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MARCH 1ST EDITION 2014

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Surj vouches his commitment to the fans

Gay bank worker killed wife before incinerating her body Jasvir Ram Ginday is alleged to have married to 'conceal his homosexuality and please his parents'

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By Anush Ansari anush@asianexpress.co.uk

A bank worker strangled his wife and burnt her body in a garden incinerator, just months after marrying her to hide his sexuality, a court has heard. Jasvir Ram Ginday is alleged to have told a neighbour he had set fire to ‘general rubbish’ after killing Varkha Rani at their home in Walsall, West

Midlands. Opening the case against Ginday, who denies murder but has admitted manslaughter, prosecutor Deborah Gould alleged that the 29-year-old had tried to destroy his wife's body. Jurors, who were warned that they may find aspects of the case distressing, heard that Ginday was arrested in September last year after police discovered the

unrecognisable remains of his wife at their home in Walsall. A bank worker, who married to conceal his homosexuality, strangled his wife a few months later with a metal vacuum pipe, a court heard on Wednesday. The defendant had travelled with his mother to India to find a bride and met several women before a match-maker known to both families introduced him to Miss Rani.

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BULL DOZERS

IN MECCA

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REDEVELOPMENT: Mecca has seen the destruction of several heritage sites which are religiously significant to Muslims

Calls to oppose plans to destroy one of the last few remaining religious sites in birthplace of Prophet By Anush Ansari anush@asianexpress.co.uk

Fresh plans to erect a modern complex on the site of the birthplace of the Prophet Mohamed (pbuh), as part of a multi-billion-dollar redevelopment of the pilgrimage city of Mecca have surfaced this week. Sources reveal that the Saudi government has granted permissions that yet another historic site of religious significance is to be destroyed. The sweeping redevelopment, which aims to increase the capacity for more pilgrims, has already seen many sacred sites and structures ravaged in Mecca. Now, Yorkshire Muslims have strongly condemned such degrading plans to destroy a heritage site, with an urgent call for Muslims in Britain to sign an online petition in protest against the proposals in Mecca. The site in question in the birthplace of the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad (pbuh), is a library, which stands on a plinth just a few metres away from the Masjid al-Haram (Grand

TO BE RAZED: Proposals by developers indicate that the House of Malawid is to be brought down. Scholars believe this is the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammed (pbuh)

Mosque). The library, named ‘House of Malawid’ - a small building, which is rarely open to visitors, had been built in the 1950s to hide and protect what lay beneath. It sits directly on top of what are believed to be the remains of the house, which scholars believe, is where Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) was born. But the construction company in charge of redeveloping the area, the Saudi Binladin Group, had suggested that it be brought down so as to make way for a new residence for the Imams and an adjacent presidential palace. At a strategic meeting held at Leeds Makkah Masjid participants agreed that the expansion of the two cities, Makkah and Madina was vital to make way for the growing numbers of pilgrims in a rapidly expanded and inter-connected world, but it should not be done at the expense of destroying Islamic heritage. Qari Asim MBE, Imam of Makkah Masjid, said: "We need to raise awareness amongst the Muslim masses. “We urge Muslims to write to

the Saudi embassy to demonstrate their opposition to the continued destruction of Islamic heritage. "There is no easy solution to this problem, but standing aside in ignorance or with indifference is not an option.” One of the participants of the meeting, Dr Khalid Muneer, said: "Much of this vandalism against Islamic historic - with direct link to the Prophet- is inspired by Wahabism. “This ideology has destroyed so much of Islamic heritage that had been preserved for centuries. It is also shocking that the average Muslim is either blissfully unaware of what is happening or ambivalent." This destruction of historical sites is not a new phenomenon. The house of the wife of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) Khadijah (SA) has been destroyed and replaced with a block of toilets. Further up the hill, centuriesold neighbourhoods have been flattened to continue the marching line of hotel towers, whilst a visit to the holy cemetery of Baqi’ reveals unmarked graves.


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COMIC STARDOM: Zayn Malik inspires new Ghost Rider By Anush Ansari

character created in the devil to come back to early 1970s. Earth. His return is in the The old ‘Ghost Rider’ form of the fiery-headed is a stunt motorcyclist Ghost Rider who tracks Bradford pop called ‘Johnny Blaze’ down evil souls. Now the new sensation Zayn Malik is crime-fighting all set to become character immortalised as a comic named ‘Robbie superhero by the creators Reyes’ is a behind X-Men, The c h i s e l e d Avengers and cheekboned, Spiderman. angry-faced With the comic-bookversion of style ‘ZAP’ tattoo on his Zayn with his right arm, it transpires f o r m e r that the East Bowling lad signature-style is a huge comics fan, stripy hair, and collecting them when he has a huge can, and is constantly on passion for fast the doodle wherever he cars. He drives goes. a souped-up The One Direction motor and has superstar recently visited a particular Marvel Studios loathing of headquarters in Los violent thugs Angeles, California, to SUPERHERO: The new ‘Robbie Reyes’ and gangs. ask illustrators for advice Word is that on drawing his own character features Zayn’s boyish looks and former trademark sriped hair the new characters. superhero Now, it seems that he’s inspired them to recreate who after his death in a comic will hit the shelves and resurrect the former spectacular bike accident, later this year. ‘Ghost Rider’ - a Marvel strikes a deal with the anush@asianexpress.co.uk

IMMORTALISED: Zayn has inspired Marvel to create a new angry-faced ‘Ghost Rider’ character

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follow us on twitter: Economic divide widens

The Hinduja brothers have emerged as the third richest family in Britain as part of an analysis of the divide between the rich and poor in the UK. According to research published by the charity Oxfam on Monday, the latest rich list from 'Forbes' magazine showed that London-based Srichand and Gopichand Hinduja have a combined wealth of $10 billion. The five top UK entries analysed for its 'A Tale of Two Britains' report found the family of the Duke of Westminster as the richest followed by David and Simon Reuben, the Hndujas, the Cadogan family, and Sports Direct retail boss Mike Ashley who between them had property, savings and other assets worth £28.2 billion. It implies that the country's five richest families now own more wealth than the poorest 20 per cent of the population, with their wealth totalling £28.1 billion – an average of £2,230 each.

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Gay bank worker killed wife before incinerating her body He went through with the Front arranged marriage to please his parents and tied the knot Cover in a lavish ceremony in India Story last March. Prosecutor Debbie Gould told a jury the couple became engaged ‘at the end of a meeting which lasted several hours’, with Miss Rani’s family believing Ginday to be ‘a perfect match for their intelligent, well-educated, and attractive young daughter’. Rani, 24, married her eventual killer in India in March last year and moved to the UK to live with him in August after being granted a Jasvir Ram Ginday is alleged to visa. have married to 'conceal his Claiming that Ginday had told a homosexuality and please his parents' friend he was attracted to men in his university study group as early Rani. "No doubt to Varkha's family the as 2008, Gould told jurors at Wolverhampton Crown Court: defendant appeared to be a perfect "Despite his sexual orientation, in match for their intelligent, wellOctober 2012 the defendant and his educated, and attractive young mother travelled to India to find daughter." After her arrival in the UK on him a wife. “While he was there the 10th August, Varkha was "in all defendant met and rejected several senses a stranger in a strange land" women before meeting Varkha and appeared to be isolated,

friendless and alone. Meanwhile, Gould told the court, the defendant was "staring reality in the face" and would have had to explain any attempt to divorce his new bride. Around a month before Varkha's death on 12th September last year, someone at the family home made an internet search for incinerators, the court heard. Ginday initially told police his wife had walked out on him after "using" him to gain entry to the UK. But, the crown alleges, Ginday had bought a quantity of petrol and put his wife in the incinerator after strangling her with a metal pipe from a vacuum cleaner. Gould added: "His ultimate intention, the crown suggests, was to play the role of victim safe in the knowledge that he could rely upon his married status as a permanent excuse for never having to have another relationship with a woman." Ginday, who is alleged to have married to "conceal his homosexuality and please his parents", has also admitted

perverting the course of justice by lying to police. Miss Rani’s father, Surjit Singh told the jury he had no idea his sonin-law was gay, and didn’t even know what the term meant. He said through an interpreter that he had been ‘shocked and distressed’ after British police had explained it to him. He added: ‘Of course I wouldn’t have let her marry him if I had known. I have never heard of it before. No, Varkha didn’t know about gay either.’ The trial continues.


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follow us on twitter: Torpedo launch in UK an ‘accident’

A British warship accidentally launched an inert torpedo during a training exercise on Wednesday, sending a dummy weapon crashing into a wharf at a naval base in southern England used by nuclear submarines. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said an investigation was under way into the incident, which occurred at Devonport naval base in the city of Plymouth on Britain's south coast, the largest such facility in Western Europe. “We can confirm an incident occurred onboard HMS Argyll, while alongside at Devonport Naval Base,” an MoD spokesman said. “During a training exercise, an inert Test Variant Torpedo unexpectedly jettisoned onto the wharf. There was no explosion and no casualties.”

Malaysian shooting relatives lose court battle

Britain's appeals court has rejected a bid by Malaysian families for an investigation into the deaths of 24 rubber plantation workers shot by British troops 66 years ago. Relatives have fought for years to force the British government to hold an inquiry into the deaths at Batang Kali on December 12, 1948. British troops were fighting communist insurgents during the Malayan Emergency at the time. Their families claim the men were executed, but British authorities say they were shot trying to escape. Britain's High Court rejected the families' legal challenge in 2012, citing cost and the amount of time that has passed. Three appeals court judges upheld that decision Wednesday.

They’re coming home

Britain has handed over all but two of its remaining bases in Afghanistan's Helmand Province to local forces as part of its planned full withdrawal by the end of 2014, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced on Sunday. In an operation lasting more than a month, the Lashkar Gah and Patrol Base Lashkar Gah Durai have been handed over to Afghan control. A third base, MOB Price, has also been closed, the ministry revealed in a statement. Britain now has only two bases operational in Helmand: Camp Bastion, which serves as the main base for UK personnel, and Observation Post Sterga 2. At the height of the war, Britain had 137 bases in the area. “The handover and closure of our bases across Helmand underlines the progress UK Forces have made to increase security and stability across the province but also to build up the capability of the Afghan forces who will carry that work forward,” said Defence Secretary Philip Hammond.

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Beaten and bruised Autistic man attacked by officers for looking ‘suspicious’ By Ashley Grint ashley@asianexpress.co.uk

An autistic man’s family have called for two police officers to be sacked after they brutally assaulted their relative on the basis that he looked ‘suspicious’. 33-year-old Faruk Ali, from Luton, was helping the bin men collect the rubbish from home, a task he enjoys doing, when two uniformed officers attacked him. The helpless victim, who has suffered from autism and learning difficulties since childhood, was allegedly thrown into the bins before being pinned down, kicked and punched, as he tried to struggle his way back into his home. Bedfordshire Police Chief Constable Colette Paul wrote to residents to announce the officers had been suspended from all police duties whilst an investigation is launched. She added: “If at the end of the investigation wrong doing is identified I will deal with it. No inference of wrongdoing can be drawn until the conclusion of this independent inquiry. “I will continue to keep you all updated as this investigation progresses.” However, Mr Faruk’s younger brother, Dhobir, said there was no other option but to sack the officers involved. He explained how they would have been able to see his Mr Ali’s badge, alerting others that he

suffered from autism, long before the attack. Dhobir said: “The family has been by the whole traumatised experience. Faruq hasn't actually recovered yet, he's still traumatised. “He is scared to leave the house, he has become more anxious and agitated and he is terrified every time he sees the police. “When he came in the house with the police behind him I saw the bruises and cuts and straight away knew what had happened to him. “Why did the police use such force? They said he looked suspicious but he was wearing slippers at the time and he was wearing a big coat. “The fact of the matter is my brother is not the only one who suffers from autism in Luton and we want to make sure this doesn't happen again.” An official apology was released from the Bedfordshire Police, saying: “Bedfordshire Police is sorry for the distress Mr Ali and his family feel regarding the actions officers took due to their concerns for Mr Ali's wellbeing on February 20 in Whitby Road, Luton.” The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) will work alongside Leicestershire Police, as they investigate the incident in a ‘transparent’ and ‘open’ manner.

“UK standing by the Syrian people”

ATTACKED: Faruk Ali, from Luton, was attacked outside his home by two police officers last month, suffering injuries to his neck, arms and legs

what they have been through but when you speak to them terrible stories of loss and trauma emerge. For parents the biggest worry is what this crisis is doing to their children. Children have been killed, beaten, shot at and abused during this war. Children have lost their homes and their schools, and, in many cases, their relatives.

By Justine Greening MP Secretary of State for International Development

Last Saturday marked the grim three-year anniversary of Syria’s civil war. In countries around the world people took part in candlelight vigils for the people of Syria who have suffered and continue to suffer the most unimaginable horrors. In just three years this brutal conflict has claimed 140,000 lives. More than 2.6million people have fled the borders to escape the bloodshed.We are hearing harrowing reports of people starving inside Syria’s sieged cities and snipers targeting children. Polio has returned to the country 14 years after Syria was certified polio-free. The UK is standing by Syrian people in their hour of desperate need. Our total funding for Syria and

the region is now £600 million.This is three times the size of our response to any other humanitarian crisis and it reflects the scale of the suffering. We know our support is reaching those who need it most. Every month it is supplying food for over 353,000 people and clean water for over 1.5 million people. We have also funded over 315,000 medical consultations. The people of the UK can feel proud that as a country we are at the forefront of the international humanitarian effort. I have seen for myself the difference we are making. I was in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley in January and met refugees facing their third winter living in a tent. These people are incredibly stoic and brave about

We must not let these children become a generation lost to conflict. That is why from the start of the Syria crisis the UK has prioritised vulnerable children, ensuring not only that they have the basics they need for survival, but also the chance for a better future. Last year, working closely with the charity UNICEF, we helped to launch the No Lost

Generation initiative, providing education, protection and trauma counselling for the children that one day we hope can rebuild Syria. We have already invested £30 million in to this initiative and by working with partner organisations such as Save the Children and Islamic Relief we are getting more help through to those in need every single day. This includes support for a £2 million project by Islamic Relief to secure access to appropriate education for over 3,500 children. In Lebanon, I announced new funding to provide 300,000 packs of textbooks for all children between the ages of 6 and 15 in state schools, both local and refugee. Many of Syria’s neighbouring countries, like Lebanon, are under enormous strain as the number of refugees continues to spiral. The UK is doing everything possible to support them. When you speak to Syrians who have been forced to flee their country the one thing they all say is that they want to go back. They want to rebuild their lives, their homes and their country. We continue to work with the UN and other partners to bring about a political settlement that will end this crisis and we continue to push all sides of the conflict for unhindered and safe humanitarian access. A whole generation is depending on us, and we cannot let them down.


