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BSNL Finance Director replaced amid financial crisis

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first_imgNew Delhi: Amidst the acute financial crisis at BSNL, the Department of Telecom (DoT) has handed over the responsibility of the Finance Director at the cash-strapped PSU to current Director Mobile as well as fixed line, Vivek Banzal divesting the charge from Sujata Ray. Official sources said Banzal, who is already holding two key charges, has been given the charge of Finance Director and this was effected by the DoT on February 28. Banzal would now be looking at all the three key wings — fixed line, mobile and finance at BSNL. Also Read – Maruti cuts production for 8th straight month in Sep The sources said that the government decides responsibilites and such things were routine and although more realignment of responsibilities were likely to be effected from DoT in BSNL. Ray is slated to retire in April. But it is not clear if any new Finance Director would be appointed shortly or Benzal will be given this post as full time given the poor financial health of the PSU, the post is vital. > Banzal took charge on March first week as Finance Director. Also Read – Ensure strict implementation on ban of import of e-cigarettes: revenue to Customs The reasons for the sudden replacement have not been cited but it was seen in the context of the present cash crunch position of BSNL which is expected to linger on given the low tariff regime and BSNL itself not having full range of services like 4G. Going through its worst financial crisis, BSNL recently failed to pay salaries for the first time in 19 years. With heightened competition unleashed by Jio with low tariffs, BSNL’s revenues have further dried up as it does not have 4G LTE service. Its loss is at Rs 7,999 crore for 2017-18.last_img read more

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UNICEF supports efforts to immunize Rwandan children against measles

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6 October 2009The third Mother and Child Health Week, backed by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), has kicked off in Rwanda with a twist, with the campaign immunizing children against measles for the first time in the African Great Lakes nation. The third Mother and Child Health Week, backed by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), has kicked off in Rwanda with a twist, with the campaign immunizing children against measles for the first time in the African Great Lakes nation.Measles accounts for less than 2 per cent of deaths of children under the age of five in Rwanda, but “we have to ensure that children continue to remain protected from this life-threatening illness,” said Joseph Foumbi, UN Resident Coordinator ad interim and UNICEF Representative in the country.Rwanda has made strides in slashing by half the number of under-five child deaths from preventable causes, from 196 per 1,000 live births in 2000 to 103 live births in 2007, UNICEF said in a press release issued in the district of Bugesera.The Health Weeks, which are held in several regions of the world, have proven to be an effective way to save lives at a low cost.During the drive in Rwanda this week, children under five will be vaccinated against measles and polio, with some also receiving Vitamin A capsules to boost their immune systems and mebendazole to fight parasitic infections.Over 45,000 people – volunteers, community health workers and local leaders – will fan out across the country to ensure that more than 1.5 million women and children are brought to vaccination sites and health centres to receive care. read more

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UN chief marks Autism Awareness Day with call for greater support to

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1 April 2011Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called for increased support for children and adults with autism and their families, saying public awareness about the condition remains low, with those affected suffering discrimination, abuse, isolation and violation of their fundamental rights. “Children and persons with autistic conditions face major challenges associated with stigma and discrimination, as well as a lack of access to support. Many struggle with multiple barriers in their daily lives,” Mr. Ban said in a message to mark the World Autism Awareness Day, which will be observed tomorrow.The United Nations chief executive said that the number of children and people with autistic conditions continues to rise in all countries and racial, ethnic and social groups, but awareness remained low despite the recognition of autistic conditions among the scientific, health and care communities.Mr. Ban described the annual observance of World Autism Awareness Day as an “opportunity to mobilize for action and assistance.”“Autism is a complex disorder. But in many cases the right treatment early on can bring improvements. That is why it is so important to raise awareness about the signs of autism and provide services as soon as possible,” added Mr. Ban.He spoke of the need to support parents, create jobs for individuals with autism based on their skills and strengths, and improve public education to better meet the needs of students with autism. Such steps can benefit society and enrich the lives of people with autism and their loved ones.Mr. Ban highlighted a remark by a mother of a child with autism who said: “Although my daughter has walked a long way, I have walked a longer way.”“Together, let us travel this road toward a more caring and inclusive world,” the Secretary-General added. read more

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Businessman shot dead in Sapugaskanda

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A businessman was shot dead in Sapugaskanda laet this evening.The Police said the businessman was shot dead at the Galwala Junction in Sapugaskanda. Two unidentified gunmen on a motorcycle had carried out the shooting.The victim was identified as 35 year old H. A. Danushka Sanjeewa from Makola North.

