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In Tamil Nadu, politics is not simply about just electing leaders, it is a way of life. Both the main Dravidian parties, the AIADMK and the DMK, have their fair share of followers, with many of them willing to give up their lives for the party. Leaders draw a obsessive kind of fanaticism. From crucifying themselves, to getting tattoos of their leaders names or faces, the tendency to adulation knows no bounds.
Embroiled in a raging controversy and an elaborate legal battle over a relationship with actor Hrithik Roshan, National Award-winning actress Kangana Ranaut said that India is a sexist country that labels women who are sexually active as 'whores' and those who are successful as 'psychopaths.'
Religious tolerance in India deteriorated in 2015 and religious freedoms of minorities were violated by Hindu nationalist groups, said a study conducted by a US government agency which monitors religious freedom. In it annual report, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom said that India was on a negative trajectory in terms of religious freedom.
Bollywood actors Salman Khan who has been shooting for his upcoming film Sultan in Muzaffarnagar, Uttar Pradesh seems to have 'annoyed' some of the locals. One resident of the city has filed a complaint in a local court against Khan and Sultan director Ali Abbas Zafar alleging that though the movie was shot in Morna area of the district, the location was shown as Rewari in Haryana.
Nobel Prize winner Kailash Satyarthi has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to declare drought as a "national emergency", saying that it had badly hit children in rural areas.
Liquor baron Vijay Mallya who had recently resigned from the Rajya Sabha so that his "name and reputation to be further dragged in the mud", will not get a chance for an honourable exit. It looks like it won't save him from expulsion as Chairperson Hamid Ansari has rejected his letter on the ground that the liquor baron had not followed the proper procedures.
The raging Uttarakhand forest fires that swallowed large parts of the hill state have raised concerns about the adverse effects it could have on the glaciers in the region. The 'black carbon' from smog and ash covering the glaciers could reportedly make them more prone to melting.
Off The Front Page
While actor Rajinikanth's upcoming film Kabali's first teaser broke all sorts of records a couple of days ago, the film also got a nudge in an unintentional political direction. DMK enthusiasts overlaid the Thalaivar's punch dialogues with political messages hitting out at the ruling AIADMK, predictably drawing the ire of fans unhappy about a the trailer being used in the electoral battle.
Nihal Bitla, aged 15, who was suffering from a rare genetic disorder Progeria where symptoms resembling aspects of ageing are manifested at a very early age, passed away while attending a relative's wedding in Telangana. Nihal, who was part of a clinical trial for Lonafarnib drug in Boston to check whether the drug could delay ageing, had posted his pictures on Facebook and Twitter to reach out to parents, specially in rural areas, and help them know about the disorder.
Jalandhar mayor Sunil Jyoti who belongs to the BJP got a lot of media attention when a photo posted by him posing in front of the Punjab government flag and the Indian tricolour went viral. The catch? The Indian national flag was hung upside down. According to the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act 1971, displaying the Indian National Flag with the upside-down is an offence with a maximum punishment of upto three years imprisonment and fine.
The Man Who Knew Infinity, a biopic on Ramanujan — a legendary mathematician born in 1887 in modern Tamil Nadu — released in India on Friday reminded his admirers of this dollop of history, says an editorial in Mint. "An important difference between the Indian tradition and the Greco-Western tradition of mathematics is the emphasis on proofs placed by the latter. This divergence is most distinctly observed in arguments between Ramanujan and his mentor G.H. Hardy at Trinity College, Cambridge. For Ramanujan, an equation had no meaning unless it expressed a thought of God. This fits in with the evolution of mathematics in India in a multi-disciplinarian framework. A regular osmotic process has sustained between Indian mathematics and other fields like astronomy, physics, linguistics, spiritualism and music," it says.
Behind the Bhagat Singh controversy lies an attempt to impose one notion of nationalism, writes Mridula Mukherjee in The Indian Express. "If Chandra’s book [where Bhagat Singh is referred to as a 'terrorist'] was attacked because of its thorough analysis, over three chapters, of communalism of all hues — Hindu, Muslim or any other — one could understand the logic. A political ideology based on a divisive communal framework trying to pass off as nationalist was bound to be uncomfortable with a book that shows it up in its true colours," she says.
The unlikely triumph of Leicester City, the new champions of the English Premier League, is a window to a larger geographic and demographic shift in England, writes Andrew Whitehead in The Hindu. "Leicester’s success in the Premier League hits back at the emerging monopoly within English football. The ‘big five’ teams have been attracting all the money, the acclaim, the worldwide following — elbowing out the smaller clubs. But without the less well-known teams, the game would be very hollow," he says.
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