The Luxembourg Appeal

first_imgMurray Newlands Murray Newlands is an entrepreneur, investor, business advisor and speaker. He is the founder of the How to CEO podcast and you can read his blog at How to Make the Most of Your Software Developer… Reasons to Outsource General Counsel Services f… Related Posts Remote Working Culture: The Facts Business Owne… Tags:#Banking#business#travel Luxembourg is a country which prides itself on its individuality and welcoming mentality. The origin of the nation’s motto says it all:Kommt hier aus Frankräich, Belgie, Preisen —  Come here from France, Belgium, Prussia,Mir wellen iech ons Hémecht weisen              —  We want to show you our fatherlandFrot dir no alle Säiten hin                                  —  Ask in all directionsMir welle bleiwe wat mir sin.                            —  We will stay what we are.This historically derived notion of hospitality and predilection for embracing individuality has undoubtedly played a key role in their current international business model.As a result, it comes as no surprise that Luxembourg’s uniquely inviting policies, coupled with their solid financial reputation make the nation the main attraction for international fintech businesses looking to set up shop in Europe.Luxembourg’s history of welcoming American business goes explicitly as far back as the 1950s when Goodyear, one of the world’s leading tire companies, looked towards the country to establish their first international R&D center. This center is currently the largest one the company owns outside of its headquarters in Akron, Ohio.I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Luxembourg’s current Minister of Finance, Pierre Gramegna,  at the Global Ventures Summit | Silicon Valley Tours the World (GVS) reception in San Francisco, hosted by Parkpine Capital. “Parkpine Capital’s thesis is to invest in scalable tech companies that can immediately scale beyond boarders.We are very excited about GVS Luxembourg as the first stop in Europe, and we look forward to announcing deals in @GVS Luxembourg this winter. Thanks to Nasir Zubairi and Alex Panican at Luxembourg’s Fintech Innovation hub for plugging Parkpine into the ecosystem” – Ahmed Shabana, Managing Partner – Parkpine CapitalWe discussed the initial draw of Luxembourg to American financiers, which started back in the 1960s when numerous American players began swarming the country as a way to circumvent the Equalization Tax imposed by the Kennedy administration.During this interview, Gramegna elaborated on the circumstances surrounding the Kennedy administration’s policies. “If you’re trying to make the life of business difficult, business is always going to find a way around it.” And indeed, they did. “The top 10 investment fund players of the US are all there with huge presence and huge portfolios,” said Gramegna.However, it’s not just America that has a particular affinity for the nation. Luxembourg has 140 banks in total that have established locations within their borders.This number includes not only the most prominent players in America but seven of the largest Chinese banks as well that have headquartered themselves in the country.Luxembourg offers something that very few places in Europe can offer growing fintech companies. For one, they have a wealth of the traditional players. They’re additionally at critical mass in a robust market where companies can have access to 500 million consumers.Luxembourg also happens to have an AAA investment grade, a prime rating currently afforded to just 12 countries in the world. These ratings primarily assess the creditworthiness of an entity and Luxembourg gets the highest of marks by S&P, Moody’s and Fitch.According to Gramegna, this means that fintech businesses can rest assured.“Whatever financial initiative you take, you’re in a country that is extremely safe,” he said. Luxembourg additionally has decades of political continuity that have served as a significant driver in ensuring their warm policies towards international business investment remain solid.“The present government has been very successful and has received the confidence of the people…We have a kind of common ground between all majority parties which ensures there’s going to be no surprises.” The nation is also quickly becoming an international hub for electronic payments.“We have become over the years…the capital of e-payment in the heart of the European Union starting from Paypal and Amazon being there for over 10 years to more recent successes like Rakuten, who is a leader in Japan, or Alipay which is the payment arm of Alibaba of China,” said Gramegna.Luxembourg’s success lies primarily in their generous business model which prides itself on limited bureaucracy.As a result, it is one of the most successful financial centers in Europe. “A company that invests in Luxembourg is not a number, it is a company that we cherish, and we know and that we will, in one way or another, help if it has challenges ahead. And I think that has been a recipe that has worked well.”Luxembourg’s diverse population also contributes to its business-friendliness.They are a multilingual nation at heart; with a high population of French, Germain, Italian, Spanish and English speakers. If you’re an English-speaking business setting up shop in the country, you can file your requests in English even though it is not an official language, nor a policy mandated by law.The country prides itself in its customer service model and its willingness to dive in and help growing businesses.The growing companies are no doubt a significant reason behind the fact that, according to the Finance Minister, more than 50 startups have elected domicile at their Luxembourg House of Financial Technologies. “…What we can offer is not only that we can solve your formalities…but basically introduce you to the business community that is already there,” said Gramegna.“You are not a number. You are a person. You are a company that we cherish, and with that, you are already on the right track.”According to the 2019 Index of Economic Freedom, Luxembourg currently ranks 17th globally. With a financial freedom score of 80, a business freedom score of 68.8 and a financial freedom score of 80, it comes as no surprise that this tiny little nation serves as a major attraction to international business from all over the globe. Serverless Backups: Viable Data Protection for …last_img read more

