Amarinder failed to punish firing case accused: Kejriwal

first_imgAs several people gathered in Faridkot’s Bargari on Sunday to demand action on the third anniversary of the Kotkapura and Behbal Kalan police firing incidents, which followed the Bargari sacrilege case, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal accused his Punjab counterpart Amarinder Singh of ‘failing’ to punish the accused.Krishan Bhagwan Singh and Gurjit Singh died in police firing in Faridkot district in October 2015, during protests against the sacrilege of Guru Granth Sahib, when the Shiromani Akali Dal-BJP combine government was in power.Twitter war Mr. Kejriwal took to Twitter to hit out at Capt. Amarinder, saying “On 3rd death anniversary of Behbal Kalan victims Krishan Bhagwan Singh and Gurjit Singh, I offer condolences to their families. Highly unfortunate that Capt. Amaridner govt has badly failed to punish the culprits of sacrilege of Shri Guru Granth Sahib Ji and the murderers of two innocents.”Criticising Mr. Kejriwal for politicising the issue, Capt. Amarinder replied by tweeting, “Stop politicking Arvind Kejriwal. It’s shocking a man in your position talks of subverting law instead of waiting for SIT’s findings. We don’t live in anarchy. In any case who better than you’d know what happens when one doesn’t go by law. Remember your apology to the Badal clan?”The Justice (Retd.) Ranjit Singh Commission, probing the police firing incident of 2015, in its report tabled in the State Assembly, had said former Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal was ‘quite aware’ of the situation developing and about the proposed action by the police. ‘Report baseless’The Shiromani Akali Dal and Mr. Badal have, though, denied any wrongdoing and termed the report baseless and hollow.Mr. Kejriwal, who was in Punjab last week, had accused the Congress government of failing to act against all those at fault based on the Justice Ranjit Singh Commission’s inquiry report on incidents of religious sacrilege in the State.Leader of the Opposition in the State Assembly Harpal Singh Cheema has asked five Congress Ministers, including Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa, Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, Navjot Singh Sidhu, Manpreet Singh Badal and Charanjit Singh Channi, to resign from their posts.“They (five Ministers) were at the fore front to seek registration of FIRs against former CM Mr. Badal and senior police officers, including former DGP Sumedh Sainin, in connection with the firing incident. But the government has failed to take action and hence they all should now resign,” said Mr. Cheema.He added that AAP MLA H.S. Phoolka has listened to the voice of his conscience and resigned from Vidhan Sabha on this very issue.last_img read more

NGO shelter homes raided

first_imgRaids are being conducted on Good News India-run Dream Centre shelter homes across Odisha by the police and Child Welfare Committee.Meanwhile, GNI founder and chairman Faiz Rahman was taken into custody on Tuesday for questioning.According to reports, 134 inmates, including 80 girls, were shifted from the shelter home. After counselling by the Ganjam CWC, 62 inmates were handed over to their guardians. The rest would be sent to their respective places on Wednesday.In a related development, a video clip purportedly showing Mr. Rahman converting children to Christianity has surfaced. State Women and Child Development Minister Prafulla Samal said, “Upon registration of FIR, the government would probe conversion activities, if any.”last_img read more

Leh avalanche: Two more bodies recovered, toll rises to seven

first_imgTwo more bodies were recovered, while three people remained missing on the second day of rescue operation in Leh’s avalanche-hit Khardung La Pass, located at an altitude of 18,380 ft.“After two days of rescue operations, seven bodies have been recovered. Three remain missing, for whom the rescue will resume at the first light on Sunday. The seven bodies are being airlifted to Zanskar on Sunday morning so that they can be handed over to their families,” deputy commissioner of Leh, Avny Lavasa, told The Hindu. The rescue was called off on Friday evening due to inclement weather and was resumed on Saturday morning. High-tech gadgets, including human detectors, and sniffer dogs were used to trace the civilians buried under snow, said an official.Five locals killed in the avalanche were working as porters with the Army. Two vehicles carrying 10 civilians were swept away and buried under the avalanche of approximately 20 ft depth and 800 m length which hit the Khardung La Top-South Pullu stretch on the world’s highest motorable road on Friday morning. The rescue is being jointly carried out by the State police, the Army and the State Disaster Response Force. It is likely to enter a difficult phase on Sunday as the meteorological department forecast more snow in Kashmir and Ladakh in the next three days and possibility of more avalanches in the upper reaches.Fresh avalanche warnings Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Baseer Ahmad Khan on Saturday issued avalanche warning for nine avalanche-prone districts of Kashmir division.“The warning has been issued for the avalanche-prone areas of district Anantnag, Kulgam, Budgam, Baramulla, Kupwara, Bandipora, Ganderbal, Kargil and Leh,” said Mr. Khan.People living in areas were advised “not to venture out to avoid the loss of lives”.“Deputy Commissioner are asked to take all the precautionary measures and to keep the SDRF, police and para-medical staff with ambulances in readiness to avert any untoward incident,” said Mr. Khan.last_img read more

