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Nitish Kumar NDA's choice for Bihar
The entire establishment of the ruling National Democratic Alliance was engaged in finalising its strategy on how to secure the Bihar Governor's invitation for its nominee to form the next government after the electorate returned a hung Assembly.

Eight Indian soldiers killed in Pak. attack
In a pre-dawn attack on a surveillance post near the Line of Control in the Jammu region by Pakistani troops, eight Indian soldiers were killed and one bunker destroyed. Five Pakistani soldiers were also said to have been killed in the incident.

Assam Minister killed in blast
The Assam Minister for Forests and PWD, Mr. Nagen Sharma, and four others were killed when ULFA militants blew their vehicle by a remote-controlled improvised explosive device at Nij Bahjani village in Nalbari district around 1.45 p.m. today. The village is considered one of the outfit's ``strongest bastions'' in the State.

Bomb blast in Delhi
A powerful bomb blast rocked the congested main bazaar area of Paharganj opposite the New Delhi railway station here today, resulting in minor injuries to eight persons and extensive damage to three floors of the five-storey guest house.

Be firm with India on N-issues, China tells U.S.
Under pressure from China and other nations to hold firm on nuclear issues with New Delhi, the Clinton Administration is at pains to suggest that non-proliferation remains an `unfininshed business' between India and the United States.

Rabri elected RJD leader
Having edged past the National Democratic Alliance, the ruling Rashtriya Janata Dal in Bihar re-elected the Chief Minister, Mrs. Rabri Devi, as its leader this evening. She will be staking her claim tomorrow to form the next Government.

 Naveen Patnaik BJDLP leader
The Biju Janatal Dal president, Mr. Naveen Patnaik, was unanimously elected leader of the BJD Legislature Party here today.

 U.P. rubs salt into Cong.(I) wounds
The ignominious electoral debacle suffered by the Congress(I) in the recently held by-elections in eight Assembly and one Lok Sabha constituencies in Uttar Pradesh, wherein each of the party's nine candidates forfeited their deposits, underlines the fact that the party's downward slide in the State has not stopped.

 No escape from reforms: PM
The Prime Minister, Mr. Atal Behari Vajpayee, today sought to discount the apprehensions that the economic reforms process would result in an increase in unemployment in the country. In fact, reforms were in the very interest of developing countries and there was no escape from this.


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