Delhi: With heat wave like conditions persisting in the National Capital, the maximum temperature is likely to touch 46 degrees Celcius on Thursday. According to the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) forecast, there will no respite for the people of Delhi in the days ahead either, with the weather conditions likely to remain the same till next Wednesday. For Thursday, the weather office has predicted severe heat wave conditions in isolated pockets of East Uttar Pradesh. It has also forecast heat wave conditions in most parts, with severe heat wave in isolated pockets over West Rajasthan and Vidarbha. Heat wave conditions are also expected in some parts over west Madhya Pradesh, Telangana and Marathwada and in isolated pockets of Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and Delhi, west Uttar Pradesh, east Rajasthan, east Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Gujarat, central Maharashtra, interior Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry.
Kolkata: The School Service Commission has resumed the process of general transfer of teachers on special ground and transfer on administrative ground. A notification in this regard has been uploaded on the website of the West Bengal Central School Service Commission.The process was kept in abeyance through an earlier notification issued on March 14, with the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) coming into effect after the announcement of the Lok Sabha elections. Also Read – City bids adieu to Goddess Durga”The application for special transfer, as per rule, is submitted directly to the department. The state Education department has given its necessary nod and has forwarded more than 2,000 applications of special transfer with all relevant documents to me,” said Soumitra Sarkar, chairman of the WBSSC. The mutual transfer application is made directly to the Commission and is carried out as per the vacancy list submitted by the District Inspector of Schools (DIs). Also Read – Centuries-old Durga Pujas continue to be hit among revellersIt was October last year when the state Education department had brought out a notification stalling the transfer process of teachers both in the primary and secondary level, until further notice. Instructions were issued to the DIs and also to the headmasters of the state schools in this regard. The move came in the wake of the incident at Daribhit High School in North Dinajpur, where two students were killed in a clash that broke out over recruitment of teachers. It was found that in the school there was no need of Urdu teachers. Neither was there any vacancy. However, despite that the school was in the process of recruiting a teacher for Urdu, which led to the unfortunate incident. The department had sought reports regarding vacancies at all schools from the DIs and it was sometime around the beginning of March when the SSC had brought out the notification regarding such transfers. However, the process was again stalled with the MCC in effect.
Pithoragarh: Indian Air Force helicopters Monday spotted the bodies of five of the eight mountaineers who went missing on way to the Nanda Devi East peak in Uttarakhand. The eight-member team consisting of climbers from the UK, US and Australia went missing en route to the Nanda Devi East peak. Bodies of five mountaineers were sighted near an unscaled peak adjoining the Nanda Devi East peak during an air search by Air Force helicopters on Monday, Pithoragarh District Magistrate VK Jogdande said. Also Read – Dussehra with a ‘green’ twist Apparently the mountaineers were perished in an avalanche while ascending an unscaled peak near the Nanda Devi East peak after they failed to scale the latter, he said. The bodies were sighted after an air search was conducted over the peak on the basis of clues provided by four climbers from UK rescued during a sortie undertaken on Sunday. “We are sending a report to the Centre. Further rescue operation will be conducted after we get instructions,” the District Magistrate said. Also Read – India receives its first Rafale fighter jet from France “We have an expert team from State Disaster Response Force, besides experts from Indian Mountaineering Foundation. In addition to these teams, we have stationed our search teams at Laspa and Bugdiyar camps close to the Nanda Devi base camp in Munsiyari,” said the official. Sub Divisional Magistrate of Munsiyari KN Goswami said, “It is now ITBP and SDRF and Air Force teams that will conduct the search operation with help of expert mountaineers and local villagers.” Led by well-known British mountaineer Martin Moran, the team went missing recently on way to the 7434-metre-high Nanda Devi East peak in Uttarakhand’s Pithoragarh district. A liaison officer of Indian Mountaineering Foundation in New Delhi was also part of the team. They had left Munsiyari on May 13 to scale the peak but did not return to the base camp on the appointed date of May 25. The members of the team were Martin Moran, John McLaren, Richard Payne, Rupert Havel (all from UK), Ruth Macrain (Australia), Anthony Sudekum (US), Rachel Bimmel (US) and liaison officer Chetan Pandey, the District Magistrate said. British mountaineer Martin Moran had scaled the peak twice in the past, he said. The route to the peak begins from Munsiyari about 132 km from the district headquarters.
Gurugram: Intense heatwave prevailing over the city now seems to be taking a toll on the citizens on a more dangerous level. Two persons reportedly have lost their lives in Gurugram in last three days due to the heat stroke.In the first casualty, a 19-year old student from Manesar died on Saturday apparently due to the extreme heat. As per his family members then identified as Hemant was in the scorching heat whole day on Saturday. He arrived at his home in the evening and went to sleep thereafter. After a long time when Hemant did not wake up, the family shockingly found out that he was no more. Also Read – Cylinder blast kills mother and daughter in Karawal NagarIn yet another incident, a 58-year-old person street hawker also died due to the heat stroke in Garhi Harsaru area. According to doctors, heat stroke is the most serious heat-related illness. “In this kind of weather citizens should limit their outdoor activities and adopt preventive measures when going outdoors. They should wear loose light-coloured clothing to reduce heat absorption and facilitate sweat evaporation and heat dissipation,” said BK Rajoura, Civil surgeon Gurugram.
