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  • Spokesman Dawlat Wazir said the attack on Wednesday involved two suicide car bombs and set off hours of fighting. He says nine other soldiers were wounded and six have gone missing. He said 10 attackers were killed. The Taliban claimed the attack in a media statement. Elsewhere in Afghanistan, a Taliban ambush in the northern Balkh province late Wednesday killed six police, according to Shir Jan Durani, spokesman for the provincial police chief. Afghan forces have struggled to combat a resurgent Taliban since US and NATO forces formally concluded their combat mission at the end of 2014, switching to a counterterrorism and support role. The Taliban unleashed a wave of attacks across Afghanistan on Tuesday, targeting police compounds and government facilities with suicide bombers in the country's south, east and west, and killing at least 74 people, officials said. Among those killed in one of the attacks was a provincial police chief. Scores were also wounded, both policemen and civilians. Afghanistan's deputy interior minister, Murad Ali Murad, called Tuesday's onslaught the "biggest terrorist attack this year."

  • PM Modi arrived at Gurez on Thursday morning to celebrate Diwali with the army and BSF soldiers posted along the LoC. He spent two hours with the soldiers in Gurez valley, which is shouting distance of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. This is the fourth successive Diwali that the prime minister has celebrated with jawans on the border. Chief of the Army Staff Gen B S Rawat and other senior army officers were present on the occasion. PM Modi offered sweets and exchanged greetings with the jawans, the officials said. Addressing the jawans, he said like everyone else, he too wishes to spend Diwali with his family. Therefore, he had come among the jawans of the armed forces, whom he considers to be his "family", he said. He said he gets new energy when he spends time among the jawans and soldiers of the armed forces and appreciated their penance and sacrifice, amid harsh conditions. The prime minister said that he had been told that the jawans present at the gathering regularly practice yoga. He said that this would definitely enhance their abilities, and give them a sense of calm. He said jawans, who leave the armed forces after completing their duty tenure, can become excellent yoga trainers subsequently. The prime minister spoke of the new resolve that each Indian citizen must make for 2022, the 75th anniversary of independence. He also encouraged the jawans to innovate, so that their routine tasks and duties become easier and safer and mentioned how best innovations are now being recognised and awarded at the Army Day, Navy Day, and Air Force Day. PM Modi said the Centre is committed to the welfare and the betterment of the Armed Forces, in every way possible. In this regard, he mentioned the implementation of One Rank, One Pension, which had been pending for decades. Protecting the motherland, far from your loved ones, displaying the highest traditions of sacrifice, all soldiers at the nation's borders, are symbols of bravery and dedication, PM Modi said. In the visitors' book, the Prime Minister wrote: "Protecting the Motherland, far from your loved ones, displaying the highest traditions of sacrifice, all soldiers at the nation's borders, are symbols of bravery and dedication. I have an opportunity to spend the festival of Diwali with you. The presence of brave soldiers at the border, on this festive occasion, lights the lamp of hope, and generates new energy among crores of Indians. To accomplish the dream of "New India," this is a golden opportunity for all of us to work together. The Army too is a part of it. Greetings to all of you on Diwali."

  • The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had registered three cases of corruption and money laundering against 67- year-old Sharif, his family members and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar in the accountability court in Islamabad on September 8. The cases were registered weeks after the Supreme Court disqualified Sharif as prime minister on July 28 in the Panama Papers scandal. The accountability court indicted Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Capt (retd) Mohammad Safdar in the London properties reference even though Sharif and lead defence counsel Khawaja Haris are both out of the country. Maryam and Safdar were present in the court during Thursday's hearing. All three accused pleaded not guilty to the charges, according to a court official. Dar has already been indicted and his trial has begun.

  • Born in Lahore, Pakistan in 1910, Chandra was a child prodigy. He published his first paper and developing his theory of star evolution before he even turned 20. "Today's Doodle illustrates one of the most important of all of S. Chandrasekhar's contributions to our understanding of stars and their evolution: The Chandrasekhar limit," Google explained. "A child prodigy, Chandra published his first paper and developed his theory of star evolution before turning 20. By age 34, he was elected to the Royal Society of London, and soon after, became a distinguished service professor of physics." "The Indian-American physicist's honors are astronomical, including the National Medal of Science, the Draper Medal of the US National Academy of Science, and the gold medal of the Royal Astronomical Society. Though originally met with skepticism in the 1930s, Chandra's theories and equations won the Nobel Prize in Physics 50 years later.

