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Trump leads as Rivals gang up on Rubio, Cruz at Republican debate



Ahead of Tuesday’s crucial primary in New Hampshire, Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump returned to the debate stage to assert that he has “the best temperament” to be America’s next commander in chief.

Trump, whose absence from the last Republican debate apparently pushed him to the second place in last week’s Iowa caucuses, had a relatively good time Saturday night as his rivals ganged up on newly resurgent Senator Marco Rubio.

And when Texas senator Ted Cruz who has been crowing about the real estate mogul’s “Trumper Tantrums” since besting him in Iowa declined to repeat his attacks on the ABC News debate, Trump noted, “If you noticed, he didn’t answer your question.”

Rubio, on the other hand, was seriously rattled by the attack from his rivals, particularly New Jersey Governor Chris Christie who painted him as someone who delivers soaring speeches but has never made a consequential decision in his political life.

“Marco, the thing is this,” Christie said=, “when you’re president of the United States, when you’re a governor of a state, the memorized 30-second speech where you talk about how great America is at the end of it doesn’t solve one problem for one person.” Christie said.

Christie also slammed Rubio’s poor attendance record in the Senate. “That’s not leadership, that’s truancy,” Christie said.

Donald Trump, meanwhile, was booed during an exchange with Jeb Bush about eminent domain that allows a government or private entity to appropriate land or property in return for payment of compensation, when he asked the former Florida governor to be quiet.

The billionaire then turned on the audience, suggesting it was made up of party figures and big donors and was therefore biased against him — and the booing escalated.

The tough talking Trump also got support on his stand on immigration from Cruz.

“We’re going to build a wall. We’re going to triple the border patrol,” he said. “We’re going to increase — and actually, since Donald enjoyed that, I will simply say, I’ve got somebody in mind to build it.”

Trump also vowed to bring back the outlawed controversial practice of waterboarding euphemistically called as enhanced interrogation. “I would bring back waterboarding and I would bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding,” he declared.

Bush also added to the Rubio criticism, saying that Americans shouldn’t gamble on a candidate who doesn’t have executive experience.

“Marco Rubio is a gifted politician and he may have the skills to be president of the United States,” Bush said.

Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, meanwhile, laid into Ted Cruz for his campaign incorrectly telling Iowa caucus goers that Carson would be dropping out of the race after Iowa and asking them to instead support him.

Carson said Saturday that the actions of Cruz’s campaign were an example of “Washington ethics” as he tried to portray himself and not Cruz as a true outsider candidate. Cruz tried to defuse the clash by saying, “Ben, I am sorry.”

The latest CNN/WMUR tracking poll of likely Republican primary voters published Friday found Trump dominating the race.

There is a fierce battle for second unfolding between Rubio at 17 percent, and Cruz and Ohio governor John Kasich, who are tied for third place with 13 percent. The three, however, are within the poll’s margin of error of 5.8 percentage points.


‘Hichki’ Movie Review: An emotionally inspiring film




New Delhi, March 23: Film: “Hichki”; Director: Sidharth P. Malhotra; Cast: Rani Mukerji, Supriya Pilgaonkar, Sachin Pilgaonkar, Neeraj Kabi, Shivkumar Subramaniam, Asif Basra, Ivan Rodrigues, Harsh Mayar and Kunal Shinde

Rating: 3.5/5

Adapted from a 2008 released English film, “Front of the Class”, which is based on Brad Cohen’s book “Front of the Class: How Tourette Syndrome Made Me the Teacher I Never Had”, director Sidharth P. Malhotra’s “Hichki” is a feel good, emotionally packed and inspirational film.

It is the touching story of Naina Mathur, a young girl who would not let Tourette Syndrome keep her from doing what she loved most; teaching. Despite her speech defect, she sets out to become a teacher.

Hichki Rani Mukerji

Tourette syndrome is a neuropsychiatric disorder which sets off multiple motor tics which include compulsive throat-clearing, knee knocking, violent muscle twitches and piercing barks. These tics are beyond one’s control. While the exact cause that sets off these tics is not known, it is believed to involve a combination of genetic and environmental factors.

Rani Mukerji as the plucky Naina Mathur is flawless. She portrays her character with sincerity.