Utilizing Remote Grades in DaVinci Resolve

first_imgUse Remote Grades is a simple but powerful feature that remains a bit hidden in Resolve’s current form. Let’s learn how to access and use it.Some Clarification First: Use Remote Grades is different than Remote Grading. Use Remote Grades allows us certain workflow shortcuts that will make grading many projects quicker. Remote Grading allows you to control a Resolve suite in another part of the world, enabling your clients to tweak from afar. In this article we’ll be talking about the former. Yes, it’s confusing that both features share the same name yet refer to two different things inside the same software.Utilizing Use Remote GradesStep One: Load a sequence. In the Color tab, right-click any shot and select Use Remote Grades. It’s important to do this at the beginning of the session before performing any grading. If you don’t, any grades you’ve performed will seem to disappear. They haven’t. You’ve just been working in the local grading mode which will not ripple to any other sequences. If you right-click a shot again and select Use Local Grades, your local work comes back.Right-click any shot in the timeline to access the remote grading feature.When you enable remote grades, the timeline changes in subtle ways. You may have gotten used to grouping clips together that share the same setup. In remote grading, some grouping has already been done for you. This may or may not be what you want based on how tightly the material was shot.For an indoor interview, you may be fine if the shooter hasn’t tweaked the exposure during the shot’s duration. If shooters were running and gunning around the set of a reality show, the grade you have for one section of a clip may not apply to another. When you want to apply different grades to shots that have been rippled together, you can unlink the dailies by creating a new version of the shot you want to treat differently.Remote grades are denoted with “(R)” below the thumbnail. You can see when several clips share the same dailies by the red box arrow icon above the shot’s thumbnail. When grading one of these clips, the thumbnails for all joined dailies update like grouped clips. I’ve used this feature for longer-form projects to reduce the number of shots needing grading.Shot 09, 10, and 11 share the same piece of media, denoted by the red arrow icon. The same grades will ripple to the other two shots when one is graded. You can tell you’re in remote mode by the “(R)” underneath the shot’s thumbnail.Remote grades can be powerful in a commercial workflow. It’s common to work on a 30-second ad and a 15-second cutdown of the same material. The client may ask you to play the :15 once the :30 has been graded. Even though both ads exist in different timelines, the grades will ripple across and the :15 will be graded and ready to play. Grouping doesn’t work across multiple timelines, so managing grades would otherwise be a manual process when addressing the cutdown.Remote grades can speed up workflow and grade management. Applying the steps found in this tutorial will allow you to focus on the more interesting creative aspects of the job. Looking for more Resolve tips and tricks? Try these links:Color Grading: Bleach Bypass Looks in DaVinci Resolve Sunkissed and Sepia Looks in DaVinci ResolveThe Isolated Color Look in DaVinci ResolveGot any obscure DaVinci workflow advice that you’d like to share? Let us know in the comment section.last_img read more

