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Sandip Soparrkar and Jesse Randhawa stunning look at Madrid International Film Festival

International dancing Stars, Indian Choreographer Sandip Soparrkar and super model Jesse Randhawa represented Indian Cinema at the Madrid International Film Festival recently. They gave a talk on 'Changing trends in Bollywood dance today' but this was not the only reason for the dancing duo to be invited to the Madrid IFF. They were especially invited to grace the red carpet and give way award for the best film. The most awaited celebration of global cinema in Spain took place in the ballroom of the beautiful Convencion Hotel in Madrid. Sandip Soparrkar was smartly dressed in a maroon tux by Deepak Shah of More Mischief and Jesse Randhawa looked elegant in a copper full sleeve gown by designer Rohit Verma completing her look with jewellery designed by Dev Balani of Malkish Jewels. While announcing the prize for the best film Sandip Soparrkar said, "Jesse and me are honoured to be present here at Madrid IFF and we wish the festival success year after year." They both were seen bonding with Hollywood stars Daniel Baldwin, Mark Doree, beautiful actress Chelsey Baker, Alice Krige and former MD of Warner Bros Neil MacEwan on the red carpet. Mr. Carl Tooney, president of Madrid IFF said "We at the festival are glad to host Indian dancing sensation Sandip and Jesse. I am very happy that they agreed to walk our red carpet and give away the award for the best film.' Normally a festival is known to invite actors and actresses to grace their red carpet but this was the first time that the Madrid IFF ever invited a dancing duo. Indeed it is a proud moment for dance loving Indians to have a representative in form of Sandip and Jesse on a global platform like this.

American star Serena Williams continued to occupy top spot in the singles WTA rankings

New Delhi: American star Serena Williams continued to occupy top spot in the singles WTA rankings while former world No.1 Caroline Wozniacki climbed two places to 13th. India's Sania Mirza maintained her career-high fifth place ranking in the doubles. Sania, who turned pro in 2003 and overcame a career-threatening wrist injury in between, had entered the top five for the first time in her career earlier this month. WTA singles top 10: 1. Serena Williams, United States, 9,231 points 2. Li Na, China, 6,960 3. Simona Halep, Romania, 6,785 4. Petra Kvitova, Czech Republic, 6,070 5. Agnieszka Radwanska, Poland, 5,330 6. Maria Sharapova, Russia, 4,881 7. Euginie Bouchard, Canada, 4,460 8. Angelique Kerber, Germany, 4,365 9. Jelena Jankovic, Serbia, 3,900 10. Victoria Azarenka, Belarus, 3,812

TRAI recommended capital investment of around Rs.2,278 crore to improve of telecom services in the Andaman & Nicobar Islands (ANI) and Lakshadweep

New Delhi: The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Tuesday recommended capital investment of around Rs.2,278 crore to improve of telecom services in the Andaman & Nicobar Islands (ANI) and Lakshadweep. “The investment comprises Rs.1,773 crore approx (including Rs.1,000 crore towards submarine cable project already approved by the Planning Commission) for ANI and Rs.505 crore approx (including Rs.468 crore for submarine cable) for Lakshadweep,” a TRAI release said. The regulator has recommended that, apart from one-time capital investment, the telecom department or union territory (UT) administration should compensate the telecom operation on yearly basis as viability gap funding. It has recommended Rs.130 crore (Rs.104 crore for ANI and Rs. 26 crore for Lakshadweep) on annual basis for five years. ANI is the largest UT of India, lying in the south-eastern part of Bay of Bengal, having 572 islands scattered over an area of around 800 Kms from North to South. Lakshadweep with an area of around 32 sq km is the smallest UT of India on the west of the state of Kerala. It is a group of 36 small islands in the Arabian Sea. Earlier the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) had sought TRAI’s recommendations on a comprehensive plan for improving telecom services in ANI and Lakshadweep and also to assess the investment required for providing quality telecommunication services in these islands. TRAI recommended 2G services in all habitation with population greater than 100. The authority is of the view that all the uncovered villages should be covered in a phased manner. It also said 3G network will be extended to all the district head quarter and sub district headquarter and entire urban population of ANI and Lakshadweep. TRAI recommended that in addition to the already planned connectivity through Chennai, connectivity of ANI should also be made from Kolkata through a submarine cable. The submarine cable connecting Chennai - Port Blair - Kolkata could be named the ‘SAARC’ cable. These islands are lagging far behind in telecom infrastructure development as compared to other parts of the country due to their difficult geographic terrain. Today, out of total 396 villages in ANI, there are 204 villages which have no telecom connectivity till date.

Rajya Sabha members expressed concern over incidents of violence with people from the northeast in Delhi

New Delhi: Rajya Sabha members Tuesday expressed concern over incidents of violence with people from the northeast in Delhi, and the chair directed the government to make a statement on it. BJP leader Tarun Vijay raised the issue during zero hour, a day after a man from Manipur was thrashed to death in the national capital. "This is not the first incident. What are people in Delhi doing to the people from the northeast? They are making them feel this is not their home," Vijay said. Several other members joined him in expressing concern over the situation. Deputy Chairman P.J. Kurien said it is a very serious matter and the government should make a statement on it. "It is a very serious matter. This kind of discrimination on the basis of place of origin. It is ethnic discrimination and it should not happen in our country. The home minister should inform the house what steps are being taken," Kurien instructed. A 29-year-old Manipuri BPO employee was beaten to death Monday by five youths, sparking outrage in the northeastern community. In January, an Arunachal Pradesh student, Nido Tania, 19, died after being assaulted up with iron rods and sticks by men after an altercation with a shopkeeper in a south Delhi market.

India is in the process of revising the guidelines for adopting children to simplify the process: Maneka Gandhi

New Delhi: India is in the process of revising the guidelines for adopting children to simplify the process, Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi said Tuesday. "The guidelines are being revised to further simplify the procedure and to minimise delay in the process of adoption," Gandhi informed the Lok Sabha. She said changes being contemplated include linking all orphaned, abandoned and surrendered children of child-care institutions to the adoption system and bringing non-resident Indian adoptive parents at par with domestic ones. The government, however, has no proposal to set up state adoption resource authority under the central adoption body in any state, she said.


Actress Sonam Kapoor unveiled the trailer of her forthcoming film "Khoobsurat"

Mumbai: Actress Sonam Kapoor Monday unveiled the trailer of her forthcoming film "Khoobsurat", and said the film's producer and director have "exposed me completely in this film". A remake of Rekha and Rakesh Roshan starrer 1980s super-hit film "Khubsoorat", it has been directed by Shashanka Ghosh and produced by Sonam's sister Rhea. Pakistani heartthrob Fawad Afzal Khan will be seen as the male lead in the movie. "There was no problem on the set because Rhea, Shashanka and the writer (Indira Bisht) knew me so well that very shamelessly they have taken every part of my personality and exposed me completely in the film," Sonam told reporters at the launch. Although it is her home production, Sonam didn't have to take any extra responsibility other than acting. "I am just an actor, there's no responsibility. It's only Rhea and Shashanka's responsibility, I have only done acting and nothing else," said the 29-year-old. "When I take on a job as an actor, I only concentrate on doing that, otherwise there is a conflict. You have to just do your best with what you have got," she said and added that when she starts thinking about the responsibilities, then she "won't be able to go to work next day in the morning". "So it's just the matter of taking each day, enjoying my work and saying that I will be a selfish actor and I will do my best for the film," Sonam said. In the recent past, Sonam has been part of hits like "Raanjhanaa" and "Bhaag Milkha Bhaag". However, her last release "Bewakoofiyaan" bombed at the box office. Shashanka said his version takes the story forward. "Original was just a clash of values within the family and here we have taken it a little further but we have held on to the core idea." If Dina Pathak played a strict mother in the original, her daughter Ratna will be seen in the remake.

Bollywood actress Sasha Agha Khan turns Shooter

If you thought Sasha Agha Khan is all about acting, think again! Well the sizzling actress, who made her exciting debut in bollywood through Yashraj Films' Aurangzeb, becomes shooter in her recent event. With guns and glory being an integral part of an upcoming film Desi Kattey, the cast of the movie took out time to attend a shooting competition at Swantantryaveer Savarkar Rifle Club, Dadar. Sasha Agha Khan and Arjun Kapoor were seen in full masti mood. Ajun Kapoor was seen putting a gun on Sasha's head and almost ready to shoot her. Suniel Shetty and director Anand Kumar also graced the event with their presence. Sasha Agha said, “It was great moment with star cast of my upcoming movie “Desi Kattey”. It’s an honour to have Suniel Shetty sir with us. He is supportive and always makes us feel comfortable.” 'Desi Kattey' is set to hit the theatres on August 28. 'Desi Kattey' is an action-drama film which is set in Kanpur and revolves around two children who work in a pistol factory and turn out to be sharp shooters.

Actor Rajan Verma turns an AD Guru with RADO Watches

“What I really want to do is direct.” Once upon a time, that was a line used to mock the unbridled chutzpah of actors who wanted to helm films of their own, but now, no one’s really laughing at the notion that the pretty people in front of the camera might also possess the talent to handle the responsibilities behind the camera as well. After years of on-screen success, many talented actors decide to take their chances on the other side of the camera. Actors’ graduating to the level of Directors is nothing new in industry. The latest to join the trend is Zindagi 50-50 fame Actor Rajan Verma with his Advertising directorial venture with RADO Switzerland Watches. Rajan Verma who had tried his hand acting is turning to direction — and with good reason. Rado is a Swiss luxury manufacturer of watches, with headquarters in Lengnau, Switzerland. Bollywood superstar Hrithik Roshan ia an Rado brand ambassador. Rajan Verma said, “Being creative is my passion and I am doing it right now. An advertising director's main responsibility is to supervise advertising campaigns for advertising agencies and I really enjoying it. Working behind the camera is really a tough job. I am grateful to associate with an international company Rado. It’s wonderful to work with them. ”


Bollywood heros Shah Rukh Khan and Hrithik Roshan have paid tribute to fireman Nitin Yewalekar

Mumbai: Bollywood heros Shah Rukh Khan and Hrithik Roshan have paid tribute to fireman Nitin Yewalekar, who lost his life when the top two floors of a 22-storeyed building here went up in flames. The deceased fireman was trapped along with 10 other colleagues in the thick smoke billowing on the top of the Lotus Business park building in suburban Andheri West Friday and succumbed. The building also houses Hrithik's office. Shah Rukh and Hrithik took to micro-blogging site Twitter to share their condolences and salute the brave men who came to everyone's rescue. SRK posted: "Non nobis solum nati sumus. (Not for ourselves alone are we born.) Cicero. Fireman Nitin Yewalekar, u proved that…You r a real Hero. R.I.P." Hrithik tweeted: "Respect for the brave firemen who risked their lives today to extinguish d flames. True courage."

