In Tezpur, retired officer takes on man from ‘tea tribes’

first_imgTezpur means ‘city of blood’, an allusion to the mythological war between the ‘outsider’ Hari, or Lord Krishna, and the ‘local’ Hara, or Lord Shiva, where blood flowed.Aeons down the line, a bloodless but verbally-loaded battle is being fought for the Tezpur Lok Sabha constituency between retired IAS officer of Assam-Meghalaya cadre M.G.V.K. Bhanu of the Congress and Assam Minister Pallab Lochan Das of the BJP.Ousider tagThe BJP considers Mr. Bhanu, from Andhra Pradesh, an outsider while for the Congress, Mr. Das — a member of the “tea tribes” community – is a story of migration to Assam from elsewhere in India since the 1800s. And the barbs invariably involve the name of the former.BJP leaders have mocked Mr. Bhanu for his long name that “even the Congress cannot pronounce or remember”. He has also been termed a ‘saalani maas’ (imported fish) and likened to cattle past the age of ploughing the field.“Name does not matter, work does. And my work for Tezpur as a district magistrate years ago speaks for itself. I have been hurt by the words they are being used to describe me, but I forgive them,” Mr. Bhanu said.Born in Navabupalem in West Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh, Mr. Bhanu retired as Additional Chief Secretary of Assam. He was also the secretary to former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy.M.G.V.K. expands to Maddukuri Gopala Venkata Kumar. But the Congress has turned the BJP’s mockery to give local meaning to the initials. One of them is Manabkhebi (humanitarian) Gooni (talented) Varakhajogya (trustworthy) Kartabyaparayan (responsible).He is the first from southern India to contest any election in the Northeast. Before him, Alka Desai Sharma from Gujarat had won an Assembly election in Assam on Asom Gana Parishad ticket while a few from northern India, including former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, have represented the State in the Rajya Sabha.“Tezpur’s has been a case of representation by migrant communities for a long time. It is unfair to call Mr. Bhanu, who has made Assam his home and is building a house in Tezpur, an outsider,” Congress spokesperson Rhituparna Konwar said.Gorkhas are a major voting community in Tezpur. The constituency has had three Gorkha MPs for five terms, beginning with Swarup Upadhyay, son of the first Assam Congress president Chhabilal Upadhyay, in 1991. The seat is currently represented by BJP’s Ram Prasad Sarmah, a Gorkha.Gorkhas’ resentmentMany Gorkhas have resented the BJP’s decision to drop Mr. Sarmah and field Mr. Das, whose “tea tribes” community constitutes about 45% of the voters due to scores of tea estates, including Monabarie which is considered the largest on earth. The last tea community MP from Tezpur was Joseph Toppo of Asom Gana Parishad from 1999-2014.Civil society leaders in Tezpur say the place earned the ‘cultural capital of Assam’ tag primarily because it was the karmabhoomi (place of work) of Assamese cultural icon Jyotiprasad Agarwala, whose ancestors settled in Assam from Marwar region of Rajasthan in the early 1800s.“Even Krishna, in that sense, was an outsider. Legend has it that he came to Tezpur with his forces to release grandson Aniruddha, who was imprisoned in Agnigarh, or fort of fire, by King Banasura for falling in love with his daughter Usha. Banasura sought his deity Shiva’s help that led to the Hari-Hara war,” veteran journalist S.G. Kashyap said.Krishna became a local deity in Assam after 15th century saint-reformer Srimanta Sankardeva propagated Vaishnavism. Krishna has since been sharing space with Shiva.Eight contestants apart from Mr. Bhanu and Mr. Das are vying for the Tezpur seat.last_img read more

Fugitive Diamantaire Nirav Modi Plans To Seek Asylum In The United Kingdom

first_imgDiamond merchant Nirav Modi, who is wanted in connection with Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case, is reportedly planning to apply for asylum in the United Kingdom, a media report said.Last week, British authorities informed India that Modi was living in the UK.Read it at First Post Related Itemslast_img

Ross sees himself in SMB teammate Standhardinger

first_img“When you get a guy like that, its always a positive,” he said.“It’s a plus that he has a long hair. He could join our long hair club,” Ross ended with a chuckle. “He reminds me of me, as a big this time,” Ross said of the rugged Fil-German.“Right now, I bring that hard-nosed mentality to the team, and bringing someone like him really helps us big time. Him being at 6-9 who is agile and versatile, it’s a great niche he found for himself.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutRoss watched San Miguel’s top pick on Sunday when he made his Philippine debut for the Hong Kong Eastern Long Lions in the ABL and he had nothing but praise.“He knows where to be. Offensively, he’s always at the right spot and that tells me he has a high basketball IQ,” he said. Nuggets beat Kings without coach and 2 starters QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH No. 1 pick Standhardinger’s monster game further fuels SMB debut hype PLAY LIST 01:07No. 1 pick Standhardinger’s monster game further fuels SMB debut hype01:30’Excited’ Terrence Romeo out to cherish first PBA finals appearance01:18Sangley airport to be operational in 7 days – Tugade01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games “He’s talking to his teammates and getting his teammates involved. He doesn’t demand the ball. I like what I see from him on the floor.”The 28-year-old Standhardinger had 26 points, 14 rebounds, four assists, and two steals. He also made two crucial buckets in the final 20 seconds to hold off Tanduay Alab Pilipinas.Ross also lauded Standhardinger for holding his ground against Alab import Ivan Johnson.“Ivan was trying to intimidate him, but he’s not backing down. We need a guy like that who’s willing do the dirty work. We need that extra muscle we could throw at the other imports once he plays in the Commissioner’s Cup,” he said.Ross shared that he can’t wait to see Standhardinger in a Beermen jersey.ADVERTISEMENT Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 Kris Aquino ‘pretty chill about becoming irrelevant’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion MOST READ Read Next LATEST STORIES Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa View comments CONTRIBUTED PHOTOChris Ross sees a lot of himself in his new San Miguel Beer teammate Christian Standhardinger.Ross, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year, said that like him, Standhardinger also brings toughness to the Beermen.ADVERTISEMENT Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMClast_img read more

