The President has approved awards of 368 Gallantry and other Defence decorations to Armed Forces personnel and others on the eve of the 65th Republic Day Celebrations.  This includes 03 Kirti Chakra, 10 Shaurya Chakra, 1 Bar Sena Medal (Gallantry), 48 Sena Medal (Gallantry), 02 Nao Sena Medal (Gallantry), 1 Bar to Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry), 14 Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry), 28 Param Vishisht Seva Medal, 05 Uttam Yudh Seva Medal, 07 Bar to Ati Vishisht  Seva Medal, 45 Ati Vishisht Seva Medal,  19 Yudh Seva Medal, 05 Bar to Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty), 35 Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty), 08 Nao Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty), 15 Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty), 10 Bar to Vishisht Seva Medal and 112 Vishisht Seva Medal.
In addition a total of 25 Mention-In-Despatches have also been announced for participating in Operation Rakshak.

KIRTI CHAKRA

  1. JC-618131L NAIB SUBEDAR BHUPAL SINGH CHHANTEL MAGAR, 5/5TH BATTALION THE GORKHA RIFLES (FRONTIER FORCE)
  2. WING COMMANDER DARRYL CASTELINO (25107) FLYING (PILOT) (POSTHUMOUS)
  3. SHRI BHRIGU NANDAN CHOUDHARY CONSTABLE/GD, 205 COBRA BN. (POSTHUMOUS)

SHAURYA CHAKRA

  1. IC-58543X LIEUTENANT COLONEL BIKRAM JIT SINGH ARMOURED CORPS / 16TH LIGHT CAVALRY (POSTHUMOUS)
  2. IC-61469M MAJOR MANDEEP SINGH GHUMMAN REGIMENT OF ARTILLERY / 1ST  ASSAM RIFLES
  3. IC-62853A MAJOR GAURAV THAKUR THE BIHAR REGIMENT / 24 RASHTRIYA RIFLES
  4. IC-70847F CAPTAIN SANDEEP BHARTIYA 17TH  BATTALION THE JAT REGIMENT (MASHKOH)
  5. IC-72419F CAPTAIN MAHABIR SINGH 9TH  BATTALION THE PARACHUTE REGIMENT (SPECIAL FORCES)
  6. 15223301M GUNNER LALLAWMZUALA REGIMENT OF ARTILLERY / 18TH  BATTALION THE  RASHTRIYA RIFLES
  7. 5457286F RIFLEMAN RAN BAHADUR GURUNG 5/5TH  BATTALION THE GORKHA RIFLES (FRONTIER FORCE) (POSTHUMOUS)
  8. WING COMMANDER ADITYA PRAKASH SINGH (23172-B) FLYING (PILOT)
  9. WING COMMANDER NIKHIL NAIDU (23986) FLYING (PILOT)
  10. FLIGHT LIEUTENANT KRISHNAMOORTHY PRAVEEN (30394) FLYING (PILOT) (POSTHUMOUS)

Well I have just listed out the list of major gallantry awards. For the complete list of awards that were declared please click here.

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On the 65th Republic day celebrations the Padma Awards will be given to several Indians for their contribution towards the country. President Shri Pranab Mukherjee has approved the conferment of Padma Awards-2014 today. This year the he has approved 127 awards which comprises of 2 Padma Vibhushan, 24 Padma Bhushan, and 101 Padma Shri Awardees apart from the 2 Bharat Ratnas that were announced earlier.

Bharat Ratna

  1. C. N. R. Rao – Scientist
  2. Sachin Tendulkar – Cricketer – Sports

Padma Vibhushan

  1. Dr Raghunath A Mashelkar – Science and Engineering
  2. B K S Iyengar – Yoga
  1. Padma Bhushan
  2. Gulam Mohammed Sheikh – Art-Painting
  3. Begum Parveen Sultana – Art-Classical Singing
  4. T H Vinayakram – Art-Ghatam Artist
  5. Kamala Haasan – Art-Cinema
  6. Justice Dalveer Bhandari – Public Affairs
  7. Prof Padmanabhan Balaram – Science and Engineering
  8. Prof Jyeshtharaj Joshi – Science and Engineering
  9. Dr Madappa Mahadevappa – Science and Engineering
  10. Dr Thirumalachari Ramasami – Science and Engineering
  11. Dr Vinod Prakash Sharma – Science and Engineering
  12. Dr Radhakrishnan Koppillil – Science and Engineering
  13. Dr Mrityunjay Athreya – Literature and Education
  14. Anita Desai – Literature and Education
  15. Dr Dhirubhai Thaker – Literature and Education
  16. Vairamuthu Ramasamy Thevar – Literature and Education
  17. Ruskin Bond – Literature and Education
  18. Pullela Gopichand – Sports-Badminton
  19. Leander Paes – Sports-Tennis
  20. Vijayendra Nath Kaul – Civil Service
  21. Late Justice Jagdish Sharan Verma – Public Affairs
  22. Late Dr Anumolu Ramakrishna – Science and Engineering
  23. Prof Anisuzzaman – Literature and Education
  24. Prof Lloyd I Rudolph and Prof Susanne H Rudolph – Literature and Education
  25. Dr (Smt) Neelam Kler – Medicine- Neonatology

