New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday led his Bharatiya Janata Party towards a stupendous victory for the second term in office, as his message of nationalism, security, Hindu pride and a New India was wholeheartedly embraced by voters across large swathes of the country.With the elections establishing the 68-year-old Modi as the most popular leader in decades, the partial vote count released by the Election Commission showed that BJP will surpass its 2014 performance, and likely cross 300 seats. Also Read – Dussehra with a ‘green’ twistUntil 6 p.m., the BJP had won 26 seats and was leading in 278 of the 542 Lok Sabha seats that went to polls in seven phases, demolishing the combined opposition with the Congress Party stuck with seven victories and a lead in 43 seats, according to the trends. Modi himself was leading in Varanasi with a margin of over 4.3 lakh votes while party president Amit Shah was ahead in Gandhinagar in their home state of Gujarat by over 5.5 lakh votes. “With all+ development for all+ everybody’s confidence = victorious India,” Modi tweeted. “Together we grow. Together we prosper. Together we will build a strong and inclusive India. India wins yet again,” he said Also Read – India receives its first Rafale fighter jet from FranceIn the end, BJP’s prediction in the final stages of campaigning of “ab ki baar 300 paar” appeared coming true, as Congress President Rahul Gandhi’s campaign slogan of “chowkidar chor hai” found no resonance among voters. In almost all the states where BJP won, its vote share was more than 50 per cent. If the trends hold firm till final results, the BJP and its allies in the National Democratic Alliance will likely end up with 344 seats, up from 336 in 2014. The BJP, which is now tantalisingly close to the 300 mark in Lok Sabha, had won 282 seats on its own in the last election. The opposition had criticised the BJP campaign as divisive and polarising. Still, the trend shows that the Modi wave and the party’s brilliant election management swept across geographies, caste lines, age, gender and economic status. In the politically critical state of Uttar Pradesh, where the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj Party combine had posed a stiff challenge, the BJP had won two and was leading in 59 of the 80 seats at stake. The Modi wave not only swept through the Hindi heartland and Gujarat, as was expected but also rippled through West Bengal, Odisha, Maharashtra and Karnataka. Only Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh appeared untouched. Even in Telangana, where it was expected to fare poorly, the BJP was ahead in four seats, the same as the Telangana Rashtra Samiti. However, Andhra Pradesh threw up a shock in the Assembly polls, which were held simultaneously, voting out of power the Telugu Desam Party of Chandrababu Naidu, and electing Jagan Mohan Reddy’s YSR Congress. After Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi, Narendra Modi is the third prime minister of the country – and the first non-Congress one – who has been able to retain power for a second term with full majority in Lok Sabha. The results were staggering for BJP in the Hindi-speaking states, including those where Congress had won in the recent Assembly elections: in Madhya Pradesh, BJP was ahead in 28 out of 29 seats with a vote percentage of nearly 60; in Rajasthan it was leading in all but one of 25 seats; similarly in Chattisgarh, BJP was ahead in nine compared to Congress’ 2 seats. The trends of the ruling party’s leads were in sync with the exit polls, most of which predicted that the NDA would be on course to retain power for a second term. In 2014, the BJP won 282 seats, leaving the Congress with an all-time low of 44 seats against the 206 it won in 2009. Buoyed by the Lok Sabha election results, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah thanked the people of the country and congratulated the party workers for the landslide victory.
Mumbai: Veeru Devgan, the popular action director behind films such as “Roti Kapda Aur Makaan” and “Mr Natwarlal” and the father of actor Ajay Devgn, passed away here Monday morning. He was 77. The cause of death is immediately not known but family sources said Veeru had not been keeping well for some time. His funeral will be held at Vile Parle West Crematorium at 6 pm. Veeru, who hailed from Amritsar, ran away from his home to try his luck in films. He initially wanted to become an actor but became a stuntman and later an action choreographer, the veteran stunt director had recalled in several interviews. Also Read – ‘Will be acting till I die’ He, however, fulfilled his dream of breaking it big in Bollywood through son Ajay, considered one of the most successful and versatile actors of his generation. Veeru worked in more than 80 Bollywood films and did stunt work for major heroes such as Dilip Kumar, Dharmendra, Vinod Khanna, Rajesh Khanna and Jeetendra among others. One of Veeru’s most famous action scenes is son Ajay’s first appearance on the silver screen — balancing on two bikes in his introduction in his 1991 debut film “Phool Aur Kaante”. Veeru also turned director with “Hindustan Ki Kasam” in 1999.
