HALIFAX REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY: Highway 111 There will be single lane closures on selected MicMac Parcloramps on Highway 111 in Dartmouth from Thursday, May 27 toSunday, June 6. Road crews will be carrying out repaving work between 7 a.m. and8 p.m. weekdays and between 7 a.m. and noon Sundays. One lane will be open on ramps at all times and traffic controlwill consist of lane drops. Local area office: 902-499-3785 Fax: 902-835-1860 TRANSPORTATION/PUBLIC WORKS–Traffic advisory, Halifax RegionalMunicipality -30-
Drivers travelling beside the LaHave River near Bridgewater will be sailing along on smoother, stronger pavement thanks to a road-paving project tendered by the province. The Department of Transportation and Public Works has called for tenders to repave Route 331 from the Bridgewater town line south for 10.9 kilometres to the LaHave River Yacht Club. The project is scheduled for completion next summer. “The province is working hard to return Nova Scotia’s roads to top shape,” said Ron Russell, Minister of Transportation and Public Works. “By tendering this job now we can get an early start on it in 2006.” The Department of Transportation and Public Works’ highways division manages more than 23,000 kilometres of roads in Nova Scotia. It maintains 4,100 bridges and operates seven provincial ferries. Staff provide services from district offices in Bridgewater, Bedford, Truro and Sydney.
FOR BROADCAST USE New regulations announced today (March 14th) will allow recreational snowmobilers access to designated trails on Crown land. The trails are managed by the Snowmobilers Association of Nova Scotia. Trail permits cost 125 dollars. Snowmobilers caught without a permit may have to pay a fine of 250 dollars for the first offence. Natural Resources Minister David Morse says that trails designation is important to manage Crown land access for snowmobilers. Organized snowmobiling and snowmobile tourism contributes 36-million dollars annually to the Nova Scotia economy. Information is available from the snowmobilers association or local snowmobile clubs. -30- New regulations, announced today, March 14, will allow recreational snowmobilers to enjoy designated trails on Crown land. “Designation of these trails is essential to manage Crown land access for snowmobilers, and encourage Nova Scotians to enjoy the benefits of the Nova Scotia outdoors in winter,” said Minister of Natural Resources David Morse. “I want the people of this province to recognize that Nova Scotia has so much to offer throughout the year, and that winter can be just as enjoyable as summertime.” The Department of Natural Resources is authorizing the Snowmobilers Association of Nova Scotia to sell the permits needed to ride on designated snowmobile trails throughout the province. Based on experience and knowledge about costs associated with managing and maintaining trails, the Department of Natural Resources has accepted the association’s fee schedule. “The Snowmobilers Association of Nova Scotia thank Premier Rodney MacDonald and Minister of Natural Resources David Morse for helping to bring organized snowmobiling in Nova Scotia in line with virtually every other province in Canada,” said association president Steve McLelan. Today’s announcement and the eventual designation of an expanded comprehensive snowmobile trail system ensure that snowmobilers contribute to the development, operation and maintenance of Nova Scotia’s largest recreational trails system. Trails designation will also ensure the long-term sustainability of organized snowmobiling and snowmobile tourism, which contributes $36 million annually to the Nova Scotia economy. Permits to use these designated trails will cost $125 per year. Snowmobilers using the trails without a permit may be subject to a fine of $250 for the first offence. Information about purchasing a permit and about the trails is available at www.snowmobilersns.com
The Department of Justice today, April 16, announced the terms of reference for an independent external audit of the policies and procedures of correctional facilities in Nova Scotia. The terms of reference are as follows: The audit will assess, report on and make recommendations with respect to the adequacy of Nova Scotia Correctional Services safety and security policies and procedures and staffing in adult correctional facilities in areas related to the following: The audit will be conducted by Deloitte and led by Saad Rafi, a former deputy minister of Public Safety and Policing Services in Ontario. He will be obtaining best practices from across Canada. It is expected that the audit will completed by fall. Audit findings will be released publicly. -30- Prisoner escorts outside of the facility for hospital and other appointments. Admission and release procedures to ensure that errors are not made with respect to the either the acceptance or early release from custody. Use of restraints for offender control including type, training and application based on security level. Use of intermediate weapons such as pepper spray, batons and Tasers by staff conducting offender transfers outside of the facility. Adequacy of safety and security-related training procedures. Assessment of circumstances and response to mistaken releases and escapes since April 1, 2007. Review of the recent internal audit of Central Nova Scotia Correctional Facility and the action steps in response. Review of Nova Scotia response to increased adult inmate count. Provide advice on any other matters around operations or public safety that emerge from the audit.
