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Delhi HC to hear Swaraj India's plea on common symbol

Legal News - Wed, 03/22/2017 - 14:48
Delhi HC to hear Swaraj India's plea on common symbol

New Delhi [India], Mar. 22 : The Delhi High Court will on Wednesday hear Yogendra Yadav-led Swaraj India's plea for allotting a common symbol to the party for the upcoming civic polls.

Appearing for the Delhi state election commission, advocate Sumit Pushkarna yesterday submitted before the court that they don't have the power to allot symbols to unrecognized but registered political parties, adding that this power is vested with the Election Commission of India (ECI).

Swaraj India, led by Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan, approached the Delhi High Court earlier last week challenging the state election commission's denial to their plea for a common symbol in the upcoming civic polls.

Delhi state election commission earlier on March 14 announced April 22 as the date for Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) polls.

The petitioner said the poll panel denied the request for a symbol on March 7 despite a provision in the rules to provide a symbol to a registered but unrecognised political party like Swaraj India which is set to make its electoral debut.

Senior advocate Arvind Nigam mentioned the matter before a bench of Justices Badar Durrez Ahmed and V. K. Rao for an urgent hearing.

Swaraj India was floated by Yadav and Bhushan, who were expelled from Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) after they questioned Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's leadership.

The lawyer argued that under the Election Symbols (Reservation and Allotment) (Amendment) order, the Election Commission of India itself allows newly registered political parties to have a common symbol for all their candidates for contesting their first election.

The party has claimed that states like Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, West Bengal, Kerala, Sikkim and Tripura follow the rules made by the Election Commission of India (ECI). (ANI)

General: FeaturedRegion: New DelhiIndia
Categories: Legal News

Taj Mansingh Hotel auction: SC to hear plea today

Legal News - Wed, 03/22/2017 - 14:05
 SC to hear plea today

New Delhi [India], Mar. 22 (ANI): The Supreme Court will today continue its hearing in connection with the plea of IHCL (Indian Hotels Company Ltd) against the Delhi High court order allowing New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) to auction the Taj Mansingh Hotel, located in the Lutyen's zone.

Earlier this month, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced that an open auction of Taj Mansingh Hotel would be done.

Kejriwal, a member NDMC made the announcement following a special meeting of its top decision-making body.

"Important decisions today's NDMC meeting-open auction of Taj Mansingh, cancel Le Meridian Hotel license, 240 days TMR (Temporary Muster Roll) every yr 2 all death cases (sic)," Kejriwal had tweeted.

The apex court, earlier in November last year ordered that the status quo with regard to the Taj Mansingh Hotel be maintained and issued a notice to NDMC to reply to plea against the auction of hotel.

The Delhi High Court had earlier dismissed the Tata Group's appeal for retaining management rights over the Taj Mansingh Hotel, and in all practicality, told the business conglomerate that it will have to participate in the auction process.

The high court gave the green signal to the NDMC to go ahead with the public auction of the Taj Mansingh Hotel located in Central Delhi. (ANI)

General: FeaturedRegion: New DelhiIndia
Categories: Legal News

SC to hear Swaraj Abhiyan's plea seeking assistance to drought-affected victims

Legal News - Wed, 03/22/2017 - 13:05
SC to hear Swaraj Abhiyan's plea seeking assistance to drought-affected victims

New Delhi [India], Mar. 22 : The Supreme Court will on Wednesday hear the PIL filed by Swaraj Abhiyan, seeking proper rehabilitation and financial assistance to the people of 11 drought- affected states.

The plea was filed by a Delhi based Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) 'Swaraj Abhiyan', seeking directions from the apex court to the Central and state governments to provide timely and effective relief to drought affected people in several states.

A Bench comprising Justices M.B. Lokur and N.V. Ramana will be hearing the case and senior Supreme Court advocate Prashant Bhushan will be representing the NGO.

In May last year, the apex court had directed the drought-hit states to provide highly subsidised foodgrains to the affected people under the National Food Security (NFS) Act. The states are Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Maharashtra, Odisha, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh.