Cricket: Key player set to go under the knife in Manchester

first_imgAdvertisement AdvertisementImage Courtesy: ScrollInjuries have plagued the Indian team which went on to become one of their factors in their recent defeat in the ODI series. Players such as Washington Sundar, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Wriddhiman Saha are all out of action due to injuries.The injuries sustained have taken a huge toll since Saha will require surgery to repair the injured shoulder. The wicket-keeper batsman is having a torrid year since injuries have shadowed him ever since the long tour to South Africa.Saha provided an update on his condition through a post on Twitter.🙏🙏 pic.twitter.com/vp83ZwF3NS— Wriddhiman Saha (@Wriddhipops) July 19, 2018Due to this, Saha has been excluded from the Indian squad for the 5-match test series in England with Dinesh Karthik and Rishabh Pant included as backups to don the gloves in England.Read AlsoCricket: Twitter reacts to Fakhar Zaman’s double centuryCricket: Aussie quick clears the air on prediction about Virat Kohlilast_img read more

Nico Rosberg contract talks unaffected by Austrian Grand Prix crash: Mercedes

first_imgNico Rosberg has been assured his ongoing contract negotiations with Formula One champions Mercedes will not be affected by Sunday’s Austrian Grand Prix collision with teammate Lewis Hamilton.”The contract is a long-term decision and isn’t influenced by a race incident,” team boss Toto Wolff told reporters at the Red Bull Ring. (Also read: Austrian GP – Hamilton booed after Rosberg collision) An exasperated Wolff, who has a 30 percent stake in the team as well as being Mercedes motorsport director, had earlier slammed the latest clash between the two title rivals as ‘brainless’.STEWARDS BLAME ROSBERG Stewards blamed Rosberg for causing the last lap incident, imposing a meaningless time penalty and reprimand.The German, who has been at Mercedes since 2010 and turned 31 last week, finished fourth while triple world champion Hamilton won to cut Rosberg’s overall lead to 11 points with 12 races remaining.While Hamilton has a contract to 2018, Rosberg’s future is in discussion. Austria’s former McLaren and Ferrari driver Gerhard Berger is negotiating with Mercedes on his behalf.He told Reuters no deal had been reached yet and whether Rosberg stayed was up to Mercedes.”It would be very short-term thinking of everybody,” he added when asked about a possible negative impact of a collision that denied the team a one-two finish.”We are seeing here a race where somebody did an outstanding job, and then a couple of circumstances happened in the last lap.”‘TEAM IS VERY HAPPY WITH ME’ Rosberg has won five of nine races so far this season and, despite some speculation about a possible Ferrari move, has said he expects to remain at Mercedes for years to come.advertisement”It feels great to be here, and the team’s also very happy with me,” he said. “I feel really very much at home. This is my racing family here and this is where I want to be for the foreseeable future.”Asked on Sunday whether anything had changed, he replied that he was just disappointed to have lost another victory.”I had it in the bag and would have loved to win here. To lose it in such a way in the last lap is unbelievably hard,” said the German, who had been chasing a hat-trick of Austria wins.”I don’t think of a big picture like that,” he added when asked about working with Hamilton. “I’m just thinking of today and I’m gutted and that’s it.”I just lost the race and he won it. I’m the guy that suffered from the collision and he didn’t.”last_img read more

Willian laughs off Chelsea exit reports

first_imgChelsea’s Willian brushed off reports that he might be leaving the club after securing a vital three points against Newcastle United on Saturday.The Brazilian curled home what proved to be the Blues’ winner at Stamford Bridge after 57 minutes, making it 2-1 against a stubborn Magpies side.Pedro had opened the scoring for the hosts after just nine minutes, before Ciaran Clark levelled prior to the break to set nerves on edge at Stamford Bridge. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Certain reports have suggested that Willian is unsettled in west London and looking for a way out of the club he has represented since 2013.Barcelona has been mooted as a possible destination, with Blaugrana flop Malcom rumoured to be part of a potential deal to take the player to Catalunya.But Willian gave the topic short shrift after his match-winning turn at the weekend.”My future is Chelsea, I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he fired to BT Sport when quizzed on his transfer situation.Fellow goalscorer Pedro also chimed in, stating to his team-mate “your future is here”.Pedro Willian Chelsea 2018-19Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri added his voice to those playing down the transfer rumours.”Willian is very important for us. He is a great player. I think that he has to stay with us,” the Italian stated.Prior to Saturday’s kick-off, Sarri had also moved to pour cold water on a possible Willian-Malcom swap.”I think he can do better, because the potential is higher, but he’s very important for us, so I think it’s impossible to lose him in January,” he explained.”I didn’t receive anything [about Willian] yesterday [Thursday]. You’ll have to ask the club and ask about the market, because if you ask me about the market you put me in trouble, because I don’t know.”last_img read more

