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Hindu Girls Abducted, Forcefully Converted To Islam In Pakistan, Sushma Swaraj Seeks Justice March 26, 2019 12:05

External Affairs Minister of India Sushma Swaraj on Tuesday asked Pakistan to return to the family two minor Hindu girls who were abducted, forcefully converted to Islam and married off on the eve of Holi in Sindh province. "Forced conversion of Hindu girls in Pakistan: The age of the girls is not disputed. Raveena is only 13 and Reena is 15 years old,” tweeted Sushma Swaraj. Forced conversion of Hindu girls in Pakistan : The age of the girls is not disputed. Raveena is only 13 and Reena is 15 years old. /1 — Chowkidar Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) March 26, 2019 “Even the Prime Minister on Naya Pakistan will not believe that girls of this tender age can voluntarily decide about their conversion to another religion and marriage," Swaraj tweeted referring to Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan's 'Naya Pakistan'. Even the Prime Minister on Naya Pakistan will not believe that girls of this tender age can voluntarily decide about their conversion to another religion and marriage. /2 — Chowkidar Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) March 26, 2019 "Justice demands that both these girls should be restored to their family immediately," she added. Justice demands that both these girls should be restored to their family immediately. /3 — Chowkidar Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) March 26, 2019 The incident came to light after the girls' father and brother revealed the details in videos that went viral on social media. In a separate video, however, the girls claimed that they accepted Islam out of their own free will. The Pakistan Prime Minister had on Sunday directed that an "immediate" investigation be conducted in the case. On the same day, India had shared its concerns through an official note to the Pakistan Foreign Office over the incident. India sought appropriate remedial action by the Pakistan government to protect and promote security, safety, and welfare of its own citizens, particularly from the minority communities. Pakistan human rights activists have claimed that this is another case of forced conversion and abduction, which are turning out to be more and more common in the southern region of Sindh. The girls were abduction from their home in Daharki taluka of Ghotki district in Sindh province on the eve of Holi and converted to Islam. By Sowmya Sangam

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Watch: Salman Khan Shake Legs with Venkatesh at His daughter Aashritha Daggubati's Wedding March 26, 2019 11:53

Recently Bollywood star Salman Khan attended Tollywood actor Venkatesh Daggubati daughter Aashritha's wedding in Jaipur and the event was out-and-out fun-filled. Videos of the two actors - Salman Khan and Venkatesh - dancing to the 'Jumme Ki Raat' from Salman's 2014 film Kick have been making the rounds on social media. Omg #Venky nd #SalmanKhan dance #AashrithaWedding pic.twitter.com/QcQw4jjBfL — Shirisha(@shirishasahu) March 24, 2019 Aashritha tied the knot with her boyfriend Vinayak Reddy in a close-knit ceremony with only friends and relatives. According to NDTV, they reportedly got engaged at Venkatesh's Hyderabad home on 6 February. Samantha Akkineni, Naga Chaitanya, Ram Charan, Venkatesh's nephew Rana Daggubati and actor-politician Bina Kak were also in attendance. Bina also shared some photographs from the event on her official Instagram account.       View this post on Instagram Congratulations Venky ! @venkateshdaggubati A post shared by Bina Kak (@kakbina) on Mar 22, 2019 at 8:34pm PDT       View this post on Instagram #destinationwedding #happeningplace#jaipur#rajasthan#southcomeshere#bondingwithfriends @venkateshdaggubati @ranadaggubati @beingsalmankhan @energeetikally A post shared by Bina Kak (@kakbina) on Mar 22, 2019 at 8:31pm PDT       View this post on Instagram SK at home !! In jaipur A post shared by Bina Kak (@kakbina) on Mar 22, 2019 at 10:48am PDT On the work front, Salman will be seen next in Ali Abbas Zafar's Bharat opposite Katrina Kaif. It was recently announced that he will share the screen space with Alia Bhatt in Inshallah and he also announced another project with Sanjay Leela Bhansali. The actor has produced the upcoming romantic drama Notebook, starring debutants Pranutan Bahl and Zaheer Iqbal. -Sangam Sowmya    

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Watch: Alia Bhatt Says ‘I Love You’ to Ranbir Kapoor in Her Filmfare Winning Speech for Raazi March 26, 2019 10:41