New Delhi: On Sunday, as there was much ballyhoo and outrage from the usual suspects over the US Religious Freedom Report 2018, with both BJP and MEA rejecting it findings. In a statement, BJP media head and Rajya Sabha MP Anil Baluni said, “The basic presumption in this report that there is some grand design behind anti-minority violence is simply false. On the contrary, in most of such cases, these instances are carried out as a result of local disputes and by (people with) criminal mindsets.” Whenever needed, PM Modi and other BJP leaders have strongly deplored violence against minorities and weaker sections of the society, he added. Also Read – IAF receives its first Rafale fighter jet from France However, Dr Tenzin Dorjee, the Commissioner of United States Commission on International Religious Freedom wrote a powerful dissent note where he disagreed with the tenor of the report on religious freedom in India. He dissented with the view that India’s religious freedom conditions ‘continued on a downward trend’ and that the ‘government allowed and encouraged mob violence’. He said India is an open society with a a robust democratic and judiciary system. He shared his experience of living in India for 30 years as a Tibetan refugee and vehemently defended India’s multi-faith society. He compared it to communist China which ‘systematically, egregiously, and continuously destroyed Tibetan religion, language, culture, and environment’. In comparison he observed, the Tibetan culture and language had flourished in India.(With inputs from DNA)
Lw Castellet (France): Lewis Hamilton extended his championship lead and continued his relentless run of success on Sunday when he scorched to an emphatic victory ahead of Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas at the French Grand Prix on Sunday. The defending five-time champion repeated his pole-to-flag triumph of 2018 with a flawless drive to his fourth win in succession, sixth this season and 79th of his career. His victory extended Mercedes’ unbeaten start to the 2019 season to eight races and their overall winning streak to 10, the Silver Arrows leaving their main rivals trailing in their wake again. Also Read – Djokovic heaps praise on ‘very complete’ MedvedevIn sweltering conditions, he extended his title race lead over Bottas to 36 points – with Charles Leclerc finishing a strong third following a determined drive in his Ferrari. Max Verstappen was fourth for Red Bull ahead of four-time champion Sebastian Vettel in the second Ferrari and the resurgent McLaren of Carlos Sainz. Vettel, who started seventh after a troubled qualifying, took a late pit stop for fresh tyres and snatched fastest lap and a track record by 0.024 seconds from Hamilton in the final seconds. Also Read – Mary Kom enters quarterfinals, Saweety Boora bows out of World C’shipsDaniel Ricciardo was seventh for Renault ahead of Kimi Raikkonen of Alfa Romeo and Nico Hulkenberg in the second Renault with Lando Norris finishing 10th despite hydraulics problems in the second McLaren. “It’s definitely been a really good weekend,” said a beaming Hamilton. “It’s such a challenge out there and I live that, really trying to find the edge. “I couldn’t do it without this incredible team and we are creating history – and I am so proud to be part of it.” Bottas, who resisted a late charge from Leclerc, said: “Ultimately, Lewis was quicker today and I couldn’t match his pace.” Leclerc said: “I gave it everything, but the Mercedes are just too quick.”
