Rally by Kashmiri separatists foiled

first_imgThe authorities on Friday foiled a march called by separatists in Kashmir by placing parts of Srinagar and Anantnag under security restrictions.All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Tehreek-e-Hurriyat (TeH) chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief Yasin Malik were either detained or placed under house arrest during the day. Security forces erected barricades in Srinagar and along the National Highway connecting the city with Anantnag. Train services were stopped in south Kashmir. No Friday prayers were allowed at the historic Jamia Masjid. “Why is the government choking our political activities if it believes in democracy?” the APHC chairman said.“Hundreds killed” The Mirwaiz alleged that “hundreds of people, mostly youth, have been killed in the ‘Operation All-Out’”.“The dictatorial approach of those in power is highly condemnable. The government has conceded its defeat by disallowing the rally,” the Mirwaiz added.last_img read more

Kidnap bid foiled in Goa

first_imgPanaji: The South Goa police on Saturday foiled a kidnapping attempt of a businessman from Vasco by three persons. The kidnappers, who were being chased by the police, pushed the victim from the car. “Three people kidnapped Harish Solanki from outside his shop and demanded a ransom of ₹10 lakh,” acting Superintendent of Police Dinraj Govekar said. The victim was pushed out of the moving car, after a police control room van started chasing the Tata Indica vehicle which the kidnappers were driving, the police officer said. “The victim is fine. There are no injuries. We have identified the kidnappers,” Mr. Govekar said, and added they would be caught soon.last_img read more

World Championship is Saina’s next main target

first_imgSaina Nehwal has now set her sights on the World Championship title.”I am now targeting a win at the World Championship. The Worlds is one of the biggest tournaments on the Badminton World Federation ( BWF) circuit,” Saina said, who won the Hong Kong Open on Sunday.The triumphant shuttler returned to Hyderabad from Hong Kong on Monday night.Saina also said that 2011 would be an important year for her. “That’s not only because of the World No. 1 ranking but also due to the fact that it will be an Olympic qualification year. One has to be at one’s best in order to make the cut for the London Olympics,” she said.However, the Indian ace recognises the tough job on her hands. ” I will be playing in a lot more Super Series events in the coming year. This is so since I have to play more often in order to aim for the top ranking,” she said.As regards her ranking, Saina said the world No. 1 spot was not on the top of her agenda. “To become world No. 1 is not my priority right now. I want to win the majors. I will be satisfied even if I am ranked in the top four”.Saina is pretty satisfied with whatever she achieved in 2010. “I won three Super Series titles, one Grand Prix title and the Commonwealth Games gold. I was also conferred with the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna and Padma Shri awards,'” she said.Coming to her lows, Saina said she was disappointed at her quarter- final loss at the Asian Games. “I had trained very hard for the Games and was very disappointed at the loss to Pui Yin Yip. I thought I stood a good chance to win especially after leading in the decider,” she said.advertisementShe also gave credit to coaches Gopi Chand and Baskar Babu for her success in Hong Kong.”The wins over Pui Yin Yip and Wang Shixian were very satisfying. Beating a Chinese in the final is always a happy feeling,” she said, adding, “out of the three Super Series titles, the Hong Kong Open was the toughest and most challenging.” She described her loss at the Asian Games as a result of one of her off days. “It was one of the most disappointing moments of my career,” she said.She said she was ready for the challenge from the Chinese shuttlers. “I have improved my strokes, my smashes are very hard and my overall game has improved a lot,” she said.Chief coach Pullela Gopi Chand said it has been a fantastic year for Saina. “Winning the Hong Kong Super Series, where the best players were playing, is a huge achievement, particularly after coming after the Asian Games. I think it was a great victory,” he said.Gopi warned that there will be more challenges next year. “The Chinese will be waiting to beat her. It will be a tough year. We have to get her ready with more workouts. But what I like about her is that she is ready to take the workload. She has proved we can beat the Chinese. She has shown the way for other Indians,” he said.Baskar Babu, who accompanied Saina to all the three Super Series tournaments, said he was happy to be part of a winning unit. “It was one of the toughest tournaments.I always like her attitude. I was there when she won her first title in the Philippines and now the latest one,” he said.Indian Open inauguratedMeanwhile, the Indian Open, which gets underway in Hyderabad on Wednesday, was inaugurated.While Saina is the top seed on the women’s side, Indonesian Dlouys Rumbyaya gets the top billing in the men’s section.last_img read more

