By Julien Pretot PARIS (Reuters) - Despite the popularity of social media and the widespread presence of traditional media, Novak Djokovic appeared to believe he could be spared the unbearable truth of discovering who his second-round opponent at the French Open might be. Just before his pre-tournament conference at Roland Garros on Friday, the moderator announced: "Novak has requested he would like to answer only questions about his first-round opponent, nothing else to do with the draw at all, top half, bottom half, and he's asked his team not to mention anything about the draw, either. ...
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- President Pranab concerned over disruptions in legislatures IANS
President Pranab Mukherjee Friday expressed concern over repeated disruptions in parliament and state legislatures. More »
- Anti-Sikh riot case: Court reserves order on Sajjan Kumar's plea IANS
The Delhi High Court Friday reserved its verdict on Congress leader Sajjan Kumar's plea challenging a trial court order to frame charges against him in a 1984 More »
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Ranchi, May 24 (IANS) Former Jharkhand chief minister Madhu Koda, allegedly at the centre of a Rs.2,500 crore money laundering scam, surrendered in a court here More »
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- US drone strikes violate sovereignty, says Pakistan IANS
Islamabad, May 24 (IANS) Pakistani government Friday reiterated its opposition to US drone strikes on its territory, saying the strikes were "counter-productive" More »
- Averse to frisking, Meira Kumar shoots down Ukraine visit Hindustan Times
India, May 24 -- Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar shot down a bilateral meet at Kiev after Ukraine refused to exempt her and accompanying six MPs from More »
- De Rossi appeals for fans to leave knives at home Reuters
By Terry Daley ROME (Reuters) - Italy and AS Roma midfielder Daniele de Rossi appealed to fans on Friday to "leave their weapons and knives at home" before this weekend's Italian Cup final against local rivals Lazio. Sunday's match comes around seven weeks after a Serie A meeting between the two neighbours was preceded by violent clashes in the streets of Rome in which several people were stabbed. ...
- Economy secretary: no "lull" in RBI's bond purchases Reuters
MUMBAI (Reuters) - The government doesn't think the central bank has slowed the pace of its bond purchase programme, economic affairs secretary Arvind Mayaram said on Friday. Commercial banks operating in the bond market say cash conditions remain tight and they are disappointed that the Reserve Bank of India has not announced an open market operation since May 7, when it bought 96.58 billion rupees of federal bonds. "I don't see that there is any lull," Mayaram told reporters on the sidelines of an event organised by the Indian stock market regulator. ...
- Smarter drivers will benefit in 2014, says Prost Reuters
By Alan Baldwin MONACO (Reuters) - Alain Prost, four times world champion and 'Professor' of Formula One, says radical new engine rules for 2014 will reward drivers who can add brainpower to the horsepower at their disposal. The little Frenchman, now an ambassador for Renault F1, earned his nickname in the turbo era of the 1980s for his analytical skill, strategic acumen and knack of preserving the tyres and brakes. The regulations will undergo the biggest upheaval in decades next year, with the old V8 engines disappearing to be replaced by a new 2. ...
- AirAsia India launch seen in Q4; may order 50 more Airbus jets: CEO Reuters
MONACO (Reuters) - Asia's largest budget carrier, AirAsia , may order an additional 50 Airbus A320 jets on top of its existing record order for 475 of the Airbus model, Chief Executive Tony Fernandes said on Friday. The additional aircraft would be mainly for the market in India, where it expects its new affiliate, AirAsia India, to launch in the fourth quarter. "We've bought a lot of planes but we're still short, we're still leasing planes at the moment, so I was right buying these planes, and we may have to put in another order... ...
- World rowing body's chief Oswald runs for IOC top job Reuters
LONDON (Reuters) - World rowing federation (FISA) boss Denis Oswald became the fifth candidate for the International Olympic Committee (IOC) presidency on Friday, with the Swiss sports administrator citing his long experience as an asset. "More than 40 years of service to the Olympic movement has provided me with a comprehensive understanding of the organisation and the movement as well as its role and significance in the wider world," he said in a statement. ...
