It is “necessary to defend our rights”Klingenberg’s latest volley, “Summary of letter from PHIUS attorneys regarding Dr. Feist’s allegations,” was fired off on September 1, 2011. In her latest public letter, Klingenberg asserts:“We thought it necessary to defend our rights publicly.”“Dr. Feist alleges that PHIUS has no license to sell the PHPP spreadsheet and manual. … PHI granted E-co Lab a reseller contract that gave it the right to sell the PHPP spreadsheet and manual to end users in exchange for paying PHI a license fee per copy.”“Dr. Feist further alleges that PHIUS made an illegal adaptation of the PHPP spreadsheet. However, the facts demonstrate that PHI expressly authorized the adaptation. … PHI eventually approved the spreadsheet.”“Dr. Feist claims that PHIUS is offering competing passive house certifications. PHIUS has not offered competing certifications.”“Dr. Feist has stated that the passive house concept is a ‘public good’ and that he desires to keep the passive house concept ‘internationally accessible and open to all.’ Yet he simultaneously resists our efforts to promote the concept in the United States.”“We … feel that PHI is creating an inaccurate portrayal of PHIUS within the passive house community. We feel he is making false and damaging allegations about us.” The Passivhaus Institut in Germany Disowns Its U.S. Satellite The American Passive House Institute Responds to Dr. FeistRound 3: Wolfgang Feist Discusses the PHI-PHIUS Split RELATED ARTICLES UPDATED 9/15/2011 with new blog linksWhile most of the Passivhaus world is tired of the bitter disagreements between the Passivhaus Institut (PHI) in Darmstadt, Germany, and the Passive House Institute U.S. (PHIUS) in Urbana, Illinois, the two principal combatants, Wolfgang Feist and Katrin Klingenberg, are unflagging.There are no signs yet that either organization has a board of directors capable of preventing their leader from issuing another press release. A plague on both their Haus-es?A few bloggers are beginning to tire of the PHI-PHIUS spat. Once such blogger, Roger at the EdgewaterHaus blog, recently wrote, “I believe PHI and PHIUS actions have devalued the passive house currency to nearly worthless in the U.S. … So to both PHI and PHIUS, shame on you and your board of complicitors for having cut the legs out from under the fledging passive house movement here in the U.S. that you profess to love and nurture.”Mike Eliason at Brute Force Collaborative reacted with this Tweet: “Does PHIUS really think I care that they’ve been at their attorney’s office over the PHI split? Losing faith rapidly…” Latest blog postsMore bloggers are chiming in: Michael Hindle at the Chesapeake Passive House blog Mel Starrs at the Elemental blogDonal at DagBlog
Sign up for a free trial and get instant access to this article as well as GBA’s complete library of premium articles and construction details. For the past five years, researchers at the Building Science Corporation (BSC) in Massachusetts have been testing the thermal performance of a variety of wall assemblies as part of an ambitious project to develop a new metric to replace R-value. (I last reported on the project in my August 2011 article, A Bold Attempt to Slay R-Value.)BSC researchers recently released information on the multi-year project:The BSC project is financed by a group of five insulation manufacturers and one trade organization — Dow, U.S. Greenfiber, Honeywell, Huntsman Polyurethanes, Icynene, and the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association — known collectively as the “Thermal Metric consortium.” While BSC hasn’t yet published a peer-reviewed paper reporting on their research project, the consortium has released enough details to draw a few conclusions.The BSC researchers set out to measure the rate of heat flow through a variety of wall assemblies under different conditions — for example, at different rates of air flow. The intent was to compare the performance of a wall when air was leaking through the wall with the performance of the wall without any air leakage. The researchers also hoped to test wall assemblies at different outdoor temperatures and to quantify the effect of thermal bridging.Eventually, the BSC researchers hope to propose a new metric for wall assemblies — something akin to the NFRC label now found on windows. “The window industry was in disarray a decade and a half ago, and it was very difficult for practitioners to select windows,” said Joseph Lstiburek, a principle of BSC. “Then the window industry came up with the NFRC ratings for windows, so that today it is fairly straightforward to get information on the three most important characteristics of windows. That labeling came from the industry, and it provides a tremendous example of… This article is only available to GBA Prime Members Start Free Trial Already a member? Log in
Get the Free eBook! Learn how to sell without a sales manager. Download my free eBook! You need to make sales. You need help now. We’ve got you covered. This eBook will help you Seize Your Sales Destiny, with or without a manager. Download Now The little voice inside your head might say, “I am tired of being rejected when I ask for a meeting.” The little voice feels like the “no” is a personal rejection that invalidates their worth as a human being, making something out of what is really nothing.The larger voice recognizes that a failed attempt to acquire a meeting is nothing more than feedback. The feedback provided by the answer “no” only means that the person receiving the call did not believe the value you offered in exchange for their time was favorable to them. The larger voice says, “I’ll change up my offer and try again later and, eventually, I will get a meeting.”The little voice says, “You didn’t lose that deal. If it weren’t for your irrational competitor’s low price, you’d have surely won.” That tiny voice absolves you of all responsibility for the loss, protecting your ego from being bruised. It reminds you that you are a good and competent person and there was nothing you could do.The larger voice tells you, “You didn’t create enough of a preference to block your irrational competitor, and you didn’t address the difference in strategic outcomes when clients underinvest. Next time, we’ll move that up in the conversation and do a better job blocking their strategy—or at least making it hard for them.” The big voice isn’t dissuaded from taking responsibility, instead it looks to what you might do differently in the future.The little voice says, “You can prospect tomorrow. You have plenty of time, and nothing bad is going to happen when you put opportunity creation off for another day. No one is even going to notice.” The small chirping voice always sells tomorrow because it prefers comfort over almost everything. It’s willing to trade comfort for your reaching your full potential.Your larger voice says, “You are paying the price today for what you want tomorrow,” quite the opposite of what the small voice sells. The larger voice is proactive and takes the initiative, doing what needs to be done today efficiently and without fail. The larger voice would have you pay in full and have what you want, knowing that procrastination only pulls the future you want further away from you.It’s important you pay attention to what you say to yourself. Your results and your future are going to first manifest in your mind, and then they will manifest in the world. Choose carefully which voice you will allow to design your future.
