Thursday, 30 January 2014

Gopal Vittal To Be Managing Director At Bharti Airtel

Gopal Vittal, the joint MD and CEO (India) of Bharti Airtel, is being elevated to the position of managing director, cementing his place as the top professional executive of the country's largest telco.

As reported by ET on January 27, Vittal Managing Director , currently India chief executive at Bharti Airtel, will also get charge of Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. He will be designated managing director and CEO of India and South Asia. That restores the structure that had prevailed earlier under Vittal's predecessor Sanjay Kapoor.
“The new structure reflects the next phase of Bharti’s growth journey, which will be led by best-in-class professionals in various segments,” said Sunil Bharti Mittal, chairman, Bharti Enterprises.

As part of the rejig, DS Rawat, CEO Bharti Infratel, will be appointed as MD and CEO of Bharti Infratel and will be inducted into the board of the company. Meanwhile, Christian de Faria will be appointed by Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands) BV as the managing director and CEO (Africa), and will assume full operational responsibility of the company’s operations across 17 African geographies.

The company said under the new structure, Bharti Corporate Office will be focused on and will deal with matters of governance. Bharti Enterprises chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal and three vice-chairmen, Rakesh Bharti Mittal, Rajan Bharti Mittal and Akhil Gupta, along with managing director, Manoj Kohli and four Bharti veterans, will form the Bharti Governance Board (BGB), it added.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Women Rule Science Congress!

Pookkodu (Wayanad): The vibrant atmosphere at Kerala Agriculture and Veterinary University (KVASU) campus assures that India has a lot of potential researchers coming up in future. More than 2000 students and research scholars are attending and presenting papers during the four-day Kerala Science Congress which started on Tuesday.

The most interesting part is the presence of a high number of women participants at the congress.  On day one, out of the 1850 students that had registered, 1116 were women.
Even among the faculty, scientists and other participants, a considerable number were women rule science congress . “This is a very good sign. More and more girls are coming up as participants and presenting papers, and showing interest in the field of research,” said Centre for Water Resources Development and Management Scientist Dr George Chackacherry.

Shackira AM, a research scholar from Calicut University Life Science Department, said that students were now aware of the scope of science and research. “I have come here not just to present my paper, but to gather knowledge on what is happening in the field of research and to update my knowledge by participating in discussions and interactions with senior scientists,” she added.

“The atmosphere here is very good and the event is well organised. I am sure that I can learn many things from here, which I can later use in my research work,” said Ranjini Krishna, a MSc student from Pulppally Pazhassi Raja College, who wants to present her paper in the next Science Congress.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

China And Russia May Hold Joint Naval Drill in The Mediterranean

Russia and China have agreed to conduct a joint naval drill in the Mediterranean Sea, a Russian media report cites the Defense Ministry. The countries’ fleets are currently involved in an intl operation to escort the Syrian chemical weapons stockpile.

The Defense Ministry said on Sunday that group of Russian naval officers deployed onboard a heavy nuclear missile cruiser "Peter the Great" visited Chinese frigate Yancheng.        

At a press conference held in December last year, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said China And Russia will send the Yancheng, a Type 054A frigate, for the escort mission, adding it was important to take part in the UN-backed mission.

After arriving in Syrian waters on Jan. 7, the Yancheng quickly joined with Russian cruiser Peter the Great, Danish combat support ship Snell and Norwegian frigate Engstar to escort the first batch of Syria's chemical weapons.

The statement from the Ministry of Defense said “On board the Chinese patrol ship, Russian sailors discussed with their foreign counterparts the possibility of joint tactical exercises in the Mediterranean Sea. Under the agreement, such exercises can be carried out in the near future in an effort to improve the level of operational compatibility between Russian and Chinese warships during joint operations in the eastern Mediterranean.”The main aim of the joint naval exercise would be to increase the level of operational cooperation between the two navies designed to tackle terrorist threats and improve joint rescue operations at sea, the Ministry explained.

Monday, 27 January 2014

59th Idea Filmfare Awards 2013: Bhaag Milkha Bhaag Bags Seven Awards

59th Idea Filmfare Awards were given away on 24 January 2014. At the 59th Idea Filmfare Awards, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag grabbed seven Black Lady awards.