Director Rohit Shetty is known to dig out hidden gems from every place where he shoots

Mumbai: Director Rohit Shetty is known to dig out hidden gems from every place where he shoots. As the story of his upcoming movie "Singham Returns" revolves around Mumbai city, he has shot at some of the iconic sites there. Shetty has canned shots at Gateway of India and the Worli fort, as well as in some of the unexplored remote places to bring out the real character of the city. "Rohit sir is very particular about the locations in his films and for Singham Returns since the story revolves in Mumbai he wanted to shoot at places which show the real Mumbai," a source said. It will be interesting to see Mumbai from Shetty's viewpoint on the big screen. "Singham Returns", which releases Aug 15, is co-produced by Ajay Devgn Films, Rohit Shetty Productions and Reliance Entertainment.

International pop star Shakira is officially the most popular person on online social networking platform Facebook

New Delhi: International pop star Shakira is officially the most popular person on online social networking platform Facebook, with over a 100 million 'likes' for any public figure. Shakira’s global appeal, her posts, interactions with fans and her overall personality, have managed to win her the 100 million-plus likes. To celebrate this milestone, she posted a video on her page thanking her fans. "I am honoured and humbled about reaching this milestone, because it's one that's purely about connecting with my fans from all parts of the globe," Shakira said in a statement issued on behalf of Facebook. She believes social media and specifically Facebook has helped herself and other artists bridge the gap between the stage and the audience. "We've been able to create a conversation, where both artists and fans can share with one another their thoughts, achievements, the most important moments of their lives in photographs and videos, and have a real, ongoing dialogue" said the 37-year-old crooner. She often takes to the social networking site to thank her fans and communicate with them. source:agency

Aditya Roy Kapur's presence on the Shree Raj Mahal Jewellers India Couture Week (ICW) ramp met with a loud cheer

New Delhi: Aditya Roy Kapur's presence on the Shree Raj Mahal Jewellers India Couture Week (ICW) ramp was met with a loud cheer. Flaunting a heavily embroidered gold sherwani, the actor said walking for Bollywood's favourite designer Manish Malhotra almost feels like "you've arrived".
"I am not much a stalwart...but it's been an honour to walk for him (Malhotra). It makes you feel you've arrived somewhere," Aditya told reporters here post the show Saturday night.

Malhotra, who has a huge friend circle in tinsel town and tops their list of favourite designers, responded by saying: "You're too sweet."
The actor is busy promoting his forthcoming film "Daawat-e-Ishq" and Malhotra gave his project enough footage while talking to the media. "Aditya has 'Daawat-e-Ishq' coming up and he is looking fabulous in it," said the designer, while also praising the actor's kurta style, seen in the movie's title song.

Since the ensemble that Aditya flaunted was meant for a groom, the "Aashiqui 2" star could not evade questions about when he's going to tie the knot. Is wedding on the cards? "In life, yes, but not right now," he quipped.

I am a very clumsy human being: Alia Bhatt

New Delhi: Bollywood's young star Alia Bhatt put up a confident front while walking a three-ramp set-up in a lehenga as heavy as over 20 kg, for ace designer Manish Malhotra's show at the Shree Raj Mahal Jewellers India Couture Week. She said she was nervous as she's usually clumsy. "I get very nervous. I am not the best walker. I am a very clumsy human being, I fall (while) standing, so walking on the ramp wearing (an outfit of) almost 25 kg and high heels, looking good, posing and smiling while people are clapping...I think it's nerve wrecking, but I think it's the best two minutes," Alia told reporters here post the show. With minimalist make-up, a roughly done-up hairdo and no jewellery, Alia carried the red bridal wear couture outfit, adorned by vintage gold embroidery, with aplomb Saturday night. Adding more Bollywood flavour on the ramp was "Aashiqui 2" actor Aditya Roy Kapur, while off the stage and in the audience were names like Urmila Matondkar and Huma Qureshi. Alia is fresh out of tasting success with her latest Hindi film "Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania", in which her character is hell-bent on getting a lehenga worn by Kareena Kapoor in a film. Here, she was happy that in real life, she was getting a chance to walk for Malhotra, who is one of Bollywood's favourite designers and has been responsible to lend a makeover to many of Hindi cinema's heroines. "I think when you're walking in a Manish Malhotra outfit, it's a big day. It's a special day. I was telling someone that I am very happy that my film has done well, but I'm happier to be walking for Manish. It's a great achievement," Alia said. She also recalled a time when she was in the audience for a Manish Malhotra show. "I was here two years back and Katrina (Kaif) was walking the ramp. I was sitting in the audience with Karan (Johar) and was thinking, 'How do people walk?' "I remember Katrina was sitting and her outfit looked heavy. I had no idea then how heavy it was but when you walk yourself, you realise how heavy it is. But it's beautiful, I loved it," she added. source:agency

Olympic bronze medallist Vijender Singh will lead the Indian boxing contingent at the Commonwealth Games to be held in Glasgow

New Delhi: Olympic bronze medallist Vijender Singh will lead the Indian boxing contingent at the Commonwealth Games to be held in Glasgow from July 23 to Aug 3. Eight men and three women have been selected in various weight categories by the Adhoc Committee Boxing. The contingent has reached the Scottish capital. Men: L. Devendro Singh (49kg), Shiva Thapa (56kg), Manoj Kumar (64kg), Mandeep Jangra (69kg), Vijender Singh (75kg), Sumit Sangwan (81kg), Amreetpreet Singh (91kg), Parveen Kumar (+91kg), G.S. Sandhu (chief national coach), B.I. Fernandez (foreign coach), Jaydev Bisht (coach), C.A. Kuttappa (coach), Gagan (team doctor), Gaurav Ahluwalia (team physio) Women: Pinki Jangra (51kg), L. Sarita Devi (60kg), Pooja Rani (75kg), Hemlata (coach), Romen Romero Darke (foreign coach)

A non-commissioned officer of the Indian Air Force committed suicide by shooting himself

Gurgaon: A non-commissioned officer of the Indian Air Force here Saturday committed suicide by shooting himself with his service weapon, police said. Anoop Kumar, 34, was posted at the Indian Air Force campus here at old Delhi road. He shot himself twice on his chin. Officerss on duty rushed to the spot after hearing the gunshots. "He died on the spot. The post-mortem examination will be conducted later," a senior police officer said. The deceased hailed from Haryana's Bhiwani district. "No suicide note was found. The cause of taking this extreme step is yet to be ascertained," he said. source:agency

Nasscom has offered to build the first-ever incubation centre for young and aspiring IT entrepreneurs in Kolkata: Mamata Banerjee

Kolkata: Welcoming Nasscom's proposal for building the first incubation centre for young and aspiring IT entrepreneurs here, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Saturday claimed the state's IT, engineering and manufacturing sectors saw very positive and encouraging developments over the past week. "Nasscom has offered to build the first-ever incubation centre for young and aspiring IT entrepreneurs in Kolkata. We have heartily welcomed the proposal and have already offered 10,000 sq.ft. space for setting up of the centre immediately with provision for another 10,000 sq.ft. for future requirement," the chief minister said in a post on her Facebook page. She said Nasscom has also offered to partner the state to share globally cutting edge thinking with students of the Indian Institute of Information Technology coming up at Kalyani in Nadia district and also mentor students towards entrepreneurship and placement. Banerjee also pointed out that 16 of the 18 exporters in engineering and manufacturing sectors from the eastern region feted by the country's apex body for export organizations, FIEO (Federation of Indian Export Organisations) belong to the state. She said the 16 exporters have exported goods and services worth over Rs.11,000 crore. "Bengal's exports were around Rs.63,000 crore in 2013-14, of which nearly Rs.32,000 crore is from the engineering and manufacturing sectors. FIEO has announced doubling of the target of exports from $10.5 billion now to $20 billion from Bengal over the coming 3-4 years." Banerjee hoped that the developments would create more jobs and more opportunities for the state's youth and entrepreneurs.


Arun Jaitley recommended that Rs.2,000 crore would be credited in National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) for the benefit of agro-processing units

New Delhi :The additional funding is for schemes in the food processing, wind energy and health sectors.
Replying to the debate on the national budget in the Lok Sabha, Jaitley recommended that Rs.2,000 crore would be credited in National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) for the benefit of agro-processing units.

"In order to make affordable credit available to agro-processing units being designated as food parks, I decided to set up a special fund of Rs.2,000 crore in NABARD," he said.
To incentivise the wind energy sector, the minister proposed to restore the accelerated depreciation scheme in the sector.

"In the budget, we have given incentives for wind energy and other renewable forces of energy. I have received more requests for concessions...I will restore the accelerated depreciation and necessary amendments will be made in the Finance Bill."
The finance minister also referred to the growing problem of drug addiction in the states bordering Pakistan, and proposed to make an initial contribution of Rs.50 crore to set up de-addiction centres, especially in Punjab, he added.

Laurel in Maryland becomes 13th US city to declare Oct 25 as “Rajan Zed Day”

City of Laurel in Maryland has become the 13th city in USA to declare October 25 as “Rajan Zed Day” after distinguished religious statesman Rajan Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism.

Cities of Hartford (Connecticut), Taylorsville (Utah), Madera (California), Sparks (Nevada), Chowchilla (California), Sanger (California), Exeter (California), Tulare (California), Santee (California), Dos Palos (California), Reedley (California) and Frederick (Maryland) have already declared October 25 as “Rajan Zed Day”. City of Reno (Nevada) has also proclaimed a day in Zed’s recognition twice in the past.

Signed by Laurel Mayor Craig A. Moe, Proclamation of the City of Laurel mentions: “Rajan Zed’s initiatives to bring various religious communities together throughout the world so that they can live in peace and mutual trust and enrich themselves through dialogue”.

It further includes: “Rajan Zed’s work to uplift about 15-million Roma (Gypsies) people of Europe who live in apartheid conditions by frequently voicing their maltreatment, issues and concerns and urging other religious leaders to do so”.

“Rajan Zed’s leadership responsibility leads him in his attempts to help the helpless”, Proclamation adds.

