Chargesheet against 48 in Assam lynching case

first_imgThe police in Assam’s Karbi Anglong district on Saturday filed a chargesheet against 48 people for lynching two men they thought were “child lifters” on June 8. Karbi Anglong SP V. Siva Prasad Ganjala filed the chargesheet at a court in Diphu. “The 844-page chargesheet is based on the case registered at the Dokmoka police station under 11 Sections of the IPC, including murder, wrongful restraint and obstructing public servants,” DGP Kuladhar Saikia said.A mob in Panjuri Kachari village under the Dokmoka police station had dragged sound engineer Nilotpal Das, 29, and his businessman friend Abhijit Nath, 30, out of their SUV and bludgeoned them to death. The adventure-loving friends were returning from the Kangthilangso waterfall, a picnic spot.Among the 48 arrested was Alphajoz Timung, a history-sheeter who had an argument with the duo at the waterfalls. He confessed to have misled the villagers into lynching the duo with the child kidnapper story.last_img read more

Lack of Champions League Begins to Hit Manchester United Finances

first_img footballManchester Uniteduefa champions league First Published: November 18, 2019, 11:57 PM IST Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. London: Manchester United’s failure to qualify for the Champions League is beginning to erode the club’s finances, but increased commercial income helped the English giants post revenues of £135.4 million ($174 million) for the first quarter of the 2019-2020 season on Monday.That represents a £400,000 increase on the same period for the previous year thanks to more sponsorship income and two extra home games compared to the same stage of last season. Broadcasting revenue fell by nearly £10 million due to a lack of Champions League football, which will make an even bigger impact in figures for the second quarter of the year when five of the six group games are played.United are expecting the 2020 annual revenue to fall to between £560-580 million, compared to £627 million for the year ending June 30, 2019 due to the lack of Champions League revenue.However, the failure to qualify for the competition is also reflected in a 6.8 million drop in the club’s wage bill for the first quarter of the season.Net debt rose £137 million to £384.5 million due to spending on players such as Harry Maguire, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Daniel James in the summer transfer market.”The significant investments that we have made in recent years in areas such as transfers, recruitment infrastructure, analytics and our academy are already beginning to bear fruit,” said United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward.”Our ultimate goal is to win trophies by playing exciting football with a team that fuses graduates from our academy with world-class acquisitions.”United have won five of their last six games in all competitions, but are in serious danger of missing out on the Champions League again next season.Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men are seventh in the Premier League, nine points adrift of the top four after 12 games. last_img read more

WTA Finals: Sloane Stephens, Kiki Bertens reach semi-finals in Singapore

first_imgSloane Stephens and Kiki Bertens continued their dream debuts at the WTA Finals when the tournament rookies won their final Red Group matches to advance to the last four of the season-ending event in Singapore on Friday.American Stephens stayed calm and saw off an increasingly agitated Angelique Kerber in the winner-takes-all night match to complete round-robin play with a spotless 3-0 record after she wrapped up a 6-3 6-3 victory against the German.In the afternoon match, Bertens advanced to the semi-finals after Naomi Osaka retired with a left hamstring injury at the end of a first set the versatile Dutchwoman had captured by a 6-3 margin.Kerber enjoyed a brilliant season with her third Grand Slam title at Wimbledon in July but the world number two seems to struggle in Singapore and was once again undone by Stephens, who now boasts a 5-1 head-to-head record against the German..@SloaneStephens gets the win and books her place in the @WTAFinalsSG semifinal!Defeats Kerber 6-3, 6-3! pic.twitter.com/rMiw4wGwCQWTA (@WTA) October 26, 2018″I stayed solid the whole time. I knew it was going to be a battle against one of the toughest players on the tour, so I just came out and played as hard as I could and am really pleased with the win,” Stephens said in a post-match interview.Stephens staved off seven break points early in the first set and added to the German’s frustration by converting the first two she fashioned to pull clear for a 5-2 lead after little could separate the baseliners in the opening exchanges.advertisementAn ace brought up the first of three set points but she was unable to convert any of them as Kerber made it eighth time lucky to pull a game back. Her joy was short-lived as Stephens broke again to seal the opener.The games were getting longer as the intensity levels increased and the pair traded breaks early in the second set until Kerber’s form dipped when she was broken in the eighth game and the American gleefully raced away to seal victory.TEARFUL OSAKAThank you Singapore, didn’t want it to end like this but I’m still really proud of how I did here see ya. pic.twitter.com/4RYDVDU9SANaomiOsaka (@Naomi_Osaka_) October 26, 2018In the early match, U.S. Open champion Osaka took to the court with tape on her left leg for a problem that flared up in her loss to Stephens on Monday, and was competitive for half a set before opting to withdraw after Bertens took the opener 6-3.Perhaps mindful of the injury, Osaka went for her shots from the outset, a tactic that comes with the risk of giving away free points, while Bertens was content to keep the ball in play and pin the powerful Japanese player to the back of the court.Both strategies worked in the early stages until Osaka pushed the limits a little too far in the seventh game and was broken after she sent a string of forehands either long or wide..@KikiBertens reflects on a win over Naomi Osaka that takes her through to the @WTAFinalsSG semifinals! pic.twitter.com/0wglq6ue5VWTA (@WTA) October 26, 2018Osaka left the arena for a medical timeout after Bertens held easily to move 5-3 ahead. The 21-year-old Japanese returned with her thigh heavily strapped and was immediately broken to love as she hobbled painfully around the baseline.The popular Osaka called for the trainer once more but tearfully succumbed to her fate after consulting with her coach to end her breakthrough season with a disappointing three straight defeats at the year-end championships.Saturday’s semi-finals will see Bertens take on White Group winner Elina Svitolina of Ukraine, before Stephens faces big-hitting Czech Karolina Pliskova in the night match of a tournament that has seen the four lowest-ranked players advance.last_img read more