Hichki review

“I can’t see you as a teacher,” one blunt administrator tells her. To which, she replies, “Before meeting me, did you know about Tourette Syndrome? Well, now that you know, I have educated you.”

This simply tells you how persevering she is.

The film reveals how as a student she was expelled from twelve schools before finally being accepted whole heartedly at St. Notker’s High School. The same school later accepts her as a teacher, mid-term, not because of her brilliant academic credentials but because of a crisis situation. She is hired to teach a class of underprivileged, reluctant misfits. How she wins everyone’s hearts, forms the crux of the tale.

Looking back periodically to show Naina as a child, the film is most powerful in some of those flashback sequences.

Hichki Movie Review

How as a child, she convinces herself that Tourette Syndrome is her lifelong companion and that could teach her important lessons about human nature. That bit of disassociation which is crucial helps her cope with otherwise difficult situations. This comes through in her strained relationship with her father and also when she tells her school teacher, Mr. Khan, “Treat me like other students.”

The film is packed with dramatic moments that are as truthful as they are inspiring. Every scene resonates with sentiments. With apt metaphors and lingo, the writing is simple and straightforward. And while the film intends on communicating life-affirming values, there are moments in the first half that seem forced.

The second half, despite the painstakingly moralistic notes, touches the right chords. You get so immersed with the characters especially Naina. You feel sorry for her when despite her sincere efforts, her class gets suspended, for no fault of theirs.

What elevates the film is the brilliant performances by the supporting cast. You can relate with every character as each one of them is well-etched. The ones that stand out apart from the gang of students are Sachin and Supriya Pilgaonkar as Naina’s estranged parents, Ivan Rodrigues as the School Principal, Neeraj Kabi as Naina’s colleague at school who is keen to dismiss Naina’s students from the school and of course the character who plays Naina’s brother.

The loving relationship between the siblings is well-defined.

With ace production values, the film is well-made. The only sore point is the loud background score that kills the subtlety of the subject.

Overall, “Hichki” remains in your mental space long after you leave the theatre.


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Unhappy Naresh Agarwal joins BJP, says SP prefered Bollywood actress over me as RS candidate



Naresh Agarwal
Naresh Agarwal joins BJP (Photo-ANI)

The Samajwadi Party leader, Naresh Agarwal on Monday joined BJP in the presence of Railway Minister, Piyush Goyal and BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra.

While joining BJP, Naresh Agarwal who is currently the Rajya Sabha member of Samajwadi Party said, “I am joining the BJP as I think that until you are in National Party, you cannot do anything for the society. I am also impressed by PM Modi, BJP president Amit Shah and UP CM Yogi. I still respect Mulayam Singh Yadav and Ram Gopal Yadav, but the current scenario in SP where it is doing a coalition with Congress and sometimes BSP is very sad.”

The leader joined BJP after the Samajwadi party nominated actor and politician Jaya Bachchan for the upcoming Rajya Sabha election in April. The party had to choose between Naresh Agarwal and Jaya Bachchan as they don’t have enough legislators in the assembly to support their candidate.

Talking about Samajwadi Party’s Rajya Sabha candidate, Jaya Bachchan he said, “My comparison was drawn with those working in films… I was rejected for those who dance in films, work in films. I found it not proper. Nobody found it proper.”

Agarwal became tv channels and newspaper’s headline for making controversial statements. In July 2017, he courted controversy in Rajya Sabha by associating Hindu Gods with alcohol, while speaking on the issue of mob violence related with cow protection. However, after his statement, he was made to apologise by BJP.


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India, Pakistan should decide to think of peace: Farooq Abdullah on ceasefire violations



Farooq Abdullah
National Conference party leader, Farooq Abdullah (File Photo)

Kashmir:  National Conference party leader Farooq Abdullah on Tuesday spoke about the situation on the India- Pakistan border in Kashmir. 

The leader speaking on the continous ceasefire violation said,”this will continue to happen.”

The leader urging both the countries to find a diplomatic solution said,”firing will continue to happen on both sides unless the two nations decide to think of peace.”

“The sooner they think about it, the sooner it will stop,” he added.

However this is not the first time when Abdullah has asked for diplomatic solutions, earlier the leader stated that war is not the solution of the Kashmir issue.


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