Evra: I played with chicken in my boot for four months

first_imgFormer Manchester United left-back Patrice Evra has claimed that he played with chicken in his boot for four months while at Monaco.The French defender had sustained an injury in an international fixture, but then-manager Didier Deschamps needed him to play through the pain and club doctors suggested that putting chicken into his boot would help.Evra’s chicken-assisted performances were so impressive that Manchester United eventually came calling and brought him from the Ligue 1 side to the Premier League, where he won five league titles, three League Cups and a Champions League. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? “People talk about when we made the Champions League final in 2004, but the craziest part [of my career] at Monaco came after I had played a game for the French U21 team,” Evra told The Players’ Tribune. “An opponent had stamped on my foot and damaged it badly. In hospital I told the Monaco coach, Didier Deschamps, ‘It’s too painful. I can’t play. I can’t even walk!’“But the team needed me, so the doctors tried everything to take away the pain. Nothing worked. Then someone from the club staff said, ‘Why don’t you just go old school?’ “Everyone said, ‘What do you mean?’“He said, ‘Just slide a chicken down his boot.’“It sounded crazy but, you know me, I’m open minded. So I went to my local butcher. The butcher said, ‘What do you want?’“I said, ‘A piece of chicken. But just a tiny one.’“He said, ‘A tiny one? How come?’“I said, ‘I’m gonna put it in my boot.’“He just laughed. I went home with the chicken. I ordered new boots: one in size 42.5, the other in size 44. I passed the ball. [It] felt okay. Painful, but okay. So I ended up playing with chicken in my boot for four months. I didn’t train with it — my mother would never have forgiven me for wasting food — but before every game I would visit the butcher. ‘Morning, Patrice. The usual, yeah?’“The chicken enabled me to play so well that, in January 2006, I was signed by Manchester United.”last_img read more

Throttle Jockey: Triumph Bonneville, the practical modern classic

first_img1. Modern Triumph Bonneville 2. Modern Triumph Bonneville 3. Vintage Triumph Bonneville 4. Vintage Triumph Bonneville 5. Vintage Triumph 6. Vintage Triumph 7. Vintage Triumph 8. 1964 BSA A50 Hornet 9. 1964 BSA A50 Hornet 10. 1964 BSA A50 Hornet 11. 1964 BSA A50 Hornet BSA and blue/white Triumph photos by Bill RobersonModern and vintage Triumph photos courtesy of Wikimedia Commons Let’s go start up my 1964 BSA A50 and go for a ride.Pull the soft cover off the bike, roll it out of the garage and put it up on the centerstand. Click ignition switch to the “on” position on the back left sidecover (no keyed ignition here, this a former competition bike). Click on the headlight switch, check headlight (it’s on – for now). Tap rear brake to check tail light operation (it’s working – at the moment).Open fuel petcock on right side of tank. Open fuel petcock on left side of tank. Check both for leaks (none found). Next, fish index finger to the inside part of left carburetor and repeatedly push the tiny priming plunger until gas dribbles out, scratch finger and get fuel on hand. Then repeat with right side carburetor. Go wash hands, discover child has used the last band-aid.Return to bike, swing kickstarter out, push down slowly until compression mounts, then kick through while slightly goosing gas. Bike fires, sputters, dies. Re-prime carburetors. Skip hand washing. Kick again and again until area smells like fuel. Check spark plugs. Dry the spark plug tips. Reconsider, and install new spark plugs from pile of spare plugs in tool chest.Rekick. Engine fires immediately, settles into a loud, lumpy idle that brings neighbors’ kids running to the windows and provokes slightly frowny face from the wife. Saddle up, put brain into British Riding Mode for shifting on the right and braking on the left, put bike in gear, let out clutch, engine dies. Consider returning BSA to garage and just riding the Honda instead.So it goes with many a classic bike.Properly cared for and set up, some are good as daily riders. Others, like my beautiful but terminally reluctant BSA, not so much. Back in the day (and today as well), you had to have some mechanical skills and a few tricks (and tools) in your pocket to keep an old British, Italian or American bike going. It was just part of the deal. But like the above procedure indicates (and I’m really not embellishing – much), it can also be an exercise in frustration. If only we could have classic bikes with modern convenience, right? Turns out, we can.The starting drill outlined above and other only-for-enthusiasts peccadilloes are why Honda and the rest of Team Japan put the British bike industry out of business in the 1970s. BSA, Norton, and eventually, in 1980, Triumph – all went buh bye.The push-button delight of electric start, the worry-free riding provided by oil-tight engines and the more approachable, more car-like utility of Honda and all the rest were perfectly timed. Convenience, reliability and low prices, even if the bikes weren’t visual and performance wonders at first, got people to sign on the line. At least you could get out and actually ride, rather than fettle about with a complicated starting procedure and worrying you won’t make it home lest something stop working (a fairly even money bet).Of the classic Big Three britbike makers, only Triumph has risen again, although it could be argued Norton is also “back” but their limited output (and price) puts them more in the realm of boutique bike maker rather than mass producer.Industrialist John Bloor and the initial team dedicated to bringing Triumph back from the dead did what any savvy business team would do: they toured the production facilities in Japan to help plan a modern resurrection of the classic British brand.As the Millennium arrived, Bloor re-launched Triumph with a slate of capable if fairly unremarkable bikes built around a common architecture. It was a smart start, and as Triumph gained traction with bikes that were, at least and at last, competitive with other international brands, the model base expanded and diversified.Finally, in 2000, while enthusiasts held their collective breath, the new Triumph Bonneville was finally announced. At 790cc’s and with all the right classic visual cues (except for a non-traditional kink in the exhaust plumbing), the “new” Bonneville was an immediate success.Let’s just call it what it is. Despite achieving great success and putting out ever more capable machines, the Triumph Bonneville is “the” Triumph. It’s the standard bearer. Bloor was smart to basically revive the bike in an “updated” but functional (and affordable) form rather than make it some exotic halo machine or styling exercise for collectors. The modern Triumph Bonneville is fairly basic, as was the original, but it’s also good looking, capable and reliable.Will it win races against sport jockeys on Japanese fours or Italian Twins? Not likely. But that’s not really it’s mission. Powered by an air-cooled and now up-sized 865cc parallel twin engine (aided by a bit of oil cooling), the current Bonnie has enough grunt to put away all but the fastest of cars off the line, and long enough legs for a spirited ride to the coast or the next state. It’s not a techno wonder by any stretch, but it has fuel injection (at least it does now – early models had carbs) so that’s one more thing to cross off the hassle list.But best of all, it has The Look and if you pop for some less restrictive pipes (highly recommended), it’s got The Sound as well. It’s bulkier and bigger than its spindlier grandparents, but so are we, so that works out just fine. You sit up straight to ride it, and the flat seat is still one of the best perches for watching the scenery go by. It’s also available in a variety of flavors now, from the basic Bonnie/T100 to the urban-warrior Scrambler to the cafe-correct Thruxton. Pick your favorite.I’ve been lucky enough to ride Bonnevilles from both eras. The 1966 Bonneville I rode, while a bit small for me, was still pretty much sex on wheels, and while sitting at a stoplight, the engine vibration was strong enough to blur your vision. The 2012 T100 version (basically a slightly gussied-up version of the base model) retained just enough of that primal vibe but included much more power, dependable electrics, modern suspension and brakes that actually stopped it in a reasonable distance. And it also had an oil-tight motor, the magic button and enough sex appeal to get a certain bike-wary spouse to ask for a ride (rare, that). Thanks, Mr. Bloor.So there it is: the modern classic, ready to ride when you are, no dribbly carb tricks or plug swaps required. Technology, when properly married to a classic form factor, can be a wonderful, capable and stylish thing.Anyone want to buy a nice 1964 BSA A50 Competition Hornet? It runs good – you know, most of the time. What Kind of Motorcycle Should I Get? A Comprehensive Guide to Motorcycle Types Icons of America: Taking a Corvette Road Trip Along Route 66 Editors’ Recommendations 7 Best Travel Coffee Mugs for Morning Joe To Go A Beginner’s Guide to Road Biking 6 Fastest Cars in the World Right Nowlast_img read more

