DONEGAL LORRY DRIVER CHARGED AFTER CONTAINER DEATH

first_imgChelmsford Magistrates Court where the two lorry drivers are to appear later today.A man from Donegal has been charged following the death of an Afghan migrant found in a container at Tilbury docks in Essex, England.Stephen McLaughlin, from Carndonagh in Inishowen but who has been living at Rose Park in Limavady, Co Derry is one of two lorry drivers charged with conspiring to facilitate illegal entry into the UK. The other is  Timothy Murphy  (33), of Elmgrove in Derry city.McLaughlin was arrested on the A1 in Banbridge, Co Tyrone on Tuesday while Murphy was detained after voluntarily attending a police station in Essex the following day.They are due to appear before Chelmsford Magistrates Court today.The dead man, Meet Singh Kapoor (40), was one of 35 people from Afghanistan, including 15 children,  discovered after dock workers heard banging and screaming coming from one of the containers which had been shipped in from Belgium.Those found inside were taken to hospital, with many suffering from the effects of severe dehydration and hypothermia.The migrants were said by police to be victims of people trafficking.Those found inside were taken to hospital, with many suffering from the effects of severe dehydration and hypothermia.The 34 survivors include 10 men, nine women and 15 children, with their ages ranging from one to 72.They are all in the care of the British Home Office after being discharged from hospital and questioned by police.They are seeking asylum in the UK.It is believed they were in the container for about 18 hours.DONEGAL LORRY DRIVER CHARGED AFTER CONTAINER DEATH was last modified: August 23rd, 2014 by johngerardShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:CarndonaghcontainerdeathdocksdriverEssexlorrymclaughlinmigrantsstephentiblurylast_img read more

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Quins support award-winning programme helping young people

first_imgAfter seeing their work first hand, Harlequins and England Under-20 prop Kyle Sinckler knows just what an impact the award-winning HITZ programme could have.The Wandsworth-born front row was one of the guests of honour at a special launch event in Lambeth earlier this month, which saw the scheme rolled out nationally to all 12 Aviva Premiership Rugby clubs.And having met some of the young people HITZ has already helped, Sinckler insists it has the power to inspire thousands more teenagers as well.“I think the HITZ programme is very close to my heart.,” said the 20-year-old Harlequins academy product.“Rugby helped me and changed my life and I think it could do the same for younger kids as well.“It teaches them teamwork, discipline, having that sense of family, a routine and hopefully it’s going to be life-changing for some of these kids in the HITZ programme.“I started at Battersea Ironside RFC when I was eight or nine, I was quite an angry kid and rugby gave me an outlet and more.“At the time I didn’t have a clue about rugby, I just wanted to hit people all the time and the rest is history.“When you’re young and angry and quite naïve, I thought rugby was a good outlet to be physical out on the field.“But as you get older you mature and you top making the same mistakes and I think the HITZ programme will teach these kids that if they do make a mistake it’s not the end of the world, keep your head up and keep rolling along.”Delivered by Premiership Rugby and funded by partners Wooden Spoon, Land Rover, Barclays and Comic Relief, HITZ uses rugby as a tool to help improve literacy, numeracy and employability, as well as encouraging young people to be more confident, self-reliant and to live a healthier lifestyle.Originally a pilot project in four London boroughs, the roll-out mean thousands more 11 to 19-year-olds will benefit from going through the programme, and having access to the specialist HITZ officers at each club – as well as 600 Aviva Premiership rugby players and mentors and role models.And Harlequins HITZ officer Paul Wilson thinks the scheme is vital in tackling the problem of NEETs (Not in Education, Employment or Training).He said: “HITZ is a new venture for us at Harlequins and we’ve got to make sure we work with the community, our target is to get 40 kids per year through the programme.“We will be targeting the NEETs and with the core values of our sport, discipline and respect, its about using the literacy skills and the sport skills we’ll give these young adults the confidence to go out into the workplace and display these skills.”The award winning HITZ programme tackles some of the greatest challenges facing young people today – unemployment, crime and disillusionment. Delivered nationally by Premiership Rugby and funded by national partners Barclays, Comic Relief, Land Rover and Wooden Spoon, HITZ uses rugby to increase young people’s resilience, self-reliance and confidence. It gives them the skills to get back into education, vocational training, apprenticeships and employment.Please visit hitzrugby.com to find out more.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

