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Lionel Messi uncertainty does not affect Real Madrid 'Clasico' plans: Santiago Solari
It is unclear whether Messi, the all-time top scorer in Spanish football as well as in the `Clasico`, will be fit for the game after ending Barca`s 2-2 draw with Valencia on Saturday with a knock. [...]
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WhatsApp 'deleting 2m accounts a month' to stop fake news
App launches paper on ‘stopping abuse’ in India, home to more than 200m of its usersWhatsApp says it is deleting 2m accounts per month as part of an effort to blunt the use of the world’s most popular messaging app to spread fake news and misinformation.The Facebook-owned service published the data as part of a white paper on “stopping abuse” that was launched on Wednesday in India, the biggest market for the company with more than 200m users. Continue reading... [...]
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The Guardian view on Afghanistan talks: hopes for peace, but at what cost? | Editorial
Taliban meetings with Afghan powerbrokers, following negotiations with the US, hold out the prospect of an end to this long conflict. But women are especially and rightly concerned about the possible priceAmerica’s longest-running war is edging closer toward a conceivable end. In his State of the Union address on Tuesday, Donald Trump acknowledged that talks with the Taliban might not succeed, but that “the hour has come to at least try for peace” in Afghanistan, noting his country’s casualties. He did not mention the Afghans who have died (24,000 civilians since 2009, and 45,000 members of the security forces in the last five years), let alone the nation’s broader suffering in the world’s deadliest conflict. Around half of Afghanistan’s population was not born when this war began, in 2001. Their elders have lived with conflict for most of the last four decades, since the Soviet invasion.A country so fissured is united in its longing for peace as last year’s brief ceasefire, in which civilians, militants and soldiers celebrated together, showed. A US-Taliban agreement would be one step along that road. Yet Afghans ask at what cost a deal may come, conscious that those likely to pay the most are not negotiating the bill. Only two women are present at the talks between Taliban representatives and Afghan politicians, warlords and other powerbrokers in Moscow. These follow last month’s talks between US and Taliban negotiators in Qatar, which reached a draft framework under which the US would withdraw troops in exchange for guarantees that the country would not harbour terrorists. Continue reading... [...]
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New govt regulations could see WhatsApp cease to exist in India
New Delhi, Feb 7: WhatsApp's popularity in India is undoubtedly high and the country is one of the biggest markets of the social media platform with over 200 million monthly subscribers. However, this might change. According to a report [...]
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'Treated like cattle': Angelina Jolie takes aim at Myanmar over Rohingya plight
Hollywood star meets refugees in Bangladesh’s Cox’s Bazar district where 740,000 Rohingya have fled since August 2017Angelina Jolie has shared the stories of rape survivors during a visit to Rohingya refugee camps and said the responsibility to let them return “lies squarely with the government and the authorities in Myanmar”.The envoy for the UN refugee agency said Myanmar must “show genuine commitment” to end violence that has driven hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims into neighbouring Bangladesh. Related: Footage shows 'prison-like units' built for Rohingya on Bangladesh island Continue reading... [...]
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Karnataka elections: Parties spent a whopping Rs 129.72 crore on publicity
Bengaluru, Feb 06: In the Karnataka assembly elections, the political parties spent a whopping Rs 129.72 crore on publicity. The highest was spent on publicity, followed by travel says a report prepared by the Association for Democratic Reforms. Political parties are [...]
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21-year-old Telugu actress commits suicide over breakup
Hyderabad, Feb 07: A 21-year-old Naga Jhansi, an upcoming Telugu actress, committed suicide by hanging herself at her apartment in Hyderabad on Tuesday night. According to police, Naga Jhansi (21), native of Vadali village of Mudinepalli block in Andhra [...]
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Pininfarina Battista EV hypercar to have a unique sound
EXCLUSIVE! Automobili Pininfarina wants its very own electric hypercar, the Battista, to have a 'natural' sound, as opposed to an artificial engine noise piped through a speaker, according to Michael Perschke, CEO Automobili Pininfarina. A thrilling soundtrack is an intrinsic part of the hypercar experience but electric cars are lacking in this department. But although the 1,900hp Battista may not emanate a sound similar to a thunderous V12, customers will hear a unique sound which Perschke says will be 'loud' and 'interesting'. Pininfarina engineers plan to amplify the 'natural sound' or the high-pitched whine of the electric motor to provide a unique aural experience. "And of course, the sound picks up over speed because the faster you drive, the more opportunities you have to channel the sound through a 'pipe' and then amplify it," Perschke added. Along with the electric motor sound, Pininfarina engineers could tune the bodywork as well and use a combination of wind noise and airflow to create an exciting sound. "We want it to be genuine, sexy and interesting as we don't believe in an artificial sound system," he said, adding that the company is still finalising the method to achieve that sound.  The intention is also that the Battista should be recognised by its sound when it drives by. Late last year, the electric hypercar, earlier codenamed ‘PF0’, was named after Battista Farina, who founded the Italian design house Pininfarina in 1930. The name recognises Battista’s dream to see a range of exclusively Pininfarina-branded cars on the roads. A near-production spec model is set to be unveiled at the Geneva motor show next month. Handmade at the company facility in Italy, the production version is expected to go on sale in 2020 at a price of $2-2.5 million. Also see: Pininfarina, Karma join hands for product development Pininfarina’s PF1 super-SUV to use Rivian tech [...]