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‘Flood Hero’ Young volunteer receives special accolade A teenager from Southfields has been labelled a ‘hero’ and given a £5,000 prize live on television after his work with the flood relief efforts in the UK. 16-year-old Zafar Ahmad was presented with the ‘Flood Hero’ award, alongside four other people, on ITV’s Daybreak earlier this week before being given a cash prize, by Sir Richard Branson, to go towards his chosen charity. During the most recent half term holidays in February, Zafar made the most of his free time and volunteered with the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association's (AMYA) flood relief campaign, joining hundreds of volunteers in assisting families affected by the floods around the country. The young volunteer spent almost every day helping however he could, whether filling and delivering sandbags, or helping with the massive clean-up operation of the St. Paul's Church in Staines. Jamal Akbar, one of the AMYA Regional coordinators for Charity, Community and Welfare Programmes, was so moved by Zafar's selflessness that he put his

name forward for this special recognition. “In my mind, everyone who helped out with the flood relief efforts is a flood hero, whether they are from our own community, the local residents, the Army or the local Sikh community who helped in Staines,” he said. “The reason I nominated Zafar was because of his selfless dedication of time and his passion to just get out there and help in whatever capacity he could. “I don’t know many 16-year-olds WORK: The teenager joined hundreds of other volunteers as they provided relief to homes at threat by the floods

who would do that during their holidays. I’m very proud that he got through as there were over 120 nominations across the country.” Zafar added: “It was a humbling experience to see those who are affected, but I am glad that the communities quickly came together to help. “I don't consider what I did to be AWARD: Zafar Ahmad was given a special, but simply fulfilment of my religious duty as a British Muslim to special award for his work helping serve my country. Nevertheless, I flood-hit parts of the country greatly appreciate this award, ITV for highlighting the floods and the kindness of Mr. Richard Branson. “I hope those people affected can get back to their normal life soon. We all have a duty to help them.” Zafar has also now been invited to a reception at 10 Downing Street with his fellow award winners in recognition of their tremendous work, yet his volunteering efforts don’t stop there. Later this year, on the 4th May, he will be participating in the annual AMYA 10K run in Battersea Park, and you can help sponsor him by visiting www.justgiving.com/Zafar-Ahmad2014.

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Asian Express Another Royal baby? Not yet

Britain may be waiting a little longer for the birth of another Royal baby after Prince William says ‘no thanks’ — at least for the time being. Asked whether he and his wife, Kate, are planning to expand their family, William said: "Maybe one day. One's enough at the moment." A soldier asked the prince the question on Monday as the royal couple visited the Irish Guards at their military base in Aldershot in southern England to mark St. Patrick's Day. Kate, dressed in an emerald green trench coat with matching hat and heels, presented sprigs of shamrocks to around 300 soldiers on parade. She also placed a bunch on the regimental mascot, Irish wolfhound Domhnall. William and Kate's baby son, George, will be joining them on their trip to New Zealand and Australia next month.

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New website now live, please visit: www.asianexpress.co.uk Manslaughter charges

Three former officers of security firm G4S will face manslaughter charges over the 2010 death of a man who died as he was being deported from Britain by the group, government prosecutors said on Thursday. The prosecutor's office, which had previously ruled out any action in relation to the case, said it had decided not to charge the company itself, the world's largest security firm, for corporate manslaughter. However Colin Kaler, Terrence Hughes and Stuart Tribelnig will be charged after the office reviewed new evidence from an inquest which found that Jimmy Mubenga had been unlawfully killed when he was restrained by the officers.

Donate your scarf

Liverpool FC are calling on football fans from around the world to show their support for the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster by sending in club scarves. A memorial service at Anfield on April 15 will commemorate the 96 fans who died as a result of a crush at the FA Cup semi-final against Nottingham Forest in Sheffield in 1989. The club said Kenny Dalglish, manager of Liverpool at the time of the disaster, had written to all 92 English League clubs asking them to donate a scarf which will be laid out with those from members of the public on the pitch to form a 96. “The annual Memorial Service in memory of the 96 is always a moving occasion for the families and survivors,” Margaret Aspinall, chair of the Hillsborough Family Support Group which is organising the memorial, said.

BBC used students as ‘human shields’ The BBC apologised last week to a leading British university for sending two undercover reporters to accompany an academic trip to North Korea, after an internal investigation found that it had failed to inform students of the potential risks. The publicly funded BBC joined the trip to North Korea for students and post-graduates of the London School of Economics (LSE) in March 2013. Two undercover journalists - including the respected reporter John Sweeney attached themselves to the group to gain access to the secretive state and film a documentary for Panorama, a current affairs programme. The general secretary of the LSE's student union accused the BBC at the time of using the students as ‘human shields’. The university said the students had been told "a journalist" would accompany them, but it had not been made clear the BBC's aim was to use the visit to secretly record footage for Panorama, a current affairs programme.

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Questionable Landmark Leeds building sold for less than Kahn’s £2.7m bid

PLANS: The Kahn Group of Companies’ redevelopment of the iconic Leeds site would have created around 200 new jobs - the new development would have comprised of a luxury car showroom, an automotive museum, an academy, a luxury hotel and apartments

LANDMARK: The YEP building stands at the junction of Wellington Street and the A58, two of the main thoroughfares through the city

By Anush Ansari anush@asianexpress.co.uk

Despite it being offered £600,000 more than any other bid, the rejection of a Bradfordbusinessman’s efforts in buying a landmark building in Leeds has been questioned. Automotive tycoon and businessman, Afzal Kahn, submitted groundbreaking proposals consisting of a scheme which incorporated relocating his businesses to the site, creating some 200 jobs and a cash deal of £2.7m - more than any other offer on the table. Kahn released the detailed proposed plans for the site, which boasts a state-of-the-art residential and commercial development. It would have incorporated a luxury car showroom, automotive museum, the ‘Kahn Academy’, a luxury hotel and apartments. Kahn had been approached by Alun Jones - a partner at Rapleys estate agents, to vet his interest in acquiring the former Yorkshire Evening Post building on Wellington Street. Now Kahn, speaking exclusively to the Asian Express, states that he was used as a ‘stalking horse’, in what was an already a decided sale from the outset by Rapleys. Their motive, Kahn claims, was to play-off another bidder, who he feels were already predisposed to

secure the sale, against himself in order to achieve a higher price from them. Rapleys had originally told Kahn to assume that the property came with clean title and that all restrictive covenants placed by the council would be removed. Kahn was then told to provide evidence of funds to complete the purchase, which Rapleys claim they didn’t receive, though email correspondence proves otherwise. Following a run-around on trying to get some feedback, Kahn states that Rapley’s not only misled the owners of the building but also Leeds City Council with regards to Kahn’s proposed plans to redevelop the site and his financial ability to conclude the sale. Kahn was informed, eventually that another party had bid and had provided plans for the site which would be better placed to put to Leeds City Council to assist in the lifting of the restrictive covenant. Kahn said: “At no point during the many weeks of waiting and chasing for a decision was I told to submit any form of planned usage for the site. We were simply told to assume a clean title. “Having provided details of our proposed use for the site a few weeks later, we were then told by Rapleys in July, some two months after my bid to buy, that our bid was rejected because the other party had provided a cash offer.

This is despite our providing proof interested in the purchase, had of cash funds on May 17th and originally submitted plans to confirming the same on June 28th.” redevelop the site as student accommodation, in order to have the restrictive covenant lifted. Now, after the covenant was removed, the plans have changed to redevelop the site into offices, which rather contradicts the excuse for not accepting Kahn’s bid for lack of clarity as to the planned use. This poses a few hairy questions. Chief Executive of Leeds City Council - Tom Riordan and his Chief Asset Manager Martin Farrington have been contacted for clarification and the Asian Express is awaiting a reply. Kahn said: “I believe that at no point during this protracted process was my offer seriously considered and that the decision to conclude a sale with the other party was decided from the outset. “I have incurred considerable time and financial costs during this whole process and feel completely dissatisfied with the unprofessional DISGRUNTLED: Despite meeting the way we have been treated by relevant criteria and topping his Rapleys, who continue to ignore previous offer to £2.7m (£600,000 our correspondence. more than any other offer) Mr Afzal “The reasons provided for Kahn’s offer was rejected and the choosing the alternative lower building sold to a lower bidder offer appear, to us, entirely unsatisfactory.” Though yet to be confirmed, a Kahn is now considering taking source has disclosed that Leeds legal action. City Council may have received a Asian Express contacted fee to remove the covenant. Rapleys for questioning but has It seems that the other party had no response as yet.


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New website now live, please visit: www.asianexpress.co.uk A ‘flood’, not ‘trickle’, of immigrants

A Government failure to commission estimates of the numbers of Romanians and Bulgarians who would come to Britain after labour market controls were lifted fuelled ‘anti-immigrant prejudice’, a group of influential MPs have said. In a damning report, the Home Affairs Select Committee said the Government's decision not to obtain official estimates played into the hands of those who ‘wish to inflame tensions about immigration for political gain’. Restrictions to the labour market were lifted for Romanians and Bulgarians on 1st January, prompting warnings of a looming surge of immigration from the eastern European countries. But the Committee said the numbers of migrants from the two countries were ‘more a trickle than a flood’.

Unlawful killing claims dropped

Claims that British soldiers unlawfully killed Iraqi civilians have been dropped after lawyers representing their alleged victims' families admitted to a public inquiry today there was no evidence it happened. Public Interest Lawyers told the AlSweady Inquiry its clients will no longer claim their relatives were killed by soldiers while in custody following the Battle of Danny Boy in May 2004. It came after more than a year of evidence from almost 300 witnesses at the hearing in central London, at a cost of more than £22 million. The inquiry was examining allegations that 20 or more Iraqis were unlawfully killed at Camp Abu Naji (CAN) near Majar-al-Kabir on 14th and 15th May 2004, and detainees were ill-treated there and later at Shaibah Logistics Base.

A void vote is possible

Thailand's Constitutional Court was due to rule on Friday on the validity of a general election held in February that was disrupted by protesters, with speculation growing it could void the vote, adding to the political turmoil in the country. The protests are the latest chapter in an eight-year crisis that pits Bangkok's middle class and royalist establishment against supporters of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and her brother, ex-premier Thaksin Shinawatra, who was toppled by the army in 2006 and lives in exile to avoid a jail term for graft. Now in their fifth month, the protesters have shut government offices and at times blocked major thoroughfares in Bangkok to try to force Yingluck out. Twenty-three people have died and hundreds have been injured in the violence. The court complaint was brought by a law lecturer who argues among other things that the 2nd February election was unconstitutional because voting did not take place in all areas on the same day.

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Zayna Fatima Iqbal, and her mother, Najmah, had appealed for a kidney donor in the Asian Express

POWER OF THE PRESS: 8-year-old of fered kidney by Asian Express reader

‘An Amazing Ge st ur e’ By Ashley Grint

Hospice. Little Zayna and her family were receiving help and care from the hospice at the time, with the A family from Bradford were youngster waiting for a kidney speechless after they received news transplant following renal failure. that their child had been offered a Thankfully, after waiting six life-changing organ donation by a months on the transplant list, a ‘complete stranger’ after an appeal match was found and Zayna in the Asian Express newspaper. received her new kidney at Leeds Eight-year-old, Zayna Fatima General Infirmary from a recently Iqbal, suffers from a condition deceased organ donor. called Global Yet now, with Zayna recovering Developmental so well at home that she is Delay, and was beginning school this week, her first featured in mother, Najmah, explained how she the paper was brought to tears once more, during a visit to after the generosity of a ‘total Martin House stranger’. Children’s “Recently we got a phone call from Martin House and a gentleman, who read the article in the Asian Express, about Zayna’s pre-transplant situation, had been so touched by it that he had actually offered APPEAL: Najmah said she was ‘overwhelmed’ after Zayna one of his Zayna received her kidney transplant and was ‘touched’ kidneys,” Najmah said. to hear another potential donor had come forward after “I was completely ashley@asianexpress.co.uk

reading about her family in the newspaper

Gunmen attack hotel in Kabul

Gunmen fired shots inside a luxury hotel on Thursday in the centre of the Afghan capital Kabul, police said, but the scale of the attack and the number of casualties was unclear. Security sources told Reuters that two or three gunmen armed with pistols entered the Serena hotel by a back door. Two people had been wounded, they said. There were no details on the nationality of those hurt. One person who was taken to safety along with other guests said that the shooting appeared to begin in the hotel restaurant. Another guest, hiding in his room, said he could hear sporadic gunfire. Police spokesman Hashmatullah Stanekzai confirmed that shots had been fired, but said it was unclear if it was an attack by insurgents. He did not speculate on other possible attackers.

shocked, I didn’t think anybody could be that compassionate or kind and I just started crying. “Of course he mustn’t have seen the latest article, saying Zayna’s had her transplant, but for someone who doesn’t even know Zayna to have such a big heart to pick up the phone and make that call, it really is touching.” Najmah and her family have now written a thank you card to the anonymous donor and attached a picture of Zayna as she continues to recover on a daily basis. The family are all living at their Bradford home again and Najmah urged other parents, whose children are in similar circumstances, to come forward and use the media as a way of appealing for help. “When I hadn’t met you, I had read stories in the paper but something stopped me from getting in touch,” she added. “I remember the paper coming to Martin House to just feature the charity but thankfully I did actually build up the courage to say, ‘what can we lose to put this appeal out there?’.

Syrians continue mass exodus

For the first time, Syrians were the biggest group seeking asylum in industrialised countries last year, as the impact of fighting in the country spread beyond the turbulent region, the United Nations refugee agency said on Friday. A record number of asylum requests by Syrians and Russians in 2013 raised the total number received in 44 rich countries to it highest since 2001, the agency said. The total of 612,700 claims rose 28 percent from the year before. Syrian refugees are expected to continue fleeing the country's civil war, now in its fourth year. Some 2.6 million have now been driven into five neighbouring countries, one million in Lebanon alone, the agency said.

“I urge others to try and not get down by their situation, be proactive and get in touch. What’s the worst that could happen?” Not only has Zayna now begun growing again, but she has also got her energy levels back, which Najmah says have kept her up until the early hours of the morning. To have her ‘home and safe’ is the most important thing though, the mother-of-three stated, and thanked everybody for their support. “Fortunately Bradford Continuing Care team have stepped in and have given me support over past months, by providing care one night a week and in the afternoons too,” she explained. “Their team is amazing and their support has been greatly appreciated. “I would also like to thank family and friends for their prayers and support during these years. “For those who were there for my family when I was in hospital for a month, I don’t know how we would have managed without you all.”

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Turkey blocks Twitter

Turkey's courts have blocked access to Twitter days before elections as Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan battles a corruption scandal that has seen social media platforms awash with alleged evidence of government wrongdoing. The ban came hours after a defiant Erdogan, on the campaign trail ahead of key local elections set to be held on 30th March, vowed to ‘wipe out’ Twitter and said he did not care what the international community had to say about it. Erdogan's ruling AK Party has already tightened Internet controls, handed government more influence over the courts, and reassigned thousands of police and hundreds of prosecutors and judges as it fights a corruption scandal he has cast as a plot by political enemies to oust him.

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Ground searches halted for missing schoolgirl MISSING: Nida Naseer has not been seen since leaving her home in Pill, Newport, on the 28th December following a family row

Rat poison used in toxic child attack

Authorities say two children have died and another 30 are sickened in a mass poisoning at a kindergarten in southwestern China. Investigators identified the toxic substance as a powerful rat poison, but do not yet know how it was administered Wednesday in the kindergarten in Yunnan province's rural Qiubei county. State broadcaster CCTV says the school began accepting students last year despite not being fully licensed. Along with the victims, aged four and five, 12 others remained hospitalized Friday, three of them in serious condition. Chinese schools have suffered a series of mass stabbings and other attacks by mentally disturbed people or those bearing grudges. There have also been incidents of school staff administering medication without authorization.