Zed opened the Laurel City Council, incorporated in 1870, with its first historic Hindu prayer on June 23; reciting from Rig-Veda, the oldest scripture of the world still in common use, besides lines from Upanishads and Bhagavad-Gita (Song of the Lord), both ancient Hindu scriptures.

October 25 is Rajan Zed’s birthday.

Zed is a global Hindu and interfaith leader, who besides taking up the cause of religion worldwide, has also raised huge voice against the apartheid faced by about 15-million Roma (Gypsies) in Europe. He is bestowed with World Interfaith Leader Award.

Frederick Smalls and Kristie Mills are Council President and City Administrator respectively of Laurel; whose tagline is "Government to the People". Prominent people associated with Laurel include President Dwight D. Eisenhower, guitarist Marty Friedman, boxer Andrew Maynard, rap artist Biz Markie, football player Visanthe Shiancoe and musician Kathleen Hanna.

Only 22% Americans know a Hindu

Only 22 percent Americans know someone who is Hindu, according to a Pew Research Center survey published on July 17. This number is lowest than any other religion/denomination surveyed. Catholics rank highest with 87 percent, followed by evangelical Christians, Jews, Atheists, Mormons, Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus. Americans express warmest and more positive feelings towards Jews (average rating 63); followed by Catholics, evangelical Christians, Buddhists, Hindus, etc., the survey adds. Reacting to this survey findings, distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, urged American Hindus to make outreach efforts towards non-Hindu communities, do charity, invite others to visit Hindu temples/ashrams, offer help to neighbors, be good role models, act for the benefit of all, volunteer, try to stay pure and exhibit warmth and love towards fellow Americans. Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, pointed out that ancient Hindu scripture Bhagavad-Gita (Song of the Lord) urged us to act selflessly without any thought of personal profit. Rajan Zed suggested to each American Hindu to take a vow of undertaking at least one charitable project during this year for less fortunate members of the community. Quoting scriptures, Zed stressed that charity was a duty, which should be undertaken with sympathy and modesty. Headquartered in Washington DC, “Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world”. Alan Murray is President. Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion adherents and moksh (liberation) is its ultimate goal. There are about three million Hindus in USA.

New GRE® rock song by Mumbai band released

Mumbai—The GRE® Program kicked off its Radio Road Show tour throughout India with a new GRE® song launch, performed by a local Mumbai band.  The song will debut via a live performance at The Podar College in Mumbai, India. The song, which has been composed by the Mumbai-based band Trip Operon, encapsulates the attributes of the GRE® revised General Test and the opportunities it provides. The peppy song has been presented to students to better form a connection and inspire them for the possibilities for the future.

The test-taker friendly GRE revised General Test is the only test that is accepted for admission to graduate and business schools worldwide, giving test takers more opportunities for success. And with the ScoreSelect® option, available only for GRE tests, individuals can take the test once or more than once, and decide on test day – or anytime up to 5 years after test day – which of their sets of scores to send to schools.  It is all part of the GRE® Power of Confidence.

Speaking on the occasion, Mrs. Kavitha Jajoo, Vice Principal of Podar College commented, “This is an exciting initiative by the GRE team to reach out to students. As many of our students harbor visions of going overseas for their education, it is refreshing to see this kind of enthusiasm from the GRE team to help students realize these dreams and aspirations.”

Students listening to the foot-tapping music were enthusiastic about the catchy tune and young style.  The song, performed by Mumbai-local band, Trip Operon, will be shared with prospective GRE test takers worldwide—and can be experienced on the official GRE revised General Test page on Facebook®.

About ETS

At ETS, we advance quality and equity in education for people worldwide by creating assessments based on rigorous research. ETS serves individuals, educational institutions and government agencies by providing customized solutions for teacher certification, English language learning, and elementary, secondary and post-secondary education, as well as conducting education research, analysis and policy studies. Founded as a nonprofit in 1947, ETS develops, administers and scores more than 50 million tests annually — including the TOEFL® and TOEIC® tests, the GRE® tests and The Praxis Series® assessments — in more than 180 countries, at over 9,000 locations worldwide.


The shooting of Amitabh Bachchan-starrer "Shamitabh" fondly called Balki, will end soon

Mumbai: The shooting of Amitabh Bachchan-starrer "Shamitabh", directed by R. Balakrishnan, fondly called Balki, will end soon, says the megastar.
"It bears late...around 3 am and there is work tomorrow for Balki .. it reaches a moment of ending soon...," the 71-year-old posted on his blog

The movie, also starring Dhanush, marks the Bollywood debut of southern superstar actor Kamal Haasan's daughter Akshara. Big B and Balki had also worked together in films like "Cheeni Kum" and "Paa" in the past.

The megastar is also busy wrapping up his pending projects. " … there is also the preparation for the fresh season of KBC and the new films of Shoojit Sircar and Vidhu Vinod Chopra as also many others on a pending list," he added.

Superstar Salman Khan is said to have shared a "rare" moment with his onscreen love interest in the forthcoming Bollywood entertainer "Kick"

Mumbai: Superstar Salman Khan, who usually shies away from intimate scenes and from locking lips in his films, is said to have shared a "rare" moment with his onscreen love interest in the forthcoming Bollywood entertainer "Kick".
In the Sajid Nadiadwala directorial, Salman stars with Jacqueline Fernandez. A source close to the team said: "Salman shares an intimate moment in the film with his love interest. It is very rare that you see Salman do this on screen."

It is however, not clear, whether "Kick" has a kiss or not.
source: agency

Filmmaker Rohit Shetty is not particularly fond of night shoots, but for the shooting of "Singham Returns" he had to lose sleep over it

Mumbai: Filmmaker Rohit Shetty is not particularly fond of night shoots, but for the shooting of "Singham Returns" he had to lose sleep over it.
The film's script demanded that the cast and crew be active at night and if a source is to be believed, "Singham Returns" is one project that Shetty shot the maximum night schedules for. As the film is about black money and illegal siphoning off of funds, it needed to be symbolised by being shot in the dark of the night.

"Singham Returns" will see Ajay Devgn as Bajirao Singham, a role he first essayed in "Singham". Produced by Reliance Entertainment, the film also stars Kareena Kapoor.

Mithali Raj will skipper the Indian women's cricket team which will tour England in August

Mumbai: Mithali Raj will skipper the Indian women's cricket team which will tour England in August to play a four-day Test match and three One-Day Internationals (ODI).
Wicketkeeper Karuna Jain has been named the vice-captain of the 15-member squad by Board of Control for Cricket in India's (BCCI) All-India Senior Women's Selection Committee. The series will start with a two-day warm-up game Aug 7-8 at the Loughborough, Haslegrave, which will be followed by the Test Aug 13-16 at Sir Paul Getty's Ground, Wormsley. A 50-over practice match will be played Aug 19 at Harrogate CC followed by the first two ODIs at the North Marine Road Ground in Scarborough Aug 21 and 23. The final ODI will be played at Lord's Aug 25.

The squad: Mithali Raj (Captain), Karuna Jain (vice-captain), Smriti Mandhana, M.D. Thirushkamini, Punam Raut, Harmanpreet Kaur, Jhulan Goswami, Niranjana N., Shubhlakshmi Sharma, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Ekta Bisht, Poonam Yadav, Swagathika Rath, Vanitha V.R., Sushma Verma. Support Staff: Sudha Shah (Coach), Cavatina Patel (Manager), Neha Karnik (Physio), Kavita Pandya (Trainer), Aarti Nalge (Video Analyst), Devieka Sathe (Assistant Coach).

Global software major IBM has entered into a six-year pact with leading micro-financier Janalakshmi Financial Services (JFS)

Bangalore: Global software major IBM has entered into a six-year pact with leading micro-financier Janalakshmi Financial Services (JFS) to spur growth and expand its operations across the country.
"We will provide JFS a technology platform with mobile and analytics-based solutions to harness customer information and automate its processes," IBM's Indian subsidiary said in a statement here Wednesday. The city-based JFS provides finances to urban under-banked people, including micro and nano enterprises, which lack access to formal banking and financial services. "As we plan to increase our footprint to 1,400 branches and 20 million accounts by 2020 from 154 branches and three million accounts currently, we were looking for a partner to provide a scalable and viable business solution," JFS chairman Ramesh Ramanathan said.

IBM will augment JFS payment platform to offer new products for customers, use analytics for quick credit decisions and help improve its distribution and collection models. "Our cloud solutions will help JFS to support its multiple deployment solutions and ensure fully integrated service management," IBM India managing director Vanitha Narayanan said. JFS will also use IBM's "biometric dedupe" solution to enhance the speed of de-duplication of fingerprints while on-boarding new customers.

"IBM's innovative commercial model will provide a direct connection between business performance and IT costs, while enabling us to scale operations and build an agile technology environment," Ramanathan said. The micro-financier will use IBM's MobileFirst solution to support its sales force for door-to-door marketing and customer services. "We will also use IBM's OpenPages software to manage risk and compliance and IBM's FlieNet content manager to manage enterprise content with greater speed, efficiency and accuracy," Ramanathan noted.

India will forge stronger trade and investment ties with South America: Narendra Modi

New Delhi: India will forge stronger trade and investment ties with South America and work more closely than ever before with countries of the region at both bilateral and multilateral level, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said.
Saying that "distance is not a barrier to opportunities", the prime minister told a group of South American leaders in Brasilia Wednesday that two-way trade has shown strong growth in recent years and there is a growing presence of Indian investors in South America. "It is, however, still well below potential. From hydrocarbons to pharma, textiles to leather, engineering goods to automobiles; the range of opportunities is enormous," an official statement issued here quoted Modi as saying. Modi is perhaps the first Indian prime minister to interact with so many South American leaders at one place together.

The meeting was arranged by president Dilma Rousseff of Brazil in which leaders of Argentina, Venezuela, Ecuador, Colombia, Peru, Uruguay and Paraguay participated. Modi said the Preferential Trade Agreement between India and the MERCOSUR trade block, and Chile, must be utilised more effectively and asked the Latin American leaders to encourage their business leaders to take part in an upcoming investment conclave in India. "I firmly believe, the possibilities of cooperation are limited not by distance but only by our imagination and efforts...We must share with each other, our experiences, best practices and innovative solutions. India stands committed to the same." India has deputed experts to South American countries in the fields of agriculture, horticulture, disaster management, communications, law and renewable energy.

