IPL 11 to begin from April 7 in Mumbai

first_imgRELATED File Photo of IPL chairman Rajeev Shukla   –  The Hindu BusinessLine Star India eyes 700 mn viewers from IPL T20 Published on IPL 2018 COMMENT SHARE SHARE EMAIL SHARE The 11th edition of the lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) will be held from April 7 to May 27, the IPL governing council said today. Mumbai will host the opening match and the final of the cash-rich T20 tournament.The IPL governing council also decided to shift the start of the matches, which were scheduled to begin at 8pm and 4pm earlier. “The Broadcasters requested for a change in timings and IPL governing council in principal has accepted it,” IPL chairman Rajeev Shukla said. “Live broadcast of 8pm game will be shifted to 7pm, while 4pm will be played at 5:30pm,” he added.Kings XI Punjab will play four of their home games in Mohali and three in Indore, while the home matches of Rajasthan Royals, who are returning to IPL after serving a two-year ban, will be decided after the Rajasthan High court’s hearing on January 24.A total of 578 players including 360 Indians will go under the hammer in this year’s IPL auction at Bangalore on January 27 and 28. The IPL governing council also decided to shift the start of the matches January 22, 2018 cricket File Photo of IPL chairman Rajeev Shukla   –  The Hindu BusinessLine × COMMENTSlast_img read more


Team Swachh to support Swachh Bharat campaign

first_imgKolkata, Feb 23 (PTI) In an effort to build a social movement for sanitation and toilet use, thereby leading to an open defecation-free India, the UNICEF and International Cricket Council (ICC) have come together by launching Cricket for Good with the aim of leveraging the vast reach and power of the sport.Team Swachh is a nationwide initiative in support of the Government of Indias Swachh Bharat Mission.Captained by UNICEFs Goodwill Ambassador for South Asia, Sachin Tendulkar, and supported by other cricket stars, ICC and Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Team Swachh will be launched with the upcoming World Twenty20 and will tap into the power of cricket to spread the movement for sanitation in the country irrespective of class, gender, age, region and religion.As part of this partnership, Team Swachh will be rolled out during the pre-tournament eight city tour, followed by events and field activations during the Twenty20 World Cup.Following this, the campaign will be taken to the community level through government schools and on-ground activation across states.UNICEF and ICC have a five-year global partnership, announced last October in New York, and will be used as the ICCs platform to advocate for children in India and other countries where cricket is a popular sport. PTI SCH SUS PRMlast_img read more


IPL 2016: Quinton de Kock 108 helps Delhi Daredevils gun down 192 vs Royal Challengers Bangalore

first_imgQuinton de Kock slammed his maiden Indian Premier League ton to help Delhi Daredevils gun down 192 against Royal Challengers Bangalore at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium on Sunday. (Full IPL coverage) Chasing an imposing 192 for win, De Kock blazed his way to 108 off just 51 balls with 15 boundaries and three sixes and in the company of young Karun Nair (54 off 42) added 134 runs in 12.4 overs for the third wicket to help Daredevils overwhelm the target with five balls to spare.De Kock’s century was also the first in this year’s tournament. (Here’s how de Kock’s ton stunned RCB) However, the Daredevils did not have the best of starts as they lost Shreyas Iyer early, courtesy a brilliant cor-ordinated catch between Shane Watson and David Wiese at the long-off boundary off Sreenath Aravind’s final delivery of the first over off the innings. Next in Sanju Samson too did not last long as he offered a regulation catch to Yuzvendra Chahal at midwicket off Watson (2/25) in the sixth over with Daredevils score at 50 for two in 5.4 overs.Thereafter, it was all De Kock and Nair show as duo took the below-par RCB attack to task and played real cricketing shots, helped by some luck to keep Daredevils in the hunt on a small ground.De Kock might have been the architect of Daredevils chase with his brilliant century but credit should also go to young Nair who gave the South African able support from the other end and in the process struck six boundaries and a six to remain unbeaten on 54.advertisementEarlier, Virat Kohli played a captain’s knock with a quickfire 79, while A B de Villiers made a brisk 55 before Delhi Daredevils pulled things back a little towards the end to restrict Royal Challengers Bangalore to 191 for five.At the M Chinnaswamy Stadium where the average score is 200 plus, RCB at one stage looked on course to achieve the target when Kohli and De Villiers were going great guns before pacer Mohammed Shami pulled things back for Daredevils with the wickets of Shane Watson and Virat Kohli in quick succession.(With PTI inputs)last_img read more


Victoria Azarenka to miss US Open over child custody battle

first_imgTwo-time Grand Slam winner Victoria Azarenka has withdrawn from the US Open as she is not allowed to take her baby son out of California amid a custody battle with her former partner.The 28-year-old Belarusian returned to action in June, after the birth of her son Leo last December, and had been hopeful that legal arrangements could be worked out to allow her to compete in the August 28-September 10 Grand Slam in New York.”I am sadly unable to compete in this year’s US Open due to my ongoing family situation that I am working through,” former world number one Azarenka, a finalist at Flushing Meadows in 2012 and 2013, said in a statement.”While I will dearly miss being in New York and playing in one of my favourite tournaments where I have enjoyed some of the best moments in my career, I am already looking forward to being back next year.”Due to the custody battle, Azarenka is unwilling to leave her son behind in California, where she has a home and where her child was born.In an open letter posted on social media last week, Azarenka said no one should ever have to decide between a child and their career. She also said the only way she could play in the US Open is if she left her child behind in California, which she was not willing to do.Since returning to action, Azarenka has reached the last 16 at the Mallorca Open in June and Wimbledon.Azarenka’s withdrawal has opened up a place for Japan’s Misa Eguchi in the main draw at the year’s final Grand Slam.advertisementlast_img read more


