first_img Human language and dolphin movement patterns show similarities in brevity © 2010 PhysOrg.com This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. (PhysOrg.com) — A new study has found that Formosan macaque monkeys prefer to keep their “words” short, using long vocalizations only occasionally. Explore furthercenter_img Humans also predominantly use short words that do not take much time to say, such as “of”, “a”, “it”, “or”, and “the”. The relationship between how often a word is used and its length is known as the law of brevity, and the fact that monkeys follow the same law may shed some light on the origins of human speech.The scientists, led by Dr Stuart Semple of the Roehampton University in London, U.K., said the law of brevity, which appears to apply to all languages, means the words used most often are short, while the words used least often are long, and this makes communication more efficient. Dr Semple and his team wanted to see if the same rule would apply to other animals, and to find out, they studied macaques (Macaca cyclopsis) living on Mount Longevity in Taiwan. The macaques were chosen because they are known for their extensive use of vocal communication. Formosan macaques have 35 calls of varying duration, and the scientists studied the relationship between the call duration and how often the call was used. The exact meanings of the calls are so far unknown, but they include greetings, screams and whines. The researchers found that the calls most often used were very short, while the longer calls, such as whines, were rarely heard.Dr Semple said this was the first time the law of brevity had been observed in non-human vocal communications, but it makes sense because keeping conversations short saves time and energy and also avoids drawing the attention of potential predators. The observations also suggest that the common primate ancestor could also have followed the law of brevity, which reveals more about why humans also communicate in this way.The scientists plan to follow up their research by studying other species, including non-primates, to see if they also keep their vocal communications short.The paper is published in the journal of the Royal Society, Biology Letters. More information: Efficiency of coding in macaque vocal communication, Biology Letters, DOI:10.1098/rsbl.2009.1062 Citation: Monkeys keep their words short, just like us (2010, January 29) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-01-monkeys-words-short.htmllast_img read more

first_img Citation: Holographic 3-D looks tantalizingly closer in 2012 (2011, December 28) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-12-holographic-d-tantalizingly-closer.html via IEEE © 2011 PhysOrg.com Scientists at Imec believe, as do other researchers, that holographic images are the answer toward resolving the eye strain and headaches that go along with present-day 3-D viewing. At Imec, their work involves creating moving pixels. They are constructing holographic displays by shining lasers on microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) platforms that can move up and down like small, reflective pistons.“Holographic visualization promises to offer a natural 3-D experience for multiple viewers, without the undesirable side-effects of current 3D stereoscopic visualization (uncomfortable glasses, strained eyes, fatiguing experience),” the company states.In their nanoscale system, they work with chips made by growing a layer of silicon oxide on to silicon wafer. They etch square patches of the silicon oxide. The result is a checkerboard-like pattern where etched-away pixels are nanometers lower than their neighbors. A reflective aluminum coating tops the chip. When laser light shines on the chip, it bounces off of the boundary between adjacent pixels at an angle. Diffracted light interferes constructively and destructively to create a 3-D picture where small mirrored platforms are moving up and down, many times a second, to create a moving projection. The process can also be described as the pixels closer to the light interfering with it one way and those further off, in another. The small distances between them generate the image that the eye sees.Imec hopes to construct the first, proof-of-concept moving structures by mid-2012. “Imec’s vision is to design the ultimate 3D display: a holographic display with a 60° diffraction angle and a high-definition visual experience,” they state. (PhysOrg.com) — Applications like holographic TV have long been relegated as the next big thing in the distant future but a Leuven, Belgium-based R&D lab for nanoelectronics has come up with a process that might bring holographic images closer to realtime. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img Explore further As such, Imec will have lots of company elsewhere in the race to iron out complexities of holographic imaging. According to reports throughout 2011, research teams aim to make the technology more of a reality than a wish-list item for consumers. The BBC’s R&D department has identified the work that broadcasters are doing across Europe, for example, in holographic TV. Engineers are also focused on research into 3-D holoscopy for the Internet and other 3-D applications. Researchers at MIT this year said they were closing in on holographic TV by building a system with a refresh rate of 15 frames per second. Also earlier this year, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) completed a five-year project called “Urban Photonic Sandtable Display” that creates realtime, color, 360-degree 3-D holographic displays. More information: New holographic radar system can track high speed shellslast_img read more

