SCFs Tanker Carries Its First Crude Oil to Murmansk Port

first_imgzoom The 2016-built Arctic shuttle tanker Shturman Albanov, owned by Russian shipping major Sovcomflot, delivered its first shipment of crude oil produced at Gazprom Neft’s Novy Port field to the port of Murmansk on September 16.The cargo, comprising 34,000 tonnes of crude oil, was loaded at the Arctic Gate terminal, near Cape Kamenny in the Gulf of Ob, earlier last week.Shturman Albanov is the lead ship in a series of Arctic shuttle tankers ordered by Sovcomflot Group under a long-term contract with Gazprom Neft.Featuring around 42,000 dwt, a length of 249 meters and a width of 34 meters, the vessels are designed to carry crude oil from the Yamal peninsula to the port of Murmansk all year-round.The Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RS) assigned the vessels an ice class Arc7, while the construction of three vessels of the series was financed by Sberbank CIB under a 14-year USD 340 million credit facility agreement signed in December 2015.The Russia-flagged Shturman Albanov joined SCF’s fleet on 16 August, after which it sailed to its loading point in the Gulf of Ob.“The successful start to the operation of SCF’s Arctic shuttle tanker Shturman Albanov is really a landmark event. In fact, Sovcomflot’s new tankers will enable the year-round transportation of oil from the estuary of Ob for the first time in history,” Sergey Frank, Chairman and CEO of PAO Sovcomflot, said.last_img read more

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DHT Holdings Locks Financing for VLCC Newbuilds

first_imgzoom Crude oil tanker operator DHT Holdings has secured bank financing for the two 318,000 dwt VLCCs newbuildings ordered at South Korean shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI).  The VLCCs were ordered in January 2017 and are to be delivered in July and September 2018, respectively.As disclosed, the financing will cover about 50% of the contract price with the remainder being financed by cash at hand.“As such, DHT does not intend to issue any stock to finance the two newbuildings,” the company said in a release.In line with the terms of the deal, the financing  has a 5 year tenor and its 20 year repayment profile is in support of DHT’s low cash break-even levels.“DHT estimates that the average cash break-even for each vessel to cover OPEX, interest and debt repayment to be about USD 16,800 per day.  The bank financing has a margin of 250bps above LIBOR and 50% of the financing is structured as a revolving credit facility,” the release further reads.Separately, the company said yesterday that its Board of Directors unanimously rejected Frontline’s revised proposal to acquire all of the outstanding shares of common stock of DHT at an exchange ratio of 0.8 Frontline shares for each DHT share.“After a comprehensive review, conducted in consultation with its financial and legal advisors, the DHT Board concluded that the revised Frontline proposal continues to be wholly inadequate and not in the best interests of DHT or its shareholders.  The Board notes, in particular, that Frontline’s revised proposal continues to significantly undervalue the contribution that DHT’s business and fleet would make to a combined company, including with respect to net asset value and profit contribution,”  DHT explained.As pointed out, DHT Board informed Frontline of its decision on Sunday, February 26 and, in its response letter, offered to have DHT’s co-CEOs meet with Frontline over the coming days, which Frontline is said to have rejected on both February 28 or Wednesday, March 1.DHT has a total fleet of 21 VLCCs, 19 in the water and two under construction, as well as two Aframaxes. Six of the VLCCs and the two Aframaxes are on fixed rate time charters.last_img read more

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Better Spot Rates Help Odfjell Shrink Loss

first_imgzoomIllustration; Source: Pixabay Norway-based tanker and terminal operator Odfjell has continued the trend of reducing its quarterly loss amid improved spot rates and lower bunker costs.The company’s net loss stood at USD 10.1 million in the second quarter of 2019, shrinking from a loss of USD 15.4 million reported in the previous quarter.Revenues improved to USD 243.2 million from USD 238.3 million in the preceding three-month period. Similarly, EBITDA marked a rise in the three-month period reaching USD 56.8 million, compared to USD 47.2 million in the first quarter of 2019.“The improvement in both spot and COA rates are still modest, but we continue to believe that we are in the early stage in the recovery of the chemical tanker market,” Kristian Mørch, CEO Odfjell SE, commented.Several vessels on time charters redelivered in 2019 were replaced by vessels at more favorable terms, contributing to the improved Odfjell Tankers EBITDA this quarter, that was at USD 50 million, up from USD 40 million seen in the previous quarter.The decreased Odfjell Terminals EBITDA of USD 6 million in the second quarter was attributed to a USD 1.6 million impairment related to the Ethylene project in Houston, after this project did not materialize.“We expect next quarter to be slightly affected by the seasonal slowdown in the chemical tanker market, but we still expect to report figures in line with the second quarter.”In the quarter ended June 30, Odfjell expanded its fleet with two vessels, a super-segregator was taken on long term bareboat charter, that was previously on commercial management to Odfjell Tankers, and one coated MR. The company is scheduled to take delivery of its first “super-segregator” newbuilding (49,000 dwt) from Hudong in August. The second newbuilding is expected to be handed over in October 2019, while the third vessel from the batch would join the fleet in January 2020.The two vessels from Fukuoka Shipbuilding are scheduled to be delivered in the first half of 2020 on long-term bareboat contracts.The quarter also saw the company shed its stake in Odfjell Terminals Jiangyin (OTJ), China. The divestment is part of the company’s strategy to grow and focus on chemical terminals in locations where it can harvest synergies between its tanker and terminal branches.Odfjell further revealed that it was preparing for the new 2020 sulfur requirements by including new bunker adjustment clauses taking IMO 2020 into account into renewed contracts. Some contracts also include clauses where there is optionality to exit from the contract if an agreement on reference price can not be reached, the company said.last_img read more