Small business will continue to get much-needed support through the province’s partnership with Nova Scotia credit unions after a $10-million loan announced today, Oct. 21. “This new loan will increase participating credit unions’ access to capital for loans to Nova Scotia’s small and medium-sized businesses, helping to create good jobs and grow the economy,” said MLA Michèle Raymond, on behalf of Economic and Rural Development Minister Percy Paris. “We are pleased to continue our work with Nova Scotia credit unions, supporting the sustainability and success of small businesses throughout the province.” The loan will come from the Strategic Opportunities Fund Incorporated, and be administered by the Credit Union Central of Nova Scotia. Credit unions can apply to the administrator to access the funds. “We are dedicated to supporting local small business and communities and we are pleased to be partnering again with the province,” said Bernie O’Neil, CEO of Credit Union Central of Nova Scotia. “This new loan will further enhance participating credit unions’ ability to respond to the needs of our small business members.” Over the last seven years, the province has provided support to small businesses through the $30-million Credit Union Small Business Loan Guarantee Program. The program has helped start 434 businesses, created almost 1,500 jobs and maintained 3,000 more across the province. Donald Savoie endorsed small business support in his Nova Scotia economic review. After his recommendations, the province amended the program to allow financing for business acquisitions and buyouts to help ensure small businesses are sustained. For more information on the program, a partnership between the Department of Economic and Rural Development, 14 participating Credit Unions and the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council, visit www.gov.ns.ca/econ/business . The Strategic Opportunities Fund Incorporated is a provincial corporation that receives and manages funds under the federal Immigrant Investor Program. It invests funds in economic development opportunities and job creation priorities. For more information, visit www.gov.ns.ca/econ/nssofi/ .
Amendments introduced today, April 12, to the Nova Scotia Business Incorporated Act will allow the NSBI board of directors to consider selling land and buildings at less than fair-market value, in limited situations. NSBI holds land and buildings and manages multiple ports and industrial parks across the province. The corporation’s goal is to work with the communities where these assets are located and help plan sustainable initiatives that will mean business growth for the region. “In some cases, it’s not just private-sector companies that have worthwhile proposals to use property held by NSBI,” said Percy Paris, Minister of Economic and Rural Development and Tourism. “We want to ensure NSBI’s act gives the corporation and government the flexibility to consider whether property could be transferred to a not-for-profit or to the provincial government for less than fair-market prices.” Since the term financial assistance, as used in the NSBI Act, doesn’t allow the province’s business-development agency to provide assistance with a grant, NSBI cannot sell or dispose of real property at less than fair market value. This makes sense when NSBI is negotiating with private businesses. With the amendment introduced today, not-for-profits and the provincial government may be considered exempt, on a case-by-case basis. These arrangements will need NSBI board and cabinet approvals. In addition, the bill allows a minor housekeeping amendment to resolve an inconsistency in the dates to submit the corporation’s five-year evaluation reports and five-year strategic plans to the Economic and Rural Development and Tourism Minister.