Markets began the week on a strong note and registered new lifetime highs on June 3. They surrendered some of the gains on the same day and all of it and a little more by the end of the week to register minor losses. The four-day trading week saw BSE Sensex close at 39615.90 points – a loss of 98.30 points or 0.25 per cent, while NIFTY closed at 11,870.65 points – a loss of 52.15 points or 0.44 per cent. The closing levels do not give the sense of trading volatility that happened during the week. The high made during the week was 40,312.07 points and the low 39,279.47 points. The swing was 1,033 points and the close reflected a mere change of 98 points. Similarly, on the NIFTY, the high was 12,103.05 points and low 11,769.50 points, a range of 334 points and the net change 52 points. Also Read – A staunch allyThe broader indices saw the BSE100, BSE200 and BSE500 lose 0.52 per cent, 0.59 per cent and 0.68 per cent respectively. BSEMIDCAP lost 1.26 per cent and BSE SMALLCAP lost 1.41 per cent. Dow Jones had a stellar week with it gaining a massive 1,168.90 points or 4.71 per cent to close at 25,983.94 points. The US FED has indicated that they would be cutting interest rates and they could go down all the way to zero in time to come. RBI cut interest rates on expected lines by the customary 25 basis points. Repo rate is now 5.75 per cent and it is at its lowest level since 2010. What is important to note is that the stance has been changed from neutral to accommodative and this indicates that more cuts could follow. Also Read – Cuban pathosIt is on the NBFC front that not much has happened and while the contentious circular struck down by Supreme Court maintains its spirit, the same looks mildly different in reading. The crux of the problem being faced by NBFC’s is that they have been lending to riskier propositions and charging higher rates of interest and trying to maximise profits. In this process, they have been taking risks far greater than what even banks would take when lending to lower-rated borrowers. When issues emerge in the market place, it first affects the lower-rated clients and this is what has happened. Another issue that has cropped up with the housing finance NBFC’s is their exposure to bulk loans and developers. With a slowdown in the realty space, they are stuck with no rotation of their loans and the developer not able to pay up as he is not having sales of property. It truly is a ‘catch 22’ situation. A piece of good news for the market is that monsoon has hit Kerala coast on Saturday. It would take maybe 7 to 10 days to hit the financial capital of the country, but the event is now on course. The progress of the monsoon would now be a talking point and one would see the electronic media using this as a discussion point on a daily basis. They then talk of sectors the monsoon would impact and so on. Most fund managers are advocating that the next leg of the rally would see midcap and Smallcap stocks outperforming the large-cap stocks. While this may seem logical, the current scenario is such that action continues in the large-cap stocks only. It is yet to percolate to the small and midcap sectors. With results season over, Cabinet formation completed, focus would now be on the budget to be presented in less than a month. While the government has made overtures to the opposition on conducting business and the smooth passage of bills in the house, it needs to be soon how they reciprocate. Coming to the week ahead, one would see markets remaining choppy and volatile. There would be sharp bouts of rise and fall as a significant segment of people believe everything is priced in and there is no reason for markets to rise. When there is buying, this leads to short covering and bulls have their say. Similarly, when nothing happens and markets become listless, they tend to fall. This is when bears take the upper hand. This would continue with markets remaining in a broad range. Buy on dips and sell on rallies. There will be plenty of such opportunities. (Arun Kejriwal is the founder of Kejriwal Research and Investment Services. The views expressed are strictly personal)
Gurugram: Two puppies aged just nine months were thrown from the eighth floor of the Gurugram residential society on Monday. The complainants in the matter have alleged that the gruesome act was done by their owner who is an Iraqi national and works in the prominent private hospital in the city. The Gurugram police on their part have lodged the complaint and begun their investigations.After the incident, most of the animal activists began posting about the news on the social media and asked the law enforcement officials to act swiftly in the matter. Also Read – Cylinder blast kills mother and daughter in Karawal NagarAs of now, it has not been made clear of what was the real reason for the person to commit such a gruesome act. While there are some who have said that the act was committed in the fit of rage there are also who have highlighted that this was done for the sake of fun. “We will actively pursue the case and will make sure that the guilty are brought to book. You can just imagine the pain these dogs may have gone through. Puppies of ages of just nine -months were thrown from such a height. The Post mortem revealed that the internal organs were truly ruptured,” said Akshima one of the animal activists. Cruelty against dogs in Gurugram is not a new phenomenon. Recently in April, it was reported that around 10 pariah dogs of ages nine to ten years were beaten to death in the upscale society. The animal activists allege that initially, the Gurugramm police were not willing to even initiate an investigation into the case but repeated pressure resulted in the filing and beginning of investigations. The case is still being investigated.
