Doctors seek Ministry help over exam fee

first_imgDoctors from All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Delhi, have written to the Union Health Ministry asking it to urgently look into the “irregularities in MD/MS examination fee in AIIMS Rishikesh”, which is charging ₹15,000 as exit fee for the exam. While the AIIMS in Delhi charges ₹300, the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, charges ₹1,100 for the same exam, they said.In the letter, AIIMS Resident Doctors’ Association president Dr. Amarinder Singh Malhi said: “We believe that appearing for final exams after fulfilment of all due requirements is the basic right of a resident and charging such exorbitant money for an exam is forceful and organised loot. We also want to highlight the fact that when you compare this fee with AIIMS Delhi, it is beyond logical reasoning.”‘No RDA’ They also demanded that all AIIMS should have administrative uniformity and such irregularities should be checked by a committee.“RDA is not allowed in AIIMS Rishikesh, which is highly unfair as residents have no proper channel for voicing their grievances against excesses of the administration. Such a decision by the AIIMS Rishikesh administration is hurting the credibility of AIIMS,” the letter added.last_img read more

Congress stares at strife over support to Sena

first_imgFault lines were visible in the State Congress on Wednesday over the party high command’s reluctance to extend a helping hand to the Shiv Sena to form a government in Maharashtra. A large group of the party’s 44 elected MLAs is in favour of backing the Sena if approached by the saffron party. Despite discussions between the party’s leaders in the State, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar and Congress president Sonia Gandhi, the high command is of the opinion that the Congress should sit on the Opposition benches. The decision has upset several newly elected MLAs, old and young, and the State leadership is now forced to pacify their anger. The younger lot is unhappy over Maharashtra in-charge Mallikarjun Kharge’s blunt comments against aligning with the Sena without seeking the opinion of elected representatives. ‘Baseless speculations’State Congress president Balasaheb Thorat, however, has denied any such discontent within the party. “While we believe that the people’s mandate is against the Bharatiya Janata Party in this election, it is up to the high command to decide the party’s position. We work as per the party ideology under the leadership of Soniaji Gandhi. The speculations are baseless and hold no truth,” he said. The denial notwithstanding, the State Congress leadership convened a meeting late on Wednesday to discuss how to pacify the disgruntled MLAs. Six MLAs to whom The Hindu spoke were in favour of joining an alternative government, irrespective of the Sena leading it. ‘Ayodhya no roadblock’“The Ayodhya verdict is going to be a court decision and every party will have to accept it, irrespective of its political stand. That cannot be the roadblock [to forming a government with the Sena]. Similarly, the Congress has received the Sena’s support in the past. Nobody objected to it then,” said one MLA, on the condition of anonymity. The MLAs said they will accept the high command’s decision, but said it will be after taking elected representatives’ opinion.Party secretary and State in-charge Ashish Dua, meanwhile, said the leadership can take the decision only if it receives a proposal from the Sena. “All this talk is in vain as there is no such proposal. How can our leadership decide whether to support the Sena or not before that?” he asked, dismissing reports of discontent within the party.last_img read more