A rare public display of affection by Alia Bhatt and Ranbir Kapoor at 64th Filmfare awards made their fans go smitten. It all happened when Alia Bhatt won the Best Actress Award for her role in Raazi. After receiving the award, Alia thanked her team of Raazi but a special mentioned was saved for her boyfriend Ranbir Kapoor. In a video that is doing the rounds on social media, Alia Bhatt can be seen saying "I love you", while Ranbir can be seen blushing over Alia's special gesture. Calling him a ‘special man’ in her speech she went on to say, “Meghna for me Raazi is you, your blood and sweat. You are my main chick. Vicky without you, the film wouldn’t be complete. Thank you, my mentor Karan for being my mentor, father, and my fashion police. Tonight’s all about love there my special one, I love you (Ranbir Kapoor).” Alia Bhatt- I love you (from stage) after winning award, while Ranbir Kapoor is all smiles#FilmfareAwards2019 pic.twitter.com/UPHZFzvV5L — RanbirKapoorUniverse (@RanbirKUniverse) March 23, 2019 Ranbir Kapoor bagged the Best Actor honor for his role in "Sanju". Just when his name was announced as the winner, Alia Bhatt, who was seated next to him, gave him a side hug and a kiss on the cheek. Alia Bhatt and Ranbir Kapoor will be seen sharing screen space in the upcoming film "Brahmastra" which is all set to release in December 2018. -Sangam Sowmya    

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Woman With Rare Sleep Order Misses Annual Exam After Sleeping With 3 Weeks Straight March 26, 2019 09:45

A 21-year-old university student from Leicester, United Kingdom revealed that she recently missed her annual exams after sleeping for 3 weeks straight. According to reports, Rhoda Rodriquez-Diaz is suffering from a rare disorder ‘Kleine Levin syndrome’ which causes a person to sleep for up to 22 hours a day. Kleine Levin syndrome is a one-in-a-million disorder characterized by recurrent episodes of excessive sleep (hypersomnia) along with cognitive and behavioral changes. people who suffer from it remain in dream-like trance state even while eating and going to the toilet. Rhoda’s worst sleeping episode lasted up to three weeks which caused her to fail her second-year university exam, reported Mail Online. "It's really annoying when people call me lazy. I do struggle with the effects of it but it's part of me and not who I am. It's frustrating because I can't help it,", Rhoda told the Mail Online. Although Rhoda was diagnosed with hyper insomnia when she was a child, it was only in September 2018 that doctors discovered the 21-year-old was suffering from Kleine-Levin Syndrome, also called ‘sleeping beauty syndrome’ "I feel a huge setback when it does happen. I miss out on so much. It's hard to explain to people where I have been because it's so rare and a lot of people struggle to understand," said Rhoda. Rhoda said she could sleep for weeks at a time even when she was four years old. At that time, her doctors were unable to find what was causing the sleep disorder. However, the sleeping episodes increased drastically when she turned 15. "I found myself mentally tired all of the time - I got worked up and my behavior changed drastically - it was only after I woke up after a few days I would feel normal again,” said Rhoda. Recently, a doctor at St Thomas’ Hospital diagnosed her condition correctly.But the problem still persists. By Sowmya Sangam

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Earth Hour 2019: From Candlelight Dinner to Self-Care, 6 Ways to Observe the Hour March 26, 2019 06:59

Earth Hour every year will be observed on March 30 every year at between 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m encouraging individuals, communities, and businesses to tune off non-essential electrical lights for an hour to raise awareness about the deteriorating condition of the earth, mainly due to human activities. The Earth Hour 2019's campaign is #Connect2Earth, which intends to spread awareness about the important role of nature in our lives. The theme for this year is 'Reduce, Reuse, Change the Way We Live'. It is to send word to people about Earth and how we as humans are closely related to nature. The day is part of an attempt to re-establish the connect people had with their environment. The Beginning of Earth Hour Earth Hour was first held internationally on March 29, 2008, from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. local time, marking the first anniversary of the event. 35 countries around the world took part as official flagship cities and over 400 cities also supported. Landmarks around the world turned off their non-essential lighting for Earth Hour. Some websites took part in the event, with Google's homepage going "dark" on the day. As Earth Hour is approaching we have listed down five activities, you can do to celebrate it in the best way possible. Candlelight Dinner You can spend a romantic evening with your beloved otherwise invite friends and have a great time together.                       (Image source from: WWF-Canada Blog) Inviting over a group of friends is a great way to spread the earth hour message and spend some time in meaningful conversation about sustainability. After dinner, you can also break out a group of board games to play and keep earth hour going. It doesn't have to be just for an hour. Stargazing                       (Image source from: CAA Blog) Drive away from the city lights and watch the starry sky on Saturday night. Let the celestial bodies leave you in the wonder of nature's beauty. It can be a time of close bonding between you and your partner, family or friends. Live Music                       (Image source from: Pixabay) Show off your musical skills with people you are surrounded with for the hour. Otherwise throw a karaoke party involving everyone, everything under candlelight. You can also go for oil lamps to keep the fire burning. Campfire                        (Image source from: Pixabay) Think about going on a camping trip and really connect with nature. You can light a campfire, share scary stories, and make some delicious food. Of course, you can do all of that without going camping too. Involve Children Tell your children about the significance of Earth Hour and why conservation of energy is important. Let the future generation grow with a better understanding of their surroundings.                       (Image source from: Pixabay) Involve them in activities and games that will tell them the importance of nature. You could also tell them to draw, write, paint or sketch on an Earth they would want to live in. Self-Care An hour of darkness is a great excuse to take some time for yourself and focus on your mental health.                       (Image source from: Pixabay) Put on some music, brew a nice cup of tea, and focus on decompressing after a long week. Taking some time for yourself allows for mental clarity and will help you kickstart your week with new energy. In fact, you can extent earth hour and can also urge others to go beyond just an hour and practice conserving energy every day by switching off power for a while daily. This Earth Hour also highlights the destruction we have already caused to the planet including loss of wildlife, worsening of global warming and climate change, depletion of natural resources, warming of seas, and pollution. By Sowmya Sangam

