New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday refused to interfere with the Bombay High Court’s direction for the police to register an FIR against NCP leader Ajit Pawar and over 70 others in the Maharashtra State Cooperative Bank scam, saying the investigation cannot be stopped. A bench comprising justices Arun Mishra and M R Shah was hearing the petition filed by some of the accused challenging the August 22 order of the Bombay High Court. A day after the high court order, the Mumbai Police’s Economic Offences Wing (EOW) had registered the FIR in connection with the scam. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details While disposing of the petition, the bench observed, that the case involves huge money and investigation cannot be stopped. The bench said the investigation will proceed ahead uninfluenced by the order and observation of the high court. Pawar, Peasants and Workers Party (PWP) leader Jayant Patil and several former directors of the bank are accused of violating banking and RBI regulations while disbursing loans to sugar mills at very low rates and selling off assets of defaulter businesses at throwaway prices. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday Such sale of assets, disbursement of cheap loans and a failure to ensure repayment resulted in losses of over Rs 1,000 crore to the bank between 2007 and 2011, it is alleged. The accused allegedly forged records and fudged figures to show the bank was making profits. Pawar, a former deputy chief minister and finance minister, was a director of the bank during the relevant period. Inquiries by the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development and a charge sheet filed by a quasi-judicial inquiry commission under the Maharashtra Cooperative Societies Act had blamed Pawar and other accused for the bank’s losses. Surinder Arora, an activist, had filed a complaint against Pawar and others with the EOW in 2015. He approached the high court through his lawyer S B Talekar when no FIR was registered on his complaint.
The Hollywood Vampires (Alice Cooper, Johnny Depp, Joe Perry) will make their television debut in front of a worldwide audience when they perform on the 58th Annual GRAMMY Awards, Feb 15 on CBS.The Hollywood Vampires Rise AgainA super-group comprised of rock royalty and Hollywood superstar, the Vampires will hit the stage offering fans a special surprise for what will be a highlight on Music’s Biggest Night.The Hollywood Vampires live again with the release of a new digital deluxe version of their self-titled album available to all digital partners on Feb 12. This expanded version includes three additional songs, including one original and two rocking covers.The deluxe version includes the scorching new single “Bad As I Am” an original song penned by Johnny Depp, Tommy Henriksen, and Bruce Witkin and features Matt Sorum, Duff Mckagen, Joe Perry, Johnny Depp and Alice Cooper. Also included is “I’m A Boy,” a Who original, that was only available as a Japanese bonus track.“7 and 7 Is” is an unreleased track from the album sessions and is the classic song by the legendary Los Angeles band Love, a Vampires special pick and one that Alice covered on his 1981 solo album, Special Forces.A little history on the Vampires: in 1969 on the Sunset Strip at a club called the Rainbow Bar & Grill, the Hollywood Vampires were born in the upstairs bar. It was a gathering place for the rock stars living in or passing through L.A. “To join the club, one simply had to out drink all of the members,” says Alice Cooper, a founding member of the original Vampires.Alice and good friend Johnny Depp got together and decided the spirit of the Hollywood Vampires should live again (minus the drinking). Alice and Johnny were joined by Joe Perry, who is an old friend of both of them, and the recording began: a tribute to the original Hollywood Vampires. An environment was born for great artists to hang, laugh and play together.Joining the Hollywood Vampires for their GRAMMY performance is Matt Sorum on drums, Duff McKagan on bass, Tommy Henriksen on guitar, and Bruce Witkin on piano and guitar.During the recording of the album, Alice, Johnny and Joe and producer Bob Ezrin were joined by an amazing group of modern day Vampires, including Perry Farrell, Dave Grohl, Sir Paul McCartney, Joe Walsh, Slash, Robbie Krieger, Zak Starkey, Brian Johnson and Kip Winger, to record tracks by their dead friends and heroes.The album package, an antique book, was created by noted men’s fashion designer (and rock fan) John Varvatos in his signature vintage style.All artist proceeds will be donated to MusiCares, an organization that provides a safety net of critical assistance (financial, medical and personal emergencies) for music people in times of need.
