Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Former Prime Minister of India, Dies at 93

first_imgAtal Bihari Vajpayee, who as India’s prime minister from 1998 to 2004 stunned the world by ending a decades-old moratorium on nuclear weapons tests but nevertheless managed to ease tensions with Pakistan and build closer ties to the United States, died Thursday in New Delhi. He was 93.The Indian central government announced his death but gave no further details. The Times of India said that Vajpayee, a diabetic, was admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi on June 11 with kidney tract infection and other ailments and had recently been placed on life support.A published poet, Vajpayee dabbled in law, journalism and rebellion against British colonialism as a young man. A leader of the Hindu nationalist opposition to the once-invincible Indian National Congress party of Gandhi and Nehru, for most of his 50 years in politics he was virtually unknown outside India.But for six years in his late 70s, Vajpayee was the face of the world’s most populous democracy, a nation of 1 billion whose ethnic, religious and regional conflicts had fomented massacres, three wars with Pakistan and internal strife for a half-century after independence from Britain in 1947.India’s current prime minister, Narendra Modi, said on Twitter that Vajpayee’s death marked “the end of an era.”By the time he became prime minister in a pink sandstone palace that once housed Britain’s viceroys, Vajpayee was an experienced, nuanced politician. He had served decades in Parliament, was foreign minister from 1977 to 1980 and was even prime minister for 13 days in 1996, a tenure cut short when his squabbling coalition fell apart.Two months after he was sworn in, India detonated several nuclear bombs in underground tests. It had been 24 years since the country’s only previous test, in 1974, and while its nuclear-weapons capability had long been assumed, the 1998 tests impressed on the world that India had joined the circle of declared nuclear powers.Pakistan responded quickly with its own tests. Some nations invoked sanctions and condemned India for breaking its moratorium, but Vajpayee defended the move as vital to Indian security.Tensions between India and Pakistan escalated. In 2001, Muslims with guns and explosives staged a deadly attack on India’s Parliament. In 2002, a Muslim mob attacked a train carrying Hindu pilgrims, and some 1,000 people were killed in retaliatory rampages.Vajpayee denounced the violence and distanced himself from the extremists. Hostilities eased, and a thaw began in 2003. Vajpayee and President Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan met and established diplomatic and transportation links.Vajpayee also went to China and began to resolve a long-standing border dispute. As the Cold War ended, he moved nonaligned India closer to the United States, welcoming President Bill Clinton to India in 2000 and strengthening bonds with pledges of support for the United States after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.In economic overhauls, Vajpayee privatized state-owned industries, encouraged foreign investment, eased trade restrictions and fostered an information-technology revolution that created 1 million jobs. But critics said he had failed to lift tens of millions out of unemployment and poverty and had largely neglected health and education programs.Vajpayee supported equal rights for Muslims, Christians and others in his overwhelmingly Hindu nation. His Bharatiya Janata Party had long tried to undermine India’s secular identity to create a Hindu state. Vajpayee, a moderate, pushed back at militants in his own coalition. He also championed women’s rights and the eradication of castes.He resigned as prime minister in May 2004 after an upset by the Indian National Congress. In declining health, he retired from active politics in December 2005.Atal Bihari Vajpayee was born on Dec. 25, 1924, to a family of high-caste Brahmins in Gwalior, in central India. His father, Shri Krishna Behari Vajpayee, was a secondary-school teacher. As a youth he flirted with communism before shifting ideologically and joining the National Voluntary Service, a right-wing paramilitary group that was the guiding force behind Hindu nationalism. In 1942 he was jailed for 24 days for anti-British activities.He graduated from Victoria College in Gwalior, earned a master’s degree in political science from Dayanand Anglo-Vedic College in Kanpur and studied law in Lucknow. But with independence and partition into Hindu India and Muslim Pakistan, Vajpayee became a journalist, working for Hindu nationalist publications.In 1951 he helped found Jana Sangh, a Hindu nationalist party. He was first elected to Parliament in 1957.Re-elected 11 times, he became a prominent critic of the governing Congress party. In 1975, he and thousands of other dissidents were jailed under Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s emergency decrees suspending civil liberties and elections. He became foreign minister in a new coalition two years later.In 1980 Vajpayee helped found the Bharatiya Janata Party, which became the main opposition group and his primary vehicle to power. He shared its view that India should enshrine Hindu culture, but he passionately opposed discrimination against other religions. Critics called it contradictory, but voters did not agree, and in the 1990s he became one of India’s most popular figures.While he never married, Vajpayee raised as his own child Namita Bhattachariya, the daughter of a longtime friend. She became a teacher and at times served as his official hostess.Vajpayee wrote a reflective brand of Hindi poetry. He published several volumes, including “Fire Is Immortal” and “Death or Murder.”India’s central government declared a seven-day mourning period across the nation and said a state funeral would be held Friday afternoon.© New York Times 2018 Related Itemslast_img read more

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Toothpaste Bomb

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Unparliamentary Conduct

first_imgThree state ministers, including a women’s affairs minister, were forced to resign after being caught watching pornography on a mobile phone during a session of Karnataka’s legislative house.Television news footage caught Karnataka Minister for Cooperation Laxman Savadi huddling with his colleague C.C. Patil, the minister for women and child development, in the state assembly watching the pornographic clip on a phone owned by state Minister for Ports, Science and Technology Krishna Palemar, who also resigned.Savadi claimed the video was a “documentary” and he was only watching it in a distracted manner: “I was reading an order on onion prices handed over to me, and watching the video in between. I came to know about the controversy created by my action only after I returned to my quarters at night.”No question, he was distracted. Related Itemslast_img read more

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Expat Voice: India, Home Away From Home

first_imgMichael Dreusicke came from Germany to India in May 2015 on a three-week business trip and found it easy to connect with people in the country. He immediately knew that he wanted to make India his home.“I finished work, went back to Berlin, sold whatever I had and came here with not much in hand,” he tells Little India.Dreusicke set up his company, named pubport Publishing, in Pune with his friend and business partner Miriam Hofheinz and there has been no looking back ever since. He talks about his work, his life in Maharashtra and more:Life in PuneI didn’t really face any major challenges adjusting in Pune. I love the weather and the people are pretty open-minded here. They are warm and curious to know what I think and feel about the country. I love the fact that they are expressive and appreciate people, unlike Germany, where people are quite cold and laid back. There is professional appreciation but, on a human level, it is rare for Germans to express themselves.However, people here don’t really understand the concept of individual space. For instance, if I am standing at a bar and someone else is standing with his back turned towards me, the person ends up coming really close and intrudes my individual or private space. In Germany, this would be considered quite rude.I’ve also realized that Indians have a tendency to always say “yes.” For instance, my vendor never says a “no” for any work that I ask him to do even if he has no idea how to go about it. People have a tendency to avoid confrontation and also hold back from expressing differences in opinion. So, you can’t always expect the “yes” to be meaningful.As far as food is concerned, I did not face a problem since I am a vegetarian — which happens to be the default option here unlike Germany, where non-vegetarian food is preferred.Friends in the CityI have a spiritual teacher here, whom I meet on a regular basis. We hold quite a few satsang, and it has changed my life fundamentally. It has helped me know and understand my true self. I am very good friends with my squash coach as well.The nightlife in Pune is amazing. I get to play the drums and piano as a lot of live music events are held in the city. I host discussions every Friday evening at my place. It was a friend’s idea. I thought it was interesting, and offered to host it at my home. It’s a social get-together where we meet and talk about relevant topics, usually in the presence of an expert. For example, if we decide to talk about depression in children, we try and get a child psychologist to speak at the event.Spiritual teacher Rajee Sharma (right) with his students Michael Dreusicke (left) and Prajote KathuriaIndian Norms I think girls in India are pressurized by their families when it comes to marriage. The pressure on the girls is more than boys. At times, families force them to get married.The pressure leads the girl to believe that she wants to get married, which is wrong. Some of my friends have left the city and even the country just to get rid of the pressure.Meeting ExpectationsMy company provides IT services for German publishers. Our main vendors are based in different cities across India, and I train them about the requirements and expectations of German publishers.We also need to double-check the work the vendors do. When they say that the work is done, it does not always mean that it is done. We need to make sure that it meets the expectations of our clients.Not an ExpatI am around Indians all the time and introduce myself as an Indian. Most people usually laugh hearing that because I look different. But, in my heart, I am an Indian and I feel completely at home here.I don’t really consider myself an expat because an expat is someone who leaves his or her homeland to settle in some other country. I don’t feel that I left my home country because India is my home.Discount on BribingOnce, the police took away my scooter because I had parked on the wrong side of the road. When I went to get it, they asked me to pay Rs 1,000. But I only had 800 bucks on me. He took that and let me go.The irony of bribing in India is that they give you a discount if you don’t have enough money with you! But I also know that I was charged a huge amount because I am white otherwise they normally charge Rs 100-200. I figured there’s no fixed fee and that they just wanted the money.Treating Each Other as EqualsThe downside is that people can be quite racist here. I feel I am privileged because I am white but it hurts me to see Indians treat people of darker skin differently. I see my security guard treat me like a superior being. He’s put me at an imaginary god-like pedestal.I can do the same with him to make him feel that we are equal. We can then communicate with each other as equals.The interview has been condensed and edited.  Expat Voice is regular column on expats in India. Email us at expat@littleindia.com to nominate yourself or another expat for the column.   Related ItemsGermanylast_img read more

