About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Tottenham boss Pochettino: Liverpool have title advantage playing at Anfieldby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveTottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino fears new stadium delays will wreck their title bid.He feels Anfield gives Liverpool the advantage as his second-place side battle for glory.Liverpool beat Newcastle 4-0 at home on Boxing Day and Poch said: “I saw the highlights, the Anfield crowd are desperate to win and are showing their support to the team.“Anfield was amazing, every game Liverpool are at Anfield is a party and that sometimes makes a difference.”Pochettino and his players are still having to play matches at Wembley as their new £850million stadium — which was supposed to open in September — is not yet finished.Pochettino said: “We cannot ask more from our fans, they are doing a fantastic job. The circumstances of this period in the club, we need to be strong and we cannot complain.“It’s not easy to get to Wembley on public transport, it’s not easy.“Our fans tried to raise the atmosphere but in a 90,000 stadium we’re limited to 51,000. We had 45,000.“That is why when I was asked before, ‘Do you want to move into our new stadium as soon as it is ready?'”I said ‘Of course, as soon as possible,’ because it’s going to be a massive boost for the team. It’s going to be a place where the fans can help the team achieve more. There is no doubt.”
Kochi: Priests of the Orthodox faction on Sunday conducted holy mass at a church in nearby Piravom amid tight security as a nearly two-year old Supreme Court order in favour of them was finally implemented. Armed with a Kerala High Court directive, the Orthodox faction entered the church known as “Piravom Valiyapalli”, a major Christian spiritual centre in the state, two days after Ernakulam district administration took over its control from rival Jacobite group. Also Read – 2019 most peaceful festive season for J&K: Jitendra Singh The church had witnessed tense situation last week after the high court rdered the district administration to take over its control for implementing the Supreme Court order granting its possession to the Orthodox faction. For the first time after the apex court order, the priests and followers of the Orthodox faction entered the church on Sunday morning after its doors were thrown opened to them by the administration. A security ring was thrown around the church and Piravom town to prevent any untoward incident in view of implementation of the apex court order on the decades-old factional feud in the administration of the church. Also Read – Personal life needs to be respected: Cong on reports of Rahul’s visit abroad Hundreds of protesting Jacobite followers, led by their priests, who lost one of their prominent spiritual centres in the legal battle, assembled in Piravom town and held their Sunday prayers on the road side. Later, the Jacobites, who owe their allegiance to the Patriarch of Antioch, held a protest march An earlier attempt by the Orthodox faction to enter the church was foiled on Wednesday by Jacobite priests and followers who locked the doors from inside. Police then made a forced entry and removed the protesting priests and others followers before Ernakulam District Collector S Suhas took control of the church, paving the way for implementation of the apex court orders. After the district administration took control of the church, the Kerala High Court had on Friday directed that Orthodox faction priests can conduct holy mass. A division bench of Justices A M Shaffique and N Anil Kumar has also ordered that those who create obstruction can be arrested and put in civil prison until further orders. Considering pleas filed by an Orthodox priest and others seeking police protection to implement the Supreme Court verdict, the high court had said all believers can attend the holy mass to be offered by the priest on Sunday. The court, however, has directed that the key of the church shall be kept by the Ernakulam district collector. The Orthodox and Jacobite factions have been locked in a tussle over the possession of the church and matters worsened after the Supreme Court ordered that the control of the place of worship be given to the Orthodox group. The Orthodox faction had moved the high court after the state government failed to implement the order of the top court. Last Sunday, Orthodox priests entered the Kandanad St Marys Church near here and offered holy mass. In its 2017 verdict, the apex court had held that 1,100 parishes and their churches under the Malankara Church should be controlled by the Orthodox group as per the 1934 Malankara Church guidelines. The Jacobite-Orthodox row dates back to 1912 and has led to violent clashes between the two groups in Kerala.
New Delhi: Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday said those who consider themselves supreme and indulge in the politics of falsehood will not understand Mahatma Gandhi’s sacrifices and ideals. In what appeared to be a swipe at the present BJP leadership, Sonia Gandhi told party workers and leaders at Rajghat that the Mahatma’s soul would be pained by what has been happening in India in the last few years. Sonia Gandhi also administered an oath on Gandhi’s ideals to party workers on the 150th anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. Earlier in the day, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi led a march of party workers from the Delhi Congress office at the Deendayal Upadhyaya Marg to mark the occasion. “How will those who consider themselves supreme understand the sacrifices of Mahatma Gandhi….Those doing politics of falsehood will not understand Gandhi’s philosophy of non-violence,” Sonia Gandhi said in her brief address on the occasion. Addressing the gathering in Hindi, she said no matter what others might claim, only the Congress has followed the path of Gandhi and has provided jobs, education and facilities to farmers, accomplishments which are unparalleled. “India and Gandhi are synonymous. Yet some people want RSS to be synonymous with India,” she said, adding that India has arrived at its present state due to Mahatma Gandhi.