The loss of 1,000 or more soldiers at six posts following the Army’s latest round of restructuring would be accompanied by significant economic impacts, according to a report the service submitted to Congress when the cuts were announced in July.The report describes the local impacts from the personnel reductions at Fort Benning, Ga. (which will lose 3,402 soldiers); Fort Hood, Texas (3,350 soldiers); Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska (2,631 soldiers); Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. (1,251 soldiers); Fort Bliss, Texas (1,219 soldiers); and Schofield Barracks, Hawaii (1,214 soldiers).Twenty other posts also are slated to suffer cuts to their active-duty populations — with many totaling fewer than 400 soldiers — but the Army is required to notify Congress only when planned changes in military personnel exceed 1,000 at a single installation. The report was posted on the website of the Federation of American Scientists after the Army responded to its Freedom of Information Act request.The six communities are estimated to incur a loss in local sales volume ranging from $91 million to $229 million. The aggregate estimated sales loss is $890 million, according to the report. Reductions in payroll at the six affected communities are projected to range from $70 million to $197 million; the aggregate loss in income is an estimated $828 million. Indirect job losses — due to a lower demand for goods and services — would range from 313 to 974, and total 3,401 across the six installations.The cuts are part of the Army’s latest round of restructuring, which will shrink its active-duty end strength from 490,000 to 450,000 soldiers by the end of fiscal 2018.Mackenzie Eaglen, a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, described the Army’s two recent rounds of cuts as “a slow bleed,” reported Breaking Defense.“The units affected and communities where it’s happening will tell you they’d actually rather have a base closure process than let the uncertainty linger and watch installations become shadows of their former selves,” Eaglen said.“The Army will be over 20 percent smaller when its end strength cuts are completed,” she noted. “The loss of 120,000 soldiers in just over half a decade means that units, and some bases, are hollowing out from within.” Dan Cohen AUTHOR
Kolkata: Two goons allegedly held a jewellery shop owner at gunpoint and snatched his bag on Monday night at Golapbag Mor in East Burdwan. While they were fleeing the spot some youths tried to stop them. Sensing trouble, the miscreants allegedly fired a shot and escaped.According to the shop owner, Samir Kumar Das, on Monday night when he was preparing to leave for home and locking the shop. Two youth with their faces covered in muffler arrived there and one of them allegedly held him at gunpoint. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseDas said: “The youth took bag and told me to keep my mouth shut and go home.” Immediately the duo started the bike and left the place. Meanwhile, some other businessman of the locality, who witnessed the incident, started shouting. Within a few metres some local youths heard the screams and blocked the miscreants’ way. Seeing resistance they tried to speed up but fell down as they lost control and skidded of the road. A local resident was able to nab one of the miscreants. Seeing his aide getting caught, the other goon fired a shot. Terrified local residents released the miscreant and the duo ran away from the spot. The police were immediately informed. Later officers from Burdwan police station reached the spot and seized the bike left behind by the miscreants. Also, a bullet shell was recovered from the spot. Das has lodged a complaint with the Burdwan police station in this regard.
Kolkata: Cricket’s biggest spectacle — the World Cup — would further bolster ties between India and the UK, which hosts the multi-nation tournament later this year, a top diplomat said. The UK Visas and Immigration division is gearing up to welcome “tens of thousands of Indian” visitors expected to travel to the UK to witness the 12th edition of the World Cup from May 30-July 14, it said in a statement on Tuesday. British Deputy High Commissioner Bruce Bucknell said India will be a “central part” of making the mega cricket event a success. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata Bose”Cricket brings us together, connects countries, communities and makes us active… “From now until the final ball is bowled, we will work with partners across India to make the tournament a success and further strengthen UK-India ties. “This includes… key visa guidance to ensure those who wish to travel apply for their visa as early as possible, or use our priority services if needed,” Bucknell said in the statement. Some of the services on offer are group appointments, where travellers can apply for appointments together at the same visa application centre, on the same day, for match tickets, passes for rail and other UK attractions. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: Mamata”We will ensure that whoever wins (the World Cup) in July this is a tournament which brings the UK and India closer,” the diplomat added. Moreover, the process to acquire a UK visa in India has been simplified and made faster ahead of the World Cup. The good news is that the applicants can now digitally upload their documents before visiting a visa office. This process will definitely cut down on the waiting time for applicants at visa application centres which used to be extremely tedious earlier. An applicant will have to carry only his or her passport and submit biometric data. All documents have to be digitally uploaded before the visit.