Demi Lovato And Carly Rae Jepsen Join We Day Minnesota

first_imgInternational charity and educational partner Free The Children, in partnership with Title sponsors Cheerios, Green Giant and Yoplait, announced the second group of names joining the star-studded lineup set to inspire 18,000 students who have earned their way through service to attend the first-ever We Day Minnesota at the Xcel Energy Center on October 8.Sharing their passion for change, international experiences and energizing the crowd with unforgettable performances will be multi-platinum, chart-topping artists the Jonas Brothers and Carly Rae Jepsen along with renowned speakers including Barbara Pierce Bush, award-winning actress and activist Mia Farrow, international activists and Free The Children co-founders, Craig and Marc Kielburger. Also joining via Skype for an important message will be award-winning singer-songwriter and Free The Children ambassador, Demi Lovato.Considering We Day has been called the Super Bowl for service, the event’s all-star roster will fittingly include NFL players from the Minnesota Vikings and other local dignitaries and personalities, including We Day co-chairs and siblings, Dean Phillips and Hutton Phillips, the Governor of Minnesota, Mark Dayton, Minnesota Commissioner of Education, Brenda Cassellius, Mayor of St. Paul, Chris Coleman, Jack Jablonski and spoken word poet and rapper Dessa.In the year of the 50th anniversary of his father’s memorable I Have a Dream speech, an exciting addition to the lineup is human rights advocate Martin Luther King III, who will be speaking at all We Day events across North America in 2013.Leading the electrified crowd as a co-host will be platinum selling artist and star of Disney’s Good Luck Charlie, Bridgit Mendler.“I had the opportunity this past summer to participate with Free The Children’s communities in Kenya, and see first-hand the lasting impact that youth in North America are making through their charitable work,” said Joe Jonas from the Grammy-nominated, multi-platinum band the Jonas Brothers. “I understand what it means to these communities to have access to clean water and an education and I was thrilled to get involved by committing to help build two schools overseas with Free The Children. It may seem like a simple assignment to make one local and one global commitment, but these efforts fundamentally impact the lives of people around the world.”We Day is a stadium-sized educational event and a movement of young people leading local and global change. We Day is tied to the year-long program, We Act, which supports students and educators with free educational resources, student-led campaigns and support materials to help turn the event’s inspiration into sustained activation. Since 2007, youth involved in the We Act program have raised $37 million dollars for over 1,000 local and global causes and logged more than 9.6 million volunteer hours.The 2013/2014 We Day season will be the largest season to date. We Day will see more than 160,000 in attendance in 12 cities across North America, and internationally for the first time with We Day UK in spring 2014, truly making this a global movement for change.We Day and the We Act program are free of charge to the thousands of students and educators in attendance at the event and state-wide, thanks to the generous support of sponsors led in Minnesota by Title Sponsors Cheerios, Green Giant and Yoplait along with other supporters, including Bremer Bank, the Otto Bremer Foundation, The Edward J. Phillips Family Foundation and the Carlson Family Foundation.last_img read more

Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy Celebrates Legacy of Barbara Bush

first_imgThe Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy mourns the passing and celebrates the legacy of its founder, Barbara Bush.Barbara Pierce Bush — a beloved first lady, proud mother of six children, accomplished author and passionate champion for family literacy — passed away on April 17, 2018.Mrs. Bush believed that every man, woman and child should have the opportunity to secure a better life through literacy. In 1989, this belief inspired her to establish the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy, which has provided educational opportunities for Americans of all ages, in all 50 states, over the past 29 years.Jean Becker, member of the Foundation’s board of directors and chief of staff to President George H.W. Bush, shared, “Mrs. Bush was a mother first and foremost, and as such believed that the most wonderful gift she could give her children — and families across America — was a love of reading and learning.”Today, the Foundation remains committed to Mrs. Bush’s vision, providing innovative programs and strategies aimed to expand access to education for all Americans. Doro Bush Koch, daughter of President George H.W. and Barbara Bush, carries on her mother’s legacy as honorary chair of the Foundation.“My favorite quote from Mrs. Bush is, ‘Believe in something larger than yourself…get involved in the big ideas of your time,’” said Chris Frangione, interim CEO of the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy. “She believed in the power of literacy to strengthen families and our nation, now and for generations to come. Her passion for big ideas will live on through the Foundation, continuing to inspire us as we work toward literacy for all.”In lieu of flowers, Mrs. Bush requested that those wishing to honor her memory do so through contributions to the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy. Visit www.barbarabushlegacy.org to make a memorial gift, share a tribute honoring Mrs. Bush’s memory, or learn more about her incredible life and legacy.last_img read more

Stranger Things Millie Bobby Brown coming to Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo

first_imgAdvertisement Facebook Login/Register With: Advertisement Advertisement Firefly’s Nathan Fillion has already been announced.Brown rose to stardom after starring in Stranger Things, opposite Winona Ryder and Matthew Modine. She played psychokinetic teen Eleven, who befriends a gang of misfit kids after escaping a government facility. Twitter LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Child actress Millie Bobby Brown, best known for her touching and effectively creepy turn as Eleven in the Netflix hit Stranger Things, is coming to Calgary this April.The 12-year-old actress was announced as a guest of the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo this year, which runs from April 27 to 30 at Stampede Park.Also new to the lineup is Christopher Lambert, best known for 1986’s Highlander and 1984’s Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan and Danielle Panabaker, who plays Killer Frost in Arrow and The Flash.last_img read more

Mudra Bank Start up India to shore up MSMEs

first_imgWith the opening of the Mudra Bank and Start up India programme, credit for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) that is a big issue will now change for the better, according to the author of a new report on the subject.Institute of Small Enterprise and Development (ISED) director P.M.Mathew, who has prepared the report that will be launched by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Deputy Governor S.S. Mundra at Mumbai’s World Trade Centre on Thursday, 26 November, said the new steps by the government in 2015, such as Mudra Bank’s setting up, and Start up India have helped to broad base credit in the Indian economy, especially for MSMEs and other micro-level economic activities.”This, unlike the ‘Loan Melas’ of the 1970s, are likely to make a significant impact on enterprise activities at the ‘bottom of pyramid’,” he said.Mathew said that the international data shows that small business loans on the balance sheets of banks are down about 20% since the 2008 global financial crisis, while loans to larger businesses have risen by about 4% over the same period.SME lending is shrinking with bank loans to SMEs in the US have been falling as a proportion of total loans over the years, he said, adding that this is true of many other European countries as well.”Fortunately, in India, non-profit lenders, crowd funders, and other online lenders are stepping up to fill the gap. These lenders are often leveraging technology to access creditworthiness, underwrite, and service loans while traditional lenders can’t or don’t want to service anymore,” said Mathew.last_img read more