Mumbai: Actor Jacqueline Fernandez says she feels flattered when people say she is a dependable artiste. Jacqueline has been a part of multiple successful films. Asked how it feels to be counted among dependable actores, she told the media here: “If that’s what people say, then I am obviously very flattered and its a very important reputation to have. I have been a part of big commercial films and I do identify myself as a commercial actor. “I have been doing this for the past 10 years but still there is a long way to go.” Also Read – Rihanna to release 500-page ‘visual’ autobiographySince Sajid Nadiadwala has announced a sequel to his hit 2014 action-comedy Kick, Jacqueline is excited about it but says the filmmaker is a perfectionist and is working on the script as of now. On the sidelines of an event here, she said: “I think Sajid Nadiadwala is working on the script of the film. It is something that he has been working on consistently for some time and knowing Nadiadawala, he is a perfectionist. “So he will not come to any of us without a perfect blockbuster script and we are giving all the time and space to him which he needs for that.” Jacqueline is also making her debut in the digital entertainment space with Netflix’s upcoming original film titled ‘Mrs. Serial Killer’. “It is a new territory for me, and not something that I am used to. I am used to theatricals, cinema halls and Fridays, but this is a completely new and interesting space for me.”
NEW DELHI: The city’s long wait for monsoon showers ended on Monday as it gauged 28.8 mm precipitation, the maximum in July this year, and more rains are expected over the next two to three days. The moderate rainfall ended a six-day dry spell in the national capital.The Safdarjung Observatory, which provides official figures for the city, recorded 28.8 mm rainfall till 5:30 pm Monday. The weather stations at Palam, Lodhi Road, Ridge, Ayanagar, Najafgarh, and Sports Complex recorded 25.8, 23.2, 13.2, 19.9, 4 and 7 mm precipitation, respectively. More than 65 mm precipitation at any place is considered heavy rain, officials said. Also Read – Bangla Sahib Gurudwara bans use of all types of plastic itemsThe monsoon trough has shifted slightly southwards from the foothills of the Himalayas. Now, it runs from Punjab, Haryana, west Uttar Pradesh…all the way up to Nagaland,” Kuldeep Srivastava, senior scientist at India Meteorological Department, said. Heavy rain was reported in Central Delhi, East Delhi and some parts of neighbouring Noida. The rain over Delhi was accompanied by a sharp drop in visibility as dark clouds gathered over Delhi-NCR. The rainfall, however, was brief and stopped after around 15-20 minutes. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderFrom July 1 to July 15, the Safdarjung Observatory recorded 55.6 mm rainfall, 61.5 percent less than the 30-year average of 88.3 mm during the period, according to officials. Since the onset of monsoon on July 5, the national capital has recorded 54.2 mm rainfall only 1.4 mm precipitation occurred in the first five days of the month. One of the primary reasons behind scant rainfall is the delayed onset of monsoon in the region, officials said. The IMD on July 5 declared the onset of monsoon over the national capital. Normally, the wind system reaches the city by June 29. So far, the city has recorded rainfall on six days in the first 15 days of July. On average, it records rainfall on 15 days during the month. On Monday, the city recorded a high of 34.7 degrees Celsius, normal for this time of the year, and a low of 26.6 degrees Celsius. Humidity levels oscillated between 64 and 96 percent. “Winds over Delhi and NCR have changed to easterly. We expect the weather to change and rains to intensify gradually,” Mahesh Palawat, Vice president Meteorology and Climate Change at private weather forecaster Skymet Weather said. An IMD official also said that the rains are expected to last till Thursday.