To share its expertise in Information Technology, India, Modi said, will set up centres of excellence in IT in South American countries. Also, India will expand cooperation in areas such as tele-medicine, tele-education, e-Governance, weather forecasting, resource mapping and disaster management. India and Brazil inked three bilateral agreements in the field of environment, consular and mobility issues as well as setting up a Brazilian earth station that will receive data from Indian satellites.

South America is emerging as a contributor to India's energy and food security. The countries of region have been supplying over two billion dollars worth of minerals every year to India. Brazil, Venezuela, Ecuador and Colombia have been supplying crude oil. India has been importing more than a billion dollars worth of soy and sunflower oil from Brazil and Argentina annually. "In a globalised and inter-connected world, our destinies are inter-linked. We are all bound, by shared aspirations and common challenges. We all have a stake in each other's success," said the prime minister.

He evoked authors and poets, like Octavio Paz, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Pablo Neruda and Rabindranath Tagore to strike a chord with the leaders. South America is also home to a large number of Indians, many of whom came centuries ago. Generations later, they remain a strong bridge of friendship, between our nations. "I look forward, to a much more intensive level of engagement between India and South America in the coming years across all domains of cooperation," said Modi.

Maharashtra Industry Minister Narayan Rane said he plans to quit the government this week

Mumbai: For the second time in two months, Maharashtra Industry Minister Narayan Rane said he plans to quit the government this week.
"I shall resign as cabinet minister Monday. However, I shall continue to remain in the Congress as an ordinary worker," Rane told media persons here Thursday. Declining to spell out the reasons behind his sudden move, the senior Congress leader said he would embark on a tour of the Konkan region next week and meet all his supporters before chalking out his future plans.

There is intense speculation in political circles that he may join the Bharatiya Janata Party, but Rane and top BJP-Shiv Sena leaders have ruled out the possibility - at least for now.
State Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant said the party leadership will speak to Rane and attempt to resolve his grievances. On May 16, Rane quit as minister after his son Nilesh Rane, the sitting MP from Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg constituency, lost to Shiv Sena's Vinayak Raut in the Lok Sabha polls 2014, following a revolt by a section of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) workers there. The party, reeling under a resounding defeat in the parliamentary elections, rejected the resignation and asked him to continue in his post.

Chief minister at the fag end of the Shiv Sena-BJP regime in 1999, Rane had quit the Shiv Sena in 2005. After joining the Congress, Rane has never played down his abilities or ambitions to become the state chief minister again and made several attempts in the past to bag the coveted post.

Magneti Marelli Motorsport launches the ‘LapTime Club’, the online innovation laboratory for the generation of hi-tech ideas

Proposing new ideas and technological solutions, contributing to the evolution of existing technologies or suggesting different and alternative uses for these, through the aggregation function of the social network: Magneti Marelli Motorsport, the Magneti Marelli division dedicated to competitions, is launching an online collaborative platform for the generation of ideas called Magneti Marelli LapTime Club (, animated demo in the homepage).

LapTime Club aims to build a high-profile ‘social innovation community’, specifically for motorsport engineers and experts, but also for technology and electronics enthusiasts and for any discipline able to contribute innovation-related technical added value and creativity. This includes university students (e.g. studying engineering) or individuals from other fields that consider themselves technically competent to take on complex challenges and to contribute to achieving technological advanced solutions.

The objective of LapTime Club is to exploit the social environment and the passion for motorsport to stimulate creativity and innovation, which promotes the development of ideas, products and services that are effective for the world of racing, in a non self-referential manner, and to explore potential influences from other highly-specialised engineering sectors.

Users, potentially even with different technical backgrounds, are therefore able to use and develop their skills in a fruitful exchange of ideas and experience, in a new logic of ‘open innovation’, i.e. participatory and collaborative innovation.

The central theme of departure that triggered the idea of an open exchange on the Web was the evolution of Magneti Marelli’s ‘Wintax’ technology, the telemetry analysis tool used in racing - capable of displaying the results of over 3,000 vehicle performance parameters - around which a number of open discussions and ‘challenges’ have already been launched in the community, thus encouraging collaboration, dialogue and ideas.

It was in fact Wintax that was the springboard for the ‘LapTime Club’ project which began from an initial phase of ‘listening’ on the Web. Following this, sixteen influencers were identified, who were then involved in a workshop that elaborated the idea of the opening of a high-profile community specifically dedicated to product open innovation.

The pilot phase has just been completed and involved an international sample of 126 selected users, of which 20% are Magneti Marelli staff and 80% are technical experts from the automotive and racing world. The interaction has generated and developed 68 ideas around 7 challenges, with over 550 comments and ratings of the contributions made.

In order to access the ‘LapTime Club’ laboratory, registration is required at the website Once registered, it is possible to log on to the social environment and to see the challenges posed as well as to collaborate, proposing ideas, commenting and voting on the ideas of the other members of the community. In the last few challenges proposed, the users discussed themes such as Internet of Things (IoT), mobile racing data analytics, WinTAX new features, engine efficiency & low-carbon systems.

The ideas proposed are evaluated through a system of rating and reward, and a Magneti Marelli jury will select the best ones, in addition to the users that are most active in relation to innovation.

A short animated illustration of the operation of the LapTime Club community can be viewed at the following address:

Magneti Marelli designs and produces advanced systems and components for the automotive industry. With its 85 production units, 12 R&D centres and 26 application centres in 19 countries, about 38,000 employees and a turnover of 6 billion Euros in 2013, the group supplies all leading carmakers in Europe, North and South America and the Far East. Its business areas include: Electronic Systems, Lighting; Powertrain, Suspension Systems and Shock Absorbers, Exhaust Systems, Aftermarket Parts & Services, Plastic Components and Modules, Motorsport. Magneti Marelli is part of Fiat Spa.

DEN Launches Delhi Dynamos FC – Delhi Team of Indian Super League

In this season of football frenzy, the national capital is seeing the birth
of its very own football movement. DEN Soccer Pvt. Ltd. (a wholly owned
subsidiary of DEN Networks Ltd.) proudly announces the launch of the Delhi
Dynamos FC, the Delhi franchise of the Indian Super League (ISL).

The name Delhi Dynamos represents the very essence of what is intrinsic to
all Dilliwallahs & the beautiful game of football – a team full of energy,
moving with power & constantly adapting to the changing environment around
it. The anthem of the team captures the diversity & the raw energy of Delhi
in a fun, catchy tune, aiming to literally be the song on every
Dilliwallah’s lips.

DEN also announces its alliance with Feyenoord Rotterdam – a leading
football club & academy from the Netherlands. Feyenoord’s football academy
has been voted as the best academy in the Netherlands for 5 successive
years. According to the CIES Football Observatory, Feyenoord is the World
No. 1 in Player Development for this year’s FIFA World Cup. Including Robin
Van Persie, the FIFA World Cup 2014 had 12 Feyenoord Rotterdam-trained
players, the highest from any club globally[1] <#14743b130516d093__ftn1>.
As a part of the alliance with DEN, Feyenoord will share its immense
knowledge of the sport and assist the Delhi Dynamos in overall development
of its team in addition to providing world class players and technical

DEN aims to create a robust football ecosystem in Delhi and Northern Indian
along with giving them a team they can support with pride. The alliance
with Feyenoord Rotterdam marks the first step in Delhi Dynamos’ mission of
building football into a leading sport across Delhi and Northern India. The
team aims to get the support all football fans in North India and unite
them behind one name, Delhi Dynamos.

The team name, the team philosophy, anthem and the Delhi Dynamos’ alliance
with Feyenoord Rotterdam were unveiled at an event held at the Jawaharlal
Nehru Stadium, the home stadium of the Dynamos. The stadium is getting a
brand new world-class football pitch in preparation for hosting the Delhi
home matches of the ISL.

*Sameer Manchanda*

*Passionate Football Fan, Chairman & Managing Director of DEN Networks;

* “Football is the world’s biggest sport and is now set to become India’s
leading sport. *

*DEN is excited to be a part of India’s football movement. We hope the
Delhi Dynamos will inject pride and passion to all Delhiites and football
fans of the region. With Feyenoord Rotterdam, we look forward to building a
team of world-class players who can inspire with their skills and represent
our city’s hopes and aspirations. Our dream is to take India to the global
football stage and ultimately to the FIFA World Cup”*

*Gido Vader*

*Head of International Relations, Feyenoord Rotterdam; said:*

 *“Feyenoord Rotterdam is thrilled to be associated with the Delhi Dynamos.

*The Indian football opportunity is huge, and we are looking forward to
assisting DEN in creating a fantastic team and ecosystem through the Indian
Super League.”*

*DEN Networks – An Entertainment Powerhouse*

DEN Networks is India's second  largest cable TV distribution company
serving 13 million homes in over 200 cities. The company has been a
frontrunner in the digitisation of Indian cable television and has
approximately 6 million digital subscribers.

DEN’s geographic footprint spans 13 key states across India including
Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Haryana,
Kerala, West Bengal, Jharkhand and Bihar. The company has a significant
presence in the strategic & economically important Hindi Speaking Markets
(HSM) belt.

DEN Digital - DEN’s digital cable services brand is one of the market
leaders in India’s digital television space. DEN Digital offers a wide
choice of channels and services spanning all major genres and languages
along with cutting edge value added services (VAS).

The company has soft launched its super-fast broadband internet services on
DOCSIS 3.0 technology in parts if Delhi and is now in the process of
scaling up rapidly in other parts of Delhi and selective cities of UP.

DEN Soccer Private Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of DEN Networks
Limited and is the proud owner of the Indian Super League’s Delhi Team –
Delhi Dynamos FC. With the introduction of Delhi Dynamos FC, DEN aims to
become the default destination for entertainment, information and
interactivity for the Indian family

*About Feyenoord Rotterdam*

Feyenoord Rotterdam is one of the two biggest football clubs in the
Netherlands, a football crazy country that has been producing top players
and teams for a long time. The club was founded in 1908. In just over a
hundred years the band of brothers transformed into an internationally
known and respected institute, playing in one of the most authentic and
loved stadiums of Europe.

In 1970 Feyenoord became the first Dutch to lift a major European trophy,
when it conquered the European Cup (which is known as the Champions League
nowadays). Feyenoord was also the first Dutch club to win the
Intercontinental Cup (1970) as well as the UEFA Cup (1974, nowadays known
as the Europa League). In the Netherlands Feyenoord was the first club to
win a ‘double’: in 1965 the Rotterdam outfit conquered both the league and
the Dutch FA Cup. In 2002 Feyenoord was the last Dutch club to win a
European trophy, when it bagged its second UEFA Cup. Nationally, Feyenoord
has amassed a total of 14 league titles as well as 11 FA Cups.

