Noida: In a concerted action, the Noida Police conducted a 15-day-long crackdown on criminals in Noida and Greater Noida, arresting nearly 450 people accused in cases of murder, loot, rape, and robbery, officials here said on Wednesday.As a result, 38 robbery and murder cases were worked out. The police had initiated a “Criminals Out” campaign on July 20 and enhanced security checks across the district of Gautam Buddh Nagar. “During the 15-day drive, 448 criminals were arrested over cases of loot, dacoity, rape, murder, kidnapping, vehicle thefts, arms robbery, among others,” Gautam Buddh Nagar Senior Superintendent of Police Vaibhav Krishna said.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court Thursday asked ‘Ram Lalla Virajman’, one of the parties in the politically sensitive Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute at Ayodhya, as to how the birth place of the deity can be regarded as a “juristic person” having stakes in the case.The apex court, which was hearing the case on the third day, said that so far as Hindu deities are concerned, they have been treated as juristic person in law which can hold properties and institute a litigation. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsA five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, however, asked senior advocate K Parasaran, appearing for ‘Ram Lalla Virajman’, as to how ‘Janamsthanam’ (birth place) can file a suit in this matter as a party.”Whether the birth place can be held to be a juristic person. So far as idols of deities are concerned, they had been held to be a juristic person,” said the bench, also comprising Justices S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S A Nazeer. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from ThursdayResponding to the query, Parasaran told the bench, “In Hindu religion, idols are not necessary for a place to be regarded as a holy place of worship…. Rivers and Sun are also worshipped in Hinduism and birth place in itself can be treated as a juristic person.” The law suit filed by the deity in the Ayodhya case has also made the birth place of Lord Ram as one of the parties.The bench then referred to a judgement of the Uttarakhand High Court in which the holy river Ganga was held to be a juristic entity entitled to pursue the litigation. “The Uttarakhand High Court has said that the rivers are also juristic entities capable of being a party in the case,” the bench observed.The bench then asked Parasaran to proceed with his submissions on other issues.Parasaran alleged that the deity ‘Ram Lalla Virajaman’ was not made a party when the magistrate had attached the disputed site and when the civil court granted injunction by appointing receiver in the case.Highlighting the importance of birth place, Parasaran recited a Sanskrit Shloka, ‘Janani janmbhoomis cha swargadapi gariyasi’, and said that a birth place is greater than heaven.The argument would continue in the post-lunch session.At the outset, senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, appearing for a Muslim party, said that the two separate law suits filed by ‘Ram Lalla Virajman’ and ‘Nirmohi Akhara’ respectively are at “loggerheads” of each other and if one is allowed then other goes automatically.He suggested that the Muslim party can be asked to advance submissions in either of the law suits as only can be allowed legally.Fourteen appeals have been filed in the apex court against the 2010 Allahabad High Court judgment, delivered in four civil suits, that the 2.77-acre land in Ayodhya be partitioned equally among the three parties — the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla.On December 6, 1992, the Babri Masjid, constructed at the disputed site in the 16th century by Shia Muslim Mir Baqi, was demolished.
Coolidge (Antigua): Cheteshwar Pujara immediately struck form with a fine century while Rohit Sharma hit 68 as India shrugged off initial wobble to score 297 for 5 against West Indies A on the opening day of their three-day warm-up game here. Pujara and Rohit stitched 132 runs together for the fourth wicket to take India to a strong position after being reduced to 89 for 3 at lunch on Saturday. Test specialist Pujara got going in his first competitive match of the West Indies tour as he retired after making 100 off 187 balls from which he struck eight fours and one six. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over ChandigarhRohit fell after making 68 off 115 balls. He hit eight fours and one six. After Pujara retired in the final session, Rishabh Pant and Hanuma Vihari pushed the Indian total further to reach near the 300-run mark. Stumps were drawn just after Pant was out for a 53-ball 33 which he made with the help of four boundaries and one six. Hanuma Vihari was batting on 37 from 101 deliveries while Ravindra Jadeja was on 1 not out when the stumps were drawn after playing 88.5 overs. Also Read – Vijender’s next fight on Nov 22, opponent to be announced laterFor West Indies A, pacer Jonathan Carter took 3 wickets for 39 runs from his 13.5 overs while Keon Harding and Akim Frazer got one wicket apiece. India, however, made a struggling start to their innings after winning the toss, with Ajinkya Rahane, who was designated as the captain for the practice game, failed once again as India reached 89 for 3 at lunch. Rahane, who has been in wretched form for the past couple of years and also had a poor county stint with Hampshire, was out for 1, edging seamer all-rounder Jonathan Carter behind stumps to keeper-captain Jahmar Hamilton. He faced six deliveries before his dismissal. KL Rahul looked fluent during his knock of 36 off 51 balls with five fours and a six but fellow opener Mayank Agarwal’s (12) defence was breached within the first hour. Rahul looked good for a big one before being holed out to Romario Shehperd off new ball bowler Keon Harding’s bowling. The talking point of Indian batting has been Rahane, who has gone without a hundred for the past two years. His last three-figure knock came against a below-par Sri Lanka side in August, 2017. In the last 12 Test matches, he has crossed half-century mark only five times in 20 innings. His place in the playing Xi is not under threat at least for this two Test series but the same can’t be said for the home series against South Africa and Bangladesh at home if he happens to fail in the current series. With Hanuma Vihari closing in on him and Shreyas Iyer waiting in the wings, it’s a tense time for the Indian vice-captain.
