Indian media: Hailing acid attack activist Laxmi

Laxmi had filed a litigation in the Supreme Court to ensure harsher punishment for those who use acid to attack women
Image caption Laxmi had filed a case in the Supreme Court seeking harsher punishment for those who use acid to attack women

Media in India are praising activist Laxmi as a "crusader for change" for her fight to bring a tougher law to curb acid attacks on women.

In 2006, she was 15 when a man splashed acid on her face because she spurned his advances.

She suffered terrible disfigurements but refused to give up, and filed a case in the Supreme Court seeking tougher regulation of acid sales and harsher punishment for attackers.

"Tomorrow is going to be beautiful," she said on Thursday after the court ordered the government to make acid attacks a "non-bailable offence" and also regulate its sales.

"It has been a seven-year-long struggle for her. At an age when most teenagers juggled school and co-curricular activities, Ms Laxmi was forced to stay indoors, with doctors and hospitals taking up all her time," says The Times of India.

"It is because of the efforts of Laxmi that the plight and struggle of acid victim has come to the fore," says the Daily Bhaskar website.

Meanwhile, newspapers have urged the government to think "out of the box" to ensure better delivery of free Mid-Day meals at state-run schools after 23 students died from eating a contaminated lunch in the eastern state of Bihar.

The Mid-Day meal scheme was started to provide free food for millions of students to combat hunger and boost school attendance, but it often suffers poor hygiene.

The Times of India says the government needs to "follow up the inquiry it has announced into the tragedy with stringent punishment for all those responsible, sending the signal that there are consequences for apathy and neglect".

"There are ways and ways of fixing the system... The government should do some out-of-the-box thinking and show that it really means business when it comes to nutrition for children," says the Hindustan Times.

In another ruling, the Supreme Court has asked India's medicine watchdog to abandon the idea of conducting a single nationwide test for those seeking admission in medical colleges.

The court said that state governments and private colleges should conduct their own entrance examinations because the "one-nation, one-test" proposal "interfered with the rights of private, minority and linguistic institutions to admit students", The Indian Express reports.

Traffic violations

Meanwhile, the traffic police in Delhi say they ignore "minor traffic violations" such as "playing loud music in the car or smoking while driving", because they do not have the resources to "prosecute motorists for every wrong", the Hindustan Times reports.

"Our prime focus is to prosecute motorists for violations that make them vulnerable to road accidents," the Hindustan Times quotes senior police official Anil Shukla as saying.

Two Air India pilots have been suspended for allowing a movie actress to enter the cockpit during a domestic flight in violation of safety norms, the Deccan Herald reports.

In sports, cricketer Harbhajan Singh is proving to be a man of many talents after recording a music album with Punjabi singer Lakhwinder Lucky, the Hindustan Times reports.

The cricketer, who has 100 Tests and 413 wickets to his name, is seen on the album cover posing as Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan standing in lush green fields with arms outstretched.

Staying with cricket, promising bowler Pradeep Sangwan has failed a random dope test conducted during the Indian Premier League tournament in April, the DNA newspaper reports.

And finally, in a story of grit and hope, 18-year-old boxer Manish Solanki has defied all odds to make an impressive comeback after a motorbike accident in 2011 nearly ended his career.

Solanki recently won a gold medal at the Golden Glove of Vojvodina - an international youth boxing tournament in Serbia - after being on bed rest for almost six months, The Indian Express reports.

BBC Monitoring reports and analyses news from TV, radio, web and print media around the world. For more reports from BBC Monitoring, click here. You can follow BBC Monitoring on Twitter and Facebook.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites