Learning will be fun with new mobile applications, gazettes

first_imgK. Sharat Chandra, 32, Founder of Butterfly Fields. Creates maths and science card games,board games and activities for children mapped to the curriculum of various syllabi-ICSE and CBSE.The company has created 350 models so far.As a 12-year-old playing Scrabble and Canasta with his grandparents in Jodhpur, Manuj Dhariwal, now 26,,K. Sharat Chandra, 32, Founder of Butterfly Fields. Creates maths and science card games,board games and activities for children mapped to the curriculum of various syllabi-ICSE and CBSE.The company has created 350 models so far.As a 12-year-old playing Scrabble and Canasta with his grandparents in Jodhpur, Manuj Dhariwal, now 26, never imagined he would one day create his very own board game. In 2008, the graduate in design engineering from IIT-Guwahati, with brother Rajat, 29, and sister-in-law Madhumita, 30, launched Aksharit, India’s first board game in Hindi. With 200 tiles (100 each for aksharas and matras), it went on to win the first prize at the Ideas to Implementation competition at IIM-Calcutta in 2008. Over the past four years, the colourful board game has made Hindi fun for over 300,000 students across 3,000 rural and government schools in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. And the trio of IIT graduates has now taken Aksharit pan-India in 11 regional languages and into cyberspace with a digital version. “Games have the power to make learning effortless and fun and instil an ability to take on challenges,” says Manuj, founder of MadRat Games, their company.Like the MadRat team, several professionals are changing the way young India learns. Giving textbooks and blackboards a miss, these new-age educators are devising games and infusing large doses of innovative technology to make learning more interactive and engaging. Be it honing your sports skills or learning the skeletal system with 3D models, there is a movement to instil fun and entertainment in the education process.Soumya Banerjee, 52, Founder of Attano.com. Cartoon Network along with Attano,a site with educational e-books,launched video e-books and interactive activity books,based on the channel’s brands like Ben 10,Generator Rex and the Powerpuff Girls.K. Sharat Chandra, 32, decided to teach young children the basics of arithmetic with a tweaked version of the popular snakes and ladders game, a staple in most homes. So, in 2005, the IIT-IIM alumnus set up Butterfly Fields in Hyderabad as a hobby centre for children to learn concepts of science and mathematics. In 2008, he partnered with schools to set up mini science centres and create concept maps and e-learning content for teachers. With 4,000 private and government schools in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka on his rolls, Chandra now creates math and science card games, board games and activities for children that are mapped to the curriculum of various syllabi, including Andhra Pradesh state board, ICSE and CBSE. “A child learns better through action rather than by reading or even watching a video of a concept being explained. We focus on ensuring that the child learns concepts by understanding underlying principles,” says Chandra, whose company has created over 350 such models and games.Technology, too, is giving these new ideas a boost, teaching subjects in a format that the GenNext enjoys best- e-books and mobile apps. Soumya Banerjee, 52, founded Attano.com in 2009 and took textbooks to the digital world. These books allow readers to bookmark pages, scribble notes and even map a child’s learning pattern and provide assessments. “Technology allows the book to evolve and integrate media through audio and video clips. Also, students in any corner of the country can access the same book,” says Banerjee, who is based in Mumbai. With a master’s degree in computer science from the University of Houston, US, he wanted to use his 20 years of corporate experience to bring about a change in education. His 200 books currently have 50,000 users.Dev Roy, 39, Founder,Leapstart. It offers physical education and sports programmes from kindergarten to high school.The modules are age-appropriate and progressive.Sensing that the mobile-bred generation gorges on anything that flashes on the palmtop screen, in December 2011 Jaipur-based Prafulla Mathur, 29, launched Money Games, a mobile app that teaches children the basics of banking. Besides decoding terms such as savings, assets, bank accounts and liabilities, children learn to set goals and plan their finances to achieve these goals in a desired time period. “Educational apps can bring science to life in ways a textbook can’t. In terms of children’s education, technology extends learning in the same way as Lego blocks and other art materials, exposing children to animals, landscapes and activities that they cannot experience in person,” says Mathur, who came back to India in 2009 after a stint in the banking industry in the UK to start his company Queppelin.Marrying technology with education, 40-year-old Sanjeev Mansotra’s CORE Education and Technologies pioneered 3D education in India. In the company’s portable 3D lab in Mumbai, students can learn human anatomy with 3D skeletal systems and organs rather than chalk-onboard diagrams. “Technology makes education more attractive, lucrative and comprehensive. Tech-education is in line with the Government of India’s agenda of access, inclusion and quality in education,” he says.While most focus on academic education solutions, Srinivas Rao Cheedella, 39, and his colleague Anurag Jain, 40, quit their jobs with Dell Services in 2010 to set up India’s largest vocational training institute. They wanted to “bridge the gap of eight million between the demand and supply of skilled manpower across vocational streams”. Two years later, their company Laurus Edutech has 140 centres across India and trains over 34,000 people every year to become electricians, welders, medical lab assistants, tailors and auto mechanics. Besides technical training, the centre uses educational games to teach the importance of ethics and professional conduct. “At the end of each game, the purpose is to drive home the message that being a good worker reaps more benefits. Aside from teaching theory, we also want to build the character of our students but merely preaching is ineffective,” says Cheedella.Manuj Dhariwal, 26, Founder, Madrat. Created Aksharit, the first ever Scrabble-like board game in Hindi.Aksharit is used by 300,000 children in schools in Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh.When Dev Roy, 39, returned to India in 2009 after a successful career with Barclay’s Capital in London, he decided to help Bangalore children take to sports. Nostalgic about the city he grew up in, he started LeapStart, which offers physical education and sports programmes from kindergarten to high school. Their play modules include elements of SPARK, a researchbased public health organisation of San Diego State University Research Foundation, whose programmes promote lifelong wellness. Here, children are taught unconventional lessons like how to fall without injuring themselves and social skills like how to interact with each other. The modules are ageappropriate and progressive. There is even a specially-designed physical education programme for children with learning disabilities. “If you have not played a sport as a child, or done theatre for example, when you enter the world of finance at 21, you are not equipped with life skills such as how to cooperate while competing or how to be a leader,” he says. The company has 100 schools as part of its programmes.With young Indian parents adopting a new approach to education, these new-age services are fast catching on. Meritnation.com started in 2009 with an initial funding of Rs 11.5 crore from Info Edge (India), but within two years raised Rs 20 crore. The site offers study material in the forms of fun academic formats like quizzes, videos, games and puzzles. The resources follow the syllabi of CBSE, ICSE and 12 state boards and the site already has a virtual “classroom” of 3.2 million students from across the country. “We realised that visuals and animation not only make learning fun but also retention easier. While children get to play games, parents know these games are constructive,” says Pavan Chauhan, 38, who founded Meritnation.com with fellow IIM-Bgraduate Ritesh Hemrajani. “It is important to customise learning according to the assimilation levels and competency of every child. An effective classroom would be one where children can access relevant materials,” says Chauhan, who has 20 years of teaching experience with The Learning Tree and Disha Public School.Giving a modern twist to academics, these new-age educators are making learning entertaining for today’s wired generation.- With Devika Chaturvedi, Ayesha Aleem, Mona Ramavat and Sonali Acharjee.advertisementadvertisementadvertisementlast_img read more

Hrithik Roshan on fast and furious Holly nightout

first_imgGuess who was Hrithik Roshan’s dinner date recently? It wasn’t a hot babe but Rob Cohen, director of Hollywood’s popular Fast And Furious films, who was spotted dining with Hrithik.Since the Bollywood superstar is said to be secretly nursing Hollywood dreams, his dinner date with Cohen has fuelled rumours that he could be seriously gearing up for a Hollywood launch.The Roshans were spotted dining with Rob CohenHrithik and Cohen were also accompanied by the actor’s filmmaker father Rakesh Roshan and mom Pinky. Hrithik got mobbed when they emerged from a posh Mumbai eating joint after dinner. Cohen was along with them. Sporting a blue T- shirt, Hrithik was seen in a jovial mood as he waved and cheered at the crowd.The actor took out time for his family dinner with Cohen in between shooting for his next release, Siddharth Anand’s Bang Bang costarring Katrina Kaif.Sources suggest the Roshans and Cohen could have had a discussion on a forthcoming project that might feature Hrithik, although it is too early to confirm anything.Apart from the Fast And Furious films, Cohen is credited with making films such as Dragonheart , Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story, and Daylight.Hrithik, who was last seen in the 2013 superhit Krrish 3, recently signed Ashutosh Gowariker’s period drama, Mohenjo Daro .last_img read more

Bombay gharana is alive and well

first_imgAjinkya Rahane.The Bombay School of batsmanship was a function of maidan cricket.With the gene pool constricted and restricted, Bombay which metamorphosed into Mumbai also lost its mojo in cricket.The cornerstone of the Bombay school was unarguably a unique guru-shishya relationship. The Bombay gharana goes back years and years and if one looks at its genealogy, it is predicated on every era and generation producing a champion batsman or two. A batter with a larger than life persona, at one level, a true blue megastar whose body of work sometimes subsumes the great game itself.Maximum city Mumbai has an intense kinetic energy which defies the adversity that its people face in the daily hurly burly of life. Yet there is a calmness and single mindedness of purpose, backed by a commitment to constantly raise the bar. This was reflected in their cricket, displaying a singular khadoosness, a state of mind, an attitude, a toughness or aloofness which allowed them to be the best. And always, the art form of batsmanship was nurtured and harnessed on the maidans of cricket.CompetitionAs I watched Ajinkya Rahane play close to his body at Lord’s and then counter attack with a rash of pulls and hooks, in my mind’s eye, I thought the art form is alive and well. The diminutive batsman with all the bearing and poise of the Bombay School looked like the genuine article if not the finished article. Three knocks in South Africa, New Zealand and now England on pitches conducive to seam and fast bowling have shown that the next little man may have arrived from the fabled stable. The joke doing the rounds, when India was put into bat on a green wicket at Lord’s, was that – we have come here to play cricket not tennis at Wimbledon.advertisementDurban, Wellington and now Lord’s have shown the pugnacious but attacking batsman could be the next big thing from Bombay. Coached by Pravin Amre, himself a former member of the Bombay School, Rahane’s adroit handling of the new ball is what sets him apart. Blessed with most of the ingredients that go into making of a technically sound batsman, one can argue a handful of swallows don’t make a summer. Yet, he holds out hope.I will give you a couple of instances of this obsessiveness for perfection, something that one finds missing in Mumbai boys now. Ravi Shastri was the embodiment of running this gauntlet in flesh and mind – an outsider, a non Maharashtrian – while playing for Don Bosco, Karnataka Sporting Association or Bombay and India. Like many others of his ilk, he woke up at 5:30 am, took the suburban train to Azad Maidan for practice, finished up and took another train back to King’s Circle to get to school every morning. Playing to win was the only motto and putting a price on your wicket was ingrained from an early age. Middle-class Maharashtrians ran a relay race, passing the baton from one to another. I will not take you back in the Wellsian Time Machine to a distant age, but only a few decades back to remind you of this inspiring lineage.FervourSchools and gully cricket was the edifice of this trade, perfected on the maidans, an area around Shivaji Park and Dadar Union becoming the epicentre of this gargantuan conveyor belt of talent. These cricketers were driven and hungry. Boys besotted with the game came out of the Shivaji Park-Hindu Colony area of Dadar, looking to carve a livelihood and make their tryst with izzat and shaurat. It is pertinent to note the Marathi enclave of Shivaji Park-Hindu Colony was a sea of talent, from the western side where Shivaji Maharaj’s statue guards the vast expanse of the maidan to the eastern side where educational institutions like R A Podar and Ramnarain Ruia college and King George – now rechristened Raja Shivaji Vidyalaya – which overlooks Matunga Maidan or Major Ramesh Dadkar Kreedangan as it is called, boosted this cult of cricket. Neophytes came from the stables of Shivaji Park Gymkhana and Dadar Union, on the other side of the railway tracks, galvanised by a fervour to become a Bombay and then India cricketer.In a way, a strange confluence of Maharashtrian middle class psyche, and sensibilities, which were bred in the congested inner city, drove this hunger. There was an element of another Bambiya tadka in this mix – khunnas or a sense of anger emanating from arrogance – which burned deep within the pits of these cricketers coming off the assembly line. And then, it all dissipated suddenly in Bombay but was burnished in distant parts – Karnataka, Delhi, Hyderabad, and then as part of a larger democratization process, it spread to Ranchi, UP, Odisha, Kerala and now J&K with Parvez Rasool.advertisementContinuanceAs the dying embers of Bombay cricket are getting a leg up with the emergence of Rahane, one longs for the tussle for suzerainty that existed in the cut throat Kanga League where Dadar Union, Shivaji Park Gymkhana, Sunder CC, Parsi Cyclists, Matunga Gymkhana, National, Baronet, New Hind, United and CCI vied for supremacy, while in the Times Shield one saw seesaw contests between the Tatas, ACC, Kohinoor Mills, Cipla, Western Railway, Mafatlals and finally Nirlon battle for the crown. That culture is all over and hence the drying up of talent wells. History will tell you the first commoners who broke through the yoke of princely fetters in Indian cricket were maidaners – Vijay Manjrekar and Subhash Gupte. Both played for Mahim Juveniles, then Shivaji Park, and finally India. In between, they played as professionals for Rajasthan and Bengal, just as Vijay Hazare and Vinoo Mankad plied their trade, in a different age, for the Jamsaheb of Nawanagar, and the Maharajah of Baroda.The relay race saw Vijay Merchant, Russi Modi, Vijay Hazare give way to Polly Umrigar, Vijay Manjrekar, Madhav Apte (coached in part by the legendary Duleepsinghji) who handed over the baton to Ajit Wadekar, Ashok Mankad and Sunil Gavaskar, who passed it on to Dilip Vengsarkar, Sandeep Patil and Ravi Shastri. The next generation saw Sanjay Manjrekar, Sachin Tendulkar, Vinod Kambli and Pravin Amre, and then abruptly, it all ended. Amol Mazumdar never made it through, though Rohit Sharma, a Mumbaikar, but not a Maharashtrian, has given us glimpses of this great tradition. Now Rahane ignites the same passion in all us diehard cricket junkies.Bombay cricket is the last bastion, standing for and upholding a heritage with a unique synthesis of a classical style and technical perfectitude. It is good that Amre is playing the role of a guru to his shishya Rahane to keep this flame burning. Clearly, the relay is still running.last_img read more

I wish selection committee had more international experience: Dilip Vengsarkar to India Today

first_imgFormer chairman of selectors Dilip Vengsarkar has chosen to speak out against the BCCI’s decision to appoint an inexperienced selection committee for the Indian cricket tea,.In an interview to India Today, Vengsarkar expressed his displeasure on the MSK Prasad-led selection committee having limited international experience.”International experience is very important. The more you have played, the more you can understand players and situations. Experience at that level widens your vision as well. You can then pick a player at the right time. I don’t know that about this selection committee. They don’t have much experience. I wish them the best,” he said. (Questions galore on DDCA’s decision to sack selectors)The BCCI for the first time departed from the tradition to have a big name as chief selector and a committee with sizeable international cricketers under their belt. MSK Prasad, the new chief selector has played six Tests and 17 one-dayers for India and has a team of selectors under him who have only played 13 Tests and 31 ODIs between them.Wishing that there were selectors with international experience, Vengsarkar said, “You need to have an eye for talent. But you also need the courage of conviction, otherwise you will struggle. I wish there were selectors who had loads of international experience.” (DDCA sacks Atul Wassan, Nikhil Chopra, Maninder Singh from selection panel)During his stint as national selector, Vengsarkar, who went on to play 116 Tests and captained India, took the brave call of dropping Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid from India’s one-day squad for a tri-series in Australia in 2007-08.advertisementThe new selection committee will need to take a bold decision on MS Dhoni’s future as India’s one-day skipper amidst Virat Kohli’s continuing success in the Test arena. Their handling of this critical decision with the Champions Trophy due in June next year and their vision for the Indian one-day cricket in lead up to the next World Cup in 2019 would tell if Vengsarkar’s criticism is justified. Vengsarkar added that the number of selectors, either three as suggested by Lodha committee or five as has been the norm, doesn’t matter much but experience does. (BCCI refuses to blink in fight with Lodha panel, names five-member selection committee)”It does not matter if you have three or four or five selectors. But I suppose more the merrier; one can watch more cricket. If you have less selectors, having talent spotters to assist them is also an option,” he concluded.last_img read more

Facts on star midfielder Steven Gerrard who retired yesterday after a 19-year football career

first_imgFootball fans out there regardless of the clubs, leagues and countries have been quite impressed by the former Liverpool skipper Steven Gerrard. Stevie G, one of the greatest midfielders in Premier League history has just announced his retirement from football after a glorious 19 -year long career.”I feel lucky to have experienced so many wonderful highlights over the course of my career. I have had an incredible career and am thankful for each and every moment of my time at Liverpool, England and LA Galaxy. I was lucky to play alongside some great players and under some fantastic managers during my time at Anfield and would like to thank each and every one of them, as well as all of the backroom staff at the club throughout my time there for the fantastic support they showed me. I fulfilled my childhood dream by pulling on the famous red shirt of Liverpool,” said Gerrard in his retirement speech.Here are some interesting facts about the English footballer:     Interested in General Knowledge and Current Affairs? Click here to stay informed and know what is happening around the world with our G.K. and Current Affairs section.To get more updates on Current Affairs, send in your query by mail to education.intoday@gmail.comlast_img read more

6 days agoBorussia Dortmund coach Favre drops Sancho

first_imgBorussia Dortmund coach Favre drops Sanchoby Paul Vegas6 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveBorussia Dortmund coach Lucien Favre has dropped Jadon Sancho.Favre has axed Sancho after the England starlet returned late from international duty, according to German reports.The 19-year-old former Manchester City winger started for the Three Lions in their shock 2-1 loss to Czech Republic but was then dropped to the bench for the 6-0 win at Bulgaria.But the forward failed to report back to Germany in time and as a result has been punished, Kicker report.Favre has axed Sancho from the squad to face Borussia Monchengladbach this afternoon. About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Lane Kiffin Jokingly Offered A Scholarship To A 6-Month Old

first_img His latest scholarship offer also involved a baby, though it is probably not one that is going to result in a commitment. At least, not anytime soon.Earlier in the week, a Charleston, SC resident tweeted a picture of his six-month old to Kiffin. He says that his son is already 22 pounds, and that he was the second-biggest baby in the hospital’s history.Naturally, Lane Kiffin took the opportunity to jokingly “offer” the baby a scholarship.Via Twitter:Offer @espn https://t.co/aovSwh5dVL— Lane Kiffin (@Lane_Kiffin) February 6, 2019As you probably realize, offers to the class of 2036 are not committable, and realistically, Kiffin is probably not going to be leading the Owls in 18 years.Still, he knows how to have fun and promote his program on social media, and that’s one of the reasons that FAU took a shot on Kiffin a few years ago. Head coach Lane Kiffin of the Florida Atlantic Owls throws the ball prior to the game against the Navy Midshipmen.BOCA RATON, FL – SEPTEMBER 1: Head coach Lane Kiffin of the Florida Atlantic Owls throws the ball prior to the game against the Navy Midshipmen on September 1, 2017 at FAU Stadium in Boca Raton, Florida. (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)Lane Kiffin has been turning over every stone as he attempts to build FAU into a Group of Five power.This week’s National Signing Day brought the sons of NFL legends Terrell Owens and Warren Sapp into the fold in Boca Raton.Last month, he made headlines for visiting one of his recruits at the maternity ward, just after he watched his baby being born.That was a totally classy move by Kiffin, and a savvy one.last_img read more

