Mumbai: Several prominent Indian celebrities have publicly condemned the recent Israeli bombardment in Gaza's far-southern Rafah region, which resulted in the deaths of 45 individuals, according to Palestinian officials. This attack, which Gaza medics report left hundreds of civilians with shrapnel and burn wounds, has drawn significant international criticism.

South Indian star Samantha expressed her outrage over Israel's attack on Rafah through a series of Instagram stories. Similarly, actor Swara Bhasker, known for her vocal support of Palestinian rights, shared multiple Instagram stories conveying her anger and frustration regarding the attack. “We live in a world that expects us to have a balanced response to babies being beheaded and burnt alive in tents! There are no words, only curses in my heart for those who did this, enabled this, abetted this, funded this, supported this, and made a narrative to normalize this,” she wrote.

Actress Fatima Sana Shaikh also took to Instagram to share her distress, posting, “Came across a really disturbing video of beheaded children in Rafah. One cannot just ignore this anymore. When will this end!” Meanwhile, Malaika Arora posted on her Instagram story, stating, “There is no such thing as killing children legally.”

Other Bollywood personalities, including director Atlee and actors Varun Dhawan, Virdas, Sonam Kapoor, Ileana D’Cruz, Anjum Khan, Rakul Preet Singh, Tripti Dimri, Konkona Sen Sharma, Hansika Motwani, Dia Mirza, and Nora Fatehi, also voiced their support for Gaza on social media. Singers Raftaar and Yoyo Honey Singh joined in, using their platforms to call attention to the crisis.

TV actor Aly Goni shared an "All eyes on Rafah" post on his Instagram Stories and highlighted reports of Israel bombing Rafah 60 times in 48 hours after an International Court of Justice order. Gauahar Khan posted about the attack, emphasizing the plight of mothers in Gaza, saying, “Tonight, mothers in Gaza will again hold their children and hope they sleep. And they, and we, will pray that they wake.”

Despite the wave of support from many in Bollywood, some netizens criticized prominent actors Shahrukh Khan, Salman Khan, and Aamir Khan for their silence on the issue.

In response to the international outcry, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu referred to the strike as a "tragic accident" but reaffirmed that he will continue the military campaign against Hamas, following the group's October 7 attack and the hostage crisis.

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Deralakatte: Abubakar Haji, popularly known as 'Koti Haji,' passed away at his residence in Deralakatte on Saturday night after a brief illness. He was 82 years old.

Koti Haji, originally from Pilivalachchil in Vitla Kadambu, was a businessman in Hospet, Vijay Nagar, before settling in Deralakatte 22 years ago.

A well-known philanthropist, he founded the Ahal Taqwa Trust, supporting various mosques and madrasas. He was also responsible for building and maintaining a mosque in Deralakatte.

He is survived by his wife, six sons, and a daughter.

Several dignitaries, including Speaker UT Khader, Muslim Jamaat D.K. District Vice President Ali Kunhi Pare, former Belma Panchayat President Yusuf Bava, DCC Vice President TS Abdullah Samanige, and Abusali Haji Kinya, paid their respects.

General Secretary of Shamsul Ulama Darus Salam Academy Wadi Twaiba Kinya, Sirajuddin Alankar, Secretary of the Public Works Department Contractors Association Nisar Ahmed Samani, and District Coordination Committee Chairman Abdul Rahiman Darimi Tabuku, among others, have expressed their condolences.