Magnus Carlsen and Fabiano Caruana head to tie-breaker after Game 12 draw

first_imgWorld Chess Championship 2018 Show Support The Guardian Game 12 was a draw after 31 moves and nearly three hours. news The world championship battle between Magnus Carlsen and Fabiano Caruana will be decided in a quickfire tie-breaker after Monday’s Game 12 ended in a 31-move draw. The result shocked onlookers in light of the champion’s advantages in position and time, and left the best-of-12-games match in a historic 6-6 deadlock. US sports Topics The formatThe match will consist of 12 classical games with each player awarded one point for a win and a half-point for a draw. Whoever reaches six and a half points first will be declared the champion.The time control for each game is 100 minutes for the first 40 moves, 50 minutes for the next 20 moves and then 15 minutes for the rest of the game plus an additional 30 seconds per move starting from move 1. Players cannot agree to a draw before Black’s 30th move. If the match is tied after 12 games, tie-breaks will be played on the final day in the following order:  • Best of four rapid games with 25 minutes for each player with an increment of 10 seconds after each move.  • If still tied, they will play up to five mini-matches of two blitz games (five minutes for each player with a three-second increment). • If all five mini-matches are drawn, one sudden-death ‘Armegeddon’ match will be played where White receives five minutes and Black receives four minutes. Both players will receive a three-second increment after the 60th move. In the case of a draw, Black will be declared the winner. Chess Share on Twitter The scheduleThu 8 Nov – Opening ceremony Fri 9 Nov – Game 1 Sat 10 Nov – Game 2 Sun 11 Nov – Rest day Mon 12 Nov – Game 3 Tue 13 Nov – Game 4 Wed 14 Nov – Rest day Thu 15 Nov – Game 5 Fri 16 Nov – Game 6 Sat 17 Nov – Rest day Sun 18 Nov – Game 7 Mon 19 Nov – Game 8 Tue 20 Nov – Rest day Wed 21 Nov – Game 9 Thu 22 Nov – Game 10 Fri 23 Nov – Rest day Sat 24 Nov – Game 11 Sun 25 Nov – Rest day Mon 26 Nov – Game 12 Tue 27 Nov – Rest day Wed 28 Nov – Tie-break games/Awards and closingThe games commence each day at 3pm in London. Share via Email Share on LinkedIn The latest bloodless result, the 12th draw between the world’s top two players in as many contests, ensured the €1m ($1.14m) showdown in London will go down as the first title match in which no decisive results were managed in the official 132-year history of world championship play.“I wasn’t necessarily going for the maximum,” said Carlsen, who all but admitted he was content to move directly to a tie-breaker after move 20. “I just wanted a position that was completely safe, [but] where I could put some pressure. If a draw hadn’t been a satisfactory result, obviously I would have approached it differently.” Since you’re here… … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay. Whether we are up close or further away, the Guardian brings our readers a global perspective on the most critical issues of our lifetimes – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. We believe complex stories need context in order for us to truly understand them. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Reuse this content The playersNorway’s Magnus Carlsen is defending the world chess championship against Fabiano Caruana of the United States. The best-of-12-games match is taking place at the College in Holborn between 9 and 28 November, with the winner earning a 60% share of the €1m ($1.14m) prize fund if the match ends in regulation (or 55% if it’s decided by tie-break games).Carlsen, 27, has been ranked No 1 for eight straight years and was considered the world’s best player even before he defeated Viswanathan Anand for the title in 2013. Caruana, 26, is ranked No 2, having earned his place at the table by winning the candidates tournament in March. No American-born player has won or even competed for the world title since Bobby Fischer in 1972. It marks the first title match between the world’s top two players since 1990, when Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov faced off for a fifth and final time.  Hide Share on WhatsApp Fabiano Caruana Magnus Carlsen Read more Share on Pinterest Thank you for your feedback. Magnus Carlsen surprises Fabiano Caruana with draw offer in Game 12 – as it happened Quick guide World Chess Championship 2018 Was this helpful? The 27-year-old champion from Norway, making his third defence of the title he captured from Viswanathan Anand in 2013, will play as white in Wednesday’s first tiebreak stage after a drawing of lots following Monday’s game. The tiebreak will consist of a best-of-four rapid match with 25 minutes for each player with an increment of 10 seconds after each move. If that is not enough to break the deadlock, they will play up to five mini-matches of two blitz games (five minutes for each player with a three-second increment). If all five mini-matches are drawn, it will come down to one sudden-death ‘Armageddon’ match in which white receives five minutes, black receives four minutes and both will receive a three-second increment after the 60th move. If that game is drawn, black will be declared the winner.Carlsen, who in addition to his No 1 ranking is the world’s top-rated rapid player and top-rated blitz player (compared to Caruana’s respective ratings of No 8 and No 16), is widely regarded as a strong favorite in the format, not least due to a 13-year unbeaten record in tie-breakers. But Garry Kasparov said on Monday that Carlsen’s hasty draw offer betrayed a lapse of nerve in the reigning champion.“In light of this shocking draw offer from Magnus in a superior position with more time, I reconsider my evaluation of him being the favorite in rapids,” the longtime world No 1 wrote on Twitter. “Tiebreaks require tremendous nerves and he seems to be losing his.”Caruana, as white, played into the Sveshnikov variation in Monday’s classical finale, as he did in the eighth and 10th games. Carlsen was first to deviate from those lines with 8. … Ne7 and Caruana quickly fell behind on time after the champion played a novelty with 12. … h5. Share on Facebook Share on Messenger The 26-year-old American challenger was offered a chance for a draw by repetition shortly after (13. Qa4 Bd7 14. Qb4 Bf5) but bravely opted to play on with 15. Be3. Yet Caruana’s temporal problems compounded over the next few moves (15. … a6 16. Nc3 Qc7 17. g3 Be7 18. f3 Nf8 19. Ne4 Nd7 20. Bd3) and he soon found himself nearly 50 minutes behind on the clock.After Carlsen castled following a 12-minute think (20. … O-O), Caruana delivered a surprise move (21. Rh2!?) that cost him in the opinion of the evaluation engines, but earned praise from the Russian grandmaster Alexander Grischuk from the commentary booth: “The deepest move in the match so far,” he said.Even after the champion expended another 10 minutes before playing 21. … Rac8, Carlsen was ahead in development with more than a half-hour advantage in time. He pressed the initiative with 22. … Bg6 23. Rc2 f5 and Caruana’s dubious 25. f4 sent the computers haywire. The challenger’s position appeared increasingly difficult to hold after 26. … e4 27. Be2 Be8 28. Kb1 Bf6 29. Re1 a4 30. Qb4 g6.Which made Carlsen’s decision to offer a draw after 31. Rd1 Ra8 nothing short of mystifying. A relieved Caruana gladly accepted after a game that had lasted two hours and 57 minutes, sending the match to Wednesday’s tie-breaker.“I was a bit surprised by the draw offer,” said Caruana, who is looking to become the second American-born player to capture the world championship after Bobby Fischer in 1972. “I can never be better [than move 31]. And I don’t really have any active ideas. If anything, black is better. At least I thought I was over the worst of it. I thought it was much more dangerous a few moves ago.”He added: “I’m mainly relieved because I thought it was quite close today. I was very worried during the game. When you feel like you’re sort of on the brink of defeat, or at least you have a very dangerous position, then of course it’s quite good.”Both players bristled at the notion that a world title match consisting solely of draws could undercut the sport’s popularity, addressing the central talking point of their three-week psychodrama.“We work with the match that we have,” Caruana said. “If the powers that be want to change it, then we’ll work with something else.”last_img read more