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Breaking down Warriors vs. Jazz: What are the champs in for in SLC?

first_imgTonight the Warriors will face their first road test of the young season, traveling to Salt Lake City to face the Jazz.Utah, led by Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, was among the NBA’s best stories last season, winning 48 games and reaching the conference semis. Now, the Jazz, who were among the best home teams last season, will be ready for the champs.Here’s your pregame rundown…Time/TV: 7:30 ET/ESPN, NBCSBA Where: Vivint Smart Home ArenaTeam Records: Warriors (1-0) Utah Jazz …last_img

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Video: A’s Ramon Laureano makes home run-saving catch

first_imgOAKLAND — A’s center fielder Ramon Laureano has built quite the reputation for a powerful and accurate throwing arm.In the second inning Sunday against the Toronto Blue Jays, Laureano showed he can also perform miracles with his glove.With Justin Smoak on first base and no one out in the second, Teoscar Hernandez launched a ball to center field against starter Brett Anderson that looked like a sure two-run home … Click here if you’re unable to view the photo gallery on your mobile device.last_img

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Aviation, maritime careers for youth

first_imgThe Eastern Cape’s Department ofTransport plans to visit 60 schools toraise awareness among pupils of theopportunities that exist in the maritimeand aviation industries.(Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica.com. Formore free photos, visit the image library)MEDIA CONTACTS • Ncedo KumbacaDirector: CommunicationsEastern Cape Department of Transport+27 82 5626 023Shamin ChibbaOnce, being a sailor or pilot meant you faced danger almost daily and had the opportunity to discover new worlds and earn praise and admiration. Nowadays, fewer youngsters are interested in taking to the seas or the air and this has led to a shortage of pilots and sailors in South Africa.As part of a strategy to tackle this situation, more than 200 young people were invited to attend an information sharing session organised by the Eastern Cape Department of Transport (ECDoT) at the province’s Bhisho Airport in late April.The event was meant to encourage the participants, most of whom were university students from institutes around the Eastern Cape, to register for learnerships in the aviation and maritime sectors.The session was organised in partnership with the South African Maritime Safety Association (Samsa), training company Mtha Aviation and local airline SA Express.According to ECDoT’s communications manager Ncedo Kumbaca, the department targeted previously disadvantaged matriculants and students who were unaware of the opportunities existing in maritime and aviation.“Young people from rural areas need to be taught about these industries,” he said, adding that ECDoT also wished to educate the students on the complex criteria that will ensure a successful application.“Many think a distinction is enough to get a learnership but it is not,” he said.Maths and science essentialAt a Maritime Day function held in East London last year, Samsa’s CE Tsietsie Mokhele expressed concern about the urgent need to develop the industry. He particularly pointed out South Africa’s poor contribution to the international maritime industry.At the same function Mahlubandile Qwase, then the Eastern Cape’s MEC of education, attributed this lack of global presence to the poor maritime education in coastal areas of the country. He claimed that there are three ports in the Eastern Cape but not a single maritime school.Kumbaca said that another factor is the large number of high school learners who drop maths and science, subjects which are crucial in kick-starting a career in maritime or aviation.Because of this, he said, the two industries remain the most untransformed in the country.However, to counter this unacceptable state of affairs, representatives from ECDoT have been on an awareness drive since 2010, and plan to visit a total of 60 schools to educate learners on seafaring and piloting.Such drives may not be necessary in the near future. According to Qwase, plans were in place to establish a maritime school in the province in 2011.“By 2015, we will have fully fledged maritime high schools and 300 graduates,” he said.Developing the aviation and maritime industriesKumbaca said Samsa was offering 100 learnerships in the maritime industry, while an unspecified number of learnerships in the aviation industry were to be chosen by SA Express.Students had the option of registering for one of three programmes that were made available on the day.Mechanical engineering students who had a diploma, had dropped out of their studies, or had studied the theory of mechanical engineering, were directed towards the maritime learnerships.Students who have passed grade 12 with at least a D average or a level five in maths, were medically fit, older than 16 and had no criminal record, were registered as potential flyers into the Aviation Learner Training Programme.Female students with a high school pass of at least a D average or a level five in maths and science, and a passion for aviation, were encouraged to sign up for the ladies-only Cadet Pilot Programme.last_img read more

