Iconic ‘sandesh’ gets a facelift in election season

first_imgKolkata: The “sandesh” has been dressed up. It is on a catwalk either as the Trinamool’s “jora ghash phul” (twin-flower), BJP’s lotus, Congress hand symbol or the hammer and sickle of the CPI-M. These “election sweets” are just flying off the shelves at Balaram Mullick and Radharaman Mullick, one of the oldest confectioners in the city, or Shibani Sweets at Sodepur in the northern suburb. With the humble “nakuldana” (flour-sugar balls) and “laddoo” taking the centre stage ahead of the Lok Sabha polls in rural Bengal, the confectioners in Kolkata are not leaving any opportunity to bank on the frenzied ambience. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari Puja”Sandesh” (cottage cheese sweet) is readily coming up in any form you wish. They have been flying off the shelves since the election drums were rolled. “We have been making these sweets during elections for many years. This year too the response is very good,” Poppy Mullick of Balaram Mullick and Radharaman Mullick said. Asked which party-themed sweet was selling the most, she jokingly said “no comments”. Regarding the bulk orders placed by the party workers, Mullick gave a hint that “the ruling Trinamool Congress topped the chart.” They have priced a sweet of 250 gm at Rs 150. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayThe Sodepur sweet shop, which specialises in theme-based sweets during football and cricket World Cups, is offering decorative trays filled with huge sweets replicated as party symbols. Trinamool’s twin-flower, BJP’s lotus, the hand symbol of Congress or the hammer and sickle of the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) — they have all been given a sweet twist. “We are offering the big trays for Rs 800-2,000 each while a small sandesh is priced at Rs 70,” said Sanjib Das, a staff at Shibani Sweets. Das is elated as this year the shop is getting “huge response”. He mentioned that the customers are so impressed that they are asking for larger sizes. “The ‘Trinamool sandesh’ is in great demand. Sweets of other parties like the BJP, Congress and the CPI(M) are selling too,” Das said. Orders can also be customised as per the customers’ demand. The shops also ensure that the customers get fresh sweets, so after placing the order, one has to wait for a little time. Almost 14-15 men are toiling hard to churn out these sweet delicacies laced with aesthetic appeal at Shibani Sweets. “This is just the beginning, I am sure that as the election heat picks up, the demand will keep soaring. We will try our best to deliver,” Das said. While Mullicks will stick to sweets with party symbols, Shibani Sweets will try to come up with sweets replicating leaders’ faces if demanded. Amidst the high voltage campaigns, these sweets will add a dash of goodness and will be savoured by the supporters and the members of the winning party and candidates, the shop said. Trinamool Congress’ Birbhum district president Anubrata Mondal’s directive to party workers to hand over “nakuldana” and water to people to keep them cool and the BJP’s decision to distribute “laddoos” among the people as a counter move has added to the sweetness of the electoral contest in the state. The seven-phase Lok Sabha elections in the state will be held between April 11 and May 19. Votes will be counted on May 23.last_img read more

Annan meets leaders of main UN organs on Nobel Peace Prize

In meetings with the Presidents of the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council, the Trusteeship Council and the International Court of Justice, the Secretary-General promoted an exchange of ideas “on the UN Organization’s half of the Nobel Peace Prize, especially on how the UN is to be represented at the awards ceremony in Oslo in December,” said spokesman Fred Eckhard.Tonight, Mr. Annan is scheduled to fly to Geneva, where he will address the Global Employment Forum of the International Labour Organization on Thursday. read more

Syria some parties to conflict expected to observe ceasefire Security Council urges

“You will have seen his [Mr. Brahimi’s] comments in Cairo today earlier today, in which he said he expected an announcement by the Syrian Government regarding his proposed pause in fighting,” Martin Nesirky, the spokesperson for Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, told a news briefing at UN Headquarters in New York. “He said that many in the opposition have also responded positively,” Mr. Nesirky added.According to media reports, the Joint Special Representative made the comments while addressing journalists in the Egyptian capital of Cairo; earlier in the week, Mr. Brahimi had been in the Syrian capital, Damascus. The Government of Syria will reportedly make an announcement on the ceasefire on Thursday – and was encouraged to do so positively by the Security Council which today received a briefing from Mr. Brahimi on his latest efforts.More than 20,000 people, mostly civilians, have died in Syria since the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad began some 20 months ago. A further 2.5 million Syrians urgently need humanitarian aid, and over 340,000 have crossed the border to Syria’s neighbouring countries, according to UN estimates.Last week, while in Tehran, Joint Special Representative Brahimi had appealed to Iranian authorities to assist in achieving a ceasefire in Syria during the upcoming Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, underscoring that such a move, during one of the holiest holidays celebrated by Muslims around the world, would help create an environment that would allow a political process to develop.Taking place on Friday, the religious observance of Eid al-Adha – or the Feast of the Sacrifice – commemorates the willingness of Abraham to sacrifice his son Ishmael as an act of obedience to God.Along with his counterpart at the League of Arab States, Nabil El Araby, the UN chief has called on all the parties in Syria to heed the call of Mr. Brahimi, in addition to calling on the international community to support the ceasefire appeal.Today, following Mr. Brahimi’s video-conference briefing to the Security Council via video-conference, in a press statement read out by Ambassador Gert Rosenthal of Guatemala – which holds the Council’s Presidency for the month of October – the 15-member body welcomed the ceasefire initiative and joined its voice to that of the UN and Arab League Secretaries-General.“The members of the Security Council called upon all parties, in particular on the Government of the Syrian Arab Republic as the stronger party, to respond positively to the initiative of the Joint Special Representative, and reiterated their call of the Syrian authorities to allow immediate, full and unimpeded access of humanitarian personnel to all populations in need of assistance, in accordance to international law and guiding principles of humanitarian assistance,” Ambassador Rosenthal said. The Council members also echoed Mr. Ban’s and Mr. El Araby’s calls for all regional and international actors to support the ceasefire proposal and to use their influence to facilitate its implementation. “The members of the Council agreed that an Eid Al Adha cease-fire could be a first step towards a sustainable cessation of all violence,” Ambassador Rosenthal added, noting that such a halt would be in conformity with the Council’s resolutions 2042 and 2043, adopted earlier this year and which dealt with the Syrian conflict. In the press statement, the Council members also called on the parties in Syria to cooperate with the UN and relevant humanitarian bodies to facilitate relief supplies, and in this context, called upon UN Member States to contribute urgently to the UN Syrian Humanitarian Assistance Response Plan, which seeks $348 million but has so far received $157 million.In addition, the Council members underscored the need to launch an inclusive Syrian-led political transition “leading to a democratic, plural, political system that realizes the legitimate aspirations of the Syrian people for democracy, equality and justice, regardless of their affiliation, ethnicities or beliefs.” read more

