January 7: Top news at 2 pm

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Photo by Manoj Verma/
Hindustan Times via Getty Images
Photo by Manoj Verma/ Hindustan Times via Getty Images


Dhoni saved me from getting dropped many times: Kohli

Not just a leader, Mahendra Singh Dhoni was also a saviour for his successor Virat Kohli, who revealed that the talismanic former skipper prevented his ouster from the Indian team many a times. Kohli has played his entire international cricket under Dhoni's captaincy since his ODI debut in Sri Lanka back in 2008. In his initial days both in ODIs and Tests, Kohli didn't show consistency and his place wasn't secure but Dhoni had immense faith in his talent and abilities.

“He (Dhoni) will always be the person, who guided me initially and gave me opportunities. He gave me ample time and space to grow as a cricketer, saved me from getting dropped from the team many a times,” India's captain in all formats gave one of the most beautiful tributes on 'bcci.tv'. India's No 1 batsman made it clear that replacing Dhoni as a captain is a big ask. “Obviously, these are massive shoes to fill. You think of MS Dhoni and the first word that comes to mind is captain! You don't relate MS Dhoni in any other way. For me, he is always going to be my captain," said Kohli. On Wednesday, Dhoni relinquished captaincy in limited overs format and the senior selection committee officially handed over the baton to Kohli, who was already leading the side in the longest format.

TN government seeks Krishna water from Andhra Pradesh

With a deficient North East monsoon failing to fill up the city reservoirs, Tamil Nadu government on Saturday urged Andhra Pradesh to ensure the immediate release of Krishna water to meet the drinking water needs of the city. Chief Minister O Panneerselvam in his letter to his Andhra Pradesh counterpart N Chandrababu Naidu, highlighted the deficient North East monsoon and meagre storage in city reservoirs, and sought his personal intervention for the immediate release of Krishna water from Kandaleru reservoir. “As you are aware, Tamil Nadu and Chennai city are primarily dependent on the North-East monsoon for bulk of the rainfall. This year (2016), the Northeast monsoon has been highly deficient in Tamil Nadu. Rainfall in Chennai city is deficient by nearly 57%," he said. The water level in Chennai's reservoirs was very low and the "meagre storage" currently available needs to be augmented to meet drinking water supply requirements of the city over the next few months, Panneerselvam said.

Goa Assembly polls: ECI to keep an eye on drug peddlers

The Election Commission of India (ECI) has kept a strict watch on drug peddlers in the state to ensure that narcotics does not become a conduit to push in money or lure voters during upcoming Goa polls. “We have had a meeting with Goa Police's Anti Narcotics Cell and Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) who are keeping a close watch on drug peddling in the state," Goa’s Chief Electoral Officer Kunal told PTI on Saturday. He said the ECI guidelines have also cautioned the use of narcotics trade to induce voters or circulate money during upcoming state assembly polls. Kunal said that the Chief Electoral Office has asked agency to have area-wise map of the drug trade in the coastal state. The CEO has also asked both the district magistrates to activate their machinery to ensure that drug trade is monitored. "All the measures are in place to ensure that no voter is allowed to be influenced,” he said adding that the flying squads which are activated in all the constituencies also would be equipped with one surveillance officer who would be monitoring the narcotics trade.

Kashmir remains cut off from rest of the country

Kashmir remained cut off from the rest of the country for the second day on Saturday due to heavy snowfall in many areas over the past four days as the mercury fell below freezing point at most places with Gulmarg recording the coldest temperature in the state. The arterial Srinagar-Jammu National Highway remained closed for the second consecutive day as the road has been blocked by snowfall and landslides at some places on the other side of Pir Panjal mountain range, an official said in Srinagar. He said efforts were on the restore the 294-km road, the only all-weather link between Kashmir and rest of the country, at the earliest. The air traffic to and fro Srinagar International Airport also remained suspended for the second day as the runway has been blocked by snow. Meanwhile, Gulmarg ski resort in north Kashmir was the coldest recorded place in the state last night as the mercury plunged to minus 8.4 degrees Celsius. Pahalgam in south Kashmir, which serves as the base camp for the annual Amarnath yatra, recorded a low of minus 4.3 degrees Celsius.

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