INDIA BECOMES A VILLAGE

first_imgThe underlying visual of many in urban India is a rural India marked by thatched roofs, kutcha roads, and uneducated people who work in farms. But the village has changed dramatically from the days of Sholay. Rural India has been growing more rapidly than urban India in the last few years and studies by many organisations are only now capturing what my colleagues at Indicus had gathered some time back. Rural unemployment fell by 3.9 million in the period between 2004-05 and 2009-10, according to the National Sample Survey (nss). Incomes are also growing faster-a 2011 Credit Suisse report found per capita gdp in rural India has grown 1.5 per cent more than urban India: 6.2 per cent in rural areas against 4.7 per cent in urban ones. As per a crisil report penned by Dhamakriti Joshi using nss data, rural household expenditures grew by Rs 3.7 trillion between 2009-10 and 2011-212, compared to less than Rs 3 trillion in urban India. The growth in rural India was 2 percentage points higher during the period. Meanwhile, education attainment is improving more rapidly than in urban India; even in household assets, more two-wheelers and tvs are being used by India’s rural inhabitants (see graphs).These changes have occurred not merely because of productivity improvements in agriculture (marginal), or nrega (slightly more than a drop in the ocean) or even higher minimum support prices (few commodities covered for a small part of rural economy). There have been massive and obvious, though undocumented, productivity improvements in rural India, including in its manufacturing and services sectors. Today, manufacturing and services account for almost three-fourths (73 per cent to be precise) of the rural economy, and will only grow in future.advertisementThese productivity improvements have occurred on the back of three developments in the 2000s. First, the spread of the telecom network across India-rural penetration rose from barely 0.7 per cent of the households in 2000, to greater than 33 per cent in 2011, and there is more to come. The overall growth of telecom has been of the order of 19 times in the period as opposed to six times in urban India. The network, unlike in many other countries, has been able to provide highly affordable services even to those at the bottom of the pyramid. It has been well documented that daily wage labourers are using them to find better daily job options, farmers and fishermen for better prices for their produce and youth for greater education options.The second major improvement has been the building of a good rural road network which will eventually connect all villages to each other and to a large market-place. Between 2004 and 2008, rural roads under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana grew more than three times to 1,61,000 km. In 2004, barely 2 per cent of all roads were rural, and this had increased to 5 per cent by 2008. The growth is actually more, but the latest data is not yet available. Many private transport services run on these roads, motorcycles have become more feasible as 24×7 and all-year-round private means of transport, transport of goods and services to villages has become possible at cheaper and regular rates. Together, all of these have led to another major impact on rural productivity. Strange though, India’s urban-centric academia has not even attempted to capture these revolutionary developments and their impact on productivity.The third major development has perhaps been the most important, and it is a result of the improvements in communications and transport. Human capital in rural India is improving at a very fast pace. Many government schools do not function-that is well known-but that they are improving is less appreciated. Today, there is rarely a child that is not in school in rural India. Teachers are more willing to teach in the hinterland as travel between the nearest town and the village becomes easier. Youth are travelling to nearby urban centres for education. Consequently, between 2004 and 2010, nss data shows that among the working age groups in rural India, secondary, higher secondary, graduates and postgraduates have grown by 45, 60, 39 and 28 per cent respectively.As the examples featured in this issue show, at least some of the better educated are electing to stay back in rural India. This group of rural achievers is very different from the ones in the past. They are not only driven by the passion or idealism of remaking rural India, but there is also a conviction that they and their families can lead happy, fulfilling lives in villages. They are benefiting from the progress, as they are also contributing to it. It is this Indian who is changing rural India the most-not an idealist, but a realist who sees opportunities, and actively participates in the great surge that rural India is making.advertisementWe are therefore starting to see the emergence of a virtuous cycle. As better-educated people utilise greater opportunities, they will create further openings for others. They will, in turn, ensure that at least some of the better-educated workforce and dynamic entrepreneurs elect to work in rural India. Some of these people may even live in urban India, as a good transport system makes it possible to travel long distances.Indian policymakers have, however, not realised the two most important characteristics of such cycles. One, that they are, typically, shortlived, and tend to die out unless there is a free flow of people, as well as goods and services to and from such areas with the outside world. And two, rural India can only grow if urban India operates efficiently.Many lazy thinkers have identified nrega and higher agricultural support prices as the key reason behind rural India’s surge, with little data to prove that claim. If the great surge in rural India is due to welfare, then India has discovered a completely new growth model! Growth can only be sustained if there are productivity improvements, and those can only be sustained if the economy is open. But rural India is still only a partially open economy. Laws, infrastructure, procedures, practices and corruption are working together to create a collection of highly walled islands. Once in a while, technology seeps in through these walls and creates a positive wave. This is essentially what has occurred since the latter part of the 2000s. But whether it is irrigation, mandis, highways, warehouses, training institutes or strange laws, a lot remains the same in rural India. Much as we see dynamism today, we shall see fatigue eating into rural India. Reforms and investment allowed urban India to get somewhere, and some of that trickled down. But, just as the urban economy is now getting tired of hope, so too will rural India, and soon.Cities and villages are nothing but a collection of closely packed homes with some markets strewn about in between. But the larger collection of human beings in cities have a role to play in sustaining and providing the scale for the smaller collection that resides in each village. Cities enable villages to benefit from economies of scale. So if rural India needs to grow, Indian cities need to function well. There was a reason why the great agriculture-centric Indus Valley Civilisation withered away once its cities were lost.There is little one can expect or hope from the Government at this time, but policymakers of the future, please note. Rural India can and should grow rapidly, but for that we need to free it from the many artificial barriers our elders have put in its path.The author is the director of Indicus Analytics, a New Delhi-based economic research firmadvertisementk. nicholson singh, 31, turned an innovator out of a sense of guilt. In 2002, a stray dog he used to often feed, died of shock after it accidentally sat on a naked wire at his electrical repair shop.He did not tell anyone how it had died, but shut shop for a month, refusing to speak to friends and family. “It was my carelessness, but it made me want to find a remedy. I asked my father, an electrician himself, if there was any device that absorbed electric shocks. He had no answer. I checked local libraries, but it was a waste of time,?? says Singh, who won the Grassroots Innovator Award in 2009 from the National Innovation Foundation for designing an electric shock-proof converter.Though not marketed commercially yet, it comes in various sizes, depending on the voltage rating of the device. “The principle is simple. I use a magnetic field to make the surge shock-proof. You plug one end of the converter to the power source, the other end to any device-fridge, tv, iron or even naked wires-and you won’t get a shock,?? he explains. Born on March 25, 1981, in village Wongkiei Koijam Leikai, 5 km from Imphal, Singh was exposed to the world of electricity from childhood, as Indrajit, his father, was an electrician at Imphal’s rims Hospital. “I learnt practical aspects of the trade from my father. But he could never explain how things worked. For that, while in Class VIII, I trained for three months under Momom Singh of iti.?? In 2000, Singh borrowed money from friends to start his shop. It was here that three years later, fate intervened, and he ended up designing the converter. by Kaushik Dekaher name means ‘gentle breeze’ in Urdu. And 30-year-old Sabbah Haji is the fresh breath of air that has bypassed Jammu & Kashmir for two decades, but is now back in the inhospitable heights of Doda district. Four years after she quit the comfort of her content-writing job in Bangalore, she’s in the thick of an incredible transformation. In 2008, Haji went back to her village of Breswana, a remote settlement of 1,500 people. “I felt there were far more relevant things I should be doing back home, instead of earning and spending in a lather-rinse-repeat cycle month after month,?? she wrote on her blog. The commerce graduate from Bishop Cotton, Bangalore, spent the next few months setting up Haji Public School (hps). From two rooms of her father Saleem Haji’s home in May 2009, hps today has its own building and nearly 200 children on its rolls, besides two branches, in Parsholla and Shadiwan. Four years on, hps has Classes I to V with no dropouts. Striking a happy mix of modernity and tradition between her Levi’s and hijab, she says it helps that she likes village life: “It’s simple and the people are real.?? For Haji, it’s been a happy descent to the uncomplicated-to the delight of watching a child’s face light up with comprehension. by Asit Jollya cause warrior if there was one, Sonia Suryavanshi persuaded a group of nomads to settle in her village of Sarasar to send their children to school when she was 14 years old. Now 27, she has devoted the last 13 years to many righteous causes. She started off by setting up an agarbatti unit to give local women jobs. That venture folded up, but her next attempt, to get polythene banned from the local market, was taken up by municipal officials. She is a messiah-on-wheels, riding her two-wheeler from one village to the next, raising awareness about education and women’s empowerment. In 2010, she took up the cause of children of lepers. “I petitioned local schools to consider these kids as potential students. They ignored me,?? she says. She finally found help from then-Udham Singh Nagar district magistrate R.C. Puroshottam. Over 300 kids of lepers are now enrolled. Next in line is revolutionising farm practices. “I can imagine