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Archive for January, 2010

Gisele Bundchen gave birth in bathtub!

January 30, 2010 Comments off

Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bundchen has revealed she gave birth to son Benjamin last December in a bathtub at her Boston home.

The world’s highest paid supermodel delivered Benjamin while submerged in water at the Beacon Hill penthouse, in Boston, which she shares with her American football star husband Tom Brady, reports femalefirst.co.uk.

“I gave birth in the bathtub,” she said.

Bundchen delivered the tot Dec 3 last year.

Categories: Entertainment

Toyota to recall 1.8 million cars in Europe

January 30, 2010 Comments off

Japanese carmaker Toyota, the world’s largest, is to recall some 1.8 million vehicles in Europe in a bid to fix a potentially lethal accelerator fault, a spokesman for Toyota Motor Europe said Friday.

The fault involves the accelerator pedal becoming lodged underneath the floor mat.

Toyota Motor Europe sold some 882,350 vehicles across the continent in 2009.

On Thursday, Toyota Motor Sales USA said it would repair an additional 1.09 million vehicles to address the same fault.

The move will expand the Japanese carmaker’s already largest-ever US recall from November to 5.35 million vehicles, which could erode Toyota’s reputation for quality.

Categories: Business

Obama steps up nuclear energy commitment, creates commission

January 30, 2010 Comments off

US President Barack Obama Friday stepped up his commitment to nuclear energy as part of the solution to global warming, marking a shift in policy that is partly designed to end a deadlock with opposition Republicans over energy policy.

Obama tasked a new commission to make proposals within two years on how to better manage used nuclear fuel and waste. He said nuclear energy was key to weaning the US off its dependency on foreign fossil fuels.

Obama also plans to triple government loan guarantees for the nuclear industry to $54 billion when he unveils his 2011 budget next week, US media reported. The Energy Department is in the process of deciding which companies should get the first round of loan guarantees that were proposed last year.

The 15-member nuclear commission includes a mix of business, environmental and union leaders. It will be headed by Lee Hamilton, a former Democratic lawmaker who led an inquiry into the terrorist attacks of Sep 11, 2001, and Brent Scowcroft, who was national security adviser to former presidents Gerald Ford and George H.W. Bush.

The US generates about one-fifth of its electricity from nuclear energy, yet the country has not granted a permit for building new commercial nuclear power plants in more than two decades.

“Expanding our nation’s capacity to generate clean nuclear energy is crucial to our ability to combat climate change, enhance energy security, and increase economic prosperity,” Obama wrote in a memorandum to his energy secretary.

Obama’s shift on an issue long championed by Republicans began Wednesday with the president’s State of the Union address before Congress. Obama told lawmakers that nuclear energy and offshore oil drilling should be part of a comprehensive energy bill that faces an uphill battle in the US Senate.

Some environmental groups have expressed concern over the new-found interest in nuclear fuel.

“This expansion of the nuclear loan guarantee program … will come at the expense of the real solutions to the climate crisis, such as efficiency and renewable sources like wind and solar power,” said Kevin Kamps of the watchdog group Beyond Nuclear.

Categories: World

I can also do non-comic roles: Riteish Deshmukh

January 30, 2010 Comments off

Riteish Deshmukh, applauded for his performance in the just released film “Rann”, says the rumour that he sulked on the sets was “gossip at its funniest” and says he should also be cast for non-comic roles.

“The problem is that half the information is always bad information. Me sulking on the sets of my own film? Can it sound stranger than that? In fact, it all sounded so amusing to me that there was nothing for me to react to. It was gossip at its funniest,” Riteish told IANS.

Released Friday, Ram Gopal Varma’s directorial venture has received positive reviews. Usually seen in funny roles, this time Riteish plays a serious journalist – one of the three principal characters other than Amitabh Bachchan and Paresh Rawal.

This is not the first time he has donned such a role. A few years ago in Varma’s “Naach” he was was roped in for a guest appearance.

The same was the case with a segment in “Darna Zaroori Hai” where he was seen as a student along with Amitabh Bachchan.

One wonders whether Riteish makes such exceptions primarily for Varma?

“On the contrary I would say that rather than me making such exceptions, it is only Ramu who comes to me with such roles. At least there is one director out there who thinks of me differently from the rest,” he said.

In fact, when he was offered “Rann”, he did ask Varma for the reason behind his casting.

“I had an interesting conversation with Ramu where I asked him point blank when no one casts me in anything other than a comic role, how come he thinks of me differently.

“To which he replied that right from the day he met me, he looked at the serious side of my personality as well. He considered me to be a serious guy in real life and hence wanted to cast me in a different zone.”

Buoyed by the confidence showed in him by Varma, Riteish is hopeful that he would be looked upon as a far more versatile actor.

“I am open to all kinds of roles. Eventually I hope when people conceive non-comic characters, they think of me as well,” he said.

