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    The photos of the doll-like Tonkey are buzzing around social media; on Instagram Tonkey has her own account and is followed by 100,000 people.
    Fluffy puppy Tonkey looks like a teddy bear and has over 100,000
    followers on Instagram. Credit - Instagram

    Staff correspondent, July 31, 2015, NewsCrunch

    A fluffy puppy called Tonkey that looks like a teddy bear is going viral globally.


    The photos of the doll-like Tonkey are buzzing around social media; on Instagram Tonkey has her own account and is followed by 100,000 people.

    Adopted by Christine Park, 26, and boyfriend David Ngu, 30, in Alberta, Canada, Tonkey boasts of high pedigree – a type called a Bearcoat of the elite Shar pei  breed.


    Christine Park told The Mirror that Tonkey loves to cuddle, likes children, and is friendly towards strangers.

    The couple has also adopted Maxi, a stray dog, who has become best friends with Tonkey.

    Video: Watch Tonkey home video – the star descends the stairs







    Photos – Tonkey the puppy….bathing, cuddlng, eating, playing

    The photos of the doll-like Tonkey are buzzing around social media; on Instagram Tonkey has her own account and is followed by 100,000 people.
    Fluffy puppy Tonkey looks like a teddy bear and has over 100,000 followers on
    Instagram. Credit - Instagram

    The photos of the doll-like Tonkey are buzzing around social media; on Instagram Tonkey has her own account and is followed by 100,000 people.
    Fluffy puppy Tonkey looks like a teddy bear and has over 100,000 followers
    on Instagram. Credit - Instagram

    The photos of the doll-like Tonkey are buzzing around social media; on Instagram Tonkey has her own account and is followed by 100,000 people.
    Fluffy puppy Tonkey looks like a teddy bear and has over 100,000 followers
     on Instagram. Credit - Instagram


    The photos of the doll-like Tonkey are buzzing around social media; on Instagram Tonkey has her own account and is followed by 100,000 people.
    Fluffy puppy Tonkey looks like a teddy bear and has over 100,000 followers
    on Instagram. Credit - Instagram


    The photos of the doll-like Tonkey are buzzing around social media; on Instagram Tonkey has her own account and is followed by 100,000 people.
    Fluffy puppy Tonkey looks like a teddy bear and has over
    100,000 followers on Instagram. Credit - Instagram

    The photos of the doll-like Tonkey are buzzing around social media; on Instagram Tonkey has her own account and is followed by 100,000 people.
    Fluffy puppy Tonkey looks like a teddy bear and has over
    100,000 followers on Instagram. Credit - Instagram

    The photos of the doll-like Tonkey are buzzing around social media; on Instagram Tonkey has her own account and is followed by 100,000 people.
    Fluffy puppy Tonkey looks like a teddy bear and has over 100,000 followers on Instagram. Credit - Instagram


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    The practice of live streaming funerals has been gaining ground in India, especially so in the Southern state of Kerala.
    A still of a recent funeral which was webcast live on YouTube 


     By Staff Correspondent, 31 July 2015

    The practice of live streaming funerals has been gaining ground in India, especially so in the Southern state of Kerala.

    The Quinthas anecdotes of production studios which, among other events, also cover funerals. For a fee ranging from Rs.33,000 to 38,000, these firms webcast funerals lasting three to four hours.

    The practice seems to have been started by Sibichan Naluparayil of Changanassery in Kottayam District of Kerala, in 2011. With the health conditions of his ailing 84-years old mother worsening after his elder brothers based abroad had returned after visiting her, Sibichan sought help of the cameras and the internet. 


    His brothers based in the US and Canada saw their mother Chinnamma breathe her last online and took part in the virtual funeral proceedings. 

    The NewIndian Express had then speculated that this ‘novel’ idea could very well become a trend in Kerala, famous for people traveling beyond their state boundaries.

    Funerals webcasts are usually packaged with close and long range shots of the deceased, assembled relatives and all real-time proceedings, often set to mourning music and numbers. 

    When streamed online, email invites are normally sent out with passwords to friends and family to enable them access the event.

    But there are also those who put these funeral videos on You Tube.

    A simple web search shows at least three different companies which have placed numerous funeral videos in public domain on You Tube.

