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Apr 192014

If it’s Friday, it’s time for another tiresome Bollywood movie!

Such has been my miserable kismet for several years now.

And 2 States did not turn out to be markedly different from the usual wretched Bollywood tripe except for a few amusing moments here and there before the de rigueur happy ending.

North-South Conflict

Based on the third rate hack Chetan Bhagat’s eponymous book, 2 States is a romance wrapped in the cliched conflict between North Indians and South Indians (collectively derided in yesteryears as Madrasis ).

Punjabi lad Krish Malhotra (Arjun Kapoor) and Tamil gal Ananya Swaminathan (Alia Bhatt) are students of the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad when love inexplicably blossoms between the two.
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With hormones in overdrive, the twenty-somethings kiss, fuck, argue and say sorry to each other!

But after their graduation from IIM the core of the movie pivots from romance to opposition between parents of Krish and Ananya to their respective offsprings’ romance on cultural and regional grounds.

Now how exciting do you suppose a cultural/regional conflict between parents of two young lovers can be in 2014?

Z E R O!

India is in the ferment of deep change and millennium-old notions of caste, religion, community and regionalism are swiftly falling by the wayside.

Pre-marital sex is fine and dandy but parental opposition over cultural differences is like the Great Wall of China, an insuperable barrier! Continue reading »

Apr 172014

Without campaign contributions, “nobody will even talk to you. . . . That’s the only way to buy them, get into the system. . . . What, what else is there? That’s the only thing.
- Sant Singh Chatwal in conversation with a Government Informant in October 2010
Source: U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York

Sant Singh Chatwal Headed to PrisonSant Singh Chatwal – Headed for Prison

Hillary Clinton supporter, Bill Clinton buddy, Democratic Party fundraiser, New York hotelier and Padma Bhushan awardee Sant Singh Chatwal is a realistic man and a man who understands the ways of the world.

Chairman of Hampshire Hotels Management LLC, Sant Chatwal knows that money is what oils the wheels of U.S. government and gets American politicians to do your bidding.

So Sant Chatwal did what so many other wealthy Americans do often – He made illegal campaign contributions to U.S. politicians.

Sant Singh Chatwal's Hoel in New York CityChatwal Group Hotel in Manhattan

Sant Chatwal – An Idiot

But Sant Chatwal is an idiot because he got caught doing what so many rich Americans do frequently but are smart enough to evade capture and thus escape punishment.

For his crimes and for his stupidity, Sant Chatwal is now headed for prison for illegal campaign contribution and witness tampering.

Sant Chatwal has pleaded guilty to conspiring to violate the Federal Election Campaign Act by making over $180,000 in federal campaign donations to three candidates through ‘straw donors’ and to witness tampering. A straw donor makes campaign contributions for which he’s then reimbursed by the ‘actual donor,’ a practice that’s illegal under U.S. law.

Chatwal faces up to 25 years in prison in theory but is likely to draw a sentence of three to four years.

As part of his plea deal with the government, Chatwal must also forfeit $1 million to the U.S.

Here’s what U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Loretta Lynch had to say on Sant Chatwal: Continue reading »

Apr 172014

Raghunandan Yandamuri's Trial PostponedRaghunandan Yandamuri Enacting His Crimes to the Police

Telugu bidda Raghunandan Yandamuri was dealt a severe blow in Montgomery County court today when Judge Steven T. O’Neill disallowed his motion for suppression of his video confession and written statement to the police  relating to the twin murders of 10-month-old Saanvi Venna and her 61-year-old grandmother Satyavathi Venna.

Montgomery County Judge O’Neill ruled today that Yandamuri’s video confession and written statements to the police and his cellphone records could be shown to the jury.

Yandamuri was present at the Montgomery County court today.
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Following the Judge’s ruling, Yandamuri’s lawyers said their client was “bitterly disappointed with the decision.”

With no plans on entering a guilty plea, Yandamuri continues to insist on his innocence and still wants to go to trial.

You can watch Yandamuri’s video confession of October 26, 2012 below:

Note to Readers: The English stuff in the below video does not start until 59 seconds have passed.

Major Setback

Although Yandamuri made a video confession of the killings (which he claims were accidental) in a calm and chilling manner on October 26, 2012 (four days after his two murders) and provided written statements to the police, the Telugu criminal subsequently changed his story and claimed the police coerced him into the confession and writing the statements.

In early January, Yandamuri’s lawyers filed a motion asking for the video confession and the written statement to be suppressed.

But the Judge was not swayed by arguments made by Yandamuri’s defense team.

Judge O’Neill’s ruling today is a serious setback to to Yandamuri’s bid to escape the death penalty because the video confession and written statement to the police are highly damning.

No one seeing the video confession will have any doubt about Yandamuri’s role in the killings or that he was not coerced by the police.

In the video confession, Yandamuri bizarrely enacts the killings and even acknowledges that the police had treated him well during their interrogation.

Pennsylvania prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for Yandamuri.

Now that his video confession and written statement are being allowed to be shown to the jury in the upcoming trial, it’s highly unlikely Yandamuri will escape the death penalty unless Lord Balaji intervenes through a miracle.

Trial Postponed

Meanwhile, Yandamuri’s ‘s trial for the twin murders during a botched kidnapping bid of 10-month-old Saanvi Venna for ransom has been postponed to the second half of 2014, according to media reports. Continue reading »

Apr 172014
Big Day for Telugu Bidda Raghunandan Yandamuri; Judge to Rule on Motions Soon

Telugu bidda Raghunandan Yandamuri has arrived in the Montgomery County courthouse in Pennsylvania from the county jail in Eagleville to hear the Judge’s rulings on his motions. Big Day Today is a big day for Yandamuri, who’s charged with killing 10-month-old Saanvi Venna and her 61-year-old grandmother Satyavathi Venna in a botched kidnapping for ransom [...]

Apr 152014
Is Asia a Goner for Samsung, Apple?

Americans and Europeans have been paying through their nose for smartphones, boosting the fortunes of greedy corporations like Apple and Samsung to stratospheric heights. The latest model of unlocked iPhone or Samsung Galaxy S series smartphones purchased at retail (which few do in the U.S.) will set you back at least $650. Together, Apple and [...]