3 Things You can Learn about Video Marketing from Wipster’s CEO

first_imgLearn MoreThere’s so much more to learn from Wenlock’s Daily WiP series, so I’d highly recommend browsing this playlist. Video marketing is a dynamic field full of great opportunities and hidden missteps. Wipster’s CEO tells you what you need to know.Cover image via Shutterstock.For the past six months, Rollo Wenlock, the CEO of video review service Wipster, has been creating and sharing a YouTube video series called The Daily WiP. He’s almost hit 100 episodes, so it’s not quite a daily video, but it’s pretty close.There’s a lot to learn from Wenlock, not only because he’s practicing what he’s preaching (creating content, sharing ideas, and not worrying about the polish) but also because he’s also connected to a lot of media agencies, brands, creatives, and influencers — thanks to his role at Wipster.In this post, I’ve highlighted three of the many things I think Wenlock can teach video producers (editors, directors, producers, etc.) about video production and marketing.Offer More Than VideoIf you’re looking to improve your video production game in 2018, then you need to start thinking beyond your standard creative skill set. For example, how can you deliver an end-to-end solution for your clients — one that provides better outcomes for them and better income for you?This is the essential point Wenlock makes before jumping on a plane at the airport in episode 51 (remember sharing ideas is what matters, even if they’re unpolished).This kind of thinking could be especially profitable for anyone working with smaller clients who don’t have their own in-house teams or agency handlers (who might traditionally handle most aspects of the content pipeline after you’ve delivered the final files).Instead, can you take responsibility for the delivery and distribution of the content you’ve created? Wenlock gives the example of asking for the keys to their social media accounts.As Wenlock points out, this opens the door to deepening your client relationships through more regular contact on the basis of metric-based reporting and offers the opportunity to draw out lessons that could apply to their next commissioned video.I know that, as a freelance editor, I most often have no idea if a video turned out to be a success after I’ve handed it over. I just know that my clients come back for more, so something must be working. But really, that’s a very shallow view to take, especially when there is so much data to mine when it comes to audience engagement.If I got to see the viewing stats, how far into the video people watched, the comments, etc., I’d have a lot more information to draw upon for the next video for that particular client.Freelancers Working with BrandsBrands aren’t buying videos from you, they’re buying outcomes. —Rollo WenlockIn episode 21, Wenlock tackles the evolving relationship between brands and freelance creatives when every brand is turning into a content machine.He has some interesting suggestions to make about how you can better serve your clients, from up-skilling their in-house staff to switching to a subscription-based business model.If you can switch to a subscription model for which they pay you a monthly fee, then there’s a chance you might make more money — if you can handle all of your clients’ demands. The client may well be delighted to no longer sign off on per-production budgets. They might prefer to simply receive online content to share with their customers on a daily or weekly basis.There’s definitely a lot more nuance to this, but it’s worth taking the time to consider which of your own clients might be up for testing something like this. (Especially if they have designs on regularly engaging with customers via video.)A blend of subscription-based and per-production clients might bring your freelance business steadier cashflow, as you’ll have regular income to fall back on.The main challenge will be juggling all of your clients’ demands so that they feel like they have constant access to you — while also producing great videos within the subscription price.Look Back Before You Move ForwardIn this episode of the Daily WiP, which Wenlock says marks 80 videos in a row, he makes an important point about auditing your video history.Wenlock’s really talking to the brands producing video content, but as a creative serving these clients, this is a really useful thing to do, too, so you know what your client has done (and its impact) before you arrived.This can help you identify a few different things, which might include the following:Which videos were the most successful?Does an episodic approach work?What are the realistic benchmarks to measure against?By examining these things, you can develop any number of ideas:Topics that resonate with the client’s audience.Whether you should deliver a teaser or follow-up content — or a regular series.How many views or engagements are a realistic benchmark. Looking for more information on online video production? Check out these articles.Choosing the Best Aspect Ratio for Your Video5 Essential Tips for Editing Professional Interview Soundbites5 Ways to Improve Your Workflow with Client FeedbackHow Social Media Has Redefined the Aspect RatioCurate Your Soundtracks on the Go with the New PremiumBeat Applast_img read more

Breaking: Deity Releases Their New Wireless Mic System

first_imgAll images via Deity.Looking for more info on the filmmaking industry? Check these articles out.After MP3: The Past, Present, and Future of Audio CodecsA Look at The Masterclass Sound Editing of “A Quiet Place”Breaking: Aputure Releases Their New Line of Light-Shaping AccessoriesNikon Releases Their First Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera to Take on SonyFour Reasons You Should Be Renting Your Gear Out on ShareGrid Aputure’s hot new microphone company Deity releases the “Deity Connect,” their first wireless mic system with a dual receiver, USB-C ports, and much more.Deity, the microphone brand that spawned from Aputure’s shotgun mic, has decided to throw their hat into the ring and compete with companies like RØDE and Azden with their new system: the “Deity Connect.”So . . . what’s so good about this thing?I know what you’re thinking: “It’s a wireless mic. What features could it have that makes it stand out? Does it transmit sound from a microphone wirelessly? Cool.” Trust me, though. This thing is pretty cool. Here are the specs that put it a cut above its competitors.A Dual-Channel Receiver with Top-Down ErgonomicsRunning two lav mics on your shoot? With the Connect, there’s no more trying to velcro two receivers onto your audio recorder or camera. One receiver can read both transmitters. The receiver (called the “Duo-RX”) is itself a marvel to behold. Its LED panel and interface buttons are on top of the receiver, so you can manipulate all of the settings in your sound bag on your hip without taking the receiver out.If you’re mounting it to your camera, the LED panel and buttons will be facing you instead of the ceiling for easy access. You can also control the settings of the transmitters (called the “BP-TX”) from the Duo-RX, which is a first for a wireless mic system in this price range.USB-C QuickChargeI’m a pretty big fan of USB-C, especially now that most of my devices are shifting over to this port. The big plus of USB-C ports is that you no longer have to keep loads and loads of batteries on hand. We’re not entirely sure about the charge time yet, but if a USB-C port can charge a Pixel phone in under 40 minutes, I’m sure you won’t be waiting around for long to fully charge this thing.2.4-Ghz Band TransmitterThe technical aspects of the Deity Connect speak for themselves:The Deity Connect ecosystem uses a proprietary protocol that was engineered with several mechanisms to ensure a strong audio link while at the same time co-existing peacefully with other 2.4Ghz devices using the same frequency band.The first mechanism is adaptive frequency hopping, automatically hopping before RF interference even happens. At any given time, the BP-TX is hopping between 9 different frequencies. The Deity Connect system is more than just a transmitter and a receiver link – it’s a bi-directional transceiver system that is always scanning and mapping out the whole 2.4Ghz frequency band, coordinating and planning the 70 frequency hops.The second mechanism used to prevent RF Interruption is called Listen-Before-Talk. If RF Interruption is detected or even thought to have taken place, the system will add the audio and data in the next two frequency hops after the ‘bad’ hop. The DUO-RX will then add that extra audio and data back into the stream as if the ‘bad’ never existed, giving you an uninterrupted stream of audio from your transmitter. Deity Connect uses the natural latency in the system as a buffer, allowing it to absorb ‘bad’ hops much like the CD Player Skip Protection feature but in a millisecond flash. This all sounds great, but how much does it cost?As of the publication of this article, we do not have a definitive price point — but according to our sources, the price will be “extremely competitive” and “surprisingly affordable for the quality of the build.”So don’t go out and blow your money on an expensive lav kit; it might be worthwhile to wait and see what the Deity Connect can offer you.If you aren’t too familiar with Deity’s products, they’ve actually got some really amazing gear. Just recently, we received an S-Mic 2 — their flagship shotgun mic — that we will be reviewing in the near future.For more information about the S-Mic 2, check out their trailer:last_img read more

