India

India bids farewell to beloved singer

Mangeshkar, whose voice was the soundtrack to hundreds of Bollywood films, died aged 92 on Sunday.

PM Narendra Modi and stars of the entertainment industry attended the funeral, where large crowds gathered to pay their respects.

Her extraordinary career spanned more than half a century and she recorded thousands of songs in 36 languages.

Two days of national mourning will follow the funeral and the national flag will be flown at half-mast throughout the country.

Plea to send lonely African elephant home from India

. Now, a plea in the city's high court seeks to send him back home.

The petition - filed by 16-year-old Nikita Dhawan, founder of the non-profit Youth For Animals - alleges that Shankar has been living in isolation for years. It demands that he be removed from the zoo and rehabilitated in a wildlife sanctuary that houses other African elephants.

It also accuses zoo authorities of mistreating the animal - the BBC contacted officials but they declined to comment.

Zee-Sony merger will create an Indian entertainment giant

The merged entity will include more than 75 television channels, film assets and two streaming platforms.

It is poised to become a major player in the country's fast-growing entertainment industry, challenging rivals such as Walt Disney's Hotstar.

India has more than 900 million TV viewers and some 800 channels.

These channels offer a variety of shows ranging from sports, melodramas to reality television.

Man beaten to death for 'sacrilege' attempt at Sikh Golden Temple in India

The incident took place during a prayer service at the city's Golden Temple on Saturday, according to local media.

The man allegedly barged into the inner sanctum, where Sikhism's holy book, the Guru Granth Sahib, is kept.

He then grabbed a ceremonial sword placed next to the book, but was overpowered by guards and worshippers.

Sikhs regard the Guru Granth Sahib as not just the holy scripture of their religion but also as the living Guru, and believe it should be treated with respect as a human might be.

India reports first cases of new Covid variant

The men, who are 66 years and 46 years old, are currently under observation, a government spokesperson said.

These are the first cases of the new Omicron variant to be reported in India.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that Omicron poses a "high infection risk".

Officials said all primary contacts and secondary contacts of the two men have been traced and are being tested as well.

India sneak home in opening T20

New Zealand made 164 for six in Jaipur, which India reached with two balls to spare.

Indian captain Rohit Sharma won the toss and decided to field first and had immediate success with Daryl Mitchell dismissed for a golden duck.

However Martin Guptil scored 70 and Mark Chapman 63 as they put on 109 for the second wicket.

"We were probably ten runs short at the end, we didn't quite get there in the end but that can happen in cricket and the way we pulled it back with the ball was a fantastic effort," said Guptil.

WHO approves India Covid vaccine for emergency use

The vaccine was approved in India in January while the third phase of clinical trials was still under way, sparking some concern and criticism.

Bharat Biotech, which makes the vaccine, has since published data suggesting 78 percent efficacy.

The WHO said in a tweet it believed the benefits far outweighed the risks.

Some experts had pointed to a fast-track approval and incomplete data, but the firm's chairman, Dr Krishna Ella, said the vaccine was "200% safe".

India PM Narendra Modi pledges net zero by 2070

Prime Minister Narendra Modi made the pledge at the Glasgow conference.

This is the first time the country has made such a commitment.

Net zero, or becoming carbon neutral, means not adding to the amount of greenhouse gases currently in the atmosphere.

In contrast, China has announced plans for carbon neutrality by 2060, while the US and EU aim to hit net zero by 2050.

India drones deliver Covid jabs to remote areas

Dr Samiran Panda said drones are being used to deliver doses in mountainous states in the country's north-east.

India aims to vaccinate all eligible citizens by the end of 2021 but experts say the drive needs to pick up a consistent pace to meet the target.

India has so far given more than 925 million doses of three approved jabs.

About 70% of the country's eligible population have received at least one dose of a Covid vaccine, according to official data.

PNG hits out at India over broken agreement and unauthorised arrivals

PNG's National Pandemic Response Controller and Police Commissioner, David Manning, alleges India's High Commission in Port Moresby deliberately participated in a deception that resulted in the unauthorised arrivals.

Manning said India broke an agreement on how many passengers were approved for the repatriation flight.

According to him, the proposed repatriation flight from India had been rejected four times due to the risk of Covid-infected arrivals from India