Friday, December 3, 2010

Is the LTTE re-grouping in Kerala?


Tiruvananthapuram: A documentary screened a few days back at a hall in the heart of Trivandrum city has sparked suspicion that the LTTE might be regrouping in parts of Kerala.
The film exhibitors were questioned by the Kerala Police who fear that it could be a garb for the outfit to regroup.
Mullaiteevu Saga, a film about Tamil genocide in Sri Lanka towards the end of the civil war has been dragged into an unwarranted controversy.
A popular Malayalm daily quoting IB sources reported that the screening of the movie which the organizers say was well advertised was actually a secret meeting for regrouping of the LTTE. The state police immediately launced an investigation.
"It is very strange. We do not know how it happened. The newspaper tells us that the IB asked them whether they knew about such a program and thats how they reported it. But how come the IB did not ask us about the program and asked the media? And how did the paper give such distorted information to the public?" said Elizabeth Philip, Organizer, Pedestrian Pictures.
At a press conference attended by social activists and senior journalists in the city the organizers raised many such questions.
"I don't know why this screening has shocked the establishment here. It is extremely unfortunate. Sections of the press and the police owe an explanation to the filmmaker," M G Radhakrishnan, senior journalist.
The police said they are only trying to find out whether the report was true.
"There was a discussion after the movie screening. We are finding out who all were present. Whether there was anybody from outside the state or country. There is nothing wrong in screening a documentary as long as it doesn't affect the country's integrity," said Ajith Kumar, Commissioner of Police, Trivandrum.

Archie and GI Joe artist John D'Agostino dies


Philadelphia: John D'Agostino Sr., whose work in comic books ranged from Archie and Jughead to the Incredible Hulk and G.I. Joe, has died. He was 81.

D'Agostino died on 28th November of bone cancer in Ansonia, Conn., publisher Archie Comics said in a statement.

Born in Italy in 1929, D'Agostino emigrated to the United States and got his first job as head colorist at New York City's Timely Comics, the forerunner of Marvel. He worked with Stan Lee, who went on to co-create numerous memorable super-heroes, including Spider-Man and the Fantastic Four.

While working at Timely, D'Agostino — his nickname was "Jon" — helped supervise another artist, Stan Goldberg, who later became synonymous with the high school adventures of Archie, Reggie, Veronica and Betty at Riverdale High School.


D'Agostino later joined Goldberg, hired in 1965 by Archie Comics managing editor Richard Goldwater, and began a long and enduring career drawing numerous characters until his death, becoming one of the company's most prominent artists.

Besides Jughead, D'Agostino also drew for titles like "My Little Margie," ''G.I. Joe, A Real American Hero," ''Sabrina the Teenage Witch" and "Sonic the Hedgehog," among others. D'Agostino also did the letters for the first three issues of Marvel's "The Amazing Spider-Man."

"Jon was concerned about doing the best job possible. He would always be available to help young artists improve their artwork and draw the Archie cast of characters," Archie co-president and Editor-in-chief Victor Gorelick said. "He was very dedicated to his work and Archie Comics. I had the privilege of working with Jon for over 40 years and considered him a good friend. I will truly miss him."

D'Agostino's latest work in comics is scheduled to be published in the December issue of "Jughead Double Digest (number) 166" and several of his covers will be seen through 2011.

"He came into the offices every week to work with other artists and continued to visit the offices even in the recent weeks before his passing," Archie co-CEO Jon Goldwater said.

D'Agostino is survived by his second wife, Vivi Test D'Agostino; three sons; two sisters; four grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews. His funeral is scheduled for Thursday.

Opened 13 days ago, Rs 650 cr bridge falls in UP


650 cr bridge falls in a15 daysBanda (UP): A Rs 650 crore bridge over river Yamuna in Banda district, inaugurated only 13 days ago by the Public Works Minister of UP, Naseemuddin Siddiqui, fell on Wednesday.

Sources told IBN7 that a major chunk of concrete fell from the middle of the bridge, raising serious questions on the quality of the work. The minister, in his inaugural address, had proudly claimed that the bridge was constructed in a record time of two years.

The accident again brings into focus the nexus between PWD and UP Bridge Corporation officials and the contractors hired for executing such projects.


The District Magistrate of Banda has ordered an enquiry into the incident.

It should be noted that there are four ministers in UP cabinet from the Banda region of Bundelkhand. Yet, the process of development has been neglected in the region.

Earlier, a pontoon bridge was used to connect Banda with Kanpur and Fatehpur.

This is, however, not the first instance of the corrupt contractor-government nexus threatening the lives of people in UP.