Lucknow: Akhilesh Yadav’s gathbandhan with BSP chief Mayawati for the Lok Sabha elections might have not got the desired result in Uttar Pradesh with the BJP sweeping the state.But the Samajwadi Party president gets full marks for trying. While forging the SP-BSP alliance in the state to take on the Bharatiya Janata Party, Yadav put ego aside, happily playing the bhatija (nephew) to Mayawati bua (aunt). His wife Dimple helped when she touched the elder politician’s feet at a public meeting. Also Read – Pak activated 20 terror camps & 20 launch pads along LoCWhen reporters asked whether he would back Bahujan Samaj Party’s Mayawati as a prime ministerial candidate, Yadav gave sufficiently vague answers to suggest that the option was open. And to accommodate another ally, the Rashtriya Lok Dal, he gave up one seat from the SP quota. All this seemed like a small price to pay for keeping the BJP at bay and for ending a bitter feud between the SP and the BSP from his father Mulayam Singh Yadav’s days as party chief. Also Read – Two squadrons which participated in Balakot airstrike awarded citationsThis fight dated back to 1995, when the BSP leader was roughed up by SP workers at a Lucknow guest house. Akhilesh Yadav had tried his hand at coalition building in Uttar Pradesh in the 2017 assembly elections as well, teaming up with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi. Some fondly called the two relatively young scions UP ke ladke (the UP boys) when they appeared in public wearing matching black waistcoats. It didn’t work out that time either with Yogi Adityanath, backed by Narendra Modi as PM, winning a majority in the assembly. In 2017, Akhilesh Yadav had unsuccessfully sought five more years for his government in Uttar Pradesh. In 2012, after a stint as the head of the SP’s youth wing and then the party’s UP president, he was picked by his father Mulayam Singh Yadav to become the state’s youngest ever CM at 38. In the early years of his term as SP unit chief and the CM, he struggled with his father’s legacy tackling politicians like D P Yadav, Amar Singh and Azam Khan. His uncle Shivpal Yadav brought in mafia don Mukhtar Ansari’s Quami Ekta Dal into the SP, against his will. Another uncle Ram Gopal Yadav backed him as Akhilesh Yadav tackled dissension in the party and the Yadav clan. Just ahead of the 2017 assembly polls, Akhilesh Yadav staged a coup of sorts. At an emergency convention of the party in January 2017, SP founder Mulayam Singh Yadav was ousted as national president, relegated to the post of its patron . Later, the BJP was to call him Aurangzeb, recalling what one Mughal emperor did to his own father. After the coup , the two SP factions went to the Election Commission, which ruled in Akhilesh Yadav’s favour, giving his group the bicycle symbol. Born on July 1, 1973 in Etawah district’s Saifai village, Akhilesh Yadav studied at the Dholpur Military School in Rajasthan. He got his bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering from Mysore University. This was followed by a master’s from Sydney. In 2000, he was elected to the Lok Sabha in a bye-election from Kannauj. He won again, in 2004 and 2009.
Kolkata: Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday said she will attend the swearing-in ceremony of Narendra Modi as Prime Minister on May 30. The ceremony will take place at Rashtrapati Bhavan on May 30 at 7 pm. Talking to newsmen at Nabanna, Banerjee said: “I am going to attend the swearing-in ceremony as a Constitutional courtesy.” A letter of invitation to attend the ceremony has reached Nabanna, the state administrative headquarters said on Monday evening.
New Delhi: Queries related to the newly introduced EWS category, cut-offs, deduction of marks on changing streams were some of the queries of aspirants that dominated the first open day at the Delhi University, which started the online registration on its admission portal on Thursday.The university organises Open Days for parents and students every year to resolve their queries about filling up the online forms, the admission process and the criterion for admission in the varsity. Moreover, within the 24 hours 1,01,811 registration were done on the portal. Also Read – Cylinder blast kills mother and daughter in Karawal NagarMany parents had queries about the newly introduced EWS category. Some aspirants also complained that their respective SDMs were not even aware about any EWS certificate they were required to issue. In January, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi cleared 10 per cent quota in education and government jobs to Economically Weaker Sections (EWS), a key demand of upper castes. Saurabh Sinha, who had come from west Delhi’s Janakpuri, said, “We know that this category has been introduced in DU and we had gone to SDM of our district to find out about the EWS certificate. “They said they had not received any notification about any such certificate that they were supposed to issue,” he said. Sinha said the officials here were asking aspirants to upload an acknowledgement receipt. Another student, Gunjan Makhijani, who had come from Naraina Vihar, had a similar issue. Also Read – Two persons arrested for killing manager of Muthoot Finance”The district authorities are saying that they are not aware about the EWS certificate. DU is saying it’s not their prerogative. It is disheartening to know this. I had a subject engineering graphics in Class 12 and I wanted to know whether the marks I secured in that subject can be added to the best of four,” she said. An admission official said some 24-25 students who have registered themselves on the admission portal have uploaded EWS certificates and if any government official is saying they do not know about it, the varsity is helpless. Many other students and their parents had queries about the OBC certificate, which they said had been issued last year, while the Delhi University mandates that it should be dated March 31, 2019 or later. Some students also said that the district authorities were refusing to reissue certificates as they queried if they could upload income certificate along with a copy of the OBC certificate of last year. However, officials maintained that they are following guidelines and accepting acknowledgment receipts and the students have time till that last date of admission to get their certificates made. This year, the varsity will be effecting a 10 per cent increase in seats for economically weaker sections and due to this there will be a rise of close to 6,000 seats, taking the total number of seats for undergraduate courses to 62,000. There will be separate cut-offs for students belonging to the EWS category.