In the last decade or so the number of players produced by the Feyenoord
Academy ready for first team football has significantly risen to the point
where home grown players are now the foundation of not only the first team
of Feyenoord but also of the Dutch national team. No less than nine players
of the Dutch World Cupi squad in Brazil were raised at the Feyenoord

The secret of this success is the unique Feyenoord Academy vision,
philosophy and methodology with its focus on individual development. Even
with limited resources the Feyenoord Academy manages to bridge the gap
between youth football and the highest level. The Royal Netherlands
Football Association (KNVB) has awarded Feyenoord for having the best youth
system in the Netherlands for an unprecedented five years in a row.
Feyenoord has produced more players than any other club for the 2014 World
Cup in Brazil.

Rockstand to add 5000 magazine titles by October 2014

New Delhi: Rockstand, the leading E-Books and E-Magazines mobile application available across Android, IOS & Windows platforms today announced the addition of leading auto and business magazines to its portfolio. It has added The Week, Auto India, Business India among other e-magazines to its store. The addition is in line with the ongoing initiative of Rockstand to build the largest bank of e-reading material to its customers. Rockstand has already tied with over 600 publishers and has added 700 e-magazines to its kitty in a short span of six months, making it the second largest e-magazine application in the country.

Rockstand aims to add 5000 e-magazines by October 2014 which will ensure its leadership in this space.

Commenting on the addition Mr Praveen Rajpal, CEO, Rockstand said, “Keeping our esteemed readers in mind, we aim to add 5000 e-magazines by October 2014 so that our users can access the largest collection of magazines on Rockstand. We have already tripled the size of our team and developed international assets to realize our goals. Our endeavour at Rockstand is to constantly enhance our readers experience and this will be a step ahead to further delight our users with the largest range of e-magazines, available literally at their fingertips.”

One of the grey areas is storage space on devices which is usually overwhelmed with applications and other data.  An innovative initiative from Rockstand is provision of cloud equivalent space to readers to store their books. This is the first time such a facility is made available to the readers to enjoy hassle free reading without worrying about the space constraint on their hand sets.

Speaking on this initiative, Mr Rajpal added, “Our first major breakthrough was developing a state of the art in-house content conversion team to check piracy and offer prompt delivery. After several tweaks and additions to app functions, we have created 1 Terabyte of cloud equivalent space for our users, ie. readers can access any Rockstand content ever purchased by visiting their purchase history, this lets users free space from their device. The experience is further enhanced as it also has “book mark feature”. The reader can access the book at the very page where he left reading the last time.”

Mr Rishi Mohan Jha, Head, Rockstand said, “We are very aggressively working on increasing our e-magazine base and soon we will have all the e-magazines available across the country on our application. Our academic content and regional magazines content cumulatively make almost 50% of our business. With emphasis on device capacity Rockstand developed PDF compression tools for e-magazines and hosts eBooks in latest ePub format to enhance user experience.  “With data being a major asset our focus is to engage users by eating less into their data packs. Our compression technology saves up to 80% of data usage and there is no stress to the users about storage on the device.”

Rockstand currently has a wide category of e-magazines ranging from Education, Competitive exams, Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel & Leisure, Business & Current Affairs, Sports, Indian & Foreign Languages Magazines, Children & Puzzle, , Entertainment, Home & Living to name a few.

About Rockstand

Rockstand, is a knowledge sharing initiative that offers a free of cost EBooks/E-Magazines reading mobile application on Android, IOS & Windows platforms. Intuitive features such as Day/Night mode, Auto-Bookmarking, Reading in offline mode, Annotations, Online/Offline Dictionary, DRM, PDF, Zoom among many other make a user’s experience on Rockstand impressionable. After having touched over 4, 50,000 devices this knowledge sharing platform is among the leading smart phone APPs in India. With its intuitive features and user friendly interface this innovative application is set to revolutionize the way expert driven content is consumed on the virtual space.

Rockstand has already tied up with leading authors and publishers across the globe taking the content repertoire to over 600 publishers with over 1,25,000 titles. This app has a vast content repository spread across genres such as Romance, Knowledge, Fiction, Non-Fiction, Health, Kids, Travel, Cooking, Academic including content in Regional and Foreign languages, Rockstand also has a bouquet of readers favorite magazines such as GQ, Femina, Vogue, Digit, PC World, Indian Today, Outlook, CRN, Business World to name a few.

Rockstand also lets user store their books on cloud equivalent space to read in offline mode, this feature has been specially added keeping in mind the availability of low space in Indian manufactured smartphones. Apart from the conventional payments modes, Rockstand is a unique app with an OPERATOR BILLING FACILITY that empowers a user to pay for an E-book/E-magazine with his/her mobile talk time. Rockstand’s dynamic repository has e-books from world renowned authors including content in regional languages and is constantly updated ‘as-per-availability’

Rockstand’s social channels on Facebook (/MyFirstBookAtRockstand ) & Twitter ( @Rockstand_India ) give real time updates on newly added content and exciting offers to fans. For more information, visit


Bollywood actress Sonakshi Sinha announced her association with World Kabaddi League (WKL)

Mumbai: Bollywood actress Sonakshi Sinha Wednesday announced her association with World Kabaddi League (WKL), for which she has bought the United Singhs team along with Britain's Hayre Group.
She is the third celebrity to associate with the League after superstar Akshay Kumar and rapper Yo Yo Honey Singh. This is the first time Sonakshi has associated herself with a sport of this kind. "I am really excited to be part of World Kabaddi League. This is my first such endeavour. Kabaddi is a fast-paced sport and I'm looking forward to some adrenaline rush moments during the League,” Sonakshi said in a statement.

She is likely to travel along with her team as much as possible for WKL, which will start in London Aug 9. Sonakshi is already making changes in her shooting dates so that her commitment to the sporting event is intact. Talwinder Singh of Hayre Group said: "It gives me immense pleasure to have an A-list actor like Sonakshi to be a co-team owner. Her movies are eagerly watched internationally and am sure she can make Kabaddi look cool as a sport to play and follow."
The organisers of the event are "very excited with the support World Kabaddi League is getting from various celebrated personalities". "Sonakshi is truly a gem in the crown. We are confident that her association will add to the growing fan following of the League,” Pargat Singh, commissioner, WKL said.

WKL will be played in Circle style which is the most popular kabaddi format followed across 26 countries globally.

Tata Communications plans to invest more than $200 million towards doubling its data centre capacity in India

New Delhi: Tata Communications plans to invest more than $200 million towards doubling its data centre capacity in India from five lakh square feet to 10 lakh sq. ft. over a period of three years, the company said Wednesday. "We are witnessing a surge in data generation and storage needs like never before. Enterprises are contending with trends such as bring your own device (BYOD), social networking, mobile, analytics and cloud - and Tata Communications is well placed to partner with them through these exciting times," said Rangu Salgame, chief executive officer, growth ventures, Tata Communications. The 44th data centre of the company was inaugurated in Greater Kailash here Wednesday. "Our global data centre portfolio underpinned with our unmatched network reach provides the infrastructure backbone that our customers can leverage to their advantage. This, our third data centre in Delhi, has been designed and constructed with a 'no-compromises' approach," he added. "With an increase in the uptake of cloud services, datacentre has become a critical element in every enterprises' infrastructure strategy. The third party datacentre market is poised to grow very fast as many enterprises are now strategising to avail IT Infrastructure as a service' rather than investing in huge captive datacentres," Benoy C.S., director, ICT Practice, Frost & Sullivan, said. source:agency

Jaipur:Former US president Bill Clinton visited a kitchen run by an NGO to oversee a lunch programme that feeds over one million school children daily across India

Jaipur: Former US president Bill Clinton Wednesday visited a kitchen here run by an NGO to oversee a lunch programme that feeds over one million school children daily across India under the mid-day meal scheme.
The kitchen here is northern India's largest run by Akshaya Patra Foundation. It feeds almost 1.5 lakh people in Jaipur, including 1.25 lakh school children studying in 1,100 government schools in Jaipur district daily under the scheme. Clinton, dressed in yellow half-sleeve shirt and khakhi colour trousers, was accorded a welcome by students of various schools holding flags of India and the US.

This was Clinton's third visit to Jaipur. "Clinton visited the areas where rotis and curry were being cooked and the places where pulses were cleaned and stored. He also saw the rice cleaning machine and was really impressed by it," said Madhu Pandit Dasa, chairman of the Akshaya Patra Foundation. He said Clinton was impressed by the roti-making machines and was surprised that how food reaches on time in all the schools where mid-day meals are served. Akshaya Patra Foundation's kitchen in Jagatpura on the outskirts of Jaipur is fully mechanised and even rotis are cooked in two machines. Each of the machines is capable of producing 40,000 rotis in an hour. Besides Jaipur, the foundation has similar kitchens in Nathdwara, Jodhpur and Baran in Rajasthan.

"We have 450 people, including dieticians, who prepare the menu for a month in advance. Based on requirements, vegetables, dal (lintels) and other things are purchased," R. Govinda Dasa, Jaipur unit president of the foundation, said. He said the food is prepared keeping in mind the calories, fats and protein requirement of a child and high standards of quality are maintained at every level. Usually two rotis, a vegetable dish, dal and rice are provided to every child, and once a week a sweet dish is also given to the children.

The foundation also provides food to about 20,000 Anganwadi workers and 4,000 daily wage labourers at over 40 locations across the city every evening at a price of Rs.5 per person. Later, Clinton visited Government Secondary Sanskrit School in Pratap Nagar area of the city. He interacted with school children and lauded the mid-day meal scheme which he said has helped in curbing dropout rates in schools. Clinton said he was happy to observe the efficient and effective manner in which the food was prepared and distributed by the foundation.

Some of the school children welcomed Clinton by singing Rajasthan's folk song "Padharo Mhare Des" (Welcome to my state). The former president was seen smiling and shaking his head to the tune of the song. Some of the children also demonstrated Vedic mathematics to Clinton. The former US president along with other delegates, about 15, served food prepared at the foundation's kitchen to the school children. Subash Saini, a student, was happy to see the former US president at his school. "Oh, it was really great. He visited our school and also served us was amazing," Saini said.

Watch the NEW look of the Actress "Seema khan"

The Sizzling new star Seema Khan  was always determined of reaching to the peak in the glamorous B-Town. Marching towards her goal, the girl with the voluptuous curves made her acting debut with thore movie.
Adamant to her dreams of being a Bollywood star, Seema got into acting and lured eyeballs for her appealing looks.