Protest against proposed bird sanctuary in Manipur

first_imgThe Manipur government’s plan to set up a bird sanctuary at the Loktak lake in Bishnupur district has met with stiff opposition from the villagers in nearby areas.A large number of residents of Thingnunggei village took out a massive procession against the government’s proposal on Sunday.“The villagers of Thingnunggei are poor and they have no other means of earning a livelihood except for catching fish and plucking vegetables from the lake. If fishing is banned in the lake, the villagers would starve. We are all for protection of birds, most of whom are migratory, but the new scheme should not be implemented at the cost of the poor villagers,” said one of the protesters.Declining number Thousands of migratory birds flock to the Loktak lake, the largest freshwater lake in north-eastern India, every year. However, in the past few years there has been a sharp decline in the number of migratory birds coming to the lake.Reports indicate that bird poachers are active in the area, targeting the winged guests. Officials of the forest department’s wildlife wing say in view of the widespread bird poaching at the lake, setting up of the sanctuary is a must. Birdwatchers on the other hand blame human intrusion, bird poaching and hydroelectric power project near the lake for the decline in the number of migratory birds and brow-antlered deer in the Keibul Lamjao national park in the vicinity.Brow-antlered deerSome decades ago, the villagers of the lake islets had agitated against setting up of the Keibul Lamjao National Park, the natural habitat of the endangered brow-antlered deer. They wanted the land demarcated for the park to be made available to them for cultivating paddy.Now, several years later, the latest census suggests that there are only 260 brow-antlered deer in the Keibul Lamjao national park.last_img read more

Defence Ministry dismisses reports of Army jawan’s abduction by militants in Kashmir

first_imgThe Defence Ministry on Saturday denied reports of an Army jawan being abducted by militants from his home in central Kashmir’s Budgam district, saying he is “safe”.The family of Mohammad Yaseen, who is posted with the Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry (JAKLI) Regiment, had on Friday informed the police that some people came to their house at Qazipora Chadoora in Budgam and took him away.Mr. Yaseen was on leave. However, a Defence spokesperson on Saturday said the reports of the abduction of the jawan were incorrect.“Clarification. Media reports of the abduction of a serving Army soldier on leave from Qazipora, Chadoora, Budgam are incorrect. Individual is safe. Speculations may please be avoided,” the spokesperson said in a tweet.An Army official said they are trying to ascertain where the jawan had been on Friday night which prompted his family to approach the police.last_img read more

4 militants killed in Shopian and Handwara

first_imgFour militants were killed in two separate encounters in Kashmir valley on Thursday.Three militants, identified as Sajad Khanday, Aqib Ahmad Dar and Basharat Ahmad Mir, all residents of Pulwama, were killed in an early morning operation at Yawran village of Keller in Shopian district.“We had credible inputs about their presence in the area. All the three bodies were retrieved from the site of encounter. It was a combined group of Hizbul Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT),” said the police. Three rifles were recovered from the site.Dar, according to the police, had a long history and was involved in conspiring and executing many “terror attacks” in the area. Three AK rifles were recovered and were taken in the case records for further investigation,” the police said.In a separate gunfight that erupted in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district, one Jaish-e-Muhammad militant was killed. “Yaroo area of Langate in Handwara was cordoned off following a tip. The search party was fired upon. One militant was killed,” said the police.The slain militant was identified as Danish Ahmad Dar, a resident of Sopore.“Dar was affiliated to JeM. One rifle and grenades were recovered from the site of encounter,” the police said.last_img read more