Padma Shri

  1. Mohammad Ali Baig – Art-Theatre
  2. Nayana Apte Joshi – Art
  3. Musafir Ram Bhardwaj – Art-Instrumental Music- Pauna Manjha
  4. Sabitri Chatterjee – Art-Film
  5. Prof Biman Bihari Das – Art-Sculptor
  6. Sunil Das – Art-Painting
  7. Elam Endira Devi – Art-Manipuri Dance
  8. Vijay Ghate – Art-Instrumental Music- Tabla
  9. Rani Karnaa – Art-Kathak
  10. Bansi Kaul – Art-Theatre
  11. Ustad Moinuddin Khan – Art-Instrumental Music-Sarangi Player
  12. Geeta Mahalik – Art-Odishi Dance
  13. Paresh Maity – Art-Painting
  14. Ram Mohan – Art-Film Animation
  15. Sudarsan Pattnaik – Art-Sand artist
  16. Paresh Rawal – Art-Cinema and Theatre
  17. Wendell Augustine Rodricks – Art-Fashion Designing
  18. Prof Kalamandalam Sathyabhama – Art-Mohini Attam
  19. Shri Anuj (Ramanuj) Sharma – Art-Performing Art
  20. Santosh Sivan – Art- Film
  21. Supriya Dev – Art-Bengali Cinema
  22. Sooni Taraporevala – Art- Script Writing
  23. Vidya Balan – Art-Cinema
  24. Durga Jain – Social Work
  25. Dr Rama Rao Anumolu – Social Work
  26. Dr Brahm Dutt – Social Work
  27. Mukul Chandra Goswami – Social Work
  28. J L Kaul – Social Work
  29. Mathurbhai Madhabhai Savani – Social Work
  30. Tashi Tondup – Public Affairs
  31. Dr Hasmukh Chamanlal Shah – Public Affairs
  32. Sekhar Basu – Science and Engineering
  33. Madhavan Chandradathan – Science and Engineering
  34. Sushanta Kumar Dattagupta – Science and Engineering
  35. Dr Ravi Bhushan Grover – Science and Engineering
  36. Prof Eluvathingal Devassy Jemmis – Science and Engineering
  37. Ramkrishna V HosuR – Science and Engineering
  38. Dr Ajay Kumar Parida – Science and Engineering
  39. Dr Malapaka Yajneswara Satyanarayana Prasad – Science and Engineering
  40. Kiran Kumar Alur Seelin – Science and Engineering
  41. Dr Brahma Singh – Science and Engineering
  42. Prof Vinod Kumar Singh – Science and Engineering
  43. Dr Govindan Sundararajan – Science and Engineering
  44. Ramaswamy R Iyer – Science and Engineering
  45. Dr Jayanta Kumar Ghosh – Science and Engineering
  46. Ravi Kumar NarrA – Trade and Industry
  47. Rajesh Saraiya – Trade and Industry
  48. Mallika Srinivasan – Trade and Industry
  49. Pratap Govindrao Pawar – Trade and Industry
  50. Dr Kiritkumar Mansukhlal Acharya – Medicine- Dermatology
  51. Dr Balram Bhargava – Medicine- Cardiology
  52. Prof (Dr) Indra Chakravarty – Medicine- Health and Hygiene
  53. Dr Ramakant Krishnaji Deshpande – Medicine- Oncology
  54. Prof (Dr) Pawan Raj Goyal – Medicine- Chest Disease
  55. Prof Amod Gupta – Medicine- Opthalmology
  56. Prof (Dr) Daya Kishore Hazra – Medicine
  57. Prof (Dr) Thenumgal Poulose Jacob – Medicine- Vascular Surgery
  58. Prof (Dr) Shashank R Joshi – Medicine- Endocrinology
  59. Prof Hakim Syed Khaleefathullah – Medicine- Unani Medicine
  60. Dr Milind Vasant Kirtane – Medicine- ENT Surgery
  61. Dr Lalit Kumar – Medicine- Oncology
  62. Dr Mohan Mishra – Medicine
  63. Dr M Subhadra Nair – Medicine- Gyneacology
  64. Dr Ashok Panagariya – Medicine- Neurology
  65. Dr Narendra Kumar Pandey – Medicine- Surgery
  66. Dr Sunil Pradhan – Medicine- Neurology
  67. Dr Ashok Rajgopal – Medicine- Orthopaedics
  68. Dr Kamini A Rao – Medicine- Reproductive Medicine
  69. Dr Sarbeswar Sahariah – Medicine- Surgery
  70. Prof Om Prakash Upadhyaya – Medicine
  71. Prof (Dr) Mahesh Verma – Medicine- Dental Science
  72. Dr J S Titiyal – Medicine-Opthalmology
  73. Dr Nitish Naik – Medicine- Cardiology
  74. Dr Surbrat Kumar Acharya – Medicine-Gastroentrology
  75. Dr Rajesh Kumar Grover – Medicine-Oncology
  76. Dr Naheed Abidi – Literature and Education
  77. Prof Ashok Chakradhar – Literature and Education
  78. Chhakchhuak Chhuanvawra – Literature and Education
  79. Keki N Daruwalla – Literature and Education
  80. Prof Ganesh Narayandas Devi – Literature and Education
  81. Prof Kolakaluri Enoch – Literature and Education
  82. Prof (Dr) Ved Kumari Ghai – Literature and Education
  83. Smt Manorama Jafa – Literature and Education
  84. Prof Rehana Khatoon – Literature and Education
  85. Dr Waikhom Gojen Meeitei – Literature and Education
  86. Vishnu Narayanan Namboothiri – Literature and Education
  87. Prof Dinesh Singh – Literature and Education
  88. Dr (Mrs) P Kilemsungla – Literature and Education – Nagaland
  89. Anjum Chopra – Sports- Cricket
  90. Sunil Dabas – Sports- Kabbadi
  91. Love Raj Singh Dharmshaktu – Sports- Mountaineering
  92. Dipika Rebecca Pallikal – Sports- Squash
  93. H Boniface Prabhu – Sports- Wheelchair Tennis
  94. Yuvraj Singh – Sports- Cricket
  95. Mamta Sodha – Sports- Mountaineering
  96. Parveen Talha – Civil Service
  97. Late Dr Narendra Achyut Dabholkar – Social Work
  98. Ashok Kumar Mago – Trade and Industry
  99. Siddharth Mukherjee – Medicine-Oncology
  100. Dr Vamsi Mootha – Medicine- Biomedical Research
  101. Dr Sengaku Mayeda – Literature and Education.

For the complete and Original list click here.


M_Id_426697_Rafael_Nadal

Rafael Nadal is back to ATP world number 1 ranking for the first time since July 2011. Well it just shows how well he has played this season, especially when he was coming off a seven month injury layoff and had to miss the Australia Open this year. Even after missing such a big tournament he has claimed the number raking and is close to clinching the no.1 year-end ranking as well, which is something that is spectacular.

Though he did lose in the finals yesterday, which a fan was a little disappointing but then one cannot just expect him to win everything. He has already won 10 titles this year which is something special and though his personal best year was 2005 when he won 11 titles, he surely has enough tournaments left this year to break that record of his.