  • To a request for a visa by a Pakistani woman named Amna Shamin, whose father is already in Delhi for treatment and she wants to visit him, External Affairs minister said, "Please contact Indian High Commission in Pakistan. We will allow this." "On the auspicious occasion of Deepawali, India will grant medical visa in all deserving cases pending today," Sushma Swaraj tweeted. Wednesday, she had directed the Indian High Commission in Islamabad to issue a visa to a Pakistani child for medical treatment in India. The child's father, Kashif, had requested Swaraj on Twitter to grant medical visa for treatment of Abdullah, saying he needed post-liver transplant evaluation in India. "The treatment of your child must not suffer for want of medicine. I have asked Indian High Commission to issue medical visa. @ChachaKashif," the minister tweeted. Kashif had said the child's medicines were about to finish and he needed immediate medical consultation in India. In another tweet on Wednesday, minister said a medical visa has also been approved for a Pakistani woman, who wants to undergo liver surgery in India. The woman's son, Rafique Memon, had requested External Affairs Minister to intervene and grant visa to his mother. The minister also responded positively to a request for a visa by Nazir Ahmed, whose eight-year-old child Mohammad Ahmed was awaiting medical visa for a year. "We will issue visa to facilitate treatment of your 8- year-old child in India," she said. Sushma Swaraj has been taking a sympathetic approach in granting medical visas to Pakistani nationals, notwithstanding strain in ties between India and Pakistan over a host of issues, including cross-border terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir.

  • Khalid Pashtun, a member of parliament from the province, provided the toll from the attack. The Taliban claimed the attack in a media statement. Afghan forces have struggled to combat a resurgent Taliban since the US and NATO forces formally concluded their combat mission at the end of 2014. Elsewhere in Afghanistan, a Taliban ambush in the northern Balkh province late Wednesday killed six police, according to Shir Jan Durani, spokesman for the provincial police chief.

  • The festival represents the victory of good over evil, light over darkness. People in large numbers are seen thronging to shops to buy candles, lamps and gifts for their near and dear ones. People have decorated their houses with lights and flowers while markets are decked up. The festival brings with it festivals of Govardhan pooja and Bhai Dooj. Army jawans also celebrated Diwali with utmost joy in Poonch and RS Pura along Loc in Jammu and Kashmir. Diwali bonhomie was seen at the Attari-Wagah border with Border Security Force jawans and Pakistani Rangers exchanging sweets. President Ram Nath Kovind and vice president M Venkaiah Naidu and prime minister Narendra Modi greeted the fellow citizens on Diwali. In his message, the President has said, "On the happy and joyous occasion of Diwali, I extend warm greetings and best wishes to all fellow citizens.” Prime Minister Narendra Modi greeted the people of the country on the occasion of the Diwali. Tweeting a signed colourful picture, PM wished brighter lives with prosperity and good health and happiness all around. Later he also met and celebrated the festival of lights with Army & BSF soldiers in Gurez sector of the valley.

  • Saina, who won a bronze in the Glasgow World Championship, defeated Marin 22-20 21-18 in a hard-fought battle. She will play either Thailand's Nitchaon Jindapol or Russia's Evgeniya Kosetskaya in the next round. Other Indians Kidambi Srikanth and H S Prannoy made positive starts to the tournament but B Sai Praneeth crashed out in the opening round of men's singles. World number eight Srikanth overcame a spirited challenge from compatriot qualifier Subhankar Dey, who played for Greve team at the Danish league this year, 21-17 21-15 to set up a clash with Korean Jeon Hyeok Jin, the 2016 Australian Open runners-up. On the adjacent court, Praneeth lost 10-21 15-21 to Hans-Kristian Solberg Vittinghus in a lop-sided contest. Earlier, world number 15 Prannoy recovered from a 6-11 deficit in the second game to oust Denmark's Emil Holst 21-18 21-19 in a hard-fought match. It was his third win over the Danish shuttler. The Indian is likely to play former World No. 1 Malaysian Lee Chong Wei on Thursday. Young doubles specialist Satwiksairaj Rankireddy also suffered twin defeats in mixed and men's doubles competition to end his campaign here. Satwik and his mixed doubles partner Ashwini Ponnappa, who had reached the semifinals last week at Dutch Open, lost 19-21 17-21 to the local combo of Niclas Nohr and Sara Thygesen. In men's doubles, Satwik and Chirag Shetty, who had reached the quarterfinals at Korea Open, failed to get across Korean pair of Chung Eui Seok and Kim Dukyoung, losing 21-14 18-21 17-21 in the opening round. Experienced men’s doubles pair of Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy lost 13-21 18-21 to Denmark's Mads Conrad- Petersen and Mads Pieler Kolding. Another mixed doubles pair of Pranaav Jerry Chopra and N Sikki Reddy, who had reached the semifinals at Japan Open, also crashed out on Tuesday in the opening round after losing 17-21 15-21 to the Irish duo of Sam Magee and Chloe Magee.