BJP protests in Valley seeking protection to its workers

first_imgSeveral leaders and supporters of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday held street protest in Srinagar to demand security to all its workers in the Valley, four days after its leader was shot dead by suspected militants in south Kashmir.“I have decided to surrender my security too till all BJP workers are provided a security cover in Kashmir,” said BJP state general secretary Ashok Koul. He board a three-wheeler rather than the vehicle provided by the state security “as a mark of protest.” Earlier, Mr. Kaul led the street protest at Srinagar’s Press Enclave to press for his demands.Suspected militants shot dead BJP leader Gul Mohammad Mir (60) alias Attal on Saturday evening in Anantnag’s Nowgam area around 10 p.m. He succumbed to his injuries, inflicted by five bullets in the upper body. The BJP leader’s security was withdrawn a few weeks ago without citing any reason. The State Home department comes under Governor Satya Pal Malik in Jammu and Kashmir, since the State is under the President’s rule.Mir, who was BJP’s vice district president of Anantnag district, had unsuccessfully contested Assembly elections for Dooru assembly segment in 2008 and 2014.last_img read more

ScienceShot: Hawaiian Paradise for Dolphins and Whales

first_imgEighteen species of odontocetes—the toothed whales and dolphins, which include sperm whales and bottlenose dolphins—call the Hawaiian Islands home. But until now, little was known about where most of these 18 species dwell in these waters, what depths they prefer, and their population numbers. A team of scientists has helped fill in the blanks via a unique, 13-year survey made in small boats, ranging in size from 5.5 to 18 meters. Over the years, they covered 84,758 kilometers of survey lines, spotted 2018 odotocetes, and photographed as many of them as possible to ensure that each species was correctly identified. The slideshow above shows some of the rarer species. The team reports its findings online today in Aquatic Mammals. Knowing which cetaceans live where in the ocean and at what depths is important, the scientists say, in order to mitigate any problems that may occur from human activities, such as aquaculture, energy development, and Naval training exercises. Most troubling, the survey revealed that many of the cetaceans have strong preferences for living at specific depths. For instance, bottlenose dolphins and spinner dolphins were most often found in very shallow water (less than 500 meters), while striped and Risso’s dolphins and sperm whales preferred deeper waters (over 4000 meters). It’s unlikely, the scientists note, that aquaculture ventures will find a place free of fish-stealing dolphins, because they occupy such a range of depths. Similarly, the U.S. Navy will have trouble finding areas in Hawaii that don’t overlap with cetaceans, such as beaked and melon-headed whales, and pygmy killer whales, that are adversely affected by the type of active sonar used in training exercises. They live at the full range of depths that the Navy’s sonar uses, too.See more ScienceShots.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)last_img read more

Archaeologists Uncover First Use of Spices in European Cuisine

first_imgBits of silica stuck in charred residues scraped from pots reveal that chefs in northern Europe were cooking with spices at least 6 millennia ago. Although researchers have previously noted the use of strong-flavored ingredients such as onions by cooks in this region during the same era, the new find is the first to report the use of an ingredient that didn’t also have nutritional value—which means that the spice, ground seeds from a plant called garlic mustard, was almost certainly used solely for its flavor.The clues researchers used in the new study are microscopic bits of silica called phytoliths (from Greek, meaning “plant stones”). Plants produce these rugged structures from dissolved minerals in ground water that is pulled into their roots and then distributed throughout the organism, says Hayley Saul, a bioarchaeologist at the University of York in the United Kingdom. While some phytoliths are deposited inside a plant’s cells, others are created in spaces between cells or in special tissues. In many cases, phytoliths are characteristic of certain species, and can, due to their minerallike nature, persist long after a plant’s soft tissues have decomposed.In their latest research, Saul and her colleagues looked at small samples of charred material scraped from the inner surfaces of pottery fragments from two sites in Denmark and one site nearby in northern Germany. Of 74 samples, 26 included phytoliths with a globular shape and a distinctively wrinkled surface, Saul says. Their average size was about 7 micrometers across, less than half the diameter of the finest human hair. When the researchers compared the phytoliths from the residue with those produced in the stems, leaves, and seeds of more than 120 European and Asian plants, the only ones that matched were those made in the seeds of garlic mustard (Alliaria petiolata), a biennial herb that grows in a swath from Europe through Central Asia to northern India and western China. Garlic mustard was introduced to the United States in the 19th century and has since become a noxious, invasive species in many regions, especially in forest floors and on floodplains. Carbon-dating of the charred material, soot on the outside of the pot, or of charcoal or bones found with the pot fragments suggests that the phytolith-riddled meals were cooked between 5750 and 6100 years ago, the researchers report today in PLOS ONE. While archaeologists have unearthed flavorful ingredients such as capers and coriander at older sites in the Near East, the new finds are the oldest to chronicle spice use in Europe.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)Because garlic mustard seeds contain little if any starch, it’s not likely that the seeds were a source of nutrition, Saul says. Indeed, in all but one of the samples that contained phytoliths, the team also found chemical fragments of specific types of fatty substances called lipids that are either produced by ruminants such as red deer or marine creatures such as mussels, scallops, or fish. Those creatures were probably the largest part of the meal, Saul says, but ground garlic mustard—which has a strong, peppery flavor—likely spiced up the dish.The new study “is an innovative use of microfossil analysis,” says Deborah Pearsall, a paleoethnobotanist at the University of Missouri, Columbia. Because the tiny bits of silica came from charred residues on the inside of a pot, she notes, “there’s no ambiguity that humans were involved. … These phytoliths were there because some ancient cook added spice to the stew.”Not all plants produce a distinct type of phytolith, says Arlene Rosen, an environmental archaeologist at the University of Texas, Austin. “But these [phytoliths] are not like any I’ve seen in any other plant, and they compare favorably” with those produced in the seeds of garlic mustard, she notes. “I think it’s a high probability that they came from that plant.”Recently, using cod and pork—meats that inhabitants of Denmark and northern Germany certainly ate, based on remains found at the archeological sites—and garlic mustard, Saul cooked up flavorful replicas of ancient stews. “They went down very well,” she says.Because garlic mustard is found across a broad region, Saul notes, it’s not clear whether its use as a spice originated in northern Europe or was imported from other areas, such as the Near East. Regardless of where the culinary practice began, however, the new finding suggests that Stone Age cooks “didn’t necessarily ‘shop’ based on nutrient value,” Rosen says. “They ate things for their taste.”last_img read more