Anaheim (California): Tom Hiddleston’s “Loki” series has found a director in Kate Herron of “Sex Education” fame. The six-episode series will take place after the events of “Avengers: Endgame” and explore a different version of the story, with the God of mischief at its centre. Marvel Studios chief Kevin Feige said the series is a “remarkably ambitious” project as he introduced Herron and head writer Micheal Waldron at D23 Expo here. Also Read – I have personal ambitions now: Priyanka”We are taking Loki to an entirely new part of the MCU,” Herron said. “The show is going to explore questions that we all have. Where did Loki go after he picked up Tesseract in ‘Endgame’. Could Loki ever make a friend? Will the sun shine on him again?,” Waldron added. Hiddleston, in a video message, said his character’s journey has just begun. “It is your boundless enthusiasm and support that means Loki still has more stories to tell. It will never stop surprising and delighting me that you think he is cool. This journey that you and I have been on isn’t over yet. In fact, it’s only just begun,” he said. “Loki” series will debut on Disney+ in 2021.
Los Angeles: Actor Jameela Jamil has described her obsession with weight as a “horrifying waste of happiness”. She was consumed by the task of being thin and struggled with crash diets and anorexia, reports mirror.co.uk. The 33-year-old actor said she weighed herself every day for more than 20 years and her mood was dictated by what she saw on the scales. Jamil told Stylist magazine: “I ended up weighing myself every single day of my life until last year. That’s 21 f***ing years of waking up every morning and my entire mood for the day being determined by the number on a stupid little machine in my bathroom. Also Read – I have personal ambitions now: Priyanka”What a horrifying waste of happiness. What a horrifying waste of time. What a sad thing for a bright girl who technically knew better, to keep as her deep, dark secret for so long.” Speaking about when the insecurities began, Jameela said, it was being publicly weighed in school and that she was the heaviest in her class. At home, she said her parents were not supportive, but put her on a crash diet to tackle her weight. The actor added that her teenage years became more consumed by her obsession, leading to dangerous weight loss, bed sores, a thinning heart and thyroid problems.
New Delhi: As a Delhi court on Thursday sent former Finance Minister P Chidambaram to judicial custody in Tihar Jail here, his lawyers moved an application surrender to the Enforcement Directorate in connection with the INX Media money-laundering case.Taking note of the application, Special judge Ajay Kumar Kuhar has issued a notice to the ED, asking the central agency to file a reply before the court on Thursday (September 12). The application was moved by Chidambaram’s lawyers as soon as the court pronounced its order on his judicial custody. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’Even during the remand proceeding, which primarily dealt with CBI’s application to send Chidambaram to judicial custody, senior advocate Kapil Sibal, arguing for the Congress veteran said that his client was willing to surrender to the ED. Sibal made this point while opposing Solicitor-General Tushar Mehta’s argument for Chidambaram’s judicial custody. Sibal questioned as to why judicial custody was projected as the only logical consequence after the end of police custody. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KThe senior advocate said, “Why judicial custody? Either the ED takes me (Chidambaram) into custody or I should be released.” The point arose specifically when the deliberations were surrounding as to whether an accused should be sent to judicial custody simply because their legal police custody is over. While Mehta said that given the nature of the offence and the character of the accused, judicial custody is the only legal consequence after the end of CBI custody; Sibal argued that adequate justification must be provided to the court for it to consider the plea. Several ED officials were also present in court during the proceedings, with some of them saying that they were there just to observe what was happening. The application to surrender to the ED came after earlier in the day, the Supreme Court of India had rejected Chidambaram’s anticipatory bail plea in ED’s money-laundering probe related to the INX Media case, thus removing his arrest-shield.
New Delhi: The amalgamation of 10 public sector banks into four has nearly ended the consolidation process and created almost the right number of banks to cater to the needs of the aspirational and new India, Finance Secretary Rajiv Kumar said This exercise will create six global size banks and will bring down the number of nationalised public sector banks to 12 from 27 in 2017. “This is almost the right number of the banks which the country needs,” he said. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalThe government on August 30 announced consolidation of 10 large public sector banks into four. He described the government’s decision as a building block for achieving $5 trillion economy target. “To support next level of growth, the country needed big banks. The mega merger announced on August 30 aims to achieve that objective. We will now have six mega banks with enhanced capital base, size, scale and efficiency to support high growth that the country requires to break into the club of middle income nations,” he said. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostThe consolidation will help create strong and globally competitive banks with economies of scale and enable realisation of wide-ranging synergies, he said adding that now they would have wider reach, stronger lending capacity and better products and technology to serve customers of new India. Kumar, who spearheaded the exercise of cleaning up the banking sector, has several firsts to his credit. These include highest ever capital infusion in the banking history and successful completion of the first three-way merger with Bank of Baroda as the anchor bank. As a result of various initiatives taken by the finance ministry, the banking sector witnessed a reversal in the deteriorating bad loan situation with reduction of NPA by Rs 1.06 lakh crore and record loan recovery of Rs 1.21 lakh crore in the last fiscal. The cleaning up exercise undertaken by him has now started showing result with 14 out of 18 public sector banks posting profit in the first quarter of the current fiscal. Earlier this year, Bank of Baroda merged Vijaya Bank and Dena Bank with itself to become the second largest public sector lender. State Bank of India had merged five of its associate banks – State Bank of Patiala, State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, State Bank of Mysore, State Bank of Travancore and State Bank of Hyderabad and also Bhartiya Mahila effective April 2017.