The unique challenges of IoT app development

first_imgShare this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInMoreRedditTumblrPinterestWhatsAppSkypePocketTelegram Leave a Reply Cancel reply You must Register or Login to post a comment. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. Continue Reading Previous Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity at ESC Boston 2017Next Open source unpredictabilitycenter_img It’s not enough just to adapt a desktop app for the mobile environment. Developers must be aware of key issues that significantly impact the way software is designed and built for the IoT. Some are new challenges, some require a more back-to-basics approach that focuses on key principles which may have been forgotten or overlooked in recent years.With the majority of devices running on battery power, energy efficiency is hardwired into the DNA of the IoT. There’s a huge diversity of hardware that forms the IoT ecosystem with most devices run on SoCs, so you can’t build a huge code base. Code must be optimised to ensure every instruction counts.It may be necessary to add components which proactively monitor and manage the system, for example matching capacity to periods of peak demand or running processes when maximum energy or bandwidth are available. It’s also important for apps to have built-in flexibility. That means using concurrent coding, enabling tasks and algorithms to be carried out simultaneously rather than sequentially, while remaining determinate. Many programmers are more used to writing sequential code, so may have to acquire new design patterns.One of the greatest concerns for developers targeting the IoT is security. We’re all aware of recent high-profile security problems involving big companies such as Talk Talk and Yahoo. In response to potentially damaging repercussions, companies such as Apple are adopting a policy of paying if a security bug in their offerings is identified.Retrospective add-ons are not the answer. It’s vital that robust security is taken into account right from the get-go. Involving a security conscious developer in the pre-project planning will ensure safeguards are embedded into the design of the core features and functionality of the app.Human security is equally important. Installers and end users will need adequate training and monitoring capability to ensure that high security levels are maintained.IoT devices are often controlling vital services and one simple glitch can cause major disruption. Therefore, IoT app developers need to concentrate even more effort on review and testing, putting in place robust verification procedures at key stages during the product development cycle. In addition, resilience is often mission-critical. Fault finding and evaluation should be essential parts of the post-installation support function.One of the main challenges that mobile app developers have had to overcome is cross-platform compatibility. In the IoT world, that challenge is on a whole new level, with a much wider variety of devices, many without traditional interfaces such as screens or trackpads. In many IoT devices you are simply relying on sensors for functionality. Building a user experience around sensors can be challenging and requires the programmer to have the skills and knowledge to make the coding effective.An app which controls an IoT device must enhance the user’s lifestyle, not complicate it. If you’re designing a program that contributes to aspects of people lifestyle, simplicity is what it’s all about.This is an exciting time to be a developer. More and more businesses are embracing the IoT concept and are looking for expert programmers to help them take full advantage of real-time data available from billions of connected devices. Being aware of and ready for the challenges is the first step to success in this massive global marketplace.— Mark Thomas is CEO of Coderus, a software development company in the U.K. Originally published on Embedded’s sister site, EE Times: “IoT apps pose unique challenges .” last_img read more


Russian star boxer Beliakova eyes gold at Women’s World Championships

first_imgNew Delhi, Nov 12 (PTI) Having finished second best in the last edition, Rio Olympics bronze medallist boxer Anastasiia Beliakova of Russia wants to go one step further and claim a gold in the AIBA Women’s World Championships to be held here from November 15 to 25. Beliakova, who won a bronze in the lightweight 57kg category in Rio Olympics, had to settle for silver in the last World Championships two years back in Astana, Kazakhstan. But the Russian boxer said this year she is in no mood to settle for anything less than the yellow metal. “I want to take gold back home this time. There won’t be any compromise on the colour of the medal after coming so close in my World Championships debut in Kazakhstan,” Beliakova said. “I am fully prepared for the goal I have set for myself.” The Russian boxing contingent arrived here last night for the event but Beliakova said it won’t be a problem to acclimatise with the conditions here. “I don’t think we will have any problem (getting used to the adverse weather conditions here). Everything is fine here and we are best prepared for the event,” Beliakova said. Beliakova said boxing happened by chance to her and now the sport has become an integral part of her life. “I never dreamt of becoming a boxer. I loved adventure sport from childhood and did some sport like skiing, climbing. But I started boxing only after I met a coach, who invited me to try my hand in boxing and I started loving it,” she said. PTI SSC SSC ATKATKadvertisementlast_img read more