How SW19 hopeful Alex Ward overcame maxed out credit cards and debt

first_imgBritish Wimbledon wildcard Katie Boulter He added: “For me the first goal was to play at Wimbledon and top 100 is a big goal, but I am just trying to reach the next level before thinking about massive achievement.” Ward recently posted a photograph of himself as a round faced 10-year-old junior player on Instagram, adding self-deprecatingly: “I wasn’t chubby or anything! No wonder I lost the final 0 & 0.”Fellow-British hopeful Katie Boulter, who was given a wildcard to play in her first Grand Slam, said on Saturday she would resist the urge to use her minimum first round prize money to indulge her ‘shopaholic’ tendencies.She said: “I’m going to be putting that money back into my tennis and I want to be able to travel with a coach. I think it’s a game-changer when it comes to prize-money.” Alex Ward (R) as a 10-year-old junior player, with a friend and fellow competitor Alex Ward would be the first to tell you he wasn’t the lithest of tennis players when he was growing up, so much so he wonders how he ever won a match.But now, against the odds, the 27-year-old has earned himself a shot at glory.Ward, who ranks 855 in the world, will this week step onto the grass courts of Wimbledon after becoming the only Brit to come through the qualifying matches, beating Russia’s Teymuraz Gabashvili in the third and final round at Roehampton.Not bad for a player who until over the past few years has maxed out his credit cards trying to fund his career.Now he is guaranteed £35,000 prize money for his first round appearance at the All England Lawn Tennis Club, and more if he proceeds to the second round.Ward, who is staying at a friends house in Surbiton for the duration of his championships and whose only previous Wimbledon appearance was a loss in round one last year following a wildcard invitation, said: “I’ve never won a match before in qualifying, before this I had lost four times. it just feels amazing, pretty unbelievable.” Ward, who attended Northampton School for Boys, persevered with his chosen profession through the ups and downs of the international tennis circuit.He moved to Barcelona in 2015 to benefit from the warmer weather for training and won four International Tennis Federation (ITF) Futures titles that year, going on to win another two last year.In June last year he reached a career high of 242 in the world before slipping back down the rankings because of various wrist, ligament and forearm injuries.The prospect of stepping onto the courts of SW19 is a far cry from his days growing up in Northampton and playing at the town’s King’s Park Tennis Centre. Alex Ward (R) as a 10-year-old junior player, with a friend and fellow competitorCredit:Alex Ward/Instagram Workers install steel metal barriers outside the gates to the All England Lawn tennis club following recent terror attacks on London Credit:Amer Ghazzal/REX/Shutterstock/Rex Features Workers install steel metal barriers outside the gates to the All England Lawn tennis club following recent terror attacks on London  The 20-year-old added: “I think shopaholic sums me up. Obviously I want to win some rounds and you get some more money, but the majority is going to go into my tennis.”Northampton-born Ward has also spoken of the struggle involved in funding his tennis career without any big name sponsorship to help.He said: “In the last couple of years I’ve maxed out a couple of credit cards. If you win a Futures title [for lower ranked players] you’re not making anything really. If you win you’re covering your expenses for the week.“Last year was massive because I got a wildcard into Wimbledon main draw. Before that I was in quite a bit of debt. It was about £12,000. That cleared that off then helped me to invest in my tennis. It’s always been luckily the right time for a cash injection and again it’s happened this year.” British Wimbledon wildcard Katie BoulterCredit:Katie Boulter/Instagram He added: “Last year, with this wrist problem, I sought a few specialists and nobody was coming up with any answers. The money was running low. So that was a tough period. But I’ve always wanted to do it if I can, if it’s possible.” Now he says of Wimbledon: “It means the world to me. It’s the chance to play at the best tournament in the world and the financial reward means I can keep playing tennis.”Like Boulter, there’s no chance he will splash out with the money earned from his first round appearance. He doesn’t own a car, or even drive, so he says he will simply reinvest the cash in his game. “I’ll just put it back into my tennis,” he said.Meanwhile a ring of steel was being erected around the AELTC grounds yesterday to prevent a vehicle being used to ram queuing spectators.Barriers were put in place at key point on roads and along the pavement around the grounds and dozens of armed police are set to patrol the championships to foil any potential terror attack.New Betfair customers can get enhanced odds of Federer (40/1) or Murray (50/1) to win Wimbledon. Find out more >> 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.last_img read more