myself riding a tractor,?? she says confidently. by Olina Banerjimeet himanshu Patel, one of India’s best sarpanchs. In six years, he has transformed the sleepy, garbage-littered village of Punsri, Gujarat, into a model of rural life. Patel was elected in 2006. He immediately got a Rs 4.5-lakh sound system with speakers installed in the village. It is connected to his mobile, and allows him to call villagers to assembly in minutes. It has been such a success that 500 panchayats in Gujarat alone have adopted it. Punsri now has a bottled-water plant, a Rs 10-lakh bus and home garbage collection. Patel won the Rajiv Gandhi Bharat Ratna as India’s best sarpanch in 2011. His next target: solar street lights. by Uday MahurkarWith one hand typing furiously on a BlackBerry, another clicking away on an iMac, Vijay Bhaskar Reddy Dinnepu, 36, ceo of Vinfinet Technologies (vt), a Bangalore-based it firm, takes to technology like fish to water. One can scarcely believe the winner of 2011 Samsung Innovation Award never saw electricity till the age of 12. “I was born and raised in Palli, a small village in Kadapa district, Andhra Pradesh, in a family of poor farmers. Being deprived of technology in my childhood made me hungry for more of it,?? he says.Dinnepu completed a BTech in Chemical Engin-eering from Sri Venkateswara University in 1997 and MTech in Computer Science from iit-Madras in 1999. He went on to work at firms such as LightSand Communications, Wipro, lvl7 Systems, Intel and Cisco. But a void remained. “I lived in the US for almost two years and could have settled there. But I had a conscience-call-that I should use my success to help others,?? he says. He returned to Bangalore in 2003, and realised he could give back most by extending to his community the benefits of technology. His mind made up, he left Cisco in August 2010 to set up vt, which builds cost-effective it solutions for agriculture. Its first product, Kisan Raja, was launched in early 2011. “It’s a gsm-based software that makes a cellphone work as an irrigation pump switch,?? says Dinnepu. At Rs 5,000 per unit, it’s already being used by over 500 farmers in the state. by Sonali Acharjeeif mahatma gandhi believed India lives in its villages, a young couple has ensured that the village they have adopted lives well. In five years, Jaldeep Thakar and his wife Snehal have spun a remarkable turnaround for Pedhamli in Mehsana district, be it in education, health, hygiene or women’s empowerment and entrepreneurship. Jaldeep imbibed the Mahatma’s vision of rural sufficiency at Gujarat Vidyapith, a university founded in 1920 by Gandhi himself. Once they settled in Pedhamli in 2006, from health issues, they moved to reviving a cooperative dairy. They opted against floating an ngo, saying Pedhamli is their ngo and its inhabitants their trustees. by Uday Mahurkarby 1928, under the leadership of Sardar Patel, Bardoli Kisan Satyagraha had developed into a model Gandhian community. That legacy continues today in this corner of Gujarat, through the Suruchi Yantra Vidyalaya. It’s here that Ram Kumar Singh and Rama Singh, a Gandhian couple, are trying to bring about rural industrialisation for the last 12 years.There have been no improvements in agricultural tools technology since India’s Independence. “We started a centre to train blacksmiths to re-design tools for farmers in south Gujarat,?? says Ram. “Since farmers trade in their produce and tools in the weekly mandi (market), we tried selling there as well. When our sickles and harrows sold quickly, we started selling them across the region. We cover five districts, 15 talukas and more than 50 villages,?? he says. The institute has so far trained 31 blacksmiths, all of whom work in their centre. “We apply engineering ideas, and have so far bettered 166 tools. Our research is documented in Gujarati,?? says Ram.The couple began their journey in Wardha, Maharashtra. “Both of us believed in a revolutionary ideology those days,?? says Rama. Today, they do research in rural and tribal uplift, and have collaborated with National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, and iit-Madras among others. “More than 80 per cent of our production is self-funded, and our turnover is around Rs 50 lakh a year. We’ve identified 130 farmer clusters in Gujarat as our potential customers. The day all 130 are in our fold, our turnover could exceed Rs 5 crore,?? says Ram Kumar Singh. by Devika Chaturvedia film at 17 may not sound that big an achievement, till you realise Jayshree Kharpade’s father forced her out of school in Class II, so that she could work at a brick kiln. Fire in Our Hearts, her 27-minute autobiopic, won first prize at the Asian-American International Film Festival in New York in July. In it, the tribal girl from Wada, 120 km from Mumbai, narrates her struggle to get an education.Now in Class X at Eklavya Vidyalaya in Usgaon, 70 km north of Mumbai, Kharpade exudes the confi-dence of a girl determined to make up for lost time. “At 12, ngo Shramajeevi Sanghathana re-enrolled me in Class II,?? she says. “I picked up so fast that my school allowed me to sit for the annual exams of Classes III-VI. I cleared them all.??There’s no rancour at her father for pulling her out of school, though, in the film, she asks him why he forced her to abandon school. “Now, baba wants me study further,?? she says. Kharpade had not seen a camera until filmmaker Joyce Chopra of New York-based ngo BYkids visited her school in December 2010, and warmed to her story. Chopra encouraged Kharpade to shoot, and edited the film.Her film’s success has sharpened Kharpade’s focus. She wants to be a civil engineer and build a school in her village, so that no girl is deprived of an education. by Kiran Tare in mandva, a village of about 11,000 people on the banks of the Narmada near Chandod, Vadodara district, Gujarat, Mehul Panchal Chand has created a forested ravine in the midst of barren land, appropriately called Oasis Valley. Racked by guilt at farmer suicides in Gujarat, this organic farm was his gift to the community he feels he belongs to. Panchal qualified as an electronics engineer from M.S. University, Vadodara, in 1993. He landed a job at an it firm in Bangalore, but unhappy with it, a year on he made a life-changing decision to move back to Vadodara and immerse himself in the uplift of the nearby villages.He bought a nine-acre barren plot nearby for a meagre Rs 35,000 in 2002. With continuous experiments over 10 years, he has turned it into a fertile valley, and has inspired over 400 farmers to his cause, that of sustainable but economically viable organic farming. “I’m inspired by India’s organic farming pioneers Ashok Sanghavi, Bhaskar Hiraji Save and Subhash Palekar,?? he says. Organic farmers like Panchal rear earthworms to turn compost to manure, and use cow urine as insecticide. He says: “With chemicals, the land needs more fertilisers in the next period. Pests become immune, and a ruinous downward spiral ensues.?? Panchal believes a farmer with just two acres can be richer than a small-town engineer. But first, “you need to be one of them??.by Devika Chaturvediat an annual salary of Rs 1.05 crore from his club, Prayag United, and Rs 65 lakh a year from All India Football Federation, 26-year-old Gouramangi Singh is India’s second-highest paid footballer. But for this soft-spoken defender from Awang Sekmai, 17 km north of Imphal, invest-ment in Indian football is not taking the right direction. “One thing our football lacks is investment in youth and infrastructure. National team players get to play abroad, but it’s important for every region to have good academies, right training, nourishment and technical assistance. India is not short of talent, but we need to be groomed to be at par with the best,?? says Gouramangi.Though born in football-crazy Manipur, Singh’s rise to stardom has not been easy. The big break came in 2003 when he captained India’s under-18 team that won the Ian Rush Trophy in Ireland. The next year, he was selected for the Tata Football Academy (tfa) in Jamshedpur. “Renedy Singh, also from Manipur, was a star when I joined tfa. It was my first step in his footsteps,?? says Gouramangi.His struggles began once he left tfa. “From being one of India’s most promising players, I struggled in Mohun Bagan. It’s only after I joined Churchill in 2007 that I settled down,?? says Singh. In 2007, he was in India’s first-ever Nehru Cup-winning team. He rates the 2008 afc Challenge Cup victory higher-it gave them a chance to play in the afc Asian Cup. “Sharing the same space with South Koreans and Australians was amazing,?? he says.At 6’1??, he is one of India’s tallest players. His headers are feared by opponents. On September 2, 2012, Gouramangi scored the first goal, a header, as India beat Cameroon to lift the Nehru Cup for the third time. by Kaushik Dekakumaravel premkumar, 19, is on his mark. In a flash he’s running, long limbs flying, till he lands, kicking up a sandy halo around him. The Pachiyappas School ground in Chennai is strewn with paper cups and garbage-not the training facility that befits India’s junior long jump champion. But he isn’t bothered. It’s his home. “I live here with seven other athletes,?? says Premkumar, who set a national record of 7.86 m in the junior level in Bangalore in 2010, and topped it with 7.92 m at the Asian Indoor Athletics Championship trials in January 2012.Hailing from Orthanadu village in Thanjavur, 300 km from Chennai, Premkumar didn’t take up sport seriously until he was 15. “My school games teacher asked me to focus on sports,?? he says. Victories at various state meets caught the eye of P. Nagarajan, head coach of Prime Sports Academy, Chennai. “I convinced him to move to Chennai,?? says Nagarajan.The decision was difficult. “My father passed away when I was two years old, and I didn’t know if I could live away from my mother,?? says Premkumar. His mother, Uma Rani, who worked as a cook in the local diocese church to make both ends meet, initially said no. “I had to convince her that this is what I wanted to do, that if I had to achieve something as an athlete, I would have to avail of better facilities and training in Chennai,?? says the champion.Premkumar’s trophy cabinet includes bronze medals from several Asian meets. He finished 8th at the iaaf World Junior Championships in Barcelona in July. Premkumar admits he has a long way to go, but his long-term goal is to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics. For now, passing high school is a priority. “I failed in the commerce paper. I’m going to sit for it again this October,?? he says sheepishly. by Lakshmi Kumaraswamias a child, Tine Mane had to negotiate rocky terrain and wild animals, every time her family needed rice from the nearest shop. The 25-year-old from the remote Inshani hills in Arunachal Pradesh was spotted in 2007 by R.K. Meetei of the state’s Directorate of Sports and Youth Affairs during an expedition near her village. She was recruited as the team’s guide for her rock-climbing skills and ability to find new routes. “Meetei sir motivated me to join an advanced mountaineering course in Darjeeling in 2009,?? she says. She soon started dreaming of scaling Mount Everest. It didn’t take long: On May 29, 2011, she became the first person from the North-east to do so.Mane’s feat was nearly a non-starter for lack of funds. The Jindal Group pitched in with Rs 15 lakh; and a fund-raising drive by two state