The Nawab is gone…

The words that conjure up when one mentions the Nawab of Pataudi are regal, class, dignity and grace. Unfortunately, I was not around at the time when the Nawab had Test Captained India and played 46 Test matches for the country, but the archives have shared his glorious days to the later generations. I came across this write up in the Herald Sun and thought of sharing it here. It has been written by David McMahon, a former sportswriter, and opinion editor of the Herald Sun. Pataudi’s sense of fine humor strikingly adds more elegance to this rather complete man. A Tiger in the complete sense.

My good friend the Nawab of Pataudi

THE peerless Jack Fingleton knew talent when he saw it. So it’s not surprising he was a big fan of Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi – better known as the Nawab of Pataudi – who has died in an Indian hospital.

Fingleton watched with growing admiration as Pataudi, batting with a runner because of a leg injury, made a brave 75 at the MCG in the 1967-68 Test series, coming to the wicket with his side five down for a paltry 25.

Pataudi was only 21 when he became India’s youngest Test captain, ironically just months after a car accident that robbed him of the sight in his right eye.

He was born into Raj-era royalty. Like his father, he became a Test cricketer.

He courted and married the beautiful Sharmila Tagore, one of the biggest stars of Indian cinema. And his son Saif is a major Bollywood star in his own right.

But there were two myths about him.

The first was that he modelled himself on the batting of his father, who played under Douglas Jardine in the Bodyline series.
The second was that he earned the nickname “Tiger” because of his unique fielding skills.

In his post-cricket days he edited a national sports magazine, Sportsworld, for a major Indian publishing group and I happened to work as his associate editor.

I was fresh out of university, yet one of the most famous men in the international cricketing pantheon put me swiftly at ease. We found common ground in each other’s company and he soon put me right on both scores when I eventually put them to him.

He never had the opportunity to model himself on his father, simply because he never actually saw his father play cricket.

And he confessed that he was called Tiger long before he picked up a cricket bat – his sister gave him the nickname after watching her infant brother rock back and forth on all fours.

For a fearless aristocrat who embodied courage in sport, Pataudi had only one weak link.

It wasn’t his cover drive. It wasn’t his peerless fielding. It wasn’t the split-second delay that caused his chin to be split open in pre-helmet days by an Andy Roberts bouncer during the Eden Gardens Test in the 1974-75 series.

It was his fear of flying. That was why he always travelled by train in India. You never saw him at an airport, waiting for a flight. He took the train.

Always. Ah, you say, but what about the time he took long flights to play cricket for his country?

True, he did board international flights when he had no other option, but he gritted his teeth at the thought of boarding a commercial airliner.

Not surprisingly, he travelled by train during his days as an editor. One evening, he invited the entire editorial staff to the station as he left on a 1500km journey.

So we found ourselves in his compartment, talking about many things. The curtains were closed and because we were in animated discussion, not one of us realised the express train had started moving.

When one of our colleagues poked his head into the corridor and was told by a horrified railway superintendent that the train was picking up speed, Pataudi was as calm as ever. A born leader to the core, he merely said with a shrug: “You guys had better come to Delhi with me.”

It was in pre-mobile phone days, however. So we turned down our editor’s suggestion. We jumped, all six of us, from a moving train, leaving our boss shaking his head. It was the only time we disobeyed an order from him.

One of the questions I was asked most often was whether he actually wrote the magazine editorials that appeared in his name. I always answered truthfully. Every word that appeared under his byline was written by him. His editorials might have been infrequent, but they were incisive, they were very well-read  and they never needed editing.

He was gracious in the company of the twentysomethings who comprised the magazine’s editorial staff. Never once did he remind us he was born to royalty. Never once did he remind us he had captained his country.

And never once did he tell us how he had rebuilt his life after the terrible accident that took his eye and forced him to re-think his approach to batting.

People who did not know him well thought him aloof, but in truth this was not the case. He was a shy man, an intensely private man.

When strangers came up and pressed his hand, he never turned them away. He would acknowledge their greetings, but I knew he would have much preferred to be playing an afternoon of bridge with friends who called him `Tiger’  rather than strangers who hailed him as `Pat’.

I always suspected that the use of the abbreviation `Pat’  would make him cringe but the man was far too diplomatic to say so openly. Adulation in the street was common, it was offered years after he retired, and he was never churlish enough to greet it with brusque behaviour. He was an aristocrat in every sense.

