Donald Trump Wishes Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos Luck In His Divorce Amid Affair Buzz


Jeff Bezos and MacKenzie Tuttle announced their divorce after 25 years of marriage. (AFP)

US President Donald Trump wished Amazon Inc founder Jeff Bezos luck in his divorce from his wife MacKenzie, predicting the proceedings will be “a beauty.”

“I wish him luck,” the twice-divorced Trump told reporters at the White House on Thursday as he departed for a trip to the US border with Mexico. “It’s going to be a beauty.”

Bezos and his wife announced they would divorce on Wednesday. Later in the day, the National Enquirer — whose chairman and chief executive, David Pecker, has been a close Trump ally — reported that Bezos has been having a relationship with Lauren Sanchez, a former TV anchor and helicopter pilot and the wife of Hollywood talent agent Patrick Whitesell. 

The Enquirer said it had been actively investigating the relationship between Bezos and Sanchez for four months.

The New York Post also reported the relationship and said Whitesell and Sanchez are separated.

Trump has a history of publicly attacking Bezos and his company. The president has criticized coverage of his administration by the Bezos-owned Washington Post, and he’s pressured the US Postal Service to raise the prices it charges Amazon to ship its packages.

Pecker is cooperating with federal prosecutors who are investigating so-called catch-and-kill payments the Enquirer made ahead of the 2016 presidential election to at least one woman who alleged she had an affair with Trump. The Enquirer secured the rights to the material, assuring the allegations wouldn’t be shared with other media, then never published the story.





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HD Deve Gowda Says I Was Also An Accidental Prime Minister Amid Buzz Over Film


Former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda on Friday said he too was an “Accidental Prime Minister”.

Bengaluru: 

Former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda on Friday said he too was an “Accidental Prime Minister” amid a political row over the movie with the same title.

The film is based on Manmohan Singh’s tenure as India’s prime minister from 2004 to 2014 with the Congress alleging it was the BJP’s propaganda against their party.

The movie is based on the book of the same name by Sanjaya Baru, who served as Mr Singh’s media adviser from 2004 to 2008.

The film’s trailer was released in Mumbai on Thursday.

Reacting to a question over the controversy, the 85-year-old JDS supremo said, “Actually I don’t know, why that was allowed…I think it started three or four months ago. I don’t know who has permitted, why? honestly, I have not gone through this so called Accidental Prime Minister. I’m also (an) Accidental Prime Minister,” Mr Gowda said in a lighter vein.

In the 1996 general elections, no party won enough seats to form a government. The United Front, a conglomeration of non-Congress and non-BJP regional parties, decided to form the government at the Centre with the support of the Congress and chose Gowda to head the government.

He served as prime minister from June 1 1996 to April 21 1997 with the help of regional parties and Congress. Later when Congress withdrew support, Mr Gowda had to step down.

Directed by Vijay Ratnakar Gutte, the film stars Anupam Kher as Manmohan Singh and Akshaye Khanna as Sanjaya Baru. It is slated for release on January 11. 





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Best Of 2018: 5 Crazy Drinks That Created A Buzz In 2018! How Many Did You Try?


Highlights

  • A lot of drinks managed to grab prime time headlines in 2018
  • This year has been quite eventful, as far as drinks are concerned
  • Let’s take a look at some of the most popular and trendy drinks

2018 is almost over and it was by far one of the most happening years for food-lovers, chefs, restauranteurs, home bakers, food-bloggers and all those who love to live and live to eat! Apart from food, a lot of drinks also managed to grab prime time headlines and ended up creating a buzz in the world of gastronomy. Be it tea, coffee or beer, this year has been quite eventful, as far as drinks are concerned. A lot of restaurants and cafes across the world started to experiment with various ingredients, giving rise to fusion drinks that eventually took the world by storm. As we move together and welcome another year, let’s take a look at some of the most popular and trendy drinks that created a chatter around the world.

Broccoli Latte

Coffee lovers, this one’s for you! Having normal coffee is too passé, some would say! It’s time to experiment with something more exciting and replace your regular cuppa with broccoli coffee! Yes, you read that right. As bizarre as it may sound, Broccoli Coffee is actually a thing and has taken the fusion game to a whole new level. This new trendy and fusion coffee made news in 2018 and how! The drink is prepared by scooping some broccoli powder into a regular cup of coffee. The ‘trendy’ coffee took internet by storm when Australia’s National Science Agency, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, posted a picture on their official Instagram page explaining the logic behind the drink. It was introduced in an attempt to make Australians consume more vegetables. 