first_img The problem he points out, is that we’ve become so dependent on electricity and electronic communications, that a big solar storm could cause power grids the world over to go down, and for GPS to become non-functional for an unknown amount of time, causing havoc across a wide spectrum of systems such as those used by the military, the Internet, financial institutions and of course aviation. And what’s more, he says, it doesn’t necessarily have to be that way because there are many things that could be done to prevent such a nasty outcome.He suggests, for example, that power grids could be upgraded to better withstand such an onslaught. He cites how upgrades were made to many grids the world over after a solar storm in 1989 knocked out power to a large section of Quebec. Unfortunately, that storm was rather puny compared to other storms that have hit Earth. One in 1921 was bigger, and another in 1859 was so powerful that it caused telegraph machines to set fire to cable offices. A storm today of that magnitude could cause power outages lasting in some places for months. Upgrading transformers even more, he says, could prevent such an outcome.But then the question is, how far do you go? Since no one really knows how bad solar storms can get, no one really knows how much protection to build into systems. Because of that, Hapgood says we need to do our homework. There are records, he points out, of prior events and what occurred as a result, but they are all mostly hand written and stored in unknown locations. We need to find those, digitize them and make them available to researchers.We need to get better at forecasting too, he adds. Currently we get from ten minutes to about an hour’s notice for solar storms, very little time to take preventive action. Better satellites could be built and put into space that could open that window a little wider, perhaps giving grid operators or those that run satellites enough time to take evasive action that could save such facilities from damage.In summation, he writes, we as a world community need to take the possibility of a serious solar storm more seriously and then start doing things to minimize the damage that could result. Failure to do so could lead to widespread chaos and unknown circumstances thereafter. (Phys.org) — In the business of everyday life, it’s easy to overlook things that could cause a serious disruption to how life is lived; floods happen, hurricanes, volcanoes and tsunamis like the one that devastated Japan last year. And now it seems, there is one more potential disaster we should add to the list: geomagnetic storms caused by coronal mass ejections from the sun. Mike Hapgood head of the space environment group with RAL Space, part of the UK Science and Technology Facilities Council, has written a commentary published in the journal Nature, suggesting that it’s time we quit burying our heads in the sand regarding the devastating impact a serious solar storm could have on modern populations. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. © 2012 Phys.Org Artist’s depiction of solar wind particles interacting with Earth’s magnetosphere. Sizes are not to scale. Image: NASA Effects of solar flares arriving on Earthcenter_img Explore further Journal information: Nature Citation: Space environmentalist warns we need to better prepare for solar storms (2012, April 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-04-space-environmentalist-solar-storms.html More information: Astrophysics: Prepare for the coming space weather storm, Nature 484, 311–313 (19 April 2012) doi:10.1038/484311alast_img read more

first_imgTwo researchers, one with Biofaction in Austria, the other with Université de Toulouse in France, report an example of ants (Azteca brevis) in Costa Rica who have developed a truly unique way of capturing prey that are much larger than they are. As Markus Schmidt and Alain Dejean describe in their paper published in the Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, the ants have found a way to take advantage of the impact a type of fungus has on trees to help them capture prey. As Schmidt and Dejean note, a type of fungus grows on tree branches in the Piedras Blancas National Forest, in Costa Rica. In addition to creating a dark residue on the branches, the fungus softens the bark, which allows the ants to dig tiny holes and build a nest beneath it. The holes, the researchers note, are just big enough for the ants to crawl into and hide—and for trapping the feet of crawling insects. Once an insect’s foot falls into a hole, the ant that is hiding in it latches on and begins pulling. As the insect attempts to free itself, it flails about, trapping its other feet (and sometimes antennae) in other holes where there are more ants hiding. They, too, clamp onto the insect and begin pulling—together, the ants trap the spread-eagled insect, preventing it from escaping. What happens next depends on the size and nature of the captured insect. For those that that are large and can still fight back, the ants simply hang on until it dies—a wait that can last for hours. For those that are smaller or weaker, other ants emerge from holes in the tree and attack. In either case, the insect is eaten where it was killed.The researchers report that the technique allows the ants to capture prey almost 50 times larger than they are. They further report that it is an example of an extended phenotype, which was introduced by Richard Dawkins in 1982 to describe all effects that a gene has on its environment, whether inside or outside the body of an individual organism. More information: Markus Schmidt et al. A dolichoderine ant that constructs traps to ambush prey collectively: convergent evolution with a myrmicine genus, Biological Journal of the Linnean Society (2018). DOI: 10.1093/biolinnean/bly028AbstractAzteca brevis Forel, a dolichoderine ant species, builds along the branches of its host plant galleries that bear numerous holes slightly wider than a worker’s head. We noted that the workers hide, mandibles open, beneath different holes, waiting for arthropod prey to walk by or alight. They seize the extremities of these arthropods and pull backwards, immobilizing the prey, which is then spreadeagled and later carved up or pulled into a gallery before being carved up. The total duration of the capture ranges from a few minutes to several hours. This ambush group hunting permits the capture of insects of a wide range of sizes, with the largest being 48.71 times heavier than the workers, something that we compared with other cases of group hunting by ants and trap use by other arthropods. A convergence with myrmicine ants of the genus Allomerus is shown. Thus, this study also shows that the genus Azteca presents the largest panel of group hunting strategies by ants and that there is polyethism related to polymorphism, as hunting workers are larger than their nestmates. We concluded that these gallery-shaped traps correspond to the notion of ‘extended phenotype’. Citation: Ants found to use trapping technique to capture much larger prey (2018, April 25) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-04-ants-technique-capture-larger-prey.