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New Form of Tidal Power to be Studied

first_imgNew technology may mean more renewable energy from the tides of the Bay of Fundy. Nova Scotia has partnered with New Brunswick and five United States’ jurisdictions to pay for a study of the feasibility of using tidal flow generators in the bay. The newest generation of tidal power turbines resembles wind turbines. Submerged in the water, the generators use fast-moving tidal currents to create electricity. The turbines stand alone, anchored on the seabed, and are not visible from shore. “The tidal currents in the Bay of Fundy seem to be ideal for generating electricity,” said Energy Minister Cecil Clarke, “but we need to have experimental data that will show whether it’s practical to use this emerging technology in our coastal environment.” The Electric Power Research Institute of Palo Alto, Calif., will conduct the study. Nova Scotia and New Brunswick will each contribute $60,000 US to the study. Maine, Massachusetts, Washington State, Alaska, and San Francisco are also taking part in the $425,000 study. The data from all the study locations will be shared among all the study sponsors. “Nova Scotia has significant in-stream tidal energy resources andthe technologies able to harness these resources are becoming available,” said Roger Bedard of the Electric Power Research Institute. “The big question is whether it makes sense for Nova Scotia and the other regions to invest in tidal in-stream energy conversion technology. We will answer that question for the province by March 2006 within the context of this study.” Nova Scotia Power’s president and CEO, Chris Huskilson, said his company is playing a key role in the new study. “Our customers told us they want more renewables and we’re listening to them. That’s why we’re bringing on wind power in this province and seeking ways to harness more power from the tides.” Nova Scotia Power already has one of three tidal power plants in the world at its Annapolis Power Tidal facility, and Annapolis Royal. The province wants to ensure that at least five per cent of Nova Scotia’s electricity supply comes from renewable resource generating capacity that was built after 2001.last_img read more

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Interprofessional Cancer Education in South Shore Health

