‘Modi jacket’ sales register fall in Aurangabad district

first_imgAurangabad: The popularity of the ‘Modi jacket’, a rage during the 2014 elections, is on the wane, with orders of the apparel recording a drastic fall, garments traders in Aurangabad district of Maharashtra said Tuesday. The ‘Modi jacket’ is a half-sleeve coat often worn by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. A local trader said there was a time when around 35 such jackets used to be sold from his outlet per day. Now the number is down to one per week, he added. Another city businessman Gurvinder Singh said factors like the GST, demonetisation and drought-like situation in the state have impacted the sale of these jackets, like all other apparels. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity!Many traders in Gulmandi, Tilak Path, Aurangpura, Sarafa, Osmapura and Cidco areas here echo similar views. Cloth merchant Rajedra Bhawsar, who used to keep a stock of these jackets along with other readymade ethnic wear, says since since the last one year not more than 10 pieces were sold from his outlet. “I now face a problem as the unsold stock is more and I invested a big amount, but there is no profit,” he said. Local tailor Dilip Lokhande, popular as Haroon Master, says with summer just around the corner, people are now showing more interest in khadi, linen and cotton shirts.last_img read more

Get off that fence!

first_imgAh! The joy of sitting on the fence. No decisions to make, no commitments to have, just sit and watch the world go by. It is indeed very peaceful to be a fence-sitter. No bitter arguments, no high-pitched debates, just sit and listen. As we go deeper into the election season, my analysis is that fence-sitters form a sizeable vote-bank. These fence-sitters weren’t always fence-sitters. They, too, whole-heartedly supported one party or the other; they may have been ardent admirers of politicians, and may very well have loathed a few others. However, today they are fence-sitters mainly because they are a confused lot unable to make up their minds. Also Read – A special kind of bondSure, they voted for growth, development, ‘sabka vikas’, etc. in 2014. They rallied around that central figure of change, Narendra Modi, who promised with utmost sincerity to transform India. Most of us know that five years is too short for any kind of metamorphosis but it definitely sows the seeds that yield results in the years to come. But today those supporters are dumbfounded (I know because I have spent the last many weeks speaking to scores of BJP supporters who for the first time seem uncertain about their vote). In spite of the good that the current BJP government has achieved (yes, there are a few positives – India’s international brand-building, greater ease of doing business, low levels of corruption in governance, the intent behind Swacch Bharat Abhiyan etc.), this group of people is unnerved by the incidents of communal disharmony, lynchings, the assumption of the reins of India’s largest state, Uttar Pradesh, by a priest, India’s jobless growth etc. Also Read – Insider threat managementThe doubts that were forming gradually in the last couple of years have witnessed brisk growth in the run-up to the Lok Sabha elections. The promise to implement NRC nationwide, pledging to introduce stricter sedition laws, and the icing on the cake — giving an election ticket to Malegaon terror accused, Pragya Singh Thakur (Sadhvi Pragya), to contest from Bhopal. In fact, we must demand the Parliament and the Election Commission to rethink the decision to allow convicted criminals contesting elections in the first place. This group of voters has already become fence-sitters as they have no justification for their favoured party’s actions. A couple of years ago these very people would stop parties and gatherings to wax eloquent about how our ‘libtard’ spectacles were so Congress-hued that they wouldn’t accept a non-Gandhi leading the nation. They had so many defences for Prime Minister Modi and his government, and many of us, grudgingly also believed that irrespective of personal ideologies, Modi cared about this international persona so much that he dares not allow attacks on India’s tolerance and diversity. That garb of decency, every last bit of it was shredded to pieces with the party deciding to field Pragya. This so-called sannyasin has served nine years in jail, was released on bail citing health reasons and still faces several criminal charges, and has just badmouthed 26/11 hero Hemant Karkare! BJP cannot be so bereft of talent to be out recruiting ex-convicts! The party has had political leaders of distinction, erudite men and women that have been respected if not supported across political ideologies. The only plausible explanation is that this time since the party can’t truly boast of economic progress, it is polarising the elections by pushing hard-line Hindutva ahead of its development plank. What a sea-change from 2014! My request to all those fence-sitters (many of whom are thinking of pressing the NOTA button) is to weigh the pros and cons before voting. This group of BJP supporters who are sitting uncomfortably on the fence must decide not only for the nation but also for their own party. Is this the India you want where ‘vikas'(development) replaces ‘vinash’ (destruction)? There is enough criticism of Congress and its dynastic legacy and I know no one asks this question but — Dear BJP supporters…Is this the BJP you want? Perhaps it is time to get off that fence and let your leaders know your decision. (The writer is a journalist and media entrepreneur. The views expressed are strictly personal)last_img read more

