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Cabinet gives nod to amend Punjab excise Act

first_imgChandigarh, Nov 22 (PTI) The cabinet today approved the introduction of the draft Punjab excise Act, 1914 (Amendment) Bill, 2017 allowing the sale of liquor through licensed vends within the limits of Municipal areas and checking smuggling of distilled spirits.The bill with amendment to sections 26-A, 72, 78 and 81 of the Punjab excise Act will be introduced for legislation in the winter session of the Vidhan Sabha commencing from November 27, an official release said.The decision was taken at a meeting of the cabinet chaired by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh here.An amendment to Section 26-A has been approved in view of the July 11, 2017 judgment of the Supreme Court, the release said.It provides that the condition of sale of liquor through licensed vends at a distance of 500 meters away from national/ state highways would not apply to the licensed liquor vends within the limits of Municipal area, the release said.With amendments to Sections 72, 78 and 81, smuggling of liquor in the state would be controlled as bringing foreign distilled spirit into Punjab in quantities exceeding twelve bottles of 750 millimeters capacity each would now be a non- bailable offence, the release said.Vehicles carrying more than three cases of liquor would be confiscated and would be released during trial only against cash or bank guarantee equivalent to the value of liquor confiscated, the release said.In another decision, the cabinet agreed to bring a Bill in the forthcoming session of Punjab Vidhan Sabha to amend Section 3(8) of the Punjab Land Revenue Act, 1972, to exclude banana, guava trees and vineyard lands from the definition of orchard.advertisementWith this the base of agricultural production of the state can be diversified from the monoculture of wheat and paddy towards fruits and vegetables, the release said.This amendment would provide a legal right to a farmer or tenant carrying guava, banana and vineyard farming to keep up to 20.5 hectares of land, the release said.The cabinet also decided to amend Section 27(j) of the Punjab Land Reforms Act, 1972 to ensure that agricultural land which has been utilized for non-agricultural purposes, such as housing, industrial, infrastructure projects like SEZ, tourism units (hotels and resorts), public utilities, warehousing, sports, religious are kept out of the purview of this Act. PTI VSD ADSlast_img read more

World Cup 2019 semi-final: Break will help India, says Monty Panesar

first_imgFormer England spinner Monty Panesar said the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 moving into the reserve day is good news for Team India, adding that India will be able to assess the chaseable target as they have already bowled against New Zealand.Rain forced match officials to call off play afte 46.1 overs of the New Zealand innings in the 1st semi-final at Old Trafford in Manchester on Tuesday. It was confirmed that the semi-final would resume from that point on Wednesday at Old Trafford.”I think the break would really help India. They have already bowled on this wicket; they will know what is a chaseable target,” Monty Panesar told ANI news agency.Kane Williamson won the toss and opted to bat in overcast conditions in Manchester on Tuesday. Jasprit Bumrah jolted the Black Caps early with the wicket of Martin Guptill after which the Indian new-ball bowlers put the brakes on the scoring rate.Ravindra Jadeja then removed a steady 2nd wicket stand between Henry Nicholls and Williamson by castling the former. Ross Taylor and Williamson then joined hands to add 65 before the New Zealand skipper fell to Yuzvendra Chahal.Taylor took his time to get going and remained unbeaten on 67 but New Zealand managed only 211 for 5 in 46.1 overs before rain played spoilsport. 3 of the 5 Indian bowlers used on Tuesday conceded at less than 4 runs per over as New Zealand struggled for momentum throughout the innings.Meanhile, Panesar also said India can comfortably chase down the target if they play “measurable cricket” on Wednesday. The former England spinner also said it’s up to India to not panic if the ball swings early in the day.”They [India] have done tremendously well today. So I think it is for India to win the match and not to have any panic if the ball does swing tomorrow. They just have to make sure that they do not have to chase anything beyond 250. Anything below that, I think India can comfortably chase the target down,” Panesar said.”I think it really depends on the weather condition, if there is a lot of rain around tomorrow morning then possibly it could favour New Zealand bowlers.”But this target of 220, there are some overs left, it is a chaseable target. If India plays measurable cricket, assess the conditions tomorrow, they do not need to play any high-risk shots.”On Wednesday, the match will continue at the same time, 3 PM IST. New Zealand’s score (211 for 5 in 46.1 overs) will be carried through to the reserve day.advertisementAlso Read | India vs New Zealand semi-final 1st ever World Cup knock-out match to move into reserve dayAlso Read | India vs New Zealand World Cup 2019 1st Semi-final: What happens on reserve day?Also See:last_img read more

VIDEO: A Rescue Story from the Sea

first_imgzoom The sea is often unrelenting and unforgiving which for those braving the stormy waters proved to be very dangerous even life-threatening.However, it takes enormous courage and determination to be able to help those vessels stricken at sea in reaching safer waters.The following video gives you a taste of what it really takes to conduct a rescue operation against all odds.The video shows AHTS vessel Tor Viking II rushed to provide an emergency tow to bulk carrier Golden Seas in the Bering Sea north of Atka in the Aleutian islands in 2010.World Maritime News Staff, Video:CatMarinelast_img read more

