- Grass stained with Gandhi’s blood auctioned for 10,000 pounds
- Campaign to track misleading Ads in India launched
- Man reunites with Family after 25 years using Google Earth
- Youtube to incorporate Google + Commenting Feature
- IISER Scientist gets bail in West Bengal
- 2,900 million litres of garbage discharged into Ganga daily
- Indian Scientist develop Drought Resistant Rice
- 23 Ancient Indian Coins unearthed in a Dumka Village
- NCTC violates the Federal Structure of Country says Bihar CM
Posted: 17 Apr 2012 05:58 PM PDT
The auction also saw many other Gandhi memorabilia going under the hammer including his iconic round-rimmed glasses that fetched far more than the estimated price.
In all, the Gandhi-related items fetched over 100,000 pounds in the auction by the Shropshire-based auctioneer, Mullock’s.
The memorabilia included a pair of Gandhi’s round-rimmed glasses, ‘charkha’, a 10 inch 78 rpm Columbia disc of Gandhi giving his spiritual message signed by him, and original photographs of Gandhi visiting London in 1931. Also in the collection sold were letters in English by Gandhi to Raghavan, Sgt N E R Poduwal in Rangoon, letters by Gandhi in Gujarati and a prayer book in Gujarati.
The pair of Gandhi’s glasses had a guide price of 10,000 pounds but sold for 34,000 pounds. Kevin Bland, financial controller at Mullock’s, said the unnamed telephone bidder who bought the spectacles also spent 26,500 pounds on a wooden “charka”. The same bidder bought his prayer book for 10,500 pounds
Posted: 17 Apr 2012 03:53 PM PDT
Misleading Advertisement would not be tolerated from now on wards. The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) today launched an initiative to track and control misleading advertisements.
The National Advertising Monitoring Service (NAMS), instituted in partnership with TAM Media Research, is a paradigm shift for self-regulation in advertising, said the self-regulatory voluntary body of the ad industry.
As part of the initiative, TAM’s division, AdEx, will monitor roughly 350 TV and 10,860 newspaper ads per week. Ads categorised as specifically violating ASCI’s code related to unsubstantiated, misleading or false claims will be monitored.
The scope of work will cover tracking all editions of over 30 newspapers, which contribute to over 80 per cent of national readership, and TV channels in all languages.
AdEx will identify misleading ads which are in potential violation ASCI code in sectors like auto, banking, financial services and insurance, FMCG, consumer durables, educational institutions, healthcare products and services, telecom and real estate. These will be forwarded to ASCI on a weekly basis. ASCI would process them as per its complaint procedure for adjudication.
Posted: 17 Apr 2012 02:32 PM PDT
Kolkata: Sometimes Internet can do such miracles which no one can envisage. With the help of Google Earth, a 31 year old Indian man was able to locate his family after a gap of 25 years. Saroo Brierley then, a 5 year old Boy who used to sweep in trains lost contacts with his family while he was asleep. He had expected his older brother to wake him up but instead he slept for 14 hours and found himself in an unknown city when he awoke.
Lost and with no way of finding his way back, he spent time on the streets before being taken in by an orphanage.
Mr Brierley was later adopted and moved out of India to Tasmania in Australia.
Nearly quarter of a century afterwards, Mr Brierley set about searching for his family, but he did not know the name of his hometown.
However, using his memories he used Google Earth to search through dozens of images in the hope of finding an area that he remembered.
“It was just like being Superman. You are able to go over and take a photo mentally and ask: ‘Does this match?’,” Mr Brierley said.
“And when you say, ‘No’, you keep on going and going and going.”
To narrow down the search, he calculated the distance the train would have travelled using the speed of Indian trains and the time he was on the train – 14 hours. He eventually came up with a distance of 1,200km.
He drew a circle around a satellite map of Calcutta and eventually he found where his family had lived in a place called Khandwa.
“When I found it, I zoomed down and bang, it just came up,” he said.
“I navigated it all the way from the waterfall where I used to play.”
Mr Brierley travelled back to India. He found his family had moved on but neighbours remembered his mother and they arranged for him to see her.