The Problem with Ultimatums

first_imgThe first problem with giving an ultimatum is that it can be accepted. You may believe that you have the power in a negotiation. You might believe that that power can be exercised by giving the other party an ultimatum. But giving an ultimatum allows for the other party’s acceptance. And then, you’re done.Maybe you really believe you should be done negotiating. But giving an ultimatum usually indicates a different, deeper set of problems.Lack of Strong RelationshipsAll things being equal, relationships win. All things being unequal, relationships still probably win.Giving ultimatums often means that you don’t have the relationship necessary to work through the issue and arrive a more positive solution. Strong relationships allow you to work through issues and give the other party the benefit of the doubt. But sometimes you don’t quite have the relationships you need. Before you give an ultimatum, you’re better off asking for an opportunity to work on the relationships, to build trust, and to build a better understanding of the other party’s view.Ultimatums eliminate relationships … they’re a seriously transactional behavior. They aren’t what people with relationships offer each other.Lack of ResourcefulnessYou are a limitless reservoir of ideas.Ultimatums are also a sign that you are in an unresourceful state. Your resourcefulness (your imagination and your creativity) allows you to continually identify new options, new ideas, and new solutions. There is no reason to get to an ultimatum when you can instead work on creating alternatives. You need the trust that relationships are built on to get the time and opportunity to work on these solutions. If you’ve got the relationship, use it to collaborate.Ultimatums eliminate the possibility of identifying and pursuing alternatives. You are a limitless reservoir of ideas. So is the person with whom you are negotiating. The best relationships are built on collaborating to find a way or make a new one.Instead of giving ultimatums, work on the underlying relationship and resourcefulness problems. 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 Nowlast_img read more

Sales Through Influence and Storytelling with Craig Wortmann – Episode 22

first_imgOur Sponsors:Jeffrey Gitomer Sales Seminars – use the code “Anthony” to receive your discount.Sales Gravy University – tell Jeb that Anthony sent you.Resources & Links mentioned in this episodeConnect with Craig on TwitterSales Engine – Craig’s businessCraig Wortman Ebook: How To Communicate With InfluenceDan Pink0985325305 The theme song “Into the Arena” is written and produced by Chris Sernel. You can find it on SoundcloudConnect with AnthonyWebsite: www.TheSalesBlog.comYoutube: Plus: you can use to share this episodeOftentimes we have too much knowledge ~ Sales pro Craig WortmannClick To TweetDiscipline is the cornerstone difference between influencers and those who are notClick To TweetSubscribe toIn the ArenaApple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsAndroidby EmailRSSOr subscribe with your favorite app by using the address below Podcast: Play in new window | Download (57.3MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Email | Google Podcasts | RSSWhen you think of a professor at a business school, you may instantly think of dry, boring lectures. But that’s the last thing you’ll get when speaking with Craig Wortmann. He’s a very sharp sales professional who trains business people how to use the opportunities that sales provides to care for people in a way that serves their needs best. In that, he has come to see that the power of listening and telling stories are two of the most effective ways to do that. On this episode you’re going to hear how Craig has come to those conclusions and how you can learn to use both more effectively in your sales career.How the power of story can increase your sales success, on this episodeClick To TweetIf you’re going to be successful in sales, you need these three things.Through his experiences as a sales professional and as a professor in a prestigious business school, Craig Wortmann has discovered that there are three primary things that salespeople need to be equipped for success: Knowledge, skill, and discipline. Too often the focus is on the knowledge with too little emphasis on skill and the discipline it takes to implement it effectively. Craig unpacks this powerful observation in this chat with Anthony, revealing how you can apply all three to achieve greater success in your sales career.Most things that lead to success are not that hard, we simply don’t do them.Craig Wortmann doesn’t think that success is really all that difficult to achieve because the things that bring success have been demonstrated over and over. The problem is not typically a lack of knowledge, it’s a lack of action. On this episode Craig chats with Anthony about the ways he challenges his students to implement the things they learn and to do so consistently. He believes (and has seen) that consistency in the little things that bring success have massive repercussions on your outcomes. Find out more on this episode.Many things that bring success are not hard, we just don’t do them ~ Craig WortmannClick To TweetThe pause after a prospect’s response is invaluable.One of the important aspects of a sales professional’s personality is the ability to talk. It’s a good thing, but not always the best thing in every situation. For example, when a question has been asked and the prospect answers, it’s imperative that sales pros learn to pause before breaking the silence. In that pause most of the time the prospect will begin to speak again, revealing even more information about their need that would not have been uncovered otherwise. Craig Wortmann talks about the power of the pause and how you can learn to use it to meet your prospect’s needs more effectively, on this episode.You’ll be more successful in sales as you learn to be more human.When Craig Wortmann says that salespeople need to learn how to be “more human,” he means that we need to think less like a salesperson and more like a feeling, caring human being. The basis of all sales is providing solutions to the very real needs and problems of customers. Compassion and care have to be at the root of that if we are going to build the trust needed in order to provide those solutions effectively and consistently. Craig advises that sales professionals stop thinking about “getting the sale” and start thinking about “caring for the person.” The difference that little shift will make is monumental. Find out more about Craig and his philosophies surrounding sales on this episode.We gain access to more actionable information if we keep our mouths shut ~ Craig WortmannClick To TweetOutline of this great episode Who is Craig Wortmann? Why did Craig start his book with the topic of discipline? The power and significance of a handwritten thank you note, and what actually doing it says about you. The framework of knowledge, skill, and discipline. Why listening is so important and how do you do it effectively. The power of the pause for a sales professional. What Craig means by being human as a salesperson. The 4 significant types of stories and why they fuel your sales career. The best way to connect with Craig.last_img read more