Karnataka CM cracks the whip, finally

first_imgKarnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa (centre) watching Karnataka lone woman minister Shobha Karandlaje being sworn in on September 22 in Bangalore.When Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa stood alongside state governor H.R. Bhardwaj to usher in six new ministers to make up the 34-member ministry earlier Wednesday morning at the Raj Bhavan in Bangalore, it was a super confident mannina maga (son of the soil) that many saw.Last year around November the 67-year-old former rice mill clerk was at the verge of losing his seat of power thanks to rebellion within the party — largely led by the mining lords of Bellary (brothers Gali Reddy, two of whom are in the Cabinet) — and it cost him a few of his trusted lieutenants. Among them his most trusted aide Shobha Karandlaje, who handled rural development and panchayat raj portfolio with aplomb. That Shobha was just 43 and a first time MLA rankled other senior BJP lady legislators who have been hoping to make it into the Cabinet.So when Karandlaje was yanked out under pressure from the internal rebellion it was expected that Yeddyurappa will fill in a women’s quota from the available kitty. He waited almost a year to unleash his attack on his detractors. Not only did Yeddyurappa pull off a major global investors conference in June 2010 in Bangalore attracting big industry titans – ranging from steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal to Bhoruka Agarwals and the Birlas — he also ensured that top class bureacrats like chief secretary S.V. Ranganath and top industries secretary V.P. Baligar [Infosys founder and unique ID project chief Nandan Nilekani’s IIT Bombay classmate] were adequately empowered to translate projects into realities. Atleast seriously attempt to do so…advertisementWorld’s fifth richest man Mittal, who had flown in his private jet straight from London to the Karnataka capital, heaped words of praise for Yeddyurappa and co for fast-tracking his steel project in Karnataka — while Jharkhand and Orissa who had been approached earlier were dragging their feet.From western suits to Nehru type bandhgala, Yeddyurappa beamed with pride at the presence of top industrialists at the June 3-4 global investors meet — the first time in ten years in the state — to herald as he claimed “a new era of industrialisation in Karnataka…”A new era or not, steel projects worth Rs 2 lakh crore accounted for a little more than half of the Rs 4,69,664 crore worth MoUs signed at this meet. He had some of these top honchos to peddle the `good work’ done by him…And earlier this month, he happened to be India’s only state chief minister to go across the great wall of China for a prestigious global meet: Yeddyurappa spoke at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting of new champions in north China port town Tianjin. The Forum’s Sept 11-15 Summer Davos was inaugurated by Chinese premier Wen Jiaboa in the coastal city, at the northern end of the Grand Canal of China which connects with the Yellow and Yangtze rivers.Interspersing his talk with lines from Buddha and Mahatma Gandhi, he showcased his state Karnataka to a select gathering of business, global and intellecutal leaders. This meet is pegged as a key global business gathering in Asia attracting over 1,500 business, government and civil society leaders from 85 countries including a sizable delegation from India led by HRD minister Kapil Sibal and members like Infosys CEO Kris Gopalakrishnan and trade body CII president Hari Bhartia.The highly charged CM personally invited WEF founder Klaus Martin Schwab, the 71-year-old German economist who founded the Geneva-based forum of business, political and intellectual leaders in 1971, to plan a Davos-type meet in Bangalore while assuring him of Karnataka government’s support.Even as detractors grew within the party, Yeddyurappa’s stock grew outside it. And when time came to effect a surgery of the government — dropping a few and adding his supporters — he decided to take the bull by the horns. Fresh from the victory of the industrial road shows here and abroad, he decided that the 28-member ministry will require his close confidants to be by his side.And this was crucial especially after major embarassment to him and his government by a slew of ministers — ranging from food and civil supplies minister Hartal Halappa who was slapped with a rape charge by a friend’s wife to medical education minister Ramachandra Gowda who had to resign following a recruitment scam in state run medical colleges. More than half a dozen ministers, over the past two and half years south India’s first ever BJP government has been in power, had to be ejected out of the Cabinet lest they brought disgrace to the ruling party. Some of them he felt had betrayed his party during the assembly bypolls and had to be shown the door..advertisementWhile sports minister Goolihatti Shekhar allegedly threatened to kill himself if he was forced to resign, adult education minister Shivanagouda Nayak threw himself on the Reddy brothers seeking their help to keep his job and higher education minister Aravind Limbavalli also decided to unleash his supporters to put pressure on the CM to retain him in the Cabinet: his fans mobbed the CM at the latter’s Race Course Road and even blocked his car from going to Vidhana Soudha. When the CMO asked these three men to resign by the CMO and they did not oblige, Yeddyurappa was forced to request the Governor to suspend them to make way for the new ministers. The governor readily agreed. And Yeddyurappa won his first round Tuesday itself.Infact, this time he has decided to throw caution to the winds and act tough: giving Power portfolio to his muse Shobha, a Vokkaliga from Puttur in Mangalore district who made her assembly debut from Yeshwantapura in Bangalore in May 2008, was not only symbolic of `power’ being restored to her but it was also to demonstrate that his detractors did not have the powers now to stop the Yeddyurappa juggernaut from rolling across the state. The six ministers who were sworn in Sept 22 Wednesday morning represent the state’s largest caste bloc Lingayats, second largest Vokkaligas and also include a Brahmin and a Dalit.Shobha herself had told India Today that she was not hankering for power “but the only thing was that I wanted to know why I was asked to go the last time”. As Shobha told this writer: “I had at that time itself called on several senior leaders including Madam Sushma Swaraj [whom Bellary Reddy brothers call `amma’ or mother] and BJP party president Nitin Gadkari seeking some answers from them. They had ensured that justice will be done to me.” When Yeddyurappa ran the list with senior leaders like LK Advani and Gadkari, battle two was won. There was nothing that his political enemies could do to prevent his plans from unfolding…The biggest surprise for Yeddyurappa was seeing most of his detractors — some of whom who had skipped the Sept 21 Cabinet in protest –marking their presence at the swearing in ceremony which was also graced by central BJP leader Shantha Kumar. Tourism minister G. Janardhana Reddy had earlier noted that the CM plan of dropping Independents turned BJP ministers like Shekhar and Nayak would amount to breaking their promise at the time of enlisting their much needed support to prop up the first ever BJP government in May 2008. On Wednesday morning by being present at the Raj Bhavan he simply communicated that they were duty bound to abide by the party’s diktat.advertisementFlexing his muscle further, Yeddyurappa has announced that he will spruce up the Cabinet again after the Budget session: chopping a few and adding some fresh faces. He has realised the folly of empty threats from his own men: the man who threatened to commit suicide ended up eating his words. Another legislator who boomed that he and a dozen others will resign has vamoosed from the political scene. Another ministerial aspirant had his supporters vent their frustration stoning government buses. Another four-time MLA from Mysore who was hoping to be roped in this time hurled choice abuse when Yeddyurappa expressed his inability to make him a minister.But because he has come unscathed in his test of fire, agni pariksha, the state chief minister has emerged strong. Yeddyurappa had told India Today earlier: “Development of the state is key and I am not going to rest content unless that happens. Whatever the political upheavals I am going to face it head on.. I dont care even if it means losing my job. God has blessed me with renewed energy and I will do everything I can for the state.”With the presence of his very close supporters like Shobha and Somanna, a Lingayat leaders with close ties to the most powerful community pontiff in Tumkur, Yeddyurappa simply does not want to look back. Moments after the Raj Bhavan ceremony on Wednesday he was busy meeting all political and religious leaders from various communities to seek their help in maintaining law and order in the light of the Sept 24 high court verdict on the Ayodhya issue.With the Opposition Congress almost in a comatose with successive losses in the byelections — it lost both in Gulbarga south and Kadur last week — Yeddyurappa also enjoys the advantages of a TINA [there is no alternative] factor. JD-S which plucked the Gulbarga seat from the BJP continues to be only a marginal player. As ever, his biggest challenge to stay in power will come from his own rank and file.And that’s something he has no choice but to worry about. And as for his wounded detractors, well, they are just like the wounded tigers waiting for the right opportunity to mount an attack. Indeed, it is a political jungle out there.last_img

I never think about records: Tendulkar

first_imgSachin Tendulkar has always stressed that he never plays for records and it was no different when the media asked him to describe his feelings after completing the historic milestone of 50 Test centuries.”I never think about records. I love to focus on preparation and trying to give more than 100 percent on the field. I love to play. Try and keep improving. If I would have been chasing records, I would not have opted out of few ODIs.I believe in producing quality cricket whenever I step on the cricket field.About this particular knock, Sachin said,”Scoring in situation like this gives one immense pleasure. All of us know that how the wicket behaved on the first day of the match. I don’t want to give any excuse but wicket was different only on the 1st day.”It was extremely important to bat well in the 2nd innings. It was even more important to send loud and clear message that we can fight back strongly. I think we have done that.”However, the legend feels that his knock of 136 vs Pakistan in Chennai (1999) was the most difficult knock of his career.”I think my knock of 136 against Pakistan at Chennai was toughest. Wicket was really deteriorating and quality of bowling attack was outstanding.”Sachin also attributed his good show to the bat he has been using for almost one year.”God has been kind to me. Yes, this bat has given amazing service to me. Normally, a bat doesn’t last that long. You may get one bad awkward ball which keeps low and bat gets broken in the toe.advertisement”I have been lucky as far as this bat is concerned. I know that this bat is not in best of condition as I am using it for so long. I have few bats absolutely ready for match.But the moment, I pick up this bat, I feel that no one can get me out,” Sachin said with broad smile on his face.For the record, Sachin has scored 12 hundreds with this bat including first ever ODI double century.About the state of the match, Sachin said, “I won’t rule out possibility of us saving this Test match.”- With PTI inputslast_img read more

