ADVERTISE WITH US , email us at :
« »


AAP will demand the status of world spiritual capital for Varanasi

Varanasi: The AAP will demand the status of world spiritual capital for this Hindu holy city in Uttar Pradesh, a party leader said Tuesday.

"Varanasi is not only about Hindu religion, and is about all religions. Hence, we would demand a special package for Varanasi so that it can be called the world spiritual capital," a senior Aam Aadmi Party leader, who didn't want to be identified, said, adding that it is included in the party's manifesto for Varanasi.

The AAP will release the manifesto in a day or two, and will focus on issues including poor infrastructure of the city and the pollution of the holy river, Ganga, among others. Party leader Arvind Kejriwal, who is contesting against Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial nominee Narendra Modi from Varanasi parliamentary constituency, will file his nomination from the city Wednesday.

Rahul Gandhi promised the poor living in Chhattisgarh that UPA III would provide them free housing and medical facilities if it returns to power

Durg (Chhattisgarh): Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi Tuesday promised the poor living in Chhattisgarh that UPA III would provide them free housing and medical facilities if it returns to power. "In keeping with your expectation, if UPA III forms government at the centre, we will provide you free houses and medical facilities," Gandhi said in an election rally in Durg district. Gandhi trashed Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)'s development claims, noting the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) registered better growth rate than the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government. "We built three times more roads than the NDA government. We provided two times more electricity, and our growth rate has been better than the NDA government," Gandhi said.


Bollywood stars Monica Bedi campaigning for Pushpa Milind Bhole for ongoing Lok Sabha elections

Even as the election campaigning is promising to reach its peak. It is devoid of Bollywood tadka a number of film stars being roped in to lure voters. On the 5th day of campaigning on Wednesday, Bollywood stars Monica Bedi joined to add glamour in BSP party Candidate Pushpa Milind Bhole campaign in Mumbai North-West. Political parties continued to woo the voters through rallies and meetings. Moinca bedi shown her support to Pushpa Ji and said, “I am asking you all to vote for Puhspa Ji as a common woman. Her contribution to this city is immense. Her work shows that he keeps his promises. His entry into politics will ensure this constituency's, and the entire city development.”

Pushpa bhole is pitted against Congress sitting MP Gurudas Kamat and Aam Aadmi Party candidate Mayank Gandhi. Pushpa bhole husband Milind Bhole while seeking people's support for her wife, said she had discovered her as a strong woman.

Fortis Malar Hospital in association with IMA Conducts CME in ‘Tribute to Asthma’

Chennai: Fortis Malar Hospital, Adyar, Chennai in association with Indian Medical Association (IMA) conducted a Continuing medical education (CME) programme to spread awareness in connection with World Asthma day.

A group of Medical Practitioner came together to bring awareness for the disease by singing Old Melodies to the group of Asthmatics. This programme was termed as “A Tribute to Asthma” and was sung by a group called “Music for healing”.

The Concept of prescription through songs was conceived by a group of doctors who were part of the singing group. The programme was initiated as a unique attempt by doctors singing to their patients. The programme was inaugurated by Film Actor Mr.Yugi Sethu, Music Director Mr. Ramesh Vinayagam, Rap singer MR.Blazee and Playback singer Dr.G.K Lavanya.

About Fortis Healthcare Limited

Fortis Healthcare Limited is a leading integrated healthcare delivery service provider in India. The healthcare verticals of the company primarily comprise hospitals, diagnostics and day care speciality facilities. Currently, the company operates its healthcare delivery services in India, Singapore, Dubai, Mauritius and Sri Lanka with 66 healthcare facilities (including projects under development), over 10,000 potential beds and approx. 260 diagnostic centres.

Yuva Bharat Express Magazines’s Kamlesh Parmar and Hitesh Kaneria Threw a Surprised Birthday Party for Actress Aanchal Munjal

Talented Aanchal Munjal, who got the entire spotlight in Sony Entertainment Television’s Parvarrish and later went on to bag the pivotal role of Pihu in Balaji Telefilms’ Bade Achhe Lagte Hain. She was previously seen in the film "Aarakshan" which starred Amitabh Bachchan. She was also a part of the cast of Kajol-Kareena Kapoor-Arjun Rampal starrer "We are Family" and now she has featured in the recently launched Yuva Bharat magazine cover. The very pretty and talented young actress Anchal Munjal turned 17 and gets a surprised birthday bash by Yuva Bharat Express Magazine Kamlesh Parmar and Hitesh Kaneria at an elegant place Kino's Cottage which had a breathtaking view of the sea. . Aanchal said, "The first and special edition of the magazine covers me and my new photographs. I am feeling very happy to be the face of the magazine on my birthday month. It's just the beginning; I have a long way to go."

The evening saw Aanchal's friends dropping in and enjoying the party to the fullest. Aanchal was seen mingling around mostly with her close friends and popular actor Rohan Shahwas among them. Aanchal was also wished and greeted by the people who were associated with her while working in the film 'We Are Family'. Also many stars like Vishal Singhh,Rajesh Puri, Rakshit Wahi, Nidhi Uttam,Dishank Arora, Shresth Kumar made their presence felt at her bash as they had worked with Aanchal in her TV show Ek Boond Ishq and Nayi Umr Nayi Chunauti - Parvarrish - Agla Padav. It seems that Aanchal is still very much attached to the family of Parvarish and so much so that she still addresses Vishal Singh as her Papa and Rajesh Puri as her Nanu. On the other hand Vishal too praised Aanchal's acting skills and wished her warmly on her birthday.

Thanking her fans for their wishes she concluded saying, "I just want them to love me as much as they do right now. It's because of them that I am who I am today. I just need your blessings and love."


Country wants to know about "RSVP (Rahul, Sonia, Vadra, Priyanka) model: Narendra Modi

Katihar (Bihar): Under attack from Congress over his Gujarat model of development, Narendra Modi Saturday hit back saying the country wants to know about "RSVP (Rahul, Sonia, Vadra, Priyanka) model" from Congess leaders.

Addressing an election rally in this Bihar town, Modi, the prime ministerial candidate of Bharatiya Janata Party, referred to Congress chief Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law Robert Vadra and said the country wants to know about the model in which Rs.1 lakh became Rs.300 crore in four years. "They say RSVP in big functions. In India's politics, we have RSVP too and a media house threw light on their activities," Modi said. "Rahul, Sonia, Vadra and Priyanaka...this is the RSVP model. Rahulji, you talk on Gujarat model but the nation wants to know this model," he added. Opposition parties have been targeting Congress over the land deals concerning Vadra.

Referring to the United Progressive Alliance govenment as "mother-son" government, Modi urged people to get rid of the model for real development and change in their life. "If you want change in life and better days, get rid of mother-son duo's model of government. Vote for BJP to form a strong and stable government to bring change in your life," he said. Modi also addressed another election meeting in Supaul parliamentary constituency where he again targeted the Gandhis as well as Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and his Janata Dal-United (JD-U).

BJP's Narendra Modi attacked the Congress over its 'mother-son' government at the centre

Nagaon (Assam): BJP's Narendra Modi Saturday attacked the Congress over its 'mother-son' government at the centre which he said has failed to meet the aspirations of the people while Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said the BJP has been making Hindus and Muslims fight against each other.

Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial candidate Modi launched his attack on the Congress in the central Assam town, just after the Congress vice president assured the people of setting up production units in the northeast for giving employment to the youth, ensuring security of women and free medicines and hospitalisation for the poor. Gandhi took to the stage at a school ground in Nagaon and alleged that the BJP has been making Hindus and Muslims fight against each other. "The British made Hindus and Muslims fight with each other. The BJP is doing the same thing," he said.

He told people the Gujarat model of development only makes some rich people richer at the cost of the poor. "The Gujarat government takes land of farmers and sells it to companies at a price of Re.1 per square metre. Later, the companies sell the same land to other smaller companies at a price of Rs.800 per square metre," Gandhi said adding that 45,000 hectares of land have already been sold in the state. "Assam will only benefit when there is a Congress government at the centre. You have a Congress government in Assam, so the state can benefit only when there is a Congress government at the Centre," he said while urging the people to vote for the party candidate for the Nawgong Lok Sabha seat, Jonjonali Baruah.

He assured the people of bringing a bill for 33 percent reservation for women, reservation for 25 percent women in police, bank loans to women, right to food and free medicines for the poor. An hour after Rahul left, Modi, speaking at another venue in the town, said the "mother-son" government at the centre and the "father-son" government in Assam have both failed to address issues like price rise, unemployment, unabated killing of rhinos and infiltration from Bangladesh. "In 2009, Congress had assured that 10 crore youths will be given jobs. However, they failed. They also assured to bring down prices of essential commodities but failed again," he said. "I heard Rahul Gandhi had come here today. Did he mention price rise even once? No. He did not. Because he is not interested in the problem," Modi said. The BJP leader also attacked the Congress on women's security.