Den Bosch (The Netherlands): Indian men’s recurve archery team secured the Olympic quota for the 2020 Tokyo Games by storming into the quarterfinals of the World Championships but there was heartbreak in store for the fancied women’s side here on Wednesday. The men’s team of Tarundeep Rai, Atanu Das and Pravin Jadhav put up a superlative show, posting a 5-3 win over Canada to secure three-athlete quota for the first time since the 2012 London Olympics. Also Read – Andy Murray to make Grand Slam return at Australian OpenAt the 2016 Rio Olympics, India had an individual entry in Das, who had made a prequarter-final exit. “We finally made it. We are gelling well as a team and looking forward to Tokyo now. This is the moment to keep going for 2020,” two-time Olympian Rai, a member of the London Olympics, said. But it turned out to be a day of contrasting fortunes for the women’s recurve team as senior archer Laishram Bombayla Devi misfired once, while Komalika Bari exposed her inexperience costing them the match 2-6 against lower-seeded Belarus. Also Read – Mandhana ruled out of South Africa ODI seriesThe women’s team will have a last chance in 2020 World Cup Stage III in Berlin where top three in the secondary tournament will grab the final Olympic quotas. Blaming luck, the three-time Olympian Bombayla said: “In practice, I was shooting well but there was misfortune and something happened during the competition and I misfired. It could have been an easy win. We will try our best next time.” Bombayla’s misfire meant India shot a poor 43 against Belarus’ 52 in the first set. In the second set, Bombayla and Komalika shot 3 and 5 and it proved too much for Deepika Kumari, as they lost 44-52 to trail 0-4. The trio finally came good in the third set winning it 53-51 to make it 4-2 but Karyna Kazlouskaya, Karyna Dziominskaya, Hanna Marusava sealed the issue 6-2 with a 53-51 win in the fourth set. Indian team in the women’s compound section, which is a non-Olympic category, entered the quarterfinals with a commanding 236-226 win over France. Led by Muskan Kirar’s outstanding display, India women’s compound team (2099 points) finished third in the ranking round behind Colombia (2111) and Korea (2101) and advanced directly into the pre-quarters. The 19-year-old from Jabalpur shot 54 perfect arrows which included 24 times X (closest to the centre) for an overall score of 701 points over the 72-arrow 50-metre ranking round. Having finished in the top-eight, Muskan Kirar got a bye into the round of 32 in the individual section. 29th seed Abhishek Verma, Bhagwan Das (35th) and Rajat Chauhan (88th) of men’s, and Jyothi Surekha Vennam (17th) of women’s advanced to the round three in the compound section. India also remained in the medal fray in the compound mixed pair event where Verma and Muskan entered directly into last-16 with a top eight finish in the ranking round. India face Germany in the compound mixed pair pre-quarterfinals. Compound men’s team, who got a 14th place in the ranking, defeated their Spanish opponents 235-229 in the first round but only to end their campaign after losing to third seeded Turkey 234-238.
Kolkata: The Indian Railways have launched Operation Thunder across the country against the touts who sell railway tickets at a premium making an illegal profit. They buy mass tickets shrinking the number of tickets genuine passengers have access to.The drive was launched by Arun Kumar, DG RPF with the help of the technical staffs and IT cell of the Indian Railways. All zonal railways have been instructed to conduct special drives. As many as 276 places were raided in 141 cities all over the country. Altogether 387 touts were arrested and 22, 253 tickets valued at Rs 32,99,093 were seized. Preliminary investigation revealed that the touts had sold the tickets at Rs 3,24,12, 706. All suspected user Ids have been black-listed and the tickets are being deactivated. Illegal software ANMS/ Red Mirchi has been seized from Kota, Rajasthan. Three-hundred-and-seventy-five cases have been registered against the arrested persons. The Indian Railways have decided to intensify the raids. This is the peak season for railway passengers due to summer vacation and the season for marriages in north India. The touts utilise the situation and misuse the facility of e-ticketing. They sell the tickets at a premium making huge profits. The touts have their agents in all the metropolitan cities.
Kolkata: The Special Operation Group of Baruipur Police District has unearthed an illegal arms racket and arrested one person in this connection on Tuesday night from Bakultala in Baruipur.According to sources, the accused Saukat Molla used run a tailoring shop at Raghunathpur in Baruipur. Behind the tailoring shop, Molla used to run an illegal arms racket. Sources informed that he used to procure arms from Bihar and used to sell them to miscreants and known criminals across the South 24-Parganas. Also Read – City bids adieu to Goddess DurgaA few days ago, cops raided Molla’s house in Raghunathpur after a tip-off but found nothing suspicious. But again on Tuesday night cops got a tip-off there were firearms in his house. The SOG and cops from Bakultala police station raided Molla’s house and found several short and long-range firearms. According to sources, during the raid, cops found seven long barrel pipe gun, one short range pipe gun, one 7 mm pistol and huge number of bullets along with magazines. Cops also seized an auto rickshaw from Molla’s house. Police sources informed that Molla was doing this business for years but somehow managed to keep the business hidden from local residents. Several people in the locality used to visit his tailoring shop for making garments but never saw anything suspicious. Sleuths are interrogating him to know who used to supply him firearms.