Kolkata: The Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) has chalked out a plan to come up with a solution so that water drains at a faster pace from a handful of pockets in North and Central Kolkata that are prone to waterlogging even when it does not rain in torrents.”We have identified some pockets in Sukia Street, Madan Mohan Burman Road, and Mahatma Gandhi Road where there is some technical problem and water takes reasonably longer time to drain out in comparison to some other parts of the city where water accumulates when there is reasonably high rainfall. Utility services of metro rail and water supply pipeline underground acts as barrier to drainage infrastructure. We will conduct detailed inspection for two days to come up with a permanent solution to this problem,” said Member Mayor in Council (Drainage) Tarak Singh. Also Read – Centuries-old Durga Pujas continue to be hit among revellersIt may be mentioned that Mayor Firhad Hakim has instructed KMC’s drainage department to come out with a permanent solution for water logging and said that he would try to arrange for funds that will be needed for work. The problem came to light after Singh held a meeting at Borough 4 with local MLA and councillors. Singh also pointed out that desiliting work from Moulali to Palmer Bazaar area has suffered as the funds from the centre under Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (Amrut) has not been received as yet. He urged BJP councilor Mina Devi Purohit to take up the matter with the centre so that the desilting work can be taken up in the stretch. “There is a part of MG Road where the drainage system gets choked within a week after desiltation work is taken up and jetting machine has to be pressed into service every week. A permanent jetting machine will be kept in the area and it will take up cleaning work regularly particularly during the monsoon to prevent water logging,’a senior official of the Drainage department said.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday ruled status quo on the sale of Essar Steel to ArcelorMittal. A bench headed by Justice Rhinton F. Nariman admitted the appeals by Essar Steel lenders and ArcelorMittal challenging the order of the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT). The court said it will conduct detailed hearing on the contentions made in the appeal and also look into the issues emerging from the Essar verdict. The top court will hear the matter at length after two weeks. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalA consortium of lenders led by the State Bank of India had moved the apex court against NCLAT order that claimed Essar Steel’s operational creditors have to be treated on par with financial creditors at the time of settling claims in the deal. Essar Steel is under a debt of Rs 30,030 crore to financial creditors and Rs 11,969 crore to operational creditors. State-run banks are primary financial creditors of Essar Steel while its operational creditors are vendors and suppliers. The tribunal has asked the committee of creditors to engage professional firms to finalize the exact amount to be distributed among each operational creditor.
Paris: French inventor Franky Zapata, dubbed “Flying man”, on Thursday failed to cross the English Channel on a jet-powered flyboard after he missed a refuelling platform on a boat. Zapata, a former jet-skiing champion, took off from Sangatte in northern France while standing on the hoverboard powered by five turbine engines, with 42 liters of kerosene in his backpack, enough for about 10 minutes of flight. He planned to reach Dover in England in 20 minutes. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USTravelling at an average speed of 140 km/h and at an altitude of between 15 to 20 metres, the 40-year-old inventor failed to land on the boat to refuel the machine to soar above the remaining distance. “It’s a huge disappointment… We practiced this manoeuver dozens of times in heavier seas, with platforms that moved more, without any problems,” Stephane Denis, a member of Zapata crew told BFMTV news channel. Due to waves the platform hit the flyboard while Zapata was landing and overbalanced him before he fell into the sea, he said. “The ships were able to recover him very quickly. Physically, he is unharmed, but he is very angry,” Denis added.
Mumbai: The rebounded by 18 paise to 70.71 against the US dollar in early trade on Thursday, a day after the Reserve Bank of India cut the key interest rate by 35 basis points. At the interbank foreign exchange, the rupee witnessed high volatility against the US dollar. The local unit opened strong at 70.80 and touched a high of 70.71 and a low of 70.83 against the American currency in early trade on Thursday. The domestic unit was trading at 70.87 against the dollar at 1010 hrs. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscal Rupee had settled at 70.89 against the American currency on Wednesday. Forex traders said rupee is trading in a narrow range tracking cautious opening in domestic equities. Besides, foreign fund outflows and rising crude oil prices also weighed on local currency. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Wednesday cut interest rate by a rare 35 basis points — the fourth successive reduction — to a nine-year low, in an attempt to boost an economy growing at its slowest pace in nearly five years. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boost “While we believe that RBI’s response could have been more aggressive with a 50 bps cut, the policy undertone remains dovish with growth revival assuming the highest priority… Also, it is pertinent to note that in the absence of fiscal expansion, monetary policy is the key lever to support the business cycle,” Edelweiss Securities said in a research note. Meanwhile, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) remained net sellers in the capital markets, pulling out Rs 383.66 crore on Wednesday, according to provisional exchange data. The dollar index, which gauges the greenback’s strength against a basket of six currencies, fell 0.01 per cent to 97.53. Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, rose 2.74 per cent to trade at USD 57.77 per barrel. Domestic bourses opened on a cautious note on Thursday with benchmark indices Sensex trading 37.01 points higher at 36,727.51 and Nifty up 5.75 points at 10,861.25. The 10-year government bond yield was at 6.37 per cent in morning trade.