    According to professionals involved, virtual funerals are more popular with Christians, followed by relatively few Hindus.

    In 2014, it was reported that funerals, of which event managers and live telecast are increasingly  an integral part, had become one of the four major industries in Kerala with weddings, births and house-construction,  with each of them attracting multi-crore investments annually.

    Funeral service of Sadhu sir and amala teacher


     

     Hindu Funeral Ceremony Kerala



     


     Funeral service FULL VIDEO of CHIKKU KURIAKOSE Part 1 





    Heart Touching Funeral Ceremony from Kerala 






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    Commenting on the large funeral procession of hanged 1993 Mumbai blasts convict Yakub Menon, Tathagata Roy tweeted that  Intelligence should keep a tab on the large gathering. "Many are potential terrorists," he claimed.
    Tripura GovermorTathagatha Roy worried that Yakub Memon mourners will become terrorists

    Staff correspondent, July 31, 2015, NewsCrunch

    BJP leader Tathagata Roy broke his promise that he would behave himself after taking over as Tripura Governor and sent out a yet another controversial tweet on Friday.
    Commenting on the large funeral procession of hanged 1993 Mumbai blasts convict Yakub Memon, Tathagata Roy tweeted that  Intelligence should keep a tab on the large gathering. "Many are potential terrorists," he claimed.

    After many criticised that his tweets were unbecoming of a Governor, he said it was his job to be concerned about the security of the state.   Tathagata Roy also claimed that he had not targeted any particular community.

    As the West Bengal BJP chief, Tathagata Roy was a highly polemical figure.He saw it as his mission to save Hinduism from  his two pet hates – Muslims and Mamata Banerjee.

    As a BJP leader, he had built a reputation for his controversial anti-Muslim tweets.

    He had lauded Gujarat riots of 2002 appreciating what Hindus extremists did. A staunch believer in Love Jihad, he had declared all Muslims as infiltrators. He had also seen all communal disturbances as occasions of Muslim aggression and believed that only a Hindu majority could save India.

    But after he was made Governor-designate Tathagata Roy said he would be beyond politics and treat all communities alike. But as it turns out, old habits die hard.

    Tathagata Roy's tweets on Yakub Memon funeral march







    Twitter Response to Tathagata Roy's tweets on Yakub Memon funeral march












    Related
    10 controversial anti-Muslim tweets from Tathagata Roy 



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     A Pakistani journalist Dr Shahid Masood has waded into controversy by calling India’s National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval less capable than a Pakistani chaprasi, dhobhi or bhangi.
    Anchor Dr Shahid Masood insults Ajit Doval, a man Pakistan loves to hate 

     By Staff Correspondent, 31 July 2015, NewsCrunch

     A Pakistani journalist Dr Shahid Masood has waded into controversy by calling India’s National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval less capable than a Pakistani chaprasi, dhobhi or bhangi.

    The video below shows Dr.Shahid Masood on News One channel advising Ajit Doval that he should hire a Pakistani chaprasi, or a dhobhi or a bhangi, who can plan better than he does.

    He also says he had met Ajit Doval in a conference in 2005.

    Taking part in a live debate, Dr. Shahid Masood’s contended that the Gurdaspur operation, in which three terrorists who had crossed over from Pakistan were killed, was actually an Indian RAW operation.

    He claimed that the CCTV footage first showed a clean shaven man, while the bodies which were later brought out were that of bearded men wearing salwar kameez.

    It can come as no surprise that Ajit Doval is not very popular in Pakistan. 

    After all, he has very effectively engaged Pakistan during his tenure in the Intelligence Bureau.

    During Operation Black Thunder-II that was launched to flush out militants from the Golden Temple, he posed as a Pakistani agent to get in touch with Khalistani militant leaders.

    He weaned away militants such as Kuka Parray in Kashmir, turning them into counter-terrorism assets for Indian security agencies.

    It has been reported that he lived incognito in Pakistan for many years at high risk providing real time intelligence on  Pakistan’s Kahuta nuclear plant to Indian agencies.

    Video: Watch Pakistani journalist Dr. Shahid Masood saying Ajit Doval is less capable than a Pakistani chaprasi








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    One hundred and sixty four sky divers made history this last month when they made a vertical formation flying upside down at Ottawa.
    A still of the video which shows 164 sky divers flying upside down in Ottawa (video below)
    Staff correspondent, August 1, 2015, NewsCrunch

    One hundred and sixty four sky divers made history this July when they made a vertical formation flying upside down at Ottawa.