When my father died after a prolonged illness, a hand-written letter arrived in the mail. It was from Tiger.

I still have the letter, all these years later. It said, in part, that someone like him who had suffered the loss of his own father could well understand what I was going through.

There was also a capricious side to his nature. That slow grin would take over when the mood was on him. We, his colleagues, often saw the mischievous side of a very private man.

On one occasion, he told us how he had been admitted to hospital in England in the late Seventies and he had made a borderline quip to a hospital staffer.

He asked if the medico had seen the funny side. Tiger shook his head, wincing at the memory. “No, my friend,” he said. “And the most valuable advice I can give you is simply this … never annoy a person who has free rein to jab needles into various parts of your body.”

Then there was the time he played a prank on a cricketing colleague. During a Test match in Calcutta (not the Test in which Roberts clobbered him) the team bus drove past the palatial marble museum known as the Victoria Memorial. Glancing casually out of the window, he told one of his teammates that it was actually one of his family’s palaces. Knowing how outrageous the statement was, he fully expected the teammate to snigger.

But then Tiger realised the teammate had fallen for the deception. So he decided to go one step further. He told the teammate that he would be welcome to join the royal clan at an exclusive gathering after the day’s play. Formal clothing, of course, for a formal dinner, at a formal venue such as the palace.

The teammate duly arrived at the Victoria Memorial that night, clad in a suit and tie, asking for the “Nawab Sahib”. Years later, Tiger’s shoulders would still shake with laughter at the memory.

I have another treasured memory of Tiger. He joined his Sportsworld colleagues, as he often did, on the lawns of a local club for an evening of snacks, camaraderie and good company.

Then some children set up wickets, produced a cricket bat and ball and an impromptu game began. One by one, we all joined in. Yes, even Tiger. He did not bat, preferring to let a succession of hero-worshipping schoolkids take their turn at the wicket.

But he fielded. And fielded well. And one of my colleagues, who kept wicket that day, still remembers the ferocity of one low, accurate, throw from the man who once captained India.

Three days ago I received a text message from a former Sportsworld colleague now based in Singapore, telling me that Tiger was ill. I actually quoted Tiger’s home number back to him and asked if the number was still in use or if it had changed. I also asked if anyone knew Tiger’s best contact number. The answer was no. I did not pursue it, because I just didn’t think Tiger was under any real threat.

I thought he was sulking because he couldn’t find a foursome to play bridge. And yes, he was precisely the sort of bloke who would check himself into a major hospital if he figured it was the only joint in town where he could get a half-decent bridge game.

In retrospect, we were an odd pair. I, an ordinary bloke; he, an aristocrat. I, a club-grade cricketer; he, a Test skipper. I, a Christian; he, a Muslim.

Ah, but there WAS something in common. He and I worshipped the same god, really.

The god of cricket.

 

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51 Responses to “The Nawab is gone…”

  1. Sharmila ji,
    Just read your post. Thank you.
    Prayers ….

    • You are welcome Rupam.

    • Sharmilaji, I remember meeting the Nawab in Guyana in the very early 70’s . and again in India in 1977. His memories will live on in his children and you.

      • Vijay – Thats so nice to know. However, I am not Pataudi’s Begum who I think you are mistaking me to be. Thanks for your comment 🙂

      • Sharmila,

        Vijay is not very far off the mark. But there are a few fine differences.

        Our Sharmila is as beautiful as the Nawab’s begum, only a lot a younger.

        Sharmila Tagore, the begum, read her grandpa Tagore’s poems.

        Our Sharmila writes her own.

        The begum spoke Hindi in Bengali.

        Our Sharmila speaks Tamil in English.

        The Begum was the Chairman of the Censor Board of Films in India.

        Our Sharmila is a film critic.

        The Begum looks at Saif and Soha with motherly love.

        Our Sharmila doesn’t look at Saif and Soha. She looks at Amitabh Bachchan, Rajini and Hrithik Roshan.

        The Begum accepted a Nawab for husband.

        Our Sharmila wouldn’t touch a Nawab with a barge pole.

      • Aye to the very last line! It sums me up rather perfectly.

  2. Movie maker Manoj Kumar, had the same fear of aircrafts. He preferred travel by trains, at least till the time before Mamta became the rail minister; he gave up traveling altogether after that.

