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 States agree on power reforms
With the Centre proposing a one-time settlement of the outstanding dues of the State Electricity Boards (SEBs) towards Central utilities, and also allowing the States to choose their method of improving distribution, most State Governments today agreed to press ahead with power sector reforms in a timebound manner.

Taliban destroys most of Buddhist relics
Most of the ancient Buddhist relics, including the head and legs of two soaring statues of the Buddha in central Afghanistan, have been destroyed, despite international pleas to save them, a Taliban official said today.

UNESCO envoy's last-ditch attempt
The UNESCO Special Envoy, Mr. Pierre Lafrance, who is here on a mission to persuade the Taliban to stop the destruction of priceless historical monuments in Afghanistan, has failed to convince the Taliban Ambassador in Pakistan. Mr. Lafrance called on the Taliban envoy, Mulla Abdul Salaam Zaeef, in a bid to convince him to take up the case with the Taliban leadership and halt the destruction.

We will move SC, says Jogi
The Chattisgarh Chief Minister, Mr. Ajit Jogi, today asserted his Government would explore all constitutional avenues, including petitioning the Supreme Court, to nullify the sale of Bharat Aluminium Company (BALCO) to Sterlite, a private company.

13 killed in Tripura ambush
Eleven 11 CRPF jawans and two civilians were killed and three critically injured in an ambush by suspected All-Tripura Tiger Force militants at Bampur in south Tripura district today.

66 Indian pilgrims die
Sixty-six elderly Indians died of natural causes so far during the Haj pilgrimage which began today with a ritual trek to the nearby Mina valley.

Trade unions plan stir
Major central trade unions have threatened to call a nationwide strike to condemn the budget proposals and would observe March 14 as protest day.

14 injured in grenade attack
Fourteen persons were wounded when militants today made an abortive attempt to target a police party in Kulgam town in south Kashmir by detonating a grenade, police said.


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