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Month: December 2019

Questions Answered! Plant-based Eating: Enhancing Health Benefits, Minimizing Nutrition Risks

first_imgPhotospin.com by MonkeyBusiness ImagesDid you miss this fantastic webinar Plant-based Eating:  Enhancing Health Benefits, Minimizing Nutritional Risks? Over 400 professionals attended and a lively discussion, and questions and answer session occurred in the chat pod.Dietitians can still earn CPEUs by listening to the recording located on the event page.Below are questions that were answered later by Dr. Pawlak and Dr. Kolasa.Q. Are there any studies that look at whether lower ferritin & iron levels in vegans and vegetarians is clinically harmful?  I have heard some people say that these lower levels could actually be healthier b/c they are indicative of lower amounts of heme iron which can have harmful effects on the body. A. I am well familiar with this explanation. It is true that a lower vs. higher normal ferritin concentration may be beneficial, for example, in terms of CVD risk. However, the documented low ferritin among vegetarians was NOT normal. In fact, according to the WHO, ferritin below 15 is not normal and in some of the studies low ferritin was defined as below 12. I am not aware of a study that assessed the actual health implication in vegetarians. However, one would expect to see similar health outcomes (e.g. iron-deficiency anemia and its symptoms) in vegetarians with inadequate iron status as in non-vegetarians.Q. Are there any good apps for the DASH diet?A. DASH for HealthQ. Is the type of B12 supplement of oral vs injection an important consideration with the aging population due to diminishing intrinsic factor?A. No. Oral supplements are as effective as injections as long as the adequate dose is utilized. In one study with elderly participants, the average adequate dose to treat mild B12 deficiency was over 600 mcg. Thus, in treatment, a dose of 1000 is likely adequate. In order to prevent a deficiency, one should follow the recommendations Dr. Kolasa mentioned during the presentation.Q. Thoughts on crystalline b12 that is being added to nut/plant milks?A. My only thought is that I wish the dose was higher. This dose may somewhat help in preventing a deficiency, it might be adequate in children and adolescents with no absorption issues (one Polish study showed a steady decline in serum B12 among young adults who ingested B12 from fortified foods), but is more than likely too low to make any difference in older adults and elderly.Q. I have read that heme iron is a reactive substance in the gut leading to dysbiosis and inflammation but not well studied at this point.A. This is true. There are a number of adverse health outcomes associated with heme iron intake. Thus, the concentration should be on adequate intake of non-heme iron sources. In fact, the bulk of dietary iron intake comes from grain products and non-heme iron accounts for the majority of intake. If people follow the MyPlate guidelines to ingest a bulk of foods as plant foods, it will result in heme iron intake being low. Heme iron intake should be decreased, while emphases should be on the non-heme iron intake.Q. What about exposing mushrooms to light for increasing vitamin D?A. Mushrooms contain vitamin D2 only when they are exposed to the sunlight. Thus, whether the mushrooms that we purchase from a store contain any (or how much) is questionable. However, one can unwrap them and place them on a patio for a couple of hours and get some vitamin. D that way (not the best/reliable way).Q. Iso Vege diets lower risk of Alzheimer’s, but EHA< DHA levels are ND based on that one study. What is the connection w lower risk of Alzheimer’s because isn’t EHA/DHA important for brain health?A. Alzheimer’s disease (AD), like most other health conditions, is a multifactorial disease. Evidence that DHA (and possible EPA) plays a role in AD is accumulating. All three nutrients mentioned above (B12, vit. D, and DHA) play a role in AD. Thus, vegetarians may have a lower risk for AD due to favorable CVD risk factor profile but they can further reduce the risk by ensuring adequate intake of B12 and DHA and maintaining adequate vitamin D level.Q. Subclinical B12 deficiency seems to be out there especially with the excessive use of acid blockers.A. Perhaps not “especially” but yes, the anti-acids do play a role. In my book “Vitamin B12. Combating the epidemic of deficiency” I have listed a number of medications that impact B12 status. Perhaps the most important of them is metformin but acid blockers do play a role.Q. Please comment on cardiovascular risk with calcium supplementsA. They increase the risk. This may surprise you but from my reading of the literature, I find no benefit of Ca, including Ca supplements on bone fracture prevention. Thus, perhaps the only benefits of the extra calcium have to do with reducing the risk of pregnancy-induced hypertension. Again, this is just a personal take, based on my research. Disclaimer: I am not an expert on Ca.Q. Are there any special considerations for athletes who are interested in becoming vegetarian or vegan?A. A few. 1. Make sure you have adequate variety and quantity of foods. 2. Use appropriate supplements (the same that non-athlete vegans should). 3 Consult with a trained health professional (e.g. RDN) rather than your coach or fitness trainer (in one study, if I correctly remember, coaches correctly answered just slightly over 50% of questions on a basic nutrition test).This blog was posted by Robin Allen, a member of the Military Families Learning Network (MFLN) Nutrition and Wellness team that aims to support the development of professionals working with military families.  Find out more about the MFLN Nutrition and Wellness concentration on our website on Facebook, on Twitter, and LinkedIn.last_img read more