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SA banks ‘sound, well capitalised’

first_img1 March 2012 South Africa’s banks are sound and well capitalised, weathered the global financial crisis well, and have no exposure to the eurozone debt crisis, the Reserve Bank said in response to Moody’s downgrading of the country’s five major banks. On Wednesday, Moody’s Investors Service downgraded by one notch the senior debt and deposit ratings of the Standard Bank of South Africa, Absa Bank Limited, FirstRand Bank Limited, Nedbank Limited, and Investec Bank Ltd. Moody’s also downgraded by one notch the subordinated debt instruments of the same banks mentioned, in addition to African Bank Limited’s EMTN subordinated debt programme ratings.Not driven by individual bank weaknesses According to Moody’s, the rating action was not driven by any deterioration in the standalone financial strength or financial performance of the banks themselves. Rather, it was motivated by what the agency saw as growing fiscal challenges that could constrain the South African government’s ability to bail the banks out in the event of a crisis. According to to Moody’s, South Africa’s financial authorities would have difficult policy choices to make if many of the country’s banks were to call for state financial support at the same time.Banks ‘unlikely to need state help’ The South African Reserve Bank said in response that it remained of the view that South Africa’s banks “are sound, well capitalised, profitable and providing investors with acceptable returns. “The five banks weathered the global financial crisis well, have no exposures to the Sovereign debt crisis of certain troubled European countries, and remain largely focused on the rand-based South African economy,” the central bank said in a statement. “Thus the likelihood of systemic support required by these banks in the immediate future is considered to be low.” Source: BuaNews, with additional reporting by SAinfolast_img read more

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Preity Zinta-Ness Wadia: Happily never after