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Azteca brevis workers using their gallery-shaped trap to catch insect prey. A, a gallery-shaped trap with workers hiding under holes with their mandibles open. B, a fly ant trapped on the gallery was later cut up on the spot. C, an insect pulled inside the gallery. (Photographs by M. Schmidt.). Credit: Biological Journal of the Linnean Society (2018). DOI: 10.1093/biolinnean/bly028 Ants sacrifice their colony mates as parts of a deadly disinfection Explore further © 2018 Phys.orglast_img read more

first_imgLook What They Made Her Do: Taylor Swift To Re-Record Her… Kevin Mazur by NPR News Anastasia Tsioulcas 8.22.19 12:00pm Ending a summer of speculation, singer Taylor Swift confirmed Thursday that she’s planning to re-record her existing catalog in order to regain artistic and financial control of her material after her former record label sold it in a reported $300 million deal.Swift first spoke publicly about her plans in an interview that will be broadcast on “CBS Sunday Morning” this week.She reasserted her plans in a live interview Thursday on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” shortly before a live performance in New York City that also served as promotion for her newest album, Lover, which drops Friday.Interviewer Robin Roberts pointed out that Lover has sold almost a million copies in pre-sale, which means that it is very likely to go platinum upon release. Swift added, “One thing that’s really special to me is that it’s the first one that I will own.” (The audience erupted into loud, extended cheers at her answer.)Roberts followed up by asking Swift about her plans to re-record her earlier material. Taylor answered, “Yeah, and it’s something that I’m very excited about doing, because my contract says that starting November 2020 — so, next year — I can record albums 1 through 5 all over again — I’m very excited about it. … I think artists deserve to own their work. I just feel very passionately about that.” (The fate of 2017’s Reputation –her sixth project released on her former label — is unclear at this point.)Swift’s announcement comes nearly two months after her former label home, Big Machine, was sold to Ithaca Holdings, an umbrella company owned by impresario Scooter Braun. (Braun’s own management roster includes Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande.) Public speculation about Swift’s plans to re-record that material was sparked by Kelly Clarkson, who tweeted the idea at Swift on July 13.Big Machine, which was founded by Nashville music industry veteran Scott Borchetta, signed Swift in 2006; Swift, then just a teenager, was Big Machine’s staple artist, and her first six albums were released on that label.Swift claimed that she was unaware of the sale to Braun’s company, and called the deal “my worst-case scenario,” alluding to Braun’s involvement in a number of feuds between her and artists he has managed, including Kanye West. Swift also said that she had tried to buy back her masters from Big Machine, but that the terms the label offered her were intolerable. In a blog post, she wrote: “For years, I asked, pleaded for a chance to own my work. Instead I was given an opportunity to sign back up to Big Machine Records and ‘earn’ one album back at a time, one for every new one I turned in. I walked away because I knew once I signed that contract, Scott Borchetta would sell the label, thereby selling me and my future. I had to make the excruciating choice to leave behind my past.”Last year, Swift signed a deal with the world’s largest record company, Universal Music Group, and its subsidiary Republic Records; Lover is her first release under this new contract.For artists, master recordings — the original recordings of musicians’ work — are vital musically, historically and financially. In most situations, labels own those masters. But many musicians, both prominent and independent ones, have tried to hang on to their masters. As Prince famously told Rolling Stone back in 1996, “If you don’t own your masters, your master owns you.”Some artists have jumped at the opportunity to re-record their work — sometimes for artistic or technological reasons (such as in the case of Car Seat Headrest, who re-recorded 2011’s Twin Fantasy and re-released it last year), and other times with far more explicitly financial goals. One example is the one-hit wonder Wang Chung, who in 2007 re-recorded “Everybody Have Fun Tonight” in order to rejigger its licensing profits. Squeeze followed suit in 2010; singer Glenn Tilbrook wrote in The Guardian: “If one of my children was doing a life sentence in prison for a crime I knew they hadn’t committed, I would do my best to get them out, no matter what. Having the recordings of my songs owned forever by someone else, with no chance of getting them back, is a little bit like that.”Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit NPR.last_img read more