The Shorrock Brothers’ Lane-Eight AD1 Trainers are the Newest Kicks on the Block

first_img 1 of 3 Editors’ Recommendations The Best Men’s Waterproof Boots for Tackling All Weather Lane-Eight is a versatile new line of trainers founded by brothers and footwear industry veterans Josh and James Shorrock, hailing from adidas and HYPEBEAST respectively. The goal: to challenge the norms of the traditional performance wear market and elevate activewear for the real-world athlete, not necessarily professionals.The Lane-Eight AD1 Trainers are built to supply the everyday folk who love to get out and be active with effortless stability but are also searching for something as comfortable and stylish outside of the gym as it is functional within.“Having worked in the footwear industry, we’ve both experienced the shortcomings of corporate-made footwear,” the Shorrock brothers said. “Now free from the organizational rules, we’re finally able to answer the big question: What does the everyday athlete require?” The AD 1 Trainers are designed to withstand tough and rigorous training sessions, featuring great grip, a stabilized base, and strong, durable materials while retaining a sleek silhouette. With ETPU (a synthetic material similar to the adidas BOOST technology) cushioning and a TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane elastomers to help absorb impact) support system on the midsole, these sneakers offer better long-term flexibility, reliable stability across all training platforms, and a higher resistance to tears and abrasions.Not only are these puppies some of the most functional trainers out there, they might be the most comfortable and adaptable trainers you’ll ever wear. The Lane-Eight AD1 Trainers sport a steezy, reinforced suede and leather knit upper sole that looks fantastic and provides stretchable breathability that is a perfect addition to your summer running gear or simply your new daily gym shoe. They feel like wearing a pair of socks to the gym, but with much more support and a helluva lot more style.If you don’t believe the Shorrock brothers, they dare you to buy and test them out. If you’re not fully satisfied with the Lane-Eight AD1 Trainers within 30-days, they’ll take them back at a full refund and cover shipping costs for you.The first release is the AD 1 Trainers were launched Friday, August 10, 2018, and are now sold in three neutral colorways through the Lane-Eight website for $160. Previous Everlane Wants You to Have a Daily Uniform to Make Dressing Easier This A-Frame-Inspired Cabin Offers Shelter from the Harsh Patagonian Elements Get Acquainted With the Military-Approved Skincare Brand Bravo Sierra A Quick Overview of the Sustainable Adidas Outdoor and Five Ten Line Essentials Next last_img read more

Q2 Results Paint a Better Picture for Container Carriers

first_imgzoom Now that the results for the second quarter of 2017 have settled in, it can be deduced that the container shipping market has entered fairer winds when compared to the horrendous second quarter of 2016.Ten carriers posted black figures, while only two have reported losses for the quarter, those being Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM), which booked a loss of USD 81.8 million, resuming its losing streak from the six of the past eight second quarters, and Mitsui O.S.K Lines (MOL), which recorded a loss of USD 55.1 million. MOL reported red figures for the past seven second quarters, intelligence provider SeaIntel Maritime Analysis said.“On the other hand, despite the revenue and volume loss from the cyber-security incident, we see an outstanding financial result from Maersk Line in 2017-Q2, recording EBIT of USD 376 million, more than three times the segment profit of second-best performing COSCO at USD 122 million. The remaining eight carriers all had 2017-Q2 operating profits of less than USD 100 million,” SeaIntel added.“All 12 carriers have improved their Q2 profits/loss situation in 2017 over 2016. Maersk Line again sees the greatest net improvement, turning a USD -123 million loss to a USD 376 million EBIT profit. COSCO has seen the second-best profit improvement over 2016-Q2, at USD 381 million. The remaining carriers have all seen an improvement of less than USD 200 million. Interestingly, Wan Hai, the only carrier to consistently have made a profit in every second quarter for the past six years, is the carrier that has seen the smallest improvement, of just USD 18 million, in 2017- Q2.”With respect to revenue, COSCO showed the strongest revenue growth, with a 47.3% Y/Y revenue increase in 2017-Q2. However, this revenue growth is partly due to the integration of CSCL in 2016-Q1.Evergreen and HMM follow with the second and third-largest Y/Y revenue increases, of 30.3% and 30.1%, respectively. Maersk Line, Hapag-Lloyd, OOCL, Yang Ming, and ZIM all saw their revenues grow 20-25% Y/Y in the second quarter, and much of this revenue growth is likely to be a consequence of the Hanjin bankruptcy, as the Korean carrier was still in operation in 2016-Q2. The remaining four carriers, Wan Hai and the three Japanese carriers, all saw much lower revenue growth of around 10% Y/Y, data from SeaIntel shows.last_img read more

Halifax Drivers Should Watch for Moose

first_imgDepartment of Natural Resource officials are hoping to tranquilize an errant moose, which is being contained near the top of Main Avenue in Halifax. Officials are asking drivers on Highway 102, near the top of Dunbrack Street, to use extra caution in case the moose heads toward the highway. People are advised not to approach the animal and ensure there is an escape route for it. -30-last_img