Chlorophyll Water

 
The year of 2018 saw the rise and fall of various weight loss diets that aimed at attracting those who are looking to shed a few pounds. Similarly, a drink that created buzz among health enthusiasts around the world was Chlorophyll Water. Chlorophyll is the pigment that makes plants appear green and helps them derive energy from sunlight. Lately, chlorophyll is sold in the form of supplements and a lot of fitness freaks are eyeing this fancy drink solely because this supplement is known to benefit skin and body in a number of ways. This weight loss friendly drink is said to be abundantly rich in antioxidants and micronutrients and is prepared by infusing chlorophyll supplements in water. Seeing the number of people out there who are out on weight loss spree these days, it seems like this 2018 health trend of chlorophyll water is here to stay. 

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This weight loss friendly drink is said to be abundantly rich in antioxidants and micronutrients

Beer Ramen

The trend of fusion delights touched new heights when this trendy yet unusual drink made its debut. Yes, we are talking about Beer Ramen. A beer lover wouldn’t probably be able to welcome the idea of having ramen dunked in his favourite summer beverage. Fret not, while it does sound a bit bizarre; it is actually not. Yuu Japanes Tapas, a Japanese restaurant in British Columbia, Canada started serving Beer Ramen and the world went crazy! But wait, what’s actually more intriguing is that this delight has got nothing to do with alcohol. The meal is served with chilled broth that is prepared from bonito flakes and the top foam that very much resembles that of beer is made with egg whites and gelatine. You got tricked, didn’t you? 

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The meal is served with chilled broth that is prepared from bonito flakes

Glitter Beer

 
In an attempt to make the beer chugging experience more enthralling, breweries across the US started experimenting with edible glitter in beer, making it a sparkly new food trend. After the glitter coffee trend, glitter beer trend took over the internet and how! The pretty and enticing pictures of glitter beer made rounds on Instagram for its insta-worthy appeal and left people wondering whether the delight tastes different than the regular one. However, the edible lustre dust that is used in the making of this beer has no flavour and taste of its own, so the drink tastes pretty much the same.  

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After the glitter coffee trend, glitter beer trend took over the internet and how

Unicorn Latte

Another drink that made rounds on the internet for its beauty and appeal was Unicorn Latte. There is no denying the fact that this fancy drink looks too beautiful to drink. A lot of cafes and restaurants across the world have started to make their own version of unicorn latte using various edible rainbow colours that complement the unicorn theme. Some people credit café The End in Brooklyn for starting this trend; however, it is still not sure where the trend originated from. Cafe The End claims it to be refreshing and light-weight latte with E3 live blue green algae. 

So here was a compilation of some of the craziest drinks that made headlines in 2018. The year gone by has been a helluva year for foodies across the world. A lot of restaurants and cafes have also tried their best to churn out exciting versions of various ongoing trends. If you know of more such bizarre yet trendy drinks that could have been a part of our list, do share with us in the comments section below.

Here’s wishing you all a very happy 2019! Happy New Year!
 



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Upendra Kushwaha, Tejashwi Yadav’s Meet After Amit Shah’s 50-50 Seat-Sharing Announcement Fuels 2019 Buzz In Bihar


A photograph of the meeting was shared by the RJD on its WhatsApp group.

Patna: 

Hours after BJP president Amit Shah and Janata Dal(United) chief Nitish Kumar announced a 50-50 seat-sharing formula in Bihar for the Lok Sabha elections, Upendra Kushwaha — president of alliance partner Rashtriya Lok Samta Party — met opposition Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Tejashwi Yadav in Arwal district today. The interaction triggered speculations of discontent in the state’s National Democratic Alliance (NDA) grouping.

While a photograph of the meeting was shared by the RJD on its WhatsApp group, a functionary of Mr Kushwaha’s party downplayed the reports — stating that “public figures do meet each other, even if they aren’t allies”. The party president refused to comment on the meeting.

