 
One of the reasons cited by Naidu for his decision to pull out of the NDA was BJP warming up to Jagan.
 
Since UPA may need the support of both, the Congress party is understood to have already initiated efforts to persuade Naidu to take a soft stand in the matter.
 
It is in this context that DMK leader Durai Murugan's meeting with Chandrababu Naidu in Amaravati on May 14 is seen as important.
 
TRS, which won five Lok Sabha seats in 2004, had joined the Congress-led UPA after the polls. KCR served as minister in Manmohan Singh cabinet for a couple of years before resigning over the demand for statehood to Telangana.
 
Though he hailed the Congress for agreeing to carve out Telangana state and enjoyed a good rapport with Sonia Gandhi, KCR was accused of betrayal by the Congress after he refused to merge his TRS with the party.
 
"Jagan has already made it clear that whichever party gives special category status to Andhra Pradesh will get YSRCP's support for government formation at the Centre. He has not ruled out support to the Congress," a YSRCP leader, who did not want to be identified, told IANS.
 
IANS
 

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Girl, 3, dies as Telangana MLA's car rams bike

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A three-year-old girl died and her parents were seriously injured when a Telangana legislator's car rammed their motorcycle on Saturday, police said.
 
The accident occurred in Jeedivagu area in Mulugu district.
 
The car in which MLA Danasari Anasuya alias Seethakka was travelling rammed the two-wheeler coming from the opposite direction.
 
While K. Arun was driving the bike, his wife Vijaya and daughter Sravanthi were riding pillion. Sravanthi died of head injuries while her parents were shifted to a government-run hospital at Eturanagaram.
 
The couple was taking their daughter to drop her at an "anganwadi" centre in a nearby village.
 
IANS
 

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DMK to be with Congress, unsure of third front

Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekar Rao meets DMK President M. K. Stalin at his residence in Chennai on May 13, 2019. (Photo: IANS)
Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekar Rao meets DMK President M. K. Stalin at his residence in Chennai on May 13, 2019. (Photo: IANS)
The DMK said on Tuesday that it will stick with the Congress even after the Lok Sabha elections and that this had been conveyed to Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao who favours a non-Congress, non-BJP coalition to govern India.
 
"We are committed to the Congress. Never in the history of the DMK has it changed its alliance post elections. The party has always stuck to its pre-poll alliance partner," a DMK leader told IANS on the condition of anonymity.
 
He said that the importance of the DMK's alliance with the Congress was explained to Rao at the meeting with party  president M. K. Stalin here on Monday.
 
Rao was requested to look at the possibility of supporting the Congress, an idea which he did not negate.
 
"Our party will not align with the BJP with or without Narendra Modi as it would have a negative impact in Tamil Nadu. There is an anti-BJP wave in Tamil Nadu. The DMK will not be part of a third front government formed with the support of the BJP," the DMK leader added.
 
DMK President Stalin told the media that it will be known only after the Lok Sabha election results are declared whether a non-Congress, non-BJP grouping was possible.
 
He said the Telangana Chief Minister met him on Monday out of courtesy. He said Rao came to Tamil Nadu primarily to visit temples.
 
Stalin said Rao did not meet him in connection with the formation of a third front.
 
Rao on Monday had an hour-long meeting with Stalin here but it appeared that his proposal for a non-BJP, non-Congress coalition didn't have takers.
 
According to the DMK, ideally the Congress should be part of any central government so that there is stability.
 
"In fact Rao's own party TRS has to win all the 17 Lok Sabha seats in Telangana so that he can try to forge a third front post election results," said the DMK leader who did not wish to be identified.
 
Political analyst Raveendhran Dhuraiswamy told IANS: "The DMK-Congress combine will get a sizeable percentage of votes. The DMK will not go with BJP after the elections. As for Stalin, Tamil Nadu is more important than having a say in the central government."
 
According to one DMK leader, if some third front proponents join hands with the BJP and form a coalition, then the DMK and Congress will be left alone. 
 
Meanwhile, DMK senior leader and Treasurer Duraimurugan on Tuesday met Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu at Amaravati.
 
Duraimurugan told reporters that he met Naidu as a mark of courtesy.
 
IANS
 

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Telangana Congress leaders publicly clash over chair

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In a huge embarrassment to the Congress at an opposition protest meet here on Saturday, senior Congress leader V. Hanumantha Rao clashed with another leader publicly and collapsed during a fight over a chair.
 
Former member of Rajya Sabha Hanumantha Rao and Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) spokesman M. Nagesh pushed each other on the dais in the presence of AICC General Secretary and in-charge of party affairs R. C. Khuntia and leaders of various opposition parties.
 
The commotion broke out during a meeting organised by the opposition parties at Indira Park to protest an alleged goof-up by the Telangana Board of Intermediate Examination in results declared.
 
Rao, who was holding the mike to invite leaders on the stage, took objection to Nagesh occupying a chair meant for Khuntia. A heated exchange ensued between the two and soon they started pushing each other even as other leaders tried to pacify them.
 
In the melee, Nagesh collapsed on the ground. He stood up and pushed Rao, who too fell down leaving the leaders and other protestors in shock.
 