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Protect environment from wars and conflicts UN urges on International Day

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“Whether caused by fighting or a breakdown in Government control, the damage to the environment has devastating consequences for people’s health and well-being […] it is not a new problem, but is one that can last for decades,” said Mr. Guterres in a message on the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict.“Areas of Europe are still affected by heavy-metal contamination from munitions used during the First World War.” In his message, the Secretary-General also highlighted the importance of a healthy environment for people to rebuild their lives once fighting stops, noting that the shared management of natural resources can also provide avenues to maintain or improve relations. Given the importance of the environment and natural resources for sustainable development, the UN chief called for steps to reduce the collateral damage from conflicts and protect them. “The UN is committed to protecting the environment as an essential pillar of peace, security and sustainable development,” he stressed. According to the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), conflicts over natural resources are among the greatest challenges confronting today’s world, with serious threats to human security. Furthermore, at least 40 per cent of all internal armed conflicts over the past 65 years have had an important natural resource dimension. Since 1989, more than 35 major armed conflicts have been financed by revenues from conflict resources, and there are fears that in the coming years, extreme climate stresses could double the risk of violent conflict. However, despite these risks, there are also “significant opportunities” linking the environment and peacebuilding, added UNEP. “Let us not forget the power of environmental cooperation to drive peace and prosperity,” said UNEP Executive Director Erik Solheim. Also today, joining forces with the Environmental Law Institute, the Earth Institute at Columbia University, Duke University, and the University of California at Irvine, UNEP opened the enrolment at the online course, Environmental Security and Sustaining Peace, which aims to build a community of 10,000 practitioners that can make natural resources a reason for global cooperation. The course covers a range of natural resources, from extractives to land and water, as well as a range of tools and approaches from conflict and gender sensitivity to assessments, meditation and spatial planning. read more

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Act now with ambition and urgency to tackle the worlds grave climate

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Because of climate change, “all around the world, people are losing their homes and being forced to migrate”, he informed the meeting, adding that the situation “will only get worse unless we act now with ambition and urgency”.Just last week, reports surfaced that “Himalayan glaciers are melting at double the rate since the turn of this century”, threatening water supplies throughout Central, South and East Asia, according to Mr. Guterres.Moreover, he pointed out that “Arctic permafrost is melting decades earlier than even worst-case scenarios”, threatening to unlock vast amounts of the powerful greenhouse gas methane.“It is plain to me that we have no time to lose,” Mr. Guterres said.  “Sadly, it is not yet plain to all the decision makers that run our world.” Even more worrying, he continued, “is that many countries are not even keeping pace with their promises under the Paris Agreement.”Keeping global warming to 1.5 degrees at the end of the century will require “rapid and far-reaching transitions” in how we manage land, energy, industry, buildings, transport and cities, he stressed. “That is why I am convening the Climate Action Summit in September.” The Abu Dhabi meeting, which is in preparation for the September Summit, aims to take stock of progress across all the areas that the Summit is looking to promote, from industrial transition to nature-based solutions to climate finance for both mitigation and adaptation.Climate disruption is happening now, and it is happening to all of us — UN chief“The Climate Action Summit is an opportunity for political, business and civil society leaders to set an example”, flagged the UN chief, “and here in Abu Dhabi, we are pointing the right direction”.“Our Summit must be open, inclusive and honest, and the work we take forward must be effective, just and fair – for those on the frontlines of the crisis today and especially for the generations to come”, the Secretary-General concluded.Thani Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of Climate Change and Environment said: “We are here today, in a region known for its hydrocarbon economy … and yet, through forward-thinking policies, we have now made solar the cheapest source of power.” “Climate disruption is happening now, and it is happening to all of us”, he warned. “It is progressing even faster than the world’s top scientists have predicted”.The UN chief lamented that it is “outpacing our efforts to address it” with each week bringing “new climate-related devastation” from floods, droughts, heatwaves, wildfires and superstorms.The increasing urgency posed by #ClimateChange is in focus at a ministerial-level meeting in #AbuDhabi today and Monday, chaired by @antonioguterres and intended to galvanize initiatives for September’s #ClimateAction Summit https://t.co/bKTf3KNI5e pic.twitter.com/QjP1gCr73Z— WMO | OMM (@WMO) June 30, 2019 read more

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Three Ohio State womens lacrosse players named Big Ten players to watch

