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  • Signs of Unrest as Baltimore Enforces Curfew

    Armored vehicles lined this battered city’s main thoroughfares and thousands of law enforcement officers and National Guard troops worked to maintain order and enforce a citywide curfew Tuesday night, amid scattered reports of unrest after a day of largely peaceful protests.

    As the curfew went into effect at 10 p.m., hundreds of people remained in the streets near the intersection of Pennsylvania and West North Avenues in blighted West Baltimore, where a CVS drugstore had been looted and burned during Monday night’s riots. There were some reports of arrests, and police fired pepper-spray balls to disperse crowds, who had earlier stood their ground despite entreaties from religious leaders and community activists.

    Shortly before midnight, Police Commissioner Anthony W. Batts declared the curfew a success.

    Earlier Tuesday night, nearly 1,000 people gathered at the Empowerment Temple A.M.E. Church, where about 500 religious leaders of different faiths called for healing. Members of the audience spoke about a litany of problems plaguing the city and called for better policing, policies to create jobs, and better schools.
    But out in the streets, there were intermittent clashes with police, as some threw bottles at a line of officers behind riot shields.

    The tense mood Tuesday night was a stark contrast to the almost upbeat feeling earlier in the day, as hundreds of people of all ages and races — many of them toting brooms and trash bags — worked to clear the neighborhood of rocks and debris.

    In the late afternoon, peaceful demonstrators marched through the streets, chanting, “All night, all day, we’re gonna fight for Freddie Gray!” — a reference to the 25-year-old black man whose death, from a spinal cord injury sustained in police custody, set off rioting on Monday night.

    “It’s sad, this don’t make no sense,” said Clarence Cobb, 48, one of many neighborhood residents who, describing themselves as brokenhearted, came out to survey the wreckage and clean up. “It comes to a point where you just got to take pride in your own neighborhood. This makes us look real bad as a city.”

    Indonesia Executes 8, Including 7 Foreigners, Convicted on Drug Charges

    Defying international condemnation and rejecting 11th-hour pleas for clemency, the Indonesian government executed eight drug convicts after midnight on Wednesday, including seven foreigners.

    But the execution of a ninth convict, scheduled to happen at the same time, was unexpectedly postponed at nearly the last minute, according to the Indonesian attorney general’s office.

    The executed prisoners, from Australia, Brazil and Nigeria, along with one Indonesian, were shot by police firing squads about 12:25 a.m. local time at a site outside the gates of Pasir Putih prison on the island of Nusa Kambangan off the southern coast of Java, according to the attorney general’s office.

    The authorities granted the stay of execution to Mary Jane Veloso, 30, a Philippine citizen, after the Philippine government requested her assistance in a human trafficking case involving a woman who surrendered to the Philippine police on Tuesday.
    Continue reading the main story
        The family of Mary Jane Veloso, who is among a group of prisoners facing execution, on its way to visit her on Saturday.
        Despite Protests, Indonesia Moves Forward to Execute Drug ConvictsAPRIL 25, 2015
        Andrew Chan and, behind, Myuran Sukumaran, in 2006, were said to have been flown to an island where people are executed.
        Countries Questioning Indonesia’s Push to Execute Drug OffendersMARCH 3, 2015
        World Briefing: Indonesia: 6 Executed for Drug OffensesJAN. 18, 2015

    “An alleged perpetrator of human trafficking gave herself up, and Mary Jane’s testimony is needed,” Tony Spontana, a spokesman for the Indonesian attorney general, wrote in a text message shortly after the executions were carried out. “Eight people were executed, but not Mary Jane,” he wrote.

    Salman Khan to be booked for assault and robbery

    While his ongoing legal woes have not come to an end yet, Bollywood star Salman Khan seems to have landed in trouble again.

    Now, Ravindra Dwivedi, a member of Brashtachaar Nirmoolan Samiti has lodged a complaint against Salman for assaulting him and snatching away his important documents, reports The Indian Express.