There are fresh Intelligence warnings about Islamic radicals attempting to enter into India through the sea route off the coast of Kerala. Investigations into the horrendous terror attacks made on Easter Sunday congregations in and around Colombo, resulting in a huge loss of life and limb, are meanwhile unravelling the scale of foreign and domestic planning as well as resource mobilisation that had gone into a covert offensive. The Islamic radicals chose soft targets but gave a message loud and clear that they were set to take on their US-led adversaries outside of the two theatres of ‘war on terror’ – Syria and Afghanistan. Also Read – A special kind of bondThe Colombo blasts are linked with the geopolitical scene of South Asia and India must now go deeply into all that could possibly threaten the future of peace on the Indian subcontinent. A disquieting trend here is that the numerous groups of Islamic fundamentalists in the region that earlier existed in parallel with the radicals operating under the umbrella of Al-Qaeda or ISIS are giving their silent endorsement to the latter’s call for Jihad. There is no criticism of the radicals – who are Wahabis – from within the Muslim world beyond an occasional repeat of the parroted line that ‘terrorists were not true Muslims’. Also Read – Insider threat managementIt is a matter of deep concern for India that there is a rapid rise of Salafism in the region, which in terms of extremism can match Wahabism. Salafism basically calls upon the Muslims to go back to the fundamentals of Islam that prevailed in the puritanic period of the Pious Caliphs and shun the ‘unIslamic’ practices that had developed under the influence of other religions. It is opposed to the tradition of Mazar and Dargah worship that Sufism had brought with it in some distant past. This is the transition that is now visible in Kashmir in particular. As already mentioned, Salafism and Wahabism both represent the same degree of Islamic extremism except that the latter is staunchly anti-West as it carries the historical memory of the first Jihad of the modern period that some leading Ulema, including Abdul Wahab of Arabia, had launched in the nineteenth century to oppose the Western encroachment on the Muslim lands. These Ulema were the first to call for a return to the golden period of Islam and declare that the political decline of the Muslim world was due to the deviation of Muslims and their rulers from the true faith. Islamic radicals of today are still motivated by that recall and consider the US-led West and their allies as their prime enemies. Saudi Arabia which earned the ire of radicals for its deep collaboration with the US pursued the strategy of funding a pan-Islamic movement through the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) that promoted Salafism to compete with the Wahabi appeal of the revivalist radicals. Salafism derives from al-Salaf – the companions of the Prophet. The ‘war on terror’ launched by the US following 9/11 underlined the divide in the Muslim world between these two streams of extremism – one differing from the other only on the issue of political opposition to the US-led West. The Islamic fundamentalists backed by the Saudis, who are on the right side of the US, advanced the line originally taken by the likes of Hasan al Banna of Egypt and his admirer Maulana Abul Ala Maudoodi on the Indian subcontinent that an Islamic State could live in ‘competition not conflict’ with the West. This did not, however, come in the way of Salafism pursuing the cause of puritanic Islam with full force. From the point of view of the democratic world, the thrust of extremism in the Muslim world is a problem of geopolitical dimension – for India, it represents an imminent threat. The Sri Lanka blasts highlight the new reality that the Salafi outfits including Lashkar-e-Taiba as also Hizbul Mujahideen of Pakistan that is now subservient to LeT had no inclination to go along with the US any more in the battle against the Islamic radicals represented by the Al-Qaeda-Taliban combine in Afghanistan and the ISIS in Syria and Iraq. This was primarily because the radicals or Wahabis did have a place on the Islamic spectrum that could not be disregarded. When President George Bush declared ‘war on terror’ he wanted the allies in the Muslim world to combat radicals at home and heavily funded countries like Pakistan to encourage them to take to the path of democracy. Pakistan had to be coerced to join in. It took money but only pretended to be fighting the Al-Qaeda-Taliban combine – after all, it was Pakistan that had installed the Taliban in Kabul to lead the Afghan Emirate in 1996. Trouble had soon arisen at Kabul, however, as the Al-Qaeda-Taliban combine showed its anti-US fangs and invited retaliation from the West, which laid the run-up to 9/11. Pakistan’s main focus, meanwhile, was on replication of Afghan Jihad in Kashmir for settling scores with India. It lost no time in sending in the Mujahideen belonging to outfits under its control such as LeT, JeM and HuM into the Valley. These, as mentioned earlier, had been funded by Saudi Arabia during the Afghan war and had no particular quarrel with the US. With this, a phase began in Kashmir when Salafi hardline would supplant the Sufi traditions of Kashmiriyat. A telling change in the atmospherics of the Valley saw leaders of the two major fronts of Jamaat-e-Islami in Kashmir – Burhan Wani of HuM and Asiya Andrabi of Dukhtaran-e-Millat – taking orders directly from Hafiz Sayeed, the Pak-based supremo of the Lashkar-e-Taiba. The Pentagon, on its part, continued to believe, however, that the Pak army was serious about putting down the Taliban-Al-Qaeda axis – as an ally in the ‘war on terror’ – and the US, therefore, ignored for long India’s concerns on cross border terror in Kashmir. It is only under the regime of President Donald Trump that the duplicitous role of Pakistan was called out and in the process the distinction between ‘good terrorists’ and ‘bad terrorists’ abandoned for good -to India’s great relief. As India under Narendra Modi’s leadership decided to take Pakistan head on and isolate this rogue neighbour in the world community, the Pak army-ISI duo took to manoeuvring both Salafi extremists and the Wahabi radicals for destabilising India. Pakistan’s strategy of using extremists of all hues across the Islamic spectrum needs a deeper probe and analysis. This is a major security challenge for the Modi government in its second tenure. The collision of Sri Lanka’s National Thowheeth Jama’ath (NTJ) in the Colombo blasts that were owned by ISIS, is of significance for us. NTJ is an offspring of Sri Lanka Thowheeth Jamaat (SLTJ) – a known Salafi fundamentalist organisation openly supporting the Jihad of ISIS. SLTJ had close organisational links with Tamil Nadu Thowheet Jamaat(TNTJ) – the two outfits hosting each other’s leaders. The Pak High Commission in Colombo is known to have acted as a conduit between ISI and ISIS and also attempted to instigate Islamic militancy in South India. Al-Qaeda in Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) headed by a former member of Darul Uloom Deoband operates out of Pakistan under the patronage of ISI. Pak ISI has had a hand in propping up ISIS flags in Kashmir Valley. Zakir Musa of South Kashmir, since eliminated by security forces, had transited from being a commander of Hizbul Mujahideen to becoming the head of Al-Qaeda in Kashmir. ISI is using Jaish-e-Mohammad, a friend of the Taliban, to raise Fidayeen against India – the Pulwama attack on the CRPF convoy was a suicide bomber operation of JeM. In Kerala, many youth influenced by the Salafi preacher Dr Zakir Naik were reported to have proceeded to Syria to join in the ISIS battle. All of this has had the effect of making South Asia extremely vulnerable to faith-based radicalisation. Buddhist-Muslim conflict in Myanmar and Sri Lanka has obviously fuelled a unity between the Wahabi radicals and other Islamic fundamentalists following Salafism. There is every likelihood of IS protagonists of Syria-Iraq region and the Al Qaeda-Taliban in the Pak-Afghan belt working for the common mission of spreading to other parts of the Muslim world. Some ill-informed analysts earlier projected Al Qaeda and ISIS as political rivals – little knowing that in Islam, politics is rooted in faith and the belief that ‘Quran is the best Constitution’ runs through the Muslim psyche. South Asia represents the largest chunk of the Muslim world and it is particularly important for India to insulate the people here from the permeating radicalisation that turns the mind of even the educated and well to do people. The faith-based terror that Islamic radicals use in the name of Jihad targets the US-led West for historical and political reasons. However, Mujahideen of both Wahabi and Salafi streams also attack the Shiites for ideological opposition as well as the historical memory of the Kharijite revolt against Caliph Ali that provided the foundation for Sunnism. And, finally, these extremists take on the world of idolatrous people wherever they can. The destruction of Buddhist statues at Bamiyan by the Taliban is not a distant memory. India is a democratic republic that uses two powerful instruments of secularism – development of all and protection of law for every citizen – and if we have to stand up to a hostile neighbour who was out to meddle into our domestic politics by playing the card of religion, we must haul up any organisations or individuals who tended to endorse this mischief of Pakistan in any manner of speaking. Thowheeth or Unity of God is a welcome part of faith in Islam but if its exclusivism generates an acute ‘rejectionist’ outlook towards others then a democratic dispensation will have a problem. India has no place for this form of extremism entering the arena of politics. The bulk of all communities in India shares the common problem of livelihood and economic uplift. Law enforcement in general, as well as the CEC in the context of elections in particular, must unleash their power in a fuller measure against those who in print or by word of mouth projected militant religion into politics. Social media scan should be stepped up to detect exposure to Islamic radicalism and outreach to parents expanded to help a timely correction of young minds trapped by it. The 2019 General Election saw the opposition indulging in the play of identity politics – its message clearly is that this will not work any more in India.(The writer is a formerDirector of Intelligence Bureau. Views expressed are strictly personal)
New Delhi: The recklessness of a country manager of the University of Birmingham, UK cost a homeless man his life, leaving three others injured in South East Delhi’s Nizamuddin area. The four victims were asleep on a pavement when the accused, in a drunken state, ran his vehicle over them. The errant driver was arrested from the spot and was booked under relevant sections of IPC. “Soon after the incident, we had taken the injured persons to AIIMS where one was declared brought dead while others were recuperating. We have sent the body for postmortem examination and have informed family members. We have also arrested the accused driver after booking him under various sections,” said a police official investigating the case. Also Read – Kejriwal ‘denied political clearance’ to attend climate meet in DenmarkDeputy Commissioner of Police (South East) Chinmoy Biswal said that the accused, identified as Abhishek Dutt (36) was coming back home in Janakpuri’s Pankha Road, considered a posh locality in West Delhi, from an undisclosed location around 3:30 am when the incident occurred near Neela Gumbad in the Nizamuddin area. Police identified the deceased as Arif (26) and the injured persons as Sahib (23), Sheikh Saju (48), Naushad (23). They all were homeless persons who were working as casual labourers in the city. Police further added that he was driving the car in an impulsive manner which resulted in the incident. Also Read – Bangla Sahib Gurudwara bans use of all types of plastic itemsEyewitnesses at the spot noticed the wreckage and made the PCR call, after which a police team reached the spot of incident and rushed the injured persons to the AIIMS Trauma Centre. 19-year-old Afsana claimed to witness the accident and said, “We heard a noise of a tyre bursting and then saw that the driver had lost control of the rashly driven car.” She said that after hearing the noise she ran away from the spot. She further said that before sleeping, victims were watching something on a smartphone. The woman also claimed that a dog was killed in the incident. “It was a horrific scene; there was blood all over the pavement,” said Afsana, adding that the victims were resting in the open to take respite from the heat. The accused had completed BCA and MBA. “He is married and has an eight-year-old son,” police said. The DCP further added that the accused was returning home aftercoming after having a meal. “All the angles are being probed,” he said. A case has been registered under section 308 (Attempt to commit culpable homicide) and 304 (punishment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder) of IPC. Further investigation is going on in the case.