first_imgImproved patient care is at the heart of a project designed to train cancer health professionals to provide cancer education to their peers. Funded by Health Canada, with Cancer Care Nova Scotia as the project lead, Partners for Interprofessional Cancer Education has trained one health professional from South Shore Health as a facilitator. The training provides expertise in interprofessional learning – a greater appreciation of each others’ values, knowledge and abilities; collaborative, patient-centred practice and cultural sensitivity and safety for First Nations communities. This facilitator will educate health professionals in their district. Together with 37 other facilitators from across Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, they will reach more than 1,100 community-based health professionals over the next year. “Canada’s government commends Cancer Care Nova Scotia and itspartners for their leadership in this project. By April 2008, more than 1,000 Nova Scotian health professionals will be better trained to help cancer patients,” said Tony Clement, federal Minister of Health. “The introduction of interprofessional education across Nova Scotia will benefit not only the patients who will receive unprecedented treatment and support, but also the teams of professionals who work in cancer care.” “With the expertise and commitment of districts, and the strength of our other partners, we are extending the value and reach of Cancer Care Nova Scotia’s original interprofessional education program, the interprofessional core curriculum,” said Theresa Marie Underhill, chief operating officer, Cancer Care Nova Scotia. “Through this project, we are enhancing it, extending the training of health professionals and providing the necessary supports for them to deliver the interprofessional core curriculum to others.” “Health-care providers are excited about the opportunity to broaden and enhance their knowledge, skills and understanding through this initiative. We are pleased to be working with our partners to provide education that will positively impact the lives of hundreds of cancer patients in our District,” said South Shore Health’s CEO Kevin McNamara. Health professionals with an expertise in cancer or palliative care were recruited to participate in the training. Medical and radiation oncologists, palliative care physicians and nurses, social workers, pharmacists, nursing students from St. Francis Xavier University and First Nations representatives working in health were among those trained. “Cancer Care Nova Scotia and its partners have produced an extraordinary education resource,” said Dr. David Abriel, physician on South Shore Health’s palliative care team, who was recently trained as an interprofessional facilitator. “In addition, the recent workshops have provided training not only in the presentation of content, but also in facilitating healthprofessionals who are establishing a new patient-centred and morecollaborative model of care.” The Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre, in collaboration with other partners, implemented the first phase of the project, the development of the facilitator training program. First Nations consultants worked with the Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre to ensure cultural safety and sensitivity was woven throughout the training program. The centre also revised the case studies included in Cancer Care Nova Scotia’s interprofessional core curriculum, which facilitators will be delivering. Beginning in April, facilitators will deliver the core curriculumprogram to community based health professionals in Nova Scotia and P.E.I. The curriculum has 10 modules including, pain and symptom management, treatment and side effects. By April 2008, 1,100 health professionals will have a better knowledge in these areas as well as an improved understanding and appreciation of the expertise of their team members and the community resources available to patients and families. The curriculum will also be included in the undergraduate nursing program at St. Francis Xavier University. As part of the project, Cancer Care Nova Scotia will help facilitators develop a community of practice to build interprofessional knowledge and expertise through better interaction. An evaluation, led by Dalhousie Continuing Medical Education, for both facilitators and participants will cover both intended and self reported changes in practice. Possible ways for evaluating the project from the patient perspective are also being discussed. In addition to Cancer Care Nova Scotia, Partners for Interprofessional Cancer Education includes: district health authorities, the IWK Health Centre, the Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre, Dalhousie University Continuing Medical Education, Dalhousie University College of Pharmacy, Division of Continuing Pharmacy Education, the Union of NovaScotia Indians, the Confederacy of Mainland Mi’kmaq, St. Francis Xavier School of Nursing, Seniors’ Secretariat and Prince Edward Island Department of Health. Cancer Care Nova Scotia is a program of the Department of Health,created to reduce the burden of cancer on individuals, families, and the health care system through prevention, screening, education and research.last_img read more

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Government Surplus Auction

first_imgThe Nova Scotia government will hold its next surplus equipment auction on Saturday, April 21. A list of items to be auctioned is not yet available, but is expected to include commercial kitchen equipment, machine shop equipment, and a few motor vehicles. A complete list of items and photos will be posted on the following website one or two days before the auction at”></a> . The auction will be held at the Department of Transportation and Public Works’ warehouse at 10 Acadia St. in Dartmouth at 10 a.m. The items can be viewed between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. The auction will be conducted by A&A Auctioneering. Payment must be made by cash or auctioneer-approved cheque. Credit cards or debit cards will not be accepted. Money earned in this auction is used to help pay down the provincial debt.last_img read more

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Province Funds Research and Development to Attract Offshore Exploration

first_imgThe government of Nova Scotia is putting new money into research and development to encourage drilling in offshore Nova Scotia. Today, the province announced a $100,000 grant to a research association to explore the use of electromagnetic imaging technology to help find oil and gas deposits in offshore Nova Scotia. “Nova Scotia has proven oil and gas reserves. I want more exploration and that is why government is helping to make it happen,” said Energy Minister Bill Dooks. The grant was awarded to Petroleum Research Atlantic Canada. “Electromagnetic imaging technology has the potential to accelerate the identification of drilling prospects and reduce exploration risk,” said Dave Finn, president of Petroleum Research Atlantic Canada. “This is a nicely focussed strategic investment by the province. We’re delighted to facilitate projects like this for our members.” The government said an announcement of nearly $1 million worth of geoscience research work will be made in the coming weeks, part of the province’s $6 million investment in research and development and other data initiatives in the past 14 months. This investment was one of several measures presented to industry members attending OTC ’07 in Houston, Texas, one of the world’s largest oil and gas shows. Industry members heard about the changes the province’s regulator — the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board — will be making to generate interest in our potential. The changes include creative approaches to land tenure issues and creating more flexible terms and conditions for new exploration licenses. In addition to the policy changes around offshore licencing, the province also outlined its steps to create a streamlined regulatory process. And it highlighted its world-class companies and workforce from Nova Scotia. Thirty-two Nova Scotia companies are taking part in the conference. With more than 2,000 exhibiting companies, and 50,000 delegates, the Offshore Technology Conference ranks among the 10 most attended trade shows in the United States. For more information, see the Department of Energy website at .last_img read more

