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"We’re sailing on a bomb" submarine officer’s warning ignored by Navy
Report dated 04/03/2014 @ 2:42 PM

As the Indian Navy board of inquiry continues to investigate the Feb 26 disaster on board the INS Sindhuratna submarine, a serving officer has turned whistle blower, and divulged a final disturbing conversation he had with officer Lieutenant Manoranjan Kumar, one of the officers who perished on board.

The officer whose identity is being protected currently serves at the Western Naval command. He told of his meeting with Lieutenant Manoranjan just days before he died. When he asked him about the submarine, the Lieutenant said "We sail on a bomb, Sir, the batteries are so old that despite ten times efforts to maintain them they still produce ten times the gas. The hydrogen burners simple can't cope".

When the whistle blower asked why he had not flagged the issue up the naval chain of command, Manoranjan said "Sir, everybody is aware. It's a point at the Commander's Conference attended by the entire higher military leadership. Battery pit fires are the order of the day".

The whistle blower, himself shocked and distraught, felt some part of the accountability should be with those at the Command and Naval Headquarters. He believes it is the collective responsibility of everyone from the electrical officer to the minister or the headquarters responsible for supplies.

As the investigation progresses and the layers of details are uncovered, the deaths of Lt. Manoranjan and his fellow officer have had a particularly grave effect on the naval rank and file.

“Delhi hotels among world's worst”
Report dated 03/03/2014 @ 1:05 PM

“Delhi hotels among world's worst” According to an online survey 'Reputation Ranking', conducted by Trivago, the world's largest online hotel search site that compares rates at over 700,000 hotels, Delhi hotels are considered the worst in the world.

Mumbai hotels fared a little better, taking 65th position on the list of 100 destinations. Other Asian destinations at the lower end of the list include Kuala Lumpur, Pattaya, Manila, Singapore, Bandung and Jakarta. The bottom list also included Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, that is hosting the football world cup this year.

Hotels in Sorrento, Italy topped the list followed by Dresden, Gdansk, and Dubrovnik.

The ranking is based on over 82 million reviews compiled by Trivago from over 200 online booking websites.

Aamir Khan gets bombproof car to tackle threats
Report dated 02/03/2014 @ 6:46 PM

Aamir Khan gets bombproof car to tackle threats Bollywood star Aamir Khan has received many security threats, compelling him to purchase an expensive special protection Mercedes Benz S600 that is a customised model especially made for VVIPs. Khan is only the third person in the country to own this model after PM Manmohan Singh and industrialist Mukesh Ambani.

Sources say after the first season of the controversial Satyamev Jayate, Khan received several threats. He had initially informed police about the threats and even received police protection, but under pressure from his family and friends, he placed an order for the car.

The second season of Satyamev Jayate, is scheduled to hit TV screens from March 2, so he was advised to take no chances.

Housing societies in cosmopolitan Mumbai turn away Muslim buyers
Report dated 01/03/2014 @ 2:16 PM

Housing societies in cosmopolitan Mumbai turn away Muslim buyers For a Muslim, finding a home outside a Muslim ghetto is a real problem in the cosmopolitan suburb Bandra, Some house hunters say they have seen over a dozen flats and at each one they were told that they were not for Muslims. One broker says most sea-facing flats in Pali Naka, Bandra discriminate against Muslims, so he only shows clients those buildings with a 'cosmopolitan mindset'.

One particularly piercing example of the situation is the case of Captain Zainul Abidin Juvale, master of cargo vessel MV Safeer who sailed from Kuwait to Dubai with 722 Indians on board when Iraq's dictator Saddam Hussein's troops had invaded Kuwait and Indians there were stranded for months. The same Captain Juvale who was called a hero then, has been house hunting in Bandra but brokers have candidly told him the societies he is interested in have an unwritten rule not to rent or sell flats to Muslims.

Juvale's family is from the Konkan. His grandfather Fakir Mohamed Juvale, was the first Indian captain in the merchant navy and was instrumental in opening the first nautical school in India in 1923. He was awarded the Padma Shri in 1981.

Amir Rizvi who started a relevant page on Facebook in 2007 says there is segregation in the city, which is further perpetuated by real estate brokers, who take potential clients to areas that have unofficially been earmarked for Muslims. Rental advertisements seeking tenants now read like matrimonial ads, and specify details including caste, creed, skin colour, work timings and marital status. Some ads even clearly state 'No Muslims' on a property website, which were withdrawn after public protests. Still, the truth is the reality has not changed.

Sahara chief Subrata Roy finally arrested
Report dated 01/03/2014 @ 2:02 PM

Sahara chief Subrata Roy finally arrested Sahara Group chief Subrata Roy was arrested by Uttar Pradesh police at 10.30 in the morning on the orders of the Supreme Court, but not before Roy had summoned doctors to check him at his house where he was being held by the police. Roy later sought to remain in Lucknow and argued against being moved to Delhi, but the Court rejected his contention and remanded him in police custody.

Roy's son Seemanto Roy addressed the press and appealed to investors and the media to understand their side of the story. Soon after he faced several questions from the media and as he left he announced that his father had never tried to evade the summons.

Sources say it is likely Roy's legal team will try to expedite the hearing as it does not want the Sahara chief to be behind bars for the next three days, but till that happens Subrata Roy, one of the most powerful and well connected business tycoons, will have to spend the next few days in custody.

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