Even online, you can’t have more than 150 friends

first_imgYour starbase is almost complete. All you need is a few more tons of ore. You could take the afternoon to mine it from an asteroid field, but you’ve heard of a Ska’ari who trades ore for cheap. So you message your alliance, use your connections to set up a meeting, and hop in your spacecraft. It’s good to have friends, even if they are virtual.An online science fiction game may not seem like the ideal place to study human behavior, but physicist Stefan Thurner has shown that the way people act in the virtual world isn’t so different from how they act in the real one. Thurner studies all sorts of complex systems at the Medical University of Vienna, so when one of his doctoral students just happened to create one of the most popular free browser-based games in Europe, Thurner suggested using the game, called Pardus, to study the spontaneous organization of people in a closed society. For almost three-and-a-half years, they monitored the interactions of roughly 7000 active players at one time within the game’s virtual world.Unlike in real life, Pardus players’ moves are tracked and their interactions are recorded automatically by the game. “We have information about everything,” Thurner says. “We know who is where at what point in time, … who exchanges things or money with whom, who is friends with whom, … who hates someone else, who collaborates with whom in entrepreneurial activities, who is in a criminal gang with whom, etc. Even though the society is artificial, it’s a human society.”Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)Thurner was especially interested in testing the theory in anthropology that there is a limit to the number of face-to-face relationships a person can maintain at once. “One hundred and fifty is the number of people you can have meaningful relationships with,” at least when you’re talking about real-world interactions, says Robin Dunbar, an anthropologist at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom who discovered the limit and was not involved in the new work. “This turns out to be correlated with core areas of the brain,” particularly “the frontal lobes and the temporal lobes.” In other words, our brains aren’t large enough or interconnected enough to maintain an infinite number of personal relationships.Some scientists theorize that the so-called Dunbar’s number could be larger for online relationships, because the time it takes to have a social interaction is reduced when all you have to do is send a quick message, as opposed to meeting up for coffee, a meal, or a full day of activities. Pardus offered an interesting way to study this, Thurner says, because players can form different kinds of relationships with each other. In the game, players choose an official faction to join, which determines which side a player is on. Within these factions, players are able to communicate and create formal groups known as alliances. Players can also declare other players as friends. Thurner and his colleagues then used their data on interpersonal interactions to divide these friendships into two groups: close friends, or players who had declared friendship and communicated through private messaging, and acquaintances, or players who had designated each other as friends but did not message.Remarkably, though the game sets no constraints on the size of alliances, players organized themselves into social structures that matched those found in the real world. The largest alliance in Pardus was only 136 members, suggesting that the limit of 150 personal connections is an inherent part of our social psychology, Thurner and colleagues report this month in Scientific Reports.That’s not the only way relationships in Pardus mirrored offline friendships. In real life, we’re more emotionally invested in those we consider our close friends, creating smaller groups of relationships within our 150-person circle that we spend the most time and energy tending. Correspondingly, Pardus players invested more time interacting with friends they messaged, concentrating their social attention on close friends rather than distributing it among a larger web of acquaintances. Thurner suggests that we may characterize people into different groups in order to keep connections straight in our heads, but that “no one knows how this mental map is organized.” In this study, “we may have seen the first insight into how this is managed in humans.”“This is a good example of a paper that suggests a clear correspondence between how people behave in real life and virtual environments,” says social scientist James Ivory, who studies social and psychological aspects of people online at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg. “People tend to behave like people, whether they’re in a prehistoric world, a business, a knitting group, or a video game. Instead of looking at behavior in video games as alien, what you basically have is a place where you can study people.”last_img read more