Categories: Bollywood News

Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol to ring NASDAQ opening bell

January 30, 2010 Comments off

Bollywood stars Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol have been invited by NASDAQ, the world’s biggest stock exchange, to ring their opening bell here Monday.

The stars of director Karan Johar’s upcoming feature film “My Name Is Khan” will become the first Indian actors to open the market, an honour usually reserved for CEOs of major corporations, when they ring in the first trading day of February at 9:30 a.m.

This prestigious event is broadcast live on many television networks across the globe. With over 3,700 companies listed, the NASDAQ has more trading volume than any other stock market in the world.

Khan and Kajol have starred together in many successful films over the years including “Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge”

and “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai” which are both modern classics in Hindi cinema.

Their much-awaited on-screen reunion will take place on Feb 12 in “My Name Is Khan” when it releases in theatres worldwide.

Shot across much of the United States, the film will also have a star-studded premiere at the 60th annual Berlin International Film Festival during the week of its release.

Categories: Bollywood News

Haiti president bemoans lack of coordination in aid relief

January 30, 2010 Comments off

Haiti President Rene Preval has criticised a lack of coordination among countries bringing aid to the Caribbean nation in the wake of the Jan 12 earthquake.

Many donor nations were helping with “all good intentions” but “without coordination”, Preval said after a meeting here with Ecuador President Rafael Correa.

He said countries such as Germany, the US and France were channelling their assistance through their own institutions and bypassing the Haitian government, which is seeking to coordinate the efforts.

Preval noted that Haiti was hit by the devastating earthquake when it still had not recovered from four destructive cyclones, and said now is the time to decentralise the country’s development with regional infrastructure.

Preval rejected the “logic of the republic of Port-au-Prince”, and called for roads, ports, airports and jobs in the provinces to slow the rate of internal migration to the capital, which had swelled to three million inhabitants when the quake hit.

“We’re not talking about reconstruction, but about construction,” he said.

“Decentralisation means to reinforce local authorities, transfer administrative activities,” Preval said, but noted that Haiti’s constitution mandates that Port-au-Prince remain the capital.

The death toll from the quake is still be counted. Preval mentioned 170,000 dead, but other government sources said the toll was more than 180,000 and could still increase.

Categories: World

Australian Open: No-sweat Federer says finals pressure all on Murray

January 30, 2010 Comments off

Grand Slam master Roger Federer has shifted the weight of expectation onto the Scottish shoulder of Andy Murray as the pair prepare for their Sunday final at the Australian Open.

With 15 Grand Slam titles in his pocket and holding boatloads of records in the game, the 28-year-old world number one has been down the road before.

Murray’s experience is rather more limited, with his only other final at a major ending as a heart-breaking straight-set loss to the smooth Swiss in New York, 2008.

Murray has all of Britain expecting him to end a massive gap of nearly three-quarters of a century since the last British men’s Grand Slam title, Fred Perry at Wimbledon, 1936.

“He’s one match away – I’ll make sure it won’t happen,” said Federer, a three-time Melbourne champion. “We’ll see how it goes.”

Federer has little more to do than prepare with calm determination after thrashing semi-final victim Jo-Wilfried Tsonga with the loss of just seven games,

“I know that he’d like to win the first title in British tennis in, what is it 150,000 years?” joked Federer. “It would be so nice for him.

“I’ll have to be aggressive. We’ve had some different types of matches against each other. We sometimes like to jerk around on the court and play some high balls at each other. Definitely it will be tactical. It is always a tactical game against him.”

Murray, 22, believes that he’s ready to fulfill history. “I’ve played my best tennis so far, I just need to do it in one more match. I’ll give it my best shot.

“There’s a lot of pressure in Slam finals and with Roger, he’s going to have the edge in experience. I feel like if I play my best like I have been this week and fight hard, I’ve definitely got a chance of winning.”

Federer thinks the pressure on Murray could easily backfire. “I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s a bit fed up by it (talk of the title drought).

“I think he’s done really well handling the pressure and considering that the media in England is very strong, I think he’s done great – under the pressure.”

Murray holds the 6-4 career edge but Federer stopped the rot after four straight losses in 2008 and early 2009, winning their last two encounters in Cincinnati and the London season finals.

The experienced Federer is contesting his 22nd Grand Slam final and feels comfortable in his accustomed role of favourite.

“He’s playing me, who’s won many Grand Slams prior to this, been able to win here three times so I know what it takes and how to do it, which is definitely an advantage.

“I don’t feel like the pressure’s really on me having to do it again, because I did it before. He really needs it more than I do, so I think the pressure’s big on him. But we’ll see how he’s gonna handle it. It’s not going to be easy for him, that’s for sure.”

Federer is bidding to become the first father to win a Grand Slam title since Andre Agassi claimed the 2003 Australian Open as father to 15-month-old Jayden. The Swiss could also win his 62nd career title, climbing to joint-sixth place in the historical table alongside Guillermo Vilas.

Categories: Sports