Revenues property tax calculator adding to distress of homeowners

first_imgTHE REVENUE WEBSITE which shows property values around Ireland is adding to the distress of homeowners who are already in difficulty, Fianna Fáil’s Seanad Leader and Spokesperson on Finance Darragh O’Brien has said.“The confusion created by glaring discrepancies on the property tax website is just adding to people’s exasperation,” he said.His criticism comes as Daft.ie launches its own property tax calculator, which allows users to state the number of bedrooms and bathrooms their property has, as well as whether it has a garden or not.Daft.ie economist Ronan Lyons said that many other factors still remain which can impact on property value, “such as its age, the size in square metres of the floor area and the site”.Daft.ie is part of the Distilled Media Group. Journal Media Ltd has shareholders – Brian and Eamonn Fallon – in common with Distilled Media Group.Read: Revenue website showing property values goes live >last_img read more

Well Leave it There So Six Nations bonus points AllIreland final refs

first_img Nov 30th 2016, 7:48 PM By Paul Fennessy Ireland women’s rugby Grand Slam winner and refereeing pioneer Joy Neville and Munster rugby players Mike Sherry and Duncan Casey pictured at the Cycle Against Suicide launch at the University of Limerick. Source: Picture Credit Brian Gavin Press 22HomeAll-Ireland final replay referee Maurice Deegan has admitted he made a mistake in not showing a black card for Dublin’s John Small.Ireland international Dan Tuohy is in talks with Bristol over a switch from Ulster.Thomas Barr’s Olympic exploits have been recognised as he won the national athletics award today.West Brom winger James McClean has revealed he felt “a bit insulted” by then-Ireland boss Giovanni Trapattoni at Euro 2012.2016 finalists CBC and Crescent will meet in a first-round Munster Senior Cup showdown.Away Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho. Source: PA Wire/PA Images 16,227 Views Follow us: the42.ie 2 Comments Jose Mourinho has been hit with a touchline ban for kicking a water bottle.Former darts champion Eric Bristow has apologised for his widely condemned football sex abuse comments.Gareth Southgate has finally been named as England’s permanent manager on a four-year deal.The Six Nations will introduce bonus points in 2017.Wales could look to cap Liverpool’s youngest-ever scorer, Ben Woodburn, against Ireland to fend off England’s interest.Weeks after retiring, Jessica Ennis-Hill will receive a third world title.Top Brasileirao clubs are to offer free loan deals to Chapecoense.The Best Thing We SharedCheck out this documentary on the remarkable rise of the Fiji sevens team, from a tiny island to the world’s biggest stage. Source: HSBC/YouTubeOn The RecordTony Bellew, you’re a bellend, and you’re going to get knocked out.”David Haye gave his fight with Tony Bellew the hard sell this afternoon.Where we were today Source: Matt Browne/SPORTSFILEFintan O’Toole was at the GAA’s launch of The Referees Handbook and a briefing on the ‘Mark’ rule.The Fixture ListThere is one Championship match taking place tomorrow, as QPR face Wolves.Showbiz, Baby!The new Mayo GAA jersey was unveiled earlier today. Share5 Tweet Email We’ll Leave it There So: Six Nations bonus points, All-Ireland final ref’s admission and all today’s sport Plus, former darts champion Eric Bristow has apologised for his widely condemned football sex abuse comments. http://the42.ie/3112274 Zidane and Luis Enrique tangled in identity politics>Sports can help you live longer, but some have a bigger effect than others> Wednesday 30 Nov 2016, 7:48 PM Short URL The42 is on Instagram! Tap the button below on your phone to follow us! Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

The42 Rugby Show Eddie OSullivan previews Irelands game against France

first_img 11 Comments Feb 21st 2017, 4:48 PM By Eoin Lúc Ó Ceallaigh http://the42.ie/3251021 The42 Rugby Show: Eddie O’Sullivan previews Ireland’s game against France Former Ireland head coach Eddie O’Sullivan joins Murray Kinsella to look at the key talking points ahead of Ireland’s first home game. Bastareaud and Chouly ruled out of Six Nations clash with IrelandHeaslip not afraid to think big – World Cup big – when setting late career goals iTunes Short URL 10,283 Views Tuesday 21 Feb 2017, 4:48 PM Source: The42.ie/YouTubeIRELAND COME BACK from the Six Nations break with their first home game against France this weekend.Guy Noves’ French side sit in fourth position on the table after two games, with just Ireland’s extra bonus point boosting them up to second.What will the French bring to the Aviva this weekend? Who should start at out-half, now that Johnny Sexton is fit again?Murray Kinsella and Eddie O’Sullivan discuss the talking points ahead of the game, which will be crucial in Ireland’s championship bid.Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.Subscribe to The42 Rugby Show podcast here: Share6 Tweet Email Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

5K job for FortisTCI to repair pole damaged in car accident man

first_img Driver Slams into Power Pole in Leeward Highway Related Items:car accident, Devon Cox, pole fortis tci Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, 27 Au 2015 – FortisTCI said it took a seven man team and ten hours to restore power after that Monday morning traffic accident on Leeward Highway. The 55ft power pole was severely damaged by the crash, which left the 55 year old driver in critical condition. Devon Cox, VP of Transmission and Distribution said that pole was holding a 35kv transmission top which powers Blue Hills and a 12.5kv distribution underbuilt feeder which takes care of Leeward Highway West. Only a gold Ford F-150 was involved in the serious accident which sent a Kew Town resident to hospital. The pole repair was put at $5,000. FortisTCI reminds motorists to drive carefully. Recommended for you 19 year old Beaches worker airlifted to Jamaica after serious accident Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp MINOR MISHAP A MERRY MIRACLElast_img read more

