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 Autonomy resolution within Constitution: PM
The Prime Minister, Mr. Atal Behari Vajpayee, today said the resolution passed by the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly on the autonomy issue was within the framework of the Constitution and that the issue would be discussed by the Union Cabinet and further action on it would follow thereafter.

Ladakh Council adopts resolution seeking separation from J & K
Close on the heels of autonomy resolution adopted by the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly on Monday, the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC) today adopted another resolution seeking complete separation from the State. Immediately, the Nation Conference Government, headed by Dr. Farooq Abdullah, described the resolution as ``unconstitutional and illegal.''

Indian peacekeepers arrive in Freetown
Twenty-one Indian peacekeepers, released by Revolutionary United Front (RUF) rebels at Pendembu, tonight reached the Sierra Leonean capital of Freetown to a hearty welcome, Army sources said here.

Hostages' safety comes first, says Fiji military
Fiji's military, which is preparing a no-go zone around the rebels who are holding 27 political hostages, said today it would prefer to let the crisis drag on rather than endanger the lives of hostages.

Pak. must create atmosphere for talks: Farooq
The Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister, Dr. Farooq Abdullah, has asked Pakistan to create a conducive atmosphere for talks with New Delhi by ending border hostilities and stopping infiltration of militants.

Denounce activists, NHRC tells VHP
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has asked the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and the Bajrang Dal to denounce their activists who were allegedly involved in propagating ``anti-Christian'' statements, in order to restore harmony in the country.

EPF rate cut
The rate of the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) has been brought down to 11 per cent from 12 per cent with effect from April 1, 2000, official sources said today.

Govt. asks CBI to give update on match-fixing probe
The Government has asked the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to give it an update within 10 days on the progress made in the investigations in connection with the cricket match-fixing scandal.

A blow to Sri Lankan Govt.
The Supreme Court of Sri Lanka today dealt a major blow to the Government by ruling that last month's appointment of the chief media censor was illegal, thereby effectively invalidating the ban order on the weekly newspaper, Sunday Leader.

PCC chief
The Congress(I) president, Ms. Sonia Gandhi, today appointed Mr. V.S. Koujalagi as the party's Karnataka unit president. He replaces the Chief Minister, Mr. S.M. Krishna.

Centre not for confrontation on autonomy issue
With the Prime Minister, Mr. A. B. Vajpayee, back in the capital after a five-day foreign trip, the Centre will handle the hot potato - autonomy - handed by the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly.

'World's best fighter planes for India
Russia would soon begin assembling the upgraded SU-30MKI multi-role fighters for India, Sukhoi corporation officials told the visiting Defence Minister, Mr. George Fernandes.


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