Erie: A day care centre where children could stay overnight as their parents worked was ravaged Sunday by a fire that killed five and sent the owner to the hospital, authorities said. The victims in the lakeside city of Erie ranged in ages from 8 months to 7 years, Chief Guy Santone of the Erie Fire Department said. At least four of the victims were staying overnight at the residential house that had been turned into a day care centre, Erie Chief Fire Inspector John Widomski told the Erie Times-News. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USThe fire, reported at about 1:15 am Sunday, was funneling out of every first-floor window when firefighters arrived, Widomski said. Valerie Lockett-Slupski, standing across the street from the fire-damaged house, told the newspaper she was the grandmother of four of the children, and that they were staying at the day care center because their parents were working overnight. She said the family had two boys and two girls and had used the center for almost a year. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential polls”So we are all at a loss, trying to figure out how this happened,” Lockett-Slupski said. The cause of the fire remained under investigation Sunday afternoon, Widomski told the newspaper. The Erie Regional Chamber and Growth Partnership lists the Harris Family Daycare as “a 24 hour, 7 days a week childcare service including holidays.” The state Department of Human Services Office of Child Development and Early Learning listed the day care as in compliance with requirements following a Dec. 28, 2018, inspection. But a Jan. 3, 2019, inspection note on that listing highlighted “ashes and cigarette or cigar butts” in “a child care space, play space or food preparation area.” The day care center’s response to the note reads, “I will make sure it will be cleaned up and remain that way,” and the department listed the issue as corrected. Another department note from the same date reads “protective receptacle covers shall be placed in electrical outlets accessible to children 5 years of age or younger,” to which the day care’s response was, “I turned the outlets so they were closed. I will make sure that they are turned closed when not in use.” That issue was also listed as being corrected. Widomski told the newspaper that the fire appeared to have started in the living room area on the first floor. The department’s two fire inspectors and three Erie police detectives trained in fire investigations are working to determine the cause of the blaze.
Kolkata: The number of students qualifying with Honours in BSc Part II in Calcutta University (CU) has seen a significant rise of over 5 percent in comparison to last year, as the figure of 81.05 percent in 2018 has gone up to 86.77 percent in 2019. The results of CU’s BA and BSC Part II Honours were declared on Thursday. 10,991 students had appeared for the BSc (Hons) exam. “We are happy with the success rate of students qualifying with Honours in both BA and BSc going up. We have also been able to speed up the process of publication of results this year,” said Asis Kumar Chattopadhyay, pro vice-chancellor (academic), CU. A total of 18,192 candidates had appeared in BA Part II (Hons), out of which 85.90 percent candidates have qualified with Honours, which is higher than 84.57 percent last year. The performance of girls has been better than the boys in both BA and BSc Honours. The qualifying percentage for girls and boys in BA stands at 87.02 and 81.80 respectively, while that in BSC is 90.64 and 81.66 respectively. 1,570 candidates out of 18,610 have secured first class marks in BA (Hons), while 3,365 out of 10,749 enrolled in BSc (Hons) have got first class marks. The BA and BSc examinations this year had started from June 3 and the results were published on Thursday. Last year, the examinations had started on May 30 and the results were brought out on September 20.