Penn State’s Class May Be Better Than Its Ranking – Here’s Why

first_imgPenn State Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin looks on against the USC Trojans.PASADENA, CA – JANUARY 02: Penn State Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin looks on against the USC Trojans during the 2017 Rose Bowl Game presented by Northwestern Mutual at the Rose Bowl on January 2, 2017 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)Penn State has reloaded with young talent once again, and although 247Sports ranks its latest group of recruits as the No. 10 recruiting class, the Nittany Lions might actually have one of the top classes in all of the country.With Brandon Smith and Noah Cain leading the next group of Nittany Lions, the future is bright in Happy Valley. If Penn State is a firm believer in quality over quantity, then James Franklin and his coaching staff should be thrilled with their latest haul.The rankings might list other schools ahead of the Nittany Lions, but the average player ratings for each class actually bodes well for the prestigious program. Outside of Alabama, Georgia and Ohio State, Penn State ranks above every other college when it comes to talent alone.Top 2019 recruiting classes by 247Sports composite average player rating:1. Alabama 94.042. Georgia 93.713. Ohio State 92.164. Penn State 92.125. Auburn 91.906. LSU 91.397. Oklahoma 91.138. Texas A&M 91.099. Oregon 90.9710. Texas 90.90— Bill Landis (@BillLandis25) December 20, 2018Unlike other recruiting classes, Penn State doesn’t even have 20 commits as of now. For example, the Crimson Tide have 26 commits for the 2019 season, meanwhile the Nittany Lions have 18 incoming players.Headed into today, FSU, Ohio State, Auburn and Penn State are the only teams with top 15 2019 classes while having fewer than 20 commits.— Tashan Reed (@tashanreed) December 21, 2018Numbers can be deceiving at times, and in this case it shows that Penn State’s recruiting class definitely has the necessary playmakers to keep the program running at an elite level.While the Nittany Lions will have to say goodbye to several seniors this season, a new core of impact players will take their place.last_img read more


PM Breaks Ground for Basic School in Home Community

first_imgPrime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, returned to her Marlie Hill roots in St. Catherine on Friday, June 21, to break ground for the construction of a $24 million early childhood institution on the grounds of the primary school, which she attended.The project is being funded by the Culture, Health, Arts, Science and Education (CHASE) Fund, and will comprise a new two-classroom building with kitchen and sanitary facilities, sick bay, and an administrative block.The Marlie Hill Basic School will also be equipped with furniture, kitchen appliances, play equipment, and other amenities to meet the requirements of the Early Childhood Commission (EEC).Addressing the ground breaking event in front of an audience that included some of her relatives, Mrs. Simpson Miller expressed pride at being associated with the Marlie Hill community and the primary school.She fondly recalled the days when she and others traversed the hilly terrain to and from school. The Prime Minister thanked the teachers, who played a role in her early development and senior residents of Wood Hall, Bellefield, Marlie Hill and surrounding areas, who took care of her and the other children, noting that “we were always protected.”She called for a return to traditional values, when the community protected children and kept them from harm.“What we have to recapture are those values that were imparted to us by our parents, to love, to care, to share….I am longing for the day when we do not hear of our children being abused,” she stated.The Prime Minister charged the parents to “take care of the children and keep them close to you,” while condemning those “who feel that they have the right to abuse a child.”The Prime Minister further urged adults to treat the children right as “the child you see today can be a great leader for tomorrow,” adding that “with the children, the country stands between history and hope for the future”.Chief Executive Officer of the CHASE Fund, W. Billy Heaven, said that the new school should be delivered by Christmas.He informed that the Marlie Hill Basic School is a Jamaica 50 legacy project and is one of nine infant schools to be constructed at a cost of $235 million. The others are in the parishes of Clarendon, Manchester, St. Elizabeth, St. Mary and St. Thomas.Mr. Heaven recommended that a database be established to keep track of the first set of students to enter the doors of the school when it opens.“Do that for the next 50 years and invite them back when Jamaica is having its centenary celebrations. At that time, you will see the doctors, you will see the lawyers, you will see the nurses, you will see the teachers and all the other professionals, and who knows, you could see another Prime Minster as well coming out of this very community,” he said.The Marlie Hill Basic School was established in the 1950s and is located in Bellefield District. At its present location, the school is being threatened by land slippage on one side and there is no possibility for expansion on the existing property, hence the decision to relocate it to the grounds of the primary school.By Andrea Braham, JIS Reporterlast_img read more