    According to the complainant, the incident took place in November last year, when he was aboard a Mumbai-Delhi flight. Salman got into a fight with him, abused him and ordered his bodyguards to take away all the important documents which he possessed.
    Following the complaint, Magistrate AD Lokhande has directed the airport police to investigate the matter and lodge an FIR against Salman if he is guilty.

    If the allegations are proved to be true, Salman will be booked under IPC section 323 for causing hurt, IPC section 504 for insult with intention to provoke breach of peace, IPC section 506 for criminal intimidation and IPC section 392 for robbery.

    Viagra not universal 'cure-all' for impotency

    If you are suffering from impotence or erectile dysfunction, reaching out for Viagra and other related drugs may help you increase the levels of your sexual activity, but not satisfaction, suggests a new research.

    Moreover, people suffering from erectile dysfunction have higher odds of suffering from high blood pressure and diabetes.

    Viagra and other related drugs, clinically known as oral phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors (PDE5i), cannot address these associated concerns, the researchers pointed out, suggesting that restoring erectile dysfunction (ED) pharmacologically is not a 'cure-all'.
    "It is important that health professionals act on this and offer a more rounded approach to managing ED," said lead author of the study David Lee from the University of Manchester in Britain.

    This should include a well-informed patient with realistic expectations, support from his partner, and an improved assessment of any psychological or relationship issues that may exacerbate sexual concerns and dissatisfaction, Lee pointed out.

    The researchers studied the responses of more than 2,600 English men aged 50-87 years.
    Older men who had recently used PDE5i drugs reported higher levels of sexual activity and function than men without ED, but were more likely to be concerned and/or dissatisfied with their sex lives.

    Prashant Bhushan rejects Atishi Marlena's claim that Shanti opposed truce

    AAP dissident leader Prashant Bhushan on Tuesday rubbished criticism by former AAP spokesperson Atishi Marlena that he backed out of the reconciliatory talks with Arvind Kejriwal camp on his father Shanti Bhushan's insistence, saying the negotiations collapsed due to "trust deficit".

    In a letter to a section of AAP leaders, Marlena, a Rhodes scholar who was close to the rebel camp, suggested that both sides were nearing truce but the talks broke down at the final phase as the senior Bhushan said "no" to any reconciliation with Kejriwal.

    "It is not correct to say that negotiations broke down because of my father Shanti Bhushan. The talks failed as there was trust deficit," Bhushan said when asked about Marlena's letter.
    Prashant Bhushan rejects Atishi Marlena's claim that Shanti opposed truce

    Bhushan said Atishi was not aware about the details of the deliberations with the Kejriwal emissaries as she was not present during the negotiations.
    #aap #prashant bhushan #arvind kejriwal #shanti bhushan aap rift
    Marlena, who was removed as AAP Spokesperson along with several others including Yogendra Yadav, said that Bhushan backed out because of his father's red flag and not on the grounds of any principle.

    The reconciliatory talks between the rebels and Kejriwal camp had broken down on March 26, two days before the national council meeting which had expelled Bhushan and Yadav from the party's National Executive.

    Both Bhushan and Yadav have been maintaining that Kejriwal was determined to remove them from the National Executive and the talks were being continued to project a positive of image of himself to the volunteers.

    Bhushan said Atishi was not aware about the details of the deliberations with the Kejriwal emissaries as she was not present during the negotiations.

    The noted lawyer said he and Yadav have already sent their responses to Marlena on the issue.

    In the letter, Marlena complimented AAP leader Sanjay Singh for trying to build a consensus between the two warring factions.

    Bhushan and Yadav have convened a meeting of the volunteers and their supporters on April 14 to chalk out their future course of action.

    IPL 8: Virat Kohli smiles as girlfriend Anushka Sharma performs

    Star batsman and Royal Challengers Bangalore captain Virat Kohli was seen savouring the moves as his girlfriend, Bollywood beauty Anushka Sharma, set the floor afire with her performance at the glitzy opening ceremony of the Indian Premier League on Tuesday.