    I remember the days when Sharmila Tagore married Nawab of Pataudi’s son, then called chote nawab. She was named Ayesha, after the youngest wife of the prophet.

    Some of the hardliners in my community were outraged. Their rant was, ‘How could Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore’s lineage marry a feudal muslim?!’

    I didn’t quite understand the import then.

    For one because my parents were reasonably liberal and also I was too young to have opinions. (For some strange reasons I had arrived at the notion that people could not make children unless they were married.)

    None of those peers are alive now. So, I can’t say what they might have felt today, now that Ayesha is a widow and Sharmila Tagore endures.

    And history repeats itself.

    Saif Ali Khan married Amrita Singh, a pukka hard-core punjabi sardarni! He is also seen in the public these days courting a Kapoor woman.

    The religious angle means nothing to me. I guess a good section of colonial societies have grown out of that zealousness.

    But, as someone asked the other day, why are men so picky about the pedigree of their domestic pets, but not their own?

  3. Cricket was a different ball game in the days of MAK Pataudi.

    In the late 60s and early 70s, the team was made of the hoi polloi except a few working class performers like Eknath Solkar or Sunil Gavaskar. Cricket belonged to Maharaja Ranjit Singh and Duleep Singh. Pataudi, may his soul RIP, was once arrested for the same reason as Salman Khan, for hunting endangered species.

    Among others in the team were Anshuman Gaikwad, a scion of the royal family of Baroda, Ajit Wadekar, a diplomat, an IAS officer. Farokh Engineer, half British and Bedi who later married an Australian.

    Today, the chairman of the selection commitee of BCCI, K. Srikanth, can never select a one-eyed royal in the team.

    Far from it. Given the performance of the Indian team in England recently, Srikanth is on the look-out for players with 4 or 5 eyes.

  4. C S N Murthy Says:

    Sharmilaji:

    Beautiful write up on Tiger. You brought out many facts hitherto unknown to us.

  5. C S N Murthy Says:

    ‘You” means Writer Mr. David McMohan…

  6. This is wishing Jagjit Singh a quick recovery. One of the finest ghazal singers of India. What a voice! Next only to Bhimsen Joshi is its tenor and range.

    When suitable words meet such a voice, the composition becomes a classic.

    Here is his all-time hit…

    • Yes. Silken voice as AB puts it. I recall he stopped performing with Chitra when his only son passed away. I hope he gets well soon. This is turning out to be an eventful week!

    • Sharmila,

      I disagree with AB’s opinion there. Not silken at all.

      He has a deep, resonating voice. Similar to Bhimsen Joshi but less in range. Both Joshi and Jagjit Singh were masters of Hindustani classical. Joshi had an edge because of his grounding in carnatic music being a kannadiga. He would add that extra note to a string which Hindustani classical strictly forbids.

      Here is an example of Joshi in Raag Bhairav, similar to Jagjit Singh’s song I quoted above:

      (Note: The word “Vitthal” in this means God, Parmaatma, The Creator) Please hear the whole song. Simple but precise lyrics.

    • And just to put it in perspective, this is what I call silken.

      Voice of Talat Mehmood:

  7. Hi Sharmila:
    Last night, I wrote to David that he is the only Australian who commanded my respect within the past three decades; I live in Melbourne. And I am a Bengali; David transcended all such labels in the name of humanity.

  8. With apologies to Bill Shakespeare:

    There comes a tide in the life of star-gazers, when there are more man-made digital satellites in the sky than God-made stars.

    Another one has come crashing down. Are we allowed to make a wish on a falling satellite?

    Do you know the email ID of the Pope in Vatican? I don’t trust Bishops and Cardinals.

  9. Time for some good news (even if only on the personal front).

    The yearly bonuses for 2010 were declared by my company’s board today. My team (6 Executives and 7500 staff) have broken all previous records of acquisition, management and revenue. We achieved 1.27 billion USD at 28.5% RoI over 7 years.

    Now you see why I am so indebted to Richard Cheney and George W. Bush.

    I was interviewed by a panel today for some additional R&R. Shall probably hear from them after the next meeting.

    • Sharmila,

      Let me know when you are back… You take time out quite often…

    • It looks like one of AB’s greatest fans, Amitabh Zibbu has passed away. Not sure if this is a a rumor again.

      • Can’t be a rumor. He is quite popular in Jaipur city. There has never been any rumor about his death before. All the news about his hospitalizations have been true. He was suffering from countless ailments. I was told that AB had been funding all his treatment. So he would know when the monthly statements don’t show Zibbu’s bills.