10 months agoPique in talks with Barcelona pal Messi about FC Andorra investment

Pique in talks with Barcelona pal Messi about FC Andorra investmentby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveBarcelona defender Gerard Pique is in talks with Leo Messi about a shareholding in FC Andorra.Sport says talks are at an advanced stage and there could be an agreement made public between all implicated parties in the coming days. Pique’s desire is to get Messi on board as a shareholder. Even though the Argentine star’s involvement would be minor, the Barça defender is aware that just Messi’s image is one of the best possible spokesmen to expand the project internationally. Andorra insiders say talks are well down the line and the official announcement could come at a press conference which will be held to reveal the club’s new ambitious structure. TagsTransfersAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say read more

Ric Flair To Be The Celebrity Guest Picker On College GameDay

first_imgRic Flair seen at a WWE event.Wrestler Ric Flair will appear on College GameDay this weekend as the celebrity guest picker.This weekend, ESPN’s College GameDay is headed to Madison, Wisconsin as the No. 8 Wisconsin Badgers take on the No. 2 Ohio State Buckeyes in a pivotal Big Ten matchup. For one of the segments of College GameDay, the hosts all choose the winners from the weekend’s slate of games, and generally, ESPN chooses someone well-known who is associated with the home team to be a guest picker. This week they chose…Ric Flair?Ric Flair Gameday guest picker? pic.twitter.com/EwwKymAVi0— Ryan Strickland (@rstrickland90) October 15, 2016J.J. Watt, Melvin Gordon, Eddie George, Ron Dayne. Lots of names come to mind. But Ric Flair? It should be entertaining at least.last_img read more

Texas A&M Player Guarantees An Upset vs. No. 1 Clemson

first_imgclemson football cheerleadersCLEMSON, SC – SEPTEMBER 15: The Clemson Tigers Rally Cats perform during a stoppage in play of the Tigers’ football game against the Georgia Southern Eagles at Clemson Memorial Stadium on September 15, 2018 in Clemson, South Carolina. (Photo by Mike Comer/Getty Images)You can say at least this much about Texas A&M as they prepare to take on Clemson this weekend: They are not at all lacking confidence.Speaking to the media on Monday, Texas A&M offensive lineman Jared Hocker proclaimed that the Aggies will pull off the upset over Clemson. Texas A&M is a 17-point underdog for the road game.“There will be an upset.”Hocker was then asked to go the full Joe Namath and guarantee a victory, to which he nodded and said he was confident in his teammates.Texas A&M and Clemson faced off at College Station last year, with the Tigers securing a 28-26 win en route to a 15-0 season and the national championship. Jared Hocker is confident that the Aggies will defeat Clemson on Saturday. “There will be an upset.” pic.twitter.com/tqbVqYlAe6— TexAgs (@TexAgs) September 2, 2019In total, the two sides have faced off five times, all in the regular season. Clemson currently boasts a two-game winning streak after losing the first three games.No doubt the Tigers are planning to even up the series with a win over Texas A&M.Clemson has not lost a game since the 2017 College Football Playoff against Alabama. They are currently riding an FBS-best 16-game winning streak after beating Georgia Tech last week.Suffice it to say, the Aggies have their hands full.But the chances are, if the Tigers are even capable of losing a regular season game in 2019, this may be the most likely team they’d lose to.last_img read more

Yuvraj Singh trolls Kevin Pietersen after Manchester United beat Chelsea

first_img India Today Web Desk New DelhiAugust 12, 2019UPDATED: August 12, 2019 19:04 IST Yuvraj Singh was in action in Global T20 Canada (Reuters Photo)HIGHLIGHTSManchester United on Sunday thrashed Chelsea 4-0 in their Premier League encounterAfter Chelsea’s defeat, Yuvraj Singh poked fun at former England cricketer Kevin PietersenKevin Pietersen is a known Chelsea supporter while Yuvraj is a Man United fanYuvraj Singh took a jibe at his English counterpart Kevin Pietersen after Manchester United registered a resounding victory over Chelsea in their opening Premier League game on Sunday.Former India cricketer Yuvraj is a known Manchester United fan while Pietersen is a big time Chelsea supporter. The Former English player has often been seen posting updates about his favourite football club on Twitter but after Chelsea’s 0-4 defeat against United, Pietersen was quiet on social media.This silence from Pietersen, prompted Yuvraj to take a friendly dig at the English cricketer as he tweeted, “”Hey mr @KP24 very quiet today all ok?? @ManUtd”.Hey mr @KP24 very quiet today all ok @ManUtdyuvraj singh (@YUVSTRONG12) August 12, 2019After Yuvraj Singh, other fans also came up with memes to troll Pietersen.Kp after Chelsea match pic.twitter.com/tSeW4ZC5WgVikram (@Itsvikram94) August 12, 2019Chelsea couldn’t even Chuck piesBikram Chaudhury (@SomeSpeaks) August 12, 2019pic.twitter.com/OS6BP9PUEfDeep Gill (@DeepLove_United) August 12, 2019Kp now pic.twitter.com/zIJPhCrM27Yuvi is my world (@LLB46section) August 12, 2019Marcus Rashford struck twice as Manchester United opened their Premier League account with a 4-0 victory over Frank Lampard’s Chelsea at Old Trafford.The win was United’s biggest over Chelsea in a top-flight match since the same scoreline in March 1965 under Matt Busby.Not only did Rashford strike twice but his attacking partner Martial also found the target after the break and the victory was rounded off by substitute James, a close-season signing from Swansea City, marking his United debut with the fourth.advertisementAlso Read | Manchester United thrash Chelsea 4-0 in their Premier League openerAlso Read | Premier League: Defeat to Manchester United reality check for Chelsea, says Frank LampardAlso SeeFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byAnita Jat Tags :Follow Yuvraj SinghFollow Kevin PietersenFollow Premier league Yuvraj Singh trolls Kevin Pietersen after Manchester United beat ChelseaAs Manchester United thrashed Chelsea in their opening game of the Premier League 2019-20, Yuvraj Singh grabbed the opportunity to take a dig at former England cricketer Kevin Pietersen.advertisementlast_img read more