Gururgam: A man and his wife, both in their early thirties, were found dead with stab wounds in their rented room in Dundahera Gurugram. The two have been identified as Vikram (32) and Jyoti (35). The injuries caused to the two was so lethal that Vikram died on the spot whereas his wife Jyoti succumbed to the injuries during the treatment.Belonging to Kanpur, the two had been working as senior executives in a multinational company in the city. The incident occurred at around 4:00 am on Thursday. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderAccording to the law enforcement officials, Vikram had six wounds while Jyoti had four. The Gurugram police was first informed about the incident at around 4:30 am on their control room number. The complainant was Jyoti’s brother Sarvesh who had also come to Gurugram for better job opportunities and was residing just a few quarters away from where the couple lived. Initially, it seemed to be the case of two attacking each other with knives due to a domestic fight between the two. The narrative however dramatically twisted after police questioned Vikram’s friend Abhinav with whom he had stayed the previous night and who had then accompanied him to his room in Dundahera. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsIt is alleged that Vikram who was planning to migrate to Dubai had borrowed money from Abhinav and the two had an argument over returning the amount following which he stabbed Vikram. He then stabbed Jyoti after she tried to resist Abhinav when he was attacking her husband. The Gurugram police is questioning Abhinav over the matter but as of now they have not made any arrests in the case. The couple has a six-year-old child. It is unclear whether or not the child was at home at the time of the incident. “We have registered the case under Section-302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code and are trying to explore all the angles in the case before taking definitive action. It was initially thought that it was an act of two stabbing each other due to an internal fight. The family members of the deceased however alleged that this is a murder that was orchestrated by Vikram’s friend,” said a senior police official from Gurugram police. Vikram has two brothers and three sisters. The third sister was expected to get married this November. Shocked by the entire incident, the neighbours of the deceased couple said that the two had been residing in Gurugram for last five years and there were no incidents of bitterness between the husband and the wife. They also highlighted that he was extremely religious and that he and his office team were planning for a religious trip in the coming days.
TORONTO – Uber has rolled out an in-app option for riders to tip their driver in five Canadian cities and plans to implement the feature across Canada and the U.S at the end of July.The new feature, which went into effect Thursday, is available in a total 121 cities in Canada and the U.S.Uber says the feature was implemented after requests from drivers and riders for the option to tip on the app, rather than in cash.Drivers were only recently allowed to ask for cash tips following the settlement of a US$100 million class-action lawsuit in 2016, which further clarified the status of their drivers as independant contractors, rather than employees.Uber drivers will not be able to see how much you tip them until they give you a passenger rating.The tipping feature is currently available in Toronto, Calgary, Edmonton, Windsor, Ont. and Kingston, Ont.
Highlights from the news file for Thursday, Nov. 9———CANADA SAYS NO TPP ON THE HORIZON: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada won’t be pressured into prematurely signing a deal on the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The U.S. pulled out of the trade deal earlier this year and the 11 remaining signatories have been trying to salvage the deal. Trudeau told reporters at this week’s APEC meetings in Vietnam that Canada won’t sign a deal just because there is pressure to sign a deal.———TRUDEAU TO MEET WITH MYANMAR’S LEADER: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is due to meet one on one with Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Friday. The meeting at the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation summit in Vietnam will be their first since a crackdown by Myanmar security forces that has forced hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims into exile since late August. Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland and the United Nations have said the violence against the Rohingya amounts to ethnic cleansing.———FEDS MAKE CHANGES TO PARENTAL LEAVE: Starting early next month, new parents planning to take leave can spread their federal benefits over a longer period. The federal government’s long-promised changes to parental leave rules take effect Dec. 3. Eligible new parents can take up to 18 months of employment insurance benefits after the birth of a child.