Apart from this he has won 5 ATP Master 1000 titles this year and can break the record by becoming the first player to win ATP 1000 titles in a year if he goes onto win in Shanghai this week or Paris a couple of weeks later. I though would hope that he wins both the tournaments and clinches the no.1 year end raking as soon as possible. And also hope that he could win the ATP World Tour Finals this year for the first time in his career as that is one of the very few prestigious trophies that he has never won.

I would like to wish him for this feat of his and hope that he has a very long stay at this ranking.

rafael-nadal-china-open-final-2013

Article: Nadal Chases History In Shanghai
Rafael Nadal has compiled an impressive streak at ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events in 2013. As he enters the Shanghai Rolex Masters, the Spaniard could become the first player to win six ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events in one year.
“I hope to be ready for Shanghai,” he said on Sunday in Beijing. “It’s an important tournament, one of the most important of the season because it’s a Masters 1000 – you need to play against best players even in the first rounds.”
Nadal, who is 29-1 in ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events in 2013, is seeking his first Shanghai Rolex Masters trophy. He reached the final in 2009 (l. to Davydenko).
At the China Open, Nadal finished runner-up to Novak Djokovic. Even with the loss, the Spaniard vaults into the No. 1 position in the Emirates ATP Rankings, ousting Djokovic from the top spot. Nadal had not held the No. 1 ranking since July 2011.
The next few weeks will prove important to the 26-time Masters 1000 champion, as he is strongly favoured to finish as the year-end No. 1. “I’m going to be in the top of the rankings for a few weeks. I need to keep playing well to try to finish No. 1 at the end of the season,” Nadal stated.

Article: Nadal Will Return To No. 1 By Reaching Beijing Final
“Rafael Nadal will become No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings on Monday after reaching the China Open final.
Nadal will contest his 13th championship match of a remarkable season after World No. 5 Tomas Berdych retired at 2-4 in the first set in their Beijing semi-final on Saturday with a back injury.
Since returning from seven-month absence due to a left knee injury in February, Nadal has compiled a 65-3 match record on the season. He has won 10 titles from 12 finals, including the Roland Garros (d. Ferrer) and US Open (d. Djokovic) crowns plus five ATP World Tour Masters 1000 trophies.
“[This is] a great year, one of the best years of my career without any doubt,” sad Nadal. “[It] sure is special be back to the top position of the rankings after more than a half year without playing tennis.”
He said he was prouder of the hard work and results that earned him the No. 1 ranking, rather than the number itself. “At the end, it’s just a number… What [makes] me happy is [everything] I did to be back where I am today.”
The left-handed Nadal extended his FedEx ATP Head2Head over Berdych to 16-3. He has now won his last 15 clashes against Czech.
The 27-year-old Spaniard has had two stints at the summit of men’s professional tennis for a total of 102 weeks. Nadal first became No. 1 on 18 August 2008 for a period of 46 weeks. He regained top spot from Roger Federer on 7 June 2010 and added 56 weeks to his tally until relinquishing No. 1 to Novak Djokovic on 4 July 2011.
By reaching the final, Nadal is one win away from claiming his first China Open title since 2005. The Mallorcan extended his current winning streak to 21 matches. It’s the sixth season in his career than Nadal has posted 20 or more consecutive victories.
Nadal will attempt to retain the year-end No. 1 ranking for the first time since 2010 and the third time overall (also ’08). “[It] will be a great finish [to] the season if I am able to finish the season [at] the No. 1 spot.  For that, I am sure I need to win more matches if I want to be there,” said the Spaniard.
If he manages the feat, he’ll become the first player to finish as year-end No. 1 three years after losing the ranking. Ivan Lendl and Roger Federer both recaptured the year-end top spot in 1989 and 2009 respectively, after a gap of two years.
“If I am able to be No. 1 at the end of the season, then, that’s an important achievement because I will be the best of the year… That’s something that really motivates me,” said Nadal.
He wished Berdych a speedy recovery, ahead of next week’s Shanghai Rolex Masters.
“I barely can sit, I [can] barely can stand up [or] walk,” said Berdych, who described the injury as new. The Czech No. 1 said he tweaked his back while running for a backhand slice.
Berdych voiced his respect for Nadal. “It’s really incredibly well done in how short [a] time he [became] No. 1 again after [his] comeback… That’s really an achievement.””

 


RAFA_NADAL_TENNIS_US_OPEN

Rafael Nadal has won his 2nd US Open title and his 13th major title. Now he is 3rd on the all-time major winner’s list with only Pete Sampras (14 titles) and Roger Federer (17 titles) ahead of him. With this he also has won his 10th title this year, and his second major of the year, after having won French Open in June. In terms of titles won this year can be regarded as probably his best year, especially since he was coming out of a 7 month injury period and had to miss the Australia Open as well. 

Also, now he inches closer to the no.1 ranking and is in the striking distance. He should definitely achieve the ranking this year unless he is not able to compete in the remaining tournaments this year due to injury or anything. Though he could have achieved the No.1 ranking had Djokovic not made it to the finals of the tournament. But that is something that is not in his hands. And whatever was possible for him to do, he did by defeating Djokovic in the finals.

DJOKOVIC_NADAL_TENNIS_US_OPEN_2013

And like I had written in one of my previous posts, what next should be on the agenda for Nadal?  Equal Martina Navratilova’s record of 9 major titles at a single event or Sampras’s 14 major titles is something to watch out for. Though he can and should achieve both of them in the French Open next year, but in the form he is in I would hope he wins the Australian Open as well early next year and then go onto win the French Open and in the process achieve another record of becoming the only player in the open era and only the third player ever to win every major at least twice. (He now has 1 Australian Open, 8 French Open, 2 Wimbledon, and 2 US Open titles).

In the end I would like to congratulate Nadal for his achievement, and I hope he gives many more such instances for us to be happy of.

RAFA_NADAL_TENNIS_US_OPEN_2013


On the 67th Independence Day celebrations the President approved awards of 43 gallantry awards to Armed Forces, Paramillitary, and Police personnels. This includes 01 Ashoka Chakra, 02 Kirti Chakra, 10 Shaurya Chakra, 02 Bar to Sena Medal (Gallantry), 21 Sena Medal (Gallantry), 01 Nao Sena Medal (Gallantry).