Brazil president suggests NGOs setting Amazon fires gives no proof

first_imgRIO DE JANEIRO – Brazil’s official monitoring agency is reporting a sharp increase in wildfires this year, and President Jair Bolsonaro suggested Wednesday, without citing evidence, that non-governmental organizations could be setting them to make him look bad.Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research, a federal agency monitoring deforestation and wildfires, said the country has seen a record number of wildfires this year, counting 74,155 as of Tuesday, an 84 per cent increase compared to the same period last year. Bolsonaro took office on Jan. 1.“Maybe — I am not affirming it — these (NGO people) are carrying out some criminal actions to draw attention against me, against the government of Brazil,” Bolsonaro told reporters.When asked if he had evidence, the president did not provide any.“There is a war going on in the world against Brazil, an information war,” Bolsonaro said.Earlier this month, the head of the space research institute was forced to leave his position after standing up to the president’s accusations that deforestation data had been manipulated to tarnish the image of his administration.The states that have been most affected by fires this year are Mato Grosso, Para and Amazonas — all in the Amazon region — accounting for 41.7 per cent of all fires.“It is very difficult to have natural fires in the Amazon; it happens but the majority come from the hand of humans,” said Paulo Moutinho, co-founder of the Amazon Environmental Research Institute.Moutinho, who has been working in the Amazon forests for nearly 30 years, said fires are mostly used to clean up vast areas of land for farming or logging.The fires can easily get out of control, especially now during the Amazon’s dry season, and spread to densely forested protected areas.This year, the Amazon has not suffered from serious dryness, Moutinho said. “We’re lucky. If we had had droughts like in the past four years, this would be even worse.”Bolsonaro, who once threatened to leave the Paris climate accord, has repeatedly attacked environmental nonprofits, seen as obstacles in his quest to develop the country’s full economic potential, including in protected areas.Bolsonaro and Environment Minister Ricardo Salles are both close to the powerful rural caucus in Congress and have been urging more development and economic opportunities in the Amazon region, which they consider overly protected by current legislation.Some NGOs, environmentalists and academics have been blaming the administration’s pro-development policies for a sharp increase in Amazon deforestation shown in the latest data from the space research institute.The government is also facing international pressure to protect the vast rainforest from illegal logging or mining activities. The Amazon is often referred to as the lungs of our planet because it is a major absorber of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.Citing Brazil’s apparent lack of commitment to fighting deforestation, Germany and Norway have decided to withhold more than $60 million in funds earmarked for sustainability projects in Brazil’s forests.French and German leaders have also threatened not to ratify a trade deal between the European Union and Mercosur countries to pressure Brazil into complying with its environmental pledges within the Paris Climate Agreement.But experts say Brazilians and particularly farmers could be the first victims of excessive deforestation, as it could affect the regional climate, bringing higher temperatures and less rain.Meanwhile, the environment minister was booed Wednesday as he took the stage at a five-day U.N. workshop on climate change in the northern state of Bahia — an event he had tried to cancel earlier this year.Some in the audience shouted while waving signs reading, “Stop Ecocide” or “The Amazon is burning.”Salles spoke briefly, saying climate change needs to be addressed.“People are asking for more and more actions. … There is an acknowledgment that we are in a situation of crisis and emergency,” said Manuel Pulgar Vidal, former environment minister of Peru, who attended the event.Vidal, who now works for the non-profit WWF, said the criticism directed at Salles could eventually prod the administration into taking action on climate change. “There is no room for negationism,” Vidal said.Associated Press journalist Victor Caivano in Salvador, Brazil, contributed to this report.last_img read more

Hilary Duff Supports March Of Dimes

first_imgHilary Duff, new mother to 22-month-old son Luca, is volunteering her time to help the March Of Dimes raise funds to help give more babies a healthy start in life.Hilary Duff for March Of Dimes“As a mom, I’m proud to support the March of Dimes helping more women have full term pregnancies and healthy babies. That’s why I walk in March for Babies,” she says in a new public service advertisement. “The money we raise funds research and local programs that help babies overcome the challenges of premature birth and birth defects. Together we can help make healthier babies possible for thousands of families.”Ms. Duff plans to participate in the Los Angeles March for Babies Saturday, April 26. March for Babies will take place in nearly 700 communities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico the last weekend in April. In the PSAs, Ms. Duff invites people to join her in supporting March for Babies by visiting marchforbabies.org and signing up to march for babies.Ms. Duff is best known for her role in Disney Channel series Lizzie McGuire and its motion picture The Lizzie McGuire Movie. She also appeared in feature films including Agent Cody Banks, Cheaper by the Dozen, A Cinderella Story and Cheaper by the Dozen 2 and she has three platinum-selling albums.The print magazine advertisement has been published in People and is expected to be included in several other national magazines. The television spot has begun airing in major markets nationwide.The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. For more than 75 years, moms and babies have benefited from March of Dimes research, education, vaccines, and breakthroughs. Find out how you can help raise funds to prevent premature birth and birth defects by walking in March for Babies at marchforbabies.org. For the latest resources and information, visit marchofdimes.com or nacersano.org. Find them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter. The 2014 March for Babies is sponsored nationally by the March of Dimes number one corporate supporter Kmart, Macy’s, Famous Footwear, Cigna, Sanofi Pasteur, Mission Pharmacal, United Airlines, and Actavis.Source:Multivu.comlast_img read more