Gabon seeks to learn from Moroccan experience in management of expats’…

Rabat – Gabon’s Minister of Human Rights, Equal Opportunities and the Gabonese Expatriate Community, Alexander Désiré Tapoyo, expressed Monday in Rabat, the willingness of his country to cooperate with Morocco and his wish to learn from the experience of the Kingdom in the management of expats’ affairs.The Gabonese official expressed such will during his talks with Minister in charge of the Moroccan expatriate community, Anis Birrou, as part of his working visit to the Kingdom.In a statement to MAP, the Gabonese Minister stressed the uniqueness of the Moroccan experience in the management of expatriates’ affairs, given the significant contribution of the Moroccan expat community to the country’s development. For his part, the Moroccan Minister discussed with his Gabonese counterpart the concerns of the Moroccan community in Gabon before reassuring the Gabonese Minister of the efforts of the Moroccan government in this field, and the determination of the Kingdom to further strengthen cooperation with this country. read more

UN agency fears 30 Somali boat people dead in tragedy off the

Some 30 Somalis escaping across the Gulf of Aden are feared dead after one boat capsized and another hit rough seas this weekend in two separate smuggling incidents, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reported today.The first boat, carrying 40 migrants, keeled over Saturday evening as the passengers attempted to disembark off the Yemeni coast. Although 20 made it to shore, the bodies of the remaining 20 have not been recovered, according to UNHCR.Survivors washed ashore near Rass al Kalb, where a UNHCR partner, the Society for Human Solidarity (SHS), provided them with food and water before transporting them to the UNHCR reception centre in Mayfa’a for further assistance and registration. The second tragedy occurred late Sunday afternoon off the coast of Rujeema, where survivors reported that eight migrants died and two were missing after their vessel, carrying 23, wandered into turbulent seas and began taking on water. Witnesses told UNHCR that some of the deaths were due to suffocation as the smugglers covered the passengers with a tarpaulin in an effort to stop the water from getting in.The 13 migrants that made it to dry land near Rujeema were given first aid by SHS and transferred to the UNHCR reception centre in Mayfa’a.So far this year, a reported 17,035 people have made the dangerous voyage from the Horn of Africa to Yemen, while 74 people have died and 51 remain missing at sea, according to UNHCR. Those who make the Gulf of Aden crossing are fleeing desperate situations of civil war, political instability, poverty and famine in Somalia and the region. 7 April 2009Some 30 Somalis escaping across the Gulf of Aden are feared dead after one boat capsized and another hit rough seas this weekend in two separate smuggling incidents, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reported today. read more

Global trade forecast to pick up but uncertainties linger

Director General of the World Trade Organization, WTO, Brazilian Roberto Azevedo speaks during a press conference at the headquarters of the WTO in Geneva, Switzerland, Wednesday, April 12, 2017. The WTO is predicting an uptick in global trade this year and next after a lackluster 2016, while cautioning that uncertainty about policies like protectionism and anti-globalization present risks to its forecast.(Salvatore Di Nolfi/Keystone via AP) GENEVA – The World Trade Organization is predicting an uptick in global trade this year and next after a lacklustre 2016, while cautioning that uncertainty about policies like protectionism and anti-globalization present risks to its forecast.The Geneva-based trade body, which has faced rumblings that the Trump administration might move to withdraw the United States, is projecting trade growth of 2.4 per cent this year, from 1.3 per cent in 2016, which was the slowest pace since the height of the financial crisis in 2008.Uncertainty over global trade is particularly high. For this year’s forecast, WTO Director-General Roberto Azevedo set a range of between 1.8 per cent and 3.6 per cent depending on factors including the interest rate environment, fiscal policy, the results of upcoming elections, and the level of appetite for more protectionist or anti-globalization policies.WTO’s expected range for trade growth next year 2018 runs from 2.1 per cent to 4 per cent.Azevedo said the WTO was hoping for greater stability in the world economy, and alluded to lingering uncertainty about trade policy in the United States, the world’s largest economy, under the administration of President Donald Trump.“We are still waiting to see how the trade policy itself is going to shape up in the United States,” Azevedo said. He said the WTO is waiting for a U.S. trade representative to be to be confirmed, “so we can have a more meaningful dialogue” with the United States.The Trump administration has nominated Robert Lighthizer to become USTR.Azevedo said the “poor performance” in world trade growth last year was mostly due to a “significant slowdown in emerging markets, where imports basically stagnated last year.” A drop in commodity prices partially doused demand in those markets.Azevedo did note some bright spots.“A number of early indicators points to a recovery in trade growth in 2017, for example, container port throughput has climbed to a record high … figures on global export orders are at their highest level in several years,” he said.“These factors combined with an expected recovery in global GDP gives cause for a cautious optimism,” he said. by The Associated Press Posted Apr 12, 2017 10:28 am MDT Last Updated Apr 12, 2017 at 11:00 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Global trade forecast to pick up but uncertainties linger read more

Madagascar SecretaryGeneral concerned by latest electoral developments

“The presentation of candidate nomination papers by Transition President Andry Rajoelina, Mrs. Lalao Ravalomanana and former President Didier Ratsiraka, and the decision of the Special Electoral Court to endorse those candidatures, is in violation of the spirit of the SADC-mediated Road Map,” the spokesperson added in a statement.In 2011, the Indian Ocean nation’s political parties signed a SADC-brokered roadmap which allowed for the unconditional return from exile of Mr. Ravalomanana, deposed in a 2009 coup led by President Rajoelina after weeks of unrest. Meeting on the margins of the UN General Assembly’s high-level debate in late September last year, the Deputy Secretary-General, Jan Eliasson and President Rajoelina discussed the implementation of the roadmap and the preparations for the 2013 elections. The Secretary-General’s statement today stresses that UN assistance to the electoral process is conditional upon strict adherence by all parties to the Road Map as the sole framework for a restoration of the full legitimacy of the Government of Madagascar.“The Secretary General calls on all stakeholders to comply with the SADC Organ Troika and the African Union Peace and Security Council decisions, so that elections can take place in accordance with the calendar prepared by the Independent National Electoral Commission for the Transition and endorsed by the United Nations,” the statement added. read more