DSD Shipping Guilty of Dumping Waste Water

first_imgA federal jury in Mobile, Alabama, has convicted Norwegian-based shipping company Det Stavangerske Dampskibsselskab AS (DSD Shipping) and three employees with obstructing justice, violating the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships (APPS), witness tampering and conspiracy, the US Justice Department said.DSD Shipping was convicted of one count of conspiracy, three counts of violating APPS, three counts of obstruction of justice and one count of witness tampering.The court also convicted three senior engineering officers, Bo Gao, Xiaobing Chen and Xin Zhong, employed by DSD Shipping to work aboard the vessel. A fourth employee, Daniel Paul Dancu, pleaded guilty in October.The company could be fined up to USD 500,000 per count, in addition to other possible penalties. Gao, Chen and Zhong face a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison for the obstruction of justice charges.As informed by the Justice Department, the evidence presented during the two-week trial demonstrated that in January 2010, DSD Shipping knew that the oily-water separator aboard its oil tanker M/T Stavanger Blossom was inoperable.“In an internal corporate memo, DSD Shipping noted that the device could not properly filter oil-contaminated waste water and stated that individuals “could get caught for polluting” if the problem was not addressed.  Rather than repair or replace the oily-water separator, however, DSD Shipping used various methods to bypass the device and force the discharge of oily-wastes into the ocean.  During the last months of the vessel’s operation prior to its arrival in the Port of Mobile, the M/T Stavanger Blossom discharged approximately 20,000 gallons of oil-contaminated waste water,” the Justice Department said.The court also established that DSD Shipping employees intentionally discharged fuel oil sludge directly into the ocean. Specifically, crewmembers removed approximately 264 gallons of sludge, placed in around 100 sludge bags, which were thrown overboard directly into the ocean.What is more, the Justice Department determined that following these developments DSD Shipping, Dancu, Gao, Chen and Zhong, presented to the U.S. Coast Guard false and fictitious entries in the vessel’s oil record book and garbage record book.“We will not tolerate the continued use of the world’s oceans as a dumping ground for contaminated waste,” said Assistant Attorney General Cruden. “These defendants deliberately and egregiously violated the law and fouled the marine environment by dumping waste, then tried to cover it up with false records.  We hope this conviction sends a strong message to shippers worldwide that this activity must end, and we will vigorously prosecute those who continue this criminal behavior.” “The defendants in this case falsified entries in their vessel’s log books to hide the true nature of its open water discharges.  Today’s guilty verdict by a jury should serve as a warning to would-be violators that the American people will not allow the flagrant violation of U.S. laws,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge Andy Castro of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) criminal enforcement program in Alabama.last_img read more


Spotted Third Viking Cruise Ship Christened in Norway

first_imgImage Courtesy: Viking CruisesViking Cruises has held a christening ceremony for its third ocean ship, Viking Sky, in Tromsø, Norway. On the occasion, Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking Cruises, commented: “This is a special time of year in Norway – these are the days of the midnight sun and the perfect backdrop for a celebration. All of our ships proudly carry the Norwegian flag, and it is an especially proud day to officially welcome our new ship in Tromsø, the arctic capital of the world.”Following the christening, the 47,800-ton ship will spend the summer season sailing Viking’s popular itineraries in Scandinavia and the Baltic.Viking Sky is the third of eight ocean cruise ships currently planned for the fleet. The vessels are able to accommodate 930 passengers and boast 465 cabins.The first ship, Viking Star, was built and delivered in spring 2015, while the second vessel, Viking Sea, was handed over to its owner in March 2016.The fourth and fifth ships, Viking Sun and Viking Spirit, are under construction and will be delivered in September 2017 and 2018, respectively.By 2019, Viking said it will welcome its sixth ship, aiming at becoming the largest small ship ocean cruise line. Two additional ships are on order for delivery in 2021 and 2022.Image Courtesy: Viking Cruiseslast_img read more


Offhighway Vehicles Now Require Liability Insurance

first_imgEffective immediately, anyone operating an off-highway vehicle (OHV)on another person’s property must have liability insurance of at least $500,000, as well as accident benefit coverage. This change is a result of legislation that came into effect in 2006, after a recommendation of the Voluntary Planning Task Force report on off-highway vehicle use. The final regulations have now been approved by the government. “In keeping with other changes to the use of off-highway vehicles, this is an important step in establishing responsible rules for OHV use,” said Jamie Muir, Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations. “This may help address the concerns of private landowners who don’t mind OHVs using their property, but are concerned about damages and liability.” Off-highway vehicle users who operate exclusively on their own property are exempt from the insurance requirement. The liability insurance is required under the Off-highway Vehicles Act and will cover bodily injury to a third party or damage to their property up to the insurance limit. The accident coverage is required by the Insurance Act. Those who race off-highway vehicles can not purchase liability insurance and are exempt from the requirement for insurance, if they meet the following conditions: The fine under the Off-highway Vehicles Act for operating an off-highway vehicle without third-party liability insurance is $250. For a second offense, it is $500 and third offense it is $750. To view the full regulations, see the Department of Justice website at www.gov.ns.ca/just/regulations/rxam-z.htm#ohveh . Parents of children who operate an off-highway vehicle are responsible for purchasing insurance since the policy is for the vehicle and should cover all drivers. In Nova Scotia, off-highway vehicle drivers/operators must follow the rules for each age group. For example, a youth under the age of 14 operating a snowmobile must: have successfully taken the safety training course (by Oct. 1, 2008), be under the direct supervision of their parent or guardian, and be operating the vehicle on private land or in a designated area. the driver is a member of a club that is registered and in good standing under the Societies Act or the Companies Act of Nova Scotia; the club has off-highway vehicle racing as one of its objectives; the driver is a member in good standing of the club and holds a valid membership card; and the machine they ride is designed or modified for racing purposes and used solely for that purpose.last_img read more


States to be key drivers of growth for making India USD 5

first_imgNew Delhi: States will have to become key agents of growth to help achieve India’s target of becoming a USD 5 trillion economy, Niti Aayog Chief Executive Officer Amitabh Kant said on Saturday.Speaking at an event organised here by industry chamber PHDCCI, Kant said states have to work together and learn from each other to radically transform India.Kant said one of the things which Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been focusing on in recent times is the target of becoming a USD 5 trillion economy by 2024 and subsequently a USD 10 trillion economy by 2030. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscal”…therefore, our challenge really is that it will not be possible for India to achieve this till states do not aim to double and triple their GDPs. And this would require major structural reforms and structural reforms over a vast range of sectors,” he said.He underlined sectors like agriculture and labour where structural reforms are required.The current size of the Indian economy is estimated at USD 2.7 trillion. The central government has announced and initiated several steps to make India a USD 5 trillion economy over the next few years.PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI) organised the ‘States’ Policy Conclave 2019′ conceptualised with the mission of empowering states to strengthen India’s federal structure of governance and contribute in making India a USD 5 trillion economy.last_img read more