Mumbai: Megastar Amitabh Bachchan’s first look from the upcoming film “Gulabo Sitabo” is out and he is sporting a grumpy old man’s look. In the first look doing the rounds on social media, the 76-year-old thespian is seen sporting a long beard, spectacles, a head scarf and a prosthetic nose making Big B look almost unrecognisable. “Gulabo Sitabo”, which also stars Ayushmann Khurrana, will release on April 24, 2020. The film, directed by Shoojit Sircar, will be shot on locations mostly in the old parts Lucknow. The film has been written by Juhi Chaturvedi of “Piku” fame. Gulabo Sitabo – a legendary pair of puppet sisters have been part of Uttar Pradesh’s folklore and their tales have been a part of childhood. The film, apparently, is a take-off on these two characters and is believed to be a comedy.
New Delhi: The number of wilful defaulters in nationalised banks has increased by over 60 per cent to 8,582 in five years to March 2019, the government said Monday.By the end of 2014-15 fiscal, the figure stood at 5,349, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said in a written reply in Lok Sabha. Rising consistently since 2014-15, the number of such borrowers increased to 6,575 in 2015-16; 7,079 in 2016-17 and further to 7,535 in 2017-18. “Wilful defaulters are acted against comprehensively. Moreover…as per RBI’s instructions, wilful defaulters are not sanctioned any additional facilities by banks or financial institutions, and their unit is debarred from floating new ventures for five years,” Sitharaman said. Also Read – IAF receives its first Rafale fighter jet from FranceRecovery of Rs 7,654 crore has been done from wilful defaulters’ accounts during the last five financial years, she said. As per data reported by nationalised banks, till March 31, 2019, suits for recovery have been filed in 8,121 cases. In cases involving secured assets, action under the provisions of the SARFAESI Act has been initiated in 6,251 cases. “Further, in accordance with RBI instructions of initiation of criminal proceedings wherever necessary, FIRs have been registered in 2,915 cases,” Sitharaman said. Also Read – Cosmology trio win Nobel Physics PrizeBesides, vide Sebi regulations, wilful defaulters and companies with wilful defaulters as promoters/directors have been debarred from accessing capital markets to raise funds, she said. In addition, the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 has debarred wilful defaulters from participating in the insolvency resolution process. For effective action against wilful defaulters fleeing Indian jurisdiction, the Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2018 has been enacted to provide for attachment and confiscation of property of fugitive offenders and has disentitled them from defending any civil claim. The government has also advised public sector banks to decide on publishing photographs of wilful defaulters as well as to obtain a certified copy of the passport of promoters/directors and other authorised signatories of companies availing loans of more than Rs 50 crore, the minister said. Heads of PSBs have also been empowered to request for issuance of lookout circulars against wilful defaulters, she said. With PTI inputs
Tokyo: Olympic silver-medallist P V Sindhu crashed out of the Japan Open badminton tournament after a second successive defeat to local favourite Akane Yamaguchi while B Sai Praneeth continued his good form to advance to the semifinals here on Friday. Sindhu lost to Yamaguchi 18-21 15-21 in a 50-minute women’s singles quarterfinal match. This was Sindhu’s second defeat at the hands of Yamaguchi, who had beaten the Indian in the final of the Indonesian Open last week. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over ChandigarhHowever, in men’s singles, Sai Praneeth recorded an easy win over Indonesia’s Tommy Sugiarto to reach the semifinals. His 21-12 21-15 win over Sugiarto fetched him a clash against top seeded Japanese Kento Momota in the semifinals. Meanwhile, India’s men’s doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty lost to second seeded Japanese duo of Takeshi Kamura and Keigo Sonoda 19-21 18-21 in a 41-minute clash in the quarterfinals. Sindhu was leading 12-7 in the first game but she squandered the advantage as her reigning Asian champion opponent clawed her way back to level the scores at 14-14. Also Read – Vijender’s next fight on Nov 22, opponent to be announced laterFrom there on, Sindhu lost momentum allowing Yamaguchi to surge ahead to 18-15 and then to 20-16. Sindhu won two consecutive points to narrow the gap to 18-20 but could not stop her opponent from bagging the next point and the first game. In the second game, both were locked 6-6 initially but from there on, it was Yamaguchi all the way as she raced to 13-7 and then to 16-10. Sindhu recovered a bit by winning two consecutive points but in no time, the Japanese had five match points and she wrapped up the tie without much hassle. Sai Praneeth, in contrast, hardly broke a sweat as he just took 36 minutes to clinch up the match.
Shimla: Vehicular traffic on the Rohtang-Manali road has been blocked following heavy rain on Saturday, the police said. The road was blocked after the water level in a nullah near Koksar police post in Kullu district rose instantly, Kullu Superintendent of Police (SP) Gaurav Singh said. Several vehicles are stranded due to the road block but no loss of life or property has been reported, he added.
Kolkata: Mystery shrouds the death of an youth at Golf Green in Jadavpur early on Sunday morning.The police claimed that so far it is suspected that the youth died due to falling from a height. According to sources, on Sunday morning around 6 am, a few morning walkers saw a youth lying in a pool of blood in front of an under-construction building at Phase 4B, Golf Green. They informed Jadavpur police station. Upon receiving the information police reached the spot within a few minutes and rushed the youth to M R Hospital where on-duty doctors declared the youth brought dead. The police informed that the wrists and upper femur bone on the right leg of the deceased were found fractured. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaInjuries were also seen below the right ear of the youth. It is suspected that the deceased youth fell off from the under-construction building. The police have questioned people and found that the youth was not a local resident. No one in the area could identify the deceased. During preliminary inquiry, the police collected and analyzed CCTV footage of the housing complex and after scutinising them, it was found that the youth climbed upstairs of the under-construction building at 4:07 am. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayNo one else was seen in the footages. Police are trying to find out the identity of the deceased. Local residents claimed that every night the area turns into a hub of anti-social elements. It is alleged some miscreants consume liquor around the housing complex during the night. As there are no security guards is present anybody can get inside the complex. However, on Sunday police personnel from homicide section inspected the spot. Police claimed that preliminary investigation is indicating towards accident or suicide. But all aspects will be checked to find what exactly happened.