You Don’t Have to Live in the Midwest or the Rockies to Love the Yukon Denali

first_img Editors’ Recommendations Escape the City and the Roads with the 2020 Subaru Outback GMC also, inexplicably, allowed me to test-drive their equally as amazing Sierra All-Terrain pickup, and the Yukon’s older brother, the Yukon XL.We were also lucky enough to take a crazy mountaintop snowcat ride in the rare and altogether badass Sierra All-Mountain. In partnership with Whistler Blackcomb ski resort, GMC outdid itself with this suped-up version of their 2017 GMC Sierra All-Terrain. I don’t have a family to tote around or anything massive to haul, and I certainly don’t live in the Midwest or on the slopes of the Rocky Mountains, but dammit if I don’t want a GMC Yukon Denali. After denying myself interest in SUVs for years, my chance to drive the Yukon Denali along the stunningly beautiful Sea to Sky Highway from Vancouver to Whistler, Canada made me a convert.Setting out from Vancouver airport, I climbed into the cab and sat myself in a leather seat that not only supported my lumbar in the best of ways, but was also adjustable up to and exceeding my wildest and most demanding seating preferences. But, before I hit the road, though, I used the Denali’s dash-displayed infotainment/GPS to input the coordinates of my destination and proceeded to put my faith in technology and trusted that the Yukon would guide me in the right direction.Yukon Denali Heads Up DisplayLeaving the airport and navigating through downtown Vancouver was easy, not only because of Canada’s excellent road and street system (thanks, Canada!), but also because of the Denali’s helpful features. The GPS map system features a projected display onto the driver’s side windshield that shows future turns and the distance to them in the form of a countdown meter. This was particularly useful in areas of Vancouver with small blocks where streets come immediately one after the other. Without the countdown system, I’m sure I would have made a couple of wrong turns otherwise.As for the ride itself, the powerful 6.2L Ecotec3 V8 Engine (which handled the often steep hills/mountains with aplomb) was barely noticeable thanks to the quiet cabin interior feature, along with magnetic ride control (a suspension system that adjusts automatically up to 1000 times a second depending on road and terrain conditions) which made the occasionally rough and curvaceous road a very pleasant drive.Throughout the drive, the Denali did an admirable job of keeping me safe–mostly from myself. As an aggressive lane changer (and driver in general), I was more than pleased to see a blind spot warning signal on the outside edges of my side mirrors, as well as lane departure warnings that would flash on my driver’s display. Prior to test driving the Yukon, I had always thought people who relied on these types of sensors and indicators were just weak drivers, but now, I have to admit, I’m right there with them. No longer having to crane my neck or strain the very limit of visible sight on my mirror angles, the blind spot and lane departure warnings made my 2.5 hour drive much more comfortable than it could have been.I drove a top of the line trim version of the Yukon Denali, but for all the options and more detailed information on the rest of the great features and accessories this luxury sub-set of GMC provides, take a look here. 1. Yukon Denali 2. Sea to Sky Highway 3. Yukon Denali 4. Interior 5. Yukon Denali and Yukon Denali XL What Wrangler Is Doing to Make Denim More Sustainable center_img Fitted with 175 series Mattracks, the All-Mountain was designed and built specifically to tackle Whistler, BC’s steep, rugged, and snow-covered landscape. When riding in the All-Mountain, at night, with its many LED lights illuminating the kicked up powder around us, we almost mistook ourselves for figurines in a snowglobe. But once that 6.6 liter Duramax Diesel revved its 445 horses, we knew we were in a vehicle that could climb (or crush) any mountain. Unfortunately, though, this bad boy isn’t for sale. Sorry, guys. Stay Free on This Private Swedish Island to Work on Your Magnum Opus There’s Never a Bad Time to Visit Whistler, the Four-Season Outdoor Playground The Jeep Gladiator Helped Me Rediscover Fun Outdoors last_img read more