The award for the Best Actor was given to Farhaan Akhtar  for his performance in Bhaag Milkha Bhaag.Deepika Padukone on the other hand was adjudged as the Best Actress for Ramleela.  

Bhaag Milkha Bhaag was awarded with the Best Film award, and its director Omprakash Mehra won the Black Lady for the Best Director.

The lifetime achievement award was given away to Tanuja click here for more information about 59th Idea Filmfare Awards .

Rest of the awards was as follows:

Award for Best Debut Director: Ritesh Batra (The Lunchbox)

Award for Best Debut (Male): Dhanush (Raanjhanaa)

Award for Best Debut (Female): Vaani Kapoor (Shuddh Desi Romance)

Award for Best Film (Critics): Ritesh Batra (The Lunchbox)

Award for Best Actor (Critics): Rajkummar Rao (Shahid)

Award for Best Actress (Critics): Shilpa Shukla (BA Pass)

Award for Best Screenplay: Abhishek Kapoor, Chetan Bhagat, Supratik Sen and Pubali Chaudari (Kai Po Che)

Award for Best Story: Subhash Kapoor (Jolly LLB)

Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role: Nawazuddin Siddiqui (The Lunchbox)

Saturday, 25 January 2014

Congress ‘Copy Cat’ Ad irks BJP

New Delhi: Imitation they say is the highest form of flattery. Congress does not think so. And BJP is seething. A war of words has broken out between the two archrivals over a Congress advertisement, which appeared on Friday.

The poster saying “Main nahin hum” shows Congress icon Rahul Gandhi flanked by common Indians from all strata of society and community. The poster gives a signal that the Congress led by Rahul Gandhi has put Indians, particularly common men from all section of society and communities above everything.
Saffronites, however, are up in arms. They claimed that the Congress has “brazenly and blatantly” lifted the slogan, which was coined by its Prime Ministerial candidate, Narendra Modi.

For BJP nearly two years back Modi had come up with a slogan saying - “main nahin hum” at an annual chintan shivir organised by the Gujarat government. For the BJP, the Congress‘Copy Cat’ which “is devoid policy and strategy” was not being able to even ape in a dignified manner.

BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain said, “Nakal ke liye bhi akal  chahiye (you need intelligence even to ape)”. He went on: “Rahul Gandhi can steal a slogan, but he cannot steal Modi’s experience, credibility and performance.”

Sniggering at the Congress Hussain said: “Congress hates Modi but loves his slogans.” 

Friday, 24 January 2014

Auto Drivers’ Strike Against Meter Drive Hits Life in Kochi

Kochi: Autorickshaw drivers resorted to a one-day strike from 6 am to 6 pm on Thursday protesting against the ongoing police drive to enforce the meter on autos.

The strike was called by the CITU-controlled auto drivers union. Leaders of the union claimed that drivers belonging to other unions also joined the strike making it total in the city and suburbs.
Women and families had a tough time finding their way to destinations, especially to far flung places, due to the strike. Those who came by trains and had luggage had to depend on taxis.

Most of the bus services, especially during peak hours, were packed and the city witnessed heavy traffic snarls, with a lot more private vehicles descending on the roads to fill the here for more information about Auto Drivers’ Strike The ongoing Kochi Metro work worsened the situation.

The striking drivers held a march to the office of the City Police Commissioner in the morning demanding that the drive be stopped and placed a charter of demands if they were forced to adhere to the meter. They claimed that nearly 1000 auto drivers participated in the march.

Speaking to DC, Sojan Antony, district vice-president of Ernakulam District Auto Drivers Association (CITU), wanted the authorities to limit the enforcing of the meter to city limits. “We are not against the meter. But the meter rates should be revised whenever the petrol prices are revised.” he said.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Kailash Meghwal Elected As Rajasthan Assembly Speaker

BJP MLA Kailash Meghwal was on Wednesday elected unopposed as Speaker of the Rajasthan Legislative Assembly.

