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NEWS|Current Affairs 
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Planes and ships from across Asia resumed the hunt on Sunday for a Malaysian jetliner missing with 239 people on board for more than 24 hours, while Malaysian aviation authorities investigated how two passengers were apparently able to get on the aircraft using stolen passports.There was still no confirmed sighting of wreckage from the Boeing 777 in the seas between Malaysia and Vietnam where it vanished from screens early Saturday morning en route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur. The weather was fine, the plane was already cruising and the pilots had no time to send a distress signal unusual circumstance for a modern jetliner to crash.Li Jiaxiang, administrator of the Civil Aviation Administration of China, said some debris had been spotted, but it was unclear whether it came from the plane. Vietnamese authorities said they had seen nothing close to two large oil slicks they saw on Saturday, and said might be from the missing plane.Malaysia's civil aviation chief Azaharuddin Abdul Rahman said his country had expanded its area of operation to the west coast of peninsular Malaysia, on the other side of the country from where the plane disappeared. "This is standard procedure. If we can't find it here, we go to other places," he said.Finding traces of an aircraft that disappears over sea can take days or longer, even with a sustained search effort. Depending on the circumstances of the crash, wreckage can be scattered over many square kilometers (miles). If the plane enters the water before breaking up, there can be relatively little debris.Investigators will need access to the flight data recorders to determine what happened.Terrorism is always considered a possibility, but the sudden disappearance of Flight MH370 has given extra emphasis to speculation a bomb might have been on board. Other scenarios include some catastrophic failure of the engines or structure of the plane, extreme turbulence or even pilot suicide.On Saturday, foreign ministries in Italy and Austria said the names of two citizens listed on the flight's manifest matched the names on two passports reported stolen in Thailand. It's unclear how common it is for people to get on flights with fake passports, but the news added to fears of terrorism.Azaharuddin said on Sunday that authorities were "aware of the situation and we are doing an investigation at the moment."Malaysia Airlines has a good safety record, as does the 777, which had not had a fatal crash in its 19-year history until an Asiana Airlines plane crashed last July in San Francisco, killing three passengers, all teenagers from China.Professor Jason Middleton, the head of the Sydney-based University of New South Wales' School of Aviation, said terrorism or some other form of foul play seemed a likely explanation."You're looking at some highly unexpected thing, and the only ones people can think of are basically foul play, being either a bomb or some immediate incapacitating of the pilots by someone doing the wrong thing and that might lead to an airplane going straight into the ocean," Middleton said on Sunday. "With two stolen passports (on board), you'd have to suspect that that's one of the likely options."Just nine percent of fatal accidents happen when a plane is at cruising altitude, according to a statistical summary of commercial jet accidents done by Boeing. Malaysia Airlines CEO Ahmad Jauhari Yahya said on Saturday there was no indication that the pilots had sent a distress signal.The plane was last inspected 10 days ago and found to be "in proper condition," Ignatius Ong, CEO of Malaysia Airlines subsidiary Firefly airlines, said at a news conference.Two-thirds of the jet's passengers were from China. The rest were from elsewhere in Asia, North America and Europe.Asked whether terrorism was suspected, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said authorities were "looking at all possibilities, but it is too early to make any conclusive remarks."Greg Barton, a professor of international politics at Australia's Monash University and a terrorism expert, said if the disaster was the result of terrorism, there is no obvious suspect. If it was terrorism, Barton expected China would be quick to blame separatists from the ethnic Uighur minority, as authorities did recently when 29 people were killed in knife attacks at a train station in the southern city of Kunming."If a group like that is behind it, then suddenly they've got a capacity that we didn't know they had before, they've executed it very well that's very scary," Barton said. "It's safe to start with the assumption that that's not very likely, but possible."AP

Pakistan captures 48 Indian fishermen, 8 boats off Gujarat coast

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Pakistan captures 48 Indian fishermen, 8 boats off Gujarat coast

Ahmedabad: The Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (MSA) on Friday apprehended 48 Indian fishermen and seized 8 of their boats near Jakhau port off the Gujarat coast, officials of National Fishworkers F...


Matter of common sense: Karnataka HC pulls up TN officials in Jaya DA case

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Matter of common sense: Karnataka HC pulls up TN officials in Jaya DA case

Bengaluru: The Karnataka High Court on Friday virtually questioned the "common sense" of Tamil Nadu officials who over-valued the properties of former Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and three o...

NIA files chargesheet in 'Pak-instigated' espionage case

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NIA files chargesheet in 'Pak-instigated' espionage case

Chennai: The National Investigation Agency on Friday filed a charge sheet in a Chennai court in a case of alleged espionage and attempts to carry out sabotage activities in India at the instigation of...

Putin goes for a salary cut of 10% as Russian economy reels from ruble collapse

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Putin goes for a salary cut of 10% as Russian economy reels from ruble collapse

Moscow: Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on Friday he was cutting his salary by 10 percent as well as the earnings of several top government officials, as the country's economy reels from th...

More rain, snow forecast in Kashmir; highway could be opened on Saturday

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More rain, snow forecast in Kashmir; highway could be opened on Saturday

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir is likely to receive more rain and snowfall in the next 24 hours even as the Jammu-Srinagar highway remained closed for the 5th day on Friday.The strategic Jammu-Srinagar h...

Sushma Swaraj leaves for Sri Lanka ahead of PM Modi's visit

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Sushma Swaraj leaves for Sri Lanka ahead of PM Modi's visit

New Delhi: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Friday left for Sri Lanka to lay the ground for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the island nation next week.Modi will be in Sri Lanka on 1...

No speedy justice? Almost a year since SC last heard the Delhi gangrape case

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No speedy justice? Almost a year since SC last heard the Delhi gangrape case

The BBC documentary India's Daughter, by film maker Leslee Udwin, has put the gruesome 16 December Delhi gangrape case back on the headlines. Even as the documentary was banned in India, the comments ...