Freedom on the Net Moroccan Internet Users Are Partially Free

Rabat- In its 2018 annual Freedom on the Net report released on November 1, US-based NGO Freedom House assessed that Morocco is “partially free” in terms of freedom for internet users. Not much has changed since the 2017 report as Morocco maintained its score, 45 out of 100.Freedom on the Net assesses 65 countries, covering 87 percent of the world’s internet users worldwide, and tracks developments in internet freedom each year. Imprisonment of journalists and activistsThe report monitored the internet freedom in Morocco from June 1, 2017, to May 31, 2018, noting the Moroccan government’s crackdown on online news channels and imprisoning of journalists and activists for their involvement in the Hirak protests in Al Hoceima.“Moroccan laws on criminal defamation and terrorism continue to pose a threat to free speech. Several online journalists and activists were arrested and imprisoned as part of a crackdown on the Hirak Rif protests,” the report states.The research mentions Moroccan journalist Hamid El Mahdaoui, editor in chief of news site Badil Info. A Moroccan court sentenced El Mahdaoui to 3 years in prison in June for “inciting participation in banned [Hirak] protests” and “threatening national security.”Like Mahdaoui, Abdelkabir Al-Hor, the founder of the online news site Rassd Maroc, was sentenced to 4 years in prison in February on charges of “condoning terrorism and inciting illegal street protests through the outlet’s coverage of the protests.”In June, a court in Casablanca gave sentences ranging from 1 to 20 years for 54 Hirak Rif activists. Hirak leader Nasser Zefzafi and three other activists received 20 years in prison for their participation in the “unauthorized” protests.The Hirak movement began in October 2016 after the death of Mohcine Fikri, a fishmonger who was crushed to death in a garbage truck while trying to save his goods that had been confiscated by authorities in Al Hoceima. The incident angered citizens, causing protests across the country, but especially in Al Hoceima province, which condemned Fikri’s death and social disparities in Morocco. Police arrested an estimated 400 activists and protesters involved in the protests in 2016 and 2017.Read Also: Morocco’s Unemployment Falls Slightly, Youth Unemployment at 27.5%Limits on contentThe report also addressed the difficulty of creating a news website in Morocco.It recalls the Ministry of Culture and Communications’ refusal to grant press cards to Mohamed Ezzouak, founder of Moroccan news outlet Yabiladi, and Ali Amar, founder of French-language site Le Desk. The cards were granted seven months later in May 2018. It is illegal for news outlets without press cards to practice journalism in Morocco, according to the 2016 press code.Though the state has strong control over media content, it did not block or filter any political, social, or religious websites and other sites discussing controversial issues such as the disputed territory of Western Sahara, the Amazigh (Berber) minority, or Islamist groups, nor social media sites such as Youtube, Facebook, Twitter “over the coverage period.”Still, the state can shut down publications “prejudicial to Islam, the monarchy, territorial integrity, or public order” and issue prison sentences and heavy fines on publishers of infringing content. News criticizing the monarchy does not exist in Morocco, notes the report.The report notes: “Discriminatory allocation of advertising and the repeated prosecution of online news editors impedes the diversification of Morocco’s digital media landscape. Digital advertisers were obliged to pay a 5 percent tax starting in January 2018, stifling an already financially fragile media sector.”The partial freedom given to Moroccan internet users has allowed them to “take advantage of various social media tools to educate, organize, and mobilize people around a wide variety of issues.” That organization was shown in the April boycott campaign that targeted three major companies in the country.Online activism and the boycott campaignThe research recalls the major boycott against high prices which sprouted on April 20 thanks to “online activism.”It all started with Arabic hashtags equivalent to “Let_it_spoil” and “SayNotoHighPrices,” against not only the high prices of Sidi Ali (mineral water), Centrale Danone (dairy products), and Afriquia (gasoline) but also against market monopolization and all forms of price manipulation across the country. The boycott caused a massive controversy in the country and prompted government ministers to repeatedly ask Moroccans to end the milk boycott, particularly. The boycott caused major economic losses for the targeted companies in its early days. Afriquia stations recorded losses of 47 percent in Nador, 25 percent in Al Hoceima, and 39 percent in Casablanca’s Hay Hassani less than a month later, according to newspaper Akhbar Alyaoum.Centrale Danone suffered a net loss of MAD 115 million in the first half of 2018 in comparison to a net gain of MAD 56 million during the same period in 2017.The boycott had largely ended by mid summer.Digital activists also continue to provide a platform for discussion on the Hirak protests.Beyond Morocco, the report states that of the 65 countries assessed, 26 have been on an overall decline in terms of internet freedom since June 2017, compared with 19 that registered net improvements.Egypt and Sri Lanka, followed by Cambodia, Kenya, Nigeria, the Philippines, and Venezuela, scored the biggest declines.“A number of governments are moving to regulate social media users as media outlets in order to legitimize further crackdowns on online speech,” Freedom on the Net reported.Egypt ranks third in the world for highest numbers of jailed journalists. read more