Los Angeles: It’s 20 years since Christina Aguilera’s hit single “Genie in a Bottle” released and the pop star says she is grateful for all the love and support. The 1999 song that went on to become a chartbuster was the lead single of Aguilera’s self-titled debut album, which also received favourable reviews. “Hi lovies! Today marks 20 years since #GenieInABottle was released… Got me feeling all types of emotional! “At just 18 years old, I remember coming home from Japan and seeing that it had reached #1 on the Billboard charts and feeling so grateful and happy that you guys loved it as much as I did. Thank you thank you thank you for riding with me all these years. My fighters, I love you!” Aguilera wrote in an Instagram post on June 22. She also shared a clip with rushes from the track’s video and the behind-the-scenes of its recording and making. “Genie in a Bottle” was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), having sold more than 1.4 million copies in the US.
London: The WTI oil price jumped back above USD 60 per barrel on Monday after OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia and non-cartel producer Russia said they would extend caps on crude output. WTI, the New York benchmark, rallied to USD 60.13 per barrel around 0650 GMT, climbing above USD 60 for the first time since the end of May.
New Delhi: The Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV) on Saturday welcomed the reduction of GST on electric vehicles to 5 per cent, saying it is in line with the government’s steps to promote eco-friendly mobility, even as it sought a similar cut in spare batteries. SMEV Director General Sohinder Gill said with the reduction in GST, the gap between prices of EVs and internal combustion engine vehicles will also be reduced and will thus play a part in faster adoption of electric mobility. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscal “The government is lately showing very clear intentions of promoting EVs and GST reduction is one such measure in line with the series of actions taken by the government in the last few months,” Gill said in a statement. “We welcome the 7 per cent reduction in GST as it will reduce the gap between the EVs and the IC Engine vehicles,” he added. Gill said if FAME-II was a dampener, the GST reduction is certainly a bright spot in the national EV policy. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boost “The EV industry now awaits the corresponding reduction of the 18% GST in the spares batteries as it will help maintain the low running cost of EVs over their lifetime,” he said. The high-powered GST Council on Saturday decided to reduce the tax rate on electric vehicles (EVs) to 5 per cent from the existing 12 per cent, effective from August 1. It also slashed the Goods and Services Tax (GST) on EV chargers from 18 per cent to 5 per cent.
New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate on Thursday conducted raids at several premises of former Ranbaxy CEO Malvinder Mohan Singh and his brother Shivinder Mohan Singh in connection with a PMLA case it is probing.ED sleuths raided seven premises related to both the brothers in Delhi, including Malvinder’s residence and premises related to Sunil Godhwani, formerly an Executive Director of Religare Enterprises Limited and NK Ghosal, an alleged close associate of both the brothers. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’According to sources in the know, the case pertains to cheating and diversion of over Rs 700 crore. The financial probe agency had registered a money-laundering case against the pharma giant after taking cognizance of an FIR registered by the Economic Offences Wing of the Delhi Police. The EOW complaint was registered a few months ago by a Religare subsidiary called Religare Finvest Limited. According to the complaint, both Malvinder and Shivinder had used their position at the head of the parent company to extend loans of hundreds of crores to companies known to them and firms of their close associates. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KAs per the complainant, both Malvinder and Shivinder had got these loans sanctioned with the knowledge and intention of diverting it for uses other than intended. The EOW case cites at least four firms which were extended short-term loans of amounts ranging from Rs 85 crore to Rs 100 crore by Religare Finvest, in an agreement to repay the amount at an interest of Rs 14 percent per annum. These firms allegedly admitted that they had transferred the loan amounts to third party concerns “within hours” of receiving the money, allegedly at the behest of Religare Finvest, which was being controlled by the Ranbaxy brothers at the time. In addition, it is also alleged that these four firms were controlled by Ghoshal, a close associate of the Singh brothers and all registered to the same address. Moreover, the company already owes Japanese company Daiichi Sankyo around Rs 3,500 crore. Daiichi had bought the Singh brothers’ share in Religare and had later sued them in a Singapore tribunal that they had failed to disclose an investigation it was facing from the US Food and Drug Administration. Hearing a Daiichi petition, seeking to recover the funds, the Supreme Court had warned the Singh brothers that they could be arrested if they failed to pay up.