Old timer Rafi Reavis has no plans of slowing down: ‘I have a lot left’

first_imgPhoto by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netMANILA, Philippines—Rafi Reavis, one of the oldest active players in the PBA, may have a lot of mileage under his belt but he still has a lot of gas left in the tank.The 41-year-old Reavis out-hustled and outwitted his much younger Rain or Shine counterparts in the grandiose Game 7 of the semifinals to lead Magnolia back to the Philippine Cup finals.ADVERTISEMENT Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles The Beermen disposed of the Hotshots in last year’s finals, needing only five games to win their fourth consecutive Philippine Cup crown.This time, however, Reavis believes Magnolia will be coming in more prepared.“Anytime you reach this stage, you feel like you’re equipped. You don’t make it this far without the right pieces. For sure we feel more equipped to win this series,” he said.Game 1 tips off Wednesday night but Reavis’ work isn’t done yet even after a grueling seven-game semifinals series.When asked what his secret to staying healthy is, Reavis said he’s heading right to the gym to do “extra work.”ADVERTISEMENT Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess ‘Excited’ Terrence Romeo out to cherish first PBA finals appearance PLAY LIST 01:30’Excited’ Terrence Romeo out to cherish first PBA finals appearance01:00Chief Justice Peralta on upcoming UAAP game: UP has no match against UST00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss “You guys know that, I have a lot left in the tank. I’m just trying to keep up with the young guys, I’m still having fun,” he said.“I really enjoy playing with this group of guys and I’m fortunate to have a management that really stands behind me and believes in me. I have a lot left.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid LATEST STORIES Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated Duterte wants probe of SEA Games messcenter_img Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. MOST READ DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Reavis had his fingerprints all over Game 7 with eight points, 20 rebounds and three blocks.“It’s just about effort. It’s gonna boil down to who wanted it more, so those are all effort plays the rebounds, the hustle points,” he told reporters after the Hotshots’ 63-60 win in overtime Sunday night at Mall of Asia Arena.“There’s nothing glorious about it. It’s all about who’s gonna do the dirty work better, that’s what this series was about and that’s what it came down to. It’s just the dirty work and that’s what I’m known for doing.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsReavis’ performance wasn’t the first time he’s had a crucial impact in the series after also coming up big in the pivotal Game 5 four nights ago where he wound up with nine points, 12 rebounds and a block in an 82-74 victory.The 6-foot-8 beanpole, who is in his 18th PBA season, has no plans of slowing down just yet especially with the Hotshots heading into an All-Filipino title showdown with defending champion San Miguel Beer for the second straight year. View comments SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Magnolia rallies to beat Rain or Shine in Game 7, books finals rematch with SMBlast_img read more

Sonam Kapoor’s tongue piercing and other facts you didn’t know about the birthday girl

first_imgSonam Kapoor has come a long way from being the daughter of Anil Kapoor to a bona fide Bollywood actor. Even her harshest detractors were silenced by the release of Neerja, where Sonam proved that she has acting chops and even received a Special Mention for her role in the film at the 64th National Film Awards.Fierce, fashionable and with a mind of her own, Sonam has slowly become a force to contend with in Bollywood. Here are some lesser known facts about the actor:1. Sonam’s very first job was a waitress at a Mexican restaurant in Singapore. However, she was fired after just four days.2. Sonam has always taken pride in being independent and revealed on a chat show that she has not taken a single penny from her parents since she turned 18 and started earning.3. Sonam conquered her fear of heights by going skydiving in New Zealand.4. Sonam has gone on record to say that she will never be in a live-in relationship because she feels that it never leads to commitment. “I believe in marriage. It’s an easy way out, living with someone. If you want to be committed, go all out,” she said on Simi Garewal’s show.5. Her parents have never bought her any designer items. She bought her first designer bag with her own money at Selfridges, London, after she did Saawariya.6. She had a tongue piercing, which she had to remove before Saawariya because her character could not sport one.7. Sonam may be a fashionista, but she is a nerd at heart and even writes poetry. She wrote a poem called Ambition at the age of 16, which she will give her soulmate.advertisement8. Her first boyfriend was Dutch.ALSO READ: Sonam Kapoor’s boyfriend Anand Ahuja makes her birthday special ALSO WATCH: I believe in ever afters and and soul mates, says Sonam Kapoorlast_img read more

Photo: USC Interim Coach Clay Helton Wrote A Letter To “Trojan Family”

first_imgInterim USC Coach Clay Helton's letter to the Trojan family.Helton LetterClay Helton has taken over as interim coach at USC for the second time in his tenure, and he should provide the program with some much-needed stability. After assuming the head coaching duties, Helton produced a letter for the entire USC family, which USC shared on its official athletics Twitter account last night. Upon taking over as interim head coach, Clay Helton wrote a letter to YOU, the #TrojanFamily. #FightOn— USC Trojans (@USC_Athletics) October 14, 2015Classy move. Helton and his players will get their first chance to “Fight On” this Saturday when they take on their nationally ranked arch-rival Notre Dame at 7:30 PM EST in South Bend. The game will be televised on NBC.last_img read more