Leaders of Telugu Desam Party (TDP), Communist Party of India (CPI), Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS) and others intervened to bring the situation under control.
 
Khuntia, state Congress chief Uttam Kumar Reddy and other senior leaders took a serious view of the incident.
 
The day-long protest meeting was called by the Congress and other opposition parties over the bungling by the Board of Intermediate Education in the results of Intermediate (11th and 12th standard).
 
The parties had also invited parents of 22 students who committed suicide over the failure in the exams. The opposition has blamed the government for the suicides and demanded compensation for their families.
 
IANS
 

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Heat wave continues in Telangana, Andhra

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Telangana and Andhra Pradesh remained in the grip of severe heat wave conditions on Monday, with the mercury in some places crossing 45 degree Celsius.
 
Khammam in Telangana was the hottest place in both the states, with a maximum temperature of 45.6 degrees Celsius. Nellore in Andhra Pradesh too sizzled at 45 degrees.
 
Nalgonda was the second hottest place in Telangana at 44.8. Most places in Telangana recorded maximum temperature of nearly 44 degrees or more.
 
Hyderabad had the lowest maximum temperature in Telangana at 41.7 degree Celsius, still 2.5 degree above normal.
 
The severe heat wave conditions affected normal life in both the states. Streets were deserted in many places as people preferred to remain indoors, especially in the afternoon, to escape the blazing sun.
 
Andhra Pradesh has recorded high temperature for the last couple of days following cyclone Fani. 
 
Vijayawada was the hottest place on Sunday with a maximum temperature of 47 degree Celsius, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD).
 
Real Time Governance Society (RTGS) of Andhra Pradesh has cautioned people to take all precautions to protect themselves from severe heat wave conditions. It asked people, especially the aged and children, to avoid direct exposure to sun.
 
According to RTGS, 210 'mandals' or revenue blocks were reeling under severe heat wave conditions. These conditions are likely to continue to till May 10.
 
IMD has forecast that severe heat wave conditions will continue in both the Telugu states on Tuesday.
 
IANS
 

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Fire at Chiranjeevi's farmhouse, film sets damaged

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A fire broke out in the farmhouse of Telugu superstar Chiranjeevi on the outskirts of Hyderabad on Friday, damaging part of a film set, police said.
 
The incident occurred near the Gandipet lake. Residents of the area, who noticed the smoke at the farmhouse, alerted the police. 
 
There was nobody on the sets of the film "Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy" at the time of the accident. A part of it was damaged in the fire, police said.
 
"Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy" is a historical war film based on the life of Uyyalawada Narasimha Reddy. Being made in Telugu, Tamil and Malayalam, it stars Chiranjeevi, Amitabh Bachchan, Nayanathara, Tamannah and others.
 
The movie is being produced by Chiranjeevi's son and popular actor Ram Charan and directed by Surender Reddy.
 
IANS

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Unseasonal rains damage iconic Charminar

File photo of the Charminar. (Photo: Vinita Abraham/ NetIndian)
File photo of the Charminar. (Photo: Vinita Abraham/ NetIndian)
 
Charminar, the symbol of Hyderabad, has suffered damage as a piece of lime stucco work on one of its minarets fell down following unseasonal rains, officials said on Thursday.
 
A portion of the stucco work detached from the granite slab on the minaret facing Mecca Masjid side and fell off late on Wednesday, sending panic among the people around the monument.
 
Police cordoned off the area where the debris fell. A large number of onlookers gathered near the monument.
 
The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) had undertaken restoration work on the monument some time ago. While the incidents of lime plasters peeling off are not new, the latest damage raised new concerns about the safety of the iconic structure.
 
Charminar was built in 1591 by Mohammed Quli Qutb Shah, the fifth king of the Qutb Shahi dynasty.
 
The 428-year-old edifice, stands at a staggering 160 feet from ground level. It has four minarets after which it is named.
 
IANS
 
 
 
 
 

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Telangana Board to involve another agency in re-verification

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Under flak from all quarters for the goof-up in Intermediate examinations, the Telangana Board of Intermediate Education (BIE) on Wednesday decided to involve another independent information technology agency in re-verification and result processing of nearly 3.5 lakh students who failed to obtain pass marks.
 
Besides Globarena Technologies, which is being blamed for the massive bungling, another independent agency will be involved in the work.
 
BIE Secretary D. Ashok announced that the responsibility to select an independent agency was entrusted to Telangana State Technological Services (TSTS).
 
The decision assumed significance in view of the allegations by the opposition parties that the state government gave the contract to Globarena Technologies as the company had links with Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) working president and former IT minister K. T. Rama Rao. They also alleged that the government was trying to shield the company.
 
Rama Rao, who is son of Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao, on Wednesday dismissed the allegations by the opposition parties. He alleged that they were playing with the lives of the students.
 
Stating that the IT department has nothing to with the BIE, Rama Rao said the opposition parties were doing cheap politics over the issue. "Will somebody give Rs 10,000 crore bribe for a Rs 4 crore contract?" he asked, referring to allegations by a Congress leader.
 
Over 9 lakh students had appeared in Intermediate 1st Year and 2nd Year (11th and 12th standard) in February-March. The results were declared on April 18, which triggered an uproar among students who alleged large-scale discrepancies in valuation of papers and processing of the results.
 