first_imgThe Value Elephant: The Head and Tail of Wealth Creation by Sanjay KulkarniIf six sightless men were asked to describe “value”, they had probably touched an elephant and described it in parts, without getting a sense of the whole. But to build lasting wealth, you must perceive the entire “value elephant”. Great fortunes are made and lost in financial markets. The author’s approach, called V-GRO, enables identification of fundamentally strong businesses which are available at a discount, debunks a number of myths like “price is always right” and “earrings are everything”, and creates positive results for investors. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’That is not all. The same fundamentals, Kulkarni argues, can be applied to a business to create value. He demonstrates how CEOs, professional managers and owners of businesses can ride the “value elephant” to make businesses more valuable, regardless of ownership and industry segment.Rustom and the Last Storyteller of Almora by Gaurav ParabRustom Iraqiwalla, a once-rich, green-eyed Parsi, is all set to blow his brains out at his best friend’s wedding. Debt-ridden and marked by the mafia, this is the only way he can secure his family’s future and atone for all the rotten choices he has made in his life. This extraordinary situation comes by way of his grandfather Fali’s will that states Rustom shall inherit the family fortune if he kills himself in a public place with the former’s eponymous gun. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixBefore he has a chance to shoot himself, his best friend Mani persuades him to meet an unlikely saviour in the Himalayan town of Almora – a drugged-out godman belting out strange visions through cryptic stories of love, power and loyalty. Will the last story-teller give Rustom a reason to live, or will his tales push Rustom further into an abyss of unimaginable loss?Ambushed by Nayanika MahtaniThis is a wildly exciting tale about the battle between man and nature. “That’s it,” thought Tara, with a sinking feeling in her stomach. “My end is here”. She fervently hoped it wouldn’t be as brutal as that of the poor tigers. Gadget geek Tara braces herself for the dullest summer ever when her banker-turned-photographer father whisks her off to a sleepy tiger reserve in the Himalayan foothills, where nothing ever happens.She couldn’t have been more wrong. A stroll through the woods sends Tara on an adventure of a lifetime, as she stumbles upon an international gang of poachers. A tigress and her cubs must be saved and Tara’s only accomplice is her mysterious new friend, Satya. But can this unlikely pair save the day?India and the World: Through the Eyes of Indian Diplomats by Surendra KumarIf there is anything constant in the world, it is change, especially in today’s globalised world. Thirty mandarins of South Block look at the current changes in different parts of the world, try to connect them with developments of the recent past, analyse and dissect them with experience and understanding spanning decades and strive to foresee what is likely to happen and weigh how that could impact India’s relations with the rest of the world.This book is a unique treasure of the thoughts and ideas of Indian diplomats who have collectively put in more than 1,150 years in the Indian Foreign Service, representing three generations: those who joined in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. While some have shared reflections and reminiscences of their roller coaster journey diplomatic career, others have focussed on India’s relations with different countries and regions.A few have set out on a rather philosophical note, wondering whether it is hard power or the soft power or the soul power that serves national interests best and whether the days of quiet diplomacy are numbered. All in all, it is a heady cocktail of reflections and reminiscences, hard-nosed analysis and dispassionate interpretation and, of course, some crystal ball-gazing.last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: Cobas 6000 auto analyser machine has been installed at Calcutta Medical College and Hospital on Monday.A fully automated modular biochemistry analyser, Cobas 6000 can perform a combination of routine biochemistry, Electrolytes and special biochemistry tests at the sametime. This analyser can deliver reports of 1,200 tests per hour.It can perform 1,200 different tests with a single sample. As a result, reports of blood tests would be given to the patients in less time. As there is a huge number of patients visiting the hospital for various tests, the machine will help the hospital authorities to cater to more number of patients in a better way. It may be mentioned that CMCH is the first hospital in the state to have such an automatic machine that performs tests on a large-scale in less time. The approximate cost of the machine is around Rs 2 crore. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedThe machine was inaugurated at the central pathology building of Calcutta Medical College and Hospital by Dr Nirmal Maji, who happens to be the Chairman of Rogi Kalayan Samity of the hospital in presence of the Principal, medical super of the hospital. According to the hospital sources, there is a provision to enhance the capacity up to 2,000 samples per hour only with an addition of another module to the machine. According to a hospital doctor, various tests including that of Sodium, Potassium, Calcium, Electrolyte, platelet, RBC, WBC, HIV and cancer can be done by the advanced machine. In addition, the machine will be able to do general biochemistry tests like sugar, uric acid, various hormone tests and tumor marker tests. The main purpose behind installing the costly machine at CMCH is to ensure that the patients get their blood tests done in minimum possible time. The people would be able to get the benefit at completely free of costs.last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: In an extremely determined austerity drive, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee directed her Cabinet colleagues and government officials to go for an “effective utilisation of resources” that would ensure that common man’s money is not spent for luxury. Following a high-level meeting at the Nabanna Sabhaghar, Banerjee said that committees under Chief Secretary Malay De have been formed to monitor and monetise resources.Speaking at a press conference on Thursday, she said measures were required to cut down avoidable expenses. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedShe added: “We have to check unnecessary expenditure but there will be no compromise on expenses to ensure better public services.”Mentioning the manifold increase in the planned budget since 2011, Banerjee stated that money is needed to give better service to the people and at the same time the leftover debt of the erstwhile Left Front government also needed to be cleared. She further stated that the state government has so far cleared Rs 2.40 lakh crore and this year, it has given Rs 46,000 crore for the debt. The Chief Minister has also taken a dig at the Centre for its step-motherly attitude as its allocation of funds for various projects have been reduced. This comes at the time when the state government’s exchequer will cost around Rs 5,000 crore as its employees will be getting Dearness Allowance (DA) at 125 percent from January 1 of 2019. Also Read – Naihati: 10 councillors return to TMC from BJPBanerjee, under whose leadership the state has witnessed an overall development in the past seven years, maintained: “We also run several projects for the benefits of the people including Kanyashree, Rupashree and Khadya Sathi.”In the same breath, she said: “Planned budget in 2011 was Rs 11,000 crore. But now it has been increased to Rs 80,000 crore. At the same time, Rs 18,000 crore also has to be invested for infrastructure development.”Banerjee maintained that the planned expenditure and capital expenditure have gone up by five times and nine times respectively. The physical and social expenditure has gone up by four times each. Income of farmers has also gone up by three times. “Our government is the first to introduce e-governance and e-tendering mechanism. We have received several awards and it has also helped in ensuring better service to people,” she added.Urging the officials to be more effective and innovative in their ideas, the Chief Minister further said: “We are trying our best to bring down expenses and provide better services to people. The number of departments has also been brought down to 51 from 63 by merging 12 departments.” She has also urged all to be more proactive as there are many areas that still remained untouched and steps need to be taken to work in those sectors.She also urged for steps so that there is no loss due to “faulty tender” process. She said that there will also be training for Financial Advisors and the Public Works Department will arrange training for engineers.Emphasising the need to rationalise human resources, the Chief Minister said: “Whatever we can save will be utilised for the benefit of the masses.”last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: Brazil’s shock 1-2 defeat to Belgium has all but ended the east Indian city’s FIFA World Cup euphoria with Argentina also bowing out of the football competition earlier.Streets of football-mad Kolkata wore a despondent look on Saturday afternoon as clutters of Brazil and Argentina flags looked colourless in the torrential downpour that lashed the eastern metropolis.Much like the end of the Durga Puja festival, the buzz in tea stalls, local sweet shops and fast food joints went missing. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedBrazil revellers, who until Friday’s reversal were happy at the fact that Argentina had lost to France in the round of 16, disappeared from the streets while jersey sellers at Maidan market were counting their losses.”Like every four years, we had ordered Brazil and Argentina jerseys the most. Yes, there was demand for Portugal as well with Ronaldo jerseys being sold a lot. But since their exit and Germany’s too, Brazil shirts were in huge demand after their win over Mexico (in the pre-quarters). With Brazil gone, we fear a downturn in jersey sales,” a Maidan market shopkeeper said. Also Read – Naihati: 10 councillors return to TMC from BJPArgentina supporters rubbed salt in Brazil counterparts’ wounds by bursting crackers the moment referee Mazic Milorad of Serbia blew the final whistle. Social media groups were awash with taunts between supporters of both parties.”We are not exactly happy but there is a sense of satisfaction as they were celebrating Argentina’s exit like Brazil have won the World Cup. Belgium showed them their place,” said Sandip Misra, an Argentina supporter.”You can say that the World Cup for Bengalis is over,” current India full-back Pritam Kotal said. “For Bengalis, I have grown up watching people support either Brazil or Argentina in my neighbourhood. So the charm will be missing now,” added Kotal, a Brazil supporter.An own goal from Fernandinho and a beauty of a strike from Kevin De Bruyne in the first half helped Belgium subdue Neymar’s Brazil for whom Raphael Augusto scored in the second period. This is the first time that neither Brazil, Germany or Argentinahave reached the semi-finals of the World Cup.last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: Police arrested five BJP supporters in connection with the assault on five policemen including an additional superintendent of police at Chowringhee in Kharagpur on Monday. The arrested BJP workers along with some others had beaten up the policemen after the vehicles they were travelling in got caught up in a traffic jam. The BJP workers asked the police to clear the jam as they had to reach the Midnapore College ground, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi was addressing a gathering. The BJP workers got down from the vehicles and beat up the policemen on duty. When some senior officers came to the rescue of their colleagues, the BJP workers beat them as well, with bamboo sticks and iron rods. An additional superintendent of police was also injured. West Midnapore district administration had instructed the police not to take the issue lightly.last_img read more

first_imgUS National Security Adviser Susan Rice is expected to pay a day-long visit to Pakistan on Sunday for discussions on various bilateral and regional issues, officials said here on Saturday.Rice is expected to hold important talks with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif over a host of issues. Sharif’s proposed trip to the US in October will also be part of the talks. Rice would also meet army chief General Raheel Sharif to discuss defence ties and regional situation including the status of talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government.The visit coincides with rising tensions between Pakistan and India along the LoC.The US has been urging the two countries to sort out their differences through peaceful means after Pakistan called off NSA-level talks set for August 23 when India made it clear that discussions on Kashmir and a meeting with separatists will not be acceptable.last_img read more