      • There was a rumor that he had died a few months back. Some one was nasty enough to spread it and Zibbu blew his top off then. I am shocked to hear about the fact that he is no more. Knew he was unwell but was not aware of the details. May his soul RIP.

  10. I am happy that at least someone is doing well in this gigantic international mess.

    My home country is trying to hold up three bankrupt countries. My adopted country is facing bankruptcy in the near future. My University has not had any money for a long time because California is unable to support it.

    Pass the Pope’s email ID please. i shall cut my hair and learn Schweizerdeutsch and ask him for a job in the Swiss Guards.

    • I am afraid you would need to contact China, currently more resourceful and powerful than the Pope himself. The savior for the EU.

  11. This song is for Zibbu, for dedicating all his time and effort for an imaginary ideal.

    Lyrics are by Sahir Ludhianvi:

    Tum bhi chalo, hum bhi chale,
    Chalti rahe zindagi…

    … … … You go your way, I go mine,
    … … … Life goes on…

  12. While I am still thinking about his death, let me pay a tribute to his madness:

  13. Message received a few minutes ago from my stock brokers:

    Dear Sir,

    We understand the need for the right research to make smart investment decisions. To keep you well informed, we present the market outlook for this week.

    Previous Week : Sensex lost 771 points for the week to settle at 16162.06

    Benchmark Indices witnessed seesaw movement during last week trade, It started the week on a positive note but the global equities tumbled during the second half of the week after US Federal Reserve gloomy outlook on the US economy. A sharp fall in rupee (which signaled huge outflow of money) resulted in a bloodbath on Indian equities on Thursday, as Global sell-off triggered the biggest percentage fall since August 2009. The sell off extended even on Friday as the benchmark indices closed deeply in red on weekly basis.

    The Sensex lost 771 points or – 4.60% for the week to settle at 16162.06 whereas the Nifty ended down by 216.50 points or – 4.30% to close at 4867.75 levels
    Most of the index stocks ended deep in red with heavyweights such as L&T, HDFC, HDFC Bank, Tata Motors, ONGC, Hindalco and Tata Steel were the major draggers during last week trade.

    The advance tax collection from top 100 corporates during the July- September quarter was up by 9.9% as compared to corresponding period of the last financial year, well short of the 31% increase in direct tax projected by the government for the whole year.

    Nymex crude declined 8.0% on a weekly basis to close at $80.93 /barrel (on Thursday) on account of weak US economic outlook by the US Fed.

    The week witnessed a bloodbath in global markets (including commodities,) coupled with IMFs’ lowering of growth forecast and Italy’s debt rating downgrade. President Obama proposed a budget deficit reduction proposal that includes $1.5 trillion in tax increases, by mostly targeting the wealthy Americans.

    The IMF has lowered its global growth forecast to 4% for 2011 and 2012. The lender had previously forecasted 4.3% growth for 2011 and 4.5% expansion in 2012
    Italy’s credit rating was cut to A from A+ by Standard & Poor’s on concern that weakening economic growth and a “fragile” government may not be able to reduce the euro-region’s second-largest debt burden.

    Moody’s Investors Service lowered debt ratings for Bank of America Corp, Citigroup Inc and Wells Fargo on Wednesday, citing reasons that the US government is getting less comfortable with bailing out large troubled lenders. It also downgraded eight Greek banks by two notches on Friday due to their exposure to Greek government bonds.

    Week Ahead : FIIs have sold shares worth 260 crores and DII were net sellers to the tune of 96 crores.

    Nifty traded extremely volatile before it closed 4.30% down for the week at 4867. After initially taking support at 5000 mark index rallied to test 5170 mark before reacting sharply lower in last two sessions of the week.

    Index once again reacted from cluster of resistances around 5200 mark. As we approach expiry week, index is expected to remain more volatile.

    Short term bias remains negative as long as Nifty remains below 5000 levels while key supports for coming week are seen around 4750 levels.

    In the month of September till date (September 22) FIIs have sold shares worth 260 crores and DII were net sellers to the tune of 96 crores.

    In India, the key data to watch next week would be current account balance (Q2) and weekly inflation

    Sincerely,
    ICICIdirect.com

    Did you know: You can leverage up to 85% of your Demat holdings and trade in Futures without bringing additional margin with Shares as Margin.