Product Announcement: Nikon D810

first_imgDisplay Screen3.2 inch LCD; 1,229,000 dots Nikon’s latest camera release focuses on video, but does it offer enough to justify the price tag?With 4K cameras sweeping the market and a camera that can shoot in near complete darkness, the camera world is extremely competitive. It will take a lot to impress modern day filmmakers, which brings us to the latest camera announcement from Nikon…the D810.The D810 OverviewWith over 50 new video features, the D810 was designed from the beginning with filmmakers in mind. The D800 serves as an updated version of the D800, however the camera lacks a few key features including RAW video recording and 4K, making it somewhat late to the party.Among the new video features, that Nikon is very proud of, is a new auto-ISO mode which locks off shutter speed and aperture while still allowing the ISO to automatically be adjusted by the camera. This new “feature” is said to help when going between different lighting scenarios.The D810 gives users the ability to shoot zebra stripes to help with peaking. Additionally, there is the inclusion of a brand new built-in microphone that can record in stereo. The camera also has the ability to change the audio EQ to focus more on voices or on the wider sound spectrum. Users can record dual audio channels, with one channel recording using the built-in mic and another using an external mic.The D810 allows users to record to one of two internal cards, while simultaneously outputting video signal to be recorded externally. This serves as a much needed improvement over the D800.The following video created by Nikon demonstrates some of the key new features:D810 Technical Specs View Finder17mm Pentaprism; 100% coverage FlashYes – Built-In Burst ShootingUp to 7fps Image StabilizationYes Sensor36.8 MP CMOS Sensor The following promotional film created by Nikon represents some footage shot on a D810. As a bonus, Nikon included a behind-the-scenes video as well. Video1080p @ 60,50,25,24fps, + 720p @ 60,50fps Shutter Speed30 Sec – 1/80,000 Autofocus51 focus areas, 15 cross type RAW VideoNo Sensitivity RangeISO 64-12,800 (Extended Mode to 51,200) Storage MediaCF, SD, SDHC, SDXC Pricing and AvailabilityYou can get your hands on a D810 for around $3,200 available today at most professional camera stores.What do you think of the D810? Is it worth the high price tag? Share in the comments below. Crop FactorNone (x1.0) BatteryEN-EL 15last_img read more

Cinema 4D Video Tutorial: Skyscrapers

first_imgThis tutorial is a great example of what can be achieved using geometrical shapes in Cinema 4D. However, if you are wanting to create more of an ‘irregular’ shaped object, we offer some tips in our recent Realistic Rose Tutorial.If you are interested in learning more about Cinema 4D check out the Cinema4D section of the PremiumBeat blog.Got questions about creating a skyscraper building in Cinema4D?Let us know in the comments! Learn to create beautiful 3D model skyscrapers in the following Cinema 4D video tutorial.Although there are a bunch of great online resources for purchasing Cinema 4D objects, building them yourself may offer more customization and doesn’t cost you a thing. In the following exclusive video tutorial I’ll show you how to create skyscraper buildings in Cinema4D.Download the project file and follow along with the tutorial video below:[maxbutton id=”23″]Although the tutorial specifically covers skyscrapers, the same principle can be applied to a wide variety of models. The tutorial covers:ModelingTexturingGeometric ShapesPositioning Lightslast_img read more