- Psy imposter caught living the high life at Cannes film festival Reuters
CANNES (Reuters) - A man pretending to be South Korean rapper Psy talked his way into glitzy parties at the Cannes film festival and posed with fans until he was spotted drinking champagne by the real Psy's manager. Psy, in Singapore on Thursday night to perform at the inaugural Social Star awards, said that Scooter Braun spotted the imposter, took a photo and sent it to the musician. "He sent it to me, and I tweeted that, like, five, six hours ago, so everybody in France, they know," Psy told Reuters television at the Singapore ceremony. "Real Psy is here. ...
- UK fighters escort Pakistan plane to airport; two arrested Reuters
By Rhys Jones and Peter Griffiths LONDON (Reuters) - British fighter jets escorted a Pakistan International Airlines passenger plane to Stansted Airport near London on Friday, where police went on board and arrested two men on suspicion of endangering an aircraft. Passengers were leaving the plane and no one was hurt in the incident, a spokesman for the airport said. Flight PK709 from Lahore in Pakistan had been due to land at Manchester in northern England with 297 passengers on board, but was diverted shortly before arrival. ...
- Interview: Pakistan should consider IMF deal after reforms in place - adviser Reuters
By Tomasz Janowski LAHORE, Pakistan (Reuters) - Pakistan's new leadership expects first results of its planned steps to shore up its finances and ease a power crisis in two or three months and only then should decide whether and on what terms to seek an IMF bailout, a senior policy adviser said on Friday. Most economists, lenders and rating agencies say that the nation's finances have reached such a critical stage that a deal with the International Monetary Fund will be necessary and the sooner it comes the better. ...
- Interview: It's all in the mind for South African Kirsten Reuters
By Nick Said CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - Understanding the fragility of the world's top players and the human element of the game have been the cornerstone of Gary Kirsten's approach to coaching international cricket teams. The 45-year-old heads off on his last assignment with South Africa on Saturday to the Champions Trophy in England after deciding to quit the post to spend more time with his young family. It will leave the world's top-ranked test side without a coach who has a studied approach to leadership which comes from almost two decades of playing at the top level. ...
- Man United assistant manager Phelan leaves club Reuters
MANCHESTER, England (Reuters) - Manchester United assistant manager Mike Phelan left the Premier League champions on Friday as new manager David Moyes prepared to make his own coaching appointments. Former United player Phelan is departing along with goalkeeping coach Eric Steele ahead of the arrival of Moyes, who takes over from the retired Alex Ferguson on July 1. "I would like to put on record the club's thanks for everything Mike and Eric have done," Moyes said in a statement released by United. ...
- Kerry says Israelis, Palestinians must make tough decisions Reuters
By Arshad Mohammed TEL AVIV (Reuters) - Israeli and Palestinian leaders must decide soon on whether to revive long-dormant peace negotiations to end their decades-old conflict, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Friday. Ending two days of meetings in the region, Kerry said he had had "very productive" talks. But there were no obvious signs of any breakthrough, with neither side offering the sort of compromises needed to end a three-year stalemate. ...
- Vestas says fraud squad investigating ex-finance chief Reuters
COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - The former chief financial officer of Danish wind turbine maker Vestas Wind Systems A/S is being investigated by the country's fraud squad over two agreements he made with an Indian firm, Vestas said. Vestas said it had contacted Denmark's State Prosecutor for Serious Economic and International Crime in December, but only made that public on Friday. The company said it approached the prosecutor on the advice of its lawyers after external auditors examined deals Henrik Norremark made with RRB Energy Ltd and its related company RBB. ...
- Russia's oldest rights group fights "foreign agent" tag Reuters
By Timothy Heritage MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia's oldest rights group began a legal battle on Friday to avoid being branded a "foreign agent" under a new law it sees as a tool of repression by President Vladimir Putin. Memorial, which has fought to preserve the memory of Josef Stalin's victims for a quarter of a century, has faced problems ever since Mikhail Gorbachev gave it his blessing in the Soviet Union's dying days. Its employees have faced harassment and bureaucratic obstacles at almost every turn. ...