Rohingya repatriation relocation stalled

first_imgHundreds of Rohingya refugees shout slogans as they protest against their repatriation at the Unchiprang camp in Teknaf, on 15 November 2018. — Photo: ReutersBangladesh’s plans to tackle the Rohingya refugee crisis have been stalled until the new year with repatriation and relocation programs only likely to be revisited following year-end general elections, a top Bangladeshi official said on Sunday.Abul Kalam, Bangladesh’s refugee relief and repatriation commissioner, told Reuters “a new course of action” needed to be adopted on repatriation that took into account refugees’ key demands.More than 720,000 Rohingya fled a sweeping army crackdown in Myanmar’s Rakhine state in 2017, according to UN agencies. The crackdown was launched in response to insurgent Rohingya attacks on security forces.Rohingya refugees say soldiers and Buddhist civilians killed families, burned many villages and carried out gang rapes. UN-mandated investigators have accused Myanmar’s army of “genocidal intent” and ethnic cleansing. Myanmar has denied almost all the accusations, saying its forces engaged in a counter-insurgency operation against “terrorists”.In late October, Bangladesh and Myanmar agreed to begin to repatriate hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslim refugees who fled, but the plan has been opposed by the Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh and the UN refugee agency and aid groups, who fear for the safety of Rohingya in Myanmar.The repatriation of the first batch of 2,200 refugees was to begin officially on 15 November, but it stalled amid protests at the refugee camps. None of those on the list agreed to return if their demands for justice, citizenship and the ability to go back to their original villages and lands were not met.“I don’t think anyone’s agreeing to go back without these,” said Kalam, who last week called on the international community to pressure Myanmar to accept certain “logical and acceptable” demands in order for any repatriation to take place.Myanmar does not consider the Rohingya a native ethnic group and calls them “Bengalis”, suggesting they belong in Bangladesh. It has agreed to take the Rohingya back and said they would need to accept the National Verification Card, which it says would allow Rohingya to apply for citizenship. The Rohingya reject the card, saying it brands them foreigners.Kalam said he believed Myanmar needed to propose a “clearer path” to citizenship for the Rohingya if any returns were to take place, adding he would raise the matter at the next bilateral meeting on repatriation, likely to take place next month.Myanmar government spokesman Zaw Htay was not reachable on Sunday for comment.With Bangladesh now set to go to the polls on 30 December, any decision either to repatriate people, or relocate refugees from the crowded camps to Bangladesh’s Bhasan Char island will not proceed until 2019, Kalam said.“Elections are coming up now, so the government will only finalise a future course of action after the elections,” said Kalam, adding that Bangladesh remained ready to repatriate refugees if any volunteered to return.Bangladesh has vowed not to force anyone to return.Kalam said construction work on alternative housing on Bhasan Char was “nearly complete.” He said he was hopeful some refugees would agree to move, given the island’s “livelihood opportunities” such as fishing and farming. Aid agencies express caution as the island is prone to flooding.last_img read more

Oikya Front leaders meet diplomats

first_imgOikya Front leaders sat for a meeting with diplomats at a city hotel on Wednesday. US ambassador Earl R Miller is seen in the picture before the meeting. Photo: Abdus SalamJatiya Oikya Front top leaders, including eminent jurist Kamal Hossain, are holding a meeting with the foreign diplomats stationed in Dhaka at a city hotel on Wednesday afternoon.Diplomats of the USA, the United Kingdom, China, Japan, Korea, Indonesia, Pakistan, Sweden, Switzerland, Norway, Turkey, Phillipines, France, Australia, among others, joined the meeting.The Oikya Front leaders include BNP standing committee member Nazrul Islam Khan, Gano Forum executive president Subrato Chowdhury, Gonoshasthaya Kendra founder Zafrullah Chowdhury, BNP leaders Tabith Awal, Sabih Uddin Ahmed, Zeba Khan and Asaduzzaman Ripon.last_img read more