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Expat Voice: Food for Thought

first_imgBorn and brought up in Arras in the north of France, Nicolas Grossemy moved to India in January 2014 for a six-month internship, and immediately fell in love with the country.“At first it looked like a big bazaar. I woke up the first day hearing cows making noise on the streets. I was really charmed with all the colors, the culture, diversity and opportunities here. I knew it couldn’t be just a six-month stay!,” he tells Little India.The 26-year-old entrepreneur talks about his French gourmet fast-food chain in Bengaluru, adjusting to life in India and more:Food Truck in Bengaluru I hold a Masters in International Management from one of the top business schools in France. I always wanted to start my own venture, and came to India not only for the experience but also to explore opportunities and see how I could contribute to the country’s development.I was interested in entrepreneurship and had three years of experience in the food and beverage industry in France. So I decided to look at opportunities to bring French street food to Bengaluru. I felt it was the perfect time for me to start because people in this city are very open to trying out new cuisines.I started a French gourmet fast-food chain called Le Casse-Croute along with three other French partners in 2015. We began with a food truck, and then opened an outlet in 2016. We mainly sell sandwiches with homemade bread that we bake daily. People really like it because it’s a unique product with unique flavors.It took us some time to set up the business. The administrative process here is time-consuming and, therefore, frustrating. But you have to learn to adapt and understand how the people live here. You cannot change the whole system.Lessons Learnt Networking is important here. It can help you find the right person to get the job done.Nicolas Grossemy at his food truck in Bengaluru.It can be difficult if you don’t have the right contacts. For the food truck, we gave the vehicle to a garage but the guy in charge didn’t do anything for two months. So we decided to go to another garage on the recommendation of a friend and it turned out to be the best choice ever! Patience is one of the key attributes to be successful here.We’re now looking to expand, and plan to have multiple outlets in Bengaluru and eventually other cities.Life in Bengaluru I don’t think living here is a huge change. You have to adapt to the culture and understand how people live in this city if you want to stay for a long time. People could get tired of the administration or the chaos on the roads or calling the supplier multiple times to know the status of the order.I had to be cautious about what to eat so that I don’t fall sick. However, if I ever decide to move back to France, my biggest takeaway from India has to be chicken biryani! Bengaluru is a growing not only in terms of population but also infrastructure. I’ve seen many new hangout places opening that could actually be in France, really modern and well designed.I like the fact that I get to meet people from all corners and learn about their different opinions, experiences in life. Bengaluru is also well connected to other cities in South India — a big advantage when you want to escape for a weekend.I don’t like the frequent power cuts during the monsoon, otherwise the weather here is nice and enjoyable. I also love outdoor activities like running, cycling, and swimming, but it’s quite difficult to indulge in such activities here due to the polluted environment. I still find a way to undertake sporting activities, but mainly indoors. Bengaluru and its outskirts have nice places for outdoor activities, I wish there was some regulation to control the high pollution levels.An Unending Adventure What I love about India is that not one day is the same as the next one. There are always challenges and unexpected things happening. The lifestyle is completely different. Living as an expat in Bengaluru is much more exciting than living in Paris or any other place in France. It’s full of surprises – there may be a bandh tomorrow, or a festival that you don’t know about.It’s like going on an adventure where you learn and discover new things every day. You learn to do things that you never would in France. You learn jugaad, and the art of finding a solution by yourself. Being an entrepreneur here is a fantastic experience. You learn aspects of the business that you would not necessarily explore in France.The interview has been condensed and edited.  Expat Voice is regular column on expats in India. Email us at expat@littleindia.com to nominate yourself or another expat for the column. Related ItemsBengaluruFrancelast_img read more

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Sachin Tendulkar’s ton and the outcome of match