The report is available at http://forestns.ca/. The industry recovered from a global financial crisis which led to major mill closures and Nova Scotia’s export of wood products and pulp and paper reached $700 million in 2015. $800 million contribution to provincial gross domestic product. It was $575 million in 2012 forest products industry ranks fifth in Nova Scotia’s contribution to gross domestic product in the goods producing sector forest products industry ranks second in Nova Scotia’s jobs in goods producing sector forest products industry ranks third in Nova Scotia’s exporters in goods producing sector A new report on Nova Scotia’s forest industry shows recent increases in the number of people employed and in economic activity. Natural Resources Minister Lloyd Hines welcomes the report, which was released this week by Forest Nova Scotia. “Forestry is a long-standing economic driver in Nova Scotia, which is now generating more than $2 billion in economic activity,” said Mr. Hines. “This is a strong recovery for the forest sector and the government wants to see it continue to grow good jobs in the province.” The report shows that the economic impact of the industry is $410 million in direct gross domestic product, $275 million in income in the pockets of Nova Scotians, 6,100 direct jobs and another 5,400 spinoff jobs. Employment in Nova Scotia’s forest industry has increased four per cent from 2012 to 2014. The independent report was produced by Gardner Pinfold Consultants Inc. Other highlights of the report include:
The College of Paramedics will come into effect on April 1, making paramedicine a self-regulated profession in Nova Scotia. In 2015, the province passed the Paramedics Act to establish the College of Paramedics. The college will serve as the regulatory body for more than 1,400 paramedics in Nova Scotia. “Paramedics play an increasingly important role in our health-care system, not only as first responders, but also providing palliative care support and working alongside doctors, nurses and other health-care professionals,” said Health and Wellness Minister Leo Glavine. “Paramedics will now have a stronger voice in the health system, with more opportunities to enhance and advance their profession.” Paramedics will join 21 other self-regulated health professions in the province. As a self-regulated profession the college will provide oversight, be accountable for its members, manage public complaints and discipline and set the standards that Nova Scotia paramedics will follow. “Public safety and quality patient care are always our top priorities,” said Dr. Andrew Travers, provincial medical director, Emergency Health Services, and a member of the incoming College of Paramedics Council. “Self-regulation means that licensed paramedics have, and work to maintain, the necessary qualifications and skills, which will mean high quality care for Nova Scotians.” Government provided a one-time $350,000 subsidy to help establish the College of Paramedics. After that, the college will be financed through member dues collected from paramedics. The College of Paramedics will be governed by a council, made up of paramedics and members of the public, that will oversee all operations. The inaugural council includes paramedics, the provincial medical director, members of the public, and members from the College of Registered Nurses and the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Nova Scotia. For more information about the College of Paramedics, visit www.cpns.ca.
New Delhi: Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath was conspicously missing from the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting held here on Saturday to discuss the reasons for the party’s abysmal performance in the 2019 general elections. Most of the party’s senior leaders such as former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, party chief Rahul Gandhi, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Mallikarjun Kharge attended the meet. Also Read – Dussehra with a ‘green’ twist Chief Ministers of Rajasthan Ashok Gehlot, Punjab Amarinder Singh and Chhattisgarh Bhupesh Baghel were also present at the meeting. Chief ministers of four Congress-ruled states and the Union Territory of Puducherry were asked to attend the CWC meet. Foremost on the table is the challenge to keep the flock together in states like Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh, where efforts were on to destabilise the government. The party is also likely to discuss upcoming Assembly elections in Haryana, Jharkhand and Maharashtra, a source said. Also Read – India receives its first Rafale fighter jet from France Out of the 23 CWC members, only four won in the just concluded elections — party chief Rahul Gandhi, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Gaurav Gogoi and A. Chella Kumar. The 12 other CWC members, who lost the polls, include heavyweights like Mallikarjun Kharge, former Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat, former Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, former Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar, Jyotiraditya Scindia, Raghuveer Singh Meena, Jitin Prasada, Deepender Hooda, Sushmita Dev, K.H. Muniyappa and Arun Yadav. Seven CWC members did not participate in the Lok Sabha elections this year. Heads have already started rolling after the party managed to win only 52 seats in the lower house, only eight more than 2014. Congress Uttar Pradesh in-charge Raj Babbar resigned from the post on Friday, along with campaign committee chief H.K. Patil, Odisha party chief Niranjan Patnaik and Amethi District Congress President Yogendra Misra. In Uttar Pradesh, the party failed to even retain the Gandhi bation of Amethi, where Rahul Gandhi lost to Union Minister and BJP candidate Smriti Irani by a margin of over 55,000 votes. In Karnataka, the party won only one seat with senior party leader Mallikarjun Kharge losing by a huge margin. According to sources, a few other senior leaders and party in-charges from states where the party drew a blank, are expected to offer to step down. The final call will be taken at the CWC, the party’s highest decision-making body. Congress won only 3 seats in three states — Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh — where it formed governments in December 2018. “The chief ministers and party in-charges from these three states will answer for the debacle and issues that needs to be prioritised in their respective states,” the source added.