Promises Made and Promises Kept

first_img 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 power in a promise isn’t found in the making of that promise. The power of a promise is in keeping it.Lots of people will make commitments with every intention of keeping them. But for all kinds of reasons, they will fail to keep them. They’ll fail to keep promises they make to other people, and worse, they’ll fail to keep the promises they make to themselves.Other people will make promises with no intention of keeping them, or they’ll make promises that they know that they cannot keep. Some have no intention of keeping the promises they make. They are making the promises because they want what they gain by making those promises.Some people are very stingy with their promises. They make very few promises. They aren’t quick to commit to doing anything. They only make promises that they intend to keep, and they keep their promises. These people recognize that the value in the promise is in its being kept, not made.You want to be in this last group, slow to make promises, fast to keep them.last_img read more

U.P. Minister sweeps office

first_imgA day after Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath emphasised on cleanliness, his Cabinet colleague Upendra Tiwari on Thursday picked up a broom to clean his office in the Legislature here, pictures of which went viral on the social media.Armed with a broom and a mop, the Minister swept the floor of his office and the corridor leading to it in the Vidhan Bhawan here, which houses the Legislature.Pictures and video of Mr. Tiwari, who is the Minister of State (Independent charge) for Environment, Water Supply, Land Development and Water Resources and Forest, sweeping the office, cleaning the corridor went viral on the social media with the staff and officials there looking on. A stickler for cleanliness, Mr. Adityanath had administered a sanitation pledge to officials a day after he took over as Chief Minister and asked them to ensure that the pledge is effectively implemented on the lines of Swachh Bharat Mission of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The CM on Wednesday banned the use of pan and tobacco products in schools, colleges, hospitals and other government buildings.last_img read more

27 children killed as school bus plunges into gorge in Himachal Pradesh

first_imgTwenty-seven children were among 30 killed when a private school bus ferrying them home veered off the road and plunged into a 200-foot-deep gorge at Malakwal in Nurpur in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh on Monday evening.At least 13 students from Classes I to V died on the spot, while the others succumbed to injuries at Nurpur hospital. The driver of the bus and two school teachers were also killed.Toll may mountThe death toll could go up as there were about 40 children in the bus, said Nurpur SDM Husain Siddique. The bus belonged to Vazir Ram Singh Pathania Memorial School in Nurpur.At least 13 seriously injured persons were rushed to a hospital in Pathankot where one of them died of injuries, an official said. The condition of the other injured was also critical, he said. Most of the deceased belonged to nearby villages.Senior Cabinet Minister Krishan Kapoor and local MLA Rakesh Pathania rushed to the spot to monitor the rescue operation.Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur announced an immediate relief of ₹5 lakh to the next of kin of each deceased.A magisterial probe was ordered and preliminary enquiries suggested the driver lost control of the bus, an official said.(With PTI inputs)last_img read more

