Sat, 17 November 2012
Thackeray's last rites to be held at Shivaji Park

Timeline  Refresh

23:54   Who will take the Thackeray legacy forward?
Sayli Udas and Shailesh Gaikwad examine the Shiv Sena's future in this article in the Hindustan Times.
23:48   Sena supporters turn MHADA office into garrison
Prasanna D Zore reports: More and more supporters are flocking to Matoshree. The traffic on the Western Express Highway, which was clogged after news of Bal Thackeray's death in the evening, has now thinned.

The MHADA office at Kala Nagar, minutes away from the Thackeray home, has turned into a garrison. Sena supporters have been taking shelter on its premises, eating and sleeping there.        
23:21   Thackeray's fractured legacy
Kumar Ketkar's assessment of Bal Thackeray's legacy in Forbes magazine. Please read it here.
23:18   Mother Teresa or Thackeray, Rahul Kanwal wants to know
Headlines Today Executive Editor Rahul Kanwal tweets, 'Watching the effusive tributes on some channels, you may end up thinking it's Mother Teresa panelists are talking about not Bal Thackeray.'
23:13   Shah Rukh Khan regrets...
'We avod buldng brdges out of personal ssues & then t gets too late. should hav gone & met BalaSahb.Wll mss our chats R.I.P. sr...' tweets SRK who had a face-off with the Thackerays after he spoke up for Pakistani cricketers to play in the IPL.
23:11   Funeral preparations begin, cops ask public to clear roads
Satish Bodas reports: Preparations have started for the funeral of Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray. Police have asked residents of Bandra, Mahim, Dadar, Shivaji Park areas to move vehicles parked on roads to make way for the cortege.     

23:08   Thackeray's last rites to be held at Shivaji Park
The last rites of Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray will be performed at Shivaji Park in central Mumbai, where he had addressed his followers for over four decades.   

The mortal remains of the 86-year-old Sena patriarch will be taken from his residence at 'Matoshree' to Sena Bhavan in Dadar around 7.30 am. The body would be kept at Shivaji Park from 9 am for Shiv Sena workers to pay their last respects.   

"The funeral would be held at Shivaji Park ground. We have received permission from the state government in this regard," Shiv Sena MP and party spokesperson Sanjay Raut told PTI.   

According to Sena sources, there would be no funeral procession.
23:07   Rajdeep Sardesai wants to know
'When Delhi netas die, a city doesn't shut down out of either fear/respect. Mumbai does. What does that say? Gnight.'
23:03   Sena workers to proceed to Shivaji Park at midnight
Shiv Sena workers from all parts of Mumbai plan to start traveling to Shivaji Park at midnight. More lorries to ferry workers will be arranged by Sena shakhas in the morning.
22:51   Don't disturb supply of milk, medicines, papers: Sena to workers
Prasanna D Zore reports from Matoshree: Senior Shiv Sena leader Ramdas Kadam told Sena workers to maintain calm and peace during party supremo Bal Thackeray's final journey tomorrow. "It will be a historic day for Sainiks. Please do not disturb supply of milk, medicines and newspapers," he said.

"We want lakhs of Sena workers from across the state to come to Shivaji Park peacefully so that all get a last glimpse of our beloved leader," he added.

Kadam also requested Sainiks not to disturb the working of petrol pumps.    
22:41   Petrol pumps in Maharashtra to stay open tomorrow
All petrol pumps in Maharashtra will stay open tomorrow, announced Ali Daruwala, Petrol Dealers' Association spokesperson.
22:30   'Imitated, but never duplicated'
Union Minister of State Milind Deora, who represents Mumbai South in the Lok Sabha, tweets: 'Ideologies & politics aside, Balasaheb was unique & his influence on Maharashtra politics is undeniable. Often imitated but never duplicated.'
22:26   No more Diwali lights or celebrations, warn Shiv Sainiks
Reports our correspondent from Dahisar: Shiv Sainiks asked everyone to switch off their Diwali lights. They also asked residents not to burn any fire crackers.

They attacked one of the houses, which still had the bright Diwali lights by pelting stones.
22:25   Thackeray protected Mumbai from Dawood: Gurumurthy
S Gurumurthy, an RSS ideologue, tweets: 'It is Thakray not police who ensured that Dawood and his cronies did not take over mumbai Nation is without social protection in his absence.' Gurumurthy, a chartered accountant, was in the news earlier this week after he probed BJP President Nitin Gadkari's business interests, at the party's insistence.
22:24   Thackeray was a lion, not a tiger: Actor Dilip Kumar
Veteran actor Dilip Kumar, who earned the ire of Bal Thackeray after he was presented Pakistan's highest civilian award, today mourned the death of the Shiv Sena supremo saying he "always thought he was not a tiger but a lion".   

"We are deeply grieving the passing of Balasaheb Thackeray who I always thought was not a tiger but a lion," Kumar tweeted.   

In a detailed write-up on his blog, Kumar wrote, "He had the virtues of a lion. We will cherish in our memories the lively evenings at his home when we smoothened out our differences over cups of strong masala tea. I found him extremely sensitive on occasions, especially during the days Sunil Dutt was going from pillar to post to get justice for his son Sanjay."   