New Delhi: Noida Metro cards sale has dipped considerably in a little over four months of its operation with commuters blaming lack of seamless connectivity and high fare as main reasons behind it. A total of 2,041 such travellers cards were issued during May 1 and 20, as against 3,686 in April and 5,064 in March this year, according to Noida Metro data. As many as 5,220 cards were issued in February and a whopping 3,363 within six days of its operation January 26 to 31, it said. Also Read – Cylinder blast kills mother and daughter in Karawal Nagar Noida Metro Rail Corporation (NMRC) has joined hands with the State Bank of India to issue SBI NMRC City 1 card. Noida Metro charges a fee of 1.8 per cent or Rs 12 (whichever is less rounded off to the nearest rupee). “The fee of 1.8 per cent for top-up is steep and uncalled for. Delhi Metro issues a non-bank card for commuters to travel and they do not charge any fee on the top-up,” said Ajay Chaturvedi, a senior citizen. He said the fare of Noida Metro is also high. Also Read – Two persons arrested for killing manager of Muthoot Finance A commuter has to pay a minimum of Rs 10 to Rs 50 to travel on weekdays i.e., from Monday to Saturday. While one has to spend anywhere between Rs 10 and Rs 40 on Sundays and national holidays. Card users get 10 per cent discount on each journey. Top-up of Rs 1.6 crore has been done on these cards by the commuters so far, the Noida Metro data said. Another daily traveller, Akash Singh said there is a lack of seamless connectivity between Noida Metro and Delhi Metro, that acts as a single big hurdle for the commuters to use Noida metro Aqua line. At present, commuters have to exit at Sector 51 station of Noida Metro and walk nearly 300 metres on an under-construction road to take the Blue Line at Sector 52 station. The narrow under-construction pathway is filled with dust and commuters have to pave way to walk on it as criss-crossing e-rickshaws ply unruly on them, he said. “I take metro forcibly as other travelling options are not viable. It would have been better had they constructed a dedicated bridge to connect the two metro stations thus saving people from a lot of hardships,” Singh said. Another traveller, Sapna said this so-called dedicated pathway is unsafe for women. “A lot of auto rickshaws block the way as soon as one gets down from Noida Sector 52 station of Blue Line and proceed to walk to reach Noida Metro. It becomes unsafe in nights as these auto rickshaws do not leave any space for people to pass by. Police presence is also not there at Sector 52 metro station, which becomes very busy during peak hours, she said. HR executive Gauri Sharma said she often has to travel with unruly people in e-rickshaws who insist on travelling sitting next to driver seat. “Passengers are not expected to sit next to e-rickshaw driver. On Friday, I saw a man arguing with the rickshaw driver to sit in the front. I got to wait for good 15 minutes till both the driver and the commuter argues. The situation becomes quiet frustrating. What is worst is that you don’t find any police men there to help such e-rickshaw drivers or commuters like me,” she rued. Due to lack of seamless connectivity and high fare, Noida Metro may not get the desired footfall, another daily traveller said. People can also travel in Noida Metro using QR (Quick Response) coded tickets. Noida Metro corporation earned Rs 11.67 lakh so far (Till May 20) from its sales to commuters.
Los Angeles: Scientists have found what makes the teeth of deep-sea dragonfish transparent, a unique adaptation which helps camouflage the predatory creatures from their prey. According to the study published in the journal Matter, the adaptation results from their teeth having an unusually crystalline nanostructure mixed with amorphous regions. The findings could provide “bioinspiration” for researchers looking to develop transparent ceramics. Also Read – ‘Hong Kong won’t rule out Chinese help over protests’Deep-sea creatures have evolved some fascinating adaptations such as bioluminescence, eyes that can see in low light, and mouths that can engulf much larger prey. Some species, such as the deep-sea dragonfish (Aristostomias scintillans), have transparent teeth. “It’s an adaptation that, to our knowledge, has not yet been explored in detail,” said Audrey Velasco-Hogan, a PhD student at the University of California San Diego in the US. “By studying why these teeth are transparent, we can better understand deep-sea organisms like the dragonfish and the adaptations they evolved to live in their environments,” Velasco-Hogan said. Also Read – Pak Army chief accompanies Imran at key meetings in ChinaTransparent teeth, along with a dark body, make the dragonfish essentially invisible to their prey, she said. Because of this camouflage, dragonfish are among the top predators of the deep sea despite being small — measuring about 15 centimetres long — and relatively slow. “They spend most of their time sitting around with their jaws open, waiting for something to come by,” Velasco-Hogan said. “Their teeth are always exposed, so it’s important that they are transparent so they don’t reflect or scatter any bioluminescent light from the environment,” she said. To solve the mysteries of the dragonfish’s dental disguise, researchers imaged and analysed the nanostructure of the teeth using a combination of electron microscopy, focused ion beam and nanoindentation tests. They discovered that the teeth have unique characteristics both in their outer enamel-like layer and inner dentin layer. The enamel-like layer consists of hydroxyapatite nanocrystals structured in a way that prevents light from scattering or reflecting off the surface of the teeth. The dentin layer is also structured in its own particular way. It lacks microscopic channels called dentin tubules, which are what give the teeth of humans and other animals their colour. The absence of tubules is also responsible for making dragonfish teeth transparent. “Typically, teeth are not nanostructured. And they tend to have microscale features such as dentin tubules. “From a materials perspective, it’s really interesting to see that dragonfish teeth have architectures that we do not see in others,” Velasco-Hogan said.