first_imgKings XI Punjab co-owners Preity Zinta and Ness Wadia at the 2008 IPL auction in Mumbai.In 2003, as larger-than-life reel heroes cowered, actor Preity Zinta, a mere 28 years old, testified against gangster Chhota Shakeel in the Bharat Shah case of Bollywood’s nexus with the Mumbai underworld. Current Mumbai,Kings XI Punjab co-owners Preity Zinta and Ness Wadia at the 2008 IPL auction in Mumbai.In 2003, as larger-than-life reel heroes cowered, actor Preity Zinta, a mere 28 years old, testified against gangster Chhota Shakeel in the Bharat Shah case of Bollywood’s nexus with the Mumbai underworld. Current Mumbai Police Commissioner Rakesh Maria was then the city’s Crime Branch chief. He put her into witness protection and kept her out of the public eye for two months. She was the only witness not to turn hostile, testifying to the Mumbai Sessions Court that the gangster had said: “Main bhai ka aadmi Razak bol raha hoon aur mujhe 50 lakh chahiye.” Preity claimed, when she finally emerged, that she had aged 10 years in those two months. But she was proud, she was vocal, and she was fearless.This time, as Maria steers the investigations into the now 39-year-old’s charges of verbal and physical abuse against ex-boyfriend and co-owner of the Kings XI Punjab team, Ness Wadia, he deals with a very different Preity. Distraught, emotional, self-admittedly fearful for her life, the actor skipped out of the public eye hurriedly, taking off to her home in Los Angeles after filing a midnight complaint on June 12 at the Marine Lines Police Station in Mumbai under sections 354, 509, 504, 506 of the IPC, two weeks after the incident occurred. Mumbai Police, unsure of whether to add a stalking charge in the absence of CCTV footage to corroborate her claim, and under pressure to be seen as proactive on women’s issues, sent a letter to her via lawyer Hitesh Jain, asking her to record a statement in person by the following weekend.advertisementThe police have also requested access to prior emails that Preity claims she had sent, warning Ness to back off. Quite far removed from the actor who publicly took on the mafia, Preity accuses Ness of pulling her arm and mouthing obscenities at her in full public view at the IPL Qualifier 2 held at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on May 30. Even as gangster Ravi Pujari claims to intervene on her behalf with the Wadias, via a number traceable to Iran, anti-extortion police are investigating if he was acting independently.Preity answered “wrong number” when INDIA TODAY called her and didn’t respond to text messages but her lawyer confirmed that the actor is directly in touch with Mumbai Police on the details of the case. She subsequently tweeted from her account to clarify: “A big Thank U 2all the people 4the support. Amazed at how much speculation in the media. No I’m not selling my stake or settling in the US.” and “So called sources says anything & its getting reported. Pls No hearsay. There are many IMP Issues in India which are much more news worthy.”The Wadias, an old-world reclusive part of Mumbai’s high society, have countered the claims saying the two had a spat caused by her refusal to save reserved seats for his mother, Maureen Wadia, and nephew, as Preity did not want to sit next to them. The Wadias had arrived late as it was Ness’s birthday and found their seats occupied by Preity’s entourage. Angered at seeing his mother standing for 20 minutes, Ness snapped.The case has pulled much of Bollywood and sporting society into its ambit, with many annoyed at having to take sides. Arjun Tendulkar, son of Sachin Tendulkar, was supposedly in the VIP enclosure and at the receiving end of a few of Ness’s obscenities. IPL COO Sundar Raman confirmed to investigators that Preity had verbally complained to him about the incident but declined information as he did not witness it; he told police that he had asked the actor to “deal with it calmly later”.Businessman Danish Kanaujia and two Wankhede employees stationed at the Garware Pavilion have reportedly given eyewitness statements. Celebrity journalists Tavleen Singh and Shobhaa De have publicly debated the merits of women of privilege seeking police help for verbal abuse.Preity and Ness with Kings XI Punjab cheergirls. Friends of both parties, like model Indrani Dasgupta, who is engaged to the Kings XI Punjab co-owner Karan Paul, of the Apeejay Group, and Lisa Haydon, former girlfriend of one of Ness’s oldest and closest friends Karan Bhojwani, have been pulled into society speculation.Legal sources have also claimed that negotiations are on to buy out Preity’s 23 per cent stake in Kings XI Punjab, which turned profitable in 2014 for the first time and was estimated to have a brand valuation of $32 million