    They went up in seven aircraft and leapt at a height of 20,000 feet. Flying 180 miles per hour it took considerable skill and practice to come together, hold hands and slowly build the circular formation.

    And they were all flying upside down and a video by Barcraft media shows the breathtaking mid air stunt.

    As they descended to 7,500 feet, they parted ways and landed safely one by one, setting a new world record in vertical formation.

    Video of 164 sky divers making vertical formation while flying upside down in Ottawa



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    You Tube video screen grab of UP Police publicly thrashing a youth accused of stealing a laptop
    You Tube video screen grab of UP Police publicly thrashing a youth accused of stealing a laptop in Merapur
     By Staff Correspondent, August 1, 2015, NewsCrunch

    UP police have been caught on camera mercilessly thrashing a young man accused of stealing a laptop with leather belt.

    As reported by India Today, Surjeet, Umesh and Farid were picked up by the Merapur police in Farrukhabad on the suspicion of stealing a laptop.

    That the youth operated a mobile repair shop in the village was the cause for suspicion, say the family members of the young men.

    The youth were reportedly kept in illegal detention for two days and booked in a false case of possessing illegal arms as the police could not find any evidence against them.

    A video shot using a mobile phone has emerged in which one of the three youngsters, identified as Surjeet, is being publicly and mercilessly thrashed by the police.

    It shows policemen in plain clothes and uniform first forcefully stretching out Surjeet's arms around a pillar to hold him in position, while two of their colleagues thrash him on his back with a thick, three to four inch belt.

    Once the video went viral on whatsapp, it was picked by the media and made its way to senior police officials.

    Station Officer Merapur Saligram Verma, Sub Inspector Ram Sanehi and two police constables have been sent to police lines and Farrukhabad SP Dinesh Kumar says further inquiry is on.


    Video: See UP police publicly thrashing a young man suspected of stealing a laptop






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    Sandeep P, president of Samanya Kannadiga, tweeted on Friday saying he had sent a legal notice to Facebook for deleting its popular page which had a following of over 20,000 people.
    Samanya Kannadiga sends legal notice to Facebook for deleting its page 
    Special correspondent, August 1, 2015

    Sandeep P, president of Samanya Kannadiga, tweeted on Friday saying he had sent a legal notice to Facebook for deleting its popular page which had a following of over 20,000 people.

    As NewsCrunch had reported recently,  Facebook unpublished a hugely popular pro-Kannada page Samanya Kannadiga (Ordinary Kannadiga)  for violating its terms of use.

    Without elaborating the nature of transgression, Facebook had just sent a standard message it uses on these occasions. Facebook rules prohibit any page from running campaigns against individuals or groups.

    Samanya Kannadiga had over 20,000 members and was active in taking on issues which were seen as offensive to kannadigas.

    Most recently Samanya Kannadiga had campaigned against Chirag Mittal, a sales manager at Casa Grande, a Chennai based real estate developer.

    Chirag Mittal had made a Facebook post making fun of Kannadigas. He had said that people were coming from outside to rule over local people while adding that five Kannadigas were working under him.

    Samanya Kannadiga had also highlighted an incident in which a Flipkart employee had abused Kannada.

    It is possible that Facebook acted on complaints or mass reporting of abuse by those unhappy with Samanya Kannadiga's activities and unpublished it.

    If the legal notice is pursued seriously, it may prompt Facebook to follow a more nuanced approach in dealing with complaints. It should specify to the page in question the nature of transgression, hear from it and then give time to take corrective action.

    It may not be possible to follow this approach to every page that is reported; but groups, which have been in operation for sometime, have thousands of members  and represent specific interests can be considered a separate case and treated with more consideration.

    Related
    Facebook axes popular Samanya Kannadiga page after it violates terms of use 





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    A probable case of clashing cultures or even failed communication has resulted in grave injustice for an Indian family in the US, at Beaverton, Oregon.  In a case revolving around their son, who by most accounts seems to have injured himself accidentally, first, a juvenile court judge held the mother responsible, calling her ‘mentally sick’.
    Culture clash- US government breaks up Indian family in USA

    Staff Correspondent, August 1, 2015, NewsCrunch



    A probable case of clashing cultures or even failed communication has resulted in grave injustice for an Indian family in the US, at Beaverton, Oregon.