first_imgHere is a list of Sachin Tendulkar’s ODI centuries and it’s impact on the outcome of the match.No.ScoreAgainstPos.Inn.S/RVenueH/A/NDateResult1110Australia2184.61R. Premadasa Stadium, ColomboNeutral01994-09-09 September 9, 1994Won2115New Zealand2284.55IPCL Sports Complex Ground, VadodaraHome01994-10-28 October 28, 1994Won3105West Indies2178.35Sawai Mansingh Stadium, JaipurHome01994-11-11 November 11, 1994Won4112*Sri Lanka22104.67Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium, SharjahNeutral01995-04-09 April 9, 1995Won5127*Kenya2292.02Barabati Stadium, CuttackHome01996-02-18 February 18, 1996Won6137Sri Lanka21100.00Feroz Shah Kotla, New DelhiHome01996-03-02 March 2, 1996Lost7100Pakistan2190.09Padang, SingaporeNeutral01996-04-05 April 5, 1996Won8118Pakistan2184.28Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium (2), SharjahNeutral01996-04-15 April 15, 1996Won9110Sri Lanka2179.71R. Premadasa Stadium (2), ColomboAway01996-08-28 August 28, 1996Lost10114South Africa1190.47Wankhede Stadium, MumbaiHome01996-12-14 December 14, 1996Won11104Zimbabwe11107.21Willowmoore Park, BenoniNeutral01997-02-09 February 9, 1997Won12117New Zealand2285.40M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, BangaloreHome01997-05-14 May 14, 1997Won13100Australia22112.35Green Park Stadium, KanpurHome01998-04-07 April 7, 1998Won14143 Australia22109.16Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium (3), SharjahNeutral01998-04-22 April 22, 1998Lost15134Australia22102.29Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium (4), SharjahNeutral01998-04-24 April 24, 1998Won16100*Kenya2297.08Eden Gardens, KolkataHome01998-05-31 May 31, 1998Won17128Sri Lanka2197.70R. Premadasa Stadium (3), ColomboAway01998-07-07 July 7, 1998Won18127*Zimbabwe2297.69Queens Sports Club, BulawayoAway01998-09-26 September 26, 1998Won19141Australia21110.15Bangabandhu Stadium, DhakaNeutral01998-10-28 October 28, 1998Won20118*Zimbabwe22105.35Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium (5), SharjahNeutral01998-11-08 November 8, 1998Won21124*Zimbabwe22134.78Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium (6), SharjahNeutral01998-11-13 November 13, 1998Won22140*Kenya41138.61County Ground, BristolNeutral01999-05-23 May 23, 1999Won23120Sri Lanka1185.10Sinhalese Sports Club, ColomboAway01999-08-29 August 29, 1999Won24186*New Zealand21124.00Lal Bahadur Shastri Stadium, HyderabadHome01999-11-08 November 8, 1999Won25122South Africa2288.40IPCL Sports Complex Ground (2), VadodaraHome02000-03-17 March 17, 2000Won26101Sri Lanka2172.14Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium (7), SharjahNeutral02000-10-20 October 20, 2000Lost27146Zimbabwe2195.42Barkatullah Khan Stadium, JodhpurHome02000-12-08 December 8, 2000Lost28139Australia21111.20Nehru Stadium, IndoreHome02001-03-31 March 31, 2001Won29122*West Indies2293.12Harare Sports Club, HarareNeutral02001-07-04 July 4, 2001Won30101South Africa2178.29New Wanderers Stadium, JohannesburgAway02001-10-05 October 5, 2001Lost31146Kenya21110.60Boland Park, PaarlNeutral02001-10-24 October 24, 2001Won32105*England4197.22Riverside Ground, Chester-le-StreetAway02002-07-04 July 4, 2002N/R33113Sri Lanka41110.78County Ground (2), BristolNeutral02002-07-11 July 11, 2002Won34152Namibia21100.66City Oval, PietermaritzburgNeutral02003-02-23 February 23, 2003Won35100Australia2184.03Roop Singh Stadium, GwaliorHome02003-10-26 October 26, 2003Won36102New Zealand21112.08Lal Bahadur Shastri Stadium (2), HyderabadHome02003-11-15 November 15, 2003Won37141Pakistan22104.44Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, RawalpindiAway02004-03-16 March 16, 2004Lost38123Pakistan2194.61Sardar Patel Stadium, Motera, AhmedabadHome02005-04-12 April 12, 2005Lost39100Pakistan2188.49Arbab Niaz Stadium, PeshawarAway02006-02-06 February 6, 2006Lost40141* West Indies2195.27Kinrara Academy Oval, Kuala LumpurNeutral02006-09-14 September 14, 2006Lost41100*West Indies41131.57IPCL Sports Complex Ground (3), VadodaraHome02007-01-31 January 31, 2007Won42117*Australia1297.5Sydney Cricket Ground, SydneyAway02008-03-02 March 2, 2008Won43163*New Zealand21122.55AMI Stadium, ChristchurchAway02009-03-08 March 8, 2009Won44138Sri Lanka11103.76R. Premadasa Stadium (4), ColomboAway02009-09-14 September 14, 2009Won45175Australia22124.11Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, HyderabadHome02009-11-05 November 5, 2009Lost46200*South Africa21136.05Roop Singh Stadium (2), GwaliorHome02010-02-24 February 24, 2010Won47120England21104.35M. Chinnaswamy Stadium (2), BangaloreHome02011-02-27 February 27, 2011Tied48111South Africa21109.90VCA Stadium, NagpurHome02011-03-12 March 12, 2011Lost49114Bangladesh2177.55Sher-e-Bangla Stadium, Mirpur, DhakaAway02012-03-16 March 16, 2012LostHere is a list of Sachin Tendulkar’s Test centuries and it’s impact on the outcome of the match List of Tests India won when Sachin Scored 100+165  England — M. A. Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai  12 February 1993 104*  Sri Lanka — Sinhalese Sports Club, Colombo  31 July 1993 142  Sri Lanka — K. D. Singh Babu Stadium, Lucknow  19 January 1994 155*  Australia — M. A. Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai  9 March 1998 122  Zimbabwe — Feroz Shah Kotla, New Delhi  21 November 2000 126  Australia — M. A. Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai  20 March 2001 176  Zimbabwe — Vidarbha Cricket Association Ground, Nagpur  24 February 2002 117  West Indies — Queen’s Park Oval, Port of Spain  20 April 2002 193  England — Headingley, Leeds  23 August 2002 194*  Pakistan — Multan Cricket Stadium,Multan  29 March 2004 248*  Bangladesh — Bangabandhu National Stadium, Dhaka  12 December 2004 109  Sri Lanka — Feroz Shah Kotla (2), New Delhi  22 December 2005 122*  Bangladesh — Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium, Mirpur  26 May 2007 109  Australia — Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium, Nagpur  6 November 2008 103*  England — M. A. Chidambaram Stadium (5), Chennai  15 December 2008 160  New Zealand — Seddon Park, Hamilton  20 March 2009 105*  Bangladesh — Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, Chittagong  18 January 2010 143  Bangladesh — Shere Bangla National Stadium (2), Mirpur  25 January 2010 106  South Africa —  Eden Gardens, Kolkata  15 February 2010 214  Australia — M. Chinnaswamy Stadium (2),Bangalore  11 October 2010  advertisementList of Tests that ended in a draw when Sachin scored a ton179  West Indies — Vidarbha Cricket Association Ground, Nagpur  2 December 1994 177  England — Trent Bridge, Nottingham  5 July 1996 143  Sri Lanka — R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo  3 August 1997 139 Sri Lanka — Sinhalese Sports Club (2), Colombo  11 August 1997 148 Sri Lanka — Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai  4 December 1997 124*  Sri Lanka — Sinhalese Sports Club (3), Colombo  28 February 1999 126*  New Zealand — Punjab Cricket Association Stadium, Mohali  13 October 1999 217 New Zealand — Sardar Patel Stadium, Motera,Ahmedabad  30 October 1999 201*  Zimbabwe —  Vidarbha Cricket Association Ground (2), Nagpur  26 November 2000 103  England — Sardar Patel Stadium (2), Motera, Ahmedabad  13 December 2001 176  West Indies — Eden Gardens, Kolkata  3 November 2002 241*  Australia — Sydney Cricket Ground,Sydney  4 January 2004 101  Bangladesh — Bir Shrestha Shahid Ruhul Amin Stadium, Chittagong  19 May 2007 153  Australia — Adelaide Oval, Adelaide  25 January 2008 100*  Sri Lanka — Sardar Patel Stadium (3), Motera, Ahmedabad  20 November 2009 203  Sri Lanka — Sinhalese Sports Club (4), Colombo  28 July 2010 146  South Africa — Newlands Cricket Ground (2), Cape Town  4 January 2011 119*  England — Old Trafford Cricket Ground,Manchester  14 August 1990 148*  Australia — Sydney Cricket Ground,Sydney  6 January 1992 111  South Africa — Wanderers Stadium,Johannesburg  28 November 1992 advertisementList of Tests India lost when Sachin scored a century122  England — Edgbaston Cricket Ground, Birmingham  8 June 1996 169  South Africa — Newlands Cricket Ground, Cape Town  4 January 1997 177  Australia — M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bangalore  26 March 1998 113  New Zealand — Basin Reserve, Wellington  29 December 1998 136  Pakistan — M. A. Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai  31 January 1999 116  Australia — Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne  28 December 1999 155  South Africa — Goodyear Park, Bloemfontein  3 November 2001 154  Australia — Sydney Cricket Ground,Sydney  4 January 2008 100  South Africa — Cricket Association Stadium (2), Nagpur  9 February 2010 111*  South Africa — SuperSport Park, Centurion  19 December 2010 114  Australia — WACA Ground, Perth  3 February 1992  (*) stands for not outlast_img read more

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3-time Olympic champion ‘Pocket Hercules’ dies at 50