Aegean Sets Up Shop in Russia

first_imgzoom Athens-based marine fuel logistics company Aegean Marine Petroleum Network has hired five former employees of the bankrupt Danish ship fuel supplier OW Bunker to run the company’s newly launched operations in Russia.Aegean’s operations in this region will include a marketing and business development office located in St. Petersburg, dedicated to sales and marketing of marine petroleum products across all Russian ports.Earlier this month, Aegean took over two bunkering barges that were previously under charter by OW Bunker, as part of the company’s plan to launch physical supply and marketing operations in Germany.E. Nikolas Tavlarios, Aegean’s President, said: “This expansion is consistent with our opportunistic efforts to diversify our operations and enhance our global footprint. We believe that our expansion into Russia, combined with our recent entry into the U.S. Gulf Coast, U.S. West Coast, and German markets, demonstrates our continued actions to strengthen the Aegean network around the world.”last_img read more

Antwerp Port Hit by Heavy Explosion

first_imgzoom A heavy blast rocked the port of Antwerp on Friday when a solid waste storage bunker exploded at an industrial waste treatment plant, Antwerp’s fire department said.The blast originated in a tank containing solvents, while an adjacent warehouse, containing small quantities of stored chemicals, caught fire and burned down completely, the facility owner Indaver said.There were no injuries reported, however due to the heavy smoke billowing from the port, local residents were asked to remain indoors and close their windows to avoid inhaling potential contaminants emitted from the blast.Firefighters were rushed to the scene and managed to extinguish the fire by early evening, the Port of Antwerp told World Maritime News. Based on the latest update, an investigation into the level of toxicity from the blast showed that the concentration was not dangerous for human health.Indaver said on Monday that the activities at the facility have partially been resumed today with workers launching an investigation into the accident.World Maritime News Stafflast_img read more

Three killed 8 hurt in busdumper collision in UP

first_imgShahjahanpur (UP): Three persons were killed and eight others suffered serious injuries when the private bus they were travelling in collided with a dumper here on Saturday, police said. The private double-decker bus, travelling from Dehradun to Nighasan in Lakhimpur Kehri district of Uttar Pradesh, met with an accident near Laugapar jungle in the morning, Superintendent of Police (Rural) Aparna Gautam said In the accident, Ramcharan (30) died on the spot while Fakhruddin (50) and another unidentified person succumbed to injuries during treatment, the SP said. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity! The eight injured persons were rushed to the district hospital, she said, adding that the bodies of the deceased have been sent for post-mortem. Saturday’s accident comes days after a UPSRTC bus fell off a bridge in Agra on the Yamuna Expressway. Twenty-nine persons were killed and 18 injured after the state-run bus skidded off the Yamuna Expressway and fell into a large drain in Uttar Pradesh on July 8. The Janrath bus of the Uttar Pradesh Roadways’ Awadh Depot was going from Lucknow to Delhi’s Anand Vihar ISBT. The 165-km six-lane expressway connects Noida with Agra in Uttar Pradesh.last_img read more

Mary Kom 8 female athletes in line for Padma Awards

first_imgNew Delhi: Ace Indian boxer Mary Kom’s name has been suggested for the prestigious Padma Vibhushan Award, country’s second highest civilian award. The Sports Ministry is also discussing eight other female athletes for the Padma Awards. Recently crowned World Champion P.V. Sindhu has been suggested for the Padma Bhushan Award. The other seven athletes — ace wrestler Vinesh Phogat, Indian women’s cricket team T20I captain Harmanpreet Kaur, captain of the women’s hockey team Rani Rampal, shooter Suma Shirur, ace peddler Manika Batra and mountaineer twin sisters, Tashi and Nungshi Malik — have been suggested for the Padma Shri Award. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over Chandigarh Sources in the Ministry have told IANS that these names have not yet been approved by Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju. Once approved, the names will be sent to the Padma Awards Committee of the Ministry of Home Affairs. “The names are being discussed and the final approval awaits,” the source informed. The names of the select awardees will be announced on the eve of the Republic Day next year. Mary was honoured with Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri awards in 2013 and 2006, respectively. In 2003, she was awarded with the Arjuna Award as well. Whereas Sindhu recently became the world champion after she defeated Japan’s Nozomi Okuhara 21-7, 21-7 in the final of the championships held in Basel, Switzerland. Sindhu, who was overlooked for the Padma Bhushan honour in 2017, was awarded with the Padma Shri in 2015.last_img read more

Maoist clears SET from correctional home

first_imgKolkata: Arnab Dam has cleared the State Eligibility Test examination from a correctional home in the state. Dam alias Bikram is at present lodged at Hooghly Correctional Home. Dam has set an example as till date no person from the state had cleared SET from a correctional home.Dam, who is now eligible for lectureship, had pursued his Bachelors and Masters degrees in History from Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) from the correctional home and had secured first division both the times. He had appeared for SET on December 2 last year. Also Read – Centuries-old Durga Pujas continue to be hit among revellersDam had also applied for National Eligibility Test examination but failed to appear for the examination because he turned up late at the examination centre due to some administrative issues. Dam, who is the son of retired judge SK Dam and a resident of Garia, has been a meritorious student throughout his academic career. He passed his higher secondary examination from Narendarpur Ramkrishna Mission and joined mechanical engineering at IIT Kharagpur. However, in 1998 during his third semester, he mysteriously disappeared from the campus. He was arrested in 2005 for involvement in Maoist activities and after some months in prison he was out on bail. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaDam was a state committee member of CPI Maoists in Bengal and was active in areas of neighbouring states of Bihar, Jharkhand and Odisha. He was arrested in connection with Maoist attack at the Silda camp of the Eastern Frontier Rifles (EFR) in 2012 from Balarapur in Purulia and has been lodged in prison since then. He had appeared for her SET examination from Presidency Correctional Home. Dam’s father was informed about his son’s results through a speed post on Friday. Now, if the state government permits Dam can take up lectureship jobs in institutions such as Calcutta University and Jadavpur University. Senior officials of the state Correctional Administration department including minister Ujjal Biswas have expressed joy over Dam’s achievement.last_img read more