    In a case revolving around their son, who by most accounts seems to have injured himself accidentally, first, a juvenile court judge held the mother responsible, calling her ‘mentally sick’.
    But a grand jury on the very next day found the father guilty of charges of assault and ordered his arrest, who is now on bail. 
    The Hindu reports that the travails of the family, which has not been identified, began early this year, in February.
    When their three year old son fell and injured his leg, his mother took him to the doctor. On diagnosis that he had suffered a hairline fracture, she casually mentioned that maybe her husband had dropped their son, when the latter had climbed his back to play.
    This was interpreted as a case of abuse and the US Government agencies, which deal with child abuse got involved. The woman was asked to sign a number of papers, many of which she could not understand.
    The husband, who worked with a high tech firm, was no longer allowed to enter his own home or have contact with his wife and children.
    After sustained rounds of counseling he was allowed to return home and the social workers were ready to close the case. But, in July, the District Attorney reopened the case and started trial, calling the wife to testify against her own husband.
    The husband is again cut off from his family, which seems to have come from West Bengal.
    The plight of the couple is similar to few other cases of families caught in the cross-cultural currents, such as the Saha case of 2012, involving an Indian couple from New Jersey, and the Bhattacharya case, involving the Bengali couple who lived in Norway.

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    Brian Sloan is looking for a good-looking vagina to make plastic moulds
    Staff correspondent, August 1, 2015

    A woman from Scotlandhas been voted as having the "World's Most Beautiful Vagina."

    The poll was conducted by Brian Sloan, the man who created hit sex toys, the Autoblow and the Autoblow 2. As we try to be a family magazine, Google out to find out that they do.

    As part of the contest rules, 182 women submitted photos of their vaginas, which were voted on by the website's134,707 unique visitors.

    Though the winning entry won by a huge margin and bagged $5,000 prize money, there were no parameters given to the voters to make their choice.

    The photos are also being used by a research project that is investigating the diversity of vulvas and the public opinion about them.



    Now, why did Brian Sloan think of the Vagina Beauty Pageant? He is looking for a good-looking vagina to make plastic moulds and turn them into sex toys. 

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    There has been no formal announcement from the government; but the extensive complaints, which are pouring in suggest that an informal official order is possibly in place to get ISPs to block adult sites.
    A screengrab of an AIB video - India bans porn. The actor in the image is presumably not a Reddit user

    Staff correspondent, August 1, 2015, NewsCrunch

    A discussion thread on community site Reddithas begun to report that users are not able to access porn sites across cities and ISPs in India.

    There has been no formal announcement from the government; but the extensive complaints, which are pouring in, suggest that an informal official order is possibly in place to get ISPs to block adult sites.

    Reddit users reported that porn sites have been blocked on internet connections provided by MTNL Mumbai, BSNL, Vodafone and ACT. The response to the adult site URLs have been varied: some are getting blank  pages, some messages such as 404 or “Directory doesn't exist”.


    A Reddit user stated that he got a message saying the site had been blocked by the 'Competent Authority'.


    After the discussion flared up on Reddit, many tested independently and found that there was merit in the complaints.

    Legally India stated that in New Delhi, on a Spectranet connection, 11 out of the 13 porn sites it tested were not accessible.

    However, it could access two websites, which were functioning normally. Many Reddit users of Airtel and Tikona reported that all of their favourite porn sites could be accessed.

    The mixed user experience in accessing porn suggests a ban that is being informally placed, spreading from ISP to ISP, with some of them possibly showing some resistance.

    If the government hand is behind the porn ban, its legal authority to do so would be suspect. The Information Technology Act of India makes watching or possessing pornographic materials legal. It only bans child pornography, distribution and production of X-rated materials.

    But the government has spoken at different voices at different times.

    In April last year, it filed an affidavit before the  Supreme Court saying banning porn in the country was not feasible. However, in November, Telecom & IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said, "Although porn is legal in other countries, it needs to be viewed in the context of Indian culture and moral obligation towards society."



