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Can BJP win Assam, Bengal without a Modi Wave?

For the first time since Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power in 2014, the BJP is going to elections without using his name. Voting begins today in the first phase of assembly elections in Assam and West Bengal, both states that have no perceptible 'Modi wave'.

Assam appears to be the BJP's biggest hope, as the Congress has been in power in the state for 15 years, says the Hindustan Times.

Soon, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and the union territory of Puducherry will also go to the polls.

Mehbooba to take oath today and make history for J&K

PDP president Mehbooba Mufti will be sworn in as Jammu and Kashmir's first woman chief minister at 11 am today. As she takes the oath at the Raj Bhavan in Jammu, she will also be J&K's 13th head of state, succeeding her father Mufti Mohammed Sayeed.

Mehbooba was invited by governor NN Vohra on Saturday to form and lead the PDP-BJP coalition government in the state, according to the Hindustan Times.

Patient dies at Mathura hospital as medical staff watch cricket

A patient at Mathura district hospital in Uttar Pradesh died allegedly because the three doctors and a nurse on duty watched India's match against West Indies in the World T20 semi-final on Thursday night rather than give him treatment.

The family of the patient said that he was treated only after the match ended, and died on Friday morning.

"The matter is serious in nature," said Dr KP Garg, chief medical superintendent of Mathura. Garg wrote to the UP principal secretary (health) about the issue after he met the family on Friday, according to the Hindustan Times.

MGNREGA owes Rs 8,000 crore in unpaid wages

More than Rs 8,000 crore of unpaid wages are due from the rural job guarantee scheme MGNREGA for the 2015-16 financial year. A further Rs 3,686 crore worth of material for the same financial year has yet to be paid.

This means that states will spend about Rs 12 crore out of this year's budget of Rs 38,500 crore, aimed to provide 100 days' work for people in rural India, making up for last year's dues.

West Bengal owes its workers Rs 2,400 crore, Uttar Pradesh Rs 663 crore, Assam Rs 487 crore, Madhya Pradesh Rs 480 crore and Bihar Rs 454 crore, according to the Hindustan Times.

Murdered NIA officer's body had 22 bullet injuries

Twenty-two bullet injuries were found in the body of Mohammad Tanzeel Ahmed, a National Investigation Agency officer, who was shot dead in the early hours of Sunday morning. Ahmed's wife was seriously injured in the attack.

The NIA officer had handled several cases involving the Indian Mujahideen (IM), including the arrest of its chief Yasin Bhatkal. The attack by two unidentified men on a motorcycle took place just before 1 am on Sunday at Sahaspur, in UP's Bijnor district, as Ahmed and his family were returning from a wedding, according to The Indian Express.

Amitabh, Aishwarya among 500 Indians with off-shore firms

More than 500 Indians figure on a list of offshore companies, foundations and trusts set up for them by Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca, reveals a study of 11 million of the firm's documents that had been leaked more than eight months ago.

The Indians on the list include actors Amitabh Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, business family Garware, Onkar Kanwar of the Apollo group, lawyer Harish Salve, the late Mumbai gangster Iqbal Mirchi, DLF owner KP Singh and Gautam Adani's elder brother Vinod Adani, according to The Indian Express.

Silk Route may have zigzagged further south than believed

A Nepali textile find has suggested that Silk Road may have extended farther south than it was previously believed. The first results of textile and dye analyses of cloth dated between 400-650 AD and recovered from Samdzong 5, in Upper Mustang, Nepal have been released by Dr Margarita Gleba of the University of Cambridge. Identification of degummed silk fibres and munjeet and Indian lac dyes in the textile finds suggests that imported materials from China and India were used in combination with those locally produced. Gleba said that there is no evidence for local silk production suggesting that Samdzong was inserted into the long-distance trade network of the Silk Road, adding that the data reinforce the notion that instead of being isolated and remote, Upper Mustang was once a small, but important node of a much larger network of people and places.

Bhubaneshwar one step closer to becoming a child friendly smart city

The Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation is working to create the city into a child-friendly smart city (CFSC). According to a Times of India report, the BMC has created a mini dining table and chairs and low-height washbasins at the Aahar centre, where people are served meals for Rs 5 - to cater to children from economically weaker backgrounds. Cartoon characters have also been painted on the walls of the centres. Of the nine Aahar centers in the city, five have now been made child-friendly. Over 200 children visit the centres every day.