"How can the Congress talk of women security? There are members in the Youth Congress who kill their wife and burn the body in a tandoor," Modi said, referring to the infamous 1995 Tandoor murder case, in which Youth Congress leader Sushil Sharma was convicted of killing his wife Naina Sahni in Delhi and trying to burn her body in a hotel tandoor (oven). "A Congress woman worker went missing during the party of a Congress leader in Latur and her body was recovered after two days," he said. Modi also lashed out at the Congress over the Nirbhaya gang rape incident in Delhi. He said the Congress-led government created the Nirbhaya Fund with Rs.1,000 crore for security of women. "However, one year has passed and not a single paisa has been spent."


Hema Malini,says she feels "wonderful" to have the support of her family members

Mathura: Hema Malini, who is busy campaigning as the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate from Mathura Lok Sabha constituency, says she feels "wonderful" to have the support of her family members.

"(My daughters) Esha and Ahana have arrived and are ready to leave for their campaign in Baldeo. It is wonderful to see my entire family rally round me - daughters, sons-in-law, brothers and bhabhis (sisters-in-law) are all here to give me moral support," the 65-year-old posted on her Twitter page. The actress, who featured in movies like "Seeta Aur Geeta", "Sholay" and "Baghban", was recently miffed over reports that her family was not by her side in her political journey.

Hyderabad -Congress has promised free television sets along with dish connection for poor

Hyderabad: The Congress has promised free television sets along with dish connection for poor and free laptops for students of government colleges, in its manifesto for Seemandhra released Friday.

The Congress, which is facing a testing time in Seemandhra in view of bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, promised freebies for different sections of voters to woo them. The election manifesto for Seemandhra said if the party comes to power, it would introduce a new scheme under which 100 square yard land will be allotted in the name of girl child immediately after her birth and a house will be constructed on the land at the time of her marriage.

The party promised to waive all loans of self-help groups. Andhra Pradesh Congress chief N. Raghuveera Reddy said free electricity would be provided to houses which consume less than 100 units per month. "There will be no hike in electricity tariff for five years and daily nine-hour uninterrupted power supply will be ensured for farmers," he said. The Congress promised to create Rs.5,000 crore calamity relief fund for farmers and increase the retirement age of government employees to 60 years.

Elections to 25 Lok Sabha and 175 assembly seats in Seemandhra are scheduled on May 7. Seemandhra will come into being as Andhra Pradesh state on June 2. Union minister and senior central leader Jairam Ramesh, who released the manifesto, said Polavaram project, which will irrigate seven lakh acre land and generate 900 MW of electricity, would get the status of national project. Jairam said 80 TMC water would be diverted from Godavari river to Krishna river, which will help both Telangana and Seemandhra.


A fire broke out in West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's hotel room

Kolkata: A fire broke out in West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's hotel room in Malda district Thursday evening but she was evacuated in time and is safe, party leaders said.

"She was in the room when the fire broke...She is safe," tweeted Trinamool national spokesperson Derek O'Brien. Banerjee, who was in Malda for the election campaign, had stayed at a private hotel called Golden Park in Narayanpur.

"The AC in her room got overheated and smoke started to come out. Luckily it was detected early and she was evacuated. "She is safe now. Her room has been changed," said state Tourism Minister Krishnendu Narayan Chowdhury. The incident happened at between 6 and 7 p.m.


We do not have any deals with media: Mamata Banerjee

Kolkata: Charging the BJP with using "media power" for winning the Lok Sabha polls, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Saturday accused the opposition of carrying out a "malicious campaign" against her. Addressing rallies in northern West Bengal's Jalpaiguri and Dinhata, Banerjee, also the Trinamool Congress supremo, said her party was being made the soft target for attacks as it stuck to its principles. She also lashed out at the media, alleging some sections of the fourth estate have sold themselves to "money power". Attacking the Bharatiya Janata Party, she said the party may use media power to show a wave, "but its divisive and communal agenda will not win". "Certain sections of the media have been sold off. They are hyping any small little incident against me. We will not bow down to any pressure. Some media houses may have huge bank balance, but we have people with us," she said. "We do not have money power. We do not have any deals with media. We work honestly for the people.We will not use money power for buying votes. We will struggle for the sake of people," she said. In an indirect attack on the Election Commission, Banerjee said the Trinamool's hoardings were being removed, and they were not allowed to put up posters. "Our wall graffiti is not allowed. How will we campaign?" she asked. Banerjee said though the opposition was conducting "malicious campaigns", Trinamool had the people's trust.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) worked as a team: Narendra Modi

New Delhi: BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi Saturday sought to dispel the impression that he had become the hub of the party and other senior leaders of the party have been relegated to the sidelines or dwarfed by him.

In an appearance on "Aap Ki Adalat" on India TV, his first TV interview since being named the party's prime ministerial candidate, Modi said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) worked as a team and every leader was assigned responsibilities according to the priorities set by the party.

Dismissing the suggestion that BJP was getting centred around him as "not true", Modi said: "BJP is a huge organization. There is a galaxy of leaders who are equally competent. During elections we have to set a goal and prioritize issues. "Even for this there is a committee of which Modi is not a part. So responsibilities are distributed according to the party's goal. Right now I have been given this role and I have to do what the party has asked me to do. I am a worker of the party. We are a team."
Addressing a series of questions on the huge money being spent by the BJP on its campaign, the Congress campaign, on Amitabh Bachchan promoting Gujarat tourism and other issues, Modi, in his long interview, mocked the Congress campaign "Har haath shakti har haath tarakki" saying: "Their hand that commits sin has to be portrayed in some other way. That is why for them, it's har haath loot, har honth jhooth (Every hand loots, every lip speaks a lie)." He described as an "achievement" an observation by Rahul Gandhi that he (Modi) can even sell combs to bald people. "I used to sell tea. I never sold combs but the information that I can do it has reached them, is a sort of achievement for me," said Modi.

Making light of Union Commerce Minister Anand Sharma's allegation that BJP has spent Rs. 10,000 crore on its campaign, Modi said: "The first thing that Anand Sharma needs to do is to write to the EC. Then there is a government agency named Enforcement Directorate. ..Let them fully investigate it. If there is any objection from EC, I'm willing to write to EC to let them do it." Defending his decision not to wear the skull cap, Modi said that he respected his own traditions as well that of others and would not wear the skull cap to appease or hoodwink others.
"They can do anything for appeasement. I believe in respecting traditions of all religions. But at the same time, I have to respect my own tradition as well although I respect all traditions. I can't hoodwink people by wearing such skull caps. But I believe in taking action against those who show disrespect to other's caps," he said. Saying that Indian politics has "deteriorated", Modi said: "I have never seen Gandhi, Patel or Nehru wearing such skull cap. Indian politics has deteriorated. They can do anything for appeasement."

Reacting to Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar saying that in politics you have to take care of every one's sentiments by wearing tilak and skull caps, Modi said, "If he thinks that it helps in taking care of sentiments then it's his thought. I believe that their children should get better education. They should have Quran in one hand and computer in the other hand." On his controversial answer in an interview with a foreign media person in context of killing of Muslims in Gujarat riots that "It pains even when a puppy comes under my car", Modi said: "In our country we say it pains even if an ant dies. These are proverbs. This should not be interpreted otherwise.
"And you should know that the person who had taken my interview, despite being a foreigner, had tweeted that I did not mean anything like that. But the news traders, and I am not talking about media, used this to sell their stuff." On the impression that Gujarat government was spending huge money on Amitabh promoting Gujarat tourism, Modi said that the mega star was not being paid anything.



The triumphant journey of internationally acclaimed Dunno Y...Na Jaane Kyun seems never ending! After getting screened at major countries and festivals of New York, Houston, London, Sydney, Oslo, Athens, Cologne, Dortmund, Switzerland, Israel, Alta, Italy, Mumbai, New Delhi, Nashik it is now getting screened at the prestigious festival of Warsaw in Poland. This festival is one of the most important event on the cultural map of Poland. They select films which are either widely acclaimed by critics and viewers or films which became a part of the canon of the worlds most important LGBT production. Besides movies this festival is famous for its exhibitions, concerts and meetings with international artists. Kapil Sharma and Yuvraaj Parashar are invited to attend the festival and they will also be doing a dance performance. The film also stars Zeenat Aman, Kabir Bedi, Helen, Rituparna Sengupta, Tara Sharma, Aryan Vaid and Mahabanoo Modi Kotwal. It is directed by Sanjay Sharma. Lata Mangeshkar sang the title track. It has won 12 international awards and Kapil Sharma and Yuvraaj Parashar best actors award.