legislators, Laeta Umbrey and Rajesh Tacho, raised another Rs 10 lakh. Her next goal is to scale Mount Kosciuszko, Australia’s highest peak, on her way to becoming the first Indian to conquer the highest peaks of all seven continents. by Kaushik Dekain bhainswal kalan village, Sonepat district, Haryana, Yogeshwar Dutt is a man with a Midas touch. “You see that huge water tank? That is part of a new domestic water supply gifted by our champion,?? says 40-year-old Raju Sharma, who teaches in an Ayurvedic college nearby. Since 2006, when it was declared a ‘model village’ after Dutt began winning international wrestling medals, Bhainswal now has streetlights, concrete-lined streets and a sewage system. No wonder then that a thousand jubilant residents carried the Olympic bronze medallist from Delhi airport on August 14. “The cheers get wilder each time I return with a medal. What more can one ask for??? says Dutt.Born to schoolteachers Ram Meher Sharma and Sushila Devi, Dutt showed early inclination for wrestling. His early mentors were his own parents. He was eight years old when Sharma packed him off to Delhi’s Chhatrasal Stadium. There he trained under Satpal Pehalwan, alongside Olympic silver medallist Sushil Kumar. Like many other wrestlers, Kumar loves coming to Bhainswal. “Dutt’s mother is like my own and spoils us no end,?? he says. There is still no place like home for Dutt. It’s where Sushila polishes the trophies won by her son each morning, and hopes to bring back a “gunwaan aur susheel (accomplished and pleasant)?? bride for Dutt very soon. by Asit Jollynaval kishore Godara, 39, looks at the impressive building of his high school, Saraswati Vidya Mandir, with justifiable pride. This is where 1,800 students from a dozen villages within 30 km of Bhinyad, his village in Barmer, Rajasthan, study. He built it two years ago to provide quality education in this backward area. His father was illiterate and he dropped out from Class VIII.In 1987, Godara left to work at salt factories in Rajkot and Gandhidham, where he sealed salt packets and loaded 50 kg bags on trucks on his fragile frame. He earned Rs 1,500 a month as a daily labourer.”I wanted to do something big. In my spare time, I served my employer Mohammad bin-Abdullah, and observed him for clues to success,?? he says. He carried out Abdullah’s personal tasks and looked after his guests. Godara’s sincerity and honesty impressed Abdullah. One day, he even expressed concern for him: “If you keep carrying such heavy loads, you won’t live long.??Godara worked here for four years. Then one day, he asked Shahabuddin, a visitor from the Democratic Republic of Congo, to take him abroad. He arranged for him to emigrate. In Congo, Godara picked up French in six months, and was soon looking after Shahabuddin’s cosmetics shops. In 10 years, he built contacts with cellphone sellers, as well as copper and cobalt miners.In 2001, he set up his own business in cosmetics, expanding to cellphones and copper. Already, he has a billion-dollar turnover. Two years ago, he sent his wife, Verju Devi, and three children back to Jodhpur, to imbibe Indian culture, and set up his school, before he returned himself. The school has buses for students living in far-flung areas. Godara implemented Right to Education to provide free education to 25 per cent students and charges Rs 250 a month from other children. These days, he is busy organising a district cricket tournament in his school. by Rohit PariharEvery night, Mohammad Ismat would study under street lights. Haoreibi Mayai Leikai, his village in Lilong, Imphal, suffers 11-12-hour power cuts a day. To crown it, six months before Class XII finals, he underwent an emergency surgery. Still, Ismat topped the 2012 all-India cbse exam with 99.6 per cent marks. The 18-year-old has battled adversity since he lost his mother when he was 18 months old. “My father had Rs 2,000 a month to raise us,?? he says. His success fetched a Rs 10 lakh grant from Manipur’s education department for his school, Zenith Academy. “I’m proud to have brought attention to my school,?? he says. by Sonali Acharjee”my name is Hanmantrao Gaikwad,?? the five-year-old introduced himself on his first day at school in Rahimatpur village, Satara, Maharashtra. The honorific ‘Rao’ took the teacher by surprise, but then, Gaikwad, chairman and managing director of India’s largest housekeeping firm, the Rs 1,000-crore Bharat Vikas Group (bvg), took pride in himself from an early age. Son of Ramdas, a Pune sessions court clerk, he would sell fruit at Pune’s railway station to supplement the family income. Their struggles increased when his father passed away in 1990, but his mother took a loan of Rs 15,000 for him to study BTech at Vishwakarma Institute of Technology, Pune.Gaikwad joined Telco, now Tata Motors ™, in Pune in 1994. He soon impressed his supervisors, who let him launch his own firm and recruit eight villagers from Rahimatpur as housekeepers in 1997. tm, his first client, contracted him to maintain its Indica plant near Pune, and he quit his job. bvg’s clients now include Rashtrapati Bhavan, Delhi High Court, Prime Minister’s residence, Parliament House, etc. “My goal is a turnover of Rs 10,000 crore in three years,?? says a confident Gaikwad. by Kiran Tarevikash kumar, 29, managing director of industry-centric knowledge portal Micro-finance Focus (mf), says he was once called “useless?? in Sahibganj, a small hamlet in Jharkhand. “I didn’t believe in what others said about me,?? he adds. The perception of others, particularly family members, changed as well when, in 2003, he qualified for a government job on his very first attempt. “My family started believing I would do something in life,?? says Kumar. His father allowed him to leave the village, and he joined Entrepreneurship Development Institute of India, Ahmedabad, for an mba, specialising in microfinance.In July 2006, he was hired by Bangalore-based Grameen Koota, a microfinance body, and launched mf, which he now runs on the side. Kumar is also a visiting faculty at Autonomous University, Madrid, and a trainer certified by the Asian Development Bank. by Ayesha Aleem”you can describe my village as ganna, gehun aur goli (sugarcane, wheat and bullet),?? says Nawazuddin Siddiqui, 38. He could well be talking about Wasseypur, and his role as the drug-addled, gun-toting mafia don Faisal Khan in Anurag Kashyap’s hit films, Gangs of Wasseypur I and II. “There are many Wasseypurs in India. My village is one,?? he says, of Budhana, Muzaffarnagar district, Uttar Pradesh. Electricity is a luxury in this village of 33,000 people and even an hour’s uninterrupted supply is cause for celebration. Dacoity, murder and honour killings are commonplace. As part of a large family of farmers-he is the oldest of seven brothers and two sisters-he worked in the family’s fields, and tended their cattle, while growing up.Two of his films, Gangs of Wasseypur and Miss Lovely, were shown at the Cannes Film Festival earlier this year, but acting wasn’t on his mind when he passed out of dav Inter College, Budhana. He moved to Haridwar to study chemistry at Gurukul Kangri University, and then to Vadodara as chief chemist at a petrochemical factory. A friend took him to watch a play and he recalls thinking “yeh sahi cheez hai (this is the real deal)??. He joined Delhi’s National School of Drama in 1993, and shifted to Mumbai in 2000, that ushered in a long period of struggle, that only turned in 2010 with his role in Peepli [Live].Today, he has 13 films that either await release or are ready to be shot. Earlier, he’d be paid Rs 500-Rs 1,000 a day for bit roles. In the last two years, his earnings have risen eight times, “and a thousand times overall??.Even now, home remains his inspiration. As a child, he mimicked those around him. “Film people have rarely seen the world outside. I’ve seen the characters I play, for real.??It was a childhood crush on a girl next door that propelled Siddiqui to his profession. Her conservative Muslim family made it difficult for him to approach her. When he managed, though, she chose to ignore him for a tv serial. Spurned, he promised to appear on tv one day. And when he finally did, he asked a friend back home to remind her, but unfortunately she was married by then. That, of course, is just a footnote, for Bollywood’s latest shooting star is now happily married, with 20-month-old daughter Shora bringing joy to his life. by Nishat Barihe was still shy of 16 when he gave in to wanderlust, to explore the world beyond Harsour, a small village in Himachal Pradesh’s hilly Hamirpur district. Unlike his peers, who headed for lucrative jobs in the metros, Vijay Kumar followed his father, Subedar Bankuram Sharma, into the Indian Army. Recalling early signs of his son’s prowess, Bankuram says: “He was precise even in the way he cut and stacked grass for our buffaloes, when he was barely seven.??It was this single-mindedness that drew him to competitive shooting, shortly after he enlisted as a sepoy in his father’s regiment, 16 Dogra, in 2003. Witnessing the young soldier’s ability to repeatedly hit bull’s eye at arms training, instructors pushed him to the Army marksmanship trials. He never looked back, having won 110 national and 45 international medals in eight years, crowning it with Olympic glory.”Seena chaura kar diya hai mere bete ne (My son made my chest swell with pride),?? says Bankuram. The village that helped raise the champion is agog. “Who could’ve imagined that a Harsour youngster would make the world stand up??? says the proud father. “It’s all because of Jwala Mata’s blessings,?? insists Roshini Devi, his devout mother.Inspired Harsour youngsters are already honing their marksmanship skills with catapults. With Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal promising a “world-class sports shooting facility?? at Hamirpur, Vijay Kumar’s success could usher the dawn of a revolution in marksmanship in this quiet corner of India. by Asit Jollythe world has many ugly corners. One of them is the world of orphaned children. There are dozens of them in Ahmedabad’s railway station, victims of exploitation by unsavoury elements of society. But 18 of them have found saviours in Sanjay Bhavsar, 47, and and his wife Tula Patel, 44, who run a unique orphanage at Bansa village near Visnagar, Gujarat, where they transform lives through innovative festivals and camps. Their traumatic stories, of lives on station staircases, addiction and sexual exploitation, are too grisly for Hollywood makeovers.Both Sanjay and Tula went to village schools. When they met in Ahmedabad, Sanjay was pursuing BTech, while Tula was studying commerce. They fell in love and got married, united in their desire to serve rural India. In 1993, they floated Vishwagram, an ngo, which began by serving the poor and the youth. Then in 2006, they decided to take up the cause of the orphaned children. They tracked down some with the help of ngo Childline, and with a large donation, built an orphanage at Basna.The world of the children here is truly unique. The duo set about transforming the children’s lives by changing their habits and influencing their tastes, weaning them away from their tragic pasts. Here, they attend festivals of films, books, theatre and sculpture that showcase wholesome classics, and are organised in collaboration with artistes. These run for a week, but leave an indelible impression on the children’s lives. by Uday Mahurkarlast_img read more