  14. People have these fetishes in their teenages. I had a friend named . He was born on 5th October ’63. Actually, I had no reason to blame his parents for that but for the fact that he fell in love with Asha Parekh merely because she is born on the same date!

    We were young. The year was 1980. There was this movie of Asha Parkeh and Shashi Kapoor, “Pyar Ka Mausam”, produced and directed by Nasser Hussain (Uncle of Aamir Khan) running at a theater called Deccan.

    We went for the matinee show on Friday. I loved the music of RD Burman while he gaped at Asha Parekh. We went back on Saturday. I admired the way Shashi Kapoor conducted himself while he continued to gape at Asha Parekh. We went again on Sunday. I slept through the film. He did his usual routine of gaping at Asha Parekh. On Monday I was through with the film. I mean enough is enough. I was dying of indigestion.

    He continued to go every day, till I think the theater owner took pity on his parents and took it off.

    He pursued this infactuation for years, and finally gave up on the original only after he found a look-alike in the college. Her name was .

    That was worse than the movie. At least I had something else to enjoy while he gaped moonily at the dame. Now, I had to wait patiently for him at the bus stand while he waited for her at the bicycle stand!

    Eventually, as happens in all such cases of polarized magnetism, he discovered that she belonged to one of the elite families in Pune.

    He went back to dreaming on the hill near our house and wrote 1000 sad poems. Sad only for him ofcourse; plain agony for me. I was his only proof reader.

    In short, Life is something that happens to young men while they are searching for love. Then it sort-of comes to an end.

    Here is a sample from the same movie:

    • HA! How intriguing.. where is your friend right now?

      • He is a freelance journalist these days. Writes for local newspapers and supplements of national dailies in Pune. He was always good with words. Far better than I can ever be.

        And in between, when he finds time, he changes his religious following. He was born a Roman Catholic, became a protestant just before his marriage, then a Seven Day Adventist after separation, and the last time I spoke to him he was rather mesmerized by the idea of a Kingdom of God. He is always confusing his guardian angels.

  15. Funny One Liners:

    The best place to miss a train is at a crossing.

    If you want to be a leader with a large following, just obey the speed limit on a winding, two-lane road.

    Mirrors don’t lie. Lucky for me, they can’t laugh either.

    I’ll always remember my wife’s dying words… “I can’t swim you idiot!”

    I’ve started keeping two lists: “To do” and “Too late.”

    I don’t suffer from insanity. I enjoy every minute of it.

    10 times out of 9, you’ll find me exaggerating

    There may be no excuse for laziness, but I’m still looking.

    Your call is very important to us. Please enjoy this 40 minute flute solo

    Help keep America beautiful. Stay in your house today.

    Did you hear about the five blondes who fell off a cliff? They were playing follow the leader

    To err is hunam

    Watched my dog chase his tail for 10 mins and thought how easily it gets entertained. Then I realised I’d watched my dog chase his tail for 10 mins

    There are 3 kinds of people: those who can count & those who can’t.

    Asking a pessimist his opinion is like asking a fire hydrant how it feels about dogs

    I always look my best when I wake up in the morning. Right up until the point I put my contact lenses in.

  16. Coffee time…

    “Name the only ism that is common between Hollywood and Bollywood” says one of our Quantity Surveyors in the morning session today, while casually working out a 10 m USD variation in the scope of our contract.

    I say “Atheism?”

    He shakes his head “No”

    “Capitalism?”

    “No”

    “What else?” I ask

    Without looking away from his monitor, he says, “Plagiarism”

    “Hmm.. why not atheism?”

    “Can’t be” he says, “Atheism is just another faction of believers”

    “Really? Howz that?”

    “Check it out. Believers said the Moon was divine. Atheists in Russia went to the moon and said, its not.”

    “So?”

    “Believers said Sun is the creator of life. Atheists sent a satellite to the Sun and found nothing.”

    “Hmmm..”

    “So on. The aethists searched Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto and beyond the constellations into all the galaxies. They said, either God is hiding or somewhere else.”

    “So, how do you call them believers?”

    “They are searching for a proof for their denial. The more they don’t believe the closer they get to God.”

    “Nice idea, ” I said, “I think it is a bit too spacious for the narrow minds of both real believers and real atheists. Should work on the agnostics. Trend it on some social network and see what comes out”

    “Cool” he said, and changed the topic.

