Month: September 2019
NOAH SEELAM/AFP/Getty ImagesThe State of the Nation March 2019 Wave 2 opinion poll conducted by CVoter for IANS shows the likely vote percentage for the two main poles of national politics, the NDA and UPA in this year’s general elections.A pre-poll alliance scenario for the BJP-led NDA formation would help it garner 42 per cent of the vote nationally, while for the Congress-led UPA alliance the vote percentage for the pre-poll allies would be 30.4 per cent.The CVoter State of the Nation March 2019 Wave 2 opinion poll released on March 24 is based on a sample survey of 10,280 this week and a cumulative base of 70,000 respondents since January 1 covering 543 Lok Sabha constituencies.The NDA is banking on the BJP’s narrative on nationalism to deliver the elections for it. While it has spoken of increasing employment opportunities under its watch, alleviation of farm distress and economic growth, nationalism has been its mainstay.The NDA has a distinct advantage over the rival formation in key states in the vote share projections. In Uttar Pradesh, where the Congress is not part of a mahagathbandhan, the NDA is likely to get 35.4 per cent of the vote.This is even though the NDA is expected to get far fewer seats compared to 2014 as indicated by the CVoter opinion poll. In Bihar, the NDA’s vote share is expected to be 52.6 per cent and in Rajasthan, the NDA is expected to get 50.7 per cent of the vote while in the BJP stronghold of Gujarat, the CVoter opinion poll suggests that the NDA will get 58.2 per cent of the vote share. SOTN March 2019 Wave II : Seat Share Projections. (IANS Infographics)In Maharashtra, the NDA is expected to have a vote share of 48.1 per cent while in BJP-ruled Haryana, the NDA could get 42.6 per cent of the vote according to the vote share projections.However, there are states where the two alliances are not as far apart on vote share and in some the NDA is actually behind, the CVoter opinion poll shows. Tamil Nadu is one of such states, Kerala is another. The two sides are neck and neck in Karnataka.Seat share projections for the NDA, based on pre-poll alliances, shows it will fall short of a House majority with 261 seats — an earlier CVoter opinion poll on March 10 had put this number at 264. The second survey shows that the BJP will get 241 seats on its own.However, the surge from post-poll alliances would push it well above the majority mark of 272.This is how the CVoter opinion poll says the numbers are likely to stack up for the NDA should the post-poll alliances click. The YSR Congress Party led by Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy is expected to win 10 Lok Sabha seats in Andhra Pradesh, the Mizo National Front is likely to get one seat, the Biju Janata Dal 10 seats and the Telangana Rashtra Samiti 16 seats — a total of 37 seats between them. Added to the pre-poll NDA alliance, the BJP-led alliance is expected to have an overall tally of 298 seats according to the CVoter opinion poll.In fact, the pre-poll alliance situation shows how the political parties concerned are adding to the BJP-led alliance’s numbers. The CVoter opinion poll highlights how in Bihar, the NDA is expected to win 36 seats with the help of allies Janata Dal (United) and Lok Janshakti Party who together are expected to win 20 seats to the BJP’s 16. STR/AFP/Getty ImagesThe BJP’s other pre-poll allies are: Maharashtra — Shiv Sena (14 seats); Assam — Bodoland Peoples’ Front (one seat); Punjab — Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), one seat; Tamil Nadu — AIADMK (7 seats): Uttar Pradesh — Apna Dal (Sonelal), one seat.Taken together, these pre-poll allies are expected to give a boost of 47 seats to the ruling alliance in the country.Uttar Pradesh, India’s politically most important state with 80 Lok Sabha seats, presents an interesting scenario. In the pre-poll alliance case, the NDA is expected to get 28 seats to the UPA’s four. It is a drastic markdown from the 73 Lok Sabha seats the NDA got in 2014 but it remains ahead of the rival alliance.However, should the Congress-led alliance forge a last-minute post-poll tie-up and become a part of the mahagathbandhan, this equation would change dramatically, giving the anti-NDA alliance 52 seats in all.What happens in Uttar Pradesh with the mahagathbandhan will also cast a shadow on vote share projections, the CVoter opinion poll shows.