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Our Picks for the 2015 Oklahoma State Season

first_imgWe’ve previewed this thing every single way it could be previewed. We’ve counted down the 20 most important people, posted every hype video on the web and even made some (probably not that great) predictions. Now, it’s time for our picks.PorterOffensive MVP: Mason RudolphDefensive MVP: Kevin PetersonBreakout player: Jordan BurtonFinal record: 11-2 (11-1 regular season)Big 12 finish: 1stBig 12 winner: OSUBowl game for OSU: Cotton BowlFinal four: Oklahoma State, Ohio St., UCLA, Michigan St.I’ve lost my mind and I don’t even care. Gundy for president in 2016 (he might be the best candidate at this point…)BooneOffensive MVP: James WashingtonDefensive MVP: Jordan BurtonBreakout player: Jeff CarrFinal record: 10-3 (9-3 regular season)Big 12 finish: 3rdBig 12 winner: TCUBowl game for OSU: Fiesta BowlFinal four: Ohio St., TCU, Clemson, USCMake your own prediction by clicking here!If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

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10 months agoBrawl sparked as Barton sent off in Fleetwood defeat

first_imgBrawl sparked as Barton sent off in Fleetwood defeatby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveFleetwood Town boss Joey Barton was sent off in defeat to Bristol Rovers.Cod Army boss Barton was sent to the stands as referee Brett Huxtable lost control shortly after Rovers full back James Clarke had stolen the points in the 94th minute.Players and coaching staff from both teams then squared up by the dugouts as former Burnley captain Barton straight marched across the pitch to join striker Ched Evans who was shown a dubious 55th minute red card for a collision with Rovers skipper Tom Lockyer.Huxtable added eleven yellow cards to the reds including one for unused Rovers sub Stefan Payne and Barton said: “That’s as bad a refereeing performance as I’ve seen and that includes junior football. The Rovers staff even warned us about him.“It wasn’t that type of game. Unfortunately someone who was way out of his depth has ruined a good game of football.”Front row view of the Joey Barton show. Couldn’t have happened to a nicer chap pic.twitter.com/ldojMXAigB— Oliver (@Dodgy_Lino) December 22, 2018 About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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Minerva FC gets permission to use Kalinga Stadium for one AFC Cup match