  • The BJP has declared its nominees for all the 68 seats in the state's Assembly and the names also include Anil Sharma, Congress veteran Sukhram's son, who quit his party recently to join the BJP. Dhumal, a two-time chief minister, will contest from Sujanpur instead of Hamirpur, which he represents in the outgoing Assembly. The BJP has not named its chief ministerial candidate. The BJP Central Election Committee had met last week to finalise their candidates in the state. The single-phase election will be held on November 9.

  • The Combined strength of Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena fell way short of BJP that won 1311 seats. The results for the second phase of Maharashtra Gram Panchayat Elections have brought smile on the face of BJP workers and leaders in the state. Ruling BJP has had a stellar, winning a total of 1,311 seats. So much has been the decimation of political rivals that the next three parties have failed to get anywhere near the BJP mark. The BJP tally is way ahead of the combined seats won by Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena. A total of 3692 gram panchayats spread over 16 districts went to polls in the second phase. Congress won 312 seats, while NCP could claim victory on 297 seats and Shiv Sena captured 295 seats. Others managed to grab win in 453 seats. The Resounding victories have gathered praise from the PM who tweeted to thank the people and vowed to keep on working harder. The BJP had registered an impressive victory in the first phase of Gram Panchayat Elections as well. It won around 50 per cent of the gram panchayats in the first phase, the three parties were routed comprehensively then as well.

  • Speaking at the LNG Producer-Consumer Conference here, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said the global LNG market is undergoing a major transformation driven by new supplies which has created a situation of oversupply. "He urged the global LNG markets, in which producers and consumers of LNG have equal stakes, to join hands to design flexible terms such as pricing review, flexible take or pay, abolition of destination restriction clause in the LNG contracts," an official statement said. These reforms, he said, are essential for developing a transparent, efficient, truly global and balanced LNG market. India, which is among the biggest importer of liquefied natural gas (LNG), has used his position to lower prices, contracted when oil was raging high, to reflect the slump in rates. In 2015, India did not take all of the 7.5 million tonnes a year of liquefied natural gas (LNG) it had committed to buy from Qatar and instead renegotiated price of the long-term deal to save Rs 8,000 crore. Qatar also agreed to waive take-or-pay conditions on the quantities India did not take. Last Month, Exxon Mobil Corp in principle agreed to cut price of 1.44 million tonnes a year LNG being imported from Australia's Gorgon project. It is now seeking to reopen the LNG contracts with the US. Long-term LNG supply contracts traditionally lock-in a price that is indexed to oil rates. They have provision of buyer having to pay even if they don't take supplies and that the gas is tied to a particular destination, thereby restricting its trading or diversion to other use areas. Pradhan also held a bilateral meeting with Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry Hiroshige Seko and discussed furthering cooperation in the hydrocarbon sector between the two nations. "They also explored joint cooperation in the areas of LNG sourcing, swapping and optimization of LNG sources and commercial exploitation of methane hydrates," the statement said. Pradhan invited Seko to attend the 16th International Energy Forum (IEF) Ministerial meeting to be held in New Delhi during April next year. The ministers signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) on establishing a liquid, flexible and global LNG Market. "The MoC provides a framework to cooperate in facilitating flexibility in LNG contracts, abolition of destination restriction clause and also explore possibilities of cooperation in establishing reliable LNG spot price indices reflecting true LNG demand and supply," it said. The pact, it said, would help in promoting bilateral relationship between India and Japan in the LNG sector. India and Japan are major consumers of energy in the world. In the LNG sector, Japan is the world's largest importer and India is the 4th largest importer. Under the Japan-India Energy Partnership Initiative signed in January 2016, the two sides had agreed to work together in promoting well-functioning energy markets and affirmed to promote a transparent and diversified LNG market through the relaxation of Destination Restriction Clause.