New Delhi: The Parliament on Friday approved an amendment to the anti-terror law to give powers to the central government to designate an individual as a terrorist and seize his properties.While Lok Sabha had passed the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Bill, 2019 that seeks to amend the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 on July 24, Rajya Sabha approved it after rejecting an opposition-sponsored motion to send it to select committee. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsThe House passed the amendment to the law with 147 votes in favour and 42 against it. Rajya Sabha also rejected the opposition-sponsored motion to send the amendment to select committee with 104 votes against it as compared to 85 in favour. Replying to a debate on the amendment, Home Minister Amit Shah said four-level scrutiny has been provided in the amendment and no human rights will be violated. He said declaring individuals as terrorists were required as they float different organisations once an institution is banned. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from ThursdayIndividuals can be declared terrorists if they commit or participate in acts of terrorism, prepare or promote terror, he said. The amendment will expedite prosecution in terror cases, he said. Terrorism has no religion, terrorists are against humanity, he said seeking the support of all parties to support stringent laws against terrorism. Responding to opposition concerns of the law being misused, he said no one’s human rights will be violated as four-stage scrutiny with provision for appeal has been prescribed when individuals are declared terrorists. Elaborating on the track record of the National Investigation Agency (NIA), he said out of 278 terror cases registered by the agency, charge sheet has been filed in 204 cases. Of the 54 cases where judgements have come, a conviction has been there in 48. Track record of NIA in conviction in terror cases is outstanding, he said. Opposition parties slammed the amendment to the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act which will empower the government to declare individuals as terrorists, saying the new law was “draconian” and could be misused against anyone opposed to the ruling establishment.
Melbourne: Superstar Shah Rukh Khan is on a short “break” from movies, but the actor says he still has a lot of capacity to create some “really good” cinema. The 53-year-old actor, whose last few films – Dilwale, Jab Harry Met Sejal and Zero – were not well-received by the audiences, said the passion for cinema he sees in the people around drives him to tell good stories. ”What drives me to do a film is the people around me who make such a great cinema… And I think I have a huge amount of capacity to do some really good cinema. I have 20-25 years of good cinema left in me,” Shah Rukh said. Also Read – I have personal ambitions now: PriyankaThe actor was talking on the sidelines of the 10th edition of Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM), where he is the chief guest. Shah Rukh also revealed that post Zero he decided to take a break and has been travelling and discovering new stories. ”I just finished the last film I made and to put it lightly, it was a disaster. I said to myself that let me enjoy a little bit of un-success as I had success for so long. So I have taken some time off for next four or five months,” he further said. Also Read – Salman Khan remembers actor Vinod Khanna”As a matter of fact, I’m on these breaks… Coming here (Melbourne) and meeting people, realising and discovering new stories, doing intellectual speaking,” the actor added. Shah Rukh officially opened IFFM on August 9 with the screening of Rima Das-directed movie Bulbul Can Sing, which on Friday won the National Award for Best Assamese Film. As a part of his trip, the Bollywood star was conferred with an Honorary Degree, Doctor of Letters (honoris causa) by the Melbourne-based La Trobe University, in recognition of his efforts to support underprivileged children, fight for women’s empowerment through Meer Foundation and his achievements in the Indian entertainment industry. IFFM will screen over 60 films in Hindi and regional languages including Assamese, Tamil and Bengali. Other celebrities attending the festival include Das, Karan Johar, Malaika Arora, Arjun Kapoor, Vijay Sethupathi, Zoya Akhtar, Tabu, Onir and Sriram Raghavan.
Los Angeles: Sarah Michelle Gellar is making a comeback to television with Fox dramedy ‘Other People’s Houses’. According to Deadline, the actor will star in and executive produce the show, which is based on a novel by Abbi Waxman. The project will also reunite Gellar with “Ringer” creators Eric Charmelo and Nicole Snyder, who are adapting the book. It is described as a suburban dramedy, “somewhere between ‘Big Little Lies’ and ‘Catastrophe’.” Also Read – I have personal ambitions now: PriyankaThe story focuses on nine people who live in Los Angeles’ Larchmont Village neighbourhood. Through the lens of social media, the characters navigate the emotional ups and downs of being parents, partners, neighbours and friends. If the project gets a series order, it would be Gellar’s first regular TV role since the 2013 CBS comedy ‘The Crazy Ones’. The project is a co-production between Universal TV and Fox Entertainment.
Washington DC: Asserting that the Afghan peace talks are dead, US President Donald Trump attributed the end in the negotiations to the Taliban and said that the group is now being hit harder than ever before. Speaking to reporters at the White House on Wednesday, Trump blamed the Taliban for the end in the deliberations after the group claimed responsibility of a terrorist attack in Kabul last week that left 12 dead, including an American soldier. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USI’ll tell you one thing–we are hitting the Taliban right now harder than they’ve ever been hit, Trump said The US president said that the Taliban did this because they thought by doing this, they will have an upper hand in negotiations. What they did was horrible When they killed a great American soldier–when they killed 12 people–innocent people– essentially, innocent people because if you look, I mean many of these people were civilians, he said. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsYou also had a NATO soldier in addition to our great solider. But when they did what they did in order to create what they thought was a better negotiating stance I said that’s the end of them–get them out. I don’t want anything to do with them. They’ve been hit very hard, he said. I know for a fact they said that was a big mistake that they made and it was. But, that was my decision and what we’re doing now is my decision, he said when asked about his decision to invite the Taliban to Camp David for talks and then cancelling it abruptly. The talks with the Taliban are dead, Trump said. On Saturday last, the US president cancelled a “secret” summit with Taliban leaders and his Afghan counterpart following the attack in Kabul, dealing a blow to protracted negotiations that were nearing a peace deal to end America’s longest war. Trump was to meet Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and senior Taliban leaders on Sunday last week at his Camp David retreat after nine rounds of talks between the US and Taliban representatives, held in Doha, the capital of the Gulf state of Qatar. Trump’s US negotiator Zalmay Khalilzad had announced a peace deal “in principle” with the Taliban on Monday last. As part of the proposed deal, the US would withdraw 5,400 troops from Afghanistan within 20 weeks. The US currently has about 14,000 troops in the country.