More than 20 students committed suicide in the last two weeks over the failure in the examination. Massive protests by the students, parents and opposition parties forced the government to order free re-verification of answer sheets of all students who failed to obtain pass marks.
 
IANS
 

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7-year-old survives on water for five days in bathroom

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A seven-year-old girl survived for five days on water after falling into the bathroom of her neighbour's house while playing, police said.
 
The startling incident took place in Makhtal town in Narayanpet district of Telangana, about 160 km from Hyderabad.
 
The house owner was shocked to see the girl lying in his bathroom after he returned home on Thursday from a tour. With no food for five days and surviving only on the water available in the bathroom, the girl had turned very weak and was in a state of shock.
 
The police investigation revealed that Kuravakacheri Akhila, a class II student, accidentally fell onto the bathroom of a house while playing on the terrace of an adjacent building on April 20. As the roof had an opening fitted with plastic net, she fell through into the bathroom but sustained no injuries as a rope with clothes on it took the impact.
 
The bathroom was bolted from outside and as the inmate was away, her cries for help went unanswered. Police said there was nobody in the adjacent house who could hear her cries.
 
Her parents Suresh and Mahadevamma lodged a missing complaint the next day after their search yielded no result. According to sub-inspector of police B. Ashok Kumar, the parents suspected she went missing from a local fair.
 
The police had formed a team and alerted police in adjacent districts and Hyderabad but found no clue.
 
It was on Wednesday that, the owner of the house returned from Hyderabad, where his family lives. Venkatesh, a teacher, said he was shocked to see the girl lying in bathroom. He alerted the neighbours, who identified her as the daughter of tenants behind their house.
 
Akhila, who was not even able to speak, was rushed to a local hospital, where she was administered saline.
 
Though schools have summer holidays, Venkatesh had returned to attend a marriage in the town.
 
IANS

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NHRC notice to Telangana over student suicides

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The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Friday issued notice to Telangana government, seeking a detailed report on the goof-ups by the Board of Intermediate Education (BIE) resulting in failure of about three lakh students and suicide by 18.
 
Taking suo motu cognizance of a media report that 18 students have committed suicide during the last one week over failure in the Intermediate examinations, the Commission has issued a notice to the Chief Secretary, Government of Telangana calling for a detailed report in the matter within four weeks, including action taken against the guilty and relief, if any, provided to the aggrieved families.
 
The panel took note of media reports that large-scale discrepancies by BIE has have triggered furore in the State. About three lakh students reportedly failed in the exams and the students and parents were staging protests.
 
"It has been observed that the contents of the news reports, if true, raise the issues of serious lapses on the part of the authorities amounting to violation of human rights. A thorough probe into the matter is required not only to punish the guilty but to ensure that such incidents do not recur," the Commission said.
 
According to the media reports, hundreds of students have failed to get even pass marks. The State Education Ministry, the Board and the government initially dismissed the allegations, but later gave in to the growing protests. The aggrieved students have also approached the High Court.
 
The role of a private company, which was given the contract for processing the results, has come under the scanner. This work was being done earlier by the Centre for Good Governance which is a government agency. The Hyderabad-based private firm Globarena Technologies, who executed the work, was reportedly not competent enough to take up the job. 
 
The firm has, however, contended that it is capable of handling the task and that it had executed the contract systematically.
 
"As mentioned in the news report, around 10 lakh students took the class 12 exam in February 2018 and nearly 3.5 have failed, making it a gigantic task for the board to conduct supplementary exams for such a large number of students. The time is also running out for the students who have to appear in the entrance exams like in EAMCET, NEET and JEE etc," the Commission noted.
 
IANS
 

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Telangana orders re-verification for failed students

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Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao on Wednesday ordered free re-verification of answer sheets of all the intermediate students who failed in the examinations.
 
The decision came amid a row over the goof-ups by the Telangana Board of Intermediate Education (TIBE) in declaring results, which allegedly led to suicide of 10 students since last week and triggered protests by parents and opposition parties.
 
With two more students ending their lives and protests continuing on Wednesday, the Chief Minister reviewed the situation with senior officials.
 
In case of students who passed but prefer re-verification and re-counting, it would be done as per the prevailing norms and regulations, the Chief Minister said.
 
KCR, as the Chief Minister is popularly known, asked officials to expedite the re-verification and re-counting process and complete that as early as possible. It should be followed by advanced supplementary examinations to prevent loss of the academic year, he added.
 
Education Secretary B. Janardhan Reddy has been entrusted with the responsibility of competing the process. The Chief Minister also instructed officials to evolve a strategy for smooth conduct of examinations and evaluation.
 
Expressing shock over suicides of 'a few' students who failed in the intermediate examination, he said it was 'most unfortunate'. He appealed to students not to resort to suicide as failing in intermediate examinations did not mean the end of life.
 
According to a statement from the Chief Minister's office, of the 9.74 lakh students who appeared for the intermediate examinations, 3.28 lakh failed. "Some students and their parents are of the opinion that during the process of addition of marks, mistakes took place resulting in less marks than expected and hence they failed," it said.
 
