The sixth and final phase of assembly elections in West Bengal saw 84.24 per cent voter turnout, the Election Commission announced this evening. Polling was held in 25 constituencies across East Midnapore and Cooch Behar districts.
As dust rises in Parliament over the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal, a report by the Comptroller and Auditor General on the issue is being frequently quoted by the debating lawmakers. The report, released in Parliament in August 2013, said then UPA government had broken its own procurement rules to award the 3,700-crore contract for 12 helicopters to Italian-owned AgustaWestland.
The AgustaWestland inquiry will focus on the roles of those named in the judgement of the Italian court, said Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar in Parliament on Wednesday in a debate that saw the ruling BJP and the Congress engage in bare-knuckled combat.
In a searing critique of security and intelligence gaps that may have contributed to the Pathankot terror attack at the start of this year, a parliamentary panel has said that there is "something seriously wrong with our counter-terror security establishment."
It's the second day in a row with hellish heat and unrelenting traffic jams for Delhi as protestors cut off one of the city's busiest highways, the DND or Delhi-Noida Direct, which links the capital with the satellite town of Noida.
Strong objections to a single entrance exam for all medical colleges, or the National Eligibility Entrance Test (NEET), will be taken up by the Supreme Court tomorrow. Some states and private medical colleges want to continue with their own exams.
As the forests of Uttarakhand continue to burn, 3 persons were arrested and 46 cases were filed under the Forest Act today. Of the 3 men arrested, one was from Pithoragarh and two from Nainital. Search is on for six others. A constable of the state's Forest Guards, meanwhile, died during firefighting operations in Chamoli district after a rock fell on him from above.
Latest satellite images show that of the 427 forest fires in Uttarakhand, 70 per cent have been doused, the National Disaster Response Force or NDRF has said. The Army, the Air Force, three teams of the NDRF and 6,000 firefighters have been working round the clock to save the forest covers in the state.
Voting for the crucial fifth phase of Assembly elections in West Bengal is being held today in 53 constituencies across the state. Today's polling will decide the fate of a number of political heavyweights including Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her party candidates who were purportedly seen in the Narada sting operation footage.
India moved one step closer to the exclusive GPS club today with the launch of its seventh and final satellite IRNSS-1G from a PSLV rocket from the launch pad in Sriharikota. The satellite system, once operational, will provide the country with its own version of a Global Positioning System, which can be used by civilians as well as the armed forces.
The government today said that the "identity of the bribe takers" in the AgustaWestland scam, which involved an order for 12 helicopters for the use of VVIPs, must be established. The ruling BJP says that Sonia Gandhi and other top Congress leaders have been implicated in the scam - a point the Congress disputed in Parliament.
Uttarakhand will remain under President's Rule for now, the Supreme Court said today, keeping status quo until it takes a final decision. A floor test that the state's high court had ordered the Congress' Harish Rawat to take on Friday will also not be held.
The BJP has decided to name Sonia Gandhi as part of an all-out offensive in Parliament on the Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland deal for VVIP choppers in 2010, when the UPA was in power. An Italian court investigating the role of officials of defence manufacturer Finmeccanica - Agusta's parent company - in bribing politicians and officers in India has cited documents that name "Signora Gandhi".