Gurugram: Addressing the public meeting on Tuesday, Gururgam BJP MP Rao Inderjit Singh said that he will ensure that it is only the party workers that get the tickets and not those people who have recently joined the saffron party. The statement by the five-time MP comes at a time when a large number of party workers including the new entrants have begun projecting themselves as the BJP candidates from Gurugram.Incumbent MLA Umesh Aggarwal has been in the news for the wrong reasons and therefore the party might not give him a second chance. He however is believed to be close to Rao Inderjit Singh and is often seen with him in the past in various public meetings. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderIt might not be an easy call for the BJP to decide on the new face as many senior leaders are pushing for their candidates and have already shared the credentials with the high command. In April 2017, Haryana Police had booked Aggarwal’s brother and his associates in a cheating case in Sonipat. At that time, Aggarwal had alleged that the case was an act of vendetta politics by CM Manohar Lal Khattar. It was a major blow for Aggarwal after his relative lost from the ward-9 in the 2017 municipal elections. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsCo-incidentally, in 2014 Umesh Aggarwal who is the incumbent MLA won the Gurugram seat with the highest margin. One of the aspirants for the seat, secretary of BJP’s district unit Naveen Goyal, said he has been working for the development of Gurugram, especially for making the city cleaner and greener. “I have already shared my credentials with senior leaders and if given an opportunity, I would implement people-friendly policies of the government.” Most of the supporters have also begun to paste the posters of their local leaders on autos and billboards. I am doing so a strong influence is being created not only on the local voters but also on the party high command in selecting them as the candidate from Gurugram Sudhir Singla, the son of former minister and RSS veteran Sitaram Singla, is also among the front runners for the ticket. Senior Singla, who passed away earlier this year, had a good relationship with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the CM and “therefore junior Singla may be considered by the party for the Gurugram seat.”
Highlights from the news file for Friday, Jan. 26———BOMBARDIER WINS TRADE VICTORY OVER BOEING: Bombardier Inc. won a resounding victory Friday, when the U.S. International Trade Commission eliminated nearly 300 per cent duties on its C Series commercial jet. Four commissioners voted unanimously that Bombardier’s American rival, Boeing Co., did not suffer harm from prospective imports of the C Series. The Montreal-based manufacturer said in a statement that the decision is a “victory for innovation, competition and the rule of law.”———RCMP FINED OVER N.B. SHOOTING RAMPAGE: The RCMP has been ordered to pay $550,000 for failing to properly arm and train its officers in the Moncton, N.B., shooting that left three members dead in 2014. Judge Leslie Jackson handed down the sentence on Labour Code charges in a packed courtroom in Moncton on Friday. He ordered the force to pay a $100,000 fine, along with $450,000 in charitable donations.———BROTHERS SENTENCED FOR REPEATED SEX ASSAULT: A Crown prosecutor says two brothers who were sentenced Friday to 12 years in prison for repeatedly raping a teenage girl should be kept in prison as long as possible. Jonathan Hak said after the sentencing that “there is very little that society can do to prevent a repeat” of Corey and Cody Manyshots’ crimes. The brothers, aged 29 and 24, have fetal alcohol syndrome.———POLICE SAY SHERMANS WERE TARGETED: Toronto police say pharmaceutical tycoon Barry Sherman and his wife Honey were the victims of a “targeted” double homicide, but no suspects have been identified. In a news conference on Friday, Det. Sgt. Susan Gomes of the force’s homicide squad said police have put thousands of hours into investigating the case over the past six weeks. The case has grabbed public attention because of the prominence of the deceased, as well as the mystery surrounding how they died.———ONT. TORIES TO HOLD LEADERSHIP CONVENTION: Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives will hold a leadership race to replace Patrick Brown, who resigned suddenly this week amid allegations of sexual misconduct. The party’s executive voted Friday to elect a new leader in time for June’s provincial election. Vic Fedeli, who was chosen by caucus members as the party’s interim leader earlier Friday, will be eligible to run for the permanent job.———N.S. TORY LEADER DISMISSED OVER SINGLE INCIDENT: The president of Nova Scotia’s Progressive Conservative Party says Jamie Baillie was dismissed from his leadership role after “multiple sources” reported a single incident of alleged inappropriate behaviour. Tara Miller released a statement on Friday as calls intensified for more information about why Baillie was dismissed on Wednesday.———CLARK CALLS OUT ‘FRAT BOY’ ANTICS IN POLITICS: Former British Columbia premier Christy Clark says she saw plenty of “frat boy behaviour” during her time in office. Clark, who was the first woman elected premier in B.C., weighed in on the discussion around sexual misconduct in Canadian politics in a Facebook post on Thursday. She wrote that it’s an often “brutally sexist” business.