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OSU then-junior attacker Rainey Hodgson (6) during a game against Maryland on May 1. Credit: Courtesy of Ben SolomanGraduating nine starters wasn’t easy for the Ohio State women’s lacrosse team, but that didn’t stop its new senior class from making a statement right off the bat.The seniors made sure they were heard this preseason, as attackmen Cian Dabrowski and Rainey Hodgson and midfielder Christine Easton represented the Buckeyes on the 2016 Big Ten players to watch list, making up three of 18 players on the conference’s list. OSU coach Alexis Venechanos said these players are three of the most experienced players on the field this year, which aids their abilities to make an impact.“Christine has been involved since her freshman year until now, and we’re looking for her to step up into a larger role on the attacking end,” Venechanos said. “Cian and Rainey have been supporting players with our teams in the past, and now they’re going to be main contributors and vocal points.”Venechanos said the preseason honor empowers the team, and she will look for the energy to carry over into the 2016 season.“When our players see these players be successful, it gives us confidence going into season play,” Venechanos said. “It’s a natural transition, and all of the honorees have worked hard for that.”Easton has 44 career starts heading into her senior season, the most on the active roster. She said the honor means a lot to her because, although she’s not a big goal scorer, she was able to stand out in the team’s defense.“I think any one of these 36 girls could be on that list, so it’s an honor to be on it,” Easton said. “We can continue to use this recognition to show the conference that we’re good enough to play with top schools like Northwestern, Maryland and Penn State.”Easton, originally a defenseman, transitioned to midfield for the first time before her senior season.OSU then-junior attacker Cian Dabrowski (14) during a game against Maryland on May 1. Credit: Courtesy of Ben Soloman“It helps having my experience on defense as I move into attack, and I’m playing with a lot of experienced attackmen,” Easton said. “We have a young defense too, so I have an important role to be there to help them.”Hodgson, who started 15 of 21 games last season, has 35 career goals with 19 assists heading into her senior season. She said the honor means a lot to her, but there’s still a lot of work to be done before the season starts Feb. 13.“We came back this year as a whole new team, so there’s a big dedication to getting our team to the highest standard,” Hodgson said. “We’re hungry to compete at the same level we have the past few years, and I’m excited to keep us there.”Hodgson said the seniors collectively try to take underclassmen under their wings and set a positive example, whether it’s by practicing extra or watching film.“I have more of a leadership role this year, as I am one of the few returning starters,” Hodgson said. “I like being able to shed light on what it’s like on the field and to help ease the transition for players stepping up into new roles.”Dabrowski, the most established offensive threat on the roster, enters her senior season with a team-leading 69 goals and 25 assists in her career. She said this honor means a lot to the team because it shows how much the program has grown.“The Big Ten conference is arguably the best lacrosse conference in the country, so this honor motivates me to push myself even harder every day,” Dabrowski said. “We do conditioning at the beginning of every practice and it gets me in the zone to be ready for practice and to push my teammates to that next level too.”The Buckeyes are ranked No. 4 in the 2016 Big Ten women’s lacrosse preseason poll, behind Maryland, Penn State and Northwestern. Their season is scheduled to begin on Feb. 13 at 3:30 p.m. against Detroit at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. read more

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IOGear Unveils New Wireless Keyboards

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first_imgIf you’re in the market for a new keyboard that won’t look strange on your coffee table paired with your home theater PC, IOGear’s new Bluetooth Keyboard with Touchpad will do the trick. The keyboard is piano black with a touch-sensitive trackpad on the right side with two “mouse” buttons underneath it. The keyboard is Bluetooth and can pair with multiple Bluetooth devices, so you can use it with your PC and then bring it over to the couch when it’s time to watch video on the big screen. IOGear also unveiled the 2.4GHz Wireless Compact Keyboard for devices without Bluetooth. This model is a smaller keyboard with a trackball on the side, complete with scroll wheel and left-and-right mouse buttons.  Both models will be available by the end of Q1, with the Bluetooth model shipping for $79.95 list price and the 2.4GHz Wireless model retailing for $59.99.  [via Engadget]last_img read more

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If you smoke 20 cigarettes a day you inhale a mugful of