 Incidentally its sequel called Dunno Y 2 (Life Is A Moment) is getting made in collaboration with European production house and is shot in Norway. It stars Zeenat Aman, Kapil Sharma, Yuvraaj Parashar and a mix of European, Pakistani and Indian actors. Its co directed by Sanjay Sharma and Norwegian director Tonje Gjevjon. Its first look teaser is available online on you tube.

India-Pakistan music festival at the Wonderland

Filming the Line of Control charts out the history of the relationship between India and Pakistan as represented in cinema, especially in light of the improved political atmosphere between the two countries. Now seven superstars from both music industries will belt out some catchy numbers and soulful rendition on April 10 in Dubai's Wonderland Theme & Water Park. Music lovers in Dubai will witness an unforgettable mélange of rhythm and rhyme as singers from the Indo-Pak music community come to set the town alive. The organizers Dream Advertising and Ministry of Events have planned a series of Indo-Pak concerts and this is Part one of the series.

The concert which starts from 8 pm has a sterling lineup of guests including Kanika Kapoor, Meet Bros featuring Khushboo, Abrar-ul-Haq, Ankit Tiwari, Aman Trikha, along with DJ Shadow and DJ Scorpio. Kanika Kapoor, a UK-based model and singer is a shining beacon for South Asian music as the voice behind the hottest dance number of the year, "Baby Doll Mein Sone Di" from 'Ragini MMS 2'. With a voice that resonates deep within the soul of people and gets them dancing almost immediately, Kanika is a lyrical powerhouse whose previous single “Jugni Ji” also received widespread fame and acclaim.

Sanjay Pratap said, “This is the first initiative of its kind and aims to create a positive interaction between musicians of both India and Pakistan, create a relationship of mutual benefit, trust and thereby strengthen peaceful ties between the two countries.”

Meet Bros are a duo of music producers are the masterminds behind the infective "Baby Doll" song, along with a variety of previous hits including the title track from Akhsay Kumar’s 'Boss'. They will perform as a band along with their female vocalist Khushboo Grewal who is also a Punjabi actress.

Abrar-ul-Haq is a name that needs no introduction, being a pioneering force in the Pakistani and Bhangra music community for decades. A veteran who knows just how to pump the crowd up and recipient of countless awards, his defining hit "Billo De Ghar" back in 1995 was only the beginning of a musical career that puts him squarely in the category of living musical legends of the Pakistani music scene.

Ankit Tiwari possesses a voice that gets positively stuck in people’s heads, powering the massive love anthem "Sun Raha Hai Na Tu" from 'Aashiqui 2', the most iconic contributions amongst dozens of Bollywood hits that has come out from the creative genius of this director, songwriter, and musician.

Aman Trikha is a master of many clubhouse hits, lending his voice to iconic tracks like "Hookah Bar", "Go Go Govinda", "Po Po", title track of 'Son of Sardaar' and "Khiladi Bhaiyya" from 'Khiladi 786' amongst other. His deep tones and melodic way of bringing words to life in a music track makes him a favorite performing act for a huge audience base that just can’t get enough of his signature singing style.

DJ Shadow and DJ Scorpio, two of the leading names in the electronic and club scene in Dubai, are the music mixing magicians that will also be performing at this concert, making sure the audiences never stop dancing to remixed versions of hit after hit.


BMW launched its premium sports car M6 Gran Coupé priced at Rs.1.75 crore

New Delhi: Luxury automobile manufacturer BMW Thursday launched its premium sports car M6 Gran Coupé priced at Rs.1.75 crore (ex-showroom Delhi).

"With its dynamic expression and luxurious appearance, the all-new BMW M6 Gran Coupé is not just the most attractive coupé in its class, it also provides the best everyday usability," Philipp von Sahr, president, BMW Group India told reporters.
The four-door sports coupé is available at the company's dealerships and has been imported as a CBU (completely built-up) unit.

The new sports coupé is powered by a 4.4-litre V8 petrol engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology and high precision injection system. The vehicle can sprint from 0 to 100 km per hour in 4.2 seconds and can attain a top speed of 250 km per hour.
The company added that it also plans to add 15 more dealerships across India in the next one year. Currently it has 35 outlets.

Those who support riots can never become PM : Mamata Banerjee

Kolkata: Attacking BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee Friday said "those who support riots" will never succeed in getting the country's top post.

"Those who support riots can never become PM. They can use money power for marketing. But people won't vote for them," Banerjee said at an election rally in Kulti of Burdwan distrist. The West Bengal chief minister said her state, and not Gujarat, is the model for India. "We do not want riots, we want peace, we want prosperity. I love the people of Gujarat, not those who orchestrate riots," she said, campaigning for the party's candidate for Asansol Lok Sabha seat Dola Sen. Describing the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as communal, she said its activity was limited to the time of the election. "BJP comes to Bengal only when there are elections and divides people on religious lines. Where does the BJP hide during Durga Puja? We participate in all festivals, whether Durga Puja or Holi," she said.


Narendra Modi vowed to bring back the black money stashed in foreign countries if the BJP-led NDA is voted to power

Nawada (Bihar): BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi Wednesday vowed to bring back the black money stashed in foreign countries if the BJP-led NDA is voted to power. "If the Bharatiya Janata Party government is formed in Delhi, I promise to bring back the black money and it will be used for welfare schemes for the poor," Modi said. Addressing a rally in Nawada parliamentary constituency, the Gujarat chief minister said the Congress-led government was not keen to bring back the black money from foreign banks because they have vested interests to save those who deposited the money there. Modi said India needs a "sevak", not a ruler, to serve the country. "Give us all 40 seats in Bihar as we want to form a government in Delhi with over 300 seats to take the right decisions." Asking the people to vote for the BJP, he said the Congress has not fulfilled any promises it had made in the 2009 polls. "The Congress manifesto is nothing but a dhokha-patra," he said. On the Nitish Kumar government in the state, he said the administration was "sleeping" when blasts took place at his Patna rally last year. "The time for promises is gone. Now Bihar needs resolution," Modi said. In a bid to woo Yadav voters, Modi said he hails from Dwarka and hence it was natural for him to be emotionally attached with the Yadav community. Taking a jibe at Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, he said: "The shehzada (prince) of Congress says he has a map of infrastructure in his head. If they took 60 years to draw the map, they will take another 600 years to implement it."

Congress president Sonia Gandhi neither has a car of her own nor does she have enough cash

Rae Bareli: Congress president Sonia Gandhi neither has a car of her own nor does she have enough cash. And she has to repay a loan of Rs.9 lakh too. This and more has been revealed in her affidavit filed before the returning officer of Rae Bareli where she filed her papers Wednesday for the Lok Sabha election. In a detailed break up of her assets and wealth, the UPA chairperson has sworn that she has Rs.85,000 in cash and is under a debt of Rs.9 lakh. She, however, has Rs.66 lakh in bank accounts and ancestral jewellery worth Rs.23 lakh. Informed sources privy to the affidavit said that the four-time MP from Uttar Pradesh has made investment worth Rs.12 lakh in mutual funds and holds some shares as well. Sonia Gandhi has also declared ownership of 1.267 kg of gold in the form of ornaments and others plus 88 kg of silver, largely silverware. During the last general elections, her affidavit showed 2.518 kg of gold in her possession. She owns 3.21 acres of land costing Rs.4.86 crore in village Dera Mandi and Sultanpur in Delhi.

Compared with her 2009 affidavit, Sonia Gandhi's cash holdings have witnessed an increase of Rs.10,000 over five years. Her UCO bank account earlier showed Rs.28.61 lakh in her account. Sonia Gandhi holds RBI bonds in her name and 10 shares of Maruti Technical Services Pvt Ltd. In 2009 she owned 500 shares of Western India Tanneries Ltd. Her affidavit shows she has no apartment or house in her name in India though there is an ancestral property in Italy, her birth place.


Sunil Gavaskar is confident that the 2014 Indian Premier League (IPL) will be successful

New Delhi: Newly appointed Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) interim president Sunil Gavaskar is confident that the 2014 Indian Premier League (IPL) will be successful.

Gavaskar's statement comes a day after the Supreme Court virtually split the BCCI and named the legendary batsman and senior board vice president Shivlal Yadav as interim heads in place of the tainted incumbent president N. Srinivasan. "I had a meeting with IPL chairman Ranjib Biswal and the management staff in Dubai earlier Saturday. They briefed me on the various aspects related to the IPL 2014 and updated me on the current status of this year's season which will commence April 16 in the United Arab Emirates. I am confident that the upcoming season of the IPL will be a successful one," Gavaskar said in a statement Saturday.

A bench of Justice A.K. Patnaik and Justice Fakkir Mohamed Ibrahim Kalifulla Friday had said that Gavaskar will only be in charge of the seventh edition of IPL and asked senior vice-president Shivlal Yadav to oversee the rest of the work of BCCI. The court also barred all those associated with Srinivasan's India Cements company, which owns IPL franchise Chennai Super Kings, from functioning in the BCCI in any manner. The court noted the offer made by Srinivasan that till investigation into allegations against him is completed, he will not discharge any of the functions of the BCCI chief.


