The Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed a plea challenging the Allahabad High Court verdict rejecting a petition seeking direction to Uttar Pradesh Police to lodge an FIR against former Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav for his alleged order to open fire on ‘kar sewaks’ at Ayodhya in 1990. A Bench, comprising Justices Ashok Bhushan and K.M. Joseph, dismissed the plea on the ground of delay considering the fact that appeal has been filed against the May 3, 2016, order of the High Court. The plea had alleged that on October 30, 1990, several ‘kar sewaks’ were killed in police firing at the temple town when they were taking part in a “peaceful movement” for the construction of a Ram Temple there. The plea was filed by a Lucknow-based man, who had in 2014 approached a trial court for a direction to the police to lodge an FIR against Mr. Yadav, who was the Chief Minister of U.P. in 1990. He had alleged that the Samajwadi Party leader had given a statement in public meetings that he had ordered the police to fire on ‘kar sewaks’ to win the confidence of Muslims. The trial court had dismissed his plea after which he had moved the High Court challenging the order. In his appeal filed in the top court, the petitioner had claimed, “The High Court failed to appreciate that in a huge public gathering, Mulayam Singh Yadav, has confessed/ admitted that he ordered to fire guns on ‘kar sewaks’ and he further admitted in the second public meeting that if he did not order to fire on kar sewaks then the confidence of Muslims would be broken.”
Odisha’s Berhampur parliamentary constituency that boasts about electing former Prime Minister P.V. Narasimha Rao in 1996 will have a triangular fight this time between the BJD, the BJP and the Congress.In this constituency that goes to the polls in the first phase on April 11, three major parties have fielded new candidates. The BJD has dropped Siddhant Mohapatra, the cine-star turned MP of Berhampur in 2009 and 2014. The party is fielding former Union Minister Chandrasekhar Sahu as its candidate. Mr. Sahu as the Congress candidate had lost to Mr. Mohapatra twice in the past and had joined the BJD in 2018. However, the party hopes for a hat-trick through him from Berhampur.Without Mr. Sahu, the Congress has fielded V. Chandrasekhar Naidu, an energy sector industrialist from New Delhi having ancestral links with the region. He is completely new to politics and this constituency. The party hopes to garner sizeable Telugu voters in the constituency that made former PM choose it in 1996.The BJP had won this seat in 1999 during the Kargil-wave, but as an ally of the BJD. This time hoping to ride on the post-Pulwama air strike sentiments, the BJP has fielded its State secretary Bhrugu Baxipatra. The party is also planning a rally of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to strengthen its prospects. The BJP leaders feel the voters here vote differently for the Assembly and Lok Sabha constituency although both elections are held together. From 1957 till 1996, Berhampur continued to be a safe bastion for the Congress where even the anti-Emergency wave of 1977 had failed to work. The magic has vanished since the past two decades. The Congress had managed to win back this seat in 2004. However, with Mr. Sahu and several other key party leaders now in the BJD, the organisational strength of the Congress has gone down in the Berhampur parliamentary constituency. Berhampur, Gopalpur, Chhatrapur, Digapahandi, Chikiti, Mohana, Paralakhemundi Assembly segments where the polling will be held on April 11 are part of Berhampur Lok Sabha seat. Mohana happens to be a reserved seat for the Scheduled Castes.