first_imgDarjeeling: Ten children were rescued from New Jalpaiguri Railway station from being allegedly trafficked to Rajasthan. Four persons arrested in connection with this racket were produced before the Chief Judicial Magistrate Court in Jalpaiguri on Friday and have remanded to judicial custody.”We had received information from Shashastra Seema Bal and accordingly launched a joint operation with the help of Government Railway Police and Railway Protection Force at the NJP Railway station. The Brahmaputra Express was thoroughly searched. The joint operation resulted in the rescue of 10 boys,” stated Ashim Rai, regional Manager, Tiny Hands, India (working in the anti-Human Trafficking arena) The incident had occurred on Thursday. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life”The boys were from Jalpaiguri and neighbouring Assam. They were being trafficked to Jaipur and Rajasthan to work in a Saree factory as embroiders,” added Rai.Chanchal Das and his wife Deepa Das of Malda along with Dipak Das and his wife Chandana Das from Jalpaiguri were arrested in connection with this incident. They have been booked under Section 370 (exploitation) of the Indian Penal Code along with Immoral Trafficking Prevention Act.Four of the rescued boys aged 18 years and above were handed over to their respective families and the remaining 6 were sent to a Home in Jalpaiguri.Tiny Hands India has been operating in Siliguri, Panitanki on the Indo-Nepal border, Jaigaon on the Indo-Bhutan border andAlipurduar since 2016.They have intercepted 585 vulnerable persons or victims since inception.last_img read more

first_imgWith BJP under fire over controversial remarks of its leaders on Dadri and beef row, party chief Amit Shah has cracked the whip and warned them against making such remarks after Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed “extreme displeasure” on the comments.Shah has pulled up Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, Union Minister Mahesh Sharma, MP Sakshi Maharaj and MAL Sangeet Som, warning them against making such comments that threaten to derail the development agenda of the Modi government, a party source said. Also Read – Punjab on alert after release of excess water from Bhakra dam”The party president has warned them against making such statements. Such controversies in a way derail the development agenda of the party as well as the Modi government,” the source privy to the development said.Shah told them that the lynching of a man in Dadri over rumours that he had eaten and stored beef was essentially a failure of the state government in maintaining law and order and BJP had nothing to do with it.Their controversial remarks deflected the attention from the Samajwadi Party dispensation and turned the spotlight on BJP, the sources said. Also Read – Union Min doubts ‘vote count’ in Bareilly, seeks probeThe top party brass swung into action after Modi, who has been criticised for not doing enough to rein in party hotheads, conveyed his anger over the controversy sparked by the comments of these leaders.”Modiji is extremely upset over these controversies,” the source said.Khattar was recently reported to have said that Muslims can live in India, but they will have to give up eating beef.He was forced to retract following a backlash over his comment. Both Sharma and Som had visited the Dadri village where the Muslim man was lynched. While Sharma had termed the murder as an “accident”, Som had alleged that police was framing innocents and warned of retaliation like Muzaffarnagar, a place ravaged by riots in 2013.The Union Culture Minister and Hindutva leader Sakshi Maharaj have been at the centre of a series of controversies over their right-wing comments.last_img read more

first_imgALL THE PAINTINGS in the exhibition, ‘Soul of my Country’ might look distinct at first glance; however the common thread among all the paintings revolves around India and Indian women. Whether it is Sita or Padmini or a simple village woman performing mangal arati or Vaastu puja, women dominate her landscape except in the works depicting mythological stories and rickshaw pullers of Kolkata. The paintings for ‘Soul of my Country’ exhibition series are of three types: decorative, figurative and narrative. In decorative paintings one can see birds, animals and human-beings. The figurative mainly includes Gods and Goddesses and Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe figurative mainly includes Gods and Goddesses and tandava dance forms of Lord Shiva. Furthermore, there is narrative kind of paintings depicting life of rickshaw pullers, Rajputs and so on. The artist uses multiple media in this collection: water colour on paper, on silk, oil on canvas, acrylic and water mixable with oil. One also gets the impression that India lives in its villages, where you can experience and share life in its full meaning. India and her core values is ingrained in her canvas with soothing colours, melting into each other with dynamism so vigorous that it consumes the viewer. The water colour on silk is almost comforting, it draws you in. The paintings Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe water colour on silk is almost comforting, it draws you in. The paintings express the soul through life, but life is only a means of the spiritual self-expression, there is a vivid and vital representation, but it is more of an inner psychical than of the outward physical life. This is what viewers will find, walking through ‘Soul of my country’– a solo painting exhibition of Bardhan’s works, which are an amalgamation of paintings of different media and style which she learnt throughout her four decades of career in art, which explores beautiful landscapes of India, her people and her culture. Bardhan is one of the very few artists who use the rare medium “Water Bardhan is one of the very few artists who use the rare medium “Water color on Silk”. Bardhan has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions in prominent galleries in different parts of India and will be showcasing in Bangalore after the Kolkata show.last_img read more