The location of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu’s office was finally revealed on March 24 by Municipal Administration Minister P Narayana to the Andhra Pradesh Assembly. The office of the chief minister will be on the 46th floor of a mega riverfront tower, designed by UK-based architecture firm Foster + Partners, with a bird’s eye view of the capital city, Amaravati.The office would lead to a helipad atop the tower. The idea behind the design is that VIPs and foreign dignitaries can enter the chief minister’s office directly through the helipad. This tower will be the tallest among the five towers making up the administrative core of the capital. The other four towers will be of 40 floors each. The models of these towers, designed by architect Sir Norman Foster’s firm, were shown in the state Assembly after the announcement for the lawmakers to see.The administrative enclave, along with the Assembly and High Court buildings, will be the central focus of the 217-sq.km capital city. The Assembly building will take up 8.5 lakh sq.ft area while the High Court will be set up in 2 lakh sq.ft area. The capital will have nine cities, of which the High Court will make “Justice City.”Announcing the decision, Narayana said: “We have chosen a spike design structure for the legislature complex with a rich elegance, reflecting the high aspirations of the people. The high court building design is inspired by the Buddhist Stupa architecture, while the secretariat towers will have a smart design with a focus on accessibility.”The 27 townships, built on 1,000 acre each, will be home to a gross population of 27 lakh. Two ring roads will be developed – a 186 km long Outer Ring Road and 97.5 km long Inner Ring Road, Narayana said. Over 30 per cent of the overall area in Amaravati would be kept for parks, he added.A road network of 1,600 km, five bridges and five reservoirs are also being planned. The development of the reservoirs aims at preventing floods in the Kondaveetivagu and Palavagu areas.Foster + Partners have submitted the final designs of the structures and the tender process for construction of buildings will be started by the end of April, Narayana said.Andhra Pradesh has submitted a detailed project report for requiring Rs 11,600 crore as part of capital development. The Central government has released Rs 1,500 crore, the Hindu reported. However, these plans are being looked at with skepticism by the Opposition. “The government could not finalize designs for the capital buildings in the last four years. When will the capital be actually built?,” the Indian Express reported quoted a BJP lawmaker as saying. Related ItemsAmaravatiAndhra PradeshArchitecture
220 images from Linnaeus Tripe’s 1854 collection of photos of India and Burma were auctioned by Sotheby’s in London in November.Tripe, an official photographer for the East India Company, took what are considered among the earliest images of India, many of which have remained unseen since the 19th century.The photographs belong to the estate of Lord Dalhousie, the seventh governor-general of India. Related Items
The contemporary story of the rise of India is intertwined with the Indian Diaspora, which has played a vital role in the economic resurgence of the country. Though Indians had been venturing out to neighboring Asian countries since as early as the 1st century, the story of the Indian Diaspora primarily has its roots in the penal colony system of the late 18th century and the indentured labor system of the early 19th century. While the former involved the use of convicts as laborers in British South East Asia, the latter was started by would-be British premier Gladstone to supplant the needs of planters after black slavery was abolished in the early 19th century.The first ship that set sail from the Calcutta harbor in 1830s for the Bahamas, with a human cargo of 400 indentured laborers, is that blur, the opening fade in shot in history, when this great odyssey of the Indian Diaspora began. Between the 1830s and 1917, when the indentured system ended, nearly 1.5 million Indians were sold into debt-bondage. Some 240,000 were sent to British Guiana (now Guyana), 36,000 to Jamaica and nearly 144,000 to Trinidad.This “Desperate Diaspora” (to borrow a term from historian Brij Lal’s vocabulary) of close to a million Indians, driven by poverty and desperation and hoodwinked by colonial traders, sailed through Kala Paani (Black waters) to unknown regions to work, sleep, eat and work, without any hope of ever returning to the motherland. They are known as the Gladstone coolies. This Diaspora was long forgotten, until writers like V S Naipaul began chronicling their stories in the 1960s in novels such A House for Mr. Biswas and The Mystic Masseur, both set in the Caribbean. They not only sought to write about the past, but also to renew their bonds with the motherland that had forsaken them. The initial results were searing narratives, such as Naipaul’s An Area of Darkness. In later years, Naipaul’s tradition was carried forward by writers such as Rohinton Mistry and M G Vassanji, among others.Meanwhile after independence, many of Indian doctors, engineers and scientists left for higher education and better job opportunities to North America, Europe, and Australia. Subsequently Indian laborers headed to the Gulf countries and South East Asia. A new exodus of technically educated Indians to the great capitals of capitalism in the 1990s saw the emergence of what Lal calls the “Dollar Diaspora.” As the profile of Indian technology professionals, especially in the Silicon Valley grew, with many becoming leading high tech entrepreneurs, they transformed the image of Indians all over the world. After the dotcom bust, many technology professionals returned to India, almost 25,000 between 2001-2004, according the National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM), sparking India’s own economic boom.Indians became one of the forces to flatten the world, in Thomas Friedman’s famous turn of the phrase in the book The World is Flat. With the globalization of national economies, the chutnifaction of cultures and Bollywood’s increasing cultural appeal and reach, the new and old Diaspora began to both converge and diverge.Today, there is hardly a major country in the world that does not have an Indian community. From politics to business to cuisine to cinema and fashion, Indians and the Indian Diaspora have become a global force. In the United States alone, Indians are the most highly educated and affluent ethnic group. Chicken tikka masala has displaced fish and chips as the national dish in Britain.The Encyclopedia of the Indian Diaspora seeks to capture this world. Here you will discover Edward Peters from Goa, who sparked off the gold rush in New Zealand in 1853 though he never got credit for it. And that female Indian migrants are among the best-educated minority groups in most societies in the world. Professor Brij Lal of Australian National University, general editor of the volume, says the book recounts the “lived experiences” of Indian communities around the world. The encyclopaedia, produced at an estimated cost of $1.6 million, offers a panoramic insight into the movement and development of 44 Indian communities all over the world, through 30 thematic chapters, comprising over 350,000 words, 800 illustrations and 140 maps, tables and figures.Balaji Sadasivan, Singapore’s senior minister of state for foreign affairs, says, “The Indian Diaspora is increasingly perceived as an intrinsic part of the bigger story of humanity’s drift toward globalization, transnational economic and cultural flows, and hybrid forms of socio-cultural identity.”The Indian Diaspora The total population of the Indian Diaspora is over 20 million It is the most widely dispersed Diaspora The largest Indian Diaspora communities are found in Malaysia (1.8 million in 2000), USA (just over 1.7 million in 2000), Saudi Arabia (1.5 million in 2001), UK (just over 1 million in 2001) and UAE (950,000 in 2001). India receives a higher level of remittances ($23 billion in 2004) from abroad than any other country, primarily from the Middle East, North America and Europe. Indian born residents in the US are the most affluent ethnic group in the country. Many members of the Diaspora are leaders in global commerce and