first_imgFILE- In this July 22, 1996 file photo, Naim Suleymanoglu, of Turkey, lifts 147.5kg, at the Summer Olympics in Atlanta. Turkey’s official news agency said Saturday, Nov. 18, 2017, Suleymanoglu, the Turkish weightlifter who was known as “Pocket Hercules” and who won three straight Olympic gold medals for Turkey between 1988 and 1996, has died. Suleymanoglu was considered one of the sport’s greatest athletes and earned his nickname for his strength and diminutive size. He was 50. (AP Photo/Michael Probst, File)ANKARA, Turkey — Naim Suleymanoglu, the Turkish weightlifter who won three Olympic gold medals and was known as “Pocket Hercules,” died Saturday. He was 50.Suleymanoglu was considered one of the sport’s greatest athletes and earned his nickname for his strength and diminutive size. He died at an Istanbul hospital where he was receiving treatment for cirrhosis of the liver. He had been in intensive care since Sept. 28 and received a liver transplant in October, according to Turkey’s official Anadolu news agency.ADVERTISEMENT MRT 7 on track for partial opening in 2021 ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims Jordan delivers on promise: 2 Cobra choppers now in PH Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Malditas save PH from shutout LATEST STORIES The weightlifter — 1.47 meters (4-foot-10) tall — won three straight Olympic gold medals for Turkey between 1988 and 1996. The Bulgarian-born Suleymanoglu could lift three times his weight.He came out of retirement to try for a fourth gold at the Sydney Olympics in 2000 but missed all three of his lifts.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games opening“I know only gold,” Suleymanoglu had said as he returned to competition. “I do not know about silver or bronze.”Suleymanoglu also won seven world and six European championships. Yankees acquire 17-year-old Then in trade with Mariners Suleymanoglu hid in Australia for several days before he went to the Turkish consulate to seek asylum. Eventually the Bulgarians allowed him to switch nationalities and he kissed the airport tarmac on arrival in Turkey. In 1986 he changed his name to the more Turkic-sounding Suleymanoglu.He went to the Seoul Olympics as a Turk and twice broke the world record in the snatch on the way to winning the gold medal.He competed unsuccessfully for a seat in Turkish parliamentary elections in 1999 and 2007.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextcenter_img After 30 years, Johnlu Koa still doing ‘hard-to-make’ quality breads The Fatted Calf and Ayutthaya: New restos worth the drive to Tagaytay Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games He was born to an ethnic Turkish family in Bulgaria, and defected to Turkey in 1986 while training in Australia.Regarded as a national hero in his adopted country, Suleymanoglu captured the hearts of Turks after winning his first gold at Seoul, South Korea, in 1988. Whenever Suleymanoglu returned home from a tournament, he would be greeted by thousands of fans who would lift him up on their shoulders.Suleymanoglu missed the 1984 Games at Los Angeles because of a Soviet-led boycott. Although only 17, he was the favorite to win the bantamweight gold.He was an outspoken critic of the Bulgarian government’s treatment of the Turkish minority in his homeland, and was forced by the authorities to change his surname to the more Slavic-sounding Shalamanov.When the Bulgarian weightlifting team went to a training camp at Melbourne, Australia, in 1986, he slipped away from the group while pretending to visit the restroom at a hotel.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

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Help on way for shooters’ minds

first_imgTop Indian shooters like Manavjit Singh Sandhu (left) and Ronjan Sodhi have sometimes struggled due to a lack of professional mental training.Individual sport can be a lonely vocation, which is why athletes need to be in top mental condition to tackle its pressures and challenges.This is especially true of Olympic sports which generally don’t have a year-round calendar where players can keep bumping into each other and form personal bonds.And when one speaks of sports like shooting and archery, which require precision and immense concentration rather than a lot of physical activity, a single outof-place thought can upset the athlete’s rhythm and spoil their prospects.This is where mental trainers come in. Professional help is always welcome and, for the first time, the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) seems to be giving this aspect the seriousness it deserves.It took the underwhelming performances of Indian shooters at three major back-to-back events – the Commonwealth Games, the World Championships and the Asian Games – for the NRAI to wake up. Although the body officially proclaims its satisfaction with the shooters’ performances, some top officials have privately admitted that the athletes need a push to take them from the threshold of greatness to greatness itself.According to sources within the NRAI, the body is set to send a proposal to the sports ministry and the Sports Authority of India to enlist the help of an American professional. What’s more, the expert happens to be a hypnotherapist, who counts among his clients the likes of double Olympic skeet gold medallist shooter Vincent Hancock, Olympic double trap gold medallist Glenn Eller and has also worked with one of the all-time greats of golf, Tiger Woods.advertisementAccording to the plan, Daniel Vitchoff, a renowned practitioner of hypnotherapy from Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, will hold a monthlong camp with selected Indian athletes, to help condition their minds on the road to the Rio de Janeiro Olympics.”We zeroed in on Dan after a long process of consultation with our senior shooters, the foreign coaches and the international shooting community. Apart from the obvious pull of someone who has worked with a legend like Tiger Woods, Dan has worked with some of the most successful American shooters and we feel his guidance will go a long way towards preparing our athletes for the Rio Games,” an NRAI official told MAIL TODAY on the condition of anonymity, since this proposal is yet to go to the ministry and SAI.”In fact, we will also try to involve archers in the plan, so that more top Indian sportspersons can benefit from his expertise.”Hypnotherapy is seen with suspicion by a lot of people, but the official said the NRAI had done its homework on its positives.”We’ve seen how much the athletes who have trained with Dan have appreciated his methods, in particular the ’33 Method’, which includes hypnosis, visualisation and neuro-linguistic programming. This helps improve focus and minimise distractions,” the official said.Currently, the Indian team regularly features a blend of experienced shooters and up-and-coming stars, and for them to get mental training will be a boon.For a while now, Indians have been reaching finals at the World Cup level, but the medal count has been disproportionately low.Maybe with Vitchoff’s help, the shooters (and archers) will be able to get over the hump.last_img read more

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I’ve realised if you are against IPL, then you are also against ICC: PCB chief

first_imgIndia are likely to play Pakistan in a bliateral cricket series in December this yearPakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chief Shaharyar Khan on Friday said that the BCCI top brass voiced their reservations about Ten Sports being the official broadcasters if the first of the proposed series happens in the United Arab Emirates.Ten Sports which is backed by Essel Group owner Subhas Chandra has had run-ins with BCCI after they started now defunct rebel Indian Cricket League (ICL) and are again planning to walk the same route.The Indian Cricket Board doesn’t want any kind of working relationship where Essel group is involved.The PCB supremo was back home after holding a series of discussions with top BCCI officials including president Jagmohan Dalmiya, secretary Anurag Thakur and union finance minister and BJP heavyweight Arun Jaitley to discuss on resumption of bilateral series between the two nations.”BCCI (top officials) says that it’s a problem since Ten Sports has broadcasting rights. They said that Ten Sports wants to start a rebel league against IPL. Now I am made to understand that if you are against IPL, then you are against ICC also. So Ten Sports is the problem,” Shaharyar told local media on his arrival.It has been learnt that BCCI is keen to hold the first series in India and in that case Star Sports will be airing the matches live.We’re open to discuss venue with IndiaThe PCB chief has revealed that he was open to other proposals from the BCCI regarding the venue of the proposed Indo-Pak series though the PCB would favour holding it at the United Arab Emirates.advertisementKhan, who recently visited India to make a strong case for revival of cricket ties between the two countries, told ‘Geo Super’ channel that the PCB would think over other venues than UAE once the BCCI officials intimate them regarding this in writing.BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur has said that the series proposed to be played in December could also be held in India.”So far the Indian Board officials have not given anything in writing that they want the series to be played at some other venue. When they do, we will look at it as well,” he said.Khan said that the PCB had clearly mentioned UAE as the venue for the first of a package of six series signed between the two Boards last year in shape of a MoU.”We have clearly mentioned UAE in the MoU. But if the Indian Board officials have something else to say, they can do it in writing,” he added.last_img read more

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IPL: All the players retained and released by every team ahead of IPL 2018