Close Ever since the advent of the smartphone, it has grown to become an extension of the body. In any city, you can’t find a person with a head down glued to the phone screen and they take everywhere and use it even in the loo. Did you know smartphone screen are said to be more than three times dirtier than a toilet seat; though it’s very hard to believe, it’s actually true. Now, American technology giant Google has good news at least for the Android mobile users, as it has launched a revolutionary Screen cleaner feature that keeps your phone squeaky clean.Google’s innovative Screen cleaner feature makes use of the advanced sensors on Android phones and smudge detector API to identify imperfections using geometric dirt models and haptic micromovement generator to dislodge dirt, smudge and other anomalies off the display, making the phone hygienic inside out. Google has launched screen cleaner feature for Android phonesGoogle/YouTube (screen-grab)The new Screen cleaner is now available on Files app and whenever you want to get rid of the dirt on the mobile display, just tap the ‘Activate’ button on the former. You can see the Screen cleaner in full action on Google’s YouTube channel.Sounds too good to be true, well, don’t fall for it, as this is an April Fool’s day prank pulled by Google on YouTube.Google’s new screen cleaner feature for Android phones.Google/YouTubeSnakes on Google MapsIn a related development, Google has introduced snake game on its popular Maps app on both the iOS and Android versions. Google has launched Snake game on its Maps appGoogle Blog (screen-shot)”Starting today, you can play a twist on the snake game in different locations across the world—including Cairo, London, San Francisco, São Paulo, Sydney and Tokyo–right from Google Maps. To start playing, simply open the Google Maps app, tap on the menu icon on the top left corner, then select “Play Snake” to get your daily dose of 90s nostalgia (boy bands, fanny packs and slap bracelets not included),” Google said in a statement.Like the classic snake game, your train will grow longer over time, as passengers hop in to from stations placed on international locations such as Big Ben, the Great Sphinx of Giza to the Eiffel Tower. This game will be available for the users to play on Google Maps for the rest of the week. 10 Crazy Facts About Google IBTimes VideoRelated VideosMore videos Play VideoPauseMute0:06/1:41Loaded: 0%0:06Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVE-1:35?Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedSubtitlessubtitles settings, opens subtitles settings dialogsubtitles off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window. COPY LINKAD Loading …
Google has launched what it calls a world-first smartphone experience in central London as the search giant looks to cement its presence on the high street.The Google Shop will see customers able to experience devices ranging from Nexus smartphones and tablets, Chromebooks, Chromecasts and Android Wear smartwatches as well as experience some of Googles other online services.The store allows customers to experience an interactive Google Maps experience on a large curved display, as well as creating their own Google Doodles on an interactive wall.The first Google Shop will be located in the Currys/PC World store on Tottenham Court Road with two similar installations planned for later this year. The shop is seen as a step-up from the current partnerships the company has in place with retailers in the UK where it has a limited presence within over 400 stores across the country.Retail storesSpeaking to IBTimes UK at the launch Google UKs marketing director James Elias said this was the biggest and boldest evolution of [Googles] store-in-store strategy to date but when asked if this was just a gateway to building its own standalone stores, Elias said the company had no plans along those lines.Apple announced earlier this week, on 9 March, that the company now had over 450 retail stores worldwide with aggressive plans to expand that number in China in particular. The company saw some 120 million people pass through the doors of its stores in just three months to the end of December, giving some idea of the revenue generating potential of the stores.Google is a very different business and while it has some hardware in the form of Nexus devices, these are built in partnership with the likes of HTC and Motorola and therefore the potential revenue gain for the search giant is not as instantly obvious as for Apple.Elias said that while the company was hoping the new Google Shop would help drive some revenue, it was as much about the experience, adding that the store wants to become part of the community with classes about how to stay safe online being held at the store in the future. Close
After giving your details, click on ‘Get Result’You can download your results and take a printout of it (Representational Image)PixabayThe Tamil Nadu Directorate of Government Examination, TNDGE, has released the dates for the exam results. According to the notification, Tamil Nadu SSLC or class 10 results will be announced on April 29.The results are expected to come out in the morning since the class 12 results were also declared at 9.30 am on April 19. The class 11 examination results will be announced on May 8.Over 10 lakh students appeared for the class 10 examinations which were held between March 14 and March 29. Students are expected to have a minimum of 35 per cent in each subject to pass the examinations and go to the next class.You can check your results by following the steps given belowGo to the link tnresults.nic.in, dge1.tn.nic.in or dge2.tn.nic.in.Click on the option for the Tamil Nadu 10th Result 2019’ the link is not activated now. It will be valid after the results are declaredEnter your registration number and date of birth
US job openings surged in December and the number of Americans voluntarily quitting work hit a nine-year high, pointing to labour market strength despite a slowdown in economic growth.The signs of a robust jobs market could ease concerns about the health of the economy, which were underscored by other reports on Tuesday showing a drop in small business confidence in January to a two-year low and further declines in wholesale inventories.”If the labour market is tightening, can the economy really be faltering?” said Joel Naroff, chief economist at Naroff Economic Advisors in Holland, Pennsylvania.Job openings, a measure of labour demand, increased 2,61,000 to a seasonally adjusted 5.61 million in December, the Labour Department said in its monthly Job Openings and Labour Turnover Survey (JOLTS). It was the second highest reading since the series started in 2001.The so-called JOLTS report is among the data watched by Federal Reserve officials to get a pulse on both the labour market and inflation.The increase lifted the jobs openings rate to 3.8 percent from 3.6 percent in November. The hiring rate was unchanged at 3.7 percent, indicating that employers were having trouble finding qualified workers for vacant positions.A total of 3.1 million Americans quit their jobs in December, the highest number since December 2006. That pushed the quits rate, which the Fed looks at as a measure of confidence in the jobs market, to 2.1 percent — the highest level since April 2008.The dollar pared losses against the yen after the data, while US stocks briefly reversed losses. Prices of long-dated US Treasuries were trading higher.The report came ahead of Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s testimony to Congress on Wednesday. A raft of weak economic reports, plummeting oil prices and a stock market sell-off have raised doubts as to whether the US central bank will hike interest rates this year.The Fed raised its overnight benchmark interest rate in December, its first hike in nearly a decade. The economy, however, has been undermined by a strong dollar, sluggish global demand and an effort by businesses to sell off inventory.Ongoing capital spending cuts by energy firms also are weighing on growth.SLACK BEING REDUCED”Skeptics may argue that these (JOLTS) numbers are backward looking, and that spillovers from tighter financial conditions or the energy slump will curb labour market dynamics in the months to come,” said Harm Bandholz, chief US economist at UniCredit Research in New York.”This is certainly a risk and one important reason why the Fed is currently sitting back and waiting. But why should this happen now when it hasn’t over the past several months? After all, oil prices started to fall in mid-2014, and most of the adjustment occurred in the first half of 2015.”The number of unemployed job seekers per open job, a measure of labour market slack, fell to 1.4 in December, the lowest level since March 2007 and down from 1.5 in November.”Diminishing labour market slack has led to a modest increase in wage growth, evident across several measures of worker compensation,” said Jesse Hurwitz, an economist at Barclays in New York. “We expect that wage growth will continue to move up gradually, helping core inflation return toward target once the headwinds from lower import prices subside.”While a separate report from the National Federation of Independent Business showed its Small Business Optimism Index fell 1.3 points to a two-year low of 93.9 in January, businesses continued to report tightening labor market conditions.Small businesses reported a shortage of qualified workers to fill job openings, prompting some to start raising wages to attract and retain them. The share of small businesses raising compensation increased to its highest level since 2007.”The combination of more job openings and more people quitting could result in pay increases, and we have seen a few other signs that wages have increased as the labour market has tightened,” said Daniel Silver, an economist at JPMorgan in New York.Wage growth, which has been frustratingly slow, picked up significantly in January. Still, growth in average hourly earnings is yet to break above 2.5 percent on a year-over-year basis. Economists say wages need to grow between 3 percent and 3.5 percent to lift inflation near the Fed’s 2 percent target.In a third report on Tuesday, the Commerce Department said wholesale inventories dipped 0.1 percent in December after dropping 0.4 percent in November.The weak inventory data added to soft December construction spending and factory orders reports in suggesting that fourth-quarter GDP growth could be revised down to an annual rate of about 0.4 percent from the 0.7 percent pace reported last month.The government will publish its second GDP growth estimate later this month.