March 2014 - 1st Edition

Police call off physical searches for teen missing since Christmas

Ten weeks after a Welsh schoolgirl was reported as missing, police have suspended all physical searches. 19-year-old Nida Naseer was reported as missing from her home in Pill, Newport, on the 28th December following a family row. Gwent Police have been leading the investigation and due to a lack of new evidence have been forced to cancel any physical searches yet state there are still 15 officers and staff working on the case. Nida is believed to have gone missing after an argument with her parents after not being able to attend university as, due to being a failed asylum seeker, she could not receive any funding and her family could not afford the fees. A Gwent police spokeswoman said officers are still pursuing several lines of enquiry and their appeal for any information from the public remains. The spokeswoman said: “The initial searches involved specialist officers searching a number of locations in the Pill area of Newport. “The investigation has also involved house-to-house enquiries and ongoing reviews of CCTV from in and around the area. “We are continuing to work

closely with Nida’s family, and we are providing support to them at this very difficult time.” The teenager is of AsianPakistani appearance and has long dark hair, is slim and is 5ft 3inches. She was last known to be wearing blue jeans and a black top. Her disappearance is described as being ‘out of character’ and she requires medication otherwise she is likely to become anaemic. Mohammad Asghar, Assembly Member for South Wales East, said Nida’s mother, Najma Tahir, has fallen into a ‘deep depression’ since her daughter’s disappearance. “She shakes all the time and the family are really devastated,” he said.“It’s a very, very sad scenario. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemies.” He added: “This family deserve more help and support than they are getting at the moment. “I hope and pray for Nida’s safe return every day. The family are deeply traumatised and it has had a devastating effect on the whole community.” Anyone with information can contact police via the 101 telephone number or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.


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Princess Diana leaked Royal contacts The former royal editor of Rupert Murdoch's now defunct British tabloid the News of the World told a court on Thursday the late Princess Diana had given him a directory of royal phone numbers to get back at her then husband Prince Charles. Clive Goodman said the confidential directory which contained numbers of senior members of Britain's royal household was delivered to the newspaper's offices in 1992 when Diana was growing increasingly bitter about her husband. Goodman, who was jailed in 2007 for accessing the voicemails of mobile phones belonging to senior royal aides, is on trial accused of making illegal payments to police officers to obtain telephone directories of the royal household. Police found 15 such directories at Goodman's home when he was arrested in 2006. Asked where a ‘green book’ directory dating from 1992 had come from, Goodman told the Old Bailey court: “[It was] provided to us by the Princess of Wales.”

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Meet the Sikh woman growing a beard ‘I feel more feminine, more sexy and I think I look it too’ By Ashley Grint ashley@asianexpress.co.uk

A Sikh woman, who suffers from a common condition which affects millions in the UK, has ditched the razor and embraced her ‘true look’, taking the decision to grow a beard. Harnaam Kaur, 23, from Slough, has polycystic ovary syndrome (POS), a condition which, amongst other things, can lead to excessive hair growth on the face. For years she battled the condition, and at times even contemplated taking her own life, but seven years ago she took the courageous decision to stop shaving and has never

looked back since. Being baptised as a Sikh, a religion which forbids the cutting of body hair, Harnaam says she became more confident in her look. Speaking to the Daily Mirror, she said: “I would never ever go back now and remove my facial hair because it’s the way God made me and I’m happy with the way I am. “I feel more feminine, more sexy and I think I look it too. I’ve learned to love myself for who I am nothing can shake me now.” Harnaam began to develop the condition when she was just 11-years-old and tried a number of methods to rid herself of the facial hair – including waxing, bleaching

“If I had any message it would be to live the way you want – it’s your journey and it’s your life.”

and shaving – yet it just grew back thicker than before. During school she says she was bullied for her looks but now she believes that by embracing the beard, she has become more feminine than ever. She added: “I’m able to go out and shop in the women’s section without feeling I shouldn’t be there. “I wear skirts, dresses and jewellery and I like to get my nails done like every other girl.” Harnaam now uploads videos to YouTube in the hope of spreading her confidence amongst other young women who suffer from similar conditions as herself. Despite threats against her life and some abusive comments, she insists that her look is still the most comfortable one she has ever had and hopes more women will embrace the beard. “I want other women to find the strength that I have,” she said. “I’ve...had loads of nice comments from men all over the world - one even asked me to marry him. “If I had any message it would be to live the way you BEARD: 23-year-old, Harnaam Kaur, began to see facial hair want – it’s your journey and growing at just 11-years-old and after years of rejecting her it’s your life.” look, she is now embracing it

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A violent past uncovered

People across England and Wales will now be able to find out from the police if their partners have a history of domestic violence before getting into a relationship with them. A law rolled out nationally in Britain on Saturday—The Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme —known as Clare's Law-—will provide information that could protect someone from being a victim of attack. It has been chosen by the home secretary Theresa May to coincide with International Women's Day. The scheme is named after Clare Wood, who was brutally murdered five years ago by her former partner George Appleton, who had a record of violence against women. From Saturday, Domestic Violence Protection Orders (DVPOs) are also being rolled out across the country. This new power will enable police and magistrates' courts to provide protection to victims in the immediate aftermath of a domestic violence incident. Ms May said: “It will provide victims with information that may protect them from an abusive situation before it ends in tragedy.”

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New £1 coin by 2017 Treasury says the two metal piece will be harder to fake By Anush Ansari anush@asianexpress.co.uk

The Treasury announced Wednesday it was ditching the £1 coin used in Britain for the past three decades and replacing it with a 12-sided piece that will be harder to fake. The Treasury says the new coin, made of two metals in two different colours and modelled on the old Threepenny bit, will be ‘the most secure coin in circulation in the world’. About three percent (45 million) of all £1 coins, are currently forgeries and in some parts of Britain this rises to six percent, according to the Royal Mint. The new coin will have the same shape of the old ‘Threepenny bit’ that was introduced in 1937 and went out with decimalisation in 1971. It was popular during World War II when households and businesses had to abide by a blackout to thwart enemy bombings, because its

distinctive size and shape made it easy to recognise in the dark. The new £1 will be made using cutting-edge technology that allows it to be easily authenticated. Combined with the use of two metals and the 12 sides, the Royal Mint hopes it will be hard to counterfeit. Finance Minister George Osborne said: "After 30 years of loyal service, the time is right to retire the current £1 coin and replace it with the most secure coin in the world. "With advances in technology making high value coins like the £1 every more vulnerable to counterfeiters, it's vital that we keep several paces ahead of the criminals to maintain the integrity of our currency." The new coin is expected to be in circulation by 2017, following a consultation with businesses. As with all British coins, the 'heads' side will feature the image of Queen Elizabeth II and there will be a public competition to decide the 'tails' side.


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Decaying Mercedes 600 left in British garage for 30 years sells for £445,000 The Mercedes 600 six-door Landaulet was the car of choice for 20th century despots, with Saddam Hussein, Pol Pot and Idi Amin among notorious owners

The iconic luxury motor sold for a staggering seven times its original estimate A rusty Mercedes left gathering dust in a British garage for 30 years has sold for a staggering £445,000 - almost seven times its estimate. The Mercedes 600 six-door Landaulet was the car of choice for 20th century despots, with Saddam Hussein, Pol Pot and Idi Amin among notorious owners. This 1971 model is regarded as the 'holy grail' of Mercedes but was previously owned by a Congolese head of state - who clearly didn’t care much for the luxury motor. The highly-regarded vehicle left Africa and spent more than three decades decaying in a UK lock-up, until it was recently auctioned for a staggering sum. The 20ft-long car was offered without reserve with a modest estimate of £60,000 to £100,000 by RM Auctions in Paris, and it soon sparked a

bidding war. The anonymous winning bidder paying a total of £442,400 after buyers' premium, but their spending on the car won’t end there. Experts believe a full restoration of the classic car would cost more than £800,000, due to the rarity of the vehicle. At the top of the range were the 26 special 'Landaulet' models where the rear of the car would open and transform it into the world's ultimate convertible. This made it perfect for parades and the 600 Landaulet became a favourite of some the world's most notorious leaders including Saddam Hussein and Pol Pot. When it was delivered in 1971, it was fitted with a nine-inch Sony TV and Becker Grand Prix radio with eight speakers.

It also had the comfort of optional armrests, the security of seatbelts, and the privacy of curtained windows. The Mercedes is powered by a whopping 6.3litre V8 engine which develops 245bhp. This accelerates the 20-foot long limousine from 0-60mph in around ten seconds and top speed of more than 125mph. The classic Mercedes 600, in its various editions, remains popular today with the likes of Jeremy Clarkson and Jay Kay among well-known owners. Stuart Haynes, service director at Mercedes specialist John Haynes Auto Technics, believes the £450,000 paid for the car could be a good investment. He said: “It was the car of the moment, anyone who was anyone had a Mercedes 600. John Lennon owned one, so did Coco Chanel and many heads of state. “The Mercedes 600 was the best car in the world when it was made and some people still argue it is. It is silent, smooth and quick. The presence shouts style and 'you've made it'. “It is the best of the best and showcased what Mercedes could do. “They are vastly complicated and expensive cars to restore because of the hydraulics involved. “You'd probably be looking at in excess of 1m euros for Mercedes to restore it. They are few and far between. “Fully restored it is a difficult car to value but you are getting a brand new Mercedes 600 and it will probably be a wise investment.”

Experts believe the restoration of the entire Mercedes could cost as much as £800,000

The Mercedes 600 was the luxury car of the 1960s and 70s, obviously the decaying interior shows much needs to be done to bring it back to its former glory

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‘A life-changing experience’ Bradford teenager speaks to thousands alongside royalty By Ashley Grint ashley@asianexpress.co.uk

A Bradford sixth form student shared the stage with the likes of Prince Harry and Sir Richard Branson last week as the first ever We Day UK event was held at Wembley Arena. In front of more than 12,000 young people, 17-year-old Mohammed Usman was cheered on as he spoke about

the work he did with the Barclays Life Skills programme. Addressing the packed out arena, the Great Horton resident took centre stage, on his own, and said the experience is something which will stay with him forever. “I will never forget that day,” the Grange Technology College student said. “It was a tremendous experience to be sharing the stage with such high profile speakers and it has changed my life. “It has motivated me so much more to work with charities and do a career which helps others who are less fortunate.” Mohammed was selected by the Barclays Life Skills programme to be their speaker completing the after programme before going on to work with charities, Feed the Children and Mother Helpage Worldwide. The programme acts as a platform for Year Six to Year 12 students to develop key skills such as communication and confidence before being given

SPEAKER: Mohammed Usman, from Bradford’s Grange Technology College, addressed more than 12,000 people at We Day UK

the opportunity to take up work placements. It was up to the local teenager to address the thousands of school pupils about the project, and he said he still remembers what it felt like moments before he ‘took the stage’. He added: “It was bigger and better than I had ever imagined. “When I was getting ready for my speech, I had just seen Jennifer Hudson do an amazing performance and Paralympian Wright do an Martine emotional speech that really touched me. “I was nervous before I went up but as soon as I stepped foot on the stage I got a huge buzz and just loved every moment of it. “After I had finished I just looked back and thought, ‘wow that was amazing’.” We Day is an educational event which aims to inspire children across the world and create a movement of young people leading local and global change.

ROYALTY: Prince Harry was just one of the esteemed guest speakers at the event at Wembley Arena. (Image courtesy of Anthony Harvey)

Mohammed Usman

CHILDREN: Thousands packed into the arena to be inspired. (Image courtesy of Anthony Harvey)


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Migrants ‘have cost UK

£140bn’ Immigrants have cost UK taxpayers more than £22 million a day for 17 years, a report has claimed. Migration Watch UK research claims that the public purse was £140 billion worse off between 1995 and 2011 as a result of people moving to Britain. It follows work by the Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (Cream), an

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independent research unit at University College London, last year that showed immigrants had made a ‘substantial’ contribution to public finances since 2000 and those from the European Economic Area had contributed 34 per cent more in taxes than they received in benefits in the decade up to 2011. Migration Watch UK said it had followed

the methodology used by Cream but had changed what it called the ‘unrealistic assumptions’ that had been made in that study, such as suggestions that EEA migrants are only half as likely to claim benefits or tax credits - something it claimed was ‘highly misleading’. Its report states that findings about the contributions made by EEA migrants are ‘simply wrong’ and rely ‘on assumptions that employees earn the same as the UK-born population’. “In fact, on less unreasonable assumptions, there was no positive fiscal impact at all from the recent EEA migrant group singled out... for their 'very positive contribution',” it states. “Indeed, migration to the UK continues to have a significant fiscal cost, and recent migrants made no difference to the upward trend.” Cream has strenuously dismissed the claims, insisting the think tank's work is ‘based on a serious misinterpretation of the methodology we have used in our work, which leads to fundamental mistakes that invalidate their calculations’. Sir Andrew Green, chairman of Migration Watch UK, said: “Our report finally disposes of the immigration lobby's oft-repeated claims that immigration reduces our tax burden. “The total cost is high and increased dramatically between 1995 and 2011, providing no compensation for the overcrowding of this island which we are experiencing, largely as a result of immigration.”

“The total cost is high and increased dramatically between 1995 and 2011, providing no compensation for the overcrowding of this island which we are experiencing, largely as a result of immigration.”

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Asian Express ‘Stop the elections’ Taliban militants are stepping up efforts to destabilise Afghanistan ahead of next month's presidential vote, kidnapping election workers and executing villagers at random to scare people off voting, officials and campaigners said. The attacks follow the Taliban's warning on Monday that it would use its ‘full force’ against anyone who takes part in the electoral process. The ballot is due to take place on 5th April, and marks the first time in Afghanistan's history that power will be handed from one democratically elected government to another. President Hamid Karzai is constitutionally barred from running for a third term. On Thursday, police and elders rushed to negotiate the release of four election workers kidnapped by the Taliban in eastern Nangarhar province a day earlier, Afghan officials said. “Police, elders, everyone is working to ensure a safe release for them,” Ministry of Interior spokesman Sediq Sediqqi said.

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A new agreement between police and the NHS seeks to improve mental health crisis care for Black and Minority Ethnic groups

Better care for mental health crisis Emergency support for people in mental health crises is set to dramatically improve as part of a far-reaching new agreement between police, mental health trusts and paramedics. The agreement – called the Crisis Care Concordat – has been signed by more than 20 national organisations in a bid to drive up standards of care for people experiencing crisis and help cut the numbers of people detained inappropriately in police cells and iron out the variation in standards across the country. There are stark inequalities in the acute sector of mental health care for people from some BME groups who continue to be overrepresented in hospital and as detained patients and in crisis care overall. Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said:“A mental health crisis can already be distressing for individuals and all those involved, but when people aren’t getting the right support or care it can have very serious consequences. It’s unacceptable that there are incidents where young people and even children can end up in a police cell because the right mental health service isn’t available to them. “That’s why we’re taking action across the country and across organisations to make sure those with mental health problems are receiving the emergency care they need. People from BME groups are more likely to present in crisis with A&E often the first point of contact. The Concordat acknowledges that this needs to be addressed and sets out that work will begin before March to look at inequalities in access to mental health services for BME communities with the aim of improving care. • In areas where black and minority ethnic groups have a higher risk of being detained under the Mental Health Act, this must be addressed by local services in consultation with these groups; and

“We want to build a fairer society – one where mental health is as important as physical health – and the Crisis Care Concordat is an important step towards addressing this disparity.” Norman Lamb, Care and Support Minister, said: “When someone has a mental health crisis, it is distressing and frightening for them as well as the people around them. Urgent and compassionate care in a safe place is essential – a police cell should never need to be used because mental health services are not available. For me, crisis care is the most stark example of the lack of equality between mental and physical health. “The NHS and police already work well together in some areas, but it is totally unacceptable that crisis mental health care is so variable across the country. It is imperative that all areas seek to implement the principles of the Concordat as quickly as possible to ensure consistent care, no matter where you live.” Local areas will now sign their own regional and local agreements to commit to working together across services to improve care and potentially save lives and is expected to have agreed a Mental Health Crisis Declaration by December 2014.