EDMONTON – Alberta Health Services says one patient contracted a bacterial infection associated with a machine that is used during open-heart surgery.Last December, the health agency notified about 11,500 former open-heart surgery patients of a risk of infection related to potential exposure to bacteria.The Federal Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control in the U.S., as well as Health Canada, has reported a potential risk for Mycobacterium chimaera infection associated with equipment needed to keep blood and organs at a certain temperature during adult and pediatric open-heart surgery.Dr. Mark Joffe, a senior medical director with Alberta Health Services, said open-heart surgery is done at the Foothills Medical Centre in Calgary and at the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute and the Stollery Children’s Hospital, both in Edmonton.He wouldn’t disclose where the infected patient received the surgery, but said all three sites are well aware of the problem with the machine and have taken steps to try to prevent patients from getting the infection.The patient had surgery one year to 18 months before symptoms showed up. It took another several months before the patient was diagnosed.Symptoms generally progress over several weeks and may include fever, unexplained, persistent and profuse night sweats, unintentional weight loss, muscle aches, fatigue, and redness, heat or pus at the surgical incision site.The patient is being given several drugs to treat the infection. The chances of getting the infection are between one in a 100 and one in a 1,000. But the benefits of surgery outweigh the risk of getting the infection, which can lead to death and is a very serious illness, Joffe said.“Heart surgery is never zero risk. There have always been risks of infection following surgery … This is a small additional risk added on to the other risks that have already been recognized.“Individuals now undergoing surgery are advised they have a very low risk of this infection,” Joffe said.The manufacturer of the heater-cooler units, LivaNova PLC, has developed a fix to prevent the bacteria from entering air from the water reservoirs, but it is waiting to be licensed, Joffe said.Until the machines can be replaced, Alberta Health Services has changed how the machines are cleaned and disinfected.It is are looking at a way to put the machine in a containment device. AHS now puts the machine as far away as possible from the patient, and the unit’s exhaust system vents directly into the operating room’s system, so it doesn’t come back into the room.The bacteria cannot be spread by person-to-person contact and doctors and other health professionals in the operating room are not at risk.Joffe said there have been two or three cases in Quebec, but no others in Canada.
WINDSOR, Ont. – A woman who was found unresponsive in her cell at a detention centre in southwestern Ontario has died.A spokesman with the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services says the woman was found by staff at the South West Detention Centre near Windsor, Ont., on Sunday.In a statement to The Canadian Press, Andrew Morrison says correctional staff performed first aid until an ambulance arrived. The inmate was then transported to hospital where she was later pronounced dead.Morrison says the Office of the Chief Coroner will investigate the death and the ministry will also conduct an internal investigation to ensure all policies were followed.Windsor police will investigate to determine whether the death was connected to criminal activity.If the death wasn’t a result of natural causes, an inquest is mandatory.“It would be inappropriate to comment further out of respect for a person’s right to privacy, especially where personal health information is involved,” Morrison says.
LACOLLE, Que. – Almost 7,000 asylum seekers have been intercepted at the Quebec-U.S. border in the last six weeks, authorities said Thursday.The RCMP’s Claude Castonguay said the force intercepted more than 3,800 people between Aug. 1 and 15, while the nearly 3,000 in July were almost quadruple the 781 from June.“They’re unprecedented, we’ve never seen those numbers,” Castonguay told a media briefing in Lacolle, a Quebec border town at the forefront of the influx of people filing into Canada from the United States.“Even though our officers are patrolling 24 hours a day, all year long, we’ve never seen such numbers coming in.”Castonguay said an average of between 200 and 250 people have been crossing each day, compared with about 500 at one point.The vast majority of asylum seekers — between 80 and 85 per cent — are Haitians.In the United States, the Trump administration is considering ending a program that granted Haitians so-called “temporary protected status” following the massive earthquake that struck in 2010.Groups that work with migrants say those spilling across the border are fearful of being returned to an uncertain future in Haiti as early as next January.Many of those people are being lured to Canada with false information about what awaits, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada spokesman Louis Dumas told the briefing in Lacolle.He noted that about 50 per cent of Haitians who sought refugee status in Canada last year were refused.“Coming to Canada, asking for asylum in Canada is not a guarantee for permanent residency in Canada,” Dumas said.“If people in the States, in certain communities, would like to Canada and become permanent residents, it’s very important they do so through the regular channels.”That said, Dumas said those asylum seekers are permitted due process and there is a robust system in place to deal with them.He noted Canada selects about 300,000 immigrants yearly to come to Canada as permanent residents.“We are an open and welcoming country,” Dumas said.At a later news conference in the same area, federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau announced a 300-room temporary shelter will be set up in Cornwall, Ont., while about 20 other immigration officers will be added in Montreal to help cope with the crush.“It’s important Canadians know that this is a situation that, yes, is out of the ordinary, but is very much under control,” Garneau said.The minister also announced that Canadian consulates in the United States will continue to work to ensure that those who want to seek asylum in Canada know the rules in place.“Unless you are being persecuted or are fleeing terror or war, you would not qualify as a refugee and it’s important to combat that misinformation that is out there,” he said.“Imagine if you’re a family coming to Canada thinking you just have to come, and you are (then) told you do not qualify, it is a very difficult human drama to live.”