The Bench had pulled up Haryana, Gujarat and Bihar for refusing to declare drought, despite a sharp fall in the monsoon rains, a primary indicator for assessing people's distress arising from water scarcity and crop failure. Gujarat declared drought only in some areas that too very late.

The Bench had directed all the 12 states, including Haryana and Bihar, to provide five kilogram of food-grains per person a month at the price meant for below poverty line (BPL) families and this should be given to even those above the poverty line (APL) and those not holding ration cards. (ANI)

General: FeaturedRegion: New DelhiIndia
Categories: Legal News

Urinating, pouring alcohol on jellyfish sting can make things worse: study

US News - Wed, 03/22/2017 - 12:21
 study

Urinating and pouring alcohol on a jellyfish sting are some of the most commonly suggested home remedies. But, a new study has cautioned that such remedies can actually make things worse for the victim.

Urine contains urea that helps with tentacle removal, but it is too diluted to help the victim. The salt in the pee can trigger more nematocysts, giving a burning sensation to the skin. Moreover, peeing on someone or in someone’s presence is quite embarrassing for everyone involved.

The new study also warned that scraping away the tentacles is not a good idea as pressure can trigger the nematocysts. Alcohol can make them fire off even more, while other DIY remedies like baking soda and shaving cream have no effect on the stingers.

Lead researcher Prof. Angel Yanagihara of University of Hawaii, said, “Anyone … encounter authoritative web articles claiming the best thing to do is rinse the area with seawater, scrape away any remaining tentacles, and then treat the sting with ice. Not only did they find out some didn’t work, research showed some actions actually worsened stings.”

However, vinegar works as it prevents the nematocysts from firing off. Thus, if a jelly fish stings you, you should pour some concentrated vinegar on the affected area.

The new study, conducted to test the validity of the home remedies, was detailed in the most recent edition of the journal Toxins.

General: Science NewsRegion: Hawaii
Categories: US News

Rameswaram: Lankan Navy arrests 10 fishermen

Legal News - Tue, 03/21/2017 - 18:45
 Lankan Navy arrests 10 fishermen

Chennai (Tamil Nadu), Mar 21 : The Sri Lankan Navy on Tuesday arrested 10 Indian fishermen and seized one boat from Ramanathapuram, Rameswaram north of Delft Island in the sea area.

The Naval personnel located in Delft Island belonging to the Northern Naval Command apprehended the fishermen.

The fishermen and the boat have been handed over to the Kankesanthurai Police for further investigation.

The incident comes on the heels of a group of Tamil fishermen being shot at by the Sri Lankan Navy, which had resulted in the death of one.

Massive protests had broken out in Tamil Nadu over the issue, even as the Sri Lankan Government promised a probe into the deaths

Earlier this month on March 5, 24 fishermen were arrested by Sri Lankan authorities for fishing in international waters. 15 fishermen were apprehended from between Katchathivu and Talaimannar, while nine others were arrested near Neduntheevu.

The boats used by the fishermen were seized by the authorities. (ANI)

General: FeaturedRegion: ChennaiTamil NaduIndia
Categories: Legal News

PM Modi asks BJP members to ensure attendance in Parliament

Legal News - Tue, 03/21/2017 - 18:10
PM Modi asks BJP members to ensure attendance in Parliament

New Delhi [India], Mar 21 : Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar on Tuesday said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid special emphasis on the attendance of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) members in the Parliament and asked them to be present during the proceedings.

Addressing the media after the BJP Parliamentary meeting, Kumar said that Prime Minister Modi has asked the party members to ensure their attendance in the Parliament.

"I can do everything but how can I mark your attendance," sources quoted the Prime Minister as saying during the meeting.

Kumar further said that Prime Minister Modi during the meeting also laid down a road map marking the future endeavours of the party.

"Today in the BJP parliamentary meeting, Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid down the road map of our future endeavours and guided us through it," said Kumar.

Today was the first parliamentary party meeting after the BJP's splendid show in the recent assembly polls. The meeting assumes significance as it was an occasion for celebration, thanksgiving and mapping out the path ahead for the party. (ANI)

General: FeaturedRegion: New DelhiIndia
Categories: Legal News

Whales’ ‘super groups’ mystify researchers

US News - Tue, 03/21/2017 - 13:05
Whales’ ‘super groups’ mystify researchers

Marine biologists are struggling to figure out why humpback whales, typically solitary creatures, are hanging out in densely packed “super groups” off the coast of South Africa.

