Abbas welcomes and backs French peace initiative

Ramallah: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told US Secretary of State John Kerry that it is important to back the French initiative for holding an international conference for peace in the Middle East.

A report published by the Palestinian state-run news agency (WAFA) quoted Nabil Abu Rdineh, an aide to President Abbas as saying that Kerry telephoned Abbas, who is currently in Amman, Xinhua reported.

Abu Rdineh stated to Wafa that the telephone conversation between the two men focused on the French initiative.

International Fleet Review big opportunity for India: Modi

New Delhi: India is proud to be hosting the International Fleet Review, which is a "big opportunity" for the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday.

"It is a matter of pride that India is hosting a big event in the first week of February. The whole world is coming as a guest, and our navy is preparing for it," Modi said in his radio address 'Mann Ki Baat'.

He noted that warships and naval ships of several countries were assembling off Visakhapatnam for the review.

Indian Social Forum urges youths to prevent killing of Gandhism

By TCN News,

Dammam: Remembering Mahatma Gandhi on his 68th death anniversary, Indian Social Forum has called upon Indian youths to work towards preventing principles of Gandhi and to fulfill his dream of comprehensive welfare state.

Indian Social Forum (ISF) is an independent organization of the Indian Diaspora that works for their well-being through social welfare activities. The forum works with the vision to enlighten the Indian expatriates on the importance of unity and to encourage them to contribute in the nation building process.

No marriage law for Hindus in Pakistan: Daily

Islamabad : There is no marriage law for the millions of Hindus living in Pakistan, a leading daily said on Friday, noting that this "legal vacuum naturally creates a multitude of issues for Pakistani Hindus, especially the women".

An editorial "Hindu marriage bill" in Dawn on Friday said that while many politicians are quick to issue public statements about the rights of minorities in Pakistan, when it comes to taking practical steps to secure these rights, there is very little to show.

How app helped rural Indian women use modern contraceptives

Washington : A unique smartphone app developed by an Indian-American researcher from the Johns Hopkins University has helped married rural women in India better understand contraceptive choices, leading to a dramatic increase in women using modern family planning methods in just a few months.

According to Sanjanthi Velu, Asia team lead at the Johns Hopkins Centre for Communication Programs (CCP), women who watched motivational videos on the app called "Gyan Jyoti" were 4.5 times more likely to use modern contraceptive methods than those who did not.

Rohith Vemula’s death sparks outrage within Indian Diaspora

By TCN News,

Boston: Protests have erupted at major universities and cities across the US and elsewhere, expressing shock and outrage at the death of 26-year old Rohith Vemula, an anti-caste activist, student leader and PhD scholar at the University of Hyderabad (UoH) on January 17, 2017.

Iran doesn't wish to attack, invade any country: Rouhani

Rome: Iran does not intend to attack, invade or interfere in the affairs of any country, its president Hassan Rouhani has said, asserting that his country was a bedrock in the conflict-wracked Middle East.

"Iran is the safest most stable country in the whole region, a country that doesn't intend to attack, invade or meddle in the affairs of any state," Rouhani told a business forum in Rome.

Iran would defend itself forcefully but with "reliable rules" and would never breach its international commitments, he said.

Republic Day Eve marked by anti-caste vigil outside India House, London

By TCN News

London: Representatives of rights groups, Indian Diaspora and Dalit organisations marked India’s Republic Day eve by holding a candlelit vigil outside the Indian High Commission in London.

A press release issued by the South Asia Solidarity Group described the vigil as a display of solidarity with the hunger-striking students of the University of Hyderabad and other places across India against the “institutional murder of Dalit research scholar Rohith Vemula by university authorities and Indian cabinet ministers.”

Smokers who quit 15 years ago still at high lung cancer risk

New York: People who kicked the butt as long as 15 years ago are still at high risk for lung cancer and should be screened, warn researchers.

The current lung cancer screening criteria set by the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends CT screening for adults between ages 55 and 80 who have smoked at least one pack a day for 30 years and are still smoking or have quit within 15 years.

Indian Muslims against ISIS: After fatwas against terror, Muslims take to streets, launch major campaign

By IndScribe,

First, there were fatwas against terrorism and ISIS.

Now, Indian Muslims have taken to the streets, to raise their voice against the outfit.

The photograph on the left, shows Muslim girls raising slogans against self-styled 'Islamic State'.

This is not a lone protest. It is part of a campaign. The reason is that many Muslims now increasingly feel that just condemning ISIS is not enough, but there is need to go to the street and say it, strongly, so that the message goes out.