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Les nouveaux diplômés de la formation en apprentissage accèdent aux métiers spécialisés

first_imgLorsque Peter Robbins s’est rendu compte qu’il n’était pas qualifié pour obtenir son emploi de rêve, il savait qu’il était temps de retourner aux études. Le résident de Smiths Cove, dans le comté de Digby, travaillait dans les métiers spécialisés depuis plus de deux décennies et avait hâte d’entamer une nouvelle phase de sa carrière, malgré les défis que ce changement représentait. M. Robbins s’est donc inscrit au programme de formation en apprentissage de la Nouvelle-Écosse. Aujourd’hui, après quatre ans et des centaines d’heures passées en classe et en formation en cours d’emploi, il est sur la bonne voie pour obtenir cet emploi de compagnon mécanicien dans le domaine du camionnage et du transport. Il est également récipiendaire du prix d’excellence en apprentissage pour cette année. « Le fait de retourner aux études après avoir passé 20 ans sur le marché du travail était plutôt intimidant au début, mais après un certain temps, je me suis rendu compte que c’était la meilleure décision que j’aurai pu prendre pour moi-même et pour ma carrière, » a dit M. Robbins. « Si vous songez à retourner aux études ou à vous inscrire à un programme de formation en apprentissage, allez-y! Ça vous ouvrira bien des portes. » Le rendement au travail de M. Robbins lui a valu le prix d’excellence en apprentissage. Ce prix reconnaît un compagnon récemment certifié qui a fait une contribution remarquable à l’image professionnelle de l’employeur en appuyant ses collègues de travail, en faisant preuve d’une éthique du travail solide et en participant activement à sa communauté. « La motivation et les compétences acquises dans le programme de formation en apprentissage ont vraiment aidé Peter à devenir l’un de nos meilleurs compagnons en plus de 40 ans, » a dit Geoff Locke, directeur général de Fleetline Parts and Service. « L’embauche d’apprentis nous permet d’offrir du mentorat et de la formation à la prochaine génération de personnes de métier tout en formant un futur employé. « C’est une situation où tout le monde gagne, et nous avons hâte de voir Peter former le prochain apprenti qui se joindra à nous. » M. Robbins est l’un des 138 apprentis qui sont devenus compagnons certifiés et qui ont reçu leur certificat de compétence dans la région du sud-ouest de la Nouvelle-Écosse au cours des deux dernières années. Le ministère du Travail et du Développement de la main-d’œuvre a présenté des certificats de reconnaissance aux compagnons récemment certifiés lors d’une célébration à Digby, aujourd’hui 30 mai. « Le dévouement et le travail acharné dont ont fait preuve ces compagnons récemment certifiés lors de leur formation sont admirables, » a dit Margaret MacDonald, sous-ministre du Travail et du Développement de la main-d’œuvre. « Ces diplômés auront des carrières très enrichissantes parce qu’ils ont su profiter des avantages de la formation offerte par le système de formation en apprentissage de la Nouvelle-Écosse. « J’ai hâte de voir les nombreuses contributions que ces hommes et ces femmes apporteront à la main-d’œuvre et à l’économie de cette province. » Le ministère du Travail et du Développement de la main-d’œuvre a également présenté un prix d’excellence à un mentor exceptionnel. Le prix d’excellence pour mentor a été présenté à Joanne Jeddry, superviseure dans le domaine de la cuisine et originaire de Meteghan, dans le comté de Digby. Ce prix reconnaît un employeur, un superviseur, un instructeur ou autre mentor qui a servi de modèle et qui a démontré des qualités supérieures en matière d’enseignement, d’enthousiasme pour le métier et d’engagement solide envers le progrès des apprentis dans leur programme. La Division de la formation des apprentis et du développement des compétences du ministère du Travail et du Développement de la main-d’œuvre appuie la promotion des métiers spécialisés par le biais des possibilités de formation, de la certification et du renforcement des normes professionnelles. Pour obtenir plus d’information sur le système de formation en apprentissage, consultez le .last_img read more

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Wesley Woodworth v Sobeys Group Inc

first_imgAn independent Nova Scotia Human Rights board of inquiry in the case of Wesley Woodworth v. Sobeys Group Inc. is scheduled to begin Monday, Sept. 22. Mr. Woodworth alleges that he was discriminated against when his job was terminated based on his inability to work in a specific area of the workplace due to his physical disability. Sobeys denies any discrimination and said the company fully met its duty to accommodate Mr. Woodworth. The board of inquiry is scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m. each day, in the Blomidon Room at the Old Orchard Inn, 153 Greenwich Rd., Wolfville. The board chair is Dennis James, who is independent of the commission, which is a party representing the public interest at the board of inquiry. -30-last_img read more