Experts said humpback whales typically hang out in groups of up to 20, but they are suddenly hanging out in group of up to 200, and they are focused on feeding.

Lead researcher Ken Findlay said, “When you’re in a small boat with 200 humpback whales around you — they’re 14-meter animals — and you’ve got whales popping up all around you, it’s a really incredible experience.”

Precise reason for the whales’ this recent novel behavior pattern remains speculative. However, some experts believe that it could be because of swelling numbers of humpback whales in the region in addition to abundance of prey.

The findings are based on observations conducted during October and November, which are spring-summer months in South Africa, in 2011, 2014 and 2015.

The researchers from South Africa’s Department of Environmental Affairs reported their findings in the latest edition of the PLOS One journal.

General: Science NewsResearchRegion: South Africa
Categories: US News

Sprint, U.S. Cellular kick off preorders for LG G6

US News - Sun, 03/19/2017 - 13:08
Sprint, U.S. Cellular kick off preorders for LG G6

After Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile and AT&T, telecommunication services providers Sprint and U.S. Cellular have also kicked off preorders for the LG G6 on their respective networks.

Sprint is offering the LG G6 for $29.50 per month, stretched more than two years. However, customers can also pay the total amount of $708 outright. The handset’s shipping will start on April 7, 2017.

Sprint CTO John Saw said in a statement, “The debut of LG G6 is an important step forward in building the global HPUE ecosystem with progress being made in record time after the standardization of the technology in December.”

Announcing preorders for the LG G6, Sprint also made a lucrative offer by offering a Google Home speaker for nothing. In addition, Sprint announced its decision to give buyers a 49-inch LG 1080p HDTV free of cost.

U.S. Cellular has also started accepting preorders for the LG G6, with shipments slated for April 7. It is offering the Google Home speaker worth $129 for free. However, it isn’t offering a free TV.

The above-mentioned offers are valid for a limited time period and can only be availed through online registration fro the new handset.

Companies: LGSprintTechnology: TechnologyPeople: John Saw
Categories: US News

It mayn’t be easy to colonize Mars: Buzz Aldrin

US News - Sat, 03/18/2017 - 12:59
 Buzz Aldrin

Former NASA astronaut Buzz Aldrin, who was a part of the Apollo 11 Moon mission in July 1969, has cautioned that Elon Musk-led SpaceX’s ambitious plan to send humans to Mars to colonize the Red Planet may not be easy.

In September last year, Musk revealed plans to travel to Mars and colonize the neighboring planet. He outlined the spaceships and rockets needed to send humans to the Red Planet. However, the plans fall short of information on how the first humans on Mars will be able to stay there.

Aldrin said that Musk’s has a myopic view because instead of focusing on what humans will do upon their arrival on the Red Planet, he is focusing on the travel.

The 87-year-old former astronaut said, “We know how to get to Mars. We are going to build a big rocket, put a dragon on top, and go land on Mars … You have got to live in something. You have to prepare for all of that. We don't have to get people there until we need to do the delicate [work].”

Some experts have suggested an intermediate step. The idea is to use Mars’ moon Phobos as a place to land on first and make final preparations for reaching the surface of the Red Planet.

Aldrin isn’t the first to raise questions on Musk’s plan to colonize the Red Planet. Previously, NASA scientists echoed similar concerns as survival on the Red Planet will largely be hinged on how efficiently humans will be able to adapt to the planet’s harsh environment.

Companies: NASAGeneral: Science NewsPeople: Elon Musk
Categories: US News

Russian FSB agents reportedly facilitated 2014 Yahoo hacking attack

US News - Fri, 03/17/2017 - 12:20
Russian FSB agents reportedly facilitated 2014 Yahoo hacking attack

The U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) has indicted that two Russian FSB agents played a key role in the 2014 Yahoo hacking attack which compromised hundreds of millions of Yahoo email accounts.