Seema Khan wants to get into the shoes of beautiful Bollywood actresses like Sonakshi Sinha and Kareena Kapoor  ,Priyanka Chopra and  When asked about her male ideal, the Tinsel Town’s King Shahrukh Khan and salman khan.

Seema Khan interested to South films was gluey and hence she attracted millions. She gives adequate time in polishing her acting skills as she wants to be among one of the most popular Bollywood stars through her acting talent rather by her flaunting her size zero figure.

Sandip Soparrkar and Jesse Randhawa take Bollywood from Cannes to Madrid International Film Festival

International Superstar film dance choreographer Sandip Soparrkar & his stunning super model wife Jesse Randhawa have been invited to attend the prestigious Madrid International film festival 2014 (MIFF) from 16 - 19 July

They has been especially called to give a talk on 'Trends in Bollywood Dance' where Sandip and Jesse will not only talk about how producers in Bollywood invest millions of dollars to shoot just one song in Hindi films but also dance and show how dance has evolved and changed in Indian cinema today.

Mr. Carl Tooney, the director of MIFF, extended this invitation to them after the choreographer's successful lecture on dance at the Cannes Film Festival in May this year. Speaking on the invitation Mr. Tooney said ' I am glad that Sandip and Jesse have accepted our invitation and we are not only looking forward to their talk on Bollywood Dance but also awaiting to have them on our red carpet.'


For his talk and for the red carpet appearance the celebrated choreographer will be dressed in designs by his all time favorite designer Deepak Shah of More Mischief and India's ramp tigress Jesse will sizzle in designs by Rohhit Verma and Gaviin Miguel. They will be wearing exquisite diamond jewelry by Dev Balani of Malkish Jewels.


The team of MIFF has been busy preparing for the talk by the beautiful couple from Bollywood on 18th July in Madrid. Through his talk Sandip will discuss the importance of dance in Bollywood cinema including its changing trends, evolution, current scenario in dance along with its commercial point and also explain how a dance is pictured in Bollywood. This is an exciting opportunity for all Spanish fans of Sandip and Jesse to experience the two international dancing superstars. they both will be in the beautiful city of Madrid for a few days and will be walking the award ceremony and the red carpet on the 19th of July at the Madrid International film festival awards ceremony at 5pm.

Sandip Soparrkar said, “It was wonderful moment for Jesse and me when Mr. Carl Tooney, the director of MIFF invited us for the famous Madrid International Film Festival and we are elated that we are getting a superb opportunity and  an amazing platform to popularize Bollywood dance at a festival like this where the world cinema comes together."


Global software giant Microsoft plans to expand its operations in Telangana

Hyderabad: Global software giant Microsoft plans to expand its operations in Telangana, it was announced Monday. Microsoft India chairman Bhaskar Pramanik met Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao here and discussed the expansion plans. Pramanik briefed Rao of the activities of Microsoft in India and also discussed the tax policy being followed in the country. A statement from the chief minister's office said Pramanik announced that Microsoft will further expand its operations in Telangana. Telangana's Information Technology Minister K.T. Rama Rao was also present at the meeting. The global software major has its India development centre here. Set up in 1998, it is the largest R&D centre of Microsoft outside its Redmond (US) facility.

Government has nothing to do with the meeting between Ved Pratap Vaidik, and Hafiz Saeed: Sushma Swaraj

New Delhi: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj Tuesday said the government has nothing to do with the meeting between yoga guru Ramdev's aide, Ved Pratap Vaidik, and 26/11 mastermind Hafiz Saeed.
"Categorically and unequivocally, through your medium, I would like to state that the government has nothing to do with Ved Pratap Vaidik's trip to Pakistan or his meeting Hafiz Saeed there," Swaraj said in the Lok Sabha. "Neither before going to Pakistan nor after reaching there did he (Vaidik) inform us that he is meeting Saeed... It was purely a private trip and a personal meeting. And here, to blame that he went as someone's emissary or that the government facilitated the meet is untrue, baseless and unfortunate," she added.

The Lok Sabha was earlier adjourned for 20 minutes after members of the house created an uproar over the issue. The 69-year-old Vaidik's meeting with Hafiz Saeed in Pakistan has sparked off a major row with the Congress seeking to pin down the Narendra Modi government by asking if he was sent as an emissary even as the ruling BJP has distanced itself from the meeting, asserting Saeed is a terrorist.

‘The Kudos Dance Award’ 2014 bestowed upon Sandip Soparrkar

Dance has always been an integral part of films, be it Bollwyood or Hollywood both the worlds have used dance to enhance their films. Creative work, popular dance steps and choreographies in cinema make the movies more attractive and entertaining for the audience. Sandip Soparrkar is one of the few choreographers of India who has not only worked on award winning Bollywood film but has also created innovative moves for Hollywood projects. He is a dancer who not just teaches dance but also choreographs for films, stage shows and musicals, his vast knowledge in dance, its culture and history won him accordance world over. Seeing his popularity ‘The Kudos Dance Award’ 2014 honored him with ‘India’s Best Choreographer’ Award last week in a glittering ceremony in New Delhi. There is no doubt that Sandip has created some master piece choreographies and has set a level for others to follow. His life is completely dedicated to dance, from volunteering to teach dance to less fortunate and underprivileged people to making the stars like Madonna, Shakira, Hrithik Roshan, Priyanka Chopra etc dance to his tunes, he has been doing it all with ease. Audiences are enthralled with the mesmerizing choreography done by Sandip in different movies and stage events. Be it the Asian Games or the World Economic Forum he has performed around the globe and is well recognized and applauded for his unique style of dancing, but Britney Spears album “Womenzier” made him touch the sky few years back. After the kind of commitment and innovations Sandip has shown in his choreographies he truly deserves this popular award. He has complete knowledge of culture, history and tradition of various dances from world over, he always grasps the lyrics and bringing forth the emotions through his dance choreographies which is really very unique about his body of work, Bollywood is indeed lucky to have a choreographer like him. Kudos to Sandip Soparrkar for winning the prestigious ‘The Kudos Award’ --

Sohan Roy’s Aries takes over Mohan Lal’s Vismayas Max Studio Network

In an unanticipated new development in the Indian Film and TV industry, UAE based Aries group of companies’ BizTV wing has taken over the management of actor Mohanlal’s Vismayas Max Studios. In the process, the company which will now be known as ‘Aries-Vismayas Max’ would become the largest film and TV studio network in South India. Kerala state’s first DTS studio, Vismayas Max, headquartered in Trivandrum with a branch at Cochin, was set up by popular Indian actor Mohan Lal. Vismayas Max with animation, pre and post production works has catered to more than hundred Indian movies in various languages. Meanwhile, Aries Group of Company’s BizTV Network is a well-known media company with three 3D movies, two Global TV channels and hundreds of International advertisements along with twenty Oscars qualification credits to it. Headed by business tycoon, Sohan Roy, Aries has branches all over the world. Sohan Roy, for his part, alongside the interests in Maritime Industry, Visual Media and Film Production, is also the co-producer and project designer of director Rupesh Paul’s international project ‘Kamasutra 3D’. Talking of the merger, Sohan Roy said, “Through Aries-Vismayas Max project we are opening the doors of International Movie/TV/Advertisement market to the India Film /Media community. There's a long a way to go.” Reportedly, Mohan Lal will continue as the brand ambassador of ‘Aries-Vismayas Max’. -

Utah’s flagship museum exhibiting Hindu god Krishna

Utah's flagship art museum, Utah Museum of Fine Arts (UMFA), will have an exhibition on Hindu Lord Krishna starting August eight. Running till November 20 in the Museum's Emma Eccles Jones Education Gallery, this Krishna exhibition “explores the Hindu god Krishna through sacred and secular artworks, dating from the 11th century to the 20th, from the Museum's Asian art collection. Krishna promised followers that through bhakti (devotion) to him, one could gain moksha (salvation).” Applauding UMFA for organizing Hinduism focused exhibition, distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that art had a long and rich tradition in Hinduism and ancient Sanskrit literature talked about religious paintings of deities on wood or cloth. Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, also commended UMFA for Hindu artifacts in its permanent collections; which included images of Hindu deities Shiva, Vishnu, Durga, Ganesha, Lakshmi, Hanuman, Saraswati, etc. Rajan Zed urged major art museums of the world, including Musee du Louvre and Musee d'Orsay of Paris, Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, Los Angeles Getty Center, Uffizi Gallery of Florence (Italy), Art Institute of Chicago, Tate Modern of London, Prado Museum of Madrid, National Gallery of Art in Washington DC, etc., to frequently organize Hindu art focused exhibitions, thus sharing the rich Hindu art heritage with the rest of the world. The Utah Museum of Fine Arts, a university and state art museum whose history goes back to early 1900s, claims to be “Utah's primary cultural resource for global visual arts” and having “a comprehensive collection of over 5,000 years of art from around the world”. Per its mission statement, it “inspires critical dialogue”. Located on the University of Utah campus in Salt Lake City, it claims to preserve over 19,000 original art objects. Gretchen Dietrich and George Lindsey are Executive Director and Deputy Director respectively. Salt Lake City also houses the world headquarters of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Malkish Jewellers is all praises by Bollywood actresses Chitrangada Singh and Karishma Kapoor

Malkish, a niche of state-of-the-art studio of jewellery design and manufacturing, has introduced a new jewellery collection at 'India International Jewellery Week.' Bollywood's beautiful actresses Chitrangada Singh and Karishma Kapoor added glamour at the exhibition. Chitrangada looked her demure best in an off white and gold Anarkali ensemble paired with stunning earrings. During the exhibition Chitrangada Singh and Karishma Kapoor visited Malkish Jewels and praised their unique collection of Jewellery. Chitrangada Singh took a close look at the Jwellery and hand-picked the pieces which caught her fancy. She said, “I love Jewellery though minimalistic but I'm extremely fond of style statement pieces and Malkish had it all.” Owner of Malkish Jewellers Dev Balani said, “It was glad moment for us that bollywood actresses Chitraganda Singh and Karishma Kapoor visited our exhibition. They have appreciated our work. I am supplier and exporter of diamond jewellery and especially concentrate on crafting heavy bridal jewellery. These bridal jewels glitter the bride and make the moment special” Bollywood actress Karishma Kapoor went through the exquisite pieces designed by Malkish Jewels and was floored by their beauty. Bollywood ace Choreographer Sandip Soparrkar was also seen praising the work done by Dev Balani. Malkish was established in 1979 by founder Mr. Balani, as a quest to immortalize art by interweaving it in the zone of jewels. Defining itself as serious connoisseur of art, its creations carry a glimpse of art backed with an understanding of heritage. A spate of jewellery exhibitions across the globe have made Malkish popular among celebrities, business entrepreneurs, builders and corporate heads in the Far East, Spain and USA. --