"Balasaheb's response was that of a father who understood a father's desperation to save his son. We pray for Balasaheb's family, especially for his son Uddhav, to derive strength from the Almighty to bear the irreparable loss."  

In 1998, Kumar is said to have had a fallout with Thackeray when the latter demanded the actor to return the Nishan-e-Imtiaz, Pakistan's highest civilian award.
22:11   Raj at Shivaji Park to monitor funeral preparations
Raj Thackeray is at Shivaji Park to monitor preparations for uncle Bal Thackeray's funeral tomorrow.  
22:08   Mamata mourns Thackeray
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee never met Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray. 
In a Facebook post, she said ,"Though I did not get an opportunity to interact with him (Bal Thackeray) personally, yet I found him as a person of exceptional organisational qualities." 
"He played a major role in Indian politics for a long time. I express my heartfelt condolences to the members of his bereaved family and followers. May the departed soul rest in peace", Banerjee said.
21:59   Police cordon building up outside Matoshree
Prasanna D Zore reports from Matoshree: It's calm yet gloomy outside the Thackeray residence. The police cordon has been building up in and around Bandra east, as preparations begin for the Shiv Sena chief supremo.   
21:49   Mumbai's ripple effect: Pune, Nashik shut down
Reports coming from many cities including Pune, Nashik, Aurangabad and parts of Konkan said that shops and restaurants remained closed there and autos were off the roads after the news of Thackeray's death was received, reports PTI.   

There were stray incidents of pelting of stones on BEST buses at Pantnagar in suburban Ghatkopar, Naupada (Thane),Prateeksha Nagar, Kamothe (Navi Mumbai).
21:42   BEST to run extra buses, no taxis tomorrow
Taxis in Mumbai have decided to stay off the road tomorrow. Auto driver unions are still deciding whether they will ply or not.

The BEST has said they will operate extra buses to deal with the rush of followers expected to reach Shivaji Park.  
21:40   Bal Thackeray: The original angry young man
'Bal Thackeray uttered no deep political philosophy, but only a stirring nativist appeal on behalf of Marathi manoos,' says Gyan Prakash in Mint:
21:31   BJP veteran Advani to attend Thackeray's funeral
Bharatiya Janata Party veteran L Krishna Advani said Shiv Sena supremo Balasaheb Thackeray's demise has left a gaping void in the country's politics, which will not be easy to fill, reports ANI.

"A political giant has departed. It's rare that I have seen in these 65 years of Independent India a political leader who has left such a deep and abiding imprint on the country... as Shri Balasaheb Thackeray. Uncompromising in his patriotism, he possessed remarkable qualities of leadership and abundance of attributes of head and heart which made him command great respect among all those who came in his contact. I can only say that his demise today has left a gaping void in the country''s politics, which will not be easy to fill," said in his condolence message.

Advani further informed that he would be going to Mumbai tomorrow to pay his last respects to the Shiv Sena patriarch."I have been told by my colleagues in Bombay, Gopinath Munde and others, that his body would be kept at the Shivaji Park for the whole day tomorrow and the final rites will be performed at around 5 (pm). So, we will be going to Bombay," he added.
21:24   Ratan Tata condoles Bal Thackeray's death
Calling him a "strong leader" respected and admired by many, Tata Sons Chairman Ratan Tata today condoled the death of Shiv Sena patriarch Bal Thackeray. "Mr Balasaheb Thackeray was a strong leader of his people '" respected and admired by many. He was outspoken but driven by his principles," Tata Sons Chairman Ratan N Tata said in a condolence message.

"My condolences go out to the members of his family. He has left his mark on Mumbai and Maharashtra, and will be missed by many," he added.
21:23   Have lost a magnanimous friend: Sharad Pawar on Thackeray
Saying that he had loss a "dear friend" in Bal Thackeray's death, Union Agriculture Minister and Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar today described the Shiv Sena supremo as a "magnanimous" leader who was ready "to pay any political price" for his stand.

"Fierce pride about Maharashtra, willingness to pay any price for the interest of Marathi language, Maharashtrians, but at the same time the readiness to contribute on Maharashtra's behalf for the sake of the country, these were the hallmarks of Balasaheb," Pawar told reporters while paying his tributes to Thackery, leader of NCP's political foe Shiv Sena.

"Regarding issues of Mumbai, Marathis, we were sometimes at conflict. We were friends, but at such times he did not cut down on his trademark 'Thackeray' language while criticising us, and we too paid back," said Pawar.
21:23   Public can pay respect at Shivaji Park from 9 am to 5 pm
The Shiv Sena supremo's body will be placed at Sena Bhavan, the party headquarters, between 8 am and 9 am on Sunday. It will then be taken to Shivaji Park where the public can pay their respects till 5 pm. The funeral is expected at 6 pm.
21:18   Gurudwaras to stay open all night for stranded Mumbaikars
Blogger Taranjit Singh updated on Twitter: Gurdwaras all over Mumbai are open for every1. Langar and stayover will be provided till situation is normal.

21:11   Thackeray was like a father figure to me: Rajnikanth
Noted actor Rajinikanth today condoled the death of Shiv Sena leader Bal Thackeray. In a hand-written note, Rajinikanth said, "Sri Bala Saab Thackeray was a great leader and a father figure to many, including me.. This is a great loss to all.."