———EX-HOSTAGE BOYLE TO UNDERGO ASSESSMENT: Former Afghanistan hostage Joshua Boyle, who faces a string of assault charges, will undergo a comprehensive psychiatric assessment. Boyle’s lawyer told an Ontario court on Friday that an initial evaluation found his client fit to stand trial, but he would benefit from a more extensive assessment at a mental-health centre. Boyle’s next court appearance is scheduled for March 26.———FEDERAL HELP COMING FOR PRINT MEDIA: The federal government is hinting that it will offer a helping hand to the newspaper industry in this year’s budget. Heritage Minister Melanie Joly discussed the matter Thursday with representatives of a Quebec union representing thousands of culture and communications workers. Details of the financing are expected to be laid out in the federal budget, likely in late March.———$300K COLLECTED FOR MOSQUE SHOOTING VICTIM: More than $300,000 has been collected for a father of three who was shot seven times and partly paralyzed in the Quebec City mosque shooting. Aymen Derbali says he’s not surprised at the generosity of people around the world who have donated to his fundraiser. Witnesses who were at the mosque a year ago say Derbali tried to get the shooter’s attention in order to help others flee.———
VANCOUVER – Michelle Obama says social media magnifies feelings of political and cultural division, underlining a need for people to get out of their online silos.The former first lady of the United States made the remarks Thursday at a sold-out event presented by the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade, where she spoke to an audience of mostly women and girls in an auditorium that seats about 2,900 people.She said for more than a decade, she and former president Barack Obama travelled the United States and found that people mostly got along peacefully.Obama recalled something her daughter Malia said after a Fourth of July celebration where tens thousands of people gathered on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., to watch fireworks. After the show, people packed up their things and dispersed calmly, she said.“It’s amazing that this many people can gather this peacefully,” Obama recalled her daughter saying.But Obama said that’s what’s happening around the world every day. Most people are fundamentally getting along, and they’re more alike than they are different, Obama said at the first of two sold-out events she was speaking at on Thursday.“Social media can do two things: it can bring us together or keep us isolated,” she said, noting that people hiding behind a computer screen are emboldened to make nasty remarks.“A life looking into your phone is not a life,” she said. “You have to break out of your silo.”She urged people to connect with one another, not through tweets or posts, but through their voices, and added that the divisiveness of social media also lends itself to a certain type of leader.“Leaders who lead by fear … that’s all you want to point to, what’s broken and wrong,” she said. “But if you choose to lead by hope, then you see that good.“Don’t despair. Don’t get bogged down in the negativity,” she added. “It takes time, but we are moving in the right direction.”Obama said she tries to teach her daughters, 16-year-old Sasha and 19-year-old Malia, to be cautious and not to tweet everything that’s on their minds.“It’s a lot of talking and a lot of them not listening. Then something bad happens, and you say, ‘I told you so,’ ” she deadpanned. “That’s how we parent teenagers.”Social media does mean that kids are more connected and more knowledgeable than ever before, but it also exposes them to other people’s opinions of them, she said.Just because they got 1,000 likes doesn’t mean they have 1,000 friends, she added.“You just have a bunch of strangers following you. That should terrify you,” she said, to laughs from the crowd.She said she tweets “by committee.” She drafts a post, calls eight people, gets their input, and spell-checks and proofreads it. Then she waits a day, calls two more people, and if they think it’s a good idea, she posts it, she said.Obama also spoke about the challenges she faced as the first African-American to serve as the first lady. She said in some ways, it was like “eight years of reading horrible tweets.“I felt that sting. I felt that judgment,” she said. “They talked about what I looked like. … They called me angry.She said she was criticized “in the same way that Hillary Clinton continues to take hits, because she’s a woman trying to do things that a lot of people think women shouldn’t do.”But she said history is a bumpy road with many ups and downs.“We still live in a racist world,” she said. “(But) we’ve come a long way. There’s no way my husband would have been elected two terms if we hadn’t.”She recalled a key moment during the Obamas’ time in the White House when they crossed Edmund Pettus Bridge to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Selma to Montgomery civil rights marches alongside civil rights leaders of the time.“There is nothing in my life that I’ve experienced that compares with what they have,” she said.The event, co-presented by the We For She Forum, which brings together female business leaders and young women, drew many girls from local high schools. Seventeen-year-old Deanna Senko called Obama an “inspiration.”“Pretty much everything she does is just encouragement for girls and women to get more active and involved in our society, and I love it.”— Follow @ellekane on Twitter.