Taipei: Five bodies have been recovered from under a collapsed bridge in Taiwan, rescuers said Wednesday, as the search continued for the last person missing after the structure smashed onto fishing boats moored underneath. Taiwan’s National Fire Agency said the deceased were fishing workers from Indonesia and the Philippines whose bodies were found in waters near two damaged boats late Tuesday and earlier Wednesday. “The search and rescue mission continues,” transport minister Lin Chia-lung told reporters, adding evidence was being collected for an investigation. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince Salman ‘snubbed’ Pak PM Imran, recalled his private jet from US: ReportThe Philippines labour ministry confirmed that two of its nationals were killed while one remained missing and five others were injured in the incident. The ministry pledged assistance to the affected workers and their families. Dramatic CCTV footage captured the moment the 140-metre (460-foot) long single-arch bridge came crashing down early on Tuesday morning in Nanfangao, on Taiwan’s east coast. In the video, a vertical cable at the centre of the bridge’s steel arch suddenly snaps. The road then collapses into the water, crashing down on three fishing boats as a petrol tanker, which nearly made it across, also plunged into the water. Also Read – Iraq military admits ‘excessive force’ used in deadly protestsTwelve people were injured, including six Filipino and three Indonesian fishing workers, the Taiwanese driver of the petrol tanker, and two coastguard personnel. The petrol tanker burst into flames at some point after it hit the water, sending a thick plume of black smoke into the air. The local landmark was completed in 1998 and spanned a small fishing port. It was featured in a number of TV dramas and commercials. Taiwan was skirted by a typhoon on Monday night, which brought heavy rains and strong winds to parts of the east coast. But at the time of the bridge collapse, the weather was fine. Taiwan has a huge fishing industry and many of those who work on its boats are low-paid migrant workers from countries such as the Philippines, Indonesia and Vietnam. Previous serious bridge incidents in Taiwan have mostly been related to typhoons.
New Delhi: Realty major DLF has settled the entire Rs 8,700 crore amount payable to DLF Cyber City Developers Ltd (DCCDL), its joint venture with Singapore-based GIC, by transferring various completed commercial properties and land parcels as well as cash payment. With settlement of this dues, the company said it has completed the exercise of transforming its balance sheet and consolidation of all rental assets under the DCCDL. DLF holds 67 per cent stake in DCCDL, while Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC holds 33 per cent. Also Read – Commercial vehicle sales to remain subdued in current fiscal: IcraAt the end of 2018, DLF owed Rs 8,700 crore to DCCDL and the amount payable came down to Rs 5,600 crore by July 1, 2019. In a filing to the BSE on Wednesday, DLF said the “inter-company payables have now been fully settled”. As part of the settlement, DLF has transferred its shareholding in its arm DLF Info Park Developers (Chennai) at an enterprise value of Rs 1,000 crore. This subsidiary holds nearly 27 acres of land. That apart, it has transferred its shopping mall in Saket, South Delhi for an enterprise value of Rs 1,012 crore. Also Read – Ashok Leyland stock tanks over 5 pc as co plans to suspend production for up to 15 daysDLF also transferred its shareholding and compulsorily convertible debentures (48.2 per cent of the fully diluted capital) in Fairleaf Real Estate Pvt Ltd, a joint venture company that owns One Horizon Center commercial project in Gurugram, for an enterprise value of Rs 1,700 crore. According to sources, DLF has settled around Rs 2,000 crore through cash. “This has been a major restructuring exercise and has now resulted in a larger alignment of the Group’s rental assets under the DCCDL platform,” DLF said. After these transfers and consolidation of commercial assets, DLF said DCCDL is positioned even more strongly to continue its growth journey. “The total settlement of receivables (net of values received for transfer of shareholding / dividend received from DCCDL and other inter-company adjustments) will result in an increase in the company’s net debt by only Rs 475 crores approx,” the filing said. DLF said it has completed the final chapter of its balance sheet transformation. Earlier, DLF had transferred Mall of India project at Noida, Uttar Pradesh to DCCDL at an enterprise value of Rs 2,950 crore. The realty firm had also transferred 3.05 acres land parcel at Gurugram, Haryana. DCCDL currently holds nearly 30 million sq ft of rent-yielding commercial assets, largely in Gurugram, with annual rental income of about Rs 3,000 crore. In December 2017, DLF entered into this joint venture with GIC when DLF promoters sold their entire 40 per cent stake in DCCDL for nearly Rs 12,000 crore. This deal included sale of 33.34 per cent stake in the DCCDL to GIC for about Rs 9,000 crore and buyback of remaining shares worth about Rs 3,000 crore by DCCDL.