"My heartfelt condolences to all his family members and followers all over the world.. My prayers for his soul to rest in peace at the feet of the Lord," the actor added.
21:08   Thackeray was an epitome of courage & valour: Modi
Gujarat CM Narendra Modi on Thackeray: Full of life, Balasaheb Thackeray was an epitome of courage & valour. I am grieved to hear about his demise. May his soul rest in peace.
21:07   Raj Thackeray leaves Matoshree
Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief and Bal Thackeray's nephew Raj has just left Matoshree.

Actor Milind Gunaji along with his wife and son and director Madhur Bhandarkar left a few minutes before.
21:06   Tendulkar mourns Thackeray
PTI reports: The cricketing fraternity today condoled Bal Thackeray's death with fellow Maharashtrian Sachin Tendulkar leading the pack, saying the Shiv Sena patriarch will "always be remembered and missed". 
Tendulkar said Thackeray's demise is a "terrible loss" for Maharashtra and he would have personally liked to pay his last respects to the Shiv Sena supremo had he not been playing in the first cricket Test against England in Ahmedabad.
"Really sad to hear about Balasaheb's demise. His contribution to Maharashtra was immense. It's a terrible loss and he will always be remembered and missed," Tendulkar said in a message on his Facebook page. 
"Unfortunately I am in Ahmedabad as I would have liked to pay my last respects personally. My condolences to his family. May God rest his soul in peace," he added. 
Tendulkar was joined by team-mate Harbhajan Singh in paying tributes to Thackeray. "Rip to great bala saheb thackeray wil be missed.very sad to hear the news.condolence to the family.respect," the off-spinner wrote on his Twitter page. 
Mumbai batsman Rohit Sharma also paid his respects to Thackeray on his Twitter page. "Roaring tiger of Mumbai-Maharashtra is no balasaheb thackeray," he wrote. 
 IPL chairman and Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Rajeev Shukla also offered his condolences on Twitter. "I would like to offer my deepest condolences to the Thakre Family on the passing away of Shri Bal Thakre.May his soul rest in eternal peace," said Shukla, who is also the vice-president of BCCI.
21:04   Raj Thackeray leaves Matoshree
Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief and Bal Thackeray's nephew Raj has just left Matoshree.

Actor Milind Gunaji along with his wife and son and director Madhur Bhandarkar left a few minutes before.
21:01   No taxis in Mumbai tomorrow
Taxis will stay off Mumbai roads on Sunday as a precautionary measure.
20:59   BEST to run extra buses in Mumbai tomorrow
BEST to operate extra buses tomorrow from various locations to Shivaji Park for those attending Bal Thackeray's funeral. The funeral will be held at Chaityabhoomi around 6 pm. 
20:59   From snack seller to liquor tycoon
NDTV's story on Ponty Chadha, who was killed in a shootout on Saturday. Please read the story here:
20:58   Sherlyn, Bhajji tweet on Thackeray. Dilip Kumar pens tribute
@SherlynChopra tweeted: May Bala Saheb's soul rest in peace. EK THA TIGER!!! 

India off-spinner Harbhajan Singh on Twitter: "Rip to great bala saheb thackeray wil be missed.very sad to hear the news.condolence to the family.respect."

And thespian Dilip Kumar wrote a personal note on the passing away of friends, here.
20:57   Angry Sainiks abuse reporter outside Matoshree
Despite repeated appeals from Sena leaders to maintain calm, Sainiks abused a reporter from a south channel, who addressed the Sena supremo as Bal Thackeray instead of Balasaheb. Tempers flared, but later eased after the reporter apologised, reports Prasanna D Zore from Matoshree.        
20:42   No prepaid taxis, autos from Mumbai airport
Sonil Dedhia reports: The Chhatrapati Shivaji International airport is in a state of chaos, as the airport has shut down all prepaid and other taxi services. Instead a series of announcements are telling passengers that the airport will arrange for buses to drop them at nearby railway stations, after which they will have to manage by themselves.
20:41   Bandh called in Belgaum tomorrow
Marathi outfits including Maharashtra Ekikaran Samithi, Shiv Sena and Hindu organisations have called for a bandh in the district to mourn the death of Shiv Sena leader Bal Thackeray tomorrow.   

Shops, business establishment have decided to down shutters and local transport  has decided to remain off roads.
20:38   Thackeray, veteran leader who worked for common man: Pranab
President Pranab Mukherjee today condoled the death of Bal Thackeray saying the nation has lost a veteran leader, who worked to help the common man.   

In his condolence letter to Thackeray's son Uddhav, the President said he was "extremely sad to learn about the passing away" of Balasaheb Thackeray.  

"Thackeray's passing away is a loss for the people of Maharashtra and India. In his death, the nation has lost a veteran leader who worked to help the common man and whose contributions in the field of media added a different perspective to the political discourse," the President said in his letter.   