MOL to Provide FSRU for Hong Kong Offshore LNG Terminal

first_imgzoomImage Courtesy: MOL Japanese sipping conglomerate Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) has signed a preliminary agreement to supply a Floating Storage and Regasification Unit (FSRU), as well as jetty operation and  maintenance services for the Hong Kong Offshore LNG Terminal Project on a long term contract. The Hong Kong Offshore LNG Terminal Project will be located at the southern waters of Hong Kong and to the east of the Soko Islands.MOL said it would use the 2017-built MOL FSRU Challenger, built by Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME), for the job. The FSRU has a storage capacity of 263,000 m3, making it the largest FSRU in the world today. The vessel is currently employed on a mid-term charter for a project in Turkey, according to MOL.Challenger is expected to enter into service at the terminal around the end of 2020 at the earliest after delivery and completion of commissioning.“Discussions are ongoing to develop and reach a definitive agreement for the supply of the FSRU which will assist in improving the long-term energy security for Hong Kong as well as providing access to competitive natural gas supply from world markets,” MOL said.In line with the project outline, the FSRU will distribute gas into two destinations in Hong Kong, the Black Point Power Station located at New Territories and Lamma Power Station located at Lamma Island.The Hong Kong Offshore LNG Terminal Project is being developed to support the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government’s target of generating about half of Hong Kong’s electricity from natural gas from 2020 onward to improve air quality and environmental conditions in Hong Kong.The government is currently reviewing the environmental impact assessment study for the project.last_img read more

The Tall Ships are Coming

first_imgTwenty-one tall ships have been confirmed to date for Halifax’sbiggest celebration this summer, Tall Ships Challenge 2004 – ASalute to l’Acadie. The largest gathering of tall ships in the Americas this yearwill take place from July 29 to Aug. 2. Ships from the U.S.,Mexico, Romania, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, theCook Islands, Poland and Canada will be sailing into HalifaxHarbour and calling the waterfront their home for the five-dayevent. “We are very pleased with the number and class of ships that havealready confirmed they will be visiting,” said Eric Thomson,chair of the Waterfront Development Corporation. “Theirparticipation, along with the exciting activities planned forTall Ships Challenge 2004, guarantee this will be a world-classevent.” The ships will be berthed along the waterfront, from Tall ShipsQuay to Casino Nova Scotia Hotel, and include square-riggedbarquentines and brigantines, traditional-rigged schooners andketches. Between 12 and 14 A-class vessels are expected,including Eagle from the U.S., Cuauhtemoc from Mexico, Mirceafrom Romania, Caledonia from Canada and Tenacious from theUnited Kingdom. B-class vessels will include Canada’s Bluenose II and Silva,Spirit of Massachusetts, Unicorn and Pride of Baltimore II fromthe U.S. Several C-class ships will also participate includingAppledore V from the U.S., and Raindancer II from Canada. Class A vessels include all square-rigged vessels, and others,that are more than 40 metres in length overall. B-class vesselsare traditional-rigged vessels that are less than 40 metres inlength and have a waterline length of at least 9.14 metres. C-class vessels are modern-rigged vessels that are less than 40metres in length, have a waterline length of at least 9.14 metresand do not carry spinnaker-like sails. More information about Tall Ships Challenge 2004 and aboutadvance boarding passes for the event is available on the websiteat, and on CBC’s website . Tall Ships Challenge 2004 – A Salute to l’Acadie is presented bythe Waterfront Development Corporation. The event is sponsored bythe province, Halifax Regional Municipality, Grou Tyme AcadianFestival, Aliant, Atlantic Lottery Corporation, AlexanderKeith’s, Sobeys, Ford, Casino Nova Scotia, Captain Morgan, TheHerald, McCain, Pepsi, Trade Centre Limited, CanJet, Halifax PortAuthority, Bishop’s Landing, Atlantic Photo Supply and PellerEstates and Ombrelle. CBC is also a sponsor and the hostbroadcaster for the event.last_img read more