The Four Most Common Mistakes Made By Feature Length Directors

first_imgMany directors fall into one of the common traps described below, ultimately preventing their film from becoming a success. It’s all about execution.Image from Northfoto / Shutterstock.comDirecting at it’s core is simply the subjective execution of an idea. It’s one individual’s unique take on a story, set of characters, and themes. It goes without saying that every director is going to make their own unique choices both on and off set, and this individuality is what makes films so dynamic and surprising to watch – yet nearly all directors at one point or another make one of the critical mistakes that are outlined below.So whether you’re a seasoned director, or just getting ready to shoot your first film, the four mistakes listed here should always be taken into account when working on a film project, as they are powerful enough to be detrimental to your final picture.Image from Vancouver Film School on Flickr1. They DON’T Make Films For Their ViewersPersonally speaking, this is the mistake that I have most commonly fallen into when directing films. So often when we direct, we have our own personal biases in mind (as we should), but there is a time and a place to let those biases go, and start to think from the perspective of the viewer.You need to remember that you are making your film for your audience – not yourself. At least that’s how it works if you want to make a career out of directing. If you intend to simply make art films for yourself to satisfy your own need for a creative outlet, then that is fine – but you will never have a large audience with this type of mentality. Yes, you want to be true to yourself and put your own spin on things, but you also need to understand the needs of your audience. Put yourself in their shoes and imagine their experience with your film.For example. you might be tempted to cut out backstory details from a scene when shooting or editing it, because it feels too contrived to you, but you need to remember that your audience may need this information to connect with the story. Just because your personal taste may be more subtle, doesn’t necessarily mean that’s what your audience needs.So while you always want to stay true to your vision and style, remember to do so in the context of a film that can still be commercially and creatively viable.2. They DON’T Make Their Protagonist LikeableThis is an issue that plagues directors and screenwriters alike. Some of the most interesting characters that we can develop on or off screen are not necessarily going to be the most likeable, and this is fine so long as it doesn’t apply to the protagonist.You need to remember that when your audience watches your film they are essentially becoming your protagonist. They are putting themselves in his or her shoes and remaining connected to the entire story through that character. The second the protagonist is not likeable is the second that your audience disconnects from that character, and inevitably the film. This point is something that you need to be conscious of throughout your entire filmmaking process – from working with your writer to create a dynamic and likeable character, to casting an actor that is charismatic, all the way through to editing in the right takes that capture the individuals true personality.Making a likable protagonist is actually quite simple once you recognize the importance of it and make creative decisions throughout the filmmaking process with you character’s likability in mind.3. They DON’T Trust The Intelligence Of Their Audience Audiences today have truly seen it all. The average movie-goer has seen thousands of hours of film and television content and in many ways knows the story you are about to tell before you even tell it. Unfortunately many directors today seem to underestimate their audiences and believe that they need their hands held through every last scene and detail in order to understand the story.As a general rule, you always want to stay a step ahead of your audience (except in certain specific genres or instances), which means you need to trust them to follow along. If you spell out the next plot point for them before it actually happens, they are going to become bored and disinterested very quickly.You need to surprise your audience. Show them something that they haven’t seen before, and that they will never see coming. Because if you don’t do that, it doesn’t matter how great your story, your actors, and your production value are – they just won’t care.4. They DON’T Know When Enough Is EnoughThere is a time and a place for a 3 hour film, but for the most part shorter is often better when it comes to feature films. Unless you are directing an epic story that spans generations or has multiple interwoven plot lines, there is no reason why the average film needs 180 minutes to get the story across. These days however, it seems we are seeing more and more ultra-long films (likely because of the ramifications of shooting/editing digitally), and in the majority of cases it is being done to the detriment of the final product.Often times directors make the mistake of believing that providing their audience with a longer cut makes the film feel more substantial or valuable, but in reality it usually has the exact opposite effect. Shorter films tend to only include the absolute best takes and most captivating moments (even if it means making painful decisions in the editing room), whereas longer films will often include additional scenes or moments that create a meandering and redundant feeling to the final piece. On nearly any film that I have directed, I had enough raw footage to make the film twice as long as I did in the end, but I always chose to have a tighter film with only the best moments packed in, rather than a longer film with a bunch of filler. In the end, it might be hard to lose some of those moments or scenes that you worked so hard for, but your audience will thank you for it.last_img read more

Why Your Sales Force Isn’t Working

first_imgThese are some of the reasons your sales force isn’t working.Most people who work from home don’t “work” from home.More and more salespeople no longer commute to an office to work. But that doesn’t mean they are “working” from home. It just means that they’re home.There are people who are disciplined enough to work from home, but they are the minority. Most people don’t do as much work as they could—or should—when they are working from home. It’s easier for most people to buckle down when they are in an office environment, and when there are other people around.Many people need this environment. Wishing it were otherwise doesn’t change anything. When I talk to struggling sales managers, the ones having problems almost always have a sales force working from home.The browser invites distractions.It’s wonderful that so much of the software we use is browser-based. But it is also horrible, and it’s detrimental to salespeople. It invites distractions.There is no greater distraction than email. If there is a close second, it’s social media. And I am not talking about LinkedIn, the most useful social site for salespeople. I am talking about Facebook, perhaps the least useful site for quota-carrying salespeople.It’s too easy to click the bookmark and launch Facebook. Or ESPN. Or Politico. Or Engadget. It’s too easy to click a link and find yourself down the rabbit hole, a place where no deals are done.There is too little accountability.Some sales managers are afraid of micromanaging their workforce. Even more don’t really know how to hold their sales force accountable for the activity and the outcomes for which the salespeople are responsible. Even more are content to believe their salespeople are doing what they should be doing because some salespeople tell a good story when it comes to the opportunities they are working (they’re salespeople, after all).Without accountability for activity and outcomes, your results will never be what they could be. And you won’t only being failing your company; you’ll also be failing the salespeople by allowing them to turn in something less than their best performance.Your goals are impotent.It’s important to make the number. But that goal isn’t as meaningful as it could be if it had a little help.Purpose is more potent. Meaning is important. Growth is important, and I don’t mean the company’s growth, I’m talking about the individual salesperson’s growth.People want to know that what they are doing is making a difference. They want to know that they are getting better, gaining new skills, and becoming more valuable. And they want to be recognized for doing these things.You don’t score points by focusing on the scoreboard. You score points by playing the game. You are coaching the game. How well you coach determines the score. Telling people you need 48 points by itself isn’t going to work.Without the bullpen, there is little transfer of knowledge.We are back to working at home. Where salespeople are all alone, left to their own devices, and far away from the leadership, their managers, and their peers. They’re far away from the conversations being had, and so they are absorbing nothing through osmosis—the way we have handed down a lot of sales knowledge for more than a century.The conversation you have with one salesperson is just that. It’s a conversation with one salesperson. The other people on your team heard nothing. Later on, you can tell them the story, but it isn’t the same as having been there, listening in on the conversation in real-time.Some of the tools help create a virtual bullpen. But most managers steer clear of having “too many meetings,” fearing that their salespeople will be off the field too long (something they would worry less about were they better at holding people accountable).To get your sales force working again, eliminate these reasons as much as you possibly can.last_img read more