Video: Samaje Perine Returns To Game After Going To Locker Room Following Huge Hit

first_imgSamaje Perine being tackled by a Houston player.Twitter/@AtrainlinerSamaje Perine injury update: the Sooners star back has returned to the game after leaving with an apparent shoulder injury.Oklahoma got a bit of a scare early in today’s hotly contested game against Houston at NRG Stadium, after running back Samaje Perine was forced to head to the locker room.The Sooners superstar back took a massive shot from Cougars sophomore safety Garrett Davis on a screen pass.Wow Garrett Davis for Houston just leveled Samaje Perine. That’s impressive.— Andy Liner (@Atrainliner) September 3, 2016He went to the locker room with an apparent shoulder injury, but eventually returned, and in very Samaje Perine-fashion, was spotted doing push-ups on the sideline.ABC says Samaje Perine went to locker room. He left earlier with apparent shoulder injury.— Jon Solomon (@JonSolomonCBS) September 3, 2016Perine is doing pushups on the sideline. #Sooners— Brady Vardeman (@BradyVardeman) September 3, 2016Perine returned to the field during Oklahoma’s most recent drive, which just stalled out at the 2:32 mark in the second quarter. He currently has four rushes for 33 yards, and two catches for 13 yards.Luckily for Oklahoma, it has two bona fide superstars in the backfield. Joe Mixon opened scoring this afternoon with a monster 32-yard touchdown run in the first quarter, and showed off his impressive receiver skills with this phenomenal one-handed grab later on in the game.Mixon has four carries for 36 yards and a touchdown, and 60 additional yards from the aforementioned catch.Houston isn’t backing down, however. The AAC power has to be impressing Big 12 fans watching this one, which they trail by just one late in the first half, 17-16. Star quarterback Greg Ward Jr. has 219 yards and a touchdown through the air, while receiver Steven Dunbar has been incredibly impressive as well, with five grabs for 99 yards.last_img read more

TSX dives back into the red after dismal third quarter

TORONTO — The Toronto stock market fell back into the red after a two-day respite from the kind of severe declines that saw many indexes turn in their worst quarterly performance in years.The S&P/TSX composite index closed down 65.07 points at 13,241.89, adding to the 8.5 per cent decline that Canada’s main index has endured since the end of June.The Dow Jones industrial average was down 12.69 points at 16,272.01, while the S&P 500 gained 3.79 points to 1,923.82 and the Nasdaq added 6.92 points to 4,627.08.As markets say good-bye to worst quarter in 4 years, analysts warn more trouble to comeOn commodity markets, the November contract for benchmark crude oil was down 35 cents at US$44.74 a barrel and November natural gas fell 9.1 cents to US$2.433 per thousand cubic feet. December gold lost $1.50 to US$1,113.70 an ounce, while December copper was down 3.7 cents at US$2.305 a pound.The loonie advanced 0.51 of a U.S. cent to 75.44 cents US after adding 0.4 of a U.S. cent on Wednesday. read more

Makandure Madush deported from Dubai arrested at BIA

Most of them arrested were drug dealers and other criminals.All except Madush were deported to Sri Lanka. Madush had appealed against being deported. He was taken to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) headquarters in Colombo to be questioned.Madush was among several Sri Lankans arrested at a hotel in Dubai in February at a party. Notorious underworld leader Makandure Madush was deported from Dubai and arrested at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) today.The Police said that he was arrested when he arrived in the country today after being deported. read more

Merck secondquarter profit more than doubles tops forecast

by Linda A. Johnson, The Associated Press Posted Jul 29, 2014 5:29 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Merck second-quarter profit more than doubles, tops forecast A big one-time gain and a tax benefit helped drugmaker Merck & Co. more than double second-quarter profit, improve its profit forecast and top analysts’ expectations.The maker of popular Type 2 diabetes pill Januvia said Tuesday that net income increased to $2 billion, or 68 cents per share, from $906 million, or 30 cents per share, in the same quarter a year earlier.Merck, based in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey, said its earnings, adjusted for one-time gains and costs, were 85 cents per share. Analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research expected 81 cents.Merck recorded a $741 million gain from AstraZeneca PLC, which exercised its option to buy out Merck’s interest in the British drugmaker’s heartburn drugs Nexium and Prilosec.The world’s fourth-biggest drugmaker’s revenue fell 1 per cent to $10.93 billion, still $220 million above Wall Street expectations.CEO Kenneth Frazier said on a conference call that Merck favours smaller acquisitions — like its $3.85 billion purchase of hepatitis C treatment developer Idenix Pharmaceuticals Inc., expected to close this quarter — and is not looking for a deal enabling it to move its legal headquarters to a country with a lower tax rate.That strategy, called inversion, is suddenly hot in corporate America. The U.S. has the world’s highest corporate tax rate, 35 per cent, but pharmaceutical companies here generally pay well under 30 per cent.Chicago-based drugmaker AbbVie Inc. just reached a $55 billion deal to combine with British counterpart Shire PLC and incorporate in Britain.BernsteinResearch analyst Dr. Timothy Anderson wrote to investors that Merck “will likely have another flattish year in 2014 in terms of financial performance but then growth should return more consistently.”Merck noted it expects by early next year to launch two new drugs awaiting approval: long-delayed suvorexant for insomnia and pembrolizumab for advanced melanoma. The latter is part of the promising new class of drugs that stimulate the immune system to identify and attack cancer cells.Meanwhile, Merck got U.S. approval in April for two tablets to gradually reduce grass and ragweed allergies, and in May for anticlotting drug Zontivity.Sales of Merck’s prescription drugs fell 2 per cent to $9.09 billion. Top sellers were Type 2 diabetes pills Januvia and Janumet, up 2 per cent at $1.58 billion, and cholesterol medicines Zetia and Vytorin, up 6 per cent to a combined $1.13 billion.Merck’s consumer health segment had the biggest sales increase, up 19 per cent to $583 million. In May, Merck agreed to sell that to Germany’s Bayer for $14.2 billion. It includes Claritin and the Coppertone sun-care line.Merck said it expects full-year sales of $42.4 billion to $43.2 billion and profit of $3.43 to $3.53 per share, excluding one-time items. In January, it forecast $3.35 to $3.53.In morning trading, Merck shares were up 72 cents at $58.69. They have increased 20 per cent in the last 12 months.___Follow Linda A. Johnson at read more