Kolkata: A Durga Puja committee in North Kolkata has roped in a combination of Indo-Spanish artists to provide pandal-hoppers a sneak peek into the Spanish culture.The colourful Durga Puja pandal, a replica of Indo-Spanish pavilion depicting chess, has two entrance — one for common people and other for especially-abled people. There is only one exit. “World famous Spanish artist Antonyo Marest has joined hands with Indian artist Malay Das for Durga Puja festival 2019. The theme of our Puja is Chaturanga. 1500 years ago in India, the game of chess was known as Chaturanga. The theme has been suggested by both of them. Both the artists have expressed their art in a unique concept Chaturango. It will spread the message towards positivity between the people of the two countries. We are thankful to Basu Foundation for Arts for helping us to connect with Marest,” said Subhendu Chowdhury, secretary of M S G L Duer Palli (Old) Sarbajanin Durgotsav Samity. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaAntonio Martinez Estevan, professionally known as Antonyo Marest, is a Spanish painter, sculptor and designer. He was in Calcutta last month and designed the structure of the Durga Puja mandap. The Puja pandal, situated at the intersection of B K Paul Avenue and Kali Prassana Banerjee Road, will showcase similarities between the people of both the countries. “This is for the first time we have roped in an international sculptor. Spanish people love different colours. That is why the pandal is colourful. The most peculiar thing is that the idol at the pandal is made of mirror. The idol of Maa Durga will reflect different colours,” said Raja Chakraborty, member of M S G L Duer Palli (Old) Sarbajanin Durgotsav Samity.
The much-speculated plastic ban on October 2, 2019, did not live up to the hype created. The government made it clear that it never meant to ban single-use plastics (SUP) but insisted on raising awareness and pushing for recycling. The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) directed all states and Union territories (UTs) that there would not be any immediate ban on plastic items. Instead, the ministry asked state urban departments and urban local bodies to strengthen plastic waste management by improvising on existing waste management systems. Also Read – Hijacking Bapu’s legacyThis can be done by investing heavily in improving source segregation of waste and supporting end-to-end segregation of waste to strengthen processing, said the Centre. The ministry gave states the freedom to look into introducing prohibitive action on SUP by identifying a clear list of products that need to be targeted. This majorly includes single-use disposable cutlery and carry bags. It asked states/UTs to play a key role in promoting eco-friendly alternatives, projects that look into upscaling or recycling single-use plastics and small-scale or micro-enterprises. Additionally, states must focus on behavioural change and raising awareness. Also Read – The future is here!While it is clear that a ban is not entirely a solution, the government must move quickly on measures to phase out and finally impose a plastic ban on problematic SUP items. It is clear that we cannot lose the momentum. What then should be the focus now? First, we need to list and define single-use plastics. It is important to identify the most problematic SUP items and assess the extent of their impacts before imposing bans. Also, it must be understood that it is not just carrying bags that are a major SUP contaminant. Items such as wrappers of sweets, multi-layered packaging items, straws and stirrers, disposable cutlery and styrofoam items are some of the most common SUPs that form a major part of the litter. What we need is a clear definition of SUPs based on the Indian scenario. There is also a need for a National Action Plan or guidelines that focus on implementing the plastic ban in a phase-wise manner in terms of urgency. This means products that have alternatives available should be phased earlier than the items which do not have alternatives, simultaneously reinforcing research and development funding for different alternatives and eco-friendly products. Second, we need to push for effective waste management with a focus on segregation, collection and recycling. Currently, most municipalities are struggling to implement existing plastic waste and solid waste regulations. In many cases, NGOs, CSR funds and initiatives by private companies, citizen activists and in particular the resourceful informal sector of waste pickers, have filled the gap. But this is not enough. Better waste management systems with a focus on segregation incentive models can help achieve long-term impacts. If cities segregate waste into three fractions — wet, dry and domestic hazardous waste — and if municipalities create infrastructures such as material recovery facilities or sorting stations, dry waste can be sorted into different fractions. We need to source segregate end to end. For instance in Ambikapur, Chhattisgarh segregated waste from households is brought to 17 solid-liquid resource management centres where dry waste is further segregated into 155 fractions at the secondary and tertiary centres, most of which is channelised for recycling. We have examples of cities such as Panaji, Trichy, Mysuru, Panchgani, Vengurla, Karjat, Muzaffarpur that have invested in effective dry waste management. In these cities, dry waste is not a challenge, it is a resource. Third, effectively implement Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR). We need to be very clear about which items should be included in EPR. Ideally, it should include all plastic packaging items that are not collected and become waste instantly, such as multi-layered plastics, PET, milk pouches, sachets, etc. The MoEF&CC is currently formulating a national