How to Give Yourself More Time

first_img Essential Reading! Get my first book: The Only Sale Guide You’ll Ever Need “The USA Today bestseller by the star sales speaker and author of The Sales Blog that reveals how all salespeople can attain huge sales success through strategies backed by extensive research and experience.” Buy Now Productivity is not a measurement of how much you do. It doesn’t matter how many tasks you can cross off a list each day or each week. Productivity is a measurement of results, of outcomes. Busyness, often seen as proof that one is productive is more likely to be evidence a lack of production.If you want to be truly productive, you must give yourself more time, time spent doing what is most important to your results.There is a reason to use three 90-minute blocks for your most important work each day.First, 90 minutes is enough time to make real progress on a project, a result, or an outcome. It gives you enough time to focus on the task at hand, and that focus is now the currency of effectiveness in an age of distractions.Second, three 90-minute blocks provide you with 4.5 hours to focus on what’s most important. If you look back over your last week, you might struggle to find a single day when you spent 4.5 hours on your most important tasks, let alone a week that resulted in 22.5 hours of intentional work.Those 90-minute blocks each day provide you with 4.5 hours of work. Assuming you work an 8-hour day, you are taking just over half the day for your real work, leaving you almost half the day to respond to the needs of your clients and your company. If you have money come out of your paycheck to be invested every week, you are already practicing this by paying yourself first. You need to pay yourself first each day when it comes to doing work that matters, work that makes a difference, work that moves the needle.By giving yourself more time, you give your most important projects and tasks the time and focus that moves them forward, task by task, day by day, and week by week. These focused blocks of work start to stack up, your productivity—and your results—skyrocket.No one is going to give you more time. If you want to do work that matters, you must give yourself the time.last_img read more

Good Leads and Bad Leads

first_imgSome leads are good even though some salespeople and their sales organization perceive them to be bad. Other leads are bad, even when some salespeople believe they are good and their sales organization paid money to acquire the lead.The worst lead: The worst lead is one who does not buy what you sell and could never benefit from doing so. This is true even if the buyer title matches your ideal customer profile, and even if you paid to acquire the lead.Compelled and engaged but should be disqualified: These leads feel like good leads. They are compelled to do something different, and they are engaged in the process. All of which points towards their being a good lead. However, if this leads should be disqualified, it is not a good lead. If you are a differentiated, value creating sales organization and happened upon a transactional, lowest-priced buyer, the lead is wrong for you.The following is a list of good leads that are often mistaken for bad ones.Not ready to buy: Just because a lead is not compelled to change and does not show up to your first meeting prepared to sign a contract, is not an indication that the lead is no good. If the lead buys what you sell or would benefit from doing so, the fact that you are required to initiate the process of change doesn’t mean the lead is not good.Stalled at discovery: The fact that a lead stalls after a discovery meeting is not evidence that the lead was no good. It is greater evidence that you did not create enough value to command another meeting or lost control of the process.Leads that don’t buy: A lead that doesn’t buy from you or doesn’t buy in the time you expected them to is not a bad lead. There is a greater possibility you mismanaged it. Even if the engagement ended in a “no decision,” the fact that they engaged in the process just that the lead was good.It is easy to spend time with bad leads believing they are right when the better choice is to abandon them. The opposite is also true, meaning you can spend too little time with good leads because you perceive them to be bad. In these cases, you are better off asking yourself if another salesperson from another sales organization is going to sell that lead what you intended to sell them.The fact that a lead is difficult to sell is no indication of the quality of that lead.last_img read more

Parting Thoughts on OutBound 2019

first_imgThis was our third OutBound Conference, and what is now an annual event held in Atlanta. In 2017, we did this conference (the “we” being Mike Weinberg, Mark Hunter, Jeb Blount, and me) we had about 9 weeks to prepare and had almost 400 people in a conference room in a hotel. The second year, 2018, we moved to a larger hotel and gave ourselves a little more time to put the program together, ending up with 600 attendees. This year we had just over 1,000 attendees in a Georgia Ballroom at the Georgia World Conference Center, with a second-to-none production.There are a few things that make OutBound special.First, the event is more of a show, a cross between a rock concert and Cirque de Soleil. It’s fast-paced, high energy, with music, lights, and an audiovisual production like no other conference. There is no emcee, and the production has one person leaving the stage and another entering without delay. We believe that entertainment and education result in greater engagement and better experience.Second, and equally important, is the fact that OutBound is a content-driven conference, which is to say that it is not a pitch fest. The content is practical, tactical, and actionable. All of the speakers delivered real and relevant content for sales professionals. There is a list of speakers from the 2019 OutBound on this post.My Gratitude for the AudienceWhat I was struck by at this OutBound Conference was the audience. Because all the speakers were accessible, shaking hands, answering questions, and signing books, we had the opportunity to listen to the audience who were all generous with their gratitude, grateful for the conference, the content, and our commitment to being there with them.Their gratitude was only exceeded by our appreciation for their decision to come and spend two or three days with us. Most of us who speak find ourselves in a room of people who, no matter how much they enjoy or benefit from the experience, are required to attend. The audience at OutBound chose to participate in this conference, deciding to spend their time and money, taking time away from their families to show up at a sales conference.The Next OutBoundWe are right now nailing down details on the next OutBound Conference, and we are already making plans to make it even bigger, badder, and better than 2019 (which will not be easy). To keep it intimate, we are going to limit tickets to some number close to 1,000, which will likely go on sale this week.last_img read more