Mackenzie Bezos has decided to give half of her fortune to charity.MacKenzie Bezos, the former wife of Amazon.com Inc Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos, pledged on Tuesday to give half of her $36 billion fortune to charity, following a movement founded by billionaires Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates. Bezos, whose former husband is the world’s richest man, was one of 19 people on Tuesday to join the “Giving Pledge,” a campaign announced in 2010 by Berkshire Hathaway Inc’s Buffett and Microsoft Corp co-founder Bill Gates. It calls for the super-rich to give away more than half their fortunes during their lifetimes or in their wills.WATCH: MacKenzie Bezos, former wife of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, pledges to give half of her $36 billion Amazon fortune to charity https://t.co/0hO0FNJA47 via @ReutersTV pic.twitter.com/EK7nC4BmDg— Reuters Business (@ReutersBiz) May 28, 2019 “In addition to whatever assets life has nurtured in me, I have a disproportionate amount of money to share,” MacKenzie Bezos said in a statement dated Saturday. “My approach to philanthropy will continue to be thoughtful. It will take time and effort and care.”MacKenzie Bezos became the world’s third-richest woman, according to a Forbes Magazine, acquiring a 4% stake in Amazon worth about $36 billion when she and Jeff Bezos announced their divorce settlement on April 4.Jeff Bezos, whose net worth was estimated by Forbes at $131 billion this year, was quick to support his ex-wife’s new philanthropic endeavour.”MacKenzie is going to be amazing and thoughtful and effective at philanthropy, and I’m proud of her,” he said on Twitter. “Her letter is so beautiful. Go get ’em, MacKenzie.”Jeff Bezos, who tops the Forbes list of world billionaires, is not among the 204 wealthy “Giving Pledge” signatories from 23 countries who come from a wide range of fields, including finance, technology, healthcare and real estate development.Other Forbes top 10 billionaires who have not joined the “Giving Pledge” are Bernard Arnault, head of French luxury goods conglomerate LVMH (LVMH.PA); Mexican telecommunications magnate Carlos Slim; European fashion retail mogul Amancio Ortega and Google co-founder and Alphabet CEO Larry Page.The pledge that signatories make is “a moral commitment to give, not a legal contract,” the campaign said on its website.
Three instances of gold smuggling detected by Union Finance Ministry’s Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) in less than 30 days at Delhi, Chennai and Bengaluru prove that the practice continues to be rampant.The latest incident comes from Bengaluru’s Kempegowda International Airport where DRI officials found 45 gold bars worth Rs 1.65 crore taped to the seat of a 50-year-old passenger who had arrived by a Jet Airways flight from Abu Dhabi on Thursday. The seizure was based on a tip-off.The passenger, Abhdul Rauf from Kodagu, was a frequent flier to West Asia and it is suspected that he could be part of a larger gang.”The passenger was caught before he could exit the airport. Definitely, there seem to be some other people involved in the racket as the gold was left inside the aircraft. So, technically it was to be found by someone else from the ground staff baggage crew. We are investigating these aspects,” the Bengalore Mirror quoted DRI sources as saying.On October 17, two seizures were made by DRI in Chennai and Delhi. In Chennai, DRI sleuths arrested a passenger who had arrived from Abu Dhabi and two ground staff for smuggling gold worth Rs 35 lakh. The passenger had handed over the bag containing the contraband to the ground staff when DRI sleuths arrested them. The duo was under surveillance.On the same day, DRI seized 20.64 kg gold and Indian currency notes worth Rs 6.44 crore from a shop in old Delhi.Earlier, in September, DRI claimed to have busted a major gold smuggling racket that was involved in smuggling around 7,000 kg of gold worth more than Rs 2,000 crore over the last two-and-half years.The racket was busted after DRI authorities seized 10 kg gold at the domestic cargo terminal of Delhi airport on the intervening night of September 1 and 2, 2016.”The seized gold bars of 24 carat purity were admittedly smuggled into India through the Indo-Myanmar land borders and were brought to Delhi from Guwahati by a domestic flight. Market value of the total seized goods is around Rs. 3.1 crore,” the government had said in an official statement on September 19.Indo-Myanmar border areas in the states of Manipur (Moreh) and Mizoram (Zokhawthar) have become new hotbeds of gold smuggling, since it is difficult to patrol due to its porous nature, the government added.