New light source shines at Brookhaven National Laboratory

first_imgProspects were looking bright today at the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, New York. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz dedicated the lab’s new $912 million National Synchrotron Light Source II (NSLS-II), which will be the brightest synchrotron light source in the United States and—within a certain energy range—the world.“The research performed at NSLS-II will probe the fundamental structure of novel materials and help drive the development of low-cost, low-carbon energy technologies, spark advances in environmental science, and spur medical breakthroughs,” Moniz said.The NSLS-II will produce extremely intense beams of x-ray, ultraviolet, and infrared light, allowing researchers—including biologists, chemists, and environmental scientists—to peer into the nanoscale, probing the properties of materials at resolutions approaching 10 nanometers. Scientists will use the facility to study high-temperature superconductors, next-generation silicon chips, and biological proteins on the smallest scales. The NSLS-II will be 10,000 times as bright as its predecessor, the National Synchrotron Light Source, which ran for more than 30 years.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)The NSLS-II began commissioning in October and is slowly ramping up to full speed. Researchers will conduct their first studies using the facility’s seven available beamlines, but engineers plan to add 25 additional beamlines over the next 5 years. Although the construction of NSLS-II and its initial beamlines were supported by DOE’s Basic Energy Sciences program, funding for additional beamlines will come from other agencies, including DOE’s Biological and Environmental Research program, the National Institutes of Health, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology. When fully complete the facility will support more than 4000 users each year with up to 70 beamlines.Initial data from the machine are looking very promising, said NSLS-II Director John Hill. “It’s a gorgeous machine,” he said. “People are just so excited to see all their hard work pay off.”last_img read more

Entry India Guide Launched at Consulate in New York

first_imgEntry India LLC, in association with the Consulate General of India, New York, launched its guide ‘Entry India’ on September 5, at the Indian Consulate in New York.More than 95 businesses, investors and trade professionals participated in the event which also hosted a panel discussion on ‘Doing Business in India’.Read it at News India Times Related Itemslast_img

Chinese Importers Rework Up To $500 Million Indian Cotton Yarn Orders

first_imgAn improvement in US-China trade relations has started to hurt India’s cotton yarn exports and there is a chance of more damage. Chinese importers have renegotiated orders of Indian cotton yarn worth $400-500 million in the past few weeks. Read it at Economic Times Related Itemslast_img