• A 24-hour helpline should be available for people with mental health problems and the crisis resolution team should be accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. • Health-based places of safety and beds are available 24/7 in case someone experiences a mental health crisis; • Police custody should not be used because mental health services are not available and police vehicles should also not be used to transfer patients. We want to see the number of occasions police cells are used as a place of safety for people in mental health crisis

halved compared 2011/12; • Timescales are put in place so police responding to mental health crisis know how long they have to wait for a response from health and social care workers. This will make sure patients get suitable care as soon as possible; • People in crisis should expect that services will share essential ‘need to know’ information about them so they can receive the best care possible. This may include any history of physical violence, selfharm or drink or drug history.


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follow us on twitter: Japan’s hidden recruitment drive

Being a soldier in Japan after World War Two was seen as a job for failed police recruits and unemployed youth from depressed rural towns. But as tension with China chips away at Japan's post-war pacifism, the military is regaining its prestige helped by a blitz of television dramas, movies and cartoons. Patriotic zeal is now a more compelling reason to enlist. A decade ago, around one in 10 candidates said they wanted to be a soldier for love of country. These days it's closer to one in three, according to recruitment data obtained by Reuters. Film directors, animators and TV producers have delivered a bumper crop of military-themed content, much of it with help from the Ministry of Defense. Hit shows include ‘Girls und Panzer’, a cartoon about schoolgirls fighting tank battles, and ‘Eternal Zero’, a movie about a kamikaze pilot that its director made in part to counter an image of Japanese soldiers as fanatics.

No meetings with released Taliban figures

Afghanistan's High Peace Council, set up to oversee peace talks with the Taliban, has had no formal meetings with any of the 46 Taliban prisoners released in neighbouring Pakistan, an official said on Friday, despite pleas to be present when they are freed. Pakistan began releasing small batches of Afghan Taliban prisoners in 2012 at the request of Kabul which wants to use the men as interlocutors to pursue peace talks with the insurgents, who are ramping up attacks as NATO troops withdraw and the country prepares for the 5th April elections. The Afghans wanted a delegation present at each release. But they complained that Pakistan does not tell them before prisoners are freed, raising question about Pakistan's sincerity in wanting to help bring an end to the war. Afghanistan has long accused Pakistan, which faces a Taliban insurgency of its own, of backing the hard-line Afghan Taliban, in power from 1996 to 2001 and seeking to oust foreign forces and set up an Islamic state.

‘Dead’ Mississippi man dies… again

A Mississippi man pronounced dead last month and put in a body bag only to come alive just before embalming, has now died, a coroner said on Thursday. Walter Williams, 78, died at about 1 a.m. local time in Lexington, two weeks after shocking people when he started breathing and kicking at a funeral home where he was taken after being declared dead, said Holmes County Coroner Dexter Howard. “I think he's gone this time,” Williams' nephew, Eddie Hester, told a local television station. Williams had been receiving hospice care at home for end-stage cardiovascular disease and other ailments before his near-death experience on February 27. The coroner mistakenly declared him dead after neither he nor nurses could find a pulse.

March 2014 - 1st Edition

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British shoe bomber didn’t detonate because of ‘mother’s words’ Former terrorist gives evidence against Al-Qaeda suspect, Osama Bin Laden’s son By Ashley Grint ashley@asianexpress.co.uk

A British man, who spoke directly to Osama Bin Laden and admitted boarding airlines in possession of a shoe bomb, has been giving evidence against the former Iraqi leader’s son. 34-year-old Saajid Badat, from Gloucester, has been giving evidence over the past week against Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, who is currently being charged with conspiracy to kill Americans and providing material to support terror organisations. During the trial at New York’s Federal Court, Badat has appeared via satellite from an unknown location in the UK, where he has also admitted to boarding a plane with a deadly shoe bomb after the 9/11 attacks. He told the jury that he flew on planes over the Middle East and Europe on a number of occasions with the explosives yet never detonated because he was ‘saving it for over American airspace’. Badat admitted to wearing the shoe bomb on at least one flight, from Karachi, Pakistan to Holland, and then from Holland to the UK in December 2011, just

months after the New York tragedy. He had initially been in possession of two bombs, yet told the court he only boarded with one after giving the other to a pair of Malaysian men who wished to carry out a 9/11-esque hijacking of their own. “I was wearing the shoe,” he said, referring to the bomb. At one point he was questioned by Abu Ghaith’s defence attorney, Stanley Cohen, about laughing at the deaths of those killed on 9/11.“Three thousand plus Americans dead was humorous to you?” Mr Cohen asked. “Unfortunately, yes,” Badat replied. The Brit, who spent three years training in Afghanistan, says he only pulled out of the operation after his mother condemned the terrorists actions, saying she ‘wouldn't want my son to be one of those sleepers’. “It was then I decided to back out of the mission,” he added. Badat was imprisoned for 13 years for his role in the shoe bomb plot in 2001 but has since been released and is helping authorities. US Prosecutors are currently

Class A drugs hid in ‘Baby powder’ £50,000 worth of dr ugs seized in raids

using the evidence supplied by Badat against Kuwaiti-born, 48year-old Abu Ghaith, as they try to prove he played a vital role with Al-Qaeda when he warned ‘the storm of aircrafts will not stop’ moments after the Twin Towers fell. If Abu Ghaith is found guilty and convicted of his actions, he could face a life prison sentence. TRIAL: Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, is currently being charged with conspiracy to kill Americans and provide aid to terror organisations

Class A drugs with a street value up to £50,000 have been taken off the streets of Leeds following a series of early morning raids by West Yorkshire Police. Officers from Operation Viper and the Leeds District Burglary Team joined forces to target 13 addresses across the North West area of the city in raids that took place across Thursday and Friday of last week. Five people were arrested during the course of the operation on suspicion of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs, with more than half a kilo of suspected Class A heroin found in a flat within the Gamble Hill Croft complex in Bramley. Within the property, officers working with a specialised drugs dog, found the class A substance behind a panel in the bathroom whilst smaller amounts were also found within a tin of baby powder. A 49-year-old man was arrested from the property on suspicion of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs and has

EVIDENCE: Saajid Badat has been giving evidence via satellite against one of Osama Bin Laden’s sons, and has so far admitted to at least once boarding a plane whilst wearing a shoe bomb

since been released on police bail. Two other men, aged 24 and 23, were also arrested on Thursday morning from separate addresses in Pudsey and have been released on bail. In a raid on Friday morning, 7th March, officers seized a Bentley Continental car from outside a property on Ireland Crescent. The vehicle has been recovered for forensic examination to determine if any offences have been committed in relation to its use or possession. A 33-year-old man was arrested from the same address with a 24-year-old male arrested from a property at Holtdale Place in Holt Park. Both men have since been released on police bail. The raids, which were carried out under the Misuse of Drugs Act, formed part of West Yorkshire Police's Operation Viper, which aims to target the county's most prolific criminals and drive down crime. Detective Chief Inspector Mark Griffin, from Leeds Community Safety and who led the operation, said: “These

HIDDEN: Class A drugs were found within a tin of baby powder in a home in Bramley arrests and a seizure of this quantity will have a significant impact on the localised drug market and shows the priority and success we have in tackling drugs and organised crime across Leeds.”


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Bradford’s f or M r s UK World Local mum to challenge for national beauty title By Ashley Grint ashley@asianexpress.co.uk

A self-entitled ‘proud Bradfordian’ is just one of 10 finalists in this year’s Mrs UK World - a competition which brings together inspirational married women from across the country. 36-year-old, Kul Sarai, will be representing her hometown of Bradford after she was told she had made the final cut on Valentine’s Day. An actress by trade, the mother of two said she was delighted to hear she had made the final, and explained how she got involved in t h e competition. “I’m on a website c a l l e d ‘StarNow’, and saw the contest advertised on there,” she said. “I wasn’t sure if it was something I wanted to do initially but thought I’d drop them a line and they got back to me saying ‘we’ve seen your portfolio, brief and bio we think you’d be suitable’. “My husband then nominated me along with two of my lovely friends and it just all went from there really.”

Unlike other beauty pageants, Mrs UK World requires all entrants to be married women, and not only have a ‘ring on their finger’ but also prove that they have not sacrificed their marriages for success elsewhere. Kul began dating her husband, Bob, in 1996, and married one year later before moving to Mumbai where she took up a career in acting and modelling. Her biggest career break came during her time in India where she featured as one of Sharukh Khan’s girlfriend’s in the film Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani. Yet, upon returning to the UK in

wonderful children so became ‘Mum’ for quite a while before taking up the acting again.” Out of this year’s ten finalists, who will compete for the crown of Mrs UK World in Beaconsfield in May, three nominations are Asian. This is a stat Kul, of Indian descent, is happy to see and explained what it would mean to her, to come away with the national crown. “It is really good to see it,” she said. “It’s nice to see the three of us there so to have an Asian face represent the whole of the UK would be amazing. “If I were to win, it would be a dream come true. To be an ambassador for the country would be amazing; to be able to travel all over the world and get out there and get my point across. “I would never have thought about being a model when I was younger but now I just can’t wait for the final.” The local contestant is currently looking for a Bradford business to sponsor her on her journey in Mrs UK World and asked if any interested parties would kindly contact her on kulsarai@mail.com

“I would never have thought about being a model when I was younger but now I just can’t wait for the final.” 2001, Kul settled into a software developer role, leaving modelling and acting at the other side of the world. “After coming back to England I became a software developer for three years after doing a course in Mumbai,” she explained. “Then, after that I had my


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March 2014 - 1st Edition

n om i n at io n COUPLE: Bob and Kul Sarai have been happily married for 16 years and it was Bob who was one of his wife’s three nominators for the Mrs UK World title

NEWS NOMINATED: Kul Sarai, from Bradford, will be competing against nine other finalists in this year’s Mrs UK World contest

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follow us on twitter: Journalist shot dead in Afghanistan

A gunman shot dead a Swedish journalist outside a restaurant in a brazen attack in one Kabul's most heavily guarded districts on Tuesday, police and embassy sources said. The Swedish Embassy identified the victim as Nils Horner, 51, who worked for Swedish Radio and had dual BritishSwedish nationality. “Nils was one of our absolute best and most experienced correspondents and what has happened to him today is terrible,” said Swedish Radio's directorgeneral, Cilla Benkö, who described this as one of the worst days in the corporation's history. “We are now trying to get as many details as we can.” Horner had been waiting outside a Lebanese restaurant with his driver and translator when two men in Western clothes approached and one shot him at point-blank range in the back of the head, said Zubir, a guard at the restaurant who uses only one name.

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CANCELLED Legoland’s Muslim fun-day cancelled after serious threats

Manhattan building collapse

Search crews picked through stillsmoldering rubble on Thursday, looking for survivors of a gas explosion that caused the collapse of two New York apartment buildings a day earlier, killing seven people and injuring about 60. Facing thick smoke and bitter cold, dozens of firefighters, police officers and a team from the National Transportation Safety Board were at the Upper Manhattan scene to determine what had caused the explosion on Wednesday, shortly after a resident nearby had called the utility, Con Edison, to complain about the smell of gas. The safety board investigates accidents involving natural gas. Five people remained missing on Thursday morning, New York Police Detective Martin Speechley said. Mayor Bill de Blasio met with first responders as heavy-duty evacuation equipment, including a machine known as "the grappler," moved rubble that was being hosed down by fire trucks.

Audi traffic light recognition could save millions of litres of fuel

Audi is ready to add a little oil to the wheels of the daily grind with advanced traffic light recognition technology, which could make driving through towns and cities far more fluid and free of annoying and economy-denting red light punctuation. Audi Online traffic light information harnesses the power of in-car internet in a new way via Audi connect to establish a link between the car and the traffic light network via the central traffic computer in each town or city. It quickly assimilates the automated traffic light change sequences in the vicinity, and on the approach to a set of lights the Driver Information System (DIS) located in the central instrument cluster then shows the driver the speed to select in order to pass through the light during a green phase. It also displays a visual aid using red, amber or green icons. If the driver is already waiting at a red light, Audi connect will calculate and count down the time remaining until the next green light is scheduled to appear via a timer on the DIS. The system also interacts with the car’s Start-Stop function to ensure the engine is switched on five seconds before the green phase.

CLOSED: Legoland Windsor will not host the Muslim fun-day this weekend, but instead will be closed up until the 14th March

A Muslim fun-day, which was due to be held at Legoland Windsor this weekend, has been forced to be cancelled after farright extremists targeted the event. Racial tension was stirred after more than 1,000 Muslim families were due to attend a private event at the resort in Windsor, Berkshire, on Sunday 9th March. The attraction received threatening phone calls, emails and social media posts for being hired exclusively by the Muslim Research and Development Foundation (MRDF). Legoland decided to cancel the event following talks with the organisers and Thames Valley Police, and officials will shut the 150-room hotel this weekend. The theme park itself was always planned to be closed to the public this weekend and will reopen for

the 2014 season on 14th March, a spokeswoman said. She said: “Unfortunately the Legoland Windsor resort has had to close the hotel on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th March 2014 after

Friday 14th March. “We are extremely sorry that we've had to cancel guest bookings and wholeheartedly understand the disappointment of those families that will be unable to

“Although we worked hard with Legoland to find a solution to the threats and negative press, Legoland made the decision to cancel the event as they could not guarantee the safety of the attendees and their staff.” threats from right-wing groups made against the resort. “The hotel closure follows the cancellation of a private event that was due to take place on Sunday 9th March prior to the theme park reopening for the 2014 season on

attend, particularly as we haven't been able to give them more notification because of the dynamic nature of this situation.” In a statement posted on its website, the MRDF said it had received a number of threats over

UK women are ‘fattest in Europe’ The UK has more obese women than any other country in Europe, according to European Union figures. Data agency Eurostat, which looked at 19 countries, found nearly a quarter of UK women - 23.9 per cent - were recorded as being obese in the year 2008 to 2009. Just over 22 per cent of UK men were classed as obese, coming second only to Malta. A person is defined as obese if their body mass index (BMI), the result of a calculation involving weight

and height, is above a certain level. The BMI correlates fairly well with body fat. Statisticians found the share of overweight and obese people increases with age in all of the 19 member states that data was available for. The data come from the European Health Interview Survey (EHIS) and was published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. Its figures for the UK were

the past few weeks and despite working to find a conclusion with the theme park had to accept the event was to be cancelled. “Together with these threats, publication of several articles in the national press helped fuel further hatred and resentment towards the event, resulting in further negative impact on the security of the event,” it read. “It was evident from these hate articles and threats that this was not an attack on MRDF alone but was an outright attack on Islam and Muslims in the UK. “Although we worked hard with Legoland to find a solution to the threats and negative press, Legoland made the decision to cancel the event as they could not guarantee the safety of the attendees and their staff.”