UNCHR 1500 Migrants Have Died in the Mediterranean in 2018

Rabat – More than 1,500 migrants have died in the Mediterranean in 2018 while trying to reach Europe, according to UNHCR.Recent EU and partner governments’ measures to curb the flow of irregular migration to Europe has reportedly borne fruit: the number of undocumented migrants who reached EU countries by sea has halved in 2018 when compared to figures for the years 2014-2017, according to AFP. Last week, Mustafa El Khalfi, the Moroccan government’s spokesperson, said that in 2017 Moroccan authorities stopped more than 65,000 irregular migrants from crossing to Europe. El Khalfi was trying to convince the EU of Morocco’s improving performance in stemming the flow of migrants to the EU. But while the number of migrants’ successful attempts to reach EU countries has considerably decreased, the migrant death toll has jumped in recent months, UNHCR has found. The rate of deaths in the Mediterranean this year is far higher than previous years. According to the UN body, more than 1,500 people have died at sea since January 2018. The UN agency noted that the large majority of at-sea deaths this year were refugees fleeing the war in Syria. More noticeably perhaps, HCR’s statement noted that more than half of the deaths occurred between June and July, suggesting worsening conditions this summer as EU governments convened in the last two weeks to devise a collective policy to tackle the crisis. Although the statement shied away from calling out names, it suggested that the rise in migrants’ deaths in the Mediterranean was caused by a recent crackdown on irregular migration. Some EU member states began to refuse entrance to rescue ships with “desperate migrants” on board. In late June, Italy and Malta sparked international criticism when they shut down ports to vessels carrying rescued migrants.Precarious conditions at seaBut the primary problem noted in the UN’s agency report is the precarious conditions in which migrants cross the sea. The document cited the surge of human traffickers making a profit off the desperation of migrants wanting to reach Europe at all costs. Traffickers put migrants’ lives at risk by packing them in “overloaded, unseaworthy and flimsy vessels.” The vessels “are then left to sail out at sea in the hope that rescue will come in time.”“In order to save lives at sea, we must use appropriate and necessary measures to hold to account those who seek to gain profit from the exploitation of vulnerable human beings.”Calling for more international cooperation to fight human trafficking networks, Vincent Cochetel, UNHCR’s special envoy for the Mediterranean, said that “states and authorities along transit routes” should push for “all necessary action to dismantle and disrupt smuggler networks.”Humanitarian measuresUNHCR also urged EU governments to consider the humanitarian aspect of the migration crisis. Indirectly referring to Italy and Malta’s recent controversial decision to prevent rescue ships from docking, the UN agency said that Europe should be more receptive and welcoming in cases where lives are at stake, especially of refugees fleeing war and other devastating living conditions.“With so many lives at stake, it’s vital that we give shipmasters confidence that they will be able to dock rescued passengers, and thereby ensure that the long-standing principle of rescuing people in distress at sea is protected,” Cochetel said. read more

Sri Lankan flight sent back to base passengers detained

The airline said Singapore’s police force requested for a number of passengers to disembark for questioning. A Sri Lankan Airlines flight that took off from Singapore’s Changi Airport was made to return to Singapore “due to security reasons” soon after take-off, according to a statement from the airline on Friday (April 15), Singapore’s Straits Times reported.The statement, posted on the airline’s website, said flight UL309, which took off on Thursday (April 14), later arrived in Sri Lankan capital Colombo past midnight on Friday after being delayed for three hours. “SriLankan Airlines flight UL 309 of April 14, 2016 was instructed to return to Changi International Airport due to security reasons soon after it was airborne to Colombo. The flight later arrived in Colombo at 0042 hrs on April 15, 2016 with a total delay of 3 hours. Upon its return to Singapore, the airport division of the Singapore Police Force requested that all check-in luggage was screened once more and also interviewed a few passengers. Accordingly, all baggage was offloaded and sent for security screening. Further, the Airport Police requested SriLankan Airlines to offload 3 additional passengers for further questioning. This was in addition to 5 passengers who were initially detained for interrogation before the flight departed,” the airline said.The airline said that in order to avoid further delays SriLankan decided to offload the family members of the two passengers offloaded for interviewing and baggage identification by the Airport Police. SriLankan provided accommodation for all these passengers, who later flew to Colombo on UL 307 of April 15, 2016. The five passengers, originally offloaded are still being detained by the Airport Police division. Passengers on board the aircraft were kept informed of the situation and were cared for by the SriLankan staff,” the airline said. Prior to take-off, the police had already detained five passengers for questioning, the statement said. The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore is yet to disclose the reasons that led to the recall of flight UL 309. However, SriLankan Airlines is in the process of requesting for a comprehensive report, as ideally all necessary inspections should be completed by airport authorities prior to releasing an aircraft for departure.“The airline commends its team in Singapore and the crew of UL 309 for handling the situation in a professional manner. SriLankan wishes to reiterate that this incident was beyond the control of the Airline and that SriLankan always maintains the highest safety standards. The Airline considers the safety and security of customers its foremost priority, under no circumstances will this be compromised.” (Colombo Gazette) read more

Army insists SLHRC not involved in recalling of Mali officer

Therefore, the Sri Lanka Army said that the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka was not involved in recalling the said officer.The Army said last week that it is to recall the military officer stationed in Mali following a UN demand but will later appeal against the order. The Army said that the appointment of the officer was agreed on by the UN itself after the Sri Lanka Army forwarded the names of four nominees in the year 2016 before the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka was entrusted the task of vetting service personnel, bound for UN assignments in December 2017 as advised by the UN. The Army today insisted that the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (SLHRC) was not involved in the recalling of the Contingent Commander of the Sri Lankan Combat Convoy Company in Mali (MINUSMA).A statement by the Army media unit said that in response to a request made by the United Nations, the Sri Lanka Army had decided to recall Lieutenant Colonel Kalana Amunupura, the Contingent Commander of the Sri Lankan Combat Convoy Company in Mali. “In fact, the UN at that stage cleared Lieutenant Colonel Kalana Amunupura for the appointment of the Commander of Combat Convoy Company in Mali (MINUSMA) dropping all three other nominees,” the Army said. Following a review of the human rights background of the commander of the Sri Lankan contingent deployed to the UN Peacekeeping Mission in Mali, the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali has requested Sri Lanka to immediately repatriate him to Sri Lanka.UN Spokesman Stephane Dujarric said that this would be done at their cost, as per normal procedures. (Colombo Gazette) read more

Battery recycling information

All vehicle manufacturers that market electrically-powered vehicles of any kind must provide information on how the lithium-ion battery is recycled. See below of links to each relevant manufacturer’s web page on battery recycling.BMW Group UKDaimlerPlease email the manufacturer’s technical support team.Ford Motor CompanyMitsubishi MotorsNissan Motor ManufacturingPSA Peugeot Citroen AutomobilesCitroenPeugeotRenaultSuzukiToyotaVolkswagen GroupAudiSEATSkodaVolkswagenVolkswagen Commercial Vehicles Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) read more