    The Supreme Court is hearing a PIL filed by lawyer Kamlesh Vasvani seeking a ban on porn as it leads to "activities like rape, harassment, molestations of women."

    Recently, CJI Dattu, while hearing the case, observed that people watching porn privately within the four walls of the home could not be stopped.

    While the hearing in the case continues, the government seems to have jumped the gun and banned the porn.


    Related
    Supreme Court shifts stance, says right to watch porn is part of personal liberty in India 



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    Noticing that all cows had similar pattern of stitches on their stomachs, they suspected foul play.  On using metal detectors to check the cows, they were able to hear a strange sound, similar to that of a ticking clock, reports Zee News.
    Sound a ticking clock is coming from the belly of the cows seized by the Indian Army.
    Screen grab from 24 Ghanta report 
    Staff correspondent, August 1., 2015

    Maoists are reportedly stitching up bombs within live animals to surprise the security forces.

    On Friday, the Indian Army seized 100 cows from two smugglers near the Indo-Nepal border.

    Noticing that all cows had similar pattern of stitches on their stomachs, they suspected foul play.  On using metal detectors to check the cows, they were able to hear a strange sound, similar to that of a ticking clock, reports Zee News.

    The cows, which have been taken to  camp, are suspected to be carrying explosive devices inside their body.

    While the report may sound bizarre, the modus operandi sounds familiar.

    Two years ago, doctors at the Ranchi Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) found an unexploded bomb implanted within the dead body of a 29- year-old CRPF constable Babulal Patel during their post mortem surgery.

    Babulal Patel was one of the 14 people who lost their lives during an armed ambush by the Maoists in Jharkhand in January 2013.

    Defusing the IED was so complicated that Jharkhand called NSG experts from Gurgaon to do it.

    The bomb was finally disposed in an open field in the RIMS premises.


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    Anup Surendranath, deputy registrar of research at Supreme Court, quit in protest after Yakub Memon was hanged to death.
    Former Deputy Registrar Anup Surendranath slams Supreme Court
    for Yakub Memon verdict 

    Staff correspondent, August 2, 2015, NewsCrunch

    Anup Surendranath, deputy registrar of research at Supreme Court, quit in protest after Yakub Memon was hanged to death.

    In his Facebook post he has called the verdict "judicial abdication, which should count among the amongst the darkest hours for the Supreme Court of India."

    He refused to elaborate to the media where the Supreme Court had erred.  .

    But Anup Surendranath resignation seems to have come less from the specifics of the Yakub Memon case and more from his general opposition to death penalty.

    He is also a faculty member of National Law University, Delhi, and Director of Death Penalty Research Project.

    The research project seeks to interview about the 400+ death row prisoners in India and Anup Surendranath himself has spoken to over 100.

    In this video, which was recorded 2014, he explains what he found during the course of his ongoing research and why for death row prisoners dying is the easy part.

    Anup Surendranath says when it comes to debating death penalty, the focus has to shift from the top courts to the trial courts, where the death sentences are actually passed.

    A person, who is sentenced  to death, is never calm; he never thinks that the appeal process in the High Court and the Supreme court will take years.  Death is always on his mind. He becomes sensitive to the sound. Any disturbance at night, jail gates closing, he thinks they are coming for him.

    98% of those sentenced to death are first time offenders - not hardened criminals. They commit crime in a state of mental distress not through cold calculations. Hence, the argument that death penalty deters others is futile.

    The impact on the families is terrible  they are ostracized by their communities and made to go through a living hell everyday of their life. 

    The evidence which hangs people to death is weak. There is no analysis of the quality of the trial court decisions or the quality of legal aid  received by the accused. The government appointed lawyers do not even speak to these prisoners.

    The concerned High Courts usually commute 85% of the death penalty cases.  

    Finally, it is the poor and the illiterates who get victimised. Dalits and Muslims dominate the ranks of those sentenced to death by anti-terror laws. 

    Video: Watch Anup Surendranath explaining death penalty research and why he opposes judicial murders 


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    On 30th July, the British media widely reported that their media watchdog Ofcom fined Lamhe Channel of Zee Network UK (owned by Asia TV Limited) 25,000 pounds.
     A still of Dr Pankaj Naram - cancer cure claims questioned  (video below)
    Staff Correspondent, August 1, 2015, NewsCrunch

    On 30th July, the British media widely reported that their media watchdog Ofcom fined Lamhe Channel of Zee Network UK (owned by Asia TV Limited) 25,000 pounds.