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Amendments to New Pooled Registered Pension Plan Act

first_imgFinance and Treasury Board Minister Randy Delorey announced today, Nov. 19, amendments to the Pooled Registered Pension Plans Act. The amendments allow money from them to flow into other retirement savings plans under the Pension Benefits Act. This will ensure workers have consistent options and protections when they retire, regardless of whether they have been saving through a defined contribution pension plan or a Pooled Registered Pension Plan. In Fall 2014, the act was passed, but did not take effect because it was not proclaimed. It is expected they will be available in Nova Scotia in 2016, following completion of regulations and a multi-lateral agreement between the federal government and participating provinces. Pooled Registered Pension Plans will provide a low-cost, regulated retirement savings option for employers, employees and the self-employed across the province.last_img read more

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Program Helping Children Through Supervised Visits Expands in Yarmouth

first_imgChildren in Yarmouth who are unable to spend time with their parents will now have access to visits through the Supervised Access and Exchange Program. These type of visits occur when a judge has ordered that supervision is necessary. The reason could include domestic violence, mental health, substance abuse, high conflict or when a child and parent have been separated for a long time and are reconnecting. “Families that are no longer together can face many challenges but it is important that the focus remain on what is best for the children,” said Justice Minister and Attorney General Diana Whalen. “This program provides a safe and supervised place for children to spend quality time with their parents.” The Supervised Access and Exchange Program is a child-focused program that helps families who are experiencing difficulties. The Department of Justice works with community service agencies to provide supervision when a child visits a parent or other family member. “At the family resource centre, we know that the key to building strong confident children comes from within the family,” said Nathalie Ellis, executive director, Parents’ Place Family Resource Centre. “We are excited to facilitate supervised visits to help build a stronger community through family.” The program also provides supervision during exchanges at Parents’ Place, which is the designated child drop off and pickup point. The supervision provides a neutral and safe place that allows children to visit with their family without conflict and unnecessary stress. For more information on the program, please visit: .last_img read more

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More Government Data Publicly Available

first_img The open data portal has about 300 collections covering business and the economy, communities and social services, nature and environment and government. The information appears in accessible, easy-to-work-with formats and contains some data that was once only available for a fee. No personal or identifying information is published. The portal pages have been visited more than 100,000 times since it was launched three months ago. The address is . public library branch locations and circulation statistics public housing for seniors directory of public schools lake chemistry data bass, pickerel and trout derbies and tournaments marriage, birth and death statistics mobile radio tower locations crime statistics municipal revenues and expenditures forest inventory municipal solid waste statistics business registration locations community health boards and health authority management zones Nova Scotians are getting access to more provincial government data, including 3D, high-resolution maps, for the first time. Premier Stephen McNeil announced today, May 6, new and refreshed data collections have been added to the open data portal. “Government has a lot of information that people should be able to use to make new discoveries,” said Premier McNeil. “Today more data sets are available so businesses and individuals can create opportunities and help grow our economy.” Among the new data collections available:last_img read more

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Ganguly changed Indian cricket only wanted to win

first_imgLondon: Former England captain Nasser Hussain sees Sourav Ganguly as the man who changed Indian cricket. “Indian cricket changed because of Ganguly,” Hussain said at the India Today show Salaam Cricket 2019. Hussain said that the personality of the Indian team changed while Ganguly was captain. “Sourav was never bothered about being friends with people. He transformed them from a nice cricketing nation to a ruthless one which was only interested in winning,” he said. Also Read – We don’t ask for kind of tracks we get: Bowling coach ArunGanguly’s captaincy started in the aftermath of the match fixing fiasco in 2000. Apart from recording a number of famous series wins, India reached the final of the 2003 World Cup under Ganguly. Hussain also said that current India captain Virat Kohli can break a number of records that the legendary Sachin Tendulkar has set. “Virat is not worried about anything else other than winning games for the country. That is his greatest asset as a captain, I feel. I thought there never will be someone to replace Sachin, but Kohli is going to break them all — just a phenomenal achievement by a phenomenal player,” said Hussain. Also Read – Bastian Schweinsteiger announces retirement, could join Germany set-upIndia start their World Cup campaign against South Africa in Southampton on Wednesday and the Indian team has been training on and off for the first game of the series. In fact, it was during the practice sessions on Saturday that Kohli injured his thumb. While it wasn’t initially clear if it was due to batting at the nets or during fielding drills, it was later confirmed that he has not sustained any serious injury. South Africa on the other hand have a tough job at hand as they have lost both the games they have played in the World Cup. While they were thrashed in the first game by favourites and hosts England, Faf du Plessis’ men were also beaten on Sunday by Bangladesh.last_img read more