Mukherjee, while offering his condolences to the family and numerous followers of Thackeray, said he prayed "to give you and your family the strength and courage to bear this irreparable loss.
20:32   Mumbai theatres shut, no shows tomorrow as well
In Mumbai, all theaters have been closed. There will be no screenings tomorrow as well.
20:32   Central Railway cancels work for Thackeray funeral
PTI reports: Central Railway has cancelled pending work on the Central and Harbour line services on Sunday to facilitate people to attend the last rites of the Sena leader.
20:31   From now on, we have to listen to Uddhav: Sena worker
Patcy Fernandes reports from Matoshree: A Shiv Sena leader, who has worked with Thackeray for 45 years, told all those gathered outside: Balasahed is no more. We have to listen to Uddhav and follow him.       
20:22   Thackeray's last rites at Chaityabhoomi
A Shiv Sena insider tells Prasanna D Zore: Only family members and senior Sena leaders are allowed inside Matoshree. The last rites will be held a Chaityabhoomi.
20:22   RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat pays tribute to Thackeray
RSS Sarsanghchalak Mohan Bhagwat pays tribute to Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray. Please see the tribute
20:17   R K Laxman's family recalls bond with cartoonist Thackeray
PTI reports: Even though they worked together at the Free Press Journal newspaper way back in 1947 as political cartoonists, the bond between Bal Thackeray and R K Laxman remained intact thorough decades. 
The last gesture the Shiv Sena supremo made to his cartoonist friend was sending a bouquet to Laxman at his Pune home when the latter turned 91 on October 24, Usha, Laxman's daughter-in-law, told PTI. 
"Their emotional attachment had become more intense in the last few years after RK suffered a stroke. Balasaheb visited him at Breach Candy hospital to boost his spirit, saying the mind should triumph over body," she recalled. 
In a rare visit outside Mumbai earlier this year, Thackeray visited the ailing Laxman at his Pune home and spent almost an hour with him. He even recommended a homoeopath to treat his (Laxman's) ailment and presented a silver image of Saibaba", Usha said, adding the family deeply grieved the demise of someone who was close to them.
20:16   Mobile toilets, drinking water for supporters outside Matoshree
Savera Someshwar reports from Matoshree: Mobile toilets and drinking water facilities have been made for all supporters of Bal Thackeray gathered outside Matoshree.

Supporters have started chanting prayers for Thackeray. Many were heard singing, "Sri Ram, Jai Ram, Jai Jai Ram!"   
20:06   Bomb scare at Mumbai airport declared hoax
The bomb scare at Mumbai airport this morning turned out to be a mere hoax. The bomb squad was rushed to the airport after an unidentified bag was found. After a screening, the bomb squad declared there was no possible threat.

20:01   Message from Matoshree: Do NOT create trouble
Prasanna D Zore reports from Matoshree: There have been continuous announcements on loudspeakers outside the Thackeray residence.

"Do not create trouble. Let everyone from Maharashtra come for Balasaheb's last rites and darshan. Please maintain law and order," announced a Shiv Sainik on a loudspeaker continuously.

This said a Sena leader is a message from Uddhav Thackeray, the Sena executive president.
19:55   'Thackeray, rare combination of religious, political pride'
And more Twitter buzz on Thackeray: 

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
on Twitter: Thackeray was a rare combination of religious pride & political pride. He instilled self-worth among the poorest people of Maharashtra.

Anand Mahindra: Bal Thackeray was both revered&feared but never ignored.Maharashtra was his pride&passion.Citizens of this state will miss their champion.
19:50   Maintaining peace is every Sainik's job: Munde
Talking to the media outside Matoshree, senior BJP leader Gopinath Munde said, "Balasaheb's work and vision a huge inspiration for us and Maharashtra. I request people of the state to follow his vision. I request people to maintain peace. That job is not only of the police but of every Sainik and Maharashtrian."    
19:34   Do not step out of your house: Police to Mumbaikars
Mumbai police commissioner Satyapal Singh says 20,000 policemen on duty in the city.

The Mumbai police have issued an advisory in the wake of Shiv Sena supreme Bal Thackeray's death.

"Citizens should not step out of their residences unless there is an emergency," said the advisory.

The Mumbai police also advised citizens to avoid taking the Western Express Highway. The police have imposed selective restrictions on traffic movement in the city.
19:33   Frantic Mumbaikars rush to stock food; few chemists shut shop
In Mahim, people stepped out of their homes to stock food as shops and even chemists shut shop after hearing about Thackeray's demise. Public was seen frantically looking for essentials like bread and butter.

There was chaos at petrol pumps as people lined up to fill fuel.
19:22   Thackeray left personal stamp on Maha politics: CM
In a tribute to Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan said, "The state has lost a mufti-faceted leader. Balasaheb spoke from his heart. He left a personal stamp on Maharashtra politics."
19:16   Thackeray's death huge loss for Maharashtra: Tendulkar
India's cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar also paid his respects to Bal Thackeray, who passed away in Mumbai.Tendulkar is playing for India in the ongoing first cricket Test at Ahmedabad.

He spoke to reporters at the end of the third day's play, saying that the veteran leader has made immense contribution to Maharashtra.

"I am sad to hear about Balasaheb's demise. Unfortunately I'm in Ahmedabad, would have liked to pay my respects personally."