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Samsung Galaxy M20
  If you need any more indication of how popular and important the mid-range and budget segment is for the Indian smartphone market, look no further than the latest developments from Samsung’s sma... [...]
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Nearly 1,100 swine flu cases in Delhi, city government issues health advisory
Nearly 1,100 swine flu cases in Delhi, city government issues health advisory [...]
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Young woman dies in fourth ‘period hut’ tragedy this year in Nepal
Smoke inhalation thought to have killed 21-year-old exiled during menstruation despite ban on customA 21-year-old woman has been become the fourth person known to have died this year as a result of the illegal practice of chhaupadi, whereby menstruating women in Nepal are banished from their homes and forced to sleep in huts.Parbati Bogati, from the western Doti district, is thought to have died from smoke inhalation while sleeping in a small, windowless hut. She was discovered by her mother-in-law on Thursday morning. Continue reading... [...]
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Almaty spills its secrets: lost Soviet art discovered behind wall
Thanks to the Kazakhstan city’s loss of capital status in the 90s, rare mosaics, sgraffiti and other artworks escaped destructionWhen Jama Nurkalieva and a small group of colleagues conducted a site survey of a disused Soviet-era panoramic cinema in Almaty, the former capital of Kazakhstan, they had no idea what lay behind the internal plasterboard wall that faces out towards the street – until someone spotted a narrow gap.As the caretaker shined a light into the darkness behind, the group caught a glimpse of a man’s head. Out came the toolbox and the rest of the artwork was slowly revealed: a Soviet-era sgraffito by the graphic artist Eugeny Sidorkin that had been lost and forgotten for decades.Discovery of the hidden Sidorkin sgraffitoThe rediscovered Lenin mosaic at the Kazakhstan Academy of Science, Almaty, complete with curtain to hide it from public gaze. Photograph: Dennis KeenTwo demolished works. Left: Always With Lenin, in Lysychansk. Right: Lenin and Science, in Kharkiv. Photographs: Nikiforov Yevgen/Yevgen NikiforovThe revealed Sidorkin at the Tselinny. Photograph: Marat Sadykov Related: Missing murals: the lost Soviet art of the Stans Continue reading... [...]
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NCW requests Kerala CM Pinaryi Vijayan in Bishop Mulakkal case
New Delhi, Feb 6: National Commission for Women (NCW) has written a letter to Kerala CM Pinaryi Vijayan requesting transparent probe into allegations against rape-accused Bishop Franco Mulakkal. NCW said, "to take prompt action to ensure prevention of sabotage [...]
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Taliban say they have no plans to seize Afghanistan by force
Insurgents attend landmark Moscow peace talks, but Afghan president is excludedA senior Taliban official has said the insurgent group has no plans to seize the whole of Afghanistan by military force, speaking at landmark peace talks in Moscow that have brought together many of the country’s powerbrokers.Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai, who has led the group’s negotiating team, told the BBC that a push for total military domination “will not bring peace to Afghanistan”. Continue reading... [...]
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Robert Vadra appears before ED
New Delhi, Feb 6: Robert Vadra accompanied by Priyanka Gandhi Vadra arrived at the Enforcement Directorate office to appear in connection with a money laundering case. Priyanka Gandhi Vadra left soon after. According to reports, more than 40 questions [...]
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GSAT-31 launch from French Guiana: 10 things to know about ISRO's 2.5 Ton satellite
New Delhi, Feb 06: Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)'s massive 2,535 kg satellite, GSAT-31, is scheduled for launch onboard Ariane-5 launch vehicle (VA 247) from French Guiana. Ariane 5 is a European heavy-lift launch vehicle that carry payloads weighing more than [...]