Narendra Modi charged the Congress-led UPA central government with becoming a burden and threat to the country

Chandigarh: BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi Saturday charged the Congress-led UPA central government with becoming a burden and threat to the country.

Addressing a "Bharat Vijay" rally in favour of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate, actress Kirron Kher here, Modi said that the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government was unable to provide security to the country and had failed on all fronts. "This government has become a burden on the country. This government has become a threat for the country. The country is not secure with such a government which cannot protect its soldiers who are being beheaded (by Pakistan). Can the country be secure with such a government?" he said.

Taking a dig at the Congress, Modi said: "Mahatma Gandhi wanted to disband the Congress after independence. But the Congress leaders did not listen to him also. Mahatma Gandhi's dream will be fulfilled in this election." Tearing into Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi's remark on the BJP's "India Shining" balloon bursting in previous elections, he contended that the Congress had tried its best to burst the Gujarat development balloon but the people had rejected its move. Slamming the Congress for not addressing the real issues of development and corruption, Modi said: "If this country has to progress, we will have to give good governance. Bad governance is like diabetes. It can finish everything.

"Congress does not want to resolve the issue (of corruption). They have admitted that corruption cannot be tackled." Questioning the Congress on fielding controversial former union minister Pawan Kumar Bansal from the Chandigarh seat again, Modi said: "I want to ask the Congress why they removed Pawan Bansal from the union government. Why have you brought him in as a candidate? What happened to the railway scam?" He said that the Congress had fielded candidates like Bansal and Ashok Chavan, whose names figured in the railway scam and Adarsh scam in Mumbai respectively.

Veteran leader Jaswant Singh expelled from BJP

New Delhi: Veteran leader Jaswant Singh was Saturday expelled from the BJP after he refused to withdraw his nomination as an independent from Rajasthan's Barmer parliamentary constituency, party sources said Saturday. He has been expelled for six years. Singh was upset over ex-Congress leader Sona Ram Choudhary being given the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ticket from Barmer, his home turf, and filed his nomination as an independent Monday, daring the party to sack him. "I will not say goodbye till the party says goodbye," he said. The party leaders had indicated they were waiting to see if he withdraws his nomination. However, as the last day for withdrawal ended Saturday with Jaswant Singh still in the fray, the decision to expel him was taken. Jaswant Singh has maintained that no party leader approached him over the issue.

He had earlier been expelled from the party in 2009 over his book on Mohammad Ali Jinnah, but was taken back in 2010. On Monday, he had said it was a mistake to rejoin the BJP, especially after the way he had been expelled.

"Perhaps it was an emotional weakness that I joined the BJP again though all my relatives and friends had sought to dissuade me." He represents Darjeeling in 15th Lok Sabha, a seat now being contested by S.S. Ahluwalia.
The veteran leader held many portfolios in the national cabinet including finance, external affairs and defence during the NDA regime (1998 to 2004).


Airtel Pocket TV is loaded with over 150 Live TV channels

New Delhi: A mobile app that enables viewers watch their favorite TV programmes while on the move was launched here  by Airtel Digital TV, the DTH service arm of leading telecom operator Bharti Airtel.

Airtel Pocket TV is loaded with over 150 Live TV channels and more than 10,000 hours of video content and over 13 channels on anytime TV, a company statement said. Pocket TV now promises a never-before library of video content which is available at an affordable price, the statement said. The Airtel Digital TV app is available for download on the Android play stores and is accessible to all smartphones and tablets with Android version 2.1 onwards. Within a month, the app will also be available on the iOS platform soon followed by other platforms. The app is a convergence of the TV and mobile phone and its launch follows the success of Airtel Digital TVs innovative offering of Twitter on TV, which was the first global convergence of Twitter and TV,the statement added.

BJP leader Arun Jaitley accused the Congress of using inappropriate language

New Delhi: BJP leader Arun Jaitley Friday accused the Congress of using inappropriate language, saying that it started with Sonia Gandhi's "Maut Ka Saudagar" comment on prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.

Jaitley said this in his blog after Imran Masood, the Congress candidate from Uttar Pradesh's Saharanpur Lok Sabha seat, said Modi will be chopped into pieces.
"This is not an isolated case of an unacceptable attack on Narendra Modi. Sonia Gandhi, Lalu Prasad, Digvijaya Singh, Mani Shankar Aiyar have all led attacks on Modi in improper language. It started with Sonia Gandhi's words 'Maut Ka Saudagar'," Jaitley said.

"The mindset behind these attacks being made in unacceptable language is that an abuse on Modi is an expression of aggressive secularism. "Abuse on Modi has now graduated to intimidation. Those who indulged in these tactics were rejected in Gujarat. The Congress has got desperate at the centre in anticipation of defeat. Such tactics are not likely to work," he said.
Masood was seen saying in a video, "I will chop Modi into small pieces", which has gone viral online.

Senior AAP leader Yogendra Yadav said there was nothing secret in his meeting Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi

Gurgaon: Senior AAP leader and Lok Sabha candidate from Gurgaon Yogendra Yadav said Friday there was nothing secret in his meeting Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi and Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda.

On the allegations about his meeting Gandhi and Hooda, Yadav said, "A delegation from Mewat met Rahul Gandhi in 2008 demanding medical college for Mewat in the name of some Meo (Muslim). I was part of the delegation."

"The delegation of Meos comprising Ramzan Chaudhary, the then Mewat head of NGO 'Sampurna Kranti Dal', met Rahul Gandhi in 2008 in Delhi as there was a recommendation of a medical college by the National Capital Region (NCR) Planning Board and we wanted to set up that college in Mewat," Yadav said.
Volunteers of Sampurna Kranti Dal sat on dharna from Feb 10 to April 24, 2009, in Mewat in support of their demand for the medical college. "The medical college in the name of Shaheed Hasan Khan Mewati has been established at Nalhar village near Nuh," he said.

"The college, approved by the Medical Council of India, started working this year and people of the region are happy with our efforts. What was wrong and secret in that meeting?" Yadav asked. Similarly, a delegation of nearly 100 farmers from Bawal (Rewari) met Hooda and his cabinet colleague Randeep Singh Surjewala at Haryana Bhawan in New Delhi in 2012.
Yadav told IANS: "Farmers were protesting in Bawal over acquisition of their lands for factories. Violence erupted, in which several farmers and their leaders, including my father Devender Singh, were critically injured. The meeting was for settling farmer issues and their demands." Professor Devender Singh, now retired, was then chief of the Sampurna Kranti Dal. "Hooda and his minister first opposed me for being part of the delegation and refused to meet. But farmers insisted they will not talk to government without me. It was a long talk that finally reached an agreement in the favour of farmers. It was all open and there is nothing to hide. Farmers thanked me for my contributions," Yadav added.

S.C. Talwar and O.P. Kataria, senior AAP leaders in Gurgaon, who recently quit the party, said they took the step because of the outfit's alleged proximity to the Congress and not over differences on portfolios.
Talwar, who was the convener of the party's Lok Sabha committee in the district, said at a meeting held in his house March 20, "we asked Yogendra Yadav if he met Rahul and Sonia Gandhi and he replied in the affirmative. Two years ago, Yadav had gone to Bawal during the farmers' agitation as a middleman from the state government," he said.

Yadav said the people who quit the AAP were actually working for the BJP for some time. He said the party's former district convener Ramesh Yadav was caught on sting saying, "AAP is a cobra, it will bite BJP" and that the party was "worse than cancer."
Yogendra Yadav recently claimed the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, ideological parent of the BJP, is using dirty tricks to infiltrate the Aam Aadmi Party.


AIADMK leader J. Jayalalithaa urged people to trounce the Congress and make its candidates lose even their election deposit in the coming Lok Sabha polls

Tirunelveli (Tamil Nadu): AIADMK leader J. Jayalalithaa Wednesday urged people to trounce the Congress and make its candidates lose even their election deposit in the coming Lok Sabha polls. "The Congress should lose its deposit in all the constituencies as it paved the way for price rise by hiking oil prices every month," Jayalalithaa said at a rally here, around 650 km from Chennai. She said her government in Tamil Nadu has taken several steps to protect people from the severe rise in prices in the past 10 years due to the wrong economic policies of the Congress-led government. "As a result, investments and exports have come down while the economy is in doldrums," she said. On the DMK's manifesto and the promise of implementing 27 percent reservation, Jayalalithaa wondered why the party did not take any action when it was part of the central government all these years. She said DMK president M. Karunanidhi was concerned only about portfolio allocations at the centre and was not bothered about reservation for backward classes. Jayalalithaa urged the people to throw out the DMK in the elections. On the power supply situation in the state, Jayalalithaa said long-term power purchase agreements have been signed and the situation would improve soon.