‘Naga accord is still in the works’

first_imgR.N. Ravi, who was the interlocutor in the Naga peace talks, said here on Thursday that the peace agreement was yet to be finalised and it would not compromise the territorial integrity of any State.On August 3, 2015, at a much-publicised ceremony at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s residence, Mr. Ravi signed a “peace accord” with T. Muivah, general secretary the National Socialist Council of Nagalim (Isak-Muivah), to find a lasting solution to the Naga issue. However, following the signing of the agreement, the then Chief Ministers of Assam, Manipur, and Arunachal Pradesh, which have a sizeable Naga population, said they had not been consulted by the Centre. The government is yet to release the terms of the framework agreement.Manipur situationManipur, which goes to the polls on March 4 and 8, has been under an economic blockade for more than four months following a strike called by the United Naga Council (UNC), a conglomerate of Naga bodies, against the Manipur government’s decision to carve out seven new districts.The council operates under the patronage of the NSCN (I-M).Mr. Ravi told a news agency on Thursday: “The framework agreement is less-than-one-page document; it tells about broad parameters within which the final settlement will be worked out. So it’s the principles within which we will work out the settlement. It does not mention anything about Manipur or any State, it does not compromise the territorial integrity of Manipur.”“A framework agreement is not the final agreement and you do not serve half-cooked meal. We believe it is not in the larger interest to release the details now. But I have explained it to all the stakeholders by and large by going and meeting with them on what it contains. An incomplete agreement can create issues,” he saidMinister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju said that without consulting all stakeholders, a final decision would not be taken. The Minister said: “I will expose the evil design of Congress, which will bust their strength. I will change the wrong perception by exposing the truth.”last_img read more

Student’s outfit demands action against ABVP

first_imgPune: City-based ‘Progressive Students’ Youth Agitation Committee’ has demanded action against the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) for the alleged physical assault it carried out against the activists of the Students’ Federation of India (SFI).The committee also protested against the terror tactics deployed by the right-wing student outfit to suppress contrarian voices at university campuses across the country.The committee is an umbrella body constituted of disparate left-leaning and secular youth outfits attached to political parties. It draws support from diverse strands, such as journalism students from the Savitribai Phule Pune University.Santosh Shinde, a member of the committee, said, “During the last couple of years, ABVP activists have increasingly resorted violence to suppress students professing progressive, liberal and left-leaning ideologies. Using coercion and pressure tactics. The ABVP has dubbed such students as ‘treasonous’ and ‘seditious’.”To condemn the ABVP’s methods, the outfit will also organize a talk on March 7 titled ‘Terror-free Education’, to be delivered by Marathi educationist Dr. Nagnath Kotapalle.Complaints galoreThe recent agitation between right-wing and left-wing outfits at Delhi University’s Ramjas College spilled over to the Savitribai Phule Pune University last week with a clash between SFI and ABVP activists, which led to the arrest of nine students.Members of both organisations lodged complaints against each other. The police arrested five ABVP members and four SFI activists. They were booked for violating prohibitory orders, causing breach of peace and inflicting hurt and injuries.City-based ABVP activists had allegedly burnt an effigy of Mr. Khalid, who was slapped with sedition charges last year. SFI activists retaliated by putting up posters condemning Maharashtra Education Minister Vinod Tawde for ‘threatening’ their colleagues at a Solapur polytechnic college. This, in turn, roused the ire of ABVP activists. Sanjay Dabhade, a member of the committee, said, “5 SFI activists were badly injured after beaten up by ABVP thugs. Even security personnel were assaulted in the melee.”Earlier this week, the SFI accused the police of denying permission to take out a protest rally on the SPPU premises, while alleging that the police had given ‘preferential treatment’ to the ABVP by allowing it to stage a rally.Police refuted this accusation, stating that they were anxious to prevent a similar scuffle. The ABVP on Monday had staged a large rally at from Shaniwarwada Fort to the Council Hall area and had submitted a memorandum to the District Collector regarding issues in many city colleges. The SFI, despite being denied permission for a rally, had staged a sit-in on the same day, condemning the ABVP’s attack on students at Ramjas College.last_img read more