  • This is her first visit to the strategically important command after assuming charge as the defence minister. She will celebrate Diwali with soldiers at the command on Thursday, besides reviewing its operational preparedness with top officials. Sitharaman was received at INS Utkrosh by Lt Governor of Andaman and Nicobar Islands Admiral (Retd.) D K Joshi and Commander-in-Chief of the Command Vice Admiral Bimal Verma. On arrival, she was accorded a joint services guard of honour, officials said. Later, she was given a comprehensive brief on the security environment and thrust areas of the command at its headquarters, they said.

  • Seeking their fourth title, Brazil have been living upto the expectations by winning all their group matches and they just brushed aside the challenge of Honduras with an overwhelmingly dominating display in the pre-quarterfinal clash. Brenner struck in the 11th and 56th minutes while Marcos Antonio scored the other goal in the 44th minute as Brazil notched up their biggest win of the tournament. They had beaten Spain (2-1), North Korea (2-0) and Niger (2-0) to top Group D. With the crowd at the Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium overwhelming supporting the Brazilians, Honduras attack were few and far between though they hit the goalpost twice, once in each half. Honduras had scored at least a goal in their three Group E matches but they were unable to do it. Brazil will now travel to Kolkata to take on Germany in the quarterfinals on October 22. Germany had produced a clinical performance while beating Colombia 4-0 in the pre- quarterfinals on October 16 in New Delhi. Attacking midfielder Alan, who sat out of Brazil's final group game against Niger as a precautionary measure after receiving a yellow card in the previous match, returned on Wednesday and set up the first goal for the South American champions. He cut into the Honduras box from the right and had a one-on-one with Wesley before releasing the ball for Brenner to calmly slot it past the goalkeeper for his second goal of the tournament. Brazil continued their domination with their quick passing football and they had two chances very soon but Paulinho and Alan's shots were save by Honduras goalkeeper Alex Rivera in the 14th and 21st minutes. Honduras were denied an equaliser against the run of play in the 32nd minute as Luis Palma's shot from a difficult angle on the right side of the box beat the goalkeeper but hit the upright. Brazil doubled the lead just before half time with midfielder Marcos Antonio scoring his first goal of the tournament with a deft left footer off a beautiful Paulinho through pass which sliced open the Honduras defence. Honduras coach Jose Valladares brought in Kenneth Martinez and Joshua Canales after half time in search of goals but Brazil did not put their feet off the pedal and made the scoreline 3-0 in the 56th minute. Wesley did all the spadework as he cut into the right side of the Honduras box and his tussle with a defender resulted to the ball landing nicely for Brenner to fire in an opportunistic strike for his second goal of the match and third of the tournament. In the 70th minute, Honduras were again denied a consolation goal as Carlos Mejia hit the left post with a left-footed shot from outside the box.

  • The interactions happened on various days in the month of October 2017. The last of these interactions was on October 17, 2017. Each interaction lasted around two hours. Subjects such as Governance, Corruption, Public Enterprises, Government e-Marketplace, Health, Education, Skill Development, Agriculture, Transportation, National Integration, Water Resources, Swachh Bharat, Culture, Communication, and Tourism came up for discussion during the interactions. PM Modi exhorted the officers to work with full dedication towards creation of New India by 2022. PM said that silos are a big bottleneck in the functioning of the Union Government. He urged the officers to adopt innovative ways to break silos, which will result in the speeding up of various processes of governance. In the same vein, PM said officers at the level of Director and Deputy Secretary must create teams, to achieve better results. MoS, PMO Dr Jitendra Singh, and senior officers from PMO and Cabinet Secretariat were present during the interactions.