Government committed to post conflict reconciliation process

The Government is committed to the post conflict reconciliation process, Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to Sweden Damayanthie Rajapakse said.She said this while participating at a ceremony held at the Sri Lankan Embassy premises in Sweden to mark the 68th Independence Day of Sri Lanka, the Foreign Ministry said today. She also expressed the desire to strengthen relations between Sri Lanka and Sweden.Religious observances were conducted at the ceremony by the Buddhist, Hindu and Christian clergy bestowing blessings upon Sri Lanka for the country’s prosperity and good governance. Ambassador Mrs. Damayanthie Rajapakse hoisted the National Flag and delivered a speech at the ceremony elaborating on the Government’s commitment to embark on the post conflict reconciliation process and for economic development. A large gathering of Diplomatic community and Senior Officials representing the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Sweden attended the event. A group of Sri Lankan children and adults residing in Stockholm adorned this event with the rendition of patriotic songs and presentation of Sri Lankan dance forms captivating the audience.At both the events, two minutes silence was observed in honour of National Heroes and the National Anthem of Sri Lanka was sung in Sinhala and Tamil. (Colombo Gazette) read more


The Hobbit The Desolation of Smaug remains No 1 at box office

AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by Jessica Herndon, The Associated Press Posted Dec 29, 2013 1:59 pm MDT LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Over the bustling post-Christmas weekend, Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” continued to lead the box office, landing in the No. 1 slot for the third weekend in a row.The Warner Bros. prequel earned $30 million, bringing the domestic gross to $190.3 million, according to studio estimates on Sunday.Disney’s animated adventure, “Frozen,” took the No. 2 position, earning $28.9 million over the weekend and $248.4 million domestically after six weeks at the multiplex.“‘Frozen’ probably had the best release date of the year because they positioned themselves to completely dominate the family film marketplace over the holidays,” said box-office analyst Paul Dergarabedian of Rentrak. “To be No. 2 in its sixth week is a total reflection of that.”Reigning box-office champion “Hobbit,” ”really contributed to this record box office that we have at the end of the year,” he added. “With ‘Hobbit’ and ‘Frozen,’ we are talking $450 million at the box office between those two films alone. They are absolutely killing it here at the end of the year.”This year is poised to be a banner one at the box office, and it is projected to surpass 2012’s $10.8 billion by nearly 1 per cent, making this the highest annual take ever.Paramount held two slots in the top five over the weekend, with the comedies “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues,” starring Will Farrell, and “The Wolf of Wall Street,” featuring Leonardo DiCaprio. Sequel “Anchorman 2” came in at No. 3 with $20.2 million, and Martin Scorsese’s dark comedy, “The Wolf of Wall Street,” took the No. 5 spot, earning $19 million after opening at No. 2 on Christmas Day with $9.15 million.“Some people are calling the performance of ‘Anchorman’ a bit of a disappointment, but it will be a $100 million gross at the end of the day,” Dergarabedian said. “All of the marketing certainly raised its profile. It will have a good showing.”“Anchorman” met studio expectations over the Christmas holiday.“We are thrilled and we feel the movie will play well in theatres for a while,” said Don Harris, president of distribution at Paramount. “The first film brought in $84 million, and this one will be well north of that.”At nearly three hours long, “Wolf” does not have as many showings in a day as the rest of the pictures currently in theatres, yet it’s holding its own at the multiplex. “The movie is very much out there in terms of content, and that’s a good thing,” added Harris. “It’s different than anything else in the marketplace. I think people are surprised that it’s a lot of fun.”At No. 4, Sony Pictures corruption saga, “American Hustle,” made $19.6 million. David O. Russell’s entertaining take on the Abscam investigation of the 1970s, starring Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper, has grossed $60 million domestically and gained seven Golden Globe nominations.Oscar hopeful “Saving Mr. Banks,” Disney’s making of “Mary Poppins” story, starring Emma Thompson and Tom Hanks, came in at No. 6, making $14.3 million.Fox’s “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” Ben Stiller’s dramatic turn, which he also directed, took seventh place, earning $13 million. “‘Mitty’ is a feel-good film and with the combination of our excellent exit polls and audience friendly rating at PG-13, I think we are going to play well into the New Year,” said Chris Aronson, president of distribution at Twentieth Century Fox. “This has been an incredibly fragmented and healthy marketplace as we’re expected to finish with a record year.”And despite lacklustre reviews, Keanu Reeves’ martial-arts film “47 Ronin” managed to slide into the top 10 at No. 9 with $9.9 million in its opening weekend.Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theatres, according to Rentrak. Where available, latest international numbers for Friday through Sunday are also included. Final domestic figures will be released Monday:1.”The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” $30 million ($98.3 million international).2.”Frozen,” $28.9 million ($50.5 million international).3.”Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues,” $20.2 million ($8 million international).4.”American Hustle,” $19.6 million ($1.7 million international).5.”The Wolf of Wall Street,” $19 million ($6.5 million international).6.”Saving Mr. Banks,” $14.3 million ($300,000 international).7.”The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” $13 million ($27.2 million international).8.”The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” $10.2 million ($9 million international).9.”47 Ronin,” $9.9 million ($13.8 million international).10.”Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas,” $7.4 million.___Estimated weekend ticket sales Friday through Sunday at international theatres (excluding the U.S. and Canada) for films distributed overseas by Hollywood studios, according to Rentrak:1.”The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” $98.3 million.2.”Frozen,” $50.5 million.3.”The Secret Life of Mitty,” $27.2 million.4.”Police Story 2013,” $18 million.5.”47 Ronin,” $13.8 million.6.”The Physician,” $13 million.7.”Personal Tailor,” $12.5 million.8.”Walking With Dinosaurs,” $12.3 million.9.”The Attorney,” $12 million.10.”The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” $9 million.___Universal and Focus are owned by NBC Universal, a unit of Comcast Corp.; Sony, Columbia, Sony Screen Gems and Sony Pictures Classics are units of Sony Corp.; Paramount is owned by Viacom Inc.; Disney, Pixar and Marvel are owned by The Walt Disney Co.; Miramax is owned by Filmyard Holdings LLC; 20th Century Fox and Fox Searchlight are owned by News Corp.; Warner Bros. and New Line are units of Time Warner Inc.; MGM is owned by a group of former creditors including Highland Capital, Anchorage Advisors and Carl Icahn; Lionsgate is owned by Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.; IFC is owned by AMC Networks Inc.; Rogue is owned by Relativity Media LLC.___Follow AP Film Writer Jessica Herndon on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/SomeKind “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” remains No. 1 at box office, earning $30 million read more