After The Music Stops

first_imgBy electing Barack Obama as the country’s first Black president, Americans defied powerful stereotypes and assumptions about race.Little India first endorsed Obama in the primaries in January 2008, when he was still a long shot. In endorsing him again in the general election, we noted that we had originally been attracted by the historical character of his candidacy as the first minority nominee of a major political party and as the biracial child of a Kenyan immigrant father and a White mother from Kansas. However, we also pointed out that “Obama has worn his multicultural identity with such ease, that the promise that Americans might transcend race in this election already stands delivered.”What the world is now celebrating, we had already acknowledged before the Nov. 4 elections. Our expectations of him only begin there, and they start not simply with coping with the financial wreck he inherits from the Bush administration, which will likely command most of his early attention in the next several months.Important as dealing with the economic meltdown is, it is even more imperative that Obama begin to address the egregious violations of America’s historical commitment to civil rights and liberties by the Bush regime right off the bat, indeed the very day he assumes the presidency on Jan. 20.The Bush administration’s so-called “War on Terror” will go down in ignominy with the Red Scare of the McCarthy era, the Alien & Sedition Acts of 1798 and the persecution of dissenters in World War I and World War II. In the name of a war against terrorism, the Bush administration engaged in reprehensible unconstitutional and criminal violations, including kidnapping people, torturing suspects or rendering them to other countries for torture, and holding prisoners without trial in Guantanamo Bay and other secret gulags. In Bush’s secret society, prisoners were held indefinitely without charge, immigrants were detained and deported without a hearing, or even access to a lawyer, and citizens and non citizens alike were monitored and their telephones and email accounts tapped without judicial or political oversight.Even after Democrats wrested control of Congress in 2006, they did little to rein in, or even document the full extent of these abuses.One of Obama’s first acts, on Jan. 20, must be to shut down Guantanamo Bay, which shall forever stand as a shameful episode in American history. He should also launch a “truth commission,” similar to the one established in South Africa to document the abuses of apartheid, with the aim of exposing the full extent of the mendacity and the abuses of political rights and civil liberties by the Bush regime.Even though Pres. George Bush and Vice Pres. Dick Cheney will not be prosecuted for what were unquestionably criminal and constitutional violations of the office they had sworn to uphold, they must be publicly exposed and humiliated.After the music stops on his inauguration on Jan. 20, constitutional scholar Obama’s first task – crucial if only for its symbolism – must be to open up the secret files of the Bush administration, so that no future president ever dare engage in such heinous atrocities again.   Related Itemslast_img read more

Ex-Employee in U.S. Sues HCL Technologies Over Alleged Bias Towards South Asians

first_imgAn ex-employee of HCL Technologies in the United States has filed a lawsuit, accusing the firm of preferring South Asian workers over Americans.Texas-based Reese Voll, a white, male computer systems architect who worked at HCL Technologies for two years, filed a class action complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on Aug. 15.“The key allegations are that HCL discriminates against non-South Asians in hiring, promotions and terminations in four ways,” Daniel Low, the attorney for Kotchen & Low who filed the complaint, told Moneycontrol in an email response.Voll has alleged in his complaint that HCL promoted and chose H-1B visa holders to work on projects, most of whom are Indians. He was put on bench or given unassigned project status in July 2016. According to HCL’s policy, an employee’s job is terminated after being on bench for 30 days. Voll’s efforts to join other projects did not fructify and he he was asked to quit in August 2016. He then applied for open job roles within the firm several times between 2016 and 2018, but was not hired despite holding adequate qualifications, the report added.“HCL gives substantial preference to South Asian applicants when hiring for local positions in the US… HCL consistently promotes more South Asian employees than their non-South Asian counterparts… HCL benches and terminates non-South Asians at disproportionately higher rates. At least 70 percent of HCL’s employees are South Asian, despite South Asians making up about 12 percent of the US IT industry,” Low added, according to the publication.The company applies for more H-1B visa positions than required, the suit alleges. “In this way, HCL has been able to secure visas for far more individuals than it actually has a present need for,” it says, the Mercury News reported.Almost all the H-1B visas obtained by the company hail from South Asia, it says. The suit also alleges that HCL gives jobs to foreign workers who hold H-1B visas rather than those who are already living in the United States.“Non-South Asian individuals are often displaced from their current positions in favor of South Asian and visa-ready individuals,” the suit claims, according to the publication. “Jobs are given to visa-holding South Asians from India.”Similar discriminatory practices are followed in case of promotion and termination, the suit alleges. HCL promotes South Asians at high rates than non-South Asians. “On information and belief, non-South Asians are disproportionately awarded lower appraisal scores, and thus, non-South Asians are promoted less frequently than South Asians at HCL,” it says.The suit also claims that non-South Asian employees are far more prone to face termination of jobs than their South Asian counterparts.Several outsourcing firms are facing legal cases over similar allegations in the United States.In a similar case filed earlier this year, Rex Trewin, a former employee of Wipro, alleged that his contribution was ignored by the firm and that his services were unfairly terminated. He further claimed that he was penalized for emphasizing upon the importance of conforming to employment laws and regulations.In September last year, Cognizant Technology Solutions, one of the largest recipients of H-1B visas, was also sued by American workers who accused it of showing bias against employees who aren’t Indian. The laid-off employees alleged that they were fired and replaced by “less qualified” South Asian employees. Cognizant denied the charges.India’s Tata Consultancy Services Ltd. (TCS) was accused in 2015 of violating anti-discrimination laws by favoring South Asians. A California judge rejected a request from TCS to dismiss the lawsuit In December last year.Outsourcing firms take the largest number of H-1B visas. Among the companies getting the highest number of H-1B visas in 2016, three of the top five firms were Indian, according to a Pew report. HCL stood in number eight on the list, receiving 3,492 visas.India tops the list of countries applying for H-1B visas, ahead of China, according to data from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). In FY 2017, 302,293 Indians applied for H-1B visa, while China followed with 41,475 applications. Related ItemsEmploymenthcl technologiesracismlast_img read more