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Bengali film fraternity mourns death of actor Girish Karnad

first_imgKolkata: The Bengali film fraternity on Monday mourned the death of Jnanpith award winner Girish Karnad and took to social media remembering the stalwart’s contributions.Karnad died at his residence in Bengaluru on Monday morning. He was 81. “Playwright, actor, scholar, an inspiring personality with brilliant intellect wit and humour, my earliest remembrance of Girish Karnad being an eternal favourite – Swami’s father in Malgudi Days. Farewell to an institution – you seldom come across such profound people nowadays,” tweeted National award-winning director Atanu Ghosh of Mayurakshi fame. Also Read – City bids adieu to Goddess DurgaActor Parambrata Chatterjee seen alongside Vidya Balan in Kahani lamented the demise of an alternative voice amidst tmainstream cinema. “We grew up with your films and plays! Will always remember you as an alternative, progressive voice amidst the mainstream din. #RIPGirishKarnad,” he wrote. Bengali superstar Prosenjit Chatterjee shared a “Rest in peace #GirishKarnad” message on his social media page. Director Srijit Mukherji known for films like Autograph and Chotushkone spoke about Karnad’s achievements. Also Read – Centuries-old Durga Pujas continue to be hit among revellers”He also coincidentally won the Sahitya Academy, Sahitya Natak Academy, Jnanpith, National Award, Filmfare, Padmashri and Padma Bhushan,” Mukherji tweeted. Young Bengali actor Riddhi Sen, who grabbed nationwide attention with his role in Nagarkirtan, expressed grief and anger at the stalwart’s demise. “Very true, he is also the person who defines and changed modern Kannada playwriting forever. Deeply, deeply saddened. Do not go gentle into that good night. Rage, rage against the dying of the light,” Sen wrote. Agencieslast_img read more

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Worry for China as industrial growth falters

first_imgBeijing: China’s economy showed further signs of weakness last month, with industrial output posting its slowest growth in 17 years, placing further pressure on the government as it tries to steady the ship while battling a trade war with the US. The authorities have for years been attempting to transition the world’s number two economy from a reliance on state investment and exports to a more stable model driven by consumption, with the tariffs stand-off complicating that mission of late. Also Read – Maruti cuts production for 8th straight month in SepRetail sales actually beat expectations, rising 8.6 per cent year-on-year in May, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said on Friday. That compares to an 8.1 per cent increase forecast in a Bloomberg poll of analysts. But the National Bureau of Statistics also said industrial output rose just 5.0 per cent, the slowest increase since 2002, and missing a 5.4 percent analyst forecast. Fixed-asset investment growth also underwhelmed with 5.6 per cent growth. The readings are likely to fan speculation that authorities may launch another round of stimulus. Also Read – Ensure strict implementation on ban of import of e-cigarettes: revenue to CustomsBeijing has rolled out huge tax cuts and other measures this year to try to blunt the impact of a trade war, which has seen the US impose tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars worth of Chinese goods, causing worries for exporters. China’s exports beat gloomy forecasts to rebound somewhat in May, though imports sank more than expected, according to official data released earlier in the week. But the overall downward trend gives Xi little room to fight back forcefully against the United States, which is using tariffs as leverage to try to force China into opening up its economy. ANZ Research said it expected further gloom ahead and revised down its 2019 estimate for Chinese economic growth. “The economic data coming out of China over the past two months have not lived up to our expectations,” it said in a commentary on Friday. It had adjusted its gross domestic product growth forecast to 6.2 per cent for 2019, from a previous estimate of 6.4 per cent.last_img read more

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Copa America Blue Samurai to unleash Japanese Messi