New Delhi: As promised, the government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday cleared a fresh bill to protect rights of married Muslim women by banning the practice of instant triple talaq.The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019, which was passed by the Cabinet, will be introduced in the upcoming Parliament session beginning June 17. While elaborating on the decisions taken by the Cabinet, Union Information & Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar told reporters that the government was confident that the triple talaq bill would get passed in both the houses of the parliament as all demands of opposition parties had been taken into consideration. Also Read – IAF receives its first Rafale fighter jet from France”The government has made all the necessary changes in the bill. Given that our PM is committed towards sabka sath, sabka vikas and sabka vishwas, this bill will be passed in Rajya Sabha unanimously,” Javadekar said, adding that the Bill proposes to declare the practice of triple talaq as void and illegal. “The Bill also provides for payment of subsistence allowance to married Muslim women and dependent children. It also proposes to make the offence cognizable,” Javadekar said. Also Read – Cosmology trio win Nobel Physics PrizeIn another important decision, the Cabinet has cleared the Jammu Kashmir Reservation (Amendment) Bill, 2019, which is aimed at giving relief to persons in J&K residing in areas adjoining International Border. Once the bill gets passed, about 3.5 lakh residents living in 435 villages adjoining International Border would get the reservation benefits in direct recruitment, promotion and admission in different professional courses. The Cabinet has also approved the Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2019 making Aadhaar a voluntary requirement for KYC. Once the bill gets passed in both the Houses of the Parliament, no individual would be compelled to provide Aadhaar number unless provided by law. The Cabinet has also approved the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers’ Cadre) Bill, 2019, which would enable a 200-point roster system in universities and colleges. It will enable filling 7,000 existing vacancies of teachers across the country, the minister said.
New Delhi: Telecom operator Bharti Airtel Friday announced closing of 3G service in Kolkata as part of its plan to replace the third generation mobile technology with 4G in the country.”This is in line with our stated strategy of focusing on serving quality customers with best-in-class service experience. Going forward, we plan to refarm all of our 3G spectrum across India and deploy it for 4G in a phased manner,” Randeep Sekhon, CTO Bharti Airtel said in a statement. Also Read – Maruti cuts production for 8th straight month in SepIn Kolkata, Airtel will use 900 Mhz frequency band for 4G service which was earlier being used for 3G. “Airtel has refarmed the 900 Mhz band spectrum being used for 3G to further strengthen its 4G network. The company is deploying state-of-the-art L900 technology in the 900 MHz band to complement its 4G service in the 2300 Mhz and 1800 Mhz bands,” it said. Airtel claimed that with L900 technology, its smartphone customers will enjoy improved 4G service. “Airtel will continue to provide 2G service in Kolkata to serve the connectivity needs of customers on feature phones. All customers on 3G were duly notified and requested to upgrade their handsets/SIMs to continue enjoying best-in-class smartphone experience. Also Read – Ensure strict implementation on ban of import of e-cigarettes: revenue to Customs”3G customers who are yet to upgrade their handsets/SIMs will continue to get access to high quality voice services,” Airtel said. In London, Shares of Bharti Airtel’s Africa arm began trading at the London Stock Exchange Friday at 80 pence apiece. The initial public offer, to raise up to USD 750 million, was oversubscribed with strong interest from a variety of reputed global investors across the UK, US, Africa, Europe, Middle East and Asia, Bharti Airtel said in a regulatory filing. The company has put 744,047,619 new shares on offer, out of which 94.7 per cent of the stocks will be listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and rest in Nigeria. “The Offer also came with a secondary listing on the Nigeria Stock Exchange with meaningful allocations to Nigerian investors,” it said. Trading for institutional investors began Friday, while retail investors can start trading in the shares from July 3 in the UK, and from July 5 in Nigeria.