Mr Kushwaha’s party — known commonly as the RLSP — is a part of the BJP-led alliance in Bihar along with Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) and Ramvilas Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party (LJP).

On Mr Shah’s announcement of the BJP and the JD(U) contesting from an equal number of seats, the RLSP leader said: “He has not stated any number of seats for any party. It would not be proper for us to say anything on the matter until the number of seats assigned to each party is declared.”

His party maintained that Mr Yadav had merely given Mr Kushwaha a “courtesy call”. “Kushwaha, in his capacity as a Union minister, had an engagement in Arwal. It was a coincidence that Tejashwi too had a political programme in the district and the two happened to be in the circuit house at the same time,” RLSP national general secretary Madhaw Anand said. “Kushwaha has categorically stated that no political meaning should be attached to the meeting.”

Mr Anand, however, expressed the hope that his party will get more than the three seats it contested from in 2014.

RJD national vice president Shivanand Tiwary said that Mr Shah has shown “excessive generosity to Nitish Kumar while ignoring old allies” by agreeing to the 50-50 deal. “Nitish, on the other hand, is like a Brahmin who will first satiate himself and leave the crumbs for Shudras and Dalits,” he quipped.

Mr Kushwaha had remarked a couple of months ago that “delicious kheer can be made with milk from Yadavs, rice from Kushwahas and dry fruits from Economically Backward Groups”, a statement that many believed was an oblique hint that a political realignment in Bihar was possible before the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

As of now, it is believed that the RLSP and the LJP will get fewer seats than what they contested from in 2014. Back then, the NDA had bagged 31 out of 40 seats in Bihar, with the BJP winning 22 and the LJP and RLSP securing six and three seats respectively.

The JD(U), which fought the polls in alliance with Left parties, won just two seats back then.

(With inputs from PTI)





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Nirmala Sitharaman On Rafale Row: Buzz Is #RahulKaPuraKhandanChor


Nirmala Sitharaman attacked Congress chief Rahul Gandhi over the Rafale deal.

New Delhi: 

Facing caustic attacks from the Congress on the new revelations in the Rafale controversy, the BJP today hit back with allegations and attacks of its own. “(Rahul Gandhi and Congress) betray their sense of desperation in being out-of-power. In our govt there is no corruption. No wonder today the buzz is #RahulKaPuraKhandanChor (Rahul Gandhi’s entire family are thieves),” Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tweeted.

Earlier, at a news conference, her cabinet colleague and senior BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said, “Why was the Rafale deal sent back for re-examination in 2012 just six months after Dassault was identified as the lowest bidder? Our explicit charge is this: they (Congress) did not get a bribe, that’s why.”

Mr Prasad lashed out at Congress chief Rahul Gandhi who said former French President Francois Hollande “is calling PM Modi a thief”. An interview of Mr Hollande to a French journal stoked a major controversy yesterday after he said that the Indian government had mandated that industrialist Anil Ambani’s Reliance Defence must be taken up as the Indian partner in the deal with France’s Dassault Aviation.

“It is very shameful, irresponsible. No national president of any party has used such words against a PM of the country before. We can’t expect anything else from Rahul Gandhi. He is chargesheeted in the National Herald case with his mother. He is silent on land grabbing case against his brother-in-law,” Mr Prasad said.

The Law Minister’s press conference was followed up by a flurry of tweets from his colleagues and BJP supporters on Twitter who made #RahulKaPuraKhandanChor the top trend on the social networking site.

Mr Prasad also contended that Reliance figured in the Rafale fighter jet contract even when the Congress-led UPA government was in power. However, he later conceded that the company in question then was led by Mukesh Ambani and eventually shut down its defence business. The company now at the centre of the controversy is the Anil Ambani’s Reliance Defence which has a joint venture with Dassault called DRAL or Dassault Reliance Aerospace Limited.

Ruling out Mr Gandhi’s demand for a joint parliamentary committee probe into the deal, he told the press conference that it cannot be done merely to satisfy the ego of “an arrogant and ill-informed leader repeating lies after lies”.

Mr Prasad also cited statements of the French government and Dassault in which they said Indian and French governments had no role in picking the offset partner, to brush aside the charge of corruption.