———SASK PREMIER ADMONISHES GOVERNOR GENERAL: Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall has weighed in on the debate regarding comments that Gov. Gen. Julie Payette made recently. Some people say a speech Payette made last week mocked people of faith and appeared to be critical of those who believe in creationism and horoscopes. Wall said on Thursday that Payette’s comments don’t meet the standard of conduct that comes with her position, saying it shows an “insensitivity to millions of Canadian who don’t agree.”———COURTS DEAL WITH PATIENTS ON LIFE SUPPORT: Two Ontario court cases involving people deemed brain dead are generating debate on whether Canadian laws should clearly spell out what constitutes death. The two separate Ontario cases both involve religious objections to the concept of brain death. The lawyer representing families involved in the two cases contends the absence of a legal definition of death creates a grey area, particularly when it comes to issues such as religious accommodation. Some legal and medical experts say enshrining the definition of death in law wouldn’t change much and they caution imposing a rigid definition could create issues down the road.———MONTREAL SHOPPING MALL CRITICIZED FOR BRINGING SANTA OUT ON REMEMBRANCE DAY: Some people are calling for a Montreal shopping mall to reschedule a visit by Santa Claus about an hour before Remembrance Day services are to begin on Saturday. Some people have taken to social media to say Place Versailles is showing a terrible lack of judgement. The mall responded that it isn’t logistically possible to have Santa come another day.———N.S. GOVERNMENT AVOIDS ADDRESSING QUESTIONS ABOUT LACK OF DOCTOR FOR PREGNANT WOMAN: Nova Scotia Health Minister Randy Delorey says a woman halfway through her pregnancy who doesn’t have a doctor is not the norm in the province. Kristen DeJong said on Thursday that she now has an appointment with an obstetrician at the end of the month, but only after months of phone calls to nurse practitioners, clinics and doctor’s offices. Delorey said he was concerned about the number of times DeJong has tried to reach out for help.———IMPERIAL TOBACCO WANTS CIGARETTES REGULATED THE SAME AS MARIJUANA: Imperial Tobacco is urging Canadian governments to use the same approach to regulate tobacco and nicotine as they plan to do for marijuana. CEO Jorge Araya told a business audience on Thursday that his company isn’t looking for a cut in tobacco taxes. He says instead Imperial wants a competitive tax regime for other nicotine products such as e-cigarettes, which represent the future growth of his industry.———TRUMP EXTENDS OLIVE BRANCH TO CHINA: U.S. President Donald Trump has set aside his blistering rhetoric in favour of friendly overtures to China as he winds down a two-day visit to Beijing. He’s trying to flatter his hosts into establishing a more balanced trade relationship and doing more to blunt North Korea’s nuclear ambitions. Trump is suggesting that if the U.S. and China jointly took on the world’s problems, they “can solve almost all of them, and probably all of them.”———FAMILY OF MAN ACCUSED OF KILLING CHURCHGOERS SAYS HIS FAMILY IS IN SHOCK: The father of the man Texas authorities say killed more than two dozen people in a shooting at a small-town church says his family is grieving. Michael Kelley is the father of shooter Devin Patrick Kelley. He spoke to ABC News Wednesday from his Texas home. Authorities say the younger Kelley died from what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The father says he doesn’t want the “media circus” surrounding the massacre to destroy “our lives, our grandchildren’s lives.”
MONTREAL – A truck driver from Brampton, Ont., is facing four charges related to a fatal hit and run south of Montreal last August.Harmandeep Singh, 23, was charged Thursday with hit and run after causing the death of one person, two of hit and run after causing bodily harm to two people, and one of hit and run involving a fourth person.Quebec provincial police arrested Singh at Montreal’s Trudeau airport when he returned from India on Wednesday.He will have a bail hearing Friday.A 21-year-old Mexican national vacationing in Quebec was killed in the collision on eastbound Highway 30 in Brossard on Aug. 3.A tractor-trailer struck the vehicle at about 1 a.m., causing it to hit a lamppost, before it drove away. The victim was a passenger in the back seat.The suspect’s vehicle was found a day later in the Montreal borough of Lachine and a warrant was issued shortly after.Police spokeswoman Joyce Kemp said Singh was aware he would be arrested upon landing in Montreal.“There had been contact between the police officers and the suspect before he returned to Canada,” Kemp said.