trade, international public service and diplomacy, the professions and academia. Examples include Sabeer Bhatia, Lakshmi Mittal, Professor Meghnad Desai, Professor Amartya Sen, T A Krishnan (Malaysia), Sir Anerood Jagnauth (Mauritius), Ujjal Dosanjh (Canada), S Sami Velu (Malaysia), Vijay Singh (Fiji), V S Naupail, Rohinton Mistry, Salman Rushdie, M Night Shyamalan, etc. Overseas Indians maintain a strong social, emotional and economic bond with the mother country. For example, the encyclopedia quotes a Guyanese girl Boodhia who has never been to India and probably never will, but nevertheless longs for the land of the Hindi movies she watches in a language she cannot understand. Or take the example of the proud Indian Mauritian who wept at the news of Indira Gandhi’s assassination as if he had lost someone in his own family.But the Indian diaspora is not just about emotion. Every year it remits billions of dollars to India – an estimated $23 billion in 2004.The idea of this hreference volume germinated at an academic workshop in 2001 and found considerable enthusiasm amongst many prominent Indians, including Singapore’s President Nathan.Lal is general editor of the encyclopaedia, which has entries from 60 scholars in 15 countries. Lal, himself the grandson of an indentured laborer, said that the book offers “deep and enriching insights into the actual lived experience of the Indian Diaspora.” Brij Lal on the overseas Indian identityBrij V. Lal, editor of the Encyclopedia of the Indian Diaspora is professor of Pacific and Asian History at Australian National University.The Indian Diaspora has been growing in influence for some time now, so why wasn’t this phenomenon celebrated before?The important thing to bear in mind is the consciousness of an Indian Diaspora. It’s fairly recent and it developed in the 80s and 90s. It began with the massive migration of people from India to Silicon Valley, to UK, and other places.You already had Indians living in the Caribbean and so on and so forth. They had individual histories but there was not this kind of an attempt to connect all of it together.I think the growth of the Indian Diaspora, the Dollar Diaspora, so to speak, and the availability of funds and money – I mean, you know, Citibank was able to sort of subsidise it (the encyclopedia). We are talking about close to a million dollars involved. And, the financial support, the institutional support, and the timing were right.So you think it is because of the growing interest in the Indian Diaspora?Definitely. It is because of the growing interest in the contribution that the Diaspora is making, particularly after opening up of India, and a high level committee of (the year) 2000 under L. M. Singhvi who went out and said how can India tap into the NRI resources, just as China’s development was fuelled by the investment of overseas Chinese. So, India said let me also milk the NRI cow. Hai na? (Isn’t it?). So there was interest from India as well – The Parvasi Bhartiya Diwas, the opening of the ministry (for Overseas Indians) itself. Every year January 9 is the Parvasi Bhartiya Diwas. So, the consciousness in India itself on how we can use the Diaspora was there. So it was a confluence of factors.In many societies, there is this divergence between the old and the new Diaspora. Is this going to grow or is this going to go away in future?No, I don’t think so. I think you put your finger on a very important thing, and the important thing is that one should not think of the Indian Diaspora in the singular. One should think of the various strains of the Indian Diaspora. You have got people who have descended from the Indenture system, from the Kangani system here (in Singapore) to those who have gone straight to England to 4th and 5th generation children born in the UK. So it’s a complex series of circles, which intersect at some points and move away at others. The phrase I use is convergence and divergence. Sometimes I feel that you as a person from India and I have something in common – language, food, faith, culture – but there are also other points where you and I don’t see eye to eye. I have much more in common with my Pacific Island friends, my Fijian friends. But I think there are some points that Indian Indians don’t seem to understand, for example, the historical and cultural circumstances, which have produced people of the old Diaspora. And there is an element of friction that I notice and read about. Sometimes it comes out in a patronizing sense about the old Diaspora, you know like you have lost your culture, lost your language and so on. And perversely, on the other side, they (the old Diaspora) also look at Indians with their sort of preoccupation with hierarchy and horoscopes and things like that. So there is sometimes mutual misunderstanding which one hopes will end.Do you think that cultural industries like Bollywood are trying to fill some gaps between the divergence and convergence of the new and the old Diaspora?I think the Bollywood movies are now beginning to address themes. There are films like Baghban, Dev and Page 3. These movies are now beginning to treat themes, which resonate in the experience of the Diaspora. I mean all those days of dancing and prancing around trees, that doesn’t play out any more. And the literature – it is very important. We are producing literature of first class order and people are able to respond. Who would have thought that a novel about a poor, illiterate man, struggling to become a writer would have won the Nobel Prize?That is Naipaul’s A House for Mr Biswas (1961)?Yes, exactly. There is another guy who is just as brilliant – M G Vassanji from East Africa (born in Kenya, lives in Canada). His The In-Between World of Vikram Lal (2003) is beautiful. There is another one called The Book of Secrets (1994). It is a fantastic book.You know there was a time when literature was being produced in the great metropolitan center-London and New York. Now the empire is writing back. That is important. Related Items
In a double cross that would have made for an entertaining crime drama, a hired goon switched sides over a payment dispute with a woman who wanted him to “break a few bones” of her ex- husband in Australia.Yogesh Gupta, 53, went to the Melbourne East Police Station after he got a call from the criminal hired by his former wife. Based on the taped conversation that ran 4.18 minutes, he got restraining orders from the city court.“The call came on August 21 and the caller told me that he had been keeping an eye on me,” Gupta was quoted as saying by India Today. “He told me that he knew my everyday schedule and where I would be at any point of time of the day. This was scary.”He added: “The man then told me that he had instructions to break my legs and show the evidence of my hospitalisation to my former wife by the day she flies off to India, to collect his payment.”When Gupta asked why the caller was giving him all the information, the latter admitted that his ex-wife Deepa had rescinded on the advance payment and had asked him to rob her husband for compensation.He elaborated: “He said he was doing me this favour so that he can recover from me $322 (Rs 20,600), the money spent on my surveillance over the last two days.”Gupta asked him to call back in a few hours to discuss payment, and rushed to the Melbourne Police. “When the hired goon called up again to discuss the payment, it was in the presence of the police officials,” he said.In the third call, the goon told him that he would send his man to pick up the money spent on surveillance. In exchange, he would provide documentary evidence against his former wife. Based on the conversations, the police issued an arrest warrant against Deepa Gupta. She was produced before Melbourne Magistrate Court on August 25. She has been asked to stay 200 metres away from any place where the protected person — in this case, Yogesh Gupta — lives or works.The court said in its restraining order: “The respondent must not commit family violence against the protected person, intentionally damage the property, attempt to locate or keep them under surveillance, publish on the internet any material about the victim.”Yogesh and Deepa, both chartered accountants by profession, got divorced in Australia after 19 years of marriage, the report added. It also cited their relatives as saying that while Deepa wanted to continue her political career in India, Yogesh settled in Australia. The disagreement led to their separation and Deepa had also filed a dowry harassment case against Yogesh. The case is still pending in the court. Related ItemsAustralia Police NRIDomestic dispute NRI AustraliaLittle IndiaMelbourne Police NRINRI divorce case MelbourneYogesh Deepa Gupta divorce Australia