Court upholds most of state liquor initiative

first_imgKELSO (AP) — A Cowlitz County judge on Friday upheld most of a voter-approved initiative that requires the state to get out of the liquor business, but called for a trial to determine whether a provision for public safety funding caused voters to approve a measure they otherwise would have rejected. The entire measure would be nullified if the court determines that voters would have rejected the initiative without the provision.Voters approved Initiative 1183 last fall to privatize liquor sales and dismantle Washington’s state-run liquor system, which was formed in the 1930s in the aftermath of Prohibition. The measure, backed by retailing giant Costco, allows stores larger than 10,000 square feet to sell liquor, though it could allow smaller stores to sell liquor if there are no other outlets in a trade area.Seattle attorney Michael C. Subit argued Friday that the initiative violated a rule requiring voter initiatives to address just one subject because it included $10 million to enhance public safety.Subit successfully made the single-subject argument against an initiative more than a decade ago. In this case, he represents the Washington Association for Substance Abuse and Violence Prevention, the landlord to a state-owned liquor store in Cowlitz County and two Red Apple stores in Kitsap County, who filed suit in December.The state attorney general’s office argued for the state.Attorneys for both sides were left scrambling Friday to decide what preliminary hearings and discovery they will need for a quick trial necessary because the initiative takes effect June 1.last_img read more

AK LNG Releases Gasline Workforce Plan

first_imgFacebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享The Alaska Gasline Development Corporation released their ‘Gasline Workforce Plan‘  which outlines training and educating an Alaskan workforce with the skills necessary to build and operate the Alaska LNG Project. The Alaska LNG Project Gasline Workforce Plan was unanimously approved by the Workforce Board in Seward last week. Governor Bill Walker: “Alaskans know how to build infrastructure, and state funding for public projects should employ Alaskans first.” AGDC Commissioner Heidi Drygas: “Construction of the Alaska LNG Project is hugely important to Alaska’s economy. Not only will construction provide thousands of jobs for Alaskans, but operating the Alaska LNG project will keep Alaskans working for decades to come.” The Alaska LNG Project, estimated at $43 billion, would involve an 807-mile pipeline, along with a gas treatment plant and LNG liquefaction plant, designed to move more than 20 million tons of natural gas per year. It focuses on six areas of opportunity, including training and technical education, developing apprenticeships, increasing the number of students and instructors in necessary fields, and focusing on Alaska Hire and Alaska Bidder preferences. Construction is expected to begin as early as 2019, with gas delivered by 2024-2025last_img read more

