Rakhi, Mirchi and NOTA

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Campaigning is hard work. Real tough.
My friend Sunil Dutt was the most tireless campaigner. He would do long padayatra. He even walked from Mumbai to Punjab to draw attention to ‘terrorism in Punjab’. I remember seeing the bruises on his feet as he lied on the hospital bed in Breach Candy Hospital. He had returned after giving his observations on terrorism in Punjab to the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and how the Congress-led government could tackle the problem.
Dutt never lost an election.
Sanjay Nirupam and Mohan Deep (Web)Sanjay Nirupam is another hard working politician. He has risen from the rank. He was a journalist with ‘Indian Express’ when Shiv Sena Chief Bal Thackrey spotted him and got him to edit ‘Dopahar Ka Saamna’. Thackeray also nominated him to Parliament. While other journalists who have been nominated – Khushwant Singh, Pritish Nandy and many more – have never contested and won an elections. Sanjay Nirupam is the only exception. But then he is also a rare Bihari from Shiv Sena who made another successful transition to Congress.
He is a three times MP who is looking at the fourth term.
He lives in my constituency but is the candidate for Mumbai North.
Rakhi Sawant is the candidate for my constituency – the Mumbai North-West constituency. And she is the Vice President of a new party called Rashtriya Aam Party (RAP). There are 1563 parties in India – only 53 are recognized by the Election Commissioner – and RAP is among the latest additions. By a quirk of fate, the HQ of this party is near the building, where I’ve my den. I invited Rakhi here.
Rakhi Sawant with Krishan Lal Hans
Neither Rakhi Sawant nor Krishan Lal Hans, the President of the party knew that I was a journalist and over the last 30 odd years, have met scores of candidates and scores of politicians. But then I know more about Gurudas Kamath (Congress), Gajanan Kirtikar (Shiv
Sena), Mahesh Manjrekar (MNS) and Mayank Gandhi (AAP) than about Rakhi.
I have known Guru since the time he was the President of Youth Congress. I covered his campaign in 1984 and have noted with interest that he has represented Mumbai North-East 5 times and Mumbai North-West the 6th time.
Gurudas Kamat
If he wins, this would be the 7th time that he would go to Parliament. He has represented Mumbai North East constituency of Maharashtra in the Lok Sabha five times (1984, 1991, 1998, 2004, and 2009).
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Sam’s Story – A chapter from “The Five Foolish Virgins”

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My novel “The Five Foolish Virgins” has been selling like proverbial hotcakes. Here is an extract from “The Five Foolish Virgins” available – one of the chapters – Sam’s Story.

You want to buy a copy…click here:
Buy Mohan Deep’s “The Five Foolish Virgins” (Flipkart).

Buy the Kindle version by clicking Mohan Deep’s “The Five Foolish Virgins”

You can also buy the hard copy from Amazon.in by clicking Mohan Deep’s “The Five Foolish Virgins”.

You want to read a chapter? Read it:

Sam’s Story

By the time I reached Bandra, it was eight in the evening. The old, decrepit building of Bhabha Hospital on the opposite side looked a little better in the darkness: darkness hides all the flaws. Continue reading

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Sunanda Pushkar-Tharoor died before spilling the beans…

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The Supreme Court (SC) has analysed section 113B of the Evidence Act with, “If it is found that the husband had harassed the woman for dowry, or treated her cruelly, the court shall presume that he had caused her death.

But Shashi Tharoor doesn’t belong to the ‘cattle class’. A husband belonging to ‘cattle class’ may find himself behind bars and his family may face harassment for years but Shashi Tharoor belongs to different class, the ruling class.
Besides retaining his portfolio, Shashi has even been appointed one of the spokesperson of Congress Party and the mysterious death of his wife Sunanda Pushkar-Tharoor slowly gets pushed into inside pages of newspapers.
Domestic violence, a politically soft term for ‘wife beating’ has certainly played a role in Sunanda Pushkar-Tharoor’s death. Shashi Tharoor’s version doesn’t match with the statements given by his staff and the injuries on her person points to domestic violence.
In fact, more details have emerged in Sunanda Pushkar case. The ‘few injuries’, ‘not related to her death’ are over a dozen on both her hands and arms and a ‘minor bruise’ caused by a ‘blunt force’ on her cheek.
There are witnesses, including Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari, who have confirmed that the couple fought bitterly for 72 hours – most of the time in public. They were fighting over Shashi’s ‘affair’ with Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar. Sunanda had obviously hijacked her husband’s e-mail and twitter accounts, had come across the incriminating tweets and mails. She posted some more on his account and created a mini-scandal.
She took the fight to Mehr Tarar, accused her of being a Pak Spy – an allegation that could have cost a Minister in any other country his job – and scheduled a talk with several TV channels.
All hell broke loose!

The marriage of convenience

In an obvious reference to IPL controversy, Sunanda also talked about taking ‘the crimes of her husband on her head’. Marriage itself seems a part of ‘cover-up’.
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(Not so) Pretty Lies of Bollywood

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Even as the film stars do their nautanki – like Salman Khan gets just 10 percent of his income and that he signed his first cheque 5 months ago (as credible as his claim of being a ‘virgin’ at 48) – and we just smile at the half truths and pretty lies that is an inevitable part of Bollywood, a rather sinister aspect of Bollywood lies goes unnoticed.
Everything about Bollywood is as fake as a six hundred rupee note featuring Madhubala in front. But this here is the story of intentional lies, fraud, tax evasion and perhaps violation of FEMA (Foreign Exchange Management Act).
First the shocker and then my story.
The shocker: With visible pride YR films announced last week that their Aamir Khan-starrer Dhoom3 created Bollywood history with gross box office collections that touched a never heard figure of Rs 500 crore worldwide, a first for any Indian film.
But YR films have paid only Rs 5.5 crore as advance tax! And when the dust settles down they would pay, may be, another 5 crore, employing what is described as ‘Bollywood accounting’.
It is the same with the entertainment tax.
It has been a boom time for Bollywood with the growth of multiplexes. 3 Idiots collected Rs 227.13 crore
Krrish3 made 300 Rs crore though an over enthusiastic Rakesh Roshan claimed the collections to be Rs 500 crore!
Shah Rukh Khan claimed that his ‘Chennai Express’ had broken the record of !3 Idiots’.
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