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All Roads Clear for Lakshmi's NTR March 26, 2019 05:32

Maverick director Ram Gopal Varma is now an extremely delighted man. His next film Lakshmi's NTR created a sensation, created a stir and got attacked with several road blockers before the release. Ram Gopal Varma challenged everyone that he would release the film at any cost before the polls. The Election Commission officials along with the Censor Board members watched Lakshmi's NTR in a special screening and approved the film. Lakshmi's NTR has been passed with minor cuts and is issued a clean U certificate. Lakshmi's NTR will now hit the screens on March 29th. Earlier before this, Telangana High Court issued clearance for the film but AP High Court is yet to respond on this. We have to wait to see if Lakshmi's NTR gets a smooth release in Andhra Pradesh. Lakshmi's NTR features a bunch of fresh faces and is produced by Rakesh Reddy.    

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Mahesh Babu’s Wax Statue for Madame Tussauds Unveiled at Hyderabad’s AMB Cinemas March 25, 2019 11:58

For the first time ever in India, Tollywood actor Mahesh Babu unveiled his statue at AMB cinemas in Hyderabad on Monday. It is the only statue of Madame Tussauds which has ever been brought to India. Following the event, the wax statue will be taken back to Madame Tussauds Museum in Singapore where it will then be open for the general public to view. Mahesh Babu’s Wife Namrata Shirodkar and children Gautham and Sitara were also present at the unveiling of the wax statue. Reportedly some of the fans will have the chance to take a selfie with the statue of the actor before it is flown back to Singapore. Mahesh will be joining a list of several top Bollywood stars who have been featured at Madame Tussauds. Among the celebrities who are featured are Amitabh Bachchan, Aishwariya Rai Bachchan, Shahrukh Khan, Salman Khan, Hrithik Roshan, and Madhuri Dixit. This is the second time that a star working in the south Indian industries has got a wax statue after Prabhas. The statue will be available for public viewing at AMB Cinemas for a day before it is taken back to Singapore and installed at the museum. On the film front, Mahesh Babu is currently busy wrapping up the shoot of his next film Maharishi after which he will be starring in an Anil Ravipudi venture. -Sangam Sowmya            

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Kamala Harris Calls for Large Federal Investment to Improve Teacher Salaries in U.S. March 25, 2019 11:02

In a bid to improve teacher salaries across the United States, the Indian origin Senator Kamala Harris has called for the allotment of a large federal investment. The 54-year-old senator, who represents California, said that presently, teachers are constituting over 10 percent less than other college-educated graduates and that gap is about USD 13,000 a year, the CNN reported on Saturday.“I’m declaring to you that by the end of my first term, we will have improved teachers’ salaries so that we close the pay gap,” Harris said to a group of supporters in Houston.“Because right now, teachers are making over 10 percent less than other college-educated graduates and that gap is about USD 13,000 a year, and I am pledging to you that through the federal resources that are available, we will close that gap,” she added.Harris officially launched her presidential campaign on January 27, 2019, in her home town of Oakland in California. She is said to be a potentially formidable opponent to her eventual GOP incumbent President Donald Trump. Harris said that her proposal would be the largest ever federal investment in teacher pay.Though Harris didn’t provide further details about where the funds will come from, the campaign has said they will unveil the details of the full policy plan next week, the report said.Harris is the first to announce a plan to allocate funding to teachers, a heavily unionized demographic that is reliably Democratic.Born to Tamil Indian mother and a Jamaican father in 1964 in Oakland, California, her mother, Harris is a graduate of Howard University and University of California, Hastings College of the Law. Her mother, Shyamala Gopalan Harris, was a breast cancer scientist who moved to the United States from Chennai. Her father, Donald Harris, was an academician of economics at Stanford University and moved abroad from Jamaica in 1961.By Sowmya Sangam