by Mumbai-based firm American Appraisal; the franchise was valued at $76 million when it was first bought in 2008. A newspaper report has claimed that Preity is looking to sell and move to the US. A Wadia group spokesperson confirmed that “the option to sell stakes will be on the table in future.” However, highly placed legal sources close to the Wadias also claim that Preity got wind of their move to cut their losses and divest their stake in the IPL next season and panicked. All Kings XI Punjab owners-Dabur’s Mohit Burman and the Wadias- barring Preity have attempted to jettison their stake at some point. Without the IPL, Preity has nothing, the legal sources claim.advertisementWith Mumbai’s legal community condemning the application of Section 354, which pertains to assault or criminal force used to outrage the modesty of a woman, Preity’s lawyer has clarified they have not mentioned sexual assault, only physical and verbal abuse.Friends of the Wadias claim Preity is still not over Ness, though their relationship ended five years ago and he is soon to be engaged to a mysterious lady love. “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned,” a top society lawyer close to the Wadias says. Preity’s friends have countered saying it was she who walked out of an abusive relationship. How did a one-time fairy-tale romance between a bubbly actor at her peak and a most eligible bachelor reach such divisive and disastrously public proportions? The saga began soon after December 2004, when Preity survived the Indian Ocean tsunami, waking in Thailand to the sound of crashing waves that took the lives of a few of her closest childhood friends; she escaped traumatised. It was a time when she seemed blessed. It had been a good two years; by 2004, Preity was a blockbuster heroine: Koi… Mil Gaya did Rs 80 crore at the box office, Kal Ho Naa Ho raked in Rs 93 crore, while Veer-Zaara wowed both Indian and Pakistani audiences as it collected Rs 88 crore. Preity came off those years on a high, and into the arms of the heir to the Bombay Dyeing estate and great grandson of Mohammed Ali Jinnah, Ness Wadia. Ness himself was no rookie to Bollywood or its stars; South Mumbai sources tell of his teenage crush on Ameesha Patel, whom he met at a gym. The two would exchange love notes and he would shower her with presents. His list of alleged dalliances included Manisha Koirala and Lara Dutta. Preity had lived in with Dutch engineer Lars Kjeldson, who is now married to actor Suchitra Pillai, and choreographer Marc Robinson. But when Preity and Ness met in February 2005 at a party, they were beautiful, successful, and seemingly made for each other.Contrary to popular opinion, when the two first started dating, just before Preity’s 30th birthday, bonding over travel and sport, Ness’s mother didn’t disapprove. “He’s an eligible bachelor, she is an eligible star, yes they are dating and as a mother I can only say my son is handsome, and they seem very equal, very well-matched,” soon-to-turn-spoilsport Maureen told Zee News at the time. Salaam Namaste had just released and Ness had made a blinkand-you-miss appearance as a man on the bus reading a paper, so lovelorn that he invented business appointments in Australia to be able to spend time with Preity on set. “We are going places all right… Ness is a very special person in my life, he makes me laugh and smile. I am in a very beautiful phase of my life,” Preity said in February 2005. Two months later, the couple visited the Vaishno Devi Shrine along with Preity’s mother Neelprabha Zinta, sparking rumours that a wedding was imminent with Ness sitting in on the aarti to make his mother-in-law-to-be happy.advertisementThey were the kind of couple that did things together. That year, on Independence Day, they launched a cleanliness drive, donating 15 dustbins to the suburb of Bandra, only to find them promptly stolen. If Preity went to New York right after to shoot for Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, her puppy love followed, with the duo stopping to spend time together on a holiday in Europe on the way back. Even as Ness remained increasingly absent from Mumbai, his brother Jeh, then 32, the original wild child, hung up his party boots and took over the family businesses, launching GoAir that year. Preity was clearly part of the family at the time, with Jeh quipping that he hoped she would be a brand ambassador for the low-cost carrier for free. Maureen’s influence became clear as Preity metamorphosed from a jeans-clad girl into a hat-andglove-sporting derby socialite.Flaunting it and happy-Preity had always claimed she would shout it from the rooftops if she was in love-trouble soon struck. In July 2005, Hindustan Times launched in Mumbai, printing