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System to launch hijackers from plane wins Ig Nobel

Researchers who swallowed a parboiled shrew, discovered that dung beetles navigate by the stars and invented a machine to launch hijackers from airplanes were among the winners of this year’s Ig Nobel prizes for comical scientific achievements.

Tobacco kills 1.5 million a year in India

Tobacco inflicts huge damage on the health of India’s people and could be clocking up a death toll of 1.5 million a year by 2020 if more users are not persuaded to kick the habit, an international report said on Thursday.

Bale set for Real debut

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Barcelona have been careful to break new recruit Neymar in gently during the opening weeks of the La Liga season and Real Madrid are likely to follow a similar policy with Gareth Bale, even with several key players carrying injuries.

Syria to ‘unveil’ chem weapons, halt production

Syria is prepared to unveil its chemical weapons arsenal and halt its production, foreign minister Walid al-Muallem said Tuesday, Russia’s Interfax news agency reported.

Now, handbags can get you loan

In designer-obsessed Hong Kong, keeping up appearances can be hard on the pocketbook. One company has an answer: Cash-strapped shoppers can get money quickly by pawning their Gucci, Chanel, Hermès or Louis Vuitton luxury handbags.

2 held in author killing in Afghan

The Afghan police has detained two insurgents suspected of killing an Indian author who they accused of spying, a provincial police chief said on Tuesday.

Tokyo wins 2020 Games, beats Istanbul

Tokyo was awarded the 2020 Summer Olympics on Saturday, beating Istanbul in a head-to-head vote after Japanese PM Shinzo Abe made a charismatic plea to the International Olympic Committee and promised Japan’s crippled Fukush-ima nuclear plant was “under control”.

‘Safe pair of hands’ Tokyo grab ’20 rights

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Tokyo was awarded the 2020 summer Olympic Games on Saturday, beating Istanbul in a head-to-head vote after Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe delivered a charismatic plea to the International Olympic Committee and promised Japan’s crippled nuclear plant was “under control.”

Wrestling reclaims spot in Olympics

Wrestling completed an unprecedented Olympic comeback on Sunday, recl-aiming its spot in the 2020 Tokyo Games after beating bids from rivals squash and baseball/softball in an International Olympic Committee vote.

Man climbs fence to breach Buckingham

The British police has arrested two men after a break-in at Buckingham Palace this week, one of the most serious security breaches at Queen Elizabeth’s London residence in about 30 years.

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I want to begin with a little story that was told to me by a leading executive at Aptech. He was exercising in a gym with a lot of younger people.

Shekhar Kapur’s Bandit Queen didn’t make the cut. Neither did Shaji Karun’s Piravi, which bagged 31 international awards.