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Volkswagen Reveals I.D. Buzz Cargo


The electric drive of the I.D. Buzz Cargo consists mainly of the electric motor with power electronics and 1-speed gearbox integrated into the driven rear axle, the lithium-ion battery and auxiliary units integrated in the front body.




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The VW I.D Buzz Cargo achieves a range of about 330 to over 500 km on a single charge

Volkswagen has revealed the I.D. Buzz Cargo which is an electrically powered commercial vehicle. The car is the most innovative zero-emission transporter and Volkswagen is looking to launch the car as early as 2021. Meanwhile, the concept vehicle offers a glimpse into the middle of the next decade with its alternative, fully-automated ‘I.D. Pilot’ driving mode (level 4). The transporter concept being presented at the IAA Commercial Vehicles in Hannover is a progressive sibling of the I.D. Buzz. The I.D Buzz was presented in 2017 in Detroit and production of that car will start in 2022.


Volkswagen

The new I.D. Buzz Cargo has been designed to be just as close to production level. The I.D Buzz Cargo, like all models in the I.D. Family is based on the Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB). With the MEB it is possible – dependent on battery size and the model concerned – to achieve ranges of about 330 to over 500 km on a single charge.

The payload (maximum load) of the concept vehicle is 800 kg; the I.D. Buzz Cargo is 5,048 mm long, 1,976 mm wide and 1,963 mm tall. Its wheelbase measures 3,300 mm. By the way, the rear overhang was extended by 106 mm, making the cargo version of the I.D. Buzz significantly longer than the van shown in Detroit.

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The VW ID Buzz Cargo is based on the MEB architecture

On the outside, the I.D. Buzz Cargo concept is differentiated from the people carrying version by a new solar roof, wide-opening rear wing doors and a new rear bumper. With a view towards optimising utilisation of the cargo space with shelving systems, there is no sliding door on the driver’s side – and this is typical of transporters. The front doors and sliding door open electrically. Unlocking the vehicle from the outside is activated via a sensor solution. The van also recognises authorised persons via a digital key which is sent to the van from a smartphone.

Instead of the 22-inch wheels of the Detroit concept vehicle, new 20-inch wheels are used with size 235/55 tyres. The solar module on the roof is able to extend the range of the I.D. Buzz Cargo by up to 15 km a day. So the longer the concept vehicle stands in the sun, the further it can drive later.

The interior has also been tailored for commercial use – down to the smallest detail. From the driver’s cab to the rear, the Buzz Cargo exhibits an entirely independent concept. Instead of two single seats, the concept vehicle is equipped with the driver’s seat and a double bench-seat on the front passenger side – a typical commercial vehicle solution. The middle seat can be folded down. This opens up a workplace, at which the driver can take care of organisational matters via an integrated laptop. In the automated “I.D. Pilot” mode this can even be done on the move. The driver activates the autonomous mode at level 4 of the corresponding VDA classification (VDA = German Automotive Industry Association) by simply pushing on the steering wheel for a few seconds. It then retracts into the redesigned instrument panel. Thereafter the driver’s seat can be turned 15 degrees to the right in order to enable the on-board computer to be operated from the ideal ergonomic position.

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The cabin of the VW ID Buzz Cargo comes with an augmented reality HUD

There is no cockpit in the conventional sense in the I.D. Buzz Cargo. Instead, key information is projected onto the road in 3D via its augmented reality head-up display. This positions the information precisely in the driver’s line-of-sight, allowing the driver to concentrate fully on road traffic. Other information is displayed on a tablet; features such as infotainment and climate control functions are also operated via this portable tablet. The main controls for driving, meanwhile, are located on the steering wheel. Its inner section is not fitted with spokes and buttons – as is normal today – rather it has a touchpad with a variety of fields. The conventional steering wheel becomes a multifunctional steering wheel.

Like all members of the I.D. Family, the I.D. Buzz Cargo is characterised by an exceptionally large interior, with its innovative package enabled by the MEB. The battery is integrated into the vehicle floor, lowering the vehicle’s centre of gravity and significantly improving handling. The transporter’s axles have been shifted outwards, because no space is required for a combustion engine at the front, and the compact electric motor with its gearbox is mounted on the rear axle. This creates additional space (up to 0.2 m3) in the front of the concept vehicle. The electric motor drives the multilink rear axle. As an alternative, an electric all-wheel drive version with improved traction and performance can be implemented – as in the van. A rear axle steering system from the Detroit concept van was also adapted to the I.D. Buzz Cargo; in conjunction with the large turn-in angle of the front wheels, this results in an extremely small turning circle of less than 10.0 metres – ideal for manoeuvring in the city.