Enshrine new conscience clause for Christians in Bill of Rights ministers urged

first_imgReligious liberty is a fundamental right, but recently we have seen it being downgraded compared to other human rightsDavid Burrowes MP Instead of setting out a list of competing rights, as the Human Rights Act effectively does, there should simply be a new duty on employers or businesses to make “reasonable accommodation” for people’s beliefs, the report suggests.It follows a string of high-profile cases in which the rights of Christians to manifest their beliefs came up against other rules, ranging from company uniform policies to laws preventing discrimination against gay people.In perhaps the most high profile example, Nadia Eweida, a British Airways check-in clerk who was sent home because her cross contravened the airline’s uniform policy at the time, took her discrimination claim to the European Court of Human Rights and won.But as part of the same case, the court ruled that Shirley Chaplin, a nurse who was forbidden from wearing a cross at work had not suffered discrimination because in her case the reason given by the hospital was a “health and safety” issue. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. While the Strasbourg court also threw out a challenge by Lillian Ladele, a registrar who asked not to conduct civil partnership ceremonies because of her traditionalist beliefs, two judges offered a dissenting minority  judgment warning of the danger of Christians’ rights being sidelined.Last month the Court of Appeal in Belfast upheld a discrimination finding against Ashers, a bakery run by an evangelical Christian family, for cancelling an order for a cake bearing the political slogan “Support Gay Marriage”. The case is now set to go to the Supreme Court.The report argues that, in the English courts at least, there is mounting evidence of a “growing preference” for putting the right to manifest a religious beliefs second to the right not to be discriminated against for sexual orientation.It argues that such cases are part of a wider trend towards the “relentless privatisation of religious beliefs”.Other faiths too, especially little known minority sects, are being mistreated or even branded “insufficiently British” for sticking to traditional ways of life, it adds.But it argues that a new rule of “reasonable accommodation” – similar to principles already applied in catering for people with disabilities – could sidestep such bitter confrontations.“Examples of reasonable accommodation might include public swimming-pools reserving special hours for women whose religion prohibits mixed swimming; or a hospital offering menus without pork to accommodate the dietary  practices of Jewish and Muslim patients; or an employer making reasonable effort to rearrange work timetables to permit religious employees to observe religious holidays,” it explains.“What distinguishes the doctrine from indirect discrimination is that the employee would no longer bear the burden of proof – he would not need to show that a rule or requirement puts him at a disadvantage.“Instead, the employee need only make a request that his religious beliefs or practices be accommodated, and the burden of proof rests with the employer to assess whether reaching an accommodation would impose an unreasonable degree of hardship.”David Burrowes, the Tory MP and Chairman of the Conservative Christian Fellowship, said: “Religious liberty is a fundamental right, but recently we have seen it being downgraded compared to other human rights.“This ResPublica report delivers a strong set of recommendations for Government in light of the future British Bill of Rights, which would be the perfect vehicle for underlining the UK’s commitment to reasonable accommodation of religious belief.“I encourage the Government to consider these recommendations carefully.” Christians and followers of others faiths should have new protections enshrined in law to enable them to “reasonably” opt out of tasks at work which go against their beliefs, a new report published in Parliament concludes.The paper, by the influential conservative-leaning think-tank ResPublica, blames existing equalities legislation for stirring up divisions between different minority groups and even spreading “political extremism”.It urges ministers to use a Tory election manifesto pledge to scrap the Human Rights Act and replace it with a new “Bill of Rights” as an opportunity to develop a new way to protect religious believers at work.last_img read more