21.4 per cent fall into that category - and the Czech Republic, where 18.4 per cent are classed as such. based on data from England, The UK's high levels of although surveys suggest the obesity are in stark contrast percentage of obese adults in to those in countries such as Wales and Northern Ireland Romania, where just 8 per is similar and Scotland's latest cent of women were classed health report put the figure at as obese along with 7.6 per 28 per cent. cent of men. After the UK, the countries Obesity levels were also with the highest levels of found to be low in Italy, female obesity were Malta, Bulgaria and France. with 21.1 per cent, and Latvia, In Italy, 9.3 per cent of where 20.9 per cent fulfilled women were found to be that criteria. obese and 11.3 per cent men. Meanwhile, after Malta and Meanwhile, in Bulgaria the UK, the countries with the levels of obesity for women highest instances of male and men were found to be obesity were Hungary - where 11.3 per cent and 11.6 per

cent, with levels of France identified as being 12.7 per cent and 11.7 per cent respectively. The figures suggested that the proportion of women who are obese or overweight falls as the educational level rises. Last month, Health Secretary Andrew Lansley launched a bid to reduce obesity levels in England by 2020. The minister said people need to be honest with themselves about how much they eat and drink. He said that, overall, Britons should be eating five billion fewer calories a day than at present.


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Female baby with two heads born in India By Anush Ansari anush@asianexpress.co.uk

A woman gave birth to a 7.7 pounds baby girl with two heads in northern India last week. The conjoined twins born at JK Hindu Hospital on March 13th, share everything below their two separate heads. The mother Urmila Sharma, 28, says that they couldn’t afford an ultrasound and had no idea she was carrying conjoined twins. "We only came to know she was carrying conjoined twins after an ultrasound two weeks ago but it was too late to do anything by then," said Dr Shikha Malik, who delivered the baby. The twins have "two heads, two necks and two spines," but just one body

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and their chances for survival are slim. “She is presently alive and healthy,” said Dr. Ashish Sehgal, CEO of the Cygnus J.K. Hindu Hospital in Sonipat, Haryana. Sehgal also added that a “meticulous and challenging” surgery could be the key to saving the twins' life, but the procedure can't take place until they are in stable condition. The twins are currently in the hospital’s intensive care unit. Press has reported that the couple and their families are “very distressed.” Some conjoined twins can be separate, depending on shared organs and where they’re connected, but most are stillborn or die shortly INDIA: The conjoined twin girls share a single body at a hospital in Sonipat, India after birth. (Credit: Sanjeev Ghangas)

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Asian Express Adidas pull ‘offensive’ shirts

Adidas agreed on Tuesday to stop selling two raunchy T-shirts months ahead of the World Cup in Brazil after the government complained that they associated the country with sexual tourism. One shirt shows a bikini-clad woman with open arms on a sunny Rio de Janeiro beach under the word-play "Looking to Score." The other has an "I love Brazil" heart resembling the upsidedown buttocks of a woman wearing a thong bikini bottom. Adidas, the world's second-largest sportswear maker, said the shirts would not be sold anymore, adding in a statement that they were from a limited edition that was only on sale in the United States. The shirt designs touched a nerve in Brazil, where people often complain about foreign stereotypes of Brazilian sensuality. Brazil's government is campaigning aggressively to shed the country's reputation as a destination for sex tourism.

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EXCLUSIVE!

ENTERTAINMENT

Entertainment

THE LATEST ENTERTAINMENT AND CELEBRITY NEWS FROM BOLLYWOOD & HOLLYWOOD

RDB’s legacy will be continued By Anush Ansari

anush@asianexpress.co.uk

Surj speaks to the Asian Express about his brother leaving the group A recent press statement issued by a brother from the music group RDB, Manj Ral, announcing that he was going solo, has caused alarm across the music industry and bands loyal fanbase alike. However, the youngest brother Surjeet Ral (better known as Surj RDB), has confirmed to the Asian Express during his recent visit to his hometown Bradford, that he intends to continue the legacy of RDB. It is widely known that whilst Kuly was the musical leader, and Manj his musical foil, Surj’s influence on the musical direction of the group was key to their success, which led them to be one of UK’s first music artists to break into Bollywood. In addition to fronting the group with his brothers, Surj also was responsible for handling the group’s business affairs which in turn saw RDB soar to Bollywood success with hits like ‘Singh Is King’ with Snoop Dogg, ‘Kambakkht Ishq’, ‘Aloo Chaat’, ‘Paisa Paisa’, and ‘Sadi Gali’ from Tanu Weds Manu to name but a few. Driven by his passion to produce music, Surj says that he has no intention of backing down from the music scene and that he will always carry the torch in honour of his eldest brother Kuldeep Ral (Kuly), who passed away in 2012. Surj says: “I was sad to see my brother Manj leave RDB. Along with my late brother Kuly, he was one of the founders of the group. He will be missed, but I wish him all the best in his solo career.” Kuly’s dream was to spread the sound of RDB to all the corners of the world and entertain fans by creating a signature sound, which was immediately identifiable as the RDB sound. Surj is already working to honour the group’s promise to their fans – to release a new album entitled “Worldwide” via RDB’s own record label ‘Three Records’ later this year. Surj disclosed that he intends to bring the unique sound of RDB, which comprises of several other

members of the existing RDB team, to the forefront of the group. Surj continued: “I will strive to honour and preserve RDB’s music, and continue to present live performances to uphold the legacy of our brother Kuly Ral. “The team and myself, would like to personally thank all our fans for listening, enjoying and dancing to our music since we started out. “I’m not about to retire. “I promise to keep the name RDB alive for you all. I would also like to respectfully thank my parents for their continuing support and personally thank all the music industry for the support in the name of Paaj.” RDB’s latest song in Bollywood – ‘Tamache Pe Disco’ from Bollywood hit ‘Bullet Raja’ was highly acclaimed and Surj promises that there’s definitely more hits set to come from the RDB quarters in the coming months. RDB (Rhythm Dhol Bass) formed over a decade ago and have enjoyed international success with a string of hit songs. RDB are widely regarded as having instigated the change in perception to UK-Asian music by introducing the likes of Snoop PIONEERS: (l-r) Surj, Kully and Dogg, Ludacris and T-Pain to the Bhangra-Bollywood scene. Manj – the RDB brothers who set As well as creating their own the standard for the next generation unique RDB sound, the group of British Asian music artists has performed and rocked stages across the globe.

PROMISE: Surj of RDB states that he is completely dedicated to the group’s fanbase and will continue to deliver floorsmashing tracks

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ENTERTAINMENT

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Jiah Khan’s mother challenges daughter’s suicide British-American actress, Jiah Khan who starred in 2007 Bollywood film, Nishabd shook the film fraternity on 3rd June 2013 when she was found dead hanging in her Mumbai flat. The case had been closed as a suicide death but Jiah Khan’s mother refused to believe this being the cause with a number of question marks over the initial investigation. She was determined to give justice to her daughter’s alleged suicide by under-taking a sting operation on the eight witnesses to her daughter’s death. Each witness gave initial statements to the Police justifying and supporting the suicide claim, but now as a direct result of the sting operation, new transcripts

have emerged and been submitted to the Indian High Court, which bring a fresh light to the case demanding a new investigation. It has emerged a couple of the key witnesses have changed their initial statements. The witnesses included the actor Anju Mahendroo, Dr Ramesh Aggarwal (first doctor to reach on scene), Dr Rahul Datta (the doctor that claimed Jiah had suicidal tendencies), the building watchman and two florists from whose shop, a bouquet was sent to Jiah the night she was found dead. Rabia Khan (Jiah Khan’s mother) has accused her daughter’s ex-boyfriend, Sooraj Pancholi of rape and forceful abortion, he is also the only

person to have ever been arrested in relation to Jiah Khan’s death. A request has been submitted to transfer the case to a Special Investigation Team as there was a possibility of it being a planned murder. The recorded statements falsify the police claims of Jiah Khan’s death being a suicide and strengthens Rabia Khan’s claim of it being a murder. “I always knew my daughter was not depressed and she could not have committed suicide, but people kept saying things. “I wanted to find out what is it that these people know but I don’t. I did not expect the police authorities to help me. Therefore, I did this (sting) so that people can know the truth,” says Rabia Khan.

Aamir spends £900,000 on bomb-proof car Aamir Khan is reported to have purchased Bollywood’s most expensive car, a £900,000 bomb proof Mercedes S600. Now Aamir joins the league of India’s wealthiest Mukesh Ambani and India’s Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh with his new vehicle purchase, which is bulletproof, explosive-proof as well as bomb proof. Sources say the actor felt the need to purchase such a protected vehicle after recent security and death threats particularly during the airing time of his reality talk show ‘Satyamev Jayate’, which is now airing it’s second season and tackles India’s most controversial topics and issues that plague the country. Several anti-social groups reportedly have threatened the actor, after he raised the issues of female foeticide, honour killings and medical malpractices.

Saif in a spot of bother

Two years after assaulting a South African National in Mumbai, Saif Ali Khan has been charged for assaulting the director of trade investments – Mr Iqbal Sharma in South Africa. The hearing against the ‘Nawab of Pataudi’ is scheduled to start from 30th April. Khan had reportedly broken Iqbal Sharma’s nose

following a scuffle at a restaurant in the famous Taj Hotel. Sharma is a South African national of Indian origin and is the deputy directorgeneral of Trade and Investment in South Africa. Allegedly, in 2012, Sharma had objected to the noise created by Saif and his friends at the hotel, following which Saif and his friends beat up Sharma.


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Ziggy collaborates with

Rahat Fateh

Ali Khan! Ziggy is one half of the UK duo Bonafide, who has for the first time decided to leave his stable mate Maz for a collaboration with one of his musical heroes Rahat Fateh Ali Khan. The collaboration titled “Has Ke Bol” has really excited Ziggy. After many years of working with Maz the boys decided that they would also record tracks outside of the Bonafide persona to complete some of their dreams that they have had on their bucket list. The Manchester lad Ziggy has come up with a banger of a tune to start off his new collaboration journey. The track was something that Ziggy has wanted to do for for some time and with the help of his friends at Hi Tech this wonderful dream has managed to come true. After the success with Bonafide, Ziggy

says: “I still can’t believe that I have recorded a track with the great Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, I still have to pinch myself as I feel that sometimes I’m in a dream”. Ziggy has developed a massive fan base both across the UK as well as internationally, pleasing the crowds everywhere Bonafide perform. To date Bonafide have performed in over 40 cities around the world including Dubai, Kampala (Uganda) and Lahore. On a final note, this does not mean the end of Bonafide but only a journey to which both Ziggy & Maz are taking to develop their own sounds and complete some of their own musical desires including collaboration and future solo singles but Bonafide will be back! The new single is titled “Has Ke Bol” released March 13th.

ENTERTAINMENT

Why Kangana Ranaut chose to play the role of a ‘simple’ girl Sweet-faced Kangana Ranaut is known as Bollywood's fashionista, but while preparing for Vikas Bahl's film ‘Queen’, which releases in cinemas this week, her looks and designer clothes were the last thing on her mind. Playing the role of a dumped girl in ‘Queen’, critics have stated that they consider this to be one

of Kangana Ranaut’s best performances. ‘Queen’ sees Kangana as the uninhibited small town girl trying to find her life’s meaning. The slight twist in Kangana’s saga is the fact that she goes on her honeymoon alone, after being dumped at the altar, to find a new self.

Asian Express caught up with Kangana and found out what made her take up the role in ‘Queen’ AE: People have been praising your performance after watching just the trailer… how do you feel? KR: I am getting amazing reactions. Mr. Amitabh Bachchan has apparently tweeted about the trailer. I also met him at a party recently. Mr. Bachchan, Mr. Aamir Khan and Mr. Salman Khan all told me that they are eagerly waiting to watch the film. What else can one ask for? It’s very important to me because I have felt accepted for the first time. I have never received such support for any of my films before. AE: Vikas Bahl is known to make exceptional films. How was your experience being directed by him in ‘Queen’? KR: What I love about these contemporary filmmakers is their spontaneity. They allow artists to contribute to the film in many ways. Vikas allowed me to write dialogues for the film, not that I was planning to or worked towards it. It just happened very organically. He liked what I was coming up with and he let me write my own dialogues. At the same time, he understands the needs of an artist. I remember, I was working multiple shifts and was filming for ‘Krrish 3’ and ‘Queen’ simultaneously. One day when I came from the sets of ‘Krrish 3’ and Vikas asked

what was wrong with me as I wasn't behaving and walking like my character Rani. I can’t just switch on and switch off. It takes me months to get into a character and I can’t just work like a robot. He understood that and respected me as an artist. He didn't shoot with me that day. It’s nice to work with such a director because you then put your all into his film because he respects you. AE: Could you relate to your character Rani? KR: I don’t really relate to the character. She has major issues. She believes that by changing herself, she can please people around her. Her goal is to keep everyone happy. She is really naïve. I don’t identify with these traits of her personality. But at the same time, I also come from a middle class background and I understand how and why she feels that way. I have also come from a small city to a big one. But I never had issues like low self-esteem. Everyone has these phases but it’s not something I have experienced throughout my life like Rani has. AE: How was your experience shooting in places like Amsterdam and Paris? KR: We frequently shoot abroad but mainly for songs for which we dress up quite a lot. You look like an actress

and people come and take pictures with you (laughs). However, for this film I had a very girl-next-door look and honestly, looked very ordinary. People would look at me and wonder why I am so special and why would someone make a movie with me (laughs).That was a bit different. People would ask the crew “Is she the leading actress?” You know, people have this idea of a Bollywood actress wearing a chiffon saree and her hair flying (laughs) but that wasn't the case with me. AE: How was your experience attending the Burberry show at London Fashion Week recently? KR: It was really beautiful. London was great as it didn't rain that day. We were expecting it to rain and it didn't. So we were quite lucky with the weather (laughs). It was my first experience at an international fashion week and show. Burberry and I go long back as they have been dressing me for red carpet appearances and events. I was thrilled to see their collection and I loved how they received me. It was just a lovely experience.

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March 2014 - 1st Edition

FILM: Highway 12A DIRECTED BY: Imtiaz Ali GENRE: Drama STAR CAST: Randeep Hooda, Alia Bhat A kidnapped rich girl forms an unexpected bond with her captor in this Bollywood romantic drama from the director of 'Jab We Met'. A carefree young city girl (Alia Bhat) is driving along the

highway with her fiance. Her life changes in an instant, when she's abducted by a gang of rough rural criminals. The kidnappers quickly discover that their hostage is the daughter of a prominent

industrialist with powerful political friends. But their leader (Randeep Hooda) is undeterred, insisting that they go ahead with their plan. As their van continues on its lengthy journey, passing through some spectacular landscapes, the girl begins to feels more free than she ever did before.

FILM: Bewakoofiyaan DIRECTED BY: Nupur Ashtana GENRE: Comedy STAR CAST: Ayushmann Khurrana, Sonam Kapoor, Rishi Kapoor

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RELEASE DATE: 14/03/2014

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FILM: Shaadi Ke Side Effects DIRECTED BY: Saket Chowdhary GENRE: Comedy STAR CAST: Farhan Akhtar, Vidya Balan, Vir Das, Ram Kapoor Bewakoofiyaan - a contemporary slice of a life story, which changes fixed notions about relationships. Mohit is a marketing whiz kid vying for a step up the career ladder... Mayera - a financial brain with a penchant for shoes... They're a young middle-class corporate couple that's ambitious and likes the good life too.