first_imgAdvertisementImage Courtesy: IPLThe IPL franchises submitted the official list entailing the retained players and released players. The upcoming auction is set to be a spicy affair after the franchises have released several huge names.Here is the list containing the players the franchises have opted to retain and release.Mumbai IndiansRetained: Rohit Sharma (C), Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Krunal Pandya, Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Mayank Markande, Rahul Chahar, Anukul Roy, Siddhesh Lad, Aditya Tare, Quinton de Kock, Evin Lewis, Kieron Pollard, Ben Cutting, Mitchell McClenaghan, Adam Milne, Jason Behrendorff.Released: Saurabh Tiwary, Pradeep Sangwan, Mohsin Khan, MD Nidheesh, Sharad Lumba, Tajinder Singh Dhillon, JP Duminy, Pat Cummins, Mustafizur Rahman, Akila Dananjaya.Traded: Quinton de Kock from RCBSalary cap available: 11.15 crAvailable slots: 7; Indian 6, Overseas 1Rajasthan RoyalsRetained: Ajinkya Rahane, Krishnappa Gowtham, Sanju Samson, Shreyas Gopal, Aryaman Birla, S. Midhun, Prashant Chopra, Stuart Binny, Rahul Tripathi, Ben Stokes, Steve Smith, Jos Buttler, Jofra Archer, Ish Sodhi, Dhawal Kulkarni, Mahipal Lomror.Released: D’Arcy Short, Ben Laughlin, Heinrich Klaasen, Dane Paterson, Zahir Khan, Dushmantha Chameera, Jaydev Unadkat, Anureet Singh, Ankit Sharma, Jatin Saxena.Salary cap available: 20.95crAvailable slots: 9; Indian 6, Overseas 3Sunrisers HyderabadRetained: Basil Thampi, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Deepak Hooda, Manish Pandey, T Natarajan, Ricky Bhui, Sandeep Sharma, Siddarth Kaul, Shreevats Goswami (wk), Khaleel Ahmed, Yusuf Pathan, Billy Stanlake, David Warner, Kane Williamson, Rashid Khan, Mohammad Nabi, Shakib Al HasanReleased: Sachin Baby, Tanmay Agarwal, Wriddhiman Saha, Chris Jordan, Carlos Brathwaite, Alex Hales, Bipul Sharma, Mehdi HasanTraded: Shikhar Dhawan to Delhi Daredevils for Abhishek Sharma, Vijay Shankar, Shahbaz NadeemSalary cap available: 9.70 crAvailable slots: 5; Indian 3, Overseas 2Chennai Super KingsRetained: MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Faf du Plessis, M Vijay, Ravindra Jadeja, Sam Billings, Mitchell Santner, David Willey, Dwayne Bravo, Shane Watson, Lungi Ngidi, Imran Tahir, Kedar Jadhav, Ambati Rayudu, Harbhajan Singh, Deepak Chahar, KM Asif, Karn Sharma, Dhruv Shorey, N Jagadeesan, Shardul Thakur, Monu Kumar, Chaitanya BishnoiReleased: Mark Wood, Kanishk Seth, Kshitiz SharmaSalary cap available: 8.40 crAvailable slots: 2; Indian 2, Overseas 0Kings XI PunjabRetained: Lokesh Rahul, Chris Gayle, Andrew Tye, Mayank Agarwal, Ankit Rajpoot, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Karun Nair, David Miller and Ravichandran AshwinReleased: Aaron Finch, Axar Patel, Mohit Sharma, Yuvraj Singh, Barinder Sran, Ben Dwarshuis, Manoj Tiwary, Akshdeep Nath, Pardeep Sahu, Mayank Dagar and Manzoor DarTraded: Marcus Stoinis for Mandeep Singh with RCBSalary cap available: 36.20 crAvailable slots: 15; Indian 11, Overseas 4Delhi DaredevilsRetained: Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant, Prithvi Shaw, Amit Mishra, Avesh Khan, Harshal Patel, Rahul Tewatia, Jayant Yadav, Manjot Kalra, Colin Munro, Chris Morris, Kagiso Rabada, Sandeep Lamichhane, Trent BoultReleased: Gautam Gambhir, Jason Roy, Junior Dala, Liam Plunkett, Mohammed Shami, Sayan Ghosh, Daniel Christian, Glenn Maxwell, Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Naman OjhaTraded: Shikhar Dhawan from SRH for Abhishek Sharma, Vijay Shankar, Shahbaz Nadeem with Delhi DaredevilsSalary cap available: 25.50 crAvailable slots: 10; Indian 7, Overseas 3Kolkata Knight RidersRetained: Dinesh Karthik, Robin Uthappa, Chris Lynn, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Shubman Gill, Piyush Chawla, Kuldeep Yadav, Prasidh Krishna, Shivam Mavi, Nitish Rana, Rinku Singh, Kamlesh NagarkotiReleased: Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Johnson, Tom Curran, Cameron Delport, Ishank Jaggi, Vinay Kumar, Apoorv Wankhade, Javon SearlesSalary cap available: 15.20 crAvailable slots: 12; Indian 7, Overseas 5Royal Challengers BangaloreRetained: Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, Parthiv Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal, Washington Sundar, Pawan Negi, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Moeen Ali, Mohammed Siraj, Colin de Grandhomme, Tim Southee, Umesh Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Kulwant KhejroliyaReleased: Brendon McCullum, Corey Anderson, Quinton de Kock, Mandeep Singh, Chris Woakes, Sarfraz KhanTraded: Mandeep Singh for Marcus Stoinis with KXIPSalary cap available: 18.15 crAvailable slots: 10; Indian 8, Overseas 2Advertisementlast_img read more

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Joe Root gives his take on Mankad controversy involving Ravi Ashwin and Josh Buttler

first_imgAdvertisement AdvertisementKings XI Punjab’s captain Ravichandran Ashwin has caused quite a stir recently in the match against Rajasthan Royals. He ‘mankaded’ Rajasthan Royals’ batsman Jos Buttler on Monday.Some criticised Ashwin’s this move saying he violated the spirit of cricket while some argued that it was a legitimate decision. Legendary Australian spinner Shane Warne went so far as to call Ashwin’s act as “a disgraceful and low act”.However, England test captain Joe Root has called for full clarification about Mankad issue and asked what was deemed acceptable and not acceptable.“I think you know some people might be looking to do that now,” reflected Test skipper Root. “I think umpires being really clear on what is out and what is not out is going to be crucial.“Making sure everyone is on the same page with it so that there are no inconsistencies is going to be really important and having the clarity there for everyone playing the game.“I know it’s not a straightforward rule, but as much as possible, there’s a way of working out what is out and what is not.”Root said that even though Mankading is well within the rule, he said that he wasn’t too much impressed with his teammate’s dismissal.“It’s not something that I’d like to be involved in, I wasn’t too impressed personally,” Root said. “But it’s within the laws of the game, as a lot of people have said, and one Jos has to take on the chin, unfortunately.”He also said that he was glad that it didn’t happen to them during the ICC World Cup.“By nature, you stay in your crease as (the bowler) is running up. I think it’s a good warning now and I’m glad it’s not happened to us in the World Cup final for example, or a World Cup game.” He said.ALSO READ:England vs. India- 2nd Test Preview: India seek retribution after close defeat at Edgbastonlast_img read more

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Province Expands Childhood Vaccination Program

first_img Dr. Jeff Scott, chief medical officer of health said he’s pleasedto see the start of the new vaccine program. “We will see positive changes for children in year one, and we’llcontinue to expand the program into 2007,” said Dr. Scott. “Iencourage parents to get their children vaccinated since vaccinesoffer good protection against disease with little risk of side-effects.” Support for the expanded program is widespread. “With theintroduction of these vaccines, we will protect Nova Scotiachildren from most vaccine-preventable diseases, and haveachieved national standards for universal vaccine programs,” saidJoanne Langley, an IWK Health Centre pediatrician. Nova Scotia also took a step in protecting children aged 6 to 23months from flu when it expanded its influenza vaccinationprogram this fall. The new immunization programs will be administered by physiciansand public health nurses, usually when children receive regularvaccinations. The National Immunization Strategy was approved by the ministersof health in 2003. This plan will bring Nova Scotia in line withthe rest of the country as provinces respond to therecommendations in the National Immunization Strategy. The province is taking another step in protecting the health ofchildren in Nova Scotia by providing free vaccinations againstmeningitis, chickenpox, and whooping cough. Health Minister Angus MacIsaac announced today, Nov. 23, a three-year plan to expand Nova Scotia’s immunization program. “Immunization is key to preventing disease. More than 40,000children and adolescents in Nova Scotia will benefit from thesenew vaccines this year alone,” said Mr. MacIsaac. “This is avery positive change and a step forward in keeping our youngpeople healthy.” The province will invest an additional $9 million over the nextthree years, as part of the National Immunization Strategy, tointroduce new vaccines and expand existing programs. Starting Jan. 1, 2005: one-year olds and 14- to 16-year-olds are eligible to receive the meningococcal conjugate C vaccine to prevent this type of meningitis; the chickenpox vaccine program will be expanded to include all children from one to six years of age; all children born Jan. 1, 2005 and after will be eligible to receive pneumococcal vaccine, which protects against pneumonia, meningitis and blood infection; 14- to 16-year-olds will receive a combined vaccine protecting them against whooping cough, tetanus and diphtheria.last_img read more