    This was in response to Lamhe airing the 'Yoga for You' programme by Dr. Pankaj Naram in June 2014, in which he claimed that '11 holy basil leaves and three black peppers' could prevent cancer.

    Also key to Ofcom's decision was Dr. Pankaj Naram's claim that he had 75,000 cancer patients, who had been given only two to three months to live by famous hospitals worldwide 15 years ago, still living and healthy following his treatment.

    Dr. Pankaj Naram claims to unlock ancient Indian secrets to offer miracle cure for a wide range of ailments.

    Ofcom noted that Dr Naram's medical advice that his ayurvedic products could be used to successfully treat cancer and hernia conditions was damaging since some ayurvedic products had a potential to be toxic; and there was no evidence that they could prevent, treat or cure cancer.

    It then ruled that such claims could convince those suffering from cancer to delay or forego their treatments and fined Zee Network.

    The NewsMinute highlighted Zee's response to the regulator that the programme actually aimed at Indian audience was mistakenly broadcast in the UK due to human error. And raised an important question about why this, having dual standards, was justified.

    Zee Network's claim that the programme was only for Indian audience does appear to suggest that it is okay to endorse and promote unproven ayurvedic products against serious ailments in India

    While only Zee Network can respond to this particular issue with more clarity, it appears that the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) could be an important stakeholder, considering that it regulates advertisements including those related to health care products and services.

    In May 2014, ASCI found 80 advertisements related to health and personal care products and services to be false or misleading or not adequately/scientifically substantiated and in violation of the ASCI Code. Twenty of these were related to ayurvedic, herbal and traditional medicine and services.

    Video - Dr Pankaj Naram offers ancient cancer cure





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    A still from the leaked footage of Rajdeep Sardesai- Arvind Kejriwal
    slamming  Najeeb Jung (Video below)


    Staff correspondent, August 2, 2015, NewsCrunch

    Well known journalist Rajdeep Sardesai was left red faced on Saturday after a footage of him commenting on Delhi Lieutenant General  Najeeb Jung leaked and spread on social media.

    The footage was shot during an interview with Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal which was aired on July 17.

    The video shows Rajdeep Sardesai and Kejriwal chatting casually in the studio before the recording begins, slamming Najeeb Jung together.

    Rajdeep Sardesai says Najeeb Jung was a Sonia Gandhi appointee and Kejriwal completes the sentence saying he had switched sides.

    Rajdeep Sardesai continues expressing his anguish speaking in half-sentences - he should have (quit) gracefully and then adds: I don't know what keeps these people ....

    For the Adarsh Bhakts, who gave the  leaked video viral treatment, it was a yet another case of Rajdeep Sardesai's  partisan reporting. The cozy chat shows his political  affiliation and many pointed out that he was merely preparing the stage for Kejriwal to deliver his message.

    Expecting journalists to have no personal opinion is like saying judges always go only by the evidence before them - personal prejudices are a professional hazard in these jobs and clever ones manage to keep it buried inside.

    Seasoned politicians and media practitioners are taught to treat all mikes as live whether the camera is rolling or not. While Kejriwal was alert to this fact, Rajdeep Sardesai, was looking fat and complacent.

    For the record, in the interview which was aired, Kejriwal went after Najeeb Jung calling him Modi's puppet. He also confronted Rajdeep Sardesai a few times saying he should be given a chance to speak without interference.



    Video: Watch leaked footage of Rajdeep Sardesai- Arvind Kejriwal slamming  Najeeb Jung









    Twitter response to  leaked footage of Rajdeep Sardesai- Arvind Kejriwal slamming  Najeeb Jung 








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    A controversy erupted on Sunday after media reported that disgraced godman Asaram Bapu has been listed among India's famous saints in a third standard text book in Jodhpur.
    A screen grab of Asaram Bapu and Ramdev among India's famous saints from Times Now
    Staff correspondent, August 2, 2015, NewsCrunch

    A controversy erupted on Sunday after media reported that disgraced godman Asaram Bapu has been listed among India's famous saints in a third standard text book in Jodhpur.