- Gold faces more pressure as inflation stays tame Reuters
By Jan Harvey LONDON (Reuters) - Gold prices are looking even more vulnerable after April's price crash, as rampant inflation expected from successive rounds of monetary easing fails to materialise. The idea that record-low interest rates would damage paper currencies and boost inflation was a key factor pushing gold to record highs in the wake of the financial crisis. Ultra-loose monetary policies are still in vogue, but gold prices have slid nearly 20 percent since the start of the year and are on track for their biggest quarterly drop in more than 15 years. ...
- Punjab, Haryana can help Africa ensure food security: Patil IANS
Chandigarh, May 24 (IANS) India's food grain states Punjab and Haryana can help African countries in ensuring food security through exchange of knowledge and technological knowhow, Punjab Governor Shivraj Patil said here Friday.
- Rahul Gandhi reviews politics in Jharkhand, Odisha IANS
New Delhi, May 24 (IANS) Amid speculation that the Congress is exploring government formation in Jharkhand -- which is under President's rule -- party vice president Rahul Gandhi reviewed the political situation with state leaders Friday.
- Rain delays IPL play-off at the Eden Gardens IANS
Kolkata, May 24 (IANS) The start of the Indian Premier League play-off game between Mumbai Indians and Rajasthan Royals was delayed by an hour Friday due to rain.
- Moily refutes charges of favouring RIL on gas price IANS
New Delhi, May 24 (IANS) Petroleum Minister M. Veerappa Moily Friday refuted allegations of government favouring Reliance Industries (RIL) as "malicious" and said the proposed revision in natural gas price would apply to all companies.
- UP CM's Ghaziabad visit postponed after family-murder IANS
Ghaziabad, May 24 (IANS) Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav's visit to Ghaziabad has been postponed after the gruesome murders of seven members of a family, an official said.
- Condom handout at Russian WWII monument slammed IANS
Moscow, May 24 (IANS/RIA Novosti) A prominent Russian lawmaker Friday called for public condemnation of a recent handout of condoms by AIDS activists at an monument in honour of soldiers who died in World War II.
- ICRA Q4 net profit rises 22 percent IANS
Kolkata, May 24 (IANS) Rating agency ICRA Ltd Friday announced a 21.64 percent rise in its net profit to Rs.27.49 crore for the quarter ended March 31, 2013 from Rs.22.60 crore for the same period a year ago.
- India aim to finish AFC Cup on 'good note' IANS
Ramallah, May 24 (IANS) India's women's football team will aim to finish the AFC Cup qualifiers on a "good note" when they take on Palestine in their final match here Saturday.
- Will not sponsor Indian team if Srinivasan continues: Sahara IANS
New Delhi, May 24 (IANS) Having pulled out its franchise Pune Warriors from the Indian Premier League (IPL), Sahara chief Subrata Roy fired another salvo saying he would immediately stop sponsoring the Indian team if N. Srinivasan continues to be the president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).
- Bollywood spot boy arrested for IPL spot fixing IANS
Hyderabad/New Delhi, May 24 (IANS) A spot boy in Bollywood movies was Friday arrested from Hyderabad for the Indian Premier League (IPL) spot fixing scandal, Delhi Police sources said.
- Putin, Obama to meet in June, September IANS
Moscow, May 24 (IANS/RIA Novosti) President Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama will meet at the G8 summit in June and during the US president's visit to Russia in September, a Kremlin aide said Friday.
- BBC editor apologises for Muslim remark IANS
London, May 24 (IANS) Nick Robinson, the BBC's political editor, Friday apologised for directly quoting a Whitehall source who described the Woolwich killers as being "of Muslim appearance".
- Japan PM's residence 'not haunted': Government IANS
Tokyo, May 24 (IANS/RIA Novosti) The Japanese government has denied rumours which said the prime minister's official residence was haunted.
- Britain sends up fighters as Pakistani plane diverted IANS
London, May 24 (IANS) Britain had to scramble fighter jets Friday for escorting a Pakistani International Airlines (PIA) plane after it was diverted from Manchester.
- Jet Airway's shareholders approve Etihad deal IANS
Mumbai, May 24 (IANS) Jet Airways Friday said its shareholders have approved the company's plans to offload 24 percent stake to Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways for around $379 million (Rs.2,058 crore).
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