first_img Next Press Trust of India New DelhiApril 11, 2019UPDATED: April 11, 2019 18:47 IST Minerva FC got permission to hold only one AFC Cup match in the Kalinga Stadium for now (Photo: @minervapunjabfc)HIGHLIGHTSThe Odisha govt had earlier withdrawn their permission to use Kalinga StadiumClub owner Ranjit Bajaj said that now they have received permission for only one matchBajaj says he will approach Guwahati, Goa and other venues for their other two AFC matchesMinerva Punjab FC Thursday heaved a sigh of relief after the Odisha government granted them permission to use Bhubaneswar’s Kalinga Stadium for their AFC Cup home match on May 1, and said they are “not shutting shop” for now.Minerva had earlier alleged that on the All India Football Federation’s insistence, the Odisha government had withdrawn permission to use the stadium against Manang Marshyangdi Club of Nepal for the Group E match.Club owner Ranjit Bajaj had requested Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to look into the matter.On Thursday, Bajaj said the Odisha government has informed him that his club can use the Kalinga Stadium for the May 1 match only. He will have to look for venues for the other two home matches on June 19 and 26.”I have been informed through phone that I can use the Kalinga Stadium for the May 1 match. I am very happy and I want to profusely thank Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik ji and Sports Secretary and Director Sports for giving the permission,” Bajaj told PTI.”We have two more matches on June 19 and 26. For these matches, we will not be able to use Kalinga Stadium so I have to find stadium for the two matches. I have more than two months and I hope to get the venues in this time,” he added.He said he has some venues in mind for these two matches — Guwahati and Fatorda in Goa.”The stadiums will have to be AFC approved. So, I will approach Guwahati, Goa and others also. The fee for using the stadium will be a factor,” he said.advertisementMinerva’s other two home games will be against Chennaiyin FC (June 19) and Abahani Limited Dhaka of Bangladesh (June 26).Asked about his earlier threat to shut down the club, he said, “I had said it in the aftermath of the non-availability of the venue of May 1 match. If I don’t have a stadium to host the (May 1) match, my club would have been banned by the AFC for a period of three to five years.”Then, a fine of USD 50,000 would have been imposed on us per match. That would have meant USD 3 lakh for the six group matches and 3-0 result against us in all these matches. So, what would I suppose to do if I have to pay this hefty fine and a then a ban of at least three years?” he asked.”I would not have any other way except shutting shop. But now, things have changed and as of now I can focus on the performance of the team for May 1 match.Also Read | Minerva Punjab FC pull out of Super Cup two days before tournamentAlso Read | AFC Cup: Chennaiyin FC, Minerva Punjab share spoils in group stage openerAlso Watch | IPL 2019: Virat Kohli struggles to solve RCB’s loss puzzleFor 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 byRoshni Tags :Follow Minerva FCFollow Kalinga StadiumFollow AFC CupFollow Football Minerva FC gets permission to use Kalinga Stadium for one AFC Cup matchMinerva FC club owner Ranjit Bajaj said they are not shutting shop for now as they have received permission to hold one AFC Cup match at Bhuvaneshwar’s Kalinga Stadium.advertisementlast_img read more

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New Police Tool Supports Victims

first_imgPolice in Nova Scotia now have a new resource to help them deal with violence between spouses or intimate partners. The police pocket guide, which was created by the Department of Justice, was shared with domestic violence educators from across Nova Scotia today, June 28, at a conference in Truro. The guide, with 135 pages of tips, resources and contacts, was handed out at a training session sponsored by the Justice Learning Centre. The centre is a partnership between the Department of Justice and the Nova Scotia Community College. “This guide is another step forward in the great work being done to help families cope with a serious social problem,” said Justice Minister Michael Baker. “Organizations across Nova Scotia are working together to make sure agencies respond quickly and appropriately to urgent situations.” Lyn Barrett, co-chair of the Transition House Association of Nova Scotia, also recognizes the importance of the new police tool. “Member organizations of the Transition House Association of Nova Scotia understand that this guide will support the work we do to address intimate partner violence. This resource will further increase effective collaboration and understanding among police, the department and our member organizations.” “This new guide will be an invaluable tool for our members across the province,” said assistant commissioner Ian Atkins, commanding officer for the RCMP in Nova Scotia. “Domestic violence has a devastating effect on families and the whole community. This guide will better equip our officers to investigate this serious issue.” The guide includes easy-to-find information on assessing risks, applying for an emergency protection order, laying a charge, protecting children in need, dealing with firearms, following up with victims, communicating with other responders and guidelines for law enforcement.last_img read more

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Harpers speech left much to be desired First Nations delegates say

first_imgAPTN National NewsOTTAWA–Many First Nations chiefs and delegates at the Crown-First Nations Gathering in Ottawa expressed disappointment with Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s speech, even as some tried to find some hope buried in the words he delivered.Many chiefs and delegates were looking for signals in the prime minister’s speech for a new approach by his government toward First Nations issues.Harper also met with a small delegation of chiefs Monday evening who relayed some of the pressing issues facing their communities and the First Nations leaders were hoping the prime minister would respond in his speech.The prime minister also stayed longer than initially believed at the meeting and was said to be meeting with delegates late into the afternoon.For many, however, the speech felt short of expectations.Michael Bignell, a band councillor from the Opaskwayak First Nation in northern Manitoba, said he was disappointed the prime minister made no major announcement.“I was hoping for something of an announcement, of anything, like education,” said Bignell, who watched the speech on a video screen in the overflow room at the Chateau Laurier.Madawaska Maliseet Chief Joanna Bernard, from New Brunswick, said the speech fell flat.“I was not impressed. He didn’t bring anything, hope or inspiration from the future,” said Bernard, who also watched the events from the luxury hotel next to Parliament Hill.Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs Grand Chief Derek Nepinak, however, said he saw gleams of possibility in Harper’s words.Nepinak said Harper’s comments on slowly eroding the Indian Act, instead of abolishing it, fit with his organizations call for creating a process, like a larger meeting involving premiers, to begin slowly changing the whole system.“We are not asking for a rewrite (of the Indian Act), we are asking for something new,” said Nepinak, who was in Victoria Hall to hear the prime minister’s chief first-hand. “First Nations are fully willing to participate and take on all responsibilities to that end. ”Ontario’s Nishnawbe Aski Nation Grand Chief Stan Beardy, however, said he came away disappointed after hearing Harper’s speech.“We had hoped there would be an acknowledgment that these are our lands and that we have a right to benefit in jobs and training and economic benefits and job creation,” said Beardy. “Also, there is no real mention of how you are going to deal with the immediate challenges like housing.”Canupawakpa Dakota First Nation Chief Frank Brown said he didn’t really expect much from the speech and the prime minister met his expectations.“There was nothing different, nothing,” said Brown, whose Dakota community is in Manitoba. “He’s tried to announce to the world that, ‘I’m dealing with First Nations.’”Brown said his community will continue to try to generate their own revenues, outside of government funds.Brown’s community has already set up a smoke shack, which has been raided a couple of times already by Manitoba Ministry of Finance authorities. Brown said there are also plans to expand a fledgling casino to include VLTs.“We are asserting and declaring our rights,” said Brown, who was in the main hall for the meetings. “We want to generate revenue and create revenue to sustain us without federal funds and that is exactly what we are doing.”last_img read more

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The World Mourns the Truck Attack That Killed 84 People in