He was overwhelmed to find her. Speaking about the reunion he said: “The last time I saw her she was 34 years old and a pretty lady, I had forgotten that age would get the better of her.
“But the facial structure was still there and I recognised her and I said, ‘Yes, you are my mother.’ ”She grabbed my hand and took me to her house. She could not say anything to me. I think she was as numb as I was.
“She had a bit of trouble grasping that her son, after 25 years, had just reappeared like a ghost.” Film makers have taken an interest in Mr Brierley's story and are considering making his story into a film.
This article originally appeared on the Telegraph UK on April 17, 2012 and can be viewed here
Posted: 17 Apr 2012 12:29 PM PDT
Video Sharing site YouTube will soon add Google+ commenting services. This means that a user with a valid Google + id can directly comment on Youtube and this will appear on Google + News Feed visible to all who have added him in Circles. In an interview with Reuters , Tom Pickett, Head of YouTube Operations said this on last Thursday April 12, who was on a visit to a visit to India.
Youtube, the massively dominant video sharing website owned by Google, aims to spruce up its social networking skills through better integration across platforms, and hopes to more than double annual ad revenue in emerging markets like India, the top executive said.
"YouTube has been lacking great social features. Commenting and sharing have been part of YouTube, but the experiences could be much better than they are."
YouTube says it gets around 800 million unique users every month. India is the second-biggest source of content for YouTube, after the United States.
Pickett said YouTube was working on areas such as the comments section of the site, which doesn't allow users to log in from other social networking sites like Facebook or Twitter.
Posted: 17 Apr 2012 08:59 AM PDT
A West Bengal court Tuesday granted bail to internationally acclaimed scientist Partho Sarothi Roy who was put behind bars for taking part in an anti-eviction drive, his lawyer said.
The relief comes a day after eminent national and international personalities including US-based academician-intellectual Noam Chomsky wrote to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh seeking Roy’s release.
“Partha Sarothi Roy was granted bail today (Tuesday) by the court of additional chief judicial magistrate (Alipore) Shahnawaz Khan. He will be released from the correctional home (jail) tomorrow (Wednesday),” Roy’s counsel Shankar Mukherjee told IANS.
An assistant professor at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research at Kalyani in Nadia district, Roy was arrested with 68 others April 8 for their alleged involvement in a clash with police during a rally April 4.
Roy had participated in the rally which was taken out after the state government March 30 demolished some shanties in Nonadanga, east of the city.
Even though 62 of the people arrested were released, Roy, along with six others, was sent to police custody.
Posted: 17 Apr 2012 05:06 AM PDT
Describing the performance of states in operating and maintaining existing sewage treatment plants as “tardy”, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Tuesday said every day 2,900 million litres of sewage is discharged into the Ganga, way above the capacity of the sewage treatment plants.
The prime minister, who was chairing the third National Ganga River Basin Authority (NGRBA), said urgent steps should be taken to save the river, deemed sacred by Hindus, and said that “time is not on our side.”
He said the states needs to focus on three key areas – untreated sewage, industrial pollution and need to maintain the ecological flow of the Ganga, deified by Hindus and intrinsic to India’s literature and lore.
The Ganga provides water to over 40 percent of India’s population in 11 states.
“First is on the issue of untreated sewage. Every day about 2,900 million litres of sewage is discharged into the main stream of the river Ganga from municipal towns located along its banks. The existing infrastructure has a capacity to treat only 1,100 million litres per day, leaving a huge deficit,” he said.
He said adequate funding is available to create additional treatment facilities under the National Mission Clean Ganga and urged the states to send appropriate proposals for new projects.
“The performance of the states with regard to the operation and maintenance of the existing sewage treatment plants has been tardy. There is under-utilisation of this infrastructure, particularly in the absence of connecting sewerage networks such as branch sewers and house sewer connections,” he said in his meet.
The meeting was called after former Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) professor and environmentalist G.D. Agarwal, 80, sat on a fast-unto-death in January this year. He called off his fast March 23 after a government assurance to call an NGRBA meeting on April 17.
Singh said the second issue is about industrial pollution and mooted strong action against the defaulting industries.