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Governments Sign Coastal and Ocean Management Agreement

first_img USE BROADCAST VERSION: A memorandum of understanding between the province and the government of Canada will improve management and protection of Nova Scotia’s coastal and ocean resources. Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Sterling Belliveau and federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Gail Shea signed the Canada-Nova Scotia Integrated Coastal and Ocean Management Memorandum of Understanding to stress the need for collaboration. Mr. Belliveau says coastal areas face challenges and pressures, and the province and the federal government need to work even more closely to ensure a co-ordinated and strategic approach. -30- A memorandum of understanding between the province and the government of Canada will improve management and protection of Nova Scotia’s coastal and ocean resources. Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Sterling Belliveau and federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Gail Shea signed the Canada-Nova Scotia Integrated Coastal and Ocean Management Memorandum of Understanding to stress the need for collaboration. “The province and government of Canada have been working side by side for many years to maintain healthy coasts and oceans,” said Mr. Belliveau. “As our coastal areas face challenges and pressures, we need to work even more closely to ensure a co-ordinated and strategic approach.” This agreement will set the stage for federal and provincial agencies to work together more effectively on ocean and coastal management issues. The agreement will focus on: implementing Nova Scotia’s future coastal strategy; integrating coastal and oceans management and planning; managing and sharing information relevant to coastal management and planning; and developing a network to advance coastal research in Nova Scotia.last_img read more

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Cant wait to be back in India Enrique Iglesias

first_imgLos Angeles: Enrique Iglesias recently said India is “one of his most favourite” places in the world and the singer is waiting to make another trip to the country. The 44-year-old singer took to Instagram to share a video from his previous trip to India where a fan followed his car to catch a glimpse of him. The moment was captured by a Mexican TV channel whose reporter was already in the car interviewing Iglesias, who spotted the fan chasing them on his bike. The reporter then lowers the window glass and points the mic towards the fan: “Are you Enrique?” comes the question. Also Read – Rihanna to release 500-page ‘visual’ autobiographyWhen he gets a yes from the ‘Heartbeat’ singer, he starts gushing about his admiration while trying to balance the conversation and the driving. “It was a pleasure seeing you here, man. You’re a rockstar. We all love you here a lot,” the fan shouts out, while a smiling Iglesias warns him to “Be careful”. Iglesias captioned the video: “One of my favourite places in the world! I love you #India… can’t wait to be back!! #Throwback.” The singer has previously toured India in 2004 and 2012.last_img read more

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Antiabortion Tory MP Rachael Harder loses bid for status of women chair

first_imgOTTAWA – Liberal and NDP members of the status of women committee feared Rachael Harder would be unable to keep her anti-abortion views from impacting their work, says a New Democrat who helped thwart the Conservative MP’s bid to lead the panel.“We know that there is a diversity of views in Parliament,” NDP MP Sheila Malcolmson said Tuesday.Still, Malcolmson said, she and the Liberal MPs on the committee felt that having a chair so publicly opposed to abortion risked making witnesses uncomfortable and compromising the committee’s work on gender equality.“She has not yet demonstrated her ability to remove that from her day-to-day work,” said Malcolmson, a vice-chair of the committee and the NDP critic for status of women.The stand-off over the choice of chair ended Tuesday much as it began last week: with a meeting that lasted mere minutes.Six Liberals and Malcolmson voted against making Harder, an MP from Lethbridge, Alta., the chair of the committee, opting instead for her Conservative colleague Karen Vecchio, who opposed her own nomination but was chosen anyway.Last week, the Liberals walked out of the committee meeting to protest the nomination of Harder, whom Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer named as critic for the status of women portfolio this summer.Malcolmson joined the exodus after trying to bring the matter to a vote.“The committee wanted a chair that we had confidence would speak for all Canadian women, including transgender Canadians, and would be able to advocate for women’s reproductive health, including the right to choose,” Liberal MP Pam Damoff, a vice-chair on the committee, said Tuesday.“I think it’s a victory for Canadian women.”The Conservatives are now accusing Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who spoke out in favour of rejecting Harder as committee chair, of using the standoff to distract from his controversial plan for small business tax reform.“It’s disappointing that Justin Trudeau would act this way and his actions demonstrate the intolerance of the Liberal Party of Canada, which claims to value diversity,” Vecchio and Harder said in a joint news release.Still, the statement said Vecchio would serve as chair.“Conservatives accept the democratic will of the committee, and unlike Justin Trudeau, we commit to working on behalf of all women in Canada, regardless of their beliefs,” they said.The Campaign Life Coalition endorsed Harder, the MP for Lethbridge, Alta., when she first ran for the Conservatives in 2015 because she filled out a questionnaire saying she believes life begins at conception and would work to introduce and pass laws to ban abortion once elected.The organization also applauded her record of opposing the government’s measures legalizing doctor-assisted dying and the recreational use of marijuana.The group also approved of how she had co-sponsored a private member’s bill, since defeated, that would have made it a criminal offence to cause injury or death to a “preborn child” while committing a crime against a pregnant woman.Vecchio, meanwhile, did not fill out the Campaign Life Coalition questionnaire and has previously mentioned at committee that she is pro-choice.Still, the group noted she also voted in favour of the private member’s bill on pregnant victims of crime.Malcolmson said she expects to disagree with Vecchio on certain issues relating to gender equality, but Harder had represented too large a divide.“It’s the right to choose which is a debate that we really hoped was behind us in this country. This has been adjudicated in the courts. This is something we just thought was a given moving forward,” Malcolmson said.“There will be things, of course, that New Democrats and Conservatives and Liberals disagree on, but we should not have an anti-choice spokesperson representing the status of women committee.”— Follow @smithjoanna on TwitterNote to readers: This is a corrected story. An earlier version misspelled Rachael Harder’s first namelast_img read more

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After 14year run Calgary ReggaeFest postponed for 2018

first_imgAdvertisement Facebook Login/Register With: Etana was one of the headliners of ReggaeFest in 2017. Calgary’s annual weekend reggae festival won’t be held this year. The board of directors of the Calgary Reggae Festival Society says it has “decided to postpone Calgary ReggaeFest for 2018” after staging the event for 14 years.The society says the festival will return in 2019. Festival co-founder and producer Leo Cripps said in a news release the group plans to take the next year to “assess and re-imagine the event.” LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment center_img Advertisement Advertisement “We did not decide this because of financial issues, but because it takes a lot of work, and after 14 years, we are reaching a burnout point,” said Cripps.After lengthy conversations, the festival team decided to take a break and pause it for a year to “reinvigorate, re-imagine and rejuvenate the energy for the event.” Twitterlast_img read more

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Venezuelan leader violates independence of judiciary – UN rights experts

16 December 2009Decrying what they termed “a blow by President Hugo Chávez to the independence of judges and lawyers in the country,” three independent United Nations human rights experts today called for the immediate release of a Venezuelan judge arrested after ordering the conditional release of a prisoner held for almost three years without trial. Judge María Lourdes Afiuni was arrested by intelligence police officers after ordering the conditional release pending trial of Eligio Cedeño, whose detention was declared arbitrary in September by the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, which cited violations of the right to fair trial. His counsel introduced the experts’ opinion before Judge Afiuni earlier this month. “We are particularly troubled about allegations that President Hugo Chávez attacked both Mr. Cedeño and Judge Afiuni, calling them ‘bandidos’ [bandits] and accusing Judge Afiuni of corruption,” the UN experts said in a statement issued in Geneva, where they report to the UN Council on Human Rights.In an appearance before Government officials, broadcast on national television and radio, Mr. Chávez demanded that Judge Afiuni be sentenced to a 30-year prison term, even if new legislation was required to achieve that result, and he instructed the Attorney General and the President of the Supreme Court to punish her as severely as possible to prevent similar actions by other judges.He also suggested that Mr. Cedeño’s defence attorneys had engaged in criminal conduct in requesting his release. Attorney General Luisa Ortega Díaz is reported to have given interviews to the press slandering the Judge. Two court bailiffs accompanying Mr. Cedeño out of the court room, and one of his lawyers were also briefly arrested, but soon released. “Reprisals for exercising their constitutionally guaranteed functions and creating a climate of fear among the judiciary and lawyers’ profession serve no purpose except to undermine the rule of law and obstruct justice,” the experts said. “The immediate and unconditional release of Judge Afiuni is imperative.”Judge Afiuni is said to have been charged with corruption, accessory to an escape, criminal conspiracy and abuse of power. She has been denied a public defender. It is also feared that Mr. Cedeño’s Venezuelan defence lawyers are under imminent threat of arrest. In November, another judge was reportedly removed from the court of appeals and demoted after determining that Mr. Cedeño’s pre-trial detention had exceeded statutory limits. The three experts are: Chairperson-Rapporteur of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention El Hadji Malick Sow; Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers Gabriela Carina Knaul de Albuquerque e Silva; and Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders Margaret Sekaggya. read more