Hardik Patel a wild card in run-up to Madhya Pradesh Assembly elections

first_imgDays after Congress president Rahul Gandhi promised a farm loan waiver to farmers of Madhya Pradesh, Hardik Patel, Patidar (Patel) leader from Gujarat, on Sunday announced a month-long yatra in the State where Assembly polls are to be held by the year-end. “I will start the yatra next month from Amarkantak, the place from where the Narmada river originates. This month-long journey, in two phases, will pass through about 100 Assembly seats of Bundelkhand, Mahakaushal and Malwa-Nimad regions of Madhya Pradesh,” Mr. Patel said during a media interaction in Indore.Since last Thursday, Mr. Patel has been on a five-day tour of the State under the banner of the Kisan Kranti Sena (KSS) that he heads.“We want to make the youth and farmers aware during this tour. We will not talk about parties or their candidates. But we will appeal to the voters to scrutinise the work of the sitting MLAs of their areas,” he added. Gujarat modelBut Mr. Patel’s presence has prompted many in political circles to question if the 25 year-old leader is doing a repeat of his Gujarat act: help the Congress break into the Patidar community of Madhya Pradesh who have traditionally supported and voted for the BJP.An estimated six million plus voters from the Patidar community are there in Madhya Pradesh and the bulk of them are in the Malwa region. “The Patel votebank is sizeable in places such as Mandsaur, Ratlam, Indore and anyone calling for scrutiny of the ruling government will help,” said a senior Congress leader.The Patels in MP, belonging to the Kurmi caste are part of the Other Backward Classes (OBC) and can be a determining factor in 30 of the 230 Assembly seats.Most important, support from the community provides the Congress an opportunity to counter Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s OBC poster boy image. To build its credentials among OBCs, during the Rajya Sabha elections in March, the Congress nominated Rajmani Patel, an associate of former Chief Minister Arjun Singh. But most believe the turning point in the Patidar community’s relationship with the ruling BJP was the 2017 farmers’ protest in Mandsaur as four of the six killed in police action were from the community. The Congress denies a hand in Mr. Patel’s visit. “This reflects the distress the farmers of Madhya Pradesh are facing. One has to see how this will evolves and plays out politically,” Congress spokesperson Tom Vadakkan said.(With PTI inputs)last_img read more

Haryana directive on flood safety

first_imgA senior Haryana bureaucrat on Sunday directed the officers concerned to complete all kinds of arrangements to avoid dangers of possible floods during the monsoon season before June 30. Haryana’s Additional Chief Secretary Keshni Anand Arora chaired a meeting of the officers of district administration and other departments in Yamunanagar district. She directed the officers to simultaneously coordinate with the Central Ground Water Board and Meteorological Department.last_img

Right time to invest in Maharashtra, Fadnavis tells investors

first_imgAcknowledging Maharashtra’s contribution to India’s improved rankings in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis today urged investors to give the State an opportunity. Speaking in Ahmednagar after inaugurating one of the State’s largest technology parks, Mr. Fadnavis said this is “right time” to invest in Maharashtra. “The most important thing is that we have skilled manpower. Now, in EoDB rankings we (India) rank 77th which was 142nd earlier. Maharashtra has contributed immensely to this improved ranking. We are here to solve all your issues and this is the right time to invest in Maharashtra,” he told a gathering of leading businessmen while laying the foundation stone for the ₹1,600 crore Midea Technology Park at Supa MIDC Industrial Park on Saturday.Mr. Fadnavis appreciated the State’s achievement in bringing in more Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into the country. “With various business-friendly initiatives now, Maharashtra is achieving new heights. Of the total FDI that comes to India, 49% comes to Maharashtra. I am confident that with Midea Technology Park there will be more employment opportunities,” he said while highlighting the achievements of the Make in India initiatives. “Maharashtra is the growth driver of the country’s economy. We have taken several initiatives to create a conducive ecosystem which has now made the State a favourite investment destination. This will help in our journey of making Maharashtra a hub for manufacturing, production, and research,” he said.The technology park complex is being set up in Supa Parner on 68 acres acquired in 2018. The Midea group, a Fortune 500 company, has earmarked ₹1,350 crore over five years for manufacturing a range of consumer home appliances, air conditioners, refrigerators, washing machines, water purifiers, water heaters, commercial air conditioners, and compressors, plans for which have been finalised in a phased manner. The founder of Midea Group, Xiangjian He, said, “We are happy to begin work on our new facility in India. True to the Midea spirit of pioneering and sharing, this technology park will create leading products for India and transform the company for the future.”last_img read more

Politics takes centre stage as DelhiAssembly celebrates silver jubilee

first_imgA day after the BJP and the Congress decided to boycott the Delhi Assembly’s 25th anniversary celebrations, the Aam Aadmi Party on Friday hit back, accusing them of indulging in “petty” politics.To mark the 25th anniversary of its first sitting on December 14, 1993, the State Assembly has planned an event at its premises on Saturday. Though senior BJP leader L.K. Advani was to be the chief guest at the event, he backed out on Tuesday citing personal reasons, according to Speaker Ram Niwas Goel.AAP spokesperson Saurabh Bharadwaj on Friday said the silver jubilee celebration was a tribute to Delhiites as the Assembly was formed after years of struggle.“At this juncture, it is important to place on record the petty-minded attempts by some political forces to belittle the successful evolution of the Delhi Assembly,” he said, accusing the BJP and the Congress of adopting “cheap tactics” and making “loaded political statements” about a non-political commemorative event.Without naming parties or individuals, Mr. Bharadwaj was alluding to Leader of the Opposition Vijender Gupta and Delhi Congress president Ajay Maken, both of whom had issued statements on Thursday about boycotting the function. “The two parties, one which barely has any presence in the Assembly and the other which lives in history, fail to understand the dynamics of a changing Delhi, which is now truly aspirational and the Assembly represents that progressive change,” Mr. Bharadwaj said. Mr. Gupta termed Mr. Bharadwaj’s remark a symptom of the AAP’s “frustration” at not being able to exercise its “supremacy”. “This arrogant allegation is precisely the reason behind the Opposition’s decision to boycott tomorrow’s programme. The AAP wants to exercise supremacy at any cost by disregarding all rules and regulations,” he said. Mr. Maken had earlier said that the celebrations should have been apolitical, with an all-party celebration committee planning the event.last_img read more

