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President salutes democratic spirit
Rather than allow the atmosphere of the Kashmir- centric gloom to cloud the August 15 celebrations, the President, Mr. K. R. Narayanan, has used the occasion of his on- the-eve-of- Independence Day message to the nation, to salute the vibrancy of Indian democracy.

 Nation put on 'red alert'
A nation-wide ``red alert'' has been sounded on the eve of the new millennium's first Independence Day as security agencies braced themselves in the wake of reported threats by Pakistan-supported militant groups to step up attacks against security forces, particularly in Jammu and Kashmir.

 Militants threaten 'massive strikes'
The Pakistan-based militant organisations continue to issue statements threatening major strikes against the Indian forces to coincide with the Independence Day.

RBI steps in to shore up rupee
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) today announced many measures, including scaling down the balances in the Exchange Earners' Foreign Currency (EEFC) accounts scheme to 50 per cent of the amount held by exporters on August 11, in yet another move to stem the free fall of the rupee against the U.S. dollar.

 Top ULFA functionary, 288 ultras surrender in Assam
On the eve of Independence Day, the Assam Government staged a formal surrender of 288 ultras of different militant groups before the Chief Minister, Mr. Prafulla Kumar Mahanta, at a function here today. That brings the total number of surrenderees since April 1998 to 1,994.

Army kills 10 militants
The Army killed 10 foreign militants in Mahore Tehsil of Udhampur district. Sources said the Grenadier battalion of Dah division killed the militants at Nukul Pass. There was no casualty on the Army side.


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