Meghwal's motion was proposed by Nand Lal Meena, BJP tribal minister and seconded by Narayan Singh of Congress.
With Meghwal’s exit, Raje is expected to induct more ministers in her Cabinet, which party sources believe will likely happen before the Parliament elections. Already several senior leaders and many castes have been left unrepresented in the Cabinet. Raje could use the opportunity to ensure balance representation of regions which were left ‘untouched’ in the mini Cabinet. The question is not whether the reshuffle will take place. The question is when will it happen.

Talking to the media, Raje said that the reshuffling would not take place during the Assembly session. On being asked whether the expansion would take place after the Lok Sabha polls, she vaguely said ‘may be.’

Consider this: Not a single woman legislator has been made a minister in the existing Cabinet click here for more information about Kailash Meghwal Elected .

Thus, it is likely that one or two woman MLAs could be included in the next cabinet reshuffle. Kiran Maheshwari and royal family member Diya Kumari emerge as strong contenders. Bharatpur division has 7 districts, but none of the MLAs from this region are in the current Cabinet, so chances are bright for Diya Kumari who won her first elections against tribal leader Kirori Lal Meena.

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Moily Sets up Team to Reassess Hydrocarbon Resources

Moving to re-assess the oil and gas potential of the country, Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Veerappa Moily on Monday announced setting up of a Multi Organisation Team (MOT) to carry out the re-assessment of hydrocarbon resources in all 26 sedimentary basins.

The Multi-Organisation Team or MOT will reassess the potential of all 26 sedimentary basins in the country in light of the oil and gas discoveries since 2001.
The assessment is to be completed within 30 months. The Keshav Dev Malviya Institute of Petroleum Engineering (KDMIPE) of the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) will act as MOT leader with the Director (Exploration) of the ONGC being its chairman, and the Director (Exploration & Development) of Oil India Ltd (OIL) as the here for more information about Moily Sets up Team A National Level Committee headed by the Petroleum Secretary will monitor and review the progress of work periodically, an official statement said.

The last such exercise was carried out in 15 sedimentary basins about two decades ago and is overdue for a full-scale revision in view of the vast amount of data collected since then. There is also an urgent need for the fresh estimation in the remaining 11 sedimentary basins as well, for which no hydrocarbon resources have been estimated so far.

During the course of implementation of pre-NELP (New Exploration Licensing Policy) and NELP rounds and other exploration and production activities, substantial geo-scientific data have been acquired and interpreted. New oil and gas fields have also been discovered by utilising improved geological understanding and new technology. With the increase in exploration spread and quantum jump in availability of geo-scientific data generated under the NELP, it was felt there is a need to revisit the hydrocarbon resource assessment of India.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Cyrus Mistry Wins The 2014 DSC Prize For South Asian

Cyrus Mistry’s Chronicle of a Corpse Bearer, published by Aleph Book Company in 2012, won the 2014 DSC Prize for South Asian Literature, perhaps the most prestigious award given to a full-length work of fiction in English (or in translation into English) featuring a South Asian theme.

The prize, is given to the best work or translations of a work on or about the South Asian region. Last year the award was won by Jeet Thayil for his debut debut novel “Narcopolis”.
Mr. Mistry is the second Indian to win the award, which is running into its fourth year. His book was selected from among the six books shortlisted for the coveted prize instituted in 2010 for the best work or translation of a work on the South Asian region.

The award was won last year by Jeet Thayil for his debut novel Narcopolis . For the 2014 prize, the shortlist was announced in November last year after the DSC Prize South Asian Secretariat received about 70 entries from South Asian countries as well as from the U.S., Britain, Canada and Australia.

“I am overwhelmed and feel happy to receive it,” the recluse author told the audience after his name was announced

The author, 45, took home $50,000 in prize money. He is second Indian after Jeet Thayal to win the award, running in its fourth year.

All six books shortlisted for the prize revolved around the themes of conflict, violence and isolation. The other five nominated were: Mohsin Hamid’s “How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia”, Sri Lankan Nayomi Munaweera’s “Island of a Thousand Mirrors”, Nadeem Aslam’s “The Blind Man’s Garden” and two translations – “Book of Destruction” by Anand and Benyamin’s “Goat Days”.

“I have hoped to raise large questions that have universal presence through my work,” Mistry said.

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Jet CEO Gary Kenneth Toomey Quits

Barely six months after taking charge as Jet Airways CEO, Gary Kenneth Toomey (pictured),  an Australian national, resigned with immediate effect on Thursday.

