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Raj Thackeray addressing party workers in Mumbai

Uddhav Faces Political Onslaught, From BJP And Raj Thackeray

The political focus in Maharashtra once again turned against Shiv Sena leader Uddhav Thackeray when he was challenged by the BJP and Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) leader Raj Thackeray in the course of the day. BJP MLA Atul Bhatkhalkar referred to Thackeray’s past announcement of resigning his legislative council membership and asked, “Where is that resignation?” Uddhav had made the announcement the night he quit the chief ministership following the rebellion in the Sena led by Eknath Shinde. In that connection, Bhatkhalkar ridiculed Uddhav and taunted, “You are telling your followers to come to the streets to fight for people’s problems. But what about you? Why can’t you come to the legislature and highlight them? Bhatkhalkar alleged that many crucial decisions under Uddhav’ government were taken at the behest of Aaditya Thackeray. He said these arbitrary decisions had cost Mumbai billions of rupees. Bhatkhalkar demanded a thorough enquiry of all such matters. Raj Thackeray, while addressing his party workers, challenged cousin Uddhav on many counts. He said, ”PM Narendra Modi and Union home minister Amit Shah had announced from public platforms in 2019 that Maharashtra’s next chief minister would be Devendra Fadnavis. Some of the announcements were made when you were on the same dais. Why did you remain silent then?” Raj announced his plans to tour Maharashtra after the 10-day Ganesh festival is over.
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SPG Inducts Karnataka's Mudhol Hounds For PM's Security

For PM Narendra Modi atmanirbhar is just not a slogan for his countrymen, it is also meant for his proximate security — Special Protection Group (SPG). Recently, he had talked about Karnataka’s Mudhol hound breed of canines, which have an international reputation for their predatory skills as well as looks. Mudhol hound dogs have been used by predators since the times of kings. The PM had stated that if this breed is encouraged, then other Indian breeds too would get a boost. Taking a cue, SPG which usually prefers Labradors and German Shepherds decided to induct the ‘sharp-sighted, agile and indigenous hounds’. The PM`s security team chose Mudhol hounds after considering the Rajapalayam dog breed from Tamil Nadu and Rampur Greyhound from Uttar Pradesh. The dogs already serve with the Indian armed forces and some paramilitary forces. Now, they could become the first indigenous breed to be part of the SPG.  In April, SPG officials visited the Canine Research & Information Center (Mudhol Hound) at Thimmapur in Karnataka’s Bagalkot district and took two male puppies. They will first undergo four months of training and later rigorous coaching. Lean and tall structured and tiny heads are the special characteristics of this breed. Predators prefer this breed for its capacity to run long distances without getting tired and special sniffing abilities. These dogs weigh between 20-22 kg and grow up to 72 centimeters.

Odisha’s Chief Secretary Suresh Mohapatra Likely To Get Second Service Extension

Post his six-month extension, Chief Secretary of the Odisha government Suresh Chandra Mohapatra is due to retire at the end of August 2022. Sources say he may get another service extension. Retaining Mohapatra is a distinct possibility because the Odisha government could not finalise candidates for the top job, though several names were doing rounds including that of Pradeep Kumar Jena, Secretary, Ministry of Corporate Affairs. Sources say the Odisha government has sent a request letter to the Department of Personnel and Training seeking extension of services of Mohapatra, a 1986 batch IAS Officer. In all probability the Centre would accede to Odisha Government’s request. It is not unusual for capable IAS officers to get a couple of service extensions and there has been past precedence. For instance, RN Das who was Chief Secretary of Odisha between 1992 and 1995 got 3 extensions of six months each when Biju Patnaik was the Chief Minister.  Mohapatra, one of the three candidates whose names was short-listed to be appointed as the Chairman of OERC, may be out of the fray, once he gets another six months extension. This means the Odisha government will have to decide between the other two short-listed candidates, Arun Panda (retired former secretary in the Ministry of MSME) and Union Territory cadre retired IAS officer Manoj Parida.
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Vijay Deverakonda: One More Telugu Star Getting Ready To Storm Bollywood