  17. News Analysis:

    Sudheendra Kulkarni, the guy who is likely to be charged under IPC 120B (Criminal Conspiracy), for allegedly orchestrating the cash-for-vote scam, is sent to judicial custody for 4 days.

    This is interesting. The Tehelka guys do the same everyday for their livelihood.

    1. I don’t think the end-game has begun.

    2. RTI applicants are being exterminated in broad daylight.

    3. Low level whistle-blowers, like Engineers and staff, are shot dead.

    4. Political whistle-blowers are arrested for conspiracies.

    5. CBI has refused to investigate the Home Minister, as it is reporting to him.

    “Are we their yet, dad?”

    “No, Son. We’re still in the middle game.”

    “What do you mean, dad? Are they playing chess?”

    “It’s similar to chess, Son. Let me explain.

    ‘In systems’ development we have an algotrithm for how knowledge is captured, deployed and sustaiined.

    ‘An acquired skill is transformed into a discipline, The discipline grows into a function. A competence profile is developed for each function. Inter-dependent functions evolve a process. An efficiency model is established for the process. A training and career ladder is designed to attract semi-literates. Finally, the whole package is called technology and patented in the US.

    ‘The political movement, the chess game that we are seeing, has a long way to go. For now, it’s limited to corruption in high places and there only to facilitators. The process is flawed and fractured. There is no competence profile for any of the challengers. It is not attracting the generation next – there is no career in politics, you know.

    ‘There are a few organisations which have the capability and the structural strength to meet the needs for sich a movement. But they are not interested. Like, the RSS, Muslim groups, Christian Church committees etc. But these are mutually antithetical clubs and do not recognize the authority of the constitution of the country.

    ‘Or may be not. May be I am thinking like an engineer. Politics is such a complex game, Son.”

    • Correction: Line 1, last but one para: There are a few organisations… to meet the needs for such a movement.

      • Correction 2: Very first line of the Father-Son dialogue! (Damn!) Are we there yet, dad?

        Correction 3: In systems development… knowledge is captured, deployed and sustained

        Anna Hazare would shoot me with an empty gun for so many corrections in one small write-up.

    • Interestingly PC’s authority is far and wide. There is no way Manio would see him resign, even if he so gracefully offered to do so. and more than anything else, it is a question of perception, of more blunders by Congress. Something that Manio will try hard to fight at this precarious stage. By the way, the SK name got me thinking!

      • 🙂 There are many by the name. It was very popular in the 60s. The Union Leader’s of Mazgaon Docks in Mumbai is S. R. Kulkarni! (AB played the role of an extortionist bootlegger at the same docks in a movie called ‘Hum’.)

        In our house my eldest brother’s name was Vijay, elder brother was Ravi, I am Sudhir and younger sister was Jayshree.

        Mother named our house in Pune “SudhiRaViJayshree” All the names fitted into each other… Sudhir-Ravi-Vijay-Jayshree…

  18. I doubt PC has the clout that he thinks he has. Raja is holding him at gun-point “Save me or die with me!”

  19. It’s a tricky situation for the UPA.

    The UPA is supported by the Communist Party at the Center while the Congress has supported and sharing power with Mamta Banerjee in Bengal. Thats not value based politics.

    The UPA has outside support from the most unreliable allies; the Samajwadi Party of Mulayam SIngh which was brokered by Amar Singh (We know where he is now); The DMK. whose members are either already in Tihar or preparing for it; Maywati’s BSP at the center which will fall apart early next year when Rahul Gandhi campaigns for the Congress during the assembly polls in UP.

    Contrast this with BJP. They let Nitish Kumar win in Bihar without under-cutting his vote banks; they have not interfered with Shiromani Akali Dal in Punjab or Shiv Sena in Maharashtra; they are wholly supporting the Telangana Rashtra Samiti which is a member of the NDA.

    The Biju Janta Dal in Orissa and J&K National Conference are breakaway factions of the NDA who supported Sonio’s UPA in a power sharing agreement.

    If the parliament loses confidence today, BJP will sweep the mid-term polls.

  20. I am from Kolkata. I met Amitabh Zibbu from a social networking site and we were friends, we chatted over net, talked over phone and shared allot. Got the news of his demise. But still can’t believe it.
    His phone no is not working. But AB has not confirmed about Zibbu’s death in his Big Blog.

    Is there anyone who has a genuine news?

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