Major Gogoi suffers ignominy of seniority reduction and exit from Kashmir Valley

first_imgSrinagar: Major Leetul Gogoi, who was at the centre of the 2017 ‘human shield controversy’, will suffer the ignominy of reduction in seniority and exit from Kashmir Valley with the Army headquarters confirming the punishment for “fraternising” with a local woman last year, officials said here on Sunday. A court martial had held Gogoi and his driver Sameer Malla guilty on two counts – “fraternising” with a local woman in spite of instructions to the contrary and “being away from the place of duty while in operational area”, the officials said. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss account details under automatic exchange framework The company commander of the unit of Malla, who was facing charges of unauthorised absence, has been authorised to decide on his punishment which includes a “severe reprimand”. Malla was recruited in the Territorial Army in 2017 and he was posted with 53 sector of Rashtriya Rifles, a counter-insurgency force fighting militancy in Jammu and Kashmir. The proceedings of the court martial were confirmed by the Army headquarters after which it was decided to shift him out the valley, the officials said, adding that the final orders were received very recently. Also Read – Trio win Nobel Medicine Prize for work on cells, oxygen Gogoi and Malla’s summary of evidence was completed in early February, followed by the initiation of the court martial proceedings, they said. The statements of the both the accused as well as other witnesses were recorded by the Army court and the punishment, which has been vetted by the Army headquarters, has been given, they added. Major Gogoi and his driver were detained by Jammu and Kashmir Police following an altercation with the hotel staff when he was allegedly trying to enter it with an 18-year-old woman on May 23 last year. The woman had expressed her unwillingness to depose during the court martial proceedings and informed the Army authorities that she had given a statement before a magistrate and the same should be treated as her final stand. The woman had also stated that she had gone out with Major Gogoi on her own will, besides disclosing that she had become a friend of the Army officer through his fake Facebook profile, where he had named himself Ubaid Arman. Immediately after the incident came to light last year, Army chief Bipin Rawat had said that exemplary punishment would be given to Major Gogoi if he was found guilty of “any offence”. “If any officer of the Indian Army is found guilty of any offence, we will take strictest possible action,” General Rawat had said. Major Gogoi hit the headlines after he tied a man to a jeep purportedly as a shield against an unruly mob which was hurling stones during a by-poll at Budgam, which forms part of the Srinagar Lok Sabha seat, on April 9, 2017.last_img read more

Ban meets with Afghan President ahead of international conference

During their meeting, Mr. Ban also expressed concern about the security situation in Afghanistan, according to information provided by his spokesperson. The Secretary-General noted that the United Nations, through its mission in the country (UNAMA), will continue to work with the Afghan Government towards a sustainable peace. He also insisted on Afghan ownership of the peace process, which should be inclusive, and called on the country to continue on the road to full inclusion of all, especially women, in all aspects of life. Respect for human rights must be a cornerstone of government policy, he added.The conference, which will be chaired by Mr. Karzai, will focus on helping the country on the path towards greater democracy, stability, security and economic development. Also in attendance will be Staffan de Mistura, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative and head of UNAMA, and Hervé Ladsous, the Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations.Mr. Ban also met on Sunday with German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, with whom he held wide-ranging discussions on the situation in Afghanistan, as well as the situation in Syria, Iran, the Middle East and North Africa. Speaking to reporters after his meeting with Mr. Westerwelle, the Secretary-General emphasized that more needs to be done to promote the rights of women and girls in Afghanistan, a point he also highlighted in his meeting with Afghan civil society leaders today.In a separate press encounter with Afghan media, Mr. Ban was asked about the absence of Pakistan at the conference. “The Pakistani delegation has decided not to come but that doesn’t mean that Pakistan is not committed,” he said. “I believe that Pakistan is committed to work together with the Afghan people and also to promote peace and security in the region.” 4 December 2011Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Sunday stressed the unity of the international community in supporting Afghanistan for the long term, as he met with President Hamid Karzai in Bonn, Germany, ahead of the conference set to convene there on Monday. read more