TORONTO – A large Canadian study is challenging conventional wisdom that says a low-fat diet is optimal for cardiovascular health and reduces the risk of premature death.The McMaster University study of more than 135,000 people in 18 countries found that eating a moderate amount of all types of fat is linked to a reduced risk of early mortality compared to the much-touted low-fat diet — while consuming a high-carbohydrate diet is associated with an increased risk of dying early.“Contrary to popular belief, increased consumption of dietary fats is associated with a lower risk of death,” said lead author Mahshid Dehghan, a nutrition epidemiologist at the Hamilton university’s Population Health and Research Institute.“Those with a high-fat intake, about 30 per cent of energy intake, had a 23 per cent lower risk of mortality and an 18 per cent lower risk of stroke, compared to the low-intake group, which had 11 per cent energy from fat,” Dehghan said from Barcelona, where she presented the findings Tuesday to the European Society of Cardiology Congress.“The association with lower mortality was also seen with all major types of fat, by which I mean saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids.”Saturated fat is found in meat and dairy products, while monounsaturated fat is contained in nuts, avocados, and vegetable and olive oils. Polyunsaturated fat is found in walnuts, sunflower and flax seeds, fish, corn, soybean and safflower oils.Current global guidelines recommend that 50 to 65 per cent of daily calories come from carbohydrates, and less than 10 per cent from saturated fats. But Dehghan said that advice is mostly based on evidence from studies in North America and Europe.Cardiovascular disease is a global epidemic, with 80 per cent of the burden of disease in low- and middle-income countries. Diet is a key modifiable risk factor for cardiovascular disease, experts say.Dehghan said the healthiest diet would be made up of 50 to 55 per cent carbohydrates and 35 per cent total fat, including both saturated and unsaturated types.“We found no evidence that below 10 per cent of energy from saturated fat is beneficial — and going below seven per cent is even harmful,” she said, adding that a diet containing 10 to 13 per cent of energy from saturated fat was found to be beneficial.A diet that provides more than 60 per cent of energy from carbohydrates — one common among populations in China and South Asia — was associated with a 28 per cent higher risk of premature death, researchers found.“The message of our study is moderation as opposed to very low or very high intake in consumption of both fats and carbohydrates.”“We’re not advocating an extreme diet,” agreed co-author Andrew Mente. “We’re not saying that people should go on a low-carb, very high-fat diet because we didn’t find any benefit with a very low-carb diet either.“There’s a sweet spot for carbohydrates, which is about 55 per cent of energy intake.”The PURE (Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology) study was published Tuesday in The Lancet. In a linked commentary in the journal, Drs. Christopher Ramsden and Anthony Domenichiello of the U.S. National Institute on Aging called the research “an impressive undertaking that will contribute to public health for years to come.”“The relationships between diet, cardiovascular disease and death are topics of major public health importance…. Initial PURE findings challenge conventional diet-disease tenets that are largely based on observational associations in European and North American populations, adding to the uncertainty about what constitutes a healthy diet. This uncertainty is likely to prevail until well-designed randomized controlled trials are done.”Mente, also a nutrition epidemiologist at the Population Health and Research Institute, was lead author of a second analysis from the PURE study presented Tuesday at the cardiology meeting.That paper — one of three from PURE published in The Lancet — found that eating three to four servings of fruit, vegetables and legumes per day reduces the risk of premature death.“And consuming higher amounts, pretty much you have the same level of risk,” Mente said from Barcelona. “There’s no added benefit with consuming more than four servings.“This is important because existing guidelines recommend that people consume at least five servings per day, which is less affordable in the poorer countries because fruits and vegetables — particularly fruits — are more expensive as a proportion of people’s incomes.”Lower-income Canadians may also be unable to afford the five to 10 daily servings of fruits and vegetables recommended in the country’s Food Guide.“So what our study shows is you can achieve maximum benefit through fruits and vegetables and legumes, and it’s also affordable at the same time.”Mente said the study also showed raw vegetables appear to confer greater health benefits than those that are cooked because of a loss of nutrients from being exposed to heat.With the federal government in the process of revamping Canada’s Food Guide, the research could be a timely addition to consultations on what Canadians should be eating, Mente suggested.“We would hope that independent thinkers perhaps reconsider the guidelines and look at our data, and perhaps rather than putting limits on total fat and saturated fat, perhaps we should be putting limits on the amount of carbohydrates that people consume.”– Follow @SherylUbelacker on Twitter.