first_imgMoms-to-be, take note! Exposure to extreme heat linked to climate change may harm both pregnant mothers and their babies, a study has warned. Researchers found that temperature extremes can adversely impact birth outcomes, including changes in the length of gestation, birth weight, stillbirth, and neonatal stress during unusually hot temperatures.”Exposure to extreme heat can harm both pregnant mothers and their babies, especially in situations where the expectant mother has limited access to prenatal care,” said Sabrina McCormick, associate professor at the George Washington University in the US.The researchers conducted the most extensive systematic review to date of study articles that identify how heat- related exposures result in adverse health effects for pregnant women.The studies they identified provide evidence that extreme heat can adversely impact birth outcomes, including changes in length of gestation, birth weight, stillbirth, and neonatal stress.”Pregnant women are an important but thus far largely overlooked group vulnerable to the effects of extreme heat linked to climate change,” said McCormick.”Expecting mothers are an important group whose unique vulnerability to heat stress should be factored into public health policy,” he said.The study was published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee lashed out at her Uttar Pradesh counterpart Yogi Adityanath for reportedly referring to the Indian Army as “Modi ji ki sena”, saying it was an “insult” and humiliation for the force.Chief Minister tweeted: “It is shocking to hear the UP CM saying that the Indian Army is the ‘Modi Sena’. Such blatant personalisation and usurping of our beloved Indian Army is an insult and a humiliation. We are proud of our Army. They belong to all. People of this country must stand up and reject this statement.” Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataIt has become a trend for BJP leaders to talk about the air strikes during election campaigns despite severe criticism by the Opposition. In Chennai, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had recently addressed a gathering and on the backdrop of the dais, there were pictures of jawans who died in the Pulwama terror attack. Banerjee said such blatant personalisation should be condemned. Earlier, she had alleged BJP leaders, spearheaded by Modi, are referring to the achievements of Indian Army to divert the attention of the people from core issues. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateIn another tweet on the foundation day of the Reserve Bank of India, Banerjee said the dignity of the RBI has diminished. She called for maintaining “the sanctity” of the central bank along with other institutions. “On this day in 1935, the Reserve Bank of India was established. Best wishes to all the employees of @RBI on this occasion. We have seen in recent times, how the dignity of this institution was diminished. The sanctity of these high offices must be maintained,” she tweeted. The RBI headquarters was initially established in Kolkata but in 1937 it was moved to Mumbai. Banerjee said time and again under the BJP’s autocratic rule the sanctity of the institutions had been ruined and they are working as a tool of the saffron brigade. Within half-an-hour, after Narendra Modi banned high-value currency notes, Banerjee had said it would severely affect the economic growth of the country. Later, many economists from India and abroad also said demonetisation would impede the nation’s economic health. At that time, Banerjee had also taken part in a dharna outside the RBI in Delhi. She wanted to know whether RBI officials were informed about the decision or not. Senior officials of RBI did not open their mouth but with time it came to light that no discussion with the then Governor RBI Urjit Patel was held before the announcement. Banerjee also alleged that institutions such as the Central Bureau of Investigation, Enforcement Directorate and the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence have been used to harass the Opposition leaders. Whenever the Opposition leaders raise their voice and ask questions about the failures of the Centre, the BJP use these institutions against these leaders to scare them. Yogi’s remark also provoked condemnation from the Congress, which called it an insult to the armed forces. The Election Commission has sought a report from the Ghaziabad district magistrate on the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister’s remark at a rally on Sunday, as it may violate the election code.last_img read more

first_imgTufangunj: Speaking to voters at a rally here on Wednesday afternoon, Trinamool Youth Congress president Abhishek Banerjee urged them to ensure that the deposit of the BJP candidates in the ensuing Lok Sabha polls is forfeited.”We should take a pledge to ensure defeat of the BJP candidates in the ensuing Lok Sabha polls. Ensure that their deposit is forfeited,” Banerjee told the people. He said people trust Trinamool Congress because they know that at times of distress they will get workers of the party beside them. “Whether in case of natural calamity or disaster in the family, our workers and leaders always stand beside aggrieved people. We do it throughout the year. But the BJP workers come only during the time of election. They are like seasonal birds and you will never find them after the poll,” he said. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataBanerjee said it is the duty of all the workers and leaders of the party to fulfill Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s dream of winning 42 out of 42 seats in Bengal. “Work hard, go to people and listen to their grievances and try to assist them,” was his advice to the party workers. He urged party workers to fight unitedly against BJP and oust Narendra Modi. “We want a secular government at the Centre and not the one that believes in hate, division and inciting one group against the other,” he maintained. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateCriticising BJP, the Trinamool Youth Congress leader said: “BJP is nominating people who have been rejected by Trinamool and thrown out of the party. The candidate from Cooch Behar has 11 criminal cases against him. He was thrown out of Trinamool. BJP had welcomed him and fielded him as a candidate. This is a party which gives protection and shelter to criminals and mafias.” Banerjee said in the past five years, the people of India have seen the performance of the Central government. “Modi’s announcement of ‘Acche Din’ was a hoax. People have lost jobs due to demonetisation. The youths have not got jobs and unemployment is soaring. There has been economic depression. On top of this, BJP is setting Central agencies against those who have raised questions. Never in the past has India seen such a vindictive and corrupt government,” he added. He said the people of Bengal do not believe in mixing politics with religion. “Religion in Bengal means tolerance and acceptance. We do not believe in division in the name of religion. BJP will get a befitting reply during the polls,” he said.last_img read more

first_imgVELLORE: Curtains came down on the three-day annual international engineering and management festival and knowledge carnival graVITas’18 at Vellore Institute of Technology on October 14. Zakwan Ahmed, Outsanding Scientist and Director General (R&M and IMPL), Defence Research and Development Organisation along with Asfaw Dingamo Kame, Ethiopian Ambassador to India took part in the valedictory function and spoke on the occasion and also handed over prizes to students who had won in the various competitions. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfKame was the Guest of Honour at the Valedictory function and handed over prizes to students of Bharathidasan Matriculation School for presenting the best research paper at graVITas. Speaking on the occasion, Kame said that a number of students had come to India to pursue their higher education at VIT as the institution enjoyed the reputation of providing good quality technical education. He said that he felt extremely glad to note that the students were happy in studying at VIT. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveSaurabh Jain, Vice President of PayTM, who was the Guest of Honour, also handed over prizes to students who had won in various competitions along with Kame.Anand A Samuel, Vice Chancellor, presided over the Valedictory function. Pro Vice Chancellor S Narayanan and Registrar K Sathyanarayanan were also present.Arpitha Dutta, student of VIT welcomed the gathering. Devendra Kumar, Convenor of graVITas, Joint Convenors along with Professors K R Prabhu, Govardhanan, Murugan, and Vasudevan were also present. Neha Benny Mathew, student, delivered a vote of thanks. In his address, the Special Guest, Ahmed said that it was a laudable attempt on the part of VIT to conduct graVITas as an event where the talent of the students to create new inventions in the area of life sciences, water, environment and power supply came to the fore. He said that water was most important for life to sustain and the population of India was 18 per cent of the world’s total population, but the water level was very low.The DRDO, Ahmed said, made rockets and missile systems using advanced technologies. They were being implemented through the ‘Make in India’ project using indigenous technology. Skill Development Centres of the DRDO were functioning at Indian Institutes of Technology in Mumbai, Chennai and IndoreWith the valedictory function, the three-day event came to a formal close.last_img read more

first_imgTeam Mickey and Minnie Mouse for the DeSouza family: (l to r) Commercial Banking Administrator Alison Nugent; Senior Marketing Associate Alexandria Dickson; VP/Collection Manager Albert Cacciagrani; SVP/HR Director Maria Salvatore; SVP/Retail Lending and Habitat for Humanity MetroWest/ Greater Worcester Board Member Scott Auen; and Emma Auen.Region – On June 28, Cornerstone Bank employees were hard at work at the Habitat for Humanity Operation Playhouse Build-A-Thon. This event brought businesses from the Metrowest and Greater Worcester area together to build, paint, and decorate themed playhouses for veteran and military families.Fifteen Cornerstone Bank employees spent the day building two playhouses – one a Mickey and Minnie Mouse theme and the other a Cozy Cottage theme. At the end of the Build-A-Thon, the Mickey and Minnie Mouse-themed playhouse was presented to the daughter of current U.S. Army Master Sergeant Luiz DeSouza and his wife, Krystal, of Milford. The cozy cottage-themed playhouse went to the children of current Massachusetts Army National Guard Chaplain (Lieutenant Colonel) Ryan Sarenpa and his wife, Clarissa, of Lunenburg.Team Cozy Cottage for the Sarenpa Family: (l to r) VP/Compliance, BSA & Security Pamela LeBlanc; Commercial Banking Officer Daniel D’Amico; VP/Controller Scott Dungey; VP/Commercial Loan Operations Rachel Briggs; and AVP/Senior Business Development Sales Manager Nada Kanaan.“Our military members make many sacrifices to protect the life that we enjoy here today in the United States. It’s always a privilege to be able to attend the Playhouse Build-A-Thon and give back to the military families in our community,” stated Scott L. Auen, Cornerstone Bank’s SVP/Retail Lender and MetroWest/Greater Worcester Habitat for Humanity Board Member.Photos/submittedlast_img read more

first_imgIt’s time for Colin’s Blazin’ 5 Prediction Podcast, and his weekly sit down with RJ Bell from Pregame.com to see where there’s agreement and disagreement from the Vegas wiseguys on his NFL Week 9 Blazin’ 5 picks.Colin went 4-1 last week to get him to a scorching 25-15 on the season, and this week he’s taking the Rams and Falcons as road favorites; the Chiefs as road dogs in Dallas; and the Saints and Titans laying points at home.Here are Colin’s Week 9 Blazin’ 5 plays. So, what do the wiseguys say?Rams (-3.5) at GiantsRavens at Titans (-3.5) Bucs at Saints (-7)Falcons (-1 ½) at PanthersChiefs (+2) at CowboysThe Blazin’ 5 Prediction Podcast is available every Saturday through the end of the football season. Download and subscribe to it exclusively at TheHerdNow.com, iHeart Radio, Google Play, or iTunes. Don’t be a mark!last_img read more