Global mining gathering in China to discuss the big concerns

first_imgThe China Mining Congress and Expo will be held in Tianjin, October 20-22, 2009 and International Mining will be there. The event will provide the appropriate platform to discuss questions like those below at one of the largest mining events worldwide, hosted by China’s Ministry of Land & Resources:How is the current economic situation affecting the mining industry & commodities?What do industry and commodity trends look like?What is the role of China within the global mining industry?How and where to find business opportunities in China and about Chinese companies going abroad.Providing the largest mineral exploration and mining trading platform, China Mining Congress and Expo plays an important role in creating more communication and co-operation opportunities for domestic and international mining corporations. The rising importance of this event will be also reflected by the continuing rise in the number of visitors and delegates. Last year more than 3,500 delegates and 400 exhibitors from nearly 50 countries and regions joint the event and celebrated the 10th anniversary in 2008.China Mining Congress & Expo’s trade show attracts foreign and domestic governments, associations and companies, including mining and exploration companies, mining technique and equipment suppliers, geologists as well as banks and legal consulting firms.Conference, exhibition and featured events, as the three cores of the event contribute to greater world appeal and influence. China Mining Congress & Expo not only collects a tremendous amount of information, capital and technology stream, but also provides a convenient channel for the purpose of economic and trade co-operations and communications between China and the world.During the conference, government officials, industry leaders, experts from both Chinese and foreign mining industries will have an in-depth mining industry discussion. The topics will cover mining industry development trends, mining and capital markets, domestic and international investment opportunities, China’s outbound investment, mining and sustainable development, commodity trends, geological surveys, technologies and equipment etc.The exhibition will include main mining countries’ pavilions, mining and exploration companies, investment and financing institutions, evaluation and consulting companies, (technical) service providers and equipment suppliers. China Mining Congress & Expo aims to boost co-operation in fields like exploration, development, investment, equipment and technologies. According to the Organising Committee, nearly 200 booths are already booked. And still some booths are available. This year’s show is also going to build a wider stage for better dialogue and co-operation opportunity for governments, enterprises and all circles from each country.China Mining Congress & Expo 2009 will be held at Tianjin Binhai International Convention and Exhibition Center (BICEC), October 20-22, 2009. Tianjin, the largest harbour city in northern China, will now open its gates to the global mining industry. Tianjin is about 160 km from Beijing, with all integrated connections to other cities with an international airport, the first high speed train in China and Tianjin Port. As the centre city of the Ring Bohai Economic Circle (including Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Liaoning and Shandong), Tianjin represents one of China’s biggest industrial centres, has built up an all-round industrial system with machinery, electronics, textiles, chemicals, metallurgy, foodstuffs, etc. as its mainstays. Tianjin is one of the most prosperous business areas as well as a distribution centre for goods and materials in North China. www.china-mining.org/enlast_img read more


McDonald criticises plan to take property tax from bank accounts

first_imgSINN FÉIN TD Mary Lou McDonald has criticised the government over plans to take the property tax directly from a homeowner’s bank account if they fail to pay it.Yesterday, the Public Accounts Committee was told that Revenue will have the power to take the money at source from bank accounts as well as PAYE workers and social welfare payments.McDonald said that at a time when one in four households are experiencing mortage distress and 65,000 local authority tenants are unable to meet the costs of their rent, the idea of taking the tax in this way is “simply wrong”.“Government’s response to this reality is to merely defer, not exempt, property tax payments for people who have suffered a ‘significant and unexpected’ financial loss or expense,” she said. “This of course will not even be applicable to families in very real distress.”During the committee meeting, McDonals questioned the legality of Revenue taking money directly from a bank account which she said struck her as a “real big brother measure”.Related: Property tax will account for flooding risk in coastal homes>This is what the new Local Property Tax form will look like…>last_img read more


Archbishop slams defacto law poor imitation of marriage

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Archbishop Ieronymos, the head of the Church of Greece, has slammed cohabitation agreements, which grant couples living together similar rights to those who are married, describing the pact as “a poor imitation” of marriage.In a letter to Justice Minister Nikos Paraskevopoulos last week, Ieronymos described the cohabitation agreement as “a neoliberal rewarding of irresponsibility in interpersonal relations which it relegates to a simple transaction.”As for a bill that foresees extending the cohabitation pact to include same-sex couples, Ieronymos asked whether the state was planning to pave the way for provisions for “the homosexual family”.Source: Kathimerinilast_img read more


Benitez spoke about Newcastles interest in Torres

first_imgFernando Torres played his last game for Atletico Madrid today as his contract won’t be renewed and he can possibly come back to Premier League where he used to play for Liverpool and Chelsea.The Spanish striker can reunite with Rafael Benitez who is currently coaching Newcastle and the manager himself didn’t rule this option out as he admitted that he would be, for sure, interested in this move.Benitez spoke about this possible surprising transfer as he said, according to Shields Gazette:“I think it will be harder for him to come, not because we don’t want to.”Jose Mourinho is sold on Lampard succeeding at Chelsea Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – September 14, 2019 Jose Mourinho wanted to give his two cents on Frank Lampard’s odds as the new Chelsea FC manager, he thinks he will succeed.There really…“I don’t know what’s going on in his head, but maybe he is thinking about something else.”“It would be appealing, but I don’t think it would be easy.”“In Liverpool, he was sensational.”“Then we went to Chelsea and, although he had a bad time when he arrived, he was essential for us in winning the Europa League.”last_img read more