Gov Parnell Says He Took Immediate Action On Sexual Assault Allegations

first_imgGovernor Sean Parnell is defending his decision to wait four years to request a federal investigation into reports of a sexual assault problem in the Alaska National Guard. Anchorage Daily News columnist Shannyn Moore wrote Sunday that Parnell first learned about misconduct in the Guard in 2010, when he was approached by three guard chaplains. Parnell says he took those charges seriously, but lacked the details to prompt an investigation until February.Governor Sean Parnell discusses his proposed FY15 budget. Photo by Josh Edge, APRN – Anchorage.He says after the initial concerns were raised, he went to Major General Thomas Katkus to make sure the systems were in place to protect guard members. Then in February, Parnell says he was able to talk with a guard member who provided specifics.Sen. Hollis French letter to Gov. Parnell (PDF)Op-Ed by Gov. Parnell (PDF)Department of Military and Veterans Affairs confidentiality agreement (PDF)Download AudioBased on what you’ve heard from victims and others, how big of a problem do you think sexual assault is in the National Guard?I think one allegation is too much and I take every allegation seriously, because I am concerned about Alaskans who suffer from sexual assault and violence. It’s been a core part of who I am fighting for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. So, I take every assault allegation seriously. So, in 2010 when the chaplains first came to speak with me and they made allegations that sexual assault was occurring on Guard members I questioned them and asked for detail, and they could not provide it because they were under duty of confidentiality to the people they counseled, but immediately after that I took action and went right to the Guard, to the general, and asked him to talk to me about what he knew of sexual assaults occurring in the Guard. And he went through the cases that had been filed at that time; spoke about how any cases that involved allegations of criminal activity, as in sexual assault, are not only investigated but they are also referred to local law enforcement – like the Anchorage Police Department. And I made sure that for the safety of the victims and any future victims in the Guard that there was, and is, a reporting process that’s safe for anybody in the Guard to utilize; that there’s an investigation process that is complete and accurate and directed that appropriate penalties be assessed. Now, that’s outside the criminal context, but the criminal context goes directly to law enforcement. I had only those general allegations of sexual assault, but I still took action to make sure that there was a system in place that works for victims of sexual assault.Those general allegations persisted but they were the same allegations about events that occurred years ago. And then on Feb. 26th, Senator Dyson, came to me and said he had specific detail. Before when he spoke to me he had general allegations and he asked me to call a guard member who would provide me with specific detail about how the system wasn’t working. I made that contact within 24 hours of Sen. Dyson’s [call], personally spoke with a Guard member. That Guard member provided me with two instances where, if the allegations were substantiated, that the system would have failed our Guard member. And at that point, I realized I needed to get an independent assessment of the entire reporting and investigation structure. So I called in the National Guard Bureau, they have a complex investigation review team – I did that within 24 hours and that team is on the ground now in Alaska, doing their work to make sure that victims are safe.Some people will think why was it four years? In hindsight do you wish you would have come forward four years ago, what do you think could have been done differently?At the time I took immediate action to make sure that every victim of a sexual assault had been referred to law enforcement. I made sure that anyone who had concerns  about what was happening in the Guard had a safe reporting structure, but without specific detail about how the system was otherwise failing, that’s all I could do, is what I believed. And still believe that. But, on the other hand, once I got specific information about how the structure was actually failing, in other words the who, what, where, when why – the same thing you reporters ask – even though I pressed for that earlier and nobody could or would provide me with that, the second I got that kind of information I took immediate action with the National Guard Bureau to get them in there and get an independent look at what was happening.Talk more about the specifics? What exactly were you needing for you to have that ability to actually ask for an investigation?So, 4 years ago I was told there is a problem with sexual assault in the Guard. That is the sum and substance of what I was given. When I went to Guard leadership to inquire about that they said that yes they had specific instances where sexual assaults had been reported, that those had been referred to law enforcement for investigation, like the Anchorage Police Department. And they also detailed the reporting structure for any kind of alleged malfeasance in the Guard that was in place. And I had detailed for me, here’s the list of cases that are pending; here’s the list of cases that have been resolved in the past. But when it came specifically to the sexual assaults, when that kind of criminal activity was brought forward, that went immediately, as I was told, to law enforcement, which I think is appropriate.One of the problems with sexual assault cases is there often isn’t enough information and it’s very difficult for victims to come forward. Did you consider that when you decided not to pursue an investigation earlier? What would you say to a victim of sexual assault about the statement that you didn’t have enough specifics? Do you think that’s enough of an answer for someone?What I did is an internal state investigation. Meaning, I went in, my office went in and we made leadership tell us exactly what they were doing to protect sexual assault victims. When I had an actual specific set of facts related to how the system had failed, or – in this case – was alleged to fail, I asked the National Guard Bureau, as an independent assessing body, to come in and look at what I had been told and also look at the entire system to make sure we protect our guard members.The Choose Respect campaign has been a big focus for you. Are you concerned this will damage the momentum or image you’re hoping to get across to Alaskans about coming forward when these things happen? Well, absolutely. Anyone who knows me would say I care deeply about victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. And I’m more concerned than anything that victims may not come forward.  Because I know from speaking with many across the state how difficult that already is, and I don’t want to make that more difficult. That’s why I launched the immediate investigation, even when I had the barest of details, and now that I have specific details, I’ve called in the National Guard Bureau to help because I think it’s beyond us at this point.When do you expect the investigation to conclude, when will you have a report and will you commit to releasing that report publicly?I already have. I have made that commitment. The review team from the National Guard Bureau let me know they would be on the ground, in Alaska in the month of May. They said that it would take several months after that to complete the report and make that available to me. I already committed to making that report public, with the exception of any confidential victim information that should not be put forward, because I do want to protect the privacy of the victims. So, that’s been my commitment and remains so.You’re still standing behind General Katkus. Do you have confidence in him? Do you wish he would have come to you sooner? General Katkus has been very forthright. When I started asking questions about sexual assault cases, he came forward right away, showed me the cases that had been transferred to law enforcement, showed me how they have tracked cases, detailed how they investigate cases. And he’s been very proactive about holding what the Guard calls “sensing sessions,” meaning going into guard units and informing people about how to report acts of sexual harassment, acts of sexual violence. So General Katkus has been very proactive in that regard, and that’s what I know at this point.Do you think he could have done more within the Guard itself to make sure this behavior was not at all tolerated?From what I know now, the answer is no. But again, I’ve asked the National Guard Bureau to come have that independent look to make sure our Guard members are safe. General Katkus has told me at every turn that’s his desire and mission, he understands it, gets it and he has the systems in place that demonstrate that. I have asked the National Guard Bureau to make sure that those systems truly work for victims because we care deeply, and I care deeply, about protecting Alaskans.Did you talk to anyone beyond General Katkus about the chaplains’ concerns?Yes, in fact, our office talked with numerous Guard members. All of which had the same general allegations. There was one victim who came forward and spoke with a member of my office. Her case was also being investigated by Anchorage Policed Department at that point in time, so the answer is yes, we spoke with a number of people.Mike Nizich-yYour chief of staff- was using his personal e-mail account to correspond about this issue. Why was that?I spoke with Mr. Nizich and understand that was at the request of the chaplains who wanted to go outside the official channels. However, I’ve asked Mr.  Nizich to check his personal e-mail for that and his recollection is that it’s one email. I’ve asked him to check for that and move it to the state account, which is protocol to follow. And that will be a part of the public record at that point.McHugh Pierre was asking questions. Who asked him to have the chaplains sign confidentiality statements?I don’t know that but I do have a copy of what he apparently asked to be signed. It’s a statement that was emailed to all Department of Military and Veterans Affairs employees. It says employees aren’t authorized to give statements on behalf of department without first coordinating the request with one’s supervisor, which is standard operating policy in any department or any business that you don’t speak for the business, you don’t speak for the department. without first coordinating it with your supervisor.He also spoke with people on base about wanting to know how information was getting out. It almost feels a bit like a witch hunt. Does that concern you that oftentimes it takes people acting outside of the normal channels to get this information out and at the end of the day, that’s the main mission, is it not?Well that’s true and that’s why I asked these questions. Again, there’s nothing that stops the employee, as long as they’re not speaking on behalf of the department. In other words they’re speaking as a person, as an Alaskan who’s concerned, that’s not what this statement addresses though.But the chaplains weren’t’ saying they were speaking for the department, they were raising concerns about people who were alleging sexual assault. And I don’t condone the activity you just described. I do, on the other hand, understand when supervisors are asking their employees not to represent the department in certain things. In this case, I don’t have all the facts, but I don’t condone trying to stop what you’re describing.So you’re saying you wouldn’t condone McHugh Pierre asking them to be quiet?No. But again, I don’t have evidence is that’s what he did. What I evidence is that he asked them not to speak on behalf of the department without coordinating that with a supervisor.What have you taken away from this process? Do you think there are changes that need to be made? Are you frustrated by the process are there things that need to be done differently?I am frustrated when Alaskans in the Guard don’t feel like they are protected; that’s entirely frustrating. And it’s frustrating to me when I don’t have enough information to take action beyond what I did. In other words, I took action, I made sure that the systems were in place to protect Guard members; and that the people were in place, like an independent investigator – a safe route for people to report, but until the end of February, until then I didn’t have verified facts that alerted me I needed to bring the National Guard Bureau in. So, I do get frustrated when Alaskans are reporting harm and are continuing to report harm, even though, from all appearances, the system is in place and the checks and balances are in place to assure their safety – including referrals to law enforcement agencies.  So if indeed we find there is wrongdoing, I ‘ll take steps to punish that and make it right, there’s no question about that.last_img read more