By Sekar KrisnauliRabat – A large white truck struck down an enormous crowd of spectators in the southern French city of Nice Thursday night during the annual Bastille Day firework celebrations, considered as France’s most important holiday, and caused death and mayhem in what was later called a terrorist assault by the French president.At least 84 people were reported dead, including many children, France’s Interior Ministry said, and 18 more people were under critical condition in the hospital. It was reported that the victims died as the driver of the truck mowed them down the sidewalk for more than a mile. The truck was described by officials and police officers as being full of weapons and grenades. The driver was later shot to death by police officers. This has become the latest terrorist attack on French soil, eight months after the killing of 130 people took place in the Bataclan music hall and theatre and approximately 18 months following the Charlie Ebdo shooting that left 12 employees of the satirical magazine dead.“The horror, the horror, has once again, hit France,” President François Hollande said in a nationally televised address early Friday. He said the “terrorist character” of the attack was unmistakable and denounced the attack a “monstrosity.”France would observe three days of national morning starting Saturday, Prime Minister Manuel Valls said Friday morning.“We will not give in to the terrorist threat. The times have changed, and France should learn to live with terrorism,” Valls said during his statement outside Élysée Palace in Paris.Officials have warned residents to stay indoors and canceled all further scheduled festivities in Nice following the incident.Witnesses of the attack described the scene as violent and chaotic, news sources reported, and expressed their frustration at the ongoing terror that has struck France for more than a year.“I heard lots of screams and everybody was running in different directions. …It felt surreal and I didn’t move,” Pouya, from Toronto, told the BBC. “Then I saw the truck coming straight at me…. After that there was no conscious thought, my body took over, time slowed down.”Damien Allemand, a Nice Matin journalist, described online what he saw after the fireworks, the Associated Press reported.“A fraction of a second later, an enormous white truck came along…turning the wheel to mow down the maximum number of people,” he told the AP. “I saw bodies flying like bowling pins along its route. Heard noises, cries that I will never forget. This evening, it was horror.”Two French police officials said they have found identity papers alongside the driver which belonged to a 31-year-old Frenchman of Tunisian descent, the AP reported.Around 10:30 p.m. Thursday, the truck sped down the Promenade des Anglais after turning onto the promenade from a side street near a children’s hospital, The New York Times reported. Some of the first killed were identified as a middle-age Muslim woman and an unidentified man on Magnan Beach. The Times’ interactive map showed that police were shooting at the truck in front of Westminster Hotel and Spa, still on the promenade. The map further showed that the truck then came to a stop in front of the Casino du Palais and the driver was shot to death by police.The world mournsHead of States, public figures, and people around the world have taken to social media to express grief, condolences, and to some extent, offer assistance.Egypt’s Grand Mufti Allam, the nation’s highest religious authority, condemned the attack and described it as a “despicable attack,” according to the Times.The newly appointed British PM Theresa May said her nation would provide any required assistance, the Times reported.“We must redouble our efforts to defeat these brutal murderers who want to destroy our way of life,” she said.Malcolm Turnbull, Justin Trudeau, Benjamin Netanyahu, and Narendra Modi, the PM of Australia, Canada, Israel, and India, respectively, among other head of states, also took to Twitter to express their condolences.Malcolm Tunbull tweet:We mourn for the victims of another murderous act of terror in France overnight, on Bastille Day https://t.co/BZ18IJJaKb— Malcolm Turnbull (@TurnbullMalcolm) July 15, 2016Justin Trudeau tweet:Canadians are shocked by tonight’s attack in Nice. Our sympathy is with the victims, and our solidarity with the French people.— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) July 14, 2016Benjamin Netanyahu:Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu:Israel condemns in the strongest terms last night’s horrific attack in Nice.— PM of Israel (@IsraeliPM) July 15, 2016Narendra Modi:Appalled by the horrific attack in Nice. I strongly condemn such mindless acts of violence. My thoughts are with the families of deceased.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) July 15, 2016The hashtag #PorteOuverteNice which means Open Door, has been used to offer homes to those in need of shelter. #RechercheNice, or “search Nice” has been used in hopes of finding friends and loved ones. #JeSuisNice which means “I am Nice,” adopted from the initial #JeSuisCharlie after the Charlie Hebdo attack, and #PrayForNice has also been circulating around social media to show support. read more

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UN agencies urge respect for Afghan childrens rights to life and education

18 September 2008United Nations agencies working in Afghanistan have urged all parties in the strife-torn nation to respect the right of children to life and education, including by allowing safe access for vaccinators and ensuring that students, teachers and schools are free from violence. Today’s call comes just days after a suicide bombing in the south-eastern town of Spin Boldak killed a driver for the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), and two doctors working with the World Health Organization (WHO) on a polio vaccination programme. So far this year 18 cases of polio have been reported in Afghanistan – one of four remaining countries in the world where the disease is endemic. Of those, 16 cases were reported in the south and two in the east, both areas where insecurity has hindered access for vaccinators.“Continued insecurity has greatly challenged our vaccination efforts,” Tahir Mir, who works with WHO’s Polio Eradication Initiative, told a news conference in Kabul today. Dr. Mir added that last weekend’s killing will not prevent UN agencies and the Afghan Ministry of Health from continuing its efforts, and urged all actors to allow immunizations to take place next week from 21 to 23 September, to coincide with the annual observance of the International Day of Peace. The goal is to vaccinate 1.8 million newborns and children under the age of five over the three-day period. “The polio eradication mission will continue… This is probably the best way to honour our colleagues,” he said.The head of the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in Afghanistan said she was confident that the country was close to eliminating the scourge. “If we have the days of tranquillity we are confident we can finish the job of eradication of polio in Afghanistan. It is within reach,” said Catherine Mbengue.UNICEF and the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) are also urging that children, teachers, schools and literacy centres in Afghanistan be protected against all kinds of violence, she added. UNESCO’s mission, together with other UN agencies and development partners, is to promote education as a fundamental human right and to improve the quality of education, according to the agency’s representative in Afghanistan.“But today in Afghanistan education is at risk,” stated Shigeru Aoyagi, who noted that more than 230 students and teachers were killed and around 250 schools were attacked by militants during the past three years. Both agencies stressed that the sanctity of schools must be respected, the lives of students and teachers must be protected, and the schools must not be used by any parties to the conflict for operations or political reasons. read more

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Closing Bell TSX closes higher amid strong earnings economic reports