New Delhi: A massive fire broke out Monday morning at a footwear factory in northwest Delhi’s Keshav Puram area, officials said. According to the fire department, information about the blaze was received around 8 am, following which 22 fire engines were rushed to the spot. No casualty has been reported so far and the firemen are trying to douse the blaze, the officials said.
Kolkata: Poll strategist Prashant Kishor and his team will be present at the TMC’s mega Martyrs’ Day rally here on Sunday to understand the mindset of the people of West Bengal before the 2021 state Assembly election, sources in the party said on Saturday. A formal invitation for the rally had been sent to Kishor, a senior Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader told PTI. Kishor’s men from his Indian Political Action Committee (IPAC) would mingle among the crowd on Sunday to understand the public mood before they came up with a “political dawai (strategy)” for the 2021 polls, he said. Also Read – Centuries-old Durga Pujas continue to be hit among revellers “He (Kishor) and his team members will be trying to read the minds of the people and the party workers at Sunday’s rally. They will also try to understand which sections of the people participate in the rally and what are they looking for from TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee. Basically, they will try to understand the mood of the people,” he added. The IPAC men have also gone through video clippings of the Martyrs’ Day rallies held in the last couple of years. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari Puja “After looking at the video footage of the rallies of the last couple of years, Kishor and his men are trying to evaluate the enthusiasm among people this year. They have also gone through the documents related to Martyrs’ Day,” the TMC leader said. Kishor’s men were also visiting the places where TMC workers from far-off districts had put up to understand their pulse, he added. “They are trying to progress with calculation and these measures are part of their process to come up with a strategy to help our party get the desired success in the 2021 Assembly polls,” he said. After the Lok Sabha polls, in which the BJP made major inroads in West Bengal winning 18 of the 42 seats, the TMC roped in Kishor last month. Banerjee had claimed that the poll strategist would be helping her party as corporate social responsibility. Since then, Kishor has held three meetings with Banerjee, who is also the West Bengal chief minister, in which he has chalked out strategies for TMC ministers, leaders and workers. The poll strategist was also present at a recently-held meeting with the party’s district presidents. TMC sources said Kishor was giving tips to its district unit chiefs regarding the changes required in the strategies to help the party bounce back after the Lok Sabha polls. “During his meetings with partymen, Kishor gave vocal tonic to them asking them not to lose confidence only because the BJP has done well in the Lok Sabha election. His advice was that they should consider the 2021 Assembly polls as their first election battle and start with new enthusiasm,” the TMC leader said. Banerjee will highlight “save democracy” and demand bringing back ballot papers to replace electronic voting machines (EVMs) in conducting elections at Sunday’s rally. The rally is organised by the TMC every year on July 21 in the memory of 13 Youth Congress activists killed in police firing in 1993 during the Left Front regime in West Bengal. Banerjee was a leader of the Youth Congress at that time. The Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) tally of 18 seats in the Lok Sabha polls held in April-May — up from just two it had won in the state in 2014 — was only four less than the TMC’s 22. The Banerjee-led party had won 34 parliamentary seats in the 2014 polls.
