Cholera claims 105

KASHIPUR: At least 105 people have died of cholera and some 6,000 people are suffering from diseases caused by drinking dirty water in the east Indian state of Orissa, officials said on Wednesday. The state’s top health official said the cholera outbreak was caused by locals drinking from stagnant pools of water and eating contaminated meat. — AFP

Flash floods kill five

GUWAHATI: Five people were drowned and thousands have been displaced in flash floods triggered by heavy rains in Assam, officials said on Wednesday. The five people, including three kids, were killed on Tuesday in three separate incidents of drowning in Assam’s Sivasagar district. — HNS

Quakes strike Taiwan

TAIPEI: Two moderate earthquakes struck off the southeastern coast of Taiwan on Wednesday, officials said. No damage or injuries were immediately reported. The first of the quakes, a magnitude 5.2 temblor, hit at 0115 GMT and was centered about 33 km southwest of Lanyu island, near the eastern coastal city of Taidung, the Central Weather Bureau said. — AP

EU’s proposal rejected

BANGKOK: Thailand’s military-appointed prime minister said on Wednesday he opposed a proposal by the European Union to monitor the upcoming general election, which would be the first since a coup ousted PM Thaksin Shinawatra last year. The EU had proposed signing a memorandum of understanding with Thailand’s official Election Commission to take part in independent monitoring of the polls, slated for December 23. But the commission on Tuesday rejected the EU proposal, and interim PM Surayud Chulanont said he agreed with its decision. — AP