TORONTO – A Toronto lawyer representing a disenfranchised member of Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives says he’s taken legal action in an effort to extend the party’s leadership race by a week.Jeffrey Radnoff said the Superior Court of Justice was scheduled to hear his application for an injunction on Friday morning, just hours before voting in the contentious race was scheduled to end.The party ruled against prolonging the race late Wednesday, saying that would contravene its constitution, and instead decided to push back the registration deadline to Thursday night and let members vote until noon Friday.But Radnoff said in an email late Thursday that his client, listed on the notice of application as Christopher Arsenault, had not received a personal identification number allowing him to vote.“Clearly, a significant number of members of the party, including the applicant, have been deprived of their right to vote as guaranteed in the party’s constitution,” Radnoff wrote in an email.The chair of the leadership organizing committee, Hartley Lefton, wrote in an email Thursday that the party’s election is in accordance with the PC constitution. He noted that the voting period had already been extended once, and the verification period had its deadline pushed back three times.“It is unfortunate to learn that certain individuals may be considering this step, after we have worked so closely with leadership campaigns and with party members from across the province on a leadership election process passed by the PC party executive in accordance with the constitution,” Lefton wrote.News of the court action came hours after one of the candidates vying for the top spot alleged that party “elites” were handpicking those who would be able to cast a ballot in the leadership election.Former Toronto city councillor Doug Ford said key documents required to participate were sent by email to specific members while ignoring others — including his own mother — awaiting the same information.Ford and the other candidates — former Progressive Conservative legislator Christine Elliott, Toronto lawyer and businesswoman Caroline Mulroney and parental rights activist Tanya Granic Allen — have all raised the alarm in recent days over the voting process.Ford, Mulroney and Granic Allen have all pushed for the party to extend the leadership race by a week in order to ensure all members can participate.“The political elites, they distribute PIN numbers to a special group — and I don’t know who picks this group — and then Mr. and Mrs. Smith … they don’t get to vote,” Ford told The Canadian Press.“Something is wrong. I’ll let you come to your own conclusion,” he said. “This is not a transparent election.”Party executives did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Ford’s allegations Thursday, but have previously said they were aware of concerns over delays in getting members the documents they need to vote.Ford said he believes the legitimacy of the race has been compromised, but he was noncommittal when asked if he would dispute the results.Mulroney said she believes the election will produce a fair result, but she vowed to look into the PIN distribution issues if she wins. Granic Allen said she would continue to call for the voting deadline to be postponed.The rules of the leadership race include provisions for filing complaints and appealing decisions, but those wishing to contest the results could also turn to the courts.“You would have to show that it affected the vote enough to have changed the result,” said Duff Conacher, co-founder of Democracy Watch.It’s incredibly rare for the courts to overturn the results of an election, however, and it would be more effective to seek an injunction before the votes are tallied, he said.“If you have real proof that things are not working the way that all the rules say they should be — or worse, actually rigged in some way — then it’s much better to go before a judge now, rather then put the judge in a position of overturning what thousands of people said they want,” said Conacher, a political science professor at the University of Ottawa.Asked about the prospect of a court challenge, Tory legislator Todd Smith said he hoped it wouldn’t come to that.“I think what I would like to see on Saturday is, no matter who wins, is that the other campaigns unite behind our leader and we start to focus on Kathleen Wynne and the Liberals,” said Smith. “It’s been five or six weeks now where we’ve been pointing the guns inwards — I think right now it’s important that we focus on defeating the Liberals on June 7.”The party said nearly 77,000 members had registered to vote and more than 44,000 had cast a ballot as of Wednesday evening.
TORONTO – How Toronto police handled the cases of men missing from the city’s gay village will undergo some form of external review in light of six murder charges laid against an alleged serial killer, the police oversight board decided on Thursday.In a motion to the board, Mayor John Tory said a series of “troubling questions” had arisen in light of the killings for which self-employed landscaper Bruce McArthur has been charged.“The genesis of today’s motion goes back to series of tragic and horrific events that deeply affected all of us in Toronto,” Tory said. “It’s fair to say that the list of unanswered and very troubling questions that have caused a lot of anxiety in the community has grown longer.”Tory said it was time to get answers to questions around missing-persons reports in an effort to maintain or renew confidence in policing in the city.Tory’s unanimously approved motion calls for a seven-member working group — which would include three external members — to be set up by April 28 to advise the board by June on the composition and structure of an external review or reviews.What’s important, Tory stressed, is that any review not interfere with judicial proceedings against McArthur, who has been charged with six counts of first-degree murder. The remains of some of the 66-year-old’s alleged victims were found in planter boxes at homes where he worked.Chief Mark Saunders, who has already initiated an internal review that will be made public once completed, has also been calling for some kind of a public inquiry. Saunders said it would be in the public interest to have the review.“For Toronto’s LGBTQ community, this has been a very difficult time and I know that many are very upset and many are still grieving,” Saunders told the board. “They have many questions about what happened and what could have been done differently.”Some members of the public who spoke to Thursday’s board meeting expressed anger at how police have treated the community. One of them accused Saunders of engaging in “victim blaming” by saying police had little co-operation in responding to missing-persons reports.“You are not innocent in any of this,” said deputant Brian De Matos.Police initially began investigating the disappearance of three men in 2012 but ended the project in 2014 after they were unable to classify anyone as a suspect. In August, police launched a second operation that looked into the disappearances of two men from the gay village, eventually leading to McArthur’s arrest earlier this year.Tory said some questions will have to wait until the ongoing police investigations and any trials are completed. He said he continues to support asking the province to consider a full-scale public inquiry at the appropriate time.“This case is beyond horrific and our community deserves justice, absolute answers and closure,” Tory said. “While I recognize all these things could take time after such a tragedy, I am dedicated to this process so that we can restore trust, confidence and begin what I’m sure will be a lengthy healing process.”
LAVAL, Que. – A Quebec man has been charged with second-degree murder in the slaying of a 71-year-old woman over the weekend.Christophe Oliviera was charged Thursday, hours after his arrest.A police tactical unit arrested him around 1 a.m. at a chalet near Sainte-Marcelline-de-Kildare, about 90 kilometres north of Montreal.Police had been looking for Oliviera since Saturday when they were called to a duplex in Laval, just north of Montreal, and found the victim outside the home with signs of trauma on her body.She was declared dead at the scene.Police say Oliviera, 31, lived with the victim but was not related to her.His case returns to court on Aug. 8.