Russian agents Igor Sushchin and Dmitry Dokuchaev reportedly paid hackers to hack into Yahoo’s cyber security and gain access to accounts containing personal and sensitive information about the owners, including their birth dates, contacts and other email accounts.

Apart from paying the hackers, the two Russian agents also facilitated and protected them during the hack as well as directed them what to do.

News of Russian agents’ involvement in the case emerged as part of the indictment that started making rounds yesterday when the DOJ would reportedly be handing down the charges.

One of the hackers named in the indictment is Alexsey Belan, one the FBI’s Cyber Most Wanted cyber criminals. A Canadian hacker identified as Karim Baratov was taken into custody just yesterday.

Belan has escaped to Russia as the U.S. doesn’t have an extradition treaty with Russia. American authorities may never be able to arrest three Russian defendants who have been named in the case. However, it is possible that these defendants could face charges if Russian authorities agree to cooperate with the U.S.

Companies: YahooTechnology: InternetTechnologyRegion: Russia
Categories: US News

Newly discovered planetary system named after famous beer brand

US News - Thu, 03/16/2017 - 12:37
Newly discovered planetary system named after famous beer brand

The discovery of seven Earth-sized planets orbiting a nearby star dubbed TRAPPIST-1 isn’t new. However, many people remain unaware of the fact that new planetary system has been named after the discoverers’ favorite beer.

Trappist has been associated with the popular brand of monastic beer that stemmed from Belgium many centuries ago. The scientists not only named the star after the beer but also nicknamed the planets orbiting it.

Each of the TRAPPIST-1 star’s seven exoplanets, the planets outside our own solar planet, has been named something coinciding with a Trappist brewery, such as Orval, Rochefort and Westvleteren.

Many scientists believe that the seven Earth-sized exoplanets many have life-supporting conditions, and the upcoming James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) could help determine that.

Hannah Wakeford, of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, said, “These are the best Earth-sized planets for the James Webb Space Telescope to characterize, perhaps for its whole lifetime. The Webb telescope will increase the information we have about these planets immensely.”

Scheduled to be launched in 2018, the (JWST) will likely be able to detect methane, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, oxygen or water on the exoplanets, helping scientists to determine if the distant worlds really have life-supporting conditions.

General: Science NewsCompanies: NASA
Categories: US News

Scientists solve mystery of early supermassive black holes

US News - Wed, 03/15/2017 - 12:13
Scientists solve mystery of early supermassive black holes

The birth of early supermassive black holes has been puzzling astronomers since they were first detected more than a decade ago. However, a new study claims that scientists may finally be a step closer to solving the mystery.

The earliest supermassive black holes, with mass around a billion times of the Sun, came into existence just 800,000 years after the so-called Big Bang. But, scientists say it should take millions of years for such voids to accumulate that much mass.

Thus, astronomers remained perplexed over how these black holes grew so quickly. A team of scientists from Ireland’s Dublin City University, the US’ Columbia University, Georgia Institute of Technology, and Finland’s University of Helsinki, found in the new study that it might be due to radiation.

The scientists found that clumping of gas to form dense pockets of material in a galaxy marks the first stage of star formation. But this process is hindered by radiation, which makes the birth of new stars impossible.

Lead study author John Regan, a researcher from Dublin City University, added, “Understanding how supermassive black holes form tells us how galaxies, including our own, form and evolve, and ultimately, tells us more about the universe in which we live.”

The researchers reported their findings in the most recent edition of the Nature Astronomy.

General: Science NewsRegion: Columbia
Categories: US News

Pruitt’s comments put him at odds with majority of climate scientists

US News - Tue, 03/14/2017 - 12:21
Pruitt’s comments put him at odds with majority of climate scientists

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt’s controversial comments have put him at odds with the majority of scientists and even many of his predecessors at the federal agency.

While a big majority of scientists have been blaming human activities like burning of fossil fuels for the global warming and climate change, Pruitt said in a TV show that there is not robust evidence showing a link between human activities and climate change. He also argued that there is a need to continue the debate as well as continue the analysis.

His controversial comments triggered an immediate pushback from the scientific community as well as environment groups. Some of his predecessors at the agency also criticized him.