The day of celebrations and the sadya feast is upon Malayalis at home and abroad as the conclusion of Onam, the 10-day harvest festival, falls on September 4. As Onam increasingly becomes a nuclear family affair in India, Malayalis in other countries cash in on the nostalgia and make it a grander affair.Onam in UAEDubai-based Emirates airline has launched an air cargo called Rosy for Onam so that the plane can bring in flowers, vegetables for the festive feast. A total of 2,200 tonne vegetables were exported from India to foreign countries, according to Mathrubhumi.In UAE, where there are an estimated one million Malayalis, retailers are stocking up on the fruits and vegetables that would be needed to prepare the Onam sadhya, the traditional feast served on banana leaves. The feast includes pappadam pazham, upperi (banana chips), sarkara upperi (crisp banana chips coated with jaggery), kootukari, avial, pachadi, banana halwa, and pazham nurukku.Onam is now more of a Gulf festival than a Kerala festival, Salim MA, director of LuLu Group, which caters to a large section of the community, told Gulf News. Typically, Onam celebrations go on for a couple of months in the region as various groups of expatriates get together during the weekends.The LuLu Group, which sells over 350 tonnes of fruits and vegetables during the festival each year, also imported banana fruits and leaves via the sea route this year. They tied up with Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority of India for temperature-controlled shipment of bananas in special refrigerated containers, Gulf News reported.A number of restaurants in UAE, such as Nalukettu at Dubai Grand Hotel, Kolam restaurant in Sharjah, and Calicut Notebook in Abu Dhabi, are also offering Onam sadhya on September 4.Stores are also stocking up on the traditional Kerala sari for women and kasavu mundu for men as they are in high demand. “Our stores have been stacked up with ethnic Kerala sarees imported directly from weavers of Kuthampully in Palakkad. Readymade kasavu skirts and blouses for girls are also in good demand,” V Nandakumar, chief communication officer at LuLu Group, said to the publication.Air India Express also launched 40 additional flights between Sharjah and India on August 22 to facilitate expatriates flying to Kerala for the festival. These flights, which are being operated from Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi and Kozhikode in Kerala, as well as New Delhi, will be operational until September 4.Photo Credit: TwitterOman Celebrates Onam Expat group Malayalam Wing of the Indian Social Club in Muscat is planning to serve Onam sadya to more than 500 labourers for free. Also, families who are not able to buy imported flowers use sawdust and colour powders for the floor decoration pookalam, which are being sold at stores now.Celebrations in Other CountriesIn the United Kingdom, Onam celebrations gained the ambience of the backwaters. About 5,000 spectators came to watch the snake boat race, which featured 22 team of rowers, in the reservoir called Draycote Water in Rugby of Warwickshire.The race was perhaps the first outside Kerala to feature chundan vallams (snake boats). “We transformed a few dragon boats that are generally used for competitions into snake boats,” property developer Noby Jose, who led the winning team, told The Times of India. “They were named after the villages of Kuttanad and some of the participants were even singing vanchipattu songs as they inched forward. We were thrilled to see the huge turnout.”Noby and team are set to fly to the United States for international vadamvali malsaram (a traditional Onam game of tug of war), which will be held in Chicago on September 4. Malayalis from countries like Kuwait, Qatar and Canada are expected to participate in the event.A pookalam made in the UK has its own distinct flowers — lilies, roses, blue bells and hotlips — instead of the flowers usually found in Indian backyards.In Tanzania, Onam is going to be celebrated with a lot of games from northern part of Kerala on September 3. The games will also have the folk art pulikali (play of the tigers), in which the performers usually paint themselves and dance to represent tiger hunting. “Our African friends are also joining us for it,” Rajesh Kanjirakadan, who works as a technical manager in a private company, told the TOI.Meanwhile, New York is going to see the Maveli Act, based on the king in whose honour Onam is celebrated. Legend has it that the benevolent king, who was revered by his subjects in Kerala, is allowed to return to the earth one day a year – the day of Onam. Sibu Nair, who works in University of Buffalo in New York, recounted to TOI how they have had Americans dressed up as Maveli quite a few times. “Not just the audience, the one who played the Maveli also enjoyed it quite a bit. The only difference was that he didn’t have a paunch like his Kerala counterparts,” he said.In Finland, the Maveli hands out presents to children in the neighbourhood, like Santa Claus. For Onam Sadhya, the 150-strong Malayali community get together and cook the delicacies. Vimi, an IT professional who lives in Finland, said to TOI: “We don’t get all the Kerala vegetables here and so we compensate with the local ones. For instance, the Finnish vegetable lantu is used instead of yam in avial.” Related Itemschundam vallamKerala UKKerala USLittle IndiaMalayalis FinlandMaveli ActNRI KeralitesNRI MalayalisOnamOnam abroadOnam in GulfOnam sadhyaOnasadhya in UAESnake boats UKUniversity of Buffalo
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on April 2 arrested an Indian-origin man and his business associate for allegedly orchestrating a fraudulent initial coin offering (ICO) that raised more than $32 million from thousands of investors last year, PTI reported. The men in question are Sohrab “Sam” Sharma and Robert Farkas, the co-founders of Centra Tech, a cryptocurrency startup that offers financial services.The U.S Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York also filed criminal charges against the duo as their start-up offered unregistered investments through a “CTR Token,” saying it planned to create a cryptocurrency debit card backed by Visa and Mastercard which could be used at stores just like a credit card. The cards would allow their customers to instantly convert hard-to-spend cryptocurrencies into U.S. dollars or other legal tenders. Their company had no relationship with credit card companies such as Visa or Mastercard for this to be possible, the complaint said.According to the SEC, the duo, in order to promote the ICO, made up fictional executives with “impressive biographies,” posted false or misleading marketing materials to the Miami-based company’s website and paid celebrities to market the ICO on social media for investors. Centra Tech also got endorsements from boxing champion Floyd Mayweather, Jr. and music producer DJ Khaled.The fake profile was pointed out by Business Insider last November. At that time, the company attributed them to mistakes made by freelancers.As per the complaint filed by SEC, Farkas, who had made flight reservations to leave the country, was arrested before he was able to board his flight. “We allege that Centra sold investors on the promise of new digital technologies by using a sophisticated marketing campaign to spin a web of lies about their supposed partnerships with legitimate businesses,” Stephanie Avakian, the co-director of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement, was quoted as saying by PTI.Filed in federal court in the Southern District of New York, the SEC charged Sharma and Farkas with violating the anti-fraud and registration provisions of the federal securities laws. The agency also filed related civil charges against the two. It seeks permanent injunctions, return of allegedly ill-gotten gains plus interest and penalties, as well as bars against Sharma and Farkas serving as public company officers or directors and from participating in any offering of digital or other securities.“Centra Tech is aware of the allegations and will not be commenting. Mr. Sharma and Mr. Farkas are represented by personal counsel who will be handling the matters,” a statement released by their attorney said. Related ItemsCentra TechcryptocurrencyUnited States