Popularity of audio technology is a factor in decline of braille experts

first_imgVANCOUVER — Experts say fewer people with poor eyesight are learning to read braille in North America, partly because audio books and voice technology are supplanting the written word.Jen Goulden, past president of Braille Literacy Canada, said other factors have also had an impact on the use of braille in this country.In the early 20th century, she said visually impaired children were educated at residential schools for the blind because all the resources were consolidated in one place. But the teaching of braille fell behind as an “unintended consequence” of putting visually impaired and sighted children together, said Goulden.The use of large print for students with low vision has also been a factor, she said, because they are only left with audio as their vision decreases and they haven’t learned braille.Teaching braille and learning to read large print was not always done together because audio was cheaper and easier to provide, she added.  Goulden said there has also been a drop in the number of braille teachers and she expressed her frustration at a double-standard in education for children who are blind because they aren’t given a chance to learn braille.“I can’t really fathom why it’s OK to do that to a blind child when we would never think of doing that to a sighted child,” she said.Statistics on the use of braille aren’t available from Canadian organizations.Christopher S. Danielsen, of the Baltimore-based National Federation of the Blind, said its research suggests about 58 per cent of blind students in the United States were using braille in the early 1960s as their primary reading medium, which has dropped to about 10 per cent today.Still, Danielsen said braille is not in danger of being lost.“Most blind people have some vision. Most of us are not totally blind but braille tends to be more efficient than reading print,” he added.Danielsen said a person can get information but not literacy from listening.“We routinely see blind people who are obviously very intelligent, very well-educated, but they don’t have braille skills because they stopped reading print at some point … and learned primarily by listening,” he said.“These are folks who will have graduate level degrees and yet have very atrocious spelling and punctuation just because they haven’t read, they haven’t actually read. They may have a good vocabulary when they speak but they don’t even necessarily have the ability to translate that into writing.”Mary Ellen Gabias, president of Canadian Federation of the Blind, said voice technologies also have limitations.“If you’ve ever used Siri to dictate a voice message to somebody or a text message to somebody, you know you can have some pretty humorous misrepresentation of what you were trying to say,” Gabias said.Learning braille helps with understanding as well, she said.“If I’m listening to an audio book for fun or pleasure, I will often turn it up to double speed. With speech compression these days you can do that without the book sounding like Donald Duck, but if I really want to know and understand and study things, I want them in braille.”Jennifer Dunnam, manager of braille programs at the National Federation of the Blind, said access to braille is better now because it can be used with electronic tools.“We have refreshable braille displays, which can be connected either by cable or by Bluetooth, and they present what is on the screen of the phone or a computer,” she said.Goulden said technology also makes it easier and cheaper to create braille.“We tend to believe that the biggest issue with braille is not that it is no longer valuable … but there is still a lot of stigma around it and people think that braille is slow to read,” she said. “I can tell you that I can read faster than I can listen.”Hina Alam, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Threats abuse move from online to real world McKenna now requires security

first_imgOTTAWA — Environment Minister Catherine McKenna says she was recently walking outside a movie theatre with her children when a car slowly pulled to a stop beside them.The driver rolled down his window and then he let fly.“F*** you, Climate Barbie,” he shouted, as she tried to back away from his car and get her kids away from him.Much has been written about the online abuse and threatening behaviour politicians — especially female politicians — and others in the public eye face every day. But McKenna says as the heat around climate change continues to grow, that abuse is going from anonymous online vitriol to terrifying in-person verbal assaults.The incident at the movie theatre is just one of several times her kids have been with her when someone in public began to yell at her. She has been called the C-word, a traitor, an enemy and a “communist piece of garbage.” Her family’s safety has been threatened more than once. Some people have wished she and her children will get fatal diseases. She has received sexualized messages so hateful they could be enough to make even the hardest of hearts skip a beat.“Tick Tock, Barbie B****,” one read.“You’re a stain on this country and I hope you rot in hell,” said another.The threats have become real enough that McKenna sometimes now requires a security detail, a level of protection even cabinet ministers don’t usually get.“There are places, yes, that I have to have security now and I don’t think that’s a great situation,” she said. “I’m someone who is trying to do my job, live my life, and talk and engage with people, and it makes it harder. I’m not going to let this stop me but I wish it would stop.”McKenna would not elaborate on the security needs, so as not to reveal when she has less protection. She said the online abuse in particular has been going on since she was elected, but that in recent months it has gotten much worse in person.“The challenges, the increases of this, is worrying for everyone,” she said.McKenna is not alone in fearing for her safety. Tzeporah Berman, international program co-ordinator for Stand.Earth, said earlier this summer that she has received death threats and was physically assaulted in the Edmonton airport by a man angry about her campaign to close down the oil sands.Catherine Abreu, the executive director of Climate Action Network, Canada, said the issue is a constant source of frustration and fear for environmentalists.“We talk about it every single day,” said Abreu. “There are many people in my community who feel they are under threat.”Abreu and Berman both point to politicians as stoking the fires. Abreu said U.S. President Donald Trump’s rhetorical attacks have emboldened people who now feel it is perfectly acceptable to insult, abuse and threaten people they disagree with.Berman said the threats and attacks against her worsened after Alberta Premier Jason Kenney launched his “war room,” a $30-million project to discredit people he says are using foreign funding to undermine Canada’s energy sector. Berman and others are being named by the Alberta government and called enemies for opposing the oil industry.“Since @jkenney announced his $30 million warroom to attack environmental advocates & this poster of me was held up at his press conference I have had death threats, misogynist & sexual attacks on social media,” she tweeted in June. “This is what that kind of fear mongering & hate does.”An attached image shows a sheet of paper with a photo of her speaking into a bullhorn in front of a banner reading “NO TARSANDS PIPELINE.” Below the photo are the words “Tzeporah Berman: Enemy of the oilsands.” Kenney didn’t hold it up but a supporter introducing him at a pro-oilsands news conference in June did.A spokeswoman for Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage said “in no way does our government condone any form of abuse, verbal or otherwise, towards private citizens or elected officials.”Samantha Peck said the “Fight Back Strategy” is in development but the war room itself has not yet been established and hasn’t issued any publications naming any specific individuals.The United Conservative Party has named at least one individual in a fundraising pitch to supporters.Emma Jackson, who works from Climate Justice Edmonton, shared the letter on Aug. 30, which named her as a “radical anti-oil and gas activist.”Berman’s tweet was itself met with a torrent of abuse, many of which called her a liar or said she deserved everything she got. A handful of people said while they disagreed vehemently with Berman’s activities, the threats and abuse were not acceptable. They, too, were then attacked.McKenna said she doesn’t call this sort of thing out often because she fears giving abusers attention. In 2017, she did stop to call foul when Conservative MP Gerry Ritz referred to her on Twitter as “Climate Barbie.”The insult was coined by the right-wing website, The Rebel, shortly after McKenna was named environment minister and has been used in hundreds, if not thousands, of insults hurled her direction.Ritz, a former agriculture minister who has since resigned from Parliament, deleted his tweet and apologized for the slur when it was met with outrage.McKenna said the fact that climate-change deniers have now verbally attacked Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old Swedish climate activist, proves just how low some will go to discredit their opponents.People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier was among them, accusing Thunberg in a tweet of being mentally unstable. He later said he wasn’t trying to insult her, just show that she was a pawn being used by adults to put an unassailable face on their lies that climate change is a human-caused emergency.Mia Rabson, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Zendaya Covers John Legend For Charity