first_imgTokyo: On a continent where “imitation” Galacticos are a dime a dozen, Japan’s Takefusa Kubo could just be the real deal. Snapped up by Real Madrid on Friday from under the noses of some of the world’s other top clubs, the teenage sensation is about to demonstrate why he is known as the “Japanese Messi” at the tender age of 18. The youngster, described by Real as one of the most promising players in world football, is set to create a buzz at this month’s Copa America in Brazil after earning his first senior call-up for the Blue Samurai. Also Read – Djokovic heaps praise on ‘very complete’ MedvedevRarely an Asian football tournament goes by without a “Thai Zico,” an “Iraqi Cristiano Ronaldo” or even a “North Korean Wayne Rooney” among the team rosters. But it was Kubo who was invited to Barcelona’s youth academy as a scrawny nine-year-old where he earned his nickname for his mazy dribbling skills. Though the Catalan giants were keen to retain him, Real Madrid took the plunge, heading off interest from Manchester City, Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain. Also Read – Mary Kom enters quarterfinals, Saweety Boora bows out of World C’shipsThe midfielder signed from FC Tokyo could come face-to-face with Argentina wizard Messi at the Copa America depending on results in the group stage. Kubo is one of 17 uncapped players in coach Hajime Moriyasu’s new-look Japan squad as the tournament guests look to build for next year’s Tokyo Olympics but is destined to attract by far the most interest. The world’s biggest clubs have been tracking his progress since he appeared in the 2017 Under-20 World Cup — at just 15. Earlier the same year he became the J-League’s youngest goalscorer, triggering the sort of hype once reserved for the likes of Japan greats Hidetoshi Nakata and Keisuke Honda. A YouTube sensation as a pint-sized toddler, Kubo none the less rejects comparisons to Barcelona hero Messi. “I don’t like being compared to Messi,” he said. “But one day I hope to be able to play like him.” Slightly taller than Messi at 1.73 metres (5ft 8in), Kubo has a similarly low centre of gravity to the Argentina legend and an eye for a defence-splitting pass. Japan face Chile in their opening Copa America in Sao Paolo on Monday, while Uruguay and Ecuador, also in group C, meet Sunday. Kubo, who could become the face of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, insists Japan’s “Baby Samurai” will go into the competition with no fear. “Teams like Brazil will definitely be serious about winning,” he told local media. “We will have to match the desire of our opponents when we get on the pitch.” Earlier this year, Moriyasu left big-name players such as Honda, Shinji Kagawa and Shinji Okazaki out of the Asian Cup squad that were beaten 3-1 in the final by Qatar. “We are looking to bring in a new generation of players,” Moriyasu said of his Copa selection. “It’s a good opportunity for them to gain some valuable experience.” Kubo’s former club manager Kenta Hasegawa backed the midfielder to seize his chance to shine on the world stage. “Takefusa doesn’t need a babysitter, he has matured a lot,” the FC Tokyo boss told Japanese media. “This kind of opportunity might only come around once in a lifetime — he will only benefit from the experience.”last_img read more

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SDMC Mayor Kangra calls on LG Anil Baijal

first_imgNew Delhi: SDMC Mayor Sunita Kangra on Thursday called on LG Anil Baijal to seek his intervention in averting financial crisis of SDMC. She also handed over a detailed letter justifying SDMC’s claim for the release of funds as per recommendations of the 5th Delhi Finance Commission and halt implementing the devolution of funds with retrospective effect as decided earlier by the third DFC in the year 2008. Kangra stated that Delhi government has decided to recover Rs 275.46 crore by implementing the recommendations of 5th DFC with retrospective effect. It may be pertinent to note that Rs 1,832.59 crore non plan and plan fund together released in the year 2016-17 has been drastically cut to meager Rs 781.84 crore in 2019-20. In the plan fund, 5th DFC made recommendation of Rs 1,555.70 crore but Delhi government has allocated only Rs 617.70 crore and that too has not been released fully as per the existing norms for the release of first installment. The major expenditure of SDMC which used to be Rs 2,198.87 cr in 2012-13 is expected to go up to Rs 4,880.00 cr in 2019-20. She added that after curtailment of funds, it will be difficult for SDMC to release salary and pension to its employees and it will not be in a position to take care of its obligatory functions like sanitation, control of vector borne diseases and maintenance of drains etc.last_img read more

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Reinventing India

first_imgIndia has long been ranked among the most dangerous nations for religious minorities and it has become all the more intense in recent years. Arguably then, in writing the political history of Islam in India, historians and scholars often fall into the trap of extreme ideological prejudices. For a few, Islam’s relationship with Hindu culture was gloriously intermingled, epitomising a splendid, pristine union of two great traditions. For the others, Islam is the sole, wicked cause of every disaster that reared its head anywhere in the vicinity of this country. India is situated between the earliest river valley civilisations of Egypt and Mesopotamia on the west and China on the east. Bound on the south, south-east, and south-west by a vast ocean and the seas and on the north, north-west and north-east by massive mountain ranges marked by some of the highest peaks of the world, India enjoyed a degree of protection and unique isolation. Yet its mountain passes, breaking through the great barrier at a number of places, particularly on the north-western frontier, provided a natural access to Afghanistan, Iran and Central Asia and from there either to West Asia and the Mediterranean world or to Turkistan and China. However, the more formidable mountain barrier on the north-east, while effectively discouraging easy movement of peoples, could not completely block the aggressors from the north. It all began with the invasion by Sultan Mahmud Ghazni in about 1000 AD, which resulted in the establishment of the Muslim rule in the Indian subcontinent that lasted for several centuries. Not only did they bring about Islamic imperialism, but they also triggered a struggle between two civilisations — one ancient and indigenous, the other medieval and migrant. However, over time, the two cultures amalgamated and it touched all aspects of human society. The invasions brought to India an advanced legal system, pride in one’s own religion, introduction of equality in society that led to outright rejection of the caste system and untouchability. It also influenced indigenous music, art and architecture, poetry, language, literature, food and craftsmanship. In due course, the impact gained significant ground and was juxtaposed cosily for the world to witness the emergence of a long intrinsic association of the two. Today, India’s secular credentials are taking a beating. Since the creation of independent India and Pakistan in 1947, there have been innumerable episodes of horrific sectarian violence that made millions of refugees overnight. Then, in perspective, it is important for us to uphold the multicultural narrative of this great country and “lead a political campaign over Indian history that seeks to reinvent the idea of India itself.”last_img read more