They work hard, they party hard. They're also passionately in love with each other. Their belief: You can live on love and fresh air... Their obstacle: Mayera's wilful bureaucratic father V.K Sehgal. The obstinate old man believes that only a rich man can bring Mayera happiness and a mid-level executive like

RELEASE DATE: 28/02/2014 Mohit simply isn't good enough! Exactly how fragile are relationships in these times where consumer lifestyles dictate their very nature and intensity? Who gets the last laugh when recession strikes and the lack of money tests love... credit-card-junkies private-sector Mohit-Mayera; or safe-playing sarkari, V.K. Sehgal?

RELEASE DATE: 21/02/2014 Indian writer/director Imtiaz Ali made his name with the hit 'Jab We Met'. He casts Randeep Hooda of 'Once upon a Time in Mumbaai' fame opposite rising star Alia Bhat in this romantic exploration of Stockholm Syndrome. Music is by A.R. Rahman.

Bewakoofiyaan - a contemporary slice of a life story, which changes fixed notions about relationships. Mohit is a marketing whiz kid vying for a step up the career ladder... Mayera - a financial brain with a penchant for shoes... They're a young middle-class corporate couple that's ambitious and likes the good life too. They work hard, they party hard. They're also passionately in love with each other. Their belief: You can live on love and fresh air... Their obstacle: Mayera's wilful bureaucratic father V.K Sehgal. The obstinate old man believes that only a rich man can bring Mayera happiness and a mid-level executive like Mohit simply isn't good enough! Exactly how fragile are relationships in these times where consumer lifestyles dictate their very nature and intensity? Who gets the last laugh when recession strikes and the lack of money tests love... credit-card-junkies privatesector Mohit-Mayera; or safeplaying sarkari, V.K. Sehgal?


ENTERTAINMENT

AsianExpress.co.uk

March 2014 - 1st Edition

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RELEASE DATE: 07/03/2014

FILM: Gulaab Gang DIRECTED BY: Soumik Sen GENRE: Social/Drama STAR CAST: Madhuri Dixit, Juhi Chawla, Priyanka Bose, Vinitha Menon, Tanvi Rao

The story of Gulaab Gang is reportedly based on the life of Sampat Pal Devi, a self trained activist from Bundelkhand, Uttar Pradesh who was married off as a child and then grew up to fight social evils like dowry, child marriage, domestic violence in the villages of India. In course of time, many women joined her and now she has a force of over 10,000 women who are called the Gulabi Gang. A few years back, with some help from a French NGO, Sampat's fight came into the limelight leading to media coverage and a documentary filmed on her. In the trailers, like we had assumed, Dixit kicks ass. She is shown wielding a baton

with a ferocity normally associated with Salman Khan or Akshay Kumar. She is seen flinging men with one effortless slap. She is seen beating up men. Evidently, Sampat's story has been adapted to suit the requirements of a Bollywood entertainer. Likewise, Dixit is also seen dancing (we are not complaining one bit about that though!). However, what is probably the most refreshing and interesting bit in the trailer is its villain - Juhi Chawla. Yes, you heard right. Juhi is indeed who Madhuri is pitted against in the film. And oh boy, isn't she delicious as the soft spoken, nearly-adorable, baby voiced woman whose smile is pure evil gold! Juhi seems to be playing the part of a politician who takes on Rajjo

FILM: Queen RELEASE DATE: DIRECTED BY: 07/03/2014 Vikas Bahl GENRE: Drama STAR CAST: Kangana Ranaut, Rajkummar Rao, Lisa Haydon A girl from a conservative Punjabi family embarks on a global journey of selfdiscovery in this inspirational drama. Twenty-four year-old Rani (Kangana Ranaut) has had a sheltered upbringing in Rajouri, New Delhi. Ever since she was nine, she's been saving up for her honeymoon. And there was never any doubt about who she would marry, as her parents were keen to match her with Vijay (Rajkummar Rao) - the son of a close family friend. But as the wedding draws closer, Vijay drops a bombshell. He calls the whole thing off, citing a mismatch of interests and lifestyles. Devastated, Rani makes a bold decision. She opts to go on honeymoon alone, leaving the country for the very first time! Along the way, she learns more about the world - and herself. Vikas Bahl's spirited Hindi drama was filmed in 145 colourful locations, taking in European capitals Paris, Amsterdam and London.

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(Madhuri) and embarks on an insidious journey to destroy the latter's clout. What makes the film so much more interesting than anything else, is instead of a woman versus man stereotypical battle, Gulaab Gang promises to be a deft exploration of feminity and the woman as an ambitious, strong, sinister, vulnerable entity.

FILM: Total Siyapaa DIRECTED BY: Eshvar Nivas GENRE: Comedy/Drama STAR CAST: Ali Zafar, Yami Gautam, Anupam Kher, Kiron Kher, Sara Khan

While Madhuri turns out to be a real hero with all her brave action sequences, Juhi Chawla has also amazed people with her cunning politician avtar in the movie. With all those bold dialogues and action, the movie is going to be one of the valiant choices of both the Bollywood divas, as far as their filmy career is concerned.

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RELEASE DATE: 07/03/2014

A young man’s desperate attempts to impress his girlfriend's family go hilariously awry in this madcap romantic comedy. Good-natured Pakistani boy Aman (Ali Zafar) is in love with beautiful Indian girl Asha (Yami Gautam). So much so that he has decided to travel to London to ask Asha's parents for her hand in marriage. Alas, her mum (Kiron Kher) and dad (Anupam Kher) are a deeply conservative couple. Everything goes swimmingly until they discover that daughter's handsome young suitor's nationality. Our hapless hero's increasingly desperate attempts to impress his prospective in-laws then unleash total chaos! Set against a scenic London backdrop, this rib-tickling culture clash comedy is written by Neeraj Pandey, creator of the awardwinning 'A Wednesday' and 'Special Chabbis'. Multi-talented actor/musician Ali Zafar stars opposite Yami Gautam of 'Vicky Donor' fame. Veteran real-life couple Anupam and Kiron Kher also appear together on film for the very first time.

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March 2014 - 1st Edition

SMEAPRT 2014 ESCAPE FROM PLANET EARTH STARRING: BRENDAN FRASER, ROB CORDDRY, WILLIAM SHATNER, SARAH JESSICA PARKER, JESSICA ALBA DIRECTOR: CAL BRUNKER U GENRE: COMEDY, FAMILY CERT Aliens are held captive on Earth by an evil general in this crazy animated family comedy. Big, blue, swaggering Scorch Supernova (Brendan Fraser) from the planet Baab is the greatest hero in the universe. That's more than a little annoying for his nerdy brother Gary (Rob Corddry), who works at Baab's mission control. When duplicitous Lena Thackleman (Jessica Alba) picks up an SOS, Scorch wastes no time in responding, even though it's

OUT NOW

COMING SOON

coming from the notoriously dangerous 'dark planet' - Earth! This turns out to be a dastardly trick by megalomaniac General Shanker (William UK RELE ASE Shatner), who's 0 7/03/20DATE: imprisoning aliens in 14 Area 51 and forcing them to work as slave labour. Now it's up to weedy, timid Gary to head to Earth and rescue his brother!

COMING SOON

THE ZERO THEOREM

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CERT

STARRING: CHRISTOPH WALTZ, MÉLANIE THIERRY, DAVID THEWLIS, LUCAS HEDGES, MATT DAMON DIRECTOR: TERRY GILLIAM UK RELE GENRE: DRAMA, SCI-FI ASE DA Terry Gilliam’s latest creation focuses on Qohen Leth (Christoph Waltz) a reclusive computer genius living in an undetermined future, who works as a programmer for the Orwellian organisation Corporation ManCom.

13/

TE:

03/2014 He resides in an ancient derelict church, awaiting a phone call that will give meaning to his life. When the mysterious ‘Management’ summons

him to crack the Zero Theorem, a formula that could answer everything, and the seductive Bainsley (Melanie

NEED FOR SPEED STARRING: AARON PAUL, IMOGEN POOTS, DOMINIC COOPER, RAMON RODRIGUEZ, KID CUDI, MICHAEL KEATON DIRECTOR: SCOTT WAUGH GENRE: ACTION, DRAMA, THRILLER COMING SOON

UNDER THE SKIN STARRING: SCARLETT JOHANSSON, ANTONIA CAMPBELL-HUGHES, PAUL BRANNIGAN DIRECTOR: JONATHAN GLAZER GENRE: SCI-FI, THRILLER Scarlett Johansson stars in a terrifying sci-fi thriller about an alien who preys on hitchhikers! An unnamed alien (Scarlett Johansson) in human form is stalking Glasgow and the Scottish Highlands. Beautiful and alluring in classic femme fatale style, with blood-red lipstick and an unruly mop of jet-black hair, she cruises around in a van

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CERT

UK RELE AS

13/03/2E DATE: 014 targeting men who are unlikely to be missed. Barely able to believe their good fortune, her victims are lured into the van where they meet a truly gruesome end.

Thierry) and the turbulent Bob (Lucas Hedges) barge into his controlled universe, Leth’s existence is set to irrevocably change.

Fresh from prison, framed 14/03/2 for a crime he 014 didn’t commit, street racer Tobey Marshall (Aaron Paul), is 12A hell bent on CERT settling the score. With revenge at the forefront of his mind, he gears up for the ultimate crosscountry race heaving with adrenalinecharged muscle machines and highoctane super cars. When his powerful rival (Dominic Cooper) places a massive bounty on his head, the wheels are set in motion and the race is finally on. Based on the most successful racing game franchise of all time, bursting with explosive action and exhilarating stunts, NEED FOR SPEED accelerates into cinemas in March 2014 UK RELE ASE DAT E:


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ENTERTAINMENT

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SMEAPRT 2014 CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER (ALSO IN 3D!)

E: ASE DAT UK RELE

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CERT

STARRING: HAYLEY ATWELL, DOMINIC COOPER, CHRIS EVANS, ANTHONY MACKIE, SCARLETT JOHANSSON DIRECTOR: ANTHONY RUSSO, JOE RUSSO GENRE: ACTION, SCI-FI

14 28/03/20

After the cataclysmic events in New York with The Avengers, Marvel's ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ finds Steve Rogers, aka Captain America, living quietly in Washington, D.C. and trying to adjust to the modern world. But when a S.H.I.E.L.D. colleague comes under attack, Steve becomes embroiled in a web of intrigue that threatens to put the world at risk. Joining forces with the Black Widow, Captain America struggles to expose the ever-widening conspiracy while fighting off professional assassins sent to silence him at every turn. When the full scope of the villainous plot is revealed, Captain America and the Black Widow enlist the help of a new ally, the Falcon. However, they soon find themselves up against an unexpected and formidable enemy—the Winter Soldier.

LABOR DAY

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CERT

STARRING: KATE WINSLET, JOSH BROLIN, TOBEY MAGUIRE, GATTLIN GRIFFITH DIRECTOR: JASON REITMAN GENRE: DRAMA

UK RELE ‘Labor Day’ AS centers on 1321/03/2E DATE: 014 year-old Henry Wheeler, who struggles to be the man of his house and care for his reclusive mother Adele while confronting all the pangs of adolescence. On a back-to-school shopping trip, Henry and his mother encounter Frank Chambers, a man both intimidating and clearly in need of help, who convinces them to take him into their home and later is revealed to be an escaped convict. The events of this long Labor Day weekend will shape them for the rest of their lives.

U

MUPPETS MOST WANTED

CERT

STARRING: RICKY GERVAIS, FRANK LANGELLA, RAY LIOTTA, CHRISTOPH WALTZ, TINA FEY DIRECTOR: JAMES BOBIN GENRE: FAMILY, COMEDY, MUSICAL The Muppets are back! And this time they are taking UK RELE AS on the world in an exciting 28/03/2E DATE: and hilarious new spy 014 thriller that will take you on a whirlwind adventure of mistaken identity, dastardly sidekicks and double dealing doppelgangers. Featuring star turns from Ricky Gervais, Tina Fey and Ty Burrell, and packed with celebrity cameos, Muppets Most Wanted takes the entire gang on a global tour including stops in Berlin, Madrid, Dublin and London. But mayhem follows them overseas as they find themselves unwittingly entangled in an international crime caper headed by Constantine, the World's Number One Criminal, and dead-ringer for Kermit.

RIO 2 (ALSO IN 3D!) STARRING: ANNE HATHAWAY, ANDY GARCIA, LESLIE MANN, RODRIGO U SANTORO, JESSE EISENBERG CERT DIRECTOR: CARLOS SALDANHA GENRE: FAMILY, COMEDY, MUSICAL Having secured the future of their species, formerly flightless pet macaw Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) and the lovely Jewel (Anne Hathaway) are raising their young family in Rio. But then they learn of an amazing discovery in the Amazon jungle. It seems they weren't the last blue macaws after all. So Jewel cajoles domesticated homebody Blu into embarking on a voyage of discovery in the wild. Along the way, they find her gruff dad Eduardo (Andy Garcia) and hunky, crooning childhood friend Roberto (Bruno Mars). Little wonder our poor hero is feeling rather inadequate. But you UK RELE can be sure he'll prove himself once AS again. All the old gang are back for 04/04/2E DATE: 014 this high-flying sequel to the hit animation.


