Nov 2 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories from selected Canadian newspapers. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
* Prime Minister Stephen Harper will land in India this weekend with a simple mission: rekindling a number of high-profile trade deals with this rapidly expanding economy that have either stalled or made slow progress.
* Just two days after vowing he would not hide from the corruption scandal that has swamped his city and brought an emergency ethics crackdown from the province, the mayor of Montreal Gerald Tremblay has left on a surprise vacation.
Reports in the business section:
* BCE Inc vowed to protect its dividend strategy and consider other takeovers if last-ditch efforts to rescue a C$3 billion bid for Astral Media Inc fail.
* The Andean gold project that is key to driving future growth at Barrick Gold Corp just got more expensive to build, and the company is still not done looking at costs.
The Toronto-based miner said the Pascua Lama project, set in the mountains between Chile and Argentina, will now cost as much as $8.5 billion to develop.
* Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is defending his decision to leave another city hall meeting in order to coach his high school football squad, arguing that a game that ended early because of a dispute Thursday "could have gotten really ugly" if he hadn't been there to control his team.
* The Parti Quebecois government is introducing new anti-corruption measures in its first piece of legislation and will subject companies to increased scrutiny if they want public contracts.
* National Bank of Canada is cutting about 300 jobs, including 10 vice presidents, as the country's sixth biggest lender shakes up its organizational structure to tighten expenses.
* Crescent Point Energy Corp, Canada's No. 4 independent oil exploration company, said Thursday it has agreed to buy closely held Ute Energy Upstream Holdings LLC for $784 million in cash.