Alberta law society investigating David Blott

first_imgBy Kathleen MartensAPTN InvestigatesWINNIPEG –The work Calgary lawyer David Blott did with Indian Residential School survivors is being reviewed by his peers.The Law Society of Alberta (LSA) confirmed to APTN Investigates it has done an investigation and is now putting David Blott through its “conduct process.”That’s law society-speak for a process that could result in a lawyer’s suspension or other discipline.Alternatively, the lawyer could keep working but with conditions attached to his practice, said LSA spokeswoman Ally Taylor.“I verified with our conduct manager that at this point all we can share is Mr. Blott is proceeding through our conduct process and unfortunately we’re restricted by confidentiality from sharing anything further,” Taylor said from Calgary.Blott has been on the LSA’s radar since the fall of 2011. That’s when officials with the Indian Residential Schools Adjudication Secretariat obtained a court injunction to stop him from working on survivors’ files.Officials were responding to complaints from survivors living on the Blood Reserve in southeastern Alberta. Blott represented them and thousands more across Canada in their individual Independent Assessment Process (IAP) compensation claims with the federal government.Blott succeeded in getting the injunction lifted but then became the subject of a court-ordered investigation into allegations he breached survivors’ trust, wrongly loaned them money, charged inflated interest rates and fees, and breached IAP rules by compensating third-parties he was in business with directly from compensation awards.Blott has denied all of the allegations as part of this on-going investigation into residential school lawyers by APTN.But investigators say they confirmed survivors’ complaints in their resulting $3-million report.  A report Justice Brenda Brown of the B.C. Supreme Court relied on in the spring of 2012 to bar Blott from any further, lucrative IAP work. However, he was allowed to keep practising by the LSA in an advisory role, meaning he couldn’t meet with clients directly the way other lawyers in his Blott & Co. firm did but could share in the profits.Recently, the LSA was allowed access to that report to assist with its own independent investigation into Blott’s work. It had to battle Saskatchewan-based lawyer Tony Merchant to get it. Merchant, who is one of the parties to the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement that spawned the IAP, opposed the move on several grounds.Among other things, Merchant argued that the affidavits in the report “cannot be equated to civil proceedings such as the transcripts of examinations for discovery…” He also worried that “personal and private information provided …by former clients of Mr. Blott, could be put to inappropriate use.”Merchant concluded: The court does not “have in place a procedure for disciplining lawyers participating in” the settlement agreement.The judge released the report to the LSA anyway.Taylor, the manager of communications for the LSA, wouldn’t speak directly about the Blott case citing member privacy protection, but did explain the process in general.“Once we’ve gathered all the information and concluded an investigation, an investigation report is then prepared and served on the…counsel or his lawyer. And then that person would have an opportunity to reply,” she said in a telephone interview. “And that’s basically for clarification; did we get the facts wrong, that sort of thing.”Taylor said it all culminates in a final report making recommendations on discipline. A panel then meets to determine the outcome.“Sometimes in parallel,” she added, “there can be negotiation with the lawyer whether or not they’re going to resign, because some lawyers do choose to resign rather than be publicly disciplined in that manner.”Any disciplinary action taken is posted on the LSA’s website, Taylor added.kmartens@aptn.calast_img read more

Facebook to release Russia ads beef up election integrity

first_imgNEW YORK, N.Y. – Facebook is slowly acknowledging the outsized — if unintended — role it played in the 2016 U.S. presidential elections.Bowing to pressure from lawmakers and the public, the company said it will provide the contents of 3,000 ads bought by a Russian agency to congressional investigators, while also pledging to make political advertising on its platform more “transparent.”“I don’t want anyone to use our tools to undermine democracy,” CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a Facebook video and wrote in an accompanying post . “That’s not what we stand for.”The moves Thursday come amid growing pressure on the social network from members of Congress, who pushed Facebook to release the ads after the company disclosed their existence in early September. Facebook has already handed over the ads to the special counsel investigating Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.Facebook’s reluctance to be more forthcoming with information that could shed light on possible election interference has prompted the chairman of the Senate intelligence committee to call for the company to testify in its election-meddling probe.A MORE TRANSPARENT FACEBOOKIn one of the first steps Facebook has ever taken to open up its secretive advertising system to observation, the company will now require political ads to disclose both who is paying for them and all ad campaigns those individuals or groups are running on Facebook.That’s a key step that will allow outsiders to see how many different variants of a given ad are being targeted to various groups of individuals, a tactic designed to improve their effectiveness. At the moment, there’s no way for anyone but Facebook to track these political ads, or for recipients to tell who is sponsoring such messages.Since average users “don’t know if you’re seeing the same messages as everyone else,” Zuckerberg said, Facebook will “make it so you can visit an advertiser’s page and see the ads they’re currently running to any audience on Facebook.”The company will hire 250 more people in the next year to work on “election integrity,” Zuckerberg said.The top Democrat on the Senate intelligence panel would go farther. Virginia Sen. Mark Warner is writing a bill that would require social media companies to disclose who funded political ads, similar to rules on television broadcasters. In an interview with The Associated Press, Warner said he hoped to work with social-media companies on the bill.AND YET STILL SECRETIVEZuckerberg suggested that the company may not provide much information publicly, saying that the ongoing federal investigation will limit what he can reveal.The leaders of the Senate Intelligence Committee have sought to bring Facebook executives before their committee for the past couple of weeks. But critics say Facebook should go further. They say the company should tell its users how they might have been influenced by outside meddlers.The nonpartisan Campaign Legal Center, for instance, stressed again on Thursday that the company should make the ads public, “so that everyone can see the nature and extent of the use of Facebook accounts by Russia.”Zuckerberg also warned that Facebook can’t catch all undesirable material before it hits its social network.“I’m not going to sit here and tell you we’re going to catch all bad content in our system. We don’t check what people say before they say it, and frankly, I don’t think our society should want us to,” Zuckerberg said. But those who break the law or Facebook’s policies, he added, “are going to face consequences afterwards.”Facebook won’t catch everyone immediately, he added, but it can “make it harder to try to interfere.”FACEBOOK HAS COMPANY IN THE HOT SEATZuckerberg’s move came a day after Twitter confirmed that it will meet next week with staff of the Senate intelligence committee, which has been scrutinizing the spread of false news stories and propaganda on social media during the election.Warner said the committee wanted to hear from Twitter to learn more about the use of fake accounts and bot networks to spread misinformation.“Twitter deeply respects the integrity of the election process, a cornerstone of all democracies, and will continue to strengthen our platform against bots and other forms of manipulation that violate our Terms of Service,” the company said in a statement.__LoBianco reported from Washington. Associated Press Writers Mary Clare Jalonick and Chad Day contributed to this story from Washington.last_img read more

