Evening bulletin: Kamal Haasan on INDIA bloc, passing away of Ameen Sayani | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Evening bulletin: Kamal Haasan on INDIA bloc, passing away of Ameen Sayani

Feb 21, 2024 03:27 PM IST

Evening bulletin February 21: Kamal Haasan commented on whether he would join the INDIA bloc, iconic radio voice Ameen Sayani passed away.

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Kamal Haasan on Wednesday said what he thinks about joining INDIA bloc.(PTI)
Kamal Haasan on Wednesday said what he thinks about joining INDIA bloc.(PTI)

Kamal Haasan on INDIA bloc

Amid speculations that Makkal Needhi Maiam was involved in alliance talks with chief minister M K Stalin-led DMK, actor-politician Kamal Haasan on Wednesday said he hasn't joined ranks with the opposition INDIA bloc. Addressing reporters in Chennai after leading the 7th-anniversary celebrations of MNM, Haasan said discussions on political alliance were on, adding it would support any bloc that would "selflessly" think about the nation. He, however, stressed that his party won't be part of ‘local feudal’ politics. Asked if MNM will join the INDIA bloc, Kamal Haasan said, "I have already told, this is the time when you have to blur party politics and think about the nation. Anybody who thinks selflessly about the nation, my MNM will be part of it." When asked if he has joined the INDIA grouping, he said, "no, I haven't." Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM), which translates to "People's Justice Centre" in English, was founded by Kamal Haasan on February 21, 2018. MNM has positioned itself as a centrist party, focusing on social justice, economic development, and environmental sustainability. It advocates for policies that prioritise the welfare of the common people and promote inclusive growth. Since its inception, MNM has contested in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections and state assembly elections in Tamil Nadu, aiming to provide an alternative to the dominant Dravidian parties, namely the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK). However, Haasan's party failed to put up an impressive show. Read full story.

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Farmers' protest

The Central government has appealed to the protesting farmers to hold the fifth round of talks. Union agriculture minister Arjun Munda on Wednesday said that the government is ready to discuss all outstanding issues, including MSP, stubble burning, withdrawal of FIRs etc. Meanwhile, farmer leader Rakesh Tikait's BKU has opened yet another front in western Uttar Pradesh as farmers astride their tractors protested at several district headquarters. "In the 5th round of meeting, we are ready to talk with farmers and discuss issues like MSP, stubble, FIR, and crop diversification. I appeal to them to maintain peace and we should find a solution through dialogue," Munda said today. He said the farmers' side hasn't reacted to the Centre's offer. "No information has come yet (from farmers' side). We appeal that we should move forward for talks and present our stand. The government also wants to move forward and find a solution," said. The farmers, who are demanding MSP support from the government for all crops, on Wednesday resumed their Delhi Chalo march. Armed with gas masks, earthmovers and bulldozers, the farmers surged forward despite the tear gas shells fired by the Haryana police. Read full story

Narayana Murthy, Sudha Murty's gain

Infosys co-founder Narayana Murthy and wife Sudha Murty earned a hefty sum after their investment firm decided to sell off their shares in e-commerce seller Cloudtail. Catamaran sold a 76 per cent stake in the company for 1,332 crore ($160 million), according to the company's reported regulatory filings, with the Murthy couple's total investment at 417 crore ($50 million). The overall transaction of selling off Cloudtail shares resulted in a profit of around 915 crore ($110 million) for Narayana Murthy and Sudha Murty, giving 3X returns on their eight-year-old investment. The prime reason behind this massive profit for the Murthy family is the success of Catamaran over the last decade and its exceptional growth rate. Catamaran's ownership in Cloudtail was through Hober Mallow Trust; Sudha Murty held 80 per cent stake in the firm while Narayana Murthy held the rest of the shares. Cloudtail is a joint venture between Catamaran and Amazon, which was established in 2014 with the primary goal of training and onboarding merchants for Amazon's e-commerce platform. Infosys founder-backed Cloudtail showed immense growth, soon becoming the largest merchant for Amazon, accounting for over 50 per cent of its overall sales. Read full story

Who nominated Elon Musk for Nobel Peace Prize?

Elon Musk has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by Norwegian libertarian MP Marius Nilsen who said that he nominated Tesla and X boss for his “adamant defense of dialogue, free speech and [enabling] the possibility to express one’s views’ in a continuously more polarized world." Elon Musk's companies have helped “make the world a more connected and safer place," the MP said while the names of Nobel Peace Prize nominees have not been officially released even after the prize is given out. Meanwhile, Sofie Marhaug, a Norwegian MP, nominated Julian Assange saying that he "has exposed Western war crimes and thus contributed to peace. If we want to avoid war, we must know the truth about the damage that war brings. Assange has exposed torture and inhuman behaviour towards prisoners of war. He deserves the Peace Prize.” This comes as US Congresswoman Claudia Tenney nominated Donald Trump in January. He has been nominated in previous years as well. Read full story

Ameen Sayani died at 91

Ameen Sayani died in Mumbai on Tuesday after suffering a heart attack; he was 91. His son Rajil Sayani confirmed the news of his father’s death to Indianexpress.com. The iconic radio presenter hosted the popular show Binaca Geetmala. Sayani’s funeral will take place on Thursday as the family is waiting for some relatives to reach Mumbai on Wednesday. Rajil Sayani said his father suffered a heart attack on Tuesday night, after which they took him to HN Reliance Hospital, Mumbai, where he died. He told the portal, “The doctors at the hospital attended him but couldn’t save him and he was declared dead.” Ameen Sayani, whose introduction ‘Namaskar bhaiyon aur behno, main aapka dost Ameen Sayani bol raha hoon (Hello sister and brothers, this is your friend Ameen Sayani)’ on Radio Ceylon still evokes strong nostalgia, was born in Mumbai on December 21, 1932. Ameen was known for his show Binaca Geetmala – which was broadcast since 1952 – mainly over Radio Ceylon and later over Vividh Bharati (AIR) – for a total of over 42 years. Read full story

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