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The vehicle’s top speed is electronically limited to 160 km/h. 

The electric drive of the I.D. Buzz Cargo consists mainly of the electric motor with power electronics and 1-speed gearbox integrated into the driven rear axle, the lithium-ion battery and auxiliary units integrated in the front body. The flow of high-voltage energy between the motor and the battery is controlled by the power electronics. Here, the direct current (DC) stored in the battery is converted into alternating current (AC). A DC/DC converter supplies the on-board electronics with 12 volts. As noted, it is possible to equip the I.D. Buzz Cargo with different size batteries according to the vehicle’s use profile. If the transporter covers fairly normal distances in the city on a daily and weekly basis, a lithium-ion battery with an energy capacity of 48 kWh is recommended. If greater range is needed, the energy capacity can be increased up to 111 kWh. The vehicle’s top speed is electronically limited to 160 km/h.

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The high-voltage battery of the I.D. Buzz Cargo is charged by cable connection. Using fast charging systems operating at 150 kW direct current, the 48-kWh battery can be charged to 80 per cent capacity in 15 minutes; for the largest battery expansion stage with an energy capacity of 111 kW it takes 30 minutes.

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Buzz Aldrin Upset “First Man” Does Not Have Flag-Planting Scene


Washington: 

Buzz Aldrin, the second man to land on moon, is not happy as an upcoming film, ‘First Man’ based on the Apollo 11 mission, won’t showcase the planting of the American flag on the lunar surface.

The 88-year old spaceman who on Sunday took to Twitter to share pictures of himself planting the flag on the moon, made it clear that he was quite unhappy about this very event being not depicted in the film.

He tweeted, “#proudtobeanAmerican #freedom #honor #onenation #Apollo11 #July1969 #roadtoApollo50”

Earlier, US Senator Marco Rubio called the decision unpatriotic. However, Neil Armstrong’s sons Rick Armstrong and Mark Armstrong defended the decision and released a statement jointly with ‘First Man’ author James R. Hansen, reported Variety.

“We do not feel this movie is anti-American in the slightest,” the trio said in the statement. “Quite the opposite. But don’t take our word for it. We’d encourage everyone to go see this remarkable film and see for themselves.”

Ryan Gosling who is playing the role of Neil Armstrong in the movie, also supported the decision of not including the flag-planting scene.

Helmed by Damien Chazelle, ‘First Man’ is based on MR Hansen’s book ‘First Man: The Life of Neil A. Armstrong’.

The film, which focuses on the Apollo 11 mission in 1969, will hit the theaters in the US on October 12.

The crew of Apollo 11 was Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins. Neil Armstong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the lunar surface while Michael Collins remained in orbit around the moon.





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A Recipe For “Kheer” Kicks Off Political Realignment Buzz In Bihar


Upendra Kushwaha was addressing a function to mark the 100th birth anniversary of BP Mandal (File)

Patna: 

The main course for next year’s national elections – seat sharing – undecided in Bihar, BJP ally Upendra Kushwaha has dessert on his mind. And his recipe for “Kheer” has started off a buzz – one that has brought a festive air to Lalu Yadav’s camp.

Mr Kushwaha, a minister in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet, had been getting feelers from Lalu Yadav’s party. So far, he had resolutely rebuffed them.

But yesterday, addressing a function to mark the 100th birth anniversary of BP Mandal — former Bihar chief minister who wrote the famous Mandal Commission report that recommended 27 per cent reservation for Other Backward Castes — he said: “One can prepare kheer with milk from the Yadavs and rice from the Kushwahas”. While Yadavs are traditionally known for rearing cows, the Kushwahas are primarily agriculturists.

“We will get the sugar from Brahmins, Tulsi from Choudharyji (RLSP Bihar chief Bhudev Choudhary), and can make delicious kheer with the dry-fruits from the backward classes and Dalits. Then we can relish the delicious kheer together,” Mr Kushwaha told the gathering.

