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UN Benazir report pack of lies: Musharraf aide 08/04/2011
A UN probe report faulting the government of then Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf for the assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto has been termed a "pack of lies" by an aide of the former military dictator.

Speaking to a private TV channel, Major General (retd) Rashid Qureshi pointed out that the UN commission should have pinned the responsibility on the government of that time and not on the presidency.

He also disclosed that according to the investigations conducted after Bhutto's 2007 killing, there were no bullet marks on her head and that 27 pieces of evidence were collected from the assassination spot, Online news agency reported.

Qureshi further pointed out that according to investigation conducted by the law enforcement agencies, then Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud...

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Music for peace 08/04/2011
Who says 'fusion music' often fails to impress? That it's more confusion than harmony? Listening to some of the most well-known contemporary violin players of the world at the concert Violins for Peace recently (G D Birla Sabhaghar, Kolkata), these doubts could be put to rest.

Conceived by L. Subramaniam, violin maestro, it brought together violinists from as far as USA, Norway, Algeria and Russia to showcase the versatility of the violin, whether adapted to Indian classical tradition or the gypsy music of Russia.

That music encompasses barriers of language and geographical borders to touch the listeners was once again vindicated at the concert.

For the average Indian, Algeria is a far-off land in north Africa.

But as Kheir Eddine M'kachiche put the bow to the violin it was as if the deserts, the blue waters of its Mediterranean coastline and the people came alive through the plaintive tones.

You also noticed that the violin was placed like a cello, that is, on the lap, unlike the traditional way in this p...

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Can MNP be game changer? 08/04/2011
Even with a response that is nearly nowhere as groundbreaking as it was initially hype-projected to have by some, mobile number portability services in India have ushered a new era of customer freedom.

Sample this exchange between a disgruntled user, who shares his anguish with his network provider over a short message on Twitter to his about 400 followers, and the carrier that swoops in to appease the customer:

ShravanRN: @VodafoneIN Should i think of MNP or are you going to rectify my problem? Cross connections for 3 weeks . *disgusting*

@VodafoneIN: @ShravanRN Sor...

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Yoga in the snow? Mountaineer challenges Baba Ramdev 08/04/2011
He's a mountaineer and a yoga instructor and claims to have performed yoga bare-bodied in Ladakh's snow-clad mountains at an altitude of over 14, 000 ft. And Ajai Kumar Bajpayee has now dared renowned yoga guru Baba Ramdev to match his feat.

Bajpayee, 32, a liaison officer with the Indian Mountaineering Foundation (IMF) and a native of Shareefabad in Barabanki district, has performed a 30-minute yoga session at the popular Kun mountaineering destination in Ladakh. He now wants Ramdev to showcase his yoga skills before the public in the same manner.

"It's an open challenge to him from my side. Let there be a yoga competition between us. Both of us will have to perform yoga bare-bodied in bone-chilling conditions or similar to that of those prevailing in Ladakh, " Bajpayee told IANS on phone from Barabanki, some 35 km from Lucknow.

Bajpayee, however, said Ramdev should take up his challenge in a sporting spirit.

"I respect Babaji (Ramdev) a lot. Undoubtedly, Babaji has done a lot in promoting yoga not only in the country but in different parts of the globe. It's not that I am proud of myself and want others to feel low. The objective behind such a challenge is to showcase the incredible tasks that could be achieved through yoga.

"I believe Babaji will accept my challenge and peop...

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Reality shows don't guarantee Bollywood success: Sunidhi Chauhan 06/01/2011
Popular playback singer Sunidhi Chauhan does not feel that music talent hunt reality shows can guarantee the winner success in Bollywood, though she herself appeared on the Hindi film scene thanks to a talent hunt on TV.

"I don't think it's got anything to do with singing. Success comes to you if you are talented and at the same time are seen and heard enough. I think reality shows give you this opportunity and platform. It can give you that initial visibility towards success in the industry, but at the end of the day what sustains you is sheer talent, " Sunidhi told IANS in an interview.

Sunidhi had in 1996 won the "Meri Awaaz Suno" music competition on Doordarshan and later went on to give Bollywood hit numbers like "Dhadak dhadak" ("Bunty Aur Babli"), "Bhaage re mann" ("Chameli"), "Mehboob mere" ("Fiza"), "Dhoom machale" ("Dhoom"), "Beedi jaliale" ("Omkara") and &quo...

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