    TV cameras kept zooming at Kohli as Anushka gyrated to the tunes of her popular movie songs at the Salt Lake Stadium. Seemingly embarrassed at first, the cricket icon was later seen smiling and watching the actress.

    The hot and happening couple was on Monday spotted at the Kolkata airport together during their arrival for the IPL opener.

    Reflecting the grandeur and exuberance of Indian festivities, the glitzy and technologically stunning opening of the eighth edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL-8) began here on Tuesday at the Salt Lake stadium amid a replay of magical moments of the previous editions of the league. Fireworks explode at the Salt Lake Stadium during the Pepsi IPL 2015 opening night in Kolkata on Tuesday.PTI
    The stadium erupted in celebrations even though thundershowers led to an hour-and-a-half delay. The rain clearly failed to dampen the spirits of the nearly 15,000 patiently waiting cricket fans.

    As the audience waited for the star performers -- Hrithik Roshan, Anushka Sharma and Shahid Kapoor -- to fire up the show, captains of the seven of the eight teams took the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) Spirit of Cricket pledge by signing a bat.

    Bollywood Actor Hritik Roshan performs during the Pepsi IPL 2015 opening night event at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata on Tuesday. PTI PhotoSunrisers Hyderabad captain David Warner was not present, and his teammate Shikhar Dhawan stepped in to sign the bat on behalf of the Australian.

    Farhan Akhtar rooting for Mumbai Indians

    Lauding the Indian Premier League (IPL) for its high entertainment quotient, actor-director Farhan Akhtar on Tuesday said he will be rooting for Mumbai Indians and was excited to see cricketer Yuvraj Singh play.

    Merger of Janata Parivar will happen before end of this month: Nitish Kumar

     Describing RJD chief Lalu Prasad's announcement in favour of the merger of Janata Parivar splinter parties as "a solid and effective" step towards the process, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday said a formal announcement will be made "much before the end of this month." "All the constituent parties have made up their mind for the merger and the announcement will be made at a formal meeting to be convened by Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav soon," Kumar told reporters while coming out of the Assembly.

    Describing RJD chief Lalu Prasad's announcement in favour of the merger of Janata Parivar splinter parties as "a solid and effective" step towards the process, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday said a formal announcement will be made "much before the end of this month." "All the constituent parties have made up their mind for the merger and the announcement will be made at a formal meeting to be convened by Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav soon," Kumar told reporters while coming out of the Assembly.
    Asked if the announcement would be made within this (April) month, Kumar said, "Very soon a formal meeting will be called where the announcement will be made." Kumar, a prime mover of the merger process of the splinter parties into Janata Parivar, said he met Mulayam Singh Yadav who was authorised to oversee the unification process, and also JD(U) chief Sharad Yadav in this regard in Delhi before coming here in the today.

    Asked when the formal meeting was expected, Kumar said the SP chief was authorised to call the meeting and so he would not speak about the date.

    "But, keeping in view the availability of leaders, the meeting will be called soon," he said. Asked about the decision of JD(U) on the merger, Kumar said the party has expressed willingness in its favour much earlier.

    BAI Announces Cash Rewards for Saina, Kashyap

    The Badminton Association of India (BAI) on Tuesday announced a cash award of five lakh rupees each to World number two Saina Nehwal and Commonwealth Games champion Parupalli Kashyap for their impressive performances at the international stage.

    Both Saina and Kashyap had won the Syed Modi Grand Prix Gold in Lucknow in January and Saina also became the first Indian woman to reach the All England Open Super Series Premier finals earlier this month.
    “It has been my policy to reward players who are performing exceptionally well on the international circuit with handsome financial gains as the players are making the country proud with their title triumphs," BAI president Akhilesh Das Gupta said.

    "Both Saina and Kashyap had won the gold medal in the Syed Modi GP Gold event. Saina has even reached number two ranking in the world.”