Seven northeastern States lag behind in toilets for schoolgirls

first_imgAn average of 34.96% schools in the eight northeastern states had usable toilets for girls in 2018 compared to 36.66% in 2016, data analysed from the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2018 report revealed.With 75.7% schools – a marginal increase from 75% in 2016 – having usable toilets for girls, Sikkim performed better than the national average of 66.4% last year. But the State’s show was overshadowed by the less-than-satisfactory performance by seven other states in the region.Nagaland was the next best State with 47%, an increase from 40.9% in 2016, followed by Mizoram with the highest percentile increase from 25.3% to 34.9% in these two years.The other five states performed poorly, the steepest drop for Assam being 38.3% from 54.2% in 2016. Manipur had 9.1% schools having fewer usable toilets for girls, followed by Meghalaya (8.6%), Arunachal Pradesh (7.6%) and Tripura (7.3%).J&K suffers too The national averages hide major variations across the states, with deficiencies particularly marked in Jammu and Kashmir apart from most of the north-eastern states, the ASER report, prepared by NGO Pratham, said. In Jammu and Kashmir, 48.2% schools had toilets for girls last year, up from 46.7% in 2014 (data for J&K for 2016 was not available). The State provided drinking water in 54.6% schools in 2018, better than the average 44.4% schools in the north-eastern states.The average for the Northeast last year was poorer than the 44.99% in 2016. Sikkim, Assam and Mizoram had an average 68.53% schools that had drinking water facilities in schools. The national average was 74.8%.According to the report, 2018 completed eight years of compulsory schooling for the first cohort of students to benefit from Right to Education Act 2010.National picture“Nationally, substantial improvements are visible over this eight-year period in the availability of many school facilities mandated by RTE. The fraction of schools with usable girls’ toilets doubled, reaching 66.4% in 2018. The percentage of schools with books, other than textbooks, available rose from 62.6% to 74.2% between 2016-18.last_img read more

Cyclone Fani: Odisha government announces financial compensation for affected families

first_img For Cuttack, Kendrapara and Jagatsinghpur districts, which were moderately affected, ₹500 and an additional one month quota of rice will be provided to people in these districts.“In all the affected districts, one month additional pension and house building assistance as per relief code that is ₹95,100 for fully damaged structures, ₹5200 for partially damaged structures and ₹3200 for minor damages will be made available,” he said.The houses completely damaged will be reconstructed under housing schemes expeditiously. Loss of agricultural and horticultural crops and animal fisheries will be assessed and compensated accordingly, Mr. Patnaik said, adding that the plantation will be taken up in mission mode soon after the relief and restoration.The cries for water and power got shriller with the State government facing a huge task to restore normalcy. Puri pummeled by cyclone Fani, suffers colossal damage The Odisha government on Sunday announced additional one month quota of rice and ₹1000 to families affected by cyclone Fani, as the situation remained critical 48 hours after the storm made landfall in coastal Odisha.“The district of Puri and parts of Khordha have been severely affected. For all families covered under food security, an additional one month quota of rice plus ₹1000 and polythene will be provided,” Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said.Also Readlast_img read more

Odisha fishermen in a fix

first_imgThe traditional fishermen of Odisha are in a fix as they have lost their boats and nets in cyclone Fani and face the diminished scope of professional employment in other coastal States during the summer months. According to Prasanna Behera, president of the Odisha Traditional Fish Workers’ Union (OTFWU), a large number of the cyclone-devastated fishermen may be forced to become menial migrant labourers during the next two months. The Phailin cyclone of 2013 that had its landfall near Gopalpur in Ganjam district had led to large scale migration of fishermen looking for work outside the State. But Phailin occurred in October, when the scope of employment in the marine fishery sector was high in other coastal States.Migration for jobsDuring the summer months fishing activity is low in States of the eastern coast, which will reduce the employment scope for Odisha fishermen, said Mr. Behera. It is expected that some of them may migrate to the western coast looking for fishing sector jobs in Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Goa. Others may be compelled to earn a living as menial workers in other sectors.According to initial government assessment, 6,389 traditional marine fishing boats, 7,240 nets, 2,524 fish ponds of area 587 hectare, three fishing harbours, six fish landing centres, and five fish farms have been damaged by Fani in Odisha. According to OTFWU, the number of damaged boats and nets will be higher as information is yet to reach it from several areas. Fani has affected the traditional fishermen of Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara districts and those living on the banks of Chilika lake in Khurda, Ganjam and Puri districts. The demand for marine fish, prawn and crab has again started to rise in the Odisha markets. But the fishermen of Ganjam, who were least affected by Fani are not able to gain from it.According to N.Taleya, a fisherman community leader of Nulia Nuagaon in Ganjam district, the ban on mechanised fishing from April 15 to May 31 for the breeding season still continues in Ganjam coast. Due to this they are only able to fish with their traditional catamarans. The catch is not sufficient to get good income, although demand is high as fishing is almost nil in the Fani-devastated coastal districts.With fall in fish catch, women of the marine fisherman community have also lost their livelihood. They are no more able to process and trade marine products. Samudram, a federation of Women Self Help Groups, is doubtful about producing 500 kg of processed marine products per month in the coming days. There was a time when it was producing 3,000kg of produce every month. As cashew jungles have been destroyed, these fisherwomen have also lost the income they were getting from cashew plucking.Only community-based measures through organisations such as Samudram and WSHGs can provide some respite to the devastated traditional fishermen of Odisha coast, said W. Babaji, a marine fisherman community leader.last_img read more