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first_img By Órla Ryan Image: Shutterstock/Marc Bruxelle Wednesday 1 Mar 2017, 6:15 AM Short URL 14,261 Views 28 Comments Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Mar 1st 2017, 6:15 AM http://jrnl.ie/3263215 ‘If you smoke 20 cigarettes a day, you inhale a mugful of tar each year’ One in every two smokers will die of a tobacco-related disease – pharmacists want to buck this trend. Image: Shutterstock/Marc Bruxelle Share159 Tweet Email3 A HARD-HITTING campaign aimed at getting people to quit smoking tells us that one in every two smokers will die of a tobacco-related disease.Thousands of people have signed up to the HSE’s Quit initiative, and there has been a decrease in the number of people smoking in Ireland in recent years.However, as of 2016, some 18.7% of people here still smoke. About 5,500 people in Ireland die from a smoking-related illnesses each year.Today is National No Smoking Day and the Irish Pharmacy Union (IPU) has teamed up with the HSE to encourage more people to give up.Pharmacists across the country are on hand to give support and advice to smokers who want to quit.Carmel Collins, vice president of the IPU, said research has shown that about 70% of smokers want to quit and over 80% wish they had never started smoking.Collins told TheJournal.ie: “We want to tap into that motivation. There are over 1,800 pharmacies in Ireland, we have a widely established network which is hugely accessible to the public.”She said smokers greatly increase their chances of giving up if they get support, rather than going cold turkey.People need to recognise that if they have tried quitting before maybe they didn’t get the right support. Pharmacists can help come up with a nicotine replacement programme. There are gums, inhalers, lozenges – what the person needs to use is dependent on their level of nicotine addiction, whether they’re a heavy tor mild smoker.“The pharmacist will ask a series of questions and can help raise awareness about the person’s triggers and habits when it comes to smoking – why they’re smoking and why they don’t want to smoke.“The person can decide a quit date to come back to the pharmacy on. In the meantime they can keep smoking but they are preparing to quit.”Withdrawal symptoms Collins said the person will most likely visit their pharmacist weekly in the first stages of quitting. She stressed the importance of making these check-ins regular so the person trying to quit has consistent support and advice.She noted that withdrawal symptoms, such as headaches and a dry mouth, can worry people but these will pass and are actually positive – signs that the body is ridding itself of nicotine.In terms of using vaping as a way to cut down on cigarettes, Collins said: “The jury is still out”, and not enough research has been done in this area.Collins said the high number of people smoking in the 18-35-year age bracket is particularly worrying. Source: HSEShe noted that smoking is also quite common among manual workers, semi-skilled workers and those on long-term state benefits such as unemployed people, adding that people with medical cards can avail of free nicotine replacement therapy. Source: HSECarbon monoxideCollins said the health benefits of quitting are obvious, noting that about 90% of lung cancers are connected to smoking.“There isn’t any argument anymore about it.People are talking about carbon monoxide poisoning now, when you smoke a cigarette you are inhaling carbon monoxide – a poisonous gas. If you smoke 20 cigarettes a day, you can inhale a mugful of tar into your lungs in a year.The HSE notes that within 20 minutes of quitting, a person’s heart rate and blood pressure drop, while all the carbon monoxide in their system will be eliminated within 24-48 hours.One year after quitting, the excess risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a continuing smoker’s and, after five years, the risk of heart attack falls to that of a non-smoker.Aside from the health benefits, it also makes financial sense for people to quit. For example, a person who smokes 20 cigarettes per day can save €4,000 a year by quitting.“A huge amount of money is saved, that’s good for anybody’s heart,” Collins added.More information on quitting smoking can be read here.Read: Vaping is ‘far safer than smoking’Read: Inmates in Irish prisons will soon have access to e-cigaretteslast_img read more

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Facebook 22000 emplois créés en France en 2011

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first_imgFacebook: 22.000 emplois créés en France en 2011Selon une étude du cabinet Deloitte, Facebook a généré la création de 232.000 emplois en Europe en 2011, dont 22.000 en France. En période de crise, s’il y en a un qui peut créer des emplois, c’est bien Facebook. La plupart sont cependant des emplois indirects, comme les éditeurs de logiciels, les développeurs internet ou les gestionnaires de communautés. La création indirecte d’emplois aura généré 15,3 milliards d’euros en Europe. La France se taille une bonne part du gâteau avec 1,9 milliards d’euros générés.À lire aussiDengue : symptômes, traitement, prévention, où en est-on ?De leur côté, les opérations directes ne représente qu’une centaine d’emplois et quatre millions d’euros de revenus. Des chiffres peu élevés en comparaison.Le système développé autour des applications, constitué essentiellement de développeur, est en plein boom puisqu’il a suscité plus de 200 millions d’euros de revenus et 2.400 emplois en France. “Des centaines d’entreprises rivalisent aujourd’hui d’inventivité pour créer des applications” rappelle Julien Codorniou, directeur des partenariats Facebook France. C’est sans compter les agences de marketing et les marques, qui, grâce à leur investissement pour figurer sur Facebook représentent 1,1 milliards d’euros et 12.000 emplois.Sur 800 millions d’utilisateurs, la France en compte actuellement 25 millions. De quoi alimenter ces résultats. “Aucune plateforme dans l’histoire du logiciel et d’Internet n’a créé autant de valeur aussi vite” souligne Julien Codorniou. Le 28 janvier 2012 à 10:30 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