The United States Justice Department is temporarily halting a program that offered legal assistance to detained foreign nationals facing deportation, pending an audit to check its cost-effectiveness, the Washington Post reported. The legal program will be stopped from April 30, the publication reported, citing a federal official.The Legal Orientation Program is offered by the Justice Department in association with Vera Institute of Justice and the National Immigrant Justice Center.The Vera Institute of Justice is a non-profit organization providing the Legal Orientation Program (LOP) to immigrants who are detained, and has a help desk that provides information to those who are not detained but face deportation. The institute advised 53,000 immigrants in more than a dozen states in the United States in 2017 alone.The Executive Office for Immigration Review said that the government wants to “conduct efficiency reviews which have not taken place in six years.” The review will examine the cost-effectiveness of the federally funded programs and whether they duplicate efforts within the court system, the Washington Post quoted an immigration official as saying. Immigration judges already inform immigrants their rights before a hearing, according to the official.The Vera Institute of Justice said in a statement that the program was created in 2003 under President George W. Bush and “is a lifeline for many immigrants, refugees, asylum-seekers, and green-card holders — some who are fighting for their lives — who would otherwise not know the rights they have or the odds they face.”The Department of Justice concluded in a 2012 study that the program created a net savings of nearly $18 million for the government, which meant that every $1 the government spent on LOP saved $4. This is why LOP has had strong support in Congress, which maintained its full funding in FY 2018.The decision to halt the program has received backlash from the National Immigrant Justice Center.“This is a blatant attempt by the administration to strip detained immigrants of even the pretense of due-process rights,” Mary Meg McCarthy, executive director of the National Immigrant Justice Center, said, according to the report.More than 20,000 Indians are estimated to be living in the United States illegally, many of whom have been enrolled in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program or are eligible for it. While immigration officers used to have discretion over whose cases to expedite, they are currently said to be processing removal orders for all illegal immigrants even if they have no criminal record.For instance, an Indian deli owner in New York was reportedly taken into custody and faces deportation despite being married to a U.S. national. Bhavesh ‘Bobby’ Bhatt had no criminal records and had gone for an annual meeting with an immigration official when he was held, according to reports. Related ItemsDeportationIndian AmericanUnited States
The young engineer arrived in America when he was 23 with a good education and little else. He landed a job at a nuclear test site, and built a home in Nevada. Between the 1970s and the mid-1980s, he brought his wife, mother, five sisters and a brother over from India, his native land.In later years, his siblings sponsored family members of their own, and their clan now stretches from Nevada to Florida, New Jersey to Texas — more than 90 Americans nurtured on the strength of one ambitious engineer, Jagdish Patel, 72.In late June, four generations of Patels assembled for a reunion in Las Vegas, a gathering that included a venture capitalist, a network engineer, physicians, dentists and students.“I am so glad that I came to America,” Patel said recently, sitting in the luxurious custom-designed house he built in Las Vegas, complete with a home theater where he hosts Super Bowl parties and a marble-lined Hindu temple room. “I brought everyone here,” he said, “and we have provided valuable service to this country.”The share of the U.S. population that is foreign-born has reached its highest level since 1910, according to government data released last week. But in recent years, the numbers have been soaring not so much with Latin Americans sweeping across the border, but with educated people from Asia obtaining visas — families like the Patels, who have taken advantage of “family reunification” provisions that have been a cornerstone of federal immigration law for half a century.Amita Patel points to a photo collage of her family, at her home in Las Vegas. Photo Credit: Roger Kisby/The New York TimesSince the Patels began flocking to America in the 1970s, millions of other Indians have arrived to work as programmers and engineers in Silicon Valley, doctors in underserved rural areas and researchers at universities. Most were sponsored by relatives who came before them. Others arrived on work visas and were later sponsored for legal residency, or green cards, by their employers.The Trump administration has framed immigration as a threat to the nation’s security and to American workers, a dramatic departure from the longtime consensus that immigration was a net positive for the country. The president’s public priorities have often focused on fortifying the southwest border, but his administration is also working to scale back decades of legal migration that have led to Asians, not Latin Americans, becoming the largest group of new foreign-born residents since 2010.Already, the administration has quietly begun taking steps to cut back legal immigration, under the banner of “Buy American and Hire American,” which the president framed in an executive order last year. Some experts predict that the number of immigrants granted permanent legal residency in the 2018 fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30, will show a rare decline.Without passing new legislation, the administration has pursued a number of policies that are slowing legal immigration. It has reduced refugee admissions; narrowed who is eligible for asylum; made it more difficult to qualify for permanent residency or citizenship; and tightened scrutiny of applicants for high-skilled worker visas, known as H-1Bs.Jagdish Patel at his home in Las Vegas. Photo Credit: Roger Kisby/The New York TimesA recent analysis of government data by the National Foundation for American Policy, a nonpartisan research group, found that the denial rate for H-1B visa petitions had jumped by 41 percent in the last three months of the 2017 fiscal year, compared with the previous quarter. Government requests for additional information on applications doubled in the same period.Green-card applicants sponsored by an employer now must undergo in-person interviews, a step that previously was taken only in cases that raised concerns.The Trump administration is pushing policies supposedly intended to favor immigrants who have valuable skills at a time when newcomers already are, on average, at their most educated. Nearly half of all foreign-born people who have arrived since 2010 have college degrees, compared with about 30 percent of native-born residents.“We are having this debate about getting our system to be merit-based, but it really in effect already is one,” said David Bier, an immigration policy analyst at the Cato Institute in Washington, D.C. “The least-known fact about legal immigration to the U.S. is that it’s much more educated than the general U.S. population.”Of the 1.1 million green cards granted in 2017, about two-thirds went to people sponsored by relatives, compared to just 12 percent who were sponsored through employment.Immigration has taken center stage in many Republican election campaigns this year. Rep. Ron DeSantis, the party’s candidate for governor of Florida, released a video in which he tells his daughter to “build the wall” as she plays with blocks. Brian Kemp, the Republican nominee for governor of Georgia, ran an ad saying he would “round up criminal illegals” in his pickup truck.