first_imgHollywood Records’ Platinum-selling artist, Zendaya recently released a cover of John Legend’s “All of Me” for charity.Zendaya joined Max and Kurt Schneider to record the song with a portion of the proceeds going to Convoy of Hope.“My generation has the opportunity to change the world,” says Zendaya. “With Convoy of Hope, I’ve raised my voice and I’m using it to give hope to people around the world.”Zendaya has been an advocate for Convoy of Hope since Hurricane Sandy devastated parts of New York and New Jersey in 2012, promoting disaster response efforts by the organization. The singer urged her fans to text a $10 donation to help with relief efforts.Since then, Zendaya has offered her voice and influence to tell Convoy of Hope’s story to her millions of followers on social media. In 2013, Zendaya also encouraged fans to support Convoy of Hope after tornadoes ravaged Oklahoma and when Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines.“We’re so grateful that Zendaya is using her platform to raise awareness for those in need all over the world,” says Hal Donaldson, president and co-founder of Convoy of Hope. “We look forward to continuing to partner with her in the future.”Convoy of Hope, a faith ­based organization founded in 1994, has a driving passion to feed the world. With a long history as an early responder in times of natural disasters, Convoy of Hope has been a Four Star Charity as recognized by Charity Navigator for 11 consecutive years. In the last 20 years, Convoy of Hope has served more than 65 million people. Find out more here.Source:PR Weblast_img read more

CVC to retire in June write 300word essay to apply for top

first_imgNew Delhi: The Centre has started the process of filling up the top post of Central Vigilance Commissioner in the anti-corruption watchdog CVC as incumbent K V Chowdary will demit office in June after completing his four-year tenure.Besides Chowdary, Vigilance Commissioner T M Bhasin will also complete his tenure in the same month, officials said Monday. Former chief of National Investigation Agency (NIA) Sharad Kumar is the other Vigilance Commissioner. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsThe Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) consists of a Central Vigilance Commissioner and two Vigilance Commissioners. It is proposed to appoint a Central Vigilance Commissioner and a Vigilance Commissioner in the CVC, according to an order issued by Personnel Ministry seeking applications for the posts. Those interested will have to write a 300-word write-up to indicate their suitability for the post and send an application to the Personnel Ministry. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from ThursdayThey shall hold office for a term of four years from the date on which he/she enters upon his/her office or till he/she attains the age of 65 years, whichever is earlier, it said. “All the applicants should be of outstanding merit and impeccable integrity and should have a knowledge and at least 25 years of experience in the relevant field,” the ministry said. A Central Vigilance Commissioner or Vigilance Commissioner is appointed from persons who have been or are in an all India services (IAS, IPS and IFoS) or in any civil service of the Union or in a civil post having knowledge and experience in the matters relating to vigilance, policy-making and administration including police administration among others, the ministry said. Besides, a person who has held office or is holding office in a corporation established by or under any central Act or a government company owned or controlled by the central government and persons who have expertise and experience in finance including insurance and banking, law, vigilance and investigations are also eligible for the appointments. The last date for sending an application to the ministry is May 1.last_img read more