J&K suspends 22 social media sites

first_imgWith students’ protests and unrest showing no signs of letting up for second consecutive week in the Valley, the Jammu and Kashmir government on Wednesday decided to suspend 22 social networking websites and applications, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and WhatsAap, in Kashmir.Invoking the Indian Telegraph Act 1885, the government said the ban will remain in force for at least one month.According to State Home department, headed by Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, the internet service providers in Kashmir Valley have been directed “to stop transmitting any content on 22 social networking sites.”“Over a period of time, an increasing trend was witnessed regarding the misuse of social media by the elements inimical to public order and tranquillity, thereby impinging on public safety, particularly in the Kashmir Valley,” reads the order issued by the home department.‘Disturbed peace’Such elements, according to the Home department, were “transmitting objectionable contents to spread disaffection amongst the public against the State administration and security forces with a view to incite them to commit various offences at a large scale, causing damage to life and property and disturb peace and tranquility.”It claimed these elements “extensively misused social media sites and instant messaging services for vitiating peace and instigating violence” during the 2016 unrest.The ban comes at a time when several videos of rights abuse and of local militants were doing the rounds on the social media. Several students protests were also streamed live on the social media. Ban opposed The move, however, has come under severe criticism from several political parties and stakeholdersin the tourism sector.“The ban denies people necessary access to prospective tourists. How will customers contact hotels and tour operators? It will ruin our business,” said Mushtaq Pahalgami, a hotel owner at Pahalgam.National Conference (NC) president and recently-elected Member of Parliament from Srinagar Dr. Farooq Abdullah said the communication blockade “would play havoc with the state’s economy and in turn, render thousands of youth unemployed.”“The PDP-BJP Government is not only suppressing the people of the State through brute force but also persecuting them economically. The continued blockade of internet will seriously affect businesses and especially youth-oriented start-ups in the e-commerce sector,” said Dr. Abdullah.Fresh clashes Students on Wednesday again clashed with security forces in parts of Kashmir Valley. Around 13 students were injured.Protesting against alleged “high-handedness of security forces against the student community”, fresh clashes led to closure of schools and colleges in Pulwama, Bandipora, Chadoora, Ganderbal and Shopian.The students were protesting against an alleged police raid on Government Degree College Pulwama on April 15, which left over 50 students injured.Last week, the authorities suspended the class work for a week after violent protests left over 50 students injured. There were fresh protests on Monday.last_img read more

Doubts over Srinagar’s master plan

first_imgExperts have raised red flags over the proposed Srinagar Master Plan, envisaging the shifting of the capital to a flood basin on the city’s peripheries and creating tourism infrastructure “at the cost of heritage and essential sites”. The proposed Srinagar Master Plan 2015-2035 has identified key city installations to open up for tourism infrastructure, which will involve big players of the hotel industry. Officials plan to host seven million tourists annually by the year 2035, with 56,000 beds required per day. These buildings include heritage structures and buildings of the Forest Department, Doordarshan, the Chief Justice’s accommodation, the old Assembly Complex, the Biscoe and Mallinson School, the Chest Disease Hospital and the District Court Complex in and around the commercial hub of Lal Chowk, which are identified for “tourism infrastructure”. Fragile State“Kashmir is environmentally fragile. There is need to regulate numbers and focus on high-end tourism sector, where we lack infrastructure, and this has not been underlined,” said Saleem Beg, head of the Kashmir chapter of the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage, and former ex-member of the National Monuments Authority of India. In another proposal, there is a plan to shift the main offices of the Civil Secretariat to a mini-secretariat, the seat of power, to Nowgam, which is prone to floods and was worst hit during the 2014 floods. “It sounds strange that planners identify the nearby railway station in a flood-prone area and propose the shifting of the capital to the same site. It will increase trips and road overload,” said Mr. Beg.The plan also proposes to expand Srinagar city from 416 sq. km. to 766 sq. km., eating into farming land and orchards.Srinagar Development Authority vice-chairman Thaseen Mustafa, who heads the nodal agency of the plan, said, “This is not the final draft. More public consultations will be held to incorporate the necessary suggestions.”last_img read more

19 die as boat capsizes in Uttar Pradesh; angry villagers vent ire on officials

first_img| Photo Credit: Special Arrangement At least 19 people, including 13 women, have died after a boat that was carrying around 62 people capsized in the Yamuna in Katha village of Baghpat district early Thursday morning.The District Magistrate (DM) of Baghpat, Bhawani Singh said that the tragedy was caused by the overloading of the boat beyond its capacity. “The boat was ferrying passengers more than its capacity. Most of them were women,” Mr Singh said.According to the Additional Director General of Police (ADG), Meerut, Prashant Singh, while ten of the passengers swam to safety, 11 were rescued from the river and sent to nearby hospitals. The rest were still missing. People gather on the banks of river Yamuna at Katha village, where an overloaded boat capsized on Thursday. A car allegedly torched by villages of Katha village.  | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement center_img According to local villagers, the victims were mostly daily wage labourers who had boarded the boat from Katha village, located 6km from the district headquarters. The passengers were either farmers who owned land on the banks of the Yamuna, or labourers headed to Sonipat in Haryana in search of work.Rohit, an eyewitness, told The Hindu that the tragedy occurred as a result of too many people pressurising Rizwan, the boatman, to ferry them in the same trip. Due to his greed, Rizwan must have agreed, he said, adding that overloading of the boat was a daily phenomenon.“The boat does not have the capacity to carry more than 25 passengers. On Thursday morning, it had left the Yamuna bank with only 25-30 passengers. But some people called the boat back as they wanted to be ferried on the same trip. Rizwan took them on board, and had gone some distance on the river, when again, another 10-12 people called him back. This happens every morning when people are in a hurry to go to their work place. But today was an ill-fated day,” Rohit said.The boatman survived the tragedy and is absconding, the police said. While the rescue operation was going on, angry villagers blocked the Delhi-Saharanpur highway by placing three dead bodies on the main road. The mob accused the administration of incompetence in handling the rescue and relief operation. Police resorted to lathi charge to disperse the mob. One officer of Deputy SP rank and one woman officer sustained serious injuries in clashes with the mob, while a women’s helpline vehicle was torched, said a release issued by the police department.When Baghpat MP and Union Minister Satyapal Singh reached the spot, he had to face the villagers’ ire. The ADG reached the spot and assured the villagers of swift action and compensation.Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath announced a compensation of ₹2 lakh to the kin of the deceased from the chief minister’s relief fund. The State government has ordered a magisterial probe into the accident.last_img read more