India reimposes restrictions in Kashmir ahead of EidulAzha

first_imgKashmiri women shout slogans during a protest after the scrapping of the special constitutional status for Kashmir by the Indian government, in Srinagar, on 11 August 2019. Photo: ReutersIndian authorities reimposed some restrictions in parts of Kashmir on Sunday ahead of the Muslim festival Eid, amid fears that large gatherings could trigger renewed protests against Delhi’s withdrawal of special rights for the region.Indian prime minister Narendra Modi’s government locked down the Muslim-majority region last Sunday, cutting off communications, detaining more than 300 political leaders and activists, and putting a ‘virtual curfew’ into force with numerous police and army roadblocks stopping movement by many residents.Seeking to tighten its grip on the region also claimed by neighbouring Pakistan, India scrapped Jammu and Kashmir’s right to frame its own laws and allowed non-residents to buy property there.On Friday, restrictions on movement in some parts of the Himalayan region’s main city of Srinagar were relaxed, with people pouring out on to the streets to stock up on provisions.But protests erupted after Friday prayers, with pro-independence youth demonstrating before being repelled by tear gas and pellets, according to police sources, witnesses and footage shown by international broadcasters.On Sunday, a Reuters reporter saw a police van driving around one part of Srinagar announcing that restrictions had been imposed again and asking people to stay indoors.Police checkpoints were also placed on some roads leading to the old quarter of the city, a traditional hotbed of protests, and some streets in central Srinagar.Officials were debating how to handle Monday’s Eid-al-Azha festival, one of the two most important festivals of the Islamic calendar, which typically sees several thousands throng major mosques in Srinagar.Indian officials will hold a video-conference with senior police and administration officials from all 10 districts in the disputed Kashmir valley on Sunday evening to decide on restrictions, two senior state government officials told Reuters.”We will make an assessment of the situation today,” one official said, requesting anonymity because he is not authorised to speak to the media. “I do not think we will allow large gatherings.”Kashmiri men shout slogans during a protest after the scrapping of the special constitutional status for Kashmir by the Indian government, in Srinagar, on 11 August 2019. Photo: ReutersIndia’s home ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the latest restrictions in Kashmir.Leaders in Kashmir had warned of a backlash against the stripping of autonomy in a territory where militants have been fighting Indian rule for nearly 30 years, leading to the deaths of more than 50,000 people.Reuters reported at least 10,000 people were involved in Friday’s protest in Srinagar’s Soura area, based on an estimate provided by a police source and backed up by two eyewitnesses. Another official source on Saturday gave Reuters the same estimate.Dilbag Singh, the Jammu and Kashmir director general of police, told Reuters on Sunday that between 1,000 and 1,500 people were returning from praying at mosques on Friday when “some miscreants” started pelting stones at security officials.”It was a reaction to stone pelting by these miscreants that one or two rounds of pump action gun was fired,” Singh said, adding that four to five men suffered injuries.Authorities had detained around 300 local leaders in total and some of them had been taken out of Kashmir, he said.Pakistan’s WrathPakistan has downgraded diplomatic ties with India and suspended trade in anger at Delhi’s latest move.Pakistani prime minister Imran Khan on Sunday compared India’s ruling Hindu nationalist party’s policies to dictator Adolf Hitler’s “Nazi Aryan Supremacy.” He warned Modi’s actions would go beyond Kashmir and eventually target Indian Muslims and neighbouring Pakistan.”Attempt is to change demography of Kashmir through ethnic cleansing. Question is: Will the world watch & appease as they did Hitler at Munich?” Khan tweeted.Ram MAzhav, a senior leader in India’s ruling Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), hit back.”Threat to democratic world is from Pak-sponsored Jehadi terror, not from India,” MAzhav tweeted.Pakistan said on Saturday that it had gained China’s support to take a motion to the United Nations Security Council condemning the Indian decision to change the status of Jammu and Kashmir.Islamabad has not received much support from other major nations, however, suggesting its odds of success at the UN were slim.India’s BJP has long campaigned for abrogating Kashmir’s special privileges in the constitution, which it sees as an appeasement to Muslims and a hindrance to its own development.The BJP and even some top opposition leaders have welcomed the decision to absorb Kashmir fully into India, and it has brought Modi support across the country.Blocked off from the world and largely unable to work or socialize, many Kashmiris were sombre ahead of Monday’s festival. Some said they would not partake in the ritual sacrificing of sheep.”What kind of Eid is this?” said one elderly man walking down a street in downtown Srinagar’s Jamia Masjid area. “We cannot reach our loves ones, we cannot visit our relatives’ homes, then what are we celebrating?” he said, declining to be named.last_img read more