“Though they are only 20 percent of the total volume of effluents, industrial effluents are a cause for major concern because they are toxic and non-biodegradable. Most of the waste water comes from tanneries, distilleries, paper mills and sugar mills along the banks of the Ganga,” he said.
The prime minister also asked states to make an assessment of the situation with regard to both untreated sewage and industrial pollution and present a report to the NRGBA, which was constituted under the chairmanship of the prime minister for cleaning the Ganga in 2009.
“We can then decide what concrete steps are necessary to attend to some of the institutional, administrative and financial problems that may be coming in the way of more effective implementation of pollution control and abatement measures,” he added.
“I urge all the concerned state governments to make full use of the resources that are available with the NRGBA.
“Projects with an outlay of more than Rs.2,600 crore have been sanctioned so far under the NGRBA in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Bihar and West Bengal for creating sewer networks, sewage treatment plants, sewage pumping stations, electric crematoria, community toilets and development of river fronts,” he said.
Singh said the third area – to maintain the ecological flow of the Ganga warrants immediate action and attention.
State governments and urban local bodies should promote water conservation and recycling of treated waste water and to promote efficient irrigation practices as a large amount of water from the Ganga is drawn through the canal systems in the upper reaches for agricultural use, he said.
Singh added that a multi-disciplinary group should look holistically at the various options available and recommend broad principles and actions that need to be taken with regard to conservation, irrigation use and running of hydel projects that will ensure uninterrupted flow of the river Ganga.
Posted: 17 Apr 2012 02:03 AM PDT
Scientists at University of Calcutta have developed the nation’s first genetically engineered(GE) drought resistant rice variety, a top Indian Council of Agriculture Research (ICAR) official said at Ahmedabad.
“Genetically engineered drought tolerant rice variety has been developed by Calcutta University. The varsity this month has published a paper on drought resistant rice,” Deputy Director General (Crop Sciences) of ICAR Prof Swapan Kumar Datta said.
“The production capacity of this variety will remain the same as in other crops, but it can survive without water,” he said. “It will take -say- another two or three years to conduct the field trials of this variety,” Datta said adding some state governments were not ready to give permission for its field trials.
According to ICAR, India can now develop variety of drought tolerant wheat, rice and maize. Drought tolerant maize variety is available with a company and its field trials are being conducted outside India, Datta said.
The states like Rajasthan and Gujarat need more drought resistant varieties, he said adding “In future we would like to have those kind of materials (crops) which are drought tolerant, nitrogen sufficient and efficient in water use, so that it could increase the yield,”.
China has already field-tested indigenously developed transgenic wheat variety which is drought tolerant, he informed.
Posted: 17 Apr 2012 01:30 AM PDT
“Work at the site has since been stopped after the discovery of the antique coins. We will write about the findings to the Archaeological Survey of India,” Dumka Deputy Commissioner Prashant Kumar said here.
Some coins were slim and big while other ones were thick and small in size. The site from where the coins were found is half-a-km away from Marpa village, which is also an interesting place for archeologists, another government officer said.
Posted: 17 Apr 2012 12:50 AM PDT
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today said the core issue in formation of NCTC was the violation of the federal principle and emphasised on the need for more consultations and collaboration between the Centre and the states to resolve all matters of internal security.
He maintained that the core issue in NCTC is violation of the principle of federalism. “The only level at which meaningful discussion could be held (on NCTC) is between heads of Government at the Centre and states,” Kumar said, adding that he will express his views in detail on the issue at the May 5 meeting being held here specifically to discuss the NCTC issue.
Raising other Centre-state issues relating to internal security, Kumar maintained that collaboration, positive and trusting approach is the need of the hour and will go a long way in addressing the problems of internal security.
Insisting that his government has implemented the police reforms in his state, Kumar said, “We urge the Central Government to avoid diluting the responsibilities of a democratically elected government in guise of police reforms. In Bihar the process of separation of investigation and Law & Order functions has been started.”
The Bihar Chief Minister enumerated the ways in which his government is trying to tackle Left-Wing Extremism in the state.
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