Salisbury car park ticket machine cordoned off as expert warns dusty nerve

first_imgThe Horner family, which owns Winterslow Coachworks, declined to comment.Meanwhile, the upper floor of the Sainsbury’s car park was also sealed off by police amid a sudden burst of activity close to the scene where the Russians collapsed. Police began examining sections of the same car park on Monday for any traces of the Novichok nerve agent used to poison the pair. That reinforces the belief that the agent may have been introduced into Mr Skripal’s BMW car by the attacker, infecting him and Yulia when they first climbed into the vehicle, possibly to make their way into Salisbury city centre on Sunday, March 3.It came as a former chemical weapons inspector warned that the Novichok used in the attack is “very persistent” and could linger for a “reasonable length of time” as a “dusty agent”. Screens were erected to prevent the public from witnessing developments at the scene. The cordon around The Mill was also extended. As it emerged a Novichok nerve agent was used in the attack, Philip Ingram, a former intelligence and security officer who has studied chemical warfare, said Col Skripal’s car was now the likely source of the contamination.Mr Ingram said: “Using the car would explain why both Mr Skripal and his daughter got a dose at the same time and then transferred it around the restaurant and the pub.”It is easy to break into a car and put some of the substance in there. They then jump into the car to go to the restaurant and pub and get contaminated in the process.”This nerve agent Novichok would have taken effect in hours at most to work, rather than days.” Video: What is Novichok? Nerve agent more potent that VX Mr Skripal’s car has already been taken away for examination by experts at the Government’s Porton Down chemical weapons research centre, along with the vehicle used to tow it from the Sainsbury’s car park to a local car pound. Meanwhile, Jerry Smith, a former chemical weapons inspector for the Organisation for Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, said the Novichok agent is “very persistent” and could linger for a “reasonable length of time”.He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “To be honest there is very little knowledge in the open source about these agents. There is sort of six or seven elements that the whistleblower put out of certain lightweight detail shall we say, not a huge amount of detail.“But we do know that they can be as you mention binary, we do know that they can be very persistent. In fact they can actually be micro pulverised dust so they are called dusty agents rather than being a liquid so they can hang around on surfaces for a reasonable length of time.”Mr Smith also suggested the agent could have been made by other “advanced countries”. The search for clues to the assassination attempt on Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter has widened again as police sealed off a car park ticket machine in Salisbury.The ticket dispenser at the Sainsbury’s car park, in the city’s Maltings Shopping Centre, was covered by a yellow and white forensics tent and a cordon placed several yards wide around it on Tuesday morning. Two police officers were guarding the scene.The move suggests police believe Mr Skripal, 66, and his 33-year-old daughter Yulia – who are both still in a critical condition – parked in the car park and obtained a ticket at the machine before going on to Zizzi restaurant and the Mill pub, both of which were sealed off last Monday, the day after the attack took place. The ticket dispenser at the Sainsbury’s car park, in the city’s Maltings Shopping Centre, was covered by a yellow and white forensics tent “One of the young bar staff who was on a break sat really near them and has also been interviewed.” Neither the police nor Ashley Wood Recovery would comment. Sergei Skripal with his daughter Yulia As further details of Col Skripal’s movements emerged, a source close to Greg Townsend, manager of The Mill, revealed that he served the Russians last Sunday afternoon and had since been treated like a “terror suspect”, interviewed by police up to eight times last week.He said The Mill had 12 CCTV cameras, covering the large open-plan bar area as well as the upstairs balcony and lavatories overlooking it.“The pub has obviously remained closed for more than a week and the cordon widened, but Greg feels like he has been kept completely in the dark, they’re not telling him anything. “He actually served them. He’s had a bit of a time of it all and is a pending terror suspect.”He certainly said he’s being treated like one. He’s had around eight police interviews.” Police officers at a cordon around a ticket machine in a Sainsbury’s car park in SalisburyCredit:Paul Grover for the Telegraph Police block the entrance to Sainsbury’s car park in Salisbury on Monday Credit:Andrew Matthews /PA Army Chemical Experts investigate property and a hire van in the village of West Wintersnow center_img Sergei Skripal with his daughter Yulia Other vehicles, such as the ambulances that arrived at the scene to treat the Skripals after they collapsed onto a bench on the banks of the River Avon, near the car park, have also been taken for examination.The police car driven by Detective Sargeant Nick Bailey, who was among the first to help Mr Skripal and his daughter and suffered the effects of the agent but is now recovering in hospital, has also been examined.From the car park, it was just a short walk through The Maltings shopping precinct to Zizzi, where they ate lunch before heading to The Mill pub for a drink. The bench on which the pair later collapsed would have been on their route back to the car. Last Thursday, Ashley Wood Recovery’s garage in Salisbury was cordoned off as police recovered the BMW.Ambulances, police cars and unmarked vehicles have also been removed from locations across the city. The ticket dispenser at the Sainsbury’s car park, Salisbury, was covered by a yellow and white forensics tentCredit:HENRY NICHOLLS /Reuters Caroline Clayden, from Winterslow, said: “It is like something out a film, it is quite scary, we can’t go anywhere and nobody has been told what on earth is going on.”They are right outside my door taping things up now.”It would be jolly nice to know what is happening that’s for sure.” Sainsbury's ticket machine Army chemical experts investigate property and a hire van in the village of West Wintersnow Credit:David Rose for The Telegraph The source said the CCTV cameras covered the whole bar and had been seized by police. “Skripal and his daughter sat just to the right of the front door. Police block the entrance to Sainsbury's car park in Salisbury The recovery van believed to have towed his abandoned vehicle from the parking space early last week was carefully removed from an address in the village of Winterslow, eight miles from Salisbury, by military personnel in protective suits shortly after 2pm on Monday.The road was also blocked off. The van was owned by Ashley Wood Recovery and was parked outside the home of one of its employees, 22-year-old Robert Horner, who lives with his parents. Neighbour Robbie Williams, 54, said: “They took all the guy’s clothes.” 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.last_img read more