KCR also asked officials to examine whether the responsibility of conducting examinations be entrusted to an autonomous body. "It has to be examined whether the responsibility of conducting examinations could be entrusted to an autonomous body. The best practices in other states and other countries are to be studied for implementing in our state," he said.
 
"The government faces problems every time intermediate examinations and EAMCET are conducted. The government, students and their parents face trouble every time. This needs to be avoided," KCR said. 
 
IANS
 

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Two more deaths take Telangana student suicide toll to 10

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Two more intermediate students in Telangana on Wednesday committed suicide, taking the number to 10 since the results were declared last week, even as protests continued over the Telangana Board of Intermediate Education (TBIE) goof-ups.
 
Depressed over failure in examinations, Chakali Raju hanged himself in his house in Chinna Shakarampet village of the Medak district. Another student Malothu Naveen of the Warangal Rural district ended his life by jumping before a train.
 
With these two suicides, the number of students who ended their lives increased to 10 since April 18 when the TBIE declared results for intermediate first and second year (11th and 12th standard) examinations.
 
Those who have committed suicide include 17-year-old Dharma Ram, nephew of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) Rajya Sabha member C. M. Ramesh.
 
The opposition parties have claimed that 18 students have committed suicide and blamed the TBIE for it.
 
While admitting lapses in declaring results, the authorities have denied that the suicides were related to this. They said efforts were being made to address the students' grievances. 
 
Education Minister Jagdish Reddy alleged that the opposition parties were trying to politicise the issue.
 
The TBIE bungling has come under criticism from all quarters as it shocked many students and their parents. Many students who had passed the first year with distinction failed in the second year. In a rude shock for them, they were awarded zero, one or two marks in each subject.
 
Meanwhile, protests by the student groups continued for third day over the TBIE fiasco. 
 
Activists of the Students Federation of India (SFI) tried to lay siege to Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao's residence. Police arrested dozens of protesters who were raising slogans against the government and demanding action against those responsible for goof-ups.
 
Students groups also staged protest at the TIBE office. Senior Congress leader V. Hanumantha Rao was arrested when he reached there to show solidarity with protesting students and parents.
 
About 900,000 students had appeared in the intermediate examinations in February-March. The pass percentage was just above 60.
 
The Telangana High Court on Tuesday heard a petition filed by an NGO fighting for children's rights, seeking free re-valuation of all answer sheets. It asked the government to inform it by next week about the time required for re-valuation of answer sheets of students who have failed in the examinations.
 
IANS

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Gusty winds claim two lives in Hyderabad

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Two persons, including a five-year-old, were killed and three others injured as gusty winds and unseasonal rains wreaked havoc here on Monday night, officials said.
 
One person was killed and three others injured when a floodlight tower at L. B. Stadium in the heart of Hyderabad collapsed on to the road due to strong winds.
 
A Goods and Services Tax (GST) employee, identified as Subrahmanyam, was killed as one of the four floodlight towers collapsed in front of Ayakar Bhavan. The injured were shifted to a hospital.
 
Four cars were also crushed under the tower, which brought the traffic in the busy area to a halt.
 
State Minister T. Srinivas Yadav, Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) Commissioner Dana Kishore and other senior officials visited the stadium.
 
The five-year-old was killed when a shed collapsed in Chaderghat area near Musi River.
 
Gusty winds, with speeds reaching 78 km per hour, lashed the city and its outskirts, uprooting trees and electricity poles. Huge hoardings also collapsed at few places, throwing the traffic out of gear.
 
The GHMC Commissioner said four teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) were asked to remain on standby for undertaking rescue and relief operations.
 
Thunderstorms brought normal life to a halt in several parts of the city. Some areas plunged into darkness as the electricity supply was snapped.
 
According to the Meteorological Centre, parts of Telangana received unseasonal rains accompanied by gusty winds.
 
Officials said that, during last four days, thunderstorm in parts of the state caused extensive damage to crops.
 
IANS
 

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IS module case: Raids in Hyderabad, Maharashtra

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The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Saturday carried out raids in Telangana's Hyderabad and Maharashtra's Wardha in connection with an Islamic State module case, officials said.
 
"The raids are on at three places in Hyderabad and one place in Wardha since early morning," a senior NIA official connected to the 2016 Islamic State module case probe told IANS. 
 
However, the official refused to share more details.
 
IANS
 

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ED seizes gold worth Rs. 82.11 crore from Hyderabad jeweller

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The Enforcement Directorate (ED) today said it had seized 145.89 kg of gold jewellery worth Rs. 82.11 crore during searches conducted at the premises of a Hyderabad-based jeweller in a money laundering case.
 
A press release from the ED said the searches were conducted at multiple locations, including the registered office-cum-residence of Kailash Gupta, the jewellery showroom of Musaddilal Jewellers Pvt Ltd (MJPL) at Hyderabad, a jewellery showroom of the company at VIjayawada, the residence and business premises of Pavan Agarwal (partner,  Shri Balaji Gold), residence of Neel Sunder Tharad (proprietor of Ashta Lakshmi Gold), and the office of chartered accountant Sanjay Sarda.
 
