Rana Daggubati, Miheeka Bajaj tie the knot

News Network
August 10, 2020

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Hyderabad, Aug 10: Actor Rana Daggubati and interior designer Miheeka Bajaj got married in an intimate ceremony here over the weekend.

The duo, who had three-day nuptials starting from haldi and mehendi ceremony, tied the knot on Saturday in the presence of family and close friends.

Bajaj wore a cream and golden lehenga, designed by Anamika Khanna, for the ceremony.

The fashion designer posted a picture on Instagram describing the garment and wrote that it was embellished with hand done zardozi work, which took close to "10,000 manhours" to make.

Complementing the bride's trousseau, the "Baahubali" star sported a light golden dhoti-kurta.

The wedding evening also saw Daggubati's industry friends in attendance, including Telugu stars Ram Charan and Allu Arjun.

Actor Samantha Akkineni, who is married to Daggubati's cousin, actor Naga Chaitanya, took to Instagram and shared a family picture from the festivities.

"#RanaWedsMiheeka the most adorable @miheeka Welcome to the family," Samantha wrote.

The couple made their relationship official in May.

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News Network
September 23,2020

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Mumbai, Sept 23: Actress Rhea Chakraborty, arrested in a drugs case related to actor Sushant Singh Rajput's death, has said in her bail plea filed in the Bombay High Court that she is innocent and NCB is "deliberately" trying to invoke stringent charges against her and her family.

She also said that she has been subjected to a "witch-hunt".

In her bail application filed in the HC on Tuesday, Chakraborty said she is just 28 years of age, and besides the probe by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB), she has been subjected to three more investigations by police and central agencies, and a "simultaneous media trial".

These probes refer to the ones conducted into Rajput's death by the Mumbai Police, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED).

Chakraborty said all of this has taken a "severe toll on her mental health and well being".

Any further custody will worsen her mental health, she said in her plea filed through her counsel Satish Maneshinde.

Her bail plea was scheduled to be heard by a single bench presided over by Justice Sarang Kotwal on Wednesday.

However, since the High Court suspended the day's hearings owing to heavy rains in the city, the plea is likely to be heard on Thursday.

Chakraborty further said in her plea that Rajput had been in the habit of consuming drugs, particularly, "ganja" since even before she got into a relationship with him.

While she would sometimes procure drugs for him in "small quantities", and would also "occasionally pay for them herself," she was in no way a part of any drug syndicate.

She also said Rajput was the only one who was consuming the said drugs.

"The applicant (Chakraborty) is innocent and has not committed any crime whatsoever," the plea said.

She also said in her plea that she has been subjected to a "witch-hunt," and after the CBI and the ED failed to gather any evidence against her, the NCB was "brought in to somehow implicate her and her family".

Chakraborty has been booked by the NCB on several charges, including financing illicit trafficking of drugs under Section 27-A of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substance (NDPS) Act.

Section-27 A brings along a bar on the grant of bail to an accused.

The actor said she has been wrongly booked under the NDPS Act Section 27-A.

Besides, since no drugs were seized from her possession and since the NCB has managed to seize only 59 grams of drugs from all accused persons, the bar on grant of bail cannot be applied to her, she said in the plea.

The actress said a bar on grant of bail can come into play only if the drugs seized are in commercial quantities.

Last week, a similar argument was made by lawyers of Samuel Miranda and Dipesh Sawant, co-accused in the case, before a bench of Justice Kotwal.

Justice Kotwal had then pointed out that a plain reading of the NDPS Act showed Section 27-A could be imposed irrespective of the quantum of drugs recovered by the NCB.

He had, however, directed Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh, who represent the NCB in the high court, to clarify the same on September 29, the next date of hearing on the bail pleas of Miranda and others.

Chakraborty said some others accused in the case had faced identical allegations, but they had not been booked under the stringent Section 27-A.

She also said that at best, she can be accused of having procured drugs in small amounts for her boyfriend.

However, she was trying her best to wean Rajput off his habit of consuming drugs, the actress said.

Besides, if Rajput was alive today, he would have been charged merely for consumption of drugs and would have invited a maximum sentence of just one year, while she has been charged under sections imposing a maximum sentence of up to 20 years, Chakraborty said in the plea.