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Army chief says troops prepared at all times

“The Sri Lanka Army as the forerunner, over the years, has displayed its professionalism in all situations in the most commendable manner. The Nation has been a proud benefactor of the contributions made by the Army, both during times of war and peace. The victorious journey of the Army, its gallantry and fortitude has impressively inspired confidence amongst all citizens of Sri Lanka. The boundless contribution of our Army in the effort of nation-building is amongst its greatest legacies. Be it ensuring the Nation’s territorial integrity, fighting the scourge of terrorism, or reaching out to fellow citizens in times of natural calamities, our Army has time and again performed their duties with dedication, maturity and professionalism,” he said. The army chief noted that the recognition the army has the world over will enable them to be more efficient at a time they embark on increasing their participation at UN Peacekeeping Missions. “Our sole aspiration is to safeguard our motherland and its citizens at all times. Let everyone understand their role and responsibility to achieve this noble cause. It requires unity of purpose and the ability to focus on issues which unite and a spirit of conciliation. I urge all members of the Army to remain steadfastly loyal to the nation and be professionally competent,” he added. Army Commander Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva says the army is ready at all times to defend the Nation.In a message to mark the 66th Army Day today, Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva said that Sri Lankan soldiers are admired world over for their display of humanity, discipline, professionalism and integrity. read more

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Youth commits suicide in Jaffna over political prisoners

A youth committed suicide in Kondavil, Jaffna over the failure by the authorities to release all Tamil political prisoners.The youth had jumped in front of a train in Kondavil and committed suicide. Reporters in Jaffna said that the youth had left a suicide note explaining the motives behind the suicide. The victim was identified as 18 year old Rajeshwaran Senthuran, a resident of Kopai and a student of Kokavil Hindu College. Meanwhile students of the Jaffna university staged a demonstration drawing attention to the death of the student.The Jaffna university students held black flags during the peaceful demonstration. (Colombo Gazette)

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Our Model Loves The Raptors Maybe A Little Too Much