Kolkata: The Indian Museum is all set to bring more collections in public view by opening up 20 more galleries. Thirteen of these galleries will be located at Belvedre House on the campus of National Library while seven will be located at Currency Building in Dalhousie Square.”Most of the museums in the world have huge collection of artefacts but only 4 to 5 percent of these exhibits can be displayed. Lack of space is one of the major constraints on the part of the museums across the world and the 206 year old Indian Museum is not an exception. The Centre has given us the nod to expand our museum and accordingly we have started working on it,” said Rajesh Purohit, director of Indian Museum. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaThe Indian Museum has 1.08 lakhs artefacts in its collection and only 5 percent of them are in display. Both the Belvedre House in Alipore and the Old Currency Building have gone structural renovation. The Belvedre House is a heritage while the Currency Building is a protected monument under the Archaeological Survey Of India. According to Purohit, the Belvedre building will have varied images and objects with each exhibition based upon a different theme. There will be exhibits on the theme of gods and goddesses like Shakti, Shiva, Bishnu and also on the flora and fauna of Indian art dating back to several years. Visitors in the building will also have access to using the Belvedre library. One of the galleries in Belvedre has already been unveiled in March. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayThe Currency Building exhibits will have a predominance of sculpture works with a separate gallery on Textile and another on Women in Indian Art. There will be also artefacts on Tibetan, Burmese, Chinese and South East Asia. There will be a cafeteria and cultural events as part of activities of the museum will be held from time to time. “Our collection in the textile sector is very enriching which dates back to over 200 years but only a few of them are on display in the Indian Museum. People who want to take up research in textile will get enough material,” he added. The Indian Museum authorities is optimistic of unveiling all the galleries by January 2020. “The two new destinations will surely give a big boost to tourism,” said Purohit. The best example where the expansion of a museum has taken place in the recent past is the Metropolitan Museum in New York. This museum has spread its wings on the bank of river Hudson.
New Delhi: The Defence Ministry on Saturday categorically said that there is no plan to privatise the Ordnance Factory Board and efforts are being made to enhance the functioning of the ammunition manufacturer.”Discussions are continuously being held by a committee of very senior officials of the Defence Ministry with employees federations of OFB and engage with them positively and constructively on all aspects relating to the corporatisation of OFB. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details”It was also clarified that the government is not proposing to privatise OFB and any apprehension in this regard is misplaced,” said Ajay Kumar, Secretary, Defence Production. State-run OFB is a leading producer of ammunition for the defence forces and has over one lakh employees. Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee recently wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, urging him to “stall and reverse the process of corporatisation and privatisation” of ordnance factories. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from ThursdayThe corporatisation of OFB will bring it at par with other Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs), it said. “This is in the interest of OFB as it will provide operational freedom and flexibility to OFB which it presently lacks. Besides, the interests of the workers will be adequately safeguarded in any decision taken on the subject,” the statement said. The committee also pointed out that the government has been trying to strengthen the functioning of OFB, including having taken several steps to modernise the factories, re-skill OFB employees at government cost, enable the development of products and components with indigenous technology, the ministry said on Friday. “The committee urged the employee organisations to recognise government’s efforts to make OFB into a competitive, productive and efficient organisation with higher turnover and enhanced profitability, which would also be in the interest of the employees. Therefore, the committee once again urged the employee organisations to withdraw their proposed strike,” it said. Indian Ordnance Factories is the oldest and largest industrial setup which functions under the Department of Defence Production of the Ministry of Defence.
New Delhi: The Delhi Police claimed to have arrested a 23-year-old homeless man for allegedly killing a person, who got into a fight with him over suspicion of water motor theft in South Delhi.According to police last month one Manoj (30), resident of Kotla Mubarak Pur was murdered. The deceased’s uncle disclosed that before the murder an altercation took place between deceased and the accused identified as Saheen in South Delhi’s in Kotla Mubarakpur night shelter over the dispute of theft of water motor. Later accused stabbed Manoj. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderAdditional Deputy Commissioner of Police (South) Parvinder Singh said that initially, there was no clue about the Saheen as he was vagabond and had spent a maximum of his life in night shelters. The team under SHO Kotla Mubarakpur Ajay Negi started their investigation. “His previous involvements were checked and he was found to be involved in four other criminal cases, including an attempt to murder and robbery. Jail record was checked and it was found that he remained in jail for more than 3 years,” police said. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsPolice took out details of his father, but on verification, it was learnt that his father had left Delhi one year ago. All his relatives were contacted and several raids were conducted. On Wednesday night, police received information that Saheen would come to Nizamuddin area near Barapulla flyover. Following the information, a trap was laid and Saheen was apprehended. During investigation, knife used in commission of crime was also recovered from his possession.