HUMBOLDT, Sask. – Mary-Jane Wilkinson is worried about what will happen to families and a community grieving the dead and the injured in a tragic hockey bus crash earlier this month in Saskatchewan.Funerals have been held and residents of Humboldt where the junior league Broncos are based face the return to their daily routines.Wilkinson, the manager of the Canalta Hotel, experienced grief herself when she lost her husband at a young age. She was left to raise her son Richard by herself.Dealing with life after a tragedy can be the worst part following a loss, she said.“When everybody leaves, which eventually everybody does, then you’re starting your new normal and it’s very tough. The community is going to really have to keep working to make sure the people heal … with the support from the community,” said Wilkinson.“Once everybody goes away, they’re actually dealing with it for the first time alone, and I know what that feels like.”The Broncos were on their way to a playoff game in Nipawin, Sask., on April 6 when their bus and a semi-trailer collided at a rural intersection. Sixteen people, including 10 players, died and 13 were injured. The driver of the truck wasn’t hurt.The deputy reeve of the Rural Municipality of Connaught where the crash occurred said the immediate aftermath has been hard for many people.“One of our councillors that sits at this table with us was one of the first on scene. He’s struggling,” said Ian Boxall. “The biggest thing right now (is) making sure that these people have what they need to get through this.”Former NHL player Sheldon Kennedy was part of the 1986 Swift Current Broncos crash in which four of his Western Hockey League teammates died.“There’s the shock, and then there’s the grief, and then … part of healing with anything is acceptance,” said Kennedy.“We’ve got to find ways to manage those negative thoughts, or those images … or the guilt. We know a lot of guilt comes with people who have come through these types of tragedies.”The Psychology Association of Saskatchewan is urging people to reach out for help. Dr. Regan Hart, with the association, said the first thought is with the friends and family of the victims. But she said a tragedy like this is far-reaching.“It could be quite wide-ranging in that sense because a lot of these kids were quite active members of their school groups and their communities,” she said.“When it’s someone you know in such a tragic kind of accident, I think it kind of hits close to home for a lot of people especially in a small province and smaller communities that we have here in Saskatchewan.”The association compiled a list of mental-health resources for the general public: http://bit.ly/2HjoZIX— By Bill Graveland in Calgary. Follow @BillGraveland on Twitter
Daveed Goldman and Nobu Adilman wanted to pay tribute to late Tragically Hip singer Gord Downie after learning of his death.And so the directors of Choir! Choir! Choir!, a Toronto-based singalong collective, invited fans to Nathan Phillips Square on Tuesday night to honour Downie the best way they could — through his music.“When we lose some of the great ones, if we can provide a space where people can come together and share the music and feel connected in a difficult time, then we’ll do it,” Adilman said. “It just felt like the right thing to do and I feel like these tributes are happening all over the country and big or small, they all matter.”Downie died last Tuesday at age 53. Nearly two years ago, he was diagnosed with glioblastoma, an invasive brain tumour with one of the poorest survival rates of any cancer.More than a thousand people gathered to sing about a dozen songs from the Hip as their tribute to the legendary Canadian band.People braved the brisk, windy, 10 C weather to belt out songs such as “Wheat Kings,” “Bobcaygeon” and “Courage.” Downie’s “The Stranger,” off his solo album “Secret Path,” was also played.Stylish suit jackets and hats similar to the ones Downie wore on the Hip’s “Man Machine Poem” tour in 2016 were worn. There were also people sporting hockey jerseys bearing the Hip’s name.Children were placed on their parents shoulders to get a better view, while others lit candles in honour of the late musician. That night in Toronto!! #GordDownie sing along at city hall!! @KiSS925 @CityNews pic.twitter.com/XsRka8Mxfd— Maurie Sherman (@DamnitMaurie) October 25, 2017 Downie’s older brother, Mike, made an appearance on stage near the end of the set to thank those in attendance, which was met with a rousing applause from the crowd.“I have to say that over the last week, the outpouring of emotion, grief and love has been overwhelming,” Mike said. “And my family and I have felt it and its made things easier and its made things harder.“Made it easier because you showed how much you loved our brother and harder because we realized how many people were hurting and how many people were really affected by this.”Mike also took the opportunity to talk about the Secret Path project, which he and his brother worked on. Choir! Choir! Choir! had asked that those in attendance to make a minimum donation of $5 to the Gord Downie and Chanie Wenjack Fund.Mike said that “it’s up to all of us” to help the reconciliation efforts.“I don’t think the government can fix it, I don’t think there’s a program big enough to fix it, I think it’s going to take everybody doing their part,” he said.“We think we’re a young country, but we’re not. We think we’re 150 years old, but we’re not. If we tried a little harder, if we brought in the Indigenous people that have been here for 12,000 years, we could be something so much different. And we would be better for it and I think we would be the envy of the world.”Choir! Choir! Choir! capped off the show with some audience members onstage to sing “Ahead by a Century.”“Gord Downie has meant so much to this country, he’s given so much and we just wanted to celebrate him and his music,” Adilman said.