Canada and Morocco Commit to Strengthen on Aeronautics

Rabat – A forum on Morocco-Canada expertise sharing has highlighted the need to bolster Morocco’s productivity and global prestige in aeronautics.Held in Skhirat, a coastal town between Casablanca and Rabat, the forum convened over 200 participants to discuss the recent achievements and the potential of the aeronautical sector in Morocco.The event, which was organized by a group of Moroccan experts residing in Canada under the auspices of the ministry in charge of Moroccans living abroad, sought to “devise the ideal way to facilitate the contribution of the Moroccan diaspora to the socio-economic changes in their country of origin.” Bridging immigration, entrepreneurship, and expertise-sharingAs an increasingly profit and job-generating sector, migration is an integral part of Morocco’s new development plan, organizers noted. And despite the range of views presented by officials and experts at the event, there was overwhelming agreement on the economic importance of the Moroccan diaspora.As officials and experts shared their perspectives, the convention took on a serious note, gathering momentum as experts, organizers, and official representatives from Morocco and Canada praised the “strategic partnership” binding the two nations.In addition to bringing the two countries closer through the investment model pioneered by Moroccans residing in Canada, they noted, the Morocco-Canada aeronautical cooperation signaled the beginning of a journey that has the potential to propel Morocco to the forefront of aeronautical breakthroughs.Abdelkarim Benatiq, deputy minister for Moroccans living abroad, and under whose department’s auspices the forum was held, underlined the positive impacts of immigration “in a world of growing suspicion and distrust [about migrants].”“Contrary to general clichés about migrants and migration, the reality of human mobility is globally a positive one,” Benatiq said. He explained that “in a constantly changing world, where physical barriers are gradually disappearing, the imperative of economic and cultural opening has never been more pressing for countries.”Putting the Morocco-Canada cooperation in the general context of globalization, the minister went on to say that socio-economic problems worldwide are increasingly becoming issues which require “collective responses from governments” as well as a mindset of “shared burden.”For his part, Moulay Elalamy, the minister of industry, seized the occasion to spotlight Morocco’s achievements in the industrial sector, particularly since the launching of the 2014-2020 “Industrial Acceleration Plan.”“There has been a true revolution in Morocco’s industrial sector,” the minister said, explaining that over half of the plan’s projected results have been achieved.“When I showed the products of some of our achievements to my Canadian counterparts, they were positively shocked that such aeronautical advances could be made in Morocco,” he noted.But while the achievements have been “incredibly impressive,” Elalamy continued, “There still remain questions to answer and areas to improve.”Among the pressing needs of Morocco’s emerging aeronautical sector, a recurring problem is “the lack of highly qualified technicians to face the immediate and urgent needs of an assertively growing industry.”Elalamy said that Morocco hoped to learn a lot from Canada, which comes third in aeronautical performance worldwide.Canada proud of its Moroccans  In his speech prior to the signing ceremony, the chargé d’affaires of the Canadian embassy heaped praise on Moroccans residing in Canada.He said that their commitment to both their host country and their country of origin, as well as their expertise in their respective fields, set the stage for the success of bilateral ties between the two countries as well as the signing of agreements such as the expertise-sharing agreement in the aeronautical sector.“I am proud to be signing this agreement on my country’s behalf,” he said.“Canadians of Moroccan descent represent one of the biggest successes of Canada’s multiculturalism.”The Canadian official’s remarks come in the wake of two success stories in the Moroccan community in Canada.On October 1, Moncef Derraji and Marwah Rizqy, two Canadians of Moroccan descent, were elected to the parliament in Quebec’s provincial elections.Prior to their election to the parliament, Derraji, a private sector operator who for 15 years worked for Canadian pharmaceuticals, and Rizqy, a tax professor at the Brooke University, had both been praised for their civic engagement and successful careers. read more

Limited progress on responsible oil sands development Pembina

CALGARY — An environmental policy research group says Alberta’s oil sands industry has made only limited progress on reducing the impacts of its development over the past couple of years.In 2011, the Pembina Institute released a report detailing 19 steps that it says need to be taken toward responsible oil sands development.Michelle Siu/National Post But policy director Simon Dyer says substantial progress has only been made in two areas, with moderate progress in five others.Dyer says the industry is doing a better job with conservation and biodiversity monitoring.He says the problem areas are a failure to protect the Athabasca River and wetlands, incomplete plans to protect the Woodland Caribou and a lack of new projects to implement carbon capture.He says international coverage of the oil sands will continue to be largely negative until government and the industry deals with its problem areas.Canadian Press read more

Lanka seeking info on capsized boat

Up to 200 illegal asylum seekers were on board the vessel, which was on its way to Australia, when it capsized on Thursday. Sri Lankan authorities were waiting for further information on the fate of the people aboard a boat that capsized off Australia’s Christmas Island as reports said most of the 200 people onboard were Sri Lankan illegal asylum seekers.External Affairs Ministry spokesman Sarath Dissanaike told Xinhua that the Sri Lankan embassy in Indonesia and the Sri Lankan High Commission in Australia were monitoring the situation and were awaiting confirmation if those on board were indeed Sri Lankans. Ships from both Australia and Indonesia were dispatched to the scene to rescue those who survived and recover the bodies.“We have seen through the media that most of them maybe Sri Lankans but we still don’t have an official confirmation,” Dissanaike said. Hundreds of Sri Lankans, mostly minority Tamils, have over the years managed to reach Australia by boat to seek asylum with most of them claiming conditions are home is not safe for them.The Sri Lankan government however insists that with the end of a 30 year war against the Tamil Tiger rebels three years ago the country is safe for the Tamils and those making asylum claims overseas should not be accepted.The Sri Lankan police last month arrested 113 people while they were attempting to go to Australia by boat illegally while earlier this month the Sri Lankan navy arrested 53 illegal asylum seekers who were also heading to Australia. Sri Lanka and Australia have an agreement to combat human smuggling.  (Xinhua) The Australian media quoted West Australian Police Commissioner Karl O’Callaghan as saying about 40 people were spotted on the upturned hull, others were in waters and up to 75 may be dead. read more

Two day railway strike from midnight tonight

A two day railway strike is to be launched from midnight tonight after talks to resolve issues failed.The Sri Lanka Railway Locomotive Engine Operators Union said that a two day token will be launched at midnight tonight which will affect train operations around the country.