Deputy General of Police D Roopa has demanded a probe by the Anti-Corruption Bureau against retired Director General of Police H N Sathyanarayana Rao on November 29, following the latter’s Rs 20 crore defamation suit against her on Monday.The suit is with regard to a report submitted by Roopa in July to then DGP Rao alleging that the DGP is involved in giving preferential treatment to AIADMK leader VK Sasikala and her relative Ilavarasi at Bengaluru’s Parappana Agrahara Central Prison.Sasikala and two of her relatives are serving a four-year jail term for corruption since February.Roopa’s allegations against Rao Roopa as DIG (prisons) submitted the detailed report against the DGP claiming the latter’s involvement in irregularities in the jail premises. The report was leaked to the media.A video also surfaced in the media in August matched Roopa’s allegations. It reportedly showed Sasikala and her relative walking around in the open inside the Bengaluru central jail.Roopa was quoted by PTI as saying, “There was a talk that Rs 2 crore had exchanged hands to give preferential treatment for Sasikala and there were bribery allegations against him (Rao) also.”A special probe was ordered by the Karnataka government into Roopa’s allegations. Roopa was also transferred by the state government after she and Rao’s public spat. IPS officer D RoopaTwitterRao’s Rs 20 crore defamation notice to RoopaRao slapped Roopa with a defamation suit of Rs 20 crore claiming that the junior officer’s allegations are “absolutely false, baseless and wild and legal action will be taken against her.”Rao’s lawyer Puttige Ramesh told PTI that the defamation case was filed on November 27.Ramesh said that Roopa has framed the DGP under false allegations to gain publicity for a film based on herself. “We came to know that a movie on Roopa is in the making. In order to gain publicity for the movie, she prepared the defamatory report on my client (Satyanarayana Rao).”The lawyer alleged that Roopa had violated norms and leaked her findings to the media before disclosing it to the jail authorities.Ramesh pointed out that, “The report was submitted on July 11 this year, but a day later the report was published in the media. It is very clear that the officer leaked the information to the media.”What now?After demanding a ACB probe against Rao, Roopa denied receiving any defamation notice. She said, “I have not received any defamation notice. If I receive it, I will answer in court. As it is, there is no defamation made out, that is the first thing.”Speaking to IBTimes India on Wednesday, Roopa said, “In the complaint I had filed earlier against DGP Rao, I said he was also involved in corruption which was not considered by Vinay Kumar. Now the ACB probe will perform a detailed investigation and should file corruption charges against him (Rao) under Section 13 (1) (c) of Indian Penal Code.”The officer stands by her earlier statement on irregularities in Bangalore jail and stressed that, “The report submitted by Vinay Kumar has confirmed that irregularities did take place in the jail and special privileges were given to select prisoners.”Roopa added, “It is now important to find out why privileges were given and that can be probed by the ACB. I stand by my statements and insist that the ACB probe the matter.” Close IBTimes VideoRelated VideosMore videos Play VideoPlayMute0:00/0:00Loaded: 0%0:00Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVE0:00?Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedSubtitlessubtitles settings, opens subtitles settings dialogsubtitles off, selectedAudio TrackFullscreenThis is a modal window.The media could not be loaded, either because the server or network failed or because the format is not supported.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window. COPY LINKAD Loading … IPS Officer exposes Sasikala’s “royal treatment” in a Bengaluru Jail
Flood victims including women and children moving to shelter centres as flood situation worsens in Faridpur’s Sadar upazila. Photo: AlimuzzamanA humanitarian crisis is unfolding across large areas in South Asia, with more than 16 million people affected by monsoon floods in Nepal, Bangladesh and India, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) said Friday, reports XinhuaThe agency cited local authorities as saying that flood levels have already reached record highs in Bangladesh, and water of major rivers such as the Jamuna has surpassed warning levels set in 1988, the deadliest floods the country has ever faced, China’s official press agency adds.”This is fast becoming one of the most serious humanitarian crises this region has seen in many years and urgent action is needed to meet the growing needs of millions of people affected by these devastating floods,” the IFRC said in a statement Friday, citing its staff for Asia Pacific region.According to the statement, more than one third of Bangladesh and Nepal have been flooded, and the humanitarian crisis could get worse in the days and weeks ahead.In Nepal, the IFRC said, many areas remain cut off after recent destructive floods and landslides, and many villages and communities are stranded without food, water or electricity.”This tragic flooding in Nepal has claimed at least 128 lives and 33 people are still missing,” Dev Ratna Dhakhwa, secretary general of the Nepal Red Cross Society, was cited as saying.In Bangladesh, the IFRC said, over 3.9 million people have been affected by the rising flood waters, and floods are likely to get much worse as swollen rivers from India pour into the low-lying and densely populated areas in the northern and central parts of the country, says Xinhua news agency.In India, over 11 million people are reportedly affected by floods in four states across the north of the country. What’s more, India’s meteorological department is forecasting more heavy rains for the region in the coming days.
A furniture showroom and a car were gutted as a fire broke out at the showroom in AK Khan Gate area in Chittagong city on Sunday night, reports UNB.Kamal Uddin Bhuiyan, assistant director (acting) of Chittagong Division Fire Service, said that the fire broke out in the showroom named Medalian Furniture around 10:30pm.On information, 11 vehicles of five firefighting units from different fire stations rushed to the spot and doused the flame after one hour of frantic efforts.The fire gutted the furniture showroom and a parked car there.The affected shop owner said that entire showroom, where imported furnitute were showcased, burnt to ashes.The fire halted vehicular movement from AK Khan Gate to Ispahani Rail Gate for one hour due to huge gathering.
A minor girl was killed after she was suspected to be raped by unidentified persons at Gachhabari village in Tangail’s Madhupur upazila on Friday, reports UNB.The deceased was identified as Liza Akhter, daughter of Mizanur Rahman of the village.Locals said Liza had been missing since Friday afternoon after she went to take bath in a nearby river.Later in the night, locals spotted the body in the bush beside her house and informed police.On the next morning, police recovered the body and sent it to Tangail General Hospital for autopsy.Liza could have been raped before being murdered, said Shafiqul Islam, officer-in-charge of Madhupur police station.A murder case was filed with the police station in this regard, said the OC.