On a similar argument last week on the other pleas, Justice Kotwal pointed out that the NDPS Act adopts an "empathetic approach" towards the drug addict with view towards his rehabilitation.

However, it aims at ending all illicit trafficking of drugs and therefore, carries stringent punishment for those involved in procurement, financing and production of drugs.

Earlier this month,a special NDPS court in the city rejected the bail pleas of the actress and her brother Showik Chakraborty, saying if let out on bail, they might tamper with the evidence.

The actress is currently lodged in the Byculla women's prison in the city.

Rajput (34) was found hanging in his home in suburban Bandra on June 14.

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News Network
September 30,2020

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Mumbai, Sept 30: Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan and producer Gauri Khan's daughter Suhana Khan has criticised Indian society's obsession with fair skin while taking on social media abusers for trolling her over her skin colour.

In an Instagram post, the 20-year-old film student said from an age as early as 12 she has been called "ugly", courtesy her brown skin tone.

"There's a lot going on right now and this is one of the issues we need to fix!! this isn't just about me, it's about every young girl/boy who has grown up feeling inferior for absolutely no reason," she wrote on Instagram on Tuesday.

"Here are just a few of the comments made about my appearance," Suhana Khan wrote, sharing some screenshots of the derogatory remarks she receives on social media about her complexion.

For Indians, who are brown by default, showing hatred towards fellow country people over skin tone reflects their insecure nature, she said.

"I've been told I'm ugly because of my skin tone, by full grown men and women, since I was 12 years old.

"Other than the fact that these are actual adults, what's sad is that we are all Indians, which automatically makes us brown - yes we come in different shades but no matter how much you try to distance yourself from the melanin, you just can't. Hating on your own people just means that you are painfully insecure."

Suhana Khan further said one should not let the idea of beauty set up by the social media world and matchmaking sites dictate their life.

"I'm sorry if social media, Indian matchmaking or even your own families have convinced you, that if you're not 5'7 and fair you're not beautiful. I hope it helps to know that I'm 5'3 and brown and I am extremely happy about it and you should be too," she concluded, with 'end colourism' hashtag.

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News Network
September 25,2020

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Mumbai, Sept 25: Actor Anushka Sharma on Friday slammed former Indian cricketer Sunil Gavaskar for his "distasteful" remark about her while commenting on husband Virat Kohli's performance in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL).

Gavaskar found himself in the midst of a controversy for making an unsavoury comment against Kohli and Sharma after the Indian captain’s forgettable outing in the IPL match, held in Dubai.

Anushka, who has faced negativity and trolling in the past as well for Kohli's performance, said she was tired of being dragged into cricket.

"It's 2020 and things still don't change for me. When will I stop getting dragged into cricket and stop being used to pass sweeping statements?" the actor said in a long statement posted on her Instagram Stories.

Gavaskar was a part of the commentary team as Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore lost to Kings XI Punjab on Thursday night and the Indian captain did not do well in the match.

He made the controversial comment about the cricketer's practice by referencing a video of Kohli and Sharma playing cricket during the lockdown.

In her statement, 32-year-old actor, who has accompanied Kohli in Dubai, asked for an explanation from Gavaskar for his remark.

"That, Mr Gavaskar, your message is distasteful is a fact but I would love for you to explain why you thought of making such a sweeping statement on a wife accusing her for her husband's game?

"I'm sure over the years you have respected the private lives of every cricketer while commenting on the game. Don't you think you should have equal amount of respect for me and us?," Sharma said.

The actor said Gavaskar could have used other words to speak about Kohli's performance, instead of bringing her name in his commentary.

In her concluding note, Sharma said, "Respected Mr Gavaskar, you are a legend whose name stands tall in this gentleman's game. Just I want to tell you what I felt when I heard you say this."

In the past as well, Sharma has reacted sharply to her name being used in cricket controversies.

In October last year, she had shut down reports that claimed that selectors were asked to serve her tea during ICC World Cup 2019.

“I have stayed quiet through all the times I was blamed for the performance of my then boyfriend, now husband Virat and continue to take the blame for the most baseless things involving Indian cricket. I kept quiet then,” she had written.

“Today. I have decided to speak up because someone’s silence cannot be taken as their weakness," she had said at the time.

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