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I Desperately Need Fords LaneKeeping Smart Bed

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first_imgStay on target Many mornings, I wake up to find my fiance’s head on my pillow and legs sprawled out where mine should be.And I’m not alone: Studies show that one in four people in a relationship sleep better alone.In fact, the old-fashioned practice of separate beds has become to popular there is a recognized trend for “sleep divorces.”But Ford doesn’t want you to lose sleep over a mattress hog.The vehicle manufacturer this week introduced a “Lane-Keeping Bed,” which applies car technology to ensure that “even the most selfish bed mate stays firms ‘in their lane’ through the night.”“Humans are most vulnerable when sleeping, so we’re programmed to wake when something or someone touches us unexpectedly,” according to Neil Stanley, an independent sleep expert.“If someone moves onto your side of the bed this defense mechanism will kick in and you’ll have a broken night, often while they continue to sleep soundly,” he explained. “I’ve seen it ruin relationships.”Ford’s “Lane-Keeping Bed” applies car tech to ensure even the most selfish bed mate stays firmly “in their lane” through the night (via Ford Europe)Just as Ford’s Lane-Keeping Aid avoids accidents by “nudging” the steering wheel in the correct direction, the prototype revolving mattress gently shifts people back into position.As exciting a prospect as this sounds, the smart bed is only a concept—and one unlikely to be developed into a commercial product.“Lane-Keeping Aid in our cars can make driving easier and more comfortable. We thought that showing how similar thinking could be applied to a bed would be a great way to highlight to drivers a technology that they might not previously have been aware of,” Anthony Ireson, director of Marketing Communications for Ford of Europe, said in a statement.The “Lane-Keeping Bed” is part of a series of Ford Interventions that apply automotive expertise to tackle everyday (or every night) problems.In December, Ford unveiled a prototype noise-cancelling kennel, using the same technology found in cars and headphones to protect sensitive canine ears during loud fireworks displays.Once internal microphones detect the sound of pyrotechnics, a built-in audio system kicks in, emitting opposing frequencies that cancel out—or at least significantly reduce—the offending noise.More on Geek.com:Ford Wants to Design Cars With Virtual Reality SketchesFord’s Sweaty Robot Butt Tests Car Seat DurabilityFord Wants to Remove New Car Odors by ‘Heating Up’ Vehicles Watch: Electric Ford F-150 Prototype Tows Over a Million PoundsFord Secretly Designed a Pickup Truck Emoji last_img read more

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Weather Eye Yes those were thunderstorms not Fourth of July fireworks

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first_imgIt was almost like the Fourth of July came early, with all the fireworks in the skies above us Monday. Numerous thunderstorms rolled through bringing cloud-to-cloud lightning and cloud-to-ground lightning strikes.Hail the size of nickels was reported here and there with the torrential downpours. Temperatures fell to 50 degrees under some of these cells, and driving was almost impossible in the severely reduced visibility. There were also power outages, perhaps caused by the lightning in the Camas-Washougal area, about the time many residents were sliding dinner into the oven.Blame it on a typical cold springtime air mass. Technically, it is still spring, as summer begins Saturday according to the calendar. I know, I wrote a week ago about this week being nice and warm. Forecast models indicate it again for next week. Maybe it will come to fruition.As of 5 p.m. Monday, I measured 0.54 inch of precipitation. I had reports near Camas of nearly an inch. Officially at Pearson, Vancouver tallied 1/3 inch.We will dry out some today (still a chance for showers) and Wednesday before another trough of low pressure slides down the coast. It may not bring much in rainfall, but we said that about the weekend storm, didn’t we?last_img read more

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Khaleda declines to appear at court in jail Prosecution

