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  • PM Modi, Sonia Gandhi Attend Wedding Reception of Lalu Yadav's Daughter

    NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress President Sonia Gandhi were among a host of political leaders attending the wedding reception of Lalu Prasad Yadav's daughter with Mulayam Singh Yadav's grandnephew in New Delhi on Thursday night.

    Leaders cutting across party line were at the ceremony which marked the union of the country's two foremost backward leaders and regional satraps.

    President Pranab Mukherjee was also there.

    PM Modi, Sonia Gandhi Attend Wedding Reception of Lalu Yadav's Daughter
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    Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, former Deputy Prime Minister L K Advani were among those, besides Mrs Gandhi and PM Modi, who blessed the couple, Raj Laxmi and Tej Pratap Yadav.

    Speaker Sumitra Mahajan and Home Minister Rajnath Singh were also present.

    Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar was also there and sources said PM Modi had a brief chat with his ally-turned-rival.

    Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) President Sharad Pawar, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, Janata Dal United (JDU) President Sharad Yadav apart from many Bihar and UP ministers attended the reception.

    The couple's tilak ceremony on February 21 had also seen an impressive gathering, including that of PM Modi, in Safai, the Samajwadi Party President's home town.

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  • Paul Williamson wedding

    Paul Williamson wedding: Pictures from emotional service as dying groom marries former college sweetheart Anne Hope

    IT WAS the Valentine’s Day wedding that fulfilled dying Paul Williamson’s last wish.

    The former Birmingham student, diagnosed with terminal cancer, today won his race against time by marrying his former college sweetheart Anne Hope.

    The couple tied the knot at Elmdon Church in Solihull in a service organised in just a fortnight.

    And their shoestring budget was boosted by a tidal wave of financial support from businesses touched by their story.

    Paul, who is just 48, bravely made his vows despite being left struggling to speak by mouth and throat cancer.

    His sister Lynda Crabb said: “I understood every word he said.

    “It was wonderful.”


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    The couple, who were only reunited last May, had been engaged for just a month when the former concert pianist, from Tile Hill in Coventry, was told his cancer was terminal last August.

    But their marriage was written in the stars as they had dated 30 years earlier as fellow students at the old Coventry School of Music.

    Their initial two-year relationship fizzled out when Paul moved to Sheldon after winning a place at Birmingham Conservatoire.

    Love bloomed for a second time three decades later when Anne, also 48, spotted Paul’s name on a directory of music teachers and the couple met up.

    But tragedy struck when Paul was told he did not have long to live – and they decided to organise their quickfire wedding late last month.

    A string of firms raced to help make their wedding a day to remember – including posh Nailcote Hall at Berkswell, near Solihull, which staged the reception.

    And the choice of church was also significant as it was where Paul’s parents were married 56 years earlier.

    The ceremony began at 1.30pm with the bride arriving at the church in a cream Beauford Open Top Tourer.

    She wore a beautiful white dress with red and diamanté detailing and carried a bouquet of red roses.

    Paul wore a tailored suit from the Suit Lounge in Holbrooks, Coventry.

    It was provided after his family struggled to find a suit to fit him because his weight plummeted to eight stone.

    Anne was walked down the aisle by John, Paul’s father, to Pachelbel’s Canon in D.

    The groom’s twin brother David was best man.

    The theme of the service, conducted by the Rev Toby Crowe, was a line taken from The Beatles’ hit All You Need is Love.

    The vicar said: “All you need is love.

    “Who better is there to give that message to the world than you?”

    As the service continued, Anne sneaked loving glances at her new husband.

    She held his hand lovingly throughout readings given by friends and family, including her teenage daughter Ellie.

    When Paul felt tired, Anne helped support him by wrapping her arm protectively around his waist.

    During the signing of the wedding register, a duo of flautists performed the Brian Adams hit Everything I Do and Take That’s Rule the World.

    Rod Simpson, of dove release firm Wings of White, provided two doves for the couple to release outside the church following the ceremony.

    Telling how the couple decided to marry, Lynda said previously: “Both Paul and Anne were very emotional.

    “I was with Anne and she got upset and said that all she wanted to do was marry Paul.

    “When I took Paul to the doctors, he got emotional and said that he wanted to marry Anne too.

    “We just take everything one day at a time.

    “He never gives up.

    “He’s full of spirit.

    “He still plays the piano and can drag me around and then out to the pub.”

    “Anne is go good with Paul. She cares for him so much.”


  • Bridegroom started mass brawl on his wedding night

    Bridegroom started mass brawl on his wedding night by telling teenage boys he could 'knock them out with one punch' before butting, glassing and throttling them

    A groom who sparked a mass brawl on his wedding night told a group of teenagers he would 'knock them out with one punch' before butting, glassing and throttling his three victims.

    John Derick Sandham, 31, was at his wedding reception at a pub in Holywell, Flintshire, when he launched an attack on a group of young friends also having a drink at the venue.

    The court heard how Sandham, who had swapped vows with his wife Clare just hours earlier, head-butted one victim before hitting him in the face with a glass or a bottle.

    He then grabbed another of the teenagers by the throat, before hitting the third victim on the back of the head, Mold Crown Court was told.

    Sandham, from Bagillt, near Holywell, had claimed he acted in self-defence, saying: 'This was my wedding night. It is supposed to be the happiest day of my life and it was blighted by this.'

    But a jury at Mold Crown Court convicted him of all three assaults. He has now been bailed until his sentencing hearing.


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    The court heard how the wedding took place on August 24, 2013 before the reception at The Abbott’s Arms.

    The victims, who were aged 16 and 17, were not part of the wedding party.

    The court was told how one of the victims went for a cigarette while the others were in the porch 'having a laugh and messing about'.

    The defendant then walked through the porch, where he was said to have asked the friends what they were saying.

    He then walked straight up to the group and grabbed one of them, before launching the gurious attacks.

    The jury heard how one of the teeangers needed hospital treatment for cuts to his nose after being struck with the glass.

    He told the jury: 'We were just having a laugh. There were no issues.

    'He turned around and asked what we were saying? We said we did not want any trouble but he said he could knock all three of us out with one punch.'

    The groom had claimed he only went through the porch to say goodbye to wedding guests, who were leaving by taxi. He said he had left his glass inside the venue.

    He also claimed that the teenage friends had started growling at him and 'went for him'.

    He told the court: 'Everyone there had a fantastic day, all the guests, all the friends and family, the children, it was brilliant. Then it was blighted by this.'

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