Political myths fog crucial Alberta election debate over carbon taxes economist

first_imgThe commission has just published a report on carbon tax misconceptions.The worst, Ragan said, is that a carbon tax doesn’t work.“If you look at B.C., if you look at California, if you look at the U.K, if you look at Quebec, these policies do work. What they don’t do is work overnight.”At least five different published studies have found British Columbia’s carbon tax, introduced in 2008, has cut overall emissions, reduced per capita gasoline use by seven per cent, improved average vehicle efficiency by four per cent, cut residential natural gas use by seven per cent and diesel use by more than three per cent.Meanwhile, the province enjoyed about three per cent annual economic growth between 2012 and 2017.Other jurisdictions that have successfully used carbon taxes to reduce emissions include Sweden, Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands, several U.S. states, the U.K. and the European Union. EDMONTON, A.B. – Between politicians who fog the truth and the ones just in a fog, Chris Ragan wants to fan fresh air into a carbon tax debate that is clouding Alberta’s provincial election and drifting into an upcoming federal campaign.“It’s pretty clear this issue is warming up politically,” said Ragan, head of Canada’s Ecofiscal Commission, a non-partisan group of academics and business leaders focused on economic and environmental solutions.“We have been sorry to see that there’s a bunch of stuff out there that is either misunderstanding or poorly explained. There are a bunch of myths out there.” Three separate studies found B.C.’s tax either didn’t affect jobs or added them. A fourth found a small decrease in jobs for less-educated workers. Studies in the U.S. or the U.K. found little or no impact on job numbers.The commission’s report finds that far from hurting families, 70 per cent of Canadian households will receive more in carbon tax rebates than they pay.Energy economists such as Mark Jaccard at B.C.’s Simon Fraser University argue that regulations get faster, bigger results and are politically easier to enact. The big cuts to Canada’s carbon emissions, he said, have come from closing coal-fired power plants and clean fuel rules.“Some people will tell you you have to have carbon pricing,” he said on a recent podcast. “That’s not true. You could do it all through regulations.”center_img You could, concedes Ragan. But that would cost the economy more. Besides, he said, bringing in carbon taxes gives governments an opportunity to cut other levies such as income tax.Albertans who believe the province could escape a carbon tax by rescinding provincial legislation may also be mistaken.Martin Olszynski, a University of Calgary law professor, said all Ottawa would have to do is pass an order in council to bring Alberta under the same federal tax that recently came into effect in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and New Brunswick. None of those provinces had its own tax.“It’s a matter of getting cabinet together and writing the order,” Olszynski said.Looking to the courts to block Ottawa’s tax is an iffy bet, he suggested.In court hearings on Saskatchewan’s anti-tax constitutional challenge, Olszynski said, judges asked if allowing Ottawa to regulate greenhouse gases as a matter of “national concern” would impede provincial efforts to do the same.“If you recognize this matter as a matter of national concern, you would strip away the provincial ability to regulate these things,” he summarized.But Olszynski notes that courts have recognized that many issues _ especially environmental ones _ are best managed jointly between national and provincial governments.Other federal arguments in favour of a national carbon tax are backed by decades of case law, Olszynski added.Ragan said the debate over carbon taxes is as important to Canada’s future as debates over the GST or free trade with the United States.“It’s a big policy issue and it’s appropriate that we’re talking about it now.”Ragan just wishes the debate wasn’t so mythical.“We live in a democratic society where people play partisan politics. Those political debates don’t always stick to the facts.”last_img read more