UN condemns recent spate of deadly terrorist attacks in Iraq

“The Secretary-General is concerned that these cowardly attacks claimed by ISIL at funerals, markets, and places of worship are aimed at undermining the unity of the people of Iraq. He appeals to them to reject such attempts at fear-mongering,” a statement issued today by his spokesman said. On Monday, at least 38 people were killed and dozens more were injured by a suicide bomber at a funeral in Muqdadiya, about 60 miles north of Baghdad, while a suicide blast at a security checkpoint in Baghdad’s western outskirts killed at least eight members of the security forces, according to reports. These attacks came after two bombs targeted a market on Sunday in Sadr City, north of Baghdad, killing at least 70 people and injuring at least 100 others. Expressing heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims as well as to the Government and people of Iraq, the UN chief wished a speedy recovery to those who were injured. Reiterating the UN’s commitment to support Iraq in its work to promote national dialogue and reconciliation, Mr. Ban also called on the Government of Iraq to ensure that the perpetrators of the crimes are “swiftly brought to justice.” In a separate statement today, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Iraq, Ján Kubiš, strongly condemned the attacks as well.“This is a particularly vicious and cowardly terrorist attack on peaceful civilians who were going about their daily business in a market. It is clearly aimed at inflaming sectarian strike,” Mr. Kubiš said. read more

At UN Assembly Saudi Minister highlights his countrys efforts to further international

Saudi Arabia is focused on peaceful solutions to conflict and is undertaking various mediation efforts, Minister Adel Ahmed Al-Jubeir, told world leaders gathered at the UN Assembly on Friday.The “historic and essential” peace agreement between Ethiopia and Eritrea, facilitated by Saudi Arabia, illustrates the crucial political role played by the country, he added.On the conflict in Yemen, the Saudi Minister said that Houthi militia continue to manufacture missiles and carry out activities that destabilize the region. Underscoring the need for a political solution to the crisis, Minister Al-Jubeir said that Saudi Arabia will continue to facilitate all humanitarian efforts to alleviate the suffering of the Yemeni people.He also highlighted the plight of the people of Syria, where the crisis is into its eighth year, and stressed that the country’s people must be able to live on their own soil.Affirming that terrorism remains a major challenge for the world, including in his own region, the Minister informed the Assembly of the institutions established by Saudi Arabia to strengthen the fight against violent extremism.He also denounced Iran for continuing aggressive and terrorist activities and spoke out against extremist and hateful rhetoric spread by Qatar through its media outlets.In his address, Minister Al-Jubeir said that “international regime”, which has existed for centuries is pillared in sovereignty and respect for international law. “This is not up for discussion. Sovereignty is a red line that cannot be crossed,” he said.The Foreign Minister also highlighted the rights of the Palestinian people, including their right to an independent State, and called on all countries to respect relevant Security Council resolutions.Full statement (in Arabic) available here. read more

Fishermen appear in Louth court after NI trawlers seized by Irish naval

first_img Mar 1st 2019, 7:22 AM DUP leader Arlene Foster (left) as Nigel Dodds MP speaks with the media. Source: PA Wire/PA ImagesHe added in his statement:“Whilst Northern Ireland allows Irish boats to fish in our waters, the Republic of Ireland has policed a hard border and do not allow Northern Ireland boats enter their waters. The Amity and the Boy Joseph in Dundalk Bay. Image: PA Wire/PA Images 61,240 Views Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Updated Mar 1st 2019, 3:00 PM THE DETENTION OF two UK-registered fishing vessels Dundalk Bay has sparked a political row between the Irish government and the DUP, who accused Leo Varadkar of dragging his heels on a fishing agreement in order to use it as a Brexit bargaining chip. The two trawlers were detained in Dundalk Bay by Naval Service vessel the LÉ Orla on Tuesday for alleged breaches of fishing regulations.The two captains of the vessels appeared at Drogheda Court today, where a judge said they were of “absolute integrity” and did not deserve a conviction, reports the BBC.“This should be dealt with absolute discretion,” the judge said.Both men received the benefit of Section 1.1 of the Probation Act (they weren’t convicted), and their impounded boats were ordered for immediate release.VoisinageMinister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Michael Creed confirmed this morning that these were the first two vessels detained by the Defence Forces since a Supreme Court ruling in 2016 which found a ‘gentleman’s agreement’ called voisinage had no legal standing.Voisinage, roughly translated as “neighbourliness”, allows fishing vessels registered in Northern Ireland to fish from 0-6 nautical miles up to Irish coasts, and vice versa.The arrangement was brought to the Supreme Court which ruled in 2016 that despite Ireland having signed up to the arrangement as part of the London Fisheries Convention (1964), there were no provisions for it in Irish law.Irish vessels, however, are still permitted to fish in the 0-6 nautical miles around Northern Ireland and Great Britain.Although the Irish government has argued in favour of changing the laws, it’s been met with strict opposition in the Dáil and Seanad, resulting in the legislation being stalled.In a tweet and press statement released today, DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds said the “Irish Prime Minister must explain why two Northern Ireland trawlers have been impounded by an Irish Navy warship”. He said the tactics demonstrated that Leo Varadkar and Simon Coveney “are entirely focused on Ireland and are fair weather friends to Northern Ireland”.“When Leo Varadkar talked about soldiers on the border he didn’t mention the Irish sending warships with 76mm guns.”Other DUP and unionist politicians have also raised concerns about the detention. Dodds’ party colleague Jim Shannon said in the House of Commons that he was “appalled” at the actions of the Defence Forces.He claimed that the waters were disputed, and that the naval service had illegally seized vessels that were in “waters that belong to this great nation, this British nation”.The Irish government’s response Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed. Source: Leah FarrellSpeaking on Morning Ireland, Minister Creed said that the reciprocal agreement between Northern Ireland and the Republic that had been observed since the 1960s was acknowledged by the Supreme Court to be “a good idea” but needed to be put on a statutory footing.Creed said the government had been doing everything possible to avoid the kind of situation that developed in Dundalk Bay from taking place, but that legislation giving effect to the fishing agreement had stalled in the Oireachtas.He said he understood the “annoyance and upset” the detention of the vessels had caused in the broader political community.Tánaiste Simon Coveney had been in touch with Fianna Fáil yesterday evening, Creed added, and it was hoped legislation governing the issue could now be fast-tracked in the coming weeks.He said he rejected entirely any accusations linking the issue with Brexit, pointing out that issues to do with fishing rights in that inshore zone were solely a matter for sovereign governments and nothing to do with the EU.The row comes as Taoiseach Leo Varadkar travels to Belfast today to meet with business leaders for discussions on Brexit and the impasse at Stormont. He is also due to deliver an address at the Alliance Party’s annual conference dinner. Naval service vessel the LÉ Orla Source: Press MilitaryThe two vessels detained this week have been escorted by the LÉ Orla to Clogherhead and were handed over to An Garda­ Sí­ochána, last night’s Defence Forces statement said. The alleged offences for the two captains of the vessels were: Vessels illegally fishing within the Exclusive Fishery Limits of the State, contrary to Section 10(1) of the Sea Fisheries and Maritime Jurisdiction Act 2006.  Illegal entry into the Exclusive Fishery Limits of the State at a time when prohibited so to do, contrary to Section 8(1) of the Sea Fisheries and Maritime Jurisdiction Act 2006.The Naval Service detained seven fishing vessels in 2018, of which two were UK-registered fishing vessels.- with reporting from Gráinne Ní Aodha The Amity and the Boy Joseph in Dundalk Bay. Image: PA Wire/PA Images As the clock ticks down, get all the best Brexit news and analysis in your inbox: Friday 1 Mar 2019, 3:00 PM I have already raised the matter with our Government. These heavy handed tactics show Ireland are fair weather friends to Northern Ireland. Short URL We have raised this with the Irish government previously. If they have been holding back as some bargaining chip on Brexit then it utterly exposes the Irish faux concern about a hard border on the island of Ireland. Share854 Tweet Email1 By Daragh Brophy 108 Comments Fishermen appear in Louth court after NI trawlers seized by Irish naval service The two trawlers were detained in Dundalk Bay by Naval Service vessel LÉ Orla. This is quite outrageous.“Despite the Voisinage Agreement to have reciprocal fishing arrangements, the Irish have never enacted any legislation to give legal effect to the agreement. Legislation was drafted in 2016 but remains on the shelf.last_img read more