The searches were part of an ongoing investigation under the provisions of Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA) in a demonetisation case, the release said.
 
The release said the ED initiated investigation under PMLA on the basis of a first information report (FIR) registered by Telangana Police on the basis of a complaint filed by the Income Tax Department against Kailash Gupta, his sons and their companies Musaddilal Gems & Jewellery, Musaddilal Jewellers Pvt Ltd and Vaishnavi Bullion Ltd. for conspiring with certain bullion dealers, chartered accountants and close relatives by blatantly misusing the scheme of demonetisation by illegally depositing huge amounts of unaccounted demonetised cash in their accounts. 
 
"For this purpose they fraudulently created around 5200 back dated fabricated advance sale receipts dated 8th Nov, 2016, each for an amount less than Rs. 2 lakhs to avoid furnishing PAN details. 
 
"During the course of investigation, it was revealed that immediately after announcement of demonetisation scheme the accused had illegally deposited Rs. 110.85 crores in their bank accounts falsely claiming that within a few hours they had received advances of less than Rs 2 lakh each from more than 5200 customers, on the night of 08.11.2016, for purchase of gold/jewellery from their firms. All these invoices were found to be bogus. Further, analysis of CCTV footages of their offices and that of the neighbourhood revealed that no such activity of purchase of gold was carried out during that period. It is further revealed that those more than 5200 invoices dated 8th Nov, 2016 were fraudulently raised on a later date. 
 
"Investigation under PMLA revealed that illegally deposited unaccounted cash to the tune of Rs. 110.85 crores in the bank accounts of the accused & their companies and subsequently Rs. 80 crores (approx) was transferred to the bank accounts of various gold bullion dealers like M/s Ashta Lakshmi Gold, M/s Shri Balaji Gold etc in the guise of purchase of gold. The accused have admitted that they had created fake sale invoices dated 8th Nov 2016.The accused failed to give any satisfactory account of the source of this illegal cash and also failed to provide the details of the accounts regarding the utilization of around 270 kgs of gold so purchased out of this money," the release said.
 
The ED said that, for tracing the proceeds of cime, simultaneous searches were conducted in the premises of the accused persons which resulted in the seizure of 145.89 kg of gold jewellery worth Rs. 82.11 crore.
 
"Further investigation is under progress," the release added.
 
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Two Telugu TV actresses killed in road accident

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Two Telugu television actresses were killed in a car crash in Telangana's Vikarabad district on Wednesday, police said.
 
The actresses, identified as Bhargavi (20) and Anusha Reddy, (21) were returning to Hyderabad after completing shooting of a serial. Car driver Chakri and another person Vinay Kumar, travelling in the same vehicle, were injured.
 
The police said the car driver tried to avert a collision with a truck coming from the opposite direction and in the process hit a roadside tree near Appareddy Guda in the early hours of the day.
 
While Bhargavi died on the spot, Anusha succumbed to her injuries while being shifted to hospital. The injured were admitted to the government-run Osmania Hospital in Hyderabad.
 
Bhargavi was acting in the popular daily soap 'Mutyala Muggu'. Anusha Reddy was an upcoming actress. Both hailed from Telangana.
 
The television artistes had gone to Vikarabad on Monday for shooting in Ananthagiri forest. After completing the shooting, the team was returning to Hyderabad when the mishap occurred.
 
IANS
 

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Vote for TRS will be vote for Modi: Rahul

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Campaigning in Telangana on Monday, Congress President Rahul Gandhi told people that a vote for the TRS would be a vote for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP and RSS.
 
Addressing an election rally here, he alleged that there was a secret understanding between the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) and Modi.
 
"There is partnership between them. The remote control is in Modi's hands," he said.
 
He pointed out that the TRS supported demonetization and Goods and Services Tax (GST) and its MPs extended full support to the Modi government in Parliament. He also claimed that TRS President and Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao never spoke about the Rafale deal.
 
He said Modi and KCR "do a drama" by criticizing each other before elections but in reality they were one.
 
The Congress President said only the Congress was fighting Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
 
"This is a fight between two ideologies. One ideology stands for dividing India, pitting one community and caste against the other so that 15-20 people can get all the benefits. Another ideology is for one India where there will be room for everyone and all will be protected."
 
Gandhi alleged that unemployment under Modi government reached the highest in 45 years but he never spoke a word about the problem. "China creates 50,000 jobs in 24 hours, Modi snatches employment from 27,000 Indian youth in the same 24 hours."
 
Referring to demonetization, he said Modi spiked high currency notes in the name of fighting black money but made common man stand in queues. 
 
"I don't know what came into this man's mind. He announced scrapping of notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 at 8 p.m. Ask any economist, he will say it was madness."
 
Gandhi said Modi was the chowkidar of thieves as he helped 15-20 people to the tune of Rs 3 lakh crore.
 
"Every day this chowkidar works to help these people and also spreads hatred."
 
The Congress leader said Modi made a false pledge of depositing Rs 15 lakh in the bank accounts of every citizen.
 
IANS
 

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TRS denies tickets to three outgoing MPs

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The Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) on Thursday announced candidates for all 17 Lok Sabha constituencies in Telangana, denying tickets to three outgoing MPs including its leader in Lok Sabha, A. P. Jithender Reddy.
 