Khaleda ZiaAs jailed BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia declined to take treatment at the government’s facilities, authorities may consider her admission at a private hospital if a decision is made as to who will bear costs.Her Bangladesh Nationalist Party on Tuesday said it will bear the expenses required for treatment of the former prime minister at private United Hospital.Saying this, BNP standing committee member Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain urged the government to take Khaleda Zia to the United Hospital in the city’s Gulshan area, without any delay.”Khaleda Zia has fallen seriously ill as the government has not taken adequate measures for her treatment,” he told a press conference at the party’s Naya Paltan central office.After visiting Khaleda Zia in jail on Saturday, member of 4-member personal physicians, FM Siddique told newsmen that Khaleda Zia suddenly fell down on 5 April.She might have suffered a mild stroke, the physician said.Since then, BNP has been demanding that Khaleda Zia be admitted to United Hospitla for her treatment.Already, the family of Khaleda Zia sent a letter to the home minister seeking the ministry’s permission for her treatment at the United Hospital, reports UNB.Shamim Iskander, younger brother of Khaleda Zia, submitted the letter to the home ministry on Tuesday.He mentioned in the letter that that all the expenses of her treatment will be borne by him.Inspector general (Prisons) brigadier general Syed Iftekhar Uddin earlier on Monday said it would require a decision from higher authorities to admit Khaleda Zia at a private hospital.”So Khaleda Zia will be taken to Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) on Tuesday,” he then said.However, Khaleda Zia declined to go to Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU).The IG prisons had also said if BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia is admitted to a private hospital, a decision should be taken as to who would bear the cost. BNP leader Mosharraf warned that the consequence would not be good should the treatment of Khaleda Zia be delayed for political vengeance.Khaleda Zia has been kept at an abandoned building of former jail in the city’s Nazimuddin Road area, since her conviction in a graft case on 8 February.
Momena Shoma. File PhotoA young Bangladeshi woman who stabbed an Australian man in the name of the Islamic State has lifted her niqab veil in court to plead guilty to intentionally engaging in a terrorist act, reports The Sydney Morning Herald.Momena Shoma, 25, refused to stand in the dock when Australian Supreme Court justice Elizabeth Hollingworth entered the court on Thursday, but lifted her facial covering when the judge asked to confirm her identity.She then pleaded guilty to engaging in a terrorist act, after she stabbed Roger Singaravelu on 9 February, as he napped next to his five-year-old daughter in the rumpus room of his Mill Park home.Singaravelu woke when he felt piercing pain in his neck and was able to wrestle the kitchen knife off Shoma, before he dashed out of the room with his daughter and got help in the street.Momena, a Bangladeshi national who came to Australia to study at La Trobe University only met Singaravelu the night before she attacked him, having moved into his family’s home to lodge, according to the New South Wales-based English-language daily.She arrived in Australia at the start of February and spent her first week at another family’s home.Momena was also charged with attempted murder but that charge was withdrawn.Documents released by the court say she intentionally engaged in a terrorist act, with the motive of ‘‘advancing a political, religious or ideological cause, namely violent jihad’’.She refused to stand when justice Hollingworth left the court and was remanded in custody to return to court for a plea hearing in January.She put the veil back over her face after entering her plea.Singaravelu was in court on Thursday, the Australian newspaper adds.The day after the stabbing, Momena told police she attacked Singaravelu ‘‘because of, ah, the order of the Islamic State’’, according to a record of interview that was among documents released last month by Melbourne Magistrates Court.She told detectives the terror organisation was calling on ‘‘everyone, even the woman. So I just felt obligated, and it was like a burden on me. Yeah, I just had to do it.‘‘I had to do it … it could have been anyone, it’s not specifically him. He just seemed like a very easy target since he was sleeping, so yeah, and I had to push myself. I wouldn’t even hurt a rat. This, I just felt like if I don’t do it I will be sinful, I will be punished by Allah.’’Singaravelu told police he was having a nap next to his daughter on a mattress when he felt pain in his neck, and saw the woman he knew as Suma pushing a knife into him.‘‘I thought that I was dreaming as I felt a sharp pain in my neck. I woke up and started screaming,’’ he said.‘‘I saw Suma right next to me, she was on her knees with both of her hands on a knife that was in my neck.‘‘Suma had such an intense look. Her eyes were so intense. She was saying ’Allah Akbar’, she kept on saying this over and over.’’ Singaravelu was later treated for a one-centimetre wound to his neck and cuts to his fingers.He told police he heard a friend went inside the house and found Momena standing in the kitchen, where, according to the friend, she claimed ‘‘it was a mission and that she had to do what she had to do’’.Momena told police she bore Singaravelu no personal grudge, but felt a ‘‘little bit burdenless’’ after the attack. She prepared for it by slashing a pillow at the other family’s home, and in the hours before the stabbing watched Islamic State propaganda videos which featured beheadings.Asked by a detective whether she travelled to Australia to study or hurt someone in the name of Islamic State, she replied, ‘‘The later one.’’