At meeting on food security UN says goal for reducing worlds hungry

Targets for reducing the proportion of hungry people around the world by half can still be reached if countries step up their efforts to reduce hunger, top United Nations officials announced today. Speaking at the opening session of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) in Rome, the Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), José Graziano da Silva, declared that “important progress” had been made in cutting the number of hungry people by 132 million since 1990. He added that the proportion of those hungry in the developing world also fell in the developing world from 23.2 per cent to 14.9 per cent over the same period. Set up in 1974 and reporting to the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the CFS, an intergovernmental body, serves as a forum for review and follow up of food security policies. With reforms over the years, it is now the world’s leading platform for discussions on food security issues and is open to participation by civil society, private sector, and international and regional organizations concerned with related issues. As many as 18 government ministers from around the world are expected to attend this year’s session. In his remarks to the gathering, Mr. Graziano da Silva, said that further efforts were required in order to achieve the UN’s Millennium Development Goals’ (MDGs) 2015 deadline for decreasing the number of hungry worldwide.“As we renew and increase our commitment to reach the Millennium Development Goal for hunger reduction, let’s look beyond it, towards the total eradication of hunger because, when it comes to hunger, the only acceptable number is ‘zero,’” he said. The eight MDGs, agreed on by world leaders at a UN summit in 2000, set specific targets on poverty alleviation, education, gender equality, child and maternal health, environmental stability, HIV/AIDS reduction, and a ‘Global Partnership for Development.’At the same time, the FAO chief expressed concern over the findings recently released in the FAO’s State of Food Insecurity in the World 2012 report, which stated that almost 870 million people, or one in eight, are still suffering from chronic malnutrition. In his address to the CFS, by video message, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also urged greater action in fighting global hunger, and pointed to his ‘Zero Hunger Challenge’ – an initiative he first proposed at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) in Brazil in June.The Challenge aims for a future where every individual has adequate nutrition and where all food systems are resilient. Its five objectives are to make sure that everyone in the world has access to enough nutritious food all year long; to end childhood stunting; to build sustainable food systems; to double the productivity and income of smallholder farmers, especially women; and to prevent food from being lost or wasted.“You are at the heart of the next big push – eliminating hunger in our lifetimes,” Mr. Ban told the gathered delegates. read more

FAHS mourns loss of Indigenous Sport Management alum

The Faculty of Applied Health Sciences (FAHS) is mourning the passing of prominent alumnus and Dean’s Alumni Council member Wray Maracle. The well-known leader at Six Nations of the Grand River Territory and in sport throughout Ontario died March 20 after a battle with cancer.FAHS Dean Peter Tiidus called Maracle, a Sport Management graduate in 2007, “a valuable member of my Alumni Council whose presence and knowledge will sadly be missed.” Tiidus said Maracle provided advice on making Brock a more accessible destination for First Nations students considering post-secondary education, and served as an advisor to more than 50 Brock students who volunteered in the 2017 North American Indigenous Games as part of the Major Games Field Course.Coming to Brock’s Sport Management department as a mature student, he had an impact on faculty and colleagues, said Sport Management Associate Professor Laura Cousens, who taught Maracle. “In my mind, he was doing sport for development long before it became fashionable.”Well-known in the lacrosse world, he was the first Indigenous sportswriter to win the Ontario Lacrosse Association award for exceptional support to the sport.“He worked hard and talked about making the world a better place,” said Sport Management Associate Professor Cheryl Mallen, “which I believe he did for those he served and worked with. He will be missed.”An obituary and further arrangements will be posted at RHB Anderson Funeral Homes Ltd. read more