The list of the recipients of gallantry awards to Armed Forces personnel and others is as follows:-

ASHOKA CHAKRA:

  1. KLVSSHNV Prasad Babu, Sub-Inspector, Andhra Pradesh Police

KIRTI CHAKRA:

  1. Major Mahesh Kumar, Sena Medal, Punjab Regiment
  2. Lt CDR Abhilash Tomy, Navy Inspector Lohit Sonowal, Assam government

SHAURYA CHAKRA:

  1. Major Sanjeev Kumar, Armoured Corps
  2. Major Swagat Kumar Das, 9th Battalion, Sikh Light Infantry
  3. Major Amarjeet Singh, Mechanized Infantry
  4. Major Mohan Chandra, 4th Battalion, the Kumaon Regiment
  5. Captain Rampreet Singh, the Jammu and Kashmir Rifles
  6. Naik Balwinder Singh, Punjab Regiment
  7. Aadesh Kumar sea i cd iii (Navy)
  8. Aircraftsman Murali Kannan (posthumous)
  9. Je (civil) Manish (Posthumous), BRO
  10. PR Mishra, Dy Commandant, Central Reserve Police Force

Well I am just listing out the list of major gallantry awards. For the complete list of awards that were declared please click here.


andy_murray_wimbledon_win_2013

Andy Murray won Wimbledon 2013, his second slam title (he won his first major at the US Open last year). With this he ended a 77 year title drought of the British Men’s tennis at the Wimbledon.

And with this title he increases the prominance of the big four of tennis. Over the past three-four years the top four (Federer, Nadal, Djokovic, and Murray) have been very prominent winning most of the big tournaments (including grand slams, masters 1000, world tour finals; infact Murray was the only one of the top four not to win a slam till September last year, and Del Potro is the only player to win a slam apart from these top four since 2005 French open). They have generally taken the 4 semifinal spots of most of the slam tournaments. However, till last Murray was the only one of the top four to not win a slam title, which changed at the US Open last year. And now this Wimbledon title should offcially shut the mouths of all the people who were doubting whether it is the top four or just the top three.

It is just amazing how these top four have dominated this era of men’s tennis. They have won 33 of the last 34 slam majors between them, a streak since 2005 Frech Open. These 33 slam titles can broken down into Federer winning 13, Nadal 12, Djokovic 6, and Murray 2

Of the last 8 Australia Open titles Djokovic has won 4, Federer 3, and Nadal 1
Of the last 9 French Open titles Nadal has won 8 and Federer 1
Of the last 9 Wimbledon titles Federer has won 5, Nadal 2, and Djokovic and Murray have won 1 each
Of the last 8 US Open titles Federer has won 4, while Nadal, Djokovic, and Murray have won 1 each (with Juan Martin Del Potro being the only other slam winner who won in 2009)

Such has been the situation of the Men’s tennis of almost the last decade. They have won the 37 slam titles between them of which they have won 36 out of the last 40 slams (with Del Potro winning the 2009 US Open, Andy Roddick winning 2003 US Open, Marat Safin won 2005 Australian Open, and Gaston Gaudio won 2004 French Open being the other four slam winners; of which Roddick, Safin, and Gaudio all won the slam before the emergence of Nadal, Djokovic, and Murray as stars on the court).

andy-murray-wins-wimbledon-2013


It is one of the toughest phases ahead that Roger Federer would have faced in past few years. He enters into Wimbledon 2013 as the defending champion, and if he fails to defend it he might just slip down to 4th rank in the ATP rankings which would be the first in close 10 years (has been in top 3 for the past 514 weeks). Also, if  Ferrer and Nadal manage to reach the quarter-finals stage (which probably they should) and Federer is unable to defend the title then he would move out of the top 4 to the 5th rank (he has been in the top 4 for the past 520 weeks- 10 years). But that is not the worry for him. The biggest challenge for him would be that, if he fails to make it to the finals at Wimbledon, he would surely move out of top 4, irrespective of how anyone else fares at the tournament, especially since he has a threat of facing Nadal in as early as the quarterfinal stage. Again, since he is also chasing history to become the first male player to win Wimbledon 8 times, there would be a lot of pressure on him.

Well this Wimbledon could not have got bigger for David Ferrer, as his consistent play over the past 1 year coupled with the absence of Nadal from the tourney has helped him accumulate a lot of points, and has given him a chance to rise in the rankings. His career-highest rankings have been 4th rank so far and this Wimbledon would give him a chance to rise to world number 2 if he finishes the tournament on a high. This also gives Nadal to get back in top 3 rankings this year. He has made a positive return since his injury winning 7 titles and reaching all the finals of the 9 tournaments he has played since comeback. A title win for Andy Murray can help inch closer to the number 1 ranking, so there is a lot up for stake for him as well.

Only Djokovic who stands as world number 1 would sit comfortably in the tournament, with his ranking to stay intact after the tournament ends. Though he would be skeptical of Nadal who has already taken a lot of strides towards the number 1 year-end rank.

Also, with Federer not getting any younger, is this the beginning of the end of a legendary career? Or would this have a sceond life?

ATP-World-Tour-Finals-Big-5


4743026-3x2-940x627

Rafael Nadal (the king of clay) has won his 8th French Open title, which is a record for men’s tennis of any male player to have won a grand slam 8 times. He has gone past Pete Sampras and Roger Federer, both who have won Wimbledon 7 times each. So, what next for Nadal? Maybe cross Martina Navratilova’s record of 9 Wimbledon titles (that’s a record for maximum titles in a single grand slam, by both men and women). Then there are Sampras’s 14 grand slam titles and Federer’s 17. Well which record will he break first, Navratilova’s or Sampras’s is something to watch out for. Though I hope that he does break all of them, whichever comes first would not matter.

In the end I would like to congratulate Nadal for his achievement, and I hope he goes many more such instances for us to be happy of.

20130609_kdl_au2_055-6f8f623792b85f29700c4dcf05082153


IPL 6 FINAL

Finally Mumbai Indians win the IPL trophy, and with this the most star-studded team finally get a hold of the trophy that eluded them for the last 5 years. And with this Sachin Tendulkar gets hold of a probably the only trophy that was missing from his trophy cabinet.