This file photo taken on 4 April 2017 shows an unconscious Syrian child receiving treatment at a hospital in Khan Sheikhun, a rebel-held town in the northwestern Syrian Idlib province, following a suspected toxic gas attack. AFPUnited Nations investigators on Thursday blamed a sarin gas massacre on Bashar al-Assad’s regime, as the United States renewed its warning that he has no role in Syria’s future.The expert panel’s report and tough remarks by US secretary of state Rex Tillerson overshadowed the announcement that UN-sponsored peace talks will resume next month.More than 87 people died on 4 April this year when sarin gas projectiles were fired into Khan Sheikhun, a rebel-held town in the Idlib province of northwestern Syria.Images of dead and dying victims, including young children, in the aftermath of the attack provoked global outrage and a US cruise missile strike on a regime air base.Syria and its ally Russia had suggested that a rebel weapon may have detonated on the ground but the UN panel confirmed Western intelligence reports that blamed the regime.“The panel is confident that the Syrian Arab Republic is responsible for the release of sarin at Khan Sheikhun on 4 April 2017,” the report, seen by AFP, says.The report will increase pressure on Assad’s regime just as Washington, in the wake of battlefield victories against the Islamic State group, renews calls for him to step down.Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s comments to reporters came during a visit to Geneva in which he met UN envoy Staffan de Mistura, who is trying to convene a new round of peace talks next month.The secretary said US policy has not changed, but his remarks represented tougher language from an administration that had previously said Assad’s fate is not a priority.“We do not believe there is a future for the Assad regime, the Assad family,” Tillerson said.“I think I’ve said it on a number of occasions. The reign of the Assad family is coming to an end, and the only issue is how should that be brought about.”Russia, which is running a parallel peace process with Iran and Turkey in a series of talks in the Kazakh capital Astana, reacted coolly to Tillerson’s remarks.“I think we should not pre-empt any future for anybody,” said Moscow’s UN ambassador Vassily Nebenzia, who on Tuesday had vetoed a US attempt to extend the gas attack probe.British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said the UN panel’s report had reached a “clear conclusion” and urged the “international community to unite to hold Assad’s regime accountable.”“I call on Russia to stop covering up for its abhorrent ally and keep its own commitment to ensure that chemical weapons are never used again,” he said.Civil warDe Mistura hopes to convene an eighth round of Syrian peace talks between Assad’s regime and an opposition coalition in Geneva from 28 November.These will be focused on drafting a new constitution and holding UN-supervised elections in a country devastated by several overlapping bloody civil conflicts.Assad’s regime has been saved by Russian and Iranian military intervention and he insists that he will not stand down in the face of what he regards as “terrorist” rebels.But Western capitals, the opposition and many of Syria’s Arab neighbors hold Assad’s forces responsible for the bulk of the 330,000 people who have died in the conflict.In addition to chemical weapons attacks against his own people, his government is accused of overseeing the large-scale torture and murder of civilian detainees.The previous US administration often said that Assad’s days were numbered, but then president Barack Obama decided not to use force to punish his chemical weapons attacks.His successor, President Donald Trump, did order one missile strike on a Syrian air base in response to a chemical attack.But US policy has otherwise focused solely on the defeat of the Islamic State jihadist group, driving it out of its last bastions in eastern Syria’s Euphrates valley.Tillerson said, however, that he hopes a way to oust Assad will “emerge” as part of de Mistura’s UN-mediated talks.‘Moment of truth’He argued that the UN Security Council resolution setting up the peace process already contains a procedure to hold elections that Washington does not think Assad can win.“The only thing that changed is when this administration came into office, we took a view that it is not a prerequisite that Assad go before that process starts, rather the mechanism by which Assad departs will likely emerge from that process,” he said.Earlier, de Mistura had told the UN Security Council that with the defeat of the Islamic State, the Syrian peace process had reached a “moment of truth.”“We need to get the parties into real negotiations,” the envoy said.Seven rounds of talks have achieved only incremental progress toward a political deal, with negotiations deadlocked over Assad’s fate.The opposition insists any settlement must provide for a transition away from Assad’s rule but, as government forces make gains, there is little likelihood of a breakthrough.
US president Donald Trump excuses reporters after his remarks to them at the start of a cabinet meeting at the White House in Washington, US, on 20 December 2017. ReutersUS president Donald Trump on Wednesday threatened to cut off financial aid to countries that vote in favor of a draft United Nations resolution calling for the United States to withdraw its decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.“They take hundreds of millions of dollars and even billions of dollars, and then they vote against us. Well, we’re watching those votes. Let them vote against us. We’ll save a lot. We don’t care,” Trump told reporters at the White House.The 193-member UN General Assembly will hold a rare emergency special session on Thursday – at the request of Arab and Muslim countries – to vote on a draft resolution, which was vetoed by the United States on Monday in the 15-member UN Security Council.The remaining 14 Security Council members voted in favor of the Egyptian-drafted resolution, which did not specifically mention the United States or Trump but which expressed “deep regret at recent decisions concerning the status of Jerusalem.”US Ambassador Nikki Haley, in a letter to dozens of UN states on Tuesday seen by Reuters, warned that Trump had asked her to “report back on those countries who voted against us.”She bluntly echoed that call in a Twitter post: “The US will be taking names.”Several senior diplomats said Haley’s warning was unlikely to change many votes in the General Assembly, where such direct, public threats are rare.Miroslav Lajcak, president of the General Assembly, declined to comment on Trump’s remarks, but added: “It’s the right and responsibility of member states to express their views.”A spokesman for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres also declined to comment on Trump’s remarks on Wednesday.“I like the message that Nikki sent yesterday at the United Nations, for all those nations that take our money and then they vote against us at the Security Council, or they vote against us potentially at the assembly,” Trump said.