Protected areas not safe from light pollution

first_imgProtected areas, such as nature reserves and national parks, are thought to provide a refuge for wildlife, but according to a new study, many of these areas are not safe from light pollution. Thanks to increasing urbanization, many nocturnal skies are no longer dark. Although helpful for humans, artificial night lighting can impact nocturnal wildlife by disrupting natural reproductive cycles, disorienting migratory species, and increasing the risk of predation. To assess how well protected areas shelter wildlife from light pollution and preserve natural darkness, researchers analyzed satellite images of Earth collected at night by the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program between 1992 and 2010. Individual pixels, representative of approximately 3 square kilometers, were assigned a number based on their degree of illumination, ranging from 0 (complete darkness) to 63 (brightly lit urban areas). More than 170,000 unique protected areas were identified using the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s World Database on Protected Areas. The degree of nighttime illumination was then compared with unprotected areas for each continent over the 2 decades. Although 86% of the world’s landmasses remain in relative darkness at night, darkness declined slightly in all regions over the study period. Protected areas were still generally darker than unprotected areas, yet protected areas experienced widespread increases in nighttime light exposure between 1992 and 2010, the team reports online this month in Conservation Biology. In Europe, Asia, and South and Central America, up to 42% of protected areas have experienced significant increases in nighttime lighting. A smaller percentage of protected areas in Europe (24%) and North America (17%) exhibited high levels of nighttime lighting in all years. Based on their findings, researchers propose reduced lighting zones be established around existing refuges to preserve their natural darkness and biodiversity.last_img read more

Indians Among 99 Foreigners Arrested in Crackdown on Illegal Migrants in Thailand

first_imgThe Thai Police searched 118 spots across the country in a nationwide raid for illegal immigrants and arrested 99 foreigners on April 26. Among those arrested were nationals from India, Myanmar, Germany and Laos, the Bangkok Post reported.The operation, called X-ray Outlaw Foreigner, marked 118 premises, 74 of which were international schools, Tourist Police Deputy Commissioner Maj. Gen. Surachet Hakpal said, according to the report.More emphasis was laid on international schools because foreigners staying illegally in Thailand most often approached these schools as language teachers, added Hakpal.The most common charge against the arrested foreign nationals is overstaying in Thailand after expiry of their visas. According to Hakpal, most foreigners caught on this charge belong to countries like India, Germany and Myanmar. Another common charge against them is that of illegal entry, with people from India, Myanmar and Laos being the main accused.The areas that were searched included some top tourist hubs like Pattaya city in Chon Buri province, Hat Yai district of Songkhla, and Koh Samui, since foreign criminals are often found posing as tourists, the report added.Some of the foreign nationals held by the police are associated with crimes such as romance scams, credit card forgery and illegal drugs. The police said that these people would be blacklisted.Earlier in April, the police took into custody 66 foreigners after conducting another set of raids as part of the nationwide sweep on illegal immigrants.“Those who’ve overstayed are mostly Indians and Pakistanis, while several Laos and Vietnamese were among those who committed theft and crossed the border illegally,” Maj. Gen. Prasert Ngoenyuang, commander of tourist police had said, as per Khaosod English. While 51 of these foreigners were arrested for entering the country illegally, the 11 other foreign nationals were charged for overstaying their visas. “They will be deported to their homelands and blacklisted so they cannot come back to commit crimes in Thailand again,” Hakpal was quoted as saying in the report.The police have conducted over 3,000 similar raids and arrested as many as 868 people in the past couple of months, Hakpal added.Following a nationwide search conducted on March 14 and 15 this year by tourist, immigration and police agencies, 117 foreigners, including Indians, were detained in Bangkok for allegedly breaking the law.“X-Ray Outlaw Foreigner” is an ongoing police effort that began in February this year in Thailand to crack down on foreign nationals who are involved in activities such as entering the country illegally, working without a permit and testing positive for drugs. Related ItemsbangkokThailandlast_img read more