Scots prisoners help to build effigies for Indian festival parade

By Christine Lavelle

SOME of Scotland’s hardest prisoners have helped create giant 40ft effigies to be torched to mark a major Hindu celebration this Sunday.

The colourful figures are for a parade marking the Indian festival Dusherra held Edinburgh this weekend.

Dusherra is a Hindu celebration of good conquering evil, telling the story of Lord Rama, who defeated the demon king Ravana following a 10 day war.

Inmates at the Edinburgh jail were given the chance to build woodwork models of Rama and the demons from scratch, which have taken them around four weeks to complete. Continue reading

Clan leader hopes to reclaim ancient territory

By Cara Sulieman

A CLAN chief is plotting to take back land that he claims once used to belong to his family.

Ranald MacDonald, chief of the MacDonald’s of Keppoch branch, is hoping to use an ancient law to regain ownership of the entire area of Lochaber.

And he claims that the law stands in his favour – with the government failing to abolish an Anglo-Saxon system of ownership.

The chief wants to use Ur Duthchas – Gaelic for clan territory – to achieve his aims and has now submitted a petition to the Scottish Parliament in the hope that they will agree with him.

Mr MacDonald became the chief of the clan after a legal battle that he took all the way to the Court of Session in 2004 where the judges decided that he was the rightful successor.

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Meteorite sale not as earth-shattering as was thought

By Cara Sulieman

SCOTLAND’S answer to Indiana Jones sold his meteorite collection today – but the results weren’t as earth-shattering as the experts thought.

Estimated at over £500,000, Robert Elliott’s collection of rocks – which included a piece of the moon – raised just £130,000 when they went under the hammer at Lyon and Turnbull.

The enthusiast’s collection included pieces of meteorites from all over the globe, including the Barwell Meteorite which fell to earth on December 24 1965.

It was the highest selling item – fetching an impressive £8,000.

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Mumbai massacre survivor relives hotel bloodbath

By Michael MacLeod

THE sole Scots survivor of the Mumbai massacre says he feared “certain death” while trapped in his hotel room for two days.

In a business trip that clashed with an Islamic terror group’s co-ordinated raid of Indian hotels, Roger Hunt, 43, was moments from becoming one of the 170 dead.

Speaking at the weekend in his first interview about the siege, the Royal Bank of Scotland manager told of how he escaped a shower of bullets.

He had just left the Oberoi Hotel’s restaurant when gunmen burst in and “sprayed bullets” at the very table he had eaten dinner at.
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Beware the “killer” curry with a contract

By Michael MacLeod

A CURRY so hot it comes with a death disclaimer has been unleashed by a Scots restaurant.

The Kismot Killer dish makes vindaloo taste like “a piece of cake” according to its creators.

The spicy meal is bidding for a place in the Guinness Book of Records as the world’s hottest curry.

Anyone willing to try it must sign a medical disclaimer before it even passes their lips.

Even the family behind Edinburgh’s run Indian and Bangladeshi restaurant, Kismot, are too scared to eat it.
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By Cara Sulieman

SCOTLAND’S best-kept secret has been revealed – Irn Bru really is made from girders.

The keep of the recipe, Robin Barr, has let it slip that there is 0.002 per cent of ammonium ferric citrate (AFC) in the national drink.

And ferric means iron – even if it is tiny quantities of the metal.

AFC is one of the 32 ingredients that Robin mixes together once a month to make the sweet fizzy drink. Continue reading