“The big story here is just the massive misperception about the nature of immigration in the U.S.,” said Edward Alden, senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, who specializes in immigration policy. “The lion’s share of public attention is focused on what is now a very small number of people coming here illegally and showing up at the border seeking asylum.“The reality is that a growing percentage of immigrants coming to the U.S. are highly educated, and are exactly the sort of people we want to be attracting.”Supporters of President Donald Trump’s position say that this trend is an incidental result of a policy that does not guarantee such an outcome.“We need to construct a system that discourages endless chains of relatives coming in,” said Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, which supports curbs on immigration. “We have an immigration system that rewards people who have relatives in the United States, rather than people who have skills and education.”Michael Bars, a spokesman for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the agency which is focusing most of the new scrutiny on legal immigration, said the government’s aim is not to close the borders but to protect against fraud, human trafficking and gang activity, “defending our system from those seeking to exploit it at the expense of U.S. workers, lawful-abiding applicants and petitioners.”There are still an estimated 11 million people in the country illegally, and that represents a major political issue.“Eleven million people is not a small number,” said Jeffrey Passel, senior demographer at the Pew Research Center. “But it is certainly the case that unauthorized immigration from Mexico is getting a lot more attention than the numbers seem to warrant.” Passel said fewer Mexicans were caught at the border in fiscal 2017 than in any year since the late 1960s.Under the Trump administration’s plan, the number of family-based green cards issued would be reduced from the 804,793 granted in 2016 to about 487,000 a year, according to an analysis by Julia Gelatt and Sarah Pierce of the Migration Policy Institute — a 40 percent reduction in family-tied green cards and a 27 percent reduction overall.“Trump is the first of any modern president to advocate for reducing legal immigration,” Pierce said.Currently, U.S. citizens like Patel can sponsor minor children, unmarried and married adult children, and spouses, parents and brothers and sisters. Green-card holders are limited to sponsoring minor children and unmarried adult children.Under the new proposal, Americans would lose the right to petition for their parents, adult or married children, or siblings; they could sponsor only spouses and minor children. Green-card holders would be limited further, to sponsoring minor children only, not adult children.The current system dates to 1965, when Congress passed the Immigration and Nationality Act, which wiped away the old system of country quotas established in the 1920s that many considered racist. The idea was to treat people from all countries equally, and the law’s central pillar was to give U.S. citizens the ability to invite family members who were abroad. It also allowed for some immigration based on skills.Some experts argue that the real implications of the 1965 law are only now dawning on the wider population, as the face of the country changes — and that realization is what has been driving much of the emotion in politics.“The 1965 act really changed the look and feel of the country in a fundamental way, but it took 50 years for the country to come to terms with that,” said Muzaffar Chishti, director of the New York office of the Migration Policy Institute.Madeline Hsu, a professor of Asian-American studies at the University of Austin, Texas, said there were only about 12,000 Indian immigrants in the United States in 1960. The foreign-born Indian population last year stood at about 2.6 million, according to the Brookings Institution, and it had risen by almost half since 2010.The 1965 law opened up the United States to people from India like Patel.He recalls that at his engineering college back in the Indian state of Gujarat, “when America started to allow people from different countries to come, we all decided to get ready to go.”Patel immigrated in 1968 and enrolled at Youngstown State University in Ohio, where he earned a master’s degree in structural engineering. He returned in 1971 to marry, and because he had a green card, he was able to sponsor his wife, Amita.In 1977, he became a U.S. citizen, and sponsored his brother Jay and Jay’s wife for green cards. By 1985, he had also sponsored his mother, five sisters and their husbands and children, most of whom settled in the New York-New Jersey area.And he had U.S.-born children of his own. His son, Satya, is now a venture capitalist in San Francisco, after working as an executive at Google and Twitter; his daughter, Sita Montgomery, is an interior designer in Salt Lake City with 140,000 followers on Instagram.Now retired, Patel savors time to play golf and travel — so far, he has visited 50 countries. He devoted a year to planning the Patel reunion in June.The eldest Patel to attend the event, which included bowling, banquet dinners and a talent show, was 88; the youngest was 9 months old. Patel gave each attendee a royal-blue booklet, its cover emblazoned with a crown and the words “Royal Patel Family Reunion.” Its pages depict the sprawling Patel family tree, starting in India.“In America, you can still succeed as an immigrant, irrespective of skin color, religion or country of origin,” said Patel, who likes to point out that Trump’s wife, Melania, sponsored her parents to come to the country she has adopted.“All this Twitter and campaign stuff is mostly just talk,” he said. “Trump knows in his mind that immigration works. Family reunification will stay.”© New York Times 2018 Related ItemsAsian AmericanIndian AmericanUnited States
An Indian American doctor has been sentenced to 54 months jail term after he plead guilty to drug distribution and health care fraud charges.Dr. Bharat Patel, 71, of Milford, Connecticut, who worked out of Family Health Urgent Care, has also been sentenced to three years of supervised release after his stay in prison.According to court documents and statements made in court, from approximately 2011 to July 2017, Patel was a physician operating out of Family Health Urgent Care, formerly known as Immediate Health Care, located at 235 Main Street in Norwalk. During this time, Patel saw numerous patients who had no legitimate medical purpose to see Patel and only came to his medical practice in order to obtain prescriptions for controlled substances, primarily hydrocodone or oxycodone. Some of those patients were enrolled in Medicaid or Medicare and paid for Patel’s services, and had the prescriptions paid for, by those programs.“Patel knew, and also was advised by pharmacists and his staff, that the prescriptions he was providing to his patients were medically unnecessary. For example, Patel had patients to whom he prescribed oxycodone or hydrocodone whose urine/blood tests showed no signs of opioid ingestion. He also had patients to whom he prescribed oxycodone or hydrocodone whose urine/blood tests showed that they had other narcotics in their systems and that a prescription for oxycodone or hydrocodone would be a contraindication. Patel ignored the warnings and continued to prescribe controlled substances to these patients outside of the usual course of professional practice and not for a legitimate medical purpose,” a release from the U.S. Attorney’s office said.On several occasions, Patel wrote prescriptions to patients who paid him $100 in cash for each prescription. At times, Patel provided patients medically unnecessary prescriptions for oxycodone or hydrocodone, which he left at a liquor store next door to his practice. Patients retrieved the prescriptions by exchanging an envelope with cash in it for the prescriptions.Patel wrote hundreds of medically unnecessary prescriptions for oxycodone and hydrocodone and received $158,523.95 as a result of this and related criminal conduct. He has forfeited this money to the government.On June 25, 2018, Patel pleaded guilty to narcotics distribution and health care fraud offenses. Patel admitted that he wrote hundreds of medically unnecessary prescriptions for oxycodone and hydrocodone and received $158,523.95 from federal health programs because of this and related criminal conduct.