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'We have to learn to live with floods': waterlogged Surat to become latest megacity
The next 15 megacities #14: Surat’s battle to hold back water has raged since its first flood wall in 1664. As its population soars, India’s ‘diamond city’ needs new solutionsRead the rest of our megacities series hereLook up as you walk around Surat and you might spot “HFL 8.8.2006” daubed in red paint on a wall above your head. HFL stands for “high flood level”, and the inscriptions are 15 feet above the ground in places – a fading memory of the devastating floods of August 2006, which killed 150 people, according to official estimates (unofficial counts put the death toll at over 500). More than 60% of the city was underwater and damage was estimated at $2bn.Surat’s geography – it lies at the mouth of the Tapi river, near the Arabian Sea – makes it prone to flooding, and it experiences a major inundation every four years on average.By 2035 another 15 cities will have populations above 10 million, according to the latest United Nations projections, taking the total number of megacities to 48. Related: Indian city of Surat anticipates worst effects of climate change Continue reading... [...]
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Borussia Dortmund lose German Cup shootout to Werder Bremen after 3-3 thriller
Achraf Hakimi`s 113th minute strike appeared to have clinched Dortmund`s place in the quarter-finals but Bremen`s Martin Harnik netted six minutes later to force the shootout. [...]
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Windies president Dave Cameron calls for slow over rate policy to be modified
The West Indies won the second Test by 10 wickets in less than three days, for an unassailable 2-0 series lead, but Holder`s subsequent suspension dampened the celebratory mood. [...]
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India Women vs New Zealand Women 1st T20 at Wellington: Live updates
India led by Harmanpreet Kaur take on hosts New Zealand in the first T20 at Wellington.    [...]
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VHP puts off Ram temple agitation till general elections
New Delhi, Feb 06: The Vishawa Hindu Parishad said on Tuesday that it would hold off its agitation for construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya till the general elections scheduled in April-May. VHP working president Alok Kumar said that the [...]
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Did you consent to being born? Why one man is suing his parents for giving birth to him
Raphael Samuel, a 27-year-old antinatalist from Mumbai, believes it was wrong for his mother and father to create him without his consentName: Raphael Samuel.Age: 27. Continue reading... [...]
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Twitter India summoned by Parliament panel over citizens' social media rights
New Delhi, Feb 05: The parliamentary panel on information technology has summoned Twitter officials over the issue of safeguarding citizens' rights on social media platforms, its head Anurag Thakur said on Tuesday. The panel has also called representatives of [...]
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Rahul Gandhi meets students to have 'open conversation' on poll manifesto
New Delhi, Feb 05: Congress president Rahul Gandhi has put out a video on Twitter of his interaction with students, telling them that he would incorporate issues raised by them in Congress' poll manifesto. "I met a group of [...]
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Waraich, Chiripal take top honours at 2019 Ultimate Desert Challenge
The fifth edition of the of the Ultimate Desert Challenge (UDC) concluded in Bikaner after three days, with Kabir Waraich (with co-driver Amber Udasi) and Gaurav Chiripal (with co-driver Karan Arya) winning the Off-road and X-Cross segments respectively. Waraich, competing in a Polaris RZR 1000, completed the off-roading competition with an impressive tally of 1,090 points, out of a maximum total of 1,100. He managed to defeat 35 other teams to defend his title, making this his third Ultimate Desert Challenge victory in four attempts. “It’s a hat-trick of wins at the UDC and I couldn’t have been happier. This particular win did not come easy, as the competition was very tight and scheduling was such that we were continuously running back-to-stages. I was feeling sleep-deprived at times but somehow I kept pushing myself and good results followed. I would like to thank my co-driver Amber without who this win wouldn’t have been possible,” said Waraich. Gurmeet Virdi (with co-driver Kunal Kashyap) bagged second place overall in the Off-road segment with 1,050 points, followed by Gagandeep Gill ( with co-driver Amardeep Godara) in third place with 894 points. This year also saw the introduction of the new X-Cross segment, essentially a closed-circuit rallying contest requiring competitors to run eight back-to-back laps of 21km each over sand and gravel. Ultimately, only six out of the 12 competitors in the segment were able to complete all eight laps successfully. Chiripal clinched victory in the segment, clocking in a time of 2 hours 43 mins and 8secs in his Polaris RZR 1000. He was closely followed by Devendra Singh Rathore (with co-driver Vinay Bhatnagar) and Vikas Tanwar (with co-driver Rajit Kadian). [...]
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Earthquake tremors felt in Delhi-NCR, parts of Kashmir
Earthquake tremors felt in Delhi-NCR, parts of Kashmir [...]
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Saradha chit fund victims form welfare organisation to fight their cause
Saradha chit fund victims form welfare organisation to fight their cause [...]
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No arrest, but appear before CBI at neutral venue, SC to Kolkata top cop
New Delhi, Feb 05: The Supreme Court has directed the Kolkata Police Commissioner to appear before the Central Bureau of Investigation. While directing the commissioner, Rajeev Kumar to cooperate, the SC said that he will meet the CBI at Shillong, a [...]
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