transcripts between actor Salman Khan and his one-time girlfriend Aishwarya Rai, taped in August 2001, a time when Mumbai Police was monitoring the nexus between film stars and gangsters. In it, Salman made boastful sexual allegations about a person identified as Preity. She was in Italy at the time and made several frantic calls to convince her beau that the allegations weren’t true, including to close friend Aishwarya to find out if the tapes were doctored. Aishwarya reportedly told her that they weren’t. Preity sued the newspaper for defamation and obtained a clean chit from a forensic laboratory. It is telling of Preity’s ability to forgive and forge relationships that she went on to shoot Jaan-E-Mann with Salman, and he remains one of her closest friends, as does Aishwarya, whose wedding to Abhishek Bachchan she attended with Ness in 2007. But in 2006, public appearances declined and rumours began to swirl. The couple got over the incident but it had shaken them. Jeh Wadia had taken over as Bombay Dyeing MD. Ness was focusing on mill lands, a legal battle with the B.K. Birla family over the Century Mills complex and handling the redevelopment of Spring Mills. Both Preity and Maureen, who was coping with spondylitis alongside managing the newly introduced Mrs Gladrags contests, issued interviews in which they stated they “looked up to each other”.But other kinds of rumours were swirling around; that the couple was getting sucked into a wilder lifestyle. In 2007, singer-actor Suchitra Krishnamoorthi blamed Preity for her own split with director-husband Shekhar Kapur, claiming the two had had an affair. Krishnamoorthi told Mid-Day in March 2007 that Preity had called her up to clarify she was marrying Ness and that she had asked Kapur to give her away at the wedding. Ness and Preity were spotted having a blast at liquor baron Vijay Mallya’s yacht party ahead of the Turkish Grand Prix and at the Louis Vuitton Cup in Valencia, Spain, in June 2007. Rumours of distancing from the matriarch had set in-Maureen had made the now-infamous remark that she didn’t care if her son “married a Zinta or a zebra”.Preity and Ness with Mohit Burman.Once Jhoom Barabar Jhoom, her last mainstream film of the year, flopped, Preity began to change her image. She moved away from the Yash Raj label, opted for films like Rituparno Ghosh’s The Last Lear, and launched her own production house, beginning to position herself as a businesswoman fashioned after the family she would now be a part of. She stopped partying with the Khans, and was seen at races like the CN Wadia Cup horse race and charity events intent on leaving her filmi ways behind. She and Ness were planning their IPL venture. Preity took over creatives, handling uniforms, promotions, anthems. Ness handled the business and logistics. Ness dubbed her “the spirit of the team”.Priyanka Chopra, Kareena Kapoor and Katrina Kaif quickly filled the acting space she was vacating. When the duo made an appearance hand-in-hand at the Aishwarya-Abhishek wedding in April 2007 and the Elizabeth Hurley-Arun Nayar wedding in June, it again fuelled rumours that they would be next to tie the knot. In October, Jeh Wadia clarified Maureen’s remark saying “Preity is definitely a part of our family. In fact, it is a pleasure to have her in our family”. The next month, Preity and Ness were spotted in Shillong in the audience at the concert of her favourite band Mr Big. She was shooting for Jahnu Barua’s Har Pal.It was however during the making of Deepa Mehta’s Heaven on Earth, a film on domestic abuse for which Preity met with several Canadian victims of violence, that she experienced a near epiphany and began to let go of what was increasingly becoming an abusive relationship, says a close friend. In April 2008, Bollywood insiders and gossip columnists claimed that Ness slapped Preity at the screening of the film, renamed Videsh in Hindi, apparently angered that she was trying to send him a ‘message’ via the film, which she was rumoured to have taken in order to confront the issue. Their fights and subsequent patch-ups were getting routine now. In 2008, even as Preity and Ness forged an IPL partnership together, she bit the bullet. By 2009, it was done. Preity was to later tell Savvy magazine that she had made the decision to walk. In a depressed state-she told People magazine she was “mentally and physically exhausted”-she chose to travel, spending time with her family, her younger brother Manish Zinta, who lived with his then four-year-old daughter Maya in Los Angeles; her childhood friend and classmate from Shimla, Sangrur Congressman Arvind Khanna’s wife Shagun; and also hanging out with star wives such as Malaika Arora Khan and Gauri Khan in London. She spent time with designer Surily