Actress Aackruti Nagpal Scribes for Women Empowerment in Reel and Real Life

Women Empowerment in India is a Burning Issue. A woman in most parts of India is looked upon more as an object of glamour or a mere SEX TOY rather than somebody who can share and shoulder equally and sometimes dominant responsibilities of decision making in the home and at work place. Although things are changing Bollywood movies here are always been inspiring for our country and the youth. We all know that this is a man made world and women are not given all the due respect and are ill treated. Many Bollywood movies on women empowerment like Mother India, Mirch Masala, Damini, Bandit Queen, Lajja and Kahani not only gives confidence to the women but also shows the world that women are no less than man. Now Actress AACKRUTI NAGPAL who has made her come back in Akshay kumar's block buster movie "Holiday' has made a short film "DAILY RAPE" with her partner DHRUV KARAN MEHTA on sex without women's concern which is RAPE in itself. Daily rape is about a woman whose marriage is nothing but episodes of horror created by her husband; we have picked up one small incident to showcase her pain, her agony, her fight and her decision to rise above herself. Women are SHAKTI and sooner they realize better our "SAMAJ" will be. Its first step taken for women empowerment, hoping the people who see and hear about spread the word to demolish such devil's in these kind of suffering households.

Actress, writer, social activist and working with N.G.O “India for women ", she is black belt in karate (shotokant style), self sufficient with heart which bleeds on injustice AACKRUTI NAGPAL. She says “It’s a high time with a number of increasing rape cases in Delhi, Mumbai and other places in India. We women should act and raise our voices .we must do something for the society to get our safety alarm heard by all. Blame game will only lead to more crime. Accepting injustice is being part of doing injustice. If we women want security we have to empower ourselves.” She strictly supports SELF defense in each and every schools in INDIA.

Gujrati Girl Aackruti Nagpal is a Grand Daughter of FREEDOM fighter VITTHALDAS PANCHOTIA who was also a Veteran silent film maker. She says, “I am PROUD to be Indian I would love to work for our Indian women empowerment. IT RUNS IN my blood TO fight FOR MY RIGHTS. I have always been a true believer in the power of every individual, especially every girl.” FIGHT FOR YOUR OWN RIGHTS. It's her agenda and working for such pained women is her PURPOSE OF LIFE. She is planning to make more such films for YouTube and big cinema. We wish her luck and support.

Urban Outfitters removes Lord Ganesha Duvet Cover after Hindus protest

Urban Outfitters (UO), a publicly traded retail company headquartered in Philadelphia (USA) which offers a variety of lifestyle merchandise, has removed Lord Ganesha Duvet Cover from its website after Hindus protested calling it inappropriate.

Lord Ganesha Duvet Cover, an "Online Only" item, did not show up after search on UO website today.

Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, who spearheaded the protest, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, thanked UO for understanding the concerns of Hindu community, which thought Lord Ganesha’s image on duvet cover was highly inappropriate and trivializing of highly revered Hindu deity.

Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, said that an official apology from UO to the upset Hindu community was still due as it was their second incident trivializing Lord Ganesha. First was socks carrying Lord Ganesha’s image, which were removed in December last. Moreover, it was sad that it took UO 12 days to act after they were informed, Zed added.

Rajan Zed suggested UO and other corporations worldwide to send their senior executives for training in religious and cultural sensitivity so that they had an understanding of the feelings of customers and communities when creating new products or launching advertising campaigns.

Zed had earlier said that Lord Ganesha was highly revered in Hinduism and was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to be slept upon. Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees.

Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about one billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought and it should not be taken lightly. Symbols of any faith, larger or smaller, should not be mishandled, Rajan Zed had argued.

Zed had also pointed out that such trivialization of Lord Ganesha was disturbing to the Hindus world over. Hindus were for free artistic expression and speech as much as anybody else if not more. But faith was something sacred and attempts at trivializing it hurt the followers, Zed noted.

Duvet cover which Hindu devotees were finding objectionable was priced at $129.00-$169.00 on the UO website, which described it as “UO Exclusive” and “topped with a standout illustration by the talented Valentina Ramos”.

UO, Inc. offers merchandise in Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, Free People, Terrain and BHLDN brands through stores in USA, Canada, and Europe; besides garden center, catalogs, websites and wholesale. It boasts of its “established ability to understand our customers and connect with them on an emotional level” and calls its brands “both compelling and distinct”. Richard A. Hayne and Tedford Marlow are President of UO, Inc., and Chief Executive Officer of UO Group respectively.

In Hinduism, Lord Ganesha is worshipped as god of wisdom and remover of obstacles and is invoked before the beginning of any major undertaking.

Arambada Lake: India’s First Jellyfish Lake

By S. Goutham

Field Officer and Project lead, West Coast Marine Conservation Project.

Recently, Wildlife Trust of India’s (WTI) researchers stumbled upon something unique! It was during their routine field visit to a small town named Armabada in Gujarat, that the research team noticed a few small boondocks. A bridge separated the water body from the Gulf of Kutch, with the only water exchange happening through a canal below the bridge.

Much intrigued at what could be in this ‘Lake’ a couple of WTI marine biologists took  snorkeling kits armed with an underwater camera and started to shovel the secrets of this ‘Lake’. At the first dip was close to the road bridge, they were surprised to find huge mangrove snappers and silver biddies curiously coming close to them and nibbling their skin.

As they snorkeled further, they realized that the bottom was matted with algae with something pulsating around them. A closer look revealed that it was jellyfish. Further down the lake it was as if the whole bottom was carpeted with jellyfish. It was a beautiful sight and the researchers  had never encountered such big bloom of jellyfish before! Back at the field camp they identified the jellyfish as ‘upside down jellyfish’ (Cassiopea sp).

“This kind of jellyfish is found mostly in intertidal sand or mud flats, shallow lagoons, and mangrove forests. They are called so because they are found upside down on the sea bed unlike others. They position themselves on their bottom side to receive maximum sunlight as they harbor photosynthetic algae called Zooxanthellae, which have a symbiotic relationship with jellyfish similar to corals”, explains marine biologist S. Goutham, WTI.

“These jellyfish require carbon from the zooxanthellae but this does not meet their daily metabolic needs. The stinging cells attached on the umbrella like body called nematocysts assist in capturing prey. The jellyfish also filter feeds and absorbs dissolved nutrients from seawater as supplement food”, added Dr Deepak Samuel, marine biologist, specializing on invertebrates.

Another unique feature of the lake was that these jellyfish were present all around the year unlike other places where reports have been seasonal.

At the moment, many reasons are being speculated for this jellyfish bloom. Some are that, the species is usually found in places where the wave action is less and as there is less or no wave action in the lake, it could have created nutrient imbalance which promote jellyfish bloom, as flushing is very minimal. Certain species of upside-down jellyfish is used as potential bio-indicator for phosphate availability in low nutrient environments (Todd et al., 2006) and the predation could also be less in this lake which could be a reason for the bloom. “These jellyfish are generally found in groups and masses” , commented S. Subburaman, marine biologist, WTI.

Further interaction with an experienced local fisherman, Sultan Bhai, revealed that a group of turtles have also taken residence in the same lake. Sultan Bhai added “When the bridge was built a decade ago, it separated this small extension of the Gulf and a small population of turtles was trapped”. As the canal head was too narrow, the bigger turtles could not migrate back to the sea.

A small survey by WTI was conducted in the lake to assess the population of these stranded turtles. It was found that 20-30 turtles are residing in this lake. During the survey a few huge turtles were seen trying to enter the canals but were unsuccessful.  “A few places in the lake had sea grass which could have been the answer to the survival of these turtles. Also, further down there a population of green turtle preying on upside-down jellyfish which also could have contributed to its survival”, explained Prof. BC Choudhury, Principal Invigilator and Senior Advisor, aquatic programs, WTI. Dr Choudhary is also the author of Marine Turtles of India. He further added, “These turtles should be rescued as they do not have any future in this lake as breeding is impossible. As many sizes and classes were encountered during the survey, we are not sure if new turtles are entering this lake occasionally”.

“A study on these turtles has been suggested by Prof. BC Choudhury as it might be easy to catch and satellite tag them, unlike the ones in the open sea. Further collaboration and funding options are being explored to undertake this feat to rescue and study the turtles and as well as the chances for this lake being the jellyfish Lake of India” commented Dr. Rahul Kaul, Chief Ecologist, WTI.

Wildlife Trust of India has been working in Mithapur coral reef and whale shark conservation in partnership with Tata Chemicals Limited and Gujarat Forest Department. This could be an expansion to conservation of marine turtles and jellyfish as well.

The world renowned jellyfish lake is located on Eil Malk Island, Palau, Trust Territory of USA. Arambada lake, Gujarat could be the first jellyfish lake of India!

Ref: Todd, B.,D. Thornhill, W. Fitt. 2006. Patterns of inorganic phosphate intake in Cassiopea xamachana: A bioindicator: Marine Pollution Bulleting, 52/5: 515-521.

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Director Kunal Kohli is quite impressed with "Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania"

Mumbai: Director Kunal Kohli is quite impressed with "Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania" and says the "outstanding love story" should not be confused with romantic comedy. "After a long time we have seen a good love story. If people think that it is a light rom-com, it is not, it is an outstanding love story," Kunal, who saw the film at a special screening Thursday, said. Directed by Shashank Khaitan and produced by Karan Johar, the film has Alia Bhatt and Varun Dhawan in the lead roles. Released Friday, it also marks TV actor Siddharth Shukla's big screen debut. Kunal is impressed with all the performances and had a special word of praise for Ashutosh Rana. "All the artists have done a brilliant job, not just Varun and Alia. Ashutosh Rana has come into a film after so long and (what a) fantastic performance. Everybody in the film has performed brilliantly. Claps in a trial are rare but this happened between scenes," he said. Kunal added: "It is a very intelligently written film. It is very tough to write such a film and like I said, it is a love story after a long time and not a rom-com." "Rom-coms run for a few days but love stories run for many weeks so this is a very big hit," he added.

