A team of the Income Tax Department on July 25 raided the residence and factory premises of senior Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader and legislator Hasan Mushrif in Kolhapur district in western MaharashtraAn MLA from the Kagal Assembly seat, Mr. Mushrif, a former Minister who held the Labour portfolio in the erstwhile Congress-NCP government, is considered to be a tall leader of his party in the State’s ‘sugar belt’ region.According to sources, the I-T team swooped down on Mr. Mushrif’s bungalow in Kagal at around 5.30 a.m. while simultaneous raids took place at his son’s residence in Pune and his relatives’ house in Takala in Kolhapur.Officials also conducted searches at the Sar Senapati Santaji Ghorpade Sugar Factory in Kagal which is said to be controlled by Mr. Mushrif among other places.However, authorities declined to elaborate on the reason for the raids.A number of the NCP leader’s loyalists thronged outside his house to express solidarity as news of the raids spread throughout Kagal. A robust security shield was in place as the I-T officials conducted their searches and scrutinised documents at Mr. Mushrif’s house and office.The raids coincide with the exit of another important NCP leader Sachin Ahir, who jettisoned his position as his party’s Mumbai unit chief to enter the Shiv Sena, allegedly impressed with Aditya Thackeray’s leadership.The timing of the raid on Mr. Mushrif’s home has triggered speculation that the NCP leader’s alleged ‘refusal’ to join the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) prompted the party to unleash the I-T Department on him.“Recently, at a public function in Kolhapur, newly appointed BJP State president Chandrakant Patil had made an open offer to Mr. Mushrif to ally with the BJP. But the NCP leader had snubbed Mr. Patil and instead questioned as to how, and from where, was the BJP able to secure enormous funds to ‘buy’ Congress legislators in Karnataka and destabilise the Congress-JD (S) government,” said an analyst, requesting anonymity.The raids on Mr. Mushrif’s house also come amid intense speculation of another NCP MLA, Vaibhav Pichad from Akole in Ahmednagar district, entering the BJP fold.Mr. Pichad, the son of senior NCP MLA Madhukar Pichad, is believed to have met with Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis at the latter’s home ‘Varsha’ in Mumbai on Wednesday evening.The developments take place a week after Mr. Patil had confidently claimed that several legislators from the opposition NCP and the Congress were in contact with the BJP. Mr. Patil had also said that the opposition camp would witness a spate of resignations in the coming week.
It seems Team India’s fortunes have hit rock bottom. For this was the least that Dhoni & Co would have expected during the first ODI at the Riverside Ground in Chester-le-Street, England, on Saturday. Score | PhotosAfter posting a competitive 274 runs of board, thanks to an impressive 95-run innings by opener Parthiv Patel, India had scalped two England wickets early and were poised for a fine finish when rains dashed their hopes.England were 27/2 with Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell at the crease when heavy rains forced the covers on. Once on, the covers remained put as the showers continued to lash the Riverside Ground till the final cut off time. Meanwhile, India’s injury list increased with Rohit Sharma fracturing his finger in the match.England won the toss and elected to bowl andmuch to the delight of the India fans India openers Parthiv Patel and Ajinkaya Rahane got off to a cautious start but gradually upped the tempo scoring boundaries and quick singles.Parthiv and Rahane were opening as regular openers Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag were unavailable. While Sehwag, who has yet to recover from his long-standing shoulder injury, opted out citing labyrinthithis of the left ear (sic) and Tendulkar was out with a persistent toe-injury.However, the two didn’t let the loss have an effect on the run rate and continued to bat at ease even as the scoreboard kept ticking.Soon India score crossed 80. But England were not undone and Stuart Broad came around to get rid of Rahane on 40. A short ball from Broad that was pulled by Rahane failed to clear the boundary and Samit Patel took a good catch in the fine-leg region. India lost their first wicket on 82 in the 16th over. advertisementBut Broad wasn’t finished yet. He came around to get rid of ‘The Wall’ Rahul Dravid cheaply. The ball took a thin edge off his bat to land in wicketkeeper Craig Kieswetter’s gloves. He fell for two and India lost their second wicket on 87. However, the decision was a controversial one as the Hot Spot did not pick the edge and the third umpire decided on the basis of sound.Post that wicket, Parthiv Patel batted steadily at the Riverside Ground and he had Virat Kohli by his side to assist him in his efforts. He crossed his fifty without much effort and then went on for his ton. Unfortunately, he fell five runs short of his century.A James Anderson ball that was pitched wide from around the stumps invited a faint nick from Parthiv and keeper Kieswetter did the rest. India lost their third wicket on 190. His 95 runs were punctuated by 12 fours. He and Kohli put on 103 runs for the third wicket.Post Parthiv’s fall, Kohli too could not stay for long and an inside edge off Samit Patel crashed into his stumps dislodging his bails. He fell for 55 and India lost their fourth wicket on 206.Post that Rohit Sharma came down to bat but returned after the very first ball that he faced. He got hit by a Stuart Broad delivery in the 38th over. He received some attention from the physio and grimaced when the swollen index finger on his right hand was touched. He felt the field immediately and went to the hospital, where scans revealed a fracture.Later, Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni batted on to increase the figures on the scoreboard, but at death Raina lost his wicket to Jade Dernbach on 38 when the team total was 266.Skipper Dhoni and tail-ender R Ashwin fell in the last over of the innings as India posted a competitive 274/7 on board.In reply England lost their opener Alastair Cook early with a Praveen Kumar ball taking the inside edge of his bat and crashing into his stumps when the total was just six.Praveen struck again to get rid of Craig Kieswetter, trapping him leg-before when the England score was 21.Soon enough the players were seen walking off and the pitch being covered to ward off the showers. Finally, the match was called off when the England total was 27/2 with Trott and Bell in the middle.
If reports are to be believed, Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif starrer Ek Tha Tiger has grossed a whopping Rs 150 crore in mere eight days! Seems like Salman Khan’s Tiger avatar could well be on its way to becoming the biggest Bollywood hit of all times. Incidentally, Ek Tha Tiger also creates a new record for the fastest Rs. 100 crore earning at the box office. Now, the trade is abuzz with the prediction that Ek Tha Tiger will cross Rs. 200 crore very soon and could well break the record haul of 3 Idiots, which was Rs. 385 crore.The film released on August 15, 2012.No sequel to Ek Tha TigerDespite the ending of Salman Khan starrer superhit film ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ leaving a scope for a sequel, the makers have denied any such move.”We have not thought of a sequel for ‘Ek Tha Tiger’. We don’t have any idea (story line) for the sequel,” Kabir informed.Even the producers have denied making a sequel. “With the success of the film, it would be the obvious conclusion for anybody to assume that the film deserves a sequel. However, as of now, there are no such plans and it is more conjecture,” Yash Raj Films’ vice president (marketing and communications) Rafiq Gangjee said.Mystery behind Katrina’s red tilak revealed!Katrina Kaif recently grabbed headlines not for her performance in Ek Tha Tiger but for the tilak she sported at private screenings of this film.According to sources, the tilak was nothing more than a religious one, applied to her forehead during a pooja she attended.Katrina Kaif is these days celebrating the unprecedented response her recent film Ek Tha Tiger is receiving.advertisement