sara.ziegler (Sara Ziegler, assistant sports editor): The Toronto Raptors stole a road win Thursday night with a huge game from Kawhi Leonard and are now just one win away from taking the Eastern Conference finals against the Milwaukee Bucks.If the Raptors can win either of the next two games, they’ll move on to face the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals. And, surprise — the FiveThirtyEight model favors the Raptors! What do you guys think about that?neil (Neil Paine, senior sportswriter): That seemed … interesting. 🤔I suppose it’s largely about the Warriors’ many injuries? (Not that those seemed to matter much vs. Portland.)JaredDubin (Jared Dubin, contributor): The Warriors did just sweep the Blazers without Kevin Durant, and without Andre Iguodala for Game 4.neil: Right.sara.ziegler: But our model doesn’t think much of the Blazers, either.chris.herring (Chris Herring, senior sportswriter): Our model is wrong.All due respect to our model.neil: Fightin’ words, Chris! (Haha.)tchow (Tony Chow, video producer): Nate is not here to defend himself.sara.ziegler: But why is the model wrong?chris.herring: Even if it’s meant to be accounting for KD’s absence, the Warriors are 31-1 in their last 32 games without Durant but with Steph Curry.JaredDubin: The Raptors were much better defensively than the Blazers during both the regular season and the playoffs. But they also haven’t played the Warriors in the playoffs.chris.herring: I don’t think the Warriors will struggle to create half-court offense the way the Bucks have, mainly.I’ve been pretty vocal in saying that the Bucks are the best team to take down Golden State. I don’t feel that as strongly when Toronto is the team coming out of the East.neil: Maybe it also says as much about our model’s love for the Raptors’ players as it does about the Warriors’ injury issues. Our ratings think that almost all of Toronto’s current rotation is composed of at least above-average players, if not really good ones: sara.ziegler: HahahaThe way the Warriors have played the Durant injury is really interesting to me. Do you guys think he’ll actually end up playing?neil: It’s a little concerning to me that he still hasn’t begun basketball-related activites yet.chris.herring: I have no idea what’s going on in his head, aside from a feud with Chris Broussard.JaredDubin: I think the more interesting question is: If he doesn’t play, has he already played his last game for the Warriors.tchow: Oh no, Jared, not this again.sara.ziegler: Tony’s just waiting for him to get here, LOL.JaredDubin: As a Knick fan who is all too familiar with their repeated free-agency failures, I will believe KD is signing with the Knicks when he is in Madison Square Garden wearing a Knick jersey during a regular-season game, and not a moment sooner.tchow: That’s so many months too late, Jared.sara.ziegler: LOLneil: I like that we have the two polar opposites of Knick fandom here.sara.ziegler: All Knicks represented.Looking beyond KD, will DeMarcus Cousins actually play in the finals? And will he actually help the Warriors?chris.herring: It sounds like he’ll play. Less sure about whether he’ll have an impactMy question there is, if the Raptors pull ahead in the series early, and Cousins simply doesn’t have it, can you afford to play him for long stretches? Answer seemingly is “probably not.”As badly as you want him to feel involved.JaredDubin: He seems more likely to have an impact against Toronto, where he can bang inside with Gasol, than Milwaukee, where Brook Lopez might space him off the floor.I also feel like whether OG Anunoby is ready to come back from his appendicitis matters a lot, especially if Durant is able to come back during the series. Toronto’s ability to go small for extended stretches against the Death Lineup depends on having another big wing alongside Kawhi.sara.ziegler: Though, Jared, our model actually thinks the Raptors are better without Anunoby.JaredDubin: OG had a tough year on and off the floor (his father passed away during the season), but having another big wing is important in a matchup where you might need to go small a lot.chris.herring: Jared’s point is spot-on.That would be either my biggest or second-biggest question with Toronto.They usually have one of Marc Gasol or Serge Ibaka on the floor. If the Warriors go up-tempo, with Draymond as their 5, it could be tough for them to match that.JaredDubin: Is your other biggest question, “How will Kyle Lowry deal with guarding Steph and not disappearing on offense at the same time?”chris.herring: Yes. It is/was.Lowry’s been pretty good in this series. Curry would be a brutal matchup for him, though.And Fred VanVleet is playing the series of his life at the moment. But I don’t think that would continue in the next series.JaredDubin: It was like a week ago that everyone was wondering if it was time to bench him because he hadn’t hit a shot in (seemingly) three years.neil: A lot of things were different for Toronto (and Milwaukee) about a week ago.chris.herring: Tell me about it!Only five teams in NBA history have come back from down 2-0 to win a conference final in the best-of-seven era.neil: Last one I remember being quite this surprised by might have been OKC beating the Spurs in 2012.chris.herring: And Ibaka was on that team, which was the last team to do it.JaredDubin: Stat! Teams trailing 3-2 in a series are 27-162 all-time, but when a team goes up 2-0 at home and then loses three straight, they are 8-7. All seven wins by the team leading 3-2 have come in Game 6. The team that went up 2-0 and then lost three in a row has won all eight Games 7. sara.ziegler: Ooooh, that’s interesting.I’m still trying to FEAR THE DEER.chris.herring: It’s a bit hard to.tchow: So Game 6 is Toronto’s Game 7.neil: That’s why Game 6 is so huge in these circumstances. According to this playoff leverage thing I did, Game 6 with the home team up 3-2 is the second most crucial possible situation.Trailing only (obviously) Game 7.chris.herring: Also, Toronto is a really difficult place to play anyway, let alone in a scenario where the Raptors can clinch a ticket to the FinalsMilwaukee made a lineup change, but it kind of feels like they’re stuck in the mud on offense when they aren’t in transition.JaredDubin: It feels like Mike Budenholzer really needs to lean in to the lineup he started last night, though. They crushed the Raptors with Bledsoe-Brogdon-Middleton-Giannis-Lopez and got destroyed in the other minutes. But he said before the game that he thinks it’s better to have 36 peak Giannis minutes than 40-plus of like 90-percent-ish minutes, basically.chris.herring: I won’t dwell on it too much, but I was so, so impressed by how many big plays the Raptors came up with at the end of a game on the road. So perhaps seeing that is reason enough to leave open the possibility that the Bucks can do that with their backs against the wall in Toronto.tchow: Can we talk big picture for a moment? Neil asked me this question this morning and I wanted to ask the group here: What would you put the chance of Kawhi staying in Toronto right this second? Before we know what happens in Game 6 or the end of this series.chris.herring: I imagine it’s really high if they win the series. It will show that you essentially can’t do any better from a team success standpoint than the situation he was traded into. So at that point, if you leave, it clearly becomes about wanting to play in another market. And with the exception of LeBron James, it’s hard to find a lot of first-rate players having done that.JaredDubin: I can’t imagine him finding a better running mate from a fit standpoint than Pascal Siakam. And if he stays, the Raptors can be even more aggressive in seeking out help for him than they were this year, and they were pretty aggressive in trading for Gasol at the deadline this year already.chris.herring: Then again, it’s Kawhi, and no one has ever been more quiet in terms of their overall persona. Who knows?He may be intrigued by being able to partner with a team on going out and getting a second max talent.sara.ziegler: He’s loved in Toronto, too. He’d obviously be second fiddle in L.A.chris.herring: Not with the Clippers!sara.ziegler: LOLOK, fair.JaredDubin: Kawhi would probably hate being second fiddle.tchow: * Kawhi laugh *chris.herring: I said this last night, but even if the Raptors lose, you have to feel content with having gone all-in at this point.You got a legitimate superstar, and he’s given you everything you could ask for at this point, especially if they reach the finals. All you wanted was a chance to win the whole thing.tchow: Yeah, definitely. Last night’s game kinda proved that’s why you risk it for a player like Kawhi, even if you end up losing him.chris.herring: If you get to that round, and he leaves anyway, that’s more about what he wanted and less about anything you as a team did wrong.JaredDubin: Masai Ujiri, president of the Raptors, has also been trying to do a full-on rebuild with this team for years. It started with trading Rudy Gay, but then James Dolan supposedly nixed a deal for Kyle Lowry, and the Raptors turned into the Raptors team we’ve seen over the past several years. Dealing for Kawhi with a year left on his deal set them up to either extend a window of contention around a player who is likely better than any the franchise has ever had, or pivot to trading guys like Lowry and Ibaka, and build around Siakam, Anunoby and some of the other younger guys they have.sara.ziegler: In other NBA news this week, the All-NBA teams were announced on Thursday. Any big surprises?chris.herring: I thought Bradley Beal would make one of the teams. But honestly, when you don’t make the playoffs, it’s always a crapshoot if you’re borderline like that.JaredDubin: There were less “surprising” things than just the reveals of incredibly tough calls. Nikola Jokic vs. Joel Embiid for first team center, and Beal vs. Kemba Walker vs. Klay Thompson for third-team guard.neil: It was weird seeing LeBron only be third-team All-NBA.sara.ziegler: It was sort of weird to see LeBron make it at all!neil: Well, he hadn’t missed first team since 2007. (But yes, it made sense for him to drop, given how much time he missed.)chris.herring: I can’t tell whether people are sad for Klay having missed out on the supermax, or if they’re simply relaying the news that he missed out. This would have been a weird season to make a passionate argument for him, in my opinion.All in all, I thought the teams were generally fine — I just think the setup of contracts and incentives being based on how the media votes is somewhat dumb. I think they should change it in the next CBA, but I don’t know how it should work going forward.JaredDubin: I don’t think there’s anybody in the media who wants to have control over how much money players make.tchow: It’s such a weird thing.JaredDubin: But we’ve also seen with player votes for All-Star teams that they don’t necessarily take voting even as seriously as the least-serious media voters, so maybe this is the best of bad options. (Aside from getting rid of supermax qualifications based on voting altogether.)tchow: I wonder if it goes through the minds of the media members who do vote where they ask themselves if they see a player like Klay or Beal “deserve” a super-max contract, and if answering “no” factors into their All-NBA selections.chris.herring: As I explained all this to my girlfriend yesterday, she was quick to remind me that these guys who are up for potential supermaxes all are due to make well in excess of $100 million anyway.It’s a crazy amount of money, but I think it’s easy to forget that A) it wasn’t really the media’s choice to have this role in the process and B) we’re talking about the very best players, and it’s not easy to decide which are the 15 best all the time.JaredDubin: I feel like, even if I were due to make $190 million, I would still prefer to make $220 million. But I also have no idea what it feels like to make $190 million, which I’m sure surprises everyone.sara.ziegler: 🤣chris.herring: Yeah.neil: The alternative is something like the baseball arbitration system, where a formula determines pay.chris.herring: * ding ding ding *neil: (And that is obviously also very fraught.)JaredDubin: It has always seemed strange that the percentage-of-cap maximums are determined by your years of service in the league. It almost always leads to guys being underpaid early and overpaid late.neil: Although that’s basically how every sport runs its business now. (Or again, if we go with the baseball model, they underpay early and then don’t pay late.)tchow: I hope we see an angry Klay in the finals play like someone who just lost out on $30 million and irrationally blames it on the Raptors/Bucks.JaredDubin: In the unlikely event the Finals gets to Game 6, I bet we see a Klaysplosion then. He’s incredible in Game 6.neil: Those Toronto and/or Milwaukee based writers clearly had a vendetta against him.sara.ziegler: Maybe the writers vote based on who gives the best interviews.neil: He’s a great interview, if the topic is scaffolding.Check out our latest NBA predictions. sara.ziegler: Toronto won more games on the season than Golden State and has fewer injuries. Toronto would have the home-court advantage in the finals. Aren’t those important points in the Raptors’ favor?chris.herring: I can’t bring myself to think it matters all that much. At least not yet.Golden State has shown it can win despite not having home-court advantage.JaredDubin: I think I’d be more inclined to give those things weight if this were the first year of the Warriors’ run and not the fifth, and if we didn’t know that the Warriors essentially treat the regular season as an extended preseason. Draymond Green didn’t even start caring until he went on his crash diet in March, and he’s been one of the, like, three best players in the playoffs.chris.herring: If anything, the Durant injury is the thing to watch. They’d obviously be better positioned, and make the Raptors work a lot more, if they had him. (If for no other reason because of Kawhi presumably having to guard him at times.)But the Warriors haven’t given us any reason to suspect they can’t win the way they are. Also, one of the Raptors’ wins over the Dubs was a game in which Curry didn’t play.sara.ziegler: I guess my point here is that the opinions on who we think will win are based most on knowing that Golden State has won.chris.herring: That’s fair.But I also don’t think Toronto is a particularly great postseason match for Golden State.sara.ziegler: I get that.And the model is about the people playing — not about how they’ll play against the specific guys on the other team.chris.herring: I would have felt much better about the Bucks and think I’d favor them.neil: For what it’s worth, Vegas still has it as Warriors 69 percent, Raptors 18 percent, Bucks 13 percent.tchow: Hypothetically, if the Bucks were up 3-2, based on the CARMELO scores, they would also be favored against the Warriors in the finals at this point, no? Would we think there’s something wrong with the model then?chris.herring: * ding ding ding *neil: Tony, I think it might. Both teams currently have identical full-strength CARMELO ratings. Our model still thinks the Bucks and Raptors are pretty interchangeable, talent-wise.sara.ziegler: That’s kind of amazing.JaredDubin: This series has essentially shown that to be true, right? The Bucks and Raptors being relatively equal, talent-wise. Each team has a blowout, and the other three close games could have gone either way.tchow: The model has been really high on Toronto, compared to other models, all playoffs long. That prediction is looking pretty good so far this series, which is making us Bucks believers (fear-ers?) look bad. Maybe I’m still salty about being wrong about Toronto, because my initial reaction on seeing the new finals projections was also “no f-ing way.”neil: I mean, that was my honest reaction too, Tony: read more

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