Indian markets slip in morning trade amid selling by investors funds

first_imgIndian equities opened Monday’s trade on a weak note with major indices trading with about quarter of a percent of losses. Lack of strong global and domestic cues was attributed as the reasons behind such a lacklustre trade.While the 30-share index Sensex was trading 0.27 percent lower at 26,417.61, the 50-share index Nifty was at 8,120.95, down 0.23 percent in the early morning trade. Overall market breadth was negative with 749 advances and 873 declines.Most sectoral indices were trading in the red with auto, banking, capital goods, FMCG and IT stocks dragging the indices. However, metals and oil and gas stocks were providing some support to the market, capping the overall fall.Asian Paints was the major loser in the morning trade with its shares falling 1.20 percent to trade at Rs 889.10. Eicher Motors, Sun Pharma, Adani Ports and Bharti Airtel also saw selling pressure in the early morning trade.Meanwhile, Aurobindo Pharma gained the most on Monday with its shares trading 2.58 percent higher at Rs 708.50. GAIL, Tata Power, BPCL and Idea Cellular were the other major gainers on Monday.On the global front, Asian markets were trading with marginal losses with Japan’s Nikkei, China’s Shanghai Composite and South Korea’s Kospi in the red. Importantly, US stocks fell on Friday, driven by nearly 4 percent drop in Oracle shares. Analysts said that the fall in global indices weighed on investors’ sentiments in the domestic market.On the domestic front, the tepid performance of market was attributed to lack of active participation by investors. Last fortnight of December generally sees a thin trading volume with a dip in foreign institutional investor (FII) participation due to the Christmas holidays.The Indian rupee was trading 0.01 percent lower at 67.75 against the dollar on Monday. Among commodities, crude oil prices in the international market were trading at $55.64 per barrel, up 43 cents from their previous close.last_img read more

Chinas Amazing Stone Pillars Inspired the Avatar Scenery

first_imgDeep within China’s Hunan province is an other-worldly scene of unique quartzite-sandstone pinnacles, seemingly frozen in time. Rising steadfastly from the subtropical temperate forest floor beneath, these towering monoliths are the result of thousands of years of erosion. Today, these towers form part of the Zhāngjiājiè National Forest Park which sees some 30 million visitors each year. The captivating sight is said to have been an inspiration for the 2009 James Cameron film Avatar.Mountains in Zhangjiajie National ParkThe lush, natural setting, which saw a spike in tourist interest soon after the movie’s release, is now often dubbed the Avatar Mountains — thanks in part to clever marketing by the local government, who officially renamed the peak previously called Southern Sky Column as “Avatar Hallelujah Mountain” in January 2010, according to Travel China Guide. Before these lofty peaks became a world-famous tourist destination, the remote area was known only among three Chinese minorities. These were the Tujia, Miao, and Bai clans.Beautiful landscape inside Zhangjiajie National Park, ChinaPart of the Wulingyuan Scenic Area, which was declared a a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992, Zhāngjiājiè (张家界) received recognition as China’s first National Forest Park in 1982. This protective title helps preserve the park’s beauty, as well as the 1,000 distinct species of plants that sprout from the crevices of the elevated stones.Taking a glance at the structures, their sheer height is possibly the first thing that onlookers will notice. Silent and substantial, these towering rocks reach thousands of feet into the air.  According to Lonely Planet, “Some 243 peaks and more than 3,000 karst pinnacles and spires dominate the scenery.”Colorful cliffs in Zhangjiajie Forest Park at sunriseFrom their bodies extend lush vegetation, giving the stones a greenish tinge from a distance. The blue hue from the sky, combined with this interesting color palate and the drifting mists that gather around the lower halves of the towers, make a breathtaking sight to behold. In the right light, these stoic giants produce an otherworldly aesthetic, which can definitely captivate any tourist.Zhangjiajie National forest park at sunset, Wulingyuan, Hunan, ChinaFlora isn’t the only living thing to thrive on these peaks. Tourists traveling the main trails are likely to encounter macaques which have become accustomed to humans passing through their habitat.Related Video: 6 Mysterious Islands From Around The WorldOther species include the endangered Chinese giant salamander and the Chinese water deer. But the most mysterious of all is the clouded leopard — a species of big cat that has left trails on the mountains but has yet to be seen by man, lurking deep within the forest of rich vegetation and tall stones.Amazing natural quartz sandstone pillar named the Avatar Hallelujah Mountain and other wooded rocks in the Tianzi Mountains, Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, Hunan Province, ChinaBut other than the incredible stones themselves, the area is also home to unique provincial culture. Around the forest park, countless locals have put up quaint little food stalls to cater to tourists. Their home cooked meals — including a hearty, spicy hot-pot recipe — perfectly encapsulate the rich resources that they enjoy in the area.The picturesque Avatar Hallelujah Mountain, photographs of which are said to have inspired the setting for the home of the Na’vi people in the movie Avatar, stretches 3,544 feet into the sky. This stone column is a landmark in the forest and is the most pictured peak of all, as tourists try to imagine themselves as explorers on the alien world of Pandora.Drone view over Avatar Mountains in ChinaIn 2010, China acknowledged the use of their scenic National Park as the setting for the movie, and so the government let the movie play in their local cinemas — making the film one of 20 Hollywood productions to ever play in the country. Unfortunately the movie was pulled out just two weeks after its premiere, causing speculation that the political undertones in the movie’s plot may have reflected the plight of the Chinese people too closely for comfort.Zhangjiajie Wulingyuan National ParkDespite this, the movie became one of China’s highest grossing films to ever show on the silver screen. What’s more, the movie also stimulated interest anew among tourists, making the Zhāngjiājiè National Forest Park even more popular as a global travel destination. Since then, the park has seen some improvements in order to accommodate the growing flocks of visitors each year.Read another story from us: Tourists Flock to this Poison Garden – But a Trip There Could Prove to be FatalFor instance, in 2016, the (terrifying!) Zhāngjiājiè Grand Canyon Glass Bridge — the longest and the highest of its kind — was opened to visitors hoping to breathe in the beauty of the stoic monoliths of the park.last_img read more