EDMONTON – Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says Opposition Leader Jason Kenney must stop the “dog-whistle” politics she says is making hateful extremists believe they have a home in his United Conservative Party.UCP candidates posed for pictures last week at an event with the Soldiers of Odin, a white nationalist anti-immigrant group.Candidates running for the party’s nomination in the Edmonton constituency of West Henday say the Odin members crashed the event and the candidates didn’t know who they were when they posed for pictures with them.All candidates, along with Kenney, have denounced the Soldiers of Odin, saying their viewpoints have no place in the United Conservative Party.Notley says Kenney’s party has been dealing with some candidates who were either banned from running or allowed to stand for nomination despite their homophobic or racist views.She says Kenney has to take more direct action to keep such candidates out of his party.
OTTAWA — Many Ontarians received an automated text message over the weekend, asking if they agree that the carbon tax must be scrapped.Who’s behind the campaign and what they plan to do with the responses is a mystery, and could remain so.The message purports to be from “Sue” from a heretofore unknown group called Ontario Strong.A group by that name does have a website but it appears to be a work-in-progress that imparts little information, other than a brief mission statement that exhorts people to “stand up for Ontario and be proud of the place we call home.”The text message appears to be an attempt to identify voters who are opposed to the carbon tax imposed by the federal Liberals, presumably so they can be targeted during the election campaign this fall.No laws regulate this kind of political advocacy; only after June 30 will anyone spending more than $500 have to register with Elections Canada as a third party, adhering to spending limits and disclosing who they are and, eventually, where their money came from.In the meantime, some Ontarians who received the mass text message are venting annoyance on social media.Among those who received the message is Liberal MP Pam Damoff, who represents the riding of Oakville North-Burlington.“How did you get my number, Sue? And who the heck is Ontario Strong? Is that code for #CPC (Conservative Party of Canada)?” Damoff tweeted Sunday.Conservative party spokesman Cory Hann said neither he nor others at party headquarters had ever heard of Ontario Strong before. And he said the party has “no affiliation at all with them.”Jeff Ballingall, who founded Canada Proud to promote conservatism and take down Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, said he’d never heard of the new group either. Ballingall was also behind Ontario Proud, a third-party group that pioneered the mass text messaging tactic during last year’s provincial election.But unlike Ontario Strong, he noted that Canada Proud and Ontario Proud have always been upfront about who’s involved and their objectives.“We’re always transparent in who we are. Whether it’s Engage Canada or others, I think people should be more upfront about who’s behind these groups and what their intentions are,” Ballingall said.Engage Canada has been running ads skewering Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer as a weak “yes man” to Ontario Premier Doug Ford. The group’s directors include former Liberal and New Democrat strategists, supported by labour unions, professional associations and individuals. Engage ran its anti-Scheer ads during the final games of the recent NBA playoffs between the Toronto Raptors and the Golden State Warriors.Those were countered by another group, called Shaping Canada’s Future, which ran its own ads deriding Trudeau. That group (like Canada Proud) has a public listing as a non-profit corporation, with an address and at least one named director; it appears to be headed by a key figure in Alberta Premier Jason Kenney’s 2017 leadership campaign.If Engage and Shaping Canada’s Future cease political activity by June 30, they will never have to reveal precisely who is behind them, how much they spent or where they got their money.The mass text message from Ontario Strong read: “Hi, this is Sue from Ontario Strong. Do you agree that we must scrap the Carbon Tax? Respond: Yes No.” The phone number associated with the message is a land line in Belleville, Ont., according to a Canada411 search.According to social-media posts, the same group also conducted a recent robocall campaign, asking people in an automated phone message if they support a pipeline across Ontario to Quebec. The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission requires third-party political robocallers to register but that applies only during the official election campaign, which won’t kick off until September.The phone numbers from which the text messages and robocalls emanated are answered by Ontario Strong voice mail.In its mission statement, Ontario Strong promises to “speak up on the issues that matter to Ontarians” and to “always stand for the values that created Ontario,” which it describes as “an example of a prosperous, peaceful, diverse and orderly society for the rest of the world to emulate.”There is nothing on the site to identify the individuals behind it. Inquiries sent through the site’s “contact us” email are answered with the message: “Thank you for your feedback.”Joan Bryden , The Canadian Press
UNICEF, the Commonwealth Games Federation and the Glasgow 2014 Commonweath Games have announced a partnership for children that seeks to touch the lives of children in Scotland and in Commonwealth countries across the world.The partnership aims to raise funds for UNICEF work in Commonwealth countries across the world, and hopes to make next summer’s sporting event a big moment for children, aiming to inspire and enable children to be the best they can be.The news was unveiled yesterday by Olympic boxing champion Nicola Adams at Swinton Primary School in the east end of Glasgow, one of UNICEF’s Rights Respecting Schools. Nicola shared her own story with pupils, and listened to their hopes for the future.“I am absolutely delighted to support this partnership and be part of the event this morning,” said Nicola. “It was great to meet the children and hear about their aspirations and what they need to be the best they can be. This is a fantastic collaboration which will reach out to every child in Scotland and much further afield.”UNICEF Ambassador Ewan McGregor sent a message of support to the event: “I couldn’t be more pleased that Glasgow has been selected to host the 2014 Commonwealth Games and partner with UNICEF.“This partnership opens the door to helping transform children’s lives, both in my own country of Scotland, and in every Commonwealth nation. That’s a hugely exciting prospect.”Fellow UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador David Beckham also added his backing: “I am delighted to hear that UNICEF and Glasgow 2014 are to put children at the heart of the Commonwealth Games legacy. This partnership is an amazing opportunity for children around the world.“Through the power of sport you can achieve so much and this great partnership will be no different. UNICEF leads the way in making sure that children have the opportunity to reach their true potential everywhere.”Source:UNICEF UK