Mumbai Indians have always been a heavy spender at the IPL auctions trying to get hold of players that could possibly win them the trophy. They had won the Champions League in 2011 but somehow IPL trophy has eluded them. This year around they made many strategic changes like appointing Anil Kumble as the mentor, John Wright as the chief coach, and Ricky Ponting as the captain. This gave the world the opportunity to watch Sachin and Ponting open the innings together, definitely a breath-taking sight.

Though Ricky Ponting in the playing eleven did not work for them, but the courageous step of dropping him from the playing eleven and appointing Rohit Sharma as the captain proved to be a master stroke. Though I do believe that Ponting would have played a huge role from the sidelines, of mentoring Sharma to take on the captaincy.

Also Mumbai was one of the strongest team in the IPL with a very strong bowling attack of Jhonson, Harbhajan, Malinga, and Ojha (and all the other youngsters that got a chance proved themselves). Again the batting was bolstered by Karthikh, Sharma, Pollard, and Smith in supreme form ably supported by Rayudu and Sachin when required. But what took the cake was their fielding. Ponting and Pollard were involved in some breath taking catches, and their ground fielding was also superb with the likes of Sharma, Rayudu and Smith diving around and why should it not have been when they were being mentored by none other than Jhonty Rhodes.

Finally Mumbai Indians lived up to the expectations of their fans and they created that magic by being unbeaten at their home venue (Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai).

B_Id_388796_mumbaindiansipl6

But to be honest I am not really sure if all the Mumbai Indian fans were excited by this victory, as soon after the victory, came the announcement that Sachin had retired from the IPL. Probably we might get to see him one last time in the Champions League donning the MI clothing. I don’t know if the IPL would remain the same from next year with the absence of Sachin. Also, I am not sure for myself, as my alliances have been with Mumbai Indians for all these six years and that has largely been due to Sachin’s presence in the team. Though maybe he still would be around next year in a mentor’s role but I am not sure if my alliances would still remain with the team.

Also, came the announcement from Rahul Dravid from IPL, unfortunately since he is out from international cricket, this year’s Champions League would probably be the last time we would get to see him play on the screen. Again, towards the end IPL was surrounded by this spot fixing controversy. I really don’t know, why would any player indulge in such an activity, as IPL already a very high paying league, and all this has done is brought dejection towards the league in the minds of the fans all over the world.

All I can hope is that IPL would remain the same as it has been over the past 6 years with or without legends like Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid, and amidst all the spot fixing haphazard that happened this year.

Rohit_Ojha_Harbhajan_Sachin_IPL_Trophy


Sachin Tendulkar turned 40 yesterday, and as I could not write down a post yesterday, I believe it is never too late to wish the legend. So I would like to take this opportunity to wish him a very happy birthday and also thank him for all the glorious days of cricket I got to witness when he played for India, whether be it in tests or in ODIs. And his records in both the formats speak for themselves.

It is really unfortunate that he announced his retirement from ODI cricket in December, or else he could have become the first Indian to do so. Anyways, he missed on the longest ODI career due to his retirement, and since he did not play an ODI since Feb 2012, that would be considered as his last day of ODI career irrespective of the fact that he announced his retirement from the format in December. Though I would have loved to have watch him play against Pakistan in that series, and it could have been a fitting end to a career and against a team with which it all started in 1989. Though now he would seventh Indian player to play test cricket in his 40s, and the first to do it after since 1960, but this is subject to the fact that he should play a test match after this. Hopefully he would play against South Africa towards the end of the year. The most precious memory of his birthday I have is of 15 years back in 1998, when he turned 25, and when he smashed the Australian bowlers all around the ground to win the series. Yesterday he could not play a big innings against Kolkata Knight Riders, and was dismissed cheaply, but yes his team did not let him down and spoil his birthday party.

Anyways, I would want to wish him a very happy birthday again, and I hope to see him soon playing the test matches, and playing it for a few more years.

Sachin_turns_40


20121221133537!Pepsi_IPL_LogoWell this year’s IPL is definitely one of the toughest in terms of competitive level. One-third of the tournament is over, and yet there is no certain team that would make through to the final 4. It is on Delhi Daredevils that look to be out of the reckoning for the final 4 spot as they have all of their first 6 matches, which they might need to win 8-9 matches of their remaining 10 matches something that looks difficult, but anything can be possible in cricket so they are not yet out of the tournament.

Well at the start of tournament, one would have bet 4 out of Delhi Daredevils, Chennai Super Kings, Mumbai Indians, Kolkata Knight Riders, and Royal Challengers Bangalore should make it to the top 4. Not much was thought of the other 4 teams of making it to the top 4. But surprisingly, team Delhi one of the strongest on paper has lost their first 6 matches, which probably make them the first team to be knocked out of the tournament. Again all of team Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, and Bangalore have should a little indifferent form in their first 5-6 matches. Though team Bangalore is placed second at this point, team Chennai at fourth, team Mumbai at fifth, team Kolkata at seventh, and team Delhi at ninth (last). The other underdog teams (especially Rajasthan Royals) have done well and in fact are at the top of the table at this stage. The other teams like Kings XI Punjab and the debutant team (Sun Risers Hyderabad) have shown indifferent form but have managed to scrape to victories on most of the occasions and they are placed sixth and third in the table respectively. Also, Pune Warriors have not played to the expectations of the fans but have defeated the big teams like Chennai and the I form Rajasthan and are currently placed at eighth, but yes they still have a very good chance to qualify.

Well who all are going to make it to the top 4, definitely looks like a surprise that would be awaited. Let’s wait and see what happens, I hope that at least Mumbai Indians makes through to the top 4.


For a long time the following image was displayed in different parts of the country to promote and advertise to make people of India proud to join the Indian Army.

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For the last couple of days, a new picture is appearing on the internet as an advertisement that is currently displayed in Shillong, featuring 9 Bollywood actresses (Priyanka Chopra, Priety Zinta, Simmi Garewal, Chitrangada Singh, Celina Jaitley, Amrita Singh, Gul Panag, Anushka Sharma, and Sakshi Tanwar, all Army Officer’s daughters), and urging the people to join the Indian Army. Though I am not sure whether this image is a genuine one or a fake (as though the official site of “Join the Indian Army” is mentioned on the banner, there is nothing on the website relating to this). Also, there is no word from any of the above celebrities of have having given their consent of the advertisement (though I feel that they would not really oppose to such a thing).