framework to implement EPR under Rule 9 of the Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016. Currently, plastic companies are expected to work with ULBs and strengthen waste management. What’s better: A credit or offset mechanism that lets companies obtain credits for plastic waste management if they support municipalities in implementing waste management approaches. This will provide the industry with the necessary push. Under this mechanism, plastics collected and recycled will count for offsetting the EPR targets for the company. All accounting of EPR targets should be met at the national level, irrespective of the state/UT where products are sold or consumed. Also, companies are getting together and setting up their own plastic waste collection and recycling schemes for items such as PET that have a high recycling value (about 90 per cent), but an approach that integrates industry, informal sector and ULB would lead to better implementation of EPR. Fourth, the focus should be on innovation in designs that incorporate waste reduction. India has to strengthen its rules for producers and enforce effective systems of EPR. To begin with, the government should invest money in encouraging the setting up of ventures that provide sustainable products as an alternative to current non-recyclable products. It should accelerate business-driven innovations and help scale circular economies that focus on systemic stalemates in global material flows so that the need for disposal of materials is delayed. Last, there needs to be a plan for remaining plastics. The non-recyclable dry waste fraction and contaminated plastics, etc., are suitable for incineration-based technologies. Also, in scenarios where materials are so degraded from repeated recycling that they are of no further use or comprise low-value contaminated plastics that cannot be recycled, deriving energy from them is preferable to discarding them at a landfill site. (The author is a Programme Manager, Environmental Governance (Municipal Solid Waste), Centre for Science and Environment, Delhi. The views expressed are strictly personal)
New Delhi: The Special Cell of Delhi Police in a joint operation with UP Police arrested three criminals after a brief exchange of fire in Meerut on Thursday. Police said that all three criminals sustained bullet injuries on their legs. Police identified the accused as Saddam Gauri (29), Usman (33) and Dalip (19). Deputy Commissioner of Police (special cell) Pramod Singh Kushwah said that the incident took place around 9.15 PM in the area of TP Nagar in Meerut. Also Read – More good air days in Delhi due to Centre’s steps: JavadekarA team under ACP (special cell) Attar Singh was involved in the operation. “Saddam got bullet injuries on both legs whereas Usman and Dalip also sustained injuries in their legs,” police said. Police further added that assistant sub-inspector Anil and head constable Sanjeev of Spl Cell and one UP Police personnel were hit by bullets of criminals but they were saved by their bulletproof jackets. Total 15 rounds were fired by both sides. “Saddam with the help of members of Neeraj Bawana gang including Rambir Shokeen had god released their associate Amit Bhoora in 2014 in Bagpat by attacking upon escort police party of UP Police and robber 2 AK 47 and an SLR from police,” added an officer.
Hyderabad: As many as 28 candidates are in the fray for the October 21 Huzurnagar Assembly by-election after withdrawal of nominations on Thursday, official sources said on Friday. The bypoll was necessitated following the resignation of Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee President (TPCC) N Uttam Kumar Reddy following his election to the Lok Sabha. The Huzurnagar bypoll is set to witness a multi-cornered fight as candidates of all major parties, including TRS, the Congress, the TDP and BJP, have entered the fray. Also Read – Personal life needs to be respected: Cong on reports of Rahul’s visit abroad The Congress has fielded Uttam Kumar Reddy’s wife N Padmavati Reddy, a former MLA, in the bypoll, while TRS has re-nominated S Saidi Reddy, who lost to Uttam Kumar Reddy in the 2018 Assembly polls. The Telangana Jana Samithi has announced its support for Congress while CPI pledged support to the ruling TRS after talks with the Sonia Gandhi-led party failed. The CPI bitterly fought the TRS in alliance with the Congress and TDP in the December 2018 Assembly polls.
New Delhi: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday urged the industry to come forward and meet him, saying he is not afraid of potential corruption charges and “not worried” that fingers will be pointed at him. Speaking at the India International Security Expo here, Singh said India cannot remain dependent on imported weapons for long and that it did not align with the country’s plans to become a superpower. He said that when he became the defence minister people told him he should be careful on who to meet and who to allow entry, as there may be corruption charges. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss account details under automatic exchange framework “They said that there are many business-related proposals, and there are matters related to imports and exports, and the minister should be careful of all this otherwise someone will raise a finger (Nahi to ungli uth jayegi). “A minister who is afraid of corruption charges, should refrain (from taking decisions), Rajnath Singh is not worried about all this. People and big industry organisations in this country know who is what (kaun kya hai). I am not worried at all. Come. My doors are open. Whatever help I can give, the defence ministry will give. This is an assurance I would like to give you,” he said. He also said his ministry had taken many steps to boost MSMEs in the defence sector and liberalised industrial licensing.