‘BULLYING’Trump abruptly reversed decades of US policy this month when he recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, generating outrage from Palestinians and the Arab world and concern among Washington’s Western allies.He also plans to move the US embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv. The draft UN resolution calls on all countries to refrain from establishing diplomatic missions in Jerusalem.A senior diplomat from a Muslim country, speaking on condition of anonymity, said of Haley’s letter: “States resort to such blatant bullying only when they know they do not have a moral or legal argument to convince others.”A senior Western diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity, described it as “poor tactics” at the United Nations “but pretty good for Haley 2020 or Haley 2024,” referring to speculation that Haley might run for higher office.“She’s not going to win any votes in the General Assembly or the Security Council, but she is going to win some votes in the US population,” the Western diplomat said.A senior European diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity, agreed Haley was unlikely to sway many UN states.“We are missing some leadership here from the US and this type of letter is definitely not helping to establish US leadership in the Middle East peace process,” the diplomat said.Israel considers Jerusalem its eternal and indivisible capital and wants all embassies based there. Palestinians want the capital of an independent Palestinian state to be in the city’s eastern sector, which Israel captured in a 1967 war and annexed in a move never recognised internationally.“The first name that she should write down is Bolivia,” Bolivia’s UN Ambassador Sacha Sergio Llorentty Solz said of Haley’s message. “We regret the arrogance and disrespect to the sovereign decision of member states and to multilateralism.”Read More: US warns countries over UN vote on Jerusalem
Suspended DIG Mizanur Rahman in the court. Photo: AsaduzzamanSuspended deputy inspector general (DIG) of police Mizanur Rahman was shown arrested in a case over bribing an official of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), reports UNB.Dhaka senior special judge AKM Emrul Kayesh passed the order after accepting a petition filed by the ACC.On 16 July, ACC director Sheikh Mohammad Fanafillah submitted a petition for showing DIG Mizan arrested in the case.Lawyer Ehsanul Haque Samaji stood for DIG Mizan while Mosharraf Hossain Kajal and Tapash Kumar Pal represented the ACC and the state respectively.ACC director Sheikh Mohammad Fanafillah filed a case against suspended DIG Mizanur Rahman and ACC director Khandaker Enamul Basir with Dhaka-1 coordinated district office under the Anti-Corruption Commission, over Tk 4 million bribery scandal on 16 July.A private TV channel reported recently that Mizan gave Tk 4 million to Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) director Khandaker Enamul Basir to get clean chit in a corruption case.DIG Mizan was an additional commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP). He was withdrawn on 9 January last year following the allegation of threatening a female news presenter of a private television channel.He had also reportedly married a woman forcibly and tortured her. Mizan allegedly picked the 25-year-old woman up in July, 2017 and then forcibly married her.He had also implicated her in a false case whereby she was arrested and remained in jail for three weeks.The ACC on 24 June filed a case against four people, including DIG Mizanur Rahman, for amassing illegal wealth and concealing information.According to the case statement, the ACC found that DIG Mizan accumulated wealth worth Tk 32.8 million while he concealed information of wealth worth Tk 3.7 million in his wealth statement.
The Trump administration is imposing sanctions on members of Venezuela’s Supreme Court following a series of rulings that the U.S. says has usurped power from the nation’s opposition-controlled congress and sparked a deadly wave of unrest. – / 12 The U.S. Department of Treasury announced Thursday it is freezing the assets of eight Venezuelan government officials on the Supreme Court in an effort to support the Venezuelan people “in their efforts to protect and advance democratic governance.”A ruling issued in late March that stripped Venezuela’s congress of its last powers was later reversed amid a storm of international criticism. But near-daily anti-government protests were triggered by the ruling and have continued across the country, with more than 40 people killed.The U.S. move marks the second round of sanctions Trump has imposed on high-level Venezuelan officials since taking office. Video Playerhttps://cdn.hpm.io/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/28151149/VZLA428_1.mp400:0000:0001:05Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Share
Share BILL ZEEBLE / KERA NEWSJosh Masters listens to Children’s Health licensed counselor Angeleena May using the hospital’s telehealth connection. Children’s Health now has more than 100 telehealth school partners.One in five North Texas children lives in poverty, and more than a quarter million are hungry as their parents struggle to feed them.Those are just a few statistics from a recent 97-page report issued by Children’s Health, the Dallas-based children’s hospital network. The study offers possible solutions, too.The Beyond ABC report only looks at the well-being of children in parts of North Texas, specifically six counties: Dallas, Collin, Denton, Cooke, Grayson and Fannin. It has come out every two years since the late 1990s.How health affects educationThe rate of uninsured kids in Dallas County, as well as Cooke, Fannin and Grayson counties is double the national average. The report says more than 500,000 Texas children lack health insurance, and nearly half of the kids in Dallas County kids are enrolled in Medicaid. The study finds children living in poverty are seven times more likely to be in poor or fair health.Health has a direct impact on education. Yet, low-income parents may be hesitant to get medical care for their kids for several reasons, including cost. Children’s Health points to its telemedicine program as a way to help.For example, if a child’s sick in school, he or she usually goes to the nurse. Then, the parent typically gets called, has to leave work, possibly lose pay, then get to a doctor’s office by car, bus or a friend. Dr. Stormee Williams, who oversees the telehealth program with more than 100 school partners, says telemedicine offers another option.“We can call in, have a live video interaction,” Williams said. “The nurse has an electronic stethoscope, otoscope, dermscope, so that, live, we can diagnose ear infections, look at the throat, listen to lungs in a child with asthma, and actually make a diagnosis and treat if necessary and send prescriptions, electronically.” Dallas’ problem with povertyThe report also finds one in five North Texas kids lives in poverty and offers another way to look at that. Nearly 500,000 children in North Texas qualify for free or reduced-price school meals. Food insecurity in all of the six counties in the study exceeds the national average.In the Dallas school district, 90 percent of the students are considered low-income.Mike Koprowski used to be with Dallas ISD, and while he’s concerned about the poverty rates in Dallas, he’s even more concerned about neighborhood segregation in Dallas. He calls Dallas one of the most segregated cities by race and income in the country.