“A lengthy prison term is appropriate for any physician who abandons his oath and profits by selling prescriptions for opioids, by overprescribing these highly addictive drugs to patients – many of whom illegally distributed the drugs they received, and by defrauding our healthcare system,” said U.S. Attorney John H. Durham. “This doctor’s criminal conduct contributed to the ongoing opioid epidemic as tens of thousands of narcotic pills were dispensed to individuals who didn’t need them and shouldn’t have them. I thank the DEA’s Tactical Diversion Squad, the Norwalk Police Department and the Connecticut Attorney General’s Office for their excellent investigative efforts in this case.”“The reckless action by Dr. Patel is not only a violation of the Controlled Substance Act but a betrayal of the public trust,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Brian D. Boyle. “Today’s sentence not only holds Dr. Patel accountable for his crimes but serves as a warning to those who are fueling the opioid epidemic in order to profit and destroy people’s lives. DEA pledges to work with our law enforcement and regulatory partners to ensure that these rules and regulations are followed.”Patel has been in custody since his arrest on July 12, 2017. On June 25, 2018, he pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and hydrocodone, and one count health care fraud.Patel has surrendered his federal controlled substances registration to the Drug Enforcement Administration. Related Items
The British Metropolitan Police department has asked Indian and Asian origin people to be careful with their jewelry during Navratri and upcoming Diwali festival.They released a video in which an elderly Asian couple, who were targeted in their home by burglars, talk about their terrifying experience. In the video, the police urge people to provide any information they have regarding the burglary..An elderly Asian couple who were targeted by burglars for their family gold reveal their terrifying experience to help warn Londoners to protect their jewellery, especially during the festivities of #Navratri and #Diwali. pic.twitter.com/hHYJNGMpZe— Metropolitan Police (@metpoliceuk) October 11, 2018The Indian origin couple lives in south-east London and was a target of burglary this February, PTI reports. The couple in their late 70s and early 80s, who did not wish to be identified, were targeted by a gang who took belongings of around £1260, the police report states.According to the report, at around 8.30 pm on Feb.24, the couple were both watching television in Hampton Hill, Middlesex, when they heard some noises coming from the hallway. The 77-year-old woman went to investigate and found four male suspects in the hallway. One of the suspects pushed her back into the lounge and made her sit down. One male threatened her with a chisel by holding it against her neck and demanded to be taken to the place where they keep their ‘Asian gold,’ whilst the others took the 82-year-old man upstairs where they searched the house for jewelry.Before leaving the property, the four masked men, all in dark clothes, stole jewelry including wedding rings, necklaces, bracelets, and bank cards. The horrified elderly woman told in the video, “These men came in through our open kitchen window and threatened my husband and I. They turned our house upside down and stole our jewelry, including my much-loved wedding ring. I would urge everyone to store their jewelry away from their home and properly secure their doors and windows.”According to police report, 1,891 burglaries involving Asian victims have taken place in the year in which 6,369 jewelry items, valued at nearly £9 million were stolen.The report says several have happened for Gold which is more readily available Asian, Jewish and Maltese houses across the capital.Detective Constable Lisa Keeley said, “Gold will continue to be highly desired by criminals due to the speed and anonymity with which it can be exchanged for large sums of cash. These pieces of gold and jewelry are not just valuable possessions, they are also of great sentimental value, and if stolen, would have a huge impact on owners.” Detective Keeley has assured Londoners by saying, “Our proactive measures to tackle these crimes has seen reductions in offences, however there is more to be done. As part of this work, we urge Londoners to take action to safeguard their gold and jewelry by following our simple crime prevention advice.” Related Items
Mumbai, Mar 31 (PTI) In a career spanning more than a decade, Neha Dhupia has featured in films ranging from romance to comedy, but the actress says she would now love to star in a sports biopic.The actress, who is a well-known fitness enthusiast, feels it would be great to portray a true story of an athlete on screen.”I would love to do a sports biopic. I love sports and I think it would be amazing to be a part of a true story and play an athlete. I am ready for something like this,” Neha told PTI.The 35-year-old actress rose to fame with her bold role in “Julie”, before turning to off-beat cinema with critically acclaimed films like “Ek Chalis Ki Last Local” and “Phass Gaye Rey Obama”.Neha will be next seen in the comedy “Santa Banta Pvt Ltd”. The film stars Boman Irani, Vir Das, Johnny Lever among others.Having acted in blockbuster comedies like “Singh is Kinng”, “Garam Masala” and “Kyaa Kool Hai Hum”, Neha says she finds the genre easy.”Comedy is easy. You have to react to what others are saying and it is all about the timing, the dialogue delivery. In comedy, an actor needs to be well aware of his or her part. It might be easy to do once you get it but comedy is a serious business.”Quizzed her on who she thinks has a good comic timing among the actress, Neha said, “I think Kangana (Ranaut) has a great comic timing on screen. Also Kirron Kher. I think she is fantastic.”advertisementIn “Santa Banta Pvt Ltd”, the former Miss India will be seen sharing screen space with actors who are well versed in comedy, from Johnny Lever, to Vijay Raaz, and Neha says she got to learn a lot while working with them.”It was such a fantastic experience shooting for the film. What I realised was, everybody, from Johnny sir, to Vijay, Boman and Vir belong to different school of comedy. They are all funny but not in the same way. It was a learning experience working with the entire team.”Directed by Akashdeep Sabir, “Santa Banta Pvt Ltd” also stars Lisa Haydon, Ram Kapoor, Vrajesh Hirjee among others. The film is scheduled to release on April 22. PTI JUR DK NDS JMF
Muktsar(Pb), Aug 21 (PTI) Indian Youth Congress (IYC) President and Punjab Congress MLA Raja Amarinder Singh Warings car today crushed a teenaged boy to death in his Gidderbaha constituency.However, Waring was not in the car at the time of the incident as he is away in Mumbai.His driver was driving the Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) when the accident occurred near Doda village in Gidderbaha constituency, police said.The 12-year-old boy was rushed to the hospital by the driver of the car but he could not be saved.Waring said its an unfortunate incident.”We have offered the deceased family that if they want any sort of action against the driver they may go for it. But the family refused to do so,” he said.The family belongs to my constituency and we would take care of the family to the best of our position, he said.No case had been registered in this connection. PTI VJ RG