Trade buzz is that Vijay Deverakonda’s Liger has a better chance at the box office as it features a south star. Is the audience today more receptive to South films? Not really. Not all south films dubbed in Hindi or their remakes have been a success.  But, generally speaking movies starring Chiranjeevi, Ram Charan, Mohanlal have done well.  In the last one year films like KGF 2, RRR, and Pushpa recorded big draws in the Hindi belt.  A trade source said, “It’s not that all the movies are accepted. If the audience accepted three movies then they have also rejected 10 movies from the south. The general perception is that south films are better in narrative and presentation while Bollywood is failing to deliver on the content front.” Liger has been shot both in Hindi and Telugu languages and it marks the debut of Vijay Deverakonda, a huge star in Telugu film industry. His Telugu film Arjun Reddy remake Kabir Singh has been a huge hit in Hindi.  To project himself as a pan India star Vijay is going all out to promote Liger by chatting with social media influencers to visiting malls and eateries so as to make his face familiar to the north audience.  Interestingly, Vijay, who has a big fan base, is an outsider who made it big in the Telugu film industry by his sheer performance.
Sanjay Raut

Jailed Sena MP Sanjay Raut To Write A Book On Patra Chawl Deal, To Uncover Truth

Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut has announced that he is writing a book that will uncover the truth about the controversial Patra Chawl housing redevelopment matter, which has landed him in judicial custody. Raut’s had been a daily TV appearance till his arrest by ED on August 1. He was held in connection with the mega deal which would run in a thousand crore rupees at the most conservative estimates. For over two years, Raut used to castigate every person and party against the Sena under Uddhav Thackeray. He would appear on the small screen many times every day and dare the government to arrest him. Even after extension of his ED custody today, Raut showed that he has maintained his aggressive posture. The special PMLA court has extended his custody till 5 September. Over the past two days, ED has dug out some more information which can damage Raut’s case if proved correct. According to tax authorities, two cars with Raut belong to a real estate firm. Earlier, it was alleged that he had purchased property near Alibaug from the proceeds he received from some builder. Raut said he is working on a tome that will throw light on the Patra Chawl matter. He reiterated that he was not connected with it in any manner. The case against him is ‘false,’ he said.


Editor’s Note: Big Punch In Small Pack

It is the Third Anniversary of Short Post and as a news media startup launched during the Covid-19 pandemic it certainly feels better than good to find ourselves where we are today. Here, I must cite the unstinted support of our seasoned contributors, all senior editors in the country, who brought a great degree of maturity and sagacity to the Short Post newsroom. But for them, our tagline “Authentic Gossip”, an Oxymoron, would not have matured viably. Our user numbers may be small but our stories have created the desired impact among people who matter — decision makers and influencers. We offer a big punch in a small pack and Short Post with its 225-word stories has been punching above its weight category. Having posted close to 3,000 stories in the last 36 months, Short Post, I feel, is an idea whose time has come.
And this is vindicated by our two marquee advertisers – IDFC FIRST Bank and ICICI Lombard. Both believed in our story and have supported us from Day one. A big thank you to both.
If you look at the media landscape – print, TV and digital — it is a mixed bag. There are job losses as some outfits have closed down while a lucky few were bailed out by large corporate houses. Yes, there is a lot of action in the digital space. However, the entry of corporate houses has raised the question of independence of news media outfits. Sadly, there are just a handful of independent media outfits in the country that are highly respected for their neutrality. At Short Post, our credo is not to take sides, prejudge issues or be biased but, informing readers of behind-the-scenes happenings. In essence, Short Post strives to be a neutral editorial platform — neither anti-establishment nor pro-establishment.
As I said last year, disruptions in the media world are moving at a fast and furious pace. Technology is playing a very big role in how content is generated and consumed. But, we are neither alarmed nor perturbed as it is all a part of the evolution process. What gives us comfort is that AI is unable to create original gossipy content. And that is the news arena where we have achieved a distinction.