Five years after Indian Ocean tsunami affected nations rebuilding better – UN

The largest emergency relief response in history was prompted by the earthquake off the coast of the Indonesian island of Sumatra on 26 December 2004, which sent waves as high as 30 metres crashing into 14 countries, claiming nearly 230,000 lives and leaving around 2 million people homeless. The international community pledged over $14 billion in aid for the overall emergency relief and recovery operations, according to a recent UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) report summarizing the results of its programmes, which have received almost $700 million to date.The report noted that communities whose livelihoods, homes, schools and heath facilities were destroyed have had opportunities to build back better health, education, water and sanitation services, as well as improve the security of areas vulnerable to natural disaster or violent conflict, and provide safer environments for vulnerable children.For example, the UNICEF-supported Darusada Children’s Centre in Aceh – a region on the northern tip of Sumatra with the closest major population to the epicentre of the 2004 earthquake – opened in 2007 and currently serves around 120 children who have been orphaned, abandoned or sexually assaulted.In addition, the court house in the regional capital Banda Aceh has added a juvenile court which is presided over by a judge who has been given special training by UNICEF. Changes in the juvenile justice system in Indonesia were also adopted after the tsunami to strengthen child protection provisions. The UNICEF report noted that the unparalleled international response to the tsunami created a unique opportunity to bolster the peace process between the Government of Indonesia and the separatist Free Aceh Movement which resulted in the signing of a peace agreement in 2005 after 70 years of conflict.Recovery efforts in Thailand have been instrumental in building a model Child Protection Monitoring System, which was initially established in 2007 to identify and monitor children orphaned by the tsunami, as well as other at-risk children. The report also underscored some of the lessons learned from the relief and recovery operations, with efforts in Myanmar positively influencing preparedness and response to other emergency situations. Following Cyclone Mala and other emergencies in 2006, as well as Cyclone Nargis in 2008, for example, UNICEF was able to swiftly mobilize and deliver emergency relief supplies, including family and child survival kits, insecticide treated bednets, and essential drugs for local health centres, in the affected areas. In the Maldives, all the houses on the island of Dhuvaafaru are newly built, and construction to defend against rising sea-levels is ongoing. After years spent in temporary settlements on other islands, Dhuvaafaru has been transformed into a new home for an entire community displaced from nearby Kandholhudhoo by the tsunami, but with 4,060 people living in 600 homes, around 80 more houses need to be built.Expanded social services are also helping to protect and promote children’s right in the Maldives, and a UNICEF-backed non-governmental organization (NGO) is at the heart of the fight against the growing problem of intravenous drug use among adolescents since the tsunami.UNICEF noted that recovery programmes in some countries have now drawn to a close, with continuing projects handed over to the national authorities or integrated into existing programmes carried out by the UNICEF country offices. Due to the scale of the recovery required in Indonesia and Sri Lanka, the agency said it will continue to support reconstruction activities through the end of 2010.The UN Development Programme (UNDP) has highlighted the power of community involvement in the reconstruction process, with shopkeepers, fishermen and women getting together to plan and build their new homes.“There was a great rush to get people back into permanent housing, but that rush could create problems, preventing a meaningful discussion with people and with the communities,” said UNDP Deputy Resident Representative for Thailand Hakan Bjorkman.“It took a little bit longer but the results were much better, and this is the essence of the ‘build back better’ concept – to have people involved in their reconstruction,” said Mr. Bjorkman.UNDP noted that since the tsunami governments, international agencies and civil society organizations have banded together to construct 250,000 permanent houses, over 100 air and seaports, thousands of schools and hospitals, as well as create national and regional tsunami warning systems by placing early detection buoys in the Indian Ocean. In collaboration with other UN agencies, national and international organizations and in cooperation with the Discovery Channel, UNDP has made a documentary telling the story of how community engagement has been successful in the mending and rebuilding lives affected by the tsunami in the hardest-hit areas of Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka, Thailand and the Maldives. The film shows that many formerly marginalized groups are playing increasingly more significant roles in their communities as a result of recovery initiatives, such as job training for women in fish processing, as well as marketing and business. 29 December 2009Five years after the massive Indian Ocean tsunami, which left a devastating trail of death and destruction, millions of people have benefited from the influx of aid by rebuilding stronger infrastructure, social services and disaster warning systems than existed before the catastrophe, according to the United Nations agencies at the core of the recovery effort. read more

Rally for unity in Matara

Following the successful rally held at Greenpath in Colombo in April the “Rally for Unity” announced that it’s second rally will take place in Matara on Sunday.“Rally for Unity” is a movement formed to show that moderates are strong and united against hate and are committed to promote understanding about the strengths of diversity and unity. The Matara rally will begin at 11.30am at Beach Park, Matara and the meeting point is the roundabout at the bus stand end. Given the recent spate of hate speech and the marginalization of minority communities in general, the voluntary movement of concerned Sri Lankans from various institutions, professions and industries organized a series of non- partisan, non-violent awareness campaigns and rallies against racist actions and hate-speech in Sri Lanka. “We believe that this will empower the silent majority of moderate Sri Lankans to stand up for an inclusive Sri Lanka and we hope that this will be a catalyst for many more similar events and initiatives. We welcome your kind support and assistance at this event,” the organizers said.The organizers said they look forward to the collaboration of the public in respecting and embracing the diversity of Sri Lanka. (Colombo Gazette) read more

Liberia making efforts to reform civilian aviation administration Annan

The report followed a request by the Security Council for information on steps Liberia has taken to improve its capacity in air traffic control and surveillance in compliance with the sanctions imposed in March 2001 in Council resolution 1343.That resolution had demanded that Liberian authorities ground all Liberia-registered aircraft operating within its jurisdiction until they updated their register of aircraft, and provide the updated information to the Council. Resolution 1343 also demanded that the Liberian Government immediately cease its support for the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) in Sierra Leone and that it expel all RUF members from Liberia, prohibit all RUF activities on its territory, cease all financial and military support to the Sierra Leonean rebel group, cease all direct or indirect import of Sierra Leone rough diamonds not controlled through Freetown’s Certificate of Origin regime, and freeze financial resources made available within its territory for the benefit of the RUF. read more

Smart Start gives new Brock students a head start

Smart Start leaders (from left) Steph Teichgraf, Paul Taylor, Dylan Magee and Aidan Smyth will spend their summer helping new Brock students get ready for the school year ahead.Living in Niagara before attending Brock University, Steph Teichgraf may have had an advantage over other students heading to Niagara for school.She knew where the campus was and benefitted from the bonus of attending school in her home community. Still, Teichgraf had plenty of questions about balancing the academic demands with student life as she embarked on her university career.She found answers through Smart Start, a one-day orientation session to help students and their families feel reassured about the four years ahead.“Although I lived in the Niagara community, Smart Start was my first time coming on campus for academics,” Teichgraf said. “The program helped me to see all the ways I could get involved while balancing my academics with all the services that are available to support students.”Now Teichgraf, who’s going into her fourth year of the Concurrent Education Program, will be showing new students the way as a Smart Start leader this summer.She’ll give campus and residence tours, leading students and parents to services offered by the University and helping with course registration.Ultimately, Teichgraf and her fellow Smart Start leaders are helping new students scratch important items of their September to-do lists early, making their first weeks of school a little less stressful.“I left my Smart Start day feeling very excited,” said Aidan Smyth, a Smart Start leader going into his fifth year of Concurrent Education. “Getting a feel for the campus, meeting some of the faculty and staff, and knowing that I was properly registered for all of my courses made it easier to hit the ground running in September.”The cost to participate is $45 per student and $15 per guest. This fee covers program materials, refreshments, lunch and parking.It’s anticipated that more than 2,000 students will participate in the program this summer, bringing with them 2,200 guests.Those numbers will help Smart Start reach a milestone of having shown 26,000 students and 28,000 parents and guests the proverbial ropes of university life.Each year, the program is tailored to ensure it covers all the topics important to new students.“Much like student life itself, the Smart Start program changes from year to year to ensure the information and services we provide are always relevant and essential,” said leader Dylan Magee, a fifth-year visual arts student. “Not only is it a day for incoming first years, it is also an experience for parents and guests to ease the transition from home.”Leader Paul Taylor, a fourth-year concurrent education student, recommends incoming students take a Smart Start tour, even if they have friends and family already attending Brock.“Even if you already have a sibling who attends Brock, Smart Start is an easy way to get a head start for September,” he said. “Bring your sibling along, they may learn something new about their school as well.”Smart Start runs from June 24 to Aug. 9, with Saturday tours available in July.Visit Smart Start online to register or for more information. read more