Canada faces Hong Kong in final bid to qualify for 2019 Rugby

Follow @NeilMDavidson on Twitter One game. One last chance.Canada’s record of taking part in every Rugby World Cup is on the line Friday when the Canadian men take on Hong Kong in the finale of a four-team repechage to decide the 20th and last berth at the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan.Millions of dollars in funding and, to some degree, Canada’s rugby reputation are also at stake. Friday’s match at Stade Delort in Marseille, France, is arguably one of the biggest for a Canadian men’s team that has struggled to hold its own in recent years. Canada coach Kingsley Jones and his players are well aware of the bigger picture, with Canada likely to lose significant financial support from World Rugby if it falls short.“We all know how important it is,” said Jones, part of Russia’s coaching setup at the 2011 World Cup. “But also we’re keeping it within the group. It’s important for Rugby Canada but it’s important for the individuals as well to get an opportunity to play in a Rugby World Cup.“The team wants to achieve and they want to play in a Rugby World Cup and that’s the driver.”After scoring bonus-point wins over No. 30 Kenya (65-19) and No. 28 Germany (29-10), the Canadians are in the driver’s seat with 10 points. Hong Kong, which lost 26-9 to Germany and picked up a bonus point in beating Kenya 42-17, has five points.The pressure is on Hong Kong, which needs to beat Canada and score four tries for a bonus-point win while denying the Canadians a bonus point in losing (by seven or less points).That would leave both teams on 10 points, with Hong Kong moving on thanks to beating Canada.Canada’s focus is simple — just win.“From our point of view, we fully respect Hong Kong —  a very good Hong Kong team,” said Jones. “They are confident. They had a blip against Germany … But they still find themselves in a position where they can qualify for the World Cup.”As it has through the repechage, Canada has opted for experience and continuity.“They’re players here who have been involved in big games before,” said Jones.The lone change from the team that defeated Germany last Saturday is on the wing where Taylor Paris replaces the injured Matt Evans.Prop Hubert Buydens, a veteran of the 2011 and 2015 World Cups, is set to win his 50th cap.Friendship will have to be put aside Friday. Jones used to play under Hong Kong coach Leigh Jones, a fellow Welshman, and counts him as a close friend. So is David (Dai) Rees, chief rugby operations officer of the Hong Kong Rugby Union.Leigh Jones is no stranger to upsets. He was defence coach under Eddie Jones (no relation, now England coach) at the 2015 World Cup when Japan defeated South Africa 34-32 in one of the tournament’s biggest upsets.Kingsley Jones expects a Hong Kong side that will look to contest at the breakdown and try to hurt Canada with its speed.“They’re well-coached, well-organized. You can see they spend a lot of time together,” said Jones. “Everybody knows their role.”The repechage winner will slot into Pool B at the World Cup alongside top-ranked New Zealand, No. 5 South Africa, No. 14 Italy and No. 23 Namibia.Both Canada and Hong Kong have moved up the rankings during the repechage. Canada stands 21st while Hong Kong is 22nd.Canada qualified for the World Cup in its first attempt every other time. But it dropped into the repechage this time after losing two-game series to the 13th-ranked U.S. (80-44 on aggregate) and No. 18 Uruguay (70-60).The loss to the U.S. cost New Zealand’s Mark Anscombe his job as coach after just 16 months on the job. Jones was hired in September 2017 four months before the Uruguay series.The Canadians go into Friday’s match with some momentum, having won five straight including a Canada ‘A’ victory over Tonga ‘A’ and a pair of wins over English club opposition.Hong Kong overcame Malaysia and South Korea in the Asia Rugby Championship before defeating the Cook Islands (77-3 on aggregate) in an Asia-Oceania playoff to advance to the repechage.The World Cup trophy — the Webb Ellis Cup — will be on hand for the repechage decider.—Canada RosterHubert Buydens, NOLA Gold (Major League Rugby), Saskatoon; Ray Barkwill, Seattle Seawolves (MLR), Niagara Falls, Ont.; Matt Tierney, Pau (France), Oakville, Ont.; Mike Sheppard, Stoney Creek Camels, Brampton, Ont.; Evan Olmstead, Auckland (New Zealand), Vancouver; Kyle Baillie, Westshore RFC, Summerside, P.E.I.; Lucas Rumball, Balmy Beach RFC, Mississauga, Ont.; Tyler Ardron, Chiefs (New Zealand), Lakefield, Ont.; Phil Mack (capt.), Seattle Seawolves (MLR), Victoria; Gordon McRorie, Calgary Hornets, Calgary; DTH van der Merwe, Glasgow Warriors (Scotland), Victoria; Ciaran Hearn, London Irish (England), Conception Bay South, N.L.; Ben LeSage, UBC Thunderbirds, Calgary; Taylor Paris, Castres Olympique (France), Barrie, Ont.; Theo Sauder, UBC Thunderbirds, Vancouver.ReplacementsEric Howard, NOLA Gold (MLR), Ottawa; Djustice Sears-Duru, unattached, Oakville, Ont.; Jake Ilnicki, Yorkshire Carnegie (England), Williams Lake, B.C.; Brett Beukeboom, Cornish Pirates (England), Lindsay, Ont; Matt Heaton, Darlington Mowden Park (England), Godmanchester, Que.; Jamie Mackenzie, Balmy Beach, Oakville, Ont.; Nick Blevins, Calgary Hornets, Calgary; Conor Trainor, USON Nevers (France), Vancouver. Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press read more