Kolkata: The blast in the underground cable line on the footpath in front of Stephen House at BBD Bag took place due to a short circuit. On Monday, scientists from state Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) visited the spot and determined the cause.According to FSL experts, apart from CESC and BSNL cables and there were cables of other firms under the footpath. At the particular point where the blast took place, cables of CESC and BSNL criss-crossed. During inspection, FSL team found that some gases leaked from that point. After examining in detail it was found that a portion cable was missing. It is suspected that the particular portion of cable was blown off. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaFSL scientists claimed that due to discharge of high energy from the CESC cables, which is commonly known as spark, the cable insulation melted. As a result flammable gases such methane, carbon monoxide and hydrogen were produced from decomposition of insulation cable. Due to flammable gases produced in the chamber high-pressure led to explosion and cables were ignited. But it is assumed that the incident did not take place suddenly. According to the experts, such incidents take a long time to occur. CESC and other organisations are working to fix the cables. Due to the work, traffic movement on Hemanta Basu Sarani was partially obstructed. On Sunday evening, a part of the footpath in front of Stephen House was blown away in a blast. The impact was so severe that the top layer of the pavement was blown away resulting in caving in of the footpath. A police team led by Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Murlidhar Sharma rushed to the spot and sniffer dog was also brought to the site. As it was a Sunday chances of loss of life was minimum.
TORONTO – Canada will formally apologize for turning away a boat full of Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi Germany in 1939, resulting in scores of them dying, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Tuesday.In a well-received speech to a sold-out Jewish fundraising event, Trudeau said the decision by Canada to force the German ocean liner “MS St. Louis” to return to Europe was a blight on our collective past.“An apology in the House of Commons will not rewrite this shameful chapter of our history,” Trudeau said. “It will not bring back those who perished or repair the lives shattered by tragedy. But it is our hope that this long overdue apology will bring awareness to our failings, as we vow to never let history repeat itself.”In the run-up to the Second World War and the ensuing Holocaust, the Canadian government heeded anti-Semitic sentiment by severely restricting Jewish immigration. From 1933 to 1945, only about 5,000 Jewish refugees were accepted due to what Trudeau called “our discriminatory ‘none is too many’ immigration policy” in place at the time.He called the turning away of the ship a “most egregious” example of the misguided policy.The “St. Louis” was carrying 907 German Jews fleeing Nazi persecution. Its captain, Gustav Schröder, tried in vain to find homes for his passengers. In addition to Cuba, the United States also turned away the refugees.Forced to return to Europe, 254 of those aboard eventually died in the slaughter that became the Holocaust.“We cannot turn away from this uncomfortable truth, and Canada’s part in it,” Trudeau said. “We must learn from this story, and let its lessons guide our actions going forward.”The March of the Living program has seen thousands of Holocaust survivors and others travel to Poland to honour the memory of the six million Jews murdered by the Nazis in concentration camps.Trudeau spoke eloquently of his own pilgrimage to Auschwitz, the infamous concentration camp in Nazi-occupied Poland.“We stared at the barbed wire fences that once separated the enslaved from their captors. We marched along the railways that delivered so many Jews to their deaths,” Trudeau said.“My visit to Auschwitz will forever stay with me and guide my time — as prime minister, but also as a father, husband, son, brother and citizen.”In a statement, the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Centre applauded Trudeau’s announcement as a “meaningful step” toward acknowledging the shameful chapter.“While an apology can never change the past, it can awaken the national conscience to ensure such grave mistakes are never repeated in the future,” centre president Avi Benlolo said.Trudeau also said recent figures indicate 17 per cent of all hate crimes in Canada target Jewish people. He said it pained him that Jews “more than any other religious group” are the victims of hate crimes.“We need to do more, as a society, to end xenophobic and anti-Semitic attitudes that still take root in our communities, in our schools, and in our places of work,” the prime minister said.The Toronto-based Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs also applauded Trudeau’s announcement.“A formal apology will be a powerful statement to Holocaust survivors and their families, including St. Louis passengers who live in Canada today, said CIJA CEO Shimon Koffler Fogel in a statement.“It will also affirm Canada’s continued vigilance in the ongoing fight against antisemitism.”Trudeau said he looked forward to offering the apology himself on the floor of the House of Commons, but he gave no date. The audience applauded loudly at the announcement.Tuesday was the first official recognition of May as Jewish Heritage Month, a designation passed by the Commons earlier this year.The fundraiser raised more than $1.1 million.