"His contribution to Maharashtra was immense. It's a terrible loss, he will always be remembered and missed."
19:14   Thackeray's darshan from 10 am to 5 pm
Bal Thackeray's cortege to leave from Matoshree at 7.30 am. It will reach Shivaji Park at 10 am.

Shiv Sainiks can take a darshan of Thackeray from 10 am to 5 pm. His last rites will be held around 6 pm. 
19:10   Roads clogged, trains packed as Mumbai rushes home
In south Mumbai, Shiv Sainiks were forcibly shutting shops, restaurants and hotels. People were seen queuing up to board buses and trains.       
19:05   Traffic normal
Mumbai's notorious traffic was in evidence on Saturday evening as residents made their way home. Passengers bound for late night flights were already making their way to the international airport, in case things got out of control later.
19:05   Music concert cancelled in Mumbai
Swedish House Mafia's music concert in Mumbai today has been cancelled following the death of Shiv Sena supremo Balasaheb Thackeray.

"Our sympathies to all in Mumbai on the death of Bal Thakery. We've postponed the concert and new date announced asap. Delhi is on tomorrow," Swedish House Mafia said on their official Twitter account.

"Yes please keep your tickets. They are valid as soon as we know the new date."
18:57   Andheri flyover choked with traffic
The Andheri flyover was choked with traffic as commuters made their way home. The Mumbai police is out on tne streets to prevent any untoward incidents.
18:55   Roadside vegetable vendors do brisk business
Anxious Mumbaikars stocked up on vegetables as the city will shut down completely on Sunday, the day Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray will be cremated.
18:55   Sena bastion Shivaji Park calm
Eyewitness account: A small gathering outside Sena Bhavan in Sena bastion Dadar, central Mumbai. Shivaji Park quiet and calm. Only cops and TV OB vans outside MNS chief Raj Thackeray\'s home there.

Meanwhile, rediff.coms Vaihaysi Pande Daniel reports from Md Ali road, south Mumbai: Shops have downed shutters and are doing business.
18:53   Jogeshwari Link Road jam-packed
Theres heavy traffic at the arterial Jogeshwari Vikhroli Link Road, which connects the western and eastern suburbs in the city. Probably people are rushing to their homes.

18:53   Shops shut in Andheri West, commuters stranded
The Lokhandwala Complex quarter of Andheri West and other parts of the suburb wore a haunted look as shops were shut and anxious commuters waited anxiously for transport to go home.
18:46   Mumbai shuts down for Bal Thackeray
Prasanna D Zore reports from Malad: Minutes after the death of Bal Thackeray was announced, Mumbai voluntarily shut down.

Shops downed shutters across the city. Only chemists, among essential services, remained opened. Taxis and rickshaws went off the roads.

However, BEST buses are plying and trains are running as per schedules.

There has been heavy police bandobast as stations and important junctions.

Call centres in suburban Malad and Goregaon have also shut down.

18:38   Flags at half-mast at Sena Bhavan, Matoshree
The flag on top of Sena Bhavan, the party headquarters, and at Matoshree is being flow at half-mast, reports's Sonil Dedhia.

Saffron flags are being removed from areas around Sena Bhavan.
18:37   An emotional Amitabh Bachchan at Matoshree
Superstar Amitabh Bachchan who was a friend of Bal Thackeray wrote on Twitter minutes after his death:  I sat by his (Bal Thackeray's) bedside for hours these past few days, a prayer in my heart, watching him struggling to breathe, but fighting. Each day he continued his struggle with a grit that was baffling even for the doctors on hand. And just a couple of hours back, as I stand next to his still, peaceful, saffron draped body, it is difficult to imagine that he has left us!
18:22   Tempers flare as Sainiks try to enter Matoshree's Patcy Fernandes reports from outside Matoshree: A minor scuffle broke out between police personnel and Shiv Sainiks who wanted to enter the premises of Thackeray's residence.

Thousands and thousands supporters from across city are converging at Matoshree.

Despite heavy police deployment, they are finding it difficult to control the grieving Sainiks.

Senior Sena leaders have appealed to supporters to maintain calm. Senior Sena leader Ramdas Kadam has appealed Sainiks not to tarnish the image of Thackeray.

18:17   Last rites of Bal Thackeray at 5 pm tomorrow
The last rites of Bal Thackeray will be held at 5 pm tomorrow.  
18:04   Mumbai top cop to address media shortly
Mumbai Police Commissioner Satyalpal Singh to address a news conference shortly. 
18:00   Took inspiration from Thackeray: Nitin Gadkari
"Bal Thackeray's death is a major loss for the BJP and the Shiv Sena. He was very clear about his views and always expressed them," said BJP president Nitin Gadkari condoling his death.

"His political life cannot be forgotten. We took inspiration from him while governing in Maharashtra," he said. 
17:57   Mumbai: Shops down shutters, roads deserted
Within minutes of Thackeray's death, shops and restaurants across Mumbai downed shutters. The roads wore a deserted look.

Trains were running as per schedule but were packed as people rushed home.
17:50   Thackeray's stature in Maha politics was unique: PM
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has cancelled his dinner with BJP leaders tonight.

Condoling the death of Bal Thackeray he wrote on Twitter, "For him the interests of Maharashtra were particularly important and he always strove to inculcate a sense of pride in its people."