Gina McCarthy, the agency’s most recent chief, said, “The world of science is about empirical evidence, not beliefs. When it comes to climate change, the evidence is robust and overwhelmingly clear that the cost of inaction is unacceptably high.”

Phone calls from angry constituents to Pruitt’s main line, 202-564-4700, hit so high volume by the recently past Friday that EPA officials were reportedly forced to create an impromptu call center. However, agency officials declined to confirm the creation of the impromptu call center.

General: Science NewsCompanies: NASAEPA
Categories: US News

Waymo seeks injunction against Otto and Uber

US News - Sun, 03/12/2017 - 13:16
Waymo seeks injunction against Otto and Uber

Google Inc. parent firm Alphabet-owned Waymo has asked a federal court to block Uber’s self-driving car project, arguing that Uber is using its stolen technology.

Filing testimonies from its employees and a security engineer in a San Francisco court, Waymo described how former Google executive Anthony Levandowski stole proprietary company documents.

The lawsuit alleges that Levandowski stole nearly fourteen thousand digital files around a month before resigning from his job at Waymo to start his own company called Otto, a self-driving car technology provider.

Otto was later bought by Uber for $680 million, and Levandowski became the chief of the ride-hailing company’s autonomous car business.

Waymo spokesperson Johnny Luu said, “Competition should be fueled by innovation in the labs … we are asking the court step in to protect intellectual property developed by our engineers over thousands of hours and to prevent any use of that stolen IP.”

Waymo requested the federal court to issue a preliminary injunction against both Otto and Uber. A hearing on the injunction motion is slated for April 27, 2017.

Technology: Technology NewsCompanies: UberOtto
Categories: US News

Great Barrier Reef experiencing coral bleaching for second consecutive year

US News - Sat, 03/11/2017 - 12:40
Great Barrier Reef experiencing coral bleaching for second consecutive year

The health of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is in ‘uncharted territory’ as the reef is experiencing an unprecedented year of mass coral bleaching for the second year in a row, climate scientists have warned.

The 1,400-mile Great Barrier Reef suffered its most severe bleaching in the recorded history during March and April last year. Scientists blamed warming sea temperatures for the problem.

Following an aerial survey off Australia’s eastern coast, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority warned on Thursday that coral bleaching is occurring again this year.

Reef recovery director David Wachenfeld said, “Regrettably, the temperatures have been high on the Great Barrier Reef this summer as well and unfortunately (we) are here to confirm... a mass coral bleaching event for the second consecutive year.”

Wachenfeld stressed that it is the first time on record that the Great Barrier Reef is experiencing coral bleaching for two years in sequence.

The Australian arm of the wildlife conservation group WWF stressed on the urgency of tackling climate change in Australia -- one of the worst per capita greenhouse gas polluters in the world.

General: Science NewsRegion: Australia
Categories: US News

Google Cloud acquires Kaggle

US News - Fri, 03/10/2017 - 12:49
Google Cloud acquires Kaggle

The Google Cloud Platform announced on Wednesday that it has acquired the world’s largest community for data scientists and machine learning nerds, called Kaggle.

Kaggle allows AI enthusiasts to explore and analyze a large compilation of high quality datasets, in addition to running code in the cloud and receiving community feedback on work, among other things.

Fei-Fei Li, Google Cloud AI’s chief scientist, confirmed the acquisition and added that it would provide Kaggle members with direct access to Google’s advanced cloud machine learning milieu.

Speaking on the topic, Li added, “We must lower the barriers of entry to AI and make it available to the largest community of developers, users and enterprises, so they can apply it to their own unique needs. With Kaggle joining the Google Cloud team, we can accelerate this mission.”

Under the terms of the acquisition deal, the Kaggle will keep on operating as its own brand within the Google Cloud Platform.

The Silicon Valley powerhouse has been busy with its aim to create self-teaching technology for years. In a letter to shareholders last year, Google CEO Sundar Pichai wrote that the company will soon move from “mobile first” to an “AI first” in the world.

Technology: Technology NewsCompanies: Google
Categories: US News




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