Closing Bell TSX up modestly as traders shrug off Spanish downgrade

TORONTO — The Toronto stock market was slightly higher Thursday as resource stocks rose alongside prices for oil and metals.Here are the closing numbersTSX — 12,233.95 +21.53 +0.2%S&P 500 — 1,432.84 +0.28 + 0.0%Dow — 13,326.39 -18.58 -0.1%Nasdaq — 3,049.41 -2.37 -0.1%The S&P/TSX composite index was well off session highs by mid-afternoon, gaining 21.53 points to 12,233.95 following three days of losses. Markets have been depressed by fresh signs of a slowing economic recovery, including another downward revision of global growth by the International Monetary Fund and forecasts of lower demand by resource giant Alcoa Inc.The TSX Venture Exchange was 2.21 points lower at 1,299.94.Commodity prices also supported the Canadian dollar, which was up 0.21 of a cent at 102.18 cents US.New York markets were also off the best levels of the day with the Dow Jones industrials down 18.58 points to 13,326.39 on top of two back-to-back, triple-digit slides. The Nasdaq composite index slipped 2.4 points to 3,049.38 while the S&P 500 index ticked up 0.28 of a point at 1,432.84.Indexes had earlier been well into positive territory as a much better than expected read on U.S. jobless insurance claims raised hiring prospects. Traders also looked ahead to key earnings reports Friday from U.S. banking giants, including JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo.The U.S. Labour Department said the number of people seeking unemployment aid plummeted last week by 30,000 to a seasonally adjusted 339,000, the lowest level in more than four years. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, dropped by 11,500 to 364,000, a six-month low.Traders appeared to take in stride a move by Standard & Poor’s to cut its rating on Spain’s debt by two notches to BBB-minus, leaving the country on the verge of non-investment grade, or junk, status.The Spanish government has so far refused to tap a new European Central Bank bond-buying facility that has been largely designed to keep a lid on the country’s borrowing rates. But some analysts think the downgrade will help push the government to finally request the help.Even so, others think traders are in danger of letting their guard down.“We probably don’t focus enough on Europe. I still think it’s simmering and could blow up in our face,” said Jim Muir, director at Fraser Mackenzie.“But we’re all growing very complacent with the problems over there. One day we’ll wake up and there could very well be another Lehman Brothers moment happen there. But history shows we do work our way through these problems.”Earnings expectations are low for the third quarter as the debt crisis continues to take a toll on the economies in Europe, affecting the results of multinationals. The malaise has also spread to developing economies such as China.“Expectations are for a 2.1% year-over-year decline in S&P 500 operating earnings — the first year-over-year drop since the recession,” said BMO Capital Markets senior economist Robert Kavcic.“Also, half of the 10 major sectors are expected to be in the red, so the earnings slowdown is relatively broad based and not just a one-sector phenomenon.”Merger and acquisition news also helped support markets.The Wall Street Journal reported that Sprint Nextel is in advanced talks to be acquired by Japanese cellphone company Softbank Corp. in a transaction valued at more than US$12.8-billion. Sprint Nextel shares surged 14.09% to US$5.75 in New York as the company confirmed during the morning that there have been talks with Softbank on a possible transaction.Most TSX sectors were higher while resource stocks led gainers as prices for oil and metals advanced.The energy sector was up 0.57% as oil continued to find support from worries that the Syrian conflict is escalating. Traders worry that the civil war in Syria could grow into a wider regional conflict that could threaten oil supplies from Middle East producers. The Middle East and North Africa account for about a third of global oil production.The November crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange was up 82 cents at US$92.07 a barrel. Canadian Natural Resources rose 21 cents to $30.01.Nexen shares climbed six cents to $25.21 as the federal government extended its review period for the proposed $15.1-billion takeover of the energy company by China’s state-owned offshore oil company. The review under the Investment Canada Act is being extended by 30 days. An initial 45-day review period was set to end Friday.The base metals sector was up 1.35% as December copper climbed three cents to US$3.75 a pound. Teck Resources ran ahead 49 cents to $30.39.The gold sector was flat as December bullion edged up $5.50 to US$1,770.60 an ounce.NovaGold Resources Inc. gained 13 cents to C$5.04 as the company reported a third-quarter net loss of $21.5-million or eight cents per share. That is less than half of its net loss of $52.1-million or 22 cents per share from a year ago.The exploration and development miner, whose flagship asset is its 50% owned Donlin gold project in Alaska, did not report any revenues for the quarter.Utilities were the biggest losers with Just Energy Group 31 cents lower to $10.55.Here’s the news investors were watching today: IMF urges Europe to put brakes on austerityGreece’s unemployment hits record quarter of workforceOttawa extends review of CNOOC’s bid for NexenCanada’s trade deficit narrows as imports fallON DECK FRIDAYECONOMIC NEWSUNITED STATES8:30 a.m.Producer Price index (Sept): Economists expect a 0.8% rise from the month before, 1.8% gain year over year 9:55 a.m.University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment index (Oct): Economists expect a reading of 78, flat with last month CORPORATE NEWSUNITED STATESJPMorgan Chase & Co Q3 earnings: Analysts expect US$1.21 a share Wells Fargo Q3 earnings: Analysts expect 87¢ a share read more

Energy lobby pulling con job on shale gas fracking Tom Mulcair says

AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Energy lobby ‘pulling con job’ on shale gas fracking, Tom Mulcair says by The Canadian Press Posted Jun 11, 2012 5:32 pm MDT ROTHESAY, N.B. – Federal NDP Leader Tom Mulcair is accusing a national energy lobby group of “pulling a con job” when promoting shale gas fracking.Mulcair was in New Brunswick to boost the campaign of provincial NDP Leader Dominic Cardy in a byelection in the Saint John-area riding of Rothesay.During his visit, Mulcair said the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers is deceiving the public when it says there are regulations to ensure that shale gas fracking is safe.“I met with the leadership of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers who gave me a lovely brochure, colour, glossy, explaining that they had a policy that all companies doing fracking had to reveal the contents of the fracking fluid,” Mulcair said Sunday.“I said, ‘But the companies aren’t doing that.’ You know what they said? ‘Well, we can’t force them, they’re just our members.’“That representative of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers was out here pulling a con job, trying to make people believe that somehow they were regulating, somehow they had rules that were going to mean something.”Mulcair called on the energy industry to tell the public what is in the fluid that is used in fracking.“Here’s one tough question: If you think that your method of getting to that gas is safe, why won’t you reveal the contents of the fracking fluid?” he said. “Because that fracking fluid contains known carcinogens and other very dangerous substances.”The oil and gas industry has argued that fracking is safe and sustainable and provides major economic benefits, an argument environmental groups reject.The president of association, Dave Collyer, responded to Mulcair’s comments by issuing a statement saying association members are expected to adhere to operating practices the association introduced in January.More importantly, he said the voluntary guideline are not meant to replace existing regulatory oversight, most of which is done at the provincial level.Disclosure of the types of fluids used in hydraulic fracturing has already been made mandatory in British Columbia, Alberta is expected to follow suit later this year and New Brunswick recently announced plans to require disclosure of fracking fluids, the statement said.“Shale gas can and is produced responsibly every day across Canada and the United States with more than 175,000 wells fractured safely in Western Canada over the last 60 years,” Collyer said.“Our operating practices demonstrate the Canadian natural gas industry’s continued efforts to ensure responsible resource development.”Mulcair also said he supports the development of a west-to-east pipeline that would deliver energy and generate jobs in Atlantic Canada.His comments come just over a week after he toured Alberta’s sprawling oilsands. At the time, he said he was surprised at the size of the operations and left determined to ensure it gets cleaned up.He has also traded barbs with premiers from the West after he said that region’s booming oil sector was hurting other parts of Canada’s economy by driving up the dollar.Fracking, which refers to hydraulic fracturing, involves the use of water and chemicals to fracture layers of rock to release oil and natural gas.There has been a public backlash to shale gas development in New Brunswick in recent months, including protests near exploration sites and at the provincial legislature.(CHSJ, The Canadian Press) read more