No winner between Hungary and Iceland

Hungary started the match well, their fast players were effective and Ancsin scored 3 big goals so after 10 minutes they were leading by 4 goals (8-4). Iceland’s coach substituted his goalkeeper  and Edvardsson proved to be effective against Hungary’s attack runs. Iceland came back into the match but fortunately for Hungary Mikler produced some great saves and a 2-goal advantage remained until the 20th minute (10-8). By the end of the first half Iceland came even closer thanks to goals by Palmarsson, Sigurdsson and very effective pivot play. The first half was good propaganda for handball with many goals and creative play (16-15). ← Previous Story EHF EURO 2014 TOP SCORERS: Nyokas and Sigurdsson lead Next Story → Macedonia takes a big step towards the Main Round Hungary seemed to be getting tired in the second half thus allowing Iceland to change the course of the match and gain a 2-goal lead in only 8 minutes (17-19). Coach Mocsai also changed his goalkeeper and thanks to Tatai’s saves and some fast players in attack Hungary managed to equalize by the 45th minute (21-21). Palmarsson and Iceland’s pivot play were still effective, but goals by Ancsin and Zubai meant that Hungary were in front again in the 50th minute. (24-23). Goals came from both sides thereafter and the match was a draw only five minutes before the end (26-26). Iváncsik and Palmarsson hit the woodwork 2 minutes later, still a draw. In the 58th minute Iceland were one man up and Karason scored. Hungary called the goalkeeper down and only 10 seconds before the end Lékai scored from the counterattack. Iceland’s final shooting attempt was blocked so the score remained even after a thrilling match (27-27).Best scorers: Ancsin 7, Császár 5/Palmarsson 8, G. V. Sigurdsson 5STATISTICSMore to come…1Iceland 32Spain 23Hungary 14Norway 0 Text: Gábor Várkonyi, Péter Butty On the third day of the European Championship, Hungary who suffered a big defeat against Spain in Round 1. had to face Iceland who previously beat Norway surprisingly easily.  The two teams last met in the quarter-final of the Olympics in 2012. Both teams lacked their No. 1 right-backs, László Nagy and Alexander Petersson were out of squad due to injury. Denmarkeuro 2014handballHandball tournamentsports read more

Gudmundson calls Danes for EHF EURO 2016 qualification start

BiH handballDenmarkeuro 2016 handballgudmundur gudmundsonLithuania handball Danish head-coach Gudmundur Gudmundson published the squad list for the upcoming EHF week in which Denmark will start qualifications for the EHF EURO 2016 in Poland against Lithuania (October 30, Brondby) and Bosnia and Herzegovina (November 2) . On the list are 19 players…Goalkeepers:Niklas Landin, Rhein-Neckar LöwenJannick Green, SC MagdeburgWings:Lasse Svan Hansen, SG Flensburg-HandewittHans Lindberg, HSV HamburgCasper U. Mortensen, SønderjyskEAnders Eggert, SG Flensburg-HandewittLine-players:Rene Toft Hansen, THW KielHenrik Toft Hansen, HSV HamburgJesper Nøddesbo, FC BarcelonaPlaymakers:Bo Spellerberg, KIF Kolding KøbenhavnMads Mensah Larsen, Rhein-Neckar LöwenMorten Olsen, St. Raphael VarBacks:Mikkel Hansen, PSG Handball ParisNikolaj Markussen, Skjern HåndboldMichael Damgaard, Team Tvis HolstebroHenrik Møllgaard, Skjern HåndboldMads Christiansen, Bjerringbro-SilkeborgKasper Søndergaard, Skjern HåndboldDefensive specialist:Kasper Nielsen, Füchse Berlin ← Previous Story Veszprem in trouble – Laszlo Nagy is out for a month Next Story → Easy job for the champions: Bielecki destroys Gornik Zabrze read more