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Chhapaak: Who Is Laxmi Agarwal, the Acid Attack Survivor Played by Deepika Padukone? March 25, 2019 09:34

The first look of Deepika Padukone’s Chhapaak has been released Monday and since then the expectations on the film elevated. Directed by Meghna Gulzar, the film will see the Padmavat actor playing Laxmi Agarwal, an acid attack survivor. The actor has done extensive research do out-and-out justice to her role as Malti, the character based on Laxmi. Who is Laxmi Agarwal? Born on June 1, 1990, Laxmi is one of India's best-known acid attack survivors and speaks for the rights of acid attack victims. She is the director of Chhanv Foundation and India-based Stop Acid Attacks campaign. In the year 2005 when she was just 15-years-old, Laxmi was attacked by a man named Gudda by acid. He was a long-time stalker, twice her age and he threw a beer bottle full of acid at her. Along with the face, other parts of her body were also disfigured during the attack. Although she received immediate treatment, she had to go through multiple surgeries over a span of a few years. The incident caused depression in Laxmi, more than physical damage. It was heart-breaking for her to even look at herself in the mirror. But her bravery managed to put the culprit behind bars and her PIL paved the way to a new law. Apart from asking for compensation, she brought about an amendment to the existing criminal laws like Indian Penal Code, Indian Evidence Act and Criminal Procedure Code dealing with the offense. She also brought a significant change with regards to the sale of acid. A ban was imposed on the sale of acid to minors and also a photo identity card would be compulsory for buying. Laxmi Agarwal was awarded the International Women of Courage Award by then United States President Michelle Obama. She started the Stop Acid Attack campaign with a journalist Alok Dixit, who she was in love with. The two decided to live-in together to avoid all the negative comments that would come from the guests if get married. They even have a daughter named Pihu. (Source: WikiBio) However, the couple separated citing mutual differences. She had the custody of Pihu but not enough money to support her. Alok Dixit too did not contribute to raising their child and nor were their funds from the non-profits. Despite voicing so much for the cause, her recent statement to a Hindustan Times report was distressing. "I have no money. I just don’t. You can check my bank account, and it doesn’t even have Rs 5000. This is how we activists live. I don’t have a regular job, and all the money that my NGO gets is spent in taking care of acid attack survivors," she was quoted. However, her sad situation was once again heard and she received assistance from everyone. She was welcomed by a makeup academy for a job as a beautician and also promised to help in backing her daughter's education. -Sangam Sowmya    

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Jet Airways to Compensate an NRI for Misplacing Bag with Items Worth Rs 2.5 Lakh March 25, 2019 07:48

Airlines have in many cases held responsible for mishandling passengers’ luggage. While many air passengers received their luggage in a shabby condition, some others didn’t receive them at all. Recently, Haryana’s Panchkula district consumer disputes redressal forum has directed Jet Airways to pay Rs 58,000 to a Non-Resident Indian whose bag went missing once he landed in India from Canada.On October 2016, Jasbir Singh Purba a resident of Ontario, Canada, and his wife were carrying a total of four bags. Once they landed at the New Delhi airport, they received only three of them. The fourth bag not only contained luxury clothes worth Rs 1.30 lakh but also medication of heart ailment and high blood pressure for his wife’s diabetes.Jasbir then contacted the employees of the airline who asked him to fill an application form and assured that his baggage will be delivered the next day, according to a report in Times of India. Jasbir said that he along with his wife had to endure a lot of trauma, stress, agony, and harassment upon losing such expensive luggage. On November 05, 2016 the airline delivered the baggage at Jasbir’s address but allegedly in destroyed and broken beyond usage condition.After forum sent a notice to Jet Airways and the representatives appeared before the forum, they laid the blame on Jasbir of raising fake claims so that the company could be blamed of deficiency in service.Jet Airways representatives said that the complainant had not disclosed the value of his baggage at the time of check-in.According to the forum, Jasbir had to purchase new clothes in an emergency, which he already had in his bag. On the basis of observation of case, the clothes purchased by him, amounting to Rs 1.30 lakh, would be used in the future, hence, they deemed it just, fair and reasonable to recompense the complainant to the extent of 1/3rd of the expenses subject by him on account of purchase of cloth items.The forum directed Jet Airways to pay Rs 43,333 which is one-third of Rs 1.30 lakh on account of damages suffered by Jasbir as well as Rs 10,000 on account of harassment, mental agony, and Rs 5,500 as litigation charges.By Sowmya Sangam

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