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Your National and Local Business Round-up

Business news

Eat Better, Live Better, Feel Better t is a common misconception that if you are slim, or do not outwardly appear overweight, that you are ‘healthy’. But what does ‘healthy’ really mean? Does it pertain to our BMI (body mass index)? Does it mean how much we exercise? Or does it mean whether we smoke or not? Being ‘healthy’ is in fact, a combination of all these things, and more. The food we consume plays a big role in determining whether we remain healthy or not. South Asian food is notorious for having high salt, oil, fat and sugar contents. It is no secret that those ladoos, samoseh and pakoreh do us no favours on the waist line; but many are

I

oblivious to the fact that what we South Asians view as ‘standard cuisine’ is in fact doing us detrimental damage on the inside. Having a South Asian background automatically puts us immediately at risk of having certain health conditions due to our genetic make-up. According to the NHS, people from South Asian communities are up to six times more likely to have diabetes than the general population – doubling the risk of a stroke. South Asians are three to five times more likely to suffer from end stage renal failure and the risk of dying prematurely from coronary heart disease is twice as high among South Asian groups in

comparison to the general British population. Though it is not one hundred percent clear why this is, one of the factors that can significantly reduce these alarming statistics is our diet. Be in control of your health by making a few simple changes We’ve outlined three of the major factors that are problems in the typical South Asian diet: Ghee: this staple in South Asian cooking is made from cow’s milk and is classed as a clarified butter. Ghee is lactose free, lacks hydrogenated oils and is said to aid digestion but while aloo parathas with a generous slather of ghee on top are undeniably delicious, do we know

how calorific it really is? Essentially, ghee is a form of pure fat. A single tablespoon (yes, just one) of ghee contains approximately 115 calories, 12.73g of fat (Guideline daily amount [GDA) for women is 70g, for men it is 95g) and 7.9g of saturated fat (GDA for women is 20g and for men 30g) – all this in just one tablespoon! Ghee has a distinct taste– but to keep calories and fat intake down, you can easily substitute it with vegetable, rapseed or olive oil. Sugar: We South Asians do not take a box of Quality Street over when there is a cause for celebration – we take mithai – and lots of it. Whether it is barfi, jalebis, ladoos, gulabjam uns or any other colourful delight, the sugar count in these treats is astronomical. A single ladoo for example, contains approximately 246 calories and 134 of these calories come from fat and sugar. The amount of sugar we put in our warm cup of chai is also a cause for concern, we often forget that the 1, 2, 3, - or dare I say it - 4, teaspoons of sugar in our tea contribute to our daily sugar intake. Whilst the odd sweet treat now and again is absolutely fine our levels of sugar need to be monitored as we are already at a higher risk of diabetes than our non-Asian friends. There are plenty of healthier alternatives; why not opt for frozen yoghurt instead of an ice-cream

or nuts rather than a chocolate? Perhaps you could even swap one of your daily cups of tea for herbal tea to improve complexion, digestion and energy levels! Salt: This is the big one. Too much salt raises blood pressure which can then lead to a heart attack or stroke. According to World Action on Salt, for most of the UK population 75% of salt comes from processed foods; for South Asians, “almost all of the salt consumed is added during cooking or at the table. In fact, more than 90% of South Asian people add salt to their cooking and 40% ‘generally’ add salt to their food at the table”. To reduce salt intake, cut down on snacks with high levels of the white stuff (crisps, Bombay mix, salted nuts), check the labels on your food – food with less than 0.3grams of salt per 100grams is low in salt, butter and ghee are high in salt – use alternatives or unsalted versions...but the best solution: gradually add less salt in your cooking! If done slowly, your taste buds will naturally adjust and you won’t even taste the difference. Make a few changes to your diet and your body will reap the rewards – inside and out! Zéna Butt, Information Officer, Halal Food Authority

Sponsored by the Halal Food Authority

For more information on health or if you have any comments or queries on what you have read please take a look at the Halal Food Authority’s charitable arm ‘Halal Food Foundation’ – www.halalfoodfoundation.co.uk / info@halalfoodfoundation.co.uk


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Game Over A decision has been handed down from the Court of Appeal in the case of Game Station (Jervis – v- Pillar Denton). The decision granted landlords Land Securities, British Land, Hammerson and Intu the right to recover rent from administrators that operated a retail business as a going concern whilst a buyer was sought, despite the rental payment date falling before the date of the administration. These Landlords left out of pocket in the Game administration were granted leave to appeal to the Court of Appeal to challenge whether rents accruing just prior to the appointment of the administrators should to be treated as an expense of the administration (and therefore paid in priority to other creditors) The appeal was sought to overturn the position established in the previous Goldacre and Luminar decisions. The consequence of this decision was that companies were strategically entering into administration on the day immediately following a quarter date, therefore avoiding rental liabilities in full even if they continued to retain possession of the leased property for the whole of the quarter. Game appointed administrators shortly after the quarter day and it is reported that they avoided paying several millions of pounds in rent before selling the business to a new owner. The principles previously established in cases of this nature were that:(1) Where rent is payable in advance and falls due for payment before the administration starts, it is provable but not payable as an administration expense even though the administrator retains the property for the purposes of

the administration for the whole or part of the period for which the payment in advance was payable; (2) Where rent payable in advance becomes due during a period when the administrator is retaining the property for the purposes of the administration, the whole sum is payable as an administration expense even though the administrator gives permission to forfeit or vacates before expiry of the period for which the payment in advance is due (the decision in Goldacre (Offices) Ltd v Nortel Networks UK Ltd). In the case of Leisure Norwich (II) Ltd and others v Luminar Lava Ignite Ltd (in administration) and others, the Court upheld the decision made in Goldacre. The court confirmed that advance quarterly rent falling due prior to the appointment of administrators is not payable as an expense, even if the company continues to trade from the property during the remainder of the quarter. The Game decision marks a shift away from these principles. The decision will find favour with landlords as the timing of administration, as was the case here, will put an end to administrators being legally entitled to continue to use rented premises for up to three months. Landlords previously had to seek rental liabilities as an unsecured creditor but now such liabilities return to be viewed as an expense of the administration and will be treated as accruing from day to day. We at Blacks deal with all aspects of property law and insolvency, acting for both landlords and tenants in all matters arising in respect of leases as well as dealing with administrations.

March 2014 - 1st Edition

Budget to bring few surprises Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne will bear few gifts for voters when he announces his annual budget next Wednesday, little more than a year before the next national election. Osborne looks determined to stick to his message that Britain is only half-way through the belt-tightening plan he launched in 2010 to fix Britain's still wide budget deficit. The ruling Conservative Party is lagging the opposition in opinion polls even as Britain grows faster than other developed economies, and some of its lawmakers are demanding tax cuts to boost their chances in the May 2015 elections. But Osborne and Prime Minister David Cameron are unlikely to heed them much beyond announcing what is expected to be the latest in a series of increases in the amount of money people can earn before paying income tax. Osborne is betting that when Britain goes to the polls in May 2015, voters will stick with his plan to wipe out Britain's budget deficit during the next five-year parliament. The opposition Labour party promises a slightly less aggressive cost-cutting plan

MONEY: Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne is likely to stick to his ‘five-year’ plan when he announces his annual budget next week

with more spending on house-building and infrastructure. But Labour is struggling to recover its economic credibility among many voters who see the deep cuts in spending as the price they are having to pay for policies during its time in power until 2010.

Nok-Ind-ia Please contact Luke Patel on 0113 227 9316 or by email at LPatel@LawBlacks.com

India's Supreme Court on Friday ordered Nokia to give a 35 billion rupee (£344.51 million) guarantee before it transfers one of its biggest handset plants to Microsoft corp. The ruling upheld a lower court verdict over the plant in Chennai, which is the subject of a tax dispute, and had been challenged by the Finnish company. Nokia, which is selling its mobile phones business to Microsoft in a £4.5billion deal, previously agreed to set aside 22.5 billion rupees

(about £215m) in an escrow account while it fights the Indian tax authority's claims in court. But the Delhi High Court last month said that Nokia should also commit to paying an additional amount for any future tax claims and waive some of its rights to legal defence as a condition for transferring Indian assets to Microsoft. The Microsoft deal, which will allow Nokia to shift its focus to network equipment, is expected to close by the end of this month and Nokia had been

keen for a ruling before then. If the plant is not allowed to be transferred, Nokia can run it as a contractor to Microsoft, but not for long, the Finnish company's lawyers have said in court hearings. If Nokia chooses to shut down the Chennai plant, it would leave thousands out of work and Microsoft without a key manufacturing site. It could also mean that Nokia ends up with less money from the Microsoft deal.


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BUSINESS

Traditional fish and chips available now on the Curry Mile By Ashley Grint ashley@asianexpress.co.uk

The home of traditional fish and chips has arrived in Manchester as Uncle B’s is proud to serve up the finest ‘British delight’ direct from the Curry Mile. Opened earlier this year, the good old-fashioned fish and chip restaurant and takeaway is the first of its kind to open on the historic strip for 10 years, with hungry eaters already gathering to get their hands on the good old-fashioned dishes. The eatery has already received major praise from avid foodies who have been calling out for a good-old chippy to arrive on one of the busiest streets in the

North of England. Every dish is expertly prepared, with a bronze crust enclosing a mouthwatering haddock, sourced from the deep blue sea, whilst chips are prepared on site from local potatoes to ensure the goodness is sealed in and fat content is reduced. Only vegetable oil is used by the team of cooks, with ‘chief-fryer’ Chris Farnell, headed with the task of ensuring each fish is the same crispy delight as the last. As well as the classic plating of fish and chips, Uncle B’s also offer some of the finest home-made pies, including the favourite steak and kidney, which could tempt even the fussiest of eaters.

With a real passion for food, owner, Irfan Malik, has been delighted with the response from customers, who he says have been so warm in welcoming his establishment in the heart of Manchester. “Being the first real ‘chippy’ to open here for a decade seems almost unbelievable as it is the ultimate British dish,” he said. “Since opening we have had a great response from all different communities and try to ensure that everybody has an option which meets their tastes. We only use the finest vegetable oils and all our produce is halal so anybody can eat it, regardless of their faith. “We pride ourselves on

only providing the freshest, crispy fish and hopefully that will help us become a favourite here in Manchester.” Despite a couple of other fisheries currently operating out of Wilmslow Road, Uncle B’s claims to be the only traditional chippy, with the others offering foreign options such as kebabs. With a growing reputation as a hot-spot for hungry diners across the city, call in to Uncle B’s today and see why fish and chips is well and truly back on the menu.

Contact:

189 Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M14 5AQ 0161 224 3854

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ADVERTISING SALES EXECUTIVES

WANTED We are looking for a Sales Executive to work for a growing company. Must have at least 3 years of advertising sales experience working in the newspaper and magazine industry.

EARN from £20k to 50k Salary • Bonus Commission • Expenses Car • Mobile Phone

Immediate start if you can answer yes to: Do you have a full UK drivers licence? Can you work of your own initiative? Do you have a thirst for money and success?

Please apply with a letter and cv to: Nadim Hanif Managing Director Media Buzz Ltd 4 Armley Court • Armley Road Leeds LS12 2LB nadim@asianexpress.co.uk

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We are looking for

We are looking for an

VAN OWNERS /DRIVERS

ADMIN/OFFICE

WEST YORKSHIRE to work for a growing company in the following areas:

Manchester Birmingham London Leeds Liverpool Nottingham Must have a full UK drivers licence (Rate of pay to be negotiated)

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AsianExpress.co.uk

March 2014 - 1st Edition

MOTORS

Rolls-Royce: Plug-in hybrid? By Steve Maybury info@asianexpress.co.uk

Imagine this car, with an electrical cord. It could happen, and fairly soon. Although fuel efficiency is just about the last thing that a Rolls Royce brings to mind, but the company may change that with a plug-in hybrid, of all things. The good chaps in Goodwood know they face a challenge in meeting rising fuel efficiency standards and tightening emissions, so they’re experimenting with various ways of squeezing more miles from every drop of petrol. Company CEO Torston Müller-Otvos has said that making a hybrid is essential, not due to customer demand perhaps, but through legal regulation on emissions. Rolls hasn’t mentioned any

specifics for such a car, which is clearly an idea at this point, but it a good guess-timate suggests we might see it within three years. But if a Phantom plug-in came to pass, it almost certainly would use drivetrain components from corporate parent BMW, which has a range of hybrids, the i3 and i8 electric vehicles, and a plug-in setup (featuring a four-cylinder turbocharged engine paired with an electric motor) for the X5 eDrive. For those of you who are thinking that Rolls is suddenly going soft, remember that even the LeFerrari has a gas-electric drivetrain, so it’s not like a Phantom with a cord with be a glorified Prius. This wouldn’t be be the first time Rolls has played with electricity. A few years ago, it unveiled the all-electric

PLUG-IN: Can you imagine the Rolls Royce Phantom drophead with a cable?

Phantom prototype called the 102EX. The absolutely stunning car was a trial balloon that customers promptly shot down. Despite producing more torque than the standard Phantom’s V12, the car’s range, claimed at 120 miles, was just too small for consumers to consider. Many also found the technology incongruous with the marque’s identity, which is a definitive monument to luxury, power, and disposable income. Now, however Rolls say that plug-in hybrid Rolls-Royce would not come with any kind of compromise, and both the recharging times and the range will be top of the agenda. They also say that with the developments in hybrid technology, the issues faced earlier will no longer be a problem.

47


48

MOTORS

AsianExpress.co.uk

March 2014 - 1st Edition

5th Bugatti Legend pics leaked

ningLEAKED: The majority of stun ers tom cus ’s end Leg atti looking Bug are from the Middle East or USA

2013: Only 150 models of the limited edition Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse model were manufactured last year

Nurburgring sold for £84m

By Steve Maybury info@asianexpress.co.uk

An image of the fifth Bugatti Legend has appeared online, ahead of its official reveal at the Beijing Motor Show next month. Known as the Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse Elizabeth Junek, the model serves as the penultimate part of the Legends special edition range. Dedicated to Czech female racing driver Elizabeth Junek, the Veyron will be limited to just three units – like all models

in this special edition line-up. Bugatti has finished the Elizabeth Junek model with a two-tone black and yellow exterior, in homage to the colours of the racing driver’s car. The alloy wheels and fuel filler cap also wear the same colour combination. Though to be confirmed, it will be powered by the same 1183bhp 8.0-litre W16 engine from the standard model, capable of 0-62mph in 2.6 seconds. The Grand Sport Vitesse also holds the record for the fastest open-top car with a record-

setting top speed of 254mph. Like the other Legend models, expect the Elizabeth Junek to carry a price tag of around £1.8million. Previous Legends models have included the Jean Bugatti, dedicated to one of the men responsible for shaping the brand, and the Jean-Pierre Wimille, named after one of Bugatti's most famous factory drivers. So far, Bugatti hasn't had any trouble selling all Legends Edition cars, with most buyers being from the Middle East or USA.

The world’s most famous racetrack - the Nurburgring, known as ‘Green Hell’, has officially been sold. Capricorn, a Dusseldorf-based parts company, has purchased the 12.9-mile track for a reported €100 million (£84 million), almost two years after the racetrack first went up for sale. The deal also includes an investment of around €25 million (£20 million) to help further develop the site and improve security. The new owners will launch a new company called Capricorn Nurburgring, which will manage the new business of 1 January 2015. "As an enthusiastic motor sport fan, the Nurburgring has always been a passion of mine," said Dr. Robertino Wild, managing partner of the Capricorn group. “We have identified the enormous potential of this unique race venue and would like to optimise the existing structures, but above all turn the vision of an Automotive Technology Cluster into reality.” Built in 1927, the Nurburgring covers an area of 937 acres and has hosted over 30 Formula 1 races on its Grand Prix circuit. Nestling within the confines of the track, manufacturers have also built development centres where cars can be tuned after testing.


AsianExpress.co.uk

March 2014 - 1st Edition

MOTORS

49

New Audi TT previewed by official sketches At next month’s Geneva Motor Show Audi will pull the wraps from a completely new iteration of the compact sports car that tore up the rulebook and changed the course of design in its class at its 1998 launch. For the third generation of the iconic TT, the designers have reinterpreted a host of ideas from that first, game-changing template. The front end of the new Audi TT has dominant horizontals. The Singleframe grille is broad and flat. Two contours form a Vpattern over the bonnet. The position of the four rings is also new - they now sit centrally on the hood, echoing the R8. Struts divide up the large air inlets. The headlights repeat this motif – they are structured with divider struts acting as reflectors for the daytime running light. Audi can supply the headlights as an option with LED technology or its pioneering Matrix LED technology, where controllable individual light-emitting diodes generate the main beam. Many details of the new Coupé’s profile are reminiscent of the first generation’s classic design. The sill contour forms a powerful light

NEW: Third-generation Audi TT teased in official sketches, set for a full reveal at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show

edge and the wide wheel arches constitute distinct geometrical entities. At the front, the wheel arch intersects the bonnet join, which continues over the door as the tornado line and extends all the way to the rear. The flat greenhouse looks like an entity in its own

right. The shape of the C-pillar, with a slight kink, gives the TT a powerful, athletic look and enhances the impression of tension. At the rear, too, horizontal lines reinforce the wide and focused impression.The struts in the rear lights pick up on the headlights’ motif.