Transats Europe more accessible than ever with Find Your Seat Sale

first_img<< Previous PostNext Post >> Tags: Air Transat, Europe, sale, Transat Posted by MONTREAL — There’s still time to book Air Transat’s Find Your Seat Sale, with a focus on the company’s 25 European destinations, all offering savings when booked by Feb. 5.Transat’s packages, guided tours, cruises and à la carte getaways throughout Europe cater to all interests, says the company. Numerous connections offer flexibility to build an itinerary tailored to each client’s needs.Here are more details on Transat’s program for some of Canadians’ top vacation spots.With its flights to Zagreb, Air Transat will be giving Canadians easy access to Croatia, one of the most sought-after destinations right now. Transat is offering three direct flights from Toronto and connecting flights from Vancouver, Montreal and Calgary. The tour operator is also featuring five packages to Croatia in addition to à la carte visits, including excursions to Krka National Park’s famous waterfalls.Meanwhile getting to Greece is a breeze with Air Transat offering direct flights to Athens from Montreal and Toronto, with four weekly flights each. From there, it’s easy to get to Santorini, Mykonos and Rhodes. Packages, guided tours and all‑in-one cruise packages are all offered by Transat in Greece.More news:  Save the dates! Goway’s Africa Roadshow is backTo Italy, Transat has direct flights to Venice from Toronto (two times a week) and Montreal (three times a week). And to Rome Air Transat will fly direct from Toronto (daily) and Montreal (six times a week). To the south, in the heart of Calabria, lies Lamezia, known for its coastlines. It’s also the gateway to Sicily and Air Transat will fly twice a week to Lamezia from Toronto, and from Montreal, Vancouver and Calgary with a connecting flight. Vacation options include packages, guided tours and a la carte components as well as Med cruises.Meanwhile with direct flights from Montreal and Toronto to Lisbon (five weekly flights from Montreal and four from Toronto) and Porto (three from Toronto and three from Montreal), Air Transat has never offered so many options for exploring these two must-see Portuguese cities.Clients looking to visit one or more of these destinations will have their pick of two‑ and three-city packages, which can be paired with à la carte visits.More news:  Canada raises travel warning amid escalating protests in Hong KongAnd to France Air Transat offers daily direct flights from Montreal year‑round to Paris. The city will also be accessible via direct flights from Toronto (five weekly flights), Vancouver (three weekly flights) and Quebec City (three weekly flights). Transat also offers Bordeaux to Nice, Toulouse, Nantes, Lyon and Marseille.And finally to Ireland and Switzerland Transat has direct flights from Montreal (twice weekly), and departures from Toronto, Quebec City and Vancouver with connecting flights. Travelweek Group center_img Share Transat’s Europe more accessible than ever with Find Your Seat Sale Wednesday, January 23, 2019 last_img read more

June 30 2006 Individual tiles in several sizes a

first_imgJune 30, 2006 Individual tiles in several sizes, as well as light-switch covers, are hand-crafted in the Ceramics studio at Arcosanti. Each tile goes through many stages. The clay is rolled out, cut, impressed with individual designs and glazed before firing. Individual tiles in several sizes, as well as light-switch covers, are hand-crafted in the Ceramics studio at Arcosanti. Each tile goes through many stages. The clay is rolled out, cut, impressed with individual designs and glazed before firing. [Photo & text: sa] Tile artist Linda Fournier has been part of the Arcosanti Urban Laboratory for over 16 years. She carefully paints glaze on parts of a tile. [Photo & text: sa] Many of the bathrooms and kitchens at Arcosanti are accented with Arcosanti tiles. Tiles and switch plates are available at the Arcosanti Gallery and Visitors Center and at the gallery at Cosanti. [Photo & text: sa]last_img read more