Tackling water challenges an urgent task as world moves forward on Global

Speaking at a meeting of the Friends of Water Steering Committee, Mr. Eliasson welcomed the Prime Minister of Thailand Chan-o-cha and President Emomali Rahmon of Tajikstan and spoke of the challenges that the Committee faced.“Worldwide, water demand is projected to grow by over 40 percent by 2050,” said the Deputy Secretary-General. “Population pressures, climate change and energy and agricultural needs have made finding sustainable solutions to water-related challenges an urgent and crucial task for ever more regions in the world.”He then went on to highlight the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the place of water-related challenges within it. “The litmus test for this new agenda will be implementation,” said Mr. Eliasson, “how to translate this vision into realities on the ground. Substantially transforming societies and economies requires political will, vigorous efforts, as well as ingenuity and innovation,” he added.The Deputy Secretary-General also noted the importance of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda in providing a foundation for enhanced global partnerships that will ensure effective implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and spoke about the importance of collaborative efforts between governments, international and regional organizations, the private sector, civil society and academic to find new ways to take action on the global water crisis.He also highlighted the work that UN-Water would be doing to provide support to ongoing efforts, and thanked Secretary-General Michel Jarraud of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) for his excellent leadership of UN-Water. He also welcomed Director-General Guy Ryder of the International Labour Organization (ILO) as the new Chair of UN-Water. “Water must never be a reason for rivalry or competition,” he said. “Water must be a source of cooperation and of shared security and prosperity. Let us remember that water is our primary source of life. So this is also, fundamentally, an existential challenge and a moral obligation.” read more

Displaced people need to be given opportunity to rebuild their lives Ban

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visits Bwerangula Primary School in Kitchanga, North Kivu, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visits Mungote IDP Camp, in Kitchanga, North Kivu, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe “We have to give hope to […] young people,” said Mr. Ban on the first stop of his two-day visit. “Particularly, we have to do much more to bring all these children back to school; we have to do much more to protect human dignity and human rights of women and girls to save them, to protect them from sexual violence.”He said he plans to meet with President Joseph Kabila and other senior Congolese Government officials to discuss all these matters tomorrow. Today, he spoke with women in the IDP camp in Mungote, describing the experience as “very humbling.” As Secretary-General, “I will do my best efforts, working together with the United Nations Member States,” he said.He said his visit to IDP camps, meeting so many people, particularly young people, reminded him of when he was six years old in Republic of Korea in 1950. “When the Korean War broke out, it was a deadly horrible war. There were millions of people killed and tens of millions had been separated, displaced. I was one of them. I had to flee,” he said, adding that the United Nations had been a “beacon of hope” then and had rescued his country “from the brink of collapse.”Now the United Nations are doing the same, despite a lack of resources, to protect the rights of 60 million IDPs and refugees around the world, the highest number since the end of the war. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visits Bwerangula Primary School in Kitchanga, North Kivu, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe ‹ ›To that end, he will convene the first-ever World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul, Turkey, in May, as well as a summit on global migration and refugee issues in September. “We need support from the Member States as the UN cannot do it alone,” he said. “No country can resolve all these issues alone.”Responding to a question about authorities wanting to close some IDP camps in North Kivu, he said he told the Governor not to close them. The authorities seem to be lacking resources, but the UN will work together with the local and central Governments. “It is important to provide life-saving assistance to those people who need daily humanitarian assistance,” he said.On a question on efforts to improve security in the areas of origin of IDPs, he said people should be protected from violence, particularly women and girls. But there are clearly limits for peacekeepers to do it all. That is why the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo or MONUSCO, the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo, known by the French acronym FARDC, and the national police are working very closely.“The protection of civilians is the number one priority for UN peacekeepers,” he said. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visits Bwerangula Primary School in Kitchanga, North Kivu, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visits Mungote IDP Camp, in Kitchanga, North Kivu, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visits Mungote IDP Camp, in Kitchanga, North Kivu, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visits Mungote IDP Camp in Kitchanga in the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s eastern province of North Kivu. Credit: UN News CentreOn 24 February, Mr. Ban will be in the DRC capital, Kinshasa, for the opening session of the Great Lakes Private Sector Investment Conference. He is also expected to meet with President Kabila, as well as several Government officials, and political and civil society representatives.On 25 February, the Secretary-General will leave Kinshasa for Juba, South Sudan, where he is expected to meet with President Salva Kiir and visit a Protection of Civilians’ site that is run by the UN mission there. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (centre) with staff members of the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) in Kinshasa. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (centre left) is welcomed by Raymond Tshibanda N’tungamulongo (centre right), Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), on his arrival in Kinshasa. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meets with Denis Mukwege, Founder and Medical Director of Panzi Hospital. Located in Bukavu, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the hospital treats survivors of sexual violence, as well as providing legal and psycho-social services to its patients. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meets with children released from armed groups and armed forces in Kitchanga, North Kivu, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visits Bwerangula Primary School in Kitchanga, North Kivu, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon takes part in a Capoeira performance during his meeting with children released from armed groups and armed forces in Kitchanga, North Kivu, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe read more