Conference of Cypriots abroad opens tomorrow

first_imgCypriots, living abroad, will gather in Cyprus this week to discuss the latest developments in the Cyprus problem and be briefed on the issue by the island’s political and religious leadership.The 23rd Conference of the Executive Council of the World Federation for Overseas Cypriots (POMAK) and of the International Coordinating Committee “Justice for Cyprus” (PSEKA), and the 5th Annual Conference of the World Organisation for Young Overseas Cypriots (NEPOMAK) will be held in Nicosia, from 24-27 August.The President of the Republic Demetris Christofias will address the opening ceremony on the evening of Tuesday 24th September.The opening ceremony will be addressed by the House President Marios Garoyan, the Archbishop of the Church of Cyprus Chrysostomos II, the Minister of Foreign Affairs Markos Kyprianou, the Presidents of POMAK, PSEKA, and NEPOMAK Haris Sophoclides, Philip Christopher and Christos Karaolis respectively, the President of the World Council of Hellenes (SAE) Stefanos Tamvakis, and the President of Cyprus Youth Board Andreas Vyras.During the conference, representatives of several Ministries will brief delegates on issues that concern them. Central Bank Governor Athanasios Orphanides, Presidential Commissioner Giorgos Iacovou, Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou, Vice President of the Committee of Cyprus’ Occupied Municipalities, Mayor of the Turkish occupied city of Morfou Charalambos Pittas and President of AHEPA Nicholas Karacostas will also deliver speeches during the conference.On the morning of Saturday August 28th a joint Press conference will be held by the presidents of POMAK, PSEKA  and NEPOMAK with the participation of Eleonora Gavrielidou, Director of the Press and Information Office (PIO) and the Service of Overseas Cypriots of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.On Wednesday, August 25th, President Christofias and his spouse Elsi will host a reception at the Presidential Palace in honour of the conference attendees. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

This Lord of the RingsThe Hobbit collection costs a cool 800

first_imgHopefully by now you all own The Lord of the Rings trilogy. If there were any films that needed to be owned by the discerning geek, it’s these. You need a demo disc to show off your home theater setup? There are moments in each and every film to choose from. You want to see how an entire film is made? You can watch hours upon hours of documentaries.The Extended Editions did a tremendous job of selling us all little statues and trinkets over the course of their numerous home video releases, but they’re not done with us just yet. Now that The Hobbit Extended Editions are available as well, Warner Bros. has announced the Middle-Earth six-film collection containing both trilogies. It’s a set that will offer every single bit of Middle-Earth ever created and it carries a frankly obscene price- $800.How can they justify that price tag? Let us count the ways, as you can see in the unboxing below. Dominic Monaghan was convinced to appear in the video to sell them, perhaps by being offered a set of his own as a fee.As you can see the set comes with the three Lord of the Rings films so you can reminisce upon greatness, and the three Hobbit films so you can ponder what went wrong while watching Peter Jackson self-destruct in real-time. They come in frankly gorgeous faux-leather-bound hardcover books that are full of art chosen by the fans as their favorite scenes from the movies, and it even contains a wooden shelf to place them on.There are a staggering 30 Blu-ray discs containing every version of every film, as well as the incredible special features that made previous sets must-owns. The collection also contains a replica of Bilbo Baggins’ Red Book of Westmarch that features some stunning artwork from the series.So yes, this is a truly great-looking set and any true fan would love to own it, if not for that astronomical cost. Fortunately you can currently get it on sale for the low, low price of $599!For those of us on a budget WB is also releasing a barebones six-disc movies-only set that costs a mere $60 or so, but it’s weirdly only with the theatrical versions. Strange of them not to release an Extended Edition set.Here’s a better idea- pick up both The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit extended edition box sets. You won’t get the artbook or shelf but you’ll have saved almost $600 in the process, which you can use to buy all manner of Tolkien memorabilia to decorate your home with.last_img read more