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After reading a couple of articles on the net relating to this picture, and I realized that this advertisement is more to promote a girl child in the Indian Army than an advertisement to join the Army, so in that case I feel this banner should have had a mention of AWWA rather than of “Join Indian Army” on the banner.

Anyways, if this is a true image, then it is a nice and an innovative way to urge people to join the Indian Army. All I can say is that, this advertisement is in a way a good representation of the exposure the kids of army personnel (I can say this, because even I am an Army officer’s son) get in their upbringing which thereby helps them emerge as winners in the field that they choose in their career.

Overall, I am surprised to such an initiative, and to a certain extent happy as well as Indian Army is getting innovative. And most of all is that this allows the kids of Army personnel (in this case these actresses), to contribute to the Indian Army, probably to which they owe a lot as it rightly pointed out by Gul Panag in one of her tweets.

About the join army ‘ad’.Whether in jest or not,I have no problem with it.I owe 100% of what I am to my AF upbringing. Proud of it. @rwac48

— Gul Panag (@GulPanag) April 14, 2013


dutt_1363847508Sanjay Dutt has been sentenced to a 5-year jail term under the case of illegal possession of arms in the 193 Mumbai blasts case. A little over 5 years back in 2007, Sanjay Dutt was cleared of the conspiracy charges in the 1993 Mumbai blasts, but was found guilty of illegal possession of an automatic rifle and a pistol. Since this case was still under the Supreme Court Dutt was granted bail, and has been out since then. Now he needs to surrender within a month and complete the sentence term (he has already served 18 months in jail earlier). Though this a sad news for all his fans, but as an Indian I am proud that the supreme court is playing its role well and even prosecuting high profile people. Though the time frame can be a topic for debate as it has been nearly 20 years since those blasts took place, but as we say better late than never, it is good that criminals like Yakub Menon have been given death sentence. This does raise a little hope in the judicial system of India.

The complete news articles are as follows:

1993 Mumbai blasts: Five-year jail term for Sanjay Dutt

The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt’s conviction in the 1993 Mumbai blasts case and sentenced him to five years imprisonment. Dutt, who has already served 18 months of his term in prison, has four weeks to surrender.

The Supreme Court today also dismissed 1993 Mumbai blasts mastermind Yakub Memon’s appeal against his death sentence even as it reduced the punishment of 10 other accused to life imprisonment from death sentence considering the fact that they have spent 20 years in jail. It also upheld life sentences awarded to 17 others.

The apex court said there is no case for probation to Dutt because of the gravity of the crime. Dutt can file a review petition.

Dutt, who was convicted under the Arms Act for illegally possessing weapons, had been awarded six years imprisonment by the TADA (Terrorists and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act) court.

However, the apex court reduced the sentence from six years to five years. This effectively means that Dutt will be in jail for three years and six months as he has already undergone 18 months imprisonment.

“He will have to serve another three-and-a-half year sentence. We had prepared him for the same,” Dutt’s lawyer Satish Maneshinde told reporters.

“We will wait for a copy of the Supreme Court judgement and then decide the further course of action,” he said. “He is a strong man and will fight back.”

In 2007, Dutt was cleared of conspiracy charges in the Mumbai serial blasts but was found guilty of illegal possession of an automatic rifle and a pistol.

The actor was the most high-profile among 100 people found guilty in the bombings trial. The 1993 Mumbai attacks were ordered by India’s most wanted man, Dawood Ibrahim, police say.

The court also came down heavily on Mumbai police and customs officers at all levels. But for their wrong actions the 1993 bombings could have been avoided.

A TADA court had in 1993 awarded death sentence to 12 people, including Memon. One of them has passed away. The court had also sentenced 20 to life imprisonment and 46 others, including Dutt, were given varying terms of imprisonment.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had faced flak for not challenging the TADA court verdict acquitting Sanjay Dutt of charges under the TADA but convicting him under the Arms Act and sentencing him to six years imprisonment.

However, in the course of the hearing of his appeal, the CBI had opposed the actor’s plea challenging his conviction and sentencing.

For a man who reportedly took to drugs in high school, hobnobbed with India’s most-wanted criminals and whose private life constantly made headlines, Dutt retains the sympathy of the industry and millions of fans who see him as a victim of his star lineage and own fame.

Dutt is the son of actor and former Congress minister late Sunil Dutt. His sister Priya is a Congress MP in the Lok Sabha. Their mother, late Nargis, had also been a nominated member of the Rajya Sabha.

Dutt married longtime girlfriend Manyata in February 2008 and became a father to twins two years later. He has a daughter Trishala from his first marriage.

Through all his troubled years, Dutt managed to stay relevant in Bollywood, with his biggest hits being the two-series Munnabhai films in which he played a funny, do-gooder gangster.

Dutt wasn’t present in the court and was represented by his sister Priya.

A series of 13 car bomb blasts had ripped through Mumbai on March 12, 1993, resulting in the death of 257 people and injuries to 713. The locations that were targeted included fisherman’s colony in Mahim Causeway, Zaveri Bazaar, Plaza Cinema, Century Bazaar, Katha Bazaar, Hotel Sea Rock, Sahar Airport, Air India building, Hotel Juhu Centaur, the Bombay Stock Exchange Building and the Passport Office.

Not linked to 1993 blasts: Dutt

In August 2012, Dutt told the Supreme Court that his offence of possessing a rifle and ammunition was not linked to the 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts.

Appearing for the actor, senior counsel Harish Salve told the apex court bench of Justice P. Sathasivam and Justice B.S. Chauhan that he came to possess the weapon in September 1992 when his father Sunil Dutt and sisters were facing threats as the senior Dutt’s help to Muslim victims annoyed some.

Salve said that the only caveat in putting Sanjay Dutt to trial under an anti-terror law was if there was any “inextricable linkage” between his possessing arms with the serial bomb blasts.

He said that this was the least common denominator that could be used for seeing any such linkage. He said that there was no linkage between Dutt possessing a rifle and the 1993 bomb blasts.