The pout in the mirror is distracting, the lips stained the colour of fresh strawberries. A longstemmed glass of white wine balances precariously on the edge of the sink as its owner throws her glossy, platinum mane back, impatiently clicks her smooth, creamy heels and gives her rock a quick,The pout in the mirror is distracting, the lips stained the colour of fresh strawberries. A longstemmed glass of white wine balances precariously on the edge of the sink as its owner throws her glossy, platinum mane back, impatiently clicks her smooth, creamy heels and gives her rock a quick dekko in the mirror.She then saunters out of the non-descript restroom at SW19 and prepares to enjoy a spectacle like none other. She is an A-lister and has a seat in the Royal Box at Wimbledon. Here the game is as much about the celebrity quotient as it is about the two fiery contestants- Federer and Djokovic, who are preparing to battle it out for the men’s title. To go to Wimbledon means doing it as the English look book dictates; if you have a ticket to view one of the big games on centre court you must obviously play the part.The sun-streaked grey swings crisscross patterns across the bare, tanned shoulders of the rich and famous as they turn up in their Sunday best. The Royal Box is being given the once over by Vogue’s formidable Anna Wintour as she pulls the lapel of her python-print coat close together. A Cartier-clasped wrist is raised to the mouth in awe as Federer serves an ace. The Duchess of Cambridge’s Givenchy glares reflect the mood of the moment. Every year, this is where royalty happily rubs shoulders with Hollywood, other athletes, musicians and anybody who is anybody. Here at Wimbledon, sport and excess hook up to create the year’s biggest ‘It’ event that is a serious crowd puller. When Wimbledon arrives in England, you know the season has turned. The smell of cut grass, the promise of strawberries fresh from Kent and sunshine, bare feet, fancy hats, red-soled heels, shorts, Burberry, wine-all the trappings of an extraordinary British summer.advertisementAnd chasing the Wimbledon dream is a brand that’s the official wine of the tournament: Jacob’s Creek. Bringing a touch of Australian whimsy and lassitude to the game for four years running, it represents a perfect marriage between the two. Wine spitzers line a neat tray waiting to be picked up as we make our way into the Jacob’s Creek hospitality marquee before the game. We are pleased as punch as the hint of wine, crushed ice and sweetness hits our throat. Much like the event, the wine brings about a sense of freedom and indulgence and depending on who’s drinking it, plays all tunes going from Bohemian rhapsody to Tchaikovsky. Versatility defines this wine and the game.The special ‘all white’ edition Wimbledon wine has lined the shelves at supermarkets across Britain in the run up to the game and is a worthy piece of memorabilia; it also helps that it tastes so darn good. Made from grapes grown in Australia’s Barossa valley, the chardonnay is easy on the tongue, its velvety fragrance reminiscent of the valley. Its pale straw hue with flecks of green is also the best accompaniment to strawberries and cream that have come to be regarded as one of Wimbledon’s rituals and a symbol of all that’s quintessentially English. The chardonnay works well if you want to taste some sunshine while sitting courtside but if the allure of the red is greater, the shiraz is an eager pleaser without being too rich or heavy. It has tasting notes of spicy berry, hints of dark chocolate and decadence. We are also served an elegant Wimbledon blend to be enjoyed at the marquee exclusively-sharp and sweet on the tongue with a touch of acidity, it offsets the well-curated meal. The wine sparkles like a bauble, the bubbles fraught with pre-game excitement and nerves.Jacob’s Creek wine maker takes us on a quick journey from vineyard to glass as we tuck into the goodness of flaky salmon and toffee cheesecake. We go the entire range from the red Sangiovese to the 2011 Reserve Barossa Shiraz which is a hit with many diners. The 2012 Reserve Reisling and the 2013 Fiano lead the whites but I am smitten by the Wimbledon blend which has the right amount of sparkle. The meal polished off, we make our way to our seats to watch the nail-biter unfold. Wimbledon is all things English and the dapper crowds are some of the more restrained cheer parties I have ever encountered.Silence and hushed moans of disappointment aside, the spectators measure their passion in wine-sized glasses and are never unruly. Halfway through the third set when it looks like all is lost for Federer, a round of Jacob’s Creek wine coolers is passed around, glasses iced to the rim and filled with wine and elderflower. The drink eases the blow and ignites some summer loving. It is evident that the brand has found a comfortable spot in England. Four years into its association with Wimbledon, it is equally at home in the Royal Box as the stands outside where picnic baskets laden with the choicest goodies are chased by a glass or two of this Australian delight.advertisementAs Federer turns away desolate after Djokovic is crowned king, we head to the marquee for our last hurrah. An English tea of scones, clotted cream, strawberries and bite-size sandwiches await us. I automatically reach for the crimson JC instead of Earl Grey, the shiraz rounding off the day in a way tea cannot hope to emulate. The agony and ecstasy of Wimbledon.