With a $50,000 grand prize for charity on the line, celebrities from different walks of life compete in the ultimate Chopped Tournament of Stars, premiering Sunday, March 9th at 9pm ET/PT on Food Network.The five-part competition series, hosted by Ted Allen, includes four celebrities going head-to-head each week in themed episodes over three rounds: appetizer, entrée and dessert – each featuring mystery ingredients within the Chopped basket. Featuring sports stars, comedians, actors, and for the first time, veterans from Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off, the celebrities are judged by a rotating roster of Chopped regulars, including Maneet Chauhan, Amanda Freitag, Alex Guarnaschelli, Marc Murphy, Chris Santos and Geoffrey Zakarian, to determine which celebrity will advance each week to face off in the finale on Sunday, April 6th at 9pm ET/PT, with a chance to win the grand prize for the charity of their choice.“This tournament brings together the most diverse, talented group of celebrities we have ever had compete in the Chopped Kitchen, ” said Bob Tuschman, General Manager and Senior Vice President Programming, Food Network. “With $50,000 on the line for their charity, these celebs fill the kitchen with action, drama and comedy as they do everything they can to be the victor.”Additionally, if you ever looked in your fridge, hoping for inspiration to strike, never again let the question “What’s for dinner?” stump you. On April 8th be the first to learn tips and secrets for combining pantry staples into exciting meals in The Chopped Cookbook: Use What You’ve Got to Cook Something Great, from Clarkson Potter. By showing how to spin your favorite ingredients into 188 fun, doable, and delicious recipes, the culinary masterminds at Food Network set you up for mealtime victory every night.Episodes include: Premiering Sunday, March 9th at 9pm ET/PT “Sports Stars!” Four famous athletes bring their fierceness and passion to the Chopped Kitchen for a five-part $50,000 celebrity tournament! With the charities they are playing for in their minds, the competitors open the first basket to find a scary ingredient – alligator. Then in the entrée round, the celebs must cook with some strange eggs and some tiny limes. The final two sports stars that make it to the dessert round put their athleticism and enthusiasm into making a great final dish that includes crystallized ginger and wafer cookies. Competitors: Brandi Chastain, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Greg Louganis, Charles Oakley Judges: Alex Guarnaschelli, Marc Murphy, Geoffrey Zakarian Premiering Sunday, March 23rd at 9pm ET/PT ”Comedians!” Bringing the funny to the Chopped Kitchen, four comedians compete for a chance to move on to the $50,000 finale. Playing for their favorite charities, the stars open up the first basket and get a pork delicacy and a gummy candy. Then in the entrée round, the three comedians left must make jalapeño poppers palatable with beer can chicken. With vanilla cupcakes in the final basket, transforming the ingredient becomes key for the two finalists. Competitors: Tommy Davidson, Sinbad, Gillian Vigman, Robert Wuhl Judges: Maneet Chauhan, Chris Santos, Geoffrey Zakarian Premiering Sunday, April 6th at 9pm ET/PT “Finale!” The four amazing finalists open the first basket and get a drive-thru snack and a cold dessert. $50,000 is destined to go to one of the last three celebrities’ favorite charities, but which stars will have good luck with the duck in the entrée basket? The final round of the celebrity tournament is bound to be intense as the competitors must have enough culinary stamina left to make something tasty, beautiful and creative from churros and champagne. Judges: Alex Guarnaschelli, Marc Murphy, Geoffrey ZakarianChopped is produced by Notional Entertainment.Source:Multivu.com Premiering Sunday, March 30th at 9pm ET/PT ”Actors!” With only one spot left in the $50,000 charity tournament, four actors bravely take on the role of chef. In the first round, one competitor tries desperately to figure out the right cooking technique for a tricky ingredient. A pretty citrus fruit and a spiny lobster are two of the mystery ingredients that the competitors must demystify in the entrée round. In the final round, the two remaining stars make a mess in the kitchen with some very creative desserts with mascarpone and strawberries. Competitors: Lucas Grabeel, Michael Imperioli, Peter Scolari, Tasha Smith Judges: Maneet Chauhan, Amanda Freitag, Alex Guarnaschelli Premiering Sunday, March 16th at 9pm ET/PT ”Rachael vs. Guy!” These four competitors are all cooking-competition veterans, alums of Food Network’s Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off, but they have never stepped foot in the Chopped Kitchen! How will they do with beef tongue and microwaveable chocolate cake in the appetizer basket? Then the stars have a pizza party in the entrée round after they discover leftover slices in the basket. With hopes of making it to the $50,000 finale, two competitors must make desserts using chocolate bars and banana chips. Competitors: Penn Jillette, Coolio, Lou Diamond Phillips, Carnie Wilson Judges: Maneet Chauhan, Marc Murphy, Chris Santos
Katy Perry has been making headlines lately after her revealing interview with GQ magazine, where the singer talked aliens, Barack Obama, and her teenage dreams. Now, the pop singer is shifting the spotlight onto The Pablove Foundation, an organization that works to improve the quality of life for children living with cancer.Perry is partnering with charity auction site Charitybuzz to offer four Katy Cats the chance to meet her backstage with tickets to any one of her North American stops. Fans can bid on this exclusive opportunity through Feb 13 here to support the foundation.Last November, Charitybuzz auctioned the chance to meet the pop star for a whopping $66,000, with proceeds benefiting Musicians on Call, making it one of the top 10 celebrity auctions of 2013.Katy Perry will be taking the stage in over 46 North American cities on her Prismatic World Tour, featuring Tegan and Sara, Kacey Musgraves and Capital Cities as opening acts. A full list of tour dates can be found here.Charitybuzz raises funds for nonprofits by auctioning thousands of incredible experiences spanning the best of pop culture. Since launching, the company has raised over $100 million for charity by giving bidders the chance to live their dreams and make a difference.