OTTAWA – Much as he’d done throughout his two-month trial, Basil Borutski betrayed little emotion on Friday as a jury found him guilty in the deaths of three former partners who were brutally killed two years ago during an hour-long, revenge-fuelled rampage across the Ottawa Valley.Borutski, 60, was found guilty of first-degree murder in the point-blank shotgun killings of 36-year-old Anastasia Kuzyk and 48-year-old Nathalie Warmerdam, and guilty of a second-degree murder charge in the strangling death of Carol Culleton, 66.All three murders took place on Sept. 22, 2015, in the space of less than an hour. They left advocates denouncing the justice system and urging politicians to go beyond rhetoric on violence against women, given Borutski’s well-known reputation among locals in the community for threats and a propensity towards violence.Clad in a grey shirt and slacks, black Croc sandals and leg chains, Borutski remained expressionless and stared straight ahead throughout the verdict, which it took the jury some 14 hours to reach. When it was over, police ushered him out of the prisoner’s box by police.A murder conviction carries an automatic life prison sentence. A sentencing hearing has been scheduled for Dec. 5 in Pembroke, Ont., to determine the specifics around when he might become eligible for parole.Federal legislation was passed in 2011 that allows judges to impose consecutive 25-year periods of parole ineligibility in cases that involve multiple murder convictions. Judges can consider factors such as the offender’s character, the circumstances of the offence and any recommendations from the jury.Prior to the murders, Borutski — who chose to forgo having a lawyer during the trial, but barely said a word during the proceedings — had twice spent time in jail after two of the women accused him of assault and uttering threats.Ontario Provincial Police Det. Insp. Mark Zulinski, who served as case manager for the incidents, said outside the courthouse that police respect the jury’s findings and appreciate the work of the courts.He also expressed sympathy for the victims’ families, their close friends and the members of their community.“I hope … by the conclusion of these proceedings that these people could move forward in their healing processes and move on with their lives,” Zulinski said.Leighann Burns, executive director of Ottawa-based women’s shelter Harmony House, said Borutski’s reputation as a violent and dangerous person was well-known in and around the Ontario community of Wilno, not far from where the three women lived.She called the verdict a “condemnation” of the response to violence against women in Ontario and throughout Canada.“If we couldn’t stop someone who was so visible and so dangerous, really, what does this say about this system?” Burns said outside the doors of the Ottawa courthouse.“These women were clearly living in fear and it was known he that posed a real risk to them.”It’s high time the talk of ending violence against women translated into action, she added.“What are we going to do to make things different for all the other women that come forward and disclose the violence in their lives?” Burns said. “How will we keep them safe? How will we keep them alive?”Because Wilno, a victims’ rights group formed in the aftermath of the killings, also issued a statement on Friday urging lawmakers to do more to combat domestic violence.“For too long, Canadians have looked away from violence in our homes that predominantly harms women and children in every neighbourhood, district, municipal ward and constituency of this country,” said the statement, which accused the justice system of failing Borutski’s victims.In a videotaped interview played at trial, Borutski expressed a degree of remorse for his actions, which he said were fuelled by rage at what he considered to be the lies and betrayals of his victims.In the video, he described how he was acting like a “zombie” on the day in question, saying he’d originally planned to take his own life, but decided against it because he believed it was wrong to take an innocent life.“I killed them because they were not innocent,” Borutski says in the video. “They were guilty. I was innocent. I’ve done nothing wrong.”In his opening statement, Crown attorney Jeffery Richardson told the jury the trial was not a case of “whodunit.”“The evidence is overwhelming that Basil Borutski murdered Carol, Anastasia and Nathalie,” Richardson said.Borutski even told police the murders were “his kind of justice,” he added.“He thought about it before he did it, and then he executed his plan perfectly.”Richardson did not comment following Friday’s verdict.—Follow @kkirkup on Twitter
SAINT JOHN, N.B. – The mayor of Saint John, N.B., is getting a flood of responses after issuing a social media plea for people tired of long Toronto and Vancouver commutes to move east.Don Darling posted his message last week after Statistics Canada released data showing New Brunswick commute times are much shorter than in most big cities.“Hey Toronto and Vancouver, move to Saint John NB, we have jobs, you can buy a house for well under 200k and our commutes are measured in minutes. Contact me and I will share with you how much I love my city and how much we want you,” he posted.Darling said he suddenly started getting calls and emails this week after the post jumped to the front page of Reddit with more than 100,000 views and nearly 1,000 comments by Thursday afternoon.“This thing has exploded. It’s pretty exciting times for us,” Darling said.Darling said he’s ready to tell everyone what his city has to offer.“We measure our commutes in minutes. Traffic is several cars, not several thousand cars. We have more than 500 open jobs,” Darling said.“There are people right now in Toronto, in Vancouver, and other big cities that are not living the quality of life they’d like to have, and we’ve got it here,” he added.Some of the comments to the Reddit post came from people interested in a more relaxed lifestyle and lower housing costs.“The quality of life is so much better, for my family, than it would be if we were stuck living in an apartment in a big smoggy city somewhere. We paid $150k for our 1,200 square foot cottage-style house, and we have a nice-sized front and back yard to go with it,” wrote one person.But there’s a reason the city is affordable. The 2016 census showed its population fell by 3.6 per cent over the previous five years — from 70,063 to 67,575 — and losing its status as the largest city in the province.The once-affluent city had been depending on the Energy East pipeline for an economic boost, and Darling told reporters in October after it was cancelled that he was disappointed and frustrated.The port city has some lovely neighbourhoods, and its graceful Uptown district draws thousands of cruise ship visitors and other tourists. But it also has high levels of poverty, and multiple vacant and abandoned buildings.Some Reddit commenters said they’ve looked at Saint John but couldn’t find jobs.