A Jet statement said that Ravishankar Gopalakrishnan, CFO, will officiate as acting CEO till the board identifies a replacement for Toomey.
Air Seychelles is a strategic partner of Etihad Airways PJSC, the national airline of the UAE that is buying a 24% stake in Jet Airways. Before joining Air Seychelles, Ball was regional general manager for Asia Pacific South and Australasia at Etihad, which holds 40% equity in Air Seychelles.

Jet, in a filing to BSE, said Toomey’s resignation was effective immediately, but didn’t give a reason for his stepping down. Ravishankar Gopalakrishnan, chief financial officer, will be the acting chief executive till the board appoints a new CEO, it said.

On 12 November, the Competition Commission of India cleared Etihad’s Rs.2,058 crore deal with Jet Airways, the first such investment since the government in September 2012 allowed foreign airlines to invest in Indian airlines. Jet received funds from Etihad last month.

“Jet Airways has completed the interviews for the CEO post. Ball is tipped as CEO. An announcement is expected shortly,” one of the two people cited above said. A second person confirmed the development. Both declined to be identified.

A Jet Airways spokeswoman declined to comment on the development.

“This (Toomey’s resignation) was on expected lines,” a third person aware of the developments said, also requesting anonymity. “Toomey was not able to gel with the Jet Airways culture.”

Friday, 17 January 2014

Temple Says ‘no’ to Tuskers, Will More Follow Suit

Kochi: In a departure from tradition, the Dakshina Mookambika Temple in Paravoor near Kochi has decided not to parade elephants during the festival beginning January 25 on the plea of animal welfare activists.

The first temple under the  Travancore Devaswom  Board to leave jumbos out of a festival, it will instead use use a rath (chariot) at the ezhunnallethu, says G. Narayanan, secretary of the temple’s festival committee. The decision of the committee, taken on Wednesday, will have to be ratified by the tantri and the Devaswom commissioner.                  
“When the issue of elephants came up for discussion , we thought we should stop the practice and set an example for temples says nearby. The Kollur Mookambika temple uses a rath for its festival, so we thought why shouldn’t we do the same,” he adds.

The practice of parading elephants, which was restricted to a few temples in Kerala till the 1970s, spread to others following an increase in jumbo trafficking to the state from the north east of the country.

Since then parading elephants has become a matter of pride for many temples, which willingly shell out the Rs 1 lakh or more required to do so even for a day. The government, however, recently ordered temples to restrict the number of elephants used in parades to three in view of the rising incidents of the animals going on a rampage on these occasions.

But with the Paravoor temple deciding to go further and give up their use altogether, it has received much praise from animal welfare activists. Secretary of the  Heritage Animal Task Force, V. K. Venkatachalam calls it “ a praiseworthy decision.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Virbhadra Singh Files Defamation Case Against Three BJP Leaders

Shimla: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh on Thursday filed a defamation case against former Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party leader (BJP) PK Dhumal, Arun Jaitley and Anurag Thakur.

"I have filed a defamation case against 3 people which includes, K Dhumal, Arun Jaitley and Anurag Thakur," said Singh.
Prem Kumar Dhumal had accused Virbhadra Singh of re-allotting the hydel project, to the same company despite most of the ministers in the Cabinet being against the decision.

"Despite most of the ministers in the Cabinet being against the decision, the project was given to the same company. In the name of FDI he introduced an NRI to execute the project," he said.

"It was rejected within six months of its allotment and three times this issue went to the cabinet for reconsideration," he added.

He said it was all due to the Virbhadra Singh who brought it thrice in the cabinet. Later on, the Supreme Court said that the power project should undergo 'reconsideration' and not're-allotted' but it was re-allotted to the same person.

He further said that the Congress was trying to give an impression that the BJP had re-allotted the project.

The Himachal Pradesh chief minister has been accused by the BJP of indulging in a quid pro quo dealing with a private company. Arun Jaitley had accused Singh of being involved in three cases of corruption, one of which involved the owner of a private company.