Goel in Paris. When the holiday extended into a general absence, she told people she was recovering from a ski accident.By December 2009, determined to take her role as the only woman owner of an IPL team at the time seriously, she enrolled for a short executive course in negotiating and dealmaking at Harvard University. Preity was talking politics, campaigning for the Congress in Kanpur for Sriprakash Jaiswal, and happily single. Ness and she originally signed up to a partnership in which each held 23 per cent, Mohit Burmanowned Windy Investments held 11.5 per cent, Mohit’s brother Gaurav Burman (also IPL chief Lalit Modi’s step son-in-law) owned 23 per cent; Karan Paul held 4 per cent, Shagun Khanna-owned Root Investments held 4 per cent, among others.Had they married unaffected by circumstances, Preity would have gone on to be a trophy wife in the VIP box, while Ness and Mohit would have handled the bulk of the business. Now, things were proving otherwise with the reinvented Preity. She was everywhere, at IPL auctions, in the dugout, at press conferences, with the team and players’ wives. In the 2009 season of IPL, Ness, who was by now dating Thapar Group heiress Ayesha Thapar, was getting into brawls at the VIP box while Preity stuck firmly to the dugout. The private security guards of South African businessman Ajay Gupta of the Sahara Group, a friend of the country’s President Jacob Zuma, thrashed Ness and Mohit Burman in the VIP box, Hindustan Times and The Times of India reported quoting agency reports, after Mohit Burman, it was alleged, had jabbed a woman spectator, Gupta’s daughter, with a Kings XI Punjab flagpole, demanding she get out of his line of vision. Ness and Mohit would have been deported if not for the intervention of Lalit Modi, who set up a meeting and insisted that the two apologise in person and in writing.The professional partnership lumbered on, despite rumours of a split. In 2010, a Chandigarh court issued nonbailable warrants against Ness, Preity and Mohit for failing to appear before it on complaints of not filing balance sheets and income-tax returns since Kings XI Punjab came into existence; Karan Paul had appeared before the court. The franchise was in financial doldrums and a move to make Rs 214.6 crore from a Rs 598 crore private placement of shares from Kolkata-based NVD Solar through a three-year contract came under the government scanner for irregularities.Kings XI Punjab then filed a criminal complaint accusing NVD Solar of reneging on payments to the tune of Rs 14 crore and bounced cheques of Rs 25 crore each via fake accounts. Preity, it was rumoured, meanwhile, struggled even more than Ness financially, having neglected her career during their romance. She sued the family of deceased producer Kamal Amrohi for interest and the return of the Rs 2 crore that she had loaned the family. There were rumours that she had put her decadelong home, Quantum Apartments in Khar, up for rent though she denied it vehemently. She raised Rs 10 crore in loans for her 2013 comeback film Ishqk in Paris from the Central Bank of India but the movie tanked at the box office, raking in only around Rs 3 crore. Preity paid the unit hands first but scriptwriter Abbas Tyrewala slapped her with a lawsuit asking for the payment of Rs 18 lakh. Preity contested the bill and claimed that she had paid everyone she owed money to. The case is still sub-judice. Finally, after seven years and despite losing in the IPL final this year, Kings XI Punjab showed a profit of Rs 78.01 lakh. The media attributed a part of the success to Preity. On the field she was one of the boys, a backslapping, hands-on team owner, maintaining a closeness and camaraderie unlike other team owners, who kept their celebrity distance.Off the field, if Preity’s allegations are true, she has remained Ness’s verbal punching bag. An emotional Preity has now asked for restitution under sections 354, 504 and 506 of the IPC. Each deal with outraging the modesty of a woman. Rumours swirl that the one-time couple is now in negotiations for her stake in the team to be bought out. That Preity, now thoroughly defeated, will give up the fight, sell her stake, and fed up of the Indian media and public prying, with the increasing murkiness of the IPL tournament, its alleged links with the underworld and unsavoury elements, move to Los Angeles to live with her brother.Would she who brooked no defeat from the mafia or tsunami or financial loss give up a finally triumphing team over verbal abuse and a seat she denied a co-owner? The answers again are with Police Chief Rakesh Maria as he pulls in witnesses for questioning. Perhaps life does come full circle, after all.last_img read more

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