"He founded the Shiv Sena and built the party into a formidable force in the state politics with his strong leadership. He was a consummate communicator whose stature in the politics of Maharashtra was unique."

"The passing away of Bala Saheb will be deeply felt by his family and followers."     
17:37   Shiv Sena leaders appeal for calm
Shiv Sena spokesperson Sanjay Raut said that Sainiks can pay their last rites to Bal Thackeray at 7 am tomorrow at Dadar's Shivaji Park.

Also, Sena leaders have appealed for calm and have asked them not to crowd at Matoshree.
17:35   Terribly pained to hear that Lion is dead: Swaraj
The buzz on Twitter after Thackeray's death:

Sushma Swaraj: I am terribly pained to hear that the Lion is dead.

Shiv Sena leader Rahul Narvekar: Appeal to everyone to stay calm

Milind Deora: Ideologies & politics aside, Balasaheb was unique & his influence on Maharashtra politics is undeniable. Often imitated but never duplicated

17:21   Darshan from 7 am at Shivaji Park tomorrow
Bal Thackeray breathes his last at 3.33 pm. He went into cardiac arrest. The announcement was made by Dr Jalal Parkar outside Matoshree.

Thackeray was 86 year old. The Sena chief has been battling for life for the last seven days.

The doctor said that they could not revive Thackeray despite their efforts. 

Please respect the feelings of the family, said the doctor.  
17:12   Emotional scenes outside Matoshree
Emotional scenes were seen outside Matoshree as the doctor announced that Bal Thackeray is no more. Thousands were seen weeping.   

Numbers have started swelling up at Bandra east.

Security arrangements have been stepped up. Additional barricades have also been put up.

Bal Thackeray's nephew Raj has is also present at Matoshree. Top Sena leaders reach the Thackerays.   

16:37   Police to record statements of injured security guard
The police have taken eyewitnesses into custody.

They are banking on the injured security guard's statement to unravel the entire sequence of events. Police have also recovered two pistols from the farmhouse and a few bullets.
16:24   Chadha shootout lasted for 10 mins, 45 rounds fired
The Crime Branch of the Delhi police have arrived at the farmhouse of Ponty Chadha in Chhatarpur where the incident took place.

The shootout between the two brothers lasted for 10 minutes and 45 rounds were fired.  
16:07   Brother shot at Ponty Chadha first
News agency IANS quotes a police official saying Harvinder opened fire on Ponty Chadha, following which Chadha's security guard shot Hardeep.

"As of now we have got the details that first Hardeep shot Ponty and immediately Ponty's gunmen shot Hardeep. The shooting was a result of a property dispute," a senior police said.

While Ponty was shot at six times, eight shots were fired at his brother.

There were 45 armed security guards inside the farmhouse.
16:06   Ponty Chadha's postmortem to be conducted at AIIMS
A letter released from Fortis Hospital says that Gurdeep Singh Chadha (Ponty) said that he was brought in dead at 13.05 hours.

Among the six bullets shot at Ponty, four hit his rib cage.

Ponty's statement has been moved out of Fortis Hospital, Vasant Kunj and has been taken to the AIIMS, where a postmortem will take place.     
15:58   Ponty Chadha, bro dead; they shot at each other
Liquor baron Ponty Chadha and his brother have died in a shooting incident at their Chattarpur farmhouse of in New Delhi. They two were fighting over property.

Delhi police have confirmed that Ponty and his brother Harvinder shot at each other.

Police sources say that six bullets have been found in Ponty's body. Harvinder had been shot eight times, said the police.

The brothers were shot in the chest.

Ponty was alive when he was rushed to the hospital.

Two security guards have been injured. The injured have been rushed to the hospital.

The incident took place post 1 pm. 

More details are awaited.   
15:41   Ponty Chadha, brother fought over land ownership
Ponty Chadha and his brother were not on good terms and there was disagreement between them over land ownership, reports PTI.  

Sources said the brothers had called a meeting to resolve disputes related to their business.
15:11   Brother shot at Ponty Chadha first: Sources
According to NDTV, the brother opened fired on Ponty Chadha. Following this  Chadha's security guard shot at the brother.

They both were taken to Fortis Hospital in South Delhi where they were declared dead. Around three to four armed men were also present at the farmhouse at the time of the incident, the sources add.
14:59   Gadkari defamation case: Court summons Digvijaya
A Delhi court issues summons to Congress leader Digvijaya Singh in a criminal defamation case filed by BJP president Nitin Gadkari.

The court asks Singh to appear before it on December 21 in the defamation case.
14:51   Who is Ponty Chadha?
Ponty Chadha or Gurdeep Singh, the sole distributor of liquor in Uttar Pradesh, has hogged the limelight many times before.

The premises of the liquor baron, who is considered close to former UP chief minister Mayawati and even Mulayam Singh Yadav, has been raided by Income Tax and Delhi Police's Central Investigation Unit over allegations of huge sums of unaccounted money at his farmhouse.

However, Chadha also owns several other ventures in the cinema, film making and multiplex sector.

The businessman reportedly owns more than 1,500 acres of prime land in UP of which around 350 acre lies near Sector 18, Noida's prime area.