Elections : Mamata Banerjee's party has now fielded candidates for 104 seats in 17 states

Kolkata: The Trinamool Congress Wednesday announced its candidates for 18 more Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh and Delhi, including Umesh Mishra for the prestigious Rae Bareli constituency which has been electing Congress chief Sonia Gandhi since 2004.

Mamata Banerjee's party has now fielded candidates for 104 seats in 17 states. The Trinamool has named 19 candidates in Uttar Pradesh, including Indira Tiwari - the granddaughter of former chief minister Kamalapati Tripathi - who will be contesting from Varanasi against Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi. In Rae Bareli, considered a pocket borough of the Gandhi family, Trinamool's Umesh Mishra will take on the Congress president.

The Trinamool, which has claimed it would emerge as the third largest party after the Congress and BJP in the coming polls, has put up candidates in Assam, Manipur, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Sikkim and Maharashtra besides West Bengal. In Assam, the party's star candidate is Parvez Ahmed, son of late president Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed, for the Barpeta Lok Sabha seat.

Actress Sonam Kapoor, Lalitya Munshaw and Anup Jalota launch Ghazal Album

Last night Iskon Auditorium of Juhu was grooved by melodious voices of renowned Celebrities and singers. It was a Grand Launch of the Ghazal Album “Kuchh Dil Ne Kaha” by gorgeous and Fashion Icon of Bollywood Sonam Kapoor along with Javed Ali, Lalitya Munshaw, Anup Jalota, Ustad Ahmed -Mohammed Hussain and Harsh Brahmabhatt. Sonam Kapoor was seen enjoying the musical night with Lalitya Munshaw.  Lyricist Harsh Brahmbhatt who was overwhelmed with his writing he said, “It an honored to see my writings transformed into such beautiful Ghazals in such great voices. I appreciate the hard work and dedication which has been put behind this album.”

Artists Javed Ali, Anup Jalota, Lalitya Munshaw, Ustad Ahmed and Mohammed Hussain performed from the album. Their melodious performance made the evening beautiful and mesmerized the audience. Red Ribbon Managing Director Lalitya Munshaw shared her experience, she said: “The uniqueness of this album is that first time in Indian musical History all the maestros of all genres have sung in one album. I am extremely elated to bring so many maestros together on a common platform. I am hopeful that there are many more to follow from Red Ribbon.” Others present at the event were Anuj from Gitanjali.

Red Ribbon as a music production company and Re N Raga as a world class studio has always aimed to preserve the great heritage of Indian Music by producing new works of legendary artists which we have been done through this album”. The audience loved a vibrant video of the making of Music album.

Actress Tara Sharma Flower Petal's Holi at Breach Candy with Cancer Patient

This Holi was special for Kids who are suffering from cancer at Breach Candy as flower petals becomes color of the day. The Breach Candy Swimming Bath Trust organized an event for Asian Cancer Foundation 'C Kids', on Tuesday, wherein children suffering from cancer were celebrating Holi with lots of fun and had a party. The theme for the event was 'Holi... Rang Barse' and the kids had a memorable Holi experience playing Holi with fresh flower petals. Actress Tara Sharma was there to celebrate Holi with these children and seen grooving with the kids on some Bollywood Holi song. Magician, a caricature artist, a balloon sculpture and an art & craft activity workshop were held to entertain Kids.

The Asian Cancer Foundation was all praise to the BCSBT Charity sub-committee comprising of Mrs. Jeannette Anand, Mrs Kaya Shewakramani, Mr. Dipesh Mehta, Mrs. Geeta Dhote and Ms.Natasha Kewalramani for organizing and playing host to such a wonderful and thoughtful event for the C Kids.

Scientists in EURO 6m quest to uncover early signs of cardiovascular disease

New Delhi: A new study is hoping to reveal the early
signs of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in order to create drugs to
treat the condition before symptoms have developed.

Despite being the biggest killer in the Western world the individual
causes of the various types of CVD: coronary heart disease, heart
attack, heart failure and stroke, are still largely unknown.

As part of a new EURO 6 million study, researchers at the University of
Glasgow are joining forces with colleagues from across Europe to try
to identify the early signs of physiological change in the body that
indicate nascent CVD.

Dr Christian Delles of the Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical
Sciences who is a key collaborator on the project which is worth
£557,000 to Glasgow, said: "The problem with cardiovascular disease is
that it often develops unnoticed over years before becoming a serious

"We all know that smoking, over-consumption of alcohol and a high-fat
diet can increase the risk of developing CVD but we currently know
very little about the earliest stages of the disease, which at are at
least in part, reversible.

"At present drug-based interventions are based on risk-factor control
- for example through reducing existing high blood pressure or using
statins to reduce blood cholesterol levels.

"However, if we can identify early signs or biomarkers of the disease
before symptoms arise, we have the opportunity to develop
interventions to stop disease before it becomes a problem."

In order to understand what transformations do take place in the body
in the early stages of CVD, the scientists will closely study the
proteins expressed by different genes and look for disease-specific
changes - a field of study known as proteomics.

Identifying a range of biomarkers involved in CVD could ultimately
lead to treatment tailored to an individual's own body - heralding a
new era of personalised medicine.

In future cardiovascular disease may be treated before it is even
noticed by the patient and has had the chance to cause irreparable

The four-year study, entitled 'Systems Biology to Identify Molecular
Targets for Vascular Disease Treatment' (SysVasc), is being
coordinated by Professor Burkert Pieske at the Medical University of
Graz in Austria.

It is funded through the Seventh Framework Protocol (FP7) of the
European Commission and involves 30 leading scientists from 10
different countries who will examine thousands of samples and

For the first time in a large research consortium, SysVasc uses
modern, systematic medical approaches that can contribute to early and
individual diagnosis and treatment through the use of new biomarkers
from blood and urine.

As a consequence of this ground-breaking research, completely new
pathways in pharmaceutical development can be pursued.

Dr Delles said: "CVD accounts for more than four million deaths in
Europe each year, thus comprehensive knowledge of the
pathophysiological processes that lead to this disease pattern is
urgently needed.

"Based on a comprehensive cause study, early detection will be
improved in the future and tailored to individuals. This will improve
the effectiveness, specificity and side-effects of treatment."


Madras High Court restrained two media companies - Zee Media Corporation and News Nation Network

Chennai: The Madras High Court Tuesday restrained two media companies - Zee Media Corporation and News Nation Network - from publishing or broadcasting for two weeks any stories linking Indian cricket team skipper M.S. Dhoni with any betting or spot/match fixing incident.

The court, in its interim order, also restrained the media companies from insinuating Dhoni's honesty and integrity in a Rs.100 crore defamation case filed by the cricketer. Dhoni had filed the suit against the media companies and also suspended Tamil Nadu police official G. Sampath Kumar.
The Indian captain in his suit had said that since Feb 11 Zee Media Corporation's Zee News Channel, the channel's editor and business head Sudhir Chaudhary colluded with the police official Kumar to telecast false news reports.

The reports insinuated that Dhoni was involved in betting and match/spot fixing cricket matches. He said News Nation Network broadcast false information that he was summoned by the Tamil Nadu Police.
According to Dhoni, the news reports were about Chennai Super Kings team in the Indian Premier League led by him. The reports marred his reputation and image worldwide.

Mulayam Singh Yadav will be contesting from two constituencies in the Lok Sabha polls

Lucknow: Samajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav will be contesting from two constituencies in the Lok Sabha polls - Mainpuri and Azamgarh.

Announcing Mulayam Singh's candidature from Azamgarh, party general secretary Ram Gopal Yadav said this was done on "popular demand". Party insiders, however, admitted that the rethink was forced by the candidature of Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi from Varanasi.
Party strategists were worried that Modi contesting from Varanasi could have a cascading effect on neighbouring seats, and hence pitting Mulayam from Azamgarh, a predominantly Muslim-Yadav constituency, was the best bet to stave off any Modi effect, a party leader told IANS.

Another party leader said the Samajwadi Party would also like to woo the Other Backward Classes, which account for over 35 percent of votes in the region. Mulayam Singh is re-contesting from Mainpuri, the family pocketborough in central Uttar Pradesh, which has twice sent him to the Lok Sabha.
The Samajwadi Party has 22 members in the current Lok Sabha while the BJP has 10 from the state. BJP national president Rajnath Singh is also contesting from Uttar Pradesh.

I am going to defeat Narendra Modi : Arvind Kejriwal

New Delhi: AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal Tuesday asserted that he was determined to defeat BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi in the Lok Sabha election in Varanasi.