The minister’s sweet outreach was seen as one that would ensure a larger share of seats for his party. His current alliance is unlikely to improve on its last time’s tally of three.

Mr Kushwaha’s party also has other demands, which the BJP has been silent on: a slot as the NDA’s chief ministerial candidate in the next assembly elections in the state. The Kushwahas, they point out, comprise 10 per cent of Bihar’s electorate — the largest votebank after the Yadavs.

The minister is also supporting some issues — including representation of all castes in judiciary – that coincide with the opposition line.

The response from Tejashwi Yadav was prompt. “Without a doubt, hard-working people need tasty and healthy kheer. The qualities of the five dry fruits are not just beneficial for the human body but also the society. A kheer made with love has nutrition, taste and energy. It’s a good dish,” tweeted Mr Yadav, who has been managing the party since his father Lalu Yadav went to jail on a corruption case.

Bihar BJP chief Nityanand Ray, however, said neither milk nor rice belongs to any caste. Everything belongs to nation, he reminded Mr Kushwaha.

The talk of caste was started back in June by Tejashwi Yadav, who at a party meeting had said the NDA was giving “step-motherly treatment” to Mr Kushwaha.

“The BJP, along with Nitish Kumar, tried to split your party. You come from a larger OBC caste, but despite that no one was made cabinet minister, while from one caste, there are more than a dozen cabinet ministers,” the 28-year-old had said.

At the time, Mr Kushwaha had questioned RJD’s credibility and said he was going nowhere.





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Chandan Mitra Quits BJP Amid Buzz That He Will Join Trinamool Congress


Chandan Mitra began his career as a journalist at the Statesman House in Kolkata.

Kolkata: 

When West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee holds her annual mega rally this Saturday to mark Martyr’s Day – to commemorate the 1993 Kolkata firing – outside Victoria House in the heart of Kolkata, a homecoming of sorts could be on the cards.

Next to Victoria House is the Statesman House, home of the iconic newspaper. The occasion and location will be the perfect setting for one man to make a comeback in more ways than one. Senior BJP leader and two-time Rajya Sabha lawmaker Chandan Mitra, who has submitted his resignation to the party, is all set to join the Trinamool Congress on Saturday.

Mr Mitra began his career as a journalist at the Statesman House. He is currently the editor of the Pioneer newspaper in Delhi.

Both the Trinamool Congress and Mr Mitra remained tight-lipped about Saturday. But Ms Banerjee’s party has promised that a large number of new faces will join the party on Saturday.

As of now, several Congress legislators are on the list. But Chandan Mitra would definitely be the biggest feather in its cap. He is believed to be unhappy at being sidelined by the Amit Shah-Narendra Modi axis of power in the BJP. In his resignation letter to the party, he has expressed unhappiness about some of its policies.

Mr Mitra had contested the 2016 West Bengal assembly election from the Hooghly seat on a BJP ticket and lost his deposit.

Mr Mitra is one of the bigger names to distance itself with the party.





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Buzz Aldrin Is Suing Andy Aldrin, Jan Aldrin. They Say They’re Trying To Protect Him


Buzz Aldrin, 88, the second man to walk on the moon, famously described its “magnificence desolation”

Two of Buzz Aldrin’s children were worried about him. The world-famous astronaut was getting older, showing “increased confusion and memory loss,” Andy and Jan Aldrin, his son and daughter, said in a statement. And so they sought to protect him from the “debilitating effects of his worsening condition,” they said, seeking a court order that would install them as guardians, able to oversee his finances and fend off outsiders seeking to profit off his name and image.

Instead, Aldrin, 88, the second man to walk on the moon, who famously described its “magnificence desolation,” took the action as an affront.

“It’s hard to hard to have your children file a legal document that says you’re crazy,” his attorney Robert Bauer said. “You can’t take that lying down. You have to respond when someone is saying you’re doing things wrong and you’re mentally unstable.”

Now, after Aldrin sued two of his children and his business manager earlier this month, claiming they sought to take advantage of him, the family is embroiled in a rancorous dispute that has spilled from the courts into a public spectacle that both sides say they don’t want.

Like many intergenerational feuds involving elderly parents, this one centers on the delicate questions of how best to care for the elderly, when others should step in and who should make those decisions.