2 Indian Americans, 6 Others Charged Over Alleged Market Manipulation Practices

first_imgEight individuals, including two Indian Americans, have been publicly charged with federal crimes for allegedly engaging in deceptive trading practices in the United States.Jitesh Thakkar, 41, of Naperville, Illinois, has been charged with conspiracy and spoofing offenses, according to the U.S. Department of Justice. New York-based Krishna Mohan, 33, is charged in a criminal complaint filed in the Southern District of Texas with commodities fraud and spoofing offenses. The offenses were allegedly committed when he was employed as a programmer and trader at a proprietary trading firm in Chicago, Illinois.Five of the people charged, including Thakkar and Mohan, were arrested on Jan. 29. Among the others charged are Jiongsheng Zhao, who was arrested in Australia; Edward Bases and John Pacilio, who were arrested in Connecticut; UK resident James Vorley, and Cedric Chanu, who lives in the United Arab Emirates. The Justice Department in its announcement of charges on Jan. 29 also included Andre Flotron, a former precious metals trader at UBS, who was arrested in September following accusations of engaging in spoofing.“Thakkar developed a software program that was used by Thakkar’s co-conspirator to engage in spoofing through the placement of thousands of orders on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange when Thakkar was the founder and principal of Edge Financial Technologies Inc.,” said the Department of Justice in a statement.According to the complaint, it was traced through data analysis that Mohan was involved in a pattern of spoofing over 1,000 times in a two-month period.Seven of the eight individuals were charged with the crime of spoofing — an illegal trading practice that can be used to manipulate the commodities markets. “Other than the individuals identified today, only three other individuals have ever been publicly charged with the crime of spoofing,” the statement added.Among the individuals who have been identified, five were traders employed by global financial institutions, while two others were traders at large commodities trading firms, and one was the owner of a technology consulting firm.“As alleged, the defendants in these cases engaged in sophisticated schemes or trading practices aimed at defrauding individuals and entities trading on U.S. futures exchanges,” said General John P. Cronan, the Acting Assistant Attorney.He added that this kind of conduct presents a substantial amount of risk of eroding confidence in U.S. markets. It leads to the creation of unfair playing field for those traders and investors who take the legal route to do things.“The Department and our law enforcement partners will use all of the tools at our disposal, including cutting-edge data analysis, to detect these types of schemes and to bring those who engage in them to justice.  Protecting the integrity of our markets remains a significant priority in our fight against economic crime,” Cronan said.According to the charging documents, the spoof orders often had the effect of artificially depressing or artificially inflating the prices of futures contracts traded on CME, Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT), and the Commodity Exchange Inc., (COMEX).The defendants, along with their co-conspirators, to take advantage of the artificial price levels created by their spoof orders, have been alleged to execute real, genuine orders to buy these at the artificially low prices or to sell at the artificially high prices. This was done to generate trading profits or to unlawfully lessen other trading losses.“Their deceptive trading artificially affected the perception of supply and demand in the market and took away a level playing field for investors. We ask for those who observe indicators of this type of fraud to come forward to law enforcement so that we can stop those who attempt to exploit our financial system,” said Deputy Assistant Director Chris Hacker of the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division.He added that the FBI has taken enforcement action against multiple commodities traders who were spoofing trades through electronic trading platforms for their gain.Director James McDonald of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Division of Enforcement said that spoofing is a malicious example of bad actors seeking to manipulate the market through the abuse of technology.“The technological developments that enabled electronic and algorithmic trading have created new opportunities in our markets. At the CFTC, we are committed to facilitating these market-enhancing developments. But at the same time, we recognize that these new developments also present new opportunities for bad actors,” he added. Related ItemsFinanceIndian Americanmarketlast_img read more