India

India bans social media in Kashmir amid violent unrest

The state government said the services were being misused by "anti-government elements" to incite violence.

Graphic videos claiming to show abuses on both sides have been shared extensively.

At least nine people have died in widespread violent clashes with the security forces in the disputed region.

Other social media services, communications tools and websites to have been banned under the order include YouTube, Skype, Telegram, Snapchat and Reddit.

India bans use of red beacon lights on cars

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said "no vehicle will have a red light" from 1 May, and "there will no exceptions".

Under the new rule, only emergency vehicles, ambulances, fire engines and police cars can use flashing blue lights.

Critics say VIPs often use red beacons as a status symbol, leading to traffic chaos for commuters.

Status-conscious politicians and government officials are also accused of using the beacons to bypass the gridlocked city traffic on official business and show off their importance.

India police search for parents of girl 'living with monkeys'

The little girl, aged between eight and 10, was found a few weeks ago in a forest in Uttar Pradesh.

Doctors said she could not communicate and displayed "monkey-like" traits.

A senior police official told BBC Hindi she had been playing with a pack of monkeys and imitating their behaviour when police went to rescue her.

The little girl was spotted by villagers in the Katarniaghat wildlife sanctuary, on the Indian border with Nepal.

The police official, Suresh Yadav, said the monkeys attacked his squad when they arrived to take her away.

Attacks on Nigerian students shock India

The attacks were prompted by the death of a local teenager due to a drug overdose. His parents blame Nigerian students for giving him the drugs.

Five Nigerian students were attacked on Monday by crowds, while another was beaten by a mob inside a shopping mall.

Police say five people have been arrested over the attacks.

Ms Swaraj said she had spoken to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, and he had assured her of a "fair and impartial investigation into this unfortunate incident".

Why these Indian state elections matter to the whole world

As vote counts trickled in from five state elections on Saturday, one result loomed large: that of central India's Uttar Pradesh, home to more than 200 million people. The staggered five-week vote in that state alone marks the biggest election in the world in 2017.

Modi's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, or the BJP, looks poised to take about 75% of the 403 seats on offer in Uttar Pradesh.

Junior Fed Cup success a boost for Pacific tennis

The team of Carol Lee from the CNMI, Tahiti's Naia Guitton and Eleanor Schuster from Samoa won their pool without dropping a set before defeating Singapore in the semifinals and accounting for Sri Lanka 2-0 in the final on Friday.

Team captain Brittany Teei was impressed by their work ethic and ability to execute the game plan in pressure situations.

"Just their ability and willingness to execute on the plans that we were talking about throughout the match," she said.

Pacific Oceania into tennis final

The team of Carol Lee from the CNMI, Tahiti's Naia Guitton and Eleanor Schuster from Samoa won their pool without dropping a set.

Yesterday they swept Singapore 3-0 to advance to the tournament decider against Sri Lanka.

Naia Guitton came from a set down to defeat Tammy Tan 4-6 6-2 6-2 Carol Lee cruised to a 6-0 6-0 drubbing of Joelle Goh before teaming up with Schuster to win the doubles tie 6-2 6-2.

Meanwhile the Pacific Oceania Junior Davis Cup Team had their first win yesterday, beating Tajikistan 2-0.

The forgotten women in an Indian mental health ward

Photographer Cheena Kapoor spent months documenting the women on the ward. Mental illness is "not the only war the women fight here - the stigma of social acceptance and gender discrimination is a major cause of their trauma", she says.

"The male ward is always filled with anxious faces waiting for the sons to return home, while the daughters are so easily forgotten."

These are some of their stories:

Meet the frog that can sit on a thumbnail

Among the smallest frogs in the world, they live on the forest floor and make insect-like calls at night.

Three larger species were also found, bringing to seven the number of night frogs discovered in the Western Ghats.

The mountain range, which runs parallel to the western coast of India, is home to hundreds of threatened plants and animals.

Scientists discovered the new species after several years of exploration in the forests of Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

 

Secretive habits

No justice in sight for India's riot rape survivors

The violence, sparked by the alleged harassment of a young Hindu woman by a Muslim man, lasted two days.

A few days later, seven women, all Muslims, went to the police alleging that they were gang-raped during the violence that broke out in their villages. The police took a year to arrest all the 29 accused, who were later released on bail.

The trials were supposed to be completed in special fast track courts within two months. But nearly four years on, the women are still waiting for justice.