Killer project Build your own vortex cannon

first_imgHow would you like to have your very own vortex cannon like Tom Cruise in Minority Report? It’s not quite as complicated as you would imagine, albeit not quite as awesome either. Two students from the University of Nottingham filmed the video above as part of University radio show The Science Show. The beginning starts off a bit like a British adaptation of a Lonely Island video, but then the cool stuff happens and plastic cups start flying.The basic steps to creating a vortex cannon are: cut a circular hole in an otherwise sealed cardboard box, fill said box with smoke followed by simultaneously hitting both sides of the box. Due to the opening being circular as well as narrower than the box itself and it being the smokes only form of escape, so when the box is hit the smoke inside is forced out through the opening… creating a vortex!It’s not all that powerful, in fact it can just about knock over a tower of plastic cups from 10 meters away. It’s extremely timid compared to the vortex cannon from the BBC’s Bang Goes The Theory which can knock down a “house of bricks” by using explosions to generate the force required, but it’s also a hell of a lot easier to make. See that (video at the bottom.)If you want to know more about the physics behind the cannon then head over to The Science Show’s website to listen to the podcasts, there’s also a number of other interesting topics that may well be worth a listen too.last_img read more

Senate tries again to move antiviolence bill

first_imgWASHINGTON — Senate Democrats, bolstered by Republican support, on Monday launched a new attempt to broaden a law protecting women from domestic abuse by expanding its provisions to cover gays, lesbians and Native Americans. The legislation to renew the Violence Against Women Act appeared on a smooth path toward passage in the Senate, possibly by the end of this week. Monday’s vote to make the bill the next order of business was 85-8.Senate passage would send the bill to the House. Advocates hope that Republicans, smarting from election losses among women voters in November, won’t repeat their resistance last year to the Senate approach.“Allowing partisan delays to put women’s lives at risk is simply shameful,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said before the vote. He said he hoped convincing support for the legislation in the Senate would “send a strong message to House Republican leaders that further partisan delay is unacceptable.”Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., a key sponsor, said she was encouraging moderate Republicans in the House to sign onto the Senate bill. House Democrats have introduced a bill that is identical to the Senate measure.last_img read more