Jithender Reddy, who was elected from Mahabubnagar in 2014, was replaced by M. Srinivas Reddy.
 
P. Srinivas Reddy, who was elected from Khammam on a YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) ticket in the previous elections and later joined the TRS, was also dropped.
 
Nama Nageswara Rao, who quit the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) on Wednesday and formally joined the TRS Thursday morning, was named as the candidate for Khammam in the list announced Thursday night.
 
The TRS has also not fielded Seetaram Naik, the outgoing MP from Mahabubabad. Maloth Kavitha was named as the candidate.
 
Chief Minister and TRS President K. Chandrashekhar Rao's daughter K. Kavitha will seek re-election from Nizamabad while senior leader B. Vinod will contest again from Karimnagar.
 
The TRS has named state minister Malla Reddy's son-in-law Rajasekhar Reddy as the candidate from Malkajgiri. In 2014, Malla Reddy was elected from this constituency on a TDP ticket but later joined the TRS. He was elected to the Assembly in the recent elections and was inducted into the cabinet.
 
Another state minister T. Srinivas Yadav's son Saikiran Yadav will be the candidate from Secunderabad constituency.
 
In a friendly contest against Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) President Asaduddin Owaisi in Hyderabad constituency, the TRS named P. Srikant Reddy as its candidate. The ruling party has already made it clear that its target is to win 16 seats, leaving Hyderabad for the MIM.
 
Outgoing MP from Nalgonda, Gutta Sukhender Reddy, who won the seat on Congress ticket in 2014 but defected to the TRS, decided not to contest again for Lok Sabha. V. Narasimha Reddy was named as his replacement.
 
Other TRS candidates are G. Nagesh (Adilabad), N. Venkatesh (Peddapalli), K. Prabhakar Reddy (Medak), B. B. Patil (Zahirabad), Ranjit Reddy (Chevella), P. Ramulu (Nagarkurnool), P. Dayakar (Warangal) and B. Narsaiah Goud (Bhongir).
 
Out of 17 Lok Sabha seats in the state, TRS had bagged 11 in the previous election. One MP each from the TDP, Congress and YSR Congress later joined it while one TRS MP recently switched loyalty to Congress.
 
IANS
 

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Telangana Congress chief to contest from Nalgonda

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The Congress party on Monday night named its Telangana state chief Uttam Kumar Reddy as the candidate from Nalgonda Lok Sabha seat while AICC secretary Madhu Goud Yashki will contest from Nizamabad.
 
The Congress party, which had announced candidates for eight Lok Sabha seats in Telangana on March 15, announced the candidates for eight more seats around midnight.
 
The party has not yet taken a decision on Khammam, from where former Union Minister Renuka Chowdhury is a contender for the party ticket.
 
Former Indian cricket captain Mohammad Azharuddin and actress Vijaya Shanti, both former MPs and among the key aspirants, do not figure in the second list.
 
Uttam Kumar Reddy is currently a member of Telangana state Assembly. Madhu Yashki, who is in-charge of party affairs in Karnataka, will take on Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao's daughter K. Kavitha in Nizamabad constituency.
 
Komatireddy Venkat Reddy (Bhongir), Mallu Ravi (Nagarkurnool) and Vamshi Chand Reddy (Mahabubnagar), who were defeated in Assembly elections held in December, figured in the second list.
 
Firoz Khan, who too was defeated in Assembly polls, will take on Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) president Asaduddin Owaisi in Hyderabad.
 
Azharuddin was reportedly keen to contest from Secunderabad but the party preferred former MP Anjan Kumar Yadav.
 
The Congress has announced Dommati Sambaiah as the candidate for Warangal seat.
 
IANS
 

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Aspiring Hyderabad pilot killed in Christchurch

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A youth from Hyderabad aspiring to become a commercial pilot was among the 50 people killed in the New Zealand mosques attack. He is the third man from Telangana confirmed dead.
 
Ozair Khadir, 25, a resident of Noor Khan Bazar area in the old city here, was in the list of Indians named by the Indian High Commission in New Zealand as those who died in the Christchurch attack.
 
Farhaj Ahsan and Mohammed Imran Khan are the other two men from Telangana killed but their names did not figure in the list.
 
Khadir, who was undergoing training to become commercial pilot in Christchurch, was at Al Noor mosque to offer Friday prayers when a terrorist opened fire. 
 
Initially he was listed among the missing but later the authorities confirmed that he was among the dead, leaving the family crestfallen.
 
Khadir's family members said his elder brother Omair Khadir, a commercial pilot in Singapore, rushed to New Zealand and was making arrangements to bring the body back home. 
 
Their parents, who live in Saudi Arabia, were also heading to New Zealand.
 
Relatives said Khadir, second of the four siblings, was born in Saudi Arabia. He wanted to become a pilot like his elder brother and had gone to New Zealand a year ago.
 
Besides Khadir, Ahsan, 31, a software engineer from Hyderabad and Imran Khan, 35, a restaurateur hailing from Karimnagar district, were identified as dead.
 