"I was reading in some newspapers that it will be a symbolic fight (in Varanasi) and it is Modi who will win," Kejriwal told a meting of Muslims here. "I want to tell him (Modi) that I am going (to Varanasi) not only to fight but I am going to defeat him," he said.
Kejriwal said the Aam Aadmi Party's "success story" of Delhi would be repeated in the Lok Sabha election. "In the Delhi (assembly) elections, nobody knew our candidates. But they defeated those who were MLAs for 20 years. I feel this will be repeated in the 2014 general election."

Kejriwal, who was repeatedly cheered, was addressing a meeting of Muslims attended by over 500 professionals and intellectuals. There was a roaring approval when the former Delhi chief minister demanded to know who from among the audience will go to Varanasi to back him in the election.
Amid cries of "Inquilab Zindabad", scores of hands went up in the hall. Kejriwal has said that he will hold a rally in Varanasi to decide if people want him to take on Modi, who the BJP has fielded in the Hindu holy town in Uttar Pradesh.


Congress leaders in Seemandhra have decided to hit the roads on a 'bus yatra'

Hyderabad: Congress leaders in Seemandhra have decided to hit the roads on a 'bus yatra' to enthuse party cadres ahead of the tough electoral battle it faces in the region following the division of Andhra Pradesh.

Nearly a month after parliament passed the bill for formation of Telangana, Congress leaders in Seemandhra have decided to embark on the 'bus yatra' from March 21 to lift the sagging morale of the party that has been facing the onslaught of rivals over the state's bifurcation. It will also be the first tour by Congress leaders after a separate party unit for Seemandhra or the residual state of Andhra Pradesh was formed last week. Party chief for the region Raghuveera Reddy, chairman of the election campaign committee K. Chiranjeevi, former state party chief Botsa Satyanarayana and senior leader Anam Ramnarayana Reddy will take part in the 'bus yatra'.

After a meeting of party leaders here Monday, Chiranjeevi told reporters that they would cover all 13 districts from Srikakulam to Anantapur. "We will address meetings of party workers to tell them the truth about the circumstances under which the state had to be divided and who were behind the decision," the union minister said. The Congress leaders said they would also explain how a special package announced by the central government and the proposed institutions will benefit Seemandhra. The leaders plan to cover two districts every day to gear up party cadres for a series of elections, beginning with municipal polls March 30. Elections to panchayati raj institutions will be held April 6, while simultaneous polls to the Lok Sabha and the state assembly are scheduled May 7.

The Congress is facing a tough time in Seemandhra as both Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N. Chandrababu Naidu and YSR Congress party chief Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy are aggressively campaigning for the last several days, targeting the Congress for the state's division. The Jai Samaikyandhra party launched by former chief minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy has also hit the campaign trail. By floating a new party Jana Sena, actor Pawan Kalyan has added to the Congress's woes. Pawan Kalyan, the younger brother of Chiranjeevi, has given a call to people to bury the Congress for splitting the state. The Congress has also been rocked by the exodus of leaders to TDP and other parties.

About a dozen legislators and former ministers switched loyalties to the TDP in the last two weeks. Union minister D. Purandeswari also quit the Congress to join the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Six parliamentarians expelled from the Congress and at least two former state ministers have joined hands with Kiran Kumar Reddy, who resigned as chief minister and also quit the Congress after the Telangana bill was passed in parliament. Seemandhra comprises 13 districts - four of Rayalaseema and nine of coastal Andhra. It has 25 Lok Sabha seats and 175 assembly constituencies. Telangana, which comprises 10 districts, and Andhra Pradesh will formally come into existence as two separate states June 2.

Millions in Bihar celebrated Holi with traditional fervour

Patna: Millions in Bihar celebrated Holi Monday with traditional fervour. But Chief Minister Nitish Kumar was not one of them, and it was a low key Holi for RJD leader Lalu Prasad.

Nitish Kumar did not mark Holi to express grief over the death of 23 children who died after consuming mid-day meal in a rural school in Saran district in July last year. Nitish Kumar is known to play Holi with friends and colleagues. On the other hand, Lalu Prasad also did not play his trademark 'kapda phaar' (cloth tearing) Holi, his aides said, saying he was tired following hectic campaigning for the Lok Sabha polls.


Prime Minister Manmohan Singh wished the nation on the eve of Holi

New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Sunday wished the nation on the eve of Holi, saying it symbolises India's "spirit of unity". In a message to the nation, the prime minister said the festival heralding the onset of spring celebrates "the different hues of the country's cultural mosaic and is an occasion to rejoice in the glory of nature in all its vibrant colours". "The festival symbolises the country's spirit of unity, harmony and tolerance. May the festival bring health, happiness and prosperity to all," he said. Holi will be celebrated Monday.

Holi festivities gripped the Krishna land

Mathura: Holi festivities gripped the Krishna land here Sunday with a riot of colours and devotional prayers in temples dotting the region.

Vrindavan temples were enveloped in colourful clouds of gulal. Saffron colour made from fragrant flowers was sprinkled on the devout. The central point of celebrations was the Bankey Bihari temple. In Mathura, the whole stretch from Holi Gate to the Dwarkadheesh temple witnessed Holi fervour. People threw colours and gulal as they greeted one another with the customary three-time Holi hug. From Goverdhan to Barsana, Nand Gaon and Gokul-Mahavan across the river Yamuna, the mood was festive and Holi celebrations were in full flow.

With bright sunshine, the mustard fields looked in full bloom, adding to the mood. "Farmers in this belt hit by abrupt rains and hailstorms suffered losses. But now the damage does not seem to be so extensive," said Atar Singh, a farmer. In Agra, foreign tourists watched the Holi revellers with awe and curiosity. Some were bold enough to join the colour-throwing contests but most chose to watch from their room windows, said hotelier Sandeep.

Arvind Kejriwal ready to contest against Narendra Modi in Varanasi

Bangalore: AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal said Sunday he was ready to contest against BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi in Varanasi but will take a final decision a week later.

Aamir Khan is 49, but can give any younger actor of Bollywood a run for his money

Mumbai: Aamir Khan is 49, but can give any younger actor of Bollywood a run for his money. The actor-producer says his genes and healthy lifestyle are to be credited.

Aamir turned 49 Friday. When asked about the secret behind his youthful looks and fit frame, he said: "What should I say...a lot of it has to do with my genes, and I always eat healthy. I stay conscious about what I eat." He is also always determined to get the look right for his characters - so, it was no wonder that for the 2008 film "Ghajini", Aamir went out of his way to get eight-pack abs. Even for last year's "Dhoom 3", he had worked hard on his body for a long time. Aamir has been entertaining Hindi film audiences for over 25 years. The actor is currently seen as the host of the second season of TV show "Satyamev Jayate", which deals with socially relevant issues.


Celebrations broke out among BJP members in Varanasi

Lucknow/Varanasi: Celebrations broke out among BJP members in Varanasi after the party late Saturday announced the candidature of its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi from the temple town.

Several hundreds of party supporters shouted pro-Modi slogans, blew conches, smeared each other with "gulaal" (colour) and burst crackers after the late night announcement.
BJP workers said they would be performing a special puja at the famous Kashi Vishwanath temple in the city Monday to thank the diety for paving the way for Modi. Modi will replace sitting MP Murli Manohar Joshi.

In Lucknow, BJP workers gathered at the Vidhan Sabha Marg party office and danced to the beats of drums and burst crackers. Party president Rajnath Singh will contest from Lucknow, replacing sitting MP Lalji Tandon.
Tandon told media there was no question of being unhappy and that the party decided to fielded Rajnath Singh from Lucknow in the best interests.

Senior leader Murli Manohar Joshi will contest from Kanpur, Kalraj Mishra from Deoria, Maneka Gandhi from Pilibhit, party general secretary Varun Gandhi from Sultanpur and firebrand leader Uma Bharti from Jhansi.
Former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh, who recently returned to the BJP, will not contest the polls. The party has fielded his son Rajvir Singh from Etah.

People should vote for Narendra Modi so that India becomes a superpower : A. Vijayakant

Chennai: People should vote for BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi so that India becomes a superpower, actor-turned-politician A. Vijayakant said.

The DMDK chief also wondered why the AIADMK and the DMK are opposed to Lokayukta and anti-corruption courts. Addressing an election rally at Arcot, 115 km from here, Vijayakant said: "Modi should become prime minister if India has to become a superpower."
Contending his party continues to be in the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA), he said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would announce the list of candidates for the state Sunday. His comments came even as BJP cadres in the state were upset with the manner in which the DMDK unilaterally announced its candidates and began the campaign Friday for the Lok Sabha elections. Praising former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee government's Golden Quadrilateral highway network, Vijayakant said there should also be "India sutrum valiban (India touring youth)" in addition to "ullagam sutrum valliban (world touring youth)" - a reference to popular film "Ullagam Sutrum Valiban" in which AIADMK founder M.G. Ramachandran (MGR) starred as a hero.