CW in the Vanguard of Pre5G testing in the Caribbean

first_img Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppPUNTA CANA, DR – July 17, 2017 – At the 33rd CANTO Annual Conference & Trade Exhibition, John Reid, CEO of C&W Communications (C&W), announced that C&W has completed a groundbreaking pre-5G (fifth generation wireless broadband technology) trial in Antigua. Once installed, Antigua will be the first country in the region with the most advanced pre-5G network, delivering download peak speeds of up to 800 Mbps. In the trial’s next phase, the Company expects to test a 5G prototype reaching 2 to 5 Gbps peak speeds, which will have a profound positive impact on the island.The announcement came as part of Reid’s keynote address today to prominent Caribbean officials at the 33rd CANTO Annual Conference & Trade Exhibition in the Dominican Republic. “These are exciting times for C&W Communications, as we continue to invest and develop more pioneering innovations to meet the needs of our customers and enable growth in the region through transformative technology,” said Reid. “This pre-5G trial in the Caribbean, is a significant step towards the evolution of C&W’s mobile networks across the region to 5G, and providing Gigabit speeds to our customers in Antigua,” he continued.C&W’s pre-5G technology trial, a combined effort with parent company Liberty Global, is based on LTE Advanced Pro (LTE-A Pro), the latest LTE evolution, that delivers lower latency, more capacity and improved reliability for customers. This translates into a faster mobile internet experience where customers can better participate in advanced technology such as richer video experience and new apps.In early October, the Company will further test a 5G prototype network designed to deliver wireless data connections above 2 Gbps. If the trials are successful, and the business case favorable, the Company plans to invest another $5 million in Antigua alone to significantly upgrade the wireless infrastructure there. C&W has invested $1.5 billion in the region over the last three years.5G is a new set of standards beyond traditional 4G/LTE technologies. This set of standards will allow operators to deliver wireless data connections above 1 Gbps and to enable the Internet of Things (IoT). C&W’s pre-5G trial and 5G prototype trials are part of a partnership with Ericsson, who will provide the equipment and software in Antigua and across the Caribbean.C&W Communications will be a major participant during the 33rd CANTO Annual Telecom Conference & Trade Exhibition, Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Punta Cana, The Dominican Republic. Please visit us at booth No. 27 and 28.Press Release: C & WAbout C&W CommunicationsC&W is a full service communications and entertainment provider and delivers market-leading video, broadband, telephony and mobile services to consumers in 18 countries. Through its business division, C&W provides data center hosting, domestic and international managed network services, and customized IT service solutions, utilizing cloud technology to serve business and government customers.C&W also operates a state-of-the-art submarine fiber network – the most extensive in the region.Learn more at, or follow C&W on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.About Liberty GlobalLiberty Global is the world’s largest international TV and broadband company, with operations in more than 30 countries across Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean. We invest in the infrastructure that empowers our customers to make the most of the digital revolution. Our scale and commitment to innovation enable us to develop market-leading products delivered through next-generation networks that connect our 25 million customers who subscribe to over 50 million television, broadband internet and telephony services. We also serve over 10 million mobile subscribers and offer WiFi service across 6 million access points.Liberty Global’s businesses are comprised of two stocks: the Liberty Global Group (NASDAQ: LBTYA, LBTYB and LBTYK) for our European operations, and the LiLAC Group (NASDAQ: LILA and LILAK, OTC Link: LILAB), which consists of our operations in Latin America and the Caribbean.The Liberty Global Group operates in 11 European countries under the consumer brands Virgin Media, Unitymedia, Telenet and UPC. The Liberty Global Group also owns 50% of VodafoneZiggo, a Dutch joint venture, which has 4 million customers, 10 million fixed-line subscribers and 5 million mobile subscribers. The LiLAC Group operates in over 20 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean under the consumer brands VTR, Flow, Liberty, Más Móvil and BTC. In addition, the LiLAC Group operates a sub-sea fiber network throughout the region in over 30 markets.For more information, please visit www.libertyglobal.comC&W CommunicationsInvestor Relations: Kunal Patel    (+1 (786) 376 9294)Media Relations: Claudia Restrepo    (+1 (786) 218 040)last_img read more

Kotak Mahindra Bank unveils digital banking initiative 811

first_imgUday Kotak, Managing Director of Kotak Mahindra Bank poses for a picture at the company’s corporate office in Mumbai January 15, 2015.Reuters fileKotak Mahindra Bank (Kotak) on Wednesday announced the launch of ‘811’, India’s unique full-service digital banking ecosystem on mobile that will drive the bank’s organic growth agenda. It has been designed around the idea of simplicity and ease of use. 811 offers a zero balance savings account with zero charges for all digital transactions, where customers can earn up to 6% p.a. on their savings account balances. With 811, Kotak Mahindra Bank will accelerate and deliver on its organic growth strategy.811 offers a completely digital and paperless account opening experience across nearly 700 locations in India. It can be opened anywhere, anytime, within 5 minutes, using Kotak’s mobile banking app – the top rated banking app in India. Kotak is the first bank in India to integrate the newly introduced Aadhaar-based OTP authentication process for account opening on mobile. Only Aadhaar and PAN numbers are required to open and operate 811.Uday Kotak, Executive Vice Chairman & Managing Director, Kotak Mahindra Bank, said, “An investment of Rs 1,00,000 made in Kotak Group in November 1985, is worth around Rs 1,400 crore today – a compounded growth rate of 40% over the past 32 years. We have always believed in value creation for our stakeholders. In pursuit of this, we have implemented multiple strategies – both organic and inorganic – thereby establishing our presence across the entire gamut of financial services.””The merger of erstwhile ING Vysya Bank with Kotak Mahindra Bank, effective April 1, 2015, doubled our geographic spread, taking us to India’s Kona Kona. Now, with 811, we embark on a bold organic growth journey. We aim to double our customer base in 18 months. 8/11 changed India. 811 aims to take our Prime Minister’s vision forward”, said Kotak.With 811, anyone can now download Kotak Mahindra Bank on their mobile. It offers access to over 100 features on mobile including completing financial transactions, managing investments, fund transfer, and is an ideal lifestyle app for e-commerce on Flipkart, PVR, Goibibo, etc.811 is fully integrated with Bharat QR Code, India’s new digital payment system, developed by the Government of India.The app is also Unified Payment Interface (UPI) enabled, for instantly sending and receiving money. Further, 811 customers will enjoy all digital transactions at zero cost, and get a free virtual debit card.Currently, 811 is available on Google Play Store, and it will soon be available on Apple’s App Store.last_img read more