TV reports suggest that Sunday's shootout at the Chadhas' Chhatarpur farmhouse in Delhi, in which Ponty and his brother Gurbeet were killed, was a result of a property dispute.
13:16   EC orders probe against Rahul for 'wrong' info
The Election Commission has asked the Returning Officer of Amethi Lok Sabha constituency to probe allegations by Subramanian Swamy that Rahul Gandhi gave "wrong information" regarding his assets while filing nomination papers in the 2009 polls.

In a letter to Chief Electoral Officer on November 15, the EC said Swamy has alleged that Gandhi had given "wrong information" relating to his assets and cited a June 2004 letter which said the returning officer is the competent authority to look into such complaints.

"Since the affidavit is filed before the returning officer, in view of the provisions of Section 195 of CrPC, it is the returning officer concerned, who is the competent authority to consider any complaint regarding false statement in the affidavit...," the EC letter said.
12:20   US lifts ban on Myanmar imports
The United States on Friday eased decade-old import restrictions on Myanmar goods just days before President Barack Obama sets foot on the Southeast Asian nation.

The departments of state and treasury said the move was taken to support the ongoing reform efforts in the nation, encourage " further change" and offer new opportunities for businesses in both countries.

As a result, the United States will open up to most products from Myanmar under a waiver and general license with the exception of jadeite and rubies mined or extracted from the country as well as articles of jewellery containing them.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced on Sept 26 that Washington would begin the process of easing the import ban put in place since 2003, in response to the advances made in the country''s reform efforts over the past year.
12:15   Sena corporators reach Matoshree to meet Uddhav
Shiv Sena corporators have reached Matoshree, the residence of the Thackerays, in Mumbai's Bandra east to hold a meeting with party president Uddhav Thackeray.

Giving an update on Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray, senior party leader Manohari Joshi said, "Balasaheb is stable."

Thackeray, who has been seriously ill for a last few days, is recovering and there is no need to worry, said party mouthpiece Saamna today.   
12:06   Israeli air force bombs Hamas headquarters
Israeli air strikes have targeted the headquarters of Gaza's Hamas leaders, as the bombardment of the coastal enclave moved into a fourth day, reports BBC.

At least 29 Palestinians and three Israelis have died since Israel killed Hamas's military chief on Wednesday.

Israel earlier put 75,000 reservists on stand-by amid speculation of a ground invasion.

Militants in Gaza have continued to fire rockets into Israel, aiming at Tel Aviv and Jerusalem on Friday.
09:58   Won't take rushed decision on abortion: Irish PM
Amidst widespread protest against Ireland's abortion laws that led to the death of Indian dentist Savita Halappanavar, the Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny insisted he will not take a rushed decision on abortion, according to a NDTV report.

"I'm not going to be rushed into the situation by force of numbers on any side. This is something which needs to be treated rationally and openly and truthfully, and that's what will happen," Kenny said.

Meanwhile, activists have launched a campaign called 'Postcard for Savita' supporting a change in the country's tough anti-abortion laws.

Savita, 31, died late last month of septicaemia following a miscarriage 17 weeks into her pregnancy. She was admitted to hospital in severe pain on October 21 and asked for a termination after doctors told her the baby would not survive. .

The foetus was surgically removed when its heartbeat stopped days later, but her family believes the delay contributed to the blood poisoning that killed her on October 28.

Read the full report here
09:33   4 of a family killed in fresh violence in Kokrajhar
Unidentified gunmen shot dead four persons of a family and injured one at Ziaguri village in Assam's violence-hit Kokrajhar district around 11 pm last night, reports's K Anurag.

A curfew has been imposed in the district since Thursday.