He alleged that Virbhadra and his wife Pratibha Singh had received a sum of one crore fifty thousand and two crores respectively from Vanshri Vakamula Chandrashekar, the owner of Venture Energy and Technology Private Limited.

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Polio Cases on Rise in Pakistan

LAHORE: In its first global analysis for 2014, the World Health Organisation (WHO) says that Pakistan is the only polio-endemic country which reported more polio cases last year than in 2012.

The analysis cited ‘non-uniform routine immunisation coverage’ with several areas having abysmally low routine immunisation coverage as major challenges which needed focus on fighting the crippling disease.

Opposition from militant groups has hampered efforts to vaccinate children against polio in Pakistan and officials said violence was part of the reason for the increase in cases.
“Last year there were a total of 58 cases, but 62 fresh victims of polio have already been reported in 2013,” a senior government official, who works with international donors working to eradicate polio, told AFP.

"We have entered a phase that we were all worried about and were afraid might happen," Elias Durry, head of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) in Pakistan, told Reuters in a telephone interview.

"The main reason for the outbreak is militancy in the northwest. Vaccination teams are unable to reach the tribal areas because of risks to their lives," the official said.

Polio cases reached a low of 28 in 2005 but have risen since, reaching a peak of 198 in 2011.

In August health officials warned of a serious polio outbreak in the northwest, saying more than 240,000 children had missed vaccination because of the Taliban ban.

Elsewhere in the country, health workers giving out polio drops have been attacked and killed, including in the largest city Karachi.

On Monday the World Health Organisation linked an outbreak of polio in Syria that has paralysed 13 children to a strain of the virus from Pakistan.

Monday, 13 January 2014

Crack on Rail Track Detected, Train Accident Averted

Thrissur: The timely detection of a crack on the railway track near Mullurkkara on the Shoranur-Ernakulam route just before the Kannur-Alleppey Executive train was to cross the stretch averted an accident on Sunday.

According to officials, a one-inch-long crack was detected by  the gangman during a routine inspection around 9 a.m. and he immediately stopped the approaching train some 40 metres from the spot by waving a red flag.
Following this, the workers spread the red flag across the track while the movement of trains  was disrupted for nearly an hour.

The railway track detected authorities carried out emergency repairs and  the train was allowed to travel at a slow speed  over  the damaged portion.

Railway officials attributed the crack to seasonal factors and said that fissure in rail joints was a common phenomenon during winter as the heat during  day time would cause expansion of the metal while it would contract  at night.

Saturday, 11 January 2014

Social Activist Ila Pathak Passes Away

Ahmedabad: Social activist Ila Pathak on Thursday passed away following a brief illness at a hospital here, the city-based NGO umbrella group 'Charkha' said.

Pathak  Passes Away (80) was the founder secretary of Ahmedabad Women's Action Group (AWAG).
A former professor of H K Arts College and president of India Chapter of Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF), Pathak passed away today at 4 pm, said a statement by Movement for Secular Democracy (MSD).

Born in 1933, she was an active member of MSD and vice-president of Peoples' Union for Civil Liberties' (PUCL).

Pathak played a key role in movement for justice to the victims of 2002 Gujarat riots, movement against Patan P T C College gangrape incident, etc. She also supported Manipur's Irom Sharmila's agitation against Armed Forces Special Powers' Act (AFSPA).

She will be cremated tomorrow at Thaltej crematorium here.

Friday, 10 January 2014

Former Mumbai Cricketer Vishwanath Bondre Passes Away

Former Mumbai Ranji Trophy cricketer Vishwanath Ramachandra Bondre died here on Wednesday night. He was 77.

“I heard from Shivaji Park Gymkhana round 10 pm that he died of a heart attack,” informed Milind Rege, a former Mumbai captain who was his teammate for one year.

Challenged at the outset by a motivated group of seamers on a helpful Wankhede pitch, it was on a formidable score that the home team ended its innings by lunch on the second day.
Having seen the behaviour of the pitch for nearly one-and-a-half hours as a batsman, the Mumbai skipper Zaheer Khan opted to go for the jugular after the long break.

Vishu Bondre played 8 games for Mumbai as a lower order batsman and a medium fast bowler and formed a combination with former India fast bowler Ramakant Desai for his employers ACC, Shivaji Park Gymkhana and Mumbai (then Bombay) click here for more information about Vishwanath Bondre Passes Away .