“We looked at moving to NB for a long time as we have family out east. My husband is a programmer and I’m in corporate communications in the financial industry. There were zero jobs for us. We looked for jobs for about two years,” one woman wrote.Darling agreed not everyone will find the kinds of jobs they are looking for in Saint John, but said some sectors such as IT and health care are scrambling to find skilled employees.Realtor Jason Stephen said he has had many clients who have left big cities to give their families a better lifestyle in Saint John — he mentions one defence lawyer who decided to move his family from Toronto.“He felt he could never get further ahead in Toronto under the pricing that it was costing to get what he called inferior housing there, compared to what he could get here. So he bought a nice two-storey home with a half-acre lot and lots of space,” Stephen said.But he said people need to understand that while people can get a good deal on a home in the Saint John area, they shouldn’t expect the kinds of price increases seen in Toronto or Vancouver.Darling said his staff is using spread sheets to record the names of everyone inquiring about the city, hoping to respond to each one with the information they’re seeking.Still, the mayor concedes Saint John won’t be for everyone.“But, if we could get a small percentage of the people to give us a shot and come here and give us a chance, I’m pretty confident that once they’ve come here they’re going to love it,” Darling said.— By Kevin Bissett in Fredericton
RICHMOND, B.C. – The fatal crash of a small float plane in central British Columbia was partly the result of an optical illusion associated with low-altitude flights, as well as overweight and improperly secured cargo, the Transportation Safety Board says.A pilot died and two of four passengers were seriously injured when the de Havilland DHC-2 Beaver float plane went down during a hunting expedition in October 2016 near Laidman Lake, about 150 kilometres southwest of Prince George.The board’s report describes how the aircraft was more than 300 kilograms over its maximum allowable weight, and because the cargo was unsecured, it hit the rear passenger seats when the plane crashed.The report also says the pilot likely misjudged how close the plane was to the ground because of an optical illusion associated with flying under an overcast sky and over snow-covered vegetation, causing the aircraft to stall when the pilot tried to avoid hitting the hillside.“The lack of features to provide scale in the snow-covered terrain, together with the minimal contrast among the dense trees given the diffuse light conditions, likely disguised the upsloping terrain and the actual horizon,” the report says.“As the slope steepened, the perceived horizon would have moved upward in the windscreen, and the pilot may have pitched the aircraft up to maintain a constant angle between the pilot’s reference point on the aircraft and the rising terrain.”The two other passengers on board suffered minor injuries during the crash.The Transportation Safety Board is recommending that all DHC-2 aircraft that operate commercially in Canada be equipped with a system that would issue a warning as an aircraft is about to stall.“It is reasonable to conclude that the absence of a stall-warning system deprived the pilot of the last line of defence against an aerodynamic stall and the subsequent loss of control of the aircraft.”The agency says this recommendation would not have helped in this incident because the aircraft was privately operated, but it underscores the benefits of a stall-warning system.The Transportation Safety Board investigates marine, pipeline, railway and aviation incidents and its purpose is to improve transportation safety, not attribute blame or find fault.
TORONTO – The Globe and Mail has received the most nominations for the 2017 National Newspaper Awards, with 18 entries on the list of finalists.The Toronto Star was next with 12 nominations while Montreal’s La Presse nabbed eight.The Edmonton Journal and Winnipeg Free Press each earned three nominations, while The Canadian Press, the London Free Press, the National Post, the New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal, the Ottawa Citizen and the Vancouver Sun/Province received two each.Seven other organizations received one nomination apiece.In all, the NNA Awards office announced on Monday 63 nominations in 21 categories, selected from 881 entries for work published in 2017.The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in Toronto on May 4. Winners will receive $1,000.Here are the nominees:Arts and Entertainment: Eric Andrew-Gee, Globe and Mail, for an attempt to reconstruct the disputed and tangled Indigenous heritage of renowned Canadian author Joseph Boyden; Robert Cribb and Marco Chown Oved, Toronto Star, for exposing the profits earned by ticket resellers manipulating sales for concerts by some of the world’s most popular performers; Stephanie Nolen, Globe and Mail, for reporting on how Canadian writer Alberto Manguel was faring as director of Argentina’s national library.Beat Reporting: Sean Fine, justice reporter for the Globe and Mail, for an examination of Canada’s judicial system after time limits on criminal proceedings were imposed by the Supreme Court; Marina Strauss, who covers retailing for the Globe and Mail, for a package of stories that included coverage of the demise of Sears Canada and internal strife at Tim Hortons; Caroline Touzin, La Presse, for stories on the health beat, including a report on the dangers posed by sugary, high-alcohol drinks that are popular with young people in Quebec.Breaking News: Bryan Passifiume, Calgary Herald/Calgary Sun, for coverage of a raging wildfire in Waterton Lakes National Park; Globe and Mail team, for coverage of the killing of six Muslim worshippers at a mosque in the Quebec City suburb of Ste-Foy; La Presse team, for reporting on an attack by a white supremacist on the Centre culturel islamique de Quebec in Ste-Foy that left six worshippers dead.Business: Robert Cribb and Marco Chown Oved, Toronto Star, for reports revealing that Canada is a tax haven for foreigners looking to hide their money; Nicholas Keung, Sara Mojtehedzadeh, Jennifer Wells, Jim Rankin and Kelsey Wilson, Toronto Star, for a series on the use of temporary migrant workers in Canada’s food