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first_imgKhaleda ZiaBNP chairperson Khaleda Zia on Wednesday refused to appear at the makeshift court set up inside an abandoned jail house where she has been kept since February, according to prosecution.The court of judge of the special trial court-5 Md Akhtaruzzaman, however, heard arguments in the Zia Charitable Trust case in her absence, said state prosecutor Mosharraf Hossain Kajol.He told the court that the jail authorities could not produce the former prime minister, Khaleda Zia, at the court as she declined to attend the hearing. The court sat at the abandoned central jail on Nazimuddin Road in Old Dhaka.Khaleda Zia, who was taken to this court on 5 September when her senior lawyers were absent, expressed her apprehensions about getting justice.Khaleda Zia’s lawyer Sanaullah Mia said it was not proper to set up such a court inside the jail as legal procedure has not been maintained all along.“We have written to the chief justice to settle the matter,” Sanaullah told newsmen.He said they have sought adjournment of the case for a month, until the matter pending with the chief justice is settled.“In the letter to the chief justice, we pointed out that there is no environment for hearing in the makeshift court in the jail. The lawyers normally cannot enter the jail,” Sanaullah pointed out.In the meantime, he added, a writ has been filed with the High Court seeking arrangement for Khaleda’s treatment in a specialised hospital.Prosecutor Kajol said the court has been established in the jail to ensure appearance of Khaleda Zia.“The defense lawyers now term the court in the jail illegal. But they are seeking extension of bail in the same court,” he said.The court on Wednesday adjourned the hearing till Thursday.The BNP chief, Khaleda Zia, has been in jail since her conviction of five years in jail by a Dhaka court in Zia Orphanage Trust case on 8 February.last_img read more

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At hajj Arab disunity blamed for Jerusalem debacle

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first_imgMuslim pilgrims circle the Kaaba and pray at the Grand mosque ahead of annual Hajj pilgrimage in the holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia on 16 August 2018. — ReutersMuslims at the annual haj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia criticized what they described as discordant Arab leaders for failing to block president Donald Trump’s decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem after he recognised the city as Israel’s capital.It was a reversal of decades of American policy and the embassy opened in May at a high-profile ceremony attended by Trump’s daughter Ivanka and his son-in-law Jared Kushner, the US envoy to the Middle East.The status of Jerusalem – home to sites holy to the Muslim, Jewish and Christian religions – is one of the biggest obstacles to any peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.The United Nations says the status of the ancient city – whose eastern sector was captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war – can only be resolved by negotiations. Palestinians claim East Jerusalem for the capital of an independent state they seek. Israel says Jerusalem is its eternal and indivisible capital.“This happened with the complicity of the Arab leaders,” 53-year-old Saad Awad from Sudan said on Monday as he walked east of Mecca with more than 2 million fellow Muslims from around the world.“If the Arab leaders were united and adhering to the Koran and the Sunna (Islamic practice based on words and deeds of the Prophet), it would be impossible for the Americans or anyone else to do something like this.”Saudi Arabia, which stakes its reputation on its guardianship of Islam’s holiest sites – Mecca and Medina – and organizing the haj, has urged pilgrims to put aside political concerns and focus on spirituality.The five-day ritual, the world’s largest annual gathering of Muslims, is a religious duty once in a lifetime for every able-bodied adherent who can afford it.Few pilgrims openly censured the host country, but dismay among ordinary Arabs at the embassy move has been tinged with anger at regional governments – particularly those of the oil-rich Gulf monarchies – for failing to stop, or even strongly protest against, Trump’s decision last December.“The Arabs are weak and have not taken a stand on the issue of Jerusalem,” said Algerian pilgrim Hilal Issa, 70.Some critics accuse Saudi Arabia, the birthplace of Islam, of surrendering Palestinian rights for the sake of its alliance with Trump and his tough stand on Iran.While Saudi Arabia and its fellow monarchies have previously criticized the embassy decision, they have also welcomed Trump’s harder line against Iran, which has cast itself as the guardian of Palestinian rights.In recent years the bitter regional rivalry that pits Shi’ite Muslim Iran and its allies against a bloc led by Sunni Muslim-majority Saudi Arabia has increasingly pushed the decades-old Arab-Israeli struggle into the background.King Salman has reassured Arab allies Riyadh would not endorse any peace plan that fails to address Jerusalem’s status or other key issues, Reuters reported last month, easing concerns that the kingdom might back a nascent US deal which largely aligns with Israel.“If the Arabs were united, nobody would have dared make such a move,” Yemeni pilgrim Amr Ahmed Ali said of the embassy transfer. “But God willing, the Arabs will unite, and this city will unite the Arabs and Muslims behind one cause which is the Palestinian cause.”last_img read more

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Girl held for supplying drugs to Correctional Home inmate