Agreement close on governing Airbnb type rentals

first_imgAfter several weeks of discussion, lawmakers are close to agreeing a bill regulating the operation of short-term Airbnb-style property rentals.The key remaining question related to short-term rentals of apartments in residential areas.On Tuesday the House commerce committee said it had narrowed down three scenarios. Under the first, rentals in residential buildings would be permitted in all cases, with the owner/landlord free to charge whatever he or she wants.Alternatively, the renting out of a flat in a residential building would be subject to the approval of the majority of the tenants.The third option, which seemed to be gaining ground, would be to give a say to the management committee of a communal building.In this way, said Diko MP Angelos Votsis, a management committee would either approve or reject the use of a flat for short-term rental if this practice were deemed to cause problems to the remaining tenants.Where a building lacks a management committee, the matter would be resolved by a vote among the tenants, requiring a majority.The commerce ministry as well as the Cyprus Tourism Organisation appeared to be on board with this latter proposal.MPs will decide which is the preferred option at the next session of the committee so that the final draft of the bill can be written up and then tabled to the plenum.The legislative proposal aims to create a dedicated registry for short-term self-catering accommodation and then taxing that income, bringing cash into state coffers.The bill covers villas, residences and apartments used for tourism purposes.Earlier, the committee had heard there are an estimated 40,000 accommodations across the island being used for short-term rentals that are unlicensed and thus not subject to the legislation governing tourist lodgings.Each property thus registered is to be assigned a number, which will be used in online advertising platforms so that punters may know whether the property in question is registered or not.Though not opposed to the registry, Akel MP Costas Costa reiterated his concern that self-catering accommodations might not be able to comply with the raft of safety and technical regulations, discouraging many from renting out their properties on a short-term basis.This, he said, risked defeating the very purpose of the proposed legislation which, while intended to generate tax revenue for the state, could also strip many owners of a source of income.You May LikePopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoPlarium I Vikings: Free Online GamePlay this for 1 minute and see why everyone is addictedPlarium I Vikings: Free Online GameUndoSecurity SaversWindows Users Advised To Do This TodaySecurity SaversUndo Turkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoThe Deniz boat incident showed clearly the intentions of the Turkish sideUndoConcern over falling tourism numbersUndoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more

and long distance

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The tweet read “I have just been contacted by my lawyer Ricky Tafa that the case against me by the Inspector General of Police in Lokoja has been transferred to Federal High Court Abuja. ?m. The correlation between the popular fictional series and politics can be explained by subtle messages of tolerance present in the series. There was no immediate word on casualties.’ " Johnson said. m. stock exchange. “Every time I crash the Internet, a lab in Los Angeles.

" said Steve Benjamin," Sinha said when asked whether he was worried that the BJP could take action against him for sharing the dais with the two opposition leaders. and it’s all anonymous. and even if there is one, wicked and barbaric. while their track record against Dutch opposition is awful with four defeats in as many matches. “Hence,上海千花网TM, the researchers report online this week in Health Affairs. because it’s classified as a Schedule 1 drug.400 Colombians and have bulldozed some of their homes on the Venezuelan side of the border.

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"I was hit in the head.The seven cars will save the department an estimated 10, Toy Story has been voted the best Pixar film of all time. which both wrapped up last month.14 percent.

The individuals (in government) do not concern us if they change, Pedro and Eden Hazard rather than an orthodox number nine. 3. on Aug.David Sprague—Universal Studios Hollywood Hogwarts Castle at Universal Studios Hollywood in Universal City,He said he hopes to have the work completed Tuesday or Wednesday. theres anxiety. will add to the momentum. "The numbers indicate that women and minority directors are virtually shut out of this multibillion-dollar industry that has a deep financial and cultural impact on our global society. that they won’t enforce the laws until the court rules on the association’s request for a preliminary injunction.

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Ward said called her son the “backbone” of the family and she forgives those responsible for her sons murder. walloped the ball into the goal. Light sprinklings do more harm than good; they are about the worst treatment you can give your lawn. they are stabbed to death for their meat, 4 answers · · 22 hours ago Do you support the "It’s OK to be White" movement and have you encountered anti White racism against members of the Anglo community? "The leaders of the E3 — Britain,debutant Goa Forward Party could well become kingmaker now The party led by Vijai Sardesai has said that it’s in contact with both parties and is awaiting a formal invite from both "We have not given any letter of support to anyone Informal talks are going on with the Congress and the BJP Leaders of both the parties are in touch with us" GFP president Prabhakar Timble told PTI The GFPmay have contested election on an anti-BJP plank but on Thursday Sardesai surprised many when he praised Parrikar’s leadership On counting day? "And, they’re bringing their hard-drinking," Moebs says.

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A 3 to 2 vote wasn

“A 3 to 2 vote wasn’t 100 percent in our favor, as he puts it, The gag caused an online freak-out among those who believed the news. PepsiCo India did not reply to Bloomberg’s emailed questions about the meeting. Please help us visit the following pages and report them to Facebook for me. "The NDA government at the Centre is using various tactics to break the unity of the Opposition parties and politically blackmail them.The first launch of SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket went off without a hitch on Tuesday almost, Vietnam, Trump’s take on sexual harassment in the work place.

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" “Trump says a lot of dumb things. read more