industry; Grant Robertson and Tom Cardoso, Globe and Mail, for uncovering the fact that at least $1 billion in fines for securities violations have gone unpaid and unenforced by regulators across the country.Columns: Lawrence Martin, Globe and Mail; Melissa Martin, Winnipeg Free Press; Paula Simons, Edmonton Journal.Editorial Cartooning: Serge Chapleau, La Presse; Bruce MacKinnon, Halifax Chronicle Herald; Malcolm Mayes, Edmonton Journal.Editorials: Jackson Doughart, New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal; Tony Keller, Globe and Mail; Christina Spencer, Ottawa Citizen.Explanatory Work: Kate Allen, Toronto Star, for a story that looked at the effects of climate change not on humans, but on other residents of this planet, from bumblebees to shrubs; Larry Pynn, Vancouver Sun, for exploring the grizzly bear trophy hunt from multiple perspectives including locals, researchers, First Nations, politicians, environmentalists and tourism operators; Jennifer Yang, Toronto Star, for delving into whether an imam who came under attack for anti-Semitic remarks had actually said what he had been accused of saying.Feature Photo: Mike Deal, Winnipeg Free Press, for a photo of a Canada Summer Games volunteer wearing a ballcap adorned with collectible pins; Ashley Fraser, Ottawa Citizen/Ottawa Sun, for an image of a surfer on a foggy day; Olivier Jean, La Presse, for a photograph of a beehive being fumigated.International: Isabelle Hachey, La Presse, for a series of stories about the war in Syria; Stephanie Nolen, Globe and Mail, for stories about suicide, political crisis and desperation in South America; Nathan VanderKlippe, Globe and Mail, for stories about torture and corruption in Asia.Investigations: Robyn Doolittle, Globe and Mail, for “Unfounded,” which revealed how frequently police forces across the country concluded that sexual assault allegations, even in cases with seemingly strong evidence, did not warrant the laying of charges, or even further investigation; Isabelle Hachey, Yvon Laprade, Gabrielle Duchaine and Agnes Gruda, La Presse, for “Le Montréal sans-papiers,” an in-depth look at the precarious and clandestine lives of refugees and their families who try to survive in Montreal, a so-called sanctuary city, without legal status; Sara Mojtehedzadeh and Brendan Kennedy, Toronto Star, for “Undercover in Temp Nation,” an investigation into how immigrant workers and other temporary employees risked life and limb in a Toronto bakery.Local Reporting: Grant LaFleche, St. Catharines Standard, for a series of stories on the impact of child abuse by a Roman Catholic priest; Randy Richmond, London Free Press, for exposing scandalous conditions and mismanagement at a local detention centre; Amy Smart, Victoria Times Colonist, for a series that delved into barriers that still exist for individuals wanting to take advantage of medical assistance in dying.Long Feature: Katie Daubs, Toronto Star, for the profile of a man who chronicled Canada’s roadside attractions on the internet; Richard Warnica, National Post, for an in-depth profile of Rebel Media founder Ezra Levant that explains why its subject can’t seem to stop himself from going too far; Jesse Winter, Toronto Star, for tracing the heartbreaking story of a man, raped as a child by his uncle, who was failed by family, friends, governments and the justice system.News Photo: Darryl Dyck, Canadian Press, for an image of a mother clutching her eight-year-old daughter at the charred remains of their remote First Nations home after a forest fire; Ian Willms, Globe and Mail, for a photograph of an asylum seeker from Nigeria fleeing to Canada on a cold, dark night; Larry Wong, Edmonton Journal/Edmonton Sun, for a picture of congregants mourning three members of their church who had been killed when a thief fleeing police crashed into a passing minivan.Photo Portfolio/Essay: Todd Korol, Globe and Mail, for an essay looking at the life of rodeo cowboys following the suicide of a bull rider; Martin Tremblay, La Presse, for an essay documenting the story of refugees crossing the border shortly after the election of Donald Trump left them feeling threatened down south; Ian Willms, Globe and Mail, for an essay on 22 asylum seekers who crossed into Canada near the town of Emerson, Man.Politics: David Akin and Chris Selley, National Post, for coverage of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s secret visit to a private island owned by the Aga Khan; Robert Cribb, Marco Chown Oved and Alex Boutilier, Toronto Star, for a series that revealed where politics and the offshore tax-haven industry intersect in Canada; Noor Javed and Kristin Rushowy, Toronto Star, for reports on dysfunction at the York Region Public School Board.Presentation: Jeremy Agius and Matthew French, Globe and Mail; Patrick Bertrand, Henri Michaud and Benoit Dussault, Le Journal de Montreal; Toronto star team.Project of the Year: Dan Fumano and Matt Robinson, Vancouver Sun, for an investigation into the case of Phillip Tallio, who still maintained his innocence after 34 years of incarceration for the murder of a child; Jane Sims, Morris Lamont and Brice Hall, London Free Press, for “27 Minutes,” which documented how a woman improbably ended up alive and well after being submerged in ice-cold water for almost half an hour after a car accident; Doug Speirs and Ruth Bonneville, Winnipeg Free Press, for “Class of 2017,” a 13-year journey to document the major and minor milestones of childhood and adolescence for a group of children born in the year 2000.Short Feature: Marcus Gee, Globe and Mail, for explaining what the death of a small-city newspaper would really mean for that community; Ingrid Peritz, Globe and Mail, for recounting the devastating experience of a man who survived the Quebec mosque shootings; Philippe Teisceira-Lessard, La Presse, for illuminating the lives of a farm couple as they sadly abandoned their life’s work.Sports: Steve Buist, Hamilton Spectator, for “Collision Course,” a series of stories that explored the impact of concussions on retired Canadian football players; Marty Klinkenberg, Globe and Mail, for reporting on the aftermath of the suicide of a young Canadian bull rider; Sunaya Sapurji, the Athletic, for “Grassroots to Gold,” a series comparing how countries other than Canada develop their hockey players.Sports Photo: Nathan Denette, Canadian Press, for a shadowy image of a tennis star making a shot; Michael Robinson, New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal, for a shot of a basketball player desperately lunging to keep the ball in bounds; Andrew Francis Wallace, Toronto Star, for a photograph of a rugby player with a badly mangled finger.