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first_imgKolkata: A girl has been arrested from the Dum Dum Correctional Home on Wednesday after she tried to supply drugs to an under trail prisoner. She was later released on bail after being produced at a Barrackpore court.She has been identified as Susmita Malakar. According to the preliminary investigation, police suspect that the girl had an affair with the accused for a long time. She used to visit him at the correctional home and supply items frequently. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe accused Bhagirath Sarkar was arrested on the charges of murder that occurred under Nijpur police station in North 24-Parganas. According to sources, the girl, a resident of Duttapukur of the same district, visited the correctional home on Wednesday morning. She met the boy inside the jail.She told the security personnel that she had some items to hand over. It was learnt that when security check was going on some of the jail staff found that the girl was carrying drugs weighing around 295 gm. The matter was immediately reported to the local police station. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedPolice reached the spot and arrested the girl. During police interrogation, the girl pleaded her innocence saying that she has been framed.The lawyer of the girl has, however, claimed that she was going to meet her friend when someone had handed over a packet to her to pass it on to someone else. When she was about to hand over the item to the person, the correctional home security men intercepted her and recovered the drug from her possession. The lawyer argued in the court that the girl, a college student was not involved in any immoral activities. After hearing the plea the court granted her bail.last_img read more

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Mamata remembers Tapasi Malik on death anniversary

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first_imgKolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Tuesday remembered Tapasi Malik who was raped and burnt to death during the Singur agitation over land acquisition in 2006. Besides paying homage to Malik on her death anniversary, Banerjee also remembered those who had lost their lives in political violence during the 34 years of Left Front rule in the state. Remembering Tapasi Malik on her death anniversary. The young protestor from Singur was raped and burnt to death during the farmers agitation in 2006. My homage to all those who lost their lives during the 34 years of Left rule, Banerjee wrote on her Twitter handle on Tuesday. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life Malik was a member of the ‘Save Singur Farmland Committee’. Her charred body was recovered from the Tata Motors’ factory site in Singur on December 18, 2006. Singur witnessed large-scale protests in 2006, when the CPM-led Left Front tried to acquire land for the factory. The agitation, that lasted for months, made headlines across the world and catapulted the then opposition leader Mamata Banerjee to limelight.last_img read more

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Tea Board working on shrinking govt support Bezbaruah

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first_imgKolkata: Tea Board of India was working on a shrinking government support with total allocation being approximately Rs 250 crore, an official said. “Tea Board is working under the backdrop of shrinking government financial support. The Board also labours under the burden of high administrative costs, with more than Rs 70 crore per year being spent on employees and maintenance of infrastructure, out of a total allocation of approximately Rs 250 crore”, non-executive chairman of the board P K Bezbaruah told PTI. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata Bose Thus, he suggested, one of the focus area of the Board over the next few years would be to reduce administrative costs by upto Rs 10 crore per annum, while many cost cutting initiatives were already on the anvil. “In my opinion, the thrust areas of the Board relating to the tea industry should be on exports through incentivization of exportable variants of tea, like orthodox, organic and speciality teas.” The Board should attempt to get the incentive for production of such variants tripled from the present level. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: Mamata Increase domestic consumption through generic promotion of tea should also be considered as a priority area, Bezbaruah, the second time non-executive chairman, said. He said that restructuring of primary markets, particularly the public tea auctions to ensure fair price discovery and prevent some sets of stakeholders from gaming the system to their advantage. “There should also be an effort to ensure transparency of all transactions on both sides, and to eliminate asymmetric information prevailing in todays primary markets”, he said. Bezbaruah said once the primary markets were restructured and strengthened, the Boards ultimate objective would be to ensure that the first sale of all produce that is not exported or sold directly to end consumers, is compulsorily routed through these channels.last_img read more

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4 militants killed in Algeria

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first_img Check your body, save your life New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Comments   Share   Al-Qaida’s North African arm, AQIM, is based in Algeria.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement The vital role family plays in societycenter_img ALGIERS (AP) – Algerian authorities say four armed Islamic extremists have been killed in a shootout with soldiers southeast of the capital.A security service statement Saturday says the fighting occurred overnight in Sour El Ghozlane, 120 kilometers (70 miles) from Algiers.The four were in a car heading south when soldiers stopped them and the shooting began, the statement said.Algeria’s army has been fighting extremists for two decades, but tensions recently have been concentrated much farther south, in the desert close to the Libyan border. Sponsored Stories Top Stories Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Patients with chronic pain give advicelast_img read more

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Holland America line wins nine 2010 readers choice awards from