    The text book also celebrates another controversial godman Ramdev, who is known as much for his political and business acumen as for his spiritual discourses.

    The text book ranks the two worldly godmen among a galaxy deeply revered spiritual leaders:  Guru Nanak, Paramahamsa, Buddha, Mother Theresa, Vivekananda and Sanakaracharya.

    While Ramdev's status dims a little when compared to Gautam Buddha, it is the inclusion of Asaram Bapu, which is outright scandalous.

    Two Surat-based sisters have lodged separate complaints against Asaram and his son Narayan Sai accusing them of rape, sexual assault and illegal confinement.

    The 73-year-old Asaram Bapu has been in a jail in Jodhpur since September 2013, ironically the same place where children are learning that he is a great saint.  Several witnesses, who have deposed against him have been shot dead mysteriously.

    The moral science textbook that features Asaram Bapu and Ramdev among great saints appears in Nyaya Ujala, a book by a Delhi-based Gurukul Prakashan.

    The latest Asaram Bapu controversy follows reports that a Madhya Pradesh textbook has listed Musharraf among world's great leaders.

    Twitter responds to Jodhpur textbook listing Asaram along with Guru Nanak, Buddha and Vivekananda 










    Related

    Madhya Pradesh text book lists General Pervez Musharraf among great men  



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    Hooked to cinema in the tin-roofed small cinema hall at his native Budhana village in UP, and trained at National School for Drama (NSD), actor Nawazuddin Siddique was broke after seven years of doing theatre.
    A still from Kahani, one among the films which gave Nawazuddin Siddique, a break

    Staff Correspondent, August 2, 2015, NewsCrunch

    Hooked to movies in the tin-roofed small cinema hall at his native Budhana village in UP, and trained at National School for Drama (NSD), actor Nawazuddin Siddique was broke after seven years of doing theatre.

    Love for acting and hunger drove him to Mumbai and look for opportunities in television and films.

    He found miniscule roles in Sarfarosh, Shool  and Munnabhai MMBS.

    He also did time as an extra, being part of the crowd in a few advertisements, during which he always turned his face away from the camera.

    ‘So that nobody could say that an NSD actor is part of a crowd’ Nawazadduin Siddiqui told Indian Express, when asked why he did so.

    The remarkable interview of the remarkable actor charts the course he’s traversed through in his profession.

    It also paints the picture of the person that he is – someone who is passionate and dedicated to his craft and as mentally tough as Dashrath Manjhi, the mountain man whom he plays in Manjhi.

    That Nawazuddin Siddiqui was a down to earth person has been apparent for quite a while.

    When a popular twitter handle ‘Gareeb Aadmi’ used his photo on its profile, he said he was not ashamed of being poor because it was true.

    The @GareebGuy twitter account run by an unidentified person tweets the experiences of a supposedly poor man, who lives with a family of 16 under a railway bridge. The account has become popular for its sharp though often politically incorrect sense of humour. 

    Nawazuddin Siddiqui however did not appreciate his photo being used by the twitter handle because of the racist remarks the account made at times in the guise of jokes.



     Previously:




     

     

     


















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    Arvind Swamy is making a comeback in Bollywood
    Arvind Swamy is making a comeback in Bollywood (Image Souce: You Tube)

     Staff Correspondent, 2 August 2015, NewsCrunch

    After making a sensational debut at 21 and quitting films at 29, southern actor Arvind Swamy is making a comeback in Bollywood in his late 40s.


    His last movie was in the year 2000 when he romanced Manisha Koriala in Raja Ko Rani Se Pyar Ho Gaya.


    Arvind Swamy was introduced to an all India audience by noted filmmaker Mani Ratnam in 1992.


    At 21 years of age, he played the lead role in Roja and at 23, in Bombay, both of which made him a household name all over the country and the heartthrob of many.


    Speaking to Ahmedabad Mirror, he says while he enjoyed the experience, he wasn’t prepared for stardom and found it stifling. 


    He stopped acting when he was 29.


    Though he kept in touch with friends in the industry, it was a personal tragedy that actually got him back films again.


    A serious accident put him in bed for almost a year. The spine injury left him partially paralysed in one leg. 


    This was when his mentor Mani Ratnam called on him, persuaded and motivated him to get back to shape so that they could do a project together. 