Coming down heavily on the Jayalalithaa-led AIADMK government in Tamil Nadu, Vijayakant wondered why there was no government scheme named after MGR while all the schemes are named "Amma" - denoting Jayalalithaa.
He said he does not believe in caste or religion as one gets his food by hard work and not because of caste or religion.


Aam Aadmi Party said it will approach the Election Commission against Congress leader and Law Minister Kapil Sibal

New Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party Friday said it will approach the Election Commission against Congress leader and Law Minister Kapil Sibal for allegedly distributing water purifiers in his Lok Sabha constituency.

"The water purifiers bear the Congress' symbol. This proves that he has violated the model code of conduct and we will approach the Election Commission," AAP leader Sanjay Singh said.

The Editors Guild of India condemned the repeated attacks on the media by Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal

New Delhi: The Editors Guild of India Friday condemned the repeated attacks on the media by Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal "that violate the norms of decent democratic debate".

A statement issued by the guild said "accusation against the media as being bought by a particular political party and candidate and his threat, even if it be an empty one, to send media persons to prison after an enquiry reflect an intolerant mind-set that resents any critical scrutiny". "It is the democratic right of the free media to raise any issue and to subject any public person or party to scrutiny, and it is ridiculous to label criticism of a party or of a political leader as 'paid news'."

It went on to say that "most parties have grown to take critical scrutiny for granted and have shown the maturity to counter and get their points of view across in a reasonable manner". "One hopes the intolerance that is reflected in Arvind Kejriwal's recent attacks on the media does not represent the new style of politics promised by the Aam Aadmi Party and its leaders."

Biswajit Chatterjee will contest the coming Lok Sabha polls on Trinamool Congress ticket from New Delhi

Kolkata: Yesteryear's Bollywood film star Biswajit Chatterjee will contest the coming Lok Sabha polls on Trinamool Congress ticket from New Delhi and not South Delhi as announced earlier, the party announced Friday.

"Biswajit will fight from New Delhi constituency and not South Delhi," Trinamool national general secretary Mukul Roy told media persons here. The party also announced a new candidate for Ranaghat Lok Sabha seat in West Bengal, in place of Saugata Barman, who has met with an accident. Roy said Tapas Mondal, an associate professor and reader of Bidhan Chandra Krishi University, would be the new nominee.

"Saugata Barman is now immobile after meeting with an accident," Roy said. He also announced party candidates from Sikkim and Andaman and Nicobar. In Andaman and Nicobar, Anita Bhakta (Mondal) will be in fray on a Trinamool ticket. She is the daughter of eight-time Andaman MP Manoranjan Bhakta.
Nakul Das Raj will be the Trinamool candidate from Sikkim. Roy claimed that the Samata Party in Gujarat has adopted a resolution to merge the party with Trinamool.

Sandip Soparrkar visits PETA head office to discuss Animal Cruelty

With all the glitz and glamour of Bollywood, the stars love to do everything in their own style. What’s even more surprising is that these stars have fondness for animals, Hollywood and Bollywood stars are lending their time and energy to highlight cruelty faced by animals. From being chained and caged, they want this unkindness and brutality to stop.

Bollywood ace choreographer Sandip Soparrkar joined the lost list of stars, including Pamela Anderson, Cindy Crawford, Aishwarya Rai, Shilpa Shetty and Madhuri Dixit, John Abraham to publize the unfair treatment to animals. Sandip who has also received an award from PETA for being a true supporter, was seen visiting PETA USA sprawling headquarters in Norfolk in Virginia and showed his love for animals. This visit was mainly as PETA wanted to discuss with Sandip various dance based events to raise funds and create more awareness about the cause of PETA in USA and India.

President of PETA Ms. Ingrid E Newkrik said, “Sandip Soparrkar has been a long-time animal ally. We are all big fans of Sandip and his beautiful wife Jesse Randhawa, who have performed for PETA events and have starred in a unique ad to wake people up to the suffering of snakes who are seized from their natural life, have their teeth ripped out, spend their lives in suffocating boxes and are forced to dance”

Sandip Soparrkar said, “Jesse and me have been supporters of PETA for years. We keep doing shows and shoots to support PETA. I am glad I finally visited their head office in Virginia USA. They have been tirelessly working towards the cause of animal welfare, my visit was like a promise that I am always there for them in all ways.”


Wellness brand VLCC has launched its first Make-up Studio in south Delhi

New Delhi: Wellness brand VLCC has launched its first Make-up Studio in south Delhi. It is designed to go hand-in-hand with the needs of today's beauty conscious customers. The studio will be a one-stop solution for every kind of make-up and hair styling. The services will primarily include pre-bridal and bridal make-up, as well as party make-up. The facility will also cater to customers who wish to have hair extensions, nail extensions and nail art. Trained experts have been hired to provide detailed personalized consultation to customers. "Today, make-up adds to the overall personality of an individual. Our new studio is yet another step in that endeavour," Vandana Luthra, founder and mentor, VLCC, said in a statement. Apart from a personalised and memorable experience, customers will also be provided a bouquet of offers for their next visit. source:agency

Sahara group chief Subrata Roy will stay in Tihar jail for some more time

New Delhi: Sahara group chief Subrata Roy will stay in Tihar jail for some more time as the Supreme Court Thursday declined his plea for release on a personal bond with an assurance that he will not leave the country.

The apex court bench of Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan and Justice J.S. Khehar reiterated their earlier order as they asked senior counsel Ram Jethmalani if there was any proposal by the Sahara chief to deposit the balance of Rs.19,000 crore to SEBI for resumption of investors money. When Jethmalani told the court that Roy was prepared to pay an amount of Rs.2,500 crore as part payment of the outstanding amount, the court refused to accept the offer. A similar offer made earlier by Sahara was rejected as unacceptable by the court.

Lalu Prasad has turned to vaastu shastra ahead of the Lok Sabha polls

Patna: RJD chief Lalu Prasad has turned to vaastu shastra ahead of the Lok Sabha polls to rid himself and his family of misfortune and ill-luck and to ensure good electoral performance of his party.

With over a dozen of his senior party leaders, including a Rajya Sabha member, half a dozen legislators and former ministers, deserting him and joining rival parties, and the Rashtriya Janata Dal's alliance with the Congress not being seen as a winning combination, Lalu Prasad has ordered that a pond be filled up following a suggestion from an expert in vaastu shastra and an astrologer. "A pond located inside the sprawling 10 Circular Road, the official residence of (his wife and former chief minister) Rabri Devi, was filled with a mix of mud and sand as per the advice of an vaastu expert," said a staff at Rabri's residence.

The pond was dug in 2006 for popular Chhath festival performed by Lalu and Rabri after they shifted from 1 Anne Marg, the chief minister's official residence, since the RJD was ousted from power in November 2005. According to RJD leaders close to Lalu Prasad, a vaastu expert suggested that the pond be filled up since it was located in the middle of the house and creating negative energy and obstacles for the family and the party. Vaastu shastra is an ancient Hindu architectural doctrine that is believed to help occupants of the structure or house lead a happy life.

Lalu "has faith in superstition, astrology and rituals to perform religious worship", an RJD leader said. The RJD chief has been visiting various temples and tombs and even paid a visit to a tantric or self-claimed god man Pagla Baba in Uttar Pradesh's Mirzapur district last year. A ruling JD-U leader recalled that Lalu was a different man when he took over as the chief minister of Bihar for the first time in March 1990. "Lalu was radical. (He) used to make fun of babas and religious beliefs, but over the years troubles and uncertainty in politics have turned him superstitious."

Rahul Gandhi will interact with party leaders in Uttar Pradesh through video conferencing March 15

Lucknow: Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi will interact with party leaders in Uttar Pradesh through video conferencing March 15, a Congress spokesman said Thursday.

The Gandhi scion, hard pressed for time owing to his election campaigns elsewhere in the country, decided to take the electronic route for crucial interaction, sources said. Apart from wishing party workers on the occasion of Holi, the festival of colours, the Congress leader will evaluate the election preparations during his interaction with a selected group of 125 party leaders. Besides offering the party's tickets for the polls, the Congress vice president will take feedback on the issues faced by the party in the state.

The issues for campaigning for the 80 Lok Sabha seats in the state will also be discussed, a party leader said. During the interaction, conducted from the party headquarters in New Delhi, some senior leaders are expected to request Gandhi to fix time to address rallies in their constituencies. Rahul Gandhi is contesting from Amethi in Uttar Pradesh and his mother and Congress president will contest from Rae Bareli. The Congress has 22 members in the outgoing Lok Sabha from Uttar Pradesh.

AAP pointed fingers at police and media alleging mismanagement, chaos, damage to public property and misreporting

Mumbai: A day after Arvind Kejriwal visited Mumbai, the AAP Thursday pointed fingers at police and media alleging mismanagement, chaos, damage to public property and misreporting.