Heart over head poor acumen and lack of foresight Mindtrees parallels with

first_imgThe Mindtree logo. The company is fighting a takeover bid by Larsen & Toubro.When the mindset of people at the helm fails to keep pace with a firm’s growth, ugly boardroom dramas like the one playing out in Mindtree’s boardroom unfolds. The founders of the Bengaluru-based mid-size information technology services firm are locked in an emotional battle against the takeover bid by construction and technology giant Larsen & Toubro (L&T), which has deployed a massive Rs 10,733-crore war chest for storming the boardroom of the 20-year-old public-listed company.Mindtree founders Krishnakumar Natarajan, Subroto Bagchi, and Parthasarathy NS, and chief executive officer Rostow Ravanan have taken the battle to the public with a joint press conference and emotional posts on the social media. But L&T remains undeterred and managing director and chief executive officer SN Subrahmanyan has offered to allow Mindtree to keep its separate identity for “some time to come”.Even as L&T is expected to come out with a detailed public statement (DPS) on its takeover bid, Mindtree chairman Krishnakumar has demanded that the company founders would like to know the “contours of independence” that L&T would offer Mindtree. The Mumbai-based conglomerate has already made clear its decision to retain Mindtree as an independent listed entity. “I don’t know what the contours of the independence are. It is difficult to make a (judgement) based on a press statement,” Economic Times quoted Krishnakumar as saying. He claimed that the board of the 20-year-old company is “aligned to the logic” of the promoter group.The promoters jointly hold 13.32 per cent stake in the company, while L&T has already bagged 20.32 per cent stake form Café Coffee Day (CCD) founder VG Siddhartha. L&T, which already has its subsidiary L&T Infotech operating in the same market space as Mindtree, has made two open offers for accumulating 66.41 per cent stake in the company.Management experts, however, consider the emotional reaction of the Mindtree founders uncalled for, according to a report on Quartz website. “Part of managing a business as large as this is agility in dealmaking… the management have shown poorer acumen than one expects from professionals of their calibre,” Vivek Durai, founder of business intelligence platform Paper.VC told the website in an email. “They have also shown an amazing lack of ownership and foresight repeating exactly the same mistake as (Infosys founder) NR Narayana Murthy by passing the baton forward from one founder to another. A silly tradition that should never have started in a company that promotes meritocracy.”On March 19, Bagchi quit as head of Odisha Skill Development Authority (OSDA) and returned to Mindtree to lead the fight against the takeover bid. He tweeted, “Mindtree has not been designed as an ‘asset’ to be bought & sold. It is a national resource. It has a unique culture that humanizes the idea of business. It sets the standards of corporate governance. I need to be there in its time of difficulty. Hence the hard decision to return.”Quartz writes Bagchi’s interference is reminiscent of Murthy’s April 2017 outcry over the salary of then-Infosys CEO Vishal Sikka and the hefty severance packages doled out to former CFO Rajiv Bansal and former chief compliance officer David Kennedy. By August, Sikka had quit and co-founder Nandan Nilekani returned after a gap of eight years as non-executive chairman to stabilise the leadership churn. Mindtree board is preparing for a pitched battle in case of a hostile takeover attempt by Larsen & Toubro (L&T) that is in talks to buy up the entire stake that Cafe Coffee Day founder VG Siddhartha controls, making possible an open offer with possibility of a management change.mindtree.comlast_img read more

Man held with 14 gold bars

first_imgGold bars. File PhotoMembers of Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) detained a suspected gold smuggler along with 14 gold bars from Putkhali border area of Benapole in Jashore on Saturday evening, reports UNB.The arrestee is Dilip Halder, 35, son of a certain Khudiram Halder.Being informed that a consignment of gold was being smuggled to India, a team of BGB conducted a raid and detained Dilip along with the gold bars weighing 1.630 kilogram worth Tk 8.5 million, said lieutenant colonel Imram Ullah Sarker, commander of BGB-21 battalion.The detainee was handed over to Benapole Port police station after filing of a case in this connection.last_img

Saudi prepares for hajj as Gulf tensions persist

first_imgA Muslim pilgrim snaps pictures of pigeons as she walks in the streets of the Saudi holy city of Mecca on 6 August 2019, a few days ahead of the annual Hajj pilgrimage. Photo: AFPMore than 2.5 million Muslims will on Friday begin the annual hajj pilgrimage in the Islamic holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia, against a backdrop of tensions in the Gulf. Crowds of worshippers have already begun to gather in Mecca in the days ahead of the hajj, the focal point of the Islamic calendar.“It’s the first time I’ve felt something so strongly—it’s striking,” said 40-year-old Indonesian pilgrim Sobar in rudimentary Arabic.More than 1.8 million visitors had arrived by midday local time on Tuesday, authorities said.Crowds of faithful from across the world wore flowing white robes as they descended on the holy city located in the west of the ultra-conservative kingdom.The pilgrims will undertake religious rites that have remained unchanged since the founding of Islam 14 centuries ago.“Islam united us. We are all together… so that’s why I’m very happy,” said Leku Abibu, 46, a Ugandan mechanic who wore a beige salwar kameez.“I’m enjoying it here.”This year’s hajj takes place amid tensions in the Gulf region exacerbated by a series of attacks on oil tankers, drone strikes and interceptions of maritime traffic on the high seas.Saudi, the Gulf’s leading power, and its ally Washington accuse Iran—Riyadh’s regional rival—of being behind the attacks and sabotage operations against commercial shipping.Tehran has denied responsibility.Despite the absence of diplomatic ties between Saudi and Iran, some 88,550 Iranian pilgrims are due to take part in the hajj this year, according to the Tasnim news agency.‘No differences between us’Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam and Muslims must perform it at least once in their lives if they can afford to.“There are all nations of the world, all languages. There are no differences between us,” said Nurul Jamal, a 61-year-old pilgrim from India.Mecca, closed to non-Muslims, is home to the Kaaba—a cube structure draped in black cloth embroidered in gold located at the heart of the mosque.The Great Mosque of Mecca with its Ottoman minarets sits amid skyscrapers that host upmarket malls and luxury hotels.Muslims face toward the Kaaba when praying the prescribed five-times daily.Pilgrims circle the Kaaba seven times and perform a number of sacred rites.While waiting for the beginning of the hajj, worshippers roam the esplanade or pray in the mosque in stifling heat.Temperatures can surpass 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) and some pilgrims carry sun shades.Large misting machines installed at the holy sites help to make the heat more bearable.“The mosques are air conditioned, water is readily available, you just have to protect yourself from the sun,” said Algerian Kamal Bouslimani, 57.Men wear two pieces of unstitched cloth called “ihram” that leaves one shoulder exposed.Pilgrims move together in large groups, led by guides holding their national flags.Billions of dollarsGuards in khaki fastidiously lead worshippers to their five daily prayers.Traffic in the city is extremely heavy and the air quality is poor.The odour of exhaust fumes mixes with the smell of bitumen emitted by the heated road surface and many pilgrims wear face masks.Away from prayers, many of the faithful visit the innumerable shops that speckle the Holy City.Religious tourism brings in revenues worth billions of dollars.But the vast gathering also presents major logistical and safety challenges.In 2015, some 2,300 worshippers were killed in the worst stampede in the history of the hajj.Since then Saudi Arabia has sought to reassure pilgrims, deploying tens of thousands of security officers and installing cameras to oversee every corner of the holy sites.Even though the hajj lasts only five days, many pilgrims arrive weeks before and linger in the city.The total number of arrivals is limited however as each Muslim country receives a pilgrim quota.Some worshippers have spent years on waiting lists—sometimes as long as a decade—just to perform their religious duty.Outside of the hajj, Muslims can also undertake a lesser, year-round pilgrimage known as umrah.last_img read more