The court was told that Dutt had never met blasts accused Tiger Memon and all that he knew about him was hearsay from Samir Hingora in whose under-production film “Sanam” he was playing a role.

The senior counsel told this to the apex court hearing Dutt’s appeal challenging his conviction under the Arms act and sentence of six years awarded to him. The actor’s appeal challenging his conviction was being heard by the apex court.

As Salve commenced the arguments, the court pointed out that there were objections that the “CBI filed appeal against all making an exception for Sanjay Dutt”.

The court was apparently referring to senior counsel Jaspal Singh casting shadows on the impartiality of the CBI by not appealing against the TADA court verdict in Dutt’s case.

Jaspal Singh, who appeared for accused Yakub Memon, said that the CBI did not oppose the bail of Dutt who had confessed his guilt and weapons were recovered from him. (With agency inputs) ..”

1993 Mumbai blasts: SC upholds Yakub Memon’s death sentence

“The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the death sentence of Yakub Abdul Razak Memon in the 1993 Mumbai blasts case and commuted the death sentence of 10 others. The apex court also upheld the conviction of Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt under the Arms Act in the terror attack and sent him to five years in prison.

However, the apex court reduced the sentence from six years to five years. This effectively means that Dutt will be in jail for three years and six months as he has already undergone 18 months imprisonment.

While confirming the death sentence of Yakub Memon, the bench of Justices P. Sathasivam and B.S. Chauhan said he and other members of the Memon family had played a predominant role in the execution of the conspiracy that led to 13 serial bomb blasts in Mumbai on March 12, 1993, claiming 257 lives and leaving 713 injured.

While commuting the death sentence of the 10 other convicts to life imprisonment, the court said that they were mere subservients in the execution of the conspiracy.

The humble and underprivileged background of these 10 accused, who were mere instruments in the hands of “principal perpetrators”, were counted as mitigating circumstances by the court.

The court said that if Memons were the archers of the conspiracy these 10 were just arrows. The judges also slammed Pakistan for aiding and abetting the acts of terrorism in infringement of international obligation as a member of United Nations.

The court also came down heavily on Mumbai police and customs officers at all levels. But for their wrong actions the 1993 bombings could have been avoided.

A TADA court had in 1993 awarded death sentence to 12 people, including Memon. One of them has passed away. The court had also sentenced 20 to life imprisonment and 46 others, including Sanjay Dutt, were given varying terms of imprisonment.

An anti-terror TADA (Terrorists and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act) court had in 1993 awarded death sentence to 12 people, including Memon. One of them has passed away.

A series of 13 car bomb blasts had ripped through Mumbai on March 12, 1993, resulting in the death of 257 people and injuries to 713. The locations that were targeted included fisherman’s colony in Mahim Causeway, Zaveri Bazaar, Plaza Cinema, Century Bazaar, Katha Bazaar, Hotel Sea Rock, Sahar Airport, Air India building, Hotel Juhu Centaur, the Bombay Stock Exchange Building and the Passport Office.

The TADA court trial court of Justice P.D. Kode had commenced the trial on November 4, 1993, and pronounced its 4,230-page verdict on July 31, 2007.

The bombings, police say, were carried out at the behest of gangster Dawood Ibrahim to avenge the destruction of the Babri Masjid in 1992 and subsequent riots in which many Muslims were killed. A special anti-terrorism court had convicted 100 people in the attacks. (With agency inputs) ..”


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Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer will meet in a quarterfinal of a tournament after almost 9 years. They way the have played and since they have maintained the top two rankings for most of the period they have generally met in the finals of a tournament. And it is only since the last couple of years that they have met in the semi-finals stage. But this is the fisrt time they will meet in a quarter-finals. The last time they met at such a stage was way back in 2004, when Nadal beat Federer in the round of 32 match at Miami. Nadal was just 17 years old then and was ranked 34 in the world. Probably that was the time when he showed signs of a player that would be one of the all time greats. Now once again they would meet at a little lower stage of a tournament and this is majorly because of Nadal’s injury all last year, because of which he missed most of the tournaments and dropped to No. 5 in rankings.

Here is the complete article:

World No. 2 Roger Federer set a blockbuster quarterfinal clash with Rafael Nadal at the BNP Paribas Open after both survived pulsating fourth-round tussles on Wednesday night, in what was one of the greatest days in tournament history at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.

It will be their first meeting for 12 months, since Federer beat the Spaniard in straight sets in the semifinals in Indian Wells. The 26-year-old Nadal leads their career series 18-10. Both are bidding to win a record-breaking 22nd ATP World Tour Masters 1000 crown this week.

Federer prevailed in a gripping tussle with Swiss countryman Stanislas Wawrinka, winning 6-3, 6-7(4), 7-5 in two hours and 20 minutes. Federer served for the match at 5-4 in the second set, but was broken to love as Wawrinka staged a spirited fightback. Wawrinka led 2-1 with a break in the third set, but could not consolidate and Federer ultimately got the decisive break in the 12th game.

“Today it was extremely close again. Okay, I should [have] maybe closed it out in the second set, but he did well to stay in it,” Federer said. “At the end, I don’t know what [got] me through. Maybe it’s the experience or maybe [I was] a bit more calm in those moments. I’m not sure. Today I think I was a little lucky to come through it in the end.”

The 31-year-old Federer improved to a 13-1 record over Wawrinka as he moved into the quarterfinals of this ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event for the eighth time. The Basel native is bidding to win the title at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden for the fifth time, after victories in 2004-’06 and 2012.

Wawrinka endured another heart-breaking loss in 2013. The 27 year old was beaten 12-10 in the fifth set of a five-hour contest with Novak Djokovic in the fourth round of the Australian Open and was on the losing side of a seven-hour doubles defeat on Davis Cup duty against Czech Republic. The right-hander, a runner-up at the Copa Claro in Buenos Aires, dropped to an 11-6 match record on the season.

“Today for sure I had some chances,” said Wawrinka. “I had some opportunities, but I [could have] lost the match in two straight sets, too… I was close, but not enough, and that’s why I need to still go practice and practice again.”

Federer is chasing his first title of the season. The 17-time Grand Slam winner was beaten in the Australian Open semi-finals by Andy Murray and fell in the last four in Dubai to Tomas Berdych.

