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India is Asia’s unlikely powerbroker in papal vote

India’s Catholics may account for less than two percent of the country’s population but they will be Asia’s most powerful voice in the election to choose a new pope. Five of the nine Asian cardinals who have the right to vote at the upcoming papal enclave hail from India, an…

Fake tuberculosis drugs manufactured by both legitimate companies and fraudsters are rampant: survey

Africa, India and other developing countries are awash in fake or sub-standard drugs for tuberculosis, fuelling the rise of treatment-resistant strains of TB, according to a survey published on Tuesday. Investigators in the United States asked local people in 19 cities in 17 countries to purchase isoniazid and rifampicin, the…

India gang-rape victim’s companion will testify in murder trial

The companion of an Indian medical student who died after being gang-raped on a bus in New Delhi was to begin giving evidence on Tuesday in the trial of five adults accused of her murder, his father said. The 28-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, arrived at the…

Baby girl’s death highlights plight of India’s ‘unwanted girls’

A three-month-old baby girl that police say was battered by her father who wanted a son died on Wednesday, highlighting the plight of millions of India’s “unwanted girls”. Neha Afreen died from cardiac arrest at a state-run hospital in India’s tech hub of Bangalore after battling for life for three…

Indian forest-dwellers take battle against mining conglomerate to supreme court

By Jason Burke The leaders of thousands of forest-dwelling tribesmen who have fought for years to preserve their ancestral lands from exploitation by an international mining corporation have promised to continue their struggle whatever the decision in a key hearing before India’s supreme court on Monday. Dubbed the “real life…

India govt. accused of concealing poverty by lowering poverty line to 44 cents per day

India’s opposition politicians accused the government on Tuesday of seeking to conceal widespread poverty after it declared that any Indian who spent 44 cents a day was not poor. Figures released by the Planning Commission on Monday showed a substantial drop in the country’s poverty figures under the Congress-led government,…

India called major factor in 25% growth in global arms trade

The global arms trade has grown by nearly a quarter over the last four years, with new growth mainly in poorer countries and India now officially the world’s biggest importer of arms, research has revealed. Statistics published on Monday by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute show that demand from…

Mass wedding in Indian ‘village of sex workers’

VADIA, India — Eight young women whose mothers are sex workers were married in a so-called “village of prostitutes” in India on Sunday under a plan to save them from being pushed into the world’s oldest profession. The event, held in the village of Vadia in the western state of…

India denies report U.S. troops on soil

India has denied as “factually incorrect” a report that US special forces were stationed in the country as part of counter-terrorism cooperation. Media reports quoted top Pentagon commander Admiral Robert Willard as telling a Congressional hearing on Thursday that US special forces teams were stationed in five South Asian countries,…

Legalization of gay sex challenged in India court

NEW DELHI — India’s Supreme Court on Wednesday began hearing more than a dozen petitions filed to overturn a 2009 ruling that decriminalised gay sex between consenting adults. Homosexuality was ruled lawful three years ago by a Delhi High Court order that declared the colonial-era ban was unconstitutional, in a…

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