Is Arjun Kapoor giving the nod to a movie adaptation of Chetan Bhagat's "Revolution 2020"?

New Delhi: Is Arjun Kapoor giving the nod to a movie adaptation of Chetan Bhagat's "Revolution 2020"? The young actor prefers to stay mum as long as the makers make an official announcement. There's buzz that after delivering a hit with "2 States", an adaptation of Bhagat's bestseller "2 States: The Story Of My Marriage", Arjun has been approached for the onscreen version of "Revolution 2020", to be helmed by Rajkumar Gupta. Asked about the prospects of signing on the dotted line for the project, Arjun said: "I have to meet Rajkumar Gupta and Siddharth Roy Kapur, so I look forward to meeting them soon. When there is something official to speak about, they are the ones who should talk about it. Producers should announce it, not actors." But are you keen? "Again that's something individual and personal," said the tall and handsome actor, who has vowed the audience with his work in films like "Ishaqzaade", "Gunday" and "2 States". The book "Revolution 2020" is a love triangle set against a backdrop of corruption.

Star rapper Yo Yo Honey Singh purchased a team in World Kabaddi League (WKL)

New Delhi: Star rapper Yo Yo Honey Singh, who has purchased a team in World Kabaddi League (WKL), Friday revealed that he has named it Yo Yo Tigers because he feels it will help people relate to it. "I wanted to associate with a sport that I really believe in. So I bought a team in World Kabbadi League, and Toronto will host my team," Singh, who had also started Global Fighting Championship (GFC) in Dubai, told reporters here. "I have named the team after my own name because I want to represent the game internationally. I know children and youth relate to me, so I feel they will support my team as much as they support me," he added. The 31-year-old has also shared that he will give his best while promoting the team and that soon he will launch a track for the same. "Watch and watch what all I do for my team," he said. WKL, to be held from August to December, will have its first match in London and it will be a "first-of-its-kind league", said the singer, who loves Kabaddi since his childhood. This year, there will be no bidding for the players for WKL, and they will be selected as per their performances.

The Lok Sabha passed the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill 2014 amid protests from members of the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS)

New Delhi: The Lok Sabha Friday passed the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill 2014 amid protests from members of the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) and others. Following the passage of the bill, the house was adjourned till 2 p.m. Home Minister Rajnath Singh introduced the bill in the house, after which TRS MP Vinod Kumar Boianapalli along with Trinamool Congress MP Saugata Roy opposed the debate on the bill. Boianapalli said that the bill was against Article 3 of the constitution, which deals with the formation of new states and alteration of areas, boundaries or names of existing states. Despite protests by opposition members, the bill was adopted and passed, after which Speaker Sumitra Mahajan adjourned the house till 2 p.m.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the NDA government's first budget converts hopes and aspirations of the people into trust

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi Thursday said the NDA government's first budget converts hopes and aspirations of the people into trust, and expressed confidence that it will take India to newer heights. "This budget is a new ray of hope for the poor and downtrodden sections of society," Modi said in his reaction to the union budget presented in the Lok Sabha. Congratulating Finance Minister Arun Jaitley for his maiden budget, the prime minister said the budget was an effort to make India "skilled and digital" by using latest technology. "The budget will give an impetus to 'Jan Bhagidari' (people's participation) and 'Jan Shakti' (people`s power)," he said. Modi took a veiled dig at the previous United Progressive Alliance government and said the budget has come as "sanjeevani" (new life) to a moribund economy. According to an official release, Modi said the entire world had immense expectations from India and recalled "how in the last decade, the entire economic system crumbled due to which not only India but also the world lost hope and there was an atmosphere of pessimism".
Modi said the budget was "arunoday" (sunrise) for the last man in the queue, the poorest of the poor. He said development should be "samaveshak, sarvadeshak, sarvasparshi" (all-encompassing) and should reach those parts of the country which have so far remained underdeveloped.

Modi said the government was leaving no stone unturned in doing its duty to ensure the country's progress. "Since we formed the government, there were discussions about whether this government can free the nation from crisis but the railway budget and today's general budget show that we are moving in the right direction," he said.

The prime minister said the government was committed to extend "all possible help to the poor, the neo-middle class and the middle class, inspired by the mantra of 'Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas'". He said the budget has innovative provisions for development of tribal communities and schemes for giving an impetus to skill development for the youth.

"The budget is in line with the government's vision to create a skilled and digital India," he said.
Modi said measures for farmers such as Krishi Sinchai Yojana would benefit them and help achieve the goal of "per drop, more crop". He also mentioned provisions for cleaning of the Ganga river and women's empowerment

Modi said the budget will give a ray of hope to the housewife burdened by rising prices. He also affirmed the government's commitment to make India self-reliant in the defence sector.

The prime minister said his government was "confident of bringing India out of crisis" and the confidence stemmed from the capabilities and strength of 125 crore Indians. Modi said the strength of people will be channelised for taking India to new heights.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has kept a government disinvestment target of Rs.58,425 crore in the union budget 2014-15

New Delhi: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has kept a government disinvestment target of Rs.58,425 crore in the union budget 2014-15 presented Thursday to parliament. The figure comprises Rs.43,425 crore from disinvestment in state-owned or public sector undertakings (PSUs) and Rs.15,000 crore from divesting government stake in non-government companies. The receipts on account of disinvestment during 2013-14 have been shown at Rs.16,027 crore against the target of Rs.40,000 crore, as also presented by the previous finance minister P. Chidambaram in his interim budget in February. However, both budget proposals this year do not give details of divestment actuals during the previous fiscal. The PSUs disinvestment target of Rs.43,425 crore presented by the new finance minister is an upward revision from the target of Rs.36,925 crore proposed earlier in Chidambaram's budget.

The culture ministry saw a jump of 20 percent in its budgetary allocations for 2014-2015 as compared to last year

New Delhi: The culture ministry saw a jump of 20 percent in its budgetary allocations for 2014-2015 as compared to last year.
Plan expenditure allocation for 2014-15 is Rs.2511 crore against last year's Rs.2094.80 crore. Of all its cultural and performing centres, National School of Drama has got the maximum raise of 41 percent, getting an allocation of Rs.41 crore compared to Rs.29 crore in 2013-14.

On the other hand, money allocation for the artistes pension scheme has dropped from Rs.18.62 crore to Rs.17 crore.
The National Mission on Libraries - a project to modernise and digitally link public libraries across the country - has been allocated Rs.57.50 crore compared to Rs 9 crore last year. An amount of Rs.657 crore has been allocated to the Archaeological Survey of India compared to Rs.514 crore the previous year.

"Archaeological sites preservation require urgent attention, lest ancient heritage is lost to future generation," Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said while presenting the budget for 2014-15.

BJP leaders welcomed the 2014-15 budget, saying it will lead to revival of economy

New Delhi: BJP leaders Thursday welcomed the 2014-15 budget, saying it will lead to revival of economy.
"The budget has successfully captured the imagination of the people by addressing their hopes and aspirations. It has defined a roadmap for new vibrant India," Home Minister Rajnath Singh said. "This budget provides an enabling framework to realise the true potential of Indian economy. In a clear move to achieve fiscal consolidation and economic recovery, the budget has made many concrete announcements," he said.

Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah said it will pump "hope" in the economy. "The finance minister has laid down a comprehensive action plan for the revitalization of the Indian economy. This budget brings back hope into the economy," he said.
"It sets the pace for greater financial inclusion of the weaker sections," he added. Parliamentary Affairs Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu said it will give a boost to manufacturing.

"The budget is aimed at operational revival of the economy. The manufacturing sector and others areas like small and medium enterprises have been given a major boost," he said.

Telangana Chief Minister K.Chandrasekhar Rao has expressed his dissatisfaction over the 2014-15 union budget

Hyderabad: Telangana Chief Minister K.Chandrasekhar Rao has expressed his dissatisfaction over the 2014-15 union budget. Criticising the budget presented in the Parliament Thursday, he said that apart from a horticultural university, no other project has been given to Telangana. "Horticultural university sanction issue was mentioned in State Reorganization Bill. It's not a new thing," the chief minister said in a statement. The union budget simply mentioned that the commitments of the Reorganization Act will be fulfilled but no specific mention has been made, he added.


This is one role that makes you feel very inadequate as an actor: Shahid Kapoor

Mumbai: Actor Shahid Kapoor, who plays a dark character in his forthcoming film "Haider", says although he prepared for the role the nagging thought that he's not "good enough" for it kept haunting him throughout the shoot. An adaptation of William Shakespeare's tragedy "Hamlet", the film, directed by Vishal Bhardwaj, is set against the unrest in the Kashmir valley and revolves around a guy called Haider who wants to avenge his father's death. "This is one role that makes you feel very inadequate as an actor," Shahid said here Tuesday at the trailer launch of the movie. Apart from other things, the 33-year-old actor even shaved off his head to get under the skin of the character. "Every day when I was on the sets, the inherent feeling I had was that I don't think I am good enough to play this role. That's what I felt everyday and I used to keep running to everybody for assurance right from Vishal sir to Pankaj, our cameraman, because this is that kind of role. "So one prepared to whatever degree that one can, but it did make me feel inadequate as an actor," he added. But he thanks his co-stars and the director for their support. "It was very difficult to prepare for the role, but I had support from some fantastic actors and that really helped me a lot," said Shahid, whose last releases include "Mausam" and "R...Rajkumar". "Being in the same frame with actors like Tabu, Kay Kay Menon and Irrfan sir was a huge learning experience for me. It gave me a lot of confidence about the product that we are trying to create," he added. Also featuring Shraddha Kapoor, "Haider" is slated to release Oct 2.

I would love to work with Salman in a film: Nargis Fakhri

Mumbai: It's Nargis Fakhri's dream to do a movie with Salman Khan but right now she has to be content with an item song with him in "Kick". But this does not make her jealous of the film's leading lady Jacqueline Fernandez.
"I am not jealous of Jacqueline because even I am getting an opportunity to be part of an item song. Of course, in future I would love to work with Salman in a film...that would be a dream and I hope it comes true," the "Rockstar" fame actress said. "Kick" marks producer Sajid Nadiadwala's directorial debut.

Talking about her dance number with Salman, she said: "It's very underground, edgy and sexy dance number. I was a little worried what if I missed out on steps, but he ended up being the best person ever and I had so much fun. "He has great energy and great sense of humour and I think his energy was making me feel very comfortable and happy. Overall it's an amazing experience."