Ahsan's parents and in-laws have left for New Zealand for his burial there. Khan's family members, who live in the US, have also rushed to New Zealand.
 
Ahmed Iqbal Jahangir, also from Hyderabad, was injured in the attack and is recovering in a hospital in Christchurch.
 
IANS
 

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3 Indians killed in NZ mosque attacks, some missing

Two men from Telangana and a woman post-graduate student from Kerala's Thrissur were among the 49 people killed in Friday's terror attacks on two mosques in New Zealand's Christchurch, while the whereabouts of at least two visitors from Gujarat were not known.
 
New Zealand police remaining 'highly vigilant and highly visible' after mosque shootings
Two men from Telangana and a woman post-graduate student from Kerala's Thrissur were among the 49 people killed in Friday's terror attacks on two mosques in New Zealand's Christchurch, while the whereabouts of at least two visitors from Gujarat were not known.
 
The shootings - the first fatal terror attack in the South Pacific island nation in many decades, was allegedly carried out by Brenton Tarrant, 28, who was charged with murder at a court in Christchurch on Saturday.
 
Ancy Ali, a 25-year-old married woman from Kerala's Thrissur, was among the victims, the Kerala Police said.
 
Ancy, who had migrated to New Zealand with her husband Abdul Nassar last year, lived near the mosques that were attacked, an officer at the Kodungalloor police station in Thrissur told IANS.
 
Ancy was doing her post-graduation in Christchurch where her husband was working, the officer said.
 
"We received news from the Special Branch that a woman from here was injured in the shooting. We have now received the news that she has passed away," said the officer who did not wish to be named.
 
Software engineer Farhaj Aslan, who was reported missing following the attacks, was confirmed dead, his family in Hyderabad said on Saturday.
 
"We have received information that my brother was killed in the attack," his elder brother Kashif Ahsan told IANS.
 
The 31-year-old's father Mohammed Sayeeduddin and mother Imtiaz Fatima, who were hoping to hear some good news about his son, were inconsolable.
 
Grieving family members huddled in a corner at the family's house in Nadeem Colony of Toli Chowki area after the family received the shocking news. Relatives and friends were pouring in to console the family.
 
Authorities in Christchurch informed Ahsan's wife Insha Aziz and her uncle, who rushed from Australia, about his death. They were at a hospital in Christchurch, waiting for some information since morning.
 
Ahsan was at Al Noor mosque for Friday prayers when the terrorist opened indiscriminate fire on worshippers. A father of seven-year-old son and two-year-old daughter, he used to regularly offer Friday prayers at Al Noor mosque as he lives in a nearby neighbourhood.
 
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Another man from Karimnagar town of Telangana was also killed in the attack. Mohammad Imran Khan fell to the bullets at the mosque, according to information reaching his relatives in Karimnagar.
 
Imran, whose family was settled in the US, was engaged in some business in New Zealand for last few years. He was also at Al Noor mosque for Friday prayers when the gunman opened fire.
 
Imran Khan's uncle Manzoor Ahmed Khan received information from his brother's family in US about his death in the Christchurch shootout. The relatives also identified him from one of the pictures on social media.
 
Meanwhile, another man from Hyderabad who was injured in the terror attack was recovering.
 
Ahmed Iqbal Jehangir, who was at the same mosque, sustained bullet injuries in his chest and shoulder.
 
"Alhamdulillah (all thanks to Allah)! He is out of danger and recovering," his brother Mohammed Khursheed Jehangir told IANS here on Saturday.
 
According to information received by Khursheed, a surgery was performed on Ahmed at a hospital in Christchurch to remove a bullet.
 
Ahmed, settled in New Zealand for 15 years, runs a Hyderabadi food restaurant near Al Noor mosque. His wife and children who stay in the same neighbourhood were safe.
 
Khursheed plans to leave for New Zealand to see his brother.
 
Officials in Gujarat said that there was no word about some people from the state who were understood to be visiting Christchurch and they were awaiting a response from the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).
 
According to unconfirmed sources, at least four visitors from Gujarat were present at the two mosques in Christchurch when the shootings took place.
 
Mehboob Khokhar, a retired employee of the Gujarat Electricity Board (GEB) and a resident of Ahmedabad's Juhapura, had gone to one of the mosques to offer Friday prayers.
 
"After the attack in the mosque at Al Noor, my brother-in-law Imran and my mother-in-law Begum Akhtar rushed to the hospitals. But we still don't know whether Khokhar is admitted somewhere or is still missing. We have not received any confirmation from the New Zealand authorities yet," said Hafiz Patni, the son-in-law of Khokhar, who's also a resident of Juhapura.
 
It is also believed that a father-son duo from Anand were also present at one of the two mosques when the attack took place.
 
IANS
 

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Two Indians killed in NZ mosque attacks, some missing

A software engineer from Hyderabad and a woman post-graduate student from Kerala's Thrissur were among the 49 people killed in Friday's terror attacks on two mosques in New Zealand's Christchurch, while the whereabouts of at least two visitors from Gujarat were not known.
 