    This project was Kadal, a Tamil film, which was shot in 2013 by Mani Ratnam, with Aravind Swamy as the lead.


    Arvind Swamy will be returning to Bollywood with a Hindi remake of Mahesh Manjrekar's 2012 Marathi period drama, Kaksparsh, which revolves around the lives of a Chitpavan Brahmin family, set in 1930s.  


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    Laddu, the much coveted prasadam of Tirupati, India’s richest temple, celebrated its 300th year anniversary on Sunday.
    A still of a YouTube video on the making Tirupati laddu at Temple kitchen. (Video below)

    Staff correspondent, August 3, 2015, NewsCrunch

    Laddu, the much coveted prasadam of Tirupati, India’s richest temple, celebrated its 300th year anniversary on Sunday.

    According to the Tirumala Tirupati temple records, the practice of offering laddu as prasadam started on August 2, 1715.


    The Telegraph reports on the fascinating history of the laddu that is served to devotees at the Lord Venkateshwara temple of Tirupati.

    Before laddu was introduced 300 years ago, the temple was offering payasam or a sweet dish made of rava or rice as prasadam.

    Around the year 1700, the Tirumala temple faced a shortage of priests; so the mahant-in-charge invited a group of Vaikhanasa priests to the service of  the Lord.

    To make the priests accept the offer, he offered them a share in prasadam revenues.  The priests decided to offer laddu as prasadam as it is dry, easier to pack and also stays longer without getting spoilt.

    The Tirumala temple sells 3 lakh laddus every day, which earn about Rs 250 crore a year.


    Video: Teams of priests making Tirupati laddu at Temple kitchen





    Related

    Online booking rush for Vaikunta Ekadasi crashes Tirumala servers 

    Tamil parties oppose Mahinda Rajapaksa’s visit to Tirupati on December 10 




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    Russian airline Aeroflot refused to fly four Kashmiri students from New Delhi to Istanbul recently, despite their having all relevant official travel documents.
    Aeroflot says the Kashmiri students did not have luggage, money and 
    original invitations to the conference. (Image source: Wikpedia) 

    Staff Correspondent, 3 August, 2015, NewsCrunch



    Russian airline Aeroflot refused to fly four Kashmiri students from New Delhi to Istanbul recently, despite their having all relevant official travel documents.

    After that, Aeroflot also failed to refund the money spent by the students on the tickets.

    Mohd Iqbal Rather, one of the students involved, told Mail Todaythat Aeroflot provided no reasons for doing this.
    Iqbal Rather, from Aligarh Muslim University, and his three fellow students, were traveling to Turkey to participate in a nine-day conference on "Concept of Social Justice in Islam."

    An anonymous official from New Delhi airport informed that the students did not have luggage, money and original invitations to the conference.

    One of them ad reportedly traveled to Pakistan frequently, but was unable to explain why he did so. 

    Iqbal Rather refuted this version of events from the anonymous official.



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    A video that’s gone viral shows a car driver disturbed by two pranksters, dressed as ghosts, running over one of them, seriously injuring the person.
    Watch A still from the video, which shows a car running over a ghost  (Video below)


    Staff Correspondent, August 3, 2015, NewsCrunch


    A video that’s gone viral shows a car driver disturbed by two pranksters, dressed as ghosts, running over one of them, seriously injuring the person.

    The video was published on You Tube on July 18thand has so far been viewed more than 1.38 million times.

    It shows a car driving slowly in the night, in a well-lit area of an unidentified Indian city, possibly New Delhi. And all of a sudden, an entity dressed in white robes with unruly, long black hair, jumps in front of the car and starts making weird movements.

    The driver starts backing off when a similar ghost-like person appears behind the car and starts grabbing it, attempting it seems, to open the back door.

    The car then moves forward again, picking up pace towards the weirdly dancing ghost-like character in the front and runs over the person.

    The injured ghost utters choicest gaalis in Hindi suggesting that the incident happened in a North Indian city.

    The spat of blood on the road and the man in costume who played the ghost writhing in pain suggests that this probably was a prank that went seriously wrong.

    This video was first uploaded by Jukin Media, which has built its business around user-generated video.  Its content generates more than one billion monthly views and recently, Samsung invested $2 million in the group.

    Watch video: Prank gone seriously wrong - Driver runs over prankster








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