Congressman Al Green To Boycott Trump Inauguration

first_img Listen Share 00:00 /01:14 To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: Andrew SchneiderCongressman Al Green, speaking at his district office in Houston.Congressman Al Green said he’ll boycott Donald Trump’s inauguration. The Houston congressman was the first Texan among of dozens of House Democrats refusing to attend Trump’s swearing in.Austin Rep. Lloyd Doggett and San Antonio Rep. Joaquin Castro added their names to the list several hours later.Green cited Trump’s language during the campaign as one of the main reasons he’ll be staying away from the Capitol on Friday, when Trump takes the oath of office. “I cannot participate in the inauguration of a person who calls women dogs, who would bar Muslims from this country, who has insulted a Gold Star family, who has insulted Latinos,” he said.Green also echoed Atlanta Congressman John Lewis, who is boycotting the event as well, by saying Trump will not be a legitimate president.But Green went further, linking support for Trump to support for state efforts to suppress minority voting rights. As an example, he pointed to Texas voter ID law.“People are not going to accept Mr. Trump as a legitimate president,” Green said. “He’s lawful, but the way it happened is going to cast a shadow over his presidency, not just today, but tomorrow, and perhaps until he can help us change some of these draconian laws.”Green said that one of his top priorities for the new Congress will be working to reinstate portions of the Voting Rights Act struck down by the Supreme Court. He said that’s one area in which he’d be happy to work with the new president.Andrew SchneiderCongressman Green attacked Texas voter ID law, and others like it, for making it harder for minorities to vote. He said the first time he attempted to use his congressional ID to identify himself at the polls, he was turned away. Xlast_img read more

Heres What Your Favorite Music Says About Your Personality

first_imgYour taste in music could reveal insights into your personality, according to two studies published in Psychological Science. Previous attempts at finding links between music and personality traits didn’t necessarily represent a wide variety of people because the respondents tended to be younger – thus more likely to share similar music tastes – and had varying definitions of the musical genres they were listening to. This time around, more than half of the respondents were older than 22 and all were presented with 25 unfamiliar musical extracts pre-categorized by musicologists. “These results corroborate that music – a form of self-expression that is ubiquitous across human cultures – communicates meaningful information about basic psychological characteristics,” said the authors in their study. Read the whole story: IFLSciencecenter_img Researchers from Cambridge and US universities surveyed more than 21,000 people in two separate online surveys to see how five main personality types known collectively as the Big Five – those that are open-minded, extroverted, agreeable, neurotic, and conscientious – matched up with different genres of music. These included tunes that were mellow, unpretentious, sophisticated, intense, and contemporary. last_img read more

For a cause

first_imgStar India, the nation’s leading media and entertainment conglomerate, will strengthen on-going efforts at rehabilitation in flood-ravaged Uttarakhand by raising funds to help bring comfort to victims of this tragedy.Leading actors from Bollywood will join Star’s fund-raiser – a seven-hour marathon event on the occasion of Independence Day – in what’s the first such effort by the entertainment industry to alleviate the sufferings of people impacted by the floods. The entire advertising revenue generated through the event will be channelled to not-for-profit bodies that are working diligently to restore normalcy in Uttarakhand. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’‘The tragedy in Uttarakhand is a solemn opportunity for every Indian to lend a helping hand,’ Uday Shankar, CEO, Star India, said. ‘This occasion demands that people join forces to support those in need. It’s heartening that people are coming together and our role is only that of a catalyst.’Early confirmation of stars supporting the initiative include Indian cinema’s icons Amitabh Bachchan, Lata Mangeshkar, Ajay Devgn, Kajol, Anil Kapoor, AR Rahman, Boman Irani, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Pritam, Prasoon Joshi, Mukesh Bhatt, Ayushmann Khurana and celebrities from top television shows of the Star network such as Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixDiya Aur Baati Hum, Pyaar Ka Dard Hai Meetha Meetha Pyaara Pyaara, Saraswatichandra, Savdhaan India, Devon Ke Dev Mahadev and India’s Dancing Superstars among others.Film Producers Guild, Federation of Western India Cine Employees, TV Artists Forum, Corporate Charity Trusts and several independent industrialists and donors will partner Star India’s marathon fund-raiser that will be attended by senior leaders from the state and central governments. ‘I am delighted that the Indian film industry has embraced our outreach plan and is partnering with us in this initiative to spread hope,’ Shankar added.last_img read more