A police source informed that a group of gunmen fired indiscriminately at the house of a minority villager killing four of the family and injuring one. The slain included one woman and one ten-year-old boy. The incident has added to the tension in the communally sensitive area.
08:13   NIA record fails to inspire
The Economic Times reports: 'The National Investigation Agency has not been able to lay its hands on 45 terrorists, including the men involved in the major terror cases handed over to the agency like the Delhi high court blast and terror cases involving Hindutva outfits.' Please read the full report here:
08:09   What Comrade Putin told Comrade Xi
A funny piece from of all places Foreign Policy magazine: Vladmir, we bet, won't be amused...
08:06   India to invest Rs 6,000 crore in new BrahMos missile
The Financial Express reports:' New Delhi: India has inked a Rs 6,000-crore joint venture with Russia under which the latter will supply 200 high-precision supersonic cruise missile BrahMos to the IAF. In its wake, India has set up another manufacturing and system integration plant in Thiruvananthapuram to boost production of the missiles. The Cabinet Committee on Security recently approved the air version of the BrahMos. Both the Indian Army and Navy have already inducted BrahMos land and sea versions in their respective inventory....' The full report here:
08:00   Mobile charges likely to go up
According to The Hindu BusinessLine, 'The tepid 2G spectrum auction could be the inflection point for the telecom sector to hike tariffs, a move that has been in the offing for some time.' Read more here:
05:29   Fire alert at 38,000 Tamil Nadu temples
Yes, you read that number right. And it is a scary report from The Times of India, and good to know the Jayalalithaa government is doing something about it:
05:24   One step at a time
Historian Ram Guha surveys the state of the nation in this The Telegraph op-Ed:
05:19   'Not a single Muslim vote will go to Congress'
After breaking ties with the Congress, MIM leader and Hyderabaf MP Asaduddin Owaisi secures support from the United Muslim Action Committee and vows to expose his former ally November 25 onwards:
05:13   How to exercise US leverage over Pakistan?
An interesting perspective from Paul D Miller who served in the US National Security Council:
05:00   Will miffed Putin bite?
Vladmir Putin is apparently upset with New Delhi. The Russian leader, who restored parity in tne India-Russia relationship after the decline of the Yeltsin years, had postponed his annual trip to Delhi citing a back injury.Now Archis Mohan reports in The Telegraph that New Delhi is inviting Putin to spend Christmas in Goa (where incidentally many Russians have set up home) before flying down to the Indian capital for talks. Read the report here:
04:53   Why did Israel launch its Gaza ops?
Puzzled about the timing of Israel's sudden onslaught against Hamas in Gaza? This piece could help clarify matters:
04:51   FB ends 60-year separation
The touching story of how Facebook brought a Mizo family together after 60 years! A story from The Telegraph newspaper:
04:48   Aradhya with her parents
Amitabh Bachchan posted this lovely photograph of his granddaughter with her parents:
04:44   Where whistleblowers are hounded out
Chander Suta Dogra reports from Haryana for The Hindu on how upright officers like Ashok Khemka are hounded out for pointing out wrongdoing:
04:39   Darling, Yeh Hain India!
How Dalit children are discriminated against in Tamil Nadu, a shocking story from The Hindu:
04:18   Briton 1st Western Tibetan monk to die self-immolate
A Briton has become the first Western Tibetan Buddhist monk to die by self-immolation, dousing his head and clothes with petrol at a monastery in southwestern France.

Click HERE to read
03:25   Rocket targets Jerusalem, Israel mobilises more troops
Hamas militia fired rockets at both Jerusalem and Tel Aviv today, aiming for the Jewish state's political and commercial hearts, and prompting Israel to call up thousands more reservists in readiness for a potential ground war.

The Israeli army said it had sealed off all the main roads around the Gaza border, declaring the area a closed military zone, in the latest sign that Israel's patience with rocket fire was at an end and it was poised to launch its first ground offensive on the territory since 2008-9.

An AFP correspondent reported seeing tanks massed along the frontier, and a steady stream of reservists arriving throughout the day. 

The army sought 11th-hour cabinet approval to call up as many as 75,000 reservists, ringing around ministers at home on the Jewish day of rest which began at sundown, cabinet secretary Zvi Hauser revealed on his official Facebook page. 

The military wing of the Islamist Hamas movement which rules Gaza said it fired the rocket at Jerusalem, the first to strike the outskirts of the Holy City in the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 

It marked a major escalation by the territory's Hamas rulers in the face of a deadly pounding since Wednesday by Israeli aircraft that has killed 28 Gazans and sparked outrage across the Arab and Islamic world.
03:23   Pakistani lawyer beaten after taking on army chief
A Pakistani lawyer has accused the military of sending thugs to beat him up after he challenged the army chief in court.

Inam Ur Raheem, a retired military lawyer, says three vehicles surrounded his taxi Wednesday night in the garrison city of Rawalpindi. Several unidentified men jumped out and attacked him with sticks, leaving him with cuts and bruises. 

He claimed they said they were there to teach him a lesson.

Raheem says the attack came a day after he filed a petition in the Islamabad High Court challenging the validity of a three-year extension given to army chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani in 2010.

The army denied any role in the attack Friday, calling Raheem's allegations baseless. 
01:10   Rockets strike near Israeli population centers
Rockets landed near Israel's two most populous cities Friday as fighting between Israel and Hamas militants persisted with no immediate end in sight.

The two rockets hit in an open area south of the city of Jerusalem and no damage was reported. 

Hamas militants confirmed that they had fired rockets toward the city, which Israel considers its capital but is not recognised as such by the international community.
00:48   6.8 magnitude quake in Pacific off Russia: USGS
A 6.8 magnitude quake struck today in the Pacific off Russia's far east, the US Geological Survey reported.

The US agency said the quake's epicenter was 161 kilometers south west of Severo-Kuril'sk, Russia.
00:48   Slight intensity quake in Arunachal
An earthquake of slight intensity struck parts of Arunachal Pradesh tonight, Met officials said. 

Measuring 3.5 on the Richter scale, the quake was felt in the Lower Subansiri region at 10:28 pm.
00:47   US oil rig ablaze in Gulf of Mexico, two dead: report
An oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico off the Louisiana coast caught fire today killing at least two people, local television reported, citing the Coast Guard and local officials.

According to KHOU-TV four more people were airlifted to hospital -- two of them in critical condition -- and two more are missing following the disaster on a rig operated by Houston-based Black Elk Energy.

The explosion comes a day after BP reached a deal with the US government to settle criminal charges over the devastating 2010 oil spill which began with an explosion on an offshore rig.

There was no immediate news on whether any oil was spilling from the burning platform, which is in relatively shallow water about 40 kilometres south of the beach town of Grand Isle.