  • He also said that states that use terror as an instrument of policy will only see their international reputation and standing diminish, in an apparent dig at Pakistan. "We expect Pakistan to take decisive action against terrorist groups based there that threaten its own people and the broader region," he said while speaking at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a top US think-tank. "It is the obligation, not choice, of every civilised nation to combat the scourge of terrorism. The United States and India are leading that regional effort together," he said. By taking decisive actions against terrorists, Tillerson said, Pakistan furthers stability and peace for itself and its neighbours, and improves its own international standing. President Donald Trump in August unveiled his Afghanistan and South Asia policy in which he had hit out at Pakistan for providing safe havens to "agents of chaos" that kill Americans in Afghanistan and warned Islamabad that it has "much to lose" by harbouring terrorists. America's relationships in the region stand on their own merits, Tillerson told the audience. In his major India policy speech, Tillerson said India-US cooperation in the field of counter-terrorism has strengthened in recent years. "In the past decade, our counter-terrorism cooperation has expanded significantly. Thousands of Indian security personnel have trained with American counterparts to enhance capacity," he said. The US and India are cross-screening known and suspected terrorists, and later this year, the two countries will convene a new dialogue on terrorist designations, he said. "We are coordinating our counter-terrorism efforts more than ever before," the secretary of state said. In July, Tillerson said, he signed the designation of Hizbul Mujahidin as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation because the US and India stand shoulder-to-shoulder against terrorism. Tillerson said India can serve as a clear example of a diverse, dynamic, and pluralistic country to others, a flourishing democracy in the age of global terrorism. He said India is a partner of the US in Afghanistan. "As we implement President Trump’s new South Asia strategy, we will turn to our partners to ensure greater stability in Afghanistan and throughout the region. India is a partner for peace in Afghanistan and we welcome its assistance efforts," he said. President Trump had vowed to boost strategic partnership with India in Afghanistan. Trump had also sought an enhanced role for India to bring peace and stability in Afghanistan. Pakistan's Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi last week warned that the Trump administration's desire to inject New Delhi in the war-torn country would be "detrimental" as he rejected any role for India in Afghanistan.

  • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told a Washington audience that Modi's visit in June highlighted the many areas of cooperation that are already underway in this new era of strategic relationship. "President Trump and Prime Minister Modi are committed, more than any of our leaders before them, to building an ambitious partnership that benefits not only our two great democracies but other sovereign nations working toward greater peace and stability," said Tillerson in a major India policy speech before CSIS, a top US think-tank. Tillerson is scheduled to visit India next week. "My visit could not come at a more promising time for the US-India partnership. As you know, this year marks the 70th anniversary of relations between our two countries," he said. Tillerson said his relationship with India goes back to 1998, when he began working on issues related to India's energy security and has made many trips to Delhi. "It was a privilege to do business with Indian counterparts then, and it has been my great honour this year to work with Indian leaders as Secretary of State. I look forward to returning to Delhi next week, for the first time in my official capacity," Tillerson said. Referring to the fact that earlier this month, a shipment of American crude oil arrived in India, Tillerson said it was a tangible illustration of India and the US expanding their energy cooperation. The Trump Administration is determined to dramatically deepen ways for the US and India to work together, he asserted. Noting that more than 600 American companies operate in India, Tillerson said the US foreign direct investment has jumped by 500 per cent in the past two years alone. The bilateral trade hit a record of roughly USD 115 billion last year, a number US plans to increase, he said. "Together, we have built a sturdy foundation of economic cooperation as we look for more avenues of expansion," he said. The announcement of the first Global Entrepreneurship Summit ever to be hosted in South Asia, to take place in Hyderabad next month, is a clear example of how President Trump and Prime Minister Modi are promoting innovation, expanding job opportunities, and finding new ways to strengthen both economies, he said.

  • The BJP has come down hard on the Congress party, raising many questions, following startling revelations by private detective Michael Hershman. In media interview, Michael Hershman, who is the president of the US-based private detective firm Fairfax has alleged that the Rajiv Gandhi-led Congress government had sabotaged his investigation into the money laundering and financial crime matters which also involved alleged kickbacks in the Bofors case. Addressing media, Union Minister Smriti Irani said that the revelations have given rise to more and more questions. She sought to know that why Rajiv Gandhi lead government tried to scuttle the investigations into Bofors kickback case and transferred then finance minister VP Singh to the defence ministry. Referring to the media interview by Michael Hershman, Irani said that the people still want to know the real story of Bofors and why them Prime Minister made special discounts to people related to dubious firms. The CBI has already said that it would look into the facts and circumstances of the Bofors scam as mentioned by private detective Michael Hershman in the interview will be looked into as per due process. BJP has hoped that now the agency will be able to probe the matter effectively. Smriti Irani also questioned the repeated silence of the Congress party in the matters even though new revelations keep tumbling out of the cupboard every now and then. Irani sought to know why the Congress leaders have not responded to media interviews by Michael Hershman. In his interview, Hershman has expressed his willingness to testify and help Indian agencies on the Rs 64 crore Bofors gun pay-off scandal.