With competition so intense for places in the eleven in Mumbai’s Ranji Trophy team in the 1960s, Bondre could play in very few games between 1965-66, his first season, and 1969-70.

Bondre scored 138 runs with 36 against Baroda at Baroda in his debut season as his best and grabbed 16 wickets at 26.50 per wicket with a personal best of 6 for 116 against Gujarat at Surat in his final Ranji season.

In all five years that he played for Mumbai, they were the Ranji Trophy champions, an indication of how strong the team was.

"He was a fine all round cricketer though he did not play much for Mumbai as competition for places was so intense. But he played a lot for ACC and SPG in local cricket and both those teams were also very strong," said Rege.

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Cabinet okays Limited Waiver For Quarrying And Sand Mining

Thiruvananthapuram: The Cabinet on Wednesday decided to grant limited exemption for quarry and sand mining operations in the state in view of the crisis in construction secto

The decision was taken in view the strike threat by Confederation of Construction Organizations (CCO) led by the Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Associations of India (CREDAI) on January 20, 21 and 22. They submitted a demands charter to Chief Minister on January 6.
Exemptions would be conveyed to the Green Tribunal which had imposed certain restrictions on the quarries and sand mining operations. Cabinet okays Waiver  Exemptions are being given only for construction activities.

Other decisions

Rs 40 crore assistance for KSRTC Additional Chief Secretary V Somasundaram has been given additional charge of Planning Cabinet approved appointment of IAS officer, N Prashanth, as private secretary to Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala Cabinet decided to set up Cancer Institute and Research Centre on the campus of Cochin Medical College which was taken over by the Government recently.

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

UP Delegation Leaves on 5-Nation Tour, Draws opposition's ire

Lucknow: A 17-member delegation of the Uttar Pradesh government on Wednesday left for a five-nation tour from here, drawing criticism from opposition parties for undertaking the visit at a time when Muzaffarnagar riot victims were living in difficult circumstances in relief camps.

BJP and Congress accused the SP government of being interested only in "having fun" and not public service as they also slammed it for holding the extravagant Saifai Mahotsava at a time when people were dying of cold in the state.
The UP government delegation, consisting of eight members of the Akhilesh Yadav Cabinet, will go on a 20-day-long tour of Turkey, Netherlands, the UK, Greece and the UAE to study Parliamentary techniques in those countries, official sources said here.

Urban Development Minister Azam Khan, who is also incharge of Muzaffarnagar district, will lead the delegation comprising Raghuraj Pratap Singh alias Raja Bhaiya, Ambika Chowdhury, Om Prakash Singh, Abhishek Mishra, Bhagwat Sharan Gangwar, Shiv Kumar Beria and Yogesh Singh, the sources said. Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, State Assembly Speaker Mata Prasad Pandey, CLP leader Pradeep Mathur and Shivpal Yadav have opted out of the tour, they said.

Congress criticised the state government for sending the Ministers on foreign junket, saying it was busy in "fun and frolic" at a time when people were dying of cold in the state and situation of Muzaffarnagar riot victims was "pitiable".

Monday, 6 January 2014

Mahesh Mangaonkar Wins Squash Title in France

India's Mahesh Mangaonkar began the New Year the way he ended 2013, with title success on the PSA World Tour beating Scottish top seed Greg Lobban 9-11, 11-3, 11-4, 11-5 in the final of the Open du Gard, the PSA Challenger 5 event marking its sixth year at Squash des Arenes here Sunday.

Third seed Mangaonkar made his breakthrough in the semifinals when he crushed second seeded Kuwaiti Ammar Altamimiin in just 28 minutes.  Now in the fourth Tour final of his career, the 19-year-old from Mumbai had a point to prove against Lobban, a 21-year-old from Edinburgh enjoying his eighth Tour final.
Mangaonkar's success in last month's Imet Open in Slovakia came after a five-game final victory over Lobban, the result of which is that both players now share a World No. 82 ranking.

Revenge looked on the cards when Lobban took the opening game but Mangaonkar Wins Squash struck back to win the next three to claim his title in 64 minutes.The win, his third on the PSA Tour, also set up a nine-match winning streak for the Mumbai teenager -- the longest of his career.