In the last match of a very-late finishing day session, Nadal edged the in-form Ernests Gulbis 4-6, 6-4, 7-5 in two hours and 33 minutes. The match finished at 9:47pm local time, with the evening session scheduled to have start at 7pm.

Nadal won just two points more than Gulbis, breaking the Latvian decisively in the 11th game of the third set before serving out the victory to 30, finishing with a forehand winner. The defeat brought to an end Gulbis’ winning streak, which had seen him win the Delray Beach title and qualify into the Indian Wells main draw before powering into the fourth round.

Nadal closed on his landmark 600th tour-level win, claiming his 597th win. After a seven-month injury lay-off, the Mallorcan returned with aplomb last month in the Latin America Golden Swing, winning the titles in Sao Paulo (d. Nalbandian) and Acapulco (d. Ferrer) and finishing runner-up in Vina del Mar (l. to Zeballos). He is looking to win the Indian Wells title for the third time after triumphs in 2007 (d. Djokovic) and 2009 (d. Murray).”


I really don’t know whether I should say that the cities in India are getting unsafe by every passing day, or it is that the crime rate remains the same but a lot many cases are now getting known to public. Well whatever be the scenario, both suggest that the people are now more scared against crime than ever before, and also it does not portray the good image of the city/locality to the people living in other parts of the country and also it portrays a bad image of the country globally.

I have written a couple of blog posts recently relating to the gang-rape incident that took place a couple of months back in Delhi. And to be honest I have always believed that Pune has been a much safer city to live in when compared to many others like Delhi, Mumbai amongst others. But then another of an incident has just come to my notice a couple of days back in Pune, though this incident is not of the magnitude the Delhi incident was, but still it is a crime and could have been far worse than it now looks. But since I got to know of it because of it happening with one of my colleagues at work, it does sound scary, and so I thought of writing of it on my blog and also discuss a few issues.

This was an email that written by one of my colleagues at work (the victim), and since then this email has circulated within the organization like virus and now has even started to get distributed to other organizations as well. I guess this is the advantage of electronic media, as now more and more people would get educated of this and can take their steps of precaution. The email:

Hi All,
I am writing this because i feel u should all know about it. It is about the level of safety around here in Pune or anywhere in India. Is there anyone you can trust ??
 
On Friday 22nd February at around 8.30 in the evening I was on my way to Mumbai waiting for one of those carpools. One which stops at wakad bridge and drops you Mumbai for 150 bucks. So this blue color indica stopped and the driver was asking people for Mumbai. Since there is no street light in that area  I couldn’t see the car no. The driver kept asking for Mumbai. When one person decided to back out, I decided to get in the car. I got in the car and was sitting in the middle with 2 guys on each side of me. There were two other in the car i.e one the driver and the other sitting beside him.  The car started and all of them were quietly sitting as if they don’t know each other. I don’t know why all of the sudden i felt something was fishy. I told the driver to stop as I remembered some urgent work. But as soon as the next stop came the driver didn’t stop and the person on my right covered my mouth and my hand while the other person on my left held my neck and other hand using great force. I got scared and started shouting but they told me to shut or else they would kill me.They told me to bend and sit pressing my neck and then put a cloth on my head so that i don’t see anything i.e neither their face nor the direction in which they are taking me. I just shut myself out of fear. They started stealing everything and asking me all kinds of question. They took my money, my specs without which I couldn’t see anything , my laptop, my cloths, my mp4 player and almost everything. Things worth around 70k. They even asked me my atm pin and I even spoke the truth fearing what if they actually check and find out its wrong and kill me. The lowest of my life was when these people were discussing whether to kill me throw my body away or just leave me. I was literally begging for my life. Then they finally took me to some place and tied my hands, took me out of the car in some deserted area with bushes all around me. They then tore my t-shirt tied my mouth with it as tightly as possible. This is when again I felt I would get killed. But then they pushed me to the ground and tied my legs and ran away. I had no idea where I was and I couldn’t move my legs or hands. It was scary. I somehow managed to untie my hands and then my legs and then my mouth. I couldn’t see anything but ran in the direction of the light. Suddenly I saw a building and luckily a window with light. Ran towards it and got all the help. It was an army area in Dehu road off old Pune-Mumbai highway.
 
But my point here is please don’t ever travel in these car pools from wakad. Especially when you are alone. These people work in group and act as if they don’t know each other and later threaten to kill and steal everything. Please ensure you either travel in bus or with someone whom you can trust or with fellow Infoscians. Girls please travel with someone you know and can trust. Times are so bad nothing here in India is safe. Just make sure you don’t travel in these car pools because you never know what might happen to you. You can never trust these people. IT COULD HAVE BEEN WORSE FOR ME BUT I AM JUST LUCKY TO BE ALIVE. It still gives me chills just to think about it.
 
So I request to all please don’t ever take carpools which drop you to Mumbai from Wakad bridge. These people can never be trusted and please don’t leave office late as well. Complete your work as fast as possible and leave as early as possible. Ladies please leave early by buses or with someone you trust. Carrying a pepper spray with yourself all the time would be great. Today it was me but tomorrow it can be anyone. And these people can come up with any ideas anytime to steal from us. So please stay cautious and alert all the time.
Please forward this mail to all friends and relatives so as to ensure their safety. Please forward this to your friends across all DCs so as to alert them and ensure their safety.

Well this happened to one of my male colleagues. Also, this email speaks about the huge risk a non-regular Mumbai-Pune traveller carries. Especially, because a non-regular traveller would not get suspicious of the activity so easily, as this person got. And then falling in trap for such a person would be far easier than for a regular one. Again, what level of crime could have happened in a scenario if this would have happened to any of the female colleagues? How can they be safe, if such evets keep on recurring. All we can say is that every city is turning towards the bad bad world.

Now all these really create a lot of doubts in the mid of people who think that Pune is a very safe city comparatively. And again, is it that this probably a single case and to judge Pune as unsafe is wrong, or is it that this is one of those cases that has manage to surface into limelight. Whatever be the scenario, it is not good news for Pune residents I guess. Also, I hope that with this post I can reach out to maximum people around, and also manage to create an awareness amongst people so that they don’t fall into such traps.