Dr Cheddi Jagan commemorative stamp finally launched

Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedCommemorative stamp to be launched in honour of Dr Cheddi JaganFebruary 12, 2018In “latest news”MOTP scraps Dr Jagan’s commemorative stamps in exchange for national symbolsMarch 24, 2018In “latest news”CJRC ‘disappointed’ that Dr Jagan’s Commemorative Stamps not deliveredMarch 21, 2018In “latest news” After much controversy between the government and the Peoples Progressive Party (PPP), the Guyana Post Office Corporation (GPOC) today, launched a commemorative stamp in honour of the 100th birth anniversary of former President Dr Cheddi Jagan. The stamp was officially unveiled at the Ministry of the Presidency.Chairman of the Guyana Post Office Corporation (GPOC), Rev. Raphael Massiah unveils the Commemorative Stamp.However, some close relatives of the former President and staff of the Cheddi Jagan Research Centre were the only ones present at the event. Not a single senior Government official or minister of Government attended. Senior PPP officials were also noticeably absent.Hydar Ally of the Cheddi Jagan Research Centre said he was representing the centre and not the party. He reflected on the life and work of the late president and expressed his gratitude.Postmistress General, Martha Ramos hands over a framed Commemorative Stamp to Director, Cheddi Jagan Research Centre, Hydar Alli. (DPI photos)Ally did explain that the centre was disappointed that the stamp wasn’t launched at the time when Dr Jagan’s 100th birth anniversary was observed.Lieutenant Colonel Francis Abraham, the Office of the President’s Director of Protocol who chaired the event in a small room within the Ministry of the Presidency also reflected on Dr Jagan’s legacy.Public Telecommunications Minister, Cathy Hughes had announced last month that the Guyana Post Office Corporation would be issuing commemorative stamps to celebrate the former President’s 100th birth anniversary, following an arrangement with the Research Centre.However, on the day of Jagan’s birth anniversary, March 21, the Research Centre never received the stamps from the Post Office.President David Granger said Cabinet had taken a decision that commemorative stamps, which are national symbols, must adhere to national criteria.The limited edition stamps will be available at all post offices beginning tomorrow. read more

Brigade launches new pulsed radar obstacle detection system

first_imgBrigade Electronics is launching its new pulsed radar system which, it says, “boasts impressive close-in corner to corner blind-spot detection. The Workzone Backsense is ideal for light to medium duty mobile plant machinery, completing Brigade’s portfolio of Xtreme and Standard pulsed radar obstacle-detection systems.Unlike most radar systems Workzone has two antennae offering complimentary detection ranges. One antenna offers a shorter radar beam for close-in detection across the back of the vehicle, whilst the other offers a 3 m range and is approximately the width of the vehicle, thus preventing false alarms. The sensors are connected to an-in cab warning device to alert the driver of an object, vehicle or person in his danger zone when manoeuvringWhite sound reversing alarms (bbs-tek) are also important as Brigade begins to phase out the beeping tonal alarms. Bbs-tek has been heralded as the safest and yet quietest alarm on the market. The sound source is directional and therefore locatable, unlike tonal alarms which can cause disorientation. They can only be heard in the danger zone, preventing noise nuisance.last_img read more

Chambéry Savoie Mont Blanc Handball suspends Amine Bannour

← Previous Story Luka Karabatic has broken finger – EHF CL Final4 in question Next Story → Cristian Ugalde to TSV Hannover Burgdorf! One of the best African handball players, Amine Bannour is suspended by his club Chambery Savoie due sports betting on handball matches.Here is the full statement of the French team:This Friday, April 20, 2018, Chambery Savoie Mont Blanc handball has pronounced, against Amine Bannour, a layoff as a precautionary measure. This decision takes effect immediately pending a preliminary interview with the player concerned and possible measures.This suspension follows an alert from the Regulatory Authority of the Online Games (ARJEL) and the initiation of disciplinary proceedings by the president of the FFHB (French Federation of Handball). Amine Bannour has indeed participated in sports betting on handball matches. It should be noted that the player has not made any bets on Chambéry matches.If this breach of the rules of sport and professional handball was proven, it would be in opposition to the values of integrity and citizenship that the club has defended since its creation more than 35 years ago. For several years, the club Chambery accompanies players and raises awareness of the rules and duties of professional sports, including sports betting.The club is also conducting every season, in conjunction with the AJPH (Association of Professional Handball Players), with the professional staff as well as players from the training center. Amine BannourChambery Savoie read more

Gov regroups in bid to push reforms ahead of troika talks

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Members of the Cabinet are set to return to the capital this coming week, following a short vacation, to resume work on economic reforms pledged to the troika ahead of crucial negotiations with foreign creditors that are scheduled to take place early next month in Paris.With the agenda of the Paris talks expected to focus on Greece’s progress in overhauling its economy, its relationship with the troika as well as the anticipated launch of negotiations to lighten the country’s huge debt burden, which stands at around 174 percent of gross domestic product, Greek government officials are keen to show international creditors that Athens has honoured its commitments and met fiscal targets.Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is understood to be eager to introduce tax breaks as an antidote to years of austerity measures and wants to overcome any likely objections by the troika to his plans by showing that Athens is toeing the line.If the outcome of the negotiations in Paris is positive, Samaras hopes to present the proposed tax relief during his speech at the Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF), where premiers traditionally set out economic policy or offer pre-election handouts. This year, TIF is scheduled to run from September 6 to 14.Allowing Greeks with debts to the state to repay their dues over a large number of installments is another sweetener that the government hopes to be able to offer.Before it can make such overtures, however, it must press ahead with a rash of measures it has agreed to enforce as part of a revised memorandum accompanying the country’s second loan agreement with foreign creditors. These measures include an overhaul of civil servants’ salaries and a second phase of pension reform.Another top priority for the government is to untangle the confusion caused by the proposal for a new unified property tax (ENFIA), which prompted an outcry after erroneous data used to calculate it resulted in disproportionate levies for thousands of homeowners. Among those objecting to the ENFIA were a large number of coalition MPs, many of whom called for the levy to be revoked.The issue is expected to dominate the political agenda over the coming days as the first installment of the contentious tax is due to be imposed next month.Source: Ekathimerinilast_img read more