Distraction On Street And Sidewalk Helps Cause Record Pedestrian Deaths

first_img Share Bebeto Matthews/APDrivers being distracted by their devices is a well-documented, rising cause of traffic crashes, but there is a growing number of pedestrians, too, who can become oblivious to traffic around them.It’s the oldest and most basic form of transportation — walking — and more people are doing more of it to get fit or stay healthy. But there’s new evidence today that even walking across the street is getting more dangerous.A report released by the Governors Highway Safety Association shows that the number of pedestrians killed in traffic jumped 11 percent last year, to nearly 6,000. That’s the biggest single-year increase in pedestrian fatalities ever, and the highest number in more than two decades.“It is alarming,” says GHSA executive director Jonathan Adkins, “and it’s counterintuitive.”“There’s been an assumption that, because of increased safety of vehicles as we move toward semi-autonomous vehicles, that traffic deaths were going to go down,” Adkins says. “We’re seeing just the opposite, unfortunately, with a particular spike as it relates to pedestrians and cyclists.”Last month the National Safety Council reported that traffic deaths overall went up 6 percent nationwide in 2016.Maureen Vogel, spokeswoman for the council, says it stands to reason that pedestrian fatalities would rise as part of that trend, but she and other safety experts did not expect the rise in pedestrian deaths to so significantly outpace other traffic-related fatalities.“A perfect storm” of factors spurred the increase, Vogel says: A stronger economy and low gas prices have put more cars on the road and have people driving more often, “but that is really only part of the story … so something else is at play here.”One possibility can be seen during rush hour in downtown Chicago just by looking at both the drivers of the dozens of vehicles inching through traffic and the scores of pedestrians crossing the busy intersections. One thing many have in common is that their eyes are down, staring at their phones.“We are crazy distracted,” says Melody Geraci, deputy executive director of the Active Transportation Alliance, a Chicago group advocating for better walking, cycling and public transportation options. “After speeding and the failure to yield, distractions are the number three cause [of pedestrian fatalities], particularly by electronic devices.”Drivers being distracted by their devices is a well-documented, rising cause of traffic crashes, but there is a growing number of pedestrians, too, who can become oblivious to traffic around them.“We have noticed over the years increases in the number of injuries related to distracted walking — pedestrians being distracted by cell phones and then injuring themselves because of that distraction,” says Vogel, referring to National Safety Council data. “So it’s entirely possible that is at play, not just on our roadways but on our sidewalks.”But a bigger problem remains vehicle speeds.“Speed is a killer for sure,” says Geraci. “If a pedestrian is struck at 20 miles an hour, they have a 10 percent chance of dying. If they are struck at 40 miles an hour, they have an 80 percent chance of dying.”New York City lowered its speed limit on most streets to 25 mph a couple of years ago to help protect pedestrians; other cities are considering slowing speeds, too.And researchers are looking through the data to see if they can come up with other ways to make streets safer for those crossing on foot. According to the GHSA report, 74 percent of pedestrian fatalities happen at night, and 72 percent of those killed were not crossing at intersections.Another significant factor is alcohol.The GHSA report indicated that 15 percent of pedestrians killed each year are hit by a drunk driver, while 34 percent of pedestrians killed are legally drunk themselves. That’s right: one-third of pedestrians killed in traffic had blood-alcohol (BAC) levels above the .08 threshold for drunk driving.“We’ve done a good job in highway safety in telling people that when you go out to the bar and you’re drunk, don’t get behind the wheel,” says Adkins. “But you should really be careful about walking, particularly if you’re walking at night, and you’re walking a distance. You’re not gonna have good judgment, a car’s not gonna see you … [so] don’t walk home at night when you’re hammered.”He and other safety advocates say lower speed limits, better road designs, and more sidewalks can help reduce the fatalities.So can new vehicle technologies that alert drivers to the presence of pedestrians — but many drivers don’t understand it, don’t know how to use it and thus disable the technology.“It’s not as if there aren’t solutions out there,” says Adkins. “We know what needs to be done, it’s just having the will to do it.”Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit read more

Supply Side

first_img While you’re reading this article, more than $70,000 in business merchandise will be purchased on eBay–everything from fax machines to construction equipment to display cases. Rebecca Shapiro, 43, owner of the arts and crafts store Pig and Panda in Portland, Oregon, has been able to leverage the power of buying on eBay to quickly grow her $85,000-plus-a-year online business. “[Reducing] our startup costs by purchasing most of our equipment on eBay allowed us to use our money for additional employees and inventory instead,” she says.Danny Leffel, manager of eBay Business, couldn’t agree more. “Buying on eBay levels the playing field for smaller businesses,” Leffel says. “They can reach outside their local area in seeking deals without having to buy in volume.” Ready to buy? Go to to register your business on eBay, which will allow you to start buying on eBay immediately. You will also receive an eBay User’s Guide and free customized business consulting. The Business & Industrial discussion boards will also be of great help. The discussion board includes up-to-the-minute information from eBay and advanced notification of free business workshops.Remember, you can also sell those unused assets lying around your business. Go to to learn more about turning those assets into cash.Janelle Elms, eBay University instructor and dean of Online Business at LA College International, is creator of the eBay Stores Video Series. Contact her at 2 min read Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. April 1, 2007 Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Register Now »last_img read more