In a statement, the state unit of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) said the volunteers had planned a flawless exit from the airport and entry into the suburban train for Kejriwal, "which got totally derailed due to the media frenzy which police were ill-prepared to control". "We are afraid that the media zeal (in pursuit of exclusive visuals) led to a total breakdown of law and order... Media clambered all over Arvind Kejriwal at the airport, making police cordon off Kejriwal and lead him in the wrong direction," the statement said. On the alleged overloading of the auto-rickshaw in which Kejriwal commuted, the AAP statement said a party volunteer hopped into the auto to ward off cameras for safety. Media persons risked their own safety and that of others to get bytes from him, inviting accident, it added. The statement also denied that Kejriwal jumped a traffic signal. The AAP blamed police for the incident and said there was no personnel to clear the chasing cameras and though Kejriwal's auto stopped at the traffic signal, police forced it to move forward.

About the charge that Kejriwal or the AAP did not take due permission for his roadshow, the statement said: "This (commute from the airport to Churchgate railway station) was no road show or event. The misreporting that we broke some law in this journey is malicious, to the say the least." The AAP pointed a finger at police for isolating Kejriwal at the Andheri railway station, and forcing him to enter through a wrong entrance, while party volunteers were waiting for him at another entrance with full preparation to ensure that normal Mumbai commuters were not affected. "This led to complete mayhem as there weren't enough police to handle the craze that set off on seeing Kejriwal, many people tried to reach out to shake hands, wish him... And the situation became quite chaotic."

Alleging misreporting on the issue of damage to scanners at Churchgate, the party said that "defunct scanners fell due to the media frenzy and surging supporters... They were down for a few minutes and immediately put back in place by our volunteers and no damage was caused". "AAP is really curious as to what levies will Home Minister (R.R. Patil) extract from the AAP for a momentary collapse of defunct scanners when he has failed to extract any levy from parties which burn and damage public property on a routine basis," the party said. "We state that whatever little disturbances that were caused during Kejriwal's visit, were due to poor handling of law and order, of the overzealous media, who risked public safety in their quest for visuals," it added.


The RSS was not involved in the killing of Mahatma Gandhi : L.K. Advani

New Delhi: The RSS was not involved in the killing of Mahatma Gandhi, BJP patriarch L.K. Advani said in a blog, quoting Gandhi's grandson Rajmohan Gandhi Wednesday.

Advani's blog 'Mahatma was perhaps not right' Wednesday also said Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel's contributions have not been acknowledged. "This book by Rajmohan Gandhi has effectively nailed the Congress party's slanderous campaign against the RSS in respect of Mahatmaji's assassination," Advani wrote. The BJP leader said that Rajmohan Gandhi in his book on Patel quoted a letter dated Feb 27, 1948, written by Patel to Jawaharlal Nehru.

The letter said: "I have kept myself almost in daily touch with the progress of the investigation regarding Bapu's assassination case. I devote a large part of my evening to discussing with Sanjeevi (head of intelligence and inspector general of police, Delhi) the day's progress and giving instructions to him on any points that arise. All the accused have given long and detailed statements... It emerges clearly from these statements that the RSS was not involved in it at all."
Advani said that anyone who analyses history "readily feels that if Gandhiji had chosen Sardar Patel instead of Pandit Nehru to become free India's first prime minister, it is quite likely the history of those early years may have been quite different". He also quoted Rajmohan Gandhi's book on Patel, saying "while acknowledgements are fulsome in the case of Nehru, and dutiful in the case of Gandhi, they are niggardly in the case of Patel".

"But the opinion of some that the Mahatma had been less than fair to Vallabhbhai was a factor in my decision to attempt to write the latter's life. If a wrong had been perpetrated, some reparation from one of the Mahatma's grandsons would be in order," the book said.
The BJP patriarch added: "For Rajmohan, Gandhiji's grandson, to say openly that Gandhiji had perhaps not been right in the decision he took about prime ministership, and, so merited some 'reparation' from one of his grandsons not only revealed his own greatness and magnanimity but also endorsed the general view that Sardar would have been a more appropriate choice."

Donations and contributions from private mining companies are taboo for the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Goa

Panaji: Donations and contributions from private mining companies are taboo for the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Goa, a party leader said Wednesday.

The party, which will contest both Lok Sabha seats in Goa, unveiled its two candidates Wednesday. Dattaram Desai will contest from the North Goa seat, while Swati Kerkar has been selected for the South Goa constituency. The AAP said it was working towards replacing the private mining companies from Goa with a state-run corporation that will be the sole agency responsible for extracting ore.

"AAP will not under any circumstances accept donations from mining companies in Goa," Desai said. A statement issued by the party said: "Mining should be done by the Goa Mineral Development Corporation so that the maximum value of the ore can be captured by the government. All money from mining to go to a special Goan permanent fund."

Mamata Banerjee said that social activist Anna Hazare skipped her rally because he was unwell

New Delhi: An embarrassed West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said Wednesday that social activist Anna Hazare skipped her rally here because he was unwell.

The much publicised joint rally of Hazare and the Trinamool chief ended with the former keeping away and organisers admitting that the crowd turnout was poor. "Anna is not keeping well. He has congestion...," a visibly disappointed Banerjee told the media later. Banerjee, who was the only speaker, appealed to the people to radically change the country's political system.

"There is a dangerous trend of two big political parties along with some other groups setting up a syndicate to serve their own interests... "This sort of outlook is detrimental to the interests of the people and (affects) the democratic institutions." She said she was aware of her "limitations. Still, we are fighting the (Lok Sabha) battle alone."


Of the 162 parliamentarians involved in 306 criminal cases, 76 are charged with serious crimes

New Delhi: Of the 162 parliamentarians involved in 306 criminal cases, 76 are charged with serious crimes like murder, attempt to murder and kidnapping, the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and National Election Watch (NEW) said Tuesday.

The analysis of the Lok Sabha MPs elected in 2009 comes a day after the Supreme Court directed that criminal cases against MPs and MLAs should be completed within a year from the date of the trial court framing charges. After analysing the affidavits of the MPs elected in 2009, the ADR and NEW observed that some cases have remained pending for more than 20 years while the average number of years that the cases have remained pending is seven years.

"The analysis is of those cases for which the MP has provided the dates as most of the contesting candidates do not provide the relevant dates like the first information report, date of filing of chargesheets, date of convictions, etc." the ADR said. According to ADR and NEW, the longest pending case is against Guddu Premchand, Congress MP from Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh, booked for murder followed by Sisir Kumar Adhikari of the All India Trinamool Congress who represents Kanthi in West Bengal. A case of rioting and theft against him is pending for 28 years.
Similarly, a case of murder against Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) parliamentarian from Azamgarh, Uttar Pradesh, Ramakant Yadav has been pending for 25 years.

A total of 50 MPs have a total of 136 criminal cases pending against them for 10 years or more while 30 of them have a total of 58 serious criminal cases pending for the same period. The ADR and NEW further said Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) MPs have 69 criminal cases against them followed by the BJP (55 cases), the Samajwadi Party (34 cases) and the Congress (30 cases).
"Kameshwar Baitha of JMM from Palamau, Jharkhand has declared 69 counts of serious cases against himself followed by Jagdish Sharma of the JD-U from Jahanabad, Bihar with 17 such cases."

AAP has received nearly Rs.15 million ($246,000) as donations in the first 10 days of March

New Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has received nearly Rs.15 million ($246,000) as donations in the first 10 days of March from within the country and outside, party sources said.

Interestingly, on March 5, when AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal was detained in Gujarat, it received a staggering Rs 24,26,481. After a stunning debut in Dec assembly elections, the party is set to expand on the national political landscape and take on the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party in the April-May general elections. From March 1 to March 10, the year-old-party received Rs.14,535,050. However, between Dec 12 2013 to March 11 2014, the party collected Rs.11,81,91,753.

Of the total, the lion's share - 21 percent - comes from Delhi, followed by Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and Haryana. "We are receiving Rs 15-20 lakh ever day. People are also donating laptops and chairs," said a party official. Besides India, the donations are pouring from the US , Singapore, UAE and Britain, among other countries. In February, the party had collected Rs.30,571,371.

Congress appointed senior leader N.V. Raghuveera Reddy as president of its Seemandhra unit

Hyderabad: The Congress Tuesday appointed senior leader N.V. Raghuveera Reddy as president of its Seemandhra unit.

Congress president Sonia Gandhi telephoned him to congratulate on his appointment to the top post, party sources said. The party has still not named the chief of its Telangana unit. Raghuveera Reddy, a former state minister, told reporters in Anantapur that he is taking up the responsibility at a difficult time. He vowed to strengthen the party with the support of all leaders and workers of the party.