Poll Should Irish people protest more

first_imgPEPPER SPRAY WAS used by Gardaí on protesters outside Leinster House yesterday while another protest blocked traffic during rush hour in the city.New barriers had been erected at government buildings ahead of the new Dáil term in anticipation of protests that started at 5am yesterday morning.So today we ask: Should Irish people protest more? Poll Results: Yes (4698) Not sure (965)center_img YesNoNot sureVote No (3708)last_img

Police to assess Jimmy Savile allegations no investigation yet

first_imgIt is not an investigation at this stage. POLICE IN LONDON have said they will begin to assess the recent allegations made against the late television broadcaster Jimmy Savile.In a statement, the Metropolitan Police Service said it had agreed to take the national lead in assessing information broadcast in an ITV documentary last night. The programme detailed claims from five women that the DJ and presenter sexually abused them on BBC premises when they were teenagers.The operation will be undertaken by the Serious Case Team of the Child Abuse Investigation Command.“Our priority will be to ensure a proportionate and consistent policing response putting the victims at the heart of enquiries,” a spokesperson said. “It is too early to say how many individual allegations there are, and we will be making contact with all those concerned in due course. Scotland Yard said it will be working closely with the BBC investigations unit during the process and the broadcaster has committed to cooperating with the operation. Detective Superintendent David Gray who is leading the assessment asked anyone with information to make contact with their local police.Earlier this week it emerged that at least three police forces had received complaints about the knighted television star but concluded there was not enough evidence to pursue them.One case of alleged rape has already been referred to the Metropolitan Police in London.Jimmy Savile was the presenter of programmes including Top of the Pops and Jim’ll Fix it. He died in October 2011.Jimmy Savile: BBC says it is “horrified” by sexual abuse allegationslast_img read more

HSE drug advisor says lifechanging cystic fibrosis drug is not value for

first_imgHSE drug advisor says life-changing cystic fibrosis drug is “not value for money” It was reported yesterday that the HSE would not be financing the drug. 11,815 Views Monday 28 Nov 2016, 10:14 AM Short URL An excerpt from a campaign calling for Orkambi to be funded. 48 Comments By Cormac Fitzgerald http://jrnl.ie/3106228 center_img Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Share356 Tweet Email THE HEAD OF the National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics (NCPE) has said that the cystic fibrosis drug Orkambi does not represent value for money and should not be funded by the Government at its current cost.Speaking today on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, Professor Michael Barry of the NCPE said that Orkambi costs too much and wasn’t effective enough to be financed by the HSE.The NCPE advises the HSE’s drugs group on the economic viability of pharmaceutical medication.The news broke yesterday that the HSE was going to reject the use of Orkambi, a drug that has transformed the lives of some people with CF.The HSE has been in talks with the drug’s manufacturer, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, in a bid to reduce its cost, for several months.Yesterday the Sunday Business Post reported that the HSE’s drugs committee will recommend against funding the medication.In a letter to Philip Watt, CEO of CF Ireland, Health Minister Simon Harris yesterday said he has not yet received a decision from the HSE regarding Orkambi.Professor Michael Barry said today that that was also his understanding of the issue.“The HSE executive has to receive the recommendation from the drugs group and I know that the HSE executive hasn’t made a decision as to whether a drug will or will not be made available,” he said.However, Barry – who is also on the HSE’s drugs group – said that the group was sticking with its earlier recommendation that the drug “was not value for money”.He said Orkambi – which can greatly alleviate the symptoms of CF – was not value for money because of its “inherent efficacy”.He said the drug – which currently costs about €160,000 per patient per year – would only work for about 25% of patients.“You’re being asked to pay a really high price for a drug which won’t work in a lot of people,” he said. Nov 28th 2016, 10:14 AM We did say in our report that we felt the price would have to fall to about €30,000 per patient per year to render it value for money.Funding Barry said that ways around combatting the high price could include a “risk sharing” approach between the HSE and the drug manufacturer.This is where an agreement could be reached whereby every patient who needs the drug receives it and the HSE would pay in the cases where the drug is effective.Orkambi manufacturer Vertex said that it had engaged in a meaningful way with the HSE to try to reach a funding agreement, however Barry said this was not the case.“It’s true they’ve engaged. I think they could have engaged in a more meaningful way,” he said.I think to be honest we need to be very frank about this that Vertex needs to put patients first and the well-being of shareholders second.The expected HSE decision not to fund the drug has been met with strong criticism from CF support and advocacy groups.In a statement, CF Ireland said it “will fight this decision” and is “angry at the cynical way the HSE has conveyed this information to our patients, some of whom are very ill”.Barry said he believed the drug could be funded eventually but that Vertex “needed to come to the table” with a viable offer.Read: ‘Orkambi saved my life, other people should get access to it’Read: Cystic fibrosis patients ‘dismayed’ at decision to not fund life-changing drug An excerpt from a campaign calling for Orkambi to be funded. last_img read more