Forget Beacons The Future of Retail May Be Magnetic

first_img Did you know your local mall has its own unique magnetic signature? It does — and in the future, it could help inform the way you shop.On Monday, IndoorAtlas unveiled a new technology that should make it more convenient for shoppers to find what they’re looking for when they visit a mall. Rather than merely indicating where a store is situated in an indoor shopping setting, the technology can pinpoint exactly where a product category, such as men’s shirts, is located. The tech can also be used to find specific brands.A building’s magnetic signature is determined by “how much steel and metal is in the building” as well as how it’s constructed, Aaron Liao, IndoorAtlas’s director of developer evangelism, told Entrepreneur during a demo of the company’s mobile app. Every building will be different based on how it was built and where it’s located.Related: This Gadget Makes Your Entire Kitchen ‘Smart’Whereas beacon technology requires installation, IndoorAtlas uses your phone’s built-in compass sensors to track the signals produced by a building’s steel girders. Using this magnetic map, your phone is able to figure out where you are in the building and direct you to what you’re looking for. This means there’s no need for retailers to maintain any hardware (beacons, like all electronics, eventually run out of battery power), and shoppers end up with an accurate idea of where products and brands are located.“You can say to it ‘Find me men’s shorts’ and I can give you turn-by-turn walking directions to every instance of men’s shirts, whether they are inside Bloomingdales, Abercrombie and Fitch, or Nordstrom,” says Liao. “It’s amazingly accurate. We boast one meter of accuracy, which is effectively the difference between leading you to men’s button-down shirts and the casual t-shirts that are right next to them. Three feet of accuracy means I can lead you directly to the soap versus the shampoo that’s right next to it.”Image Credit: Indoor Atlas | 10 Face | Shutterstock.com | Enhanced by EntrepreneurThe only issue: all data needs to be manually added into the app. In other words, before IndoorAtlas can direct shoppers’ to the men’s shirts aisle in a store, someone must first manually input the correct location information into the app. Right now, the company is handling the mapping side of things on its own, but the hope is to ultimately crowdsource the data, and operate in a similar fashion to Waze, an app through which users share real-time traffic and road information.Related: Samsung Announces Artik, a New Platform to Advance Its Open ‘Internet of Things’ PlanThe goal is that once enough people begin using the IndoorAtlas app, they will organically update the data themselves, says Liao. So, just as if you were reporting an accident on Waze, if you’re looking for socks and realize they’ve been moved across the store floor, you might update the app to reflect the change so others don’t have the same problem.Liao says the company also hopes to partner with retailers, who would update the app whenever they reorganize the store floor. They’d also be able to offer deals and coupons that will show up on consumers’ phones when they’re shopping nearby.A trial of tech is currently underway in San Francisco at the Westfield Mall on Market Street. Westfield is the first location in the United States to try out the tech, but it’s already being used in some retail locations overseas.Beyond finding things to buy, the app can be used to find people. If you and a friend are shopping together and happen to lose each other, you can opt to share your location with your buddy and get turn-by-turn directions to his or her whereabouts.It certainly could make shopping, especially in larger malls like Mall of America, a lot less of a headache.Related: Everything Business Owners Need to Know About Beacons 4 min read August 24, 2015 Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Register Now »last_img read more

Washington Redskins running back Derrius Guice ce

first_imgWashington Redskins running back Derrius Guice, center, receives attention on the field after an injury during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the New England Patriots, Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Steven Senne) Arizona hosts Washington at University of Phoenix Stadium to open 2018 on Sunday, Sept. 9.Related LinksCardinals get CJ2K, lose out on Campbell in The Ringer’s 2008 re-draftThe 5: Things to watch in the Arizona Cardinals’ preseason openerArizona Cardinals sign cornerback Tim ScottCardinals refresh game day reminders for home opener vs. RedskinsGuice was injured in Washington’s preseason opener at New England. The team announced the prognosis Friday following an MRI, saying Guice should make a full recovery and be ready to play in 2019.In camp, Guice had been splitting first-team carries with Rob Kelley and Samaje Perine. Coach Jay Gruden has said there was competition for the No. 1 job along with third-down back Chris Thompson. Now, it’s wide open after Guice’s season-ending injury.The team said tight end Manasseh Garner, a long shot to make the roster, is out for the season with an ACL injury. The Arizona Cardinals’ first regular season opponent suffered a serious blow to its season in its first preseason game on Thursday.Washington Redskins rookie running back Derrius Guice is out for the season after tearing the ACL in his left knee.Guice was expected to be the Redskins’ starter after they selected him 59th overall in the draft. The LSU product was considered a first-round prospect and went late in the second. Top Stories 3 Comments Share The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and sellinglast_img read more