Congress sweeps Nanded civic polls

first_imgThe Congress today made a clean sweep in the Nanded-Waghala municipal corporation elections, winning 49 of the 54 seats for which results were declared. Results for 54 seats, out of the total 81, have been declared so far. Nanded is Maharashtra Congress president Ashok Chavan’s home turf and it saw an aggressive campaign, with BJP making all efforts to wrest control of the civic body. The campaign for the polls witnessed a bitter war of words among the Congress, BJP and Shiv Sena. Of the results declared so far, BJP has won three, while Shiv Sena is placed a distant third, winning a solitary seat. The results indicate a rout of the AIMIM, which had around a dozen corporators in the outgoing body. The Congress has 41 members in the outgoing civic body, followed by 14 corporators of the Shiv Sena, 11 of the AIMIM and Nationalist Congress Party’s 10. The municipal corporation of Nanded has been ruled by the Congress, since it came into existence two decades ago. The BJP won 12 of the 16 civic bodies, for which polls were held this year, expanding its footprint in Maharashtra’s urban areas.last_img read more

‘Padmavati’ row: Rajput protesters shut Chittorgarh Fort

first_imgMembers of the Rajput Karni Sena and other fringe groups staged a massive protest demonstration outside the 13th century Chittorgarh Fort, which houses the Padmini Palace, and blocked the entry of local residents as well as tourists into the fort. The Chittorgarh Fort, a UNESCO world heritage site in Rajasthan, is at the centre of attention because of the agitation against Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s movie, Padmavati, featuring Deepika Padukone. The Rajput groups have demanded a ban on the film.Dressed in traditional attire and carrying swords, a large number of men and women protested under the banner of Chittorgarh Sarva Samaj Samiti, claiming that the Hindi film had distorted historical facts. Two gunshots were fired in the air during the speeches delivered by local Rajput leaders.Jauhar Smriti Sansthan president Ummed Singh said a dharna demanding a ban on Padmavati had been on for the last eight days and the fort had been kept out of bounds for visitors to draw the government’s attention to the “strong feelings” in the community.The fort was not officially closed. The district administration deployed police to control the law and order situation. A three-layered barricade ring was formed on the road leading to the fort. The luxury train, “Palace on Wheels,” popular among foreign tourists, was not allowed to stop at Chittorgarh and was diverted to Udaipur.CPI(M) leader Brinda Karat, who was here on Friday, accused the BJP government of indulging in “vote bank politics” by remaining silent on the provocative remarks and threats issued by fringe groups. She demanded immediate action against such individuals and groups.There was protest in Bihar too on Friday as effigies of director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and actor Deepika Padukone were burnt. Rajput Karni Sena president Lokendra Singh Kalvi met women members of the community in Patna and called for a Bharat Bandh on December 1.Police in Mumbai said they would deal strictly with people trying to be “adventurous” ahead of the film’s release(With inputs from Amarnath Tewary and PTI)last_img read more

Goa village evacuated after ammonia gas leak

first_imgAt least two women were today shifted to a hospital and hundreds of residents in Goa’s Chicalim village evacuated from their homes after a tanker carrying ammonia overturned on the nearby highway connecting Vasco City to Panaji. The incident occurred at around 2.45 a.m. when the tanker from Mormugao Port Trust to Zuari Industries Limited, overturned at the highway and gas started leaking from it. “Disaster response teams were sent to the site immediately while police and fire and emergency service personnel were asked to wake up people and evacuate the entire area,” Deputy Collector Mahadev Arondekar told PTI.“Two women had to be shifted to a nearby hospital as they complained of breathlessness,” a senior district administration official said, adding that they were sleeping inside their house close to the accident. According to Vasco Police Inspector Nolasco Raposo the highway crossing through Chicalim village has been blocked for traffic. “We have stopped the motorists from using the road. Also we have informed the public in the vicinity to evacuate and to cover their mouth with masks or wet clothes,” he said. Nearly 300 houses are located in the area, a few kilometres from Goa’s Dabolim Airport.last_img read more