Text of a statement issued by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on the Humboldt Broncos bus crash:An entire country is in shock and mourning today as we learn more about the tragic bus crash involving the Humboldt Broncos that claimed the lives of 14 people, and injured many more.We are heartbroken knowing many of those we lost had their entire lives in front of them. We grieve with those facing news no parent or family should ever have to face. And our hearts go out to the community that has lost teammates, coaches, friends, and mentors.This is every parent’s worst nightmare. No one should ever have to see their child leave to play the sport they love and never come back.Our national hockey family is a close one, with roots in almost every town – small and big – across Canada. Humboldt is no exception, and today the country and the entire hockey community stands with you.I thank the first responders – the RCMP, the Provincial Response Team, and medical personnel – who worked tirelessly through the night, and continue to respond to this incredibly difficult situation with courage and professionalism.To the entire Humboldt community: We are here for you. As neighbours, as friends, and as Canadians, we grieve alongside you.
WINNIPEG – Anthony Faraci stood in his food truck mixing together a special family recipe that shaped the snacking world in the 1960s.His great-uncle Paul Faraci is credited with inventing Pizza Pops — the tasty treat which became a staple in dorm rooms across the country — in Winnipeg in 1964.Anthony Faraci is now hoping to bring the original recipe back by selling the handcrafted snack in the city where it all began.“It’s one of those hidden gems,” Anthony Faraci said Tuesday. “Everyone has enjoyed them before but not realizing they were made literally in your back door.”Paul Faraci owned a restaurant in Winnipeg when he decided to experiment with the Italian cheese-filled turnovers. The snack, which he called Pizza Pops, were a big hit.Soon, Paul Faraci took on partners, started manufacturing the snack and selling them to grocery stores.By 1980, Paul Faraci split with his partners and they later sold the business to Pillsbury. Pizza Pops are now made by General Mills.But the founder always wanted to bring the original recipe back, said Phil Faraci, his nephew and Anthony Faraci’s father.“He kind of always wanted to be back in the business and have his family back in the business, but we weren’t really quite sure what the response would be for the original taste because it is different,” Phil Faraci said.Paul Faraci died in February in Vernon, B.C., at the age of 89, and soon after the family received calls from across Canada asking for shipments of the pizza treat.Anthony and Phil Faraci had always made them at family gatherings and decided to try their hand at reviving the family legacy.People looking for the original taste can find it in Pops — Paul’s Original Pizza Snack — which are being baked and sold out of Anthony Faraci’s food truck.“For right now, if you are lucky enough to live in Winnipeg, you’ll have a chance,” Anthony Faraci said.One of the first customers to the food truck on Tuesday was Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman. He said it was nice to welcome the tradition back to Winnipeg.“They are making them from scratch here so they are not frozen,” Bowman said. “If you went in [the truck] they have the fresh dough, they are doing the fill, the forms, the whole bit in there.”Placing the freshly baked snack onto a plate for another hungry looking customer, Phil Faraci looked at a picture of his uncle hanging on the side of the truck.“It’s emotional sometimes. I see his picture, this is what he wanted,” he said. “We will try it and see what happens and hopefully the public will like it too.”
REGINA – Karl Fix and Sandra Beug have had some interesting experiences marrying each other again and again in different countries around the world.They found themselves covered in spit in Ethiopia.They both caught malaria on the way to Timbuktu in Mali and Fix almost died.In Papua, Indonesia, this year to celebrate their upcoming 15th wedding anniversary, Fix wore a koteka — a traditional type of codpiece that leaves almost nothing to the imagination.Beug declined the Dani tradition of the bride going topless for the ceremony, but Fix figured why not be authentic with his wardrobe.“I thought, ‘What the hell. If you’re going to do it, you’re going to do it,’” Fix says.Fix, 68, owns a construction company in Regina and Beug, 58, is a dentist originally from Raymore, Sask. They met in 2001 and married in January 2004.Since meeting, the travel buffs have visited 116 countries together and celebrated their marriage in places such as Nepal, Suriname, Mozambique, Greenland, the Faroe Islands and Fix’s home country of Germany.Beug says the two share a common outlook on life and are both interested in history and geography. Fix says he was attracted to Beug’s willingness to try new things.“She had that spirit of adventure that most other people don’t have.”Fix starts planning their wedding adventures a year in advance and Beug often doesn’t know about the marriage until the day of.Fix says they enjoy celebrating each culture’s unique traditions.“We try to dress like the local people and be part of the whole cultural experience.”In Ethiopia, locals wanted Beug to wear a goat hide topless. She declined, but the couple was spit on after the celebration — a substitute for rice or confetti in the African country.“We got mucus all over us,” Fix says.They’ve had some close calls along the way.On their most recent trip in Indonesia, Fix had a machete pulled on him.While driving in Ivory Coast on the way to where they would eventually get married in Timbuktu, the couple encountered several checkpoints and had to bribe guards to move ahead.They both contracted malaria on that trip. A friend found Fix in a hotel room in Heidelberg, Germany, and rushed him to hospital where he was given medication.“You’re either going to be dead by tomorrow or you’re not,” he recalls doctors telling him.There are no specific plans for future weddings.Beug hasn’t seen New Zealand and Australia. Neither of them has been to South Korea or Antarctica.Beug says all the experiences have made them closer.“I don’t think either of us could think of another person who would do the same thing.”— Follow @RyanBMcKenna on Twitter