His children say they love and cherish their father and are only trying to protect him. Aldrin believes they are trying to unjustly strip him of his autonomy. In a lawsuit filed in Brevard County, Florida, Aldrin alleged that his son and business manager took advantage of him “for their own self-dealing and enrichment.” It says they assumed control of his “personal credit cards, bank accounts, trust money, space memorabilia, space artifacts, social media accounts and all elements of the Buzz Aldrin brand.” The suit also accuses Jan Aldrin of a breach of fiduciary duty.

Aldrin is an author of several books, and the chairman of a foundation designed to inspire and educate people about the space travel, science and engineering. On the foundation’s website, Andy and Jan Aldrin are listed as board members, as is Christina Korp, who is also listed as manager and “mission control director” at Buzz Aldrin Enterprises, a separate company.

“He doesn’t want to fight with his children,” Bauer, the attorney, said. “But he does want control of his life and his dreams. … We need to stop thinking our grandparents and our elderly are spent resources that are just waiting to be thrown away. We need to see our aging population as the valuable resources they are.”

That, Andy Aldrein said, is precisely how his children view him. In interviews, he, his sister Jan and Korp, Buzz Aldrin’s business manager, all vehemently denied the allegations that they took advantage of the retired astronaut.

All financial transactions are run through a business management firm, and Andy Aldrin said he “couldn’t spend any money without their knowledge and approval.” He added that his father’s space memorabilia is under control of a trust that Buzz Aldrin helped set up.

“Let it be clear that every one of these allegations are products of the increased confusion and memory loss that Dad has demonstrated in recent years,” Andy and Jan Aldrin said in a statement.

They said their father had recently started associating with a few people they did not trust who were “trying to drive a wedge between Dad and the family,” Andy Aldrin said. In the statement, the siblings said they would not allow “opportunistic agents who see an opportunity to grab the spotlight break our family apart.”

They said they were also concerned about his increasingly lavish lifestyle, which grew to more than $70,000 a month at a time when he stopped accepting paid speaking engagements. His annual salary from the foundation was just $36,000.

“The most offensive and egregious aspect of this lawsuit is the accusation of elder exploitation,” Andy Aldrin said. “We dearly love and respect our father and are trying to protect his ability to live well and continue to be financially self-sustaining. To accuse us of stealing from him to enrich ourselves is deeply offensive and easily refuted. We look forward to the opportunity to set the record straight.”

This week, Aldrin was undergoing one of three mental health examinations requested by the court to determine his competency, his attorney said, and would not available for comment. But during an appearance on “Good Morning America” on Tuesday morning, Aldrin said that he was of sound mind and body.

“I’m feeling younger and more energetic, really, than really I have ever been in my life,” he said. “There is less confusion and more clarity.”

Andy and Jan Aldrin declined to discuss his mental health in detail, saying it was a confidential matter to be sorted out by court-appointed experts. But they said that given their father’s celebrity status, and willingness to trust people, he could be susceptible to fraud.

“The main point is, we are trying to protect his assets from the people he’s associating with that seem to think he maybe has a whole lot more money than he does,” Jan Aldrin said. “He does attract these people. That’s why we were protecting him. They seem to want to profit from him. We look into it, and a lot of them have a shady history, and they don’t have my Dad’s best interest at heart.”

The legal wrangling comes on the eve of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing, and as Aldrin is seeking not just to secure his legacy, but to build on it, extolling the virtues of exploration and space travel. He travels extensively, speaking about his vision to get people to Mars. He also talks openly about his past bouts with alcoholism and depression.

“He’s 88 years old, but he still has something to contribute to this country and the world,” Bauer, the attorney, said. “He doesn’t want to be a Faberge egg stuck up on the shelf.”

In a statement, Jan and Andy Aldrin said the family is “committed to protecting him, his reputation and his legacy,” and that they hope to resolve their differences.

“I honestly believe if we can get my dad in a safe place with the right people around him that have supported him for decades I think we can get back to creating a legacy that he deserves,” Andy Aldrin said.

Buzz Aldrin seemed less conciliatory, telling the Wall Street Journal, “I intend to disengage as a repairman of family ruptures.”

But days later he struck a different tone on “Good Morning America”: “Family is forever, and I will forever be trying to patch it up.”

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)





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