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first_imgSource = Holland America Premium Cruise Line Earns Accolades for Top Itineraries, Best Private Island and Most Eco-Friendly Honors Holland America Line, a leader in defining the premium cruise experience, recently was awarded nine 2010 Readers’ Choice Awards including Best Eco-Friendly Cruise Line and Best Private Island for Half Moon Cay, its exclusive paradise in the Bahamas, from Porthole Cruise Magazine, one of the world’s leading cruise travel publications. Porthole Cruise Magazine’s Readers Choice Awards are determined by thousands of the publication’s readers who vote on their favorite cruise lines in a wide variety of categories including Best Private Island, Best Shore Excursions and Best Itineraries.“Porthole Cruise Magazine is the top source of cruise and destination content for novice and veteran travelers alike,” said Bill Panoff, publisher and editor-in-chief of the magazine. “Our readers appreciate the quality and overall cruise experience that a premium line such as Holland America Line delivers every day.”Holland America Line’s 2010 “Readers Choice Awards” include:Best Eco-Friendly Cruise LineBest Private Island (Half Moon Cay)Best Alaska ItinerariesBest Northern Europe ItinerariesBest Central/ South America Itineraries (including Panama Canal) Best Canada/ New England Itineraries Best Shore ExcursionsBest Medical Facilities Best Overall Facilities for Physically Challenged Passengers“Holland America Line is delighted to win these prestigious awards from the readers of Porthole Cruise Magazine,” said Richard D. Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs. “We are proud to be recognized for our in-depth cruise itineraries, enriching shore excursions, environmental commitment and an unforgettable premium cruise experience on board.” Half Moon Cay Receives Best Private Island Honors For the past 10 years, Porthole Cruise Magazine has awarded Half Moon Cay its Best Private Island Award. Half Moon Cay features 15 beach front air-conditioned cabanas, a natural 700-acre lagoon and endless fun-filled excursions for nature lovers and adventurous travelers alike. Here guests can enjoy fascinating excursions on the island including horseback riding by land and sea, snorkeling and swimming with stingrays in a secluded cove, biking tours, the AquaTrax watercraft adventure tour and parasailing.Top Itineraries Garner Top HonorsHolland America maintained its leading position as the cruise line with the Best Alaskan Itineraries. In 2011, the line will sail seven ships on 13 unique itineraries, highlighted by scenic cruising in Glacier Bay National Park, Hubbard Glacier in Yakutat Bay and Alaska’s renowned Inside Passage.  Holland America Line also received top honors from Porthole Cruise Magazine recognizing its Canada/ New England voyages on ms Maasdam and ms Eurodam that explore the historic seaports and stunning fall foliage of the region. The line’s 2011 itineraries range from seven to 13 days and will feature 24 sailings between May and October. This year marks the first time the line has earned a Readers Choice Award for its acclaimed Northern Europe itineraries aboard seven of the line’s 15 ships, including the newest addition to the fleet, ms Nieuw Amsterdam. Port calls featured in the Northern Europe sailings include Copenhagen, Denmark; St. Petersburg, Russia; Helsinki, Finland; Bergen, Norway; and Rotterdam, The Netherlands. Rounding out the honors garnered for top itineraries are the line’s Central/South American voyages, a series of sailings that explore the region’s natural beauty, indigenous cultures, full transits of the Panama Canal and scenic cruising on the mighty Amazon River. Eco-Friendly Initiatives, State-of-the-Art Medical Facilities Holland America Line won the Most Eco-Friendly Cruise Line award for its commitment to responsible environmental practices for a range of comprehensive and innovative fleet-wide programs. The programs emphasize waste reduction and recycling, use of cleaner-burning propulsion technology and cutting-edge cleaning solutions.  Holland America Line also has a history of embracing new environmental technologies such as shore power while ships are in port and becoming the first cruise line to install state-of-the-art, level-four water treatment systems and implement a whale strike avoidance program.  Completing the awards, Holland America Line received recognition for its accessibility and medical facilities.  Holland America Line ships accommodate guests with a variety of special needs including those requiring wheelchairs, scooters or service animals, those who have sight or hearing impairments, and those using oxygen. Each ship is equipped with a medical center carrying much of the standard equipment found in North American hospital emergency departments.last_img read more

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Aussies heading to Tahiti

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first_imgSource = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J The number of Australian travellers preferring to visit Tahiti has almost doubled this year, with the region experiencing a 43.5 percent jump in Aussie arrivals in February this year.Compared to the same month last year, the French Polynesian island’s figures saw February to be the busiest month for Australian arrivals, a figure increased by Tahiti’s natural appeal, according to Tahiti Tourisme Australia representative Robert Thompson.Mr Thompson noted that the escalation in arrivals occurred outside of Aussie peak travel months from September to November. “We haven’t seen February numbers like this since 2002 – it’s really quite remarkable,” the Australian representative said. “The summer spike is most likely due to a combination of factors including the ongoing strength of the Australian dollar, but also a run of holiday packages with enticing value adds like upgrades to overwater villas and half board.”last_img read more

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