Supreme Court admits Congress plea against Goa Minister

first_imgIn a blow to the Manohar Parrikar-led BJP government in Goa, the Supreme Court on Friday admitted a Congress party appeal to disqualify the State’s Health Minister Vishwajit Pratapsingh Rane for playing “fraud on the Constitution.”Mr. Rane had quit the Congress and joined the BJP last year.A three-judge Bench led by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra issued notice to the State of Goa, Election Commission of India, Goa State Election Commission, Speaker of the Goa State Legislative Assembly, former pro-tem Speaker Sidharth Sripad Kuncalienker and Mr. Rane, among other BJP leaders in the State.The Congress said Mr. Rane defied a party whip to vote against the Parrikar government during the Floor Test conducted in the Goa Assembly on March 16, 2017 on the orders of the Supreme Court. The special leave petition said though Mr. Rane signed the whip at 11 a.m., he abstained from voting and instead walked out of the Assembly. He returned later in the afternoon and tendered his resignation, which was accepted without question by the pro-tem Speaker Mr. Kuncalienker.A few days later, Mr. Rane joined the BJP and was made the Health Minister. He contested a by-election in Goa and won, thus continuing to be a Member of the Legislative Assembly.The Congress, represented by senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi and advocates Sangramsingh Bhonsle and Samridhi Jain, argued that both the pro-tem Speaker and Mr. Rane “played mischief” and reduced the anti-defection law to a “paper tiger.” Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi for Mr. Rane countered that an absentee legislator leaving the Assembly without voting cannot derail a floor test and invite the anti-defection law.Chief Justice Misra observed that the question of law whether “a Speaker ought to have accepted the resignation of a member who had invited disqualification by an act of defiance without conducting inquiry” should be examined in detail.last_img read more

Yavatmal farmer commits suicide, blames Modi in note

first_imgA debt-ridden farmer committed suicide in Yavatmal district on Tuesday and blamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his death in the suicide note.Shankar Bhaurao Chayare (50), a resident of Rajurwadi village in Ghatanji Tehsil of Yavatmal, first attempted to hang himself to death, however, the rope broke and he fell down.“He then drank poison and killed himself. He also left behind a suicide note in which he has mentioned that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is responsible for his death,” according to Devanand Pawar, head of Farmers Committee for Justice.This is the second such incident in eight months in Yavatmal when a farmer has killed himself and blamed the Prime Minister.In September last year, after Prakash Mangoankar killed himself the state government had announced some compensation for his family members.Chayare owned six acres of land and is survived by his wife, three daughters and a son. “I am committing suicide because I have a huge debt burden. The cotton crop in my farm was damaged this year due to the pink worm. Narendra Modi is responsible for my death,” Chayare wrote in his suicide note. Chayare’s family members, and local farmers led by Mr. Pawar, prevented the authorities from conducting a post-mortem.Mr. Pawar also led local villagers and Chayare’s family members to Ghatanji police station in the evening to register an FIR against Prime Minister Modi.“When Mr. Mangoankar committed suicide last year, this government announced compensation for his family members. But they are yet to receive any help. This government is hell-bent on destroying the farmers. I have never seen such an insensitive government,” Mr. Pawar told The Hindu.Kishor Tiwari, the head of Maharashtra government’s Task Force on agriculture distress, expressed grief over the farmer’s suicide and announced that he would visit the grieving family members on April 11.“The pink worm attack on cotton and improper rates of pulses have increased the farmers’ distress. The government should announce a special package and Mr. Modi should lend them a helping hand,” Mr. Tiwari demanded.last_img read more

Bid to connect popular tourist spots by air

first_imgThe Ministries of Civil Aviation and Tourism will jointly develop a strategy to improve air connectivity to popular tourist destinations, like the temples of Khajuraho in Madhya Pradesh and cave monuments of Ajanta and Ellora in Maharashtra, according to a senior government official.Plan in 15 daysThe officials of the two Ministries will also discuss if airlines would be offered subsidy or incentive to connect these tourist destinations. They will finalise a plan within 15 days, the official of the Ministry of Civil Aviation added.According to a statement from the Ministry of Tourism, Mr. Alphons requested for Air India flights to Khajuraho, enhanced connectivity to the holy city of Varanasi and to Aurangabad for access to Ajanta and Ellora apart from ways to inter-connect Kochi, Goa and Jaipur – the three places being a must visit for many international tourists.There was also a demand for direct flights to Srinagar from Kolkata and Ahmedabad.last_img read more

One held in hanging of BJP worker’s case

first_imgThe Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has made the first arrest in the case of the hanging of BJP worker Trilochan Mahato at Purulia district. The death has been ruled as murder. Punjabi Mahato, 45, was arrested on Sunday after “thorough interrogation” at the Balarampur Police Station. Nishat Pervez of the CID said the arrest was made “on the basis of circumstantial and strong evidence”. Punjabi Mahato belongs to the same village as Trilochon Mahato.The evidence comprises two mobile phones and two SIM cards that were hidden in Punjabi Mahato’s house. These items are currently being forensically examined. A senior CID official told The Hindu that his behaviour was reported to be suspicious on the day the body was discovered. So far, the motive is unclear. The same source stated that though the post-mortem report is yet to arrive, prima facie study of the body showed that the victim had been poisoned and tortured before the hanging took place.Trilochan Mahato’s death was followed by the hanging of Dulal Kumar, a worker of the same party. Both hangings took place in the same district between May 29 and June 2. However, the latter case has been declared to be one of suicide.last_img read more