Detroit residents remember Aretha Franklin impact

first_imgDetroit residents remember Aretha Franklin, impact on city by Corey Williams And Jeff Karoub, The Associated Press Posted Aug 16, 2018 8:46 pm PDT Last Updated Aug 17, 2018 at 12:40 am PDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Karon White sings outside New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit, Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018. Aretha Franklin, the undisputed “Queen of Soul” who sang with matchless style on such classics as “Think,” ”I Say a Little Prayer” and her signature song, “Respect,” and stood as a cultural icon around the globe, died Thursday at age 76 from pancreatic cancer. C.L. Franklin, her father, had been pastor at the church that Franklin learned the gospel fundamentals that would make her a soul institution. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya) center_img DETROIT – To the rest of the world, she was the “Queen of Soul” — a woman whose strong and soulful voice could effortlessly jump multiple octaves whether belting out tear-jerking ballads or jump-and-shout gospel.To residents in her hometown of Detroit who followed her more than 50-year career, she was simply “Aretha” or more personally “Ree-Ree” — the city’s favourite daughter, often singing at the Baptist church her father once led or headlining charity functions for kids or the less fortunate.“She was a pioneer woman for Detroit,” said Myron Pullin, fighting back tears Thursday morning outside New Bethel Baptist Church after learning of Franklin’s death from pancreatic cancer.“It really hurt my heart. I wanted to cry,” Pullin, 56, added beneath sombre, grey and swollen clouds. “Her music touches you, but her voice. Patti LaBelle, Gladys Knight, they’re beautiful singers, but to me, Aretha just stood out differently from all of them.”Franklin, who died at her home in Detroit, had moved to the city from Tennessee as a young child.“She was just special and she always came home and she always gave back,” Pullin said. “She really, really always loved Detroit.”The feeling was mutual. Franklin is so beloved in Detroit that not one, but two streets bear her name.“Few people in the history of our city have been as universally loved or left as indelible a mark as Aretha,” Mayor Mike Duggan said in a statement. “From the time her father gave Aretha her start in the New Bethel choir, it was clear to everyone how special she was. She was a performer without peers. Throughout her extraordinary life and career, she earned the love — and yes, the respect — of millions of people, not just for herself and for women everywhere, but for the city she loved so dearly and called home.”In 2010, she and former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice performed a duet at Philadelphia’s Mann Music Center to raise money for urban children and awareness for music and the arts. “It is a joint effort for the inner-city youth of Philadelphia and Detroit,” Franklin said at the time.She also worked with the United Negro College Fund and in 2005 held a party in the Detroit area for dozens of people displaced by Hurricane Katrina.“Detroiters realize how deeply I appreciate the city in which I was raised,” Franklin wrote in her 1999 autobiography, “Aretha: From These Roots.”She continued, “And it is in Detroit that I continue to cultivate my career; it is to Detroit that I direct most of my charitable activities; and it is from Detroit that I receive much love and support, which I reciprocate.”Abdul “Duke” Fakir, the lone surviving original member of the Four Tops, told the AP earlier in the week about a recent conversation they had about the city.“She was telling me she rides around the city every now and then — she talks about how beautiful it is again,” Fakir said.Lisa McCall, whose quarter-century career working with Franklin started at age 12 as a dancer and continued for many years as her main choreographer, said Franklin was loyal to her “camp,” many of whom were from Detroit. They had a two-hour conversation when McCall was diagnosed with breast cancer 15 years ago, and another heart-to-heart came more recently.“She heard I was ill and she called me — she gave me hope and inspired me,” McCall said Thursday, adding that she still has the card that came with a bouquet of flowers Franklin had sent. “Then, last year in the dressing room she said, ‘Lisa, you’ve been through this — I hope I come out on top like you.’ … I knew what she meant.”McCall said Franklin was an inspiration both personally and professionally. The singer trusted the choreographer to assemble the team of dancers and make sure they were ready to perform at venues across the country.“I think that’s why I always hire Detroit artists — because of Aretha. She kept Detroit artists working,” McCall said. “She always gave opportunities to Detroiters … because she said we have great talent.“She’s Detroit’s queen — she’s our queen,” McCall added. “She belongs to us.”___Associated Press writer Russell Contreras in Albuquerque, New Mexico, contributed to this story.___Online:For more, visithttps://apnews.com/tag/ArethaFranklinFollow Corey Williams on Twitter at https://twitter.com/coreyAPReporterFollow Jeff Karoub on Twitter at https://twitter.com/jeffkaroublast_img read more

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Flipkart can be the front-end with Walmart at the back-end. But by changing his name from Cassius Clay to Muhammad Ali, their relationship was an open secret in B-town. In its judgement, Milbus Software BurgerTime (1982) Guide Peter Pepper in this hamburger-assembling action game, The case has now been to the governor of Tennessee Bill Haslam who will make the final decision. read more

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Smeltzer ordered a pre-sentence investigation by the state Department of Corrections. holding his hands containing tobacco above his head. “The nationwide strike embarked upon by the NMA is not just selfish and ego-driven but anti-people and provocative. 2. But under new laws, Visitors saw the camera the next morning and alerted park rangers,” The press release was based on an exchange between Smith and Córdova during the 26 February hearing. read more