TORONTO — Strong economic data and solid bank earnings from the United States helped push the Toronto stock market higher Thursday.Here are the closing numbers TSX — 12,628.85 +60.08 0.48% S&P 500 — 1,689.37 +8.46 0.50% Dow — 15,548.54 +78.02 0.50% Nasdaq — 3,611.28 +1.28 0.04%The S&P/TSX composite index was up 60.08 points to 12,628.85, led by gains in energy stocks and financials, as the Toronto market advanced for three of the past four sessions.“(People are) looking at the economy and saying, there isn’t especially great news but there isn’t bad news either,” said Sadiq Adatia, chief investment officer at Sun Life Global Investment.“And so you have seen the market start to pick up and it’s more broadbased then it was before.”The Canadian dollar was ahead 0.36 of a cent to 96.38 cents US. It slid almost half a U.S. cent Wednesday after the Bank of Canada said it was in no hurry to raise its key interest rate from 1%, where it has been for almost three years.U.S. indexes were higher and the Dow industrials and S&P 500 closed at record highs as investment bank Morgan Stanley beat expectations and a major manufacturing index came in much better than expected.The Dow Jones industrials moved 78.02 points higher to 15,548.54, the Nasdaq was up 1.28 points to 3,611.28 and the S&P 500 index gained 8.46 points to 1,689.37.The Philadelphia Fed’s manufacturing survey in July surged to its highest level in more than three years, coming in at 19.8, up from 12.5 in June. The results were much higher than the reading of 10 that economists had expected.Also, the New York-based Conference Board said it’s leading economic index was unchanged in June. It reported that the economy is seeing “positive but moderate” growth, and continued expansion is expected this year.Meanwhile, Morgan Stanley earned $898 million after excluding the benefit of an accounting gain, a leap from $337 million a year earlier. Earnings ex-items were 45 cents a share, two cents better than expectations and its shares were ahead 4.37%.“I’ve been strongly bullish on U.S. banks because of the housing market improving, the economy improving,” added Adatia.“We’ve seen extremely positive results from the U.S. banks. And that will impact Canadian banks positively.”On Thursday, advancers were led by a 1.34% rise in the financials sector. Manulife Financial (TSX:MFC) was ahead 17 cents to $18.25 after hitting a new 52-week high of $18.36.Two of Canada’s biggest banks also racked up record highs.Royal Bank (TSX:RY) was up 98 cents to $64.78, 29 cents above its previous high on Feb. 29.TD Bank (TSX:TD) rose $1.32 to $87.48. Its previous record closing price was $86.40 on March 30, 2011.The energy sector gained 0.76% as benchmark crude for August delivery was up $1.56 at $108.04 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange after gaining 48 cents on Wednesday.Despite cooling economic growth in China, the price of oil was underpinned by another sizable decline in U.S. oil supplies. U.S. crude inventories fell by 6.9 million barrels last week, bringing the three-week decline to 27.1 million barrels. Canadian Natural Resources (TSX:CNQ) was up 55 cents to $33.92.The consumer staples sector was up 0.41% as food company Saputo (TSX:SAP) gained 48 cents to $49.23. Shoppers Drug Mart (TSX:SC) posted quarterly earnings of $147 million or 73 cents a share, one cent above a consensus estimate and its shares added six cents to $60.31. The Shoppers’ board and management are supporting a $12.4-billion takeover offer from Loblaw (TSX:L), announced earlier this week.The TSX also continued to benefit from traders buying up mining stocks that have been beaten up this year while commodity prices have suffered from a slow global economic recovery. Gold prices have sunk recently on speculation as to when the Fed might start to ease up on its bond purchases.Copper prices shook off early losses and the September contract on the Nymex closed unchanged at US$3.13 a pound. The base metals sector edged up 0.1% and First Quantum Minerals (TSX:FM) climbed 37 cents to C$16.25.The gold sector led decliners, down about 0.64% as August bullion gained $6.70 to US$1,284.20 an ounce. Goldcorp (TSX:G) faded 28 cents to C$27.34.Elsewhere on the earnings front, Google Inc. delivered an earnings disappointment after the close. Second quarter earnings per share came in at $9.56 ex-items, lower than the $10.78 that analysts had forecast. Google handed in revenue of $14.11 billion versus expectations of $14.42 billion and its shares fell 4.47% in after hours trading.Microsoft’s earnings per share also missed expectations, coming in at 66 cents ex-items, nine cents below forecasts. Revenue was $19.9 billion, weaker than the $20.73 that was forecast and its shares fell 4.7% in after hours trading.Traders also took in a second day of congressional testimony from U.S. Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke. He reiterated that the Fed’s efforts to boost the U.S. economy remain tied to the job market’s health and inflationStocks also rose Wednesday after Bernanke said the Fed’s timetable for reducing its bond purchases was not decided and that the central bank could even boost them if the economy fails to meet expectations.He said he wants to see substantial progress in the job market before scaling back its $85 billion a month in purchases of bonds. TOP STORIESDetroit files largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. historyRBC, TD shares soar to near-record highsShoppers Drug Mart staff ‘excited’ about Loblaw merger, execs say WHAT’S ON DECK FRIDAYG20 finance ministers and central bankers meet in MoscowECONOMIC NEWSCANADA8:30 a.m.Consumer Price Index (June): Economists expect 0.1% gain from the month before, 1.2% rise year over year CORPORATE NEWSUNITED STATESGeneral Electric Co. Q2 earnings: Analysts expect 36¢ a share Honeywell Q2 earnings: Analysts expect US$1.22 a share Schlumberger Q2 earnings: Analysts expect US$1.11 a share read more

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Police investigating fatal crash in Ancaster

(Update)A man in his 20’s is dead after a crash Monday morning in Ancaster.The man was driving a compact vehicle which collided with a pick-up truck being driven by a man in his 30’s. That driver is expected to be ok. The younger driver was trapped in his vehicle and was pronounced dead at the scene. The crash happened around 6am on Fiddlers Green Road between Book and Butter roads. The stretch of road was closed for several hours. 00:00:00 | 00:00:00::Projekktor V1.3.09

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Riller scores 23 Charleston runs home win streak to 19

CHARLESTON, S.C. — Grant Riller scored 23 points with six assists, Jarrell Brantley added 19 on 8-for-9 shooting and College of Charleston ran its home win streak to 19 straight, defeating South Carolina State 83-70 Wednesday night.Jaylen McManus added a season-high 10 points as Charleston (6-2) shot 60 per cent from the floor (28 for 47), blocked five shots and led for nearly 37 minutes while winning three straight since a 12-point loss to No. 19 LSU. Nick Harris added six points, 11 rebounds and three blocked shots.McManus opened the second half with a 3-pointer as Charleston led by double digits for most of the final period.Damani Applewhite led South Carolina State (1-7) with 22 points, Aramani Hill added 13 and Rayshawn Neal 10.Charleston’s 19-game home win streak spans nearly two years — 643 days.The Associated Press read more

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RAF Nato row after totally unacceptable engine problems keep £26bn fleet on

A row erupted at a recent Nato conference over the RAF’s new £2.6billion transporter planes as it has emerged engine problems mean just two of 20-strong fleet are able to fly at any one time.The delay in bringing into service the new A400M plane for the RAF and other partner nations led to a major disagreement between Airbus, the aircraft manufacturer, and Nato Ministers. Stuart Andrew, the MoD’s Minister for Procurement, said that after an “extremely robust meeting” the problems with the A400M aircraft should be fixed by next year.  Concerns have been raised over the new aircraft since its inception in 2003. A recent Defence Select Committee was told that engineering staff at RAF Brize Norton called the aircraft “a dog” and that on occasion only two out of the fleet of 20 aircraft were serviceable.In 2015 one A400M aircraft crashed in Spain during a test flight, killing four crew members. A software fault, since rectified, was found to be the cause of the crash.  Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The latest serviceability figures for the RAF’s A400M, from February this year, showed that 12 of the 20 were in the ‘Forward Fleet’, which comprises serviceable aircraft and those temporarily unavailable due to minor works or other technical inspections that can arise on a day-to-day basis.The number of aircraft available varies day-to-day according to normal flight management activities and general serviceability.Although assembled in Seville, Spain, the A400M is an international project with parts built across Europe. The carbon-composite wings – the biggest ever on a military aircraft – were designed and built in Filton, near Bristol, and numerous other subsystems including the software which controls the aircraft came from Britain.A total of 174 of the aircraft have been ordered so far, sustaining 8,000 UK jobs.  An A400M in service with the German Luftwaffe showing the eight-blade variable pitch fully feathering propellers on the aircraft. An A400M in service with the German Luftwaffe showing the eight-blade variable pitch fullyfeathering propellers on the aircraft.Credit:Steve Thorne/Getty Images Europe A crew member looks out the window of a RAF Airbus A400M as it arrives at RAF Fairford. July 7, 2016. A crew member looks out the window of a RAF Airbus A400M as it arrives at RAF Fairford. July 7, 2016.Credit:Matt Cardy/Getty Images Europe The RAF version of the A400M – called Atlas – is due to replace the current fleet of C-130 Hercules cargo aircraft. With a capacity of 35 tonnes and a 2,000 nautical mile range it is far more capable and versatile than the ageing Hercules. As it is fitted with propellers rather than jet engines it can operate from dirt strips and unprepared runways and can fly up to 400 knots. Although the larger C-17 Globemaster can carry around 70 tonnes of supplies, it has to fly from established air bases, limiting its utility in disaster relief or covert operations.Britain has bought 22 aircraft, with 20 delivered so far, at a cost of £2.6 billion. The planned in-service date of 2009 slipped more than six years. Germany has bought 53 aircraft, with 30 delivered so far. The Telegraph understands the Luftwaffe sought to pull out of the programme and not take the remaining 23, but was convinced by Britain to stay in. Large crowds in front of an Airbus A400M during the Royal International Air Tattoo at RAF Fairford on July 12, 2014.Credit:Tim Ireland/Getty Images Europe In Parliament this week Mark Francois, a former Defence Minister, said: “We have paid £2.6 billion for an aircraft with appalling reliability, bad engines, a virtually broken gearbox, problem propellers, massive vibration problems and an inability to deliver paratroops.”The former Minister of Defence asked what could be done about the “emerging procurement disaster”.Mr Andrew replied: “The performance has been totally unacceptable.  We are now expecting EuroProp International, the engine manufacturer, to be more empowered to negotiate the support solutions that we need. “Airbus Defence and Space has also been held to account, but, following the problems with the engines and gear boxes, those parts will be replaced on each of the aircraft by the middle of next year.The MoD confirmed that there will be no additional cost to the taxpayer and that all reliability improvements will be funded by industry. Large crowds in front of an Airbus A400M during the Royal International Air Tattoo at RAF Fairford on July 12, 2014. read more