Musician and Founder of the Do It For the Love Foundation, Michael Franti, will be honored with the Universal Smile Award by Operation Smile, at the San Francisco Smile Gala on Saturday, October 11, 2014, at the Marines’ Memorial Club & Hotel.Michael Franti pictured with Three Little Bears in honor of being named Operation Smile’s first San Francisco Universal Smile Award recipient.“We are proud to present the Universal Smile Award to Michael Franti in recognition of his foundation’s work to better the lives of others through the healing power of music,” said Operation Smile Co-Founder, Kathy Magee.Operation Smile, is an international children’s medical charity, which provides free surgeries for children worldwide suffering from facial deformities – healing their smiles and transforming their lives. Kathy Magee will personally present the Universal Smile Award which recognizes individuals who exemplify an extraordinary commitment to helping others in need who are facing medical challenges.Founded by musician and Bay Area native, Michael Franti and E.R. nurse Sara Agah, Do It For The Love’s mission is to inspire joy, hope, and lasting powerful, family-centered memories through the healing power of music. The Foundation (www.doitforthelove.org) grants live concert music wishes for people living with life-threatening illnesses, children with severe challenges, and wounded veterans. During the event, a live auction will be held to raise money to provide life changing surgeries for children around the world. For $240, a child will receive a smile surgery and both the donor and an Operation Smile patient will receive one of the Three Little Bears named after Lisa Lori’s three sons.“It is an honor to be Operation Smile’s first San Francisco Universal Smile Award recipient. Sara and I have both witnessed how moments of joy can bring inspiration and hope to people at times of greatest need,” said Franti.Individual tickets for the Smile Gala begin at $150. For more information, please visit www.operationsmile.org/sfgala.
Elisa Sednaoui – the model and actress and now philanthropist – has teamed up with innovative celebrity fundraising platform www.MyGoodness.com to raise money and awareness for The Elisa Sednaoui Foundation.Elisa Sednaoui and Christian LouboutinThose who donate to the Foundation via MyGoodness.com will be in with the chance of winning an exclusive weekend in Paris where they will meet Elisa herself, as well as her iconic godfather, Christian Louboutin.“I am so grateful to Christian and Mygoodness.com for their support AND GENEROSITY,” said Elisa. “The funds raised will help ESF organize the next workshops and continue the training of the young adults who will eventually run a community cultural centre which we intend to fund in Luxor. Creative learning cultivates the minds and the hearts, it opens up imagination, and nurtures the soul. Yet, there is very limited access to creative outlets in the daily lives of people in Luxor, and virtually no arts education in local schools. I would like to thank all of you for helping us promote playful cultural exchange, citizenship, tolerance, equality, the celebration of heritage and the building of life skills.“By donating you are contributing to give a very unique experience for all the kids who will participate in the programmes. I am looking forward to meeting you in Paris”The Elisa Sednaoui Foundation (ESF) supports creative learning projects (i.e.: education through and exposure to culture and arts) to promote playful cultural exchange and the building of life skills. Why creative learning? Because it has the power to transform the social and cognitive development of children, help foster innovators and problem-solvers, build a sense of community, and promote civic engagement.The winner of the experience will be flown to Paris to meet Elisa Sednaoui and Christian Louboutin at his studio, where they will discuss the secret of the red soles as well as get to choose their favourite pair of stiletto’s from the collection that will be signed by Christian Louboutin. They’ll then indulge in a VIP spa treatment at Darphin and spend an evening at the Crazy Horse, sipping champagne and enjoying the most glamorous show in Paris.Donations start from as little as £10, which will earn entrants 2 entries to the competition, with the winner being selected randomly at the end of the campaign. Other than the grand prize, entrants can get many other exclusive rewards , including Darphin beauty products, Lisa Marie Fernandez Ponchos, original drawings from Christian Louboutin himself, and a signed pair of his signature shoes.Severine Balick, co-founder of MyGoodness.com said: “We were very impressed by the engagement of Elisa the first time we met her and as fans we are thrilled to be working with Elisa and Christian Louboutin. Elisa is an amazing role model and we’re excited to help her to show people how doing good and making a difference is Fashionable. At MyGoodness we believe that if you do good things, good things happen to you.”