A seven-year-old boy from Ganderbal district of Jammu and Kashmir has become an internet sensation for bowling the ‘ball of the century’ and also received praise from Australian spin wizard Shane Warne.In a tweet, Warne praised the bowling skills of the boy identified as Ahmad, a resident of Ganderbal district in central Kashmir.”This is outstanding! Well bowled young man,” Warne tweeted, ending his tweet with thumbs up emoticon.This is outstanding ! Well bowled young man https://t.co/NfADPHXj4F Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) December 5, 2018Warne’s response on Twitter came on a tweet by a senior journalist in Kashmir who had posted a video of the boy bowling at a local match earlier this year.”Easily ball of the century. A googly that turns a metre and a half. @ShaneWarne take a look. You have some competition,” journalist, Islah Mufti had tweeted.”His name is Ahmad. He is 7 year old from Ganderbal district of Kashmir. A prodigy, I guess,” Mufti later tweeted in reply to Warne.Easily ball of the century. A googly that turns a metre and a half. @ShaneWarne take a look. You have some competition. pic.twitter.com/GEanTVuVME Mufti Islah (@islahmufti) July 23, 2018The video has already gathered 64000 views on Twitter.After Warne’s twitter praise for Ahmad, the young boy became a topic of discussion during Fox Cricket’s lunch break broadcast on day two of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy match between Australia and India at Adelaide.The broadcast clipping on Fox Cricket’s Instagram page has also garnered nearly 50000 views.advertisement(With inputs from PTI)
zoom Hyundai Heavy Industries, Lloyd’s Register, Woodside Energy, Anangel Maritime Services and General Electric Company revealed their intention to commence work on a joint project aimed at exploring the sustainability of technologies for large ships, such as very large ore carriers (VLOCs).This was announced at Gastech 2017, a gas and LNG exhibition and conference being held in Japan from April 4 to 7.The first stage of the joint design project encompasses conventional dual-fuel powered VLOC incorporating proved technologies, while at the next stage the parties will investigate the design and benefits of next-generation LNG-fuelled propulsion systems.A program of work has been agreed by the parties to address design, construction and operational aspects including LNG bunkering. The aim is to create a new generation of cost-efficient, safe, reliable and environmentally optimised design for large ore carriers, according to Lloyd’s Register.Since the International Maritime Organization (IMO) nitrogen oxide and sulfur oxide emission limitations have been introduced and developments in the global supply of gas increased, there is a need for ship designs to evolve to provide further alternatives to traditional oil-fuelled designs, Lloyd’s Register said in a statement.In this regard, the ship propulsion design burning natural gas is considered as the most favorable option and the adoption of gas storage, supply and propulsion technologies is not only environmentally friendly but also provides possibilities for cost-efficient design and operation.
Paris: Ashleigh Barty said that she “certainly” did not think the French Open would be her first Grand Slam title, but with the Roland Garros crown sealed, she will head into the next few majors as one of the favourites and targeting her “next goal” of becoming the world number one. The Australian, the first player from her country to win in Paris since Margaret Court in 1973, took a break from tennis in 2014 to play professional cricket. But the 23-year-old has rapidly risen up the rankings since returning without a world ranking, and will be the world number two on Monday. Also Read – We don’t ask for kind of tracks we get: Bowling coach ArunHer dominant 6-1, 6-3 final victory on Saturday over Czech teenager Marketa Vondrousova will certainly have her earmarked as a player who can consistently compete on the biggest stage. “Certainly not here, that’s for sure. It’s just been an amazing journey that we’ve had over the last few years,” Barty said. “I just tried to tell myself on the court that I may never get this opportunity again, so enjoy it, try and grab it with both hands and go out there and smile. Also Read – Bastian Schweinsteiger announces retirement, could join Germany set-up”It’s new territory for me going deep into Slams, that was the goal. One of our goals is to continue to do that.” Now the number-one ranking is well within her reach, with Naomi Osaka only holding a narrow lead at the summit, and Barty has the Japanese star in her sights. “Obviously, that’s the next point, the next goal, the next situation I can see myself in,” she said. “Being number two in the world is incredible and something I never dreamt of as a child and we’ll keep chipping away and try our best to get to number one.” – ‘Body was shot’ after comeback event – Barty played for the Brisbane Heat cricket team in the Women’s Big Bash League four years ago, playing nine matches with a top score of 39. “No, not at all,” she said of her hopes of winning a Grand Slam when she started her comeback with a surprising run to the semi-finals at Eastbourne in 2016. “I was very nervous (at Eastbourne) because I didn’t even know if I would get in the draw,” she said. “I only got in the draw because it wasn’t full in quallies. It was pretty nice to almost flip into tournament mode straight away… “I remember at the end of that week, my body was shot. It wasn’t used to playing matches again. It was incredible. “To know that it was three years ago — it feels like only yesterday that we were there and in the same breath it also feels like it was a lifetime ago.” Barty lost in three Grand Slam doubles finals alongside Casey Dellacqua in 2013, but had only won two singles matches and lost nine at the big four tournaments when she stepped away five years ago. She did not play another Grand Slam singles main-draw tie until 2017, and only reached the second week of a major for the first time at least year’s US Open. Barty does not think she could have seen such an upturn in her fortunes without taking a hiatus. “Absolutely not. I don’t even know if I’d be sitting here talking to you if I was playing tennis (and) if I didn’t step away,” Barty said. “It’s obviously a part of my life that I needed to deal with, and I feel like it was the best decision that I made at the time, and it was an even better one coming back.” She has not totally turned her back on cricket, though, and said she “would have loved” to have been able to attend Australia’s World Cup match against India at The Oval in London on Sunday.
Bengaluru: Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa on Saturday said some good news was in the offing from the Centre amidan outcry for central aid for effective relief work in the flood-hit areas of the state.The demand for central grants grew louder as Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the city to witness the soft landing of Chandrayaan-2’s Vikram module on the lunar surface from the ISRO centre.ISRO’s plan to soft-land Chandrayaan-2’s Vikram module on the Lunar surface did not go as per script in the early hours of Saturday, with the lander losing communication with ground stations during its final descent. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM'”More than us, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is aware of the flood situation. We are expecting good news from the Centre,” Yediyurappa told reporters in Mysuru when asked about any assurance from Modi on central grants for flood relief.The Chief Minister was in Mysuru, where he made offerings to the Kapila river at Kabini Reservoir, which is brimming.The offering was a mark of gratitude for bringing fortune to the people living on its banks, especially the farming community. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KThe Chief Minister further said he spoke to Modi in Bengaluru too, though he had apprised him of the prevailing flood situation in the state.Noting that Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had toured the flood affected regions, Yediyurappa emphasised that the Centre was well aware of the damage caused by floods.As the floods have caused immense damage, the government was focusing on flood relief for keeping aside other development works, he added. “The flood has caused an immense damage to the state.There is a need to build 1.25 lakh houses in the state. The state government is ready to release grants for the purpose,” Yediyurappa said.As many as 103 Taluks of 22 districts were hit by the floods last month. Approximately 7.5 lakh hectares of land was submerged in water and 82 people lost their lives.The floods in August compelled the government to open 493 relief camps where about 2.10 lakh people were accommodated till the water receded.Just when the government was planning to intensify its flood relief operations, another wave of a possible spate in North Karnataka, parts of coastal Karnataka and Kodagu is set to pose a challenge before the state government.