Howard Homecoming – Whats Missing

first_imgThousands of people from across the world came to the District of Columbia to participate in Howard University’s recent homecoming events. But, many were surprised when key activities were left off the schedule.During the week of Oct. 18-22, Howard celebrated its homecoming week, with the name “Blueprint,” which, according to the university’s website, stood for recognizing the past, celebrating the present and embracing the future. Homecoming events took place on the main quadrangle known as “The Yard,” the Burr Gymnasium, and throughout the university. But, some signature events such as the parade and the gospel concert didn’t take place this year, and some alumni weren’t happy about it.Howard University homecoming is one of the District’s most popular events. (Courtesy Photo)“I miss the parade and I am disappointed that it was cancelled,” Ryscha Williams told the AFRO. “I miss the gospel concert too. There were also too many people in line at the events and you had to do too much walking to go to things.”Kevin Jenkins, a graduate of Howard, agreed with Williams. “I was disappointed that there was no parade,” Jenkins told the AFRO on Oct. 22. “After getting my haircut, I stepped on Georgia Avenue and said to myself, ‘Where is the judges’ stand?’”The reason for the missing events had more to do with the budget than with a lack of interest. “The budget was reduced dramatically, by 20 percent,” said Victor Montgomery, director of special events and development and alumni relations told AFRO. “In years past, we’ve gone over for events that cost a lot, like the Gospel show and the parade, but receive little or no return. This put us in a hole fiscally. This year, the goal was ‘less-is-more.’ We put our focus in making fewer events more memorable for all.”Howard University has celebrated its homecoming since 1924 and it is considered one of the leading annual entertainment activities occurring in the District. As many as 100,000 people participate in homecoming activities that include a football game with a battle between Howard’s band and the visiting band, Yardfest, and a concert event that takes place on the The Yard the Friday before the Saturday football game that features well-known artists and bands.This year, rapper-entertainer Common, vocalist Faith Evans and the band Ayyy-tone entertained thousands of people at the International Yardfest. The Yardfest also had vendors in white tents selling food, university and Greek-letter paraphernalia, and organizations such as the Peace Corps and the D.C. Army National Guard.“Yardfest speaks to the fellowship, community and Howard. Issues with the crowd caused us to cancel it in other years, but the alumni reached out and expressed how much of a signature the event is to Howard,” Montgomery said.The step show, featuring Greek-letter organizations, took place on Oct. 20 and was sold-out. “I am glad to see the step show back on campus,” Williams said. The step show features Greek fraternities and sororities stepping in cadence with dance routines.Howard University President Wayne A.I. Frederick said that “homecoming is a unique experience.”“It not only provides an opportunity for Howard University students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends to engage with one another but it also reminds us why the Howard University experience is essential to the genetic makeup of the Diaspora and the world,” Frederick said.Katherine Powell, a spokesperson for the homecoming committee, told The Hilltop Howard’s student-run newspaper, that changes were made to make homecoming more focused on its popular events.“We wanted to bring everything back to those core events, the very traditional Yardfest and step show, everything that is most exciting,” Powell said. “Obviously the parade, R&B show, and the gospel show were events that the community loved, however we wanted to make sure that we allocated all of our efforts and funds to do a very strong Yardfest and step show.”There were other events such as a “Committed to Breath” town hall meeting, an LGBTA Reception, and a Tailgate that ultimately had thousands of people at the school’s parking lot across from the university’s bookstore.Inga Willis told the AFRO she was going to enjoy homecoming, parade or not. “I am happy to come to homecoming,” Willis said. “I think the homecoming committee and the administration did what was feasible. There should always be a flexible schedule in regards to those things.Not having the parade didn’t stop me from having a good time.”William Anderson, a junior at Howard, looked at homecoming differently. “It is great to see people come together and have a good time,” Anderson told the AFRO. “In terms of the parade, I have always learned that there will always be glitches. The main purpose of homecoming is for people in the Howard family to come together and have a good time.”Alexa Lisitza contributed to this article.last_img read more