  • Inaugurating 'Deepotsav' celebration in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath talked about Ram Rajya at length. Addressing a large gathering, he said that Ayodhya gave the concept of Ram Rajya - where there is no pain or grief. He said the real meaning of Ram Rajya is a home for all and electricity and LPG gas cylinders for every household. The holy city of Ayodhya, the birthplace of Lord Rama grabbed all the limelight on Wednesday evening when earthen oil lamps were lit on Diwali eve and a special laser show held to show various facets of the Ramayana. Chief Minister and the governor also distributed allotment letters to the beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojna. Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik, Deputy Chief Ministers Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma were also present on the occasion. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath also said that other tourist destinations of UP would also be similarly developed. The Chief Minister said four other phases would also take place and this is the first phase. Governor Ram Naik said Lord Ram's teachings inspire us. “This occasion would not only promote Ayodhya as a tourist destination and ensure its all-round development but also serve as a platform to the people to know and understand more of Lord Ram's teachings,” he said.

  • Unbeaten India looked the most convincing team in the tournament so far but the dangerous and defensive Koreans came tantalisingly close to register a stunning win over the Manpreet Singh-led side. Despite enjoying the lions share of possession and having better scoring chances, the in-form Indian strikers found it difficult to breach the resolute Korean defence. After a barren opening two quarters, Jungjun Lee (41st minute) gave Korea the lead before Gurjant scored (60th) just seconds before the final hooter to salvage a point for the Indians. It was always expected to be a contest between Indian forwardline and Korea's defence and it panned out that way only with the Koreans defending in numbers and relying on counter attacks. Akahdeep Singh missed a sitter for India in the first quarter after he failed to connect the ball from close range with only the Korean goalkeeper to beat. Seconds before the end of the first quarter, India secured the only penalty corner of the match but it was wasted as they went for variation. The second quarter saw a neck-and-neck tussle between the Indian strikers and Korean defence with both the sides not in a mood to give an inch to each other as the first half ended goal-less. Six minutes into the third quarter, India were in for a rude shock when Lee scored, chancing upon a lapse from Varun Kumar and Sumit in the Indian defence. Four minutes later, a brilliant run from Satbir Singh set up a fine ball for S V Sunil inside the Korean circle but the Indian striker failed to get a good touch. Trailing by a goal, it was Indian attack all the way in the fourth and final quarters but the Koreans played smart hockey and defended in numbers. They did not give the Indian strikers any space to create chances. Four minutes from the final hooter, India withdrew goalkeeper Suraj Karkera for an extra player and the move paid rich dividends as Gurjant finally scored the much-needed equaliser in the last minute of the match. The Indians went full throttle and the move paid off when Gurjant scored from a rebound after his initial shot was saved by the Korean goalkeeper, much to the relief of new chief coach Sjoerd Marijne. India will next play impressive Malaysia in their second Super 4 stage match on Thursday. Earlier in the day, Malaysia defeated Pakistan 3-2 in another Super 4 encounter. India's last Super 4 match is against arch-rivals Pakistan, whom they have defeated 3-1 in the pool stages. As per the tournament rules, the top two teams from the Super 4 stage will qualify for the final to be held on Sunday.

  • Goals by captain Eric Ayiah off a penalty in the first half added time and substitute Richard Danso in the 90th minute helped Ghana win the rough and tough round of 16 game at the D Y Patil Stadium after dominating play almost right through. Ghana will take on African champions Mali in a repeat of their continental qualifying event final in the quarterfinals on October 21 in Guwahati. Debutants Niger, who lost to Ghana 5-6 on penalties in the African U-17 tournament in May, had to defend stoutly against the fleet-footed Ghana trio of captain Eric Ayiah, Edmund Arko-Mensah and Emmanuel Toko. The losing team's hero was their goalkeeper Khaled Lawali who time and again came to his side's rescue to stop goal- bound shots with his agility and positional sense. In fact, the excellent goal-keeping by Lawali and robust defending by the back four kept the two-time champions at bay for almost the entire first half till they conceded a penalty in the added time. Ayiah threw off his shadow after chasing a through ball into the penalty area on the right before he was tripped by his marker and central defender Farouk Idrissa. Ayiah, already with two goals under his belt, converted the spot kick by making Lawali dive the other way as he found the right bottom corner of the net to give Ghana a 1-0 lead just before half-time was called. The entire Ghana team, barring goalkeeper Danad Ibrahim, were seen in the rival half or close to the centre line at times in an attempt to breach their opponents' defense. Ayiah also missed a golden chance to score his second goal of the match and fourth of the competition from the penalty spot. But Ghana were not to be denied their second goal, which came from a peach of an effort, off a long range shot by substitute Richard Danso who unleashed a right-footer that went past the palms of a leaping Lawali to bulge the net. Danso scored immediately after replacing Toku just before the end of 90 minutes of play.

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