New Zealand police remaining 'highly vigilant and highly visible' after mosque shootings
A software engineer from Hyderabad and a woman post-graduate student from Kerala's Thrissur were among the 49 people killed in Friday's terror attacks on two mosques in New Zealand's Christchurch, while the whereabouts of at least two visitors from Gujarat were not known.
 
The shootings - the first fatal terror attack in the South Pacific island nation in many decades, were allegedly carried out by Brenton Tarrant, 28, who was charged with murder at a court in Christchurch on Saturday. 
 
Ancy Ali, a 25-year-old married woman from Kerala's Thrissur, was among the victims, the Kerala Police said. 
 
Ancy, who had migrated to New Zealand with her husband Abdul Nassar last year, lived near the mosques that were attacked, an officer at the Kodungalloor police station in Thrissur told IANS. 
 
Ancy was doing her post-graduation in Christchurch where her husband was working, the officer said.
 
"We received news from the Special Branch that a woman from here was injured in the shooting. We have now received the news that she has passed away," said the officer who did not wish to be named.
 
Software engineer Farhaj Aslan, who was reported missing following the attacks, was confirmed dead, his family in Hyderabad said on Saturday.
 
"We have received information that my brother was killed in the attack," his elder brother Kashif Ahsan told IANS.
 
The 31-year-old's father Mohammed Sayeeduddin, who was hoping to hear some good news about his son, was inconsolable.
 
Grieving family members huddled in a corner at the family's house in Nadeem Colony of Toli Chowki area after the family received the shocking news. Relatives and friends were pouring in to console the family.
 
Authorities in Christchurch informed Ahsan's wife and her uncle, who rushed from Australia, about his death. They were at a hospital in Christchurch, waiting for some information since morning.
 
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Ahsan was at Al Noor mosque for Friday prayers when the terrorist opened indiscriminate fire on worshippers. A father of two, he used to regularly offer Friday prayers at Al Noor mosque as he lives in a nearby neighbourhood.
 
Like every day, Sayeeduddin rang up his son, unaware of what was going on at the mosque. "We spoke to him over phone every day around afternoon and today being Friday, I rang him around 8 a.m. but he did not respond," he had told IANS.
 
He then called his daughter-in-law, who informed him that there was an attack at the mosque and that she also tried to reach Ahsan over his mobile phone.
 
She later went to hospital with a picture of her husband and after a long wait, the authorities told her that he is among 19 people missing.
 
Ahsan, who did his MS from Auckland University, worked for various companies and had recently completely a project for a firm in Christchurch.
 
Meanwhile, another man from Hyderabad who was injured in the terror attack was recovering.
 
Ahmed Iqbal Jehangir, who was at the same mosque, sustained bullet injuries in his chest and shoulder.
 
"Alhamdulillah (grateful to Allah)! He is out of danger and recovering," his brother Mohammed Khursheed Jehangir told IANS here on Saturday.
 
According to information received by Khursheed, a surgery was performed on Ahmed at a hospital in Christchurch to remove a bullet.
 
Ahmed, settled in New Zealand for 15 years, runs a Hyderabadi food restaurant near Al Noor mosque. His wife and children who stay in the same neighbourhood were safe.
 
Khursheed plans to leave for New Zealand to see his brother.
 
Officials in Gujarat said that there was no word about some people from the state who were understood to be visiting Christchurch and they were awaiting a response from the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).
 
According to unconfirmed sources, at least four visitors from Gujarat were present at the two mosques in Christchurch when the shootings took place.
 
Mehboob Khokhar, a retired employee of the Gujarat Electricity Board (GEB) and a resident of Ahmedabad's Juhapura, had gone to one of the mosques to offer Friday prayers. 
 
"After the attack in the mosque at Al Noor, my brother-in-law Imran and my mother-in-law Begum Akhtar rushed to the hospitals. But we still don't know whether Khokhar is admitted somewhere or is still missing. We have not received any confirmation from the New Zealand authorities yet," said Hafiz Patni, the son-in-law of Khokhar, who's also a resident of Juhapura.
 
It is also believed that a father-son duo from Anand were also present at one of the two mosques when the attack took place.
 
IANS
 

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Finance Commission to visit Telangana from February 17-20

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The 15th Finance Commission headed by its Chairman N K Singh will be visiting the state of Telangana from February 17 to 20.
 
The team will include Commission Members Anoop Singh, Ashok Lahiri and Ramesh Chand and senior officers.
 
The Commission will begin its visit with on-site reviews of the Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation project, the Medigadda Barrage and Mission Bhagirathi, the safe drinking water project of Telangana.
 
Separate detailed meetings will be held with representatives of Panchayati Raj Institutions and Urban Local Bodies. The Commission will meet the representative of all political parties separately followed by an elaborate and detailed meeting with the State Government.
 
The Commission, on the final day of its visit, will have a meeting with eminent economists headed by Dr Y V Reddy. The Commission will also have a discussion in the Indian School of Business (ISB), Hyderabad on the draft report of Evaluation of State Finances of Telangana. 
 
There will also be a presentation to the Commission on updating of Land Records and on Rythu Bandhu, an investment support scheme for agriculture and horticulture crops by way of grant of Rs. 4,000 per acre per farmer each season for purchase of inputs like seeds, fertilizers, pesticides, labour and other investments.
 
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