    Sushant Singh Rajput turns into Byomkesh Bakshy

    Sushant Singh Rajput is ready to jump into the character of Sherlock Holmes. He would don the role of a detective in his upcoming ‘Detective Byomkesh Bakshy!’ The actor is playing the lead in this thriller that would hit the screens on 3rd April. The film is directed by Dibakar Banerjee and it is a Yash Raj Film production. The filmmakers have released a video showing Sunshant Singh Rajput’s transformation from an ordinary guy to the dynamic detective Byomkesh Bakshy. The video features a song sequence paired with a series of clips from the film.

    What makes YRF’s video utmost interesting is how the filmmakers have shown the concept. It starts with the actor in casual western clothes and looks nowhere close to a detective. The music that begins sets Sushant on his feet with energetic moves. But impressive dance moves is not all that has been shown. The actor’s steps are combined with all the power packed action that he indulges in, as seen in the movie. He gets more into the character of the detective as the song progresses. And slowly, we see the hip hop style Sushant transform into the dhoti clad Bengali detective. By the end of the song, detective Byomkesh Bakshy is all ready for the audience.
    The film has been adapted from ‘Byomkesh Bakshy’ that is a Bengali fiction written by Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay. The Bengali writer in turn, has been inspired by the famous English fiction ‘Sherlock Holmes’ by Arthur Conan Doyle.

    Another lead role in the film is Swastika Mukherjee, would be seen as a spy and a dancer called Anguri Devi. Her character is based on Mata Hari – the well known Frisian exotic dancer. Anand Tiwari plays Ajit Bandyopadhyay – a close friend of Byomkesh Bakshy.
    It has been reported that Rani Mukherjee is the one that the filmmakers had earlier approached for the female lead. But the actress refused as the female lead was required to do some bold scenes. Yet another prominent personality to be considered was Aamir Khan. He was asked to be a villain, but he too refused as he had ‘Dhoom 3’ in hand where he played a villain. Director Dibakar Banerjee wanted to make the film so that Indian get their own detective. And he has worked hard on this, as Sushant says- “A lot has to be done for the film like the look of the 1940s’ hairstyle,

    Defamation case: Kejriwal appears before court after judge says he has no respect for law

    Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and AAP leader Yogendra Yadav on Tuesday appeared before a Delhi court in connection with a defamation case, after they faced a flak from the judge for not appearing.

    Earlier in the day, Kejriwal, Sisodia and Yadav were directed by a court here to appear before it later in the day in connection with a criminal defamation complaint, saying there was no ground for exemption from their appearance.

    Metropolitan Magistrate Mayuri Singh took strong view of absence of Kejriwal, Sisodia and Yogendra Yadav, and said they "have no respect for the law".

    The court fixed May 2, for pronouncing order on framing of charges against Kejriwal, Sisodia and Yadav in the case.

    The case was put up before magistrate Singh as Metropolitan Magistrate Muneesh Garg, before whom the matter was going on, was on leave today.

    During the hearing, the court had said the exemption application displayed no reason for the absence of the accused.

    "There is nothing to reflect why accused (Kejriwal, Sisodia and Yadav) have not appeared. Accused have no respect for law. Considering no one has appeared for accused, I am keeping the matter pending at 2 PM. Call at 2 PM," the magistrate said.
    The court noted that a clerk appeared on behalf of the accused and his advocates and moved the exemption plea.

    The complainant, advocate Surender Kumar Sharma, opposed the plea saying the lawyers are on strike and not the litigants and it would not be in the interest of justice if any adjournment is given in the case as the case had earlier been adjourned three times due to absence of the accused.

    Sharma had alleged that in 2013 he was approached by volunteers of AAP who had asked him to contest the Delhi Assembly elections on a party ticket, saying Kejriwal was pleased with his social services.

    He filled up the application form to contest the polls after being told by Sisodia and Yadav that AAP's Political Affairs Committee of the party had decided to give him the ticket. However, it was later denied to him.

    On October 14, 2013, the complainant claimed, articles in leading newspapers carried "defamatory, unlawful and derogatory words used by the accused persons" which have lowered his reputation in the Bar and the society.

    The summons were issued on the complaint under sections 499, 500 (defamation) and 34 (common intention) of the IPC, with the court saying there was prima facie material to summon the accused.

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