They remain permanently on – another Audi innovation. The third brake light with a flat strip shape links the two units on either side. All engine versions have two large, round exhaust tailpipes in the diffuser. Like all Audi S models, the TTS features four tailpipes. Inside, too, the styling is so light it almost seems to float, evoking the clean sports car character of the new Audi TT. The centre console and door trims have flowing, matching shapes. Seen from above, the dashboard resembles the wing of an aircraft. The round air vents, a classic TT feature, have a turbine-like look and incorporate the air conditioning controls. This solution – and the elimination of the central MMI monitor, now replaced by the Audi virtual cockpit – paves the way for the dashboard’s remarkably slim architecture. Sharper lines and a more dramatic interplay between surfaces will be particularly notable features of the third generation of the Audi TT, but they only scratch the surface of a pedigree sports car that has been systematically refined in every department, both inside and out.

Citroën’s new city car New Citroën C1, a cute-looking little city car will go on sale in the UK in July, with an equally cute price of just over £8,000. Available with three and five doors, the new C1 range starts at just £8,245 for the C1 Touch VTi 68 manual 3-door, rising to £11,935 for the new C1 Airscape Flair VTi 68 ETG 5-door. With eight body colours to choose from, including four metallic options, three colour choices for the fabric roof, three wheel designs and four interior upholstery finishes, the car offers a sweet and tempting option for young buyers thinking of buying their first motor. The New C1 range is powered by two latestgeneration petrol engines: a VTi 68, available with either a 5-

speed manual or a 5speed gearbox, or as an eVTi 68 Airdream 5-speed manual with Stop & Start technology. There is also the addition of Citroën’s latest 3-cylinder ‘PureTech’ VTi 82 engine with a 5-speed manual transmission. Generously equipped, the lead-in New Citroën C1 Touch standard specification includes ABS, EBA, ESP, power steering, high frequency remote central locking, electric front windows, six airbags, an MP3 compatible audio system, a USB socket and LED daytime running lights. Optional extras include automatic air conditioning, automatic headlights, keyless entry & start and styling details such as black leather upholstery and various interior colour packs.


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MOTORS

AsianExpress.co.uk

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123 YKP

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A SH42D ASKI

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HE11ENR HE11ENT

HE11OO X HD11EEP HK11NGS

HK11MAR

HM11LES

K4JOL

K40SUM

K444BAH K77 MYE

no withheld numbers

K7 PPA

KA11 DEM KA11 SYM

KA51ERH

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M011VER

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RV11JAY RY11SAF

RY11SUF

S011LJA SOC4R

S11LYM

S11 OHL

SH03B SH04 BEK SH10AEB

no withheld numbers

SH10ABY

SH10KET

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Jaguar XE This week at the Geneva Auto Show, Jaguar confirmed that it will bring an allnew mid size sports sedan to production the Jaguar XE. The XE will be the first product from the new advanced aluminium architecture, which was showcased in the C-X17 concept car back in 2013, with global rollout scheduled for 2015. It will be the first aluminium monocoque vehicle in the segment and brings all the benefits of aluminium: lightness and stiffness for impressive handling, performance, refinement and efficiency. The Jaguar XE will be the first user of the Ingenium engines in four-cylinder two-litre petrol and diesel variants. They will be built at Jaguar Land Rover's new UK Engine Manufacturing Facility. Utilising the most flexible engine architecture ever produced by Jaguar Land Rover, the new engines are

Advanced aluminium monocoque mid-sized sports car announced by British carmaker promised to be both efficient and powerful – including top speeds of over 300km/h (186mph), and emissions lower than 100g of CO2 per km. Speaking at the Geneva Auto Show Dr Ralf Speth, Chief Executive Officer, Jaguar Land Rover, confirmed: “We announced just a few weeks ago that our new Engine Manufacturing Centre would produce a new family of premium,

lightweight, low-friction, low emission four-cylinder petrol and diesel units. “The first of our Ingenium engine range will be used in our all-new midsized Jaguar sports sedan – the XE.” The name of the Jaguar XE follows a logical progression, positioned alongside the XF and XJ saloons in the range. Full XE technical and range details will be announced later in 2014.

Utilising the most flexible engine architecture ever produced by Jaguar Land Rover, the new engines are promised to be both efficient and powerful

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Formula O ne Ret u r n s Flying start for Force India, as new-look side clinches double points finish By Ashley Grint ashley@asianexpress.co.uk

After months of waiting, the 2014 Formula One campaign finally got under way last weekend with sports fans all over the world tuning in to see what the latest instalment of the fast and furious sport had to offer. Last season was a dominant year for Sebastian Vettel, yet his Australian appearance was short lived as his new look Red Bull engine stuttered after just five laps, leading the German to an early exit. Lewis Hamilton started on pole, yet also failed to complete the race after his car’s loss of power after just two laps, allowing his Mercedes teammate, Nico Rosberg, to steal the show with an emphatic victory in the opening race. Elsewhere, there was delight in the Force India tent after both racers clinched points finishes, after second placed Daniel Ricciardo was disqualified after the race for failing to oblige to new fuel consumption rules. The Red Bull driver’s mistake allowed Force India’s Sergio perez to steal tenth position, and one point for the constructors, adding to Nico Hulkenberg’s impressive eight point haul for finishing sixth. Both drivers were making their first starts for the new look side, and for Nico Hulkenberg it was the perfect

start to the latest chapter in his racing career. “Sixth place is a positive way to start the season,” he said. “I was very happy to see the chequered flag – the first time I’ve done so in Melbourne – and it’s important to score some good points early on. “I made a strong start and enjoyed good track position for the first two stints when I was running up in fourth. “The only real issue I had was some front left graining on the soft tyres, which never really cleared up and that compromised my first two stints. It was a shame to lose two positions at my second stop [to Button and Alonso] but it looks like some of the cars around us have a bit more pace at the moment. “I want to thank the team for the amazing job they’ve done over the winter and this weekend to get us to this point. It’s been a great effort and it’s nice to reward everyone with some points at the first race.” Up next on the Formula One calendar is the Malaysian Grand Prix, set to be held on Sunday 30th March. Last year’s track champion, Vettel, will be hoping for less controversy than his previous Malaysian appearance, where he overshadowed a fine performance from the Red Bull team, going against team orders to pass his teammate, Mark Webber, to set up a feisty looking podium.

TENTH: After Daniel Ricciardo’s late disqualification, Sergio Perez moved up to tenth spot and picked up a single point

PODIUM: Nico Rosberg clinched the first title of the 2014 Formula One season with a convincing display, whilst teammate, lewis Hamilton, was forced to retire (l-r) Daniel Ricciardo (DQ), Nico Rosberg, Kevin Magnussen

SIXTH: Nico Hulkenberg had a day to remember as he finished the Malaysian circuit for the first time, picking up eight points in the process


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A fighting chance Boxer rejects huge sponsorship deal to ‘discourage underage drinking’ ROLE MODEL: Suz Member has had eight European Boxing Federation bouts to date, yet when he was offered the chance to make the step up to a full-time professional, by a potential alcohol sponsor, he declined due to his public image

much they were offering. I do talks in schools and prisons, so what kind of message would I be spreading if I came in with a big alcohol sign on my back? “It could have been a millionpound deal and I would have still had to say ‘no’. It really was a simple decision because I was not willing to sell-out to this sort of company when I am in the public eye and should be spreading a positive message.” Member was initially approached by the unnamed, potential sponsors

18 months ago, yet only spoke about it openly earlier this month during a radio interview. As a practicing Muslim, Member also stated that to accept such a deal would have only been condescending to his faith and his way of life. “Of course religion had a part to play as well but it was mostly about protecting children,” he explained. “I was very humbled to receive the offer and it is not about the money, I don’t want any more than they are offering, it just seemed

wrong to accept.” The firefighter turned boxer, who still works nine to five and has to fund the majority of his boxing career independently, has turned down fees previously to help others. In 2012, he was approached to become one of Tanzania's official representatives after being recognised for the charity work he did in 2012 in neighbouring country, Zambia, where he donated his entire fight purse to a local school to cover the costs of the children's exams. “That was an amazing experience,” he said. “I got invited over there to have a few fights and then they tried to pay me at the end. “There was no chance I was going to take the money though. Children were there with no shoes on their feet so how would it look if I came in and just took whatever money they had.” Member not only gave the funds to the children in the area he was working with, but also gave the rest of his purse to a homeless centre in the country. Now, the welterweight fighter, who has had eight European Boxing Federation bouts to date, winning six by knockout and losing two, needs a sponsor to help him finally achieve his dream of turning professional full-time. He explained: “I feel like I am at a level now where I cannot only give back to sponsors but also get their name out there on a global stage. “I’m just me, a hard worker who has the drive to get to the next level yet just need a partner to help me on my way.” If you would like to contact Suz Member about any sponsorship deals, please email info@suzmember.com or find him on Twitter via, @SuzMember

There are not many professional athletes who would turn down a sixfigure sponsorship deal because it ‘gives the wrong message to children’, yet that is exactly what one rising boxer has done. Suz Member, from Preston, may struggle to pay for his training costs and does not have enough revenue from his sporting career to turn professional full time. So when an unnamed alcohol company offered him a six-figure sum to become one of their brand ambassadors it may have seemed

too good to be true. Yet, for Member, who also trains children in boxing and has most recently been appointed as a ‘Goodwill Ambassador to the UK’ by the Tanzanian boxing board, it would have been the ‘wrong career move’. “Don’t get me wrong, I’m certainly no angel and have had my share of bad moments in my youth,” he said. “But when I got approached by this company I instantly turned it down without even hearing how

One of football’s most influential antiracism groups have called for tougher sanctions to be put in place for players found guilty of making racist offences. The Kick It Out organisation want to see the minimum suspension increased from five games to ten after witnessing Nicolas Anelka being served a five-game ban for using the quenelle gesture in a goal celebration. Neither Anelka, nor the FA, decided to appeal the suspensions, which was handed out by an independent regulatory commission, earlier this month. The anti-racism group claim that the Frenchman’s ‘excuse’, that he didn’t know of any anti-Semitic connotations surrounding the quenelle, was ‘beyond feasibility’. Anelka's club West Bromwich Albion have also come in for criticism with Kick It Out saying the Baggies should have

Increase the ban’ Anti-Racism group call for tougher sanctions apologised for the offence caused by the striker's goal celebration against West Ham on 28th December. Anelka had told the commission he made the gesture in support of French comedian, Dieudonne M'bala M'bala, who has been convicted seven times of anti-Semitic crimes, but that he was unaware of any anti-Semitic associations. A statement from the group read: “Kick It Out finds it difficult to reconcile the sanctions imposed and conclusions reached by the commission.

“There are many ambiguities that are not easily reconcilable with the final outcome. For instance, Anelka has attended one of Dieudonne's live performances and admits to being a friend of his, and to claim that he does not understand the anti-Semitic connotations of the quenelle is beyond feasibility. “The FA provided a hard body of evidence, complemented by in-depth research into the quenelle by an appointed expert, to justify a stronger ban than its five-match minimum.

“People will be perplexed as to why it has not been challenged considering they were clearly seeking a sanction which was quite different. “Kick It Out urges the FA to review its anti-discrimination regulations and increase its minimum ban for players found guilty of discriminatory acts to 10 matches, in line with UEFA, so as to provide a much more meaningful deterrent to deal with potential offences.”

BANNED: Nicolas Anelka was handed a five-game ban and fined £80,000 for using the quenelle as a celebration for a goal back in December


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‘A year to prove myself’ Former Prizefighter champion readies himself for ‘HUGE’ 2014 Back page story continued

it has only acted as motivation for Anwar, who vows to make it up to all his supporters and himself. He said: “2014 is a year to prove myself “I want to show the local fans why they once again worthy of a British Title, I will should continue supporting me and show be working harder than ever to achieve them the difference that their support my goal. makes,” he said. “I have the most loyal “I need to get back on track and prove supporters who have been there through to everyone that I am a great fighter and the set back is all a part of the journey. At the wins and the losses. “It has been difficult [returning to the end of the day, you win some; you lose work], but nothing I can't handle and some, that's boxing for you. What matters that's how I started before winning is how you come back. Prizefighter. It's a lot of hard work but...it “I'm determined to show the boxing world what I'm capable of doing. Last year makes my aims and goals much clearer didn't end how I wanted it to but that's all and gives me more motivation to reach them.” in the past. Anwar’s next bout is set to take place at “I'm focussed on what is ahead and the same venue where he suffered defeat what must be done in order to get there, last time out, at the Leeds United which is to, eat, sleep and live boxing.” His loss at the hands of Simone Lucas in Banqueting Suite, Elland Road, on the 28th March. his last outing in September came as a Despite no opponent yet being named, shock to many in the boxing world, with the light-welterweight boxer says he is the former Prizefighter winner losing on ‘hungrier’ than ever before for victory, and home soil to the Nottingham fighter. Since then, he has been forced to return knows that this fight is the perfect chance to work, training alongside his day-job, yet to kick-start his rise back to the top.

Serbian Success Djokovic clinches Indian Wells title Pictures of Novak Djokovic with trophies is becoming something of a common sight yet the world number two was certainly made to work for his latest success as he played out a classic encounter with Roger Federer. After losing the first set, 3-6, the Serbian came back to pick up a second set victory and a close encounter in the third was only decided by a tie-break with Djokovic eventually winning 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (7/3). In what is Djokovic’s first title of 2014, he spoke of his delight of picking up the Indian Masters title for the third time and now looks to kick-on with the rest of his season. “You always have to dig deep against Roger,” he said. “I'm just very happy and thrilled to be able to win the first title in this season. “Mentally this definitely helps my confidence.” Federer, aiming for an unprecedented fifth Indian Wells title, wrapped up the first set in just over half-an hour, looking more confident than his opponent who was suffering his worst start to a year since 2006. The Swiss veteran broke his opponent when Djokovic missed out on a backhand, whilst a pair of double faults from the Serb showed signs of low confidence.

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CHAMP: Novak Djokovic claimed the Indian Wells title for the third time in his career after defeating Roger Federer in an action-packed final

Yet, as the game played out, Djokovic rallied, taking the second set, 6-3, before the third was settled in a tie-break. Clinching two break points, the 26-year-old finally claimed victory after more than two and a quarter hours to walk away with the Indian Wells title, and take his personal head-to-head record with Federer to 16-17. “It was a very even match,” said Djokovic. “As I said before the match, very few points will decide a winner, and that's what

happened.” In reply, Federer, who had not dropped a single set leading up to the final, said he was feeling good about his form. “Personally, I'm very happy. I think I'm playing great tennis now and I'm really enjoying myself,” Federer said. “Of course, I would have liked to have more won a few more points at the end but Novak made it tough, so congratulations to him for winning.”

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‘A year to prove myself’

CONFIDENT: Adil ‘The Platinum Kid’ Anwar, is determined to prove himself to his fans this year, as he aims to get back into contention for a British title shot

By Ashley Grint ashley@asianexpress.co.uk

After back-to-back defeats at the end of 2013, Adil Anwar’s flourishing boxing career took a huge body blow, yet now, with his first bout of the year just one week away, he vows to come back stronger and better than ever before. At just 26-years-old, the ‘Platinum Kid’ certainly has time on his side, and his loyal followers will, no doubt, continue to support their Yorkshire battler. However, if he is ever to get back into contention for a British title, the Leeds ace will have to ensure 2014 begins in a different way than his previous year finished.

Continued on page 55

Former Prizefighter champion readies himself for ‘HUGE’ 2014

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