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White iPhone Knockoffs Could Land Teen in Hot Water

first_imgA New York-based teenager may have incurred the wrath of Apple’s lawyers after he took white iPhone delays into his own hands. Seventeen-year-old Fei “Phil” Lam has been selling eager customers converter kits to turn black iPhones into white iPhones. The kits, which he’s selling for around $279 a piece contain parts supplied by Foxcon–the China-based company that manufactures parts for Apple. Lam speaks fluent Chinese and got in touch with FoxCon through an acquaintance. He sells the kits through his site whiteiphonefournow.com.Lam claims to have made around $130,000 selling them to antsy Apple fans who apparently can’t sit through anymore delays (the white iPhone, now scheduled to arrive in March, was originally slotted to appear at the same time as the black iPhone 4). Lam plans to use that money to help pay for school. “I’m very thankful, ’cause for months I was struggling for an idea that would bootstrap my first startup and help pay for college,” he told The New York Observer.Unfortunately, all of that money may end up going to Lam’s legal expenses. The Queens-based teenage entrepreneur claims to have been contacted by a private investigator attempting to put the kibosh on his burgeoning company. Lam believes that the P.I. may have been hired by Apple. “There are a couple of other sellers online and somehow I’m the ‘focus’ of it all,” Lam said. “I think this guy is just trying to scare me into stop selling on behalf of Apple.”last_img read more

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VAVI Sport Social Club endorses SoccerCity plan

first_img October 2, 2018 Dan Plante, 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) – They are the largest ‘sports organization’ in San Diego, and today VAVI Sports and Social Club has endorsed Soccer City over SDSU.  “We have 100-thousand members on our e-mail list and 50,000 active members.“We’re a sports and social club and Soccer City Fit’s perfectly with what we do”, says Keith Cunningham, V.P. VAVI Sports/Social Club.VAVI Sports sponsors and organizes over a dozen different sports, from Kick-Ball to Soccer. “A couple big things that will benefit our community.  They will not cost the taxpayers any money and they have plans to bring an M.L.S. Team to San Diego”, says Cunningham.Like the plan from SDSU, Soccer City plans to build a river park, create opens spaces, housing and a thriving entertainment district. Soccer City claims their plan will not cost taxpayers a dime. VAVI Sport & Social Club endorses SoccerCity plan Updated: 4:43 PMcenter_img Posted: October 2, 2018 Dan Plante Categories: Local San Diego News Tags: SDSU West, SoccerCity, Stadium Site FacebookTwitterlast_img read more

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Pedestrian struck seriously injured by vehicle near convention center

first_img August 7, 2019 Pedestrian struck, seriously injured by vehicle near convention center Posted: August 7, 2019 KUSI Newsroom, KUSI Newsroom Categories: Local San Diego News, Traffic & Accidents FacebookTwitter SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – A pedestrian was struck and seriously injured by a vehicle Wednesday morning on a street near the San Diego Convention Center.The collision happened around 8:30 a.m. near the intersection of Harbor Drive and Fifth Avenue, according to San Diego Harbor Police.All southbound traffic on Harbor Drive near First Avenue was diverted due to the accident. As of 10:25 a.m., officers were beginning to reopen the roadway, a Harbor Police dispatcher said. last_img

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Volunteers help turn former Fort Lauderdale church into community center

first_imgThrough great partnerships great things happen! HOPE South Florida was granted $10,000 from #HomeDepot to help rennovate our new home. – Thank you to the amazing employees who are volunteering this morning.#HomeDepot… https://t.co/tIMwQ08T3V— Hope South Florida (@HopeSFL) April 17, 2018This project will include a multi-purpose dining and education room, complete with offices for the entire staff. Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) – More than 60 volunteers came together in Fort Lauderdale on Tuesday to help transform a former church into a community center.The Home Depot Foundation teamed up with the Rebuilding Together Foundation to help bring the volunteers together.7News cameras showed volunteers painting, laying tiles and cleaning the site of what organizers said will be a thriving facility that helps homeless people and veterans.“This place that we’re standing in — every single week — provides meals for close to 400 men, women and children who are homeless in Broward County. They also work to provide housing for veterans,” said Robin Taylor, executive director of Rebuilding Together. “Our work today is going to make sure that Hope South Florida can serve veterans in not just any old place, but in a beautiful place.”last_img read more

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Lauderhill police identify suspect in double shooting

first_imgLAUDERHILL, FLA. (WSVN) – Police are asking for the public’s help in locating a man accused of injuring a man and child in a Lauderhill shooting.Lauderhill Police have identified 18-year-old Reginald Lee Jr. as the suspect of a double shooting that occurred along Northwest 19th Street and 31st Avenue on July 17.Authorities believe Lee has left Broward County.He is considered to be armed and dangerous.If you have any information on Lee’s whereabouts, call Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $3,000 reward.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img

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Nuke Mars says Elon Musk

first_img Tags 23 Elon Musk, billionaire SpaceX founder and interplanetary nuclear aspirant.  Frederic J. Brown/Getty Images No, Elon Musk can’t nuke Mars. At least, not that we know of. Yet. But that didn’t stop the billionaire SpaceX founder and CEO from tweeting “Nuke Mars” on Thursday evening, followed by “T-shirt soon.” It’s not the first time he’s suggested using thermonuclear technology on the Red Planet. During a 2015 appearance on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Musk laid out the idea behind nuking Mars: To make the planet habitable for colonists, he’d have to unleash as much greenhouse gas as possible to warm the planet.”The fast way is to drop thermonuclear weapons over the poles,” he said. (Disclosure: “The Late Show” appears on CBS, which is also the parent company of CNET.)  Comments NASA-backed 2018 research, however, is skeptical of the possibility. It concludes there just aren’t enough greenhouse gases on Mars to get the job done. “As a result, terraforming Mars is not possible using present-day technology,” said the lead researcher. SpaceX didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.  Sci-Tech Tech Industry Nuke Mars!— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 16, 2019 Share your voice Elon Musklast_img read more

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More parties showing interests to join ruling alliance Quader

first_imgObaidul Quader file photoRuling Bangladesh Awami League (AL) general secretary Obaidul Quader on Friday ruled out the possibility of holding ‘formal dialogue’ with the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) ahead of the next general elections.“Only three months left for the election schedule. So, there is no need to hold any dialogue with any political party centring on the next parliament polls,” Quader, also the road transport and bridges minister, told reporters after visiting the progress work of Metro Rail in front of IDB Bhaban at Agargaon in the capital.Quader said there might be discussions with the leaders of any political party through mobile phones for maintain working relations. Many problems could be solved if good relations exist among the politicians, he added.Regarding the expansion of the ruling alliance, Quader said, “Our alliance might be bigger as many political parties are expressing interests to join our alliance. There are also many parties who want to take part in the polls by forming separate alliances.”He said it is natural that there might be political polarization ahead of national polls. “But we need to wait to see what happens and I think it will be clear within next October,” he added.About Barapukuria coal scam, Quader said prime minister Sheikh Hasina has already given directives to take tough actions against those who were involved in the scam.He said the works of the Metro Rail are progressing fast.last_img read more

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Cleartrip proposes increase of listings and cities on Activities app

first_imgCleartrip aims to include 300-400 activities from 30 cities on its new Activities app vertical by March 2016. The Activities app, which is part of the main Cleartrip mobile app, offers a range of 150 themes like culinary classes, food walks, segway tours, luxury bike rentals, yachting, adventure, go karting, photography trails, hiking, kids’ trips, day outings, and night treks. Samyukth Sridharan, President and COO, Cleartrip, informed that following the expansion of activities listing, Cleartrip intends to expand by getting more cities onboard. The app is available on iOS, Android, and Windows, with the activities prices starting from Rs 200.Recently, Cleartrip joined hands with SBI Card, whereby customers can carry out transaction on their website using the SimplyCLICKSBI Card and earn 10 times the reward points on the purchases made. The Card comes at a fee of Rs 499 and could be used at all merchant outlets within India and abroad.last_img read more

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