“When you have areas of concentrated poverty, that creates a lot of challenges in the school. So any educator will tell you a kid living in poverty brings challenges into the classroom,” he said. “But when an entire school building is concentrated with low-income kids, the challenges get more difficult.” Koprowski calls that segregation a disaster for Dallas.Proposed solutionsThe report recommends supporting increased development of mixed-income neighborhoods and more widespread acceptance of housing assistance vouchers.Some say lawmakers should get involved.Matt Moore, Children’s Health vice president for government relations, says elected leaders often say it’s important to improve the state of children, but they don’t necessarily take action.“So, I think that the interest is there; we see it from both sides of the aisle,” Moore says. “We see it among the deepest of red tea party members; we see it among the most blue of liberal members. The interest is there, but it just seems that, right now, the moment is aligned against us.”That leaves nonprofits, like the North Texas Food Bank, education groups and health care providers, playing a big role. The goal is to help kids get the basics for success when obstacles block the way. Dr. Williams says it all matters because she’s looking to the future. “We know that healthy kids learn better. And children who’ve learned well end up being healthier adults,” Dr. Williams says.The report also suggests that schools prioritize support for student health and healthy behaviors by providing more nutritious meals and more physical activity and focusing on students’ behavioral and emotional health.Read the full report 2017 Beyond ABC Report by KERANews on Scribd
Andrew SchneiderPresident Trump has called NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement, a “job killer” for American manufacturers. It’s a message voters in the industrial Midwest seemed to buy. But with the U.S. now renegotiating the treaty with Mexico and Canada, we found that manufacturers here in Texas are becoming deeply concerned.Daniel Allford is one of those manufacturers. We talked with him on the floor of his factory, ARC Specialties, on Houston’s west side. Allford started the company in his garage in 1983.“My whole life, all I’ve ever done is build things,” said Allford. “When I was a kid, I built catapults, flamethrowers, steam engines, and I’ve always been a computer geek. So if you add manufacturing and computers together, you get robotics.”ARC Specialties now employs more than 50 people to build robots, largely for the oil and gas industry. The company sold few machines to Mexico or Canada its first decade. Then NAFTA came along.“It was quite seamless to me. All I knew was all of a sudden exports became easy and greater quantity. It fluctuates, but last year 30 percent of our business was overseas, and half of that was Canada and Mexico,” said Allford.Allford said those gains came when NAFTA eliminated tariffs on his products, making them cheaper for foreign buyers. So when President Trump threatens to pull the U.S. out of NAFTA if Mexico and Canada don’t agree to revisions, he’s aiming right at Allford’s bottom line. “So far, I can’t say that it’s affected me,” said Allford, “but I’m sure it will if tariffs are placed.”Allford is hardly alone in his fears. Jeff Moseley is CEO of the Texas Association of Business. He recently testified before a Senate subcommittee hearing on NAFTA in San Antonio.“Since 2006, Texas exports of goods to NAFTA signatories have grown 71 percent,” said Moseley. “An undermining of the tariff policies that have allowed that growth would have huge detrimental effects in most sectors of the Texas economy.”Governor Greg Abbott and Senator John Cornyn have made that point to President Trump often. But the message doesn’t seem to be having much effect. Stephen P. Vaughn, general counsel in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, testified at the same hearing.“Of course, there are Americans who benefit from NAFTA, and we want to avoid harming them,” said Vaughn. “But USTR must look at trade deals from the perspective of the country as a whole, and from that perspective, there are serious problems with NAFTA.” Vaughn said that over the past decade, the U.S. racked up a $500 billion trade deficit with Mexico and a $100 billion deficit with Canada.George Y. Gonzalez, a partner at the law firm of Haynes and Boone, said that may be true, but it misses the point.“Regional trade was at $290 billion in 1993 among the three countries. In 2016, it’s at $1.1 trillion,” said Gonzalez, arguing that jump in North American trade created more jobs than it cost. “It’s the very opposite of what the rhetoric is, in fact. The implementation of NAFTA has preserved jobs and has maintained a vibrant and competitive U.S. manufacturing position.”Daniel Allford at ARC Specialties said he doesn’t have to imagine what will happen to his sales if the U.S leaves NAFTA. “In the countries that NAFTA doesn’t cover – for example, in Brazil, there’s 40 percent tariffs on my equipment,” he said. “What this means is I have yet to sell a machine to a Brazilian company.”President Trump has set a deadline of March to wrap up the NAFTA talks. Any longer, and they risk bumping up against the Mexican presidential election and campaigning for the U.S. congressional midterms. X To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: 00:00 /03:59 Listen Share
Share Photos via Twitter of Houston Police @houstonpolice Baby Shamali Flores (left) was rescued by the HPD on Thursday morning. Her mother Carolina Miranda Flores (right) was killed on Tuesday.Chief Art Acevedo announced Thursday Houston Police Department (HPD) agents arrested Erika Gisela Miranda-Álvarez, 28, for the murder of Carolina Miranda Flores, 33, and she will be charged with capital murder.During a press conference held at HPD headquarters, Acevedo detailed the arrest was made around 1:00 a.m. on Thursday, December 21st, at the Windscape apartment complex, located southwest of downtown Houston.The HPD chief explained members of the Homicide Division and the S.W.A.T. Team, among others, participated in the operation that resulted in the arrest of Miranda-Álvarez, which also allowed HPD officers to safely recover six week-old baby Shamali Flores, daughter of the victim.The baby was checked at the Texas Children’s Hospital and Acevedo noted she is “healthy” and “unharmed.” She is now in the custody of Children Protective Services (CPS).The HPD chief added Miranda-Álvarez’s boyfriend hasn’t been charged so far but is “under investigation.”According to investigators, Miranda-Álvarez was friends with the victim’s brother and that is how she met and developed a relationship her. They had known each other for about five years.Acevedo explained that, according to the investigation, Miranda-Álvarez was due to have a baby last January, but she had a miscarriage and she faked the rest of her pregnancy.If you want to watch the joint press conference with HPD and the FBI about the arrest click here