Challenging Australias monolingual mindset

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram We attended the Research Unit for Multicultural and Cross Cultural Communication (RUMACC) lectures at the University of Melbourne on Sunday 22 November 2015. The free seminar to an audience of over 300 people from various ethnic backgrounds, most of whom were young parents, was conducted over four hours and addressed themes including the advantages of bilingualism and issues and practical suggestions in raising children bilingually. Below are some important research and themes emerging from these and previous talks: – If we take a ‘global citizen’ view, bilingualism (or multilingualism) is the norm around the world. In many countries children grow up speaking two, if not three or more languages. Hence it is more ‘normal’ to be bilingual than not. At least 50 per cent of the world’s population speaks more than one language to some degree. In Melbourne, it is estimated that at least two languages are spoken at home in around 30 per cent of the population and the figure is around 23 per cent across Australia. – Language is a fundamental part of our identity and a ticket of entry to other cultures and worlds. We have a right to share languages, heritage and culture with each other and with our children and to respect those from other cultures, all in the context of a wonderful and exceedingly successful multicultural Australia and a multi-national world. – In the past, particularly in English-speaking countries, there has been an inherent bias against other languages. How many of us have our own stories of being discriminated against or not being made felt welcome or proud to express ourselves in languages other than English, or even being made to feel apologetic for coming from a Greek background?! Consequently, there has been a loss of language and culture in many second and further generations with significant down sides to this. The anti-language attitudes and policies of the past need to be seen as grossly ignorant, isolationist, at times barbaric and not conducive to cultural and global citizen sensitivity. – There is mixed evidence that children who grow up with two languages may have cognitive benefits. It appears that constantly switching from one language to another may offer brain benefits when doing things such as crossword puzzles, in that it exercises the brain. – While learning English is essential and those of us who live here are immensely proud of being Australian, of Australia and its achievements and values, connections with other family members and to familial backgrounds are also important and are another benefit to bilingual or multilingualism. – Effective bilingualism requires at least one person in the household speaking to children in the second language continuously. You can’t just drop the kids off at Greek School and expect it to work. – The Victorian government has previously released a document entitled ‘Languages-expanding your world’, stating that “a language has the ability to change your life”. It is reported that the federal government wants 40 per cent of year 12 students studying a language within a decade and is funding the Asia Education Foundation to investigate why so many Australian students drop languages before the end of school. As parents and doctors, we were also interested in the information tabled regarding the health and medical benefits of bilingualism: Active bilingualism results in the delay of dementia type syndromes by at least 4.5 years in later age compared to those who are monolingual. Those who have some strokes and are bilingual are twice as likely to undergo full recovery compared to monolinguals (40 per cent vs 20 per cent full recovery). To bust some language myths, bilingualism does not create language delays or result in stuttering. Children commonly mix the two languages; however, this is temporary. Children are not confused by learning two languages. Celebrities who are actively bilingual include Sandra Bullock (English and German) and Bradley Cooper (English and French). There are multiple advantages to bilingualism. Speaking more than one language offers potentially great benefits to students and adults who will emerge into an increasingly connected world. Language learning should be viewed as a key 21st-century skill. Despite the advantages of bilingualism, Australia faces significant challenges in convincing its parents and children to undertake language education. There needs to be greater incentives at a school-age level to undertake bilingual education including up-scaled ATAR scores, etc. We would like to see the various stakeholders in Melbourne’s Greek community and across Australia synergising more, and a more a formal strategy developed for how we can ‘mind our language’ more effectively. * Anyone who would like to share or discuss similar ideas and would like to form a support or interest group (at least for our children’s sake) can contact us at gstabelo@med.usyd.edu.aulast_img read more

Wildfires hurting air quality in Washington

first_imgSPOKANE — Wildfires were hurting air quality Monday in much of Washington, as forecasters issued a stagnant weather advisory to last at least through Wednesday afternoon.Smoke from the blazes drifted west over the Cascade Range but had not yet settled close to the ground, the National Weather Service said. That could change by Tuesday, when some smoke is expected in the western foothills of the Cascades.An inversion moved into the Wenatchee area east of the mountains on Sunday evening, holding smoke in the region where 1,700 people were fighting a complex of wildfires burning on about 51 square miles.Hundreds of people have been evacuated as the fires were helped by unseasonably warm temperatures. The area is extremely dry, and conditions are right for rapid growth of existing fires and new fire starts, fire managers said.All of the big fires in the state started during a Sept. 8 lightning storm. About 3,700 firefighters, including some from Canada, were battling the fires.last_img read more

GlaxoSmithKline and Liverpool Victoria shortlisted for benefits team of the year

first_imgGlaxoSmithKline, Liverpool Victoria, and Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council are among the organisations that have been shortlisted in the benefits team of the year category at the Employee Benefits Awards 2017.The award, sponsored by Conduent HR Services, celebrates the achievements of an in-house benefits team that works together to deliver benefits that help to drive an organisation’s business strategy, as well as meet its HR goals.The full category shortlist is:GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)Liverpool Victoria (Entered by Thomsons Online Benefits)RBSSandwell Metropolitan Borough Council (Entered by P&MM Employee Benefits)The winning team will be announced at the Employee Benefits Awards and Summer Party at the Artillery Garden at the HAC, London, on 9 June 2017.See the full shortlist.For more information, or to reserve your table.last_img read more

Foster parents of slain Florida toddler take in his newborn sister

first_imgLARGO, Fla. (AP/WSVN) — The newborn sister of a 2-year-old Florida boy who police say was killed by his mother is now in the care of his former foster parents.Jordan Belliveau lived with Sam and Juliet Warren for most of his life until he was returned to his biological parents. His body was found in a wooded area near St. Petersburg in September. His mother initially told Largo Police a stranger abducted him, then said she hit the boy.The Warrens have asked for a “fundamental re-examination” of the state’s child protective services system.“Last fall we were broken by the death of a child we loved dearly,” the Warrens’ said in a statement to the Tampa Bay Times. “As the fall continued, the question of what would happen to Jordan’s little sister began to weigh on us. We knew that Charisse would not be able to care for her. After much prayer, we approached Charisse about allowing us to adopt the baby, and she agreed.”Jordan’s mother Charisse Stinson, gave birth to baby Serenity while in custody on a murder charge. The Tampa Bay Times reports the Warrens said in a statement Friday they are working toward adopting Serenity with her Stinson’s cooperation.According to the Tampa Bay Times, Jordan’s father, who is also named Jordan Belliveau, filed a petition for paternity in court. However, it is unclear if he is seeking custody of Serenity.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more