"First win of 2014 in Nimes," Mangaonkar tweeted. "Hopefully more to come this year.  Now, preparing for German league in January and Finland next month."



(1) Greg Lobban (SCO) bt Christophe Andre (FRA) 11-8, 11-5, 11-7 (35m)
(3) Mahesh Mangaonkar (IND) bt (2) Ammar Altamimi (KUW) 11-9, 11-2, 11-0 (28m)


(3) Mahesh Mangaonkar (IND) bt (1) Greg Lobban (SCO) 9-11, 11-3, 11-4, 11-5 (64m).(IANS)

Saturday, 4 January 2014

Portugal Award Ronaldo order of Prince Henry

The 28-year-old Real Madrid forward, who is already an Officer of the Order of Prince Henry, will now be made Grand Officer for his services to the country and the example he sets to its young people.

Ronaldo will be awarded the title of "Grand Officer of the Order of Prince Henry the Nevigator" by President Anibal Cavaco Silva next Tuesday at Lisbon's presidential palace, Xinhua reported Friday.
"He is a worldwide symbol of Portugal, making the country better known internationally and an example of perseverance for younger generations," said a presidential statement.

In November, Ronaldo became Portugal's all-time joint record goalscorer.

Following the announcement, president of Portugal's Football Association Fernando Gomes said in a statement that the award "expresses the sentiment of the Portuguese in general for what Cristiano Ronaldo has achieved, not only in terms of national football but also for the elevation of Portugal's name abroad".

Gomes also highlighted Ronaldo's "magnificent performance" in Sweden Nov 19 last year, which enabled Portugal to qualify for the World Cup in June.

Friday, 3 January 2014

Pakistan Plans to Produce 8,900MW Nuclear Power By 2030

ISLAMABAD: With the country facing severe power shortage, Pakistan plans to set up seven functional nuclear plants of 1,100 MW each by 2030 in addition to four units of 300 MW, producing a total of 8,900 MW of electricity.

Chairman of the Pakistan Plans to Produce Atomic Energy Commission Dr Ansar Parvez said that nuclear power was set to become a major player in the country’s power sector.
Chairman PAEC said by 2030 the commission will be operating four nuclear power plants of 325 to 340 MW and seven nuclear power plants with the capacity of 1100 MW each.

He was briefing journalists on the eve of the ‘dome-laying ceremony' of Chashma-IV nuclear power plant, which will mark the completion of civil works at the unit and will be followed by installation of the reactor.

In addition to the four units at Chashma, two of which (Chashma-III and Chashma-IV) are expected to start commercial operations by 2016; the government has begun work on two 1,100MW plants (Kanupp-II and Kanupp-III) in Karachi, whose ground-breaking ceremony was performed in November.

Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Sun Weidong had recently pronounced that a series of Chinese companies have a penetrating seductiveness in appetite team-work with Pakistan and they are peaceful to attend in water, thermal, solar, wind, polite chief appetite era projects.

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Japan's Population Logs Record Drop in 2013

Japan's population fell by a record 244,000 in 2013, according to health ministry estimates released on Wednesday, highlighting concerns over an ever-dwindling workforce supporting a growing number of pensioners.

Estimates from Japan's Health and Welfare Ministry show the total population declined by 210,000 in 2012 — the largest annual decline since records became available — to 128 million people,  the CBC's Craig Dale reported from Tokyo.
As a result, the natural population decline came to a record 244,000, the ministry said, beating the previous highest fall of 219,000 in 2012.

Japan's population totalled 126,393,679 as of March 31, down 0.21 percent from a year earlier, according to a government figure.

It has continually declined since 2007 by natural attrition - deaths minus births.

Japan is rapidly greying, with more than 20 per cent of the population aged 65 or over - one of the highest proportions of elderly people in the world.

Japan is rapidly greying, with more than 20% of the population aged 65 or over – one of the highest proportions of elderly people in the world. The country has very little immigration and any suggestion of opening its borders to young workers who could help plug the population gap provokes strong reactions among the public.

The proportion of people aged 65 or over will reach nearly 40% of the population in 2060, according to a 2012 government report.