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Two arrested for issuing fake documents for vehicle registration

first_imgKolkata: Two persons were arrested from Rajarhat on Wednesday night for allegedly issuing fake vehicle registration and other related documents. Police have also seized two bikes and a luxurious car.According to police, on Wednesday night, cops from Rajarhat police station got a tip-off about a racket being operated in Rajarhat area where fake vehicle documents are being issued. Based on the information, sleuths raided a flat located on Reckjoani Hospital Road and found two persons identified as Ajijul Rahaman of Galasia Dakshinpara in Rajarhat and Altaf Hossain of Lilong District in Manipur along with a lot of fake documents. Also Read – Centuries-old Durga Pujas continue to be hit among revellersDuring the raid, the police found one computer which was being used for making fake documents, instruments of making fake smart card, engine number plate, 144 pieces of blank Smart I Card, 58 pieces of blank Smart card with micro chip, photo paper and some finished, semi-finished smart card from Assam, Punjab and West Bengal. Immediately, both of them were arrested. Sleuths have also seized two bikes out of which one was unregistered and a luxurious SUV bearing registration number of Assam. During checking of database, sleuths found the same model of car with the said registration number but the engine number is different. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaAfter interrogating the accused persons, investigating officers came to know that Rahaman was arrested previously in Kolkata Police area for dealing in stolen bikes. Hossain was also arrested in a same case in Kolkata Police area before that. Both of them met while they were in judicial custody then. Rahman had taken the flat in Rajarhat on rent during April this year and was running the racket under a person identified as Rafique of Haroa. Sleuths are trying to locate Rafique in order to find out who else are connected with the racket. It is suspected this could be an inter-state vehicle theft racket.last_img read more

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Selectors look at Iyer to solve Indias No 4 woes

first_imgMumbai: The Indian selectors — led by M.S.K. Prasad — finally decided to address the number four conundrum when they sat down to pick the squad for the West Indies tour on Sunday. After struggling through the World Cup without a fixed number four, the five wise men have decided to give Shreyas Iyer a go. Considered as one of the best batting units in the modern era, India failed to produce a number four batsman going into the 2019 World Cup and the tour of West Indies now provides the selectors the perfect opportunity to try and solve the issue with an eye on the 2023 World Cup. Also Read – Fast bowler Behrendorff to undergo spinal surgeryWhile the selectors decided to ignore Iyer for the World Cup, the ploy of experimenting at that position flopped. Coming into the Windies series, it was always going to be a competition between Shubman Gill and Shreyas Iyer for that position. Both the batsmen are currently in the West Indies with the India ‘A’ team and have been among runs. Interestingly, skipper Manish Pandey also hit a century in the series, but he is seen more as a number five or six than a number four in the batting line-up. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over ChandigarhSpeaking on Gill’s exclusion, Prasad said: “He was given an opportunity when K.L. Rahul was out against New Zealand, he will have to wait for his turn.” Batting coach Sanjay Bangar came under the scanner for failing to produce a number four batsman ahead of the showpiece event despite being with the team for quite some time now. Speaking to IANS, a senior BCCI official said that the constant chopping and changing in the middle-order was something that had hurt the Indian team not just in the World Cup, but over the last couple of seasons. And for Bangar to not be able to find a solution is something that reflects poorly on the coach. “It was a constant struggle,” the official said. “While we are all supportive of the players and they had a good tournament with the exception of this bad day in office (in the semi-final against New Zealand), the support staff’s processes and decision-making will surely be scrutinised thoroughly prior to any decision being taken about their future. “The batting coach must have answers for the number 4 question since it is obvious that it was the team management that was